Intelligent Design

Science and news media: It helps not to be an arrogant bastard

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From the recent Pew Report, we learn:

Public Praises Science; Scientists Fault Public, Media
Scientific Achievements Less Prominent Than a Decade Ago (July 9, 2009)

While the public holds scientists in high regard, many scientists offer unfavorable, if not critical, assessments of the public’s knowledge and expectations. Fully 85% see the public’s lack of scientific knowledge as a major problem for science, and nearly half (49%) fault the public for having unrealistic expectations about the speed of scientific achievements.

A substantial percentage of scientists also say that the news media have done a poor job educating the public. About three-quarters (76%) say a major problem for science is that news reports fail to distinguish between findings that are well-founded and those that are not. And 48% say media oversimplification of scientific findings is a major problem. The scientists are particularly critical of television news coverage of science. Just 15% of scientists rate TV coverage as excellent or good, while 83% say it is only fair or poor. Newspaper coverage of science is rated somewhat better; still, barely a third (36%) of the scientists say it is excellent or good, while 63% rate it as only fair or poor.

Well, if it’s not their job to educate the public, it’s not the news media’s either. Story of my life: There is only so much you can do in 750 words. By the way, if news reports distinguished between findings that are well founded and findings that are not, all but 5% of everything written on evolutionary psychology could hit the recycler, bypassing the press.

It would suit me fine. There might be space for something more educational than “The gene that makes you want to shop” and “The brain module that makes you tip more.” But is that what the U.S. scientists really want? I’ve yet to get a straight answer out of many of them.

Overall, the American scientists come off as legends in their own minds, believing they are much better than anyone else worldwide – we heard it from them first, remember?

36 Replies to “Science and news media: It helps not to be an arrogant bastard

  1. 1
    Lock says:

    They are probably concerned that the average jane and joe (being stupid like we are) doesn’t have the updated red herrings, fallacies, and otherwise vain arguments to defend against the evil ID assault on the culture.

    So does that mean that now it’s time to blame the Discovery Channel and the general media for their unsophisticated level of propaganda?

    Perhaps PBS should consider having, ‘The News Hour with Richard Dawkins’. That would bring the public up to speed.

    More seriously, I must admit that most of the people I know get very glazed eyes over all of this. And it is a shame. But I personally put the blame on the lack of solid philosophical training in our culture. Generally speaking, we do not know how to think anymore. Therefore, how does one analyze the mass of information in the information age?

    One has to have a perspective (and that’s hard in a pluralistic culture) with which to put the data into a coherent picture. The pluralistic philosophy (smuggled in btw) leaves one unable to trust anything. No one seems to distrust that perspective though. It is an easy sell in a lost culture.

    So in a round about way, I guess I agree with the assesment of our culture’s new hallowed scientific priests.

  2. 2
    Mapou says:

    Paul Feyerabend said it best:

    And a more detailed analysis of successful moves in the game of science (‘successful’ from the point of view of the scientists themselves) shows indeed that there is a wide range of freedom that demands a multiplicity of ideas and permits the application of democratic procedures (ballot-discussion-vote) but that is actually closed by power politics and propaganda. This is where the fairy-tale of a special method assumes its decisive function. It conceals the freedom of decision which creative scientists and the general public have even inside the most rigid and the most advanced parts of science by a recitation of ‘objective’ criteria and it thus protects the big-shots (Nobel Prize winners; heads of laboratories, of organizations such as the AMA, of special schools; ‘educators’; etc.) from the masses (laymen; experts in non-scientific fields; experts in other fields of science): only those citizens count who were subjected to the pressures of scientific institutions (they have undergone a long process of education), who succumbed to these pressures (they have passed their examinations), and who are now firmly convinced of the truth of the fairy-tale. This is how scientists have deceived themselves and everyone else about their business, but without any real disadvantage: they have more money, more authority, more sex appeal than they deserve, and the most stupid procedures and the most laughable results in their domain are surrounded with an aura of excellence. It is time to cut them down in size, and to give them a more modest position in society.

    Against Method by Paul Feyerabend (emphasis mine)

    The public does not understand science because scientists themselves do not understand science. If they did, they would have no trouble explaining it in simple terms that the average intelligent layperson can understand. So what do they do? They look down condescendingly at the public (the very public who ultimately pay their salaries) and tell us that we are too stupid to understand science. It’s time for a rebellion, in my opinion.

