Selective Denialism

The New Scientist (one of my favorite popluar science magazines despite its propensity toward knee-jerk leftism) is running a feature section on "denialism" in the current issue. Well, OK. But I tend to agree with Michael Fitzpatrick's opinion piece in the feature section where he argues that trying to suppress the speech of one's opponents by denouncing them as "deniers" of scientific truth is dangerously illiberal:

Such attempts to combat pseudoscience by branding it a secular form of blasphemy are illiberal and intolerant. They are also ineffective, tending not only to reinforce cynicism about science but also to promote a distrust of scientific and medical authority that provides a rallying point for pseudoscience.

He then quotes University of Exeter philosopher Edward Skidelsky who says,

..."the extension of the 'denier' tag to group after group is a development that should alarm all liberal-minded people." What we need is more debate, not less.

The New Scientist then supplies a list of denialisms, under the title "True Disbelievers." The list includes, climate denial, evolution denial, Holocaust denial, AIDS denial, 9/11 denial, vaccine denial, and tobacco denial. For my part, I agree that science and history are against any would-be "deniers" of the listed phenomena. However, I am bemused that some other "denialisms" were not on the list. Perhaps the editors ran out of space. So, using the New Scientist list format, I add a few of the current denialisms that annoy me:

Biotech crop denialism

In a nutshell: Biotech crops are dangerous for human health and environment

Origin: Leading NGOs, including Greenpeace, Friends of the Earth, and the Union of Concerned Scientists

Call themselves: Environmentalists, or greens

Influence: Five stars*****

Drug war denialism

In a nutshell: We are winning the war on drugs

Origins: Early 20th century progressive prohibitionists

Call themselves: Drug Enforcement Agency, Congress

Influence: Waning, but still four stars ****

Market denialism

In a nutshell: Economies can be better directed from the top down by benevolent politicians and bureaucrats

Origins: Primitive beliefs given the guise of science in the 19th century by Karl Marx and other practitioners

Call themselves: Progressives and socialists

Influence: Unfortunately growing, now three stars ***

I cordially invite Reason readers to identify any other denialisms that they think that the New Scientist overlooked.

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  • ||

    "The list includes, climate denial, evolution denial, Holocaust denial, AIDS denial, 9/11 denial, vaccine denial, and tobacco denial. For my part, I agree that science and history are against any would-be "deniers" of the listed phenomena."

    Ron you are still worshiping at the church of AGW? I thought you had at least become an agnostic. And seriously, you worship there so much that you throw in dissent on made made climate change in with Holocaust denial?

  • Mo||

    Believing in global warming is completely different than believing in AGW. The evidence strongly points to the GW as largely proven (even taking into account the UEA and CRU fuckups). Believing in global warming doesn't necessarily mean that a) people caused it or b) governments need to do anything about.

    However, people like you that conflate the two actually give the AGW people more credibility, rather than less. There's reams of evidence of regular global warming, not much on AGW.

  • ||

    The e-mails bring all global warming into doubt. They show in part that they were manipulating the data to downplay the medieval warming period to make the current climate look like an unprecedented warming.

    If by "global warming" you mean "the climate is not static, the I guess I agree, although I am not sure what the point of such an obvious statement is.

  • ||

    Damn fake handles.

  • Mo||

    The e-mails bring all global warming into doubt. They show in part that they were manipulating the data to downplay the medieval warming period to make the current climate look like an unprecedented warming.

    No they didn't. That's a pretty blatant misreading and exaggeration of the email scandal.

  • ||


    True disbelievers

    Climate denial

    * In a nutshell: Global warming either (1) isn't real (2) isn't caused by humans or (3) doesn't matter
    * Origin: Corporate astroturfing in the early 1990s
    * Call themselves: Climate sceptics
    * Influence: *****

    Your argument could have some merit if the cited article didn't conflate people skeptical of any global warming, those skeptical of AGW, and those who think that it doesn't matter much. Try better next time.

  • Zeb||

    And they left out the option (4) attempts to fix it (regardless of cause) will either fail or cause more harm than good.

  • ||

    I also don't spell "skeptics" with a "c".

  • EscapedWestOfTheBigMuddy||

    I demand at east one 'c' in my skeptics.

    Really, I do.

  • ||

    Believing in AGW has nothing to do with believing that governments need to do anything about. The two are separate, just as denying GW is not the same thing as saying it doesn't matter.

    Under The New Scientist's definition, I'm a "climate denier" even though I believe AGW is real.

  • Mo||

    BTW, well played with Godwining the thread in the first comment.

  • ||

    That is not a Godwin. A Godwin is when you call your opponent a Nazi. I did not such thing. I simply pointed out that Bailey listed "climate denial" in the same list, and presumably on the same level, with Holocaust denial.

    There needs to be a new word to describe the over broad use of the term Godwin.

  • Joe M||

    Godwinfail?

  • Baff||

    Badwin?

  • Alec||

    Baldwin?

  • ||

    Godfail?

  • Joe M||

    Whether or not AGW is real is entirely independent of whether or not the government should intervene.

  • ||

    exactly.

