Zeno's Paradox
While critical thinking may not make up for a lack of knowledge, it is essential for gaining knowledge.
Thursday, July 06, 2006:  
Critical Thinking:
"Addressing the public about science and religion" by Murray Peshkin
Reasonable people need to know what science is about, especially what an established scientific theory is and how scientists know when it's right...

Science is based entirely on experiment. To illustrate what that means, I raise the possibility that the world was created three hours ago with all our memories and everything else in place, and I encourage discussion of that possibility. Science cannot refute it. That leads into the notion that a proposition is not a scientific theory at all unless it's falsifiable in principle...

I always discuss the words "It's only a theory" by saying that for practical purposes that's the same as saying "It's only science," and the price we can pay for such contempt for science is high.

    -  Ron  3:44 PM

Critical Thinking:
"A credulous man is a deceiver" - Sir Francis Bacon

In his June 9th newsletter, James Randi shares:
Johnny Carson, in one of his letters to me, September 8, 2002, referred to Larry King and Montel Williams, who were blandly accepting the ridiculous claims of John Edward and thus deceiving their audiences by giving him huge TV exposure. Johnny gave me an illustrative quotation from Bacon that described what King and Williams were doing: "A credulous man is a deceiver"
Randi continues with the Bacon quote in context and ends there. I'd hoped for more about Johnny Carson...

While I'm reminded of Chris Mooney's article, Blinded By Science, it's not a problem just with topics of a scientific nature. The problem is of lazy and unresponsible "journalism" that prefers reporting "both sides" to actual journalism. These journalists are a promoter's dream, whether the promoter is selling a product, person, or con. All it takes is getting the journalists' attention with a newsworthy topic, giving them a press release covering the point of view you wish to perpetuate, and at most the journalists will find a quote or two to "balance" the article. The journalists spread the deception. The credulous are deceivers...

    -  Ron  12:03 PM

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