Reply To: SARS cov2 and Covid 19

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“Don’t tell me you are also of the opinion that there is some kind of subversive campaign…”

Well there does appear to be some such campaign, but I have not written that you, Steph, are part of it. My remark concerned your personal commenting style: you heaped praise upon John Ioannidis more than once, found Yeadon ‘plausible’ and ‘interesting’, and as soon as Duck posted some conspiracy theory you described it as “a very good point”. Yet you repeatedly accused me of rudeness, and utter lack of concern for human rights.

So I see a pattern; those who play down the danger, you praise, especially their personal qualities. It looks to me like a subconscious strategy to influence the argument; people crave approval, so you give personal praise to those promoting the narrative you wish to encourage, and personal criticism to those saying that things you’d rather were overlooked. Others will see this, and preferring to be described as “plausible, interesting, warm, polite, respectful, experienced and incredibly knowledgeable” rather than “rude, condescending, arrogant, obdurate, angry, impossible to reason with and entirely uncaring about human rights” (all your own words, Steph), they modify what they say towards the outcome you’re trying to achieve. In short, it’s manipulative. Yes, I know; your hackles rise with the word “manipulative”. But like “conspiracy theory”, it’s a description rather than an insult.

I have asked you several times about conspiracy theory, but you simply ignored me – which is just as rude as using rude names and making ungrounded accusations (which you have done and I have not). We have had various commenters promoting blatant conspiracy theory on this thread, and Yeadon lapsed into conspiracy theory. Yet you have so far reserved nearly all your criticism for me. So I ask again; Steph, do you accept that there’s any such thing as conspiracy theory, and can you recognise it?