The Ethical Skeptic

Challenging Pseudo-Skepticism, Institutional Propaganda and Cultivated Ignorance

The Contrathetic Impasse – Key Sign of Heavy-Handed Agency at Play

When compliant answers therefore are observed to be the goal, the dilettante, sycophant and even neutral, craving intellectual belonging, receive the instruction that method does not matter – so long as one arrives at a normative closure. This plurality learns that venom in one’s assault of specific ideas, persons and evidence – not only is rewarded with acceptance, but moreover its imposter, acclaim.
This is called the exoentropy of normatives. The contrathetic impasse is the result of such philosophical misadventure.

February 2nd 1959, nine hikers led by 23-year-old ski hiker Igor Alekseievich Dyatlov died in the snowy wilderness of the Kholat Syakhl slopes, Russian Soviet Federative Socialist Republic. The circumstances around their deaths involve some murky details accompanied by moderately well documented states of the bodies which were not found until 26 February, when a search party finally encountered the group’s abandoned and badly damaged tent. Six of the group members died of hypothermia and three of fatal injuries. All of them perished along or at the end of a trail of barefoot or semi-clad footprints which they left behind in an obvious sudden rush to flee from their tent. The three who died of fatal injuries, died from forced blunt head or body cavity compression trauma exceeding that which can be delivered by a human being.1 I assembled the map to the right because I could not find a resource which both outlined the detailed circumstances of the case, but as well appropriately understood topographical maps and how to determine slope grade, in order to to assess this case in a more objective fashion.

The various theories which have been foisted to explain the odd circumstances inside what is known now as ‘The Dyatlov Pass Incident’ include some of the ones I have cited below – classed into categories familiar inside ethical skepticism. I am not here to suggest of course any solution to the mystery nor foist one explanation as ‘being scientific’; nor virtue signal about my superior doubt and objectivity skills, nor bitch about names of people who need to be visibly condemned for considering forbidden alternatives. All such activity is foolishness. I utilize this mystery simply to highlight the signs to watch for, in order to determine that agency has its hands inside a paradox. The skeptics are haplessly providing the same predictable impact that intelligence groups reliably desire. Tools. This mystery, even with its crazy alternatives, is purposeful in other words. For what purpose, we may well never know. But we as ethical skeptics can know the minds of the mystery spinners themselves.

Perceiving the Mind of Agency

To date, fatal information has been produced for each of the potential explanations proffered below. This condition, one of every known viable alternative having been falsified, in itself stands as a clue. Please note that very familiar mechanisms (see: The Tower of Wrong: The Art of the Professional Lie) exist inside the Dyatlov Pass alternative grouping, as they do in many controversial mysteries. They are

Einfach Mechanism (Omega Hypothesis – HΩ) – the null hypothesis which is enforced as the go-to answer, however has not attained that status through reasonable qualification by science. These bear a bit more evidential base or reason based upon the evidence, and tend to survive despite existing falsifying evidence to the contrary. One may be forced as the ‘consensus’ answer without merit. Anachronistic explanations, or explanations used to promote the core thesis of a current popular researcher are often thrust into the Einfach Mechanism group.

•  Low-grade slope slab avalanche (Omega/Null Hypothesis – HΩ)
•  Soviet military parachute mine, radiological or gas weapon testing
•  Panic attack from wind or snow vibratory infrasound (Fad/Anachronistic Hypothesis)
•  Local Mansi raiding party/Lone wolf attacker
•  Hypothermia induced ‘paradoxical undressing’ (Fad Researcher Hypothesis)

Imposterlösung Mechanism – an incoherent or ridiculous contention which is assumed as a potential null hypothesis simply because it sounds good enough for public consumption. These alternatives pass muster with the general public, but are easily falsified after about 4 minutes of real research. Despite this, most people hold them in mind simply because of their repetition. This fake hypothesis circumstance is common inside an argument which is unduly influenced by agency. They are often padded into skeptical analyses, to feign an attempt at appearing to be comprehensive, balanced, or ‘considering all the alternatives’.

•  Bear-Moose-Elk wildlife attack (Simple Construct)
•  Tent stove carbon monoxide poisoning and ensuing confusion/wandering
•  High winds blowing a member away – ensuing rescue
•  Misinterpreting the Aurora Bourealis and ensuing panic
•  American CIA information exchange meet up gone bad
•  Went out to take a piss, drunk and got lost. Others went to search
•  Inexperience/Misadventure

Ad hoc Alternatives/Pseudo-Theory – can’t be fully falsified nor studied, and can probably never be addressed or can be proposed in almost any circumstance of mystery. These ideas will be thrown out for decades. They can always be thrown out. They will always be thrown out.

