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How do you argue?

I can't argue at all. Every time I try, I look like a complete idiot.

 

I don't what would be relevant to say.

Or what's appropriate.

 

How do others argue so well?

How can you counter others even if what they're saying seems logical and right?

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Wow, this is quite the topic. There are many ways to argue your ideas and challenge the validity of other ideas. 

 

If you want an easy entry read, then I can recommend Arthur Schopenhauer's The Art of Being Right

Don't take everything it says seriously, since it is a satirical work (and a damn funny one at that).

But the book does show the do's and do not's of an argument and it shows how to structure an argument. 

 

As for what i do, I try to word my arguments in an understandable manner, I try to avoid logical fallacies and I try to back up my argument with empirical facts when I make arguments pertaining to the real world.

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Don't argue without having facts and scenarios to back up your argument. Not doing either of those things will make you look like a fool when someone counters your argument.

 

General tips I picked up in high school and college level Model United Nations-

 

1) When in doubt, use the red herring tactic.

 

2) Emotionally persuade them.

 

3) Ask questions that force a certain answer.

 

4) Technicalities and small details can either work for or against you.

 

5) Citing sources is important.

 

6) Avoid logical fallacies.

 

Here's a nice website I found to help you out- Logical Fallacies and the Art of Debate

 

 

 

 

 

 

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You need to learn the difference between passive, passive-aggressive and assertiveness.

Another aspect is you need a firm understanding of the english language, and its words.

To be an effective communicator this is crucial. I noticed several mistakes in your OP.

I dont really know what you are trying to say really in your post.

Just seems like a broad statement, with no clear goals really. Perhaps its laziness or boredom.

You need practice just to talk on a casual basis, you do this with your peers.

Then you need to step it up a bit.

It all comes with practice.

A proper way to communicate is having an intro.

I cant argue at all. Everytime I try, I look like a complete idiot.

the second line is jibberish.

Whats appropriate, who knows, appropriate of what?

You need to be more clear.

Setup the problem.

Fill in the middle

Close with your goals.

You need to know the facts 100%

Some may seem like they know their shit, but they are smooth talkers and can convince you even if they dont know shit.

Most news talking heads are of this type.

 

 

1 hour ago, AniJan said:

I can't argue at all. Every time I try, I look like a complete idiot.

 

I don't what would be relevant to say.

Or what's appropriate.

 

How do others argue so well?

How can you counter others even if what they're saying seems logical and right?

 

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simple, stay close to facts that are grounded, usually arguments tend to over exaggerate things for the sake of having a higher ground, those wont & cant stand when you present facts properly , thoughtful & steady .  metaphorically like boxing doesn't matter how many times one can swing with random vague argument , if it's weak it will shatter in its own force.

Details separate people.

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46 minutes ago, Volbet said:

how to structure an argument.

This is something more people need to learn, without it any point you may have will mean nothing.

.

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"If you don't know what you're talking about, try not to get into an argument over it" is something I do a lot. When I do get into an argument I just try to stay as calm and reasonable as I can, trying to destabilize the other person's argument and counter with my own. If they have a point, try to find something on your side that has a bigger impact/ more weight so you can still 'win' kinda sorta. No shame in being factually wrong though, keep that in mind.

idk, the only real arguments that didn't end in autistic screeching were in school as an assignment, I always hated that sh*t too

 

then again, I have no problem to just admit that I'm in the wrong if a) I really am or b) it'll get me out of that unpleasant situation. I really have no pride in that regard xp

Ryzen is pretty cool I guess

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I could point out some wonderful examples on the site of how to do it right, and how not to do it, but the latter wouldn't be a very nice thing to do

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3 hours ago, Ryan_Vickers said:

I could point out some wonderful examples on the site of how to do it right, and how not to do it, but the latter wouldn't be a very nice thing to do

Feel free to use me as an example, sweeite. ;)

 

 

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23 minutes ago, AlwaysFSX said:

This is something more people need to learn, without it any point you may have will mean nothing.

