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Why am I so Wrong? by ProfWag

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Re: Why am I so Wrong? by ProfWag

Postby ProfWag » 16 Oct 2009, 01:44

NinjaPuppy wrote:
ProfWag wrote:
NinjaPuppy wrote:I'm not known to accept anything that anyone says, hook, line and sinker. I do like to believe that people are honest but I'm not blind to the fact that there are always three sides to every story. His, hers and the truth.

Good on ya' NinjaPuppy! Now, if we could just get that through to some of the other people we know who appear honest, sincere, blah blah blah.


What I find to be the most irritating thing is when someone puts out a piece of information for discussion and an opposing view slams it down without any intelligent discussion. It's usually accompanied by a few choice names, some uncalled for nasty commentary, defamation of the original sources charater or credentials, etc. Now I'm not talking about you ProfWag or even skeptics. Just the way some discussion topics are addressed which can really throw off any chances of good, heated debate with possible value.

Yea, that irritates me too.
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Re: Why am I so Wrong? by ProfWag

Postby wjbeaty » 24 Oct 2009, 11:23

ProfWag wrote:I kind of made up the term “pseudo-believer” to counter the term “pseudo-skeptic.”


Hah, the process continues! I originally made up the term "pathological skeptic" to counter similar derogatory labling coming from the fanatical skeptic fringe: they'd started heavy use of namecalling: "pseudos," "pathological scientists," "woo-woos," "crackpots," "new-age flakes," etc.

Well, two can play at that game, and if you want to drive a bully crazy, use their own tactics against them. I spread the term around, but it didn't really catch fire until the early days of Wikipedia. It seems to have succeeded a bit too well, since in the intervening years others contributed: scoffers, disbelievers, debunkers, 'wet' skeptics, false skeptics, bogus skeptics, cynics, skeptoids, skeptopaths, skeptinazis, randi-bots, randi-roids, pseudoskeptics, knee-jerk skeptics, hardcore skeptics, type-II pseudoscientists, skeptologists. Who's ahead in the brawl? Clearly there aren't enough terms for 'woo-woo!' :)

Going back to ProfWag's original topic: where is the proof? Well, all these crazy topics involve "proto-science" at best. If simple and extensive proof existed, they'd already be part of modern science. (And their weirdness and mystery would be extinguished. And then we wouldn't be arguing about them here.)

Classic example: meteorites were ridiculed and ignored as peasant superstition until solid proof was gathered, mostly by Ernst Chladni around 1820. His chemical analysis showed that most meteorites were similar, and they didn't belong to any known mineral group. So, a topic which had been the target of scoffers was turned into a target for scientists.

Just imagine ...what if you lived in the time before Chladni, and you had a personal meteorite experience? You might have seen a rock fall from the sky, found the nearby hole and recovered it. But no scientist would ever believe you. They'd assume that you were lying, or trying to pull a hoax. After all, "ignorant superstitious farmers" had been reporting such things forever. And scholars of the time all knew that there WERE no small rocks in space that could fall onto the Earth.

And so here's one way of saying it: people involved with certain "Fortean" topics are hoping that their pet subject becomes the next "Meteorite." Then they got to be involved with the earliest stages of a new science. And also they can then say "see, we told you so!"
-----------------------------------------------
'Skeptic' does not mean scoffer
'Skeptic' does not mean debunker
'Skeptic' does not mean csicop member
'Skeptic' does not mean Atheist
'Skeptic' does not mean cynic
'Skeptic' does not mean woo-woo-hater
'Skeptic' does not mean anti-paranormalist
'Skeptic' does not even mean self-declared Skeptic
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Re: Why am I so Wrong? by ProfWag

Postby ProfWag » 24 Oct 2009, 19:58

wjbeaty wrote:
ProfWag wrote:I kind of made up the term “pseudo-believer” to counter the term “pseudo-skeptic.”


Hah, the process continues! I originally made up the term "pathological skeptic" to counter similar derogatory labling coming from the fanatical skeptic fringe: they'd started heavy use of namecalling: "pseudos," "pathological scientists," "woo-woos," "crackpots," "new-age flakes," etc.

Well, two can play at that game, and if you want to drive a bully crazy, use their own tactics against them. I spread the term around, but it didn't really catch fire until the early days of Wikipedia. It seems to have succeeded a bit too well, since in the intervening years others contributed: scoffers, disbelievers, debunkers, 'wet' skeptics, false skeptics, bogus skeptics, cynics, skeptoids, skeptopaths, skeptinazis, randi-bots, randi-roids, pseudoskeptics, knee-jerk skeptics, hardcore skeptics, type-II pseudoscientists, skeptologists. Who's ahead in the brawl? Clearly there aren't enough terms for 'woo-woo!' :)

Going back to ProfWag's original topic: where is the proof? Well, all these crazy topics involve "proto-science" at best. If simple and extensive proof existed, they'd already be part of modern science. (And their weirdness and mystery would be extinguished. And then we wouldn't be arguing about them here.)

