scratch-mark

A Fine Day In The Echo Chamber

The morning started off just right. Sunrise on the patio, a cup of coffee, then skipped the morning hour long walk because Bea was off in the morning and wanted to do it.

To top it off, a comment from reader Ian.

Richard, your blog is great and the effort you put into photographing your paleo lifestyle including recipes and cooking techniques is invaluable, as are your regular updates containing links to articles with new relevant information for those pursuing or curious about pursuing this lifestyle.

I’ve been reading it pretty frequently, sometimes multiple times per day just to flip through the old posts and drool over your delicious looking creations and soak up your thoughtful advice.

However, when it comes to your advocacy for the paleo diet, you’re doing yourself and others who are interested in it, and are ignorant of it, a great disservice. Arguing from a position of unchallengeable authority, or even just arrogance peppered with accusations and attempts at mockery is not only unpersuasive but totally alienating to anyone who doesn’t already share your point of view.

In other words, you sound like a shithead. Based on the rest of your blog, i think it’s pretty unlikely you actually are one, but at first glance at one of your forum posts, who would know?

Getting as close as possible to the truth on any subject that falls under scientific scrutiny is difficult, it requires dispassionately analyzing the evidence available and trying to come to the best objective conclusion, then sharing your analysis of the evidence and having it sanity-checked by others.

It’s not a rap battle or a comedy central roast. Calling a guy who has spent a decent portion of his life trying to educate people on nutrition and bring them away from processed foods and to whole natural foods a liar (”inconsistent, bordering on dishonest”) because he hasn’t been persuaded to your point of view on meats and fats yet is pretty uncalled for.

People who believe differently from you are not your enemy to be destroyed, but your ally to be persuaded, this is the only way meaningful knowledge can advance. Making an argument to someone requires having a sensitivity to their point of view, ie understanding what it is and how they established it if possible, and then building on it with a combination of persuasive rhetoric and dispassionate presentations of the evidence you feel supports your position.

Quips like “do the math” and “the religion of plant based dieting” do not serve this cause well. It also sets the tone for the participants and readers of your blog, the first comment was someone making a point about the perceived ecological impact of the meat industry to which someone responded just to call them a “lower case troll”. What the hell is a lower case troll? We’re really going to attack peoples conversational internet grammar because they have an environmental concern? That’s where unnecessary vitriol inevitably leads.

But don’t take my word for it, here’s an excellent and highly amusing video of Neil Tyson making a similar argument to Richard Dawkins.

Though my response didn’t mention this (I thought about it later), Ian makes one point I have a certain sensitivity to: "It also sets the tone for the participants and readers of your blog." Yep, that’s the risk and I must say that I generally don’t like commenters slinging shit (either direction). That’s my job. Call it inconsistent, or whatever, but the post is designed to — as I’ve often said — hit & run or slash & burn, then let’s hammer it out in comments. Anyway, that’s my goal: to use the posting to draw in the traffic, then let’s have a decent discussion. And, yes, I don’t always live up to that ideal myself.

Anyway, the day gets better. I headed off to the gym shortly after the above & had a really great workout. And then I get back from the gym and, low-&-behold, I’ve got another comment, this time from John.

Ian, you are absolutely correct about Richard. Having read this blog since before Richard started bowing to Art DeVany, I have noted that Richard’s personality at its core is that of a know-all asshole whose primary mission is to win a fight/argument, not necessarily find or promote truth. In other words, whatever Richard believes today is the Truth. The point of the blog is to satisfy Richard’s congenital need to express his rectitude. He is always “immovable”.

Like a blind pig, Richard’ has latched onto the paleo thing. For the most part, I find his writing entertaining and often informative (I focus primarily on his cooking explorations), but always subject to scrutiny.

His and Jimmy Moore’s ilk consistently react to criticism the same way their targets do: name-calling and instant dismissal, with a dash of unsubstantiated counter-claim. The echo chamber is an easy/comfortable box in which to live. But that is part of the entertainment of the blog. It can be helpful to read things that often annoy me and keep me questioning and investigating, such as Richard’s comically authoritative perspective. It requires more than what Richard’s intellect possesses to argue his perspective dispassionately.

If you prefer more consistently moderate and accurate reading, read Art. Art’s writing reflects a deep and long-running interest in what makes for healthful living. Art also is an actual prototype for long-term health (as opposed to Richard’s born-again evangelism). Art’s ego is satisfied with considered thoughts and a focus on his own health and on sharing his experiences and observations without shrill ridicule.

If you primarily want entertainment, read Richard. But don’t expect any less lyprocrisy or hyperbole from him than from the people he ridicules.

So, there you have it. Right out in the open. Just taking one in the chin for Team Echo-Chamber.

I’ve always said — ask my wife — that I enjoy being loved & hated just about equally. It’s far, far better than indifference, so I’ve got to give a warm thanks out to both Ian and John for helping to make it a great & effective day.

