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Debunking the debunkers.

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posted on Feb, 2 2016 @ 03:32 PM
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To debunk is to expose the hollowness behind something, to reduce someone's reputation. It is interesting to me that people will buy anything that claims to "debunk a conspiracy theory". The public has been conditioned to accept rhetoric as long as it is disguised as skepticism and as long as it is presented in a humorous fashion and supported with fallacious ad hominem arguments.

For example, to refute someone's claim of conspiracy on a factual basis, by informing an audience and then presenting convincing arguments is dangerous. You may wind up with more people embracing the conspiracy theory.

It is far easier, and more reliable, to call into question the theorist himself or herself. Of particular usefulness is to attack on the basis of intelligence. For one, you cannot see someone's intelligence. The Dunning Kruger effect picks up the slack here. Since most people are not smart, they cannot tell who is actually smart from who claims to be smart. They will side with the more arrogant individual, especially if the arrogant individual throws out more information. People presume that detail and specificity indicate truthfulness. Call someone dumb, then throw out a lot of big words and links to things you've never even visited... and you will convince the majority.

This is the essence of what the debunker does.

So, I have a question. What makes someone qualified to be a "debunker"? What education does it require? What experience does one need to "debunk"?




posted on Feb, 2 2016 @ 03:35 PM
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a reply to: misterz

To put it simply, you need credible sources and facts that refute whatever is being claimed.

That's the beauty of it - no educational requirements! Only that you can fact-check and research (and of course articulate your point after collecting that information)



posted on Feb, 2 2016 @ 03:37 PM
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I'd say the ability to draw conclusions properly without making assumptions. Pretty much just familiarity with occam's razor. The simplest, most logical and PROVABLE rationale is probably the right one, until other evidence presents itself. Jumping to the conclusion that what you believe will be vindicated by future evidence is flawed, as is claiming evidence as false because it doesn't support your narrative.



posted on Feb, 2 2016 @ 03:51 PM
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a reply to: misterz

The acceptance of debunking conspiracies is aided by the sheer volume of conspiracy theories. Not unlike crying wolf. After a while, one develops a natural
defense mechanism against the unending barrage of claims.


I also submit that conspiracies are often no more than agendas. That, in itself, changes the landscape mightily.


Conspiracies is an emotionally charged word. Overused and misapplied more often than not. Whereas, agendas are a whole different order of things. Goals, visions, corporate and group objectives...all have 'agendas' , all conspire to achieve them.


Usually at odds with one another. hence world-wide grid-lock. Political, economic, moral, the works.


Bottom line? The conspiracy crowd debunk themselves as much as anything.....



posted on Feb, 2 2016 @ 03:55 PM
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a reply to: misterz




It is interesting to me that people will buy anything that claims to "debunk a conspiracy theory".


As opposed to conspiracy theorists buying anything that claims to be proof of a conspiracy.



The public has been conditioned to accept rhetoric as long as it is disguised as skepticism and as long as it is presented in a humorous fashion and supported with fallacious ad hominem arguments.



Way to make assumptions.




It is far easier, and more reliable, to call into question the theorist himself or herself.


That's not really something encouraged here...go for the source and not the messenger is a better way.



The Dunning Kruger effect picks up the slack here. Since most people are not smart, they cannot tell who is actually smart from who claims to be smart.


That works the same for CT...




Call someone dumb, then throw out a lot of big words and links to things you've never even visited... and you will convince the majority.


You do know why they throw out big words and links to things you have never visited...they are trying to help you see the other side of the claim being made.

It's like this...they can give you links concerning the topic being discussed, it's up to you to decide how you use those links.



So, I have a question. What makes someone qualified to be a "debunker"? What education does it require? What experience does one need to "debunk"?



Didn't know there was qualifications for being a debunker...learn something new everyday.

Pretty sure as long as you know how to use the internet your education doesn't matter.

You need to learn how to look at both sides of the topic before making up your mind...and learn how to do better research.

That's just my opinion as others may vary.
edit on 2-2-2016 by tsurfer2000h because: (no reason given)



posted on Feb, 2 2016 @ 04:18 PM
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a reply to: nwtrucker

"Bottom line? The conspiracy crowd debunk themselves as much as anything....."

