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← Two equally bad fallacies

Misfire's Avatar Jump to comment 9 by Misfire

@Comment 8 by ollipehkonen

Couldn't agree more with you there. A little while ago I actually submitted a topic for discussion on using language effectively (which was a little too dry to make it up), where I suggested in some contexts avoiding the word "believe" in favor of "think."

For one thing, "belief" has a positive ring to it. Also, while people feel comfortable "believing" any manner of nonsense, we're reluctant to "think" stupid thoughts. Phrasing a question as, "Do you think that everything the Pope says from the pulpit is true?" Is more challenging than asking someone what she believes about papal infallibility. Similarly, replacing "I don't believe in God," with, "I don't think there are any gods" takes the discussion out of the blurry world of beliefs.

That being said, I think I wrote that bit poorly, trying to exemplify a poor argument. "Trust" would have been better.

Mon, 30 Jan 2012 23:13:48 UTC | #912855