23 Oct – Epistemic Humility From PZ Myers? Nah…

Really interesting day at Pharyngula. After a six-lie day yesterday – which included creating a fictional historical event out of thin air – PZ appeared to have learned some humility overnight. This is one of the first things we read today:

“Intellectuals” seems to be acquiring a new meaning here in the 21st century. It refers to well-off white people who use their illusion of academic prestige to defend 18th century ideas against all reason…


We wondered…is he talking about himself? He’s a well-off white male who uses the fact that he has a PhD in Biology and teaches at a small state school in western Minnesota to defend 18th century ideas like socialism against all reason and evidence.

Turns out he was actually talking about the so-called “Intellectual Dark Web” – except PZ, like a six-year-old, calls them the “Intellectual Dork Web.” Classic. He rails about “Pinker and Harris being bad scholars,” and is aghast that their “fellow travelers flock to defend even their more egregious errors.”

For realsies? We have 163 examples (and counting) of lies he’s told just since the 30th of May. PZ Myers is the last person on earth who should be complaining about someone else getting something wrong.

And speaking of getting things wrong, PZ tells another lie today:

PZ Myers Lie [in bold]:

Can we all agree that this is totally antithetical to the principles of a free Republic? No one can be above the law. Trump wants to be an autocrat, like his heroes Putin, Kim, and Erdogan. This alone is sufficient cause to impeach him, kick him out of office, and toss his orange ass into jail.



In between the first and second sentences above – which constitute PZ’s entire contribution to this blog post – he inserts this snippet from a Politico story:

A lawyer for Donald Trump argued in federal court on Wednesday that the president could shoot someone on 5th Avenue in New York City and not be prosecuted.


That in itself is a lie, as is PZ analysis of it. Trump’s lawyer, using an argument the US Department of Justice has made consistently since 1973, said a sitting President could not be prosecuted for a crime until after leaving office.

“Once a president is removed from office, any local authority” could prosecute him, Consovoy told a panel of three judges from the U.S. Second Circuit Court of Appeals. “This is not a permanent immunity.”



This is much ado about nothing, and PZ knows it. He read the article, he knows the argument, and he was around during the last two impeachment efforts of Richard Nixon and Bill Clinton, when it last reared its ugly head. He knows what he posted is a lie, he just doesn’t care.

Except for us, nobody calls him on any of his lies, least of all the useful idiots who make up the bulk of his dedicated readership.

And still he has the balls to call the members of the Intellectual Dark Web “poseurs.”

Final Tally:

Today: 1 science-related post, 3 posts on other stuff

Since 30 May 19: 122 science-related posts, 507 non-science posts.

19% of the posts on a “science blog” are about science. 

Today: 1 PZ Myers Lies

Since 30 May 19: 163 PZ Myers Lies

Over to you, PZ. Until tomorrow.

2 thoughts on “23 Oct – Epistemic Humility From PZ Myers? Nah…

  1. This site is not only creepy and obsessive, it’s completely unnecessary. PZ is an awful person to be sure, but he relegated himself to irrelevance and obscurity a long time ago. He has no audience except for a small following of far-left whackjobs on his blog, and the few remaining denizens of the sad, tattered remnants of the almost-dead Slymepit, which I assume is your target audience. Seems like a sad and pathetic waste of time to me, but I guess obsessives gotta obsess.

    1. You flatter us.

      Obsessed is just another word for dedicated and how we spend our sad, pathetic life is completely up to us, but we disagree that PZ has no audience. We “re-discovered” him because he was prominently mentioned in a mainstream, legacy media “debate” with Jordan Peterson. He has 167K followers on Twitter and while we don’t know how many people read Pharyngula on a regular basis, quite a few writers aspire to have a potential audience of this size.

      And it’s fascinating to us that he can lie so blatantly and consistently to that audience. Lying on this scale is bad form even for a partisan ideologue, but it should be completely out of bounds for a sceptical atheist.

      This experiment has an expiration date of one type or another. Either PZ stops lying, or we get tired of reading him (and the latter is happening quicker than expected). We’ll take all the criticism people can dish out (it’s not anything we haven’t already said to ourselves), the only thing we’re concerned about is being honest and getting our facts correct. If we’ve done that, then we’re doing our job.

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