At RealClearScience: Science is a method and discipline, but Scientism is something more – it establishes a set of beliefs by which to view things. It sees science as “realistic” or “just the facts”, like some objective totem. What’s more, Midgley argued that Scientism is invariably aligned with some kind of excessive reductionism, where everything is reduced to neurons or evolutionary psychology, for instance.
At The Scientist: With the potential moves against Marcy and Ayala, “We are watching social change happening in front of our eyes,” says Nancy Hopkins, an NAS member and emeritus biologist at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. “It has been a long time coming.” …
The main reason that interest in panpsychism is growing is probably the inability of materialism to provide a coherent account of consciousness.
Egnor: [t]he logic pointing to God’s existence is overwhelmingly stronger than the evidence and logic supporting any other scientific theory in nature. Aquinas’s First Way proof of God’s existence, for example, has exactly the same structure as any other scientific theory. The empirical evidence is the presence of change in nature. Because infinite regress is logically impossible in an essentially ordered chain of changes, there must be a Prime Mover to begin the process and that is what we call God.
Sheldon: The skeptical neuroscience student talks about the sin of employing too many statistical searches on the data, also known as “p-hacking”. Once again, the sin is not in using statistics, but rather in refusing to tell the world how many searches you made on the data before you settled on this one. Because the significance is not simply the data p-value, but the search space you used in finding it.
Readers might remember that Brian Keating recently interviewed Steve Meyer but here he himself is interviewed.
Gabriel encourages us to see psychology as a mythology and, of course, he is right: “Sigmund Freud’s theories were largely unfalsifiable, and the promissory note that the mind is the brain has yet to be cashed in.” The idea that the mind is just the brain is unfalsifiable too. Beliefs that do not originate in fact are impervious to evidence.
Nicoll: The “scientific” label comes freighted with assumptions that a matter is factual, proven, and settled. Yet the dust-bin of science is filled with once-settled “facts” that stand as reminders that scientific conclusions can be wrong—very wrong.
Chaitin: I have a pessimistic vision which I hope is completely wrong, that the bureaucracies are like a cancer — the ones that control research and funding for research and counting how much you’ve been publishing. I’ve noticed that at universities, for example, the administrative personnel are gradually taking all the best buildings and expanding. So I think that the bureaucracy and the rules and regulations increases to the point that it sinks the society.
It’s hard to see how all the Virtue that Krauss recounts will help young members of minority groups today make their way in science, as opposed to creating window dressing jobs for Wokesters. But maybe the window dressing jobs ARE the point of this sort of exercise.
12 noon EST, as part of the Cutting Edge Apologetics Webinar Series, sponsored by the C. S. Lewis Society.
Babylon Bee: The scientific method was created by a devout Christian, which burdens scientists with restrictive fundamentalist rules: The scientific method limits our science. We’re tired of fundamentalist Christians always imposing strict rules. Live a little, for goodness sake!
Okay, but many papers can’t be replicated and many journals have gone Woke too. So it may not matter as much as Arvay thinks. Maybe it doesn’t matter much that the reporting is just as bad as the studies.
From an interview with John Staddon we learn that constructive criticism is more useful than cheerleading when one’s game needs work. One outcome of the problems Staddon describes is that “trust the science” is becoming something of a joke in a broad variety of areas and that is not good news.
Seminar leaders include James Tour, Alister McGrath, Fazale Rana, and Mike Keas.