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Location: UFOUpDatesList.Com > 1998 > Jul > Jul 7

Re: 'She Blinded Me with Science'

From: Jerome Clark <jkclark@frontiernet.net>
Date: Tue, 07 Jul 98 09:23:03 PDT
Fwd Date: Tue, 07 Jul 1998 13:15:24 -0400
Subject: Re: 'She Blinded Me with Science'

>From: RobIrving@aol.com
>Date: Mon, 6 Jul 1998 20:48:07 EDT
>To: updates@globalserve.net
>Subject: Re: UFO UpDate: Re: 'She Blinded Me with Science'

>>To: "UFO UpDates - Toronto" <updates@globalserve.net>
>>From: Jerome Clark <jkclark@frontiernet.net>
>>Subject: Re: UFO UpDate: Re: 'She Blinded Me with Science'
>>Date: Mon, 06 Jul 98 09:21:57 PDT

>You wrote that Festinger's Theory of Cognitive Dissonance has
>been "pretty well challenged" by sociologists of religion,
>etc... Considering >how little of it is directly related to
>religion that's a broad statment. Are you talking about its
>derivative, re. disconfirmation & proselytism?

>It's an important distinction, which I'd like to hear you
>explain before I obsequiously accept such a sweeping dismissal.

Rob, I confess that I don't understand much of the above. I was
simply pointing out that Festinger has been challenged and that
key ideas expressed in 'When Prophecy Fails' have failed of
replication. I also noted, and you have failed to refute, a huge
historical error which unfortunately Festinger used to buttress
a key argument. Aren't you the guy who keeps quoting people who
say that you can't draw a sound conclusion from unsound
premises? Or is that another Rob Irving? Or does that apply
only to persons with whom Rob Irving disagrees?

(I might as well insert here, lest I sound as if I am
discouraging anyone from reading it, that 'When Prophecy Fails'
is a hugely entertaining book, its flawed theoretical premise
notwithstanding. It is as close to a comic novel as a
sociological tract gets.)

You were using Festinger, I couldn't help noticing, as some kind
of all-knowing authority figure who proved his virtue by bashing
people interested in UFOs, and you figured you could use him to
accomplish yet more bashing. I got the clear impression,
moreover, that you or he or both of you were not bothering to
draw any distinction between, say, Dorothy Martin and James
McDonald, Dorothy Martin and Walter Webb, or whatever. If that
is the case, I find it pointless to discuss the matter, since
the argument is flawed from the first and, may I add, dishonest.
It seems to me you want to have it not only both ways but all
ways. . Jerry Clark