From my (O’Leary for News) review of sociologist Steve Fuller’s book, Post-Truth: Knowledge as a Power Game: How ID Foxes Can Beat the Darwinian Lions
Fuller clearly finds the foxes more interesting and sympathetic figures than the lions: “The lion rules by focused shows of force, as opposed to the fox’s diverse displays of cunning.”
The usual strategy of the Darwinian lions is to portray the ID foxes as not merely wrong but bad, for example as “liars” for not upholding the current orthodoxy. But, Fuller observes, that strategy can fail when the evidence does not really support the lions as much as they claim: “The dispassionate observer might well conclude that the lion’s extremely loud roar belies its inability to defeat any challengers who might call its bluff.” For example, in 2016, the Royal Society held a high-profile interdisciplinary conference on “New Trends in Evolutionary Biology.”
Officially, the event was open to the widest possible range of criticisms of the Neo-Darwinian synthesis. Yet the invitation did not extend to proponents of intelligent design theory who have publicized most of the same criticisms of the synthesis. It would seem that the paradigm shift demanded by advocates of intelligent design would have been a step too far.
Fuller has little use for huffy claims about scientific consensus (“cognitive authoritarianism”): “The idea that consensus enjoys some epistemologically more luminous status in science than in other parts of society (where it might be simply dismissed as ‘groupthink’) is an artefact of the routine rewriting of history that scientists do to rally their troops.” He finds that consensus tends to be invoked on the very matters (“climate change, evolution, anything to do with health”) that can’t easily be addressed by the peer review process of Kuhn’s “normal science.” More.
See also: Sociologist Steve Fuller’s new book on post-truth in science