• Connie St Louis: Delusional or Dishonest?

    conniestlouis2Well, the dust has settled, and the internet’s fickle attention has shifted away from June’s flavour-of-the-month hot news item: the shaming of Nobel-laureate scientist Sir Tim Hunt.  But along the way, an actual audio clip surfaced of the tail end of Hunt’s infamous toast in Seoul—an audio clip that made it clear he was telling the truth all along about speaking in jest and in warm support of women in science, that most of his audience took his remarks in exactly that spirit, and that his chief accuser, Connie St Louis, told some porkies on tv about a certain “deathly silence.”

    The situation now?  Sir Tim, despite having been abundantly exonerated, is still in the doghouse.  UCL declined to reinstate him in his honorary position, in as mealy-mouthed a press release as I have ever seen.  His invitation to a conference in Italy was withdrawn, for fear of feminist activists disrupting the proceedings.  And no apology or even acknowledgement of the facts was forthcoming from any of the bloggers, journalists, or twitterheads who unfairly maligned him, particularly including Connie St Louis.

    Mind you, St Louis was dealing with problems of her own, in the wake of a thoroughly damning deconstruction of her online  curriculum vitae.  Borderline dishonest on the one hand, poorly written and abysmally edited on the other—the sort of incompetence that is appalling in a professional writer who is supposed to be teaching younger people how to write.  Her institution stood by her stoutly, and declared that they would help her bring her CV up to date—a process which apparently required a full calendar month. (One wonders whether they hoped her critics would forget all about it if they waited long enough.)

    So the new sanitized version went up a few days ago, with some interesting additions, and some fascinating omissions.  There are a few items one could get petty about—she claims a book under her publications, without making clear that the “book” in question is a 77-page pdf of conference papers published online, which she edited but did not write.  She does specify where she received her degree, though not the year—almost as if she wants to downplay the fact that the institution was a polytechnic at the time.  She claims to have won an award for a certain radio program, though she is not named as the recipient—but fair enough, she did present the show, and the show did win an award.  I would imagine that Ms St Louis’ little helpers made sure everything appearing in the shiny new CV had at least some basis in fact.

    No, it is the omissions that are more interesting.  No mention this time of doing piles of writing for various national papers.  No self-description as a scientist. No mention of membership in the Royal Institution. No mention of the fifty thousand quid awarded to her ten years ago, to do some writing that never got done.  No taking credit for the Foundling Museum’s  350,000-pound grant.  But most glaring of all…

    …no mention of the Tim Hunt controversy.  Her BBC interview does not appear on the (very short) list of her media appearances.  Her Guardian article on the subject does not appear on the (very short) list of her press/online articles.  Could this be because nearly every word she uttered in the BBC interview, and nearly every word she wrote in the Guardian article, were later shown to be egregiously inaccurate, biased, and on the edge of libellous?  Indeed, that level of sheer wrongness suggests that she was either (a) lying, or (b) blinded and deafened to the point of delusion by her ideological SJW agenda.  Neither interpretation reflects well on St Louis’ competence or integrity as a journalist—and it does make one a little anxious about what she is teaching her hapless students.



    h/t to Nick for date correction

    Category: FeaturedSecularism

    Article by: Rebecca Bradley