Appeal to Sincerity – FT#72

Appeal to Sincerity – FT#72

Show Notes

The Appeal to Sincerity fallacy is committed when someone tries to convince you of just how sincerely they believe in their claims, rather than offering evidence to back them up.


We started out by talking about this clip of Trump in September 2020, claiming he really believed the US was rounding the corner on Covid:

Then we talked about this clip of Trump claiming he really, really believed Democrats don’t care about crime:

And finally we looked at this clip of Trump claiming that he really didn’t believe they ever had any empty seats at his rallies:


Mark’s British Politics Corner

Mark talked about several times Boris Johnson expressed his confidence in the UK response to Covid, including these clips:

Then he covered this exchange between Matt Hancock and Michael Gove:


Fallacy in the Wild

We talked about this clip from Castle:

We followed that up with this clip from the song ‘Still Alive’ from the end of Portal:

And finally we discussed this clip from Galaxy Quest:


If you’d like to win some Fallacious Trump Merch and a t-shirt, go to the competition page and do exactly what it says there!


Fake News

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

  1. I get all these flash reports, and they’re telling me about the border, they’re telling me about China, they’re telling me about Iran… how are we doing with Iran, how do you like that? Boy, they were ready to make a deal, they would have done anything They would have done anything, and this guy goes and drops the sanctions and then he says, ‘We’d love to negotiate now’.
  2. You have Biden talking about the vaccines and he’s, there’s no vaccine if I wasn’t there. Frankly you still wouldn’t have it in a year’s time, but the FDA… everyone knows, everyone remembers, I hope everyone remembers, but you’ve got people saying ‘Oh, Joe is doing so well’ and I don’t need to tell you, but it would just be nice, you know?
  3. What’s happening to the kids, they’re living in squalor, they are living like nobody has ever seen anybody, there’s never been anything like what’s… and you’re gonna have hundreds, and you have it now, they have the airplane photos, the shocks, they call them shocks, and these things are showing thousands and thousands of people coming up from South America and it’s gonna be, it’s just, look, it’s a disaster.

Click below for the answer

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


Sidney Powell is still not a logical fallacy

We covered Sidney’s insane defense in the Dominion defamation lawsuit against her.


