How Do You Know What You Know?

The problem—if there is one—with very intelligent people is that it’s only relative, and they often don’t recognize it. The very most intelligent and knowledgeable person in the world a few thousand years ago could not hold a candle to your average 8-yr-old gamer, today. There have been millions of amazingly intelligent people throughout history that spurred on humanity. We know of less than 1% of them. We owe our survival to all of them but it’s anyone’s guess which were more valuable: the heralded 1%, or the never known and long forgotten 99%.

The virtue of knowledge acquisition way back when and then, was that it was wholly honest. Nobody financed it, nor did anyone have a personal financial stake in it to the extent they could expect to sell it by holding it back for themselves. To the contrary. Power structures like the ancient church at the time actively suppressed knowledge of nature, so as to keep people ignorant, to remain in control. This went on for a very long time.

Things haven’t changed a whole lot principally. Only the actors, the subtlety. It went from church control to government control—a brief pause for an Enlightenment—back to various levels of control and then, the Industrial Revolution, to add a player. And it was the most important player because, it actually really created lots of values people voluntarily trade for, thus generating a lot of tradable value (money), and the church and state became whores explicitly. It’s reached such a level of sophistication now, that whoring for tax dollars is a sub-contracting network, and everyone’s hand is vying for the pot of gold. And given public unions and pension plans, a 30-year job with the state is a very low risk, high reward proposition that’s going to break the financial back of the newest player, industry, eventually (indirectly) unless something gives first. Such is the work of the parasite.

The biggest scam in history is that the principal producers must be under the reins of the principal parasites.

One way to view history and modern geopolitics is as the means of keeping people as ignorant as possible. And it was marvelously effective, up to the age of the printing press, US Constitution (freedom of speech), newspapers, radio, TV, and now, the Internet, blogs, Facebook, Twitter—each, a step along the way, not only to the decentralization of knowledge and information, but most importantly, the absolutely unpredictable consequences. It has gotten to the point where even church and state kinda realize that to suppress it now–cat outta bag— would be worse for them than to face the inevitable consequences—which, in the most exuberant sense, would be for them to get their resumes out there, seeking honest work.

I’m not a hand wringer at all. In fact, if the real truth about everything we can have the truth for means that, oh shit, I’m a goner…then that’s the way it is.

I’ll take my chances. No guarantees. Everyone is on their own.

At the same time, there are and will remain for a long time, vestiges of authority. Handed down knowledge. You can’t be trusted to have the raw, messy, incomplete data and decide for yourself for better or worse, risking harm or death if you should fall victim to exuberant stupidity.

Take, for example, this little post with a comment thread that nears 1,000 by this point. It was about a “crazy guy.” He happens to be a practicing surgeon. In the run up to that, I spoke to several people, waxed & waned, initially brushing it off, then embracing the idea that the guy is nuts. Then, something about it was unsettling and I decided to do what I always do: blow it wide open with a blog post.

Why not?

Well, I guess because we’re really not beyond the idea of authority, yet. I got resistance on many fronts from respected authorities.

…My attitude about some authorities is pretty specific. They’re essential for survival. It’s a balance, push-pull, yin-yang sort of thing. When the shit hits the fan for you individually and you’re in trama surgery, they’ll save your life if it can be saved. Succumb to some weirdo disease? Likewise.

That’s why I love them first, hate them only second.

And my hate is only idealistic. I’d love to not need them at all—equally idealistic. On a practical level, It’s a bit sad that what happened in that comment thread, happened…pitting “us against them,” as it were. From the outside looking in, to me, it reads like the authorities vs. the ignorant. The missing realization is that everyone is ignorant about something all the time and ignorance can be cured in a mater of seconds and it can be cured profoundly. Thing is, the cure for ignorance is not always to go with the authorities. In the case of that comment thread, it might be to take in far more information than available from the authorities represented, and synthesize it into a personal plan of action or retreat.

I trust people enormously. Saves me a lot of time and worry, and I think it’s natural unless you have reason. Some think Jack Kruse is “dangerous,” and because I can rally a lot of eyeballs on this blog, I somehow have some comic responsibility to protect straying eyeballs.

I’m a Darwinian. You’re on your own and you read at your own risk.

It’s not as though I—in any way—wish to set people up for a downfall, But I don’t feel any particular duty to guard against that, either. I simply don’t believe there is any danger to Jack Kruse’s prescriptions that I can tell. I’ve done cold myself for years. And in the last 4 days I’ve spent two of them in 50 deg water for 25-30 minutes, and the last 2 days, swimming in an unheated pool at about 60 deg for over 30 minutes. Yes, Ray Cronise has some very conservative guidelines. That’s cool. In my experience, I consider them hyper conservative. But it’s cool.

I trust people enormously and I’m quite confident that anyone who wants to take matters into their own hands can skim that comment thread, make up their own mind, and be sensible about whatever they choose to do—and even that’s a bit conceited. Most paleo people would have been OK embarking on such experimentation anyway. When I built up to 15 minutes in 40 deg water I had read nothing at all, ever. I just did it, over time. It was a natural adaptation.

Alright, so what about Melissa McEwen who figured in that comment thread? Here’s the quote from her recent post.

But lately I’ve thought of sweat lodges because of the whole “cold adaptation” thing that’s caught on a bit. Richard Nikoley posted a pro-Dr. Kruse anti-intellectual screed. The gist of it seemed to be: well, I benefited from cold water, so Dr. Kruse must be onto something and I like him anyway. Ok. Dr. kurt harris and Dr. Emily Deans tried to talk some sense into him. Thankfully Ray Cronise, who happens to be an expert on the subject, showed up and finally Nikoley listened to a voice of reason. If you are interested in doing some thermal hacking with cold, I strongly recommend that you follow Ray’s sane science-based recommendations.

Yea, my grandmothers were always trying to “talk sense into me,” too. What a condescending little bitch, eh? I would never, ever characterize her like that. Ever.

We had an exchange in comments under that post over several rounds. She eventually retired. She “resented” arguing with me because I haven’t dug into the books on staph infection, which in my view is impertinent to the argument (I explain why in comments). As of this draft, they’re all still there (no shouting either way). Oh, well. I’m not going to quote it here, but you can read for yourself in that thread what I think about the hand wringing, veiled authoritarianism and really, protectionism she seems to promote.

Subsequently, in an effort to constructively move to common ground, I posted a comment to her later post on food carts about my past experience in Thailand and their colorful, amazing food cart culture, by which you can tell time. It was summarily deleted soon after.

…But anyway, Melissa is a liar of convenience. Yep. It’s all right here in my own comments, damn transparent and amazingly stupid. She had already posted to comments, Don Wiss showed up, and she posted as Anon to diss and insult him, but it was right after a comment she’d posted as herself. Don called her on it, and she flatly denied it. Don then asked me to look at the IP address, and since he’d been anonymously dissed, reasonable request. Yep, exact same IP. Melissa didn’t even have the guts to own up. She just disappeared. So I guess we all ave our little issues with truth and reality, eh?

Yea, Melissa is whip smart—smarter than me I’m sure—and does really good blogs, is meticulous about science, and on and on. Everything kurt harris says about her is true.

And I fucking hate this. But, fuck me…and I’ll fuck you if I can. And I didn’t ask for a fight, goddammit. You insist that I condemn Kruse. I will not. You insist that I have celebrated Kruse. I have not. I raised the question. I blogged in an open way, let everyone have their say.

You fucking asked for it, Melissa.

So, how do you know what you think you know?

Update: Melissa and I are exchanging emails. I never materially edit a post. That said, here’s the deal. Because it’s my post and if you think I’ve done Melissa wrong, feel free to go after me in comments. On the other hand, please, enough said on the negative side here, don’t pile on if you have an urge. Understand that I hate this. Hell, I’ve hugged Melissa and given her a ride in my car. I hate this. Let it rest. I said what I said, She said what she said.

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  1. Gene on April 13, 2012 at 01:49

    How do I know what I know? I follow the science, you see. And based on Ray Cronise’ data about the perfect amino acid profile of potatoes and this study showing PUFA are better than Sat Fat —
    — synthesis tells me that this Paleo lark is a crock and I’m going to eat potato chips and french fries for every meal!

    • julianne on April 13, 2012 at 19:24

      It’s a 10 week study. PUFA saturates cell membranes over time – 3 months or so. Years of high n-6 PUFA is different. Note the Israeli paradox
      Diet and disease–the Israeli paradox: possible dangers of a high omega-6 polyunsaturated fatty acid diet.

      • Gene on April 14, 2012 at 06:34

        Thanks, Julianne. Though I figured my last line gave away my facetious intent.

      • julianne on April 14, 2012 at 16:14

        Yeah, I did notice.
        I’ve just been reading a whole bunch of clincial papers on sat fat for an assignment. Many quote the studies that if you replace SFA with PUFA you decrease your risk of heart disease, just a wee bit titchy at how it is believed without looking at the studies or the bigger picture.

  2. Chris Tamme on April 13, 2012 at 08:01

    I have always appreciated those that can think outside the box. Dr. Kruse is certainly one of those and while I don’t agree with all he says he certainly has some profound insights into the mechanisms of the human body. All those that say they completely understand the complex mechanisms of the human body I call bullshit. All that knowledge has been advancing for the past 1000 years and will continue to change for the next 1000. For all those that say “Don’t sell the bike shop” or “Just use a candle” get out of the way of progressive thinking.

  3. Melissa on April 12, 2012 at 23:24

    I don’t know. You could Google MRSA. I didn’t get an MD. I sought out information on my own. I went to the fucking library and checked out books.

    I didn’t sign up for comment notifications on your blog, so I never followed up my trolling of Don, who everyone in NYC agree is a creepy stalker. We eventually had to ban him from our meetup for being a creep. I agree, I was a bitch then. I am still a bitch. I try to hold back, but sometimes I just have to lay it down.

    I didn’t delete your comment on food trucks. It was caught in my spam filter.

    Also, can you spell my name correctly? Melissa McEwan is actually a feminist blogger. I hear people call her a bitch too though. So I guess we can both be in the same boat.

