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How to Win Debates
by CV Berton - Wednesday, 15 March 2023
* Here is the PDF version for print or viewing: How to Win Debates

The America First movement must insist on debate whether the left like it or not. It's the key to everything. But we must debate effectively.

We do well to remember the famous quote by playwright Edward Bulwer-Lytton in 1839, “The pen is mightier than the sword.” Lesser known but equally true was Napoleon Bonaparte’s quote, "There are only two powers in the world, saber and mind; at the end, saber is always defeated by mind." Never were these axioms more relevant than in this crucial political climate in which we find ourselves.

Essentially, democracy, represented by our Constitutional Republic, has replaced the need for bloodshed among ruling factions within our nation. Some might point to the Civil War as the exception, but the mitigating circumstance there was that the South was trying to secede from the United States. Let’s put that aside. And for a moment, let’s also put aside the elephant in the room that most of us distrust the current electoral systems in this country. Rather, let’s focus on winning the hearts and minds of the voters, and that means winning the debate!

We’ve all heard the naysayers bemoan the futility of debating, pointing out that it is highly unlikely to change your opponent’s mind. But you are not necessarily debating to change that person's mind; you are doing it for the benefit of those watching. The greater the numbers of those watching as you eviscerate your opponent, the more hearts and minds you are firming up for the next election. Remember that.

America First patriots are right on the issues, but we need to do better in the arena of persuasion. I’ve seen too many debates between Republicans and Democrats where the Republican was, frankly, a lousy debater, and went on to lose the election. With common sense on our side and the sheer numbers we have in the America First movement, it should not be nearly this hard to win elections.

Now, to address election integrity, the bottom line is this: With election integrity in question, all the more reason to win hearts and minds to overwhelm the cheating on the left. Yes, we must all work hard to get rid of the machines and insist on same day voting and voter I.D., but we also must work hard at winning debates.

So, to be clear, the answer is not to outcheat the cheaters, or take to arms. The simple answer is to do both: fix the electoral systems, but also decisively win the argument. To say it bluntly, we are at the most crucial crossroads ever in our history, and winning the debate is one of the two prongs that are keys to our survival. This piece breaks down the best practices for winning debates.

Rule # 1: Don’t debate unless you know the reasons why you are right.

We’re talking about winning debates, not just having shouting matches where we talk over one another. We must win on the merits of the argument so that we don’t have to shout. To do that, firstly, do not get into a debate unless you have reasonable command of the topic at hand. Secondly, be sure you have the emotional conviction to fuel your strength, so that you can do the heavy lifting of the facts. Otherwise, you are going to enter the ring without the desire to win.

Aristotle defined three essentials to persuasion. Logos = the intellectual argument, the facts. Pathos = the emotional appeal. Ethos = why the person making the argument has authority on the matter.

Let’s look at ethos for a minute. A person’s credentials carry little weight in an argument unless it’s the reason why they entered the debate in the first place. Unless you are citing sources from things like peer-reviewed science journals and such, to simply tout your credentials is superficial. It’s a way to establish confirmation bias in the audience for your favor, but logic and facts still trump credentials. There are plenty of top university graduates who come out of these institutions in love with communism and are unethically inclined to twist the facts in favor of their beloved ideology, establishing their own confirmation bias.

By the way, look up “confirmation bias”. In the simplest terms, it’s when a person cherry picks facts to confirm their own bias, while disregarding facts that contradict their bias. It’s a natural human tendency, but it’s also a bad habit. Try to beware of this proclivity within yourself. Look at both sides of an argument to be sure you are not talking yourself into something that isn’t true. Look at the big picture. Look at statistics. And above all, be logical as you piece the information together. Also look up Occam's razor, or the law of parsimony, which, in short, is a principal that says that the simplest answer, with the least number of variables, is most likely the true explanation of a phenomenon.

We were talking about ethos, which is easy to remember because it’s phonically similar to egos. And we know that the ego also has to do with one’s authority and credibility, at least in the way that one likes to perceive oneself. Where ethos is beneficial is when you turn it away from yourself in the citing of credible sources. That’s a good use for ethos. The reverse psychology of ethos is an even greater strategy. That’s when you cite a leftwing source when making a rightwing point. For example: Your leftwing opponent calls you a far-right conspiracy theorist for doubting the election results, so you quote Democrats and leftwing sources who, several years ago, decried the fact that voting machines are easily manipulated. Always try to do that because it makes your citation much more pointed.

