The new paperback edition of 'The Half Life of Facts' by Sam Arbesman - re-written to take account of my discovery of the supermyth phenomenon.
See pages 83-84, 213 and 227. Click the book to see it on Amazon
Building on this concept, the 'newly discovered Matthew Supermyth' (see latest dysology news) marks the end of Darwinism and beginning of Matthewism in the field of evolutionary biology.
The Dysology Hypothesis:
A popular criminological ‘theory,’ which is in fact little more than a controversial hypothesis, is known as Broken Windows Theory In essence, it claims that areas with visible signs of disorder such as litter, anti social behaviour, graffiti and broken windows signal to potential offenders that in such neighbourhoods guardianship is less capable than offenders and so an escalating spiral of decline occurs leading to more serious offending such as kerb crawling, on street prostitution, drug dealing, theft, and serious violence.
Criminologists and other scholars who find this hypothesis compellingly plausible might wish to consider the Dysology Hypothesis which is that:
Letting scholars get away with publishing fallacies and myths signals to others the existence of topics where guardians of good scholarship might be less capable than elsewhere. Such dysology then serves as an allurement to poor scholars to disseminate existing myths and fallacies and to create and publish their own.
Of course, more research is required to see if this is a worthy hypothesis, but I suspect it might be worth further consideration. By way of just one small example of confirming evidence. The case study I have in mind is one where prolific fallacy and myth allurement occurred for over 30 years in the notorious on-going story of the iron content and nutritional value of spinach: see here, here and also here.
New topic - political dysology: when is targeted injustice irrational: here
To avoid spreading myths and fallacies, always remember: Google first or else risk being half-lifed: My Amazon Review of the Half life of Facts: here
The Most Ironic Unintended Consequences of Performance Culture in Policing and Academia. Read about it here
Crime Opportunity Theory is wrong! Because the RAT crime triangle that is used to describe the crime opportunity is merely a description of what happened after the crime was successfully completed here
Modern myths may contain the same core elements as ancient ones. Moreover, it is myth making to claim that it will always be impossible to forecast the social futures of mankind. Read the Futurebabble myth here
Rebutter is what we should all be using.
It's excellent. Click the icon above to learn about the best way to refute any article or website with a reference to veracious knowledge. Here comes the future of verity online. Ahh, but ahh, does it?
This website has had 37400 visits since launched in March 2011
(Last updated October 12th 2013).
Thank you for finding it and paying a visit. Please come back again soon.
Do we need Dysology?
Philosophers, natural and social scientists teach and publish text books about the causes and pitfalls to avoid, and how to spot problems when conducting research or examining the results of other people's work. This contributes to a significant body of knowledge that we have amassed about the veracity of evidence, which includes what is known to be harmful, bad or simply weak research practice and how to avoid faulty inference.
Psychologists lead the field in helping to identify, explain and understand irrational thinking.
Myth busting researchers in many different disciplines and areas - from the philosophy of science to journalists and amateur essayists - have authored works on fallacies, myths, conspiracy theories, hoaxes, frauds, downright lies, deliberate and hidden bias.
This all adds up to a widely spread body of disparate knowledge from distinct disciplines, different levels of expertise along with wealth of examples and case studies, But these potential knowledge treasures have never been the subject of comprehensive and systematic scholarly research.
With such a large body of disparate, but important, knowledge do we need to develop a specialist field comprising the study and understanding of veracity in order to better understand what is behind our understanding and beliefs in what and is and is not so? Should we work towards developing a multi-disciplinary science named dysology?
What is Dysology?
Dysology is the study of orthodox bias, academic blind spots, irrationality, pseudo scholarship and fraud influencing bad social science research, bad science, bad policymaking, quackery, counterknowledge, 'voodoo histrories', 'voodoo criminology' 'flat earth news' and other ignorance.
Criminology has no explanation for the general crime drop and rise in Internet crime
Could the communications revolution be a major factor influencing the crime drop in western industrialised countries?
What might a better Crime Science look like?
If we can't forecast crime, but can only explain it post-hoc, that shows the failure of criminology to understand it beyond the fallacy of claiming it is one of those things that cannot really be understood before it happens. Thinking about dysology in criminology and so called 'Crime Science' led me to outline what a new junkscience theory of crime might look like. Please note that this particular essay is fundamentally a tongue in cheek work in progress. To read it click the Forecasting Crime page.
What Works, What Fails and Why?
Implementor failure is an ignored contingency in social 'scheme' failure. More research is needed before we can say that unproven or inconsistent templates for social action are good or promising practice.
