There’s so much to love about this. Mr Donald Trump — wind power hater because it supposedly ruins the view… unlike his towers and golf courses — seems to have missed the sarcasm in an infographic he retweeted. Well, just check it out here:
First of all, thanks to Some Air for making the infographic, and for sharing the news regarding Mr Trump’s blunder, and to Grist for sharing it with more of the world. They’ve already said so many things so well that I’ll just provide some good quotes from the above links:
From Some Air‘s post introducing the infographic:
Simon Chapman, professor of public health at Sydney University, started compiling the purported ‘symptoms’ of ‘wind turbine syndrome’ in early 2012.
His list currently sits at 216. It’s big, and broad, and it’s comprised entirely of anecdotal evidence. Anecdotes are generally regarded as the weakest form of evidence, in terms of scientific inquiry.
A few days ago, Trump trumped the selflessness of these acts by tweeting an infographic demonstrating the dangers of exposure to wind turbines, to his 2,444,053 followers….
If that infographic looks familiar, it’s because I made it, and posted it a few months ago. The reason I made it was to demonstrate the outcomes of over-reliance on anecdotal evidence. Click here for a large version. I even included the following quote, to make the purpose of the graphic utterly unambiguous:
“Thinking anecdotally comes naturally; whereas thinking scientifically does not”
– Michael ShermerSo how did Trump get fooled by small print? He was tweeted the picture by a guy called Dan Scavino Junior, General Manager of ‘Trump Golf“…
Turns out the GM of Trump Golf cares as much about infrasonic emissions as Trump does. It’s genuinely fascinating to see my infographic, originally intended to demonstrate the logical fallacy of relying too heavily on personal testimony, used as evidence by Trump, and the GM of his golf enterprise. It demonstrates perfectly Trump’s desire to find surrogate causes to stuff the blatant, gaping holes that stem from the fact his hatred of wind energy comes not from a genuine concern for Scottish welfare, but from a single specific development, barely visible from his planned luxury golf course.
Hilarious, isn’t it? I have certainly made my own embarrassing mistakes in the publishing world, but I think this one trumps anything I’ve seen from anyone. (Pun intended, but it sprung to mind without effort.)
I don’t want to rail on him too much myself, but I will share one more quote about the hilarity of and a lesson from the whole matter, from Jess Zimmerman of Grist:
Whether he’s functionally illiterate, lousy at Twitter, or so blinded by his rage at wind turbines that it doesn’t occur to him that they might not actually cause social problems in peacocks — or, you know, all three — the fact is that Trump uncritically tweeted a graphic whose entire purpose is to demonstrate how uncritically people accept BS anecdata. In short: LOL @ you.
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