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Critical thinking/conspiracy theories

Any topics that are primarily about humanism or other non-religious life stances fit in here.
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animist
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Critical thinking/conspiracy theories

#1 Postby animist » February 13th, 2017, 10:30 am

I am considering starting a course on this topic for my local U3A group. Any thoughts? The topic seems closely related to the growing importance of the internet and its misuse, while I hope to link it also with the common argumental fallacies that TH has already covered

https://educationblog.oup.com/theory-of ... ing-part-1

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Alan H
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Re: Critical thinking/conspiracy theories

#2 Postby Alan H » February 13th, 2017, 10:53 am

It looks good and very worthwhile, particularly in these 'post truth' days. I know Rob Brotherton although not read his book - he knows his stuff!
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What, precisely, are the significant and tangible benefits of leaving the EU? Anyone? Hello? Hello?

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Zeff
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Re: Critical thinking/conspiracy theories

#3 Postby Zeff » February 14th, 2017, 5:57 pm

From the context, my guess is that TOK stands for Theory of Knowledge?
You might like to give a talk at the Humanist Society Scotland (HSS) or Glasgow Skeptics if you're up this way, please. Speakers don't get much but they may pay travel expenses. (The Skeptics meet in a pub :-)

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Alan H
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Re: Critical thinking/conspiracy theories

#4 Postby Alan H » February 14th, 2017, 6:25 pm

Zeff wrote:From the context, my guess is that TOK stands for Theory of Knowledge?
You might like to give a talk at the Humanist Society Scotland (HSS) or Glasgow Skeptics if you're up this way, please. Speakers don't get much but they may pay travel expenses. (The Skeptics meet in a pub :-)

Maybe the Glasgow SitP (I've given talks to about 24 different SitP) but I'll give the HSS a miss if you don't mind.
Alan Henness

What, precisely, are the significant and tangible benefits of leaving the EU? Anyone? Hello? Hello?

"We're all in this together, but some are more in it than others."
— Me, with apologies to Napoleon

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animist
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Re: Critical thinking/conspiracy theories

#5 Postby animist » February 17th, 2017, 11:26 pm

Zeff wrote:From the context, my guess is that TOK stands for Theory of Knowledge?
You might like to give a talk at the Humanist Society Scotland (HSS) or Glasgow Skeptics if you're up this way, please. Speakers don't get much but they may pay travel expenses. (The Skeptics meet in a pub :-)
absolutely right, Zeff: http://www.ibo.org/programmes/diploma-p ... at-is-tok/
When I was a young philosophy student (er, quite some time ago) the phrase meant something a bit different, but the new meaning seems a lot more relevant. Thanks for the invite :smile:

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Re: Critical thinking/conspiracy theories

#6 Postby animist » February 23rd, 2017, 12:06 pm

I've now finished reading the Brotherton book (Alan H - do you mean from your comment that you know Rob B. personally?). Perhaps the most depressing thing in it is the revelation that we all exhibit the Confirmation Bias (even those of us who are not Conspiracy Theorists and like to think of ourselves as free spirits), and that in particular we like to read the opinions of people who agree with us. Il va sans dire, IMO, that everyone should make a point of reading informed comment which disagrees with their own views, learns from it, and then maybe answers it in a civil and informed way.

Here is one of several Brotherton talks available on YouTube
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tOmdd2-sQLc

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Re: Critical thinking/conspiracy theories

#7 Postby Bryn » February 23rd, 2017, 12:38 pm

Before reading an excellent book about conspiracy theories, Voodoo Histories by David Aaronovitch, I wasn't that interested in them but now I find the whole topic fascinating. The book covers several of the main ones including JFK, 9/11, and the deaths of Diana, David Kelly and Hilda Murrell. I still don't really get how people can be so certain in their belief in something fantastical that their minds are totally closed to counter suggestions that they could be wrong. If you want to kill one of the most famous women in the world, is that how you'd do it? Wait for her to leave a hotel with dozens of paparazzi outside and cause a car crash while they are in hot pursuit?!

But stupidity over conspiracies about murdering individuals pale in comparison to those around vaccines and chemtrails, in which sinister forces are (allegedly) deliberating harming whole populations for some unknown purpose. What's that about? I find it absolutely bewildering.

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Re: Critical thinking/conspiracy theories

#8 Postby Athena » February 23rd, 2017, 12:56 pm

Alan H wrote:Maybe the Glasgow SitP (I've given talks to about 24 different SitP) but I'll give the HSS a miss if you don't mind.

He wasn't talking to you, silly!