  • ||

    National Defense Denialism
    In a nutshell: Pre-emptive war is necessary for our defense
    Origins: Strike your enemy or neighbor because they are plotting against you
    Call themselves: national solcialists, neocons
    Influence: fading fast

  • ||

    You hit the troll daily double a Godwin and a Neocon reference.

  • ||

    Strike your enemy or neighbor because they are plotting against you

    Ruby ridge and Waco. So he also Reno'd the post.

    He wins Final Jeopardy AND hits the Trifecta.

  • Frankyb||

    I really don't understand how Michael Shermer can be sceptical of the capacities of Big Government yet still embrace AGW as fueled by the IPCC, even up to go to call the people who question it "denialists".

  • Mike||

    Despite the fact most people who worry about climate change advocate retarded economic policies to combat it, it does not mean that climate change is a fraud. It is possible to realize climate change exists and be against the restrictive policies done in the name of environmentalism.

    See Bailey, Shermer, and Lomborg.

  • ||

    You're one of them!!!

  • ||

    Truth.

  • ||

    Goddam threaded comments. I'll use the slower, far superior method instead.
    ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Despite the fact most people who worry about climate change advocate retarded economic policies to combat it, it does not mean that climate change is a fraud. It is possible to realize climate change exists and be against the restrictive policies done in the name of environmentalism.

    See Bailey, Shermer, and Lomborg.


    Truth.

  • Zeb||

    Meta-truth.

  • Brett L||

    They have, however, done a shoddy job on a number of things, trumpeted these shoddily got results, and tried to silence all criticism of both their method and results. Their methods have been poor, their results must be questioned. Because of their crap handling, we don't know.

  • Bill||

    Yes climate change exists. There was at least one ice age. Its not that cold now so climate change exists. Do I get funding now?

  • affenkopf||

    Reality denialism

    In a nutshell: Nah, nah. I can't hear you!
    Origins: Politicans
    Call themselves: Public servants, altruists
    Influence: We're fucked

  • creech||

    Individual Rights Deniers.
    In a nutshell: one only has the rights the group allows you to have; those claiming individual rights are selfish and cruel.
    Origins: envy of the productive, desire to control those who don't agree with your group's position.
    Call themselves: everything except "libertarian" or "student of objectivism" or "classical liberal."
    Influence: on upswing since 1776.

  • ¢||

    Ron you are still worshiping at the church of AGW? I thought you had at least become an agnostic.

    He's an ex-agnostic who got bullied into converting. So it's GORE 4 LYFE.

    Sometimes it seems like he might break out of the cult and come back to us, but then we get something like the last two posts, where he says "carbon rationing" and "climate denial," two nonsense shibboleths that send an "I'm with you, and only you, 4eva" signal to the Right Kind Of People—of which you're not one, so he's not answering you.

  • ||

    Cent: Simply not true. See "Confessions of an Alleged ExxonMobil Whore" for details.

  • robc||

    Dude, thats 4 years old. There has been plenty of evidence (or lack thereof) to switch back.

  • ||

    robc: I don't think so. As far as I can tell, the balance of the evidence still favors AGW. In any case, a huge blast of global warming science and policy news is coming out tomorrow from several reports issued by the National Academy of Sciences.

  • ||

    In any case, a huge blast of global warming science and policy news is coming out tomorrow

    Sounds like it'll affect the climate. Can i expect tomorrow to be a whole 0.5degC warmer due to this "huge blast"?

  • ||

    Can i expect tomorrow to be a whole 0.5degC warmer due to this "huge blast"?

    Faith doesn't work like that wylie. Like Obamacare and passing it to find out what's in it, we have to believe and wait and any coincidental fluctuation observed after the fact is proof positive of it's existence. Remember, it's not a predictive tool! Religions are like that.

  • ||

    Please, Ron, this has gone too far. Mike used his nature trick to hide the decline, yet you are sticking to the program. Sheesh.

  • ||

    Ron, how could you expect all the eminent scientists on this page (errr... I mean arm chair fakers) to simply accept the hack judgments of a group of amateurs like the National Academy? Don't you know all these climate wizards on this thread are far more qualified to evaluate the data? Surely their skepticism is warranted given the hundreds of hours they've spent in grad school, in post-doc appointments, and in their professional capacities (in the relevant disciplines of course). It's only slightly akin to some guys who play flag football at the community rec center disputing the NFL coaches association definition of offense and defense, but hey - everyone's entitled to an opinion, right?

  • ||

    Threadjack? 7 year-old-girl killed in botched police raid. Firebang lit her on fire and a bullet finished her.

    http://www.poetv.com/video.php?vid=79097

  • General public||

    That story is so yesterday.

  • TXLimey||

    Climategate denialism

    In a nutshell: Bad data, lack of peer review, and heavily massaged statistics in no way suggest that scientific theories need to be rexamined

    Origin: The UN IPCC, Greenpeace, Al Gore

    Call themselves: New Scientist

    Influence: Five stars*****

  • Francis||

    Very good!

  • pantsfan||

    Dragon Denialism

    In a nutshell: some claim that Rand Al'Thor is not the dragon reborn

    Origins:
    Whitecloaks
    Darkfriends
    Aes Sedai of the Red Ajah

    Influence:
    Waning, now that Egwene is the true Amyrlin.

