Tooling around looking for news, I came across this post, which Barry wrote about a site called The Skeptical Zone (TSZ):
The site has a sort of symbiotic relationship with UD, because many, if not most, of the posts there key off our posts here.
Wow. This must really be Internet III.
Used to be that booted trolls would found solo blogs to rant about us for a few weeks, and then (one guesses) turn sixteen, get a job at the car wash legally, and discover what “the value of one’s time” means. TSZ seems really organized by comparison.
While we are here, a regular commenter who would probably really enjoy TSZ, if he doesn’t visit it already, appended a comment to “Are we and rats powerless against the urge to stuff ourselves with Oreos?”, to the effect in part that:
At no point in the published material do they claim that we (or rats) are powerless against our urge to stuff ourselves with Oreos.
But we hold on to the hope that our longtime commenter is not nearly so naive as to believe what he is saying. Indeed, one of the explicit purposes of such research (otherwise, why bother?) is to identify evidence that disapproved foods act like drugs, reducing our control over our actions.
Intrusive legislation follows, of course, and that was part of Satel’s point in the original post.
When former New York mayor Bloomberg tried banning large size soda pop, for the good of citizens, an evolutionary biologist chimed in, announcing that we evolved to need coercion.
Presumably, we have all turned out to be nutritionally reckless because there was no paleolithic Nanny Bloomberg to supervise us.
Worse, U.S. judges (judges!) have shown themselves to be creationist denialists after all. They have driven Nanny Bloomberg’s law to extinction.
As for TSZ, as Barry noted, skepticism of the faculty lounge’s received opinion is no more likely a goal of theirs than constitutional liberty is a goal of the “soda ban” mayor or his friendly neighbourhood evolutionary biologist.
It’s too bad in a way because “skepticism” used to be a meaningful word.
Note: “Evolved to need coercion” is, by contrast, a repulsive concept in this universe or any other that may happen to exist.