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Bullspotting: Finding Facts in the Age of Misinformation Paperback – October 16, 2012
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- Nicholas Capaldi, director, Center for Spiritual Capital, Loyola University New Orleans, and author of The Art of Deception
"This highly readable and entertaining book is full of wonderful examples of BS. It also provides a very useful compendium of the warning signs of BS. We all need to build some immunity to BS - especially youngsters. This book is a good place to start."
- Dr. Stephen Law, philosopher and author of Believing Bullshit
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Top Customer Reviews
I would recommend three more constructive books:
*Michael Shermer: Why do people believe weird things (this one tries to understand where do all these strange beliefs come from, and not just offer science antidote).
*Massimo Pigliucci: Nonsense on stilts (this one squarely puts science against law, religion, pseudoscience, and shows how science is different)
*Moti Ben-Ari: Just a theory (basics of philosophy of science in very digestible format: induction, hypothesis, statistics; plus sociology of science, postmodernist critique, reductionism...)
This excellent bit of research alone would make his new book on the art and science of detecting nonsense worth a look. However, he also turns out to be a clear, incisive writer who can tell an interesting story to illustrate a point.
The result is that even inveterate skeptics will find this book a good read. It provides a choice selection of recent hoaxes, conspiracies and false rumours to demonstrate how the tools of skepticism work. Perhaps because the author is a lawyer, the chapter on pseudolaw (legal theory that relies on frivolous arguments) is especially interesting.
As befitting a book on searching for truth, there are extensive notes and references at the end.
Introduction; Baloney Detection; Denialism; Conspiracy Theories; Rumors; Quotations; Hoaxes; Pseudoscience; Pseudohistory; Pseudolaw; What's The Harm; Notes, Index
Collins uses real-life examples in all the chapters to illustrate his points. For example, denialism is covered with the use of the young earth theory, JFK's assassination by a single person, the moon landing, Shakespeare's authorship, and the Holocaust. Each chapter covers how to spot that type of "logic", as well as the arguments that you'll encounter when you try to point out the fallacies. I found that breaking out the different types helped my understanding, as it broke down the feeling of being overwhelmed by the stupidity that is out there.
It's sad that the people who need this information the most will be the ones least likely to read Bullspotting, but one can hope. For everyone else, this is a very good read.
Obtained From: Library
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This guy is a 2nd rate dis-info agent, waving his "Ra, Ra" flag for the establishment. Counter Intelligence propaganda at it's best. Read morePublished 9 months ago by Dr. Matthew Tuttle
"The first principle is that you must not fool yourself--and you are the easiest person to fool."
This book is based on the simple premise that... Read more
I thought it was a good book and would recommend it, but there seems to be much redundant material. However, I learned a few things from reading it.Published 23 months ago by Amazon Customer
I am disheartened to see the overwhelmingly favorable reviews this confused little volume has attracted. Read morePublished 23 months ago by Jim
People can easily be fooled, and common sense is not always the best indicator of truth. Subject to all sorts of biases and prejudices, even the most rational among us can be... Read morePublished on December 10, 2013 by G. Wagner
Loren Collins takes a look under the hood of many of our USAmerican culture's most prominent conspiracy theories (from JFK to 9/11), Denialists (Birthers and Moon-Hoaxers), and... Read morePublished on August 3, 2013 by C. Lambeth
I purchased this book earlier this year (March, 2013) here at Amazon.com
In the first paragraph of Chapter 1, or `Baloney Detection', we find that Collins confidently... Read more
Excellent summary of techniques for denying the deniers. Succinct and definitive. Keep this handy for confronting the conspiracists and other assorted nutcases; would also be... Read morePublished on June 8, 2013 by Robert Haley