  • Chicken George||

    I can't even think about those books without wanting to puke. *tugs braid*

  • affenkopf||

    I started reading after book 8 or so. Heard the new author is good, might get back to the books.

  • affenkopf||

    *stopped reading

  • Cliché Bandit||

    DAMN YOU!!!! I HAVENT READ THE LAST THREE YET>!!!!! FUUUUUUCKKKKKK!!!

  • this jolly bag!||

    Dragon Denialism

    In a nutshell: some claim that Rand Al'Thor is not the dragon reborn

    a.)born on the slopes of Dragonmount

    b.)twice & twice was he marked

    c.)Stone of Tear fell to him

    d.)claimed Callandor

    e.)Lews Therin Telemon talks to him inside his head, B!

    f.)even the Forsaken acknowledge he's the Dragon Reborn

    g.)the dead Heroes of the Horn all recognised him, & after he proclaimed himself the Pattern had no more use for False Dragons

    The Science is Settled!

  • ||

    Warty, Episiarch, et al, please witness that it was NOT me who brought up the Wheel of Time.

    (yes, I read the latest, you bastard)

  • ||

    Health care Reform Denialism

    In a nutshell: believe that Obamacare was necessary to "bend the cost curve" of medicare and medicaide and save the country from bankruptcy while providing universal insurance coverage.

    Origins: FDR and other advocates of socialized medicine

    Call themselves, Democratic activists, netroots.

    Influence: five stars but waning.

  • ||

    +1

  • Chicken George||

    The list includes, climate denial, evolution denial, Holocaust denial, AIDS denial, 9/11 denial, vaccine denial, and tobacco denial.

    The problem is that you can't debate people holding most of these positions, because they aren't coherent ideas so much as irrational attacks on the status quo. It's like debating a conspiracy theorist; every bit of opposing data simply supports the all-encompassing nature of the conspiracy.

  • ||

    I think referring to skeptics of AGW as "deniers" is ridiculous. Whether there's even a sustained warming trend remains debatable, and even more debatable is whether human activities are a major cause of whatever warming trend there is.

    Usually, the side with the most demands of "faith" or "belief" is the one to worry about. The Holocaust has evidence on its side. Deniers of that have to believe something other than the overwhelming evidence. Ditto, incidentally, the Moon landings. This is simply not the case with AGW, where the conclusions being trumpeted do not match the evidence presented.

  • Tony||

    If you bothered to consult a reliable source on the subject you know that the last 12 months are the hottest on record, and that all causes other than anthropogenic ones have been ruled out, and there's not that much debate among relevant experts, nor has there been for quite some time.

  • ||

    Tony you just responded to the charge of making conclusions without evidence with a list of conclusions and assertions without evidence. Sometimes you really are great parody.

  • ||

    He said "reliable sources" agree with him. That's all the evidence he needs.

  • Tony||

    Are you 5? Do you not have Internet access? Go to any place where you'd normally find reliable scientific information, and see what they have to say.

  • Kat||

    The "on record" clause is key here. Earth = billions of years old. Human records = what, a couple decades?

    Maybe human activity has something to do with temperature fluctuations, maybe it doesn't. What's clear is that the proposed solutions won't do much to alter climate change, but will hand over more control and power to people who likely played one of the largest parts in environmental damage. Unless you think nuclear testing and shuttling soldiers around the world has had no impact on carbon emissions. Do we even need to mention the economy in all this?

  • Tony||

    You're probably right about "proposed" solutions. What we need are much bigger solutions. We can sacrifice a few months of buying useless crap to save future generations of human beings. We can do a lot more than that.

    It's utterly pathetic that because a solution to a global problem might require collective action, rather than just square-jawed entrepreneurs acting independently, that libertarians deny the problem exists in the first place.

    If your worldview isn't able to take factual reality into account then there's a problem with your worldview, not the facts.

  • ||

    The problem (and reason for AGW denial here) is not collective action but *forced* action. Nice try, Tony.

  • Apogee||

    If your worldview isn't able to take factual reality into account then there's a problem with your worldview, not the facts.

    You don't define factual reality, and there's plenty of evidence that what you call 'factual reality' is, in real reality, cooked science.

  • Michael Ejercito||

    You're probably right about "proposed" solutions. What we need are much bigger solutions. We can sacrifice a few months of buying useless crap to save future generations of human beings. We can do a lot more than that.


    Carl Sagan and four other scientists proved the existence of a solution to global warming back in 1983.

  • Brian E||

    He "proved" the nuclear winter scenario using the same type of BS models that got us where we are. For starters, Sagan's model assumed that the Earth was a perfect, featureless sphere, when it's rather more of a bumpy ellipsoid. That turns out to have a rather significant impact on the results...

  • West Texas Boy||

    HOLY SHIT! LET'S WRECK THE ECONOMY!

  • Brian E||

    Provided you're comparing direct measurements to past proxy data, sure. Comparing the current proxy data to proxy data from the MWP suggests otherwise. So far there hasn't been a coherent explanation as to why the proxy data is reliable for the time before direct measurements were available but shouldn't be used now.