It really is. 

More often then not you see arguments amount to nothing more than two sides slinging incoherent gobbledygook at eachother. 

 

8 minutes ago, Ryan_Vickers said:

I could point out some wonderful examples on the site of how to do it right, and how not to do it, but the latter wouldn't be a very nice thing to do

Since when do we care about being nice?

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1 hour ago, lilbman said:

Don't argue without having facts and scenarios to back up your argument. Not doing either of those things will make you look like a fool when someone counters your argument.

 

General tips I picked up in high school and college level Model United Nations-

 

1) When in doubt, use the red herring tactic.

 

2) Emotionally persuade them.

 

3) Ask questions that force a certain answer.

 

4) Technicalities and small details can either work for or against you.

 

5) Citing sources is important.

 

6) Avoid logical fallacies.

 

Here's a nice website I found to help you out- Logical Fallacies and the Art of Debate

Numbers 1,2,&3 are actually logical fallacies https://yourlogicalfallacyis.com/poster-download?path=%2Fsystem%2FApp%2FSettings%2Fa3posters%2F000%2F000%2F001%2Foriginal%2FLogicalFallaciesInfographic_A3.pdf 

 

Raising a red herring, appealing to emotion, and asking loaded questions doesn't make a person argue better, it makes a person obnoxious. 

 

There is more that meets the eye
I see the soul that is inside

 

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2 hours ago, AniJan said:

I can't argue at all. Every time I try, I look like a complete idiot.

 

I don't what would be relevant to say.

Or what's appropriate.

 

How do others argue so well?

How can you counter others even if what they're saying seems logical and right?

Here's a Coursera online course you might want to enroll for free made by Duke University. 

IMG_5611.thumb.PNG.ab0b875339c1b1d4ecd77bb011b706ad.PNG

There is more that meets the eye
I see the soul that is inside

 

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I don't see it as being foolish if you're wrong. As long as you can admit when you are in the wrong, actually shows that you are a balanced human being and that you can look at things logically.

It's people that still cling to their beliefs even when proven wrong, that make up the worst members of human society... people like politicians for example :D

 

Please quote my post, or put @paddy-stone if you want me to respond to you.

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2 hours ago, AniJan said:

How can you counter others even if what they're saying seems logical and right?

What if they are indeed right - why counter them then?

 

1 hour ago, lilbman said:

 

General tips I picked up in high school and college level Model United Nations-

 

1) When in doubt, use the red herring tactic.

 

2) Emotionally persuade them.

 

3) Ask questions that force a certain answer.

 

4) Technicalities and small details can either work for or against you.

 

5) Citing sources is important.

 

6) Avoid logical fallacies.

As @hey_yo_ said, (6) contradicts (1-3), which are advice on how to troll (or get elected :P).

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6 hours ago, paddy-stone said:

I don't see it as being foolish if you're wrong. As long as you can admit when you are in the wrong, actually shows that you are a balanced human being and that you can look at things logically.

It's people that still cling to their beliefs even when proven wrong, that make up the worst members of human society... people like politicians for example :D

 

Well some people like to milk out the defeat, and it gets irritating.

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2 hours ago, sgzUk74r3T3BCGmRJ said:

"Winning" an argument doesn't need to have anything to do with 'the truth' or 'being right. Using the 'general "you"' below:

 

Consider two sides to any long-running debate: e.g. "Should a nation privilege individual autonomy over societal harmony when forming legislation or resolving disputes." There are good arguments to be made on both sides of that, and all it takes is starting from slightly different axioms to build out a compelling argument logically or passionately. I think there is a good case to be made that this is an intractable discussion but I have a preference and so I'll argue that point so that my preferences are realized.

 

We could sit in front of an audience and if I'm a better orator than you, I'll "win" the debate (that is, the audience would vote that my argument was most convincing or strongest) no matter which side I'm on. I may not convince you to change your position, but arguments frequently aren't about convincing your opposition, they're about convincing the rest of the people who are exposed to it. In such cases responding to your opponent is a rhetorical device to present the case for 'your side'; see Socratic dialog and Aristotelian dialectic for famous examples from antiquity.

