Talk:List of fallacies

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heaven's reward fallacy.[edit]

I can't find heaven's reward fallacy in this list. The fallicy is the expecation that good things should happen to good people. Should this be added? Can this be added? --Lbeaumont (talk) 22:42, 16 April 2015 (UTC)

I like it! So much that I put it in right away with a citation I found. I put it in Informal fallacies right after gambler's fallacy alphabetically, but is also another hopeful thinking type fallacy. Thanks for pointing it out. Richard-of-Earth (talk) 08:46, 17 April 2015 (UTC)
Alas, an IP removed it. I suppose if I put it back, someone else will remove it. The IP said it was "not really a fallacy per-se, as it may or may not be fallacious, depending on your notion of whether or not good people actually are rewarded for their actions." The citation I gave did mention it as a distorted thinking and sourced it from "Thoughts & Feelings" by McKay, Davis, & Fanning in 1981. an excerpt can be found here. It mentions 15 items and to quote about this one: "15. Heaven's Reward Fallacy. We expect our sacrifice and self-denial to pay off, as if someone is keeping score. We feel bitter when the reward doesn't come." So is "distorted thinking" a fallacy? Perhaps it could be reworded? Not mention the "keeping score" part? Richard-of-Earth (talk) 08:39, 20 April 2015 (UTC)

This is not subjective enough to be specified as a fallacy, and fails to generally cohere due to the ambiguity of "good". Let's take "doing good work will yield good product", for example. Is good work fast work? Or is it detailed and comprehensive work? Is a good product one that sells? Or is it one of high quality? As per our definition of good, I can objectify and expand the notion of "Good things should happen to good people" to "High quality products will be attributed to detail-oriented working people" if good things means high quality product attribution and good people are people who do detail oriented work. For another example, "Social abundance should happen to friendly people"... Ben Barkay (talk) 21:58, 6 May 2015 (UTC)

Here is an example of this as a fallacy: Person A's car breaks down. Person A get mad about it. Person B ask why get upset, cars break down, happens to everyone. Person A say "I do so many good things, bad things shouldn't happen to me. It is not fair." The fallacy is the belief that because you do good things, bad things should not happen to you. Everyone does good things or at least things they believe to be good. The fallacy is not about what is and is not good, it is about poor reasoning. It is also not about religion, Person A could be a materialist and still think good acts give protection from random bad events. Richard-of-Earth (talk) 08:19, 7 May 2015 (UTC)
Isn't this fallacy more usually called the just world fallacy?Thefatoafeditor (talk) 11:50, 10 September 2015 (UTC)
Apparently as we have an article: Just-world hypothesis. Says it is a cognitive bias and mentions it "has high potential to result in fallacy". A bunch of the items listed on this page are not fallacies, but just bad assumptions or tendencies to make bad assumptions. We could add it to the list. Richard-of-Earth (talk) 18:53, 10 September 2015 (UTC)

Are these fallacious arguments? If so - what are their names, and shall they be added to the page?[edit]

Maybe they're not fallacious arguments, but I'm positive they are. Maybe I missed the line they were on ('lots of fallacies on here so it's reasonable to assume I missed a couple'), but here are some examples of said fallacies, as I am not sure of their names ('or if they exist'):

1. "I may as well do it because someone else will do it" - justifying an action that may be seen as immoral because another person may participate in these wrong-doings themselves, ie: I may as well sell these drugs because someone else is going to if I don't.

2. "Because someone else is doing it, I can do it to" - justifying an action because someone else does it, ie: it's okay for me to litter cigarettes because I see other people littering cigarettes frequently.

3. "A good deed doesn't cancel out a wrong doing" - justifying the doing of an immoral action (or actions) because they also do good deeds, ie: a man donates $5,000,000 to various charities each year (good deed), but he uses this to justify sexually assaulting young boys (bad deed).

4. "I can afford to do it, therefore I'm entitled to it" - justifying ones actions that may be perceived as wrong because they can "afford" to do it, ie: a person throws out a substantial amount of the food they purchase because they can afford to do so. I come across people using this type of logic a fair bit in real life where they justify being wasteful because they can financially afford to be wasteful.

5. I don't know how to accurately summarize this one ('maybe shifting the blame'?), but it gets thrown at me pretty frequently so I'll give two examples of it; (a) I would say; "you never finish all of the food on your plate, plus you don't eat your leftovers, so you end up throwing out good food in the trash - so put less food on your plate", there response, "just be happy, lighten up man", it's kinda as if they're tryin' to make me seem like the villain when I'm just tryna' look out for the planet. Seems like a red herring argument no doubt, but is there a specific name for the type of red herring? (b) another example would be something like, someone says a racist "joke", and when I call them out on it, they end up copping out and calling me "too serious" in a negative way, and again, try to make me seem like the villain, when we damn well know a portion of the time someone says a racist "joke", they aren't actually joking. — Preceding unsigned comment added by B23Rich (talkcontribs) 18:56, 26 September 2015 (UTC)

Unwarranted assumption fallacy or Fallacies of Presumption[edit]

I removed the following from the formal fallacies:

  • Unwarranted assumption fallacy - The fallacy of unwarranted assumption is committed when the conclusion of an argument is based on a premise (implicit or explicit) that is false or unwarranted. An assumption is unwarranted when it is false - these premises are usually suppressed or vaguely written. An assumption is also unwarranted when it is true but does not apply in the given context.

It has no citation nor article. I (and others I suppose) left it there because it seems like there should be one. I look around again for some support and discovered it is refereed to as "Fallacies of Presumption" and is a category of both formal and informal fallacies.[1][2]

Perhaps we should add a section mentioning different ways of categorizing fallacies. Richard-of-Earth (talk) 18:36, 29 September 2015 (UTC)


  1. ^ Thompson, Loren J. (1995). Habits of the Mind: Critical Thinking in the Classroom. University Press of America. pp. 118–125. ISBN 978-0-7618-0017-0. Retrieved 29 September 2015. 
  2. ^ Creighton, James Edwin (1909). An Introductory Logic. Macmillan. p. 180. Retrieved 29 September 2015.