Saturday, September 09, 2006

Logical Fallacies, Part 10: Hasty Generalization

The hasty generalization occurs when stating a generalization with insufficient evidence. Example:

The company lost $11 million in the first half 2006; therefore, it will end the year just as poorly.

Perhaps the $11 million loss is an improvement over previous periods. Maybe the loss is a one-time or cyclical situation. It could be that the loss was from an investment which will soon become profitable. The evidence is just not there to make this claim.

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