I think I’m right on track. For those who care to wonder why I engage in the style I do, it’s really the only way I could. Entertainment? Yep, that’s primarily it, for me — the lifestyle has its own rewards and I don’t need to be doing this to get all the rewards such lifestyle offers. Part of that entertainment is the inputs, i.e., the posts, all of the posts. The other part is the results we get to read about and the help other readers are more than willing to give.

It takes what it takes. But I’m sure both Ian and John spend far more time and effort promoting paleo in their own ways than I do, and I’m sure they’ve convinced a lot more people than I that a paleo path is a good one. Possibly — I’d have to look — but perhaps Ian & John are really the ones responsible for this.

Free the Animal Stats
Free the Animal Stats

We’re on a rate to exceed 70,000 visits and 120,000 page views in November.

Thanks Ian & John for all the hard work.

Richard Nikoley

I'm Richard Nikoley. Free The Animal began in 2003 and as of 2021, contains 5,000 posts. I blog what I wish...from health, diet, and food to travel and lifestyle; to politics, social antagonism, expat-living location and time independent—while you sleep—income. I celebrate the audacity and hubris to live by your own exclusive authority and take your own chances. Read More

75 Comments

  1. Jimmy Moore on November 18, 2009 at 11:55

    I’m proud to be of the same “ilk” as you Richard! 🙂

    • Richard Nikoley on November 18, 2009 at 12:26

      You ilkster, you!

  2. Lute Nikoley on November 18, 2009 at 12:22

    Some people find me as know it all, smart-ass, arrogant when I express my arguments , right or wrong. But, I had a boss many years ago, he was a Lt. Col., I was a staff sergeant. We had an argument, although he admitted to me being right, he told me these words after we were done “I may not always be right, but I am never wrong.” I guess Richard is a chip off the old block after all.

    Keep up the good work Richard, it helps a lot of people.

  3. gallier2 on November 18, 2009 at 12:29

    I often like your style. It’s often a good approach to have this ‘know-it-all’ advocacy tone on, especially if you have the results that go with it (that’s not my case unfortunately, but I have to start on the strength training thing yet). A more consensual tone can often lead to a more boring blog which can bring invaluable information but fail to catch attention. This is the fate actually (in my eyes) of Stephan’s blog and even more for Chris Masterjon’s. Both have the upper hand on you concerning the technicity and analytical level, but their blogs lack sometime a bit of sparkle and fire. That’s why I like your perspective, it’s refreshingly acute and to the point. And even if you appear often a bit rough, it is clear that you’re open to new ideas, the only thing is , they must be argumented. Tom Naughton’s blog is a bit similar, only he uses comedy instead of aggressivity to get his point across.
    Concerning Jimmy Moore, I like his enthusiasm, even if I do not follow his blog regularly (I can not follow all blogs, sometime I have to work) and find his motto ‘Livin’ la vida low-carb’ a bit annoying, I find the interviews he makes extremly valuable. The net would be poorer without him.
    I have to say that Art Devany and Mark’s Daily Apple are blogs I do not visit often because there is a lot of “mainstream, conventional wisdom” going on, not really in the articles, but in the comments. And repeating 1000 times that 5 fruits/vegetables a day is bullshit gets boring.
    Sorry for giving my 2 cents of feedback from a failed low-carber of the “communist” European Union.

    • Richard Nikoley on November 18, 2009 at 12:53

      Gallier2:

      Thanks. I must point out that of the blogs you mentioned, Stephan’s is an enormous resource to me. Yes, his is designed for a cool, scientific look at things. One should not mistake my style in any way as some sort of claim that this is the best approach or that the approach of guys like Stephan are less than ideal.

      I just think people respond to different approaches.

      Of course, we paleos are right, and there’s simply no denying that. It’s good to be right. That said, we’re maybe only at 80% of adequate knowledge, so it’s good to keep learning — and I think even my style can further that goal. I wouldn’t wast my time, otherwise.

  4. BMcD on November 18, 2009 at 12:48

    I hope and pray you never stop doing things the way that’s true to you. It’s make a great blog and it changes people’s lives. Having critics like those only means one relevant thing – people are paying attention.

    • Richard Nikoley on November 18, 2009 at 12:54

      The big advantage to my style, above all else, is that my readers know for sure I’m not lying or blowing smoke up their asses..

      • BMcD on November 18, 2009 at 14:25

        That’s why this is the only blog I visit every day.



  5. Skyler Tanner on November 18, 2009 at 13:37

    You’re a total cock who can’t refeed properly. 😉

    That said, it shouldn’t be any other way. Anybody who takes the time to blog is distilling a very specific perspective, one that has a large amount of thought behind it. If one were to attempt to add the math that went into the answer, the blog posts would be enormously long and contradictory, likely filled with switchbacks and dead ends. When you’ve “done the math” and spit out a post peppered with personality, you’re going to catch shit. It will of course pass.

    Humor and vitriol grab attention and the curious stick around for the meat and potatoes; Arthur Jones knew this years ago. The worst you can be is misunderstood.