I learned how to debate primarily from watching Jesus. Whether you believe Jesus is the Son of God or not, you must acknowledge the fact that he was master at the art of debating. Firstly, he had command of the issues as shown in Luke 20:27-40.

Some of the Sadducees came to him, those who deny that there is a resurrection. They asked him, “Teacher, Moses wrote to us that if a man’s brother dies having a wife, and he is childless, his brother should take the wife and raise up children for his brother. There were therefore seven brothers. The first took a wife and died childless. The second took her as wife, and he died childless. The third took her, and likewise the seven all left no children, and died. Afterward the woman also died. Therefore, in the resurrection, whose wife of them will she be? For the seven had her as a wife.”

Jesus said to them, “The children of this age marry and are given in marriage. But those who are considered worthy to attain to that age and the resurrection from the dead neither marry nor are given in marriage. For they can’t die any more, for they are like the angels and are children of God, being children of the resurrection. But that the dead are raised, even Moses showed at the bush, when he called the Lord ‘The God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob.’ Now he is not the God of the dead, but of the living, for all are alive to him.” Some of the scribes answered, “Teacher, you speak well.” They didn’t dare to ask him any more questions.

A) Jesus knew the topic backward and forward, that’s logos/logic. And B) He cited credible sources, in this case, the scriptures which even his opponents valued, that’s ethos/credibility/authority.

So, you go in there loaded for bear with the facts (logos), and your passion (pathos) is intact to give you the emotional energy to make your factual arguments strongly. Your citations must be credible (ethos), particularly if they come from sources that even your opponents respect.

Rule # 2: Know your enemy to avoid the pitfalls they employ against you.

Like every professional boxer or mixed martial artist, we must study our opponents so that we can prepare against their habits and methodologies.

The main hurdle of ever hoping to reason with the left is the fact that they were educated to be existentialists, which, simply put, means that they do not believe in universal truth. They were trained to believe that their “truth” is different from your truth. We’ll get more into that later.

Let’s look at the tactics of the left, listed below, as their approach is entirely different from ours. Don’t use their tactics as they are disingenuous.

                Left’s Tactic A: Avoidance

Firstly, they try desperately to avoid debates in the first place. This shows their lack of confidence. And this attitude is so pervasive, it’s hard to get any traction because they leave before the debate hardly begins! You know the type. For example: They will stand up and walk out the door the moment Trump is mentioned, or the moment you show any skepticism over the vaccines. But the attitude of avoidance is so deeply entrenched into their psyche that it becomes part of the nervous system that flexes the muscles in their legs to briskly walk out of the room before barely conscious as to why. It’s an impulsive reflex to avoid debate like many would instantly crush a spider without thought (I don’t recommend that either).

Believe it or not, avoiding debate is a debate tactic in itself because their excuse is that they don’t want to “legitimize” your argument, or they don’t want to “humanize” their opponent – an excuse drilled into their heads by their superiors, educators and peers—which is beyond condescension, but then this excuse gives them the added benefit of deceiving themselves into thinking they won by default. Truth is, they are cowards.

The best way to get into a debate with them is to enter an event where you are invited, or one which is open to the public, and let them pronounce something in which you disagree, and then you will have the right to respond. Another is to casually say something in which you know they will disagree and let them become the opposition. Once they say anything or call you names, you’re in—of course, that still doesn’t prevent them from storming out of the room. But the audience will decide who made the most salient point, and who comported themselves decently. They do not realize how being gauche hurts the stances which they champion. You, on the other hand, never cut and run. Always stand your ground. The people watching, whom you aim to convince, will respect you more, and consequently, will respect your opinions more. And they will look askance at those who flee from you.

Left’s Tactic B: Deciding the Rules and Using Moderators

When it comes to an official debate between two candidates, understand that an honest discussion is not the lefty’s first concern. Honesty is not a virtue which the left value. The only value for them is to win at any cost, so they deploy certain tactics to rig the game, as they do with everything else in their policies. This comes naturally to lefties anyway because the very definition of leftwing is micromanagement.

