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Logical Fallacies and the Martial Arts (video)

In this video I discuss some of the widespread logical fallacies that we see during discussions and debates within the traditional martial arts community. Good quality debate is one of the tools we can use to rid ourselves of bad ideas and to ensure good ideas are fully realised. However, poor quality debate – based on dogma, emotion and the logical fallacies discussed – is largely pointless. We need a lot more of the former, and far less of the latter, if traditional martial arts are to thrive and grow.

I present these logical fallacies as a layman, but I’m sure you will recognise much of what is presented from both your online and in person discussions with fellow martial artists.  I hope the video can be useful in three main ways:

1) To help ensure any viewpoints we put forward are devoid of these fallacies such that we share good quality information as clearly and robustly as possible.

2) To recognise when others are employing these fallacies and to reject any arguments or counterarguments based solely on them.

3) To provide a video people can link to when such fallacies crop up.

The logical fallacies covered in this video are:

Appeal to Authority

Argumentum Ad Populum (argument to the masses)

Proof by Assertion

Argument to Moderation

Argument from Incredulity

Appeal to Novelty

Appeal to Tradition

Straw Man Argument

Ad Hominem (arguing against the person and not the proposition)

While there is not much in the way of martial arts in this video, it is my hope that people enjoy the video and that it can be of use in ensuring more productive debate. Such debate is of vital importance to the continued growth and development of the arts we love.

All the best,


PS The YouTube link can be found HERE

Logical Fallacies and the Martial Arts