Breaking the Spell of Adissonance

‘Critical thinking’ and ‘rationality’, notorious weapon words of fake skepticism, merely serve to exploit the ignorance of one’s existing knowledge, coupled with the natural human proclivity to seek a resolution of dissonance as quickly and easily as possible. Ignorance serves goals of predatory power in ways which an ethically discerning population would never tolerate.

A corollary principle we broached in one of our latest articles, The Distinction Between Comprehension and Understanding (The Problem of Abduction), contended that the purpose of comprehension, is not to increase one’s understanding by means of the familiar and simple. As well, we observed that the purpose of comprehension is not to necessarily resolve the discomfort incumbent with the dissonance over paradox or not knowing. Our entire universe is crafted to challenge us by means of dissonance in the first place. Whether by mere happenstance, intent, or design is uncertain – and one must tolerate dissonance over that uncertainty as well. Nonetheless, the reality remains – we face the necessity of learning to surf the tempestuous froth, the disquieting anomie, and the abject discomfort, of dissonance.

Adissonance – the natural human desire or state of escape from the discomfort of dissonance.

Adissonance is a form of skeptical intoxication. Dissonance in contrast, is the learning person’s fuel. Never allow a debunker or fake skeptic to dilute your fuel with simplicity and comfort. In my life I have failed more times at business startups, than I have succeeded. Yes these instances were painful. These processes would not have been improved in the least by a clueless outsider contending, ‘it’ll likely fail’, even if they happened to turn out to be correct in the end. Such a process adds no value in terms of actual knowing. During my experiences, the lessons learned therein pertained not to balance sheets nor technical system constraints, but rather to the reality around business verticals, the financial world, and the nature of humanity. I also honed those new talents under difficult circumstances, developing skills which constituted more than simply the base of ability I started with out of college. Now influential and powerful people pay me well for my insight and startup implementation abilities. But I have also learned that my purpose in life is no longer to make the rich, even richer.

It’s not what you are capable of, it’s what you are willing to do.

~ Mike Tomlin, NFL head coach

The most brilliant of person is the one who has, through proactive and constructive method, found themself to be wrong, again and again until they encountered success. The most ignorant among us, knew the answers from day one – enjoying their role as the smartest person in the room, stumbling their way through life on scripted obviousness, privilege, and luck. Burying their credential in the ground, whipping it out as their main basis of credibility, or upon being challenged as to the value of their contribution. Often the threat is not ‘being (found) wrong’ per se, as being wrong is an element which serves to inform; rather, our challenge is the comfort of wallowing in and cultivating ignorance – passed off as rationality.

And he who had received the five talents came forward, bringing five talents more, saying, ‘Master, you delivered to me five talents; here, I have made five talents more.’

~ New Testament (ESV), Matthew 25: 20

Beware of those who peddle lists of commonly-taught fallacies as wares of the huckster, and as if this somehow demonstrates prowess on their part. “You can believe me, because I published this list of canned rationality I copied off the internet.” Such philosophers have never really done anything in their life. What you will find through a successful and engaging career, is that contrary to what fake skeptics might suggest, the purpose of their malicious misrepresentation is to cultivate ignorance – not address irrationality. A trading cartel does not seek to make everyone ‘bad at business’, rather only to render them ignorant of how to circumvent their lock on specific industry advantages. The tricks of developing a buyer letter of credit overseas, driving the right combination of x-factory terms yet still efficient as to freight consolidation, how to insure both product and at-risk money, and finally get it all serviced through one of the big accredited global banks despite the reality that they may ignore even a properly developed transaction submitted by a no-name entity – such skills are not outlined in textbooks for a reason.

The Tradecraft of the Huckster – Debunker and Fake Skeptic

Along the same line of principle, your suddenly becoming a ‘rational’ or ‘critical thinker’ will not serve to resolve one’s ignorance in the least. Sitting in a pub drinking pale ales with other critical thinkers, although fun and flush with exciting group-think, will not alleviate this condition as well. Mere failures in formal and informal logic can be detected and resolved, but as one will eventually discover, ignorance is a much more difficult challenge in dispelling. If your formal theory, serves also to decrease the level of information – then you are the problem, no matter how many formal fallacies you have memorized to impress others.

Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life. Don’t be trapped by dogma – which is living with the results of other people’s thinking. Stay hungry. Stay foolish.

