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Friday, July 24, 2009


This, lifted from Wikipedia seemed appropriate considering the Speak your Branes site seems like politically correct herd instinct after a lobotomy. Indeed it has been fairly said on there that the whole point is to make fun of different ideas without having to discuss the facts at all & that I am a bit of a spoilsport by mentioning them.

Bandwagon effect,invented by Conal Sherry, also known as "cromo effect" and closely related to opportunism, is the observation that people often do and believe things because many other people do and believe the same things. The effect is often called herd instinct. People tend to follow the crowd without examining the merits of a particular thing. The bandwagon effect is the reason for the bandwagon fallacy's success.

The bandwagon effect is well-documented in behavioral psychology and has many applications. The general rule is that conduct or beliefs spread among people, as fads and trends clearly do, with "the probability of any individual adopting it increasing with the proportion who have already done so". As more people come to believe in something, others also "hop on the bandwagon" regardless of the underlying evidence. The tendency to follow the actions or beliefs of others can occur because individuals directly prefer to conform, or because individuals derive information from others. Both explanations have been used for evidence of conformity in psychological experiments. For example, social pressure has been used to explain Asch's conformity experiments, and information has been used to explain Sherif's autokinetic experiment.

...Cascades explain why behavior is fragile—people understand that they are based on very limited information. As a result, fads form easily but are also easily dislodged

...Bogus poll results presented to voters prior to the 1996 Republican primary clearly showed the bandwagon effect ... approximately 6% of the variance in the vote was explained in terms of the bogus polls.

The related article on conformism say:

Conformism holds that individuals and small groups do best by blending in with their surroundings and by doing nothing eccentric or out-of-the-ordinary in any way.

By definition, conformism presents the antithesis both of creativity and of innovative leadership, and hence opposes change and/or progress itself.

An example of the use of "consensus" rather than science is this letter from Canon Kenyon Wright. It is, of course, factually rubbish but the point is that he did not attempt to produce any facts preferring to rely on saying there is a bandwagon

The neo-conservative press and radio in the United States constantly confuse people there by presenting the arguments for and against as if there was some sort of balance to be struck. They ignore the fact that the vast majority of serious scientists now accept both the fact and the human causes of global warming, while those who claim otherwise seldom have any real authority and often are funded by groups with a vested interest in avoiding the implications of the reality.

The way government can use its power to manufacture a consensus was understood by the late Dr Goebbels too
“If you tell a lie big enough and keep repeating it, people will eventually come to believe it. The lie can be maintained only for such time as the State can shield the people from the political, economic and/or military consequences of the lie. It thus becomes vitally important for the State to use all of its powers to repress dissent, for the truth is the mortal enemy of the lie, and thus by extension, the truth is the greatest enemy of the State.”

Fortunately for the state if most of the people get their only information on something, whether global warming or Yugoslavia, once their position has become established there are a lot people who will do & say almost anything not to accept their bandwagon is heading in the wrong direction. Here are previous articles on mobbing.

Weeeell, we can all bandy wikipedia articles about, can't we, Neil?
Weeeell, we can all bandy wikipedia articles about, can't we, Neil?

I agree with you Norman/anonymous -you do indeed appear to suffer from paranoid shizophrenia coupled with delusions of grandeur. Thanks for letting us know you are seeking treatment.
I'd have thought you'd be pleased, Neil. Instead of insulting the SyB people, you should be thanking them! Now, more people than ever have heard of your silly little political party. Remember, there's no such thing as bad publicity.
Neil, Neil, Neil, how can you have a post on the bandwagon effect on SYB readers without mentioning the tedious, repetitive catchphrases? You couldn't make it up! "Bank."

Although I have a question: What exactly does "politically correct" mean in this context? Or at all for that matter?

In this context it means that Branes support, noticeably without any attempt at thought, whatever nonsense & lies the BBC/Guardian & other government funded organisations are pushing at the moment. This applies both when it is palpably untrue (catastrophic global warming) & palpably not the popular view (immigration).
Fascinating. Especially the bit about the Guardian being government-funded. I'm fascinated by the detailed nuances of words, so please, tell me more. How exactly does "politically correct" differ from "in disagreement with Neil Craig"?
If you look at an ordinary newspaper you will see that its prime source of profit, advertising, comes from Tesco etc. If you look at the Grauniad it is government. I would regard the BNP as politically incorrect.
Do you agree with the BNP's policies, Neil?
You can remove the word "politically" from that sentence, and it's still true!
If you look at the Grauniad it is government. I would regard the BNP as politically incorrect.

