I've always had problems understanding "straw man" as used in "debates."
One of the problems is that over time, many different types of argument defined as "straw man arguments" have arisen, I think, confusing the original use of the phrase.
Wiki, of course, provides an excellent definition:
A straw man is a common form of argument and is an informal fallacy based on giving the impression of refuting an opponent's argument, while actually refuting an argument that was not advanced by that opponent..So, now an example, and this is priceless.
This is a New York Times headline in today's on-line edition: Ford Move, Cited As Win By Trump, Has No Effect On US Jobs.
Perfect straw man argument.
This all had to do with the phone call that was initiated by Bill Ford, chairman of Ford, who called President-elect Trump to simply tell him that the Ford automobile company had decided to keep Lincoln production in Kentucky. That's all that was said in the tweets, back and forth. Nothing was said about jobs.
Trump tweeted that he had received that phone call.
The New York Times provided an example of the perfect straw man: the newspaper gave "the impression of refuting an opponent's argument, while actually refuting an argument that was not advanced by the opponent."
Trump never advanced the argument in that tweet that this saved jobs.
The importance of the call was completely lost on The New York Times headline writer. The amazing thing was that the chairman of Ford felt compelled to call Trump to tell him that the company had decided to keep Lincoln production in the US.
By the way, within 24 hours, Apple also acknowledged that it might start making iPhones in the US. Immediately analysts said that Apple would never be able to afford to do that. Maybe, maybe not. That was not the reason the story was important. Again, Trump did not call Tim Cook and ask him if Apple might not manufacture the iPhone in the US; Apple initiated that possibility for whatever reason. T+11.