Talk:Argumentum ad baculum

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Isn't this just the argument from adverse consequences? Merge or delete. ωεαşεζøίɗWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 19:43, 31 August 2010 (UTC)

Doesn't it imply that the "adverse consequence" will be administered by a third party regardless of the truth or otherwise of the argument. Whereas ad consequentiam is brought on by nature or other unavoidable stuff. 19:47, 31 August 2010 (UTC) SusanG Toast
i.e. Galileo vs Cat Church = ad baculum not ad consequentiam. 19:49, 31 August 2010 (UTC) SusanG Toast
I can see the distinction too. One is "if you do this something bad will happen" and the other is "if you do this I will make something bad happen to you." so keep this article or I'll fackin do yer, roight? Totnesmartin (talk) 20:15, 31 August 2010 (UTC)
Mmm, argumentum ad bacon. I love bacon. --The Emperor Kneel before Zod! 20:57, 31 August 2010 (UTC)
Bacon? I keep reading it as argumentum ad bacillum - the argument from bacteria. Totnesmartin (talk) 21:05, 31 August 2010 (UTC)
OK, so the article should make it clear that the adverse consequences are a deliberate punishment. As it's currently phrased on this page ("If Y is true, A suffers negative consequences") this is not made explicit & it just looks like a reiteration of the argument from adverse consequences. ωεαşεζøίɗWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 17:03, 3 September 2010 (UTC)


Neither of those examples seem to fit. The first is a valid syllogism from a false premise (that God will never flood the world again), and the second is another false premise (that atheism leads to murder and rape) combined with argument from adverse consequences (they're not going to be doing it). Sake Fueled (talk) 21:22, 27 October 2011 (UTC)

Statist Ad Baculum[edit]

Can someone help me understand, is this a fallacious ad baculum? Statists freak out when I ask this question in debate but I keep getting this and when I ask them to explain it they get real aggressive. Can someone who is really good at logic look at this: "If one were to take "the constitution shall be the highest law of the land" as the literal truth, would that be based on faith or evidence?" "Well, it's enforced, so it's a law of the land. " If [punishment] then [highest law]. Is there something I'm missing here? "Look, Dipshit, if the Constitution was not enforced, then it would obviously not be a law of the land. Therefore, the punishment is relevant to the conclusion and this is not a use of the fallacy. " Can someone help me understand, is this guy just trying to bully me out of challenging or am I misunderstanding something here? The argument is If ~P->~L therefore P -> L? Right? Where P=punishment and L=constitution is law? How is this different from Isis "enforcing" the Koran as a proof of its "truth"? What am I missing here, or is he just trying to bully - also threatened to ban for "arguing" -asking him to clarify and defend the position.LogicMaster777 (talk) 09:04, 6 December 2014 (UTC)

You've been told this. You're not being threatened to make you agree with your opponent's premise, you're being told a threat of force is used to enforce a thing you say isn't real, as evidence that it is. The threat is evidence, ad baculum would require the threat be the argument. King Skeleton (talk) 09:11, 6 December 2014 (UTC)
Read the actual page and then come back here to clarify any points you don't grasp from the examples given there. Give some indication you made an effort on your own. Here's how consequences work as evidence: If Person A predicts Consequence X of Action L because of Thing V's existence, but Person B disputes V's existence and then performs L, and X happens as A predicted, this sequence of events can be taken as indicating 1) V exists 2) A knows what they're talking about and so B should modify his position to allow for the possible or probable existence of V and allow for the idea that A knows what he's talking about. --Maxus (talk) 09:35, 6 December 2014 (UTC)
As for the ISIS example, the argument "Allah exists, because if you say he doesn't these men will beat you to death with clubs" is ad baculum, because the existence of men who will beat you to death with clubs does not provide any evidence for the existence of an almighty being. However, "Allah exists, because if you say he doesn't these men will beat you to death with clubs" is excellent proof of the existence of a group who will beat you to death with clubs for not believing in Allah. King Skeleton (talk) 09:58, 6 December 2014 (UTC)
Right, I get that. What I'm getting at though is how you claim the existence of a "state" through the use of government punishment. I get that it would prove the existence of "government" doing the punishment, like ISIS doing the punishment. If "state" is government then ya that makes perfect sense. If the "United States" or the "state" or "republic" means GOVERNMENT only, then yes this violence supports the theory there is a government. And the other part of the chain of evidence is taxes. Since that what distinguishes government as government: violence and taxes. But if you are trying to collectivize something beyond just the government into a collective "entity" that goes beyond the government itself, how does the violence of government prove that greater collectivized "entity"? Or do you mean only to show the government exists with your "punishment" argument? If Constantine proved his armies existed would it also prove "One Rome under One God"? I took your argument as saying that you collectivize more than only the government into "the state". Would that be a misconstruance?LogicMaster777 (talk) 00:57, 21 December 2014 (UTC)