•  Love triangle gone bad
•  Drug abuse/Bad drugs/Alcohol
•  Horrible fight/Crazy party member
•  Drug deal gone bad
•  MiHoDeAL theories – Misidentification, Hoaxes, Delusions Anecdote and Lies (MiHoDeAL Construct)

Poison Pill Hypothesis (Embargo Hypothesis – Hξ) – the hypothesis which will never be allowed to be studied, through pejorative classification in advance of study. Ironically the very people who decry these alternatives are the very ones who keep bringing them up. Note that, in absence of any kind of evidence, these are often ad hoc as well. Their broach is NOT to introduce the idea, nor provide clarity or diligence, nor are they many times introduced by paranormal researchers at all. Rather they are entered into the mix in order to create a negative perception influence and attract skeptic patrols to enforce that influence. If you dissent, you are no longer legitimate – then you might just be a ‘believer’ (see Witch Hunt Methodology):

•  Yeti (Almas-Menk) attack (Embargo Hypothesis – Hξ)
•  Skinwalker/Panic inducing interdimensional phenomena
•  UFO/Lights in the sky panic

When fringe or paranormal theories are touted in scorn, yet ironically are raised repeatedly by, or to attract cynical skeptics in every mysterious circumstance – such idea stickiness is generated to a large degree because of fake skeptics themselves and not simply paranormal buffs. In such an affair, know that incentive is being introduced for you to adhere to another (in reality, probably false) alternative.

I have yet to ever meet a single person who claims that ‘aliens built The Pyramids’.
Ironically the idea not only survives, but moreover thrives, entirely through its interminable repetition by scoffing skeptics
and ass-kissing journalists wishing to exploit the media bandwidth they jointly hold captive.

So many of these ideas regarding the Dyatlov Pass Incident are simple in their falsification, yet still they persist. Why? In reality as well, there exists falsifying evidence, or at least a complete lack of any evidence, for every single one of these explanations above. This is one of the first indicators that a contrathetic impasse is at play. Such familiar conundrum is not mere benign happenstance by any stretch. It is our vociferous desire to oust disdained alternatives, which produces the circumstance serving as fertile ground for the contrathetic impasse.

How the Contrathetic Impasse Originates – Fake Skepticism and Dark Agency

Contrathetic simply means ‘the evidence points both ways for multiple hypotheses’. Moreover, any time you observe the rich presence of these mechanisms: Einfach, Imposterlösung, anachronsitic, MiHoDeAL, ad hoc, enforced simple/provisional, and Embargo hypotheses – be cognizant that agency has tampered heavily with the evidence and the post research discourse around the issue under consideration. Whenever you observe such pontifications being pushed en masse inside the media, those of the dilettante, malicious and idiots among us pretending that solutions to things they read about while dwelling in their parents’ basement are ‘obvious’ (as is done inside this trash piece of journalism by Jake Slocum at Cracked) – moreover, passing themselves off as ‘researchers’, ‘critical thinkers’, ‘skeptics’, or possessing superior grasp of the obvious (an oxymoron and fallacy), regarding things about which in reality they know nothing – know that social skepticism is at play. Another factor in this play was the obfuscating presence of state intelligence agency, who shut down the site for three days and kept many details secret for decades. Both fake skepticism and state intelligence agency are the same genre of impacting factor. Their detriment happens through a process called the exoentropy of normatives, an offshoot of the law of unintended consequences as it applies to dogmatic or obfuscating activities.

Exoentropy of Normatives

/philosophy : consequentialism : pseudo-skepticism/ : the effort to enforce order inside a controlled subsystem, inevitably and ironically serves to increase the level of disorder or entropy surrounding it. Moreover, systemic dynamics can serve to impart unethical consequentialist outcomes which arrive as a result solely and wholly from individual efforts to maintain normatives of propriety or the appearance of such propriety; especially when coupled with the gaming and exploitation potential therein.

A great example of such influence can be found in the poor but insistent effort contributed by social skeptic Benjamin Radford in his hack job for the Center for Inquiry. Possessing such a mad rush to debunk some TV show, personality and idea over which he was frothing at the mouth, and to get an article out with the least effort possible, he subsequently rushes past details about the state in which the tent was found, then conflates pictures of the uninjured hikers with the trauma reports of the three severely injured ones, straw manning: “The photographs are crystal clear: the bodies were not “mutilated” at all.”. “They were cold and lay together to conserve heat, as any novice hiker is taught to do.” exclaims Radford, fully ignorant of the fact that none of the hikers were found in a warmth conservation huddle at all. Save for two bodies which were laid beside each other (probably the first to die since they were clad only in their undergarments) and separated by 1 or 2 feet, their bodies were spread out over a length of about 700 meters along a creek bed below the tent downhill (see graphic at top). A full kilometer from any possible snow slide area. They were running in such a panic upon fleeing the tent, that not one, but two of them discarded their working flashlight along the way, one well out of any avalanche potential danger area. The remaining living seven had fled in a second panic away from the fire, which was their only remaining chance to survive, and into a creek bed or to freeze to death in an attempt to ascend the hill back to the tent. How did that all of a sudden become a good idea? Dubinina, who lost her tongue, ‘lost it while she was still alive’ according to the medical examiner’s report, her stomach containing 7 ounces of blood from the tongue removal injury, which was too far back to have been bitten off by her own teeth. This is only a small sample of the details which would have taken maybe 8 minutes of research to determine. Unfortunately Radford did not invest 8 minutes. You see, these disdained subjects and researchers, they are not worth his time. And if he had found anything of credibility, his club would summarily evict him from membership.

