Skeptic Shermer Won’t Be Fooled Again; Gets Fooled Again

by Tom Gilson

Let’s start by agreeing Shermer is right, as he opens this interview: Humans do seek out evidence that supports our beliefs. We do tend to cement our convictions more than we question them. He’s wrong, though, when he tells Stephen Colbert (at 1:40), “The only way to tell, really, the difference between these true patterns and false patterns is science.”

I’m happy to leave the most obvious flaws in that thinking for you to discuss in the comments. For starters, it’s a performative self-contradiction/self-defeating statement, and it’s over-optimistic with respect to the “debunking” human factor in science. I see these topics debated all the time.

Under the surface, though, Shermer’s got another theme going on. Hardly anyone talks about this one — even though atheists and “skeptics” do it all the time…

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Skeptic Shermer Won’t Be Fooled Again; Gets Fooled Again