Words Poorly Used #137 — Argument

You cannot be “in an argument.”  You can be “in disagreement” when in an argument there is disagreement or misunderstanding.

In a discussion the other day, a friend asked me to pretend that I was doing a performance review on POTUS.  His argument was based on that premise, and the subarguments were 1) POTUS is a CEO, 2) the “economy” is “good,” and 3) there are “jobs.”

I refused to take the bait.  Ayn Rand would have been proud of me because I considered the premises.

An argument is a proposal passed to a discussion.  Both interlocutors can be in agreement, in which case the discussion is short.  Or the receiver can reject the argument, rightly or wrongly — and a discussion never takes place.  Or the discussion descends into a disagreement — and the discussion concludes, eventually, beside the point of the argument.

An argument is a proposal for an agreement, otherwise it is aggression.

— Kilgore Forelle

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