 

There are plenty of reasons a person might argue with someone who is 'right':

  • Sometimes a well reasoned argument has an unpleasant outcome: for example there are compelling logical arguments to be made in favour of state-sanction torture but many people think it "feels wrong" to support that position. Our moral intuitions are difficult to defend and it takes some time to develop convincing arguments to support them (notice how the arguments for or against capital punishment, divorce, 'rules of warfare', etc. have evolved through history).
  • Just because a logical argument is correct or valid doesn't mean it is sound: give me a single false premise and I can make the moon out of cheese and bring J.F.K. back to life. For most things we care about it is difficult to establish 'true premises' with the same rigour we define mathematical axioms, consequently we argue against valid but unsound positions, perhaps without being able to identify which premises aren't correct.
  • Sometimes you argue for personal gain: if I can convince somebody else to adopt a position about the world—e.g. that black people are lazier than other races—then I am \ at an advantage where I'm able to recruit and hire the smart and hard working black scientists to my organization that your newly found racism caused you to reject. The truth or falsity of the racist claim doesn't really matter, I just want you to be believe a specific thing because it puts me at an advantage
  • You may want to argue to counter a logically sound position to obscure the truth. If I can convince you I didn't drink all the beer in the fridge then you won't think I have an obligation to replace it. If you're my partner I may want to convince you that you're still as attractive as you were 10 years ago before you gained a bunch of weight in order to spare your feeling even if you are now a fat ugly cow. Sometimes there is value in having people believe anything but what is true.
  • Sometimes you really are trying to educate, inform, and expose the truth. In those cases an argument should be easier because you have the benefit of the truth being on your side. It's not necessary to have but it sure makes things easier.

An argument for the sake of argument can be fun, but that's it's masturbation. Knowing what you're trying to argue for, why you're trying to convince people of that position, and who you're trying to convince, should be what guides a person's approach. I suspect that's ultimately the problem the OP is encountering: they don't know their own position, they don't their your audience, and they don't really know what they're trying to accomplish so their arguments are terrible.

Yeah, does that apply to people who are trolls? A lot of the people I argue with are trolls; they believe anyone that gets mad over something a 'troll' says are losers.

 

 

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Four major points:

-I try to retain an objective and neutral tone (I try. Doesn't always happen).

-I treat the distinct arguments against mine as bullet points and structure my response to address them individually and separately, sometimes changing the order so they all lead to a main point.

-I try to only use explanations, descriptions, and relevant information as arguments. When I argue against someone who I think is wrong, my goal is to help them understand their error (as I see it), not 'win'.

-I will always try to concede when I'm shown to be wrong. Sometimes I don't, but I do find it very important to make sure the result of the argument is correct.

 

I'm not the best person to argue things that don't have a factual basis, though. And I absolutely cannot effectively argue for a position I don't agree with, both as a matter of principle and because my mind treats it like buying a coffee at Starbucks and paying with Monopoly money.

"Do as I say, not as I do."

-Because you actually care if it makes sense.

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12 hours ago, AniJan said:

Well some people like to milk out the defeat, and it gets irritating.

Just don't talk to them ever again, then. They're not very good people to be around.

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20 hours ago, AniJan said:

I can't argue at all. Every time I try, I look like a complete idiot.

 

I don't what would be relevant to say.

Or what's appropriate.

 

How do others argue so well?

How can you counter others even if what they're saying seems logical and right?

By "arguing", do you mean the argument itself (an insightful discussion between you and your coworker about the recent election), or the "argument" that happens afterwards (you and your coworker start insulting each other and calling each other names because you support different candidates)?

 

In general, my tip is avoid getting into arguments on topics you don't have a ton of knowledge/experience on to begin with. You will generally end up being humiliated, unless your opponent is equally clueless. 