    And of course let's not mention the "adjustments" to the direct data performed by programs whose source code hasn't been released, and isn't included in peer review materials. But hey, we can trust that the programs do what their authors purport that they do, because they don't have any money riding on this and programs also never have any bugs. And they had a really, really good reason for deleting the original raw data. They were out of disk space, or were afraid of those nasty freedom of information laws, or something. Totally understandable.

  • Tony||

    And the 7th tower!!!!

    You don't know what you're talking about. Life is short. Why not read some actual science reporting, rather than whatever hack web site you get your opinions from?

  • ||

    Everyone Else: "and there's tony, not providing any evidence again."

    Tony: "you've all got internet!"

    E.E.: "well, here's what i read..."

    Tony: "hack websites, one and all."

    Par for the course.

  • Brett L||

    On record == since 1978 for satellite data, and probably not earlier than 1940 for reliable surface station data. Excuse me if I don't chicken little. Also, the adjustment in the data-set is warm-biased for GISS and HADCRUT. As the statistics have been found to be questionable, and HADCRUT lost their source, we don't even know that. (GISS used HADCRUT to fill, so they are not an independent dataset.)

    All we can say is that you may be right. Or you might not. The GW true believers have not done truthseekers any favors. Your data are a mess, your methods are questionable, the scientific method mandates that we seek to independently verify the results.

  • Old Mexican||

    If you bothered to consult a reliable source on the subject you know that the last 12 months are the hottest on record,

    That much is true - I felt hotter. My wife felt hotter. We made out like rabbits, in these last 12 months. It's true.

    As for the reliable sources, I stopped calling MSNBC "reliable" a long time ago...

  • ||

    Tony: If you bothered to consult a reliable source on the subject you know that the last 12 months are the hottest on record

    30 seconds of googling later:

    1) It's history: Winter 2009-2010 snowiest on record
    Records set at National, Dulles, and BWI Airports

    2) It’s Official: Coldest Winter Ever
    Saturday, March 20, 2010 7:42:55 AM
    Reported by Dave D’Marko and Amanda Evans

    ORLANDO -- If the last three months have made you think, “I can’t remember a winter ever being this cold in Central Florida,” you were right.

  • Geotpf||

    It's called "Global Warming", not "America Warming". The winter last year in the United States was colder than average but warmer than average on the planet overall.

  • Sean Healy||

    It was colder in Europe, too.

  • Tony||

  • ||

    You guys don't see any problems in 1) trying to calculate an "average temperature" for an entire planet, and 2) getting a result supposedly accurate to 1/100th of a degree centigrade?

  • Tony||

    No less a problem apparently than you have believing whatever bullshit comes from the nearest non-scientist hack who agrees with your preconceived biases.

  • EscapedWestOfTheBigMuddy||

    Calculating a mean temperature is trivial with good data, and possible with decent data.

    Interpreting the results is harder.

  • Michael Ejercito||

    If you bothered to consult a reliable source on the subject you know that the last 12 months are the hottest on record


    Which in itself is a lie.

  • ||

    Government is bad denialism.

  • ||

    We don't deny rights. We just tell you which ones you can exercise.

  • ||

    DOOOOM denialism

    In a nutshell: In two years time, it will still be cheaper to wipe your ass with toilet paper than dollar bills

    Origin: Too Big To Fail

    Call themselves: Progressives, Conservatives, Bankers.

    Influence: $1.2K/oz

  • ||

    I think referring to skeptics of AGW as "deniers" is ridiculous. Whether there's even a sustained warming trend remains debatable, and even more debatable is whether human activities are a major cause of whatever warming trend there is.

    THIS!

  • anarch||

    I cordially invite Reason readers to identify any other denialisms that they think that the New Scientist overlooked.

    No.

  • reinkefj||

    Corrupt Politicians Denialism
    In a nutshell: Humans are automagically corrupted when going into politics
    Origins: The King, The Priest, The Tyrant: all of whom know best,
    Call themselves: Progressives
    Influence: In full control

  • ||

    Comeuppance denialism.

  • ||

    You'll pay for your insolence! You'll get yours!

  • Gummint||

    I'll get yours, too.

  • ||

    You'll get less of mine in less than a month! (Yeah CMS, I'm looking at you)

  • Lather, rinse, repeat ||

    We took a survey and guess what? Everybody fucking knows!

  • Jonas||

    Kind along with the market denialism, there's a good deal of regulation denialism. You know, people who think that there's been "massive deregulation" of all sorts of things for the past couple decades and that most sectors of the economy are under-regulated. Even industries that have thousands of pages of regulatory laws to restrict basically anything and everything they do are said to be "unregulated" because people think that if there's ONE regulation that's not there that "should" be, then the whole industry must be free to do whatever-the-hell they want.

  • ||

    In a nutshell: Size matters
    Origins: Eve (or Lucy)
    Call themselves: Women
    Influence: Puhleez

  • ||

    If you bothered to consult a reliable source on the subject you know that the last 12 months are the hottest on record, and that all causes other than anthropogenic ones have been ruled out, and there's not that much debate among relevant experts, nor has there been for quite some time.

