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"nut picking"

Wednesday,  02/08/23  09:58 PM

I came across a useful concept the other day: "nut picking". 

Scott ("Dilbert") Adams tweeted: "The public needs to agree on an insulting label for the practice of acting as if the craziest people in any group represent the group...  Maybe 'nut-picking'?"

Everyone does this - me too - it's a form of ad homonym attack, wherein you attack a whole group based on any one of its members.  It might be all Republicans, all Democrats, all people who support X, all people who believe X, etc.  All bloggers!  If any one of them does something crazy, you can "nut pick" to smear the whole group.  The mainstream media are especially good at this.

Note, just because you're nut picking doesn't mean you're wrong ... it just means you aren't using a logical way to show you're right.  If you can demonstrate that the picked nut is typical - representative of the group - then your argument is valid.

Now that I'm familiar with the concept, I'm going to look for it and hopefully discredit the practice as often as possible!

(BTW, Eichhorn means squirrel in German; I should be especially good at picking up nut-picking :)