One way they rig the game in an official debate is to have moderators. Unfortunately, our side have become conditioned to accept this, but I have always been harshly opposed to this format. The job of the moderator is to ask the questions, clock the participants at two or three minutes, and then cut them off rudely and abruptly when the allotted time is expired. This only benefits the left, not the right, and it’s absurd—not a real debate at all. It’s a debate against the moderators, not between the two opponents. It’s particularly unfair when the moderator is biased; and let’s face it, everyone is biased. If the two debaters cannot ask each other questions then it’s a rigged debate, plain and simple, even if most say that this is the approved, conventional format.

The format is never going to change unless we demand change. Negotiating the rules of an official debate is itself a debate and must also be won. And here is a winning point to make on this subject: The power of a person in a debate is to be able to ask his opponent questions. When you take that power away and hand it to the moderator, it’s essentially a debate against the moderator. That is not okay if you are looking to debate a specific person. Stop rolling over to the left’s unilateral rules. You want to win debates? Be bold. Be strong. Be brave. See Ezekiel 3:9.

Like diamond, harder than flint, I make your brow. Do not be afraid of them, or be terrified by their looks, for they are a rebellious house.

We should demand the following rules in official debates between two people: First, they should each be allowed to be give their opening statement, and then let the two conduct the debate on their own, without a moderator. They should be given the floor to question his or her opponent, and to respond without external interference. There should only be a referee and bouncers in case the opponents get out of hand. Any physical aggression should be stopped immediately. The first person to get violent (and that includes throwing anything, spitting or pushing) that person has surrendered and lost the debate. These rules should be read aloud before the opening statements. Everyone should agree on that. It’s basic.

Assuming the two are nonviolent, they should be given as much time as they need to hash out their differences. If they want to go for two, three, or even five hours, leave them alone. Any network can go to commercial or end the broadcast while letting them carry on. Later, the full, uncut video can be made available online. If the debate runs too short, then let the spin doctors argue for the remainder of the time.

Let one or both yell or be rude, or talk over the other person, just so that we all know that the person who behaves badly is clearly losing. That’s all. Are we not adults? Can we not handle a little conflict? After all, the fate of the world, in many cases, does hang in the balance. Obviously, the ideal is to be cordial and win on the merits of one’s argument. The person who can do this is the winner. In the end, the audience will decide, and we’ll all know who won by the election results (assuming we get a handle on election integrity).

Left’s Tactic C: Demonizing, Discrediting, Non-Personing and Othering You

We touched on Aristotle’s Greek terms: logos, ethos and pathos. Logos means logic. Conservatives love logic. Lefties hate logic because they were reared in a culture of existentialism where they, at their core, do not believe in objective truth or facts. They are terrified of facts, although they’ll never admit this. They’ll make up their own “facts”, because, to the existentialist, we all have our own “truths”. But ask anyone of them if they believe in absolute truth, and they will either not answer you directly, or they’ll admit that they don’t. So, they try to squelch the logos using the other two: ethos and pathos. They’ll boast of their own credentials while destroying yours, and they’ll do it in a way that elicits the greatest emotional response in the audience. You know their favorite go-tos: Nazi, conspiracy theorist, racist, misogynist, xenophobe, homophobe, etc. They’ll also use a supposed scandal in which you are allegedly involved, and often, they’ll make it up out of whole cloth.

The best way to handle this type of character assignation is to control the conversation. Dismiss what they called you curtly (while throwing it back in their faces if possible), but quickly take control and force them to answer your prior point or question—which brings us to the next tactic they use.

Left’s Tactic D: The Strawman

I don’t want to take too much time on this one because most people know the strawman tactic. That’s when your opponent ascribes to you some over-the-top belief, policy, proclivity, intention or action that in no way applies to you, so that they can easily knock it down and claim victory over you. As an example, which just happened to me today as of this writing, I told someone that I am a Trump loyalist, and he accused me of making Trump into a golden calf (meaning that I idolize Trump, worshipping him in place of God). Now, that’s quite a leap. The debate went on, but in short, I replied, “Being loyal to someone who has proven himself is nothing like worshipping him in place of God.” And I gave examples of people to whom my opponent might be loyal, like family, friends and an employer. I asked, “Does that mean you made them your golden calf?”

