The argument from a dictionary is a logical fallacy and happens when someone's argument is based, in a problematic way, on the definition of a particular term as it appears in a dictionary. The problem with these arguments:
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People often say something using more words than required, usually to be vague or misleading. This phenomenon, known as circumlocution, is often intentional and a ploy used by politicians ...
The act of saying a lot but in essence saying nothing at all is also described as ‘beating around the bush’ by many.
People use too many words intentionally in order to:
Many of us use circumlocution unintentionally or in situations that are harmless, using way too many words when we:
It is a rhetorical technique that involves overwhelming your opponent with numerous vague arguments, with no regard for accuracy, validity, or relevance of those arguments.
A classic example is when a proponent of some pseudoscience bombards an expert with many weak arguments and start a new argument each time the expert successfully refute one of them.
But Gish gallops also appear in less formal contexts. E.g., someone who wants to support an unfounded stance on social media might post a huge list of irrelevant sources that they didn't actually read.
When responding to specific arguments within a Gish gallop, you can use certain techniques to respond effectively to the flawed arguments.
Premise 1: I can’t explain or imagine how proposition X can be true.
Premise 2: if a certain proposition is true, then I must be able to explain or imagine how that can be.
... and to bring this up as part of an argument. The issue with doing so occurs when this incredulity isn’t justified or supported by concrete information, and when this lack of belief is used in order to assume that a preferred personal explanation must be the right one, despite the lack of proof.
At the same time, it’s also important to remember that it’s possible that the person using the argument from incredulity is right, despite the fact that their reasoning is flawed.
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