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Originally posted by Mr Mask
Skeptics are often the ONLY thing worth reading on ATS at ALL!
[edit on 19-2-2010 by Mr Mask]
Initially they agree with most things written, sometimes starting their own threads to which they gain a following. before long they throw little comments in here and there which agree with the majority, soon the worm turns and you start to see comments like, I am just waiting to hear what ******** has to say. as much as I agree that we need skeptics, we also have to be aware of making a skeptic a forum super hero.
Originally posted by the way
Quantum computers, nano machines and even mobile phones would not have been possible if scientists had not ignored the mocking Know it alls who said-"thats ridiculous, doesn't fit in with physics-can't be done!"
Someone posts something in for instance Science and Technology about Acoustic levitation.
Characteristics of a pseudoskeptic:
1. The tendency to deny, rather than doubt.
2. Double standards in the application of criticism.
3. The making of judgments without full inquiry.
4. Tendency to discredit, rather than investigate.
5. Use of ridicule or ad hominem attacks in lieu of arguments.
6. Pejorative labeling of proponents as 'promoters', 'pseudoscientists' or practitioners of 'pathological science.
7. Presenting insufficient evidence or proof.
8. Assuming criticism requires no burden of proof.
9. Making unsubstantiated counter-claims.
10. Counter-claims based on plausibility rather than empirical evidence.
11. Suggesting that unconvincing evidence is grounds for dismissing it.
12. Use of vague, exaggerated or untestable claims.
13. Asserting that claims which have not been proven false must be true, and vice versa (Argument from ignorance).
14. They speak down to their audience using 'arguments from authority'.
15. They put forward their assumptions as if they were universal truths.
16. No references to reputable journal material.
17. If the pseudo-skeptic has a monetary interest (such as maintaining a funding stream or a salary) his criticisms often become vituperative.
True Skeptics / Open-Minded Skeptics
A. Does not show any of the characteristics of a pseudoskeptic.
B. Inquires and asks questions to try to understand things
C. Applies open inquiry and investigation of both sides
D. Is nonjudgmental, doesn't jump to rash conclusions
E. Has honest doubt and questions all beliefs, including their own
F. Seeks the truth, considers it the highest aim
G. Fairly and objectively weighs evidence on all sides
H. Acknowledges valid convincing evidence
I. Possesses solid sharp common sense and reason
J. Is able to adapt and update their paradigms to new evidence