2 Sep – Does This Post Count As Noticing?

PZ Myers does this odd thing – he’s done it twice in the last few days – where he writes about something while trying to claim credit for simultaneously noticing and not noticing that thing. It’s at least as confusing as our sentence structure, so let’s give an example. Today, he wrote about an atheist conference populated by people with political views he hates, and he titled his post: “What if you put on a sh*t-show and nobody noticed?”

Hmm. A prominent skeptical atheist writing a blog post about something, then advertising that post to his 168,000 followers on Twitter is quite possibly the definition of “noticing” an event. In his post, PZ goes on to say there was “a reliable audience” in attendance at the one-day event and he links to someone who, like him, disagrees with some of the political positions of the attendees and was on hand to report on the event. More on that person at the end.

Instead of nobody noticing this event, it sounds like more than a few people did. It caused us to take notice. We would never have heard of Mythcon had PZ not written – and lied about – the conference.

PZ Myers Lie [in bold]:

The whole thing passed me by without a ripple, but at least Talia Levin was there to report on the event. Unfortunately, the Libertarian Freezepeachers noticed her tweets and denounced her and chased her from the casino. Follow the link, read about her adventures.

https://freethoughtblogs.com/pharyngula/2019/09/02/what-if-you-put-on-a-sht-show-and-nobody-noticed/

Facts:

We’re wading into familiar PZ Myers waters with this lie, where he hides the real story under two feet of calm, crystal clear blue ocean, hoping nobody will look. Clicking on the link above, we read Levin’s description of events with interest, searching in vain for the moment when those radical “Libertarian Freezepeachers” “denounced her and chased her from the casino.”

This is what we got instead:

The man who I earlier described as a “Christian nationalist” emphasized that he is in fact both a Christian and a nationalist. He is chasing me around the event calling me a propagandist and a liar and telling people not to talk to me. I was told to exit through the press room. During the panel on “political violence” (for which Andy Ngo got a standing ovation) some folks approached me about my tweets and I beat a hasty retreat. Bye Minds IRL!

https://threadreaderapp.com/thread/1167785541024309249.html

Two things Libertarians – especially those at an atheist conference – generally don’t describe themselves as are “Christian” and “Nationalist,” so we think we’re safe to assume the one guy who “chased” her around – but not out of – the casino does not identify as one.

Additionally, Levin beating “a hasty retreat” after “some folks approached” her does not meet our definition of being chased out. It sounds more like she left of her own accord, which makes perfect sense if the event did, in fact, as she writes earlier in the piece, use up “5000% of [her] social energy for the year.”

To summarize: did “Libertarian Freezepeachers” chase Levin from the casino?

No. PZ made that up.

Analysis:

We thought of Andy Ngo as we read Levin’s report of the event, not only because he was in attendance but also because she uses a similar shtick:

  • go to an event organized and attended by people with whom you violently disagree
  • advertise your disagreement on Twitter or another social media platform
  • ask questions intended to provoke
  • distort/slant/selectively edit the answers to those questions (this step is optional, but we’re pretty sure Levin did it in this case)
  • appear to be an innocent bystander when people take offense and want to engage with you

This is not how genuine conversations are had. This is not about trying to understand what a diverse group of people are saying and thinking and feeling. This is high-school-level stuff designed to provoke your political enemies and score points with the members of your own tribe.

PZ is complicit in this. His decision to “notice” this event has everything to do with boosting Levin’s profile and encouraging others to do the same thing she did. He likes provocateurs from his tribe (and his tribe only).

Once again, there are few principles in PZ Myers’s world, but the main one is power.

He doesn’t want anyone who doesn’t think like him to have any.

Final Tally:

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

Since 30 May 19: 94 science-related posts, 308 non-science posts.

23% of the posts on a “science blog” are about science. 

Today: 1 PZ Myers Lies

Since 30 May 19: 106 PZ Myers Lies

Over to you, PZ. Until tomorrow.

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