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Old 3rd December 2012, 05:02 PM   #161
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Originally Posted by justintime View Post
This is why we group them as Skeptics.

Who is "we"?
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Old 3rd December 2012, 05:42 PM   #162
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Originally Posted by justintime View Post
That should be of grave concern that science has no moral convictions.
Why? Engineering has no moral convictions either. Science doesn't tell us what is right or wrong, but it can help us to understand why we think things are right or wrong.

Quote:
I have tried to accept Science as an amoral discipline. I also considered those scientist who help build the nuclear bomb. If scientist cannot be responsible for how it is used. Then their scientific curiosity should be subject to some restraint because of consequences they have not considered.
So we should limit free inquiry because it might lead to some things that you don't like?

Quote:
Which brings to mind Stephen Hawking's warnings that we should avoid making contact with aliens because they might not have altruistic intentions.
How did the above bring that to mind?

Quote:
Now try communicating that to a scientist like Carl Sagan who was obsessed with contacting aliens...
I tire of addressing this silliness. Your "argument" isn't getting any less dumb with repetition.

Quote:
and supported by Skeptics who have yet to articulate the wisdom behind his obsession.
It's called scientific inquiry. It's about human curiosity. You've expressed an interest in learning about humanity. Wouldn't you like to know how unique or common life in the universe is?

Quote:
Stephen Hawking Warns Over Making Contact with Aliens
https://www.commondreams.org/headline/2010/04/25
Thank you. We've actually heard of Stephen Hawking.
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Old 3rd December 2012, 05:45 PM   #163
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Originally Posted by justintime View Post
Why would he? He was profiting from it.
He wrote a book and people purchased it? What an appalling human being!

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Why he targeted Skeptics is the focus of my inquiry.
I think his intended audience was anyone who was curious about what it might be like to detect a signal from an extraterrestrial civilization.
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Old 3rd December 2012, 05:49 PM   #164
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Originally Posted by justintime View Post
Please read Plot summary for Contact. I have the same reaction with every Skeptic who claimed they read Contact. They all missed that part. This is why we group them as Skeptics. They all arrive at the same conclusion with different facts.
Smartcooky's observation in no way contradicts the plot of Contact. As he (she?) observed, there are no UFOs or alien visitors in the story and the only spacecraft is built by humans.
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Old 3rd December 2012, 05:50 PM   #165
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Originally Posted by justintime View Post
The information received contained the blueprint for a spacecraft. The spacecraft was built from that blueprint and used to contact the aliens.
Yes, it was a piece of fiction written and marketed at the same time he was also denouncing UFOs and alien encounters. Sounds hypocritical.
Why the aggressive banter? the smugness, the defensiveness? insecurity maybe? are you 14? your argument sounds like that of an angry teenager who's been shown to be wrong, so he trolls the forum-verse hoping to either find one place where people agree with his goofy ideas, or to try and make everybody else's life miserable whilst they grapple with the sheer denseness of his thinking.

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Old 3rd December 2012, 05:57 PM   #166
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Originally Posted by Foster Zygote View Post
How do you know this? Do you ask everyone you meet? Most people apply skepticism to one degree or another, so I suspect you've met more than you realize.


So far, you seem more determined to tell skeptics what you want them to believe.


There are no doubt people who fit that definition, but on a forum such as this you are more likely to encounter people who define skepticism as an unwillingness to accept claims that have not met a certain scientific standard of empirical evidence. This isn't to say that such skeptics won't acknowledge the possibility of a claim.


Generally with words.


It depends on the standard of evidence that they require of a given situation. Around here, most rely on the scientific method for claims about the natural universe.


Can you link to this discussion? It's just impossible to evaluate an exchange that we know nothing about.


How do you know this? Did he tell you this, or is it something you've assumed?


What evidence? What claim did you make?


