|Reproduced from http://xkcd.com/552/|
I discussed the most common avoidance strategy - merely changing the subject (#1) - and suggested effective countermoves to keep a constructive conversation on track. In Part II, I discussed strategies #2 and #3, nitpicking and accusations of overgeneralizing respectively. In Part III, I discussed strategy #4, blame shifting. In Part IV, strategy #5, fatalism.
This post is the second in a series about strategy #6, the use of irrational arguments. Descriptions of this strategy have been subdivided into several posts because, in order to counter irrational arguments, one first has to recognize them. I will hold off describing strategies to counter the irrational arguments until after I have describe some of the most common types.
Irrational arguments are used in metacommunication to throw other people. The other individuals either becomes confused about, or unsure of the validity of, any point they are trying to make or question they are trying to ask. Fallacious arguments are also frequently used to avoid divulging an individual's real motives for taking or having taken certain actions.