One of my greatest sources of frustration is that for every legitimate, promising conspiracy theory with legs, there are easily dozens that make no sense at all... and you can typically read about them on BeforeItsNews.com and hear about them on radio programs like Glenn Beck's and Rush Limbaugh's.

I do think that the abundance of these lesser theories dilutes any relevence the good ones might have ever been able to have. And that sucks.

I believe debunkers are just conspiracy theorists who got sick of being in the losing side.



posted on Feb, 2 2016 @ 04:41 PM
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a reply to: tsurfer2000h

There are reasonable people who are interested in the truth, and then there are agenda-driven, high-profile professional debunkers.

Like SkepticalRaptor. He just takes things that don't agree with his perspective, and "debunks" them. It's the difference between someone saying, "Here is my take on it" and "I hope you're sitting down. The whackos are at it again, and you won't believe what they're saying this time."

Maybe the difference is too subtle to be seen for most people.

It is like opinion being presented as fact, only it's one perspective being presented as the truth and all challenging viewpoints being insanity.

To tell the difference, I suspect you must only observe whether or not the person is using name-calling/insults and if they are inexplicably smug. Also note appeals to things like "everybody knows x is true" and "you're the only one who thinks x".

The mind is the weakest point on a person, conspiracies take place every day.

Some, like the Moon Landing Hoax Theory, are so big that you can never make a dent. It's fun to play with but if I found conclusive evidence, I would bury it... lol.

Others, like anything related to vaccines, need to be pursued because there are human lives and personal liberties hanging in the balance.

I look at someone who wakes up and has a cup of coffee, and the spends all day discrediting people with personal attacks to be unhelpful in the grand scheme of things. And I think the behavior is suspect...

...then again, I would, wouldn't I?



posted on Feb, 2 2016 @ 04:44 PM
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a reply to: misterz


Well, two points in rebuttal. I can't speak of Beck, but Rush is probably the biggest debunker out there. he doesn't and never has bought into the general theories.


Myself? I've already placed the vast majority into the agenda class.


I will cede the downside to all the 'lesser' conspiracy theories is the baby being thrown out with the bath water. Likely some valid ones discarded when they are valid.


Thus the onus seems to fall one those convinced of their validity, be it through predicted acts, further information/proof
that overcomes the natural skepticism.


As the poster commented, Occam's Razor is about the only way to come to grips with it all and still leaves the door open for further evaluation. The sheer cacophony of B.S. that is available demands skepticism. Your cross to bear, methinks.



posted on Feb, 2 2016 @ 05:07 PM
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The problem with all conspiracy theories is that, if the alleged crime or deception were easily proven, it wouldn't necessitate theorizing. By definition, a conspiracy theory is a hunch, a hypothesis.

The people already got away with it.

The world may never know it, but vocal conspiracy theorists are probably the only thing preventing the general population from total control. When we are wrong, we're wrong. When we're right, though... it's like a silver arrow right in the heart of the beast. It takes the teeth right out of someone's scheme.

I guess the problem is once you start seeing through the matrix, and you get one conspiracy theory right, it becomes impossible to believe that anything is genuine ever again.



posted on Feb, 2 2016 @ 05:24 PM
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so many conspiracies are so easily debunked, people should move on to the good stuff out there.
look at chemtrails, first reported in '96, on a very young internet, nowhere else and still no proof.
late '96 WCW (the anti WWF/E) started a group called nWo which, ruled search engines for around two years.
guess who hijacked those yahoo/google searches.
'99 nostradamus end of world prophecy and, y2k!
theorists jumped ship predicting the end times, a certain alex jones announced russia was invading (for some reason), however nothing happened, and nobody used a nostradamus end date again.
september 11th happens, the 'new world order' idea spawns into freemasons, jews or lizards didit, rather than terrorists.
some branch off into 'illuminati' didit, ignoring the fact they ceased in 1787.
fast forward to every shooting is staged, crisis actors, gun control, hawaii is a muslim state and, then you have guys that stand a little to the right of mussolini declaring, the holocaust did not happen, jews started every war, ever, jews run all banks somehow, and well you get the gist.