    • Richard Nikoley on April 12, 2012 at 23:34

      I apologize for spelling your name wrong. Actually, I looked it up a few days ago because i wasn’t sure about the ‘a’ or ‘e’, but I guess my fingers still have the old memory.

      I hate it came to this. Fucking really.

      • Melissa on April 12, 2012 at 23:36

        You know really it doesn’t bother me, except bringing up the Don thing. I posted anon at first because I was afraid of Don. He lived in my neighborhood at the time and knew where I lived. It was dumb I posted anything, but that’s a habit of mine. You can ask John Durant about our dealings with him.

      • Richard Nikoley on April 12, 2012 at 23:57

        If you had a real concern about him you should not have engaged at all, and you KNOW this.

        Second you should have remembered what I had longed to be forgotten before you chose to go after me in a blog post, lamenting about people talking sense into me.

        I would not take that from my own mother or father. You can ask them and they’ll confirm.

      • Melissa on April 13, 2012 at 00:02

        We all do dumb things. I’ve been provoking scary men since I was 4.

        And non-scary men too ;)

        Having people who are smarter than you talk sense to you is something I wish would happen more often to me.

      • Sean on April 13, 2012 at 13:44

        “Having people who are smarter than you talk sense to you is something I wish would happen more often to me.”

        Finding someone who is smarter than you to talk sense to you is really a special gift and I hope you find it someday Melissa.

      • Matthew Caton on April 14, 2012 at 15:51

        You guys need to chill……

        Maybe in an ice cold bath…..?????

        Bad Timing?

        Seriously guys, relax, get outside, go for a long walk, and get some sun.

    • Monte on April 15, 2012 at 08:44

      Melissa, can you tell me why you moderate your comments so thoroughly but then go around to other blogs and do the very things you moderate against?



  4. Erika on April 12, 2012 at 23:34

    About freakin’ TIME someone said it. Amen, brotha.

  5. Steve on April 12, 2012 at 23:37

    First off, thanks for the post on Dr. Kruse. I had been reading the blog, and really trying to study what he said. Some things he said in comments always seemed to make the posts a little more understandable for me. But I also knew he was talking way above my level, and no way was I going to go get a degree in Biology, Chemistry and one or two others to know for sure what he was saying was spot on. So I started looking around the net. And on a few sites, I asked bloggers what they thought of what he was saying. If the things he were saying were true, it seemed like it could change a lot of things about we understand. And something about what he was saying struck me as feeling like he was going in the right direction. And while feeling might be an ok reason to try some N=1 experiments in terms of diet and exercise, I also want to know what is true, not what feels true. I thought about asking you what you thought, but just decided against it, not sure why. So I was thrilled when I saw the post. I’m still not sure what to think, I lean more to the he might be a little crazy side, with some genius thrown in too. I mean, he is a brain surgeon! And I know Dr. Harris and the other dissenters are way more versed in the science behind this whole thing, but something about the tone of the comments, it put me off. Maybe they had been arguing with people, Dr. Kruse , for so long, and things had gotten so personal on other blogs that they just came in with a pissed off attitude towards any one who was so stupid and beneath their intellectual level to even start to believe what they were saying. I had to give up reading the comments, I will probably go back one day, and will take Dr. Kruse with a huge grain of salt and a bit of skepticism, but something about the vehemence of the statements to his supporters just put me, kind of made me think, is this a case of people being pissed off because their point of view is being threatened? I doubt that is it, their arguments are probably rock solid, they are not intellectual slouches, that is for sure, and it is not their job to be nice or convince me. But until I have the time and inclination to go get 5 different degrees or spend the next 4 years studying text books every night, at some point, I have to really on what other people tell me. And it would have been easier if the arguments had been calm, rational, responses, not high school level, anger filled jabs. But hey, that is what the internet is for , I guess. That, and porn. Mostly porn. Thanks for throwing the party though, i am glad I came!

    • Richard Nikoley on April 12, 2012 at 23:53


      You are a perfect example of why I do this. Though it’s a bit difficult to follow exactly your train of thought, there is absolutely a train there.

      Keep thinking for yourself!

      • Steve on April 13, 2012 at 02:02

        And I guess that is one reason I tend to give Kruse a bit of slack, I can relate to having what makes perfect sense in my head, not quite make as much sense to others when it comes out of my mouth or onto the page. And a good reason why I would probably never have a blog of my own, and instead enjoy the hard work of others! :)

  6. Melissa on April 13, 2012 at 00:14

    “Melissa and I are exchanging emails. I never materially edit a post. That said, here’s the deal. Because it’s my post and if you think I’ve done Melissa wrong, feel free to go after me in comments. On the other hand, please, enough said on the negative side here, don’t pile on if you have an urge. Understand that I hate this. Hell, I’ve hugged Melissa and given her a ride in my car. I hate this. Let it rest. I said what I said, She said what she said.”

    Heheh, don’t worry. I’m no delicate flower. I know what people think of me. Heck, I’ve gotten DEATH THREATS from animal rights activists. This stuff said about me on the paleosphere is pretty tame in comparison. So even if I am a bitch, wrong, yadda yadda, at least people aren’t threatening to firebomb my house.

    If you are going to fight, do it with some pride at least. I may be tiny materially, but in words, I am a beast. One of the reasons is that I’ve been through a lot in my life, so there isn’t a lot that I’m afraid of.

    • Richard Nikoley on April 13, 2012 at 00:18

      Alright. With that, I’m gonna grab some sleep. 8 hour drive in the morning, I won’t be able to check into comments, so, everyone post your favorite nice thing about Melissa.

  7. Anon on April 13, 2012 at 01:22

    everyone post your favorite nice thing about Melissa.

    She’s saner than Evelyn.

    She’s got bigger balls than Stephan.

    Hell, she tried to browbeat you, Richard! That’s an F for tactics, but an A for heart.

    Or something.

    MM: “next month I’m too busy meeting some of the top ice swimmers in Stockholm”

    And who builds their European vacation around proving a Nashville doctor wrong? While bitching about his Alexa score and how many pageviews he gets?

    We’re talking serious, stalker, get a temporary restraining order crazy.

    • Emily Deans MD on April 13, 2012 at 01:40

      What? Melissa lived in Sweden for some time and has a whole blog about science, anthropology, and human capacity. I agree Kruse has gotten under her skin, but if she wanted to stalk him, there are much better ways to do it than by going to Stockholm.

      • Anon on April 13, 2012 at 01:45

        Yes, she could create a 20-part series of attack posts instead.

        Oh, wait.

  8. Emily Deans MD on April 13, 2012 at 01:34

    Richard, if you hate this, then why do it? What provoked you to write this post, really? Was it just Melissa, or was it me too, and Kurt? (and others) We said worse things to you directly, right here in your blog, but Melissa gets her own separate post and public “airing.” Why is that?

    I get your motivations for the other post, I disagree with them, as you well know, but I get them. My disagreement is that Kruse himself has very little to do with science, and everything to do with using his own *authority* to create his online personality cult, so arguments from authority, in debating the veracity of the Kruseisms, are valid, and meaningful, and address the issue directly. Fine. We addressed it. That’s what the post was for, I suppose, for better or worse.

    But if you are 100% cool with a rumble on the blog and in the comments, why write this post, after the fact,
    specifically going after one person? What was in your heart, Richard? Veracity? Revenge? Another public airing?

    You’ve done it, and now you hate it. That’s fair enough. But what do we learn from it?

    • Anon on April 13, 2012 at 01:42

      You apparently missed the part where Melissa ripped Richard a new one on her blog.

      • Chloe on April 13, 2012 at 03:26

        Good grief. It’s clear that Melissa has gotten under your skin, Richard, as well as Kruse’s. I don’t think he can go a single day without posting something nasty in his blog comments or forum about her (and Emily Deans, and Kurt Harris, and whoever else has ever disagreed with him). Then his supporters follow suit and join the pile-on. And now you’ve posted this, which, whether you intended it to or not, will only fuel Dr. Kruse’s vitriol toward Melissa (et al.) and, no doubt, make his supporters rally around him even more, no matter what weird, messianic, pseudo-science gobbledygook he says next. You claim to be agnostic about Dr. Kruse, but if often seems like he’s got you in his pocket. (In a move that will surprise nobody, Dr. Kruse has already retweeted a link to this post.)

      • Shane on April 13, 2012 at 22:43

        blah, if that was ripping richard a new, he’s pretty darn sensitive. I wouldn’t think it after reading his blog here for so long.

        I think, richard just wanted the controversy & page views. :)

      • Richard Nikoley on April 14, 2012 at 01:34

        Page views, are a gift, Sean, but only if thers righteous, honest controversy.

        I dare say. This is about the only Paleo blog where one and all can come to take a shit or plant a flower. Let it ever be so. Everyone is one their own.

      • Sean on April 14, 2012 at 02:40

        Uhm, dude, Shane, not Sean.

      • Richard Nikoley on April 14, 2012 at 03:11

        Get over yourself, Shane, Cunt.

      • Richard Nikoley on April 14, 2012 at 03:12

        And yes, it is 3am and all 14 in the cabin are to bed but one. Soon,

      • Sean on April 14, 2012 at 03:30

        Speaking of Shane, my parent’s next door neighbor is the late Jack Schaefer’s daughter. My Dad was really pissed off when he found this out right after Schaefer died, as Shane is his all-time favorite film and he wanted an autograph.

    • Richard Nikoley on April 13, 2012 at 09:14

      “What was in your heart, Richard? Veracity? Revenge? Another public airing?”

      I’m human just like anyone else. I mulled over it all day, including during my 30-minute swim in the cold water. Then, I just began writing. And I always try to give it straight with little to no regard how it will be perceived.

      At any rate, I didn’t really take pleasure in it in the first place. Within minutes of posting, there’s Melissa in my email. We shot a half dozen emails back & forth and in the end, I hated having done this.

      But I did, it’s there, it’s done, and Melissa took it like the champ she is.

