Critical Stupidity

October 31, 2006

This article is great: The Killeen Daily Herald – Real life creepy crawlers

Dracula on the other hand, or Count Vladamir Dracula, was a powerful nobleman in Rumania, not Transylvania, who lived around the 4th century A.D. According to Johnson, Dracula entered the lore of Halloween when a priest came to visit him in the night, and refused to show the proper respect to the count’s status by removing his hat, citing his devotion to God as his only master. Dracula, unimpressed with the priest’s candor and dedication, had his guards screw the priest’s hat into his head so that he may never forget whom it was he disrespected.

HOw do people who call themselves Dr. get to spout idiocy? Easy, they recourse to the newspapers. I wonder if you can guess what’s wrong. Well, if you’ve read Dracula Sense and Nonsense, you’d know that Romania wasn’t a country until the 19th C. Dracula, i.e. Vlad Tsephes (spelling close) was a voivoid (military ruler) in Wallachia, in the 14th C (or 15, give me a break). He has never entered halloween, but he is reputed to have nailed turbans to a sultan’s envoys’ heads.

But we believe what we read in the papers… I guess I can use this in my critical thinking class today. Rule of thumb: If you know that half the facts are bogus, assume they all are bogus, and don’t trust the source or the reporter in the future.

3 Responses to “Critical Stupidity”

  1. could be worse…. we coudl believe what we read in blogs… where would we be then?

  2. I certainly hope you’re dressing up as a vampire to scare the kids tonight.

    Not sure what this has to do with your post, but you’re blogging about vampires on Halloween and it seems very aproppo. (or however you spell that last word)


  3. (grin) I just had a similar discussion with some Norwegian students about trusting online sources and looking for markers of “legitimacy.” What a nice example this would have made for double checking facts!