People here don't know what a strawman argument is.


#1

No. Strawmen are not made up tales.

No. Strawmen are not lies or making waves or unsupported or generalized assertions.

Nope.

People have been shouting strawman left and right, like they just learned the term and want to stick it on the people they argue with to sound smart. And often they get it wrong.

A strawman argument is when an opponent takes YOUR argument, simplifies it, and attacks the simplification rather than your own argument in order to support their own assertion.

This doesn’t include lying, it doesn’t include trolling, it doesn’t include ad hominems, it doesn’t include red herrings, it doesn’t include post hoc, it doesn’t include the slippery slope, and it doesn’t include circular reasoning. So in case something is actually a strawman argument, let’s just stop using the term.


#2

Lets see you constantly try to change the focus of a discussion and insert your opinion other than the topic-- yeah we all know what a strawman argument is and how you look to employ them.

Etymology:

“Straw man” is one of the best-named fallacies, because it is memorable and vividly illustrates the nature of the fallacy. Imagine a fight in which one of the combatants sets up a man of straw, attacks it, then proclaims victory. All the while, the real opponent stands by untouched.

Quote…

When your opponent sets up a straw man, set it on fire and kick the cinders around the stage. Don’t worry about losing the Strawperson-American community vote.

…Unquote

Source: James Lileks, “The Daily Bleat”

Example:

Some of you may have seen the 90-minute ABC network television show…entitled “Growing Up in the Age of AIDS”.… I was one of nine guests on that live program.… …[A] single 45-second sound bite cost me a long journey and two hectic days in New York City.
Why…did I travel to The Big Apple for such an insignificant role? …I felt a responsibility to express the abstinence position on national television.… How sad that adolescents hear only the dangerous “safe sex” message from adults who should know better.

What follows, then, is what I would have said on television.…

Why, apart from moral considerations, do you think teenagers should be taught to abstain from sex until marriage?

…[N]ot one of 800 sexologists at a recent conference raised a hand when asked if they would trust a thin rubber sheath to protect them during intercourse with a known HIV infected person. … And yet they’re perfectly willing to tell our kids that “safe sex” is within reach and that they can sleep around with impunity.

Analysis

Source: James C. Dobson, in a fund-raising letter for “Focus on the Family”, February 13, 1992.

Exposition:

Judging from my experience, Straw Man is one of the commonest of fallacies. It is endemic in public debates on politics, ethics, and religion. A straw man argument occurs in the context of a debate―formal or informal―when one side attacks a position―the “straw man”―not held by the other side, then acts as though the other side’s position has been refuted.

Logical Fallacy: Straw Man


#3

Inserting opinions isn’t a strawman, either. At best it’s off-topic.


#4

It is something you present all of the time. Especially when things aren’t going your way.


#5

Exactly, corner a Liberal and they misdirect with a stawman in the hopes that you will forget that you cornered them and not demand that they address their lack of a foundation.

It is one thing to be wrong do to ignorance and quite another to be knowingly wrong and dig in anyway.
The former is symptomatic of a world saturated in propaganda and forgivable, the latter is simple evil.


#6

Strawman arguments are just what you are doing right now, Trekky, misdirecting the subject with phoney statements.


#7

Nope misdirection is not a strawman. A red herring, sure.


#8

Misdirection is exactly what a strawman is, all strawman arguments are misdirection even though all misdirection is not necessarily a Strawman.

You take a position that others oppose, when they make their argument you realize that you cannot refute their argument because all the facts condemn your position.

At this point you can choose to concede, those with a respect for truth do this or at least say “at this point my position seems quite weak, I will further research this matter in light of your arguments to see if I should change my opinion”.

Or you can hope that your opponent is not familiar with Leftist tactics and introduce a meaningless element while pretending that the facts that destroyed your position were never introduced. Then you vehemently begin to argue this new, meaningless position (the Strawman that you used misdirection to introduce) not really caring about the result except to hopefully cause everyone to forget that your primary position was proved imbecilic.

It is not possible to create a Strawman without misdirection, if the direction has integrity the arguments are relative.
No Liberal can make relative arguments because relative arguments require logic and facts.

If logic and factual information was the priority they would not be Liberals to begin with.


#9

Let me give a typical trekky argument. Tiny says I love Jesus. This is what trekky claims Tiny said. Trekky says then it is true as a republican you hate blacks and support slavery.

