Is this an example of parodying circular reasoning, or it is an example of circular reasoning itself?

"I've got an expert, you've got an expert, everyone's got an expert, but we don't know what the criteria for an expert is, unless you ask an expert."

asked on Saturday, Jul 24, 2021 04:29:36 AM by Jim

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Bo Bennett, PhD

I would classify this as irony or perhaps sarcasm, but that doesn't mean there can't be fallacies (circular reasoning is behind many funny jokes and ironic statements). Of course, if we are looking to evaluate reason , then intent does matter. Given that, I would say they are pointing out what they see as circularity with irony as the goal—but they would be technically wrong.

This is similar to the measurement problem. To measure something, a measurement tool is required. But to make a measurement tool, it would appear that we need some kind of measurement tool (e.g., how do we know how long a meter is?) This doesn't mean we can't measure anything; it does mean that we just need an agreed upon standard for a measurement. Likewise, we don't need an expert to tell us if someone is an expert or not; we just need agreement that a person is an expert or not. Unlike measurement, expertise is subjective and the standard can be set independently based on agreement whereas where it comes to measurement, the meter was agreed upon to become objective and unchanging. In other words, while agreement on the standard applies to both measurement and expertise, it has been agreed upon that a form of measurement (let's just say the meter) cannot be redefined.

answered on Saturday, Jul 24, 2021 06:21:20 AM by Bo Bennett, PhD

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Newpu Blicvoid writes:

Bo - Well said. But didn't you go from:
A. Beginning to evaluating fallacious content
C. Describing the nature of consensual linguistic definition (CLD)?

without pointing out the fallacy by name?

posted on Sunday, Jul 25, 2021 12:44:44 PM
Bo Bennett, PhD writes:
[To Newpu Blicvoid]

I didn't see any named fallacies here, just a misunderstanding of how expertise is established.

[ login to reply ] posted on Sunday, Jul 25, 2021 01:34:47 PM
Newpu Blicvoid


First off, thank you. This is a fascinating piece of propaganda! In addition to the question of circularity and all the  discussion of it's validity, it's got over the top rhetorical devices going on. The repetition of "got an expert" is the funniest use of Epistrophe I've ever read. It really sets up the humorous tone of the text. "I, you, everyone" is Amplification. Irony and the Red Herring (apparent circuity) noted below. It's a masterpiece.

CDL (consensual linguistic definition) concerning expertise is the subject matter in the submitted text. Expertise is both the example put forth for the process of CDL, and the ( assumed ) condition for CDL. Hence the "irony:" a rhetorical quality.

The author could be technically wrong but could equally be right but they've made an unfounded assertion... " we don't know ." The actual mechanics for determining knowledge are irrelevant. If the assumption is not inferred, the broken circuity becomes rhetoric and not the primary fallacy. The circuity is designed to distract the target from the invalid argument. Any focus on the text I've written in red, or in another answer is, well... a Red Herring. The remaining argument relies on an assumption, or presumptive answer, Begging the Question.

 The subject matter appears to be anti-scientific, anti-intellectual propaganda... hard to say. I'm not an expert.

answered on Sunday, Jul 25, 2021 01:52:21 PM by Newpu Blicvoid

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