Whilst editing Building your Skeptical Toolkit I decided to remove two of the chapters that I had written. There was nothing wrong with them, they just didn’t really fit with the feel I was going for with the rest of the book. But rather than do away with them completely I thought I would just give them to you for free. So here they are, two full bonus chapters for your reading pleasure. Enjoy.
My Expert is Better than Your Expert
The world is a complicated place and there simply isn’t enough time for us to learn everything there is to know about every topic out there. As such we turn to experts. The problem is that there are so many people on all sides of every issue claiming to be experts, how do you know who to listen to?
This chapter looks at what makes a real expert and gives you six things to keep an eye out for when trying to decide if the person you are listening to is a true expert or just full of hot air.
Good Skepticism and Bad Skepticism
Everyone claims to be a skeptic these days. The people who claim 9/11 was an inside job call themselves skeptics, so do those who deny the evidence for global warming or evolution. But are they really practising skepticism or skepticisms evil twin…denialism?
This chapter looks at some of the ways you can tell the difference between someone who has a truly skeptical mind and someone who just uses the word to cover up a pre-existing conclusion.