The answer to the strawman tactic is to call it out as soon as you see it. In the upcoming Tactic E, you will see them occasionally use the strawman in their pivot.

Left’s Tactic E: The Pivot

Another way lefties try to rig the game is by employing the pivot.

Lefties know that someone asking the perfect question can bring down their whole house of cards, so they make sure that when their people go into a debate, only the moderators of their choosing get to ask the questions. What that does is neuter their opponents from the outset. We covered that already. In any setting, either you or the moderator might ask the perfect question which gets at the crux of the matter, corners the lefty, and in one fell swoop could win the debate right then and there. So, they employ the pivot.

The definition of “pivot” here is “to change the direction or course of the topic at hand”. It is to avert, deflect, deviate, divert, shift, swing, turn, obfuscate, smokescreen, or veer away from the question that was asked, which they cannot answer because it puts them in a no-win situation, so they go ahead and answer a different question that wasn’t asked, one which they wished was asked.

The pivot works great for the person who does not have truth on their side. The left teach their followers to use this tactic because it works. Why does it work? Because for the people of average intelligence in the audience, the pivot happens so quickly that they forget the original question. Indeed, most of the time, even the one who asked the original question didn’t notice. Why? Because if done effectively, the person asking the original question was immediately put on defense. Like a back kick in Karate, he didn’t see it coming. The pivot is great for the lefty because nine out of ten times, they get away with not answering the question which would’ve destroyed them. It’s more like 100% of the time if it weren’t for the fact that I’ve defied the tactic myself many times. But watching a debate where I am not involved, where I’ve seen it employed, it has worked every time. They not only get away with it, but they come away with the upper hand.

Let me show an example. Mr. Smith asks, “Mr. Jones, why are you so lax about illegal immigration when it’s driving down wages in the inner-city communities whom you represent?” Mr. Jones replies, “If you’re so concerned about wages, why are you against raising the minimum wage?” Now Mr. Smith is on the defense, “No worker should be concerned about minimum wage when he should only be striving for maximum wage.”

Although Smith ended with a good point, it was a philosophical one which may have been lost on the audience. All they saw was that Smith was put on the defensive. They had already forgotten his original question which would’ve put Jones on defense except that Jones immediately pivoted and went on offense.

Smith let Jones off the hook, and that was a mistake. He could’ve saved his last response until after Jones answered the original question. Yes, but you might ask, how can Smith make Jones answer the question? Simple. He could’ve just demanded an answer by saying, “I’ll answer your question after you answer mine first.” If you want to project authority, be authoritative.

Speaking of authority, this is a good place to recommend things not to say in a debate, or in any other setting where you are commenting and giving your opinions. Do not use weak phrases such as “sort of”, “kind of”, “a little bit” and “like”. Also, do not end your statements on an up note as if every statement sounds like a question. It’s called “uptalk”, and it sounds childish. Too many adults, even in high places, speak like this now. It’s infuriating. If you want people to respect what you’re saying, don’t speak like you are uncertain.

Then Mr. Jones will pivot again by saying, “The only reason you are worried about undocumented migrants holding jobs in America is because you are a bigot who believes privileged white folks are being replaced. It’s the replacement theory.” See what Jones did there? He alluded to Smith’s original question while pretending to answer but without answering. He also used the strawman. To the untrained ear, he did answer the question, but he did not. Instead, he cast aspersions upon Smith, putting him on the defensive. That’s like Judo, but it’s cheating Judo. You don’t have to sink to such levels when you have the truth on your side. I advise against such tactics. When you know you are right and you have nothing to hide, answer every question put to you honestly. Never pivot. Follow this rule, and you’ll win every debate. The audience will know, even if it’s just subconsciously, who performed the strongest.