    Best,
    Skyler

    • Richard Nikoley on November 18, 2009 at 13:53

      “You’re a total cock”

      Thank you, sir. My grandmother called me “the smartass,” and I miss her saying that every day since her hard drinkin’, hard smokin’ self has been gone.

      “…who can’t refeed properly”

      Laf, We know where that comes from. So how’s the McDonald asshole been doing? haven’t popped in in a while.

      But thanks Skyler. Nice to know that the most important of readers and contributors gets the essentials of what I’m up to.

      BTW, I wish my parents had named me Skyler. 🙂

      • Lute Nikoley on November 18, 2009 at 14:11

        Yeah, I like the name too. But, Richard will do just fine.



      • Lute Nikoley on November 18, 2009 at 14:15

        How do I get my mug shot into that laying on it’s side “G”



      • Richard Nikoley on November 18, 2009 at 14:19

        http://en.gravatar.com/

        Just make sure you use the same email as you use in the posting form.



      • Skyler Tanner on November 18, 2009 at 14:18

        It’s funny about Lyle; he did an interview with the guys over at Reality Based Fitness. Great interview; he comes across exactly like he did when he was on Jimmy’s show. The internet brings out the most pointed and irritable in many of us, I suppose. We don’t have to play nice unless we want to.

        Thank my father for the name; one only need to see the “Magic Voodoo Beer Glass” vid I did at my blog to get my father: 57, handlebar stash, sleeve tattoos…how my mother put up with that I have no idea. 😀

        Best,
        Skyler



  6. John on November 18, 2009 at 14:32

    “The highest form of vanity is love of fame.” -George Santayana

    I headed off to the back field to do my daily primal workout shortly after the above & had a really great workout. And when I get back, I’ve got the gift of a full posting by Richard (and wonderfully insightful comment by Jimmy as an extra special bonus).

    The echoes resonate through the comments.

    Notoriety and fame don’t correlate with credibility, expertise, or authority. Reading this blog does not equate to agreeing with or respecting Richard’s ideas or presentation. The statistics certainly don’t suggest that Richard has “convinced” the 70,000 people who have viewed this site to follow a paleo lifestyle. I have followed this type of lifestyle for many years (long before you rolled over to realize your lifestyle needed a change) and am confident that many others who read this blog have as well. Richard is not a pioneering voice. Much of the site’s readership learned of it from other paleo-oriented sites.

    Inflating one’s own importance is the narcissist’s stock in trade. Richard’s is a stark contrast to the thoughtful and persuasive writings of Art, Sisson, and others and bolsters Ian’s original statements.

    What did Samuel Clemens say: “Figures often beguile me, particularly when I have the arranging of them myself; in which case … There are three kinds of lies: lies, damned lies, and statistics”?

    I will retire from the chamber, too much cognitive dissonance.

    • Richard Nikoley on November 18, 2009 at 14:47

      “Richard is not a pioneering voice.”

      That’s the most important thing you wrote. But I suspect that you have no idea why.

      What’s clear to me is that you like to think you know how and why minds are changed. I, on the other hand, know how minds are changed and have chalked up 20+ years of doing that from philosophy, religion, politics, and now, most successfully in diet and health. Hint: you don’t change _average_ minds with intellectualizing. That’s mental masturbation for intellectuals, which is fine. Average minds are changed by first engaging them, and you can only do that through drama.

      But just go ahead and go on kibitzing those who are actually DOING SOMETHING, John. What are you doing, other than easily criticizing others who are?

      It’s far easier to tear down than to build. While I don’t imagine your rebuke will do anything but bring more readers, I do note that it is far easier (are you masking your laziness, here?) to take shots at me than to, say, do your own bog in the boring fashion that you prefer.

      In short, you’re a thief, of sorts. While it’s petty, to be sure, you are nonetheless parasitizing values I’ve built over many months and many hours of effort. It will come to nothing. But, at least you got it out of your system.

      Here, let’s formalize: go fuck yourself, John (all day long is just fine).

    • Anand Srivastava on November 19, 2009 at 00:51

      I did learn it from other sites, but Richard showed me those sites.

      I had always dismissed Low Carb as stupid and too extreme. Richard showed me that it has reasons behind it. He brings out his intelligence very well in the site and is very convincing. His posturing doesn’t matter much to me at least.

  7. Smoketh on November 18, 2009 at 14:36

    Richard, I’m a relatively new reader and a first time commenter (if that’s a word..kinda like refeed). The smart-ass, in your face, sarcastic passion you bring to the table is refreshing. Sure you are beyond passionate about the Paleo lifestyle…so be it. That being said, I don’t feel like you pound this stuff down anyone’s throat, but you offer links allowing the reader to make his or her own decisions. I’ve done the math Richard, great blog with great information.

    MikeZ

    • Skyler Tanner on November 18, 2009 at 14:51

      Hey Mike,

      If unfriend is the “word of the year” then refeed is damn well a real word! 😀

      Best,
      Skyler

    • Richard Nikoley on November 18, 2009 at 15:03

      Smoketh:

      Thanks for commenting a first time. See folks, it doesn’t hurt. Jump in.