Or they may simply be people with higher than average educations who have learned a thing or two about critical thinking and the scientific method.
Just too many points to deal with in one post.
I know there are no skeptics outside skeptic forums. I have never been asked for citations or even questioned about my faith. There is a lot less paranoia outside Skeptic forums.
I have to protect the individuals privacy because it is really my concern. I knew the person and his dire situation before we entered the world of social media. But after joining a few Skeptic Forums I have noticed the drastic changes. He now denies not only what he knows which is little considering he is a school dropout, but who he is which is an unemployed welfare recipient for the last 10 years, but also where he is which is a failed single parent living is a dump.
But the biggest concern I have is his obsession engaging in endless arguments on forums hiding behind his anonymity. And the reason he can do that is because Skeptics are not very astute at seeing through the facade and reward doubt, a questioning attitude and uncertainty as evidence of critical thinking and evidence directed validation. But all the person is doing is putting the burden of proof on the other person and expecting to be educated about the subject in the process.
This can become tedious because you cannot raise a school drop-out to graduate level with a few well placed arguments. He needs the whole enchilada and months of your time. I haven`t seen him progress over the years because he cannot get an education debating on Skeptic forums. The smarts ones quit or are banned and the ones that remain share the same level of doubts and uncertainty that drew them to the forums in the first place.
I appreciate your interest in what I am attempting which is to understand why Skeptics are such disagreeable people. In an information age the more you know the better your chances are to succeed. And a Skeptic on welfare is not the success expected from applying critical thinking and simultaneously ignoring what is self evident.
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Old 3rd December 2012, 06:00 PM   #167
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Originally Posted by Foster Zygote View Post

Why can't you seem to understand that one can accept the possibility that life exists elsewhere in the universe, but also conclude that there isn't any convincing evidence that it is visiting us here on Earth with the purpose of anally probing any idiot in a pickup truck?

.
Yeah that's totally true.... I burned three weekends laying in the back of that truck.... nothin.




as far as the OP goes, why do I get the sneaking suspicion that Jesus is going to be making an appearance soon?
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Old 3rd December 2012, 06:06 PM   #168
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Originally Posted by justintime View Post
Just too many points to deal with in one post.
I know there are no skeptics outside skeptic forums. I have never been asked for citations or even questioned about my faith. There is a lot less paranoia outside Skeptic forums.
I have to protect the individuals privacy because it is really my concern. I knew the person and his dire situation before we entered the world of social media. But after joining a few Skeptic Forums I have noticed the drastic changes. He now denies not only what he knows which is little considering he is a school dropout, but who he is which is an unemployed welfare recipient for the last 10 years, but also where he is which is a failed single parent living is a dump.
But the biggest concern I have is his obsession engaging in endless arguments on forums hiding behind his anonymity. And the reason he can do that is because Skeptics are not very astute at seeing through the facade and reward doubt, a questioning attitude and uncertainty as evidence of critical thinking and evidence directed validation. But all the person is doing is putting the burden of proof on the other person and expecting to be educated about the subject in the process.
This can become tedious because you cannot raise a school drop-out to graduate level with a few well placed arguments. He needs the whole enchilada and months of your time. I haven`t seen him progress over the years because he cannot get an education debating on Skeptic forums. The smarts ones quit or are banned and the ones that remain share the same level of doubts and uncertainty that drew them to the forums in the first place.
I appreciate your interest in what I am attempting which is to understand why Skeptics are such disagreeable people. In an information age the more you know the better your chances are to succeed. And a Skeptic on welfare is not the success expected from applying critical thinking and simultaneously ignoring what is self evident.
So, you apparently don't understand skepticism, critical thinking, burden of proof . . . and probably a bunch of other stuff.

Did Carl Sagan or some other skeptic piss on your corn flakes?

Inquiring minds don't you know.
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Old 3rd December 2012, 06:12 PM   #169
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Originally Posted by justintime View Post
I know there are no skeptics outside skeptic forums.

You should get out of your mom's basement a little more often.

Admit, it, you're just trolling now, aren't you? Or do you really believe the nonsense you post?
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Old 3rd December 2012, 06:15 PM   #170
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Quote:
I know there are no skeptics outside skeptic forums
You don't know any such thing. This is the most preposterous claim I've seen this week.

You may not have met any, but there certainly are skeptics outside of skeptic fora.
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Old 3rd December 2012, 06:24 PM   #171
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Originally Posted by justintime View Post
The information received contained the blueprint for a spacecraft. The spacecraft was built from that blueprint and used to contact the aliens.
Yes, it was a piece of fiction written and marketed at the same time he was also denouncing UFOs and alien encounters. Sounds hypocritical.

You still don't get it do you?

