The Nirvana Fallacy

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The Nirvana Fallacy

Postby sepia » Sat Sep 29, 2012 3:15 pm

I have noticed that the wiki has no article about the nirvana fallacy, also known as perfect solution fallacy. The term is hardly used to counter apologists, but some of their claims can be described as a nirvana fallacy. In this thread I will write a few ideas down. Maybe some are good enough for an article.

The Fallacy:
An obtion is rejected because it has at least one flaw. This is wrong, because we often have no perfect solution and doing nothing would be even more harmful than accepting a flawed solution for a problem. Its like rejecting airbags because they don't safe all people from all car accidents.

In Apologetics:
I think many apologetic claims about atheism and science can be called nirvana fallacy, but their are often combined with double standard (because theism is not perfect eighter), or developed to an other fallacy. For example the claim "Science was sometimes wrong, therefor we can't trust science." is nirvana fallacy, but "In some cases science was wrong, so its wrong every time." is a hasty generalisation.

For detecting a nirvana fallacy I suggest to look, if a claim could be objected by: "Yes, the solution isn't perfect, but it is still the best solution we have."

And I can think about many such claims.

List of supposed nirvana fallacies:

1) Scientists have been frauding and errating, so they aren't trustable.

2) Evolutionary Biology is useless because there are gaps in the fossil record.

3) There is no scientific explanation of the evolution of [whatsoever] because the explanation doesn't include any single mutation.

4) Vaccines are bad because of adverse reactions. So they have to be replaced by homeopathy and/or prayer, which have no adverse reactions.

5) Presuppositional Apologetics

6) Secular Morality isn't perfect, so we need theistic morality.

7) Atheism doesn't prevent people for doing any evil things, hence atheism is dangerous.

8. We don't need proof for god, because we can only prove in maths something 100% certain.

9) Pascals Wager: We could be punished for atheism, so we shouldn't be atheists.
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Re: The Nirvana Fallacy

Postby Lausten » Mon Oct 01, 2012 12:20 pm

I have done a litte bit with the wiki. I think is an external link to a fallacies web page. I don't have all the name fallacies memorized so I can't say if that one is addressed or not without some research. I'd consider putting that out there if you'd like. I might do a little copy editing.

Probably won't get to it for a bit.
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Re: The Nirvana Fallacy

Postby sepia » Mon Oct 01, 2012 2:48 pm

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