      Needless to say, I’m not a “don’t hit back” sort. I say, hit back harder. In my experience that resolves things the quickest.

      FWIW, I agree with you about Kruse arguing from authority and have said many times that he needs to really tone down the hyperbole and his narrative. However, I don’t think counter-arguments from authority get us anywhere.

      • BabyGirl on April 13, 2012 at 10:03

        You know how Melissa operates. If you hadn’t busted her with the proof of something she lied about she’d still be running her mouth about you.

        Don’t back down bro.

      • Monte on April 15, 2012 at 13:04

        Amen, BabyGirl.

    • MoreAnon on April 13, 2012 at 12:51

      “But what do we learn from it?”

      What we learn is that a whole bunch of long-time bloggers are upset that a new guy can come in, make a following, and monetize his blog for major $$$$$ when you guys don’t know how. Follow the money – Kruse is making it, and those who aren’t, be-otch.

      • MoreAnon on April 13, 2012 at 12:54

        Kruse is *the* successful entrepreneur here in this story, Richard. Note that, please. The rent-seekers who rely on their credentials from their exclusive guild & elite colleges ain’t pulling in the same bucks. And so their angry reactions are to be expected.

      • VW on April 13, 2012 at 13:48

        “The rent-seekers who rely on their credentials from their exclusive guild & elite colleges ain’t pulling in the same bucks”

        Are you alleging that the credentialed critics are going after Kruse because of they’re jealous of the money he is making? I don’t know anyone here and so I can’t say definitively otherwise, but my inkling is that there’s not even a tiny grain of truth in that allegation, if that’s what you’re averring.

      • VeryTrue on April 13, 2012 at 19:04

        “but my inkling is that there’s not even a tiny grain of truth in that allegation, if that’s what you’re averring.”

        i don’t know MoreAnon, but I think they have a point. If not jealousy, then what’s with all the griping about who ranks where on Alexa? Surely it’s all about blog traffic and its benefits. Of course that suggests it’s about the money. The h8terz can’t a dime from their blogging.

        In general, I support the entrepreneur, who brings and creates value for other people instead of endless nay-saying.

      • M. on April 14, 2012 at 08:11

        Exactly! You discovered Denise Minger’s secret. The nay-sayin’ whore was just jealous of T. Colin Campbell’s money. The kindly old man has helped so many people with his progressive ideas, and he has made a tidy profit as well. H8terz goin’ to h8t. Stinkin’ jealous whores.

      • Anon on April 28, 2012 at 20:11

        M., your attempt to conflate Denise Minger with Melissa McEwen and the Usual Suspects is ludicrous.

        Melissa radiates red-hot jealousy over Kruse’s platform. But Minger’s elegance, humor & devotion to the science can’t be missed.

        Let me break it down for you clearly:

        Melissa wishes she were a star, but will never be one.

        Kruse wanted to be a star, and made it happen.

        Denise Minger never cared to be a star, yet she was born one.

      • Anna K. on April 28, 2012 at 21:09

        Well put anon

      • Jscott on April 13, 2012 at 19:06

        Access to financials? That comment was lamesauce.

      • Exceptionally Brash on April 17, 2012 at 18:29

        Amen, MoreAnon.

    • Jscott on April 13, 2012 at 19:02

      Because it creates the one thing the blogosphere/internet/life is missing?

      A table for ALL people to sit around, hash things out, share a meal together, and make merry after drinks.

      The initial focal point becomes a piece of a puzzled backdrop.

      That is how I take most of Richard’s posts.

      Interesting, as I loved the other post. My degrees are in different areas. I do not know Kruse. I read his first few blog posts a year ago (I think). I think I tweeted something dealing with Quantified self about him. I thought his blog looked a bit Tony Robbinsish to be a Neuro dude. I forgot about him.

      The blog post, I thought, used him as a metaphor.

      And this one? A bit of the same with more cayenne. I hate that. (Cayenne makes me Break out.)

    • Hordearius on April 14, 2012 at 19:03

      Why do it? Wounded pride. Melissa’s young and attractive, and not some wizened, post-menopausal loon who could be dismissed out of hand.

  9. LeonRover on April 13, 2012 at 01:58

    “The biggest scam in history is that the principle producers must be under the reigns of the principle parasites.”

    You must have intended either “principal” or “unprincipled”

    – I suggest “UN-“.


    • Elenor on April 13, 2012 at 06:29

      Okay… {sorry} wee pile-on here… it’s “reins” not “reigns” — “reins” as in controlling, driving, directing… Not “reigns” as in ruling as king/queen… (I’m a technical editor by profession… and I TRY to keep it under control… but sometimes it escapes…)

      • LeonRover on April 13, 2012 at 07:13

        And when the Queen is side-saddle on her palfrey, say, while reviewing her troops . . . . ? ?


  10. Gene on April 13, 2012 at 02:00

    Oh wait, that’s the Matt Stone diet…

  11. Gene on April 13, 2012 at 02:14

    And since bad things are said to come in threes, my final word: I don’t give a toss if Kruse, Cronise, McEwen, McEwan, Nikoley, Harris or anyone else is bat shit crazy/dangerous/reckless. The only question worth asking is, “are they RIGHT?”

    How comical it may be to read some of things said about Kruse by the medical authorities of the Paleosphere should the man turn out to be on the money. I kind of hope he is just for that.

  12. Txomin on April 13, 2012 at 03:57

    Did you claim that the average 8-yr-old gamer is more intelligent than, say, Aristotle?

    • Chris on April 13, 2012 at 04:18

      There are different kinds of intelligence. Certainly, the average 8-year-old-gamer has Aristotle, as they say, pwned in certain areas, and vice versa. To claim that one is simply smarter than everyone else in all regards is pretty silly. There are plenty of members of Mensa that live in their parents’ basement and possess a vast array of pets of a single species (cats, for example). Meanwhile, I might be a pretty dim bulb in comparison to what the Mensa people know, but I only have one pet, a wife, lots of friends, people that fist bump me in the gym, so on and so forth. I think we should respect that different folks bring different elements to the game, no pun intended.

      Having said that, I am reminded that the Internet is serious business, and that Richard Nikolay has a serious following. Kudos to him and his. It’s good to be engaged in this kind of conversation and change. I’d like to be able to force this kind of conversation and change with my classmates, who are all soft-belled, sleep-deprived grain-munchers that are convinced that my high cholesterol diet is killing me, despite my increased muscle mass, energy, and gorgeous metabolic and lipid panel results. Anyway.

  13. steve_01702 on April 13, 2012 at 04:14

    isn’t Don Wiss the dude that threw you off paleo island when he got wind you were eating potatoes?

    Enough of the drama…

    we need a Ray Peat series here at FTA! FTW!

    • Erika on April 13, 2012 at 15:19

      We need a Jimmy Moore data dump post! There must be at least two dozen ‘experts’ who can sort all this out for us – including Kruse himself!

  14. Nigel Kinbrum on April 13, 2012 at 05:10

    “How Do You Know What You Know?”
    I don’t know anything for certain. I examine the evidence for & against things. My beliefs are based on my interpretation of the evidence.

    I see the Dunning-Kruger effect every day!

    • garymar on April 13, 2012 at 23:53

      Just read the Wikipedia entry on Dunning-Kruger effect. The effect is the opposite in East Asians. East Asians consistently underestimate their effectiveness. Let’s call it the Regurk-Gninnud Effect. I am not worthy!

      I read a book about the Russians written in the 60s, and a phrase the writer used to contrast them with the Americans stuck in my mind: he said Americans possessed a kind of “irritable individualism”. I thought that was pretty apt. I suppose this irritable individualism includes a whopping dose of self over-estimation.

  15. Jarick on April 13, 2012 at 05:39

    Great post. So many people in the “paleosphere” have such a damn rigid dogma that they cling to, even while they poke fun at “CW” and “SAD”. I read this stuff, probably like most people, because I want to be healthier in whatever ways. Until it’s been proven one way or the other, it’s interesting, and maybe worth trying.

    The ad hominem arguments come out full scale against Kruse and it’s counterproductive. The man wrote a pretty interesting THEORY that challenged a lot of what we believe. Instead of debating or analyzing the theory, it’s name slinging and undermining.

    I dig that you’re willing to step outside your comfort zone and present new ideas that might challenge what you yourself believe. Only a handful of people seem to do that, and it makes them far more interesting (valuable, worthwhile, helpful).

    For CT, I’m going through his entire series (taking notes, correcting grammar, deleting some of the self-important fluff) and it seems consistent. I’m keeping an eye on the early adopters and watching their results. If it has some promise, I’ll give it a shot. If not, I’ll keep it in the back of my mind.

  16. Kevin on April 13, 2012 at 05:44

    Nice post Richard.

    In my opinion, the absolute best thing that could happen from this whole exchange with Melissa and Evelyn et al is for the Paleo world to realize they represent harm and as Dean Dwyer so eloquently stated at PaleoFX, make a stand that we’re having zero tolerance for those who have no desire to help others, simply take a stand to attack again and again and apply their Graffiti to sites such as FTA and others.

    She represents an opportunity to cause more harm to others than anyone, even Kruse, and the Paleo movement by discouraging those lurking who may need to ask for help to avoid jumping in and posting for fear of being the recipient of her sharp tongue.

    The world would simply be a better place if Melissa and Evelyn would stay in the ‘bad side of town’ and kept their harsh words with the rest of the like minded folks on Paleo Hacks.

    • M. on April 13, 2012 at 06:15

      “The world would simply be a better place if Melissa and Evelyn would stay in the ‘bad side of town’ and kept their harsh words…”

      I don’t think that was quite what Richard was getting at. You stupid cunt.

