Dunning-Kruger effect! I never realized how that applies to people who believe mis-information. This guy is SO STUPID he thinks he's brilliant, therefore also believes that everybody else in the world is a lot smarter than they really are. The government is perpetrating a plot to take away my land? Impossible. I have met people that work for the government. Again I say, impossible. They are not competent to pull that off. I need no further argument. I stated as much to this fellow, that government employees at their most brilliant can still only do something that can be completed in a single fiscal budget cycle. A 20 year plot is untenable from a budget standpoint.
He logged off suddenly when I stated plainly that 2 years of studying oceanography with the people that actually collected the data makes me qualified to say definitively that anthropogenic global warming is real (I may have used all caps. I was trying so hard not to be a dick, too.) Anyway, the next day I got two long emails from him. All I can say is that I'm glad I was able to waste so much of his time. I didn't actually click any of his links. I knew it would just make me mad. At the end he informed me that I have a lot to unlearn.
When I was trying to find the link to the original article about anosognosics I found this one about ignorant people contradicting scientists over their methods for predicting climate change. I identify with this article a lot. I didn't struggle through three classes with Dr. Philip Froelich without a healthy appreciation for what we know, what we don't know, and what we might figure out soon. Having some smart-blind git telling me I have a lot to unlearn makes me a little bit angry. It's so hard for scientists to explain climate change to ignorant people because it's REALLY FUCKING COMPLICATED. I mean, damn, anybody remember the phase diagram for ice from high school? Try to tell Sarah Palin that water expands when it freezes AND when it gets hot and she probably won't believe you. Not even if you were Lord Fucking Kelvin.
So first the smart-blind thing made me angry, and then later it made me sad. There are SO many people in the world like him. A colleague at work showed me the dancing parrot video on YouTube because she thinks it's funnier than the ninja cat. Well the parrot has twice as many views as my rocket video, so I guess that says a lot. Ninja cat, on the other hand, has FOURTEEN TIMES as many views. As much as the Japanese like the sonic boom sky ripple, they like a stealthy cat more.
And then it made me mad again when I read this tweet from Phil Plait:
The comments on my UFO posts are always amusing, but people accusing me of not knowing Jupiter are awesome.http://is.gd/g41eTAnd sure enough there was a comment where somebody contradicts Phil Plait.
There are NO reports of balloons and Jupiter was not actually visible in the NYC night sky according to the National Weather Service. ALSO, the daylight sightings would not be Jupiter either? I suggest some calming tea and maybe read Richard Dolan’s UFO & the National Security State 1973-1992. ‘We have never been alone.’ -Major Robert DeanOh shut up.
There's another one that was suspicious because he questioned if you could see Jupiter from New York, but that guy was just being innocent, not ignorant. Somebody gave him a nice response.
@20 NAW: “But can you really zoom a news camera in to get that nice of an image of Jupiter in the middle of New York city?”
Yes, a TV camera can show Jupiter very well, since it has a nice zoom and keeps steady. The city lights don’t bother the planets nearly as much as other nighttime objects. You only need 8x zoom or so to see the moons. Most binoculars will do, if you can hold the darn things steady.
I remember watching an outdoor sporting event on TV (I think it was the Winter Olympics), and coming out of commercial, there was this beautiful shot of Saturn. You could clearly see its rings and color bands. Then, the camera zoomed out to show just the dot and then the bright landscape that’s normally shown. That was wonderful.And then the original commenter replied
@24. AliCali: thanks, never really being to a large city and/or working with a camera like that, I didn’t know.See? Isn't that civil? Everybody is learning? Accepting each other's expertise?
You need to go watch the video. It made me go "Nuh UH! That reporter can't be that STUPID! And the cameraman TOO?!" I looked at Jupiter with binoculars the other night. I could only make out three moons, but that's exactly what it looks like, what they show in the video. I think the part that struck me as smart-blind was not that the reporter didn't know it was a planet and moons, but that she didn't know anybody to ask! And she didn't CARE! She just went on and on about it without feeling self-concious that she couldn't find out what she was talking about. There is almost no strange phenomenon I encounter where I don't know an expert I can ask about it. Be it biology, electromagnetism, geology, astronomy, computers, psychology, construction, weather, sewage, skydiving, cars, food....
But other people just don't care that they don't know, like the Fox News person, or they think they are so smart they contradict and criticize people that are probably smarter than them. Like this other comment on Phil's blog.
....your post in no way proves that the observed phenomena was a combination of balloons and Jupiter. Therefore I respectfully respond with some reasonable steps someone could take to actually prove the point that you falsely claim to have demonstrated. You know, the sort of things a science journalist should be expected to do.
First, you need to compare the location of Jupiter that night to the time and location of the video. Shouldn’t be too hard.
Second, you need to establish that the Fox News video camera has a powerful enough zoom to see the moons of Jupiter in Chelsea. I am actually a bit skeptical of this because of light pollution, but I have no real idea how powerful their zoom is.
Finally, any account has to also deal with the other objects that we seen after dark (ie, the earth cam footage) and the photos that have found their way to flickr. There is also the footage of the pyramid shaped object from the 13th, but that footage looks a bit hokey to me. Still, a thorough scientific analysis would not simply ignore it.
I am not claiming that there isn’t a conventional explanation for this event. Rather I hope that I have shown that you have not proved your assertions.OK, that guy is just a dick. Sounds kind of like the same sort of jackass that graded my GREs and gave me a 30th percentile on the written section. Phil Plait says it's Jupiter, it's Jupiter. He's not on the stand in a capital murder case, he's just refuting an patently idiotic Fox News bit. Now shut the fuck up.
As for the pyramid shaped object, you must have missed this Tree Lobsters post.
See, now I'm angry again. Smart-blind blow-hards need to be dealt with. I don't have any idea how to do this. The best I can figure is that children should be exposed to smart people, namely scientists, as role models from an early age. Give Phil Plait a TV show, good idea. Neil DeGrasse Tyson on a sit-com, excellent. (Twitter says Bill Prady asked him to be on Big Bang Theory) Hopefully these smart people will have an influence on people who don't have any cultural exposure to brilliance.
I have developed a new litmus test for guys on the online dating site. I ask them, "Who is the smartest person you know?" If they can't think of anybody, that's bad. If they say, "Hmm, I'd have to say I am the smartest person I know." Epic fail. If you don't know somebody smarter than yourself, and you have a masters degree, then you either went to the worst college in the country or you are just smart-blind. Why would you take instruction from somebody you didn't think was smarter than you?! I mean, outside of high school where you don't have any choice. I did have one or two high school teachers that I thought were smart. But before college I pretty much relied on my family for smarter-than-me role models. I'm trying to think of a smart TV character from my formative years.... There was that nice white-haired guy on Wild Kingdom. He knew a lot about animals. I thought he was cool. And Dr. Who. Oh, and
|From the Autumnal Equinox. Jupiter is the speck. I don't have a TV camera.|
Update Feb 4, 2015
Jack Klaff, @jackshebang on twitter, posted this John Cleese video about this topic on January 28th. John Cleese is friends with David Dunning!