Wilfred Reilly on political bias in social science; Scott Alexander on the psychology of conspiracy theories; Ryan Bourne on the AEA meetings; Emil O.W. Kirkegaard on the value of cognitive elites
Scott, a psychiatrist: conspiracies are products of rationalized anger
Arnold, economist, author of “In My Tribe”: conspiracies are products of tribal behavior
Probably both somewhat right, but it’s a fun anecdote where people with different hammers view the same thing as a nail. Not a bad thing -- pluralist science is great. “Specialize in production” as they say
An obvious source of conspiracy theories is that many of them are true! Conspiracies (ie, people coordinating out of the public eye to accomplish their goals) are common, and so of course people tend to look for them.
I would recommend caution with Emil Kirkegaard. His pushing of the dysgenics hypothesis as a certainty based on questionable data and bogus papers (my own conclusions from reviewing the subject) suggests he is driven more by a social agenda than by the evidence. Here’s a tweet from 2018: “Dysgenics is real. Eugenics or Western civilization dies. Choose wisely.”