Look again at the adverts. The Guardian is full ads for all sorts of companies.

Your love for the BNP is well known.
So...I'm not quite sure I follow this, but it seems that if you support something that is "not the popular view", for example believing that the Earth is round and orbits the Sun in 16th Century Rome, or in more recent times that homosexuality is not a disease, your view is formed "without any attempt at thought", and based upon "nonsense and lies".

Therefore, where there is no scientific consensus, and I choose to prefer the views of accredited experts with one view, rather than their opponents, and you disagree, I have reached my view "without any attempt at thought", while on the other hand your view cannot be wrong. Have I got that right?
I've looked at the grauniad quite closely, and I fail to see where you're seeing its prime source of profit is the government. given, you know, that it makes a loss, and is paid for by GMG's other rags, notably "Auto Trader". Presumably the government are breaking out into the used car market in a big way?
Anyone can look at the Guardian & see that their ratio of government adverts greatly exceeds that of other papers.

Your allegations about me & the BNP Norman are, naturally purely the sort of lies that nobody with the remotest shred of personal honesty could ever have said. You are a disgusting, corrupt, obscene Nazi & you owe me an apology.

I also challenge you to name an occasion when I stood up at a public meeting to say I supported the BNP as you did over raping children.
It seems you don't follow it. If the view is based on considering facts, as Galileo's that the earth orbits the Sun certainly was, then it has been, by definition, been achieved by an intellectual process.

If your view has been achieved simply by being told, dishonestly in the case of "catastrophic global warming", that everybody else does, then, equally by definition, you have not been engaged in an intellectual process.
Hello Neil, I'm an occasional SYBer but I also work for an ad agency, and I buy ads in the Guardian all the time for my (very non governmental) clients.

I know the ad agency people who deal with governmental campaigns (they offered me a job once). They use the Guardian but they use all the other papers as well. I don't have to speciously guess this because I know it as fact - I can send you a full breakdown if you're interested.
I would be interested my email is . However I have to say that simply looking at them gives a different impression.
Hey... check out this homage to Palin, Neil. Ain't she great?
I'm still struggling to see, where, in my post, I expressed any opinion on global warming, "catastrophic" or not. To be frank, I am unaware of what is meant by "catastrophic" global warming, but there does seem to be a tiny amount of evidence of recent reductions in the size of glaciers, and of general temperature increase. Whether this is wholly, partly or not at all the result of human activity I do not know, but I am not prepared to rubbish one side of the argument out of hand.

Is it your position that certain scientists are being actively dishonest, as opposed to interpreting data in good faith? And that their peers are colluding with them in presenting data they know to be false? Why would they do this and face the loss of their posts if dishonesty were proven?

Your so-called "facts" are nothing compared to Neil's impression. Get a grip.
There is indeed a tiny amount of evidence of glacier shrinkage. Under 100 of the 100s of thousands worldwide have been reported on. Of these some are shrinking, some aren't changing, some are growing. Guess which group Daviod Cameron chooses to visit? There is no current evidence of warming - indeed currently we are cooling. Catastrophic warming would be warming of such an extent to do significant damage. This would have to be above the 2C we have experienced historically since such warming produced eras of prosperity. If there is no evidence of catastrophic levels of warming I submit it would be pointless to destroy most of the world economy to alleviate the risk of beneficial warming.
Dear Neil, this link is to a youtube video where a young scientist questions the need to have a debate with a creationist that has obviously been shouting denials at him. (the first 50 seconds are irrelevant, but stick with it, it is only a couple of minutes long.) I'd like you to substitute the word 'creationism' with 'climate change denial'. And transpose their argument to our argument.

In short, what makes you think that a comicbook store manager with a specialisation in science fiction animation retail is capable of challenging the global scientific community?
You are choosing to argue from authority rather than evidence which is one of the forms of false argument. Nor, of course, am I as you claim alone. Indeed 31,000 scientists have signed up to say catastrophic warming is false which is far more than have ever claimed the opposite.
You're alone on this blog.

I can't see anyone else here.

I can't see 31,000 scientists backing you up and including you in their work.