LATEST MYTH BUSTING
• Popeye never once ate spinach for iron
• The Spinach Popeye Iron Decimal Error Myth
Supermyths, of which braced myths are a sub-type - are ironic unintended, or else a deliberate and disingenuous, consequences of fallacy dissemination. Supermyths have very specific components:
The creation of a fallacy, myth or error by an orthodox expert, being used by another expert who in turn promotes it as being ‘true, and whilst still thinking that it is true either promotes it as a good example of the need to be healthily skeptical of bad scholarship, or else compounds the myth by using it as a premise upon which to build one or more supporting myths.
Braced myths are supermyths that have been pointedly deployed by orthodox scholars in order to bust another specific myth or fallacy. The braced myth hypothesis is that using one myth as a specific mythbusting device in this way braces the supermyth to make it further entrenched and therefore more difficult to prevent it being credulously disseminated as veracious knowledge.
Braced myths begin as fallacies produced by errors, bias, lies, academic fraud, hoaxes and other forms of pseudo scholarship that are created, packaged to look like facts, and disseminated by orthodox experts. These fallacies become myths as more people accept them. They become braced myths when orthodox respected sceptics credulously believe them, and while still believing they are true promote them as examples of the need to be sceptical of fallacies and myths.
Are you aware of any braced myths? If so I would love to hear of them over at the Supermyths blogsite
• The Beat Policing Myth
Popeye Statistical Challenge NewsUpdate on Granger causality test
What are the reasons for research bias, pseudoscholarship, the dissemination of and widespread belief in counterknowledge, voodoo histories, flat earth news, Frunkfurtian bullshit and lies?
Wikipedia is deliberately plagiarising the work of myth busters in order to hide its own mythmongering.
An unintended consequence of Wikipedia's stealth plagiarism policy is that pernicious fallacies and myths are being kept out of the public domain for longer than necessary, because originators can now only ensure priority by way of traditional book and article publication. Click here to read the shocking story of Wikipedia's shameful institutional stealth plagiarism.
Latest Dysology News
Expert's create a supermyth by denying that the earliest discovery of the US phrase "The whole nine yards" (1855) is its orignal influence.
In daily protest against Wikipedia plagiarising my work and refusing to cite me as the author whose unique mythbusting discoveries they are misappropriating, every day I will be revealing a new fallacy or myth being spread by Wikipedia on my Best Thinking blog
I now have a completed manuscript for my book, which tells the story of Patrick Matthew and Charles Darwin.
Using hi-tech research methods to find the relevant hidden books in library, I have unearthed the greatest known research fraud in history. Namely that Charles Darwin and Alfred Wallace stole the entire natural selection hypothesis from Patrick Matthew. I have a multitude of brand new solid factual evidence to prove this beyond all reasonable doubt.
Watch this space for developments regarding progress to publication.
Best Thinking Blog post by Mike Sutton
See how my Internet Dating research technique recently bust:
The Merton Myth is Bust
Robert K. Merton never invented the phrase 'self fulfilling prophecy' (here)
The Moral Panic Creation Myth is Bust
Contrary to criminological 'knowledge' neither Cohen (1972), nor Young (1971) nor McLuhan (1964) coined the phrase 'moral panic'. Moreover, both the exact phrase and the basic concept developed by Stan Cohen was used in relation to cholera in the USA in 1830 (here)
Another Pre-Supermyth busted: The 25-a-day Channel 5 Fallacy - here
Pre-supermyth: This is how supermyths are created. Another headless zombie arithmetical fallacy. The 6ft Zombie Rat Fallacy - here
The Criminology Crackdown Myth of Report 113. (9th December 2012) Read about it here
The Semmelweis Supermyth is the Fourth Supermyth Discovered (4th November 2012)
Read All About it here
Supermyths.com launched in preparation for my book
What is a supermyth? Visit my blogsite to find out and get links to the busted myths
How can something you have not yet done be the cause of you doing it? It can't. Yet so called 'crime as opportunity theory' is based on the premise that it can. Read how it was mythbusted here
What is Effective Criticism?
What is the most effective, as opposed to the 'correct' way t
o challenge orthodoxy, knowledge consensus, pseudoscience, junk science and apparently simple claptrap?
Michael Shermer is the founder and Editor in Chief of the Skeptic magazine. Shermer’s position has long been that the most effective way to challenge fallacies and myths is to publish from a position of seeking to understand rather than ridicule (Shermer 1997). The same conclusions have been put forward by Hyman (2001) and Loxton (2011). But how do they know they are right? This is a strangely unexplored area and it is surely perverse that these leading and acknowledged healthy sceptics should accept their own intuitive and appealing beliefs in this area albeit supported in part by anecdotal evidence possibly gathered from an unintentional position of confirmation bias. For all we know, sceptics in their aim to be effective myth busters have created another myth. Because ridicule, done the right way, might turn out to be the most effective way to spread the word that certain myths are busted and to stop others from publishing pseudoscholarship.