It is not that Ben is wrong in his conclusion – it is that his methods are wrong. In order to improve his acclaim, he obsesses over a show, an embargoed idea and a person. This activity has nothing at all to do with science nor skepticism. And the fact that he could be right in this circumstance, is simply accidental. Wrong methods cannot be presumed to be beneficial simply because they have served to produce compliant answers in the past. He is not serving science, skepticism, nor any quest for actual truth, precisely because of this mechanism of exoentropy of normatives.

When compliant answers therefore are observed to be the goal, the dilettante, sycophant and even neutral, craving intellectual belonging,
receive the instruction that method does not matter – so long as one arrives at a normative closure.
This plurality learns that venom in one’s assault of specific ideas, persons and evidence –
not only is rewarded with acceptance, but moreover its imposter, acclaim.

This is called the exoentropy of normatives. The contrathetic impasse is the result of such philosophical misadventure.

His fixation on the ridiculous served to compromise the integrity of his work. ‘Henceforth man now knows that the snowmen exist. They can be encountered in the Northern Urals, adjacent to Otorten mountain.’ read a scrawling by one of the party on a brochure the group held. This was not an entry into one of their at times farcical diaries, as goes the spin. The statement is odd yes, however one can do nothing with it. Nonetheless, the scrawling served to cause an avalanche in Radford’s mindset, rendering him utterly useless as a researcher. As a skeptic you cannot afford to froth over such statements. If they do not add value, table them. Ignore them until they do support a schema – which they may never do. To obsess over their presence is to introduce not just bias, but agency into your repertoire. This is a mistake of tumbling into a mindset of religious negative reactance. It is fake skepticism.

Thereafter, Radford implies that the post mortems were done by ‘mountaineers and not doctors’ (which is complete horse shit), ignores a good 80% of the case details, save for those which were useful in the 20 minute total effort he put into this typical skeptic piece of garbage. It is one thing to credulously swallow fantastical creature tales, but it is another thing altogether to be so disdainful of that idea, and so motivated to impress your ‘colleagues’ for club rank, that one commits the same fallacies or worse in the process of running away from it. I don’t believe in Yeti’s, but I believe even less in stupidity and propaganda being passed off as scientific thinking. Taking risk, thinking and knowing you are gonna catch hell for your research avenue, takes a lot more effort and courage than does throwing shit at people while ensconced inside the safety of your high-school-mentality clique.

“We all fantasize about infallibility, and that’s the point. Total jerks aren’t just fantasizing. They take their dreams of infallibility out into the real world. Self love is great, but, like they say to lovers, get a room. Be an infallibilist in your own fantasies and fight for fallibility in reality.”  ~ Jeremy Sherman, Ambigamy

The incentive is high to tap into the limelight that childish denial tricks can afford bad wanna-be journalists. This perspective involving the specter of surreptitious hand tempts me toward favoring the Soviet Military explanations. There is no more heavy handed a dark agency than the old Soviet mafia and KGB. Well, global socialists (Globzi’s) have topped them as of late – but we’ll save that discussion for another blog article. Shallow press, such as in the two examples cited above, is one of the chief mechanisms of such agency.

They key for ethical skepticism, is to go and look for yourself – research your alternatives – don’t just shoot at people and ideas you don’t like. That is not skepticism. All you do with that self aggrandizing exercise is provide an environment where people are afraid to think differently or to speak up against oppression.

I Doubt My Own Favored Alternative

The low-grade slope slab avalanche is strong and naturalistic in terms of its explanatory potential. As well, it had snowed heavily all that fateful day of February 1, 1959. The sheets of ice which form on top of an underlayment of snow could account for the broken rib injuries as well as the penetrating head wound. Plus the grade immediately above the tent, towards the Kholat Syakhl peak, did broach the 13 – 15 degree threshold (my graphic at the top of this article shows an average 14 degree slope on the critical fall line in question), well below the typical minimum for an avalanche to occur – but I suppose not impossible. This form of avalanche theory is my a priori favored hypothesis. It bears the most explanatory power. Save for the tree climbing and 8 photographs (their last ones taken that night) of the lights in the sky and curious random shots into the night horizon/snow. Anyway, that means that I now look for a means to kill my favorite alternative – not kill everyone who thinks differently (as Radford exemplifies above).

The box niche they had dug into the hillside of snow for the tent was done with protection from a slab avalanche (and the wind) in mind in the first place. It’s placement, cut into the snow bank could have explained why the tent and belongings were not swept away with the avalanche mass. As you can see by the PisteHors chart to the right, this would place any avalanche in a range of occurrence near 0.1 percentile in likelihood based solely upon frequency of avalanche by slope. Below a p-value threshold certainly. However incline is just one of the elements of the Avalanche Triangle, which includes type of terrain (not just angle of incline), snow-pack, and weather as well.2 Alternating ice and snow layers  tend to cake and form like a frozen lasagna on the leeward/south side of a mountain – as was the condition of the slope just above their camp. Melting in the sun during the day and freezing back to hard layers overnight. That may well have been what happened here. Especially given that, on the leeward side of a mountain in particular, land grade does not always equal snow grade either.3

However this alternative still features some critical path elements which not only do not bear soundness, but are falsifying in their deductive impact. In other words, elements which are imminently fatal to the alternative as being comprehensively explanatory.

