Fallacies[edit | edit source]

The "Farmer John" Fallacy - A form of reductionist argumentation where the complexities of a real-world economy are reduced to individuals personally exchanging simple commodities. This usually takes the form of person A and person B exchanging food commodity X and food commodity Y. It is often combined with other fallacies.


  • "I make cupcakes. I sell them out of my house. Without the state's market barriers who is going to stop me from selling cupcakes?"
  • "I have a person come to my house to take pictures and pay them $x. Are you saying that isn't voluntary exchange?"

The "Pervasive Market" Fallacy - A form of false equivocation where all interactions between all agents are characterized as exchanges. This is used as step one in an argument in which the second step is to characterize all forms of interaction as occurring in a free market (except those with "the state", of course) in order to apply free-market logic to it.


  • "Sex is a voluntary exchange between two parties. Therefore it occurs in a free market. Therefore, if you do not support property rights, you support rape."

The "Commons Tragedy" Fallacy - is a form of an Appeal to Probability, where arguments take the "tragedy of the commons" for granted because it would probably be the case (or might possibly be the case)


  • "People can't co-operate because everyone is only self-interested. Therefore co-operation is less efficient than competition. Therefore markets are preferable to planned economies."

The quadruple-double-standard[edit | edit source]

A fallacious analysis of the efficacy and beneficence of various social systems in their real-world mixed economy forms.  The quadruple-double-standard implies or states explicitly one or more of the following:

  • Atrocities carried out by governments of capitalist societies are not a result of capitalism.

Atrocities carried out by governments of communist societies are a result of communism.

  • Successes by capitalist markets are attributable to capitalism.

Successes by government programs would have been more efficiently done through capitalism.

  • Real-world capitalism isn't true capitalism because of government intervention.

Real-world communism is true communism, which simply requires government intervention.

  • Barriers to entry created by regulations are because of government intervention.

Barriers to entry created by limited access to capital are because of government intervention.

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