48 THE INTELLIGENT SOLUTION OF PROBLEMS STUDY QUESTIONS 1. Criticize the following Miscellaneous Fallacies taken from A. Wolf, Exercises in Logic and Scientific Method, The Macmillan Co. (1) A vacuum is impossible, for two bodies must touch if there is nothing between them. (2) Human life will at some time disappear from the earth, for all men must die. (3) To be wealthy is not to be healthy; not to be healthy is to be miserable; therefore, to be wealthy is to be miserable. (4) When any condition of life is empty of evil, we easily imagine it to be full of good. (5) The proportion of inmates in our asylums who can read and write is very high, from which we may infer that education is among the causes of insanity. 2. Criticize the statement, " Effects always follow causes. The disturbance of the air in front of ... a moving automobile is the cause of the automobile." 3. Criticize the statement, "He is rich, for he has plenty of time; and 'time is money.'" 4. Is the following conclusion logical? Why or why not? " Whoever has virtue has good; good includes freedom; therefore the virtuous man alone is free." 5. Is propaganda always undesirable? 6. Compare propaganda with disinterested instruction. 7. Show the fallacy in the following argument: All Men Are Liars Therefore he was a liar Therefore, what he said was not true Therefore, all men are not liars But if he were not a liar What he said was true — "All men are liars." 8. List some examples of the use of repetition in radio advertising. 9. Make a list of the most popular ideas today and show how these are the means between two extremes. Which extreme is more likely to be correct than the compromise which is so popular? 10. When is a person a capitalist? IL When is a person a radical? 12. When is a sheet of paper white? 13. List as many of the common slogans and proverbs of today as you can, and try to show that there are many situations and many details in which they are not true. How many of these slogans are true with respect to the circumstances in which they were first used? 14. Can you suggest any exceptions to the following statements? "Virtue is its own reward." "Americans are dollar-chasers." "Europeans are degenerate." "The Germans were responsible for the World War." "The World War was fought to end war and to make the world safe for democracy." " Be wise and alkalize." "All men are born equal."
STRAIGHT THINKING 49 15. Are advertising testimonials examples of crooked thinking? If so, what kind? 16. Make a scrapbook or series of posters showing how reasoning by authority is a path to untruth employed by advertisers. 17. Does the fact that "everj'body says a given thing is so" make it so? Why or why not? 18. Should you treat your teacher as an authority? Discuss. 19. Why is the atmosphere of the lecture platform not favorable to intellectual honesty? 20. Try to find examples of inconsequent argument in advertisements. 21. Try to discover examples of irrelevant data in answers given to questions by 3'ourself and your fellow students. 22. Examine "letters from the people" in newspapers for other such examples.