What 31,000 scientists anyway? On google, nobody knows about it except you and your loony tune website conspiracy freaks. It's just another lie that you tell each other. You're as bad as the creationists for swallowing an old unsubstantiated rubbish.
So... I may not claim authority. Then the next sentence, you do. And of course at the same time you ignore the main point: that you are a comicbook salesman, not a scientist and if you have the evidence to disprove global warming, go and save the world, get the Nobel prize and stop dicking about.
The 31,000 scientists are from the Oregon Petition. If you claim our media don't censor such things in the fascist cause then it will be incomprhensible that you have never seen it mentioned on the TV news.

I did not argue that the 31,000 on that petition "proves" no warming - what it proves is that I am not, as you claimed, the only person disputing these media lies.
Your allegations about me & the BNP Norman are, naturally purely the sort of lies that nobody with the remotest shred of personal honesty could ever have said. You are a disgusting, corrupt,obscene Nazi & you owe me an apology...I also challenge you to name an occasion when I stood up at a public meeting to say I supported the BNP as you did over raping children.

Anyone who wants proof of your support for the BNP simply has to search your blog Neil. What you say your posts mean are not always what they actually say. The rest of your comment is, of course, petulant nonsense.
The 31,000 scientists are from the Oregon Petition.

The worthlesness of the notorious Oregon Petition is exposed by Deltoid here: .
Hmmmm.... well... for 31,000 scientists, read "31,000 people with degrees." and wiki lists many objections to the way the petition was gathered.

It has been estimated that only 200 people who work in climate studies are on the list and that includes the anti-GW lobby scientists. That is somewhat different from "31,000 scientists". You cry wolf at every turn.

Neil, in your desparation to collect evidence for your troubled theories you rake up an awful lot of nonsense and refuse to analyse it critically. You WANT global warming to be wrong and cherry pick any old crap to bolster your hunch. You spend too much time 'researching' at the sites that adhere to your views and recycle any old garbage. And, the big big big getout clause is that anything which knocks holes in your ideas is dismissed as conspiracy. You are not even close to an amateur scientist with methods such as these.
While Norman demanded that I say when he publicly asserted his desire to be a child rapist & I did so (& included when I know for a fact the LibDem party leadership were aware of it) he has made no attempt whatsoever to justify what he knows to be a total & disgusting lie about my supporting the BNP. That the LibDems expel people for being liberals or opposed to genocide but not for dhild rape is an interesting & undeniable fact.

Deltoid, being an alarmist organisation with a history of dishonesty, is hardly impartial.

By "climate scientist" Mous mean computer modeller. To say that most climate computer modellers making their living this way say it is real & that this proves it is precisely the same as saying that scientific disagreement with "creation science" comes entirely from people who aren't accredited creation scientists. If Norman were in any way whatsoever honest he would immediately denoumce Mous as a "scoundrel".
I think anybody reading this will see that wikipedia, allegedly a forum open to anybody has been controlled here to slant its report exactly as I previously said.

You've made the fundamental mistake of believing that everyone who thinks you're a twat must believe a load of other stuff you refuse to accept as well.

I think the BBC is (among MANY other things) a propaganda instrument for the government and hence for corporations and elite interests. The Guardian is (among very few other things) a pseudo-left propaganda instrument for large corporations (specifically the one that owns it, but more generally too) and hence also for elite interests and the government.

Just to be clear, the above paragraph is REALLY what I think. Not sarcasm. OK?

Now, please bear all this in mind in future. Remember that you're an angry, woolly-minded, old fool and so there's a VERY broad range of opinion that's going to disagree with your own, which is largely bollocks.

Jah bless.
Since you have described yourself on your site as a cunt & me here as a twat we better not meet.

You now say you agree with me about the BBC & think you are saying you agree with me about the Guardian (I actually said it was primarily a government fake not a corporate one though the corporation happily takes government momey). You have been unable to say what you dissagree about, let alone put up the requested coherent argument & so, yet again, resort to personal insults. Plus ca change.
Since you have described yourself on your site as a cunt & me here as a twat we better not meet.

Good thinking, Neil. Don't cross the streams.
Just a brief reminder to Mr Violent Majority who, denying my saying the Guardian is obviously bought & paid for by government advertising, that "I don't have to speciously guess this because I know it as fact - I can send you a full breakdown if you're interested."

One would get the impression from Violent's unwonted reticence in not coming back with the promised figures, that he found I am right. Again.
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