The agit prop, spreading lie/slander well-poisoning game
Just now, I responded to a point JM made in the current James Tour thread. I think the comment chain is worth headlining:
KF, 14: >> why debate someone when instead:
[a] you can ignore, marginalise and rob of publicity?
[b] you can caricature, smear, slander and poison the well?
[c] you dominate institutions and are utterly ruthless in imposing a crooked yardstick as the standard for straightness and accuracy?
(If you doubt me, see the Wiki article on ID. Resemblance to current trends in discussing political issues, policy alternatives and personalities is NOT coincidence.)>>
D, 15: >>you have described very accurately the pathetic situation in this world.
Facing the strong arguments of a scientist like Dr Tour, the still dominant voices in academia just circle the wagons, but that won’t keep them from defeat anyway at the end of the day. It’s just a matter of time.>>
JM, 16: >>“It’s not a lie, if you believe it…”- George Costanza>>
KF, 17: >>it’s not so simple. There is an epistemic duty of responsible warrant before believing or propagating a claim. For, to lie is to speak with disregard to truth in hope of profiting from what was said or suggested being taken as truth. You can first lie to yourself, then spread deception to others, based on a self-serving belief. That’s how agit prop operators get the politics of personal destruction by slanderous accusation to work: people BELIEVE smears (without carrying out reasonable and responsible tests for truth and fairness on such destructive claims) and spread them — which BTW I am betting we are going to see a lot more of in coming months. Major media houses, I am looking straight at you. This dirty game goes beyond merely being in honestly acquired error, having done duty to truth, fairness and right.>>
I fear, we are going to see things getting uglier and uglier as truth and fairness are increasingly trashed in pursuit of advantage in cases where shifting public opinion counts. Wiki’s hatchet job on ID is just one case in point. END