      • Rebecca on April 13, 2012 at 06:39

        M. Would you please go crawl back under your rock? Your mode of operandi here is not exactly helpful.

    • Chloe on April 13, 2012 at 07:03

      I’m not exactly sure what Dwyer said at PaleoFx, but Kruse has alluded to it approximately 8,000 times. He, at least, seems to interpret what Dwyer said to mean that there are two groups of people: visionaries who come up with theories and make treatment/training recommendations and “trash” (yes, that’s the word Kruse uses) who question or criticize the other group’s theories and recommendations. Kruse likes to insult the latter group and accuse them of “mental masturbation.” I would argue that both groups are necessary. The paleosphere needs people to come up with new ideas and also needs people to vigorously question those ideas, to make sure that dogmatists and invalid theories don’t rise to prominence. I honestly believe that Melissa and Evelyn have a desire to help others. Otherwise, why would they bother writing blogs and subjecting themselves to insults? They help hold people like Kruse accountable and thank goodness for that. So thank you, Melissa (and Evelyn, Emily, etc.), for putting yourself on the line so publicly. You are far braver than I am.

      • john lushefski on April 13, 2012 at 08:24

        Both the “theorists” and the “mental masturbators” have followers, some of which are oddly loyal fanatics. For the critical thinking crowd, the “mental masturbator” group is unnecessary. I stopped reading CarbSane’s blog when I realized she is obsessed with finding fault in others, and her commenters are mostly sycophants who already have “everything figured out.” I just don’t see the purpose in continual nitpicking, other than to build an unintelligent following: the people who need a “guru” for “debunking” are the same people who don’t read references in the first place, just leading to more splitting of dogmatists.
        Unlike many others, I’ve never tried veg*nism, because arguments put forth by McDougall et al are full of holes and non-supportive references. We need more people to examine “theorists'” references/ideas and follow up with their own; we need fewer people wandering around blogs taking “guru consensus;” we need more writers like Masterjohn, Dobromyskyj, Ayers, Tafur, Peat, etc, who present novel arguments and ideas.

      • expat on April 13, 2012 at 09:09

        I agree with Kevin and John Lushefski.

        These anti-Kruse people have not brought anything to the table but continually nitpick on bull*hit. It is frustrating and annoying. It seems that Emily, Melissa, Kurt, Evelyn etc are jealous. Seems they need the spotlight continually on them.

        I have been reading many blogs for a long time including this above mentioned clique that lauds one another but doesn’t tollerate anyone else’s opinion. They haven’t helped me in the least bit. But I have been reading Kruse for the past few months, implemented the Leptin Rx and feel and look much better. That is all the proof I need right now.

        PS: And enough with the haters like Chloe. Kruse has not insulted anyone-not in the podcasts or in his blog.

      • Chloe on April 13, 2012 at 09:25

        If Emily, Melissa, Kurt, and Evelyn continually needed the spotlight, perhaps they would hire a publicity team like the one Kruse has. And to say that Kruse has never insulted anyone . . . wow, if I had all the time in the world, I could go back and find a hundred examples for you from his blog, forums, Facebook, Paleohacks, Twitter, and god knows where else (don’t worry, Richard, I don’t actually believe in god). He is a serial insulter. If you haven’t seen examples of this, I’m really wondering what you’ve been reading or listening to.

      • Kim C. on April 13, 2012 at 10:55

        expat – I’m in my 5th week of the Leptin Rx and CT, and seeing great results.

        However, this quote from you “Kruse has not insulted anyone-not in the podcasts or in his blog” is just on accurate (not even directionally accurate – lol). Unfortunately, Dr. Kruse has on many, many occasions online, including on his blog/forum, called out/attacked/insulted Melissa, Kurt, and Emily (I guess you could call it “self-defense,” but c’mon), and I cringe every time I see such remarks from him, because it detracts from his work (which I believe is helping people). I earnestly believe that he has good intentions, and for that reason, I really wish he’d take the high road (and for that matter, I’d love to see all of these other bloggers do the same).

      • expat on April 16, 2012 at 03:54

        @Chloe and Kim C

        Can I please have a few examples of Dr. Kruse insulting?

      • Chloe on April 16, 2012 at 04:14

        On his Facebook page, Dr. Kruse said that Kurt Harris has “no balls.” He also said, “He has 6 neurons in his head a [sic] 5 of them are infected with spirochetes.”

        On his blog, forums, and Twitter, he routinely says that Emily Deans and Kurt Harris don’t know what they’re talking about. I’m sure you can find these examples on your own (he sometimes doesn’t use their names, but instead just refers to them as a radiologist and psychiatrist).

      • expat on April 16, 2012 at 08:16

        you are joking right?

      • Chloe on April 16, 2012 at 08:32

        Joking about what, expat? No need to be deliberately cryptic. That doesn’t really foster discussion. Just explain yourself.

      • expat on April 16, 2012 at 09:48

        Those are insults? For an FTA follower you sure have a thin skin..
        Anyway, I think those remarks are in response to the insults that Dr. Kruse has been dealing with ever since he has been taking more and more of the spotlight away from this clique.
        Again I have gained nothing from the usual suspects-and they really come off as arrogant know-it-alls. In the very least Dr Kruse has given people hope and is a positive figure in alternative health- I put him up there with Wolf, Sisson and Gedgaudas. They are true selfless leaders-unifiers. Not dividers vying for the spotlight.

        BTW, why are you facebook friends with Kruse if you think he says “weird, messianic, pseudo-science gobbledygook” and “insults” your heros? Very weird…

      • Chloe on April 16, 2012 at 10:04

        I think many, if not most, people would classify those statements as insults. But we clearly have very different opinions about Dr. Kruse, so I’m not sure it’s worth even arguing about. It feels sort of like an Obama supporter facing off against a Newt Gingrich fan (i.e., a huge waste of time and energy). Clearly, I believe that there are valid reasons Dr. Kruse has gotten so much negative attention. You don’t. I’m sorry you’ve gained nothing from Kurt Harris and Emily Deans. I have. On the other hand, I haven’t gained anything from Dr. Kruse, whom I regard as a very damaging, divisive presence in the ancestral health movement.

        I’m not Dr. Kruse’s Facebook friend. His Facebook page is public, however, and, was quoted extensively in the comments of Richard’s previous blog about him.

      • Anon on April 16, 2012 at 23:51

        He also said, “He has 6 neurons in his head a [sic] 5 of them are infected with spirochetes.”

        “Chloe”, Google can only find the string “He has 6 neurons in his head” on one place in the entire internet, and it’s in your post right here on FTA.

        That makes you a liar. What a surprise.

        As for “no balls”, there are too many instances of it on the net to check, but I imagine it’s yet another one of your retarded falsehoods about Kruse.

        Who I don’t even like, particularly. But I despise hit squads consisting of sneaky asshole camp-followers like you far more.

        I find it interesting how Gang of Six — such fierce warriors elsewhere — has been all but silent in defense of Melissa. Harris showed up, but only to paste in his curriculum vitae. Emily Deans tried to lend air support by pretending that Melissa’s upcoming Scandinavian trip (“next month I’m too busy meeting some of the top ice swimmers in Stockholm”) was the product of something other than her Fatal Attraction obsession with Kruse.

        Because that’s why everyone vacations in Sweden: It’s where the ice swimmers are.

        As if Melissa hasn’t already outlined her future post where these “top ice swimmers” discuss Kruse’s ideas and pronounce him a Stoopit Doodyhead who is also Dangerous and Must Be Stopped. And has Too Big An Ego. And a Higher Alexa Than Me. (Sob!)

        And we’ll have to take Melissa’s word for it that the “top ice swimmers” really said those things. Why would she lie?

        (BTW, what the fuck is a “top ice swimmer” anyway? How demented is she that she’s condescending based on that? hahahaahhahahahaahaha)

        (And is it just my machine, or has Melissa deleted the comments where she questioned Richard’s motives, called him sexist, etc etc etc?)

      • Chloe on April 17, 2012 at 00:58

        Hi Anon. Sorry to disappoint you, but I’m not a liar. (Un)fortunately, I didn’t have the foresight/obsessiveness to take a screen shot of Dr. Kruse’s Facebook page when the insults against Dr. Harris were there for everyone to see. Sounds like he has (in a moment of clarity? for fear of a lawsuit?) taken down the incendiary comments. There’s really not much I can do about it, is there? I’m sure there are other people who frequent FTA who did see the comments. If you’re so inclined, you can continue your sleuthing by asking around.

      • Chloe on April 17, 2012 at 01:15

        Actually, it looks like Jack Kruse doesn’t have the judgment with which I was almost ready to credit him. His insults against Kurt Harris are still on his public Facebook page in a thread from April 3rd. It appears that I slightly misquoted his statement about the number of neurons in Dr. Harris’s head (it should have started “The dude . . .” rather than “He. . .”). My apologies, Anon. I’d hate for you to have to trouble yourself with more research, so I’ve pasted Dr. Kruse’s insults in their entirety below.

        Dr. Jack Kruse: I love Harris……dude sits in a dark room all day and has not touched a patient since med school and thinks he knows anything about what did or did not happen that day. You can’t get in trouble for any of this when you are the patient!!!! What a maroon. As a patient I can consent and do what I want to myself. The only person I put at risk was me. And I go the MRSA from a family member and cultured it out. And he says I’m lying. I have tons of proof. Every person in the OR that day knows the full story because I told them within 2 weeks……………..Moreover, I just got off a stage in my own home town and told the world what I did and why I did. I have used this to help patients in my clinic and OR within three weeks of performing this bio hack. Jealousy…….that is his response because he has no balls. That is why happens when you read articles and stop thinking. The dude has six neurons in his head a 5 are infected with spirochetes! It so obvious he hates me. Ironically, I like that. I still like him because we need him in the paleo world to start helping patients and get in the game to help people. There are millions out there that need MD’s help. Stop reading papers and being a blog commenter and get in the game. Reminds me of Top Gun at the end……..dude is MIA, Its time him and the other paleo MD’s step up their games.

      • Richard Nikoley on April 17, 2012 at 06:31

        Anon, the comments between Melissa and I are still there.

      • Sean on April 13, 2012 at 11:07

        I think the anti-Kruse people bring plenty to the table, actually. And if they want to trash Kruse on their blogs or in the comments here, well, why the hell not? They aren’t engaging in censorship. I’m not saying I agree 100% with the anti-Kruse crowd or don’t find people like Melissa to be annoyingly smug at times, but it’s wantonly disingenuous to say they bring nothing to the table.

