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Three stories about appeal to authority

Who do you like?

Earlier this summer, I was having dinner with some friends and to my surprise, they started speaking positively about some fairly well-known reactionary public voices. I didn’t wanna start a whole thing but I didn’t wanna say nothing either so I tried clearing out what I thought were misconceptions. They listened but then they asked me a question I couldn’t answer. “Sandra, who do you like? Which public figure do you approve of?”

I’m right because he says so

There’s another friend of mine who always has had a kind of “appeal to authority”–based reasoning. He’d latch on to such-and-such book or writer. We were in an argument about a project and a lot of his arguments were based around his judgments of the people involved. He’d be like: this is good because these guys are the only one in the field who can think about this stuff, that other project is bad because the people working on it are futzes who don’t know what they’re doing.

People are influenced by you

Someone emailed me a few days ago saying that he gets emails from people who say they’re influenced by me but also that they’re intimidated by me. I’m sure that it’s no more than a handful but it still surprised me to hear that. I’ll try to do a better job putting the argument first from now on. It’s not supposed to be about my personality and my quirks. I change my mind all the time. I’m no hero.