This morning, I ran across a news item on the “undiscovery” of Sandy Island off Australia:
Most explorers dream of discovering uncharted territory, but a team of Australian scientists have done the exact opposite.
They have found an island that doesn’t exist. (vid at the linked)
This led me to think about the institution of an award for exposing scientific fraud and a NewScientist interview with Shi-min Fang, its first recipient:
What prompted you to start challenging dubious pseudoscientific claims in China?
In 1998, after eight years studying in the US, I returned to China and was shocked to see it was deluged with pseudosciences, superstitions and scientific misconduct. . . .
(This one is disturbing, NS even speaks of a threat to life for whistle-blowing. Let us trust the problem can be fixed and that it will not cost blood to do so.)
From this sort of news, however, I am then led to ponder about how much of our “map” of the remote, unobserved past of origins is really accurate and what grounds the emphatic confidence in the consensus we commonly hear concerning a timeline that is so often announced as being almost final. Especially, the “maps” of the origin of life (which admittedly is the acknowledged zone of uncertainty) and of the origin of major body plans.
Especially, as today marks two months of no comprehensive response on my 6,000 word essay offer to proponents of the chance and necessity only account of origins.
What are our thoughts? END