Steven Novella comments on a piece by John Horgan.

Post Reply
User avatar
bindeweede
Site Admin
Posts: 3310
Joined: Sun Oct 25, 2015 3:45 pm
Location: Hertfordshire, UK

Steven Novella comments on a piece by John Horgan.

Post by bindeweede » Tue May 17, 2016 4:29 pm

I'd come across the "Skeptical about Skeptics" site, but was unfamiliar with its author, John Horgan. http://www.skepticalaboutskeptics.org/

Horgan recently spoke at the Northeast Conference on Science and Skepticism, NECSS, and the talk was published on Scientific American's site.

Novella was "disappointed".
The big lesson here is this – if you are going to criticize a movement, discipline, subculture, science, or group from the outside, to the point of telling them what they should be doing, you should at least have a working knowledge of that group.

After reading his article, it is safe to say that Horgan does not have the first clue about scientific skepticism. The result was a parade of straw men supported by cherry picked and often misinterpreted examples.
http://theness.com/neurologicablog/inde ... #more-9046

User avatar
Ketchup
Posts: 668
Joined: Sun Oct 25, 2015 10:15 pm
Location: Around the bend
Contact:

Re: Steven Novella comments on a piece by John Horgan.

Post by Ketchup » Wed May 18, 2016 10:45 am

bindeweede wrote: Novella was "disappointed".
The big lesson here is this – if you are going to criticize a movement, discipline, subculture, science, or group from the outside, to the point of telling them what they should be doing, you should at least have a working knowledge of that group.

After reading his article, it is safe to say that Horgan does not have the first clue about scientific skepticism. The result was a parade of straw men supported by cherry picked and often misinterpreted examples.

Hmmm ... Spot the hypocritical error in Mr Novella's description of what "The big lesson" is supposed to be here. It's a big lesson for himself, yes - but one that he doesn't yet seem to have learned to apply in his own critical practices!

Example: http://skepsforum.prophpbb.com/topic1905.html
~ Today is the Tomorrow you worried about Yesterday ~

User avatar
chaggle
Posts: 2263
Joined: Mon Oct 26, 2015 10:01 am

Re: Steven Novella comments on a piece by John Horgan.

Post by chaggle » Wed May 18, 2016 4:22 pm

Hayley Stephens has written a good piece about it as well...

http://hayleyisaghost.co.uk/bigfoot-ske ... a-defense/
I view Horgan’s comments as extremely dismissive of the work that many skeptics have achieved in a whole range of areas of society. From bringing to the public eye the dodgy behaviour of rich psychics, to having a hand in defunding homeopathy on the National Health Service in the UK (where funding is currently in a bit of a crisis situation), to protecting cancer patients from harmful treatments that might not help them… if these are considered soft targets then I have no choice but to politely disagree.
Don't blame me - I voted remain :con

Post Reply