      I’m very grateful that even as a new reader you are capable of seeing beyond the hyperbole, which I hastily admit some of it is, and if not in substance, surely by design, as that IS THE DESIGN. Explicitly.

      I’m a hybrid, which is to say, I greatly enjoy the blogs by Art, Stephan, Peter and others out there who are cool and scientific to the nth degree. But beyond even the possibility of doing likewise (I could if that’s what I wanted to do), there’s enough of that, and I have many, many emails from guys like Art, Mark, Dr. Davis, Dr. BG my buddy, Perter at hyperlipid, Stephan to be sure, Dr. Edes and others.

      So, how come they email and reply to emails from a hit & run asshole like me?

      I know, of course. Ian and John don’t.

  8. Tim Rangitsch on November 18, 2009 at 15:14

    Did he say Jimmy Moore resorts to name calling? Jimmy Moore?!?

  9. Cynthia on November 18, 2009 at 15:29

    I always enjoy your blog and educational efforts, even when they are phrased indelicately. I appreciate your allowing dissension and debate and tolerating those who don’t agree completely. Everyone should always think for themselves, not just blindly follow your opinions or anyone else’s. Thanks for not trying to be a self-important “guru” who must sarcastically crush anyone who disagrees with you. It makes you much more credible!

    • Richard Nikoley on November 18, 2009 at 15:36

      Thank you dear Cynthia for bringing context and what I call wide-scope accounting.

      Nope, “Animals Don’t Need Gurus”

      https://freetheanimal.com/2008/09/animals-dont-need-gurus.html

      It’s al there, and that’s why I laugh at and enjoy a coming out such as this. It’s like a cleansing fast. Sure, they can point to my worst, but are they going to point out my best?

      The whole exercise is funny, in that these most ardent of rebukers are apparently readers who have up to now been unable to help themselves but read the blog. Curious.

  10. Cynthia on November 18, 2009 at 15:34

    ok, well maybe you are a little sarcastic sometimes… But it still seems to me to be in the service of education and debate, not ego gratification. That’s a subtle but important distinction…

    • Richard Nikoley on November 18, 2009 at 15:40

      I must in all honesty admit to a huge dose of ego gratification.

      But why would’t I? Let’s think about it. Here I blogged from 2003-2006 and had but a few hundred readers. I found something valuable, did a hybrid blog for a year or so (politics and paleo), then went full time paleo about a year ago and have had popularity increase hundreds of percent.

      That’s ego gratification and if someone tells you different, they’re a pussy who can’t bear the truth of matters.

      Look,it’s simple to me. I just read reality as honestly as I can and report the best findings, and because I’ve already spent hours in thought, I get to have a hand up and gratify my ego by being asshole about it.

      A simple formula, at least for me.

  11. Satya on November 18, 2009 at 15:58

    Richard,

    Freetheanimal rocks! I have been reading for well over a year, but this is my first comment. Perhaps this is a coming out party for lurkers or something.

    I especially love your food photos, exposes on various things, and your most recent progress pic – wow what a dramatic improvement. It is the latter that has finally gotten me off my butt to say something. Excellent progress, and thanks for all of your words of wisdom over time!

  12. VIctor on November 18, 2009 at 15:59

    Richard,

    Are you sassy? Yup. Are you more confrontational than Sisson and DeVany? Yes. Are you trying to pass your blog off as the replacement the Journal of the American Medical Association? Only a fool would think so.

    Your blog doesn’t claim to be a scientifically objective and dispassionately peer-reviewed piece of institutional bland boiled turkey. It’s one person’s publication, an internet soap box or editorial on how he feels about Paleo living. A container of sorts and a jumping point for things Paleo\EF\Primal. I come to your blog PRECISELY because it presents passionate advocacy for something I have just begun to adopt.

    You’re doing a great job, warts and all. Keep up the good work!

    Victor

  13. Susan in Spokane on November 18, 2009 at 17:37

    Richard,

    I am a fifty-six year old female who, having gone LC and grain free since March 2009, lost 40 lbs. and feels wonderful! I discovered your blog about three months ago, and I thoroughly enjoy your sassy opinions. I check out several nutritional blogs most days, including yours. I like the different perspectives that I can get from these sites. It allows me to gather more and more information from folks who have taken the time and effort to read and assemble the newest nutritional information out there. You then take the time and effort to share your finds, as well as your opinions on them, with readers like myself, which arms us with more information with which to make our own decisions.

    I do not always agree with your take on subjects (I suspect there are many things we would not agree with! LOL), but I still enjoy reading what you have to say and appreciate you very much. I think you are doing a great job, and your hook of a bit of sarcasm is what keeps me coming back as well. Oh, and by-the-way, there is nothing wrong with a little bit of ego gratification for something that is done well. Isn’t that part of the rewarding aspects of blogging?

