Pseudoscience: A dangerous gateway to superstition
Posted: 18 October 2013 03:57 AM   [ Ignore ]
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http://opinionator.blogs.nytimes.com/2013/10/10/the-dangers-of-pseudoscience/?_r=2

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Posted: 18 October 2013 08:44 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1 ]
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Wow. read the comments section. These are people who read the NY TImes so presumably a little smarter than the average joe and yet the vast majority of the coments are in support of pseudoscientific ideas. The world gets a little scarier every day.

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Posted: 18 October 2013 09:56 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2 ]
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I read the comments, you’re right. It could be yet another effect of the ascendency of the far right, tea party types. They work hard to sow their anti-intellectualism and that’s going to have an effect on otherwise normal people.

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Posted: 18 October 2013 11:12 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 3 ]
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CuthbertJ - 18 October 2013 09:56 AM

I read the comments, you’re right. It could be yet another effect of the ascendency of the far right, tea party types. They work hard to sow their anti-intellectualism and that’s going to have an effect on otherwise normal people.

It could be that people with no scientific sense are more likely to write in response to such an article. They already think the goverment (and maybe science itself) is conspiring against them and they feel the need to protest.

All together now, “I believe in pseudoscience.”

Lois

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Posted: 18 October 2013 02:43 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 4 ]
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macgyver - 18 October 2013 08:44 AM

Wow. read the comments section. These are people who read the NY TImes so presumably a little smarter than the average joe and yet the vast majority of the coments are in support of pseudoscientific ideas. The world gets a little scarier every day.

Have you seen this
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fJuNgBkloFE


The horrifying part is that in democratic-republic society, it is people who elect the leader.
Until people learn to actually check their sources and study issues and not go with what is “popular” then maybe
the world will change a little.
https://sandala.org/blog/critical-eyes-in-a-critical-time#.UmGrSPlJO0M

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Posted: 18 October 2013 02:55 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 5 ]
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Amusing that this author could write about

Popper’s basic insight: the bad habit of creative fudging and finagling with empirical data [that] ultimately makes a theory impervious to refutation… all pseudoscientists do it, from parapsychologists to creationists and 9/11 Truthers

without acknowledging that a lack of falsifiability runs through NIST’s report on the collapse of Building 7, a key complaint of “truthers” ever since it was published.

Popper would unquestionably define NIST’s work as pseudoscience, and so should any other rational thinker.

[ Edited: 18 October 2013 02:58 PM by jomper ]
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Posted: 18 October 2013 04:15 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 6 ]
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There are some good comments in the comment section, too. I was wondering if maybe there was some mention of “Qi” in the article’s tag-line before one clicks on the link to read the full article, but because this article is over a week old I think that whatever tag-line info was associated with it has been taken down. Unless I’m just doing a bad job of surfing the NYTimes website.

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Posted: 18 October 2013 11:48 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 7 ]
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You don’t have to be a reader of the NYT to be a commenter, do you?

NYT readers are not going to be less likely to believe in some types of Pseudoscience anyway.

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Posted: 19 October 2013 05:45 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 8 ]
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I didn’t bother with the comments, I see this enough in my circle of friends, even my local free thinkers group. The article did a great job of defining the demarcation and explaining how “alternative medicine” can become just “medicine”, but it jumps to the idea of affecting how people think critically pretty fast and throws anti-vaxxer and 9/11 truther in with no supporting evidence. Not that I need the evidence, but I’ve seen how doing that sets people off.

I hope lots of pseudo-science believers do read this because the first few paragraphs do a great job of explaining how people learn only part of the critical thinking process then apply it by watching a one sided documentary and end up “confusing the possible effectiveness of folk remedies with the arbitrary theoretical-metaphysical baggage attached to it”.

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