How to be an Armchair Critic and Not Look Like a Total Idiot (It is possible).


Lesson # 1 – Don’t use the phrase “So-called Experts”

One of the most over used phrases in an arm chair critics vocabulary is the Phrase “So-Called Experts.”

So-called
adj : doubtful or suspect; “these so-called experts are no help”
[syn: alleged, supposed]

Expert
adj 1: having or showing knowledge and skill and aptitude; “adept
in handicrafts”; “an adept juggler”; “an expert job”;
“a good mechanic”; “a practiced marksman”; “a
proficient engineer”; “a lesser-known but no less
skillful composer”; “the effect was achieved by
skillful retouching” [syn: adept, good, practiced,
proficient, skillful, skilful]
2: having or showing great skill or knowledge or special
training as expected of a professional; “an expert
opinion”
n : a person with special knowledge or ability who performs
skillfully

The problem is one of arrogance. Applying the term So-called Expert to someone infers that you know better. I did not go to university until I was 37 and was far from an expert on anything. However, even in my opinionated and less expert years, not that I am an expert now, I read and wrote and spouted off on things I was and still am far from an expert on. The one thing I always did however was respect those that were called experts. I did not assume they were always right as even an expert has the potential to be wrong. I have no doubt that, much as I dislike the opinions of Stephen Harper and think that he makes some less than expert comments on items, when he talks about conservative opinions he is accurate. He is an expert. It is true however that anyone can dispute what an expert says. To assume a person with knowledge will form the best conclusions and advice is a fallacy, but to assume someone is not an expert just because you don’t agree with them is CRAP ! It is an insult and has no bearing on an argument unless there is basis for it. If someone has no knowledge and is calling themselves and expert then to say he / she is a “so-called expert” is legitimate but if they have the knowledge have it on their CV or have worked in the field for years then, they trump you, and you are setting yourself up as an expert. What would you have these so called experts do? I have heard it many times, “I wish these So-called experts would shut up.” So now we have determined who the so-called experts truly are, they are the ones making the accusation and, we hope you will take your own advice.

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