Podcast #251 (Supplemental): Conspiracy Theorists Vs. Skeptics – Brett On ALP Live


OPTIONAL show! This is my recent appearance on the ALP Live Show. Hosts Ali and Ellen invited me to discuss the topics of conspiracy theories, skepticism, and historical research.

The Agenda:

-I point out Penn and Teller's bullshit on their show, Bullshit
-the utility of conspiracy theories
-Libertarian dismissal of conspiracy
-Let's change the language: forensics (both groups)

now we may be avoid to avoid confirmation bias
-Forensic science (often known as forensics) is the scientific method of gathering and examining information.
-confirmation bias - you don't decide what makes the most convenient story and then go to look for evidence to back it up, like the 9/11 Commission did!
-JFK, the revolutionary
-Building 7 demolition theory problems
-Where are we asked to focus?

we're trained to defer to experts, demolition, physics, ballistics
-Why do you care and who are you talking to?
Paradigmatic thinkers, Wishful thinkers or true believers
-Validity? Of conspiracy or refutation
What's the approach?
Does the story have inconsistencies or contradictions?
BUT where do they come from? eyewitness testimony?
But how complex and traumatic is the event?
Were protocols broken or ignored?
Who investigates?
Does the perpetrator have a clear motive?
Does the perpetrator have a better motive than the investigators?
What follows?

About ALP: Join Ali & Ellen in a journey in self-education and personal intellectual empowerment. Live on LRN.FM from 11:00PM - 1:00AM Eastern. Please like their show on Facebook.

Bumper Music:
Rockin' Around the Christmas Tree - Brenda Lee

Look Closer:

Inductive Fallacies - http://www.fromdeathtolife.org/cphil/lfallcys.html

MORE 9/11 CANTOR FITZGERALD, GOLDMAN SACHS, FED. R., UST, BUSH ETAL 'FINANCIAL TERRORISM - http://www.theantechamber.net/V_K_Durham/More911FinancialTerror.htm

10. United States House Select Committee to Investigate Tax-Exempt Foundations and Comparable Organizations (Reece Committee) (Cox Committee) - 10. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_House_Select_Committee_to_Investigate_Tax-Exempt_Foundations_and_Comparable_Organizations

27. The Anglo American Establishment: From Rhodes to Cliveden - 27. http://www.carrollquigley.net/pdf/The_Anglo-American_Establishment.pdf

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  1. Great show.

    Honestly I never liked Penn, and I’m not sure what his appeal to people even is. But how can a thinking person listen to that rude, offensive, loud mouth and find anything he says objective at all.

    He had me fuming!

  2. Freaking brilliant! There really need to be more shows like this, Brett.
    This kind of stuff would make for a great, ongoing series. Maybe call it something like Intellectual Self-Defence in Action.
    In a sense, this could really be a sub-series of Logic Saves Lives. You have already done two other shows like this (Reality Time for Bill Maher and Lawrence O’Donnell/Glen Greenwald) entirely devoted to breaking down and highlighting the fallacies in a show or news clip. I think these deconstructions are really valuable to help listeners learn what it is to practice intellectual self-defence – really emphasising how much work it actually requires.
    Please at least do an episode breaking down Jon Stewart’s appearance on Crossfire years ago. While I really disliked Crossfire as it pandered to the lazy, left-right political discourse, I was amazed that no-one points out how Stewart was never raked over the coals for some really empty criticism.

      • Great show. I’m reliving the last 15 years. I started by reading Brian Green’s the Elegant Universe which led me to reading several dozen books concerning quantum physics and cosmology leading me the paranormal which led me to investigating 911 in 2003 or ’04. Eventually, perhaps like you, I have been led to volunteerism even though I majored in History, minored in Philosophy, Spooner and Rothbard were not high on my Philosophy Professor’s suggested reading in 1980. Lots of Locke, Descartes and Hume. It really has only been listening to your podcast have I been led to these great writers. But I digress. There’s so many things about your show I appreciate but this episode really hit home. Thank you bro. Thank you.

  3. Speaking of media manipulation: What was the chain of custody of the videos that were presented as live footage on September 11? How can it be verified that they were live? If the videos aired as live are in dramatic conflict with on another, can they be said to be representative of actual events? Is it possible for a plane to enter a building in its entirety with no visible disturbance to itself or the building, as was captured by numerous amateur videos?

    Much of the 9/11 research has been done using images presented by the networks as prima facie evidence. Check the premise.

  4. Great show Brett!

    I had no idea P & T were such mainstream gimps…I now have less than no respect for them as now confirmed “Logical Felons”.

    The way you use living examples to point out the fallacies is incredibly effective and I agree with Kirkland Kaye that more of these examples would be a great idea.

    The only point I would have added to the conversation is the possibility of the P & T’s of the media world intentionally playing both sides of the fence. In other words, some of the really stupid examples that these cheeseball debunkers always seem to find, could be fabricated as big, easy and convenient targets for their weak logic scams. How many times have you seen a 9/11 and or JFK debunker showing up to a completely honest format (i.e. Lew Rockwell, School Sucks, Freedomain Radio, Tragedy and Hope, etc.) willing to calmly, maturely and logically defend “The Official Reports” while systematically reducing all of the hard evidence behind the “conspiracy theories” to mere fantasy?

    Thanks again for your exceptional work Brett, it definitely makes a difference!

  5. What a stupid thing to say ” all conspiracy theory’s are bullshit” you mean like the gulf of Tonkin ? I find generalisation bullshit, so I switch off after that

  6. Brett,
    I recently discovered your podcast and have been listening to many back episodes. I am incredibly grateful for your efforts and consider you a leading voice in the libertarian movement, especially in the domain of education. That said, I do have a minor disagreement over a term you used in episode 251.

    In the show notes you said “Forensic science (often known as forensics) is the scientific method of gathering and examining information.” As a forensic scientist, I disagree.This is one of the first lessons i have to teach my students.
    ‘Science’ is the systematic ordering and testing of knowledge. As such it is a better fit for your definition.
    ‘Forensics’ and ‘forensic science’ are not synonyms. This is a mistake perpetuated by popular media culture.
    Forensics refers to a legal context, not a scientific one. Forensics is best understood as the application of information to a legal/deliberative process. Lawyers do forensics in the truest sense.
    Scientists (as experts) are often called to testify about an issue under legal dispute. This has given rise to the phenomenon of ‘forensic scientists.’ This is the application of scientific expertise to a legal question (such as did the accused commit the murder?.) All scientists are (presumably) in the business of testing and ordering knowledge about their particular field. They don’t become ‘forensic’ scientists until they are qualified by a court to be an expert witness. Expert witnesses have the unique ability to render opinions in court (normal witnesses can only cite direct experience.) Because their opinion is given judicial notice, their qualifications must be established to the court. This is why many scientists are sought as expert witnesses.

    Parenthetically, the people who collect evidence at crime scenes are better referred to as ‘criminalists.’

    None of this should be taken as criticism of you or your efforts, and I look forward to every episode.

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