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  • #46
    Originally posted by Psibeliever
    Oh, come now, let's be honest. They may not have said those two words, but that is their mission. Or their religious belief. This is in fact why many moderate skeptics resigned from CSISCOP, especially over the organization's fudging of the Mars (astrological) effect.

    You're not going to deny the organization's mission to discredit paranormal, are you?
    I'm going to take their mission statement at face value. I've had no experience speaking to anyone involved in CSI who said "It's all just crap in principle."

    The Committee for Skeptical Inquiry promotes science and scientific inquiry, critical thinking, science education, and the use of reason in examining important issues. It encourages the critical investigation of controversial or extraordinary claims from a responsible, scientific point of view and disseminates factual information about the results of such inquiries to the scientific community, the media, and the public.
    The more a person disagrees with your beliefs, and the more publicly they say so, the more strident they are going to appear to you. That's the way it goes. That said, I'm quite sure they have made mistakes.

    ~~ Paul

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    • #47
      Originally posted by Paul C. Anagnostopoulos View Post
      Could you point me to their mission statement where it says "nothing whatsoever"?

      ~~ Paul
      It scarcely needs to be an explicit mission statement. It is quite evident that the CSI, many people who contribute to the Randi forums, and generally those who explicitly label themselves as skeptics, are trying to convince people that any phenomena which might be appropriately labelled the paranormal simply doesn't exist. And in most cases they use underhand methods to do so. They appear to deliberately mislead people, make liberal use of fallacious, sophistic and specious arguments, concentrate on the the more spectacular alleged paranormal phenomena and then insinuate that this applies to somewhat more moderate phenomena, persistently attack strawmen and make slanderous attacks on those scientists who express sympathy for the possibility that at least some paranormal phenomena are real. They also appear to have very little or no understanding of their philosophical presuppositions and seem to be quite immune to any enlightenment on such issues no matter how patiently and simplistically it is explained to them.

      I just can't be pestered in attempting any communication with them any more; and that includes you Paul.

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      • #48
        Originally posted by Ian
        It scarcely needs to be an explicit mission statement. It is quite evident that the CSI, many people who contribute to the Randi forums, and generally those who explicitly label themselves as skeptics, are trying to convince people that any phenomena which might be appropriately labelled the paranormal simply doesn't exist.
        I don't think you can find a thread at the JREF forum titled "Nothing labeled 'paranormal' exists."

        And in most cases they use underhand methods to do so. They appear to deliberately mislead people, make liberal use of fallacious, sophistic and specious arguments, concentrate on the the more spectacular alleged paranormal phenomena and then insinuate that this applies to somewhat more moderate phenomena, persistently attack strawmen and make slanderous attacks on those scientists who express sympathy for the possibility that at least some paranormal phenomena are real.
        I'm sure that each and every one of those tactics has been used at one time or another. I disagree that every argument is nothing but those tactics.

        They also appear to have very little or no understanding of their philosophical presuppositions and seem to be quite immune to any enlightenment on such issues no matter how patiently and simplistically it is explained to them.
        Yes Ian, we know you think that you are the only person on the planet that understands metaphysics.

        I just can't be pestered in attempting any communication with them any more; and that includes you Paul.
        This would be a counterexample, then?

        ~~ Paul

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        • #49
          What CSI says and what it does are two different things.

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          • #50
            What CSI does and what some people say it does are also two different things. But some events are certainly classic he-said/she-said examples.

            ~~ Paul

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            • #51
              So when has Csiscop/CSI admitted that there's evidence of the paranormal? Or UFO's?

              Remember the accusations over the Gauquelin Effect? Insiders said the astrological results were replicated, but the organization tried to cover it up. This led to resignations.

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              • #52
                Originally posted by Psibeliever
                So when has Csiscop/CSI admitted that there's evidence of the paranormal? Or UFO's?
                Perhaps they don't think there is any good evidence.

                Remember the accusations over the Gauquelin Effect? Insiders said the astrological results were replicated, but the organization tried to cover it up. This led to resignations.
                That's one of the most convoluted he-said/she-said affairs in the history of the paranormal. I don't think it's clear at all what happened. In particular, I don't think Dennis Rawlins' objections are cut and dried. And the CFEPP study showed no results at all. In any event, no one actually thinks there's anything to astrology, do they?

                We all agree that this particular affair was a mess. Anything else?

                ~~ Paul

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                • #53
                  Csiscop hasn't seen any good evidence of paranormal, and many of the former members have said the organization tried to fudge the results.

                  You don't see anything suspicious? If you still can't accept the fact that Csi has an agenda, then there's a bridge in Brooklyn that I'd like to sell you.

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                  • #54
                    Originally posted by Psibeliever
                    Csiscop hasn't seen any good evidence of paranormal, and many of the former members have said the organization tried to fudge the results.

                    You don't see anything suspicious? If you still can't accept the fact that Csi has an agenda, then there's a bridge in Brooklyn that I'd like to sell you.
                    Sure, perhaps there was something suspicious in that affair. Do you have a few other suspicious affairs so that you can establish a pattern, or do you base your opinion on that one event?

                    Do you seriously believe that athleticism is tied to Mars? Am I supposed to take that as evidence of the paranormal?

                    ~~ Paul

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                    • #55
                      Do you seriously believe that athleticism is tied to Mars? Am I supposed to take that as evidence of the paranormal?
                      I used to believe in astrology, when I was a kid, but now I'm not so sure, because the studies consistently show otherwise. The point remains, however, that, if the results were replicated, Csiscop had the ethical obligation to admit that fact, not cover it up.

                      As for other incidents, well, I have no personal dealings with Csiscop, but I do know someone who is prominent in the local skeptics association, and he is dogmatic about skepticism, in one incident refusing to let me speak. He is known to be like that. I'll be fair and say that, one day, I went out of my way to ask if he had seen a psychic, and he sighed in resignation and said not lately - so I'm no angel either.

                      But a look at the Skeptic and Skeptical Inquirer shows clearly that the issues have a consistent theme to discredit any evidence of the paranormal. You can't dispute that, can you?

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                      • #56
                        Originally posted by Psibeliever
                        I used to believe in astrology, when I was a kid, but now I'm not so sure, because the studies consistently show otherwise. The point remains, however, that, if the results were replicated, Csiscop had the ethical obligation to admit that fact, not cover it up.
                        I agree, although, as I said, I don't think the case is cut and dried.

                        But a look at the Skeptic and Skeptical Inquirer shows clearly that the issues have a consistent theme to discredit any evidence of the paranormal. You can't dispute that, can you?
                        It's a skeptical magazine, so it shines a skeptical light on everything. If you want to think of that as discrediting any evidence, so be it. That's like saying that a dieting magazine is trying to discredit being overweight. Sure, I guess so. But all that matters in the end is whether the articles are factual or not.

                        ~~ Paul

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