What is the test? What is the idea? The test is to show that you people are ridiculous. I’m giving Roberto Refinetti a hard time here because he is the editor of the journal “Sexuality and Culture.” He agreed to talk to me after his journal was hoaxed by these people. *Laughter* Dog Park They submitted absurd papers to twenty academic journals. One paper included gibberish about rape culture in dog parks. Another was a section of Mein Kampf re-written with feminist buzzwords. Editors of 7 journals published them, proving, say the hoaxers, that: Making absurd and horrible ideas sufficiently political fashionable can get them validated at the highest levels of academic grievance studies. Six of the journal editors wouldn’t talk to me, but Refinetti did. Let’s look into things and see if we should continue doing what we’re doing. Maybe you shouldn’t be doing what you’re doing because it’s gibberish, and they’ve proved it. Yeah. They didn’t prove, that’s the problem. They sent the articles to 20 different journals without asking them if you could study them, which is a basic requirement in research these days. But if they’d asked the journals They couldn’t have done the test. But you’re deceiving people without much of a reason. I think the hoaxers had good reason. Their hoax woke us up to the fact that some academic journals publish nonsense. The paper Refinetti’s journal accepted titled, “Going in through the back door”, claimed you could reduce Straight male homo hysteria and transphobia through receptive, penetrative sex toy use. Correct. Sounds like, “Oh, it’s not your everyday article.” And it’s not. This is a specialized journal that deals with sexuality and culture. Will decrease transphobia and increase feminist values. Mm hmm. Yeah. What is the problem with that? I don’t see a problem. Again, it’s a statement that could be correct. It’s nothing really absurd or unusual. But then why publish it? Oh, okay. Yeah, that’s an issue in publication. That’s the specialization. We’ve been doing that for maybe 100 years. Seems silly. Yeah. Okay. So what is silly? Ahmm. Is the respiration mechanism in an ant not silly? The way an ant breathes? Yeah, the way an ant breathes. But that’s facts. It either breathes this way or that way. This is speculation. Is it a speculation? If it were just a statement this thesis not tested, we wouldn’t do anything with it. [Printing Press] Journals say they determine the quality of research they publish by submitting it to expert reviewers. Reviewer one: This paper is rich
and exciting. I’m just overwhelmed, which is a sign of a marvelous paper. He’s an idiot! They made up data that he wished, or he or she wished he had but he didn’t. So he sees, “Wow, these people did a study that I wanted to do, and they got the results that I thought should be there. This is great.” The fields we are concerned about put social grievances ahead of objective truth. So as a simple summery we call the problem grievance studies. Because grievance studies journals are so filled with jargon phrases like these … even nonsense like the dog rape paper can pass muster. If papers were written in plain English, people might see that some of these ideas are false, or meaningless. Inferring from lessons relevant to human and dog interactions to suggest practical applications that disrupt masculinities. Yes. What!? That’s one thing they like these days to disrupt masculinities. I don’t like that concept. That gets you published, that gets you promoted. Only in those departments that support that. Well, psychology, your department, leans that way, right? In some departments, in some areas. Doesn’t this show journals have a problem? Is there such a bias here that instead of knowledge, we’re just putting political correctness? In some areas that is the case, but again, that’s my feeling. And I wouldn’t do anything until I can actually document it. Is a hoax helping document that? No, it doesn’t. I think it kind of does. I wouldn’t have realized how silly some of these journals are without this. I think something sounds silly, you watch, look carefully and you’ll see it’s not as silly as you thought it was. The hoaxers say that in fields that end in the word ‘studies’ A culture has developed in which only certain conclusions are allowed. Like those that make whiteness and masculinity problematic. In some places that is correct. Is that a problem? How big of a problem is it? Is it worse than hunger? Is it worse than people shooting each other? Why do we need your journal? Very good point. Sexuality and culture. Yes. Yes. You know, let’s question our assumptions because maybe we’re making
assumptions that we shouldn’t be making When homosexuality was considered a mental illness. People pushed and this, and the psychiatrists got together and said It’s a perfectly fine thing to choose and not to call it mental illness. So that’s the type of thing that, you know, a journal like sexuality and culture does is discuss. [Bells] Discussion is good, but in journals today, only some discussion is allowed. Some feminists assert, the dildo was an oppressive tool of the patriarchy. This just sounds political. Political jargon. Yes. But in itself just a sentence, right? It’s just describing some women think that using the dildo is a man idea. But that is a correct statement. But is it suggests — a bias. REFINETTI: Oh, in the wording.
STOSSEL: It’s not science, it’s just political jargon. Correct correct. There is some jargon that is used. I don’t like much. And in certain areas you just learn to live with it. In your field, the jargon just goes one way, men are the problem. Yes. And actually I do have a problem with that. You publish it. It doesn’t mean I agree with what they found out. Shouldn’t there be a little more diversity in your field? That’s a general thing that we hear in university campuses, right? That most people are on the left. A National Association of Scholars report found that in liberal arts colleges democrats outnumber republicans 10:1 I think it’s very reasonable — because what happens? What is the job of learning? Is questioning assumptions that are not traditional. So not being traditional, not being conservative, is part of the job of learning. Being more open to new ideas, which is, you know, what being a liberal is. But this is your left leaning definition. It’s conservatives that proposed changes like school vouchers, privatizing air traffic control, all kinds of new programs while liberals want more of the same. Oh, that’s an interesting point. Then the hypothesis is shut down. See, that’s how things work. You show the idea, you discuss the idea and get it. Any right leaning article is rejected. No no, and I think that’s the major – Can you point to a couple in your journal? That are right leaning? Well. Ah. I wouldn’t say right leaning because we don’t like either the extreme left or extreme right. He has published papers that challenge feminist orthodoxy, like this one saying the “me too” movement may go too far. There’s a push for the women’s side these days, which very understandably in a reaction because for many for a long time there was a push on the men’s side. A researcher who had another opinion wouldn’t get hired or published. Correct. If you don’t match what most people believe, you’re considered wrong. But isn’t that how humans handle knowledge? No, say the hoaxers, to learn all sides should be heard. If they wanted to make their point that there are people who are in the extreme left, yes, there are people in the extreme left, but a hoax in a publication in a journal is not going to solve the problem. It’s like, robbing a bank because you have to feed your children. It’s fine, but it’s not fine. The bank gets robbed, they update their security systems. What have you done? I don’t think at this point we have a real good solution. I don’t think they do. I’m grateful that Refinetti was willing to have a conversation. But I cheer the hoaxers for revealing that much of what passes for scholarship at colleges today is bunk.