Straw Man

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Straw Man

An individual who acts as a front for others who actually incur the expense and obtain the profit of a transaction.

In the terminology employed by real estate dealers, a straw man is an individual who acts as a conduit for convenience in holding and transferring title to the property involved. For example, such a person might act as an agent for another in order to take title to real property and execute whatever documents and instruments the principal directs with respect to the transaction.

West's Encyclopedia of American Law, edition 2. Copyright 2008 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.

straw man

n. 1) a person to whom title to property or a business interest is transferred for the sole purpose of concealing the true owner and/or the business machinations of the parties. Thus, the straw man has no real interest or participation but is merely a passive stand-in for a real participant who secretly controls activities. Sometimes a straw man is involved when the actual owner is not permitted to act, such as a person with a criminal record holding a liquor license. 2) an argument which is intended to distract the other side from the real issues or waste the opponent's time and effort, sometimes called a "red herring" (for the belief that drawing a fish across a trail will mislead hunting dogs).

Copyright © 1981-2005 by Gerald N. Hill and Kathleen T. Hill. All Right reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
I wondered at times if we had read the same book, or if I was reading another ADL straw-man hit piece on Buchanan.
Also, Berger underestimates the possibilities for irony in Van Dyck's portraits, though his case for Rembrandt's complexity does not require that Van Dyck be seen as a straw-man foil.
By launching a new public awareness campaign entitled "Don't Lie For The Other Guy," the NSSF hopes to educate dealers and gun buyers alike about the risks involved in straw-man sales.
Perhaps we should turn Carnivore loose on those dealers' Internet accounts, and those of their possible straw-man buyers, and their friends and families too.
These straw-man opponents have been erected, of course, to divert attention from the politicians' failure to deal with real issues confronting the country, among them: