I've noticed that Apple Store will always open negotiations by taking a whack at you with some generic line to try to blow you off. Maybe it's only me, maybe it's only Applecare customers; the latter would be quite immoral.
Once, the "Genius" started leading in to a question about my third-party RAM and I quickly shut him down by "reminding" him (he knows damned well…) that there are instructions in the freaking manual about how to upgrade the RAM (non-Retina Macbook Pro) and that it's a user-serviceable component.
Another time, they had nothing on me, so they tried to accuse me of not cycling the battery often enough (!!), thus degrading its life. I calmly pointed out that I had been, in fact, cycling the battery, on average, once every two days and offered to help him with his arithmetic.
The key to surviving (and thriving) in the white lucite jungle is to always maintain one's calm assertiveness. It's not fair, and it's quite ridiculous, but it works and it's what you have to do. Keep calm, repeatedly ask for what you want, hell you can even just repeat it verbatim, over and over again, even that'll work. Go for a little bit of snarkiness iff that helps you keep grips on the situation. Wear decent clothes. Whatever.