Tag Archives | Critical Thinking

How Do I Find Out If a Specific Conspiracy Theory Is or Isn’t True?

Pic: Steve Lee (CC)

Pic: Steve Lee (CC)

Rob Ager writes:

At this technologically sophisticated point in human history the scope for ordinary citizens to monitor power institutions and spread awareness of corruption is greater than it has even been. The average citizen has access to printers, email, DVD players and a multitude of other information distribution outlets. This has become a major problem for power institutions. The big brother surveillance society swings both ways and so now governments are having a major problem with what they consistently call “conspiracy theories”.

A few major difficulties have emerged with this new public monitoring of power institutions.

  1. Poor research has been widely disseminated on many conspiracy subject due to the limited investigative skills or personal bias of those doing the research.
  2. Conspiracy theory dissemination has developed a commercial edge; with some films and books being sold for higher prices than would be expected in high st retail stores.
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Larry Correia Refutes the Gun Controllers Once and For All

An expert testimonial refuting the illusions of security pandered by soothsayers and demagogues, hell bent on disarming an awakening citizenry.

Via 1389blog.com

An opinion on gun control

Larry Correia

I didn’t want to post about this, because frankly, it is exhausting. I’ve been having this exact same argument for my entire adult life. It is not an exaggeration when I say that I know pretty much exactly every single thing an anti-gun person can say. I’ve heard it over and over, the same old tired stuff, trotted out every single time there is a tragedy on the news that can be milked. Yet, I got sucked in, and I’ve spent the last few days arguing with people who either mean well but are uninformed about gun laws and how guns actually work (who I don’t mind at all), or the willfully ignorant (who I do mind), or the obnoxiously stupid who are completely incapable of any critical thinking deeper than a Facebook meme (them, I can’t stand).

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Logical Fallacies (Video)

A great primer for the emerging auto-didactic class. "Sorta on the side of evil, if you want to persuade people, mastering fallacies is a very useful skill. If you want to defend against being emotionally manipulated, knowing about fallacies is very useful." —Dr. Michael Lobossiere
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The Problem With Moderates

Plato And AristotleIn a world of ever-widening extremes – from weather patterns to wealth disparities to polarized politics – what does it mean to be a moderate? More specifically, how does this term apply to religion?

Viewed in the context of most everyday activities and situations and in line with Aristotle’s idea of the “Golden Mean” (which states that virtue lies at the midpoint between two vices; i.e. courage lies between cowardice and recklessness, etc.), it could be said that a moderate stance is generally better than an extremist one. For example, being a moderate drinker seems to strike a pretty good balance between being healthy and having fun, as opposed to the opposite extremes of being an ascetic teetotaler or a raging alcoholic. Likewise, being politically moderate, if nothing else, tends to generate far less strife during dinner conversations amid mixed company or at large family gatherings.

Then again, for some activities moderate is still too far from the bell curve – particularly in cases where conventional wisdom has taken up residence at one of the distant ends of the spectrum of possibilities.  For example, while being moderately racist may be an improvement over being a hate-filled white supremacist neo-Nazi skinhead, it still leaves a lot to be desired if hoping to join enlightened humanity in recognizing equal rights for all people based on our shared human condition.… Read the rest

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Analytical Thinking Erodes Belief in God

The ThinkerDebora MacKenzie writes on New Scientist:

Charles Darwin and Albert Einstein famously did not believe in a supernatural God, and neither do some scientists today. It now appears there may be a good reason for this: thinking analytically dims supernatural beliefs, apparently by opposing the intuitive thought processes that underpin them.

The vast majority of people believe in a supernatural god or gods, says social psychologist Ara Norenzayan of the University of British Columbia in Vancouver, Canada. Yet there are hundreds of thousands of atheists and agnostics who do not. While scientists have begun to study the psychology of belief, we know little about what causes disbelief.

Humans use two separate cognitive systems for processing information: one that is fast, emotional and intuitive, and another that is slower and more analytical.

The first system innately imputes purpose, personality or mental states to objects, leading to supernatural beliefs. People who rely more on intuitive thinking are more likely to be believers, while the more analytical are less likely.

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