This is a nice accusation

So, I wrote about a health/food matter elsewhere. I receive this as part of an email:

By the way, I am reminded of Upton Sinclair\’s quote:

\”It is hard to get a man to understand something when his salary depends on his not understanding it.\”

Would you mind if I investigated your industry affiliations? If you don\’t mind, please respond to this email. If you do not respond, I will take your silence as an admission of industry sponsorship, and I will use that information accordingly.

Someone\’s a bit touchy about their pet theory, aren\’t they?

26 thoughts on “This is a nice accusation”

  1. Sounds like another case of projection to me.

    Just let them know you’re in the pay of Big Scandium 🙂

  2. “It is hard to get a man to understand something when his salary depends on his not understanding it.”

    Could one apply a variation of this to climate science?

  3. There’s a certain irony that. as old religions lose their followers, those congregations flock to new idols with all the old zealotry.

  4. “I’m sending an email to you to ask if you drown puppies in a sack.

    If you don’t mind, please respond to this email. If you don’t respond, I will use your silence as an admission of puppy-drowning and use that information accordingly. “

  5. I’m surprised you even got an email. The normal approach is just to denounce immediately, regardless of evidence or argument.

    Oh, and tell all who is going to be shortly digging away in a fruitless search for dirt.

  6. I do recall having seen various references made by Tim to longings for Marmite, HP Sauce and other ex-pat types of British food – sausages? Any kickbacks here?

  7. It does come across as “I’d really like to accuse you of x, and if you don’t reply then I will. If you do reply, I can instead say ‘He strongly denied any association with x – methinks he doth protest too much.'”

    Any email from anyone I’ve not emailed would go to my spam filter anyway – there’s a good chance they expected this to happen here, so that they can accuse you of all sorts of nastiness with “justification”.

  8. Tim

    You’ve allowed the writer their anonymity, but I can spot Caitlin Moran’s hand anywhere. This cyber bully really must be stopped!!!

  9. By the way, I am reminded of what Teddy Roosevelt said of Upton Sinciair-

    “I have an utter contempt for him. He is hysterical, unbalanced, and untruthful. Three-fourths of the things he said were absolute falsehoods. For some of the remainder there was only a basis of truth.”

  10. that’s a threat. There is only one way to respond to threats. Post the email address and we can all send him – for I am certain it is a he – amusing banter and constructtive criticism.

    I suggest you also respond along the lines of

    “Would you mind if I posted your email address on my blog? If you don’t mind, please respond. If you do not respond I will assume you don’t mind and use that information accordingly.”

  11. Usually the best response to impertinent missives like this is some variation on the reply given in Arkell vs. Pressdram.

  12. On Upton Sinclair, GB Shaw thought he was brilliant – never great company to be in – and HL Mencken used to take the piss out of him mercilessly.

    In the autumn of his years, Mencken hoped to spend a year or so compiling a list of all the great untruths Sinclair had believed in his time. It would run, Mencken predicted, to hundreds, and maybe even thousands, “a number so far beyond the bounds of ordinary probability that, aside from Sinclair himself, not more than half a dozen human beings have ever believed in them.”

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