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January 10, 2019

Of Course: One of the Researchers Behind the "Sokal Squared" Grievance Study Hoax Ratted on by NPC and Now Being Investigated for, Get This, Shoddy and Misleading Scholarship

To prove that the academy was no longer interested in scholarship but groupthink political activism, he and his confederates wrote a series of absurd papers to see if Grievance Studies Journals would publish them.

Not only did they publish them, but one of the obviously-fake NPC papers was officially awarded for being one of the very best articles the journal had published in its 25 years of existence.

To expose the crank "scholarship" of these bullshit papers, the three hoaxers invented obviously fake data which any competent peer review panel should have immediately recognized as crank and spurious. But of course, they weren't competent, and accepted, in one case, the claim that to prove that Dog Parks were hotbeds of Dog Rape Culture (in as much as dogs humped each other and their masters tacitly approved of this by not sending the dog rapists to dog prison), they claimed they had inspected the genitals of 10,000 dog park dogs for signs of rape.

This is obviously nonsense. These people run "studies" involving 10 or 15 or 20 people, because they're lazy. The idea that anyone is running a "study" that closely examines ten thousand dogs' genitals is absurd on its face, and should have been flagged as a fabrication.

But it wasn't, and so the NPCs are embarrassed, so now they've reported only professor working at a university for faking data, trying to get him fired.

Portland State University is now plotting how to fire a professor (Peter Boghossian doesn't have tenure) for daring to do actual scholarship.

On October 2, 2018, the Wall Street Journal broke a story that detailed an unprecedented audit of certain sectors of academic research, specifically those we--its authors--called "grievance studies." In that effort, which has come to be known as the Grievance Studies Affair, Portland State University assistant professor of philosophy Peter Boghossian joined the two of us in writing and submitting a series of academic papers in fields like gender studies, race studies, sexuality studies, and so on. Our goal was to understand and expose a corruption of scholarship that puts politically motivated research ahead of honest inquiry in these disciplines. Given that seven of our papers were published--with a realistic potential for several more--the international headlines, and ensuing academic debate on the issue, we think we were reasonably successful.

Portland State appears less impressed. It took Peter's administration ten days from the breaking of the story to formally initiate a Committee of Inquiry to determine whether he had engaged in research misconduct.


"I have arrived at that decision and find enough concerns that I have decided to initiate a formal Committee of Inquiry," wrote Mark McLellan, Vice President for Research and Graduate Studies at PSU. Specifically, this Committee would be investigating the issue of whether the fabrication of data for some of the papers in the grievance studies audit constituted a breach of research ethics, a proceeding which they notified him may take up to sixty days. McLellan also referred his concerns about the Grievance Studies Affair to Portland State University's Institutional Review Board (IRB). This board's duty was to determine whether or not conducting the audit should have required ethical approval and the informed consent of the targeted journals' editors and peer reviewers. Obviously, we did not and could not seek any such approval or consent.

So they're being investigated for not alerting the journals to the fact that they were submitting hoax papers intended to prove that the journals were practicing shoddy, silly activism. Portland State University -- a garbage-tier fake school -- is actually claiming they should have gotten consent from the journals to test them.

This is absurd. Psychological tests are done every single week in which the subjects are not told what is being tested. Often they're being tested without being told they're being tested. For example, they might be positioned in a waiting room, told that they will be tested in a half hour, but then, unknown to them, the actual test is conducted on them while they're waiting.

This is an accepted form of testing -- some tests cannot be performed if the subject knows he is being tested and, even worse - if he knows specifically what he's being tested for. If you tell someone "I'm testing you for racism in witness identification in a crime," well, he's kind of going to be aware that when you stage a robbery in front of him in the waiting room that he should be very careful about identifying the race of the (mixed race) actor you hired to pose as the robber.

But Portland State is seriously contending that the researchers should have told the journals they were submitting to that they were submitting absurd, fake NPC papers to see if they were gullible enough and ideologically deranged enough to publish them.

Gee, that wouldn't have skewed the test results much, huh?

In the meantime, early in November, an anonymous "collective" of a dozen Portland State University faculty members penned an open letter to PSU students, ominously (and vaguely) urging them to consider what Peterís participation in the grievance study audit might "mean for their education." The piece was too sloppy and amateurish even to consider viable as a cheap hit-piece, though it was certainly nasty and unfair enough to qualify. Its (ridiculous) conclusion? "Some faculty practice education in bad faith right in your own backyard. This is to the detriment of the university's reputation and the serious scholars trying to make PSU an excellent place to seek higher education."

Roughly six weeks after their October 12 letter, the Committee of Inquiry, headed by McLellan, followed up with Peter regarding their deliberations. In a letter dated November 27, 2018, the committee wrote, "The Committee unanimously agreed that the 'dog park' article represents an unambiguous example of research data fabrication."

Wrong. The Dog Park "data" wasn't the data. That was just a necessary bit of stage-dressing to get the real data, which is whether or not the journal would publish an article which claims obviously absurd data. Boghossian et al. weren't actually researching Doggie Rape -- they were researching sloppy and ideologically-driven corruption in phony-baloney "academic" publishing.

But you can't test to see if a subject detects a problem with an obviously-counterfeit five dollar bill -- Abraham Lincoln wearing a turtleneck sweater, say, as one old Superfriends cartoon had it -- without actually passing him the obviously-counterfeit five dollar bill.

You can't get informed consent from your test subject -- telling him that this is a test to see whether or not he takes careful notice of money he's handed -- because, well -- I mean, obviously, that gives the game away, doesn't it? It prejudices the test results so completely that there's no point doing the test.

And say -- given that these journals accept papers from the wide public, including some cranks, and supposedly have a peer review process to make sure crank papers don't get published -- do you need informed consent from a journal to let them know they should do their supposed job?

When people test TSA to see if they can smuggle (dummy) weapons through security, do they alert them in advance "I'm gonna be trying to smuggle this dummy knife past you, mmmkay?"

Basically, Portland State has decided that testing test subjects is now officially unethical.

But of course they can't mean that; this is just a special double-secret probation investigation intended to never be used as precedent in any other case (except for others exposing NPC corruption).

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