Sunday, April 21, 2013

Skepticism, Strange Ideas, and Context

Random skeptical thought... I wonder if people are too quick to believe things largely because they don't think about the context. 
Example One:  I've met people who think Hitler reorganized Germany's finances for the better.  Context: He was a failed painter who knew no more about banking or economics than my dog. How could he have done this? He couldn't.  He stabilized the economy with massive military production. 
Example Two: Many people think we recovered alien technology at Roswell.  Context: Would we have discovered that and done nothing with it? Sure, the government could have kept it secret, but would it be losing thousands of soldiers and maintaining a staggeringly expensive logistics effort in far-flung ground wars if we had alien-based skycraft and perhaps weaponry?  (Same context applies to claims of Tesla death rays: the idea the government did nothing with them is absurd: we can document step-by-step, expensive, time-consuming development of today's still-experimental energy weapons. Would we have done that if we had the basic tech in the 1940s???).  

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