1. I believe that the cosmos is swarming with intelligent life.

2. I believe that UFO's DO NOT have any connection whatever with the intelligent life in the cosmos.

These two belief are NOT mutually exclusive; I can argue in support of BOTH beliefs without any contradiction and without any hypocrisy.
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Old 3rd December 2012, 06:30 PM   #172
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Originally Posted by justintime View Post
Just too many points to deal with in one post.
I know there are no skeptics outside skeptic forums.
What an odd claim to make. Were there skeptics before the days of forums, message boards, newsgroups, and even the internet?

I'd say yes, but what about you?

That said, I know many skeptical people who don't participate in forums.



Originally Posted by justintime View Post
I have never been asked for citations or even questioned about my faith. There is a lot less paranoia outside Skeptic forums.
There are far fewer credulous claims made outside of forums these days as well. Do you wander around various places and start proclaiming your faith to all who are within earshot? If yes, have you noticed any people who look at you weird and then politely walk away? These people are also skeptics, but they are less likely to engage you in discussion face to face because let's be honest... there are some real crazy nuts out there and who knows what they might do if you try to take away their candy.



Originally Posted by justintime View Post
I have to protect the individuals privacy because it is really my concern. I knew the person and his dire situation before we entered the world of social media. But after joining a few Skeptic Forums I have noticed the drastic changes. He now denies not only what he knows which is little considering he is a school dropout, but who he is which is an unemployed welfare recipient for the last 10 years, but also where he is which is a failed single parent living is a dump.
But the biggest concern I have is his obsession engaging in endless arguments on forums hiding behind his anonymity.
So this bout of Skeptiphobia* that you've come to is out of concern for a friend of yours? Your concern is commendable, but perhaps his issues have nothing to do with skepticism in general.



Originally Posted by justintime View Post
And the reason he can do that is because Skeptics are not very astute at seeing through the facade and reward doubt, a questioning attitude and uncertainty as evidence of critical thinking and evidence directed validation.
My you're quick to generalize aren't you? Have you considered the possibility that your friend who is sadly failing at life (in your opinion) may not necessarily be representative of skepticism and skeptics in general?



Originally Posted by justintime View Post
But all the person is doing is putting the burden of proof on the other person and expecting to be educated about the subject in the process.
If someone makes a claim, is it not their burden to prove the claim? If not, what would you propose as a general rule of thumb?



Originally Posted by justintime View Post
This can become tedious because you cannot raise a school drop-out to graduate level with a few well placed arguments. He needs the whole enchilada and months of your time. I haven`t seen him progress over the years because he cannot get an education debating on Skeptic forums. The smarts ones quit or are banned and the ones that remain share the same level of doubts and uncertainty that drew them to the forums in the first place.
It can also become tedious to deal with skeptiphobics who are seemingly obsessed with undermining critical thinking while professing otherwise.



Originally Posted by justintime View Post
I appreciate your interest in what I am attempting which is to understand why Skeptics are such disagreeable people. In an information age the more you know the better your chances are to succeed. And a Skeptic on welfare is not the success expected from applying critical thinking and simultaneously ignoring what is self evident.
May I suggest that you focus more on your friend than on skeptics in general if your actual concern is your friend?



*read this as 'credulity'

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Old 3rd December 2012, 06:35 PM   #173
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Originally Posted by justintime View Post
Just too many points to deal with in one post.
I know there are no skeptics outside skeptic forums. I have never been asked for citations or even questioned about my faith. There is a lot less paranoia outside Skeptic forums.
I have to protect the individuals privacy because it is really my concern. I knew the person and his dire situation before we entered the world of social media. But after joining a few Skeptic Forums I have noticed the drastic changes. He now denies not only what he knows which is little considering he is a school dropout, but who he is which is an unemployed welfare recipient for the last 10 years, but also where he is which is a failed single parent living is a dump.
But the biggest concern I have is his obsession engaging in endless arguments on forums hiding behind his anonymity. And the reason he can do that is because Skeptics are not very astute at seeing through the facade and reward doubt, a questioning attitude and uncertainty as evidence of critical thinking and evidence directed validation. But all the person is doing is putting the burden of proof on the other person and expecting to be educated about the subject in the process.
This can become tedious because you cannot raise a school drop-out to graduate level with a few well placed arguments. He needs the whole enchilada and months of your time. I haven`t seen him progress over the years because he cannot get an education debating on Skeptic forums. The smarts ones quit or are banned and the ones that remain share the same level of doubts and uncertainty that drew them to the forums in the first place.
I appreciate your interest in what I am attempting which is to understand why Skeptics are such disagreeable people. In an information age the more you know the better your chances are to succeed. And a Skeptic on welfare is not the success expected from applying critical thinking and simultaneously ignoring what is self evident.
Is this post autobiographical?
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Old 3rd December 2012, 06:44 PM   #174
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Originally Posted by smartcooky View Post
You still don't get it do you?