      • john lushefski on April 13, 2012 at 13:26

        Why? I’m honestly curious as to what you think they have contributed. To me it’s a matter of actively looking for something to find fault with, no matter the utility of the idea or context of the quote; why not just extract what you think *is* useful and present a new idea? Criticisms of Ray Peat tend to be particularly empty.

        Too many comment sections are filled with people looking to get some sort of guru consensus. Someone who bounces around from Sisson to Rosedale to Durianrider is just going to eventually settle on whatever he wants to hear, which is why Matt Stone’s blog is good a being a crazy cult site: it’s great to be told you can eat and do whatever you want, and intelligent people get bored and leave.

        I think comment sections of blogs are often good indicators of the blog itself; look at the comment section archives of Hyperlipid or your blog for instance. People start discussions, have reasonable arguments, and learn new things; and they want to learn, not find a savior.

      • Sean on April 14, 2012 at 03:21

        Well, if someone like Kurt Harris or Emily Deans has a serious problem with Kruse then that alone is a red flag for me. We all weight opinions, right? People looking for gurus just seem to weight opinions in binary ;)

        These people raised issues about MRSA obviously, but also about whether or not it is even possible, much less healthy to spend four hours in freezing water, and I think they were valid arguments. If Kruse is telling obvious lies then that’s a big problem. Again, I have to stress I haven’t read Kruse at all and I’m not really motivated to at this point, he could be right but he strikes me as a blowhard.

        I think having a spectrum of blogs and commenting styles is a good thing. Sometimes people just need to relax and argue like they were sitting at a pub and I think FTA is great for that. When everyone’s screaming at each other, one can sometimes gain the most insight into who really is full of shit. I’d never tell someone to go fuck themselves over at Perfect Health Diet, but I do it here occasionally, although often facetiously.

        The average person seems to have a craven desire to be led around by the nose by gurus, the State, etc. Nothing we can do about that. But I do think seeing a lot of opinions and rather emotional clashes such as in the Kruse post can be enlightening. In my case I’ve actually started experimenting with cold ass baths even if I think Kruse is a blowhard. The whole brouhaha got me interested. Also, I’m tired of catching all the colds my son brings home from preschool, because they turn into man colds.

      • expat on April 16, 2012 at 03:51

        “I think the anti-Kruse people bring plenty to the table, actually. And if they want to trash Kruse on their blogs or in the comments here, well, why the hell not? ”
        I have no problem with them disputing. I do have a problem with them nitpicking and thinking they are the gurus. I know the whole point of blogs is for some kind of discussion. But they don’t discuss they try to shoot down everything Dr. K states. It is very annoying and distracting.
        Also, you appear to be intelligent but why write the following discrediting sentence: “I have to stress I haven’t read Kruse at all and I’m not really motivated to at this point, he could be right but he strikes me as a blowhard.” You seem like a chearleader for your online blogger friends.

      • TMS71 on May 1, 2012 at 12:24

        How can you say Kurt wants the spotlight? If that were the case don’t you think he’d post more than once every 4 months or whatever it is? I take them at their word, that they think Kruse is an incompetent fool who is far overreaching his expertise and baffling people with sciency sounding BS. I agree with Richard that they should have just made their case and let people decide and shouldn’t have lobbied him to take some ‘prudent’ position. Its not Richard’s responsibility to look after us. But aside from that I don’t think they are motivated by jealousy. I think they are genuinely irked by what they see as a BS artist dressing up totally unfounded ideas in fancy jargon.

      • Erika on April 15, 2012 at 23:49

        John –

        CarbSane was instrumental in exposing Jimmy Moore and the whole LLVLC franchise – to say nothing of her masterful debunking of Gary Taubes (something she was doing when pre-conversion Kurt Harris was still playing ‘John the Baptist to his Jesus’ or however the analogy went).

      • Sam on April 28, 2012 at 12:34

        CarbSane was instrumental in exposing Jimmy Moore and the whole LLVLC franchise – to say nothing of her masterful debunking of Gary Taubes (something she was doing when pre-conversion Kurt Harris was still playing ‘John the Baptist to his Jesus’ or however the analogy went).

        You assholes are so jealous of the results of hard work that you can’t even see straight. “Exposing Jimmy Moore”? “The whole LLVLC franchise”? Like Jimmy’s some devious, lazy media baron? The fat-cat in the cluttered S. Carolina spare bedroom?

        Do you have any idea how hard it is to produce that many radio shows day after day, month after month, year after year? He has worked harder and longer — like a fucking dog — to create the community, and in any other part of media he would make more and work less.

        And he doesn’t even pick sides. He respectfully interviews anyone who might reasonably have something to offer in the area, and promotes every single paleo blog that launches. He’s just trying to make the tent bigger. Is that why he should be singled out for hatred — because he doesn’t savage your enemies?

        Jimmy’s picked a small but important part of the world where one man busting his ass for years can make a difference — and he HAS. Evelyn has done nothing, exposed nothing — she’s just being vicious, and it’s no accident that her followers are weak, self-hating males like Sanjeev, Nigel, and Kamal Patel.

        And “masterful debunking of Gary Taubes”? Carb restriction was a punchline before Taubes’ NYT magazine cover story invented the “paleosphere”. You need to work on your father issues, Erika, because Taubes is the daddy of this whole deal. That’s why you hate him.

        Evelyn will never write an article or book that will move a culture the way Taubes has. She doesn’t have anything new to say. And she’s too nasty, too poor a writer, and too fat to be credible — at least on the subject of diet.

        She could be the Perez Hilton of paleo, though. But I guess she already is.

        Shoot for the stars, eh?

    • Shane on April 13, 2012 at 22:53

      I happen to have found quite a bit of value in Melissa and Evelyn’s blogs. I haven’t yet found anything of value in Kruse’s blog. Just a lot of confusion. I get the feeling that he has a hard time keeping his facts straight and confuses even himself when writing his posts.

  17. Travis Steward on April 13, 2012 at 05:49

    Richard had to do it. You authorities don’t know where your brilliance ends and your ignorance starts.

    Waxing certainty on the highly grey area of truth is a cocky and arrogant endeavor. Sometimes, no matter how many letters behind your name, how many obscure books you’ve read, you need to relax the perceived accuracy of your divine knowledge and… listen with a little bit of humble doubt about what you know.

    This is Dr. Nikoley’s prescription for progress. And he’s dead right.

  18. v on April 13, 2012 at 06:38

    my prediction is melissa and richard will make nice because they are a lot more alike than different. lesson here: don’t insult richard or you will pay.

    • rob on April 13, 2012 at 07:17

      I don’t know … once you get on a woman’s bad side you are there for good even if she pretends to makes nice, may take 20 years to stick the knife in your back but stick it she shall … and it is impossible to tick off one woman, you make one angry you’ve made thirty of them angry.

      • Liz on April 13, 2012 at 07:39

        Huh. Is sexism Paleo?

      • Carlos on April 13, 2012 at 18:23

        Go kill yourself.

      • Sean on April 14, 2012 at 15:26

        Stay classy, Carlos.

      • Richard Nikoley on August 18, 2012 at 21:56


        rob, I just had to look up this comment because I remembered it. Turns out you were right. I’m not going to elaborate, but everyone’ll know soon enough, but not from me.

    • Kim C. on April 13, 2012 at 11:02

      I don’t think they’re that much alike. I like Richard.

      rob – try getting laid. You might start liking women again.

      • rob on April 15, 2012 at 14:32

        There’s a difference between “sexually attracted to” and “liking.”

        It takes a few decades to figure that out.

      • Kim C. on April 16, 2012 at 09:53

        I’m sad for you that these things appear to be mutually exclusive to you. :(

  19. Paul C on April 13, 2012 at 07:12

    I want to live near Mystical Paleo Palace, where my generous leader tells me what to eat, teaches me to live in perfect health and shows how to perform legendary athletic feats. You and Melissa are besieging my illusions. This “you are on your own” stuff is scary and time consuming.

  20. marie on April 13, 2012 at 07:16

    Information isn’t knowledge. I should stop there, it’s all that’s really necessary ……
    But I can’t help myself, so here goes :
    “The more I know, the more I know that I do not know” (or that the ancients had us stumped on epistemiology :-).
    The key in that phrase is that it starts with “the more I know…”, so that, anyone who has ever taken the time and trouble to learn something deeply, whether formally or on their own, comes to this age-old realization. True experts know the limits of their knowledge and communicate it (those ‘qualifying statements’ that ignorants take as ‘timidity’).
    Experts are modest. It’s their ‘tell’. They can’t help it. Anyone else is a blowhard, take with caution.
    You can also flip the above expression on its head and say that the less someone knows, the more they Think they know (which led to : ” a little knowledge is a dangerous thing”). That’s the problem with people thinking they know something from fooling around reading things on the net. Synthesis is great, if we actually have the ability to do it, that is, if we’re able to prevent “garbage in, garbage out”.
    We need to be able to evaluate the Quality of that vast and conflicting information we’re exposed to so as to choose what/how to synthesize it. The only known way to do that o our own is to become experts ourselves. Seeing as there aren’t enough hours in the day to do that for everything that is important or interests us, most people do rely on experts for that. That’s where the experts have a responsibility that other bloggers don’t, to be careful in their recommendations.

  21. Hugh Anderson on April 13, 2012 at 07:43

    I’m growing ever more skeptical of those advocating a kinder, gentler paleo. They propose we squelch all criticism lest it scare away the unwashed masses. They argue that they’re just trying to help people, but it sounds more like their true interest is in winning hearts and minds for “the cause” or “the paleo movement.” They speak of making dialogue more productive by banning curse words and harsh language and strong opinions, as though intellectual debate withers and dies under such circumstances, when the opposite is more likely true, that the flow of ideas flourishes when people speak freely, forcefully, and yes, at times, harshly.