  3. 3
    lamarck says:

    Also there’s way too much emphasis on a twisted idea of falsification. That’s too impractical if you really want to get something done.

  4. 4
    JTaylor says:

    O’Leary: “Overall, the American scientists come off as legends in their own minds, believing they are much better than anyone else worldwide – we heard it from them first, remember?”

    There could be a couple of reasons for this. Firstly, it could be part of the phenomena known as “American Exceptionalism” – the idea that America occupies a special niche in the world. Of course this is not true, but in the minds of many Americans it certainly seems to be a reality to them at least. Perhaps if we were to poll Americans on other topics – sports, music, democratic values et we would find a similar trend. So maybe scientists are just reflecting a general trend in the American population to think of themselves better at something…

    Secondly, it’s actually possible that American scientists are indeed better than the rest of the world, at least by some measures. Of course remember a large majority of “American” scientists are in fact immigrants from other countries who came here to study and then stayed (the Pew study doesn’t distinguish here). I don’t have the data, but it’s likely that on several measures American leads the way in research investment and research institutions etc (although not in every field of course). Just by sheer might it wields an enormous influence in the scientific world, so it’s inevitably that much good work is done in the U.S.

    And by one measure, the Noble prize, Americans do indeed win a larger share of prizes, and regularly win at least one prize every year.

    Certainly science needs to be better communicated and better understood – and scientists certainly own a big responsibility here. But I”m not sure calling scientists “arrogant bastards” is going to contribute much to a solution (or is Ms O’leary calling the media that name? – not clear from the title of the piece). I think actually it’s a little ironic, because many ID supporters regularly complain that the mainstream media misunderstands and misrepresents ID – seems like Ms O’Leary wants it both ways here.

  5. 5
    CannuckianYankee says:

    Lamarck,

    “Also there’s way too much emphasis on a twisted idea of falsification. That’s too impractical if you rally want to get something done.”

    Agreed. I think falsification and required mechanisms are used as talking points for Darwinism. While valuable tools, the Darwinists have not learned to separate them from MN; theories based on “natural” phenomenon can be falsified, theories based on “supernatural” phenomenon can’t. Yet they refuse to define what they mean by “supernatural.”

    Is the Big Bang falsifiable? What’s the required mechanism?

  6. 6
    Nakashima says:

    Mrs O’Leary,

    I’ve yet to get a straight answer out of many of them.

    I find this statement difficult to take at face value. I agree that scientists fail to give straight answers, especially answers that fit into 750 boxes. (Though there are some respondents here at UD who would have difficulty with that limit also! 🙂 )

    No, what I have real difficulty with is the idea that you have spoken with many scientists. Your items here at UD and on your other blogs are so often recycling someone else’s reporting – you are usually working with secondary or teriary sources. Your recent quoting of Sharon Begeley from Newsweek comes to mind.

    Or what about that Wikipedian study? Did you call any research scientists working in the same field, but not involved in the study, to get their opinion of its significance (or not)? That would be straight on science journalism.

    I appreciated your reporting of the conference experiences you had recently. They were first hand accounts of your direct interaction with Lawrence Krauss and the working scientists of the neutrino experiment. The rest is either commentary on science or commentary on science journalism, not journalism itself.

  7. 7
    CannuckianYankee says:

    JTaylor,

    I think you’re onto something; but I would clarify it a bit. Exceptionalism as in America the country, or as in native-born Americans, the people? I think a case can be made for American exceptionalism if referring to the constitutional framework we have in this country, leading to the freedoms we have to question “the establishment.” However, as you pointed out, America is a land of immigrants.

    I think that we could make some improvements in the educational system that would make our system even greater. For example, O’Leary in an earlier post told us about how in Canada (a more secular, but religiously tolerant country), a family can make the decision where to send their children to school, and the government will subsidise it. We don’t have that freedom in this country. Politicos in recent years have suggested legislating a voucher system or something of the sort, which would allow parents to choose the kind of schooling they want for their children.

    Some think it’s a terrible idea, but I think it has potential. The problem though, is that we will have to relook at previous legislature on First Amendment grounds. Why? because the courts have stated that if a parent sends a child to say a Catholic school, then the government could not fund such schooling; it conflicts with the establishment clause. I personally believe that stretches the establishment clause a bit. What’s stoping Bush or Obama from creating faith-based initiatives, for example?

