I had a conversation the other day with a friend who reads our site and had been through the posts here where we called out Vani Hari and agreed with other authors across the web that she was a at best uninformed and at worst a complete fraud. He asked me what exactly we had personally against Hari and why we had harped on it. It took me a second to answer properly, formulate the appropriate response, rather than simply blurting out, “Have you actually read her crap?”
There is a pervasive anti-intellectualism that has been steadily growing for years, here in the US in particular we feel it, but found across the web in general. It’s a mix of healthy skeptism gone berserk. Being able to critically examine an issue and see it from either side of an argument is the hallmark of an intelligent individual, it helps us in the process of problem solving, but run rampant it gains a life of its own. The skeptism has now become mainstream ideology of utter disbelief in anything that anyone tell you, which has filtered down to include a rejection of scientific consensus. While Hari is simply a bit player in the overall game of calling each others bullshit, the fact that she will not own up to her mistakes is infuriating, doubling down on her nonsense is not helpful or useful or even fair. If she refuses to have an honest conversation then we should refuse to have an honest conversation back.