  • First, you have to stack multiple risky conjecture upon conjecture in order to assemble a slab avalanche scenario which explains even 40% of the observation set. This introduces plurality. Is it necessary? I do not know. If it explained 90% of the observations, then perhaps. But the alternative does not do this.
  • Second, where did the avalanche snow go? Temperatures never rose to such a sufficient point during the 3 weeks of winter, so as to melt it away before the tent was found.
  • Third, a recent re-investigation has started. Accordingly a video of the relative slope grades made via drone has been released. The slopes can be seen in the video from 00:14 to 00:29. In no way do these slopes approach anywhere near a ‘risk of avalanche’ circumstance.
  • Not just a part of the tent, but a standing tent pole and fully intact tent attached to it (impossible in any avalanche) was found sticking up out of relatively shallow and precipitation-accumulated snow cover.
  • As well, why flee a full 1.5 kilometers away from the shallow avalanche footprint and more importantly your supplies, boots and clothes?
  • How do you leave a working flashlight laying on top of the tent as you flee, and further then another working one laying on the ground 300 meters down the hill, well away from the avalanche slide zone? You need those flashlights, why were they discarded so quickly?
  • Why climb a tree at night in -14ºC limited visibility, when you had just built a fire to keep from dying? Climbing a tree in such a circumstance equates to a mindset of ‘I want to die’, or ‘I am about to die’.
  • Why split up before anyone died and while two had a fire? Have everyone huddled in a warm circle and use the only pair of boots to have one person gather wood.
  • Why would an avalanche break ribs 3, 4, 5, 6, 7 in bilateral symmetry for two individuals and not harm anyone lying right next to them in the same orientation in some kind of similar fashion, not even touching other body parts or members?
  • Why would experienced, level 2 snow survivalists, simply abandon their only source of hope, the tent – which they would have already been inside of by the way? The protocol would have been to dig straight up and then re-excavate the camp for clothing first. If you can all flee quick semi-clothed then you can also quickly dig back down and get boots and jackets and tools, at the very least – before you choose to abandon camp.
  • Their bare footprint tracks were depressed initially departing right nearby the tent – so any avalanche was not very deep nor extensive at all; certainly not the avalanche which you see in movies. This renders the paradoxical undressing alternative impossible as well (at least as being reason why the whole event began).
  • Why were the most severely injured individuals (per hoc aditum, from the avalanche) given the extra clothing, sent the farthest most arduous path, and were in the end the ones to have survived the longest? Yet they too ran 75 yards away from the fire.
  • Why change minds and try to go back after having fled 1.4 kilometers? And by leaving your fire?
  • This flight involved a level of panic and events far in excess of that which level 2 ski hikers are trained to survive under (which includes low grade slab avalanches).

No, these victims were traumatized a second time during this cascade of events. They panic fled their tent, then they panic fled their last hope, the fire, as well. No, this alternative, just like all the others, is a fatally flawed answer incentivized as truth. It too, unfortunately and despite my favor for it, is an Omega Hypothesis.

It is not the first terrifying event at the tent which defines this case;
rather the second terrifying event, later beside the fire. The key critical path element exists here.

These were survivalists, who had devised a means to survive the night, as they were trained to do in desperate circumstance.
Something intervened to change that last hope stratagem.

Contrathetic Impasse = Cultivated Ignorance

In the end, none of these explanations stand in any way tantamount to a satisfactory provisional explanation. Their flaws are not mere ‘gaps’, they are fatal flaws – and an intelligence specialist understands the difference. I am not chalking this case up to ‘solved by barstool critical thinking’. So, given this state of epoché, let’s instead use the case to examine the circumstance involved here, that of the contrathetic impasse.

An intelligence agent, is nothing but a conspiracy theorist who has kept you alive.

“One does not conduct deception for the sake of deception itself. It is always conducted as part of a conflict or in a competitive context, intended to support some overarching plan or objectives of a participant.” ~Robert Mitchell and William Mitchell, Intelligence Specialists 4

The contrathetic impasse is a lens tool used by intelligence agents to spot agency at play. Agency which believes that it has gone undetected, will eventually become abusively habitual both in regard to self and target.5

Contrathetic Impasse

/philosophy : hypothesis reduction : paradox-paralysis/ : a paradoxical condition wherein multiple competing hypotheses and/or ad hoc plausible explanations bear credible inductive evidence and research case history – yet each/all hypotheses or explanations have been falsified/eliminated as being sufficiently explanatory for more than a minor portion of a defined causal domain or observation set. For instance, the MiHoDeAL explanation contains 5 very credible possible explanations for challenging phenomena. However, the sum total of those 5 explanations often only amounts to explaining maybe 5 – 15% of many persistent paranormal phenomena. The presumption that one of those explanations is comprehensively explanatory, is a trick of pseudoscience. Another new hypothesis is therefore demanded in the circumstance of a contrathetic impasse paradox.