    In Canada it’s not an issue. They don’t have a constitutional establishment clause.

    But what Canada has succeeded in doing is eliminating the quagmire we have with establishment issues, by allowing students to go to religious schools with government funding, with the added benefit of not exposing students to a particular religion if they don’t choose it.

    Another benefit of this sort of setup is that it creates competition for education funding, rather than a public school monopoly, which diminishes the quality of education. Studies have shown that home-schooled, private-schooled or charter-schooled students do as well or better on standardized testing than the average publically educated student.

    Another added benefit of this is that when schools compete for funding, they need to create programs that are educationally beneficial rather than straight dry academics, in order to survive. They need to get students interested in learning. Students need to buy into the benefits of education, and sadly, that does not appear to be happening in many of our public schools. School is presented more as an obligation, rather than as an opportunity.

    It’s no wonder that we have a current culture of apathy towards education, and I don’t believe that academians and educators are wrong in pointing that out.

  8. 8
    IRQ Conflict says:

    Nakashima, I was unaware that journalists were not allowed to voice opinion. Thanks for that,uh,.. insight?

  9. 9
    Diffaxial says:

    Also there’s way too much emphasis on a twisted idea of falsification. That’s too impractical if you really want to get something done.

    Other scientistic fetishes include theoretical content and coherence, empirical prediction, hypothesis testing by means of observations, replicability, and actually doing research. All that just slows things down.

  10. 10
    CannuckianYankee says:

    “Other scientistic fetishes include theoretical content and coherence, empirical prediction, hypothesis testing by means of observations, replicability, and actually doing research. All that just slows things down.”

    Yes, I think assertions work best. Simple, self verified, to the point. 🙂

  11. 11
    Nakashima says:

    Mr CannuckianYankee,

    Sure the Big Bang is falsifiable. If the cosmic microwave background radiation had a different distribution, then the various theories are excluded. It is a very direct reflection of the theory.

  12. 12
    dbthomas says:

    CY: More indirectly, the Big Bang is utterly dependent on General Relativity. If we’d run into phenomena that clearly violated its predictions, then the Big Bang would be in big trouble.

  13. 13
    sparc says:

    Diffaxial

    Other scientistic fetishes include theoretical content and coherence, empirical prediction, hypothesis testing by means of observations, replicability, and actually doing research. All that just slows things down.

    Isn’t this just the route that Drs. Dembksi and Behe and the Biological Institue claim to follow?

  14. 14
    CannuckianYankee says:

    dbthomas / Nakashima,

    So we’ve established that the Big Bang is falsifiable, but here’s the kicker – it’s a “first things” event. Now how can’t we come up with a falsifiable origin of life event? If we’re able to come up with a theory based on CMBR that tells us that there was as far as we know, a singularity, which goes back, what is it 18 billion years (can’t remember what the exact fiture is), How come biology can’t come up with a simple “singularity” event for evolution? It seems that would be a simpler solution than what astrophysics was able to do with the Big Bang.

    We know empirically that the BBT is the best explanation because of Relativity and CMBR. It’s pretty solid. Yet we don’t care to guess what if anything was there “before” the singularity; and indeed, as much as I’ve spoken with scientists on this matter, it’s pretty much meaningless to even talk about “before” the singularity.

    It’s an event, which if we could travel backwards in time, takes us to nothingness – no time, no matter, no energy. This is one of the big reasons why theists are able to infer God from that event – because the nothingness realization does not make sense. You don’t get a something from a nothing – quantum physics notwithstanding. To infer God is the best most parsimonious solution to the problem – we posit that the information for it all existed prior to the singularity. This is the simplest solution, even if we don’t know the mechanism that converted information into energy and matter. Seems like a miraculous event to me, and ultimately even Darwinists have to contend with the miraculous eventually if they are to resolve the infinite regress problem.

    I hinted on this issue in a previous post (can’t remember where) when I stated that information can exist without a conduit. matter requires information, but information doesn’t require matter. As Dr. Meyer has pointed out in several media interviews regarding his new book, a blank CD weighs the same as a CD with information recorded on it.

    Another analogy I made in that earlier post – we understand information in its basic form as existing in spaces. is it the information that is the essence of the space, or is it the space that is the essence of its prior information?

