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Why Anecdotes Are Not Worthless When Their is Colloboration

Discuss PseudoSkeptics and their Fallacies. Share strategies for debating them.

Why Anecdotes Are Not Worthless When Their is Colloboration

Postby leo100 » 08 Jun 2009, 02:07

This post is from my blogspot called "Paranormal and Life After Death", i like to post it here.

It was bound to happen a member on James Randi's forum found a site that i have linked too on here called Skepcop. This site is created by Winston Wu who debunks the skeptics. Here are some of the comments made by some of the members of the forum.


http://forums.randi.org/showthread.php?t=144802

Richard R says

No, not worth a looksee at all. This is Winston Wu's drivel. I wrote about Winston Wu - note how he shows up in the comments (May 20), and note how he offers nothing of value and doesn't respond to anyone's criticisms.

Really? says him apparently and this rebuttal of Winston's Wu's debunking of skeptical arguments.

http://www.skepticreport.com/resources/analysiswu.pdf

Here's just some of the rebuttal and my response to them

He mentions that Winston Wu is committing an appeal to authority when he mentions an psychiatrist view on the afterlife, he says that a psychiatrist isn't qualified to speak about matters on the afterlife. This is where he is wrong, because apparently this psychiatrist is getting consistent results from many witnesses who had past lives.

Basically this rebuttal creates several fallacies, without acknowledges that no fallacies were committed. Instead of addressing why their is so much anecdotal evidence he instead invents fallacies that are not made in Winston Wu's article debunking skeptic arguments. The skeptic misses the whole point in Winston's Wu's article and that is not to accept mere anecdotes but to consider them when their is colloboration of multiple eye witnesses along with physical evidence.

Also i like to point out a good post by Michael Prescott on Anecdotes, clearing pointing out that some evidence for psi and life after death is anecdotal however a lot of the evidence for psi and life after death is not anecdotal.

Also it clearly is a double standard by skeptics to say that that believers use anecdotal accounts while skeptics rely on scientific observations. Why? because their are clear examples of many skeptics indeed using anecdotal accounts without any physical evidence, that they say counts as evidence against the paranormal. I would never take the word of anyone unless their is colloboration of multiple eye witnesses claiming to see the same thing, along with them being sober and not on drugs. As well as information that can be verified, this has happened many times in psychical research.

Let me get at what i am saying here, that this rebuttal misses out on the fact that in many phenomena such as past lives, apparitions etc. A lot of those cases have colloboration of multiple eye witnesses with verified information coming through. To those cases yes you can say that their was fraud etc. However it's a double standard to say that anecdotal testimony is worthless when their is colloboration of multiple eye witnesses combined with physical evidence[ information being obtained from outside physical reality.

Go here to check it out for yourself


http://subversivethinking.blogspot.com/ ... e-and.html
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Re: Why Anecdotes Are Not Worthless When Their is Colloboration

Postby Scepcop » 08 Jun 2009, 10:56

Thanks. I was trying to post this site link in JREF forums too, but I have trouble registering, as they keep removing my account during the activation process without explanation.

I wonder why it's so hard to register there. Are you registered there? If so, can you post my new entry there about "characteristics of pseudoskeptics vs true skeptics"?

http://www.debunkingskeptics.com/characteristics.php

Thanks,
Winston
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Re: Why Anecdotes Are Not Worthless When Their is Colloboration

Postby Scepcop » 08 Jun 2009, 11:08

It looks like the JREF folks are planning to register on this forum:

http://forums.randi.org/showthread.php?t=144802
Has anyone registered for the forum? I want to but I want to be sure it is safe to do so before I do. I need one of those sneakmail accounts first. I'd hate to get bombarded with more spam by some sleazy forum owner.


I wonder if we should let them. It would be a mess if they all came in at once. But it looks like they only want to come here as a group, not alone. I guess their strength is in numbers, not truth. lol So far, none of them have dared.
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Re: Why Anecdotes Are Not Worthless When Their is Colloboration

Postby leo100 » 08 Jun 2009, 23:20

I have actually tried to register on Jref forum before, i could try again.
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Re: Why Anecdotes Are Not Worthless When Their is Colloboration

Postby leo100 » 09 Jun 2009, 09:33

Ok i just registered and the adminstrator has accepted i am now a jref member.
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Re: Why Anecdotes Are Not Worthless When Their is Colloboration

Postby jakesteele » 09 Jun 2009, 11:15

As far as Appeal to Authority goes, they definitely have double standards on this and pretty much their whole debunking thing goes. One of my favorite ones is the alleged debunking of the two different sightings of the Phoenix Lights. They use the following two "Appeals to Authority" to debunk:

1st event - Amateur astronomer Mitch Stanley, and friend, who was outside that night with him state that they saw

2nd event - The USAF explained the second event as slow falling, long burning flares dropped by an A-10 Warthog aircraft on a training exercise over Luke Air Force Base.

They are appealing to two different Authorities and taking their word on.
They also are using anecdotal heresay evidence when they take the word of the amateur astronomers. It just never ends, does it?

