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sledge-hammer argument

A strong argument that eliminates all opposition. I really want to win the debate next week, so I'm preparing a real sledge-hammer argument.
See also: argument

use a sledgehammer to crack a nut

To use excessive, overcomplicated, or extravagant means or force to accomplish something relatively minor or simple. With this new system of issuing licenses, the government has employed a steam engine to crack a nut: four separate departments now handle each stage of an application, when a single department could easily process applications from start to finish.
See also: crack, nut, sledgehammer, use

a sledgehammer to crack a nut

If someone uses a sledgehammer to crack a nut, they use methods to solve a problem that are far more extreme than is necessary. The widespread campaign by the government to reduce childhood obesity is, she says, using a sledgehammer to crack a nut. Bankers say that the proposed law is a sledgehammer to crack a nut. Note: People sometimes replace sledgehammer with hammer. Robbins's film takes a large hammer to crack a familiar nut. Compare with be breaking a butterfly on a wheel. Note: A sledgehammer is a large heavy hammer which is used for smashing rocks and concrete.
See also: crack, nut, sledgehammer

take (or use) a sledgehammer to crack a nut

use disproportionately forceful means to achieve a simple objective.
A sledgehammer is a large, heavy hammer used for such jobs as breaking up rocks and driving in fence posts.
1998 New Scientist Fighting tooth decay by annihilating mostly harmless bacteria in your mouth is like taking a sledgehammer to crack a nut.
See also: crack, nut, sledgehammer, take

use a ˌsledgehammer to crack a ˈnut

use more force than is necessary: It was a small and peaceful demonstration so I don’t know why there was such a big police presence. It was like using a sledgehammer to crack a nut.
See also: crack, nut, sledgehammer, use
References in periodicals archive ?
Thieves used sledgehammers to smash their way into the centre
Split screen has been confirmed to be one of the features coming to "Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare," according to Sledgehammer Games' Michael Condrey.
A sledgehammer has been recovered and is being examined by forensics, and the car was confirmed as stolen from Roath.
SOUTHBRIDGE - A man carrying a sledgehammer in one hand and a Bud Light Lime beer in the other allegedly broke into his ex-girlfriend's house at Windsor Court, proceeded to her bedroom, where she was with a male companion, and told her he just wanted to talk.
com)-- The new Model 0101 Sledgehammer Hard Drive Crusher from Security Engineered Machinery (SEM) destroys all computer hard drives regardless of their size, format or type, including 3.
He said: "They put a sledgehammer through the door and grabbed what they were after.
THESE dramatic CCTV pictures, released yesterday, show how a raider smashed a jewellery shop window with a sledgehammer as an armed accomplice kept watch.
AN Indian man who was jailed for life for murdering a colleague and trying to kill another with a sledgehammer, lost his appeal to reduce his sentence yesterday.
From responding to mixed messages and underlying agendas to transmitting anger in a more productive manner and expressing needs without manipulating, Saying What's Real goes a long way towards teaching how to 'say it like it is' without using a sledgehammer.
Using fingertip pressure, one person can operate the Slide Sledge tool to deliver the impact of up to a 21-pound sledgehammer aim drive out pins easily.
The first step in this research project was to "take a sledgehammer and see what happens when you break the clock" says Reppert.
The Grip 3's surface design and gripping force are said to allow users to handle anything from an egg to a sledgehammer.
It reportedly mirrors the sharp blows of a sledgehammer but operates at 3 impacts per second.
The subtly circulated half-truth gave birth to the oft-repeated sledgehammer lie of the socialist Nazi Party.
Four men armed with a sledgehammer escaped with thousands of pounds after threatening a security guard outside a Midland DIY store.