This establishing a strawman argument that has several lies as its premise

Tiny is a republican–No he is not
Tiny hates blacks-** He never said that**
Implying republicans were the supporters of slavery while it is your party the democrats who did so

Then when cornered proceed to try to weasel out of your previous statements by trying to change subject or claiming you never really meant your accusation but was throwing it out there to try to inflame.


#10

TREKKY you seem to be going out of your way to p*ss people off. keep it is sonny.


#11

Trekky, I’m pretty sure I’ve caught you and called you on a strawman argument or three…


#12

Yes, many people have said the word strawman, and I have been guilty of it myself. But they aren’t lies, as ConLib seems to think, and they aren’t mere misdirecting, as RET himself admitted. It’s a specific type of argument that makes use of simplification of a position in order to attack it.

The problem is people use the term “strawman” as a catch-all term, labeling arguments that may or may not be fallacious as strawmen when they are nothing of the sort. It’s the same as playing the race card, they are calling whatever they don’t like a strawman argument in an attempt to discredit it and sound smart when in fact the arguments they claim are strawmen, though sometimes flawed, are not strawmen. And I’m not saying this out of bias. Liberals who have told lies have been told they presented a strawman argument. No, sorry, but lies are not strawmen. Call it what it is, a lie.

I just want people to use the dang term correctly. It’s not simply any argument that is flawed. It’s an argument that simplifies a position in order to attack it.


#13

If done deliberately, a strawman argument can indeed be a lie.


#14

Strawmen can be lies, but lies are not strawmen.

Same thing to RET. Strawmen can be misdirection, but misdirection is not a strawman.


#15

[quote=“Trekky0623, post:12, topic:38366”]
Yes, many people have said the word strawman, and I have been guilty of it myself. But they aren’t lies, as ConLib seems to think, and they aren’t mere misdirecting, as RET himself admitted. It’s a specific type of argument that makes use of simplification of a position in order to attack it.

The problem is people use the term “strawman” as a catch-all term, labeling arguments that may or may not be fallacious as strawmen when they are nothing of the sort. It’s the same as playing the race card, they are calling whatever they don’t like a strawman argument in an attempt to discredit it and sound smart when in fact the arguments they claim are strawmen, though sometimes flawed, are not strawmen. And I’m not saying this out of bias. Liberals who have told lies have been told they presented a strawman argument. No, sorry, but lies are not strawmen. Call it what it is, a lie.

I just want people to use the dang term correctly. It’s not simply any argument that is flawed. It’s an argument that simplifies a position in order to attack it.
[/quote]The problem is you try to interject your version of reality rather than actual truth when it comes to veritifible facts then post something like this to whine how it is the rest of the world that is wrong even when what others say can be Authenticated and verified.. Just because you are a liberal you do not get to impose your reality over facts.


#16

Says the man who blames Obama for literally everything…

My political opinons don’t change the definition of strawman.


#17

Well…liberals learned from the master of untruths, William Jefferson Klinton, who had the audacity to argue about the definition of the word “is”. Of course, the lying and strawmen arguments was even further perfected by his diety, Barack Hussein 0bama. Trekky is using RO in a system of works designed to achieve the same greatness as his profits and diety.

The only problem with using a site like RO is that it is not the lapdog media where a liberal can literally say anything with it going completely unchallenged.


#18

These liberals have been living in an echo chamber so long that they have indoctrinated themselves to believe their own lies. If someone says anything different than what they have heard in the echo chamber, they react like Muslims do to unsatisfying depictions of Mohammad.


#19

A straw man argument is a rhetorical device that is meant to easily prove that one’s position or argument is superior to an opposing argument. However, the straw man argument is regarded as a logical fallacy, because at its core, the person using the device misrepresents the other person’s argument. The person does this because it then becomes easier to knock down the weaker version of the opposing argument with one’s more substantial counter argument. The term straw man derives from the use of scarecrows for military practice, such as charges. In reality, a scarecrow is far easier to defeat than an actual person.

The straw man argument, also called straw dog or scarecrow, deliberately misrepresents and weakens the argument of the opposing side. This can be done by leaving out key points of an opposing argument, quoting a person’s words out of context, or presenting a particular person’s poor defense as the entire defense of an opposing side. In the worst case, a straw man is literally an imagined person who weakly defends an argument and can be easily defeated.
Example:
Child: "Can we get a dog?"
Parent: "No."
Child: "It would protect us."
Parent: "Still, no."
Child: “Why do you want to leave us and our house unprotected?”

What is a Straw Man Argument?


#20

Tiny’s got it right. :slight_smile: