OP-ED: Science, Politics and...

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OP-ED: Science, Politics and...

Unread postby Brigit Bara » Mon Apr 16, 2018 11:38 am

OP-ED: Science, Politics, and Religion
By David Drew

"Conventional wisdom has it that Politics and Religion are best avoided in polite conversation. This seems sensible enough given that tackling either topic can be like walking on eggshells. As if to make life more difficult, however, science can now be added to the list of emotive topics sometimes best avoided. There is a simple reason for this. Science has become heavily politicised. Worse still, some fields of scientific endeavour seem to engender a religious fervour — dare I say a cult-like mentality — in their advocates. Little wonder we spend so much time talking about the weather in the UK, where discretion is still considered the better part of valour."

cont'd
https://www.thunderbolts.info/wp/2018/0 ... -religion/





Reason for posting this thread in Electric Universe:
"Plasma and electricity in space. Failure of gravity-only cosmology. Exposing the myths of dark matter, dark energy, black holes, neutron stars, and other mathematical constructs."
“Oh for shame, how these mortals put the blame upon us gods, for they say evils come from us, when it is they rather who by their own recklessness win sorrow beyond what is given…”
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Re: OP-ED: Science, Politics and...

Unread postby Brigit Bara » Mon Apr 16, 2018 11:45 am

Religious leaders have also jumped on the bandwagon, perhaps fearing they were losing ground in the self-righteous league table. Apparently, Pope Francis said the halting response to climate change reminded him of a phrase from the Old Testament — Humankind is a stupid and stubborn man that does not see [probably mis-handled Proverb]. It can only be a matter of time before someone predicts Fire and Brimstone to accompany the next ‘extreme’ weather event.

With few exceptions, the mainstream media are also singing from the same hymn sheet.


Well as much as I might not like it we certainly must yield that point to David Drew! (:

The Particle Physics Song
Channel: CERN
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=28X9czEROPs
dur 3 min 56 sec
“Oh for shame, how these mortals put the blame upon us gods, for they say evils come from us, when it is they rather who by their own recklessness win sorrow beyond what is given…”
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Re: OP-ED: Science, Politics and...

Unread postby Zyxzevn » Mon Apr 16, 2018 1:31 pm

Perhaps Terry Pratchett summed it up best: “In the beginning there was nothing, which exploded.”

Now I am gonna use that in every future discussion with a "Banger".
More ** from zyxzevn at: Paradigm change and C@
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Re: OP-ED: Science, Politics and...

Unread postby Brigit Bara » Tue Apr 17, 2018 12:11 pm

While there may be differences of opinion in terms of what the scientific method is, and how scientific knowledge should be applied, it is rarely the actual science that is at fault but rather the presentation.


The main problem is that while young children are in school they are taught that all science is based on experiment, and stands or falls on the results. There are indeed inspiring passages in the children's science books about performing experiments, and observing and publishing results, which can then be replicated.

During high school, or perhaps in College, students then learn a little of Karl R. Popper's standard of falsifiability. That is, in order to distinguish a scientific theory from any other claim that may be made, and subsequently "proven" by observations and experiment, the scientific theory must have some test which, if it failed, would falsify the original claims of the theory. This is a very important parameter, because it aids in discovering if a theory is making claims which actually cannot be tested.

Between the lab requirements in high school and the assurances of falsifiability in university coursework, any one with an education has learned to trust the scientific method. It gives every appearance that any one can participate, and that some falsifying experiment can be produced at any time -- and any reasonable person, including the scientists and academics, will welcome the new evidence.

But in practice, every institution and branch of academic science has switched to Kuhn's system of science serving a dominant paradigm. Essentially, the practitioners of science control all the questions to be asked, the tools to be used, the terms and language to use, and the interpretation of the data; and above all, they can re-fit history to the new paradigm. These practitioners of science are under no obligation to doubt or abandon the dominant paradigm, until they are good and ready to select the new paradigm of their choice. Not you. Not the "garage tinkerer," not the amateur. The practitioners of science choose the time and outcome of scientific "revolution." Karl R. Popper protested this brilliantly in his book The Myth of the Framework.

