Posts Tagged ‘ sock puppets ’

Building bridges

Mar 7th, 2011 11:42 am | By

Wally Smith wrote an article on a forthcoming book in October 2009. In fact it’s dated October 26, 2009, which happens to be the date of Chris Mooney’s “My Thanks to ‘Tom Johnson'” post. The opening paragraph of Mooney’s article, given all that we know now, is so richly ironic that one feels dizzy reading it.

Last week, the New Atheist comment machine targeted the following post, in which I republished a preexisting blog comment from a scientist named “Tom Johnson” (a psuedonym). In the comment, Johnson had related  how some of his New Atheist-inspired scientist colleagues had behaved toward religious folks at bridge-building conservation events.

You see what I mean, I’m sure. Mooney insults us for being … Read the rest


Mar 6th, 2011 11:42 am | By

Remember Orlando Figes? Remember what he got up to?

The future of one of Britain’s leading historians was looking increasingly uncertain tonight after he admitted that he was the author of anonymous reviews that praised his own work as “fascinating” and “uplifting” while rubbishing that of his rivals.

Oh that. He used a pseudonym to trash people. This was considered a bad thing. Not an excusable little lapse in manners, but a seriously bad thing.

John Sutherland, professor of English at University College London, suggested Figes’s position at Birkbeck could be under threat. “On the whole academics are pretty tolerant,” he said. “Clearly in the present climate he’s a star, and Birkbeck needs stars because of the upcoming research

Read the rest

Hammill the prodigal

Mar 4th, 2011 11:38 am | By

Hammill, as I said in a comment earlier this morning, is Walter Smith, known as Wally, a graduate student in biology at the University of Alabama in Tuscaloosa.

He said last summer that he would never do it again. He’s been doing it again.

He’s been sowing little seeds of hostility and paranoia and mistrust. He’s been ever so gently tarnishing the reputations of gnu atheists. Again.

For instance on this post, which of course drew him like a fly to honey, because it was both scornful and inaccurate about me. His kind of thing! (I don’t know why he hates me so particularly, given that I’m hardly the only vocal atheist out there, but he does.) He saw … Read the rest