Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Twoofer Rules

Whenever I debate twoofers, I notice that they seem to work under a fair number of implicit rules. A lot of them are like standard woo, but it seems to stick out a lot more when I read them.

1. Ad hominem is the basis of all reality: Broadest form of pretty much all these other rules: Who you are makes your argument valid, not the internal logic or physical evidence.

2. Evil = Power: Because Bush is evil enough to do something, there's no need to prove that the laws of physics would allow him to do that something. No need to worry about the administrative nightmare of managing thousands of rogue ninja demolition crews, either.

3. Anonnies and people with pseudonyms are automatically wrong because they might possibly have something vaguely resembling a government connection. Therefore, if a conspiracy skeptic posting under a blog name, rather than his real name, says the sky is blue, then obviously it must not be. Exception: Twoofers who use fake names, after all, they're the only people who have something honest to protect, and they're the only people on the entire surface of the Earth who don't want death threats sent to their snail mail address or
government suppression squads at their front door or office.

4. Using your real name = Infinity Plus One times your normal credibility. Being ridiculed by snail mail or physical presence when someone figures out where you live boosts your credibility level far more than email or forum ridicule because Galileo didn't have an email address.

5. People who are standing up against The Man are automatically right. Outspoken liberal skeptics who berate government officials for trampling on science, trying to get Intelligent Design in schools, employing various ineffective or even counterproductive "War on [Concept]" measures, destroy civil rights, engage in historical revisionism, or whatever aren't doing enough: They have to sit on their rears talking/posting about being certain of the government using Orbital R-9 Wave Cannons in order to count as being opposed to the administration. Anything less, and they're exactly as loyal as any Bush crony, and thus automatically wrong.

6. If it doesn't sound like a TV/movie plot, it's not realistic. There's ALWAYS a frame-up, an "unexpected" plot twist, or whatever. If the evidence is rock solid, that just means the guy doing the framing/set up/whatever is more elaborate about the level of evidence he plants.

Feel free to extend the list in the comments.

15 comments:

Infophile said...

Mwahaha! I see you've fallen for my evil plan and have started linking TV Tropes as well! Excellent. *Monty Burnsesque fingers*

RodeoBob said...

Occam's whetstone: there are no conincidences in a conspiracy. If a chief debunker happens to share the same last name as a government official, even thought they are not even remotely related and have no contact with one another, said debunker is a tool of the conspiracy.

Truth cannot be stranger than fiction! When I was dabbling in creative writing, I came across the lovely explanation for the axiom of "truth is sometimes stranger than fiction". The reason for that being that fiction has to make sense! Twoofers construct a narrative, and like all narratives, it must make sense. Everyone speaking, everyone interviewed, all radio communications, all of it must fit into the narrative. The reality of confusion on the ground, public officials mis-speaking about times, or firefighters using the wrong piece of jargon cannot simply be a result of a long, chaotic, stressful day; they must be part of the narrative.

Jake said...

Stoopid question: What's a twoofer? Google didn't tell me right away.

Bronze Dog said...

They're the nuts who say 9/11 was an inside job.

Covered it in the past, so you might want to click. There's a good list involved.

Tom Foss said...

You forgot one:
Witnesses are the best line of evidence, far better than anyone examining the site after the fact. However, since witnesses can be threatened by the government, brainwashed, or paid off, the believability of a witness's statement is directly proportional to their lack of expertise on the subject, and inversely proportional to the amount of sensory input and detail, and the amount their account conforms to the "official story" squared. So a 'witness' taxi driver 20 blocks away from the WTC towers who says "I heard something like explosions" is far more believable than an on-site firefighter who says "I could see everything, and there were no charges."

Also, all witness accounts are to be taken on their face, so if someone says "it sounded like an explosion," then it must have been an explosion. A civilian witness who says "it looked like a 707" and an airplane technician witness who says "it was a United Airlines jet, a 757, with the flaps down. It passed only a few hundred feet over my head" clearly cancel each other out, and therefore it was a missile.

Maronan said...

If an expert on the scene can't figure out exactly what happened, it must have been done by the government because the skeptics can't disprove the missile/controlled demolition/space laser/misc. conspiracy theory. If the expert says that the towers were destroyed when a hijacked airplane crashed into them, he is a tool of the government. If the expert says that the buildings were destroyed by a missile/controlled demolition/space laser/misc. conspiracy theory destructo machine, then the twoofers' story is validated by the experts.

It's the meaning that matters: An experiment "showing" that the twin towers couldn't have collapsed, or had to have been hit by a missile using a simulated "tower" which is nothing like the twin towers or a simulated "attack" which is nothing like a plane crash or a missile/controlled demolition/space laser/misc. conspiracy theory destructo mechanism proves that it was a conspiracy. The fact that the twoofer performing the "experiment" intended it as a simulation of the attack is what's important. (Slight woo crossover?)

PalMD said...

Great, Twoofers...another evil band to fight...hmm..

SME said...

As the skeptic spouse of a Truther, I hear ya loud & clear. As with most conspiracy theorists, the professional Truthers (virtually unemployable folks who make their living hawking grainy DVDs and self-published books on the conspiranoid lecture circuit) sometimes fall back on the All-Knowing Anonymous Source. This imaginary friend works for one or more alphabet agencies and has been witness to more significant events than Forrest Gump. Of course, anything the Truther says is not open for debate because Anonymous Source said so and HOW DARE we question someone who's putting his life on the line by being an (anonymous, well-hidden) whistleblower?!

Tom Foss said...

the All-Knowing Anonymous Source. This imaginary friend works for one or more alphabet agencies and has been witness to more significant events than Forrest Gump.

I had no idea that this was a common claim in Twoofer circles. I talked to a guy who had two friends working in the Pentagon, who swore the section that got hit was completely empty at the time of the attack; I soundly trounced his claims, but I wish I'd known that this was a common tactic. That makes the claim, in my mind, even more horrendous.

Anonymous said...

it's Ad hominem... whatever that is.

Bronze Dog said...

Again, I mess that spelling up. Doesn't help that Firefox's spellchecker doesn't like either of them. Fixing...

Anonymous said...

I bet you are a Jew or you are a follower of the Jews. Your rabulistic pseudo-logic stinks!

Akusai said...

Oy vai! Those schlemiel gentiles and their ad hominems are making me all verklepmt!

Bronze Dog said...

Hey, Anonny who needs to peek at the comment rules, if my logic is pseudo, you should be able to point out logical fallacies or present valid arguments for your position.

You know, do that sort of thing, instead of making unfounded ad hominems.

Jimmy Blue said...

I bet you are a Jew or you are a follower of the Jews. Your rabulistic pseudo-logic stinks!

You seem confused - Bronze Dog is an atheist and follows no-one nor is he Jewish (as far as I know) - Christians on the other hand are all followers of a Jew in the strictest sense, and certainly follow Jews in a more temporal sense.

Which bit are you confused over you poor dear?