I heard about a blog this morning from one of The Usual Suspects that tries to address the skepticism movement.
So, not really wanting to go and read it because I am very suspicious whenever this one person writes anything about skepticism since famously, and publicly, year ago denounced and left skepticism. I thought I had to subject myself for a moment.
This diatribe is over 1300 words long. He correctly states that people often conflate science and skepticism. Yes, they’re two different pursuits. Not all skeptics are scientists and not all scientists are skeptics.
After two examples of where skepticism has contributed to exposing fraud and misinformation, the real reason for the post starts to slowly unwind and we begin to get hints of a possible agenda in this post.
Here’s a statement that caught my eye. At this point, I was sure there was going to be something really good coming up and of course, I wasn’t disappointed. But first:
What we’re stuck with is a schema that tolerates motivated reasoning, as long as it looks like debunking.
I wonder what he’s referring to as “motivated reasoning”? No explanation. Let’s move on for a bit and see if we can find any more hints.
Well, right here, just below that statement he accuses skeptics of “contemptible sexism” and “Libertariam bullshit”. Now we’re starting to see the issue here. Wait for a moment and the agenda will become absolutely clear.
It’s actually in the very next paragraph. He’s gone on for hundreds of words and now, just now, we know what his objection to the skeptical movement has been all along:
And then the movement as a whole has been wracked with this bizarre denial of sexual harassment, and refusal to deal with the issue.
Okay! He could have said that in the first paragraph and spared us his infallible wisdom don’t you think? He then proceeds to briefly mention hyperskepticism. I still don’t know what that is and if you do please let me know in the comments. As far as I can determine, it’s not an actual word.
The last part os almost 400 words trashing a fellow blogger of mine here on the network. I won’t make any comments here about that. Maybe in a future post.
He sums up his objection to skepticism by saying, “When your whole business model is simply about rejecting fringe claims, rather than following the evidence no matter how mainstream the target, you’ll inevitably end up with a pathologically skewed audience that uses motivated reasoning to abuse the weak.”
I think that rather describes his business model. He inflames his weak minded minions to forward his personal agenda. All you have to do is read the comments in any of his posts.
Before he leaves us though (thankfully!) he must take one more shot at an accusation of someone groping breasts at a conference. Although, being evidence-based, he has none. He just takes someone’s word that heard someone say that something happened.
Now that’s science!