Why we should not try to rehabilitate cheaters and frauds. They will never take responsibility and therefore never change.

Sep 09 2013 Published by under Academics, Anger, Scientific Misconduct

exhibit a:

h/t retractionwatch blog and PhysioProffe.

9 responses so far

  • drugmonkey says:

    It's one thing for other people to seek to describe the circumstances that encourage, permit or cause a person to commit academic fraud and scientific fabrication.

    It just comes off poorly for the cheater himself to try to contextualize his choices. Looks like avoiding taking responsibility for his actions.

    I am particularly unenthused about the way he keeps talking about himself.

  • dsks says:

    I wonder if they're investigating the co-authors (mostly grad students and postdocs, I imagine) on those retractions. It's highly unlikely that the two grad students who finally blew the whistle were the only ones to know what he was up to. How many knew but chose career prospects over honesty?

    54 retractions... jeebus.

  • drugmonkey says:

    chose career prospects over honesty?

    "chose"? hmmmm.

    but yeah, the way this guy would make up data and hand it over to his grad students does question wtf they were thinking. Totally foreign to my experience that the PI would be running his experiments all by himself and then turning up with new data that nobody else had a hand in.

    One thing if he was telling them that he had some *old* data that helped to support their new studies. The current students might actually buy that in limited cases.

    But going out and collecting the new stuff himself? c'mon now..

  • Dr Becca says:

    WTF is this guy even going on about?? At any rate, I cannot trust him because he doesn't even know that the main character in ET is named ELLIOT, not "Thomas" (I presume he's thinking of the actor who plays Elliot, Henry Thomas, but still).

  • drugmonkey says:

    What he is going on about is how his "true self" had absolutely nothing to do with the frauds.

  • Cynric says:

    It's kind of fascinating in some ways: the same narcissism that caused them to fake results (without really believing that they were doing anything wrong), seems to drive them to obliviously justify their behaviour again and again. Reminds me of disgraced politicians.

  • drugmonkey says:

    And this is why we can never trust them to really change, Cynric.

  • Cynric says:

    And this is why we can never trust them to really change, Cynric.

    I agree. These people seem to have the mindset: "this misconduct that happened [passive voice] must be defensible, because *I* am a good person with good intentions"

    Total mental disconnect from the act of typing made up numbers into an Excel file, which was anyway only done to bolster the case for what they *knew* was the true result.

  • drugmonkey says:

    I also love how Stapel appears to believe he deserves to regain his place in the world. No apparent insight that *he gained his place by fraud and doesn't deserve squat*. Hauser always gave off a similar vibe.

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