Hey, Bryn, long time no see! :)
I've read DA's book too and highly recommend it. I know what you mean about the stupidity. Conspiraloons are incredibly active on twitter - mock chemtrails once and you'll be bombarded. Today's conspiracy concerns google's very welcome blacklisting of the Natural News

Silencing Natural News is all part of the globalist “script” for the enslavement of a population kept ignorant of reality


:hilarity:

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Alan H
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Re: Critical thinking/conspiracy theories

#9 Postby Alan H » February 23rd, 2017, 1:12 pm

animist wrote:I've now finished reading the Brotherton book (Alan H - do you mean from your comment that you know Rob B. personally?).
Yes, not well, but have met him a few times - I first came across him while he was doing his PhD under prof Chris French at Goldsmiths a few years ago. He lives in the US now - probably far more fertile ground for conspiracy theories these days!
Alan Henness

What, precisely, are the significant and tangible benefits of leaving the EU? Anyone? Hello? Hello?

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Zeff
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Re: Critical thinking/conspiracy theories

#10 Postby Zeff » March 2nd, 2017, 11:20 am

Alan H wrote:
Zeff wrote:From the context, my guess is that TOK stands for Theory of Knowledge?
You might like to give a talk at the Humanist Society Scotland (HSS) or Glasgow Skeptics if you're up this way, please. Speakers don't get much but they may pay travel expenses. (The Skeptics meet in a pub :-)

Maybe the Glasgow SitP (I've given talks to about 24 different SitP) but I'll give the HSS a miss if you don't mind.
I'll need to keep an eye out for you (and whoever Animist is). Thanks.

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Re: Critical thinking/conspiracy theories

#11 Postby Athena » June 3rd, 2017, 7:44 pm

Talking of conspiracy theories, there are dozens of videos on youtube pointing out how the attack on the Manchester Arena two weeks ago was 'obviously' fake - the main reason being offered by commenters is that they haven't seen footage of the explosion or its aftermath. They expect to see dismembered corpses and body parts apparently. There is also a video pointing out that there are ambulances on their way to the scene at 2 am, according to a station clock so that proves the whole thing is a hoax; the footage showing police and ambulances outside the arena was 'just a training exercise'; the injured survivors, bereaved families and medical staff who were interviewed are all 'bad actors'.

I'm seriously triggered by this kind of stupidity. I just don't get what's wrong with these people.
:headbang: /rant

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Re: Critical thinking/conspiracy theories

#12 Postby Alan H » June 3rd, 2017, 8:05 pm

If it was all staged, why did they not provide footage of the bomb blast and the carnage that ensued? Or were they so incompetent they never thought of that? You'd have thought that after so make fake events (moon landings, 9/11, etc) they'd be better at it by now...
Alan Henness

What, precisely, are the significant and tangible benefits of leaving the EU? Anyone? Hello? Hello?

"We're all in this together, but some are more in it than others."
— Me, with apologies to Napoleon

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Re: Critical thinking/conspiracy theories

#13 Postby Athena » June 3rd, 2017, 9:25 pm

Exactly. I pointed out to one person who said he wouldn't believe it until he saw dead bodies and buckets of real blood that such a scene would be the easiest thing in the world to stage compared to the fact that so many of the victims or their relatives are easily found on social media and can be verified. But even normal people don't like admitting they're wrong, let alone these fruit loops.

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Re: Critical thinking/conspiracy theories

#14 Postby Athena » June 4th, 2017, 12:15 am

And to show just how nutty they are, this is one of the responses I got to a throwaway comment about there being about 120 injured and a link to the Manchester Evening News showing pics taken at the scene soon after the bomb went off.
I have never met anyone on YT as stupid and gullible as you. There are no reports of 120 injured survivors anywhere on the web. ZERO. One (1) report in the beginning of this OBVIOUS HOAX said there were 119 victims. That report was CODE for 911. But you're too obtuse to understand how you've been brainwashed since you flopped upside down out of your momma's vagina.

Just keep believing the idiots on your TV and repeated in the "news" you love so much. You've been caught in a trap and don't even know it. But I'm the imbecile? You deserve whatever you get. And what you have is a pack of lies.

You think that freelance photographer, Joel Goodman, just happened to be there that very night at that time? LOL!

So....either you're a gullible fool that falls for every trick in the book or you are a stupid shill. Either way you are an idiot.

As Chorkaloopa has already said...

I worked on an ambulance (AMR) in the US for 4 years and I can tell you this, if we didn't clear the scene of an incident of all patients in less than a half-hour where casualties were involved, we'd have been fucking fired

This is more than enough evidence to show you how fucked in the head you are.

If you reply to me with anymore of you brainwashed jibber jabber I will be forced to block your dumb ass.
:hilarity:

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Re: Critical thinking/conspiracy theories

#15 Postby Alan H » June 4th, 2017, 12:38 am

Next you'll be telling us someone thinks it didn't happen because you can't see the ambulances on Google Street View...
Alan Henness

What, precisely, are the significant and tangible benefits of leaving the EU? Anyone? Hello? Hello?

