Logical Fallacy 5 – The Bandwagon Effect
When your teenager says, “but Mom, everyone is doing it” that’s the bandwagon effect. This fallacy assumes that just because “everyone” supposedly thinks or does something, it must be right.
Unfortunately, this is used a lot in advertising or promoting an idea, product or philosophy. It may appear in the form that the product or idea is claimed to be “growing fast” or faster than other ideas.
My favorite one that is used a lot lately by politicians and in particular by Hillary Clinton, is “everyone knows that has been thoroughly investigated and debunked!”. When a politician does that, I would love to have the interviewer ask, “how specifically has it been debunked?”.
Many years ago, I got the hear the late, great journalist Robert Novak speak. He had a favorite story. He said that when Richard Nixon beat George McGovern by the 4th biggest landslide in Presidential history, it was common for Washington D.C. insiders to say “I can’t believe McGovern lost! Everyone I know voted for him!”
With investments you can imagine the possibilities. Everyone is buying XYZ, or selling ABC and you had better follow suit!
See you soon,