So, now what should Mr. Smith do? Again, it’s simple. Smith should ignore what Jones just said, and not take the bait by going on defense. He should stay on offense no matter what. “Answer the question. I asked, ‘Why are you lax about illegal immigration when it’s driving down wages for Americans who are already struggling?’” Notice that Smith tightened the wording of his question. He drilled down into the crux of the point even stronger. He did not defend himself after being called a racist. He simply ignored that and doubled down on his question.

Then clever Mr. Jones will say, “I am not lax about immigration. My plan is all about reforming immigration policies to address the plight of those seeking asylum . . .” and yadda, yadda, yadda, talk salad designed to make Smith forget his original question and the point he was trying to make.

Mr. Smith, if he’s tougher and smarter than the average bear, should drill down even tighter into the crux of his question. Drop the “lax” part, and go right for the throat: “I am not leaving here until you answer the question. This is not a forum for making speeches. If there is no back and forth dialogue, than this is not a debate. I might as well be talking to the wall. If you refuse to answer the question, then you refuse to debate. That means you lost. It’s as simple as that. Now I’ll give it one more try. Are you okay with illegal immigration driving down wages?” You see? He drilled down a third time, and in so doing, simplified the question and focused it like a laser beam and shot Jones right between the eyes.

No matter what happens in the debate from this point on, Mr. Jones is now appearing to be afraid of the question. And Smith’s insistence on Jones answering is putting a huge spotlight on the fact that Jones is made uncomfortable by the question, and the entire audience is now acutely aware of that fact. Now, Smith could continue to pressure Jones to answer, or he can turn to the audience and say, “I can let my question go without his answer and pretend to continue this so-called ‘debate’ where Mr. Jones refuses to respond to my specific questions or points, but that would be a disservice to all the viewers who thought they were here to watch a debate.”

No matter what happens after that, it’s a given that Jones lost the debate on that evening, based on this one exchange alone. That’s how you win a debate.

So far, we covered two rules:

Rule # 1: Don’t debate unless you know the reasons why you are right.
Rule # 2: Know your enemy to avoid the pitfalls they employ against you:

  • Avoidance
  • Deciding the Rules
  • Demonizing
  • The Strawman
  • The Pivot

Now, there is one last all-important rule:

Rule # 3: Ask the right question!

It’s not enough just to insist that your opponent answer the question, but more importantly, make bloody sure you ask the right question! You want to ask a question where they have no good answer. At least not an answer that would help them in the debate. You want to ask a question where if they answer honestly, it will destroy them in the debate. This is what they fear the most. This is why they need to have moderators ask the questions who are friendly to their cause. This is why they avoid debates from the outset. This is why they demonize their opponents relentlessly, so they’d be too busy fending off the smears, running out the clock. This is why they use the pivot to avoid answering such questions.

The best kind of question to ask is the one that gets at the core of the matter. I have an example which may be oversimplifying, but I don’t think that’s a bad thing. The crux of the matter happens to also be the simplest (Occam's razor). I remember when I was debating a highly educated lefty when I realized that he was unphased by facts, and seemed to believe he can lawyer any topic to death, bloviate, talk in circles, use talk salad to try to confuse the issue and make me forget my point or my question, and make me think he answered when he didn’t. He would also ask me a barrage of questions instead of answering my one question. I realized that this guy had no interest in the truth at all, that he was educated or brainwashed to be an existentialist.

So, I decided to go for the throat, so to speak. I asked, “Do you believe in absolute truth?” Of course, he ducked the question and pivoted, employing all the same tactics as he did before. But I was relentless that he answer. “If you don’t answer my question, then what are we doing here? This is not a dialogue. You are mainly speaking just to hear yourself talk. Well, I am not here to talk to the wall. If you don’t answer, you lost the debate.” And that’s true. If someone cannot answer the question, the debate is over. He or she lost. So, I pressed and pressed until he admitted that he does not believe in absolute truth. That’s when I declared that this debate is over. How can I try to reason with someone who just admitted that nothing can be proven or reasoned to a conclusion?

If a person is an existentialist who doesn’t believe in absolute truth, then he is disqualified from having debates because he lives in an unstable parallel universe, and certainty not one that can support his believes or debunk mine. Bye, bye. Home to Mommy.

