Skeptics’ Circle Number 69 – Unscrewing the Inscrutable

At Unscrewing the Inscrutable Brent Rasmussen brings us the 69th skeptics circle with a fun, old west feel.

One of the first entries was particularly interesting to me as an example of crank magnetism. The Socratic Gadfly found Lynn Marguilis embracing 9/11 conspiracies, which shouldn’t be surprising given her HIV/AIDS denial – also requiring a conspiratorial world view.

It would be interesting to study this problem systematically, and see how many times a crank adopts more than one crank belief. I suspect given that it takes a certain kind of broken mind to believe this nonsense that they are susceptible to multiple crank theories as a default, and it will actually be rare to find someone that is irrational on one issue, and not irrational on most issues.

I think it’s also a bad sign for the 9/11 cranks, between Marguilis and their super-secret inside man declaring himself the messiah, it just goes to show just what kind of nuts get attracted to this nonsense.