5 minutes rational reading would solve that, but why bother when someone made a youtube video or you can pay up to hear a guy shout at you how some shadowy organization controls all, without a shred of proof.
all the while blatant media manipulation occurs.

grrrr end rant



posted on Feb, 2 2016 @ 09:49 PM
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a reply to: stinkelbaum

It's dumb, I know. But a lot of sneaky stuff goes on, nonetheless. The problem is people don't think about conspiracies as though the people involved were just like them. Masons? Illuminati? Is that what you would do? Not me.

The thing is, people only do stuff out of self interest and nobody is pure evil. Even Hitler liked nature and animals. We fail when we create caricatures. People aren't cartoons... they're people.

Why do I think we faked the moon landing? We weren't given a choice, we had to one-up Spitnik. Little kids were crying to their mothers about not wanting to be blown up with atomic space bombs. What the hell were we supposed to do? What would you have done? They tell you, the President, that there's no way to get to the moon. It can't be done. I know what I would have done. I would have said... Jesus H. Christ, man. Can we make it look like we went? Who's to say that we didn't?

Because that's what people do... they do what must be done when the time comes.

All this other # about secret societies and the rest... I just say, what's the need? If you ruled the world... why remain secret? You rule the world.

Bigfoot, aliens... I don't even go there.

I just try to see the people involved and understand their needs and what they might do in that situation, without dogma or judgement. And sometimes the answer to the situation is... we are going to do something really sneaky, nobody can ever find out or it was pointless... and if anyone ever tells a soul the rest of us will come after you. And sometimes the answer is... we know a way to make the profits we need to stay in business, but... yes, but the ends will just have to justify the means.

And so on. People are human.



posted on Feb, 3 2016 @ 01:07 AM
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The onus is on the presenter to prove their position. If they can not, it's debunked. If they can, then the onus is on the debunker to show why the evidence presented is wrong.



posted on Feb, 3 2016 @ 11:55 AM
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originally posted by: OccamsRazor04
The onus is on the presenter to prove their position. If they can not, it's debunked. If they can, then the onus is on the debunker to show why the evidence presented is wrong.


That is wrong.

It is always about two opposing positions.

Who wins always comes down to who is better at convincing the majority.

It's more important to go first than to be right.

This is because the onus always lies with the person who is asking people to challenge the default position.

Therefore, whoever can convince people that something is the default position wins.

Not the better argument.

The more natural argument that feels easier to accept.

Feels easier to accept because it seems like "everybody agrees with this".

Feels easier to accept because "only crazy people don't believe this".

Humans are emotional creatures.

Politicians know this.
Leaders know this.
All those in power know this.

A good argument cannot compete with fear.




posted on Feb, 3 2016 @ 08:36 PM
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originally posted by: misterz

Not the better argument.

The more natural argument that feels easier to accept.

Feels easier to accept because it seems like "everybody agrees with this".

Feels easier to accept because "only crazy people don't believe this".

Humans are emotional creatures.

Politicians know this.
Leaders know this.
All those in power know this.

A good argument cannot compete with fear.



I have some sympathy with that,
Some things just do not present themselves as factual even when it comes down from high. Look at this statement from WHO just a small while ago,


Processed meats - such as bacon, sausages and ham - do cause cancer, according to the World Health Organization (WHO).
Its report said 50g of processed meat a day - less than two slices of bacon - increased the chance of developing colorectal cancer by 18%.
Meanwhile, it said red meats were "probably carcinogenic" but there was limited evidence.
The WHO did stress that meat also had health benefits.
Cancer Research UK said this was a reason to cut down rather than give up red and processed meats.
And added that an occasional bacon sandwich would do little harm.
(source BBC)
Now what does one do with that mixture? sure there may be a little more background about bacon being smoked and barbys, and salt, but you have to ask...how good are the stats in the first place, when the general statements end up like the above?
Elsewhere, you could be looking at a consensus of scientific opinion on something, based on the use of stats physically gleaned on a day to day basis for God knows how long by someone else, yet when you look at the methodology and the use of the equipment themselves, you are saying, feck me, that's seriously compromised, and the science guys in the glass houses are using all that stuff, and making models, and proclamations on it, and telling governments what must be done about it!
So, yes a guy could come into the likes of here and wave an official paper about, whatever, which could be a load of shiite, and many might just agree.



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