Prof. Ed Dutton’s “Almost All Scientific Fraud in Psychology Backs Up Leftist Dogmas”

@The JollyHeretic, on Odysee, January 20th, 2023

Dietrich Stapel former professor of social psychology at Tilburg University was fired for fabricating evidence. “Stapel has retracted dozens of papers, settled with Dutch prosecutors and agreed to 120 hours of community service, after resigning from Tilburg University and relinquishing his PhD.” https://retractionwatch.com/2016/09/13/no-teaching-post-for-fraudster-diederik-stapel-after-all/#more-44194

He made up data to prove left-wing and environmentalist ideas to be correct. One paper argued that people who eat meat are more selfish than vegetarians. It is typically only possible to publish in top journals, which are controlled by leftists, if you show that left-wing dogmas are correct. Since they are seldom consistent with the facts, it can be necessary to fabricate the data. Generally, conservative ideas, hereditarianism, are correct. Both intelligence and personality are largely inherited, contradicting left-wing doctrine that believes in social constructionism – that society, and not genetics, makes us what we are. By 2023, Stapel had had 57 of his articles retracted for fraud and for making up the data.

Dutton looks at the site “Reversals in Psychology” https://www.gleech.org/psych.

The criterion for a reversal is a study that does not replicate, for which there is only very weak evidence, or is simply fraudulent or manipulated. It was up to Dutton to note that it was largely papers supporting left-wing or liberal dogmas that had these problems.

Left-wing people are liars who value equality and harm avoidance, but are low in sanctity, loyalty, group orientation and obedience to authority. Telling lies violates sanctity. Since they are anti-social, pro-individual, self-promoting, and high in Machiavellianism, they do not care what is good for the group and are prepared to lie. They are also low in conscientiousness, which also promotes lying. They care about their own prestige and power, as opposed to those who care about the power and prestige of the group to which they belong. In fact, they are traitors who identify with the outgroup, which allows them to collaborate with them to try to promote themselves. Conservatives, on the other hand, care about the in-group.

Liberals are high in narcissism and wish to be admired. This is because they are mentally unstable and unsure of themselves. Thus, they want to fight for prestige in an underhanded manner, by virtue signaling and going on about equality and harm avoidance rather than being confrontational. 50% of girls under the age of 30 who identify as very liberal have serious mental health problems. Such people fear the world and want power, plus they have low self-esteem and want to be looked up to. Verhulst et al have proven that liberals are higher in the “lie score,” meaning they lie more than conservatives. You would do as an individualist, because for them nothing is more important than power and prestige. They will say “all races are equal,” “all races are the same,” yet they will speak to black people in a patronising manner; more slowly, and so on. Whereas, conservatives will speak to black people in the same way as they speak to everyone else.

Reversals in Psychology has been set up by Gavin Leech who has not highlighted this liberal tendency to lie and commit fraud. As an indication of Leech’s sympathies, he has particularly acknowledged Stuart Ritchie who has a Ukraine flag in his Twitter bio.

Some of the claims that have been debunked are:

  • You can form tribal alliances over trivial things. The reason we make alliances and friends seems to have more to do with genetic similarity theory. Our friends resemble us genetically more than others.
  • Implicit bias and implicit bias training that can root out racism is false, and that racism is almost entirely environmentally mediated is not true. Again, there is in fact an in-built genetic bias towards people who are more genetically similar which promotes racism.
  • Pygmalion Effect. If teachers evaluate you badly, they think you are rubbish, then you will do badly. This is not true. It does not replicate. It has no effect on how well you do at school.
  • Stereotype threat. If a group is told they will do badly on something, this will create a psychological pressure that will somehow cause them to do badly. This is not true and does not replicate. No one asks where these stereotypes come from in the first place. Stereotypes are simply generalities that are typically true. The stereotype that East Asians are likely to do well at math is true. They are in fact tilted against language and in favor of math with an average IQ of 106. Leech claims the evidence is weak. Dutton says he has read evidence that it is simply wrong.
  • The idea of multiple intelligences. The idea that linguistic, spatial and mathematical abilities are not central to intelligence underpinned by G and 80% inheritable is false. The idea of multiple intelligences, kinesthetic, bodily, and emotional intelligence and therefore we all have different kinds of intelligence is nonsense. They do not correlate with intelligence as normally understood. It is a way of trying to make people feel good. So people can claim that we are all intelligent in some way. Now, even the man who invented the idea, Howard Gardner, has admitted that it does not replicate and is nonsense.
  • The ten thousand hours rule. The idea that if you practice for 10,000 hours anyone can be good at anything, such as Olympic gymnastics, or become a famous singer, anyone can become anything, is not true.[1] It does not replicate and the person who came up with it, Malcolm Gladwell, has admitted as much.
  • The idea that IQ can be permanently elevated by certain environmental interventions. The opposite has been shown over and over again.
  • There is no correlation between the prestige of a journal and how likely a finding is to be replicated. Since the left have taken over all the prestigious journals, if a finding is not consistent with left-wing dogma or questions it, then it will likely be rejected out of hand, making it necessary to publish in a more obscure journal. They will then dismiss it and say, “Oh, well, it’s not in the proper journal.” Obscure journal studies are just as likely to be replicated.