Is there a man or a dog in the moon? Visit the pareidolia page to see what you see
The Meme Muncher by Mike Sutton 2011 (all rights reserved)
Click on the orange Infinity Paradox link above the image to discover my own personal confusions and dysology in the field of quantum physics.
Why are good written explanations not infinite in their scope and power in the infinite world of mathematics?
Professor David Deutsch writes that good explanations with universal infinite 'reach' are hard to vary and refutable. Yet varying his weird Infinity Hotel analogy by moving his own book, rather than his example of a puppy in a sack, along an infinite hotel corridor, would the book and its good explanations be annihilated into a singularity? If so then here is one ironic refutation of the books main theme, at least within the theoretical realm of mathematics. And if this insight is a good explanation with infinite reach does that not make Deutsch's own thesis easy to vary and impossible to refute?
Does a mocking video of a mechanical hamster in a wheel, placed on a mirror, giving a lecture on belief in the opportunity component of Routine ActivitiesTheory (RAT) serve as a useful parody and heuristic device for explaining the unscientific logical fallacy that an easy to vary and irrefutable truism can be an explanation for crime?
The video essentially mocks the widely believed Crime Science, RAT and Situation Crime Prevention (ratortunity) notions that a mere description of the components of crime can be the most important cause of crime. Does the seemingly insane Rev. Hammy Wheel have any chance at all of setting irrational criminology and Crime Science straight via YouTube? Visit the Dysology Page: 'On Opportunity and Crime' to see the logical fallacy of the old saying 'opportunity makes the thief' - at least as it is currently understood by Crime Science and crime opportunity theorists.
Disclaimer: All Mike Sutton’s views and work on this website are entirely his own and either do not, or else may not necessarily reflect those of his employer or any other organisation.
The Internet Journal of Criminology. Probably the most innovative academic journal in the world.
Please note: Theft of a person’s original ideas or written work is theft of their time. Since time is perhaps the most valuable commodity we have, please respect the usual rules of copyright and academic citation.
The original content on this page and on the entire Dysology website is protected by USA and European laws of copyright and also by standard universal and local academic rules and regulations regarding plagiarism.
All rights reserved.
© Dr Michael (Mike) Sutton
OFFENDERS PLAY DICE
Crime as opportunity theory and Routine Activity Theory are wrong. Because these theories are based on the premise that the characteristics of a criminal opportunity are certain. In fact, only once a crime has been unsuccessfully attempted or else successfully completed are its offender and guardianship characteristics certain. Only then does the opportunity relinquish all its uncertainty.
Latest on crime and opportunity
My essay on crime and opportunity: Contingency Makes or Breaks the Thief: Introducing the Perception Contingency Process Hypothesis is now published over at BestThinking.com .This essay proposes one way forward for Crime Opportunity Theories to avoid illogically and erroneously relying upon truisms as explanations for causality.
Truth can be stranger than fiction. Forget the Pelican Brief. Read the Displacement Brief here. Because it raises some seriously telling questions about crime displacement 'knowledge' and the basis for the origins of the diffusion of benefits hypothesis.
Remember some remote annual risks become certainties over enough years. So how safe is that nuclear reacter in your back yard if you live to be 100? To find out click: Curse of the Lucky Monkey Princliple
Could being a victim of a minor belief in harmless myths and fallacies and then seeing them get busted protect you against dangerous or otherwise harmful scams
If this idea intrigues you, then you might like to see where I got it from. If so then please click here to read my latest blog post on the subject on Best Thinking.
Was the great Karl Popper wrong?
Popper's own refutation of inductive knowledge is achieved using the inductive methods he deplored. See: BestThinking.com
Beware the Toynbee Phenomenon
Is Hot Clocking (cold fusion 'free energy' by another name) a bad explanation for something that probably does not exist that is woven from huge strands of disconfirming evidence? Click the Toynbee Phenomenon link above and visit the comments section of a paper on BestThinking.Com - where the Cambridge professor and Nobel Laureate physicist Brian Josephson - refused to bet with me (at no financial cost to himself) that he is wrong. Will the physicist Professor Berkovich put his reputation where his brain is and take the Dysology Challenge?
Weirdly, because it has never been proven to be effective, my own Market Reduction Approach is recommended as good crime reduction and policing practice by UK, USA, New Zealand and Australian government websites. Click here to read my blog post - entitled Impact of my research - about how the internet enables us to discover evidence of our impact on the world that we might not otherwise know about.
Crime Science is founded on completely unscientific notions. Laycock's Mistake
Do We need to understand rather than ridicule to most effectively bust fallacies and myths? If so, show me the research evidence.
Criminology and Dysology
Because I am a criminologist, and for no other reason, this website includes many examples from my own field of criminology
See Mike's Publications
Read Mike's Supermyths blog
Read Mike's Crime Blog