FIVE TROPES OF TRUTH DENIERS
1. Cherry Pick Evidence
( Problem: this definition fails to identify the use of edge cases as general cases. )
2. Believe in Conspiracy Theories
( Problem: this definition fails to identify that it’s been converted to a moral, not scientific issue. )
3. Rely on Fake Experts and Denigrate Real Experts
(Problem: (a) fails to acknowledge that the ‘source of truth’ (the state) has not engaged in testimony that is the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth, but positioning and pandering, and (b) fails to identify that expertise is narrow within any domain, and non-transferrable (see economics) as much as 90% of published peer-reviewed work fails to replicate, and that postwar behavioral pseudoscience has dominated the academy, and that IQ, personality, sex, class, race, cultural differences are substantive and universally obvious in the data – thereby conflating morality and science – creating the current conflict that is the origin of our civil stress.
4. Engage in illogical reasoning
(Problem: yes, moral reasoning is largely irrational when applied to amoral contexts. But by conflating amoral and moral it’s not illogical. Just wrong. So don’t convert the amoral to moral by relying on coercion rather than understanding.)
5. Demand science be perfect that it’s about proof, rather than warranty.
(Problem: If we forced all scientific publications and all published authors to warranty due diligence of their work against error, bias, wishful thinking, and deceit – and did the same to all science reporters, how fast would the industry self-correct? How many funding streams would be canceled? There is a reason some of us specialize in ‘prosecution’ of pseudoscientific as well as supernormal and supernatural claims. There is a reason we track retractions. )
The problem remains, what incentives are driving science deniers? Evidence suggests that they feel out of control, feel alienated or persecuted, or are trying to create or preserve status and self-image, by preserving a falsehood that makes them feel they’re in control: absence of MINDFULNESS. We don’t train people in mindfulness any longer, and religion is no longer a viable means.
So this is why the only method of ‘convert’ someone from denial to acceptance is whey they TRUST YOU. Face to face. Listen to them. Delivered on their terms with respect and understanding. Under a condition of Trust. Thereby re-converting from a moral issue back to an amoral empirical issue.
This is why I’ve been complaining about the approach to shaming ridiculing moralizing and psychologizing anti-vaxxers. It’s counterproductive. It creates a moral issue out of an amoral issue, meaning that evidence cannot persuade, only under trust. And trust only by shared understanding. You have to show understanding to re-convert what has been converted to a moral issue, back into a scientific issue by restoring trust. By politicizing the issue of climate change and vaccinations we just make a moral issue because the means of coercion are dishonest and immoral, not because of any other reason.
Most conspiracy theories that are true consist of a chain of rational incentives. Most that are false cannot be constructed as a chain of rational incentives. This is why conspiracy theory is a subset of the technique of fraud by of BAITING INTO HAZARD.
“Trust the science” is in the same category as “Women must be believed”, “Everyone knows that“, and “God said so.” As such, any immoral form of coercion converts a question of truth to a question of morality – by the MEANS of conveyance: coercion.
Scientists, The Academy, and the State have converted our high trust society into a lower if not yet low trust society, losing all authority, because of convenient lies to advance multiculturalism and the one world hypothesis. You can’t expect trust to maintain in science when the primary issue of the day is 70 years of pseudoscience in behavioral sciences.
So, you know, IMO philosophers’ job is to police the informational commons, integrating and rejecting the findings of evidence. Justifying the failure of scientists, the academy, and the state as ‘believe scientists’ without their warranty is no better than believing any other commercial or political organization without its warranty.
The academy is claiming authority while acting as a clerisy. And it’s exasperating that we haven’t increased the productivity of it since about 1963. The absolute number of innovative scientific talent appears relatively constant. Any demographer can explain why, just as easily as they can explain why Japan has the same number of ‘smart people’ as the USA despite 40% of the population, or why the USA can never compete with China, nor India with China, Nor why south America cannot achieve European economic parity for the same reason,
The problem is moral, not scientific. And the academy, and the scientists, and the state, and the courts, have been immoral. You can’t claim authority while everything that matters to the people is spoken in comforting falsehoods, and then expect their trust when you deprive them of choice.
The divide is among people who benefit from buying the comforting lies, and those who pay the cost of buying the comforting lies.
You’re all to blame.