    Spoof?

    I honestly cannot tell.

  • ||

    I thought the last few years were actually a bump in the general warming trend. I know that I froze my ass off for most of the last three winters. But I live in Florida, which maybe doesn't count for some reason.

    And yes, I know that's purely anecdotal.

  • ||

    I lived in FL most of my life. Both south and north. "Freeze" is relative. I've also spent a lot of time in Minneapolis, Indianapolis and Germany. I have never heard anyone complain about GW, A or otherwise, in Minneapolis in January/February.

  • ||

    I only meant that in the comparative sense. For Florida, it was ridiculously cold for much longer than usual. Have spent a large part of the 90s in Minnesota, Illinois, and Ohio, nothing Florida is likely to throw at me, cold-wise, is going to faze me much.

  • robc||

    I was at the coldest Orange Bowl in history. AFAICT, Miami is generally colder than Madison, Wisconsin.

  • ||

    It's funny you should mention that, because of one our northern-based employees said something very similar after going to the Orange Bowl.

  • ||

    I would define "deniers" as those who hold views contrary to the generally-accepted opinion of experts in relevant disciplines. As such, climate change skeptics would indeed fall under the definition of deniers. It doesn't mean that you're wrong (which is sort of the whole point of the article) but it does mean that, for whatever reason, you are choosing to reject the generally-accepted scientific theory of the day.

  • ||

    "Denier" indicates some sort of irrational belief system, though. Again, if I'm challenging the Moon landing or the Holocaust, that makes sense. Not so much in challenging the findings in complex and inexact sciences like climatology, macroeconomics, or psychology.

    Another example: String theory is in major vogue, but physicists who reject it and posit alternative explanations are hardly "deniers." In fact, they may have more science on their side than the string theorists do.

  • ||

    But to me the problem with your definition is that it's somewhat outcome-determinative: if their denial "makes sense," then they're not deniers. The whole point of my definition is that it's NOT outcome-determinative. Obviously the term is inherently ambiguous so neither of us can claim to be right, but I think my definition is more consistent with the author's point that simply dismissing people as deniers is intellectually lazy.

  • ||

    Here's my point: If the skepticism is rational, then dismissing the skeptic as a "denier" is irrational.

    If the skepticism is irrational, then dismissing the skeptic as a "denier" is rational.

  • Cosmic String Theorist||

    Denier!

  • ||

    I think maybe I am, as much as a nonscientist can have that opinion. Though that doesn't mean that I think we should stop working on string theory altogether.

  • ||

    Early 20th century progressive prohibitionists thought we were winning the war on drugs?

  • PETE||

    THANK YOU!

    Geez, that took long enough.

  • ||

    Just today in Afghanistan, 5 U.S. Soldiers were killed in a suicide bombing, along with many civilians.

    It may actually be true that the perpetrator (and many others like him or her) would not do these things if there were no foreign troops in the Country, and that therefore, the war is a waste of money, and a waste of American lives.

    But if you are in the military and are serving there, you need to deny that this could possibly be true, so as to feel you are doing something worthwhile and self-sacrificing.

    If you work for a company that makes the sort of military supplies that are used up in Afghanistan, you might also be inclined towards the same denial. Ditto if your child is serving there, or if you are a senator beholden to military contractors.

    Once a person is committed to actions that he feels are self-sacrificing or heroic, he is less inclined to listen to those who tell him that what he has chosen is ineffective.

  • anarch||

    Your last paragraph - was that about us reason posters?

  • ||

    If the shoe fits, right?

  • ||

    Ending Affirmative Action Denialism

    In a nutshell: The belief that a specific genetic ethnicity must have special consideration for employment and educational equalization of outcomes along a standard distribution curve. Punishes those that achieve or exceed the standard and elevates those who do not meet the standard.

    Origins: Karl Marx, The Eugenics Movement (adherents too numerous to list) and Social Crusaders.

    Call themselves: Liberals, Progressives, Community Organizers, Disadvantaged Minorities and Hyphenated-Americans.

    Influence: Insidious and pervasive. See also: Social Justice.

  • Geotpf||

    Various groups perform the following test many times: They send identical (fake) resumes to various private companies, half with "black" sounding names on them (like Jerome), and half with "white" sounding names on them (like Ethan). The "white" names always get a ton more interviews than the "black" names.

    Until the results from this test changes, it is clear that blacks are disadvantaged in private employment due to discrimination, and therefore governmental remedies such as affirmative action are required to balance the scale.

  • ||

    half with "black" sounding names on them (like Jerome)

    Me personally, I know more white and Jewish people with the name Jerome. It doesn't sound "black" to me. In the initial post I wrote "a specific genetic ethnicity", I did not specify a particular race, i.e. black, white, American Indian, Eskimo, Asian, etc.

    Until the results from this test changes, it is clear that blacks are disadvantaged in private employment due to discrimination, and therefore governmental remedies such as affirmative action are required to balance the scale.

    Citation please. Also, if a company is private do they not have the right to consider for employment whomever they wish? Equal opportunity does not mean equalization of outcome.

