Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Ad hominem 

What does one do when it is hard to attack a message?  Attack the sender.  This is a rhetorical tactic in which Donald Trump is an expert.  An economic study shows Trump's plans for the economy would damage it and cause a recession.  Attack the author of the study for being in bed with Hillary Clinton.  Don't bother with the study itself.  Assume it is worthless and anyway, who but the "sleazy" media are going to read it.  The average voter is cynical enough with the ways of Washington that he is only to ready to believe that such a study is shilling for the Democratic nominee.  Ad hominem attacks are misdirection.  Rather than arguing the merits, they argue the person behind the contention.  Sometimes that is all one can do because his armory of argument is bare.  This appears to be the case with Trump.  He has no study to make a counter-argument. He is likely not to get one before the serious campaigning begins.  His only argument is "Trust me.  We'll make America great again."  That seems to be a weak proposal from someone who has an inflated ego and is a narcissist.


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