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Persuasive Argument Strategies Logos, Ethos and Pathos

Explained in his highly revered written work “Rhetoric”, Aristotle laid out persuasive strategies to support a case and respond to opposing arguments.  Using these three appeals in combination will make a good approach to any argument.

Logos is based on facts, reason and rationality. It’s an academic approach to proving your side of the argument. Logos appeals to the logical side of reasoning so think of facts. When reasoning with people, provide them with factual reasons why they should believe you. You can also use aids like charts, data and bar graphs to bolster your logos. It’s like the mathematical proof to your argument.

Logos uses two main forms of arguments which are inductive and deductive. The inductive argument begins with the specifics and then moves to the general. The deductive argument begins with the general and moves to the specific.  Whichever form you use there must be a sufficient amount of reliable evidence that represents the situation for logos to work.

Ethos, a Greek word meaning character, is based on the speaker or author’s character and credibility. A key thing to remember about ethos is that your level of credibility is based on how your audience perceives you. Some aspects are respect, good character, trustworthiness and authority on the topic. Using the power of authority with quotes can help credibility.

You can use quotes by famous people like doctors, judges, presidents and engineers. Quoting someone who has good social acceptance and is thought of to be a persuasive person will add power to your argument. So if you are persuading a group of people about leadership you could give a quote by Norman Schwarzkopf like,

“Leadership is a potent combination of strategy and character. But if you must be without one, be without the strategy”.

Pathos is an appeal to the emotional sensibilities of your audience. Essentially you want to associate pathos with pity. It can appeal to the senses, memory and common experiences. This is the poetic feel of your argument and will give people a reason to be on your side. To get an emotional response from an audience you can use storytelling, metaphor, analogy, anecdote and simile. Some of the emotional aspects for evoking feelings are love, sympathy, compassion, envy, hate, contempt and fear.

Understanding the persuasive appeals gives you the tools on how to persuade people. Think of them as guide lines when it’s you job to change people’s minds. An if you’re the audience its helpful to understand these persuasive appeals so that way you will know when someone is trying to use these tools on you.

MT Rainier

Mount Rainier National Park: The Wonderland That It Is

MT RainierLike many composite mountains Rainier is the result of a large stratovolcano piling on layer after layer of lava. The lava cooled and formed this mass known as “The Mountain” by area locals here in Washington State.

At 14,410 feet tall, Mount Rainier is the back drop for much of the surrounding area and can be seen all the way from Vancouver B.C. The Mountain towers over the surrounding smaller peaks whose summits average from 5,000 to 7,000 feet tall.

As the central feature of Mount Rainier National Park, this mountain is packed full of scenery. It has two volcanic craters at the summit, each over 1,000 feet in diameter. Geothermal heat keeps snow and ice from forming on the crater rims. Additionally, large ice caves are created by the heat, forming tunnels throughout the Mountains 26 major glaciers.

Typically during the winter months, captivating lenticular cloud formations can be seen coming off the top of Mount Rainier. The Mountain forms these UFO looking clouds when the air flow is just right. Air gets pushed upward along the mountain where it cools and condenses into clouds at the top. Depending on how smooth the wind flow is you might see some truly amazing cloud formations.

Mount Rainier National Park has a complex and diverse ecosystem offering a range of experiences. Whether it’s climbing to the summit, hiking the Wonderland trail or a scenic drive, there is something for everyone.


Here are some visiting tips:

Visit in the spring for a burst of wildflower, across the hillsides, The summer when the temperatures are warm and glaciers glimmer in the sunlight. Come in the fall to see the leaves turn to fiery color and winter to feel like you have the park all to yourself.

The park entrance fee of $15 is well worth the price of admission.

You can find map services at these main five exploration points: Paradise, Sunrise, Longmire, Ohanapecosh, and Carbon/Mowich.

There are 260 miles of hiking trails throughout the park.

Huckleberries can be picked along the trails around the end of August!


Mavericks: Big Wave Riders Only

Mavericks surfingUp the Pacific coastline from Santa Cruz, California, is a reef know as Mavericks, where legendary Waimea size waves are produced.

Jeff Clark was the first to conquer these world class waves, and organized the Maveicks Big Wave event in 1999. Every winter since the most accomplished big waver riders from around the world have surfed this Mt. Everest of big wave competitions

Last year the event money purse reached an all time high of $150,000 for first place. Because weather is critical, conditions have to be just right to hold the event. Surfers stand by for a 24-hour notice during the official waiting period from November 1 through March 31. Once the waves begin to crest over 25 feet tall, the contest is on.

Mavericks waves begin thousands of miles away in the Gulf of Alaska. This North Pacific wave factory serves up 50 foot tall angry green faced monsters. These waves are so vicious they register on the UC Berkeley seismograph.

