Accident Fallacy – FT#126

Accident Fallacy – FT#126

Show Notes

The Accident Fallacy is committed when someone applies a general rule to a specific situation which is actually an exception to the rule.


We started out by discussing this clip of Trump:

Then we talked about this Trump tweet:

And we followed that up with this amazing math from Charlie Kirk:

Mark’s British Politics Corner

Mark talked about these clips of Boris Johnson in a Privileges Committee hearing about whether he misled Parliament:

Fallacy in the Wild

In the Fallacy in the Wild we looked at this clip from Thelma and Louise:

Then we discussed this clip from The Little Mermaid:

And we finished by talking about this clip from 9-1-1:


Fake News

Here are the statements from this week’s Fake News game:

  1. This was not just extreme carelessness with classified material, which is still totally disqualifying. This is calculated, deliberate, premeditated misconduct, followed by a cover-up, that included false statements and lies to Congress, the media and the American People.
  2. There is no excuse, none whatsoever, for treating classified information in such a negligent – and it is negligent. It’s totally unacceptable and if it was anyone else they would already be in jail, it’s not even a question. You leak classified information, you go to jail.
  3. And there were many other cases where documents were leaked, even accidentally. It’s so – classified documents are so important that even if they are leaked accidentally… Now, Hillary Clinton leaked more classified documents than any human being, I believe, in the history of the United States of America.

Mark got it right this week, and is still on 47%


A Federal Indictment is not a logical fallacy

We talked about the 37 count Federal criminal indictment against Trump in Miami. You can read the full indictment here.


