Being Skeptical of Skeptics’ Skepticism

…I have spent a great deal of time reading blogposts and comments on skeptical sites on the Internet, and one important fact has become readily apparent: that many in our community aren’t aware of one of the most important things a skeptic should know.

I’ve seen opinions stated without any factual substantiation. I’ve seen self-styled “experts” make derisive comments about others’ lack of knowledge about a topic, only to find out that it was they who were, in fact, ill-informed. Why? Because too many of us don’t know what we don’t know.

That’s Skepticism and Ethics

Yeah, I was disappointed the other day when I posted information that I had a great deal of confidence in (having two sources including one inside) that medical doctors on the scene wanted a woman at the South Pole research station to go to a real hospital, that the current conditions there were actually allowing some flights in and out (though rarely) that the turnaround time to get a flight in place was at least a few weeks and none were in the loop so regardless of conditions the woman could not be airlifted at all, and finally, that the decision to not take this very expensive but only moderately risky (no riskier than previously carried out supply flights) action were being stonewalled by a private corporation.

And the response I got were a number of people who said “you simply can’t fly in or out of the antarctic now, it can’t be done” and/or “there is nothing medically you can do for a stroke victim anyway” or “it’s the pilots who make these decisions so let them decide.”

One can certainly agree or disagree as to whether or not a flight if this kind should be made, but not on the basis of what was being said by these commenters who had the opportunity to click the provided link and read all about it. This is annoying, but especailly annoying because my blog post was a request to get people to sign a petition to urge the US government to consider the issue and put aside the interest of noehtyaR Corporation (spelled backwards here so they don’t find this discussion … I have it on good authority that they are trolling for mentions of their corporate name in connection with other key words to make efforts to control the discussion.)

There were three kinds of commenters who responded to my humble request for help for a good friend of mine with “sketpical” statements calling the whole thing into question (again, incorrectly and without reference to the relevant facts):

1) Regular commenters whom I know to be skeptics, who were just being sloppy. I believe they likely learned from this situation. These are commenters who in the past have never been shy to disagree with something I’ve said, and those disagreements have often sent me back to the books to check on my argument, and although I’m very rarely wrong (obviously!) occasionally I may have been though I don’t remember

2) Individual(s) hawking some kind of crazy medical revisionism serving their own shady purposes.

3) Individual(s) whom I can’t identify but whom I’ll guess (and it is only a guess, and a bold one at that) are agents of Neohtyar Corporation who are repressing me.

That discussion is going on here. Please go there and click the links, especially the one to sign the petition!

And read S&E’s post!

Thank you very much that is all for now.

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8 Responses to Being Skeptical of Skeptics’ Skepticism

  1. Nemo says:

    I have it on good authority that they are trolling for mentions of their corporate name in connection with other key words to make efforts to control the discussion.

    Eh… wouldn’t it be cheaper/simpler for them just to give in, and fly her out?

  2. Greg Laden says:

    I think some guy armed with Google Alerts is probably a lot cheaper than a C130. Depending on what they do to us for discussing this.

  3. john says:

    If agents of this corporation are represssing you, then I think they know about this blog. Hence, no need to spell their name backwards. They are already in our midst. They could be anyone. Be vigilant comrade. Oh and pass me the pipe.

  4. Greg Laden says:

    What corporation? I didn’t say anything about a corporation?

  5. john says:

    Raytheon. Raytheon. Raytheon.

    Let’s see if the trolls find this thread and try and steer the discussion. Let the repression begin!!

  6. Glenn Davey says:

    I usually begin with the assumption that I know nothing and am prepared to be taught something, and go from there…

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