Suppose you’re at a party and some hotshot intellectual is expounding on the economy of Peru, a subject you know nothing about. If you’re drinking some health fanatic drink like grapefruit juice, you’ll hang back, afraid to display your ignorance, while the hotshot entralls your date. But if you drink several large shots of Jack Daniels, you’ll discover you have STRONG VIEWS about the Peruvian economy. You’ll be a WEALTH of information. You’ll argue forcefully, offering searing insights and possibly upsetting furniture. People will be impressed. Some may leave the room.
* Make Things Up
Suppose, in the Peruvian economy argument, you are trying to prove Peruvians are underpaid, a position you base solely on the fact YOU are underpaid, and you’re damned if you’re going to let a bunch of Peruvians be better off.
DON’T say: “I think Peruvians are underpaid.”
Say: “The average Peruvian’s salary in 1981 dollars adjusted for the revised tax base is $1,452.81 per annum, which is $836.07 before the mean gross poverty level.”
(NOTE: always make up exact figures.) If an opponent asks where you got your information, make THAT up too.
Say: “This information comes from Dr. Hovel T. Moon’s study for the Buford Commission published May 9, 1982. Didn’t you read it?”
Say this in the same tone of voice you would use to say “You left your soiled underwear in my bath house”.
* Use Meaningless But Weightly-sounding Words and Phrases
Memorize this list:
Let me put it this way
In terms of
As it were
so to speak
You should also memorize some Latin abbreviations such as q.e.d., e.g., and i.e. These are all short for “I speak Latin and you do not”.
Here’s how to use these words and phrases. Suppose you want to say: “Peruvians would like to order appetizers more often, but they don’t have enough money.” You never win arguments talking like that. But you WILL if you say: “Let me put it this way. In terms of appetizers vis-a-vis Peruvians, they would like to order them more often, so to speak, but they do not have enough money per se, as it were. Q.E.D.”
Only a fool would challenge that statement.
* Use Snappy and Irrelevant Combacks
You need an arsenal of all purpose irrelevant phrases to fire back at your opponents when they make valid points.
The best are:
You’re begging the question
You’re being defensive
Don’t compare apples and oranges
What are your paramaters?
(This last one is especially valuable. Nobody, other than mathematicians, has the vaguest idea what “paramaters” means.)
Here’s how to use your comebacks:
You say: Liberians, like most Asians….
Your opponent says: Liberia is in Africa.
You say: You’re being defensive.
* Compare Your Opponent to Adolf Hitler
This is your heavy artillery, for when your opponent is obviously right and you are spectacularly wrong. Bring up Hitler subtly.
Say: “That sounds suspiciously like something Adolf Hitler might say” or “You certainly do remind me of Hitler”.
Now you know how to out-argue anybody. Do not try to pull any of this on people who generally carry weapons.