    And Jimmy Moore is the best! Absolutely a gentleman!

    Susan :>)

  14. Helen Burke on November 18, 2009 at 17:53

    Ilk on dude! I’ve been reading your site more and more and loving it. I like the way you talk to people, the amount of wrong information and crap out there is overwhelming. Page per views speak for themselves. . . continue on Sir Ilkm it’s why I read.

  15. Arlo on November 18, 2009 at 20:34

    Sounds like you’ve got some want-to-be amateur psychologists in your readership, Rich! Interesting how John lambastes you about being arrogant, overly critical and mean, but basically spends his whole post prattling on about what an asshole you are.

    I get a kick out of all these people who email blogs and say, “You should change your blog to be better in line with my views.” Bottom line: this is your blog, presenting your view and opinions. If they don’t like it, then they can go somewhere else!

    Oh, and I’ve got a quote of my own for them from Thomas Jefferson. He was speaking in a different context, of course, but I think it applies: “Ridicule is he only weapon which can be used against unintelligible propositions. Ideas must be distinct before reason can act upon them…”

    • Richard Nikoley on November 19, 2009 at 08:43

      I’ve always taken “asshole” to be a compliment.

      TJ…”Ridicule is the only weapon which can be used against unintelligible propositions. Ideas must be distinct before reason can act upon them…”

      Absolutely. There is a minimum requirement to meet the possibility of rational discussion. Would you, for instance, engage in a rational discussion over the possible existence of unicorns? Or, would you ridicule someone who takes the affirmative seriously?

      There is no difference. I care not to pretend that advocates of low-fat and anti-saturated fat be accorded respect they don’t deserve. I see them as accomplices to murder, mayhen, and debilitation.

      In a more rational world, we’d simply slaughter them and eat their livers.

      That’s what’s at stake. It’s life & death and I’ve always approached this as s fight for my life and those I love & care about.

      It’s not a game. We’re in a fight with predators that wear white coats.

  16. Tin Tin on November 18, 2009 at 21:01

    Richard, love the blog – don’t change your style.

    Ian’s reference to the Neil Tyson and Richard Dawkins interaction puzzles me. What is Ian saying? Is he suggesting Neil’s style is preferable to Dawkins’? In the footage Neil Tyson comes in with a long, confused rambling comment directed at Dawkins to which Dawkins pretty much says – that’s what it is and if you don’t like it fuck off. As far as I’m concerned Tyson looked like a nervous, confused twit! Dawkins rolled him!

    BTW, have you heard from Katlin or whatever her name is?

    • Arlo on November 18, 2009 at 22:26

      It’s funny, cause I like both of those guys and respect of their different approaches. They both have their place.

      The British accent doesn’t help Dawkins’ case of sounded arrogant though, lol.

    • Richard Nikoley on November 19, 2009 at 10:18

      I think she’s shown up a time or two and things are just fine.

  17. Tin Tin on November 19, 2009 at 01:12

    BTW, does anyone have a legal/legitimate copy of Art’s DVD they want to sell? Art’s DVD is a bit pricey for me and I’d like to see if I can get my hands on a second hand copy.

    • Monica Hughes on November 19, 2009 at 06:16

      yes, yes! Email me at monicabeth10ATgmailDOTcom

    • Skyler Tanner on November 19, 2009 at 11:18

      When you’re done with it I might be interested in buying it; sort of like the massive rental train! Email me if this is something you’d consider (or if Monica’s price is too high, I’d like to purchase it): skylerssATgmailDOTcom

  18. DrA on November 19, 2009 at 02:24

    Great blog, Richard. Don’t change anything!

    • Richard Nikoley on November 19, 2009 at 10:21

      DrA:

      Glad you commented, as I hadn’t seen your blog before that I can recall. Looking forward to checking it out.

  19. Trish on November 19, 2009 at 03:41

    It always amuses me when people bitch about a blog writer on said writer’s blog. Don’t like it? Don’t read it. Simple as that. Having said that, however, there’s a danger of getting a God complex when there’s a lot of people kissing your ass and telling you how awesome you are. Yes, it’s very gratifying for your ego but you need to keep in mind that if you’re blogging about a controversial subject you’re going to get the haters, and how you treat the haters is ultimately how you’ll be perceived. Personally I think we need more f-bombs in the world so keep them coming.

    • Richard Nikoley on November 19, 2009 at 10:54

      Trish:

      I have a wife. Consequently, I’m in very little danger of developing a god complex. 🙂

  20. Guy on November 19, 2009 at 03:55

    “Average minds are changed by first engaging them, and you can only do that through drama.”

    Great line, Richard! Perhaps this is why Ayn Rand wrote her novels first.

  21. Byron on November 19, 2009 at 04:29

    I´m a longtime carnivore from Germany and enjoy your blog because of your straightness and fun. I´m working hard enough in biochemical research so it´s a great place to relax. Besides: your blog is like your house and guests should know how to behaviour and they are always allowed to move on – actually, why they drop in?! I would not waste my time by visiting blogs I don´t agree.
    Greatings from beautiful Munich.

