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Trouble in the Skeptic Kingdom

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

Re: Trouble in the Skeptic Kingdom

Postby Arouet » 13 Feb 2013, 06:42

That's all well and good, but what I really want to know is - did Carl Sagan smoke pot? And if he did, did he enjoy it?

(I also wonder whether Sagan was obsessed about aliens - but you can deal with that after the pot thing.)

tx
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Re: Trouble in the Skeptic Kingdom

Postby really? » 13 Feb 2013, 10:56

What point are you attempting to make ?
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Re: Trouble in the Skeptic Kingdom

Postby Arouet » 13 Feb 2013, 21:46

He's a troll really - though a more entertaining than average troll.
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Re: Trouble in the Skeptic Kingdom

Postby really? » 13 Feb 2013, 23:41

Arouet wrote:He's a troll really - though a more entertaining than average troll.


I agree. I've seen him/her posting on the JREF site also talking about his/her pet peeve Carl Sagan. Even so, I'd like to know what their point actually is.

I've been keeping up with Skeptiko particularly the thread Ruminations on the skeptic/proponent dialogue which I found interesting.
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Re: Trouble in the Skeptic Kingdom

Postby really? » 14 Feb 2013, 11:46

First off provide a link to the Novella article to allow readers to get up to speed. Secondly, when quoting someone also provide a link. Readers need check for themselves if the quote is accurate and not taken out of context. If you'll do that it would be appreciated.

This skeptic is well aware that science by itself is most times not enough to cause someone to change their beliefs. What helps most is what Steven Novella discusses here.

How To Talk to a Believer
http://theness.com/neurologicablog/inde ... -believer/

It seems to me you are implying skepticism is either a foolish endeavor or close to being on its deathbed. Is my impression correct ?
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Re: Trouble in the Skeptic Kingdom

Postby Arouet » 14 Feb 2013, 21:42

I think pot should be decriminalized - and I've only tried it a handful of times more than a decade ago, and I'm not a smoker or illegal drug user.

If Shermer said science and skepticism are synonymous I disagree with that. Brian Dunning's statement is more accurate. Skepticism often involves science but not exclusively.
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Re: Trouble in the Skeptic Kingdom

Postby Arouet » 16 Feb 2013, 00:08

Close: Skepticism is not science but science is by its nature skeptical. That doesn't mean that everyone with a science education practices skepticism in other areas of their lives.

Skepticism has nothing to do with one's conclusions. Skepticism is about how one gets to their conclusions. it doesn't require science, but it does require sufficient reliable justification for a claim.
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Re: Trouble in the Skeptic Kingdom

Postby really? » 16 Feb 2013, 23:38

justintime wrote:I wrote a lot and didn't link to anything.



I want you to go back and provide all necessary links as requested before.
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Re: Trouble in the Skeptic Kingdom

Postby drastikmeazures » 17 Feb 2013, 00:38

I think pot can be exteamly usefull for a lot of people, it can also be abused. Although I don't think you can actually die from an overdose the way you can with aspirin.
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Re: Trouble in the Skeptic Kingdom

Postby really? » 17 Feb 2013, 11:49

justintime wrote:Steven Novella wrote:

"The skeptical movement is having some (charitably characterized) growing pains. It’s nothing new, actually. Ever since I have been involved in organized skepticism (about 17 years) we have been struggling with the exact same identity crisis, and from speaking with older skeptics it seems much longer than that."

http://theness.com/neurologicablog/inde ... -religion/[/quote]

Thanks for linking. I read this a few weeks ago. You whole interpretation of this article is completely wrong.
Novella is pointing out skeptics should be better at defining what goals they want to achieve. Skepticism is not on it's way out. But if what you want is the demise of skepticism, critical thinking, reason then it would be a world more disturbing than it already is. There are places on this earth right now where none of those things exist and in those places bad and horrible things happens to innocent people. I can provide references.

P.S. You need to get this bug about Sagan out of your ass.
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Re: Trouble in the Skeptic Kingdom

Postby Arouet » 17 Feb 2013, 23:08

justintime wrote: Even when the facts are overwhelming like in climate change, skeptics will be true to their definition as One who instinctively or habitually doubts, questions, or disagrees with assertions or generally accepted conclusions.


Not sure if this is just part of your troll act or not. Are you aware of any other definitions of skepticism that may be more related to critical thinking?
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Re: Trouble in the Skeptic Kingdom

Postby Arouet » 18 Feb 2013, 04:55

Well- if you're interested in identifying the definition that skeptics use when referring to skepticism let me know.
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Re: Trouble in the Skeptic Kingdom

Postby NinjaPuppy » 19 Feb 2013, 21:53

justintime wrote:The definition of skeptics or skepticism is not the only problem facing skeptics?
What you are suggesting is putting lipstick on a pig. Now matter how well you try to dress a pig, it is still a pig.
Skeptics need to align with intelligent people.

A pig with lipstick may still be a pig but intelligence and beliefs are two completely different things.
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Re: Trouble in the Skeptic Kingdom

Postby NinjaPuppy » 20 Feb 2013, 01:34

justintime wrote:How can my advice apply to people who wear lipstick for other reasons? It is still an ineffective way to hide their skepticism.

Ah yes... now we are getting somewhere. "OTHER REASONS" is the keyword.

Skepticism or being skeptical can be a very, very good thing. Once again, the definition will determine exactly how good or bad. What I see happening here is not actually defining the word "skeptic" but rather stereotyping a mishmash of people from all walks of life who have a similar attitude toward things that can't be explained by science or math.

The prime example of the problem with defining "What is a skeptic" is using any internet based BB forum as the defining group. You are assuming that they have some sort of skeptic hive mentality. In many ways, internet forums do have that hive mentality to them but skeptical thinking would be really low on the totem pole of similarities. Not to mention that the population of a BB forum has a broad range of edjumacations and social (or lack of social) skills. Let's not forget the broad range of people who wouldn't have anything to say without at least a 6 pack under their belt and the ones who require meds just to function in society.

Everyone is different in their own way, just like you. ;)
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Re: Trouble in the Skeptic Kingdom

Postby NinjaPuppy » 20 Feb 2013, 02:34

justintime wrote:Are we dealing with some archetype skeptics are predisposed to, some primordial remnants of a violent and uncertain past? You won't find the answers in benign definitions of skeptics and skepticism. You will find the answer in the skeptics and the facts that define them.

You are generally dealing with people with extra free time who enjoy thinking that they are right. :lol:
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