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David Gorski Goes After TMR – Gets Demoted To Low Hanging Fruit Status by Hoofnagle The Science Cat

I tried. I really, really tried. David Gorski just can’t help himself. I must once again take advantage of another teachable moment for those of you who are new to the term I coined known as Narcisscientism. Narcisscientism blinds the true believer to their own logical fallacies. Don’t try to explain this to them though, because you will be led down a long and winding road where all of the terms are redefined and they will move the goal post wherever they have to.

There may be some of you reading this, skeptics most likely, who are scratching your head in bewilderment because I just used your definition of denialism. Yes. That’s because denialism is denialism and you guys do it all the time. Now onto our example.

I noticed a blog post from last month where he was dishing out his usual dose of Resentful Impotence directed at the Thinking Moms Revolution. Again. The Duck Commander made the following statement:

Another annoying characteristic of TMR is that its bloggers take on some truly annoying pseudonyms that range from the height of Dunning-Kruger arrogance, such as “The Professor,” to the cutesy, such as “Princess,” to the faux fantasy cool, such as “Dragonslayer” or “Goddess.”

For those of you unfamiliar with Dunning-Kruger, the definition is “a cognitive bias wherein unskilled individuals suffer from illusory superiority, mistakenly assessing their ability to be much higher than is accurate.”

SO…according to Gorski, by choosing the pseudonym “The Professor”, this is evidence of the blogger suffering from the Dunning-Kruger effect. After all, if you call yourself “The Professor” then you obviously must think you are indeed the intellectual equivalent of a professor and are assessing your ability to be much higher than is accurate, right? Lets set that aside for a moment and come back to it.

Then there’s what he calls “faux fantasy cool”. For an egghead like Gorski, this is interesting. What exactly is “faux fantasy”? Faux – meaning fake or not genuine. Fantasy, in the context of the pseudonym’s he was describing, would mean the genre of imaginative fiction involving magic and adventure, especially in a setting other than the real world. So… is Gorski hiding some kind of belief in “real” fantasy that would cause him to look down and mock someone who is practicing Faux Fantasy by selecting a pseudonym like “Dragonslayer”?  I am going to guess that David, in his rush to be snarky, bent over and didn’t realize his woo was showing.  Anyway, lets get to the good stuff.

Gorski has made it clear in his post, that choosing a blogger pseudonym like “The Professor” is a sign of illusory superiority and can further be considered evidence of a misguided attempt to possess the desirable characteristics or personality traits of that pseudonym. Gorski even describes the TMR bloggers choice of that pseudonym as “Hubris”.

Ok. Fair enough David. Lets see how you fair under your own standards.

If “the height of Dunning-Kruger arrogance” for you is a pseudonym of “The Professor”, then tell me where would something like ORAC rank? For those of you who don’t know who ORAC is, let me introduce you.  There is a BBC program called Blake’s 7. Among the list of characters is one whom David Gorski chose to use as his pseudonym.

Now David, in order to avoid the appearance of suffering from illusory superiority, ORAC would have to be at the most, equal to your cognitive and intellectual abilities. So who is ORAC?

ORAC is a highly advanced portable super-computer capable of reading any other computer’s data. It uses a component called a Tariel cell – a universal computer component – and can access information stored on any computer that uses one. It can also control other computers. ORAC projects a carrier beam through the same dimension that allows telepaths to transfer thoughts.

Oh snap.

Let me get this straight. Call yourself a professor and  you are the height of Dunning-Kruger.

Call yourself a sentient super computer with “woo” powers and you are…ummm

How about a dumbass. I think that fits.

Oh, I almost forgot. The Wikipedia page for Blake’s 7 says ORAC also “dislikes work that it considers unnecessary, enjoys gathering information and has delusions of grandeur”. It also notes that throughout the series, It was never clear whether Orac’s genuine concern was for humanity or for self-preservation.

Ok, so you two may have some similarities. Fair enough.

I could go on, but I think it’s pretty evident by now to anyone reading this, that you’ve just been handed your ass, and honestly, I don’t get any satisfaction from it. This article doesn’t stroke my ego or fill some need to prop myself up at your expense. I’m no better than you or anyone else. Everyone has their issues and everyone is flawed. What I have a problem with is standing idly by while a ridiculously transparent douchebag kicks someone else in the teeth for having a different opinion or belief system they disagree with. When I see a bully attacking someone for a belief, I knock his ass out. That person could believe everything I do and agree with every philosophy I have, but if he’s being a dick, I will call him on his bullsh*t.

That’s called keeping it real. Give it a shot. You might like it.

– Hoofnagle The Science Cat