Argumentum superiorum

Beware the many forms of this common, bullshit argument, never stated directly:

If you knew everything I knew, you’d know just how wrong you are.

And, confession: this post brought to you by guilt. I caught myself on the verge of using this argument on someone. Oops! Fortunately, I stopped myself before actually going there, because it would have just been pointless provocation. The temptation comes up for me the same way over and over again in the same context: dealing with trolls and cranky e-mailers, people so profoundly ignorant that they really haven’t got the slightest idea just how ignorant they are (Dunning-Kruger Effect), who managed to lure me into a bit of pointless “debate” against my better judgement. When I realize that I’m feeling the urge to pull rank, we’ve obviously reached a dead end and it’s time to just politely exit, or fail to continue. Ironically, that’s when they tell me that I don’t know enough for a meaningful debate …