Causes or influences which contribute to a contrathetic impasse:*

1.  Foundational assumptions/investigation are flawed or have been tampered with.
2.  Agency has worked to fabricate and promote falsifying or miscrafted information as standard background material.
3.  Agency has worked to craft an Einfach Mechanism (Omega Hypothesis) from an invalid null hypothesis.
4.  Agency has worked to promote science of psychology, new popular theory or anachronistic interpretation spins on the old mystery.
5.  SSkeptics have worked to craft and promote simple, provisional and Occam’s Razor compliant conclusions.
6.  Agency has worked to foist ridiculous Imposterlösung constructs in the media.
7.  Agency has worked to foist shallow unchallenged ad hoc explanations in the media.
8.  SSkeptics seem to have organized to promote MiHoDeAL constructs in the media.
9.  There exist a set of repeatedly emphasized and/or ridiculously framed Embargo Hypotheses.
10.  Agency has worked to promote conspiracy theory, lob & slam Embargo Hypotheses as an obsession target to distract or attract attack-minded skeptics to the mystery. The reason this is done is not the confusion it provides, rather the disincentive which patrolling skeptics place on the shoulders of the genuine skilled researcher. These forbidden alternatives may be ridiculous or indeed ad hoc themselves – but the reason they are raised is to act as a warning to talented researchers that ‘you might be tagged as supporting one of these crazy ideas’ if you step out of line regarding the Omega Hypothesis.

A great example of number 10 above is the skeptic community tagging of anyone who considers the idea that the Khufu pyramid might have not been built by Pharaoh Khufu in 2450 bce, as supporting ancient aliens as the builders – or being racist against Arabs who now are the genetic group which swept though modern Egypt three thousand years after Khufu’s reign. Heavy-handed agency at play.

* Please note that these six action steps constitute a typical counter-intelligence operations plan. All six are typically used.

The contrathetic impasse. A sign that heavy handed influence is at play. It is what senior intelligence officials use to spot counter-espionage. You are not gonna solve the mystery – just step back and watch the players involved instead. Examine and ponder their proclivities and behavior. The fakers will begin to bear consistent habits. Never wallow in such a mystery. Either solve it and add value, or maintain epoché, step away and say ‘I don’t know.’ Never pretend, as that is the habit of your foe. Watch him and learn to spot his group and their handiwork.

This is what ethical skeptics do.

epoché vanguards gnosis


How to MLA cite this blog post =>

The Ethical Skeptic, “The Contrathetic Impasse – Key Sign that Ockham’s Plurality is Necessary” The Ethical Skeptic, WordPress, 17 Nov 2018; Web,

November 17, 2018 Posted by | Agenda Propaganda, Tradecraft SSkepticism | , , , | Leave a comment

Ten Common Misconceptions About Science

Your mission as an ethical skeptic, is to oppose agency. Ten top apothegms of agency follow.

If you approach any typical skeptic, and ask them to enlighten you as to the core principles of science, odds are that many or most of these precepts below will crop up inside the discussion. Below are my top ten favorite misconceptions about science – which are sold by social skeptics. What you will find after a couple decades of experience in debating plurality, is that these gems of a lie are most commonly spun by persons promoting some form of agency. Your task as an ethical skeptic, is to oppose agency – and allow genuine science method to do its job. No matter who is conducting it, what question they seek to address, nor the results suggested from their study.


1.  Science starts by asking a question

The process of science begins through observation, the crafting of intelligence frameworks and finally the establishment of necessity. In absence of a well framed necessity inside a schema of intelligence inside a domain of research – a question, asked prematurely will simply serve to bias the process of research or mislead researchers.

“A biology investigation usually starts with an observation.” – Khan Academy, The Scientific Method

2.  The simplest explanation tends to be the correct one

The only way one would buy this apothegm, is if their entire life had been relatively simple up unto the point of first being presented it. This circumstance occurs most often inside of academia. Science and Ockham’s Razor hinge upon plurality, not simplicity.

“…there are numerous reasons to suspect that this simple [Occam’s Razor] is itself fundamentally misguided.” – Science Blogs, Why The Simplest Theory Is Never The Right One: Occam’s Razor Has A Double Edge

3.  The ‘gold standard’ or most rigorous form of science is a meta-study

A meta-study, in absence of risk assessment or study author engagement, and especially if it consists of merely a survey of abstracts or does not combine longitudinal studies of the same analytical species, is the most dangerous and misinforming version of scientific study. Most meta-studies are simply systematic reviews and opinion articles, being spun as high confidence meta-study.

