Parody of anti-gay pamphlets offers detailed, behind-the-scenes view of how liars misuse real citations


12 Responses to “Parody of anti-gay pamphlets offers detailed, behind-the-scenes view of how liars misuse real citations”

  1. “…uses these ostensibly unbiased sources of information as a way showing how people can use real information to corroborate a lie.”

    Though it’s usually not a lie. Usually it’s bullshit, which, to paraphrase Harry Frankfurt, is way worse than a lie, because the speaker doesn’t care about the truth. They care about winning. As Frankfurt said, at least a liar knows what the truth is.

    • James Kimbell says:

       This is a good point. It’s not as though these tracts would use better scholarship if they had the facts on their side. They don’t really know or care whether they have the facts on their side, not in a way that involves good statistical/academic understanding.

      • Jonathan Roberts says:

        I’d say many who come to this kind of argument from a religious point of view feel they DO have the facts on their side – their holy book is an objectively true and accurate reflection of reality. If this is true, scientific studies not supporting their holy book are either flawed or misunderstood, or the understanding of the holy book is wrong (probably in that order). It’s probably a third level of thinking that’s even more dangerous than bullshit, where you feel science itself is full of bullshit and can only be understood or approached in the light of your holy book. You can feel free to cherry pick the data that supports your argument, because that’s the place where the truth has come out in spite of people’s efforts to obfuscate it. At some point in the future your view will be vindicated, because it’s objectively true (see start of argument, repeat).

  2. ldobe says:

    This type of obfuscation in the news has been pissing me off ever since I first learned statistics.

    All of the polls that seem to have no sample size, margin of error, or geographic location or sampling frequency.

    All the stories that say “researchers have found that…” but never cite studies or researchers.

    All the bullshit conclusions drawn from assumptions with no basis in the reported studies.

    All the overhyped breathless reporting about how something IS good or bad for you based only on one scientist’s opinion, while the scientific consensus is totally ignored.

    News reporting on science is utter garbage in my experience. And stat reporting is nearly always useless due to failure to disclose methods and sample groups and sizes

  3. For this study, the actual breakdown of marijuana use is: heterosexual, 19% (of 8816); homosexual, 14.6% (of 225); and bisexual, 33.3% (of 348). For other drug use: heterosexual, 7.1%; homosexual, 9.9%; and bisexual. 18%

    So bisexuals are the real menace to society?

  4. That_Anonymous_Coward says:

    or something…

  5. Ian Wood says:

    There is nothing in our mass culture that values the proper evaluation of purported facts. Nothing. Our government educational system does not teach critical thinking, it peddles the fashionable pedagogical philosophy of the moment, and textbooks. Our politics favor emotion over reason. People read something on the Internet and think it’s true. Slightly more intelligent people do a Google search and come up with a couple of references that reinforce what they already believe, think those references are true, and that their beliefs are therefore true. 

    Simply put: we have deluged people with information without providing them with the tools they need for discernment. Maintaining an even keel in this storm is extremely difficult. You can find reasonable-sounding support for anything you wish to believe, connect with like-minded people, and build an unassailable bubble. In the public square, establishing a common base of reason in order to have an actual discussion aimed at the truth, independent of individual prejudice, is next to impossible.

    Tom Wolfe once remarked that fascism is forever descending on America, but always seems to land in Europe. The developing global misinformation culture has eroded that distinction.

  6. Marja Erwin says:

    Lilith and Eve, not some dudebro and Eve!

    Ugarit was full of hetero-sexual practices, and it fell. Now America is full of hetero-sexual practices, and the heterosexualists have set up camps to indoctrinate children.

  7. andre paris says:

    its time that this be distributed, in places of religious worship globally

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