  • Lather, rinse, repeat ||

    HIRING DISCRIMINATION AGAINST IMMIGRANTS OF COLOR:

    http://www.bendickegan.com/pdf/2009/Testing_article_ Feb_2009.pdf

  • MlR||

    All that would prove, even if was true, that people with funny names are disadvantaged.

    Which would lead you to the dramatic conclusion and policy recommendation that... people shouldn't give their kids funny names.

  • ||

    Indeed. I suspect employers who look askance at "Sh'aniqqua Jones" but not "Judith Jones" are making assumptions about culture, not race.

  • ||

    Product Rule Denialism
    In a nutshell: [f(x)g(x)]' = f'(x)g'(x)
    Origins: Listening to iPod and watching porn on their laptops during class
    Call themselves: Freshmen
    Influence: *, if Dr Teabagger has anything to say about it

  • ||

    HA!

  • crazyfish||

    Damn are you a teacher?

  • Max||

    How about the noxious notion that the majority of Americans were not far better off as a result of Roosevelt`s New Deal. Call it New Deal Denialism. That you be you fuckwads.

  • Old Mexican||

    How about the noxious notion that the majority of Americans were not far better off as a result of Roosevelt's New Deal.

    Yes, that majority of Americans are now dead - that is, better off than still living under FDR's New Deal. That much is true.

  • ||

    Where would we be today without the WPA and the CCC? Oh wait, they're gone.

    Where would we be without the Wagner Act? Well, the Detroit automakers might not be dead or dying....

  • Father Max||

    Feck! Arse!

  • Fred Korematsu||

    Go fuck yourself.

  • Adolf Hitler||

    I was a great admirer of Führer Roosevelt, until those crafty Britischers und die Juden tricked him into the war!

  • ||

    The "new deal" is why the depression lasted until FDR was dead. We got out of the depression in 1946 by 1) cutting federal spending by about 2/3, 2) releasing around a million men from conscription, and 3) abolishing most of FDR's insane wage and price controls.

    -jcr

  • ||

    Self-determinance/ self-ownership/ (adulthood) denialism.

    People who believe no risk is too insignificant to require government action, and no individual is capable of judging the acceptability of any given risk for himself.

  • ||

    See also: The Nanny State

  • guy in the back row||

    What about
    Deficit Problem Denialism?
    Moon landing Denialism?

  • ||

    I prefer Moon Denialism. That is, people who deny that there is a Moon.

  • ||

    (Moons Pro'L Dib) (_|_)

    As you were saying?

  • TXLimey||

    This "moon" you speak of did not exist until 1969, when the reanimated head of JFK ordered that millions of pounds of excess cheese created due to gov't subsidies be jettisoned into orbit.

    The Library of Congress was created to edit historical material to try to convince people that this "moon" had existed all along. Some of the more smart-assed people working on the project even inserted some sly references to the moon being made of cheese.

  • ||

    I happen to know that the "Moon" is actually a bunch of coordinated high-altitude dirigibles, owned and operated by the Masons.

  • ||

    We prefer the term "Zeppelin".

  • ||

    Ah, I see. That makes sense, as Led Zeppelin is, of course, the official band of the Masons. Also not widely known is that John Bonham is a fully certified high-altitude zeppelin pilot. Yeah, I said is.

  • TXLimey||

    No no no. The name "Led Zeppelin" is based on the expression "going down like a lead balloon." The name is a reference to bringing down the Masonic zeppelins.

    Led Zeppelin were Illuminati.

  • ||

    You are clearly a Lunar Masonic Zeppelin denier.

  • ||

    No no NO! You fools! Led, in this case, refer to the past tense of the verb "lead". So it was a reference to leading zeppelins to their doom, via the Hindenburg, clearly the work of the Priori of Zion.

  • Mike M.||

    Currency/Debt denialism

    In a nutshell: Governments can print, borrow, and spend infinite amounts of money without the risk of currency devaluation or other adverse effects on the market and economies.

    Origins: Misguided economic theories proposed primarily by John Maynard Keynes, Otto von Bismarck, and Franklin D. Roosevelt.

    Call themselves: Kenynesians, progressives, socialists, and sadly in some cases, Republicans.

    Influence: Unfortunately skyrocketing up to five *****, soon to inevtiably collapse down to one *.

  • ||

    This "moon" you speak of- it's actually some sort of flying space turtle, if I recall correctly.

  • ||

    Mass hysteria.

  • ||

    There's hope for me yet!

  • Anonymouse||

    Race/Sex and IQ/genetics denialism is high on the list. You need only look back a few weeks with the Harvard private e-mail leak, or back futher with James Watson and Larry Summers.

  • Anonymouse||

    Just to be a bit more clear Race & IQ average differences, and sex & genetic average differences.

  • Max||

    You certainly can`t deny that libertarians are overwhelmingly waspish losers. lack, Jews, and hispanics all lean left. You fucksticks are a diminishing demographic, thank God.

  • Old Mexican||

    You certainly can't deny that libertarians are overwhelmingly waspish losers.

    Yes, I can deny it. Just to begin with, I am not a WASP.