 

Generally, in order to  win an argument, you will want (not in any order):

 

  1. General knowledge on how the world works. It might seem a little weird to bring up graphics card sales when you're talking about politics, but trust me, being a "jack of all trades" is a good thing when you're having an argument (but you do want to be a master of something). You can make analogies and provide a basis for your arguments.
  2. Specific knowledge on the topic being debated. Like I said, you don't wanna argue with Stephen Hawking when you're a middle school math teacher. You need to be aware of what's being discussed. You want facts and the opinions of other notable people (so like, if you're debating...I dunno, finance or something, Warren Buffet's opinions may come in handy) to provide support for what you're trying to get across. You need to have a clear stance on the issue being discussed before you even start arguing - if you're unclear on where you stand, why debate? You will also most definitely want to know the other perspective - what your opponent is trying to argue. Only then will you be able to effectively counter their points and use their arguments against them. Being aware of the history of the issue is also really helpful - the past guides the future, and you will be able to make analogies and provide a basis for your arguments using information from events that have already occurred.
  3. A little less important, but you want to need to appear strong and confident, and you wanna seem like you know what you're talking about, even if you don't (like I mentioned before, you want to avoid getting into arguments in which you don't know jack shit about what's being discussed, but if your opponent catches you in a corner, you want this sort of impression). This will really only come from experience with speaking. Make eye contact. Make gestures. Be serious. Be charismatic. You want flow. Your language should be powerful, moving, and expressive.
  4. Experience. The more arguments you have, the better you will become at arguing. You will have knowledge from past experiences to pull from, and you will be able to detect patterns in your opponent's debate style - this will only come with arguing a lot. 
     

Tips:

  • Get smarter! Watch some educational videos (12, 3, 45, 6, and 7 are very good). Read the news. Browse forums like this to collect knowledge on topics that interest you. 
  • Watch famous debates and speeches. They will help you develop better speech techniques and charisma. 
  • Read books. This will help you with word flow. Reading the classics or the stuff that they make kids read in schools and mentioning their plots or quotes from them will allow you to appear more educated, intelligent, qualified, and sophisticated.
  • Avoid insulting the other person or appearing angry/offended. You will only escalate the conflict further and showing your emotions will allow your opponent to spot your weaknesses. (The first point only applies unless it's an insult-war, of course).
  • Accept good comebacks/points form your opponent if you don't have anything to really counter them with. Respect their views. Learn from your mistakes. When they are speaking their opinion, pay close attention to points you will be able to point out flaws for and use as your own arguments.
  • Always be a few steps ahead of your opponent if you can. Think of what they might say before they even say it. This is why being aware of why your opponent believes what they do is a good idea.
  • Don't argue with trolls, or about religious/political matters. You'll usually end up wasting your time. Insightful discussions are okay for the latter, but people are really sensitive about their religious/political/ideological beliefs that things will tend to get heated very quickly. 

 

My two cents. 

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18 hours ago, SpaceGhostC2C said:

What if they are indeed right - why counter them then?

 

As @hey_yo_ said, (6) contradicts (1-3), which are advice on how to troll (or get elected :P).

It's how to get elected.  Hell, more hypocrites have gotten elected than truly honest people.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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18 hours ago, hey_yo_ said:

I purposely did it to see if the OP noticed.  At least you did

 

19 hours ago, hey_yo_ said:

Raising a red herring, appealing to emotion, and asking loaded questions doesn't make a person argue better, it makes a person obnoxious. 

 

Tell that to all of the publicly elected officials that use all three of those. It worked for them, didn't it?

 

 

 

 

 

 

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@AniJan you need to grow some thick skin, and as I like to say some balls.

What strangers say is meaningless, ignore them.

Pay attention to the people in your inner circle.

Your mom, dad, siblings.

Then its  your friends - When I say friends I mean real friends, not online shit.

Next up is your boss and your fellow employee's.

 

Learn the gift of the gab.

You need to socialize more.

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