1. I believe that the cosmos is swarming with intelligent life.

2. I believe that UFO's DO NOT have any connection whatever with the intelligent life in the cosmos.

These two belief are NOT mutually exclusive; I can argue in support of BOTH beliefs without any contradiction and without any hypocrisy.

I agree with and share your beliefs. I don't think it's going to have much impact on justintime's position though. The only hypocrisy taking place here is justin's condemnation of skepticism by being skeptical of skeptics; the painful and hypocritical conundrum of all skeptiphobics.
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Old 3rd December 2012, 07:06 PM   #175
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Originally Posted by justintime View Post
I am not a religious person but I do believe in defending the religious rights of people. And with 0ver 3 billion believers. It would take a lot of hating to hold all of them in contempt. I have made the effort to study comparative religion and many secular philosophies. And they all teach us about our humanity.
As for your question. There are many religions and then there are superstitions. So learn "The difference between religion and superstition".
http://mikio.hubpages.com/hub/The-di...d-superstition
And you learn the difference between your silly, disproven, adversarial., inaccurate, unsourced "definition" of "skepticism" and what skeptics actually are.

http://youngausskeptics.com/what-is-a-skeptic/
"A skeptic is an individual who approaches every claim with a degree of scepticism proportional to its plausibility. They use the basis of science, the scientific method, to analyse objectively each issue they encounter so as to come to a conclusion that is most supported by the evidence."

http://oxford.skepticsinthepub.org/D...t-is-a-Skeptic
"A skeptic is one who prefers beliefs and conclusions that are reliable and valid to ones that are comforting or convenient, and therefore rigorously and openly applies the methods of science and reason to all empirical claims, especially their own.
A skeptic provisionally proportions acceptance of any claim to valid logic and a fair and thorough assessment of available evidence, and studies the pitfalls of human reason and the mechanisms of deception so as to avoid being deceived by others or themselves.
Skepticism values method over any particular conclusion."

and, from a link you provided, but did not read:
http://skeptoid.com/skeptic.php
"The true meaning of the word skepticism has nothing to do with doubt, disbelief, or negativity. Skepticism is the process of applying reason and critical thinking to determine validity. It's the process of finding a supported conclusion, not the justification of a preconceived conclusion."

It is odd to see you claim not to be "religious" in this forum...
I believe that people have the right to be "religious" in whatever way gives them comfort, as 3 billion credulous people pursuing numberless different "truths" attest. And as the warm feelings of love and unity expressed by all of the "3 billion" attest.

If I might be so bold, may I ask why you caution against contempt for the credulous, when you yourself are so dismissively contemptuous of "skeptics"?

Adhere to whatever bronze-age superstition you choose--but do not pretend that gives you the right to spread calumny, disingenuous calumny, about anyone, credulous or skeptic, who does not share your superstition.

...but I, and others, have already pointed these things out to you...
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Old 3rd December 2012, 07:09 PM   #176
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Originally Posted by justintime View Post
I don't have a problem with Carl Sagan's criticism of superstitions and other irrational beliefs. But to attack them with skepticism and at the same time believe in aliens, flying saucers and ETI is a contradiction.
What evidence do you have that Sagan had any such belief?

Here's what Sagan himself had to say:

=========

"I'm frequently asked, "Do you believe there's extraterrestrial intelligence?" I give the standard arguments -- there are a lot of places out there, the molecules of life are everywhere, I use the word billions, and so on. Then I say it would be astonishing to me if there weren't extraterrestrial intelligence, but of course there is as yet no compelling evidence for it.

