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Successful critical commentaries

  • Re-express your target’s position so clearly, vividly, and fairly that your target says, “Thanks, I wish I’d thought of putting it that way.”
  • List any points of agreement.
  • Mention anything you have learned from your target.
  • Only then are you permitted to say so much as a word of rebuttal or criticism.

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MORE IDEAS FROM THE SAME ARTICLE

It is designed to be resistant to attacks by a defier.There arguments are difficult to avoid because they have a lot of overlap with legitimate debate techniques.

A person using an iron man argument will most likely make their own viewpoint so vague that nothing anyone says about it can we...

This is a weak case (similar to the Straw man arguments) attributed to a non-existent group: Someone will fabricate a viewpoint that is easy to contradict, then claim it was made by a group they disagree with. Arguing against an opponent which doesn’t exist is a pretty easy way to win any deb...

  • We have to accept it’s something we’re all vulnerable to: it’s easy to look at other people we know that use logical fallacies. It’s much harder to recognize them in ourselves.
  • Bad arguments are almost unavoidable if we haven’t taken the time to research both sides of the debate. ...

  • They are harmful to everyone involved in a debate: they don’t get us anywhere because we’re not tackling an opponent’s actual viewpoint. This means we have no hope of convincing them.
  • It’s not easy to admit we’re wrong about anything or to have to change our minds. But this is cruc...

A straw man argument is a misrepresentation of an opinion or viewpoint, designed to be as easy as possible to contradict.

The only purpose is for it to be easy to expose. It’s not an argument you happen to find inconvenient or challenging. It’s one that is logically flawed...

The first thing you can do you is to point it out. Explain why that isn’t helpful.

If this is not working, repeat your original point and make no attempt to defend the bad argument. The debate should probably not continue when your opponent proves unwilling to recognize their use of a bad ...

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  • People think emotionally, so forget facts
  • When people are asked to explain their beliefs about how a given thing works, they’ll actually become less confident in those beliefs.
  • When people have their self-worth validated in some way, they tend to be mor...

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15Logical Fallacies You Should Know Before Getting Into a Debate

Need help prepping for an argument, or just want to double check your philosophy homework? Here you'll find 15 of the most common logical fallacies.

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Know your facts

How many times have you made a claim about some piece of trivia only to realize, as soon as you’ve made that claim, that you’re completely wrong?

Stop and think before you make such errors, and you’ll be less likely to lose, whether the matter is trivia or a truly important

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