    This might be a bitter pill for some to swallow, and to them I highly recommend the book Kindly Inquisitors: The New Attack on Free Thought by Jonathan Rauch . He lays out a formidable argument that the intellectual tradition of the past 500 years relies heavily on NOT limiting debate to nicey nice conversations. To quote Amazon, “Rauch investigates the development of the culture of critical, liberal inquiry in which strong opinions are pitted against each other. He criticizes “epistemological pacifists” who “think you can keep knowledge and get rid of pain.””

    • Chris Ford on April 13, 2012 at 09:39

      Hear, hear. Do we have to turn paleo(ish) into (more of) a religion? Q: “How do I convert someone to paleo?” A: “You don’t, let them figure it out for themselves!”

    • Sean on April 13, 2012 at 09:57

      I agree, Hugh. Historically, science has been full of bitter rivalries, infighting and partisan feuds. That’s just human nature. This goes all the way back to Plato who turned the word sophist into an insult. Did the Sophists really suck that bad? Probably not, but short of a time machine we’ll probably never know.

      Obviously there’s a big difference between some heated argument and plain old obnoxious trolling. But I don’t think there’s some sort of magical clear demarcation between calm discussion of differences and intellectual partisanship, perhaps even descending into bitterness. These things have always happened, and science hasn’t fallen into decadence. Well, it has, perhaps, but not because people weren’t being nicey nicey enough, in my opinion.

      Which reminds me, I saw where you were called a troll by the author over at Highbrow Paleo for making a reasoned argument. Perfect example of using the nicey nicey card to completely dismiss someone’s viewpoint. Fuck that guy. I’ll take heated disagreement over PC fascist mentality any day of the week.

      • Hugh Anderson on April 13, 2012 at 21:21

        Yeah, I felt like I was the one being trolled. Instead of attacking my argument the author calls my character into question, calling me a troll and “one of those people.” I should’ve known better than to waste my time on someone advancing the “Why can’t we all just get along?” argument. Kumbaya, motherfucker.

      • Sean on April 14, 2012 at 04:53

        “One of those people” was a dead giveaway. I’ll keep the feed, though, because Stabby and Kamal are pretty awesome.

    • TMS71 on May 1, 2012 at 12:30

      And he pitches for the Mets too!

  22. Trilobyte o' Ram on April 13, 2012 at 08:48

    Richard, thanks for calling out these moronic Scienceteer-types. They swarm the internet in almost every field of discussion, attempting to stake out the “scientific” high ground of the argument all the while trying to outdo one another in volume as they shriek out “pseudoscience!” at the top of their virtual lungs. Their pathetic attempt at admonishing you for what you share on your blog and your opinions on the subject only make them look like complete fucking tools.

    I read damn near every comment in the Kruse post. Melissa, EMILY DEANS MD WITH HONORS and their merry gang of assmunches come across as arrogant know-it-alls (who look pretty stupid frankly) and they certainly did not do their argument any favors.

    Travis Stewart above made this excellent point: “Richard had to do it. You authorities don’t know where your brilliance ends and your ignorance starts.

    Waxing certainty on the highly grey area of truth is a cocky and arrogant endeavor. ”

    I didn’t know science was a religion that needed to constantly be defended by acolytes and the Faithful. I guess I wasn’t on the distribution list for the memo because as old Darth would say the “Science” isn’t very strong with this one.

  23. clarevh on April 13, 2012 at 08:59

    The fact that all of my (and your) ancestors survived long enough to reproduce through every major “extinction event” all the way back to the primordial soupbowl fascinates me. How did they do it? Was it pure dumb luck, or some adaptive strategy?
    A few years ago I read The Little Ice Age by Brian Fagan. It got me thinking about the plight of my more immediate ancestors and how they survived the vicissitudes of the past couple of millenia. Wars, plagues, famines, weather extremes, punctuated by random acts of Church and State…how did they do it? To the best of my knowledge, my European ancestors for the last few millenia were a bunch of peasants and farmers living between 50 and 55 degrees north latitude (roughly the latitude of the Aleutian Islands)…how did they survive?
    Hmmm – activation of “ancient metabolic pathways” and “cold adaptation” could be part of the explanation. That’s why I am paying attention to what Jack Kruse says. The answers could be there, and I don’t want to miss out.

  24. mark on April 13, 2012 at 09:49

    Well at least you have the church and state thing nailed down. I’m taking cold showers now and its all your fault.

  25. Tim on April 13, 2012 at 10:21

    I have to say that I don’t get the Gang of Six’s jihad against Kruse, because I don’t see what he’s saying that’s all that new. Cold plunges for health? We’ve seen pictures of old people swimming in icy waters forever, invariably with a caption making fun of how the backwards old biddies thought it was good for them. (Hell, they probably also took cod liver oil daily, the fools! (Pass the SmartBalance, would ya, my bagel’s a little dry.)

    And apparently cryo machines are now fixtures in every NFL locker room, so how is cold so exciting and new? (NB: the smart play right now would be to do the mid-market cold machine & put them in every Curves gym. ie, what the Eades did with Sous Vide.)

    I think a more accurate criticism of Kruse is that he’s taking more credit for ideas than he deserves. To me, he’s more a synthesizer than an innovator.

    Kruse is largely banging the fractal exercise drum De Vany’s been beating for years, expanded on more recently by Erwan Le Corre. Seth Roberts is probably the largest blog popularizer of timed light exposure (and, interestingly, timed social exposure) as crucial to health. The cold exposure thing seems to be in the realm of forgotten science, not new science. And the list of IF researchers & bloggers is too long to mention.

    That said, Kruse’s stuff does seem to be arranged around a common theme, which I do think is useful: the importance of cyclic variation.

    Just as sprints turned out to be much better for us than jogging, it’s good to be reminded of how variation has vanished in the current unhealthy milieu:
    – constant carbohydrate, all day long
    – constant light, 24/7
    – constant warmth, 24/7

    As for the hate directed his way, I think it’s because Kruse assumed an authoritative posture from the beginning, without starting with the ritual butt-sniffing and grooming behaviors that the Mean Grrrls demand.

    Well, if there’s anything a surgeon is going to suck at, it’s faking humility. (Even Kurt seems to have issues in that area, and I would bet he spent more of his career on the financing of MRI machines than on their science.)

    I do think Kruse talks better than he writes (and I wish I could send him a gift basket of paragraph breaks.)

    But I’m also sure Melissa wouldn’t hate him like this if she’d actually met him. She still goes after people she’s supped with (Michael Eades), but she doesn’t bury the blade to its hilt.

    Anyway, I’m sick of the hit squads and their hangers-on who would take ownership of “Paleo” by crucifying anyone who doesn’t bend the knee.

    And I’m insulted by the idea that Wrong People Are Dangerous and Must Be Silenced.

    To anyone who would presume to argue that: Fuck you.

    • Kurt G. Harris MD on April 13, 2012 at 11:03

      “Even Kurt seems to have issues in that area, and I would bet he spent more of his career on the financing of MRI machines than on their science.”

      You would lose a stupid bet like that.

      I helped teach 3 generations of radiology residents MRI interpretation and physics at a major university, all while getting paid a third of what my private practice colleagues did. You really have no basis to bet on anything like that regarding my career do you?

      But facts don’t really matter when you all you really have to say is “fuck you” do they..?

      And good luck with your staph aureus self-injections, as that is nothing new and no big deal either, right?

      • Kim C. on April 13, 2012 at 12:19

        Just so everyone is clear on this point, Dr. Kruse is NOT recommending to anyone to inject themselves with MRSA/staph. I’m not condoning his “epic biohack.” I’m just clarifying that he’s not going around recommending people do anything like that. If that was the case, I think a lot of us who are trying out his protocols would be completely turned off (even regardless of positive results).

    • Sean on April 13, 2012 at 11:21

      I’m not sure what the fractal exercise drum is, but I’m not impressed with DeVany’s knowledge of chaos and complexity theory. My knowledge of chaos theory is extremely limited but I challenge anyone to refute my arguments there. Apparently Kruse likes to employ quantum theory also, and my knee-jerk reaction is to be pretty skeptical of that also. Roger Penrose makes a good case for quantum effects (or actually TOE effects) to be at the root of the human brain’s functionality. I’m skeptical Kruse matches Penrose in his knowledge and application of quantum theory.

      • Kurt G. Harris MD on April 13, 2012 at 11:44

        “I’m skeptical Kruse matches Penrose in his knowledge and application of quantum theory.”

        You really are an honourary brit.

      • Sean on April 13, 2012 at 12:16

        Heh, heh. Actually I like to think of myself as more of an honorary Swede.

      • Kurt G. Harris MD on April 13, 2012 at 12:45

        that comment took extra effort to override the american english spell-checker, you know.

      • Sean on April 13, 2012 at 13:05

        I noticed you took the extra effort, Kurt, and I appreciate it.

      • Neal Matheson on April 14, 2012 at 03:02

        and you still spelled sceptical wrong!!!

      • Sean on April 14, 2012 at 04:05

        NEIL, I was just getting some ALUMINUM from the TRUNK of my car (which is a lovely shade of GRAY, although I don’t know how many METERS long it is or how many TONS it weighs). And I thought to myself, I ought to check under the HOOD. Turns out I had to fetch a WRENCH and tighten a few bolts. Then I decided to collect some BRANCHES that had fallen in the YARD. Actually this all happened last FALL, way before it snowed and the snow PLOWS got to work. Now if you are SKEPTICAL that any of this actually happened, well I don’t blame you, get in LINE.

      • Sean on April 14, 2012 at 04:06

        Also, something something THE hospital.

      • Neal Matheson on April 14, 2012 at 07:44

        Very entertaining ,though what word do we use instead of branches? Tree arms?

      • Sean on April 14, 2012 at 08:30


        I used to own a ’76 Triumph Tr7 with a British manual (where I picked up the car jargon). If I’m an Anglophile about anything (and I’m not, I hate you Limey bastards) it’s those classic British sports cars. While the ’76 TR7 might have been one of the worst cars ever produced it was still a magnificent disaster. Dual Zenith-Stromberg carbs, is there anything that symbolizes the magnificent quirkiness of the Brits more than those ridiculously complicated contraptions? While a ’67 Corvette is pretty cool (also with dual carbs) I’d still prefer a ’67 Jag.

