Political Argumentation

In Britain, as no doubt in the rest of the world where different political parties are permitted, our politicians waste so much time smearing the reputations and policies of other political parties that they do not have time or energy to think through the logic and suitability of the political policies they themselves promulgate  and so electorates are offered a very poor and un -nourishing bill of fare at the ballot box. A classic device – watch out for it – is a politician arguing against a proposition that has not been argued by his or her opponent. The trick is this.

You listen carefully to what your opponent has said. You then restate it but being careful to distort what your opponent has said, making sure that the distortion is unsupportable, and then you argue against the distortion while pretending to argue against what has been actually said. Everyone can win an argument if you define the proposition that you are arguying against , if the point of the argument is to win it, as opposed to discover the truth or advance learning.