Finding someones argument too tough to handle? Over your head in a matter of biblical exegesis, scientific evidence, or logical validity? Dont despair. Now you can always respond to those smart-alecks and put them in their place. These are field-tested methods for diverting attention from the lack of substance in your argument. Never be stuck again for a snappy comeback!
1. The Devil-in-the-Details Device: If the opponent appealed to specific details, accuse him of nitpicking. If he didnt go into as much detail as possible, accuse him of ignoring glaring difficulties with his position. Note that this strategy is viable in all situations.
2. The Editors Gotcha: Point out an isolated spelling or grammatical error in your opponents writing as evidence of his unreliability.
3. The Evil Nun / Mad Scientist Defense: Assert that its obvious to anyone who is not blinded by (religious or secular) indoctrination that youre right and your opponent is wrong.
4. The Fideist Finagle: Piously intone that religion is a matter of faith, not reason, and that the opponents problem is that he is too intellectual in his approach to the subject. (Skilled practitioners reserve this stratagem as a last resort, to be used after they have tried presenting rational arguments for their position that didnt hold up.)
5. Flat-Earthing: Tell an anecdote about a stupid statement on the subject made by someone else who is (at least supposedly) on the opponents side.
6. The Hoagland Hustle: Find a scholar or scientist who supports your position and conclude that your view is therefore just as good as your opponents.
7. Kirks Kobayashi Maru Gambit: Redefine the parameters of the debate so you will win.
8. Lenins Law: Repeat your already refuted argument, even more emphatically and confidently, as though your opponent had not even challenged it.
9. The Moroni Maneuver: Appeal to your private religious experience, even though doing so does not answer the argument at hand. See also The Fideist Finagle.
10. Owls Retort: Offer vacuous comments or criticisms using big words. A strategy associated with one of Winnie the Poohs friends.
11. The Persecution Complex Pity Party: Accuse the opponent of picking on you, or of being anti(your religion or belief here), or of being the kind of person who hundreds of years ago would have happily consented to your being burned at the stake.
12. The Sextus Empiricus Switch: Put the burden of proof on the opponent to show that his conclusion is absolutely, mathematically, deductively certain and that there is no possibility in any potential universe of any other explanation turning out to be right.