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Friday, November 09, 2007

Gibson vs Eraser

Disturbingly difficult to
discern the difference.

On a related note, I have never seen a worse reputedly science-based blog than "Climate Audit". In fact, I find it so bad that the award it got for Best Science Blog immediately invalidates the lesser half of the blogosphere's contribution to science completely.

Update from comments: Gumby also upset about eraser family resemblance.

Another Update: Many of the climate change deniers have fallen for this hoax of epic proportions. In their (Rush Limbaugh, et al) desperate quest to find any evidence to grasp on to, they choose a well-done spoof. I just love the equation style the spoofers have chosen
Q²uct, yΦ³= ∑cy³42
or this one
4δ161 x Λ³Жญ5,6,1,8Φ-4 = {(ΣΨ²Њyt3 - 14๖P9) x 49}

2β x ⅜kxgt -§
That final character, which last time I checked, we usually use as a word processor flow marker takes the cake for incredulity. It basically screams, "You idiots, can't you see this is all gibberish?". But of course the Gibson crowd fall for it anyways (the slugs at Climate Audit apparently a bit too slow to catch on one way or the other). Because, of course, their stupidity knows no bounds, and the reservoir for new wing-nuts to join the Clown Hall circus remains infinite.


Professor Blogger Step Back said...

Hi Mobo,

I understand the need for emotional lash out at these kinds people.

However, in general, the ad hom attack backfires.

It gives credence to their more subtle techniques of rhetoric.

You can only fight rhetoric with better rhetoric.

Your eraser head friend is using something called "social proof" as his rhetorical style. Basically, 10,000 flies voted for me, they all can't be wrong and therefore I'm right.

Calling him an eraser head doesn't help. It only adds gasoline to the fire.

You may be better off agreeing with him that 10,000 flies did indeed vote for him. You may wish to note that the 10,000 flies also believe in depositing their offspring in fresh dung so that their babies will eat it. And obviously he approves. Obviously, he has to rely on these swarms of fly friends for validating his position because real scientists won't.

2:38 AM  
Professor Blogger WHT said...

I also thought that picture of Gibson kind of looked like Gumby, but I felt a bit more deconstruction was in order. Thus the salient features of a pencil eraser occurred to me. I find this a subtle form of rhetoric that mixes in absurdity with the kind of outright mockery that these charlatans deserve.

7:42 AM  
Professor Blogger Step Back said...


The last symbol is a section mark. It's similar to a paragraph mark (a backwards P) except it indicates that the number to follow is a section number.


1:34 PM  
Professor Blogger Step Back said...


I empathize with your anguish over Rush Limbaugh and his ilk.

With regard to what makes us "empathize" with one person but not another, you might want to read this article today in the NYTimes.

At the same time that I appreciate your anguish with these kinds of people, I must confess that I enjoy listening to Rush in the morning; NOT because I agree with his words, but because I admire his use of modulated tonality for manipulating people. It works.

Rush's techniques do not leave me with a dead ended feeling of frustration. They used to. But no more. I have grown new mirroring neurons (I call them modeling neurons) to abstractly model the manipulation techniques used by Rush and others. So at the time they are using them, I am not filled with upset and lack of comprehension of why they are succeeding, but rather with admiration of their craftiness. It's not something that fits into a mathematical model.

1:43 PM  
Professor Blogger Step Back said...

Rant continued:

You might want to know why so-called skeptics of AGW love to hate Al Gore?

It's really straight forward simple.

Al Gore was the smart kid in class who sat in the front, raised his hand and went "Ooh ooh teacher, I know the answer to the fifth order polynomial question".

The kids sitting in the back of the class and not understanding what the heck even a 2nd order equation means were full of anger. This is their chance for vengeance.

If only they can latch on to someone who self-qualifies himself as a "scientist" and who questions Al Gore's smarts, then they finally feel vindicated. Al (or his analog) wasn't that smart after all. He was a sucker for a doomist story. And they, the angry majority in the back of the class room are going to prove it with a popularity vote. You lose nerd. Ha ha.

Can you "empathize" with their emotions?

If you can, you are on your way to understanding what is going on behind the facade of "skeptical science". This is not science. This a vote for High School prom king.

1:53 PM  
Professor Blogger WHT said...

Which is no different than the way organized religion works.

6:51 PM  
Professor Blogger Step Back said...

It's no different than the way organized anything works.

Evolution has shaped our brains to value social status over most everything (except instantaneous survival). Power and authority all come from social status. If a movie star says AGW and PO are real, then it gets credence. If the Pope says so, it's gospel. If you are I say the same thing, it is worthless.

"Mainstream" is just another name for herd mentality. So let's all moove along and stay the course. The eternal cliff beckons. Bah bah humbug to anyone who believes in global ha ha warming or peak ho ho oil.

11:07 AM  

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