You get to the crux if you know the psychology of the person you’re debating. It’s relatively easy to get a handle on the leftist mentality because they’re all collectivists, and they basically have one hive mind. You know one, you know them all.

Here’s a great example from Jesus Christ. This is Matthew 21:23-27.

When he had come into the temple, the chief priests and the elders of the people came to him as he was teaching, and said, “By what authority do you do these things? Who gave you this authority?” Jesus answered them, “I also will ask you one question, which if you tell me, I likewise will tell you by what authority I do these things. The baptism of John, where was it from? From heaven or from men?” They reasoned with themselves, saying, “If we say, ‘From heaven,’ he will ask us, ‘Why then did you not believe him?’  But if we say, ‘From men,’ we fear the multitude, for all hold John as a prophet.” They answered Jesus, and said, “We don’t know.” He also said to them, “Neither will I tell you by what authority I do these things.”

In the interest of time and space, I will not dissect this exchange here, but maybe I will in book form someday. I’m just showing how essential it is to ask the perfect question if you want to win a debate quickly as Jesus obviously did here. Here’s another example of Jesus silencing his critics with the perfect question in Matthew 22:15-22.

Then the Pharisees went and took counsel how they might entrap him in his talk. They sent their disciples to him, along with the Herodians, saying, “Teacher, we know that you are honest, and teach the way of God in truth, no matter whom you teach; for you aren’t partial to anyone. Tell us therefore, what do you think? Is it lawful to pay taxes to Caesar, or not?” But Jesus perceived their wickedness, and said, “Why do you test me, you hypocrites? Show me the tax money.” They brought to him a denarius. He asked them, “Whose is this image and inscription?” They said to him, “Caesar’s.” Then he said to them, “Give therefore to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s, and to God the things that are God’s.” When they heard it, they marveled, and left him and went away.

I mentioned earlier that the point of having a debate in not necessarily to change the mind of the specific person you are debating. In both examples above, the debaters were thinking more about the audience rather than their immediate opponent. In the first example, the chief priests and elders were afraid to say that John was a false prophet because the audience surrounding them held that John was indeed a prophet of God. In the second example, the Pharisees were trying to catch Jesus speaking against the government so that they could accuse him before Rome. They failed miserably.

Note also, that Jesus takes control of the conversation boldly. When they asked him from where comes his authority, he said, “I also will ask you one question, which if you tell me, I likewise will tell you . . .” This would have been impossible to do if he allowed for moderators to control the debate. Do not allow moderators to control the debate! You must demand the right to ask your own questions! Moderators are, by definition, control freaks; they will always side with the micromanaging left. That is not to your benefit. By agreeing to that, you agree to lose.

Some might say that since Jesus is the Son of God, of course he’s going to ask the perfect question and win the debate, but what about us average people? If you follow these rules, you will not enter a debate on topics where you are not sure of the facts. You will not face an opponent where you don’t understand his mindset and tactics. Jesus understood the spiritual battle and the core component of each of the two battling philosophies, and he knew where his opponents were coming from, and he knew where they were going. And you can too. For example, the difference between left and right is that the left are the party of doubt and fear. Everything is fragile to them: the Earth and their feelings. They believe all our resources are dwindling (conveniently so that they can ration resources to whom they will). They believe there’s overpopulation (conveniently so they can decide who gets to live or die). They believe that our God given natural immunity is weak and ineffective because they doubt God and his creation (conveniently so they can enrich themselves by forcing mandated vaccines on the people). I can go on, but you get the point. The right are the party of faith. They believe there is an abundance of resources, that our rights come from God, that merit and individual responsibility are paramount, and they don’t fall apart when offended.

Having said all that, there is also something called intuition. I prefer to call it the holy spirit gift. Jesus expected his followers to be as sharp and as quick to the point as he was in a debate setting (or any setting). See Luke 6:40.

“A disciple is not above his teacher, but everyone when he is fully trained will be like his teacher.”

See Mark 10:16.

“Behold, I send you out as sheep among wolves. Therefore, be wise as serpents and harmless as doves.”

See also Matthew 10:19-20.

“But when they deliver you up, don’t be anxious about how or what you will say, for it will be given you in that hour what you will say. For it is not you who speak, but the spirit of your Father who speaks in you.”