Dutton then goes through an analysis finding that 23 versus 11 studies which are either fraudulent or simply not replicable were liberal. He disputes some of the findings against the conservatives, such as the idea that Dunbar’s number does not replicate. Dutton has found plenty of instances where it does. This is the notion that the number for optimal human association is 150. People know each other well and many features of human association seem to work out best around that number. People seem to return to this number in many contexts through trial and error.

Out of those 23 findings, one of them was the aforementioned Dietrich Stapel who accounted for 57 fraudulent papers all on his own. Another researcher Brian Wansink, formerly at Cornell, authored 50 papers using dishonest statistical analysis. A conservative researcher, Hans Eysenck has had 26 papers about which “concern” has been registered. Unfortunately, he is dead and cannot defend himself, in contrast to the other two. If they are included, then 78% of the lying papers are liberal. Without them, then fraudulent studies or ones that do not replicate would be liberal in 92% of cases; possibly more.

Academic fraud is something that is overwhelmingly done to support leftist environmentalist, equalitarian ideas. “Environmentalist” in this context just means that most of what makes us how we are is environmental rather than hereditary, justifying environmental interventions and social policies.

To sum up, though the authors of Reversals in Psychology do not point it out, the conclusion that can be drawn is that liberals are liars who find it necessary to invent data; real data being mostly nonexistent to support their causes.

[1] I am not positive that that was the actual claim. My impression was that the claim was that the 10,000 hours rule was more that that amount of practice was necessary to become truly good at many difficult things. The Beatles practicing in Hamburg before becoming famous is given as an example. It would seem to fit the “necessary but not sufficient” category.

https://theeconomyofmeaning.com/2016/11/06/howard-gardner-on-his-multiple-intelligences-the-theory-is-not-longer-current/

31 thoughts on “Prof. Ed Dutton’s “Almost All Scientific Fraud in Psychology Backs Up Leftist Dogmas”

  1. You’ve probably heard the expression, “shout the finding and whisper the retraction,” and I expect it applies here. Most of the false ideas you list have diffused into popular consciousness and I expect they will stay there. I think this is because environmentalism is cheering and hereditarianism is depressing. In fact, most leftist ideas are superficially attractive. So it’s not just that the retraction is whispered. It’s also that the audience does not hear what it does not want to hear.

    In this and other posts you have thrown light on academic leftists. I’ve been surrounded by these people all my life and so know how the beasts behave in their native habitat. With notable exceptions they are not nice people. Maybe they are nice to each other but that’s not how it looks from the outside. They are extremely transactional in their relationships and I think their core drive is ambition. As you say, they covet power and prestige and leftism is where power and prestige are to be had. Most academic leftists I know would consider a conversation a waste of time if it did not lead to a publication or a grant. Careerism may stand behind some of the frauds you describe. A soulless psychopath entering academia today would at once become a zealous leftist.

    • Even with hereditarianism, a lot of effort is required to actually realize your inherited potential and you need to surround yourself with people of similar abilities. Without Tom B., I’m adrift. The only intellectual conversations I have are in my head, or I pretend people will want to hear what I have to say and kind of talk at them. But, a one-way address is not a conversation.

      I remember encountering an assistant professor as a graduate student who refused to discuss philosophy after 5pm. That’s work! Analytic philosophers are not lovers of wisdom, just pedants and technicians.

      The most extreme careerism and transactionalism I encountered was living in Frederick, Maryland – dormitory suburb for Washington, D.C. What a socially hellish place. If one was not an Ivy Leaguer, then you were a waste of space. But, then who wants to be wanted for your pedigree and pragmatic usefulness anyway?

      Regarding hereditarianism, I used to think my family was smart and academically successful because we read a lot. Now, I think we read a lot because we were smart – being interested in intellectual matters is correlated with intelligence – hence the surfeit of students lacking such interests. Of course, reading also helps “maximize your phenotype” or however they put it.

      My disagreeableness puts me in the Leftist camp, but my conscientiousness (prosocial in nature) makes me honest and thus not a Leftist. I take heart that conservatives come out as consistency nicer people than liberals, but I’m not one of them! Honesty and careerism are a terrible combination.

      • In the debate between Nature and Nurture, it should not be overlooked that genetic and environmental factors may be a function of each other.

        Consider the condition that used to be called cretinism and is now known as phenylketonuria. Here, severe learning difficulties result from brain damage caused by the presence of phenylalanine in the diet, an environmental factor, but only in the tiny minority of people who are unable to metabolize it, which is a genetic condition. The reason the condition was thought to be wholly genetic is that phenylalanine is found in virtually all naturally occurring proteins.

        In a population in which everyone smoked, lung cancer would be considered a genetic disorder.

      • If boats didn’t exist, the deficiency of being prone to motion sickness would mostly not exist.

        If there were no books, the genetic predisposition for becoming near-sighted in childhood from reading would not exist.

        Genes end up interacting with environment. Intelligence is generally good, one would generally think, but high intelligence and high education currently renders women infertile.

      • “Intelligence” often shows itself as talent in rather specialised fields. Descartes was a genius in mathematics, his Analytical Geometry being one of the greatest discoveries since antiquity, but his philosophy is often logically incoherent. Newton was a no more than competent Master of the Mint, Pascal appears to have fallen into a number of theological errors and Paul Painlevé was a notably undistinguished premier of France. Indeed, mathematicians, as a class are not particularly distinguished for general ability or versatility.

        The same holds true in other fields, too.

      • The people you name are geniuses and all geniuses are lop-sided in their intelligence. It is as though all the brain power that would normally be reserved and required for other things has been appropriated in such a way that the person has narrow intelligence. Geniuses also tend to be psychopathic/antisocial. Smart non-geniuses are usually more well-rounded in their abilities. Most people who are great at mathematics (not geniuses) are also smart verbally and vice versa. I’m smart verbally and poor at mathematics. That is unusual.

      • Most people who are great at mathematics (not geniuses) are also smart verbally and vice versa

        Look at Pascal, who made important contributions to Projective Geometry, Number theory, Probability theory and to physics, too (the vacuum, the weight of the air), while Les Provinciales mean that he is reckoned the father of French polemical journalism.

      • I’d be willing to bet money that you’re poor at mathematics only in relation to your verbal. I’m the opposite: very high in spatial and mathematical reasoning and lower in verbal but my verbal is still well above average.

      • Possibly. The only reason I think that I might have some hidden ability is that I learnt symbolic logic – deductive calculus and existential (quantifier) logic – in about 15 hours starting from scratch because I absolutely had to in order to continue on with my PhD. With a figurative gun to my head, I could do it. What was really strange was that one moment I couldn’t and then it felt like something went “click” in my head, and the next moment I could after 12 hours (over four days). Math majors look at symbolic logic and go, “I got this!”

    • One reason that I think people find hereditarianism so terrible is that they assume everything is a relentless winner-take-all competition. There are some things like that: there can only be one president or one prime minister per country. But most things aren’t.

      People only think about relative scales and have forgotten absolute scales. A relative scale compares people while an absolute scale just measures what you can accomplish. Clearly an absolute scale is the more fundamental because you need to be able to accomplish some thing before you can compare people’s ability at doing that thing.

      Even if you are not the best at anything, you can still learn to do more things than you could have done before. You can accomplish some valable task.

      One can distinguish between competitive and additive jobs. A competitive job is a position that can only be given to one person or a few people, whereas an additive job is one where each person adds to what can be accomplished. Of the two, additive is better and back in the day, it was recognized that most things in life are in fact additive.

      Since people have forgotten that and since the rulers of this world have done their best over the past few decades to destroy that way of thinking, people think hereditarianism is intolerable.

      • Hereditarianism is depressing for people near the bottom because it says their family’s prospects for social mobility are not great. It is depressing for people near the top because it means their utopian plans are just pie in the sky. As you say, hereditarianism is less depressing for people near the bottom if (a) their lives are rewarding and (b) they keep their envy and status seeking under control.

  2. As far as 10,000 hours, I think the mistake people make is that if you just do something for a long time you will become good at it. But you have to have intentional practice and push yourself to become better. 10,000 hours of repetition just builds habit. (And you don’t even need that much to build it)

    Also, you have to practice in the right way, and that’s where a teacher comes in. Though I would also suppose that some creative individuals practice and encounter a difficulty, but then solve it in their own way, which leads to them developing a distinct style of doing things.

  3. Modern psychology has been bedevilled by the belief in “internal mental processes.”

    Like many fallacies, it arises from the mind/body dualism inherited from Descartes Once we start thinking of inner world of consciousness and outer, physical world as two distinctive, parallel realms, we are tempted to think that the kinds of understanding we have about the outer (physical) world should apply similarly to our inner lives. There must be inner states and processes about which we can have knowledge (or fail to have knowledge), and this knowledge must be based on some sort of data, and so on. It was an idea that Wittgenstein spent most of his life challenging, as not simply wrong, but ultimately meaningless.

    The scientific method of observation and experiment works very well for the “outer,” material world precisely because it allows observation, controlled manipulation, modelling in space and time, and public verification and the rest of it. “Mind” does not; it is a reified abstraction and has no material, and, therefore, no objective, properties.