Often, I'm asked next, "What do you really think?"
I say, "I just told you what I really think."
"Yes, but what's your gut feeling?"
But I try not to think with my gut. If I'm serious about understanding the world, thinking with anything besides my brain, as tempting as that might be, is likely to get me into trouble. Really, it's okay to reserve judgment until the evidence is in." -- Carl Sagan, from his 1997 book The Demon-Haunted World - Science as a Candle in the Dark, page 180.

=========

Have you read the book?

RayG
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Old 3rd December 2012, 07:20 PM   #177
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Originally Posted by justintime View Post
Please read Plot summary for Contact. I have the same reaction with every Skeptic who claimed they read Contact. They all missed that part. This is why we group them as Skeptics. They all arrive at the same conclusion with different facts.
Quote:
Wiki: A third message is discovered containing over 30,000 pages describing plans for a machine that appears to be a kind of highly advanced vehicle, with seats for five human beings. But they cannot understand the third message until they find the fourth message, a primer hidden in phase modulation.[2] The primer allows them to translate the alien language to human language.

Ultimately, a machine is successfully built and activated, transporting five passengers
The above is purportedly your "response" to:
Originally Posted by smartcooky View Post
What a load of tosh! There wasn't a single UFO anywhere in the FICTION NOVEL Contact, and the only alien spacecraft was built by humans.
You might actually want to read Contact, instead of just the wikki summary, because (in case you missed it) there were no UFOs in Contact. The only "alien" spaceship in Contact was built by humans.

What point did you think you were making?
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Old 3rd December 2012, 07:25 PM   #178
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You obviously haven't read Sagan.

He wanted to find EVIDENCE they existed. He never said he was 100% certain they were out there.

How is this not skeptical? If anything he thought it was highly likely, but he never said they existed for sure, as he never had any evidence.
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Old 3rd December 2012, 07:31 PM   #179
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Originally Posted by RayG View Post
What evidence do you have that Sagan had any such belief?

Here's what Sagan himself had to say:

=========

"I'm frequently asked, "Do you believe there's extraterrestrial intelligence?" I give the standard arguments -- there are a lot of places out there, the molecules of life are everywhere, I use the word billions, and so on. Then I say it would be astonishing to me if there weren't extraterrestrial intelligence, but of course there is as yet no compelling evidence for it.

Often, I'm asked next, "What do you really think?"
I say, "I just told you what I really think."
"Yes, but what's your gut feeling?"
But I try not to think with my gut. If I'm serious about understanding the world, thinking with anything besides my brain, as tempting as that might be, is likely to get me into trouble. Really, it's okay to reserve judgment until the evidence is in." -- Carl Sagan, from his 1997 book The Demon-Haunted World - Science as a Candle in the Dark, page 180.

=========

Have you read the book?

RayG
But Ray--what do you really think?
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Old 3rd December 2012, 07:31 PM   #180
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Originally Posted by justintime View Post
I don't have a problem with Carl Sagan's criticism of superstitions and other irrational beliefs. But to attack them with skepticism and at the same time believe in aliens, flying saucers and ETI is a contradiction.

Another quote from Sagan--this time from Cosmos--showing how wrong you are (highlight added):