“The large majority of produced systematic reviews and meta-analyses are unnecessary, misleading, or conflicted.” – John Ioannidis, Stanford University

4.  Data science

Science involves the use of data, converted into information, which is then framed into intelligence schema – but that does not mean that those who handle data, are therefore scientists, nor that they are necessarily ‘doing science’ by merely processing data. The ability to convert data into intelligence, and avoid univariate fallacy or error, is an uncommon skill.

“‘Data Science’ is a misnomer. Science, in general, is a set of methods for learning about the world. Specific sciences are the application of these methods to particular areas of study. Data is a collection of facts. Data, in general, is not the subject of study. Data about something in particular, such as physical phenomena or the human mind, provide the content of study. To call oneself a “data scientist” makes no sense. One cannot study data in general. One can only study data about something in particular.” – Stephen Few, Visual Business Intelligence: There is No Science of Data

5.  Science seeks reliable information

Science seeks probative information, and then seeks to establish means to improve the reliability of incremental conjecture based upon that probative information. The seeking of only reliable information, and trying to force such information to then be probative, constitutes a procedural fallacy called streetlight effect. It will serve most often to result in the very answers we expected before even looking.

“A policeman sees a drunk man searching for something under a streetlight and asks what the drunk has lost. He says he lost his keys and they both look under the streetlight together. After a few minutes the policeman asks if he is sure he lost them here, and the drunk replies, no, and that he lost them in the park. The policeman asks why he is searching here, and the drunk replies, ‘this is where the light is’.” – Wikipedia, Streelight effect

6.  Myth of the excited scientists

The common misconception that, upon discovering groundbreaking evidence or unprecedented observations inside a ‘fringe’ subject, amazed and unbiased scientists would immediately draw close with interest and thereafter dedicate their lives to the study of that subject.

“So when I turn to the rest of the evidence, ghosts and all, I cannot carry with me the irreversibly negative bias of the ‘rigorously scientific’ mind, with its presumption as to what the true order of nature ought to be.” – Psychologist William James, Scientific American: Brilliant Scientists Are Open-Minded about Paranormal Stuff, So Why Not You?

7.  Bigger science is better science

The misconception that adding more data to a study or more studies to a meta-study, will therefore increase the accuracy, salience or verity of that study. In fact, Yule-Simpson effect analysis shows that the complete opposite is often true.

“Small research groups tend to beat large collaborations when it comes to producing innovative projects and breakthrough discoveries.” – The Scientist, Bigger Is Not Always Better for Team Science

8.  The conclusions of science are the propriety of scientists

The misconception that only scientists are qualified to understand, discuss or socially disposition a privation of science, and that the conclusions of scientists cannot be over-ruled by the public at large, at-risk stakeholders, nor their elected representatives.

“Fewer than 20% of those surveyed believe scientists are transparent about potential conflicts of interest with industry all or most of the time. The public is also skeptical that scientists regularly admit their mistakes.” – Cary Funk, Pew Research

9.  Science hinges upon the burden of proof

The vast majority of science ‘proving things correct’ hinges upon incremental Bayesian probability and induction. These forms of inference in no way constitute the same level of proof which deduction or falsification can offer. While deductive proof is nice, and a desired goal – it is seldom attained. Therefore it is misleading to claim or imply that science is based solely upon such a concept, or to burden outsiders with such a Herculean ‘proof’ task before they can be considered to be doing ‘science’.

“…Popper provides that a scientist creatively develops a theory which may be falsified by testing the theory against evidence or known facts. Popper’s theory presents an asymmetry in that evidence can prove a theory wrong, by establishing facts that are inconsistent with the theory. In contrast, evidence cannot prove a theory correct because other evidence, yet to be discovered, may exist that is inconsistent with the theory.” – Wikipedia, Scientific evidence

“Proof is for maths and alcohol, not science.” – Common proverb

10.  Our current scientific body of knowledge originated from science itself

The vast majority of our knowledge does not originate from formal university, corporate or government labs. Our knowledge is derived from specialty laymen, ancient practitioners, garage tinkerers, contract employees, three forms of hypothesis sponsors and hobbyists. Science simply takes possession of their discovery and work, after the fact.

“Statistics show half of all inventions happen by accident.” – David Nield, Science Alert

     How to MLA cite this article:

The Ethical Skeptic, “Ten Common Misconceptions About Science”; The Ethical Skeptic, WordPress, 29 Sep 2018; Web,

September 29, 2018 Posted by | Agenda Propaganda | | Leave a comment

The Lyin’tific Method: The Ten Commandments of Fake Science

The earmarks of bad science are surreptitious in fabric, not easily discerned by media and the public at large. Sadly, as well they are not often easily discerned by scientists themselves. This is why we have ethical skepticism. It’s purpose is not simply to examine ‘extraordinary claims’, but also to examine those claims which masquerade, hidden in plain sight, as if constituting ordinary boring old ‘settled science’.