    I posit that the information comes first because the information can exist without the space – just as the information in a book is not really in the book. But matter cannot exist without information. None of it can. Even the smallest particle contains information – that it is a particle, and that it has certain physical properties. The information in the book that the book is a conduit of, is that it has physical properties – it is made of paper, glue, ink, etc. That is really all the true information that is physicaly there. The information expressed in the book is not physically there.

    So we have something with biology that is very similar to the Big Bang event. As the Big Bang started with what Hawking calls a “singularity,” biology as the beginning of actual life started with a singularity type event. I don’t think there’s a biologist who wouldn’t agree with that. Otherwise, why would biologists be concerned with hypothesizing about a primordial swamp?

    Why can’t Natural Selection come up with a Big Bang of Biology that is falsifiable?

    I think I know why; because the Darwinian theory is insufficient. ID I think will prove to be the Big Bang of biology. And I think that it is falsifiable.

    And furthermore, given that this BBOB (Big Bang of Biology) would be similar to the singularity event of the BBT, and we don’t know for certain what the “mechanism” for the BB was, it makes no sense that Darwinists should demand the “mechanism” for ID.

  15. 15
    Rude says:

    Some theories are falsifiable and some though not falsifiable are nevertheless subject to abductive evidence.

    In linguistics, for example, you may theorize, say, that in all rigidly verb final languages a relative clause precedes its head noun. A single counter example will falsify your a strong claim (though not necessarily a modification of it). If, on the other hand, you theorize that, say, Japanese and Tamil are genetically related, that claim is not falsifiable.

    One can only demonstrate that languages are related (this by identifying cognates and working out sound correspondences, etc.)—one can never prove that they are not related.

    Scientists tend to be rather ignorant of the philosophy of science, naïvely parroting Popper while seemingly unaware that refutation is but one tool in the toolbag of the trade. Physics, once the prototype science, is yielding some of that status to biology. And whereas physics is largely theory driven, biology is heavy on observation. Refutation may loom large in physics, in the observational sciences it’s more seeing is believing.

  16. 16
    Learned Hand says:

    For example, O’Leary in an earlier post told us about how in Canada (a more secular, but religiously tolerant country), a family can make the decision where to send their children to school, and the government will subsidise it. We don’t have that freedom in this country. Politicos in recent years have suggested legislating a voucher system or something of the sort, which would allow parents to choose the kind of schooling they want for their children. . . . [but] the courts have stated that if a parent sends a child to say a Catholic school, then the government could not fund such schooling; it conflicts with the establishment clause. I personally believe that stretches the establishment clause a bit.

    You’re mistaken on the law here; the Supreme Court has actually approved vouchers being used to send students to religious schools. See Zelman v. Simmons-Harris.

  17. 17
    CannuckianYankee says:

    Learned Hand,

    Thanks – I was not fully aware of the nature of that case. It still disturbs me though, that 4 of the 9 justices voted against the vouchers, calling it Government supporting the “indoctrination” of students, as if students aren’t indoctrinated already in public schools.

    This seems like the fairest way for government to provide compulsory education without demanding that a particular world-view be the only one allowable.

  18. 18
    Barb says:

    Lock wrote; “But I personally put the blame on the lack of solid philosophical training in our culture. Generally speaking, we do not know how to think anymore.”

    I have to agree with you on this matter.

  19. 19
    lamarck says:

    “Other scientistic fetishes include theoretical content and coherence, empirical prediction, hypothesis testing by means of observations, replicability, and actually doing research. All that just slows things down.”

    Diffaxial why don’t you address falsification? It sounds like you want to say something but don’t dare because you know I’ll knock your ego into next week.

    What do you think I meant by attacking falsification? Or did you have no idea and you were swinging blindly? I want to get to the bottom of this.

  20. 20
    nicholas.steno says:

    Why can’t Natural Selection come up with a Big Bang of Biology that is falsifiable?

    this is of course the important question. I suggest that the raw materials do not exist. The heritable variation of the evolutionists requires the spark of life to work, that spark of life is information.

    cannuckian yankee I am not familiar with the example you suggest, Myer’s talk? I think if your characterization of his view is accurate then he is mistaken. Information, while necessary immaterial, does have material consequence. For instance, when a living organism dies it loses a very small quantity of mass. This has been independently verified by multiple investigators, although establishment science dismisses this claim as measurement error or worse. Alternatively, we can see that in some instances information actually has a mass of negative quantity, such as an inscription on a stone tablet (the tablet, or medium receiving the information, actually has a lower mass once the information is imparted into its substance.

    we should not be surprised to learn that information has empirical import. the information required to form a full grown human being is contained in a single sperm, yet the expression of this information in the fertilization of an embryo necessitates the loss of mass of the sperm, namely the tail!

    i apologize for rambling off topic, and I agree with Ms O’Leary that it is difficult, if not impossible, to get a straight answer about science communication from a scientist. so many of the vile bloggers on the internet are content to launch filthy invective and ad hominem laced dismissals instead of addressing the faults of science communication and communicators. I am sure that you know whom I mean. I appreciate this post and discussion.

  21. 21
    CannuckianYankee says:

    nicholas.steno

    “this is of course the important question. I suggest that the raw materials do not exist. The heritable variation of the evolutionists requires the spark of life to work, that spark of life is information.”

    It’s somewhat paradoxical, isn’t it? I mean it sounds so intuitive, yet counterintuitive at the same time.

    “I am not familiar with the example you suggest, Myer’s talk? I think if your characterization of his view is accurate then he is mistaken.”

    I’m not certain if Meyer would agree with me, but I think there’s a difference between “expressed” information – such as what is on the disk, and “essential” information, which is the information that describes the physical properties of said disk.

    I think the essential informatin is there for obvious reasons, but I’m not certain if the expressed information is fully there or somewhere else. It’s source certainsly comes from somewhere else. I think Meyer was refering to the expressed information, which does not affect the physical properties of the disk. But I could be wrong about his views, not being a scientist myself.

  22. 22
    David Kellogg says:

    nicholas.steno:

    Information, while necessary immaterial, does have material consequence. For instance, when a living organism dies it loses a very small quantity of mass. This has been independently verified by multiple investigators, although establishment science dismisses this claim as measurement error or worse. Alternatively, we can see that in some instances information actually has a mass of negative quantity, such as an inscription on a stone tablet (the tablet, or medium receiving the information, actually has a lower mass once the information is imparted into its substance.

    Are you serious? Life-force information is lost at the moment of death? Alternatively, information has negative mass?

  23. 23
    lamarck says:

    “For instance, when a living organism dies it loses a very small quantity of mass. This has been independently verified by multiple investigators, although establishment science dismisses this claim as measurement error or worse.”

    Good point Nicholas, I’ve heard of this too. It’s probably the mind.

  24. 24
    Seversky says:

    nicholas.steno @ 20

    For instance, when a living organism dies it loses a very small quantity of mass. This has been independently verified by multiple investigators, although establishment science dismisses this claim as measurement error or worse.

    Of course it loses mass. It loses heat as it cools. It loses water through evaporation. What is strange about that?

  25. 25
    Diffaxial says:

    lamarck @ 19:

    What do you think I meant by attacking falsification? Or did you have no idea and you were swinging blindly? I want to get to the bottom of this.

    Here’s the bottom: ID asserts nothing falsifiable, yet maintains that it is making scientific claims. Therefore you are motivated to dismiss falsification as a an element of the game of science.

  26. 26
    CannuckianYankee says:

    nicholas: “For instance, when a living organism dies it loses a very small quantity of mass. This has been independently verified by multiple investigators, although establishment science dismisses this claim as measurement error or worse.”

    Seversky: “Of course it loses mass. It loses heat as it cools. It loses water through evaporation. What is strange about that?”

    He didn’t clarify the time frame within which this occurs – is it immediately after death? – a few hours, days? If it’s immediate, it is rather strange. I don’t think it’s the mind. I don’t think the mind has a mass, becaues this would mean that the mind is material. I don’t believe it is.

  27. 27
    Seversky says:

    nicholas.steno @ 20

    For instance, when a living organism dies it loses a very small quantity of mass. This has been independently verified by multiple investigators, although establishment science dismisses this claim as measurement error or worse.

    Were you thinking of this?

  28. 28
    Diffaxial says:

    nicholas.steno @ 20:

    For instance, when a living organism dies it loses a very small quantity of mass. This has been independently verified by multiple investigators, although establishment science dismisses this claim as measurement error or worse.

    lamarck @ 23:

    It’s probably the mind.

    I wonder when that mass enters the human body. At conception? The blastula stage? At birth? Does it grow proportionately throughout life? Or perhaps even more than proportionately, like our noses and ears?