Quote:
In the Milky Way Galaxy there must be many planets millions of years older than Earth, and some that are billions of years older. Should we not have been visited? In all the billions of years since the origin of our planet, has there not been even once a strange craft from a distant civilization surveying our world from above, and slowly settling down to the surface to be observed by iridescent dragonflies, incurious reptiles, screeching primates or wondering humans? The idea is natural enough. It has occurred to everyone who has contemplated, even casually, the question of intelligent life in the universe. But has it happened in fact? The critical issue is the quality of the purported evidence, rigorously and skeptically scrutinized - not what sounds plausible, not the unsubstantiated testimony of one or two self-professed eyewitnesses. By this standard there are no compelling cases of extraterrestrial visitation, despite all the claims about UFOs and ancient astronauts which sometimes make it seem that our planet is awash in uninvited guests.
Not skeptical, huh?
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Last edited by AdMan; 3rd December 2012 at 07:34 PM.
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Old 3rd December 2012, 07:38 PM   #181
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Originally Posted by justintime View Post
Just too many points to deal with in one post.
I know there are no skeptics outside skeptic forums. I have never been asked for citations or even questioned about my faith. There is a lot less paranoia outside Skeptic forums.
I have to protect the individuals privacy because it is really my concern. I knew the person and his dire situation before we entered the world of social media. But after joining a few Skeptic Forums I have noticed the drastic changes. He now denies not only what he knows which is little considering he is a school dropout, but who he is which is an unemployed welfare recipient for the last 10 years, but also where he is which is a failed single parent living is a dump.
But the biggest concern I have is his obsession engaging in endless arguments on forums hiding behind his anonymity. And the reason he can do that is because Skeptics are not very astute at seeing through the facade and reward doubt, a questioning attitude and uncertainty as evidence of critical thinking and evidence directed validation. But all the person is doing is putting the burden of proof on the other person and expecting to be educated about the subject in the process.
This can become tedious because you cannot raise a school drop-out to graduate level with a few well placed arguments. He needs the whole enchilada and months of your time. I haven`t seen him progress over the years because he cannot get an education debating on Skeptic forums. The smarts ones quit or are banned and the ones that remain share the same level of doubts and uncertainty that drew them to the forums in the first place.
I appreciate your interest in what I am attempting which is to understand why Skeptics are such disagreeable people. In an information age the more you know the better your chances are to succeed. And a Skeptic on welfare is not the success expected from applying critical thinking and simultaneously ignoring what is self evident.
It's OK, "Justin", aka "Justintime", aka "justinrapper", aka "jamalrapper"--most of the posters here understand how frustrating it is to deal with a habitual nym-shifter; especially one who tries to deny his identities...
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Old 3rd December 2012, 07:39 PM   #182
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Originally Posted by Slowvehicle View Post
But Ray--what do you really think?
I just told you what I really think.

RayG
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Old 3rd December 2012, 07:48 PM   #183
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Originally Posted by RayG View Post
I just told you what I really think.

RayG
Yeah, but what's your gut feeling?
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Last edited by Slowvehicle; 3rd December 2012 at 07:49 PM.
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Old 3rd December 2012, 07:48 PM   #184
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"If the galaxy is teeming with intelligent life, then why haven't at least some of them been here"

I remember Sagan answering this question with something like this

"First, its long way here. What is there about us that makes us worth spending the time and effort to visit? Even if that civilisation was physically close to us, say, at Alpha Centauri, and somewhere near our level of technological development, a trip here would take them many thousands of years. If they were significantly more advanced that us, why would they even bother to visit us"

"Second, we have only just attained the technology to make our presence known, We have only been broadcasting for a hundred years, and only with enough power to be obvious in the last 70. We may not have even been noticed yet!"
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Old 3rd December 2012, 07:53 PM   #185
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Originally Posted by Slowvehicle View Post
Yeah, but what's your gut feeling?
I try not to think with my gut. (unless cupcakes or cheesecake are involved)

RayG
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Old 3rd December 2012, 07:57 PM   #186
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Originally Posted by RayG View Post
I try not to think with my gut. (unless cupcakes or cheesecake are involved)

RayG
:
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Old 3rd December 2012, 08:49 PM   #187
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Skepticism is simply the process by which someone can determine whether a given claim is true or not.

For example, if I walk up to someone in the street and tell them that I have a green cat in my pocket, they will be skeptical. If I suggest to you that I can flap my arms and fly, you will be skeptical. If I tell Mr Joe Random that my brain is made of blue vein cheese, he will be skeptical.

Similarly, when someone walks up to me and tells me that their Miracle Mineral Solution can cure cancer, I am skeptical. When someone tells me that they were brought aboard an alien ship and given a tour of the Andromeda galaxy, I am skeptical. When someone says that they can talk to my dead grandmother, I am skeptical.

This is all that skepticism is - a rubbish detector. Those of us who have been practising for a while have our rubbish detectors quite finely tuned. It's easier for us to tell when someone is talking rubbish because we have a lot of experience in working out what differentiates rubbish from non-rubbish.

