When experts disagree about a claim we have good

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- When experts disagree about a claim, we have good reason to doubt it. - Fallacy of Appeal to Authority: i) Just because someone is an expert in one field, he or she is not necessarily an expert in another. This point is not that these experts can’t be right, but that their expertise in a particular field doesn’t give us reason to believe them in all things. ii) We may fall into a fallacious appeal to authority by regarding a non-expert as an expert. Movie Stars TV actors Famous athletes Downloaded by Bob Smith ([email protected]) lOMoARcPSD|4899380
3) Personal Experience - It’s reasonable to accept evidence provided by personal experience only if there’s no good reason to doubt it . Factors that can give us good reason to doubt the reliability of personal experience: Impairment If our perceptual powers are somehow impaired, we have reason to doubt them. The following are reasons to doubt the trustworthiness of what we experience. o Situation: too dark, too bright, too hazy, too noisy o Senses: sick, injured, tired, stressed, excited, drugged, distracted, disoriented, drunk Expectation We often perceive exactly what we expect, regardless of whether there’s really anything there to detect. Innumeracy ‘Innumeracy’ means roughly ‘being really bad with numbers’. Another error is to think that previous events can affect the probabilities in the random event at hand. We call this the Gambler’s Fallacy. 4) Fooling Ourselves - We too often fail to give evidence its due. We... Ignore evidence Deny evidence Manipulate evidence Distort evidence - Three of the most common and most serious mistakes we make are: Resisting contrary evidence o Often, you will see the evidence you want to see (and be blind to what you don’t want to see). o We resist evidence that flies in the face of out cherished beliefs. Looking for confirming evidence Confirmation Bias o We often seek out and use only confirming evidence. This is known as confirming bias. o The result: we can end up accepting a claim that’s not true. o When we evaluate claims, we should look for disconfirming as well as confirming evidence. Preferring available evidence Availability Bias o Availability error: We rely on evidence because it’s memorable or striking, or rather, because it is psychologically ‘available’. Downloaded by Bob Smith ([email protected]) lOMoARcPSD|4899380
Chapter 5 Some bad arguments are fallacies. - These are arguments that (i) exhibit a faulty pattern of inference , but that (ii) are nonetheless frequently offered. We have already seen two examples of (deductive) fallacies: - Affirming the Consequent - Denying the Antecedent In general, a fallacy is a faulty pattern of inference because the premises don’t provide adequate support for the conclusion. But what does “adequate support” mean?? - In good arguments, the premises should be both relevant and acceptable .

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