Just getting out to these waves is no small feat. Surfers must paddle over 45 minutes and navigate through the land of the lost boulder field. Upon reaching the reef surfers having to resist strong currents to maintain their line ups. The surfers line up reference points on the shoreline to triangulate their position in open water.

The worst thing that can happen at Mavericks is getting caught inside the break. That’s when someone yells “inside” which means a sneaker set came out of nowhere. Waves come in sets and there’s about 20 seconds between waves on average. The surfers have to overcome these concentric bands of energy and get back outside the break point.

Riding these giant waves is entirely different than any normal kind of surf because there’s such a big burst of energy. This abruptly shaped reef instantly forces deep ocean water into a monstrous wall of ocean.

Finding the wave’s critical mass is key for getting big points in this contest. Critical mass is the wave’s top center, the ideal place to drop in and steal some wrath before the Gods come crashing down. Like Bruce Lee said, don’t focus on the finger or you will miss all that celestial beauty!

Go to to see live up-to-date conditions and watch live streaming video of the event here.


Finally Got Serious About Hike Camping

campingThe parking pass?…..Where’s the parking pass?…..Here we go Vasco Da Gama navigating through the National Park system, with wild animals that might as well have high range weaponry. These are the type of plots that make for a well stewed story ending. One massive eco-system against one cyber punk.

After many conclusions with the inevitable….How could I possible forget the tent poles?… what happed to all the drinking water as your miles away from civilization. It could get ugly and most likely, always does.

I finally purchased all the necessary equipment for hike camping. At this point it became obvious that a sorted and itemized packing list would be needed. However the list has not guaranteed perfect success… and I won’t kid you about that… Yet I have found it reassuring to know your not missing something i.e. (water purifier) after it’s too late.

In celebration of our geographical cornucopia here is a quick check list of hike camp items you surly do not want to forget.


  • Water purifier and location of water supply along route
  • Matches / lighter / chunk of fire starter log or news paper
  • Gas stove / plenty of fuel
  • Cooking pan / utensils / pot holder / sharp knife
  • Food / Ziploc bags
  • Biodegradable soap and dish rag
  • Food night storage bear bag and rope to hang from tree
  • Marshmallows and pudgy pie maker (optional)

  • Tent / ground tarp / rain cover / poles / stakes
  • Sleeping bag / pillow / air mattress and repair kit
  • Extra rope to hang and dry the tent in the morning (optional)

  • Poles (optional)
  • Headlamp and extra batteries
  • Maps / campus / wrist watch
  • Camera and case

  • Clothing / tooth brush and past / biodegradable body soap and towel / toilet paper / vitamins / medication – if needed

  • Parking pass for national forest / ranger station camping permit – if needed
  • First aid kit / safety pins
  • Bug repellent / sunscreen
  • Check weather forecast
  • Cell phone
  • Tell someone your plans, when and where you’re going and when you’ll be back

Slacklining: It’s Abs-Solutely Great for Core Strengthening

slackliningSlacklining looks like tight rope walking only your lower to the ground and the line “slacks” like a rubber band.

Slacklining is a balance sport that utilizes a suspended flat length of narrow nylon webbing stretched between two trees. The art/sport was started in the 1970′s by rock climbers in Yosemite National Park and has become its own phenomenon.

Here in Seattle it is common to find slacklines stretched from tree to tree in many local parks. Green Lake, Golden Gardens and Gas Works Park make for an ideal spots to setup a balancing session.

People generally are interested and amazed by this unique use of rock climbing equipment. As unlikely as it may seem, most people commonly achieve the basics of slacklining in just one half hour session.

The dynamic nature of the line allows for impressive tricks and stunts. Standing, bouncing and “surfing” are just the beginning of the great number of tricks that can be performed on the line. As for a workout it is abs – solutely great for core strengthening!

You can buy equipment from REI and assemble a slackline kit yourself for $40-60 or buy a pre-assembled one online. NW has the full gamut of resources from explaining the simplest method of rigging with no mechanical come- a-long, to recommending online retail kits.


Free Running: Plot Your Own Course

parkourThe myriad of obstacles that your everyday topography provides has become the course for free runners, an activity otherwise known as Parkour.

Free runners traverse the terrain in a fluid like way, using a combination of techniques that include jumping, vaulting, leaping and balancing.

This activity was developed in Paris during the 1980′s by a group of friends who used the architectural landscape as their playground.

The most prominent of this group is David Belle who is considered to be the founder of Parkour. David is promoting the need to look after the body and creating harmony between you and the obstacles.

This quasi acrobatic sport is sweeping the nation, particularly among youth culture. Onlookers are perhaps still perplexed by people doing insane jumps between buildings, over railings and through cities. However, with the multitude of architecture and natural landscapes it can only percolate an ongoing progression of Parkour. Ambitious runners are enticed step-by-step and leap-by-leap to conquering obstacles, not each other.