  22. Andrew S on November 19, 2009 at 05:36

    I see two arguments here: 1) Richard is an arrogant, know-it-all prick, and 2) the first argument leads readers to be just as arrogant.

    The first is off the mark. As many have pointed out in the comments, having an aggressive style (especially when bashing the insufferable fools pushing the SAD) is refreshing and invigorating. But there’s a difference between being aggressive and being arrogant; if Richard was ignorant or preachy or arguing from authority it’d be something to worry about. You’ve posted enough links to studies and other analysis that I think a reader would be blind to think that you don’t know what you’re talking about.

    As for the second argument, I think anger is the proper response to those that threaten our lives and livelihoods through their promotion of tired, failed theories of diet and disease. You’ve cautioned readers often enough to look at the evidence and make up their own minds. Readers should be careful to not latch on to Paleo just because they like your style. Yet … it sounds like Ian and John want to sit around in their smoking jackets, sipping brandy, and calmly discuss the ways in which Mainstream “scientists” and bureaucrats wish to strip away our health and freedom.

    If you’re not angry, you’re not paying attention.

    • gallier2 on November 19, 2009 at 10:29

      If you’re not angry, you’re not paying attention.

      Fantastic quote. This one I have to steal.

    • Richard Nikoley on November 19, 2009 at 11:13

      Great exercise in making critical distinctions.

      Yea, let’s stop pretending that these asshole frauds in white coats who go out of their way to ignore or disregard human evolution in their never ending quest to impugn real food for the sake of industrial garbage and the drugs.

      There’s distinctions to make. I’m not arguing that man was created and the earth is 6k years old using the bible as my authority and being arrogant, dismissive and insulting to those who disagree.

      In the end, Ian’s and John’s problem is the same: moral equivocation.

      This is not equivalent. We are RIGHT. Yes, there is still more to learn, perfect, optimize, but we are RIGHT on the fundamentals and the white coat frauds can go fuck themselves. Moreover, it gives me great pleasure to imagine that they see their name in Google on my site, characterized as it should be. And there’s more; not only are we right, they are wrong and they have pushed their wrong for decades and have lied, cheated, and looked the other way at data that even an average layman can understand. Accordingly, they are, to large extent, evil.

      Make no mistake: I will not be satisfied until these murderous frauds are shamed, discredited, and left to starve with rotting sores in the streets. That is what they deserve for what they have perpetuated with their stolen money and pretenses of authority and presumptions to dictate the diets of peoples worldwide.

      • gallier2 on November 21, 2009 at 03:00

        A propos frauds, have you heard of that?
        http://wattsupwiththat.com/2009/11/19/breaking-news-story-hadley-cru-has-apparently-been-hacked-hundreds-of-files-released/

        It’s not about nutrition, it’s worse, it’s about “climate change”. There happenned to be a tremendous leak of information from the HadleyCRU showing what a scam the climate change is. The peer review process is a farce, the “scientist” involved are grant-whores etc.. read it for yourself.
        I hope it will someday inspire someone in the nutrition/health industry to do the same kind of leak.
        If you’re not angry, you’re not paying attention.



  23. adam r on November 19, 2009 at 06:13

    I can’t help but jump on this for a first comment… I come here for the free food porn. I’ve been cooking vicariously from this site for a couple months now. In fact, I may be part responsible for a large increase in your total traffic. Meatza, who knew?

    In regard to overall tone of the blog, I don’t care, your food looks great. But there is this overwhelming sense of “schoolyard scrap” today. Very primal of you, human biology involves more than food input and diet but also occasional territorial scraps(this blog does smell like Richard’s). Since nobody is sissy slapping each other the occasional verbal tussle can be expected. I kinda wanted to chime in and start chanting fight fight fight.

    opinion blogs are unique in that they offer up the wonderful human quality of idea exchange, sometimes it just gets murky when contention arises and so be it. I have enjoyed the exchange that started this post rolling. this is a quality blog. Thankyou.

  24. Troy on November 19, 2009 at 07:30

    Love the blog. Keep it up

  25. Mike Gruber on November 19, 2009 at 09:51

    Richard *is* an arrogant, know it all prick. That’s one reason I read his blog, he reminds me of a slightly overweight version of myself. 😉

    • Richard Nikoley on November 19, 2009 at 10:11

      “Richard *is* an arrogant, know it all prick.”

      Thank you, sir. It’s not at all the perception I mind, but the notion that it’s somehow uncalled for.

      Sure, for pussies, pansies and pacifists, I suppose; none of which describes me.

  26. Nancy on November 19, 2009 at 10:56

    Richard,
    To me you are the ‘Billy Beck’ of the Paleo Bloggers. Keep being yourself – it’s wonderful!

    Ian and John strike me as the type who most likely think Obama’s bowing around the world is a good thing.

