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View Full Version : Why can't these stories be true?


Dagobahn Eagle
07-03-2003, 11:25 PM
I'm going to list two controversial stories which both have at least one (maybe more than one) big logical fallacy in them.

It's up to you to find the fallacy and be the first to post it.

Story 1:
CNN.COM (let's just say it was posted on CNN.com):
A man falls asleep during a sermon in a church, and dreams that he lives in France during the French revolution. He gives a ringing speech in defense of the aristocracy, but is nevertheless dragged onto the guillotine platform. Just as the blade is about to slice his neck, the woman behind him drops her bible. The bible hits the back of his neck. The man suffers a heart attack just as the bible hits the back of his head and dies instantly.
Name the fallacy. We wouldn't be reading it as is if it was true because...?

Story 2 (told by a friend, I'm 99% sure it's false. Heck, it'd better be:)):
In Saudi-Arabia, men and women are strictly segregated. In fact, they're so segregated that they can't stay in the same room for an extended time. Now, this day there was a fire in a classroom. Now, as the Saudis are segregated, the male teacher could not walk down the same corridor as his female students. What he did to make sure this rule was followed was to get out of the classroom and lock the door before any of the female students got out. All but one, who had the courage to jump out the window and fall two stories, breaking a leg, burned in, stuck in the classroom.

Yeah right. And the fallacy? This one should be fairly easy :).

Oh, and feel free to add your own stories.
The technique you're building is an important one. It's more easy than you think to manipulate minds, and excersises like this one makes sure you come to class prepared.

obi
07-03-2003, 11:50 PM
Let's see about this first one here. The woman must have had VERY good aim to have dropped it in the direction of the back of his head. =)

MikeDoggg2004
07-04-2003, 12:03 AM
no.2 is probably true
lol

edlib
07-04-2003, 12:59 AM
If the man died instantly while asleep, how would we ever know what he is dreaming?

By the way,.. there's a common rumor that if you dream about dying, you will actually die. I can tell you for a fact this is not true. I have died several times in dreams, and I am still here. I think...

Number 2: If they were so closely segregated, what was a man doing there at all?

But, I recall something very similar to the second incident from Newsweek. This was a real event, and a number of female students were burned to death, although I think they were in a basement.

http://www.hrw.org/press/2002/03/saudischool.htm

The reason they were locked in is because they weren't wearing thier head-dress, and the male rescuers would have seen them uncovered. So they were locked in and allowed to die.

I'm not sure which version of the story is more disturbing.

ZBomber
07-04-2003, 01:09 AM
Originally posted by edlib
If the man died instantly while asleep, how would we ever know what he is dreaming?

By the way,.. there's a common rumor that if you dream about dying, you will actually die. I can tell you for a fact this is not true. I have died several times in dreams, and I am still here. I think...

Number 2: If they were so closely segregated, what was a man doing there at all?

But, I recall something very similar to the second incident from Newsweek. This was a real event, and a number of female students were burned to death, although I think they were in a basement.

http://www.hrw.org/press/2002/03/saudischool.htm

The reason they were locked in is because they weren't wearing thier head-dress, and the male rescuers would have seen them uncovered. So they were locked in and allowed to die.

I'm not sure which version of the story is more disturbing.

Ooh, very good thinking. :)

Sam Fisher
07-04-2003, 01:18 AM
Meh, I've died several times in my sleep... its creepy..

The Cheat
07-04-2003, 01:37 AM
really? what were you dreaming about?

Sam Fisher
07-04-2003, 01:43 AM
I actually don't remember.. I go to sleep most of the time 'til around 12 'o clock. I don't have dreams, too tired.

legameboy
07-04-2003, 02:21 AM
I dreamed once I was skiing, and there was a soft spot in the snow and I went down 50 feet in it and suffacated very slowly and painfully, then I dreamt that Gollum was eating me mouthful by mouthful and I was still alive(!). :(

coupes.
07-04-2003, 03:44 AM
i would say that for the first one, it's physically impossible for the woman to drop the bible in the back of the man's neck. The man is'n really lying face down, it's only in his dream, So this would mean that to drop on the back of the man's neck the bible would have to travel horizontally, which is impossible if it is dropped.

as for the second one, edlib has already settled this for us, the Teacher would not even been allowed to be in the classroom.

BongoBob
07-04-2003, 07:17 AM
Still, they are creepy.

