Criticism Is Easy
From In Praise of Appreciative Thinking:
I’m sure the students preferred the storytelling of the least-supported theory. But I agree they should prefer the story that is a proven model for actual data, even if it’s less pleasing aesthetically.
Interpreting data is hard. Most students probably didn’t try to do so.
Lazy skepticism is a necessary filter; too much “research” is being produced and publicized. However, if a trusted expert recommends a paper, I’d be happy to learn about the evidence in it. I’d prefer that they summarize for me the data and the inferences they think should be drawn from it, because I’ll rarely bother to sift through a paper aimed at the clique of academics who specialize in the topic.