  27. adam r on November 19, 2009 at 12:34

    have to chime in again. as an employee of an enormous health club organization, who doesn’t agree with 90% of what they represent, I find myself on the defensive less and less while arguing with know nothing busy bodies about diet, having obtained more legit info from this blog and other paleo low carb fare concerning diet and nutrition in 2 months than the junk their type have been dumping on unsuspecting masses for 50 years. their research is crap(they know it) inconclusive, and does cause untold amounts of damage. I have a full time job where I get to watch walking talking nutrition disasters do what they’re told by all these numb nut white coats and they’re falling apart, old and young alike.

    i’d have to say it’s a righteous anger about telling these folks what’s up. why be so polite as to spare their feelings, they’re killing innocent sheep.. er, people with their ignorance and willful lies. why should several generations of people suffer so much for their stupidity?

    nobody here likes to listen to the guy who fixes everything they break, though. what could I know?

    • Richard Nikoley on November 19, 2009 at 12:42

      Good spirit, Adam.

      Yes, you see the debilitated, unhappy lives right up close, as do I and my trainer at my gym. And then there’s the friends & family members too.

      Righteous indignation. Here’s to keeping it up.

  28. Mark Donkin on November 19, 2009 at 12:57

    Richard,

    As you know I’m a regular reader and poster to your blog. It’s simply not in my nature to be offended by swearing or brash rhetoric (In fact my nature trends in the same direction). However I can see that many people will be offended or at least turned off by such stuff, and from experience I know that the only people that such a style ever convinces are those who are already “on your side”. Now, I realise that my argument so far is purely negative, but I would suggest a balance between flair and reasoned argument if you hope to change the minds of people who have a different view from yours and mine.

    Cheers – Mark

    • Richard Nikoley on November 19, 2009 at 13:05

      Mark:

      Actually, my experience over 20 years has been quite different and I have done LOTS of arguing, pretty much always in the same style.

      The difference is that it’s an evolution of mind changing, which I think is ultimately more solid.

      That said, sure, there should be some balance. See what you think of the next post in that regard. Should be up soon, if I can ever stop editing it and adding stuff.

      • Mark Donkin on November 25, 2009 at 02:01

        Gotta agree – your next post was indeed a well reasoned piece of argument. Keep up the good work!

        Cheers – MArk



  29. Jesrad on November 19, 2009 at 13:34

    Dissonance is the normal way our brains work, and certainly not peace-talks. Our neurons come up with “our” decisions by waging total war against each other, not by compromising. And that’s why political correctedness and consensus-minding kill the human mind, down to the cellular scale. So, please keep being an arrogant know-it-all. Thank you for your blog, I find it very informative, especially the parts on vitamins.

  30. g on November 19, 2009 at 14:16

    “If you’re not angry, you’re not paying attention.”

    Gallier2,

    I’ve got to steal that one TOO!

    Richard,

    Do u bring out the pr*ck in me?? I dunno b/c somehow when I post over here or on FB, the animal is freed in me. Seriously, I post my most pissed off stuff HERE, not at my blog (where I am all congenial and friendly)…

    *HAAAAA*

    Keep it up dude. You crack me up. Isn’t laughter the best medicine? Plus, you git it. About EVERYTHING. Good thing Bea (and us) keep you in line!!!

    -G

  31. VIctor on November 19, 2009 at 15:08

    Raising your voice at a deaf world isn’t a sin.

  32. Neil Fraser-Smith on November 19, 2009 at 19:20

    So Richard, what guns do you own?

    • Richard Nikoley on November 19, 2009 at 20:13

      Neil:

      Hmm, since I don’t recall you previously commenting — and I’ll hope you’ll excuse the oversight if you have — then I’m left wondering somewhat of the motivation without explanation for such an off topic post. Is this an effort to bate me in some way?

      No matter, because I’ll simply deliver an honest answer.

      I grew up around guns — in my grandparents’ cabinets, their bedside tables, in my parents’ closets, and, of course, the bird & deer hunting trips. From the time I was about 10 or so on these trips, I carried a holstered, loaded .22 and was allowed to explore with it, and shoot stuff. Keep in mind I had been very familiarized with guns for years. An uncle was a gunsmith, his son owed a Reno Pawn shop where guns were a mainstay. Suffice to say, I was allowed a gun at 10 because there was no danger in it.

      As a Navy officer I maintained marksman status over 8 years in both the M-1 rifle and the .45 handgun.

      Now? I’m fond of telling people when the subject comes up that in our loft I’m never more than 5 seconds away from a loaded gun. Here, I’ve got my grandmother’s .38, a .22 handgun, a 30-30 Winchester lever action, a 10 gauge shotgun from mom, and a Sig-Saur .40 S&W semi auto handgun. At the cabin I have a small handgun that I forget the caliber of.

      Need more? That’s the .40. Yes, I know it’s a hostage target. Just saving the hassle of changing targets.

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y8AhMjr0jWE

      • Richard Nikoley on November 19, 2009 at 20:16

        a few edits to that comment after publication.