"We're all in this together, but some are more in it than others."
— Me, with apologies to Napoleon

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Re: Critical thinking/conspiracy theories

#16 Postby Athena » June 4th, 2017, 2:52 am

Yep, that's exactly what someone did say - as you already knew. :)

I see the conspiraloons are now emerging about the 'London Hoax' even though I'm still watching the ongoing situation and listening to witness accounts as I type...

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Re: Critical thinking/conspiracy theories

#17 Postby animist » June 4th, 2017, 8:42 am

Athena wrote:And to show just how nutty they are, this is one of the responses I got to a throwaway comment about there being about 120 injured and a link to the Manchester Evening News showing pics taken at the scene soon after the bomb went off.
I have never met anyone on YT as stupid and gullible as you. There are no reports of 120 injured survivors anywhere on the web. ZERO. One (1) report in the beginning of this OBVIOUS HOAX said there were 119 victims. That report was CODE for 911. But you're too obtuse to understand how you've been brainwashed since you flopped upside down out of your momma's vagina.

Just keep believing the idiots on your TV and repeated in the "news" you love so much. You've been caught in a trap and don't even know it. But I'm the imbecile? You deserve whatever you get. And what you have is a pack of lies.

You think that freelance photographer, Joel Goodman, just happened to be there that very night at that time? LOL!

So....either you're a gullible fool that falls for every trick in the book or you are a stupid shill. Either way you are an idiot.

As Chorkaloopa has already said...

I worked on an ambulance (AMR) in the US for 4 years and I can tell you this, if we didn't clear the scene of an incident of all patients in less than a half-hour where casualties were involved, we'd have been fucking fired

This is more than enough evidence to show you how fucked in the head you are.

If you reply to me with anymore of you brainwashed jibber jabber I will be forced to block your dumb ass.
:hilarity:
reading this makes one wonder how serious or sincere these people are - maybe they just want some excuse to pour out abuse? I don't actually monitor YT for such things, so I appreciate your updating on new theories like this one. I'll be writing short piece for this new U3A group, and of course will post it here. It occurs to me that a "decent" CT requires not just a few apparent problems with the "official story" but a reasonable motive for why this story is not the truth. Anyone hinting at a motive for why the Manchester bombing should be faked?

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Re: Critical thinking/conspiracy theories

#18 Postby Athena » June 4th, 2017, 11:19 am

Anyone hinting at a motive for why the Manchester bombing should be faked?

I get the impression that the vast majority of those who are commenting on Manchester in this manner (and I've now seen many dozens of different commenters) have a knee-jerk reaction to any stories of terrorist attacks in Western countries - they believe they are all fake. The Sandy Hook massacre is very widely believed to be faked and I've even seen the Boston marathon attack described as 'obviously fake'. There are already many such comments about last night's London attack on twitter.
At the bottom of it all seems to be a belief (especially from Americans who are the majority of commenters) that the 'global elite' is doing it to keep populations scared and under control. But I've also seen comments specifically about Manchester that suggest the government want to use it as an excuse to introduce repressive measures against Muslims and to wage war on Syria.

Seriously, these are the nuttiest people I've ever seen commenting online.

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Re: Critical thinking/conspiracy theories

#19 Postby Alan H » June 4th, 2017, 11:28 am

This was posted on a homeopathy group I monitor:
I've been reading about the heavy metal contaminants in Chem Trails for the last two days and wondering if my horrible cough is due to some of these things I've been breathing in…a day of a complete cloud cover and then a two minute intense storm. One way or another they seem to want to get us. I've read two reasonings for this..control of the weather..and trying to change our nervous systems so that we are susceptible to mind control through radio waves(trying to simplify here).Or they just want to kill us.
I have no idea how you counter this stuff.
Alan Henness

What, precisely, are the significant and tangible benefits of leaving the EU? Anyone? Hello? Hello?

"We're all in this together, but some are more in it than others."
— Me, with apologies to Napoleon

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Re: Critical thinking/conspiracy theories

#20 Postby Dave B » June 4th, 2017, 1:41 pm

Alan H wrote:This was posted on a homeopathy group I monitor:
I've been reading about the heavy metal contaminants in Chem Trails for the last two days and wondering if my horrible cough is due to some of these things I've been breathing in…a day of a complete cloud cover and then a two minute intense storm. One way or another they seem to want to get us. I've read two reasonings for this..control of the weather..and trying to change our nervous systems so that we are susceptible to mind control through radio waves(trying to simplify here).Or they just want to kill us.
I have no idea how you counter this stuff.

You can't, you only seriously worry about it when politicians take it up as a cause or some teacher spouts such crap. Whilst it is still just a random member of the public it remains less dangerous than fundie religions.

Keep up the good work against the organised and profit motivated shysters advertising their fake therapies - save your energy for them!
"Look forward; yesterday was a lesson, if you did not learn from it you wasted it."
Me, 2015


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