Maude picture
18T02 — Maude

A cheatsheet on Discourse.

You should attempt to re-express your target's position so clearly, vividly, and fairly that your target says, “Thanks, I wish I'd thought of putting it that way.”
— Rapoport's First Rule

The arguments rankings are taken from Scott Alexander, and the responses rankings are taken from Paul Graham.

Argument Ranking

●●●●●High-level generatorsDisagreements that remain when everyone understands exactly what's being argued, and agrees on what all the evidence says, but have vague and hard-to-define reasons for disagreeing.
●●●●○OperationalizingWhere both parties understand they're in a cooperative effort to fix exactly what they're arguing about.
●●●○○Survey of evidenceNot trying to devastate the other person with a mountain of facts and start looking at the studies and arguments on both sides and figuring out what kind of complex picture they paint.
●●●○○Disputing definitionsArgument hinges on the meaning of words, or whether something counts as a member of a category or not.
●●○○○Single StudiesBetter than scattered facts, proving they at least looked into the issue formally.
●●○○○Demands for rigorAttempts to demand that an opposing argument be held to such strict standards that nothing could possibly clear the bar.
●○○○○Single FactsOne fact, which admittedly does support their argument, but presented as if it solves the debate in and of itself.
●○○○○GotchasShort claims that purport to be devastating proof that one side can't possibly be right.
○○○○○Social shamingA demand for listeners to place someone outside the boundary of whom deserve to be heard.

Response Ranking

●●●●●●Central pointCommit to refute explicitly the central point.
●●●●●○RefutationArgue a conflicting passage, explain why it's mistaken.
●●●●○○CounterargumentContradict with added reasoning or evidence.
●●●○○○ContradictionState the opposing case, what.
●●○○○○Responding to ToneResponding to the author's tone, how.
●○○○○○Ad HominemAttacking the author directly, who.

arguments

responses

beliefs

the three gates of speech