When you do not want the answer to be known, or you desire a specific answer because of social pressure surrounding an issue, or you are tired of irrational hordes babbling some nonsense about your product ‘harming their family members’ *boo-hoo 😢. Maybe you want to tout the life extending benefits of drinking alcohol, show how vaccines do not make profits, demonstrate very quickly a pesticide as safe or over-inflate death rates so that you can blame it on people you hate poliitcally – or maybe you are just plain ol’ weary of the burdensome pain-in-the-ass attributes of real science. Wherever your Procrustean aspiration may reside, this is the set of guidebook best practices for you and your science organization. Trendy and proven techniques which will allow your organization to get science back on your side, at a fraction of the cost and in a fraction of the time. 👍

We have managed to transfer religious belief into gullibility for whatever can masquerade as science.

~ Nassim Nicholas Taleb, Antifragile

When you have become indignant and up to your rational limit over privileged anti-science believers questioning your virtuous authority and endangering your industry profits (pseudo-necessity), well then it is high time to undertake the following procedure of activism. Crank up your science communicators, your skeptics, your critical thinkers and notify them to be at the ready …ready to cut-and-paste plagiarize a whole new set of journalistic propaganda, ‘cuz here comes The Lyin’tific Method!

The Lyin’tific Method: The Ten Commandments of Fake Science

1. Select for Intimidation. Appoint an employee who is under financial or career duress, to create a company formed solely to conduct this study under an appearance of impartiality, to then go back and live again comfortably in their career or retirement. Hand them the problem definition, approach, study methodology and scope. Use lots of Bradley Effect vulnerable interns (as data scientists) and persons trying to gain career exposure and impress. Visibly assail any dissent as being ‘anti-science’, the study lead will quickly grasp the implicit study goal – they will execute all this without question. Demonstrably censure or publicly berate a scientist who dissented on a previous study – allow the entire organization/world to see this. Make him become the hate-symbol for your a priori cause.

2. Ask a Question First. Start by asking a ‘one-and-done’, noncritical path & poorly framed, half-assed, sciencey-sounding question, representative of a very minor portion of the risk domain in question and bearing the most likely chance of obtaining a desired result – without any prior basis of observation, necessity, intelligence from stakeholders nor background research. Stress that the scientific method begins with ‘asking a question’. Avoid peer or public input before and after approval of the study design. Never allow stakeholders at risk to help select nor frame the core problem definition, nor the data pulled, nor the methodology/architecture of study.

3. Amass the Right Data. Never seek peer input at the beginning of the scientific process (especially on what data to assemble), only the end. Gather a precipitously large amount of ‘reliable’ data, under a Streetlight Effect, which is highly removed from the data’s origin and stripped of any probative context – such as an administrative bureaucracy database. Screen data from sources which introduce ‘unreliable’ inputs (such as may contain eyewitness, probative, falsifying, disadvantageous anecdotal or stakeholder influenced data) in terms of the core question being asked. Gather more data to dilute a threatening signal, less data to enhance a desired one. Number of records pulled is more important than any particular discriminating attribute entailed in the data. The data volume pulled should be perceptibly massive to laymen and the media. Ensure that the reliable source from which you draw data, bears a risk that threatening observations will accidentally not be collected, through reporting, bureaucracy, process or catalog errors. Treat these absences of data as constituting negative observations.

4. Compartmentalize. Address your data analysts and interns as ‘data scientists’ and your scientists who do not understand data analysis at all, as the ‘study leads’. Ensure that those who do not understand the critical nature of the question being asked (the data scientists) are the only ones who can feed study results to people who exclusively do not grasp how to derive those results in the first place (the study leads). Establish a lexicon of buzzwords which allow those who do not fully understand what is going on (pretty much everyone), to survive in the organization. This is laundering information by means of the dichotomy of compartmented intelligence, and it is critical to everyone being deceived. There should not exist at its end, a single party who understands everything which transpired inside the study. This way your study architecture cannot be betrayed by insiders (especially helpful for step 8).

5. Go Meta-Study Early. Never, ever, ever employ study which is deductive in nature, rather employ study which is only mildly and inductively suggestive (so as to avoid future accusations of fraud or liability) – and of such a nature that it cannot be challenged by any form of direct testing mechanism. Meticulously avoid systematic review, randomized controlled trial, cohort study, case-control study, cross-sectional study, case reports and series, or reports from any stakeholders at risk. Go meta-study early, and use its reputation as the highest form of study, to declare consensus; especially if the body of industry study from which you draw is immature and as early in the maturation of that research as is possible.  Imply idempotency in process of assimilation, but let the data scientists interpret other study results as they (we) wish. Allow them freedom in construction of Oversampling adjustment factors. Hide methodology under which your data scientists derived conclusions from tons of combined statistics derived from disparate studies examining different issues, whose authors were not even contacted in order to determine if their study would apply to your statistical database or not.

