Aristotle and an Aardvark Go to Washington

Aristotle and an Aardvark Go to Washington

by Thomas Cathcart, Daniel Klein


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Thomas Cathcart and Daniel Klein, authors of the national bestseller Plato and a Platypus Walk into a Bar, aren’t falling for any election year claptrap—and they don’t want their readers to either! In Aristotle and an Aardvark Go to Washington, our two favorite philosopher-comedians return just in time to save us from the double-speak, flim-flam, and alternate reality of politics in America.

Deploying jokes and cartoon as well as the occasional insight from Aristotle and his peers, Cathcart and Klein explain what politicos are up to when they state: “The absence of evidence is not the evidence of absence.” (Donald Rumsfeld), “It depends on what the meaning of the word ‘is’ is.” (Bill Clinton), or even, “We hold these truths to be self-evident…” (Thomas Jefferson, et al).

Drawing from the pronouncements of everyone from Caesar to Condoleeza Rice, Genghis Kahn to Hillary Clinton, and Adolf Hitler to Al Sharpton. Cathcart and Klein help us learn to identify tricks such as “The Texas Sharpshooter Fallacy” (non causa pro causa) and the “The Fallacy Fallacy” (argumentum and logicam). Aristotle and an Aardvark is for anyone who ever felt like the politicos and pundits were speaking Greek. At least Cathcart and Klein provide the Latin name for it (raudatio publica)!

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780810995413
Publisher: Abrams, Harry N., Inc.
Publication date: 01/01/2008
Pages: 196
Product dimensions: 5.10(w) x 7.10(h) x 0.80(d)

About the Author

Tom Cathcart and Dan Klein pursued the usual careers after majoring in philosophy at Harvard. Tom worked with street gangs in Chicago and dropped in and out of various divinity schools. Dan wrote jokes for comedians, designed stunts for Candid Camera, and continues to pen thrillers. Each lives with his wife in New England.

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Aristotle and an Aardvark Go to Washington: Understanding Political Doublespeak Through Philosophy and Jokes 3.1 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 14 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
What better illustrations of purposely misleading, wrongheaded arguments could one find than those proposed by politicians? This book is about teaching to think and to evaluate logically. If you have read more formal works about the rules of argumentation and are ready for illustrations to help better understand them, then this is the book. One should avoid this book if she has any healing cracked ribs. As far as political leaning, it's like a shooting gallery, one shoots at the things that are visible. Neither party has a monopoly on twisting the facts to fit the platform.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book is no more philosophical than it's authors are philosophers and it is no more comedic than it's authors are comedians. The book is more banal punditry mostly towards the right with a few jabs at the liberals. If you are in the middle of the political spectrum you probably won't enjoy any of this read.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I've always known the politicians were full of $%&#! Now, I can identify why... and in Latin. So much fun!
guitarbeast on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I thought the author spent far too much time espousing his personal political views. Plato and a Platypus was a much better book, unlike Aristotle and an Ardvark, I couldn't put it down. This one I could hardly finish and I'm not even a conservative.
ALincolnNut on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Following up their successfully funny and informative approach to philosophy in "Plato and a Platypus Walk into a Bar," Thomas Cathcart and Daniel Klein follow it up with "Aristotle and an Aardvark Go to Washington," which claims to show the philosophical and logical fallacies of 'political doublespeak.'The problem is that Cathcart and Klein constantly fall into the same fallacies that they claim to be pointing out in others. Rather than offering a humorous introduction to logic, they simply berate Republicans for their irrational rhetoric, and by implication, their irrational and indefensible political positions.There is much doublespeak in politics -- talking points from both sides of the political spectrum are rife with logical fallacies. One could write a very funny book that pointed these things out, but this is not that book. Given the insight and playfulness that Cathcart and Klein demonstrated with "Plato and a Platypus¿" I expected much better. As much as I enjoyed that book, I hated this one. Any time an author or authors allow their political views to cloud their reason, the result is not pretty. In this book, the result is ugly indeed.
quilted_kat on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Bad political jokes are used as examples to explain logical fallacies. Mildly entertaining, but only if you are current on American Politics in George W.'s administration.
discourseincsharpminor More than 1 year ago
While quite amusing, this book contains some serious information and pits our politicians (circa mid-2000's) and their bullfunky against the rhetorical fallacies outlined by Aristotle. Jokes are sprinkled throughout the book as well because comedy also untilizes the fallacies often. You won't find any criticism of the Obama administration whatsoever because the book predates it. Dubya fans take note, this was written during the depths of the very contentiously debated and still controversial Iraq War and the authors do not shy away from it. Also, some might perceive a liberal bias -which didn't bother me, but some may appreciate a heads up. I loved this book and feel that many who enjoy philosophy, politics, and a good joke would too.
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slimequeen More than 1 year ago
With a lot of humor and some great examples pulled from the headlines of today's news, you quickly learn how to identify and counter all the most common fallacies floating around out there.
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