The Mistrust of Science

Discussion in 'Why Science Is Wrong... About Almost Everything' started by RoseGardener, Jun 21, 2016.

  1. RoseGardener

    RoseGardener New

    Joined:
    Feb 2, 2015
    Messages:
    14
    Hello Folks:

    The Mistrust of Science is an article - from the New Yorker.

    The text of this article was actually delivered as the commencement address at the California Institute of Technology, on Friday, June 10th.

    Reading it is worth your time. I look forward to the ensuing discussion/debate. Not to give too much away, before you do read it, for my own part I think the author missed an opportunity to really delve into things like:

    • The amount of money involved in determining what gets studied, how it gets studied and why current biases within the scientific community become entrenched.
    • Nor do I think the author really delved into community bias as much as he could of, almost as if he did not see the scientific method capable of long-term entrenched bias. From his perspective, the scientific method itself counters human bias. He didn't seem to consider the possibility that human bias obstructs observation, even scientific observation.
    Anyway - I look forward to exploring this article in more depth, with all of you.
     
  2. David Bailey

    David Bailey Administrator

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2013
    Messages:
    4,284
    Last edited: Jun 21, 2016
    Sciborg_S_Patel likes this.
  3. I think some things that would help science regain public trust is massive replication, examination of misconduct, greater public communication on informed consent in clinical trials, rating of the different fields (including parapsychology), greater access to research ($35-$75 for a paper?!), and an abandonment of materialism as a default standard.
     
  4. Typoz

    Typoz Member

    Joined:
    Nov 1, 2013
    Messages:
    2,407
    Which links? Which thread?
     
  5. David Bailey

    David Bailey Administrator

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2013
    Messages:
    4,284
    Thanks - link added!

    David
     
    Sciborg_S_Patel likes this.
  6. David Bailey

    David Bailey Administrator

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2013
    Messages:
    4,284
    Rose,

    I thought that article was incredibly smug, and gave pat reassuring answers to some very complicated issues.

    For example a whistleblower at the CDC reopened the whole vaccine debate:
    http://www.mintpressnews.com/new-do...s-cdc-covered-up-vaccine-autism-links/213212/

    'Climate change' is also a very odd issue which we have explored at length - so I won't go into it now.

    There are also huge rows going on about the safety of giving older people statins (I got stung that way), whether cholesterol in the blood is actually related to disease, and whether saturated fats are bad for you. This is, of course related to Big Pharma, and big money!

    There is also science's blanket dismissal of psi phenomena despite many replications and lots of personal stories to the contrary.

    I would say that modern science is in a very precarious position right now.

    Do you have a science background?

    David
     
    Roberta, Reece and Baccarat like this.
  7. gabriel

    gabriel New

    Joined:
    Dec 19, 2013
    Messages:
    1,644
    This is a neat summary of my doubts about the present scientific position. It's ostensibly a God vs Darwin debate, but Berlinski sums up the materialist mindset perfectly:
     
  8. David Bailey

    David Bailey Administrator

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2013
    Messages:
    4,284
    There is a lot of truth in that - I just wish his dreary delivery could be improved!

    I think his point is that Science has taken to claiming that it knows that God does not exist when it clearly doesn't have a scientific proof. However this extends to so much more that modern science claims to 'know' - the sickness in science is more general.

    We only need to look at the thread about that very subject:

    http://www.skeptiko-forum.com/threads/critiques-of-science-as-currently-praticed.2959/unread

    David
     
    Sciborg_S_Patel likes this.
  9. Baccarat

    Baccarat New

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2016
    Messages:
    805
    I'm salvating, how can this not quench your thirst for my knowledge and wisdom? I turned off the TV a long time ago
     
  10. Baccarat

    Baccarat New

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2016
    Messages:
    805

    The Mistrust of Science

    The article brought up some good points, but again made it seem like a "us verse them" The article played it safe and seemed more like propaganda to me.

