We Do Not Live in the Age of Reason

We live in the Age of Utter Credulity.  All you need is a lab coat, computer  and a facility for turning statistical technobabble into SCIENCE[TM] and you are in business scamming the secular lab-coat-venerating yokels with a success rate that Elmer Gantry could only dream of.

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  • http://wmbriggs.com William M. Briggs

    Thanks for the link, Mark! This study is hardly anomalous. It’s part of a growing trend of papers written by puzzled academics searching for any explanation but the right one as to why people believe.

    • Mark Shea

      That’s why guys like you and Mike Flynn are so important. Thanks for exposing this tommyrot.

  • http://pavelspoetry.com Pavel Chichikov

    There were no depressed, anxious, delusional, suicidal, addictive personalities in the Soviet Union. They all died in the gold mines.

  • Mike Melendez

    Too much precision. Too little accuracy. It’s a common failing of human beings.

  • ivan_the_mad

    Heh, I remember a comboxer from a while back who insisted that the historicity of Jesus is dubious and that studies “showed” religious people more inclined to submit to fascism etc. Incredible. That is the very word for this stuff.

  • Theodore Seeber

    Makes me want to make up a fake study about atheist tendencies. Leah Libresco did much better with her double blind study of how well theists and atheists could predict other people’s responses.

  • Desi Erasmus

    Fantasies about the functioning of the scientific enterprise abound even among practitioners, most of whom are little more familiar with philosophy of science than the most credulous worshippers at the altar of scientism. An effort worth noting, as a modest exception to this general obliviousness to the philosophical foundations is: “Re-Engineering Philosophy for Limited Beings: Piecewise Approximations to Reality” by William C. Wimsatt , who offers at least a recognition of some boundaries on the domains of knowledge which the enterprise can penetrate. The Amazon listing has some good description and commentary.

  • NoahLuck

    Quote from that linked page:
    > What fooled Silton, and what bamboozles other “researchers” like her, is that her survey gave numerical results, which made it feel scientific.

    Oh sure, “debunk” a social study by inaccurately pointing out that its survey involved (*gasp*) topical questions. Then rightly point out that the evidence is too weak to bother with. Then spew out malicious psychologizing without any pretence whatsoever of backing evidence.

    That debunking is a hack piece. Its conclusion is, in the end, probably correct. But it’s still a hack piece.

  • Psy

    “That debunking is a hack piece.”
    Yes it is a hack piece on an article about a peer review and not a critique of the actual peer review which are sometimes available in the internet for free. I found a source for the actual peer review paper for $39.95 and I personally don’t have that much interest in the topic.