The Venn-Inversion Fallacy

A Venn-Inversion is a fallacy where from a small Venn diagram overlap, you posit a complete capture.

The IDW, a favourite wellspring of head scratchers, personifies many fallacies.  This one in particular arises time and again.  But I haven’t seen anyone yet model it and give it a name.  Let Eric be my inspiration.

The pattern works list this… There are innovative people who recognize things that most cannot, and as a result advance their culture.  Dick Fosbury for example.  And there are barking mad people who still believe that the world is flat and vaccines will turn you into Bill Gates’ garden gnome.

Now, not all innovators are crazy.  And not all crazies are innovators.  But there is some overlap between these two sets.  Innovators so visionary, so far ahead of their culture, that their culture cannot understand them and so label them crazy.

The fallacy, come from thinking that because your culture calls you crazy you must be a true visionary, a prophet of the the truth.  The label alone is proof.  If they call you crazy its only because you are right, they are wrong, and they are scared.

From minor overlap, to complete capture and conspiracy thinking.

The IDW folks take every criticism as persecution.  They cultivate this into full persecution complexes and epic Manichean narratives.  And through Venn-Inversions, criticism alone becomes proof positive that they, only they, hold the truth.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.