The Correct Way to Argue With a Hole

The best way to win an argument with an asshole is to ignore him completely. But this is not always possible. Sometimes you need to convince someone to stop fighting and physically leave, or you need to reduce the escalation of an argument with someone with whom you need to coexist. Sometimes you need to drop a very bad idea before it catches on. Lawyer Ryan Meer says that when you really have to argue with a jerk, you have to argue like an asshole .

In a viral Tumblr post that recently went viral on Twitter , Meer explains that when someone argues in bad faith, you can’t beat them by arguing in good faith. They are not here to weigh two opposing ideas, they are here to yell at you for disagreeing with them. You cannot play chess with someone who plays teaserball.

To defeat the asshole, Meer says, you must give up all hope of convincing them that you are right. “Here’s the cool, ugly thing about people,” he says. “ Confidence has nothing to do with facts . And when people are confident , then they become assholes. ” Giving them the facts will just give them stuff for the assholes. Instead, you have to make this asshole lose by their own rules. You must be unfair.

Meer lays out a few tactics you need to use with assholes when – or before – they use them against you:

  • Get them to define each term and take apart their definitions.
  • Whatever question they ask you, get them to answer it first, otherwise they will be cowards.
  • Scold them for being too emotional.
  • If they try to joke or use a disgusting euphemism, pretend you don’t understand it until they spell it out.
  • Laugh at them.
  • Let them go.

Read Meer’s blog for a more complete explanation of this tactic. And as Meer points out, this approach is good for assholes because it’s a game for assholes. Don’t force it on someone who doesn’t ask for it.


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