Not everyone can accept the above quote. But if you can, then know that you can also manifest this kind of confidence. If this pulls on your heart, then debating is for you. 

To recap, here are the A, B, Cs of winning a debate:

A) Make sure you are allowed to ask your opponent questions. Do not allow your enemies to make rules where the moderators hold all the power. Ideally, a debate should be entirely without moderators—just a referee in case one or both debaters get physical. Excessive moderation is how the left “win” (more like steal) debates from the outset. Their insistence that their moderators are fair, evenhanded and unbiased is a ploy only for the most gullible.

B) Insist that your opponent answer the question you have asked no matter what, no matter how neurotic it might make you look. Just make everyone understand that if there is no back and forth conversation, then this is nothing but speeches and empty words spoken into the wind. How can there be a debate without direct answers to direct questions?

C) Ask the question that gets straight to the heart of the matter. If they cannot answer, it’s over. You won the debate in record time.

It seems that the whole world has gone completely insane. Go out there and shock them to their senses with some cold, hard reality!

* Comments and questions are welcomed at CVBerton@yahoo.com

** Here is the PDF version for print or viewing: How to Win Debates


Alpha Eye - My New Novel
by CV Berton - Tuesday, 16 March 2021

Alpha Eyeis a psychological/supernatural thriller. That’s the best way I can describe the genre. And while it does the job to entertain, it’s much more than that for those who ask the big questions of life’s meaning, and the essence of life and consciousness. For those who don’t ask those questions, there is still plenty of drama, intrigue and nail-biting suspense to keep the pages turning. And while its purpose is not to decisively answer those big questions once and for all, it does air both sides of the debate. So, whether you believe we have a soul and mind which may or may not go on after death, there are sets of characters in the story which argue for and against both sides of the debate between spiritualism and materialism, a battle which has raged for centuries; as it says on the cover:

“The most crucial battles are often fought in the shadows.”

To get more specific about the story, the blurb on the back cover says enough to whet one’s appetite without giving away too much of the story:

“One blustery March finds Dr. Jennifer Larson’s hypnotherapy practice entangled between spiritualism and a psychopath.”

Other issues addressed in more subtle ways are the similarities and differences between healthy narcissism (taking pride in one’s work), malignant narcissism (exploiting other people’s good work), sociopaths (underhanded and lacking empathy), and psychopaths (capable of murder).

Key words I chose for search engines include:

Psychological Horror

Many years of hard work were put into this novel. It was a world in which I emersed myself while it took on a life of its own. It even surprised me as if I were experiencing the story rather than just being its writer. I trust you will enjoy it as much as I did. Thank you!

Depression is Not for Everyone
by CV Berton - Sunday, 30 August 2020

Putting aside the kind of depression that the experts say can only be controlled with medication, there is a large swath that are depressed because of thoughts that, with discipline, can be controlled without medication.

Narrowing it down further still, there are people who think they are not good or not useful, and I would suggest that this premise is incorrect, and if eradicated would alleviate this form of depression.

Even the Bible says that “no one is good, no, not one”. So, being “good enough”is a theoretic impossibility, therefore, throw that one out. What you should be proud of is not being harmful to other people. If you can say that, then there is really nothing about which to get down on yourself. If you are being harmful to someone else, that is within your control, so you just turn it around. Problem solved. An apology would be appropriate also, and maybe some restitution if applicable.

Addressing the other issue of not being useful, the question becomes: To whom? This incorrect premise that you must be useful to other people is flawed. You don't have to be useful to other people other than providing some service or product they want for which they will pay you, and that pay is useful to you! You see, you are doing it for yourself. Their happiness is a byproduct.

It's okay to enjoy life for yourself. You owe yourself a living, and by doing that, you are making others happy, but their happiness is only so that you get paid, and that's reward enough. Stop beating yourself up. You don't owe anyone anything other than what you're buying from them. And they're selling it to you for their own selfish reasons, not because they like you. Nevertheless, always give them more value than for what they're paying, so that they remember you and keep coming back for more. That's called job security - for you.