And so it is, that every one has a basic understanding from their earliest youth that science is based on a method of empirical observations, and that scientists do not ever make claims in areas where measurements and experiments cannot be made. But science from school days are a "kept" illusion, because the practice of scientific expertise has moved on to the main task pursuing a paradigm. Because an entire generation was universally trained in Kuhn in the 60s and 70s, practitioners of science are, in all good conscience, allowed to ask loaded questions, control the experiments they will accept, and adjust the data and the past. And the public is left with its youthful impressions of lab coats and falsifiability.

Consider reading the Myth of the Framework. Then, if any one still accepts the terms under Kuhn's Paradigm Shifts, don't call it "a religion" when the structured scientific paradigm shifts yield a bad result. It was simply another bad scientific paradigm, adopted by practitioners of science.
“Oh for shame, how these mortals put the blame upon us gods, for they say evils come from us, when it is they rather who by their own recklessness win sorrow beyond what is given…”
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Re: OP-ED: Science, Politics and...

Unread postby Brigit Bara » Tue Apr 17, 2018 12:37 pm

One of the most important objections Popper made to Kuhn's Paradigm Shifts has to do with the question of who can participate and contribute to science.

From Structure of Scientific Revolutions at Fifty

"By defining science in terms of rational criteria of empirical observation, Popper seemed to place scientific tools equally in the hands of philosophers of science, skeptics, and common persons who needed some means to question scientists who tried to back their claims by appealing to their own scientific authority. For Popper, novel scientific theories should be greeted with skepticism from the outset. But for Kuhn, one of the key characteristics of the healthy functioning of the community of scientists is its practice of singling out a successful theory from its competitors — without concern for its social implications, and in isolation from public scrutiny.


In a sense, Popper and Kuhn each saw himself as a defender of free inquiry — but their notions of free inquiry were fundamentally opposed. Kuhn’s thesis reserved free inquiry specifically for scientists, by considering legitimate whatever paradigm scientists happened to agree upon at a given time. But Popper, given his longstanding concern for the open society, thought that this idea marginalized the role of skepticism, only regarding it as important at the point of crisis...
“Oh for shame, how these mortals put the blame upon us gods, for they say evils come from us, when it is they rather who by their own recklessness win sorrow beyond what is given…”
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Re: OP-ED: Science, Politics and...

Unread postby Brigit Bara » Tue Apr 17, 2018 12:44 pm

One of my favorite passages from Popper's book, which I will retrieve later, makes the powerful case that any one can participate in science, including any one who can express himself reasonably well, and any one who will be affected by the authority of the scientists and the effects of their Scientific Paradigm.

The reason he said this is because that was not a feature of Kuhn's Science.
“Oh for shame, how these mortals put the blame upon us gods, for they say evils come from us, when it is they rather who by their own recklessness win sorrow beyond what is given…”
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Re: OP-ED: Science, Politics and...

Unread postby Zyxzevn » Tue Apr 17, 2018 2:16 pm

There are different kinds of paradigms in science:
1) the paradigms in the scientific theories
2) the paradigms and structure of the scientific community and its communication
3) the paradigms in the scientific method

Every paradigm needs to change.

The 1. is easy. There are many mainstream theories that are oversimplified or very limited in their application.
For example the paradigm of the mainstream that there are no electrical fields or currents in plasma,
mostly based on an oversimplification of plasma.

The 2. This is partially discussed in the mainstream.
Usually it is about peer-review, the majority fallacy and the
difference between popular science and real science.
Often there is also the false usage of Statistics, which is very common, but
often ignored by the mainstream if it matches with their believes.
And of course the problem of "Publish or Perish", which is the basis
of modern mainstream science.

I think the biggest problem is the authority fallacy.
It is often caused by the difficult maths in science, and false application
of specialized theories.
The "sceptic" community strengthens the authority fallacy as a community,
by attacking sceptics that doubt the authorities.
Sometimes they mix it with the majority fallacy, by claiming that there
is a "consensus" on a certain subject.

That authority and consensus is a logical fallacy, is clear when we
see that there are many authorities of Astrology, and they almost all agree
that astrology works. Whether this is correct or not, authority is not a logical basis for
any certainty.

The 3. is about the inability of science to deal with unknown things.
Example: "In the beginning there was nothing, and then it exploded".
The scientific method needs replications, which does not work if you don't exactly
know what you is going on.
For example: corruption is very hard to model in any branch of politics, especially because
a lot of it is hidden (or even secret).
For many phenomena it is also very hard to create models. So the tendency is to hold
on to old models, even when they are wrong.
And due to the Authority fallacy, these problems with these models are also ignored.

