Nassim Taleb And Josh Barro Went At It On Twitter And Things Got Unpleasant

The New York Times’ Josh Barro and the author Nassim Taleb got into a Twitter spat on Thursday.

The topic: GMOs.

And like too many fights on Twitter, things took an ugly personal turn.

It began when Taleb took issue with this Josh Barro tweet from Wednesday:

 Taleb followed a few hours later with an anti-journalist jab, something he’s well-known for.

Barro wasn’t having that. Things spiraled.

The paper Taleb tweeted at Barro is called “The Precaution Principle (with Application to the Genetic Modification of Organisms),” and argues that the precaution principle should be used to “prescribe severe limits on GMOs.”

Taleb has a propensity for being quite combative on Twitter, on topics ranging from bonds to GMOs, and Taleb will fight with just about anybody. 

Last year, Taleb said he would take a fight to Twitter if one of the following conditions were in place:

“…his critics 1) use “straw man arguments” (misrepresenting my ideas to critique them), 2) transform low probability bets into deterministic predictions, 3) mistake P/L (profit/loss) for prediction.”

Our guess is Barro violated nos. 1 and 2.

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