“Crimes Against Logic”

That is the title of this fun little book by Jamie Whyte. (Thanks to Steven Landsburg for the pointer.) By the way, many of the logical fallacies exposed by Whyte are especially relevant to law and judging, such as his critique of “chaotic verbiage” (page 66). Consider, for example, legal words like “reasonableness” or “probable cause” that are not testable and do not really promote any clarity. We especially liked Whyte’s point about how persons in authority often will “don a simple robe” in order to substitute “sanctimony for evidence” (p. 32). We strongly recommend Whyte’s little book.

While we are on the subject of logical fallacies, Alex Tabarrok just wrote up this excellent post explaining why “legislative intent” in the field of statutory interpretation is nonsense … yet many judges, lawyers, and law professors still take the idea of “legislative intent” seriously, as if that were a coherent or meaningful concept.

Read at your own risk.

About F. E. Guerra-Pujol

When I’m not blogging, I am a business law professor at the University of Central Florida.
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