The stories we really didn’t have time to talk about

  • After Trump’s indictment was announced last Thursday, one of his lawyers, Jim Trusty, was on CNN defending Trump, but then on Friday the indictment was unsealed and presumably Jim and fellow attorney John Rowley eventually got around to reading it, because they immediately resigned. They released a statement saying that now the case has been filed, this is a logical time to step aside. Which might make sense if they weren’t both experienced trial lawyers and someone more suitable was stepping out of the wings. But instead, Trump was left with just a few days to hire a new lawyer before his Tuesday arraignment. Sure, he could have gone with Lindsey Halligan, who is a member of the Florida Bar, but her only trial experience so far is as an insurance lawyer in landlord/tenant disputes, and two other members of Trump’s legal team told the Daily Beast that Trump only keeps her around because she’s pretty. So Trump spent Monday meeting with lawyers to gauge their interest in working for him, but for some reason, none of them wanted a client who refuses to take legal advice, repeatedly asks his attorneys to break the law for him, pathologically admits to crimes every time he speaks, and whose previous legal counsel have ended up unpaid, disbarred, or in prison. So his local counsel for Tuesday’s arraignment was former Florida Solicitor General Chris Kise. Avid listeners might remember Kise’s name from episode 110, Appeal to Freedom, when we reported that having just joined Trump’s legal team he had been side-lined in the Mar-a-Lago documents case for making the mistake of suggesting Trump cooperate with the Department of Justice. I wonder if he’s got the balls to tell Trump “I told you so”.
  • Kari Lake it seems is lining up for the Gran’ Ole Opry with a new Country sounding song from the makers of Trump’s Justice for All song featuring the Jan 6 prisoners choir. Whilst it doesn’t have the political punch of say CassetteBoy with his astonishingly witty and bitingly sharp satirical cutups of British government ministers set to familiar backing tracks, what am I saying, witty, satirical, bitingly sharp? This is the right wing discovering Max Headroom about 40 years late, wielding a thick bludgeon (no offence Kari – (no actually I do mean it!)) to try to blame everything that’s wrong with the country in their eyes, i.e. Trump’s not in power, on Biden. With the somewhat fallacious argument that “I can’t afford groceries, I can’t afford gas,  81 million votes my ass”, the song samples a line from Kari Lake’s 2020 speech. An Oscar Wildean ribald rapier riposte it’s not. “It’s all gone to shit, how could Biden possibly have got 81 Million votes?”’ Whilst trying to take the piss out of Biden, Kari and her song producers certainly seem to be taking the O out of country. And the record producers are again taking the Trumpbase for a ride. Although a ringing endorsement from just the kind of confused, self-confessed conspiracy-theorist soccer mom QAnonsense we’ve come to know: robinsue – posted a comment on Forbes about the song “I didn’t see that kind of public support for Biden in 2020 and I definitely don’t see it today. I agree, 81 million votes my ass!!! and still no one is willing to show the proof of that claim, but plenty of proof is available to show those numbers really were pulled out of thin air. ghost votes!!” No evidence either that the song will do well but with a potential howevermanymillionmorevotersyouwannacomeupwiththatvotedforTrump like that in sales, they’re laughing all the way to the bank if not the Billboard charts!
  • The true essence of Trump’s Presidency was neatly captured in objectively the funniest thing that’s ever happened, the Four Seasons Total Landscaping press conference. But if you’re looking for a day which sums up Trump’s approach to politics in general, you would be hard pushed to come up with a better one than Tuesday. He woke up at his own golf club in Miami and went to the Federal Courthouse, where he sat petulantly with his arms crossed for 45 minutes while other people talked about crimes he’s committed. After he left the Courthouse, he visited a restaurant where he surrounded himself with supporters who sang him Happy Birthday and prayed for him. Then he loudly announced “food for everyone!” and left without paying for food for anyone. Finally, he flew back to his golf club in New Jersey where he surrounded himself with supporters who listened to him whine and lie for half an hour about the crimes he committed and how unfair it is that other people aren’t being charged instead of him. Then he asked them for money.
  • In good old land of the free-est Florida where rich, powerful and white Ron DeSantis last year announced to the nation that he had arrested several people who illegally voted in defiance of re-enfranchisement laws — though the cases mainly fell apart before being dismissed, has done some similarly otherwise-factually-indistinguishable discrimination. State Attorney Bill Gladson’s office confirmed in May 2022 that six offenders voted in Lake County — but that they couldn’t be prosecuted because their fraud wasn’t wilful after they were ‘mistakenly given voter registration cards. However, mere months later 20 ex-felons living in majority Democrat counties were quickly jailed after being arrested by DeSantis’ new election police force, the Office of Election Crimes and Security (sounds like they could be knocking on Donald’s door down the coast any minute). Each of the 20 had also voted, but they too had received voter ID cards. Lake County? Yeah heavily Republican. Until only a few years ago, Florida permanently disqualified all convicted felons from voting, with only a select few having their rights restored case-by-case at the discretion of the governor, til Amendment 4, a constitutional change approved by voters in 2018, restored voting rights to those who complete their sentences, but excluded those convicted of murder and sexual offences. The GOP-controlled legislature subsequently rolled back Amendment 4 even further by declaring rehabilitated ex-offenders must also settle all outstanding fines and fees to regain their voting rights, even those that weren’t part of the original sentence. Yeah who says Jim Crow legislation is a thing of the past down in modern 18th-century Florida? Oh yeah white, rich, powerful men! 
  • Wearing the enemy’s uniform into combat is literally a war crime under the Geneva Convention, but for some reason it’s fine for people like Tulsi Gabbard and anti-vax conspiracy theorist Robert F. Kennedy Jr to run for President as a Democrat. On the plus side, anyone actually paying attention can tell the difference and there’s very little chance of someone like RFK becoming the party’s nominee because he’s unlikely ever to grow much beyond his current 20% level of support by Democratic Primary voters due to the fact there aren’t enough anti-vaxxers who support Democrats and at least some Democrats will have noticed that he only ever gets interviewed by people like Joe Rogan, Jordan Peterson and Steve Bannon. Somewhat more insidious are the right wingers who pretend to be non-partisan centrists like 2,000 Mules contributors True the Vote, or supposedly moderate organization ‘No Labels’, who claim to be a common sense compromise between the extremes on both the right and the left, and are reportedly planning to run a third-party ticket in the 2024 election. Back in April The New Republic reported that GOP mega donor, Nazi memorabilia collector, and Clarence Thomas’s best bud, Harlan Crow had funded No Labels to the tune of over $130,000 and convinced nearly two dozen of his rich pals to do the same. Last week, reporting by Mother Jones added to the picture by looking at No Label’s fundraising platform, which is handled by a company called Anedot. Anedot also claim to be non-partisan, but this is undermined a bit by the very front page of their website, where there is a button marked “Conservative List”, which brings up 205 Republican politicians, groups and campaigns you can donate to with handy links for each one. There is no ‘Liberal List’ button. The motivation for organizations like No Labels to hide their GOP bona fides is to split the anti-fascism vote and bleed support away from Biden, just like Jill Stein did in 2016. The fact these groups seem to be missing is that if you think Biden and Trump are as extreme as each other, you’re not a centrist, you’re a fucking idiot.