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

  • We talk a lot of shit about QAnon on this podcast, but when they get something right you’ve got to give them credit, even if it is a broken clock kind of situation. Of course, when they said prominent politicians were involved in sex-trafficking minors they probably weren’t thinking about creepy forehead monster Matt Gaetz. The New York Times revealed least week that Gaetz was the subject of a DOJ investigation into an alleged sexual relationship with a 17 year old girl, potentially adding federal sex-trafficking charges when he paid for her to travel across state lines. Matt, who looks like a Funko Pop of himself, then went on Tucker Carlson’s Fox show to answer the allegations. After trying to drag Tucker under the bus with him, he claimed this was all part of a blackmail scheme and his Dad had worn a wire to get evidence that someone was demanding $25 million to make the allegations go away. I’m not clear why Matt ‘Pizza’ Gaetz thinks admitting that someone was blackmailing him about his sex-trafficking makes him look innocent, but further reporting that he and a friend paid girls for sex using Apple Pay and other digital-trail-leaving apps doesn’t look good for him. Nobody could have seen this coming – well, apart from the fact he was the only vote against an anti-human-trafficking bill in 2017, the fact that he regularly showed aides and fellow congressmen naked photos of women he was sleeping with, and the super fucking weird way he revealed that he kind of adopted, but not in a legal way or anything, a 12 year old boy who he never mentioned to anyone for several years.  But really, who could have guessed that any friend of Jim Jordan’s would be involved in something like this?   
  • In an apt recalling of the fallacy de jour Garrett Miller assured his mom that  “I don’t feel that I’ve done anything wrong and now I’m being locked up”. Wisely he didn’t say anything at all to officers that turned up at his door to arrest him for being at the Capitol riots sorry insurrection.  Not that he needed to cos when he answered the door his t-shirt spoke a thousand words emblazoned as it was with Trump’s picture and “Take America Back” and “I Was There, Washington D.C., January 6, 2021,”. Circumstantial possibly but along with grabs from news and phone footage including a selfie on his own account; yeah it was him. Been there, done that, and all I got was this lousy t-shirt yeah and an indictment on 12 counts, including civil disorder, obstruction of an official proceeding, and assaulting, resisting or impeding officers. Those tacky souvenirs of days out that didn’t end well will bring you down everytime!
  • Former Trump advisor, and balloon with a face drawn on it in Sharpie, Jason Miller, has been in the news a couple of times recently. First, when he announced that Trump was working on creating his own social media platform, since being banned from the ones that people actually use, and second, when it was revealed that he is at the forefront of Republican efforts to innovate in the field of committing fraud, by using it to be an even more deadbeat Dad.  After posting a series of obscenity laden tweets in 2019 including one calling Congressman Jerry Nadler a ‘fat fuck’, Miller was let go from his job as managing partner of political consulting firm Teneo. He cited the loss of his nearly half million dollars annual salary as the reason why he could no longer afford to pay child support. Weirdly, fat fuck Miller didn’t mention that literally the day after leaving his job, the company immediately, and secretly, hired him as a consultant, doing the exact same work for the exact same pay. To be fair, he probably needed the money, because it must be expensive to train that many bees to constantly sting you in the face so that he can maintain his trademark swollen-anaphylaxis-patient appearance. 
  • In the 80s the final episode of the UK TV show Spitting Image that featured puppet caricatures of the politicians of the day, had a story where the nastiness of Thatcher’s law and order-heavy police-state inequality-promoting right-wing Tory regime was swept aside in a rewriting of her as a Julie Andrews figure signing sweetly in a scene of pastoral peace and harmony, gingham dress, floppy bunnies the lot. Fast forward past the horrors of Trump’s administration and there it is again Trump’s new website celebrates “the most extraordinary political movement in history” which “dethroned political dynasties, defeated “the Washington establishment” and “overcame virtually every entrenched power structure” – huh WTAF! Yes an oasis of a re-imagined era where the ghastly inconveniences of the pandemic and the insurrection and the tanking of the economy and the inhuman immigration actions and nonsensical architectural folly of the wall on the southern border are simply trivialities not worth a mention. A twist in the space-time continuum Great Scott! Listen Donny we saw you write all these lies down before in 280-character installments before you got banned for inciting violence – Laso not mentioned – compiling them all together in one place doesn’t make them any more true. Of course it’s not for the likes of you and me to read and point out the exclusive use of ‘alternative facts’, it’s for true patriots to see the truth and continue to be fleeced by the gold-toilet-owning grifter who’ll grift them to their MAGA graves to his own end, whichever comes sooner.   
  • A CNN documentary last weekend showed Anthony Fauci and Deborah Birx talking about how crap the Trump Administration’s response to Covid was, which largely tracks with what Fauci’s said all along, and largely shits all over Dr Birx’s claim at the time about Trump: “He’s been so attentive to the scientific literature & the details & the data. I think his ability to analyze & integrate data that comes out of his long history in business has really been a real benefit during these discussions about medical issuesTrump took to Twitter, well, he dictated a statement that his mindless acolytes tweeted for him, since he had his social media privileges taken away like a teenager who got caught smoking pot. His statement was exactly what you would expect, calling Fauci and Birx ‘self-promoters’ and proudly claiming to have ignored all their medical advice, and including this amazing sentence: “In a fake interview last night on CNN, Dr. Fauci, who said he was an athlete in college but couldn’t throw a baseball even close to home plate, it was a ‘roller,’ tried to take credit for the vaccine, when in fact he said it would take three to five years, and probably longer, to have it approved.” Trump, the only President since Taft not to have thrown out the first pitch at a baseball game, ended by saying “Time has proven me correct. I only kept Dr. Fauci and Dr. Birx on because they worked for the U.S. government for so long — they are like a bad habit!”
  • In the land of the right-leaning, spittle-flecked gammon-faced false equivalence is king! Ron de Santis is getting enraged at the possibility of vaccine passports being introduced as an infringement of personal liberty, he’s a Republican, Republican’s are introducing stricter voter restrictions in many states to restrict the chances of non-republicans winning elections, but white nationalist friendly congressman Paul Gosar remarked “Vaccine passports but no voter ID. Lol. Clown country,”. and former Trump lawyer Jenna Ellis, attempting to own the liberals, wrote: “The same leftists pushing vaccine passports are the same people claiming voter ID is racist.” Well the way it’s being implemented by the right is and it’s not the same thing. Besides reports that elementary to high schools in the United States have long required students to be vaccinated and show proof of such to be enrolled at the institution. And that frequent international travelers might be familiar with vaccine cards, which are typically a yellow paper showing a persons’ vaccinations. Certain areas require proof of vaccination against illnesses like yellow fever or tuberculosis” Ah well there you have – people who have gone outside of the USA and maybe seen other people and ideas and realised the humility involved in being a single member of the global human race take perhaps a more balanced humane selfless view – many of those in the Republican party?
  • Last Monday the House Oversight and Reform Committee held a hearing on H.R. 51, a Democratic-led bill aimed at granting statehood to D.C. Republicans seem to have decided between themselves that they can’t just come out and say “we don’t want DC to become a state because they’ll vote Democrat”, even though everybody knows that’s what they’re thinking, so instead they’ve opted for more and more bizarre reasons why it just must not happen. Georgia Congressman Jody Hice went with “D.C. would be the only state—the only state—without an airport, without a car dealership, without a capital city, and without a landfill” because… I honestly don’t have a fucking clue. And that’s aside from the fact DC does have a car dealership, and even though Reagan Airport is technically in Virginia, it’s FAA location ID is DCA and it used to be called Washington National Airport. Meanwhile, Zack Smith, legal fellow for the Heritage Foundation, claimed that DC residents already exert an undue influence over national politics, saying “For the members here today, how many of you saw D.C. statehood yard signs or bumper stickers or banners on your way to this hearing today? I certainly did.” Yeah, Zack, ‘Everyone in this room knows how much DC residents want statehood because they won’t shut up about it, but we shouldn’t listen to them’, isn’t the great argument you think it is.
  • April Fool’s week this week in British Politics – a report into whether Britain is institutionally racist finds that concluded the “claim the country is still institutionally racist is not borne out by the evidence”- because they didn’t ask any of the leading experts on black and minority issues, including institutional racism, the police inspectorate report found that the police did not act with violence against the women at the vigil highlighting the need for action to prevent violence against women, when 4 male officers knelt on the back of one woman when arresting her – then later releasing her without charge. The prime minister’s press secretary said Boris Johnson acted with “honesty and integrity” as London mayor despite a US businesswoman claiming they had a sexual relationship while he was married and who also benefited from thousands of pounds in public money, including from the mayor’s promotional agency, London and Partners (L&P), and was given coveted places on trade missions to New York and Tel Aviv alongside Johnson, despite failing to meet the criteria for those trips. The problem in the absence of Trump is that we no longer have a visible clown to compare Boris’ mob against so they continue to redefine the new normal – which is just the old normal that various other dictators would recognise.

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

Jim Cliff

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