28 Jan Argument from Ignorance – FT#18
The Argument from Ignorance fallacy describes a situation where someone claims a proposition to be true simply because it has not yet been proven to be false. Obviously if an outlandish claim is made and it cannot immediately be proven to be false that does not mean it should automatically be assumed to be true.
Our guest on this week’s episode is Marsh from The Good Thinking Society. He’s also the host of the excellent podcasts Be Reasonable and Skeptics With A K.
The examples used in this episode will be coming soon.
Here are the links to the stories we talked about
And finally, some things we really didn’t have time to talk about:
- We’re in day 33 of the partial government shutdown and the polls aren’t looking good for Trump. According to Politico, Trump’s disapproval rating is now at a record low of at 57%, with 40% approving of his work. Meanwhile, only 31% of Americans are confident that Russia doesn’t have compromising information on Trump. But the part of the poll I find most interesting is this question
- In a couple of deleted scenes from the family tit-for-tat psycho-drama The War of the Roses movie, Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi wrote to Trump, saying because of security concerns he would have to wait until the government reopens before he can deliver the State of the Union address; alternatively, twisting the knife, he could choose to submit his speech in writing, she said. Yeah right! So he in turn cancelled her access to military transport to fly a group of lawmakers to Afghanistan to visit American troops there, of course in the process he unwittingly – how else does he do things, blew the security cover “significantly increasing danger” to lawmakers, the troops, and other government officials supporting the trip which has been postponed indefinitely – way to get everyone on your side Donald!
- Buzzfeed News reported that Michael Cohen told the Special Counsel’s office that Trump personally told him to lie to Congress about Trump Tower Moscow. After several hours of reporters saying just how damn impeachable this is, Mueller’s office released a rare statement saying that the Buzzfeed story was “not accurate” without clarifying which bits they disagree with. Buzzfeed stands by their story, so all we can do while we wait for the truth to come out is take a quiz to find out what kind of pasta we are. I’m fusilli.
- And I’m conchiglietta.!” In an interview to help clear up the situation surrounding the BuzzFeed News report that Trump instructed Michael Cohen to lie to Congress, Rudy Giuliani told The New Yorker he believed the report was incorrect, because, and I quote “I have been through all the tapes, I have been through all the texts, I have been through all the e-mails, and I knew none existed.” then adding “I shouldn’t have said tapes. There were no texts, there were no e-mails, and the president never told him to lie.” “No tapes. Well, I have listened to tapes, but none of them concern this.” – With help like this who needs colluders!!
- In 2014, Michael Cohen hired an IT firm called RedFinch Solutions to rig online polls including a CNBC poll to identify the top 100 business leaders in the US. Despite writing a script which voted repeatedly for Trump, The Donald didn’t even make the top 100. Cohen used the firm again to set up a Twitter account called womenforcohen which tweeted exclusively about how great and sexy Cohen is. I think that’s the best part of the story, but it might be that when the owner of RedFinch met Cohen in Trump Tower to collect his $50,000 fee, he was handed a blue walmart bag containing $12,000 and a boxing glove that Cohen claimed had been worn by a Brazilian MMA fighter.
- Despite being the Chief denigrator of the media as horrible fake news merchants Trump’s own Instagram account has photoshopped a picture of him from his own Facebook account – Trump’s right shoulder has been slimmed down and his face is looking thinner. He’s also gotten a haircut—well, a digital one anyway—and Trump’s fingers have been made slightly longer. Seriously! Well if you can’t beat them… and do you know what Donnie – you can’t!
- Remember those goalposts that Rudy Giuliani likes to move around about who colluded, and whether collusion is a crime. Well, Rudy fired them into orbit this week when he claimed he never said there was no collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia, in an interview with Chris Cuomo. He went on to claim Trump had never said it either. Basically their target audience at this stage is that guy from Memento.
- And of course we have accepted the invitation to dine at the White House – after all there’s a Trump hotel over the road who can do the catering cos the Oval Office catering staff are furloughed it’ll be great. I’m looking at the menu what’s on offer – 300 no wait a 1,000 hamberders, and then smocked salmon, washed down with covfefe, the lukewarm nature of the food was of course offset by the warmth of the president’s integrity, humility and self-effacement. Yeah right and monkeys fly out of my butt – 1,000 monkeys paid for by me!!