The scientific method also includes that new models should be based on older
"established" models. I think that this is a fallacy by itself.
As a scientist who is also a software developer, it is clear that "models" are seen in
science as "fixed", while in software we continuously have to change "models" to
fit with the observations.
That is because the models are always simplifications of reality, and this means that they
only work within a certain context and application. Developers always try to find the
best solution, and best model.
Yet, in science it is seen as "laws" that can never change. So it does not progress.

That is why we are now discussing 100 years old ideas on our phones.
More ** from zyxzevn at: Paradigm change and C@
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Re: OP-ED: Science, Politics and...

Unread postby webolife » Tue Apr 17, 2018 2:39 pm

In the beginning, created...
I'm not sure how long we'll be able to keep this conversation from being dropped to the Human Question board :)
but I would like to comment on David Drew's quote from Feynman:

“Science is the belief in the ignorance of the experts.”
~Richard Feynman


This could be re-phrased as:
Scientism is ignorance of the beliefs of the experts. ~[me]

A premise of scientific materialism is that that there is no place for faith in science, ie. science is strictly concerned with material causes and material effects. However, all honest scientists* will begin [or at least include] their claims or treatises with an exposition of their premises. Every scientific theory is based not upon the evidences put forth to support it as is the popular scientism claim, but rather upon a set of foundational or core beliefs, which may include a number of the following:
1. Atheism or Agnosticism or Theism
2. Materialism or a belief in the spirit
3. Determinism or chaos
4. Big Bang or steady state
5. GR and/or SR (Einstein-ism)
6. Infinite or finite universe
7. Light wave/particle duality
8. Uncertainty principle
9. Creation or saltation or mutational accumulation or natural selection
10. Phylogeny [macro-evolution]
11. Gravity-only
12. Electricity-only [EU/PC]
13. Aether
14. Radioactive dating methodologies
15. Ageless or ancient or recent creation or continuous creation
16. Various geologic systems: uniformitarianism, plate tectonics, gradual or rapid continental drift, magnetic reversal, expanding earth, biogenesis or abiogenesis of oil, EDM or impact, the great deluge or cataclysm, fossil record as a certificate of birth or a certificate of death, etc.
17. Saturn system origins
18. AGW or systemic variation of climate over time
19. Intrinsic or extrinsic or cosmologic redshift
20. {add more here}
Sometimes these premises are thinly disguised as scientific questions, but investigations of the writers generally yield the entrenched belief or faith base of the scientist. Without this revelation, the true pursuit of science degenerates [and has degenerated] to scientism, which may be characterized by the perception that "Most scientists say..." is followed by a true or reliable claim.
In short, every scientific claim is founded upon some faith base, the evidences proceeding therefrom often leading to the "logical" conclusion that the belief has been "proven". One test of an honest scientist might be that [by surprise] in mid pursuit a core belief is challenged and changed, re-starting the pursuit in a different direction.

honest scientists*[The decreasing percentage of these with respect to the increase of popular scientific literature is to be noted.]

I respect both Kuhn and Popper.
Truth extends beyond the border of self-limiting science. Free discourse among opposing viewpoints draws the open-minded away from the darkness of inevitable bias and nearer to the light of universal reality.
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Re: OP-ED: Science, Politics and...

Unread postby Brigit Bara » Wed Apr 18, 2018 12:19 pm

Part of the reason for the Op-Ed being posted here is because there was a continuing discussion about the very free use of the term "religion" to describe mainstream cosmology and physics. David Drew's piece dovetailed so nicely with the other discussion, that I wanted them to be on the same board where the excellent remarks could be on-topic, if any one wanted to continue. The majority defends the use of the term "religion" or "cult" to describe poorly performing science and scientists.

Here is the thread:
viewtopic.php?f=3&t=17023

Also, the Electric Universe board is for discussions dealing with "Failure of gravity-only cosmology."



cos·mol·o·gy
käzˈmäləjē
noun
    the science of the origin and development of the universe. Modern astronomy is dominated by the Big Bang theory, which brings together observational astronomy and particle physics.

    an account or theory of the origin of the universe.