Classic example: meteorites were ridiculed and ignored as peasant superstition until solid proof was gathered, mostly by Ernst Chladni around 1820. His chemical analysis showed that most meteorites were similar, and they didn't belong to any known mineral group. So, a topic which had been the target of scoffers was turned into a target for scientists.

Just imagine ...what if you lived in the time before Chladni, and you had a personal meteorite experience? You might have seen a rock fall from the sky, found the nearby hole and recovered it. But no scientist would ever believe you. They'd assume that you were lying, or trying to pull a hoax. After all, "ignorant superstitious farmers" had been reporting such things forever. And scholars of the time all knew that there WERE no small rocks in space that could fall onto the Earth.

And so here's one way of saying it: people involved with certain "Fortean" topics are hoping that their pet subject becomes the next "Meteorite." Then they got to be involved with the earliest stages of a new science. And also they can then say "see, we told you so!"

Hmpf, I never thought of it that way, but very interesting comments!
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Re: Why am I so Wrong? by ProfWag

Postby ciscop » 25 Oct 2009, 01:03

could it be...?
that you are wrong
because you are rational
and believers often use their emotions as an argument? (what they feel about a person sincerity?)
For every person who reads this valuable book there are hundreds of naïve souls who would prefer to have their spines tingled by a sensational but worthless potboiler by some hack journalist of the paranormal. You who now read these sentences join a small but wiser minority. Martin Gaardner (Psychology of the Psychic)
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Re: Why am I so Wrong? by ProfWag

Postby brett » 25 Oct 2009, 02:13

ciscop wrote:could it be...?
that you are wrong
because you are rational
and believers often use their emotions as an argument? (what they feel about a person sincerity?)


what a bit like some skeptics resort to insults , ad hominem attacks etc when they are loosing an argument ciscop ?? ( or just because they are , well i am too polite to lower myself to such language - but it rhymes with "glass bowls :roll: to start with ) - good job we are not all like that eh ? - believe me , i have been called a lot of things whilst TRYING to debate with skeptics , fortunately the ones here are quite civilized compared to some i could mention :D

strong convictions and the willingness to stand behind them are a form of emotion - regardless which side of the argument you favor ;) - and SOME believers are rational too , dont tar us all with the same brush please :D
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Re: Why am I so Wrong? by ProfWag

Postby wjbeaty » 27 Oct 2009, 13:13

ProfWag wrote:
wjbeaty wrote:And so here's one way of saying it: people involved with certain "Fortean" topics are hoping that their pet subject becomes the next "Meteorite." Then they had an opportunity to be involved with the earliest stages of a new science. And also, they can then say "see, we told you so!"


Hmpf, I never thought of it that way, but very interesting comments!


Well, I gotta admit that most weird topics have ended up NOT becoming the next 'meteorite.' Instead they end up as the next 'phrenology'. For every Wright Brothers laboring ignored in 1902 obscurity, there were hundreds of other crackpot "flying machine believers." Their machines tended to be flapping steam-powered bat-wings made of leather, mounted to hay wagons. There were even international meetings for all the many crackpot flying-machine inventors. Also they had 1902 celebrity skeptics shaking their heads over the ridiculous efforts and lives wasted in pursuit of such wrong ideas.

One csicop guy on the old PhACT forum has noted that even the most thoughtless of knee-jerk scoffers is correct 99% of the time. (And maybe that should be %99.9) Huge loads of wrong ideas really do exist. This is most easily seen if we look back at much older controversies. I doubt many people on this forum would be very tolerant towards believers in Phrenology. Or Flat Earth theory. Or sales of Violet-Wand devices to cure cancer, TB, baldness, and criminal tendencies. (Recommended video: "The Road to Wellville" !)

So along the Believer-Scoffer spectrum, where should we all try to sit? How many deranged crackpot flying-machine inventors should we tolerate while waiting for one Wright Brothers to come onto the scene? (And even that example is only clear in hindsight, since it's easily conceivable that the Wrights would never appear, airplanes remain a ridiculed dream, and the crackpot's wasted efforts still continued today.)
-----------------------------------------------
'Skeptic' does not mean scoffer
'Skeptic' does not mean debunker
'Skeptic' does not mean csicop member
'Skeptic' does not mean Atheist
'Skeptic' does not mean cynic
'Skeptic' does not mean woo-woo-hater
'Skeptic' does not mean anti-paranormalist
'Skeptic' does not even mean self-declared Skeptic
((((((((((((( ( (O) ) )))))))))))))
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Re: Why am I so Wrong? by ProfWag

Postby brett » 27 Oct 2009, 13:35

well bill we have a more polite term than " crackpot " - we crackpots term ourselves "eccentrics" and there is a fine line of eccentric inventors in the UK , and even a few people who believe in things paranormal ( quell horror :shock: ) - and there have also been a long line of those who stand and observe "that,l never work " - only to be proven wrong many times , and i can imagine way way back when the wheel was first introduced to England some ancient skeptic pronouncing that "thee is wasting thy time , it will never catch on :lol:

so i guess that the battle between skeptics and believers ( in whatever ) always has and ever will continue - so i guess you pick your side and settle down for a life time of argument :lol: :lol: :lol:

ah well it passes the time i suppose ;)
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Re: Why am I so Wrong? by ProfWag