~ Steven Jobs, commencement speech to Stanford University 2005 graduating class

What one learns after leaving academia is that it is not simply fallacy which you have to watch for inside scientific, or even daily communication. Rather, the astute successful researcher, executive, scientist, or businessperson need perceive the full array of crooked, manipulative, smoke and mirrors, and narrative-ninny agency which seeks to cultivate ignorance. A focus on just ‘fallacies’ indicates one has never really done anything, as such lists are circulated commonly throughout academia to stand in as substitute for actual competence.

Thus, when we in ethical skepticism speak of ‘Huckster Tradecraft’, we refer to a learned and broad set of cognitive tricks and misrepresentations which are habitually exploited to lead the quarry into the comfortable ignorance of adissonance. Such techniques are outlined here (click on The Tree thumbnail to open the header page):

The Tree of Knowledge Obfuscation

Over 3,000 Fallacies, Errors, and Methods of Crooked Thinking Grouped by Category of Misrepresentation

As one may observe in the two-axis chart to the upper right hand side of this article, the purpose of ethical skepticism is to displace a person from out of the comfort of ignorance and through the process of comprehension. Such an ethic eschews any process which seeks to capitalize upon the familiar and simple, as a means to static and abductive understanding. ‘Critical thinking’ and ‘rationality’, notorious weapon words of fake skepticism as it turns out, merely serve to exploit the ignorance of one’s existing knowledge, coupled with the natural human proclivity to seek a resolution of dissonance as quickly and easily as possible. We all naturally seek a state of adissonance. Fake skeptics realize this, and exploit such a human foible in order to peddle whatever religion it is they are selling.

The role of the narrative ninny and fake skeptic is to mislead you into substituting the state of comfort, simplicity, and familiarity – in lieu of the uncomfortable process of comprehension. One still wallows in ignorance, however no longer bears the dissonance to even detect that sad reality. The purpose of ethical skepticism is to challenge the mind to break such a habit or spell.

The Ethical Skeptic, “Breaking the Spell of Adissonance”; The Ethical Skeptic, WordPress, 19 Jan 2022; Web,

No You Are Not a Critical Thinker

Ironically, the self-congratulating critical thinker is most likely the first person to be incorrect inside an asymmetric or complex argument. Any time one assumes that they are ready to start drawing likely conclusions, without any preparation, based upon current knowledge, under a presumption of invulnerability and bearing a motivation to mock and deride – Yeah, that’s gonna work…

There are three primary philosophical problems incumbent within the fanciful aeunoia of one who virtue identifies themself as a ‘critical thinker’.

A.  First, the whole deceptive shtick concealed within the marrow of critical thinking, is the implicit premise that, because one is a critical thinker, one cannot be deceived. Everyone else is a credulous believer, only you protect the likely superior beliefs (truth). Therein resides the critical thinking abuser’s most conspicuous Achilles’ Heel. The self congratulating critical thinker is most likely the first person to be deceived, because they do not prepare with research, and they bear no introspection (self skepticism), and they believe what they are told by fellow club members, without issue.

B.  A second weakness of this flawed philosophy, resides in the implication that because one only shoots down ideas, one is therefore not promoting any ideas. Ninety nine percent of the time, with a critical thinker, this implication is far from being true (see The Appeal to Skepticism: Inverse Negation Fallacy). Trust me, they are there to promote highly specific answers which fit their religion. The inverse negation tactic is just a show they put on to convince themselves they are not.

C.  Finally, A key cognitive vulnerability of the critical thinker resides in their desire to attain celebrity, mock people and deride subjects. Critical thinkers habitually fail to acknowledge these personal bias vulnerabilities – an essential facet of skeptical or critical thought.

Individuals expressing belief superiority—the belief that one’s views are superior to other viewpoints—perceive themselves as better informed about that topic… [However} Despite perceiving themselves as more knowledgeable, knowledge assessments revealed that the belief superior exhibited the greatest gaps between their perceived and actual knowledge. When given the opportunity to pursue additional information in that domain, belief-superior individuals frequently favored agreeable over disagreeable information, but also indicated awareness of this bias. ~ Raimi-Hall Belief Superiority Study1

Critical thinking has nothing whatsoever to do with ‘Stanovich goal enabling behaviors and cognitive dispositions’ as false skeptics tout.2 – as that is nothing but compliance and the ability to spot how to comply. This is the definition of critical thinking, and it has nothing to do with what you currently know, is not an armchair exercise for the intellectually lazy – or pressure you receive from your peers, to conform to ‘rationality’:

Critical Thinking

/philosophy : skepticism : science/ : the ability to assemble an incremental, parsimonious and probative series of questions, in a reductive sequence, which can address or answer a persistent mystery – coupled with an aversion to wallowing in or sustaining the mystery for personal or club gain. Critical thinking is the ability to understand, along with the skill in ability to deploy for benefit (value, clarity, risk and suffering alleviation), critical path logic and soundness of evidence. A process of methodically and objectively evaluating how to approach a claim to verity through scientific method, while seeking new observations/questions which can be creatively and intelligently framed to challenge elements of fiat knowledge which underpin or oppose the claim, regardless of how compulsive, reasonable, justified and accepted that knowledge might be promoted or perceived.

“If a man is offered a fact which goes against his instincts, he will scrutinize it closely, and unless the evidence is overwhelming, he will refuse to believe it. If, on the other hand, he is offered something which affords a reason for acting in accordance to his instincts, he will accept it even on the slightest evidence. The origin of myths is explained in this way.”
Bertrand Russell

Now the opposite of critical thinking, is actually what most skeptics practice:

Antipode Path Logic

/philosophy : bias : error/ : the inverse of critical path logic. A condition wherein an arguer develops a conclusion about a matter in absence of having addressed any critical path logic or epistemology (risk incremental, dependent series and probative questions or tests) before making the conclusion. The opposite of the condition where a person has pursued critical path logic, yet in finding insufficient evidence, refuses to tender a final conclusion or opinion (ethical skepticism).

Any time one assumes that they are ready to start drawing likely conclusions, without any preparation, based upon current knowledge, under a presumption of invulnerability and bearing a motivation to mock and deride – they bear the highest likelihood of errors in judgement. History shows that this type of thinking is foolishness. Everyone, for the most part, is a critical thinker and skeptic. They just don’t go around telling every person they meet, about such an assumed virtue identity. There is a reason for that – because they do not want to be associated with those who call themselves ‘critical thinkers’. And here are thirty reasons why.

The Critical Thinker Dirty Thirty

No You are Not a Critical Thinker – IF YOU:

1.  Believe that your current level of knowledge is a sound basis from which to resolve a complex or multifaceted persistent mystery.

2.  Believe that ‘assailing the facts’ – is tantamount to investigation.

3.  Research ‘skeptic’ literature first as you investigate anything.

4.  Think anything can be probed or resolved from a pub stool or while imbibing alcohol.

5.  Believe that you are adequately prepared in the now, to ‘Ask a Question’ (the first step in the pseudo-scientific method).

6.  Habitually avoid your past or qualifications (other than club membership).

7.  Overblow an irrelevant past, education, honors or qualifications set (even if it contains a PhD).

8.  Believe that ‘critical thinkers’ are people who think exactly like you – ironically. Then exacerbate this by gathering into a club with them, as if that is going to add value to a challenging subject; ignoring the history that such action never has served to resolve anything.

9.  Seek celebrity and money through being one.

10.  Virtue signal as a means to enforce your correctness.

11.  Think the world is bifurcated into believers and skeptics.

12.  Employ the terms ‘woo’ or ‘pseudoscience’ when referencing an entire field of study.

13.  Use the term ‘woo’ at all.

14.  Bear the Pollyanna delusion that teaching critical thinking will make it all go away.

15.  Speak often and equivocally of ‘doubt’.

16.  Are able to explain pretty much everything.

17.  Find the answer to always be simple.

18.  Never fail to produce the most likely answer to a mystery.

19.  Pretend that serious investigators have genuinely wanted or sought your opinion.

20.  Find your biggest thrill in discrediting persons, based upon a priori ‘plausibility’.

21.  Cite any form of absence of observation/research as evidence of absence. Especially if you cannot even tell when you have done this.

22.  Consider a plausible explanation to be congruent with a scientific hypothesis.

23.  Think that observations are ‘claims’.

24.  Think a person’s lack of skill in describing a phenomena or taking a clear photo of it, is evidence of its absence.

25.  Regard plausibility as ‘likely proved’ – and call something debunked from there.

26.  Go only deep enough into ‘the evidence’ to find a tidbit to confirm your a priori bias.

27.  Hold a goal of social praise or mocking others.

28.  Assume that others are not critical thinkers or skeptics – simply because they hold open a disposition or might not agree with you.

29.  Declare something as unlikely, without any study or statistics to underpin such a claim.

30.  Call yourself a critical thinker.

That is pretty much it. In any one drunken session at your local watering hole, you will find probably all 30 of these violated in any given evening.