    People do certain things: knowing, learning, discovering, imagining, pretending, hoping, wanting, feeling depressed, feeling a pain, resolving, doing voluntarily, doing deliberately, perceiving, remembering and so on. Because these activities have some similarities (“similarity” is itself an abstraction, not a thing), we bundle these very different activities together and label them “mental.” Then we postulate that they are all the product of a single faculty (which we cannot begin to imagine) and, if we are Cartesians, we round it off by treating “Mind” (with a capital M) as a substance or entity, in Aristotle’s sense of substance (what exists without either being predicated of or existing in anything else)

    Beginning in the second half of the 19th century, psychologists tried to cash in on the growing prestige of science by propounding theories of the “mind” superficially similar to those of the physical sciences.

      • “Psychology is BS” might serve as a head-note, but it should be read in a qualified sense, like the famous head-note in Clement’s Case ((1830), 1 Lewin 113, 168 E.R. 980) – Possession in Scotland evidence of stealing in England

  4. It may well be that >90% of social science papers promote Leftist dogmas. Does Dutton show that the fraudulent ones are even more monolithically Leftist than the non-fraudulent ones? Actually, I guess he can’t do this study–he would need a large enough sample of non-fraudulent social science papers.

    • Since most science papers in major journals that get published are Leftist, it would stand to reason that there would be more fraudulent Leftist studies than conservative, seems like a possibility. Hopefully, most social science papers will be non-fraudulent, but we know most studies of any kind cannot be replicated.

  5. I’m curious about his definition of narcissism because a current social media trend is for people to post memes and comments where they play amateur psychologist and diagnose people they are angry at (“my ex husband”) as narcissists. I don’t understand how low self esteem people can be categorized as narcissists. If you take the Narcissist Personality Inventory you find that it’s rather the opposite – narcissists think the world of themselves.

    • I think the idea is that narcissism is compensatory – an invented persona to hide feelings of insecurity. Every time my wife calls someone arrogant, I say the opposite. Truly self-confident people don’t need to tell you how great they are. Roger Federer doesn’t beg you to consider him a great tennis player. Moral people don’t virtue signal. In fact, virtue signalers, who try to prove how great they are without actually doing anything good or helping anyone, are hypocritical liars.

      • Interesting – maybe it should have its own name: “compensatory narcissism” or some such. I am super insecure but score 0/40 on the Narcissism Personality Inventory. And I’m extremely right wing – always have been. Maybe it’s also their lack of agreeableness – whereas I’m very high on that trait too.

        One thing I find interesting is something that perhaps could be called “female compensatory narcissism.” You see where all too common female feelings of low self esteem are overcome by this culture of over-the-top female self esteem. I know someone else here must have noticed this. It’s like (many) modern women have two modes: either feelings of inferiority and worthlessness or over-the-top arrogance and feelings of moral superiority and perfection. You wonder how much of the latter is faked and/or compensatory. Very little middle ground where normal people should be: I have intrinsic worth but am also a very imperfect sinner.

        Sorry for rambling.

      • Ever since I read the phrase “middle class mediocrity” in “Madame Bovary” as a teenager, I knew that had my name all over it. It’s good to have a keen sense of who our superiors are. For me, Rene Girard, Thomas F. Bertonneau, and so on.

        High agreeableness would probably stop you from projecting your insecurity on to other people, as does high conscientiousness (89) for me – despite my low agreeableness; a measly 16.

        Since we are living in a female sentiment dominated world, it is female narcissism and neuroticism that is ruining our society and thus our lives.

    • That’s the thing about labelling. The objective features of a phenomenon so little constrain the ways it is classified and theorized that these features can often be disregarded in trying to understand why a particular classification system or scientific theory has been adopted.

  6. I’m not surprised in the least when I read about fraudulent psychology studies that do little more than validate left-wing dogma. What is surprising is that the professor would get disciplined and even fired. A good sign.

    Consider that absurd Harvard Medical study that put forward that reparations to blacks would have prevented/ameliorated their Covid incidence. The germ theory of disease be damned; much more impactful is whether subjects are receiving huge government bounties. In the Harvard Medical Journal no less. As far as I know, there have been no retractions, and the article was recently cited by a congresswoman (dimwit Sheila Jackson Lee). Mission accomplished!

    I’m not claiming that the article might not have data behind it, but it seems to me on the order of saying that a daily walk could help prevent or lesson Covid incidence. This is the state of scientific “studies”.

    • The fact that BOTH the long time editors of The New England Journal of Medicine and The Lancet (UK equivalent) resigned in disgust at the politically motivated decisions about what got published says it all for me. They won’t be winning friends by outing their publications either, not to mention being out of a job.

Comment

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.