All the rest is just baggage. We're human beings, after all, with all that being a human entails. We have emotions, relationships, likes and dislikes, different upbringings, different attitudes and different ways of looking at things. That's why we like to get together - so that we can compare and contrast our different styles. Sometimes we get into arguments. Sometimes we disagree. But we all agree that some claims are rubbish, and everybody ought to be able to tell what's rubbish and what isn't, in order to minimise the amount of unnecessary harm that these claims cause.
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Old 3rd December 2012, 09:19 PM   #188
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Originally Posted by arthwollipot View Post
Skepticism is simply the process by which someone can determine whether a given claim is true or not.

For example, if I walk up to someone in the street and tell them that I have a green cat in my pocket, they will be skeptical. If I suggest to you that I can flap my arms and fly, you will be skeptical. If I tell Mr Joe Random that my brain is made of blue vein cheese, he will be skeptical.

Similarly, when someone walks up to me and tells me that their Miracle Mineral Solution can cure cancer, I am skeptical. When someone tells me that they were brought aboard an alien ship and given a tour of the Andromeda galaxy, I am skeptical. When someone says that they can talk to my dead grandmother, I am skeptical.

This is all that skepticism is - a rubbish detector. Those of us who have been practising for a while have our rubbish detectors quite finely tuned. It's easier for us to tell when someone is talking rubbish because we have a lot of experience in working out what differentiates rubbish from non-rubbish.

All the rest is just baggage. We're human beings, after all, with all that being a human entails. We have emotions, relationships, likes and dislikes, different upbringings, different attitudes and different ways of looking at things. That's why we like to get together - so that we can compare and contrast our different styles. Sometimes we get into arguments. Sometimes we disagree. But we all agree that some claims are rubbish, and everybody ought to be able to tell what's rubbish and what isn't, in order to minimise the amount of unnecessary harm that these claims cause.
Goddammit, man, you've left me nothing to say.

That's pretty much it, right there in a nutshell.
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Old 3rd December 2012, 09:29 PM   #189
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Originally Posted by justintime View Post
I know there are no skeptics outside skeptic forums.
No, you don't. You may or may not legitimately think that you know, but you're wrong.

Quote:
I have never been asked for citations or even questioned about my faith.
So, what you're saying is, when you visit a forum that is specifically about skeptical inquiry, you encounter skeptical inquiry regarding claims you've made. Funny how that works.

Over in the religion and philosophy sub-forum, I've questioned a great many people about a great many claims. I've challenged them to produce evidence, pointed out flaws and fallacies in their arguments, etcetera. Know what I say when a nice old lady says "Thank you. God bless you" after I hold the door open for her at a store? I say "Thanks, you too".

Quote:
There is a lot less paranoia outside Skeptic forums.
How did we get on the subject of paranoia?

Quote:
I have to protect the individuals privacy because it is really my concern. I knew the person and his dire situation before we entered the world of social media. But after joining a few Skeptic Forums I have noticed the drastic changes. He now denies not only what he knows which is little considering he is a school dropout, but who he is which is an unemployed welfare recipient for the last 10 years, but also where he is which is a failed single parent living is a dump.
But the biggest concern I have is his obsession engaging in endless arguments on forums hiding behind his anonymity. And the reason he can do that is because Skeptics are not very astute at seeing through the facade and reward doubt, a questioning attitude and uncertainty as evidence of critical thinking and evidence directed validation. But all the person is doing is putting the burden of proof on the other person and expecting to be educated about the subject in the process.
This can become tedious because you cannot raise a school drop-out to graduate level with a few well placed arguments. He needs the whole enchilada and months of your time. I haven`t seen him progress over the years because he cannot get an education debating on Skeptic forums. The smarts ones quit or are banned and the ones that remain share the same level of doubts and uncertainty that drew them to the forums in the first place.
I appreciate your interest in what I am attempting which is to understand why Skeptics are such disagreeable people. In an information age the more you know the better your chances are to succeed. And a Skeptic on welfare is not the success expected from applying critical thinking and simultaneously ignoring what is self evident.
Even if I believed the above tale, what would it tell me about you?
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Old 3rd December 2012, 09:38 PM   #190
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Originally Posted by Slowvehicle View Post
It's OK, "Justin", aka "Justintime", aka "justinrapper", aka "jamalrapper"--most of the posters here understand how frustrating it is to deal with a habitual nym-shifter; especially one who tries to deny his identities...
Thanks, that led to some quick but informative search results. The analogy that often comes to my mind in situations like this is wondering whether someone is pooping his pants on a crowded bus because he doesn't know any better, or because he just likes the commotion it causes. I think I have my answer.
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Old 3rd December 2012, 09:47 PM   #191
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Originally Posted by justintime View Post
I was hoping that by posting my OP in the philosophy section someone could frame the difference between scientific skepticism and classical Hume, Descartes, Pyrrho and address the problems of the One and Many.
If you understand the scientific method you pretty well grasp scientific skepticism.
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Old 3rd December 2012, 10:06 PM   #192
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Originally Posted by arthwollipot View Post
Skepticism is simply the process by which someone can determine whether a given claim is true or not.