  • ||

    That statement is true of every political party. I don't know this for a fact, but I imagine the Democrats are more WASP than not.

  • Ecolibertarian||

    Typical racist Democrat.

  • Geotpf||

    I can't believe so many people went for this obvious troll.

  • ||

    I miss the days of subtle trollery.

  • ||

    Max Denial

    In a nutshell: Believes that if anyone (anyone? someone? please?) would listen to him, he could save us all from certain death.

    Origins: Stealing the neighbor's internet connection from mom's basement.

    Call Themselves: Brilliant you fucktards!

    Call Others: Fucksticks, fuckwads, losertarians.

    Influence: Only in his own mind (no stars)

  • ||

    Complexity Denial

    In a nutshell: Believe the world's problems can be solved with linear, political solutions.

    Origins: Political Class, Lobbyists, Sheep

    Call Themselves: Remocrats, Depublicans.

    Influence: Waning, whether they like it or not. ***

  • ||

    See, they missed when the trend shifted to Nonlinear effects. THATS whats hot on the streets.

  • x,y||

    of my favorite popluar science magazines despite its propensity toward knee-jerk leftism

    Because you prefer consensus leftism?

  • ||

    x,y: Nope.

  • ||

    Yo, this whole "climate denialism" thing is ridiculous from the start. Climate changes, like any complex chaotic system, and whoever denies that it just an idiot.

    But in the face of how little we know about global climate, especially when it comes to quantifying the inputs and even consistently measuring the outputs, the only rational position regarding the sources and future of its change is curious agnosticism.

  • ||

    The most asinine thing about the global warming debate is the claim that its effects can be remedied by surrendering the last of our freedom to some global über-state.

    If everything that Al Gore claims is true, then we're going to need freedom to cope with it. Can you imagine letting the Ray Nagins of the world try to organize the evacuation of most of our coastal areas?

    -jcr

  • hurly buehrle||

    Boston Sports Team Failure Denialism

    In a nutshell: Believe that the Bruins, Red Sox, Patriots, and Celtics are the greatest teams evah(!!!).
    Origins: Tawmy from Quinzy, Sully from Reveah, Bill Simmons
    Call Themselves: Wicked awesome!
    Influence: Waning, after the Sox' crushing loss last night and the Bruins' epic choke job Friday. **

  • Dropkick Murphys||

    Tessie is the Royal Rooters rally cry
    Tessie is the tune they always sung
    Tessie echoed April through October nights
    After serenading Stahl, Dinneen and Young
    Tessie is a maiden with a sparkling eye
    Tessie is a maiden with a love
    She doesn't know the meaning of her sight
    She's got a comment full of love

  • Joe_D||

    Giant Cock Denialism

    In a nutshell: People deny that I have a giant cock.
    Origins: The water was cold damnit!
    Call Themselves: Women, motherfucking women.
    Influence: Well, the videos are getting fewer hits these days.

  • ||

    God denialism

    In a nutshell: There is no invisible man up in the sky, watching and judging our every action

    Origins: Rock n Roll, Satan

    Call themselves: atheists, scientists, realists, non-retards, Muslims

    Influence: Satan's perfidy has spread throughout the land, five stars *****

  • Michael Ejercito||

    God denialism

    In a nutshell: There is no invisible man up in the sky, watching and judging our every action

    Origins: Rock n Roll, Satan

    Call themselves: atheists, scientists, realists, non-retards, Muslims

    Influence: Satan's perfidy has spread throughout the land, five stars *****


    Muslims do not deny God.

    In fact, on average they are more devoted to God than Christians.

  • ||

    It's a joke. I was writing it from the point of view of an evangist Christian.

  • Attorney||

    Troll Denial

    In a nutshell: Everyone who posts comments is worth responding to.

    Origins: 21st-century interweb

    Call themselves: Regulars

    Influence: 1/2*

  • ||

    Teacher's teaching denialism.
    In a nutshell: Holding to the idea that teachers are willing to educate their charges to be anything more than good subjects of the state.
    Origins: the self-stated intentions of the founders of public education.
    Call themselves: NEA, AFT,
    Influence: Infinity.

  • ||

    Should be aren't willing.

  • JazzPiano (Jamie Kelly)||

    Porn Denialism
    In a nutshell: Pornography is addictive, dangerous to marriages and demeans women.
    Origin: The religious right, feminists, and a shitload of mothers who used to watch porn
    Call themselves: Proponents of "family values" and female liberation
    Influence: Five stars*****, but I just dumped a load of cum on them, so ****. But then I just realized that porno fucking rocks my relationships, always has, keeps my cock hard and thrusting into my girlfriend, and that most people who claim to hate porno fucking get their clits and cocks off to it a lot. So **.
    Two stars, yes. My final answer.

  • GILMORE||

    This article (the New Scientist) seems to be biting Michael Specter's style... and twisting it to make it more conveniently "progressive". Even though Specter mostly picks on progressives in his book... seems like the best thing to do when someone is accusing you of "denialism" is to go, "No I'm NOT! THEY ARE!!!" Co-opting the rhetoric of your enemy, basically.