Now, of course, they blindly take on faith anything James Randi says and also the CSIOPS people. You can't get too much bigger of an Appeal to Authority than that.
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Re: Why Anecdotes Are Not Worthless When Their is Colloboration

Postby jakesteele » 09 Jun 2009, 11:17

I forgot to include in the above post that I am a member of JREF and I would be happy to post your stuff for you. Even though you have it in your post, please reply with whatever you want linked/posted and I will do it.
Debunkers think all UFO photos are fake,
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Re: Why Anecdotes Are Not Worthless When Their is Colloboration

Postby Scepcop » 10 Jun 2009, 07:43

leo100 wrote:Ok i just registered and the adminstrator has accepted i am now a jref member.


Great, are you going to post your response there now?

He mentions that Winston Wu is committing an appeal to authority when he mentions an psychiatrist view on the afterlife, he says that a psychiatrist isn't qualified to speak about matters on the afterlife. This is where he is wrong, because apparently this psychiatrist is getting consistent results from many witnesses who had past lives.

Basically this rebuttal creates several fallacies, without acknowledges that no fallacies were committed. Instead of addressing why their is so much anecdotal evidence he instead invents fallacies that are not made in Winston Wu's article debunking skeptic arguments. The skeptic misses the whole point in Winston's Wu's article and that is not to accept mere anecdotes but to consider them when their is colloboration of multiple eye witnesses along with physical evidence.

Also i like to point out a good post by Michael Prescott on Anecdotes, clearing pointing out that some evidence for psi and life after death is anecdotal however a lot of the evidence for psi and life after death is not anecdotal.

Also it clearly is a double standard by skeptics to say that that believers use anecdotal accounts while skeptics rely on scientific observations. Why? because their are clear examples of many skeptics indeed using anecdotal accounts without any physical evidence, that they say counts as evidence against the paranormal. I would never take the word of anyone unless their is colloboration of multiple eye witnesses claiming to see the same thing, along with them being sober and not on drugs. As well as information that can be verified, this has happened many times in psychical research.

Let me get at what i am saying here, that this rebuttal misses out on the fact that in many phenomena such as past lives, apparitions etc. A lot of those cases have colloboration of multiple eye witnesses with verified information coming through. To those cases yes you can say that their was fraud etc. However it's a double standard to say that anecdotal testimony is worthless when their is colloboration of multiple eye witnesses combined with physical evidence[ information being obtained from outside physical reality.

Go here to check it out for yourself


http://subversivethinking.blogspot.com/ ... e-and.html


And also show them this link:

http://www.debunkingskeptics.com/characteristics.php
“Devotion to the truth is the hallmark of morality; there is no greater, nobler, more heroic form of devotion than the act of a man who assumes the responsibility of thinking.” - Ayn Rand, Atlas Shrugged
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Re: Why Anecdotes Are Not Worthless When Their is Colloboration

Postby Scepcop » 10 Jun 2009, 08:18

So true Jakesteele.

Usually, narrow minded people are unable to see their own flaws and double standards. That's why they can't see that they are doing themselves what they criticize in others they wish to debunk. Like SteveTrueblue said, they lack the ability to see patterns, connect the dots, and see a larger picture.

Either that, or they're just dishonest.

It takes an open mind and a broad mind to see one's own faults and be able to admit to them too.

Their appeal to authority is not just limited to JREF and CSICOP, but to the government and the scientific establishment as well. They NEVER question anything they say. Even when there's an obvious cover up attempt or thwarting of an investigation, such as when J Edgar Hoover used his powers to block a proper investigation into the JFK Assassination, the skeptics see nothing wrong with it. That's not true skepticism or truth seeking.

Objectivity, truth, reason, wisdom, open mindedness, rationality, etc. are not on their side. So they have to resort to insults and ridicule a lot, as the JREF forum posters do, as well as the SGU forum folks. But a small band of folks dedicated to truth and objectivity can defeat a hundred who live in ignorance and have no truth or wisdom on their side.
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Re: Why Anecdotes Are Not Worthless When Their is Colloboration

Postby Scepcop » 10 Jun 2009, 12:11

jakesteele wrote:As far as Appeal to Authority goes, they definitely have double standards on this and pretty much their whole debunking thing goes. One of my favorite ones is the alleged debunking of the two different sightings of the Phoenix Lights. They use the following two "Appeals to Authority" to debunk:

1st event - Amateur astronomer Mitch Stanley, and friend, who was outside that night with him state that they saw

2nd event - The USAF explained the second event as slow falling, long burning flares dropped by an A-10 Warthog aircraft on a training exercise over Luke Air Force Base.

They are appealing to two different Authorities and taking their word on.
They also are using anecdotal heresay evidence when they take the word of the amateur astronomers. It just never ends, does it?

Now, of course, they blindly take on faith anything James Randi says and also the CSIOPS people. You can't get too much bigger of an Appeal to Authority than that.


Awesome example. I quoted it on this page:

http://www.debunkingskeptics.com/doublestandards.php
“Devotion to the truth is the hallmark of morality; there is no greater, nobler, more heroic form of devotion than the act of a man who assumes the responsibility of thinking.” - Ayn Rand, Atlas Shrugged
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