Postby ciscop » 27 Oct 2009, 15:07

brett wrote:well bill we have a more polite term than " crackpot " - we crackpots term ourselves "eccentrics" and there is a fine line of eccentric inventors in the UK , and even a few people who believe in things paranormal ( quell horror :shock: ) - and there have also been a long line of those who stand and observe "that,l never work " - only to be proven wrong many times , and i can imagine way way back when the wheel was first introduced to England some ancient skeptic pronouncing that "thee is wasting thy time , it will never catch on :lol:

so i guess that the battle between skeptics and believers ( in whatever ) always has and ever will continue - so i guess you pick your side and settle down for a life time of argument :lol: :lol: :lol:

ah well it passes the time i suppose ;)


yeah..
in that instance i think you are taking the word skeptic as pessimistic
which is not the same

a skeptic will say... let me take a look at that, i dont know what that is.. how does that work?
let me see it running, and thats it

in the other hand.. believers will take any odd shaped wheel.. lets say a rubik shaped wheel.. and hear a story of somebody using something like that and despites all their failures and science and mechanics and phsychs telling them that doesnt work and their stupidity in believing in a rubik shaped wheel.. they will keep trying since they "know in their heart" the rubik shaped wheel is the best way if not the Only way... after all they heard a story from a lovable guy who wouldnt lie.
For every person who reads this valuable book there are hundreds of naïve souls who would prefer to have their spines tingled by a sensational but worthless potboiler by some hack journalist of the paranormal. You who now read these sentences join a small but wiser minority. Martin Gaardner (Psychology of the Psychic)
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Re: Why am I so Wrong? by ProfWag

Postby wjbeaty » 27 Oct 2009, 15:23

ciscop wrote: phsychs telling them that doesnt work and their stupidity in believing in a rubik shaped wheel.. they will keep trying since they "know in their heart" the rubik shaped wheel is the best way if not the Only way... after all they heard a story from a lovable guy who wouldnt lie.


Bad example, because then the Wright brothers come along, ignore the supposed impossibility, and start selling a cube-shaped wheel which really works:

Smooth-rolling cubes & tetrahedrons
http://amasci.com/exhibits/wheels.html
-----------------------------------------------
'Skeptic' does not mean scoffer
'Skeptic' does not mean debunker
'Skeptic' does not mean csicop member
'Skeptic' does not mean Atheist
'Skeptic' does not mean cynic
'Skeptic' does not mean woo-woo-hater
'Skeptic' does not mean anti-paranormalist
'Skeptic' does not even mean self-declared Skeptic
((((((((((((( ( (O) ) )))))))))))))
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Re: Why am I so Wrong? by ProfWag

Postby ProfWag » 27 Oct 2009, 22:06

One of my favorite sayings:
"Two wrongs don't make a right, but two Wrights made an airplane."
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Re: Why am I so Wrong? by ProfWag

Postby brett » 27 Oct 2009, 22:55

wjbeaty wrote:
ciscop wrote: phsychs telling them that doesnt work and their stupidity in believing in a rubik shaped wheel.. they will keep trying since they "know in their heart" the rubik shaped wheel is the best way if not the Only way... after all they heard a story from a lovable guy who wouldnt lie.


Bad example, because then the Wright brothers come along, ignore the supposed impossibility, and start selling a cube-shaped wheel which really works:

Smooth-rolling cubes & tetrahedrons
http://amasci.com/exhibits/wheels.html


guess you got ciscop there bill - he really needs to visit your site ;) ;) :lol:
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Re: Why am I so Wrong? by ProfWag

Postby ciscop » 28 Oct 2009, 04:10

hahaha AWESOME!
when i was writing the comment
i was thinking in weird shaped wheels
i thought rombe, star and triangle
but went for rubik
since i have one here on my desk (i suck at it)

hahahaha nice one
For every person who reads this valuable book there are hundreds of naïve souls who would prefer to have their spines tingled by a sensational but worthless potboiler by some hack journalist of the paranormal. You who now read these sentences join a small but wiser minority. Martin Gaardner (Psychology of the Psychic)
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Re: Why am I so Wrong? by ProfWag

Postby wjbeaty » 30 Oct 2009, 03:31

ciscop wrote:hahaha AWESOME!
i thought rombe, star and triangle
but went for rubik



Ooo, ooo, smoothly-rolling rubik TRIANGLE. Well, tetrahedron actually.

Search for reuleaux mastermorphix and Rubik. (Reuleaux Triangle is the Exploratorium's bulgy polygon which has constant width and can be used as a roller-bearing.)
-----------------------------------------------
'Skeptic' does not mean scoffer
'Skeptic' does not mean debunker
'Skeptic' does not mean csicop member
'Skeptic' does not mean Atheist
'Skeptic' does not mean cynic
'Skeptic' does not mean woo-woo-hater
'Skeptic' does not mean anti-paranormalist
'Skeptic' does not even mean self-declared Skeptic
((((((((((((( ( (O) ) )))))))))))))
Bill Beaty Science Hobbyist
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