Category Archives: Haters

Sorry to distract you with this [removable] post. But watch the smear campaign against me in response to the PP paper by Monsanto and incompetent Ketchum copywriter:

It did not hit them that I AM a cancer survivor, and changed “despise those who boast” to despise cancer survivors”. Also look at the fake student evaluations…

Here is the offensive propaganda they removed it. As a cancer survivor all I can see this is…. bothersome.

via: Facebook

Is Nassim Taleb a “dangerous imbecile” or just on the pay of the anti-GMO mafia? | Genetic Literacy Project

Taleb is known for his disagreeable personality–as Keith Kloor at Discover noted, the economist Noah Smith has called Taleb a “vulgar bombastic windbag”, adding, “and I like him a lot”–and he has a right to flaunt an ego bigger than the Goodyear blimp. But that doesn’t make his argument any more persuasive.

The crux of his claims: There is no comparison between conventional selective breeding of any kind, including mutagenesis which requires the irradiation or chemical dousing of seeds and has resulted in more than 2500 varieties of fruits, vegetables, and nuts, almost all available in organic varieties versus what his calls the top-down engineering that occurs when a gene is taken from an organism and transferred to another ignoring that some forms of genetic engineering, including gene editing, do not involve gene transfers. Taleb goes on to argue that the chance of ecocide, or the destruction of the environment and potentially humans, increases incrementally with each additional transgenic trait introduced into the environment. In other words, in his mind it’s a classic “black swan” scenario.

via Is Nassim Taleb a “dangerous imbecile” or just on the pay of the anti-GMO mafia? | Genetic Literacy Project.

Watch Nassim Taleb debate Twitter’s greatest tech jargon parody account.

What the world needs now is a Twitter fight among Nassim Taleb (the pretentious author of The Black Swan), Prof Jeff Jarvis (the parody of new media evangelists staged by Rurik Bradbury), and the real Jeff Jarvis (the Web guru who proves how far you can get with lots of jargon and few results).

What if academics followed the new model of @nfergus and @nntaleb and got paid based on #controversy and #engagement?

— Prof. Jeff H Jarvis (@ProfJeffJarvis) August 12, 2014

@ProfJeffJarvis @nntaleb Re. Taleb – either you fail to appreciate the high-stakes epistemic issues or you don’t care. Polemics justified.

— Lynn Layman (@lynnlayman) August 12, 2014

@lynnlayman @ProfJeffJarvis Thanks Lynn, “prof” Jarvis commits 3 fallacies, implies shouting truth => seeking controversy, not byproduct.

— Nassim N. Taleb ن (@nntaleb) August 12, 2014

via Watch Nassim Taleb debate Twitter’s greatest tech jargon parody account..


Not everything Nassim N. Taleb says is rubbish. For someone writing about so many different things (people call him ‘eclectic’, although he prefers to be called a thinker), it would be quite a feat never to say anything interesting. His criticism of financial forecasters is undoubtedly warranted – for the most part. He’s also right in observing that forecasters have a bad habit of finding silly excuses for their misses, and tend to take credit for predictions they haven’t actually made (e.g. hindsight bias). But when I read Taleb, I’m constantly reminded of the pot that called the kettle a swan (or something).

One of Taleb’s achievements that boosted his popularity is his correct prediction of the financial crisis. Or should I say, his claim that he correctly predicted the crisis, or one particular event that occurred during the crisis. That claim is not only made by himself and his fans, but to my surprise, it is also admitted by some of his critics.

Before we have a closer look at the precise ‘prediction’ he’s credited with, let’s read again this passage by the master himself (The Black Swan – NN Taleb, 2010 (2nd edition), pp 153-154)…