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straw man
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straw man
as in:  a straw man argument

She’s effective at tearing down straw men, but let me ask about a real case.
  an argument attributed to one’s opponent that is weaker than their actual argument
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straw man strawman straw men strawmen
The position attributed to one’s opponent is weaker than their actual position, so it is described as a straw man (as contrasted to a real man who would be more capable).
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  • She’s effective at tearing down straw men, but let me ask about a real case.
  • Lots of fires and cider and straw men.
    Patrick Rothfuss  --  The Name of the Wind
  • The older one also had a sword in a scabbard, and with coaching he could probably chop up a straw man, but the younger one looked to be completely useless.
    Megan Whalen Turner  --  The Thief
  • He looked a straw man set out to announce some holiday.
    Cormac McCarthy  --  The Road

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  • "I’m supposed to ride against the straw man."
    George R.R. Martin  --  A Clash of Kings
  • Deaf Dick Follard sat in a crenel, methodically cleaning and oiling the mechanism of his crossbow to make sure the wheel turned smoothly, while the Oldtown boy wandered restlessly around the parapets, fussing with the clothes on straw men.
    George R.R. Martin  --  A Storm of Swords
  • One thudded into the face of a straw man, and Pyp said, "Four for Watt of Long Lake!
    George R.R. Martin  --  A Storm of Swords
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Associated words [difficulty]:   straw man [9] , non sequitur [7] , red herring [7] , begging the question [8] , ad hominem [9] , circular reasoning [9]
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Most commonly used in these subjects:   Logic & Reasoning, Philosophy, Public Policy & Politics
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