What I learned so far


There is a beautiful poem which I have deeply loved since I was a young girl. The Author is an Austrian poet: Peter Rosegger.

Was ich aus Trotz verbracht,
wuchs voll Pracht
über Nacht
und ward verregnet.
Was ich aus Liebe gesät,
keimte spät,
reifte spät
und ward gesegnet.

In English
What I did out of spite, grew full splendor over night and was rained out.
What I sow with love, germinated late, matured late and was blessed ever after.

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The Argument from Intimidation

There is a certain type of argument which, in fact, is not an argument, but a means of forestalling debate and extorting an opponent’s agreement with one’s undiscussed notions. It is a method of bypassing logic by means of psychological pressure . . . [It] consists of threatening to impeach an opponent’s character by means of his argument, thus impeaching the argument without debate.

Example: “Only the immoral can fail to see that Candidate X’s argument is false.” . . . The falsehood of his argument is asserted arbitrarily and offered as proof of his immorality.

In today’s epistemological jungle, that second method is used more frequently than any other type of irrational argument. It should be classified as a logical fallacy and may be designated as “The Argument from Intimidation.”

The essential characteristic of the Argument from Intimidation is its appeal to moral self-doubt and its reliance on the fear, guilt or ignorance of the victim. It is used in the form of an ultimatum demanding that the victim renounce a given idea without discussion, under threat of being considered morally unworthy. The pattern is always: “Only those who are evil (dishonest, heartless, insensitive, ignorant, etc.) can hold such an idea.”

From Campus Ayn Rand