14 Jan Guilt By Association – FT#17
The Association Fallacy occurs when a person or information source is dismissed because of their connection to, or their similarity to another person or source which is already viewed negatively for some established reason.
The examples used in this episode will be coming soon.
Here are the links to the stories we talked about
AOC is not a logical fallacy: http://nymag.com/intelligencer/2019/01/alexandria-ocasio-cortez-70-top-tax-rate-60-minutes-green-new-deal.html
And finally, some things we really don’t have time to talk about:
- As of this recording, the government is entering its third week of partial shutdown, with 800,000 workers either furloughed or forced to work without pay. Trump took over Primetime TV on Tuesday to lie about why the border wall is needed, and Chuck Schumer and Nancy Pelosi shared a podium-for-one immediately afterwards to call Trump a liar, followed by almost every network and cable news show fact-checking Trump’s lies.
- The most Altruistic President Ever ™ Donald Trump took to all the major networks to broadcast an appeal to help solve the humanitarian crisis gathering on the southern border, Acting as a kinda orange-headed UNICEF his office sent an email to all his supporters both before and after his presidential broadcast to the nation giving them the opportunity to feel good about themselves, bypass those pesky Democrats and donate to secure the border. Fine print combers over at MSNBC helpfully read out the actual bottom line on Trump’s behalf which revealed that any funds raised would go to the Make America Great Again Committee – which oddly is not a border security organisation but is Trump’s re-election campaign fund. Can I just say again that this was done by the actual president of the actual united States using a national multi-channel broadcast to actually deceive the nation – this isn’t a Nixon-after-dark-at-arm’s-length job – this was in plain sight people in plain sight!
- Trump is always claiming that he’s achieved things nobody else could, and for once, I agree with him. Because of the shutdown, some people have actually got some sympathy for the TSA. Forced to work without pay and not even knowing if their health insurance payments are being made, TSA officers have been calling in sick in record numbers, and are now starting to resign, which just makes me think of Willy Wonka saying “Stop. Don’t. Come back”. Some say this is making air travel less safe, but in a 2015 Homeland Security report, undercover officers were able to smuggle weapons and explosives past TSA officers 95% of the time, so to be honest, it probably doesn’t make that much difference.
- The United States Coast Guard offered guidance on “Managing your finances during a furlough” to their 50,000-odd currently unpaid staff – it gives clear-eyed financial advice and practical suggestions on dealing with the sudden, unanticipated loss of a salary for an uncertain amount of time. Including in “Step Four: Supplement Your Income,” including babysitting, dog walking, and selling your stuff to make ends meet.” Just when I was expecting thousands of very tired dogs, busloads of sleeping babies ferried to the beach and back and loads of rubber dingies and waders appearing on ebay the Coast Guard took the tip sheet down from its website as it did not “reflect the Coast Guard’s current efforts to support our workforce during this lapse in appropriations.” Okay then!
- The FDA has suspended all routine inspections of domestic food facilities during the shutdown, but how important can that be, really? I mean is says here that the inspections just watch out for hygiene, bug infestations and harmful contamination, so you’ll probably be fine. Or maybe just stick to mac n cheese for a while.
- Within the Disney-esque, Michael Jackson Neverland Ranch-style world that is Trump’s head all the ex-presidents freely admit he’s doing the right thing about the wall – indeed Trumps says “Some of them have told me that we should have done it.” Rushing to give Trump’s story creedence Carter said: “I have not discussed the border wall with President Trump, and do not support him on the issue,” Bush said he never discussed a border wall with Mr Trump and adds “I don’t like him” Clinton’s spokesman point out that “they’ve not talked since the inauguration.” and Obama is only on record as having said “A nation ringed by walls would only imprison itself,” Does Trump not know that a) we can check these things and b) other people can and often do speak for themselves? Oh he means all the dead ones that only he can talk to – sorry Donald my mistake!!
- New congresswoman Rashida Tlaib spoke at an event in a bar last week and ended by saying “we’re gonna impeach the motherfucker”. Much clutching of Republican pearls followed, with the President saying she had dishonored her family. Look, this is locker room talk. It’s very embarrassing, but it’s just locker room talk. She will knock the hell out of ISIS. Wait, what are we talking about? Oh yes, the man who was having sex with a porn star while his wife looked after their newborn son thinks Rashida Tlaib dishonored her family by saying a bad word.
- Paul Manafort’s lawyers are almost as good as Trump’s. They redacted some details in a document they filed last week by simply changing the background colour to match the text. This allowed basically anyone with a computer to un-redact the relevant sections, which turned out to be evidence of Manafort sharing internal polling data with Russian operatives during the campaign. This looks so much like collusion that even Fox News have decided that if it walks like a duck and quacks like a duck it’s probably a witch and should be burned. Or something.