So, if you were someone who used to feel depressed because you thought you weren’t good enough or useful enough, you don’t have to be depressed anymore. You have now learned that not being harmful to others is all that is really required of you, and that to be useful to yourself by working with dignity and value is plenty of reason to pat yourself on the back. So, go ahead, treat yourself to the good rewards of your hard labor.

Depression is not for everyone, and it is certainly not for people like you who believe in themselves.


Humans, Like Other Species,
are Territorial

by CV Berton - Thursday, 25 April 2019

To castigate nationalism and patriotism as evil or even “xenophobic” is to deny nature itself. Most, if not all, living organisms are territorial. It’s necessary for survival. What creature doesn’t want to be safe in the area where they need to eat, sleep, procreate and raise their offspring?

Reasonable people want strong national security for the same reasons other animals are territorial. We want a safe place to eat, sleep, procreate and raise our young. But as thinking creatures, and being the most intelligent animals on Earth, we see national security in a much larger scope. We are concerned for our progeny and descendants for thousands, if not millions, of years into the future.

And as an advanced, socialized society, it’s certainly not just our singular bloodline we’re hoping will carry our surname many generations into the future, we want the social structure in which we have thrived to continue on as well, and that requires preserving our culture in perpetuity.

The territory in which we find ourselves living today, and for which we fight to preserve on many fronts, is what many have called “the American experiment”. Reasonable people know that this experiment was a phenomenal success, not in terms of longevity, but in terms of quality of life, average lifespan, prosperity and advancements in technology, travel, health, knowledge, communication and entertainment. No other nation has transformed the human condition in such a relatively short time as did the United States of America.

But who and what are trying to take it all away from us? Only those who oppose our way of life and our social order built upon our philosophy based on human rights, meritocracy and freedom could be our enemies, even when they live among us, dress and speak like us - in fact, that’s what makes them more dangerous than our foes trying to invade and destroy us from the outside.

Yes, the enemy within. We’ve all heard the expression. They work in unison, and they work with our outside foes as well, to weaken our national sovereignty, to undermine our pillars of society, like our faith and our families, our independence and our free market. They do this through the use of propaganda, utilizing whole industries which they have strategically co-opted, like our education system, the news media, the entertainment industry, and most recently, the internet.

Their propaganda is all about how nationalists and patriots are knuckle-dragging Neanderthals who hate those who don’t look and speak as do they, and want to keep them out of their country. But they paint themselves as being much nobler, educated and sophisticated. “That is not who we are,” they say. They would erase all borders if they could, and just allow all walks of life from all four corners of the world to come and go as they please. What could possible go wrong?

Then one could ask, “Why would those who live within our territory, along side of us, not be territorial? While we are naturally territorial, why are they being unnaturally nonterritorial?”

Ah, but you see, our in-house enemy has just as much instinct as any household dog. Why else do they attack relentlessly? It is not that they are not territorial; it is that they seek a wider territory which includes this piece of geography upon which our cities and towns are built. It is a difference in the way they define their territory, and their definition is very wrong.

While we define our territory as borders, language and culture, they define their territory as no borders, no official language and no faith-based, family-based culture. They’d gladly sacrifice Middle America for their own prestige and their own family’s heritage.

Our enemy also has a parasitic nature, and a cunning one at that. While its leaders seek a territory which put them on successive levels of height, power, influence and stature, they ride on the backs of the people they see as the proletariat – the laborers – the malleable hordes, whom, ideally, they want kept ignorant, doped up and generally unhealthy in mind and body, to be, in the end, deprived of all rights and ownership of land.

If we do not join them in their micromanaging government, or conform like sheep to the laborers in the “labor party”, they want to engage in their comprehensive strategy to degrade and ultimately destroy us, like Obama claimed he wanted to do to “ISIL”.

In nature, the animals fighting for territory either fight to the death, or the losing party is beaten so decisively, that they retreat and limp away in disgrace. Humans, on the other hand, are the most intelligent animals on the planet, and there is a chance that a good many in the unreasonable party can be convinced to join us in freedom, family, faith and independence in a society that rewards and encourages upward mobility, with secure borders to keep our crazy enemies out. But in the meantime, beat them fair and square in the arena of ideas and debate (and other arenas if necessary) until they retreat in disgrace.