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PZ Myers dissects evolutionary psychology: brief, sharp and fabulous

I admit I LOL'd at the part about lighting up "like a Christmas tree." WATCH AND LEARN all IDWs!

The Brian Ferguson Interview

Tuesday, July 7, 2020

Steven Pinker and climate change denier Michael Shellenberger

You could smell the right-wing anti-science stench off Michael Shellenberger a mile away. He was discussed by Pinkerite in connection with Quillette and Steven Pinker:
It was recently brought to my attention that (Claire) Lehmann is publishing Michael Shellenberger, whose speciality is anti-renewable energy. Here he defends Koch.
Shellenberger runs a pro-nuclear power organization "Environmental Progress" - what a perfect Koch brothers-esque astroturf name - and one of his Science and Economy Advisors is... Steven Pinker.
What I didn't realize until recently is that Schellenberger is listed as a member of the Quillette "team" and a "Contributing Writer."

I am not at all surprised that Shellenberger is now promoting climate change denialism. Per the publication PressProgress:
In a recent Quillette article titled “On behalf of environmentalists, I apologize for the climate scare,” author Michael Shellenberger writes that although “climate change is happening,” he does not believe it is “ the end of the world” and “not even our most serious environmental problem.” 
Shellenberger previously headed a think tank called the Breakthrough Institute, an organization that does acknowledges climate change is real but spends a lot of time criticizing environmentalists — the organization has been criticized by scientists for pushing messages that play down the impacts of climate change and sometimes appear to align with US Republican talking points
Shellenberger himself has been described by fellow environmentalists as a “nuclear salesman posing as a new generation environmentalist.”
While I was researching Quillette's About page I noted Quillette bragging about its pedigree of race science and incompetence.
How did Quillette begin?  
Quillette began in Claire Lehmann’s living room in 2015. Claire had recently dropped out of her graduate program in psychology and wished to create a space for academics to publish their ideas. Quillette’s first contributors included Associate Professor Brian Boutwell and documentary film-maker Jamie Palmer.
Brian Boutwell is a biosocial criminologist who has pushed race "science" many times as I have documented. He's currently associate professor of criminology and criminal justice, associate dean for Research and Corporate Partnerships, Saint Louis University College for Public Health and Social Justice,

Jamie Palmer is apparently the Quillette editor responsible for failing to fact check "Archie Carter" resulting in Quillette publishing a hoax.
Quillette senior editor Jamie Palmer encouraged the hoaxer to expand on his essay, telling him at one point to mention clips from the DSA convention that had gone viral in right-wing media. At one point, Palmer asked the writer for identification to prove his identity, prompting the hoaxer to declare he wanted to ditch the Randolph alias and go by his “real” name, Archie Carter.

“I'm tired of biting my tongue, and they can’t do anything about it,” he wrote back to Palmer. “I need it off my chest, and I’ll be damned if I care what they think about me.”

It’s not clear if Quillette made any other attempt to fact-check the essay. Palmer didn’t respond to a request for comment.
And no, of course Palmer was not sacked for his incompetence. This is Quillette.

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