Thursday, November 5, 2015

Every true Scotsman

I've previously blogged about the "no true Scotsman" fallacy, which involves redefining a category to exclude members of that category that are inconvenient to one's argument. The flip side, which one might call the "every true Scotsman" fallacy, involves redefining a category to include new members that would help one's argument. For example, people often argue that the countries with the highest standards of living are socialist. By what analysis do we know that those countries are socialist? Well, any sensible person can tell that they're socialist because they have such high standards of living. Never mind what those countries' own prime ministers think.

See also my rule of political and economic terms here.

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