The board by nature is bound to overlap with religious questions because of the discussion of cosmology, a realm of phenomenon outside of physical observation. But just because there is an overlap of questions does not mean that failures, a bad scientific paradigm, and the perfectly predictable devotion to theory and misbehavior of scientists makes this science "a religion." In fact, there have been so many harmful and destructive scientific theories in the past 100 years, it makes no sense to try to deflect scientific failures to another category, as if it was unheard of to see errors, falsehoods and evils in science. Is this some kind of new paradigm shift being structured, where the history of science is wiped clean, and misbehavior by scientists becomes "religion" -- something else entirely?

Does any one realize the extent of harm caused by scientific theories? I wonder. The young people seem to know very little about it, and I had to educate myself about Mao's use of state science in the destruction of agriculture during the Great Leap later in life. I am not confident that the people who hold a materialistic view have properly passed on the real history of science to the next generation. What were the scientific theories that led directly to death and mayhem in the 1900s? What do people here consider indispensable to the next generations to know about the destructive power of science?



We have this from the op-ed:

At one time, science was simply regarded as a body of knowledge arrived at via measurement and observation, and therefore free from human bias and political chicanery. If only life was so simple. Communism, remember, liked to consider itself ‘scientific and religion free (the opium of the masses)’ but there was a problem. It didn’t work.


He also brilliantly adds psychiatric treatments and AGW to the list, and concludes

“The hostility of the state would be assured toward any system or science that might not strengthen its arm.”
~Henry Brooks Adams
“Oh for shame, how these mortals put the blame upon us gods, for they say evils come from us, when it is they rather who by their own recklessness win sorrow beyond what is given…”
~Homer
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Re: OP-ED: Science, Politics and...

Unread postby Brigit Bara » Wed Apr 18, 2018 1:10 pm

The destructive power of science, I think, must include the extreme Anthropocene Age Scientific Paradigm, which uses scientific studies and papers to convict every single chemical, em wave, cultivar, fuel and economic activity of people as being either carcinogenic, or destructive to the environment.

People who hold this scientific paradigm can always be counted on to love the science that has to do with belief about cosmology and distant stars and biology, but to forbid the use of science by every day people in every day life, such as using coal and gas for transportation, energy generation, chemistry, engineering, infrastructure, etc etc.. And these technologies, by the way, were developed by every day people through the encouragement of the sciences by Patents in Anglo-American law.

The holders of the Anthropocene Age Scientific Paradigm, just as Popper pointed out, are under the unconscious control of their own theory and language, and seek to exclude carefully from the conversation those who will be effected, in this case very negatively, by their pet paradigm.

I believe there is another scientific paradigm regarding demographics, which predicts both a shortage of workers and the end of the nation-state, and requires, of course, methods of preemptive action by radical changes to the demographics of each country.

There is considerable scientific activity devoted to disrupting and destroying adulthood -- "adulthood" meaning the progression of the individual male or female through love, to marriage and having and raising children.

Others may wish to defend these scientific paradigms but they are certainly not religions. At least we can identify them for possible scrutiny.
“Oh for shame, how these mortals put the blame upon us gods, for they say evils come from us, when it is they rather who by their own recklessness win sorrow beyond what is given…”
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Re: OP-ED: Science, Politics and...

Unread postby Brigit Bara » Wed Apr 18, 2018 1:55 pm

“Science is the belief in the ignorance of the experts.”
~Richard Feynman

This could be re-phrased as:
Scientism is ignorance of the beliefs of the experts. ~webolife


Quotes to live by!
“Oh for shame, how these mortals put the blame upon us gods, for they say evils come from us, when it is they rather who by their own recklessness win sorrow beyond what is given…”
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Re: OP-ED: Science, Politics and...

Unread postby silvanelf » Tue Jun 05, 2018 5:59 am

Brigit Bara wrote:During high school, or perhaps in College, students then learn a little of Karl R. Popper's standard of falsifiability. That is, in order to distinguish a scientific theory from any other claim that may be made, and subsequently "proven" by observations and experiment, the scientific theory must have some test which, if it failed, would falsify the original claims of the theory. This is a very important parameter, because it aids in discovering if a theory is making claims which actually cannot be tested.

The question is: does Popper's falsification describe how science works or is it just a theoretical concept describing how science should work? In my view that's the difference between Kuhn and Popper:

    Kuhn tries to describe how science actually works
    Popper has a recipe how science should work; according to Popper's standard, most if not all of current science is just pseudo-science
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