      • john lushefski on April 13, 2012 at 14:46

        Most people, at first, have trouble even with the concept of a non-algorithimic system (assuming most people also think “‘consciousness’ is ‘deterministic'”), but it becomes somewhat clear when you introduce them to Godel.

        The story of Penrose and Hameroff is interesting, and it seems Penrose’s sort of “metaphysics[?]” is necessary to develop “real science,” even though “hardcore, no nonsense” (like Tesla maybe) scientists historically reject it.

        Ray Peat has an article “Can art instruct science? William Blake as biological visionary,” and it is kind of cool, as well as somewhat of an introduction to his book *Mind and Tissue: Russian Research Perspectives on the Human Brain*. For anyone interested in reading about “non-algorithmic, deterministic systems,” that book has lots of jump-offs.

      • Sean on April 14, 2012 at 03:36

        Yeah Penrose rocks. I’m not sure I would characterize him as any way metaphysical. He merely thinks that there’s a deeper mechanism involved in consciousness that is related to quantum mechanics or an underlying TOE. The fact that he initially attacked the strong AI argument in 1990 and we are still not any closer to making any sort of real AI more than twenty years later gives plenty of credence to his argument, IMO.

      • Sean on April 14, 2012 at 04:14

        Also, let us not forget that Douglas Hofstadter wrote Gödel, Escher, Bach that was basically the poster child for the Strong AI argument. Where’re your self-aware machines now, eh, Dougie?

        Being aware of Gödel’s incompleteness theorem doesn’t seem to necessarily lead to an embrace of the non-algorithmic nature of self-awareness.

    • Michael on April 13, 2012 at 13:51

      Lots of truth in your post. Well written. I actually like most of the things written by the crew you reference. But, it seems they are also good at Internet debating. That gets tiresome for me and gets in the way of the important things I get from reading their blogs. It also makes me pause to ask a question or perhaps want to express a different view, as Internet debating is not a skill I cherish. It does sometimes feels like Paleo is a cliche. Me? I am no expert, just a person trying to learn a little.

    • Anna K. on April 13, 2012 at 21:52

      I agree with Tim, good summary post.

      And to “Kurt G. Harris MD ” ( I hope I spelled it all correctly) – almost every post of yours appears so arrogant and self aggrandizing, that anything you say of value gets lost (if it were there to begin with). You really need to look into your ego issues.

      • Mario Vachon on April 16, 2012 at 18:45

        Kurt virtually never blots anymore but the vast majority of his posts on his blot are very informative and very well thought out. Is he a little arrogant? Fair comment. He doesn’t suffer fools and carries it a bit far. But for chrissakes, if you find him arrogant surely you find Kruse even more so.

  26. Nandalal Rasiah on April 13, 2012 at 10:38

    if you see what Kruse is recommending as Flat Earth then writing a post ‘opening up the debate’ is like saying, “On Shape of Earth, Scientists and Clerics Differ.” With the clear implication that taking either side is equally close to the truth. Now, if you don’t, then it’s a different question. Reading about MRSA probably isn’t necessary, IMO, to dissuade people from culturing a MRSA sample, injecting it in their bum and sitting on an ice toilet in the arctic for hours every day. If one were interested as to how long-term cold exposure, as Nikoley has done recently, is affecting their health it probably would necessitate blood tests and visits to the doctor–where said MD’s affinity for the power of their credentials wouldn’t really matter as the fellow they’re treating is going to continue such a regimen regardless of the results of the tests and tenor of the doctor’s advice. Sitting for hours in a hot tub certainly feels swell but, for a man, you can’t exactly feel your procreative potential decreasing while immersed–that’s something that science has to show you afterwards.

  27. VW on April 13, 2012 at 11:28

    Speaking as the dumbest person on this comment thread, I say this: LEARN TO USE ANONYMOUS PROXIES, YOU SMART SHITHEADS!

    Or speak your peace and put your name to it, if you’re so inclined

    I used to troll sites and people just for the sport of it (8 to 10 years ago). It’s nowhere near where I am now and it ultimately didn’t give me any satisfaction or pleasure. It did little more than water the seeds of ignorance and anger that hopefully have gone somewhat more dormant within me.

  28. Pauline on April 13, 2012 at 15:19

    I have tried to read Kruse’s blog it is difficult. I listened to his audio interview he comes across a lot easier to understand. My feeling he is reminding us of some things that need to be brought to the fore, but most of it has been done before by other researchers and authors, he has just brought it all together under one roof . He comes across as authoritive in how to synthesise it all with a special emphasis on restoring Leptin Sensitivity and using cold adaptation to improve health and lose weight and regain hormone balance. I think the arrogance that may be perceived is him taking centre stage with his ideas in a field where so many have gone before and presenting himself as though he has found the unique formula. A lot of what he says I have heard or read before but not all in one place and I am not sure whether he has gone out of his way to give credit where it is due, he has definitely borrowed and taken from a lot of writers/researchers out there writing and investigating this stuff, as we all do. I am glad Richard has brought this to the table out in the open for us to question and engage in and take what we found useful and discard what does not.

  29. Jscott on April 13, 2012 at 18:41

    It took me a while to figure out why I dug this blog. This post reminded me. THIS is what blogging was about back in the day. There were no advertisers. Media outlets did not give a fuck.

    Chris locke, Doc Searls, Jeneane Sessum, David Weinberger, Dave Winer, etc. There was much back and forth and linking and debating and ad hominem and it was beautiful. And messy. And obsessive.

    And pure. No angles. No search engine gaming except to be “us against them.”

    It was tribe. If you came naked.

    This blog is homemade apple pie to me. Yes, with sugar, spice and everything gluten. This post makes me owe you a scotch. Twelve years old right?

  30. gilliebean on April 13, 2012 at 21:00

    “If two people agree, then one of them is unnecessary.”

    While not always true, this little saying taught me to appreciate disagreements. I appreciate that all these thinkers disagree. They can hack it out and I’ll glean from the scraps. I appreciate all the people who are publically and actively seeking truth about food and our bodies – especially those making headway in the real-food-paleo-sphere. Much love!

    • Jscott on April 13, 2012 at 21:49

      We do better than we think. (Double entendre just happened.)

  31. Chris on April 14, 2012 at 06:08

    I have to agree with the majority of the sentiments here: experimentation leads to optimization, and the only way to do it is to try. There is no greater evil than that so-called good which is most sure of itself. I’m studying to go into medical research, so blogs like those of Cruse don’t really phase me, but even being able to read his work, anyone with a functioning mind should be able to see through his strong personality and take what he says – what anyone says – with a grain of salt. We can’t blame Cruse for those people that never question him.

  32. Alex Good on April 14, 2012 at 20:10

    I’m not taking a particular side in this. I am watching and enjoying.

  33. Alex Good on April 14, 2012 at 20:22

    Oh and I’ve always told people that I don’t actually know anything and I’m basing my opinions on what I’ve encountered.
    I mean really, our minds could be perceiving things in an entirely different way than how others would perceive things.
    The way I usually explain it is by saying that what I see as red you could very well see as blue. We couldn’t know for sure because there is no way to describe what we see, hear or smell except in a way that would describe what others view to them.

    Yes, I am a bit insane, but so was Plato.

  34. Evolutionarily on April 15, 2012 at 10:29

    I think you should have slept on this one Richard, but as Kurt Harris links to you in his blogroll, this the “Paleo pub” after all… I have a virtual crush on Melissa, but I am also a FTA fanboy, but this post fucked a little with my Ch’i if you know what I mean.

    • Evolutionarily on April 15, 2012 at 10:30

      CORRECTION: Oooh it appears FTA is no longer linked on Archevore’s recommended blogs (Melissa fist pumps the air)

      • Richard Nikoley on April 15, 2012 at 11:53

        Kurt gets to do what he wants on his blog.

        In fact, I would not want to have anyone suffer potential ill will or embarrassment by linking to me if they’re not solidly in support of the way I do stuff here.

      • Mark on April 17, 2012 at 01:54

        Well, if Kurt’s standard for removing someone from his recommended links is not automatically hating on Jack Kruse, then he needs to remove Keith Norris now as well:

  35. FF_BC on April 15, 2012 at 01:04

    The things I want to know about CT is:

    1. Does it increase GH levels?
    2. Does it increase autophagy?
    3. What are the potential other gains from CT
    4. What are the dangers?

    If the answer to Q1&2 is “Yes” it is enough for me to keep doing CT. If the only danger (if not being a moron) is getting a cold or some light damage to my skin, I can think of 3000 things more dangerous than CT, getting drunk, drive without seatbelt, taking the train etc…

  36. Wolfstriked on April 15, 2012 at 07:45

    Just a :) for you Richard,Great post.I have been finding some crazy things on Youtube that I thought you with your open mind would like.You might at first think its stupid paranoid people just going ape shit but I just ask you to watch it once.

    Many people online speak frequently of some type of hidden government.Illuminati,free Masons and New World Order.You see it mentioned everywhere,from government videos to music videos with some people claiming that new musicians are connected with this New World Order.Just stay with me here as I laughed when I first heard it but now I am starting to wonder what really is going on.Is there a NWO that plans on living underground while the earth perishes?

    I know what your thinking so I just let you see for your own eyes.This first video is conspiracy theory starring ex Governer Jesse Ventura.This one really got me to see that something is not right with where governemnt is headed….of course if its truth…you decide.Just go to Youtube and paste the below in the search box.First is 6 parts at 8 minutes each.

    jesse ventura conspiracy theory 2012

    Then there are videos of a man who decodes the Denver airport murals.

    denver airport murals

  37. Wolfstriked on April 15, 2012 at 07:53

    Oh and just wanna add that the government is hiding some facts from us that I have found online.One is that the poles are shifting.North is not north anymore according to compasses.Airports are needing to change there runways and compasses lest pilots get lost or worse land where there is no runway.And another thing is that the earths magnetic shield that protects us from solar flares all of a sudden has a huge hole in it.

