How It’s Done

     I’ve been thinking about the attempts by the Usurpers to dismiss all the videos of Biden stumbling, freezing, “losing time,” and wandering around as if lost as “cheap fakes.” That’s the wrong approach. Aristotle would have told them.

     The best approach is to start with what Aristotle called encomium. The dictionary defines encomium as “glowing and warmly enthusiastic praise,” but in fact it has a sly undercurrent. To cut the legs out from under an adversary’s argument, first you slather it with encomium: effusive praise. Then, ever so delicately, you point out the oh-so-teensy elements of the argument that aren’t…quite…consistent, whether with the facts or with other aspects of the argument. From there you keep “pulling on the loose threads,” gradually revealing how the body of the thing unravels under the really close scrutiny you, the Superior Critical Analyst, are able to give it. There’s an excellent example of this procedure in Robert Nozick’s book Anarchy, State, and Utopia, in the section where he discusses John Rawls’s odious “Theory of Justice.”

     So rather than pour contempt on the videos as “cheap fakes,” Administration spokesmen should praise them effusively as marvelous depictions of important events that all Americans should see…and proceed thence to speaking of tiny little flaws in lighting, shadow management, placement of limbs and fingers, the hang of people’s clothes, and thus cast doubt on the videos, framing them as elaborate, skillfully composed fakes – but not quite skillful enough. Most people, disinclined toward really close observation and unwilling to do their own analyses, would buy that approach, whereas virtually no one is buying the “cheap fakes” gambit.

     That the Administration hasn’t adopted this approach is a demonstration of the witlessness of its spokesmen and those who compose their public statements. But then, we really shouldn’t have expected anything else. A president is likely to surround himself with persons who are much like him, isn’t he?

3 comments

  1. Good thoughts. The witless would panic sooner than the bright.

    a demonstration of the witlessness of its spokesmen

    Bill Clinton was far wittier, as he always kept in practice: “why tell the truth when a good lie will do?” he is alleged to have said.

    Shakespeare’s Mark Antony’s speech was a fine example of encomium, wasn’t it:

    …Ambition should be made of sterner stuff:

    Yet Brutus says he was ambitious;

    And Brutus is an honorable man…

    They are all — all — honorable men.

  2. The Biden administration is so used to flat out lying, and having their boot-licking toadies in the Democrat-Media Complex responding and immediately parroting those lies, that any other tactic probably never even bubbled up to whatever mash they call a frontal cortex. Notice how quickly the “cheap-fakes” went from Karine Diversity Hire to the hacks at CNN and outward. And they’re not going to be able to use effusive praise as a weapon, because their active base is so witless and rabid that they would turn on anyone who dares say any nice thing about the Right, even as a tactic to overcome said Right.

    I don’t know what’s to come in the next few months, but I’m buying popcorn.

    And ammo. Lots and lots of ammo.

    1. Thumbs up on the ammo. Careful with the popcorn, though. It can get stuck in between your teeth!

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