6. Shift the Playing Field. Conduct a single statistical study which is ostensibly testing all related conjectures and risks in one felled swoop, in a different country or practice domain from that of the stakeholders asking the irritating question to begin with; moreover, with the wrong age group or a less risky subset thereof, cherry sorted for reliability not probative value, or which is inclusion and exclusion biased to obfuscate or enhance an effect. If the anti-science group is whining about something in prevalent use in Canada, then conduct the study in Moldova. Bias the questions asked so as to convert negatives into unknowns or vice versa if a negative outcome is desired. If the data shows a disliked signal in aggregate, then split it up until that disappears – conversely if it shows a signal in component sets, combine the data into one large Yule-Simpson effect. Ensure there exists more confidence in the accuracy of the percentage significance in measure (p-value), than of the accuracy/precision of the contained measures themselves. Be cautious of inversion effect: if your hazardous technology shows that it cures the very thing it is accused of causing – then you have gone too far in your exclusion bias. Add in some of the positive signal cases you originally excluded until the inversion effect disappears.

7. Trashcan Failures to Confirm. Query the data 50 different ways and shades of grey, selecting for the method which tends to produce results which favor your a priori position. Instruct the ‘data scientists’ to throw out all the other data research avenues you took (they don’t care), especially if it could aid in follow-on study which could refute your results. Despite being able to examine the data 1,000 different ways, only examine it in this one way henceforth. Peer review the hell out of any studies which do not produce a desired result. Explain any opposing ideas or studies as being simply a matter of doctors not being trained to recognize things the way your expert data scientists did. If as a result of too much inherent bias in these methods, the data yields an inversion effect – point out the virtuous component implied (our technology not only does not cause the malady in question, but we found in this study that it cures it~!).

8. Prohibit Replication and Follow Up. Craft a study which is very difficult to or cannot be replicated, does not offer any next steps nor serves to open follow-on questions (all legitimate study generates follow-on questions, yours should not), and most importantly, implies that the science is now therefore ‘settled’. Release the ‘data scientists’ back to their native career domains so that they cannot be easily questioned in the future.  Intimidate organizations from continuing your work in any form, or from using the data you have assembled. Never find anything novel (other than a slight surprise over how unexpectedly good you found your product to be), as this might imply that you did not know the answers all along. Never base consensus upon deduction of alternatives, rather upon how many science communicators you can have back your message publicly. Make your data proprietary. View science details as a an activity of relative privation, not any business of the public.

9. Extrapolate and Parrot/Conceal the Analysis. Publish wildly exaggerated & comprehensive claims to falsification of an entire array of ideas and precautionary diligence, extrapolated from your single questionable and inductive statistical method (panduction). Publish the study bearing a title which screams “High risk technology does not cause (a whole spectrum of maladies) whatsoever” – do not capitalize the title as that will appear more journaly and sciencey and edgy and rebellious and reserved and professorial. Then repeat exactly this extraordinarily broad-scope and highly scientific syllogism twice in the study abstract, first in baseless declarative form and finally in shocked revelatory and conclusive form, as if there was some doubt about the outcome of the effort (ahem…). Never mind that simply repeating the title of the study twice, as constituting the entire abstract is piss poor protocol – no one will care. Denialists of such strong statements of science will find it very difficult to gain any voice thereafter. Task science journalists to craft 39 ‘research articles’ derived from your one-and-done study; deem that now 40 studies. Place the 40 ‘studies’, both pdf and charts (but not any data), behind a registration approval and $40-per-study paywall. Do this over and over until you have achieved a number of studies and research articles which might fancifully be round-able up to ‘1,000’ (say 450 or so ~ see reason below). Declare Consensus.

10. Enlist Aid of SSkeptics and Science Communicators. Enlist the services of a public promotion for-hire gang, to push-infiltrate your study into society and media, to virtue signal about your agenda and attack those (especially the careers of wayward scientists) who dissent.  Have members make final declarative claims in one liner form “A thousand studies show that high risk technology does not cause anything!” ~ a claim which they could only make if someone had actually paid the $40,000 necessary in actually accessing the ‘thousand studies’. That way the general public cannot possibly be educated in any sufficient fashion necessary to refute the blanket apothegm. Have them demand final proof as the only standard for dissent. This is important: make sure the gang is disconnected from your organization (no liability imparted from these exaggerated claims nor any inchoate suggested dark activities *wink wink), and moreover, who are motivated by some social virtue cause such that they are stupid enough that you do not actually have to pay them.

The organizations who manage to pull this feat off, have simultaneously claimed completed science in a single half-assed study, contended consensus, energized their sycophancy and exonerated themselves from future liability – all in one study. To the media, this might look like science. But to a life-long researcher, it is simply a big masquerade. It is pseudo-science in the least; and at its worst constitutes criminal felony and assault against humanity. It is malice and oppression, in legal terms (see Dewayne Johnson vs Monsanto Company)

The discerning ethical skeptic bears this in mind and uses this understanding to discern the sincere from the poser, and real groundbreaking study from commonplace surreptitiously bad science.

epoché vanguards gnosis


How to MLA cite this blog post =>

The Ethical Skeptic, “The Lyin’tific Method: The Ten Commandments of Fake Science” The Ethical Skeptic, WordPress, 3 Sep 2018; Web,

September 3, 2018 Posted by | Agenda Propaganda, Institutional Mandates, Social Disdain | , | Leave a comment

Chinese (Simplified)EnglishFrenchGermanHindiPortugueseRussianSpanish
%d bloggers like this: