Appeal to Flattery

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    Also called

    • Appeal to Vanity
    • Emperor's New Clothes
    Another simple fallacy in which it is suggested that accepting a particular conclusion speaks well of the person who accepts it. This is a variant of Appeal to Consequences, since the unstated suggestion is that if someone does not accept the argument, the flattery is untrue. Very, very popular in advertising.
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    "Surely an intelligent, sophisticated reader such as yourself doesn't need an example or demonstration to recognize an Appeal to Flattery?"

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    Examples of Appeal to Flattery include:


    • This is one of many techniques Palpatine uses to manipulate Anakin in the Star Wars prequels. He tells Anakin that he is the most awesome Jedi ever and that he is just way too awesome to take orders from that silly Jedi Council, who are clearly Just Jealous if they don't treat someone as awesome as Anakin with the proper reverence. This works extremely well because it's exactly what Anakin wants to believe.
    • Anytime an advert implies that only intelligent, strong or popular people buy its products.
    • Anytime someone begins a sentence with "Surely even an idiot cannot deny that ..." or "Obviously, it is true that ...", this trope is likely (but not always) being used. The implication for the first one is that a person who denies the claim is worse than an idiot; the second implies that, if you don't think it is true, you are missing the obvious. Appeal to Flattery has a flip side.