Those who promulgate the rhetoric of consensus rightly want to preserve the integrity of science in the eyes of the public. The empirical, precise, and collaborative method of natural science remains – despite the current reproducibility crisis – our most reliable source for knowledge about the natural world. And it often facilitates tremendous technological achievement. No surprise that its practitioners enjoy a high degree of what sociologist Pierre Bourdieu called “cultural capital.” They ought to. More.
Well, yes, but if there is a reproducibility crisis, one would best deal with that before subjecting any decision to a vote.
Otherwise, it’s like showing up in court and saying you have no evidence for the strength of your case.
M. Anthony Mills’ analysis, linked above, sounds reasonable. But now here is a critical question:
Not what’s “true” but “what should the taxpayer be expected to fund?
In general, that’s the only question that need come to a public vote.
Science, as such, is like art. People are free to do what they want and be judged by their peers.
But if the rest of us must pony up, we ought to want to know the reason.