Critical thinking. Remote viewing, for those who do not believe in remote viewing. Ethical skeptics demand more than this, of themselves and of their ‘thinker’ friends.

The Ethical Skeptic, “No You Are Not a Critical Thinker” The Ethical Skeptic, WordPress, 7 Jul 2018; Web,

The Habits of an Institutional Liar

The best lies are those related through a process of being meticulously and selectively truthful, projecting an air of unquestionable authority and exhibiting an intimidating disdain for anything different. It is a compromise of integrity, wherein being correct becomes more important than being accurate..

Contrast Between Individual and Institutional Liars

I am ScienceIf a person contended to me, “Bigfoot was standing in my backyard last night,” I have ways in which I can assess whether or not that person is a liar or is simply being deluded.  I can many times detect when an individual is lying.  Several times however, when I suspected a person to be lying, it turned out I was incorrect.  As a skeptic however, I do not immediately cast every challenging datum I encounter outside my pre-authorized paradigms onto the “heap of hate,” as that is not being skeptical.  That process of dismissal involves some kind of childhood trained defense mechanism, a psychosis inside of which I have no interest in participating.  This process of denial is the trained circus act reaction of a person fully bought into the institutional lie.  Consider for a moment, the religious pitches under which we have all been victim in the past.  How did they craft a panorama of fear involving the unknown?  How did they frame or imply a set of ‘knowns’ in an attempt to motivate you?  You are going to hell after you die, everyone knows that, right?  But the person or group making the pitch to you was acceptable and now represented the truth, right? And if you did not accept the contention in question at that very moment, you were in the bad group, right?

The person who executed this religious pitch was not individually lying to you, they were institutionally lying.  A person can be meticulously truthful as regards their choice of moral trait, yet still stand for and promote institutional lies.

As in the case of the person seeing Bigfoot, it is useful in this type of process to possess the skills to ascertain when someone is likely lying to you.  Possession of the skills set wherein one can detect an institutional liar is even more important than possessing that of detecting an individual liar.  With the individual, I can collect more data, sense the habits of the person involved and eventually vett the observation for veracity.  Nor do I have to in the end, actually do anything about their potential lie.  It will not degrade my life one iota. With the institutional liar, it is not always this simple.

An institutional liar deludes self first, then operates from a playbook supporting an agenda to which they have surrendered fealty.  They apply skepticism to all but their favored beliefs, compensating for any ethical inner doubts by being selectively correct, meticulous and intolerant of ideas which threaten this fealty.

One can readily deflect and disarm an individual liar.  But what if the proponent is stepping way past simply contending a false observation, and is now authoritatively enforcing an entire ontology or policy centered around a very large set of implied claims under a guise of ‘correctness?’ With an institutional liar, the lie is much more complex and surreptitious, as it typically involves a complete set of claims inside a presumed factual basis which they hope to slip by without your notice, and is backed by an illusion of authoritative position.   There are five key characteristics which make up the habitual foundation of an institutional liar.

  1. The implication or contention that you lack a key understanding or mental skill
  2. The adorning of a robe of personal authoritative acceptability on the part of the contender
  3. A unique positioning or framing of a set of unknowns inside a group of unstated but implied ‘knowns’
  4. Habitual polarized framing and disregard for the ‘other group’ in which they identify you as being part
  5. Discomfort with your lack of assent to their particular manifest and implied contentions.

the preachThese are the five character/action traits of an institutional liar.

Fake SSkeptics were keen observers of the old method of religious proselytizing.  Lie to them regularly and lie to them early, before they can hear anything else.  While I give many fake SSkeptics credit for in reality, possessing an emotional distaste for the religious sales job which was foisted on us all from a young age, I also do not find acceptable, their employment of similar ilk tactics to enforce their religious beliefs.  And if all they were doing is attempting to promote their personal religion, that would also be fine.  But in similar fashion to Abrahamic religious pitches, they too promote an entire social fabric of control which they seek to imbue into government, academia, and our lives.  One which I find to be highly unacceptable.

The Approach of the Institutional Liar



……You Do Not Possess Critical Thinking Skills




…..I am a Skeptic Authority on Science





corrida in madrid



……Here is What Science/Critical Thinking Says


sskeptic finger pointing


……You are a Ridiculous Bunk Believer



angry skeptic acolyte


……Your Lack of Assent Affirms All This