  • ||

    Comparative Advantage Denialism

    In a nutshell: The belief that restrictions on trade intended to protect domestic industry "save jobs" and/or help the economy.

    Call themselves: Progressives

    Influence ***1/2

  • ||

    Sound Money Denialism.

    In a nutshell: the belief that letting Ben Bernanke and his minions inflate the money at will is somehow better for our economic health than a free market for coinage.

    Call themselves: academics

    Influence: Way the hell too much, given their nearly century-long record of failure.

    -jcr

  • ||

    Oops, forgot the origin.

    Origin: some douchebag king who first got the bright idea of forcing his victims to accept base metal slugs as if they were coins.

    -jcr

  • ||

    Atheism denialism

    In a nutshell: God exists

    Origin: Who knows?

    Call themselves: Theists

    Influence: Five stars*****

  • ||

    Global warming deniers say that AGW isn't true because it SHOULDN'T BE true. It can't be real because they hate government, scientists, liberals, environmentalists, and Al Gore, and none of those entities must ever be proven right (or in government's case, potentially necessary). Their standpoint is entirely ego-driven and anti-evidentiary. Just like creationists who say evolution isn't true because it caused the Holocaust. Even thinking "inside the box," it isn't an argument, it's just a beam of hate.

  • Charles||

    No event in human history has been studied more thoroughly and carefully than the Holocaust. Thousands of thesis and dissertations papers have poured over mountains of data, from physical evidence and anecdotal testimony to captured German war documents. Virtually everyone with a PhD in History will stake their career on the fact that millions of Jews were systematically exterminated by Nazi Germany. One can no more "revise" this fact than one can revise the existence of gravity. Wannsee Conference records prove that Nazis planned the extermination of Jews as, "The Final Solution." German concentration camp records prove that it was carried out.

    Whenever we stand up to those who deny or minimize genocide we send a critical message to the world. As we continue to live in an age of genocide and ethnic cleansing, we must repel the broken ethics of our ancestors, or risk a dreadful repeat of past transgressions.

    Holocaust deniers ply their mendacious poison everywhere, especially with young people on the Internet. Deniers seek to distort the truth in a way that promotes antagonism against the object of their hatred, or to deny the culpability of their ancestors and heroes. If we ignore them, they will twist the minds of countless young people, creating a new generation of those who deny the facts of the worst episode of genocide in history. Freedom of speech and the press is a symbol of a healthy society. Yet, since no crime in history is as heinous as the Holocaust, its memory must be accurately preserved, to protect our children and grandchildren.

    Museums and mandatory public education are tools to dispel bigotry, especially racial and ethnic hatred. Books, plays, films and presentations can reinforce the veracity of past and present genocides. They help to tell the true story of the perpetrators of genocide; and they reveal the abject terror, humiliation and degradation resulting from blind prejudice. It is therefore essential that we disclose the factual brutality and horror of genocide, combating the deniers’ virulent, inaccurate historical revision. We must protect vulnerable future generations from making the same mistakes.

    A world that continues to allow genocide requires ethical remediation. We must insist that religious, racial, ethnic, gender and orientation persecution is wrong; and that tolerance is our progeny's only hope. Only through such efforts can we reveal the true horror of genocide and promote the triumphant spirit of humankind.

    Charles Weinblatt
    Author, "Jacob's Courage"
    http://jacobscourage.wordpress.com/

  • steve||

    The point of the article was that some questions are directly resolvable by scientific methods and some are not ... so I will point out that (even though I agree STRONGLY with your implied positions) the reason neither the drug war nor market capitalism were on the list is that they are too messy and complex to be directly resolvable. Sloppy argument does not help our case.

  • ||

    As a progressive, I'd balance market denialism with the following:

    Pool denialism

    In a nutshell: Market economic mechanisms are always more efficient and effective than the collective allocation of pooled resources or collective management of the commons.

    Origins: A simplistic cold-war ideological opposition of market vs. state (dog-whistles for USA vs. USSR) positing these as the only two mutually-exclusive economic sectors, ignoring:
    - their interdependence,
    - the whole field of institutional economics (firms, families),
    - club goods,
    - open economics, and
    - the entire co-operative/mutual sector (neither market nor state)

    Call themselves: conservatives, fiscal conservatives, laissez-faire capitalists, libertarians

    Influence: Hegemonic *****

    For me the tragedy is that I think conservatives are right about many things, but blind to much else. I'm happy to consider market reforms and privatization of many state services that are considered sacred cows on the left, but the notion that "more market" is always better is absurd.

    Nobody who buys a health club membership thinks it would be better if the club was reorganized as a fairground with each workout station being its own business, competing with the others, so you'd have to shop around to get the lowest price per exercise, turning each and every use-session into a market transaction. The transaction costs would totally overwhelm the benefits of competition. Organizing a club is way more effective and efficient.

    And all over the world we see that market liberalization is leading to market consolidation and the creation of enormous firms - meaning much of the economy is institutional, not market-mediated.

    Market fundamentalism/Pool denialism is both descriptively inaccurate and prescriptively inadequate. It's not a rich enough tool to base good policy on - even though it may often be good to introduce market mechanisms into systems they were excluded from before.

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