In “How we know they know they are lying,” a searing primer on detecting bunk in science, John Brignell January 2009explains why you should not be intimidated by the consensus science that Randy Isaacs, executive director of the American Scientific Affiliation* urges all to put their faith in:
This is a word redolent of the state of contemporary science. It is a political word, not a scientific one. Most of the great innovations in science have been by individuals, or very small groups, striking out from the prevailing opinion to establish new frontiers. As Einstein is reputed to have remarked, when the Nazis published a book in which one hundred German scientists pronounced him wrong, “It only needed one of them to be right.” There was indeed a “consensus” in physics at the start of the twentieth century that “the science is settled”, but that was blown apart by Einstein and his contemporaries. Most of the great breakthroughs in science are made by those who are in a minority of one. The moral pressure to join the consensus and support the establishment view is substantial, even carrying the threat of dismissal. Such things have no place in a free society. This is not persuasion, it is enforcement. Research funding is exclusively given to proponents of establishment theories and denied to opponents. It is a remarkable tribute to the human spirit that so many dare stand up to the bullies and accept the contemptuous label of “denialist” (not that the general public ever get to hear of them). Others, who have family responsibilities, have to preserve their reservations for private conversation.
As for the accompanying slogan “The science is settled”, if it is settled it is not science and if it is science it is not settled.
Much other good stuff. Although his target is the government sponsored frauds in defence of a climate change apocalypse, one need mentally edit very little to make it an analysis of the Darwin drag in biology:
There is a long and respectable history of patronage in science as well as art, literature, lexicography etc. The patrons (other than the church) used their own money. The modern patrons, however, are bureaucrats who use the money of others; to whit, taxpayers. Their science is not the science of recent tradition, but a whole new ball game.
There are major differences between real science and bureaucratic science (BS). Real science involves living with the prospect of failure. In BS, failure is not allowed. The whole project is mapped out beforehand in forms such as Gantt charts. There are deliverables that have to be delivered on the due date. With the exception of really big physics, real science is carried out by small groups. It is the same with BS, except that there are about five managers for every researcher. Above all the expected result must be delivered on time. Those who desire further patronage never report a negative result or, indeed, a result at variance with the expectations of the sponsors.
We can identify the “scientists” who habitually lie by the fact that they produce, on time, results that are never unexpected and always conform to the establishment-sponsored theory. Real science is never that predictable.
*A group consisting severally of Christians in science, former Christians in science, and Christians who were formerly scientists – proportions unknown at present, amid much discussion.
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