19 Nov Post Hoc Ergo Propter Hoc – FT#13
Latin for ‘after this, therefore because of this’, this fallacy is committed when people confuse correlation for causation and assume that because one event followed another, the former was caused by the latter. Of course, while this may be the case, it is by no means certain. The two events may be completely independent for example, or there may be a third element that in fact caused both events.
The examples used in this episode will be coming soon.
Here are the links to the stories we talked about
Incompetence is not a logical fallacy: https://www.snopes.com/news/2018/10/30/comically-flawed-attempt-smear-robert-mueller-explained/
And finally, some things we really didn’t have time to talk about:
- There was an election recently. Don’t know if you caught that. And despite Trump’s claim that the result was “very close to complete victory” for the GOP, in fact, The Democrats had their best midterms since Watergate, picking up at least 34 House seats and flipping at least seven governor’s mansions to blue.
- Victories included the first two Muslim women elected to congress…
- The first two Native American women elected to congress…
- The first openly gay governor, and the first openly bisexual senator…
- And the most women and people of colour ever to serve in the House.
- Best of all, though, Wisconsin’s Republican governor Scott Walker lost by 1.2% to Tony Evers, and was prevented from asking for a recount by a law that he signed in 2016 restricting the criteria for recounts. Also we can confirm Dennis Hof, the brothel owner who died last month and whom we mentioned in Ep 11, defeated Democratic educator Lesia Romanov on Tuesday in the race for Nevada’s 36th Assembly District. County officials will appoint a Republican to take his place in the seat. As NBC News’s website points out “The 36th is a sprawling assembly district that touches both California and Utah and includes the Nevada National Security Site where nuclear weapons were once tested.” Far be it from me to go all Post Hoc fallacy – but that probably explains it!
- Some races are still undecided, with recounts, postal ballots and provisional ballots still being counted in some very close elections, and Republicans are suing to get vote counting stopped in Utah and Florida, and claiming in many places that continuing to count votes amounts to election fraud. Trump called for Florida to go with the election night tally, ignoring all postal votes including those of US servicemen overseas. But other than that I’m sure he hasn’t disrespected veterans at all this week.
- Well, there was that one thing where he went to France for the 100th anniversary of the end of WW1 and cancelled a trip to a military cemetery because it was raining. And then a couple of days later he cancelled a trip to Arlington National Cemetery on Veteran’s Day. Because it was raining again. Never mind bullets in Dieppe Monsieur Macron, do you know how expensive Donnie’s hair is?
- While in France, Trump did get to see his old friend Vladimir Putin, but then Macron had the seating arrangement changed so that Trump and Putin weren’t sitting together at dinner. Seriously, my wife is a teacher and she tells me that sometimes you do have to separate naughty children to stop them colluding.
- Even Fox News are in support of CNN suing Trump over the White House suspending journalist Jim Acosta’s press access. Acosta asked Trump a pertinent question but an intern tried to take the microphone from him when he followed up by kinda asking that the President actually answer it rather than bluster some baloney. Sarah Huckabee Sanders later claimed Acosta “put his hands on” the intern. To prove it the White House put out a doctored version of a clip from the news coverage, readily detectable as doctored cos it’d gone out live already. Their clip accentuated the immense Karate chop that Acosta clearly inflicted. Bruce Lee is suing from beyond the grave for the use of an overblown yelping sound effect from Enter the Dragon, but there’s no truth in the rumour that Trump is suing Sanders for breach of the copyright he holds for “putting hands on” women.
- Mitch McConnell, a man who was clearly in a teleporter accident involving a turtle and a giant bag of hypocrisy, wrote an op ed for Fox News asking “Will Dems work with us, or simply put partisan politics ahead of the country?” Twitter users promptly trampled each other to death in the rush to be the first to yell “Merrick Garland!”
- In unexpectedly *cough cough* regretfully and voluntarily stepping down from the post of Attorney General, Jeff Sessions wrote “Dear Mr President, at your request I am submitting my resignation,” Whilst there’s really no need to ask why Trump *cough* fired *cough* him perhaps Sessions himself summed it up as he continued in his letter – “Most importantly, in my time as attorney general, we have restored and upheld the rule of law.” Sorry Jeff with an appalling attitude like that you gotta go!