      • Neil Fraser-Smith on November 19, 2009 at 21:16

        Wow, thats some accurate shooting. No, not trying to bate you, just thought this topic was getting a bit too serious. If people don’t like what you have to say or how you say it then don’t read your blog, simple really.
        I suspected with your military background you might have an interest in guns and it would cheer you up to have a bit of an ‘off topic’ after those stupid comments from ‘Richard’ and ‘John’.
        Love the blog, read it every day. All the best from Australia.



  33. adam r on November 20, 2009 at 05:38

    not to beat dead horse too long, but my case in point: at a nearby sister gym in my area a dude went out a-la elvis, in a toilet stall. was leaving but felt bad so he came back to use the john. 6 hours later the janitor got suspicious since he’d been there a few hours.stroke and/or massive coronary in a gym bathroom at 1 am. popped like baloon after his workout. not trying to be callous about a man I know nothing of, but that’s not the way i’d want to go.

    side note: without a change in diet, resistance training can cause a thickening of arterial walls, those with prior heart disease take care, all actions have consequences.

  34. Eric Lepine on November 20, 2009 at 09:58

    Richard, I’ve been reading your blog since the beginning pretty much. Stumbled upon it a long while back, like many, through Mark’s Daily Apple or Stephan’s Blog, I forget…

    Anyways, if it’s any consolation (not that you seem to be needing it…), I find your style to be greatly entertaining and, at the same time, informative. What more could you ask for, really!?

    I was also brought up a “good catholic” and like you, have long erased from my mind the notions and dogmas this involved. BUT, I still have it in me to try my best to always be nice and accomadating to people around me (even, as you call them, the “grant whores”!!!). Not always the healthiest thing (my wife keeps reminding me, but usually to no avail) but if anything, your writing style is liberating and refreshing, and a good example, in some ways, for me to follow; not something I’d have expected from following my passion for nutrition and health but heck, why not 🙂

    Keep up the good work mate!
    Eric

  35. Paleo Pussies | Free The Animal on November 23, 2009 at 19:04

    […] Well that was fun. And you know what? Life is just too fuckin' short to be a paleo pussy, a wimp…an intellectual masturbator in all of this. […]

  36. Bryce on November 23, 2009 at 19:23

    What warfare area were you in, Richard?

    Current SWO asking.

    -bryce

    • Bryce on November 23, 2009 at 19:26

      disregard – I decided to stop being lazy and found your bio

  37. Bryce on November 23, 2009 at 19:37

    Despite the fact that your a fellow skimmer, you might appreciate this guy, if you haven’t found him already. He’s got a hilarious “no quarter for fools” attitude about the navy, and also occasionally waxes nostalgic about good ole days at sea.

    • Richard Nikoley on November 23, 2009 at 20:19

      I may have seen that once or twice, over the years. Been a long time since I’ve been gone. BTW, in two years of standing OOD on two French ships, never had to wake the Captain once. You have essentially total freedom. On the REEVES, you could only get away with that if you were able to fudge your course a couple of degrees way ahead of time, and if you had traffic, forget it.

  38. Michael on November 23, 2009 at 21:08

    “Average minds are changed by first engaging them, and you can only do that through drama.”

    This makes me think back to when I was first discovering the paleo/primal principles. I stumbled upon MDA and needless to say I was experiencing a TON of dissonance. It went against everything I believed yet it seemed plausible and rational. The more I read and cross-referenced the more engaged I became.

    I agree with the first part of this statement but the “only drama” statement irks me a bit. Yes, argumentation that isn’t attended to can’t strike, but I think drama is just one avenue. Ultimately it is about getting and holding attention and there are certainly more than one way to do that.

    • Richard Nikoley on November 23, 2009 at 23:35

      I simply mean that drama takes many forms.

      And I’ll bet you’re an above average mind, too.

  39. Steve on November 23, 2009 at 22:31

    You belive in what you “preach”, so you are passionate about it. Big deal. Art and Mark can persuade some people, you can persuade the ones who do not respond to their style, hopefully. We need to convince as many minds as possible and arm as many people as possible with facts as quickly as possible. If, God forbid, we get nationalized healthcare, since the conventional wisdom is that fat is bad, it is entirely possible we could be “persuaded” to change our evil ways. Maybe some re-education camps, who knows. Time is of the essence. You obviously have spent MUCH time studying this, and are constantly looking at other blogs and research. You can understand and make sense of the technical, scientific mumbo-jumbo stuff that would stump me, and make it understandable to me. This gives me a basis to talk to others and, hopefuly, make rational, informed, arguments. The work you do is important, and thank you for all the time and great effort you put into this site, it has been an invaluable resource to me, both for the things you teach and the other sites I have found through you. And I will be “subscribing”, I promise, just waiting till the Christmas shopping is done to see what the budget allows 🙂

    • Richard Nikoley on November 23, 2009 at 23:38

      Thank you very much, Steve.

      Some days I realize I’ve spent so much time that I go on a rant about it, just like the latest post.

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