    NBC News Reports – Magnetic Poles Shifting

  38. Jason on April 15, 2012 at 15:31

    I feel like social idiocy has found it’s electronic or ‘e’ venue. Melissa is definitely no ‘wunderkind’ in her academic abilities, and definitely has much to be desired in the area of humility. Processing information is not a difficult task, there are tons out there like Melissa, Kurt, Emily..etc. Possessing humility and a natural grace, akin to a sort of intuition, allows the wielder a unique status–one where they have information and know how to proceed with it. Reddening in the face and acting like infants make you even less special than you already are.

    • expat on April 16, 2012 at 05:14


    • Trilobyte o' Ram on April 16, 2012 at 09:44

      Very well said, Jason. In my experience–and I’d hazard a guess this matches the experience of almost every one else–truly intelligent and academically gifted people behave in a fashion that you have no idea how smart they are. In discussions you certainly get a whiff of it, but they certainly don’t act like entitled, fucking childish know-it-alls brandishing credentials while passive-aggressively letting you know how mentally inferior you are as well as lucky to be in the presence of such a caliber of genius who deigns to mingle around us mere mortals. On the contrast, almost every intelligent person I’ve come across has been respectful in arguments and discussions, if for no other reason they’re smart enough to know that being a dick isn’t going to help your case one iota.

      Look at a real lady’s man and compare him to the poser, the braggart who never shuts up about his sexual prowess and conquests. The real deal doesn’t showboat simply because he doesn’t have to. It’s not necessary.

      • M. on April 16, 2012 at 11:22

        “truly intelligent and academically gifted people behave in a fashion that you have no idea how smart they are”

        I think you are idolizing here.

        “fucking childish know-it-alls brandishing credentials”

        Yeah, Kruse puts “neurosurgeon” in the title bar of his blog because he cares so little for credentials.

        Jack “Dude, I’m a neurosurgeon” Kruse has always tried to present himself as the expert on the science, and that has where he has gotten in trouble with his nonsense statements (avocadoes brown because of their 06 content, nipple massage reduces cancer by 50%, etc…)

      • Trilobyte o' Ram on April 16, 2012 at 16:45

        Looks like I hit a nerve, maybe because I’m not idolizing you.

        Question: Are you the M who runs MI6, or are you the “M” as in Elissa who’s been trolling this whole thing?

        Also, sources please for your accusations.

        Regardless, you clearly missed the point of my comment. Whether Kruse is right or wrong, the behavior of the Super Science Team Go! hit squad is extremely arrogant, condescending, and mockable, mostly in their lame attempt to chastise or censor Richard. The fact is this blog received a huge amount of traffic and comments from his Kruse posts, and the nasty, egotistical responses from the “experts” who blog with M.D.s after their name only gave the guy more cred and made people–like me–who are indifferent to the whole thing look more into it.

      • VW on April 16, 2012 at 17:40

        Hey, I have a doctorate! Maybe I should start including it in my handle here.

        (Never had a Porsche to create a pretextual post about on my blog, though.)

      • Richard Nikoley on April 16, 2012 at 17:55


        Let’s consider another possibility. But first, let’s understand that there are people who seriously take stock in what Kurt or Emilily say because they have cred in the sense that they have already demonstrated their willingness to go against CW whenever they see the need to do so. At the same time, they are not the sort, either, to be bright eyed or conspiracy theorists, which is to say, they don’t automatically dismiss CW because of the C.

        And I don’t really know where Jack sits in all of this, and I’m not sure Kurt or Emily do either. But I thnk they think they are safe in dismissing him and because he too is an MD, and a surgeon, there’s the possibility that K and E are a bit irked. Understandable, because we already know about a lot of the CW BS and K & E don’t need to bother much because everyone is on board already.

        Jack is WAY un-CW for and MD surgeon and I think that because of that implicit authority, Kurt and Emily worry a bit, because of the tendency of people to follow blindly.

        To make it very, very clear: this was never, ever about going after Kurt, Emily, Melssa, Evylin, et al. It was about, actually, an unbiased, forum. I’m actually thankful to all the foregoing that they made clear their concerns. I never ever automatically dismiss what any of them have to say and in fact, take serious note.

      • VW on April 16, 2012 at 18:47

        Kruse certainly comes across as a troubled wackjob, but these highly-credentialed guys commenting on your blog want to be acknowledged as correct and want to see Kruse exposed as a moron. Both.

        Patience, smart guys. Patience. I doubt that many people will be seriously injured before this all plays out.

      • M. on April 16, 2012 at 18:29

        “Looks like I hit a nerve”

        Trilobyte, I just disagreed with you, and then you start talking about “hitting nerves” while mocking my name and accusing me of really being Melissa and a troll. Your “arrogant, condescending, and mockable” attitude might make me cry. FTA is no place for harsh words.

      • Trilobte o'Ram on April 16, 2012 at 19:12

        “FTA is no place for harsh words.”

        Actually, I thought it was a bakery.

        And thanks for sourcing your statements about Kruse and nipples and avocadoes (sic) too. Really cleared up a lot.

        The Lost Boys, 1987. Joel Schumacher.

      • M. on April 17, 2012 at 05:59

        “avocadoes (sic)”

        Oh noes, mocking my spelling. How can I withstand your arrogant condescension? I think I must cry.

    • trog on May 10, 2012 at 06:17

      Well-put. I used to frequent Paleoquacks (as another commenter funnily calls it) until I realized that queen bitch-style high school politics ruled the place regarding moderation and that Melissa character had nothing better to do than that.

  39. Ed on April 16, 2012 at 12:23

    ” The very most intelligent and knowledgeable person in the world a few thousand years ago could not hold a candle to your average 8-yr-old gamer, today.”
    Your kidding right? You can’t possibly believe an immature 8-year old brain is more intelligent than Cato, Newton, Socrates,Plato, Cicero,Pliny the Elder, Tacitus, et. al. Please don’t mistake of confusing knowledge with intelligence. A modern 8-year old may have some specific knowledge about X-box games but are they going to reason out how to discover the diameter of the earth using just the sun?

    • Richard Nikoley on April 16, 2012 at 12:31


      Knowledge and intelligence intersect at a point, and that’s what I’m talking about. Take your laundry list and put them in 2012.

      • Ed on April 16, 2012 at 15:13

        OK, but the sentence I pointed out is a non sequitur. Simply pointing out that ancient does not equal stupid.

        ” Take your laundry list and put them in 2012.” What are you saying? Newton would be dumb and couldn’t handle modern mathematics?

        Sorry for this diversion from your OP.

      • Richard Nikoley on April 16, 2012 at 15:51

        Let me try again.

        Resurrect Newton, put him alone in a modern home with all amenities, including running water, has appliances, refrigerator, computer, tv, Xbox, DVDs a DVR, cable, wifi, etc, etc.

        Introduce a modern 8yr old a few hours later.

        Now to you get it?

      • Trilobyte o' Ram on April 16, 2012 at 16:46

        To put a finer point on it, look at Chess. Many of the classic greats from the 19th century wouldn’t hold a candle to the average student well taught in openings.

      • Jason on April 16, 2012 at 16:51

        Now place a book in the same two hands. Do you get it, Richard?

      • Richard Nikoley on April 16, 2012 at 18:01

        No, Jason. I don’t get it. It’s relative. Place a book on String theory or QM in Newton’s hands,;better yet, “Men are from Mars, Women are fom Venus,” :)

      • Ed on April 16, 2012 at 17:35

        OH Stop it dude your cracking me up:) Oh man I haven’t laughed that hard in a long time. Thanks:)
        But seriously your pulling my leg, you can’t seriously be equating the use of a modern trinket with intelligence. Next I expect to hear that since Sun Tuz couldn’t field strip an M16 the average grunt is a superior tactician.

        I wish we were sitting at a bar having this talk, with a few beers and this would be really hilarious.
        Take care, checking out……

      • Richard Nikoley on April 16, 2012 at 18:03

        Ed, I’m not talking about intelligence. I’m talking about knowledge and experience and most particularly, context of place in history.

      • Richard Nikoley on April 16, 2012 at 18:06

        In other words, and not paradoxically, to go the other way, any human less than perhaps 200,000 years old could probably learn to adapt and function in modern society given reasonable time to adjust and learn.

        I consider the human brain to be 200,000 year old hardware, but with software that’s at about version 1 million.1


  40. colin nelson henley on April 16, 2012 at 21:00

    a person less than 200,000 years old could function in ‘moder’ society….
    yup. bye!

    • Richard Nikoley on April 16, 2012 at 22:34

      Bye. And by the way, did you notice how all other commenters know how to reply and nest their comments?


      • garymar on April 16, 2012 at 23:32

        Nesting behavior!

        Everybody I know is less than 200,000 years old.

      • colin nelson henley on April 17, 2012 at 03:11

        oopsies… something else I neglected in my drunken stupor is to say thanks- your rants have been entertaining, more often than not.

      • Richard Nikoley on April 17, 2012 at 06:47

        Thanks Colin. Now I have to go edit my comment. Dammit.

      • colin nelson henley on April 17, 2012 at 17:26

        heh! it was a fair cop, guv.

  41. Chaohinon on April 17, 2012 at 21:50

    Haha, I love how Don Wiss turns out to be a creepy stalker, however many months after that potato meltdown.

    Conclusion don’t fuck with potatoes.

  42. […] LC which may not be apparent because of my frequent attack dog modality: I don't go after my own (unless they go after me first). It's a target rich environment out there, I have plenty to keep me occupied, and the very last […]

  43. […] How Do You Know What You Know? […]

  44. […] She goes onto complain how "this started after she…." Excellent. Nice admission. She posted about me, I responded in kind, including exposing a blatant lie of hers in my comments. Incidentally, her reply to my post, among other "don't worry about it" comments? "Heheh, don't worry. I'm no delicate flower." […]

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