  • Yessss it’s finally happened, the book-burning snake has eaten so far up its own tail it is biting the back of its own head (an AI Image generation prompt right there!)
    A parent at a Utah district school complained a “sex-ridden” book is inappropriate for children and so several elementary and middle schools in the Davis School District removed the offending publication from their bookshelves. So far, nothing surprising there, fucking depressing but not surprising, or funny, until you hear that the book in question is the King James Bible! Right, so now I’m officially mindbent; the book containing the very words that the, admittedly deranged, self-righteous right-voting right bastards on the right, say grants them the right to campaign against the rights of their offspring to basically access free and equitable book-learning, has incurred the, admittedly deranged, wrath of the same right bastards? The Salt Lake Tribune (you can see what’s coming) reported that the parent’s complaint said the Good Book contained tales of “incest, onanism, bestiality, prostitution, genital mutilation, fellatio, dildos, rape, and even infanticide,” I don’t remember any of that- surely it would have been even more popular; film rights anyone? Also according to the Tribune, the school district received a request last Friday to also review (yes, here it comes) the actual Book of actual Mormon for content that may not meet newly-enacted standards set by lawmakers. We’re in Salt Lake Utah fer fukksakes, more than 60% of Utahans are Mormons!! It practically got invented there!! Well I guess that scene in the musical where an elder got to bless that woman under his charge and in his tent had to come from somewhere! Okay, so now the right-wing Fahrenheit 451-ers have effectively committed the grandfather paradox, the way lies clear for progressive, inclusive and properly-funded book-based education for the young – thank you for your service Dolly Parton
  • Turning Point USA held their annual Young Women’s Leadership Summit last week, and it mostly consisted of telling the young women in the audience that they probably shouldn’t try to be leaders, because it will just get in the way of being a wife. I wish I was exaggerating. The opening speaker, podcaster and anti-feminist Alex Clark, told the audience of college and high school girls about the dangers of hormonal birth control, day care, and believing you can both have a career and be a mother, and to be fair, she does kind of have a career and isn’t a mother, so she’s living proof that that’s true. This was followed by noted expert on women Charlie Kirk, who decided the best way to help young women become leaders was to complain about the Pride flag outside the hotel and make several minutes worth of transphobic remarks. Lara Trump and Laura Ingraham rounded out day one by conspicuously not mentioning Donald’s indictment and instead talking about working out and looking good on the beach. Day two started with Christian fundamentalist podcaster Allie Beth Stuckey who told the audience their highest calling is not to have a career, nor even to be a wife and Mom, but to glorify God. Turning Point USA personality Benny Johnson then suggested if they were having trouble finding a great man, they should ask themselves if they’ve behaved like a great woman that would attract a great man, and said “There ain’t nothing wrong with being a trad wife. Being a trad wife’s based. Men love this.” But the best example of the Conservative movement’s approach to women in leadership comes from Charlie Kirk’s response to an audience member who said she wants to be an orthopedic surgeon and for some reason asked Charlie Kirk for advice on balancing her career and maybe even having the time for dating before she’s 30. Kirk told her “Maybe it will work for you, but the evidence is overwhelming; that will lead to an empty life. There are a lot of successful, 35-year-old orthopedic surgeons that have cats, and not kids, and they’re very miserable.” Quick reminder, this is a summit for Young Women Leaders. Fuck me.
  • Weeeelll the big news you’ve heard already, Boris resigned but it bears repeating, Boris resigned. But in a bad-tempered flouncy, adolescent, banging of all the doors in the house as he’s says “it’s all so unfair I hate you” kind of way. Thus he thinks he’ll get off scott-free and won’t be able to be tarred by the Privileges Committees findings and sanctions – and while Johnson cannot be sanctioned with a suspension now he has resigned, the committee could recommend that he be refused a pass offered to ex-MPs allowing privileged access to parliament and pressure is building on Little Rishi to prevent him ever standing again. Boris professes to be appalled and bewildered and so are his equally appalling and bewildering co-conspiracy theorists/GB News presenters/slavish love-lorn lackeys Nadine Dorries and Nigel Adams who both resigned their seats as MPS with immediate effect – yeah the tsunami of dissenting MPs, you know like the 50 or so who resigned in one day to force Boris out, did not materialise to pave the way with palm fronds for his return. Dorries did not get a gong in Boris’ resignation honours list; from lack of honour perhaps? And seems to have resigned with immediate effect out of pique, but it could be that her seat has a 24,000 majority whilst Boris piddled his lead down to zilch in the constituency he never bothered to visit ever, so she laid down and opened up her seat for him to stand in whenever he wants! Starmer cut to the chase and said fer chrissakes Sunak call a general election before the rest of the country dies of lack of government. Though he did begin to roll back on the magnanimous promises of healthy, educational and green deals cos they can’t budget for it since Bozza and his pals, including newly knighted unctuous world’s tallest man cosplayer Sir SnakeyJakey Grease-Gob, spaffed all the money unaccountably up the wall to their friends in return for dodgy useless PPE/saying nice things in the papers about them. All the economists are advising Labour hmmm just rejoin the single market you dolt and that’ll grow the economy exponentially to be able to pay for everything. Keir/Keith/Kevin’s a bit loath to do that for fear of riling the right wing press/leave voters who might, just might, vote for him. Oh fer chrissake Starmer be bold, boldly go where no man has gone before – well except maybe Harold Wilson with his “should we remain in the EEC referendum” in 1975!! But even old-school establishment pipe-smoking Wilson might be just too much of a leftie to be tolerated. Speaking of which Jeremy Corbyn celebrated 40 years of being the MP for Islington North this week, good on ya Jezza here’s to 40 more

That’s all for this week, thanks for listening!

Jim Cliff

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