Sunday, January 27, 2008

Using a citation to provide plausible deniability

Bob Park, in discussing Pope Benedict XVI and the current Sapienza matter, wrote:

In a 1990 visit to La Sapienza, the Pope, then Cardinal Ratzinger, supported the trial of Galileo by quoting oddball science philosopher Paul Feyerabend: "The trial against Galileo was reasonable and just." Using a quote to make his point is a standard ploy of the Pope to preserve deniability. "The pontiff didn't say it," the Vatican will explain, "he was quoting someone else."

IPBiz notes that such a procedure is routinely employed by academics. In the legal realm, this device was used in the "97% patent grant rate" matter, wherein many professors would quote the elevated patent grant rate claimed by Quillen and Webster, but were completely incapable of justifying it when challenged.

Similarly, when IPBiz challenged a certain blogger on the Merrill plagiarism matter at the University of Missouri, the blogger immediately went to "I was only quoting someone else." A similar result ensued in the Tom Carhart / Gettysburg Day 3 matter, wherein a favorable reviewer of the book was incapable of defending his review.

Of Park on the Flamm matter, see also

Elsewhere in the 25 Jan 08 WN post, Park wrote: Flamm is now being sued for defamation by one of the authors. He doesn't deny the study was fraudulent, but claims Flamm defamed him by persisting. Initially dismissed by the court under an anti- SLAPP law, the suit against Flamm has been reinstated on appeal. IPBiz notes that there was no appeal. The same judge changed his mind on re-consideration.


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