Possible Legitimate Use?[edit]

When dealing with an epistemological nihilist of any form, is it OK to use the argument ad baculum? That is for example, "well you can't prove that reality exists!", you in turn throw something at them, and ask "if you have no way of knowing that something flying at you would hurt you, why did you duck?" or if they do get hit "well, how was I supposed to know that would hurt you?". I really want to add something like this in here. It's kind of like SMBC's proof that even if thoughts and emotions are "chemical reactions", they are just as real as pain

I will at the least add in the non-fallacious form though.CorruptUser (talk) 16:51, 4 June 2015 (UTC)

Pls add this. Regardless of the truth or untruth of epistemological nihilism, nobody can ever truly believe it. Sir ℱ℧ℤℤϒℂᗩℑᑭƠℑᗩℑƠ (talk/stalk) 17:18, 4 June 2015 (UTC)
Still not a valid argument in that case. True knowledge is impossible to attain (knowingly, at least), but that doesn't mean people can't have convictions or strong suspicions. (talk) 17:57, 4 June 2015 (UTC)
Then you can allege that you have knowledge about those suspicious. Stalemate resolved. ikanreed You probably didn't deserve that 18:04, 4 June 2015 (UTC)
I can allege to know many things, but that doesn't make those things true, which is a requirement for it to be considered knowledge. Young-Earth creationists think they know things too, but that doesn't make their convictions true knowledge. (talk) 18:11, 4 June 2015 (UTC)
Epistemological nihilism (or epistemological anarchism) is the idea that you can't ever know or learn anything, not whether you can ever be sure what you know is true. The argument ad baculum is for when you are playing pigeon chess with an epistemological nihilist. CorruptUser (talk) 18:17, 4 June 2015 (UTC)
But epistemology concerns itself with propositional knowledge, not with psychological conviction. If what you 'know' isn't true, it's not knowledge in the epistemological sense. (talk) 18:45, 4 June 2015 (UTC)

──────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────── So how do you refer to someone who claims that you can't ever prove anything? CorruptUser (talk) 18:57, 4 June 2015 (UTC)

In relation to empirical proof, there's the problem of inductionWikipedia's W.svg and in relation to logical proofs, there's the Münchhausen trilemma.Wikipedia's W.svg There's various ways of handling these problems, but the position that nothing can be proven conclusivelyWikipedia's W.svg and all beliefs/theories/conjectures are fallible doesn't seem unreasonable. Popper's critical rationalismWikipedia's W.svg is in fact based on a rejection of positivist and justificationist approaches to knowledge. Now, if you're talking about someone who completely rejects and dismisses all forms of reasoning due to perceived shortcomings, I wouldn't know if there's a specific label for that. Understandably, it wouldn't be a very popular position in philosophy. Though fundamentalists who purport that "all your logic and proofs are invalid because God transcends logic" might fit the bill. (talk) 18:48, 5 June 2015 (UTC)


Some content from 32℉uzzy; 0℃atPotato (talk/stalk) 00:38, 2 August 2015 (UTC)