For example, if I walk up to someone in the street and tell them that I have a green cat in my pocket, they will be skeptical. If I suggest to you that I can flap my arms and fly, you will be skeptical. If I tell Mr Joe Random that my brain is made of blue vein cheese, he will be skeptical.

Similarly, when someone walks up to me and tells me that their Miracle Mineral Solution can cure cancer, I am skeptical. When someone tells me that they were brought aboard an alien ship and given a tour of the Andromeda galaxy, I am skeptical. When someone says that they can talk to my dead grandmother, I am skeptical.

This is all that skepticism is - a rubbish detector. Those of us who have been practising for a while have our rubbish detectors quite finely tuned. It's easier for us to tell when someone is talking rubbish because we have a lot of experience in working out what differentiates rubbish from non-rubbish.

All the rest is just baggage. We're human beings, after all, with all that being a human entails. We have emotions, relationships, likes and dislikes, different upbringings, different attitudes and different ways of looking at things. That's why we like to get together - so that we can compare and contrast our different styles. Sometimes we get into arguments. Sometimes we disagree. But we all agree that some claims are rubbish, and everybody ought to be able to tell what's rubbish and what isn't, in order to minimise the amount of unnecessary harm that these claims cause.
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Old 3rd December 2012, 10:30 PM   #193
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think he'll be back?
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Old 3rd December 2012, 10:34 PM   #194
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Originally Posted by Foster Zygote View Post
Quote:
Quote:
As for your question. There are many religions and then there are superstitions. So learn "The difference between religion and superstition".
http://mikio.hubpages.com/hub/The-di...d-superstition

Hardly an authoritative source. Looks an awful lot like special pleading to me.
I have a Faith, you are in a sect, he is a nutty cultist.
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Old 3rd December 2012, 11:10 PM   #195
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Originally Posted by Squeegee Beckenheim View Post
That's why God invented paragraphs.
~~~
Actually, he didn't. Paragraphs, punctuation, word spacing were invented by God's editors.
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Old 4th December 2012, 12:19 AM   #196
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Originally Posted by justintime View Post
The information received contained the blueprint for a spacecraft. The spacecraft was built from that blueprint and used to contact the aliens.
Yes, it was a piece of fiction written and marketed at the same time he was also denouncing UFOs and alien encounters. Sounds hypocritical.
You clearly do not know, among other things('fiction' would probably be included in the other things), the meaning of 'hypocritical'
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Old 4th December 2012, 12:56 AM   #197
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Originally Posted by justintime View Post
Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence, particularly in claims that are far fetched or that violate physical laws.

Carl Sagan did not need extraordinary evidence to spend his adult life searching for ETI (aliens). He just followed his early obsessions with flying saucers and aliens to fuel his scientific curiosity and a rather weak statistical probability based on arbitrary assumptions, hardly scientific by any definition or even scientifically skeptical.
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Old 4th December 2012, 01:00 AM   #198
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No kiddin puppycow, they are gonna have to change the definition of Obtuse to "see justintime" if he keeps this up
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Old 4th December 2012, 01:13 AM   #199
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Originally Posted by justintime View Post
Just too many points to deal with in one post.
That is still why God invented paragraphs.

As far as the rest of your post goes, it seems to be a bunch of irrelevant nonsense about some guy you know, which you're then extrapolating to be true about every single sceptic on the internet. Do I really have to explain why this isn't a well thought out proposition?
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Old 4th December 2012, 01:48 AM   #200
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Originally Posted by godless dave View Post
justintime, do you understand the difference between extraterrestrial life and UFOs?

On the evidence of this thread, he doesn't even understand the difference between fiction and non-fiction.
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