    The author kept bringing up "they" and cherry picking data for vaccines, I think "both sides" are guilty are cherry picking data
     
  11. David Bailey

    David Bailey Administrator

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2013
    Messages:
    4,284
    I think you might find this thread, with its various links, interesting:

    http://www.skeptiko-forum.com/threads/critiques-of-science-as-currently-praticed.2959/

    David
     
    malf and Baccarat like this.
  12. Silence

    Silence Member

    Joined:
    Oct 12, 2016
    Messages:
    362
    I found the article quite interesting. It seemed to be pointing in what I would deem the "right direction" but ultimately fell short. A couple of key quotes struck me along these lines:
    and
    The ultimate blind spot for the most intelligent is arrogance, IMHO. Science should be cast as a social service and the word "power" or "powerful" simply should not be used. Those words (correctly) embed a certain level of mistrust.

    The second quote, specifically what I have highlighted in bold, seems to be a second key blind spot. It limits a broad and gigantic word like "truth" to the scientific method; the materialist realm. That "truth seeking" is only possible through the scientific method as defined today. As this forum does such a wonderful job of articulating, where is the proof that the material is "all there is"?

    I'm a huge fan of science, discovery, etc. I imagine everyone here shares that view at a fundamental level. However, the only "beings" we know who actual "do science" are humans. And fallible they are; even our best and brightest.
     
  13. Science has nothing to do with materialism.

    It's the study of relations through the observation of change.
     
    Roberta likes this.
  14. Silence

    Silence Member

    Joined:
    Oct 12, 2016
    Messages:
    362
    Thank you for the correction. I did not mean to imply otherwise, but was attempting to speak more to the limits (at least presently) to what science can actually observe (and therefore speak to from an authoritative position). It seems to me to be a rather limiting condition. More directly, I think of folks like Krauss and Carroll who appear to me, at least, to leap from this limitation to proclaim materialist-like proclamations like "there is no purpose" and "there is no God".
     
    Sciborg_S_Patel likes this.
  15. Ah sorry I was a bit rushed, that may have come off as more aggressive than it should have.

    Apologies.
     
    Roberta, Steve and Silence like this.
  16. Silence

    Silence Member

    Joined:
    Oct 12, 2016
    Messages:
    362
    Not at all. I hope to learn quite a bit from the community and while an amateur, I still hate being technically incorrect!
     
    Sciborg_S_Patel likes this.
  17. Vortex

    Vortex Member

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2013
    Messages:
    627
    Modern science is not the one which people usually dream about or defend: it is no longer an authority-independent search for truth. Once it was one: it started as an attempt to understand nature with rational analysis of empirical observation in an open open community - with the latter factor, communal openness, being as important as the former two. In the early era of science, when it was conducted by enthusiastic, amateur explorers, the scientific inquiry was indeed opened for everyone who had something valuable to propose. Later science become professionalised, yet it was still relatively open for new blood and new influence. Yet later it was turned into an institutionalised, corporate enterprise, which lead to turning scientists into "experts", a priest-like closed community with a priveledge of "truth-saying" and a demand for everyone to believe them obidiently and uncritically. It is not a surprise that they are badly scared by a perpective of people trying to think for themselves, without a blind trust into "experts" and their "expert opinion".

    Henry Bauer, a veteran of science and technology studies (STS), describe this three-stage transformation of scientific enterprise here.

    And here is an intersting essay by Kevin Carson which describe a sociopolitical context which encouraged a transformation of science from a free, open, egalitarian exploration into a authoritarian caste of priests... sorry, "experts".
     
  18. Baccarat

    Baccarat New

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2016
    Messages:
    805
    Interesting links will be diving in to them
     
    Vortex likes this.
  19. Vortex

    Vortex Member

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2013
    Messages:
    627
    Thanks for the compliment - I post rarely, yet most times try to insert some interesting links into my posts, so their high quality would compensate for their low quantity!
     
  20. Baccarat

    Baccarat New

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2016
    Messages:
    805
    ;)
     

Share This Page