    If it occurs all at once during any of these earlier stages that should be observable too. Any mass sufficient to be measurable upon departing at death would dwarf early embryonic stages, instantly multiplying embryonic mass by thousands.

    In fact, the entry of this mystery parcel all at once should be measurable simply by continuously weighing women in the hours subsequent to serious canoodling. It takes time for those wriggly little dudes to find their target, and I don’t think anyone posits the entry of this component prior to fertilization. Careful measurement of intake and output would be required, of course. Those women who later prove to be pregnant should have displayed an unaccountable increase in mass in those hours.

  29. 29
    Oramus says:

    CY, you’re right. The mind does not have weight since it is the interface between the soul and body.

    When soul and body separate, experience as perceived through the mind is lost. But I believe a virtual copy of what the soul perceived through the mind interface is retained.

    Seversky/Diffaxial. The soul does have mass/weight since it is a created entity. It is simply material composed in a different dimension thus virtually undetectable in this dimension.

    Now maybe many generations from now, humans will devise some contraption to capture confused/anxious souls lingering in our dimension, but I don’t have time nor feel the need to wait on that empirical confirmation to determine if in fact there are lost souls in dire need of directions to the Crystal Palace.

    To be sure, Faith is the logical solution. Go with your ‘gut’ rather than your eye. The wait is a killer and besides, if I’m not mistaken, the eye is of such a poor ‘design’ that one would be foolish to put too much credence in what it sees. 🙂

  30. 30
    Diffaxial says:

    Oramus @ 29:

    The soul does have mass/weight since it is a created entity. It is simply material composed in a different dimension thus virtually undetectable in this dimension.

    Boy, that is simple. There is a fifth dimension beyond that which is known to man. It is a dimension as vast as space and as timeless as infinity. It is the middle ground between light and shadow, between science and superstition, and it lies between the pit of man’s fears and the summit of his knowledge.

    I forgot about that one.

  31. 31
    CannuckianYankee says:

    Oramus,

    “When soul and body separate, experience as perceived through the mind is lost. But I believe a virtual copy of what the soul perceived through the mind interface is retained.”

    There’s a very serious argument in philosophical circles – I don’t know how valid, that if we did not have souls, we wold be zombies. 🙂

  32. 32
    Oramus says:

    CY,

    Actually, if we didn’t have souls we would be dead.

  33. 33
    Oramus says:

    Diffaxial.

    Is it not science that proposes 10/11 dimensions? Do we not know that there are material entities like x-ray,gamma rays, gravity, nuclear force, etc., that are unseen yet detectable? Their discovery adds to, rather than takes away from, the intuition that we have souls.

    It seems that is has been those willing to ‘boldly go’ that are the ones driving discovery. Your timidity and temerity in limiting your pursuit of knowledge to the detectable is a pity.

    Science could use a few bold visionaries willing to go out on a limb and say:

    “You know what, it is extremely likely that the soul and God exists. We just simply do not yet understand them very well. Theology is helping us in this department and one day we will shake hands at a job well done and have the signing ceremony at the Crystal Palace”.

    “Out of sight is not out of Mind”.

  34. 34
    Diffaxial says:

    Your timidity and temerity in limiting your pursuit of knowledge to the detectable is a pity.

    – Timidity: Showing a lack of courage or confidence; easily frightened.

    – Temerity: Excessive confidence or boldness; audacity.

    – Vocabulary: Knowing what words and stuff mean before using them.

  35. 35
    Oramus says:

    I apologize for the confusion. I ran two related thoughts together in my mind.

    There’s a timidity to go beyond detectable phenomena, but a temerity in holding fast to the notion that only what the eye sees matters.

    But back to the point. Why would a person seeking knowledge, already understanding that there are phenomena barely detectable yet unseen, not take a step further and consider there be other phenomena yet to be detected affected visible matter.

  36. 36
    Diffaxial says:

    Oramus @ 35:

    But back to the point. Why would a person seeking knowledge, already understanding that there are phenomena barely detectable yet unseen, not take a step further and consider there be other phenomena yet to be detected affected visible matter.

    Empty speculation concerning virtually undetectable, or barely detectable, or already detected soul-stuff, or mind, or maybe information, or maybe some sort of mass curled up in extra dimensions (you know, whatever), with all the precision of a script from Lost in Space doesn’t much further one’s search for knowledge, IMHO.

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