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Jack comments on What is Bayesianism? - Less Wrong

81 Post author: Kaj_Sotala 26 February 2010 07:43AM

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Comment author: Jack 28 February 2010 06:23:22PM *  4 points [-]
  • Conspiracy theorists will find suspicious evidence, regardless of whether anything suspicious happened.

Ad-hominem. Is the evidence reasonable, or isn't it? If not, why not?

As a matter of fact there are conspiracy theorists about many important public events, cf the moon-landing, JFK etc. Before there even was a 9/11 Truth movement people could have predicted there would be a conspiracy theorists. It is just that kind of society-changing event that will generate conspiracy theories. Given that, the existence of conspiracy theorists pointing out anomalies in the official story isn't evidence the official story is substantially wrong since it would be happening whether or not the official story was substantially wrong. It's like running a test for a disease that will say positive 50% of the time if the patient has the disease and negative 50% of the time if the patient doesn't have the disease. That test isn't actually testing for that disease and these anomalies aren't actually providing evidence for or against the official account of 9/11.

(I think this comment is Bayesian enough that it is on topic, but the whole 9/11 conversation needs to be moved to the comments under Eliezer's Meta-truthers post. Feel free to just post a new comment there.)

Comment author: woozle 28 February 2010 07:14:47PM 1 point [-]

...the existence of conspiracy theorists pointing out anomalies in the official story isn't evidence the official story is substantially wrong...

Correct. What is evidence that the official story is substantially wrong is, well, the evidence that the official story is substantially wrong. (Yes, I need to reorganize that page and present it better.)

Also, does anyone deny that some "conspiracy theories" do eventually turn out to be true?

(Can comment-threads be moved on this site?)

Comment author: Jack 28 February 2010 08:40:24PM 2 points [-]

Comments can't be moved. Just put a hyperlink in this thread (at the top, ideally) and link back with a hyperlink in the new thread.

That list of evidence is almost all exactly the kind of non-evidence we're talking about. In any event like this one would expect to find weird coincidences and things that can't immediately be explained- no matter how the event actually happened. That means your evidence isn't really evidence. Start a new thread an I'll try and say more.