Thursday, September 1, 2011

Dick Dawk Science

The truth, so humorously encapsulated in this video, is the smug arrogance of the scientific community, and the utter foolishness of placing one’s blind faith in them. Scientists are mere human beings, and are every bit as susceptible to corruption and prejudice as politicians and corporate businessmen are. The fact that the scientific community has not only been wrong on a plethora of issues stringing from medicine to biology, climate science to physics, and economics to the viability of political systems, but has in many cases relied upon fraud and greed to produce a self-serving consensus, should remedy even the most die-hard science fetishist of the cult-worship of the scientific establishment.

“Dick to the Dawk to the PHD, he’s smarter than you – he’s got a science degree!” is nothing more than an effort to pressure the recipient not to think for himself and conform his thoughts to the intellectual elite’s ideals. It is this same mentality that was exhibited by history’s greatest mass murders: the inclination to order society to your utopian vision. And yes, the nature within the scientific community has been increasingly authoritarian the last few decades. The system set up that makes use of tenures, government grants, and peer review stresses conformity of thought and staying in line with the status quo instead of original innovation and a little dose of healthy skepticism. So ironically, the intellectual boldness of the founders of modern science - Galileo, Newton, Kepler, and Capernicus, to name a few -who challenged conventional wisdom, is notably absent from the list of modern-day overspecialized scientists.

(Moreover, often times a science degree only indicates a superior knowledge in one specific discipline of science. It does not qualify him to pontificate on philosophy, religion, politics, or even other sciences outside of his narrow discipline. It’s hilarious to see Richard Dawkins talking about theology, philosophy or history because he simply doesn’t know a darn thing about them. So, “he’s smarter than me – he’s got a science degree!” is almost meaningless unless they the topic is the particular scientist’s specific field.)

This of course does not mean that there are no great scientists in our day, or that whatever the scientific community styles as a “consensus” is inherently wrong. There are many open minded scientists that have produced brilliant works. No question. However, there are simply not enough of them. And the real question is whether their works have progressed or have been hindered by the current scientific establishment. The evidence tends to indicate the latter.

There are many examples one could use to demonstrate this to be the case. Take the issue of the Darwinian theory of evolution. As was shown in the documentary Expelled: No intelligence allowed, a mere fragment of dissent from Darwin’s Dangerous Idea leaves evolutionists waxing hysteric and the “antics” are invariably mocked into silence, usually resulting in a demotion or outright firing of the dissident. This is despite the fact that Darwin’s original theory has been so heavily modified over the