Loki GM
07-04-2003, 01:23 PM
the first one id say that yes the woman could drop it one the back of the mans neck because he would be facing down and say she bumped into someone and while she was trying to regain her balance the book falls out of her handsand goes directly into the mans neck but id say that it has something to do with the fact that its a woman with a bible on the platform because what do you think she would be doing seeing that see isnt a preist

•-BLaCKouT-•
07-04-2003, 01:48 PM
Erm... I'm just musing here.
Is it because that due to the republican nature of the French Revolution, there were no Bibles in France at the time? Religion believed to be a symbol of the Monarchy they were trying to destroy?
Or is is that no Bibles were allowed on the platform, as the executees weren't allowed a blessing, as they were meant to go to Hell?
Or was it just that no women were allowed on the platform?
One of the three I think.
...maybe.

:p B.

Mort-Hog
07-04-2003, 01:50 PM
Originally posted by SamFisher
Meh, I've died several times in my sleep... its creepy..
Originally posted by TheCheat
really? what were you dreaming about?

Originally posted by SamFisher
I actually don't remember.. I go to sleep most of the time 'til around 12 'o clock. I don't have dreams, too tired.


Spot the fallacy!

•-BLaCKouT-•
07-04-2003, 02:00 PM
Point ;)

B.

ZBomber
07-04-2003, 02:31 PM
Originally posted by BLaCKouT_1138
Erm... I'm just musing here.
Is it because that due to the republican nature of the French Revolution, there were no Bibles in France at the time? Religion believed to be a symbol of the Monarchy they were trying to destroy?
Or is is that no Bibles were allowed on the platform, as the executees weren't allowed a blessing, as they were meant to go to Hell?
Or was it just that no women were allowed on the platform?
One of the three I think.
...maybe.

:p B.

Well, you read it the same way as I did. But it was in the present when the lady dropped the Bible on his head..... I think.....

•-BLaCKouT-•
07-04-2003, 02:40 PM
Originally posted by ZBomber
Well, you read it the same way as I did. But it was in the present when the lady dropped the Bible on his head..... I think.....

Oh right, getcha. :p
Erm, is it that he wouldn't die 'instantly' from a heart attack, and that the heart attack would wake him up? :confused:

or is it:
The bible hits the back of his neck. The man suffers a heart attack just as the bible hits the back of his head and dies instantly
ie- neck or head, which is it?
If it is that one, it's a pretty petty mistake. More of a typo :rolleyes:

EDIT: Although I'm inclined to go for what was said before: if he died instantly, we wouldn;t know what he was dreaming about. But that seems too obvious to be it...

B.

ZBomber
07-04-2003, 02:42 PM
Originally posted by BLaCKouT_1138
Oh right, getcha. :p
Erm, is it that he wouldn't die 'instantly' from a heart attack, and that the heart attack would wake him up? :confused:

or is it:

ie- neck or head, which is it?
If it is that one, it's a pretty petty mistake. More of a typo :rolleyes:

B.

Maybe she dropped 2 Bibles. :D

•-BLaCKouT-•
07-04-2003, 02:46 PM
Originally posted by ZBomber
Maybe she dropped 2 Bibles. :D
Would someone try and get away with beating someone to death with a Bible in the middle of a church? :p
Someone might, I suppose...

B.

ET Warrior
07-04-2003, 08:02 PM
edlib already gave the answer to the first one.

The story could not be told as it was, because nobody would ever know exactly what the man were dreaming if he died instantly.


Another fallacy with the second one, besides the fact that the teacher wouldn't even be in the room with them, is that if men and women are SO segregated that they cannot be in a room together for an extended period of time, how do Saudi's reproduce? :p

Dagobahn Eagle
07-04-2003, 08:41 PM
Edlib was right about both of them.

It's technically possible to drop a bible on someone's neck, so that's the wrong answer.

Erm... I'm just musing here.
Is it because that due to the republican nature of the French Revolution, there were no Bibles in France at the time? Religion believed to be a symbol of the Monarchy they were trying to destroy?
Or is is that no Bibles were allowed on the platform, as the executees weren't allowed a blessing, as they were meant to go to Hell?
Or was it just that no women were allowed on the platform?
One of the three I think.
...maybe
Whoa, there's an educated one.
But it's still physically possible to dream stuff like that, even if it's against history. You can dream about dinosaurs and monsters and still there are no dinosaurs around today, right?

That thing with the head-dresses is just plain disturbing. It's obviously where my friend got his story from, though.

Bob Gnarly
07-04-2003, 09:00 PM
The second one is not true because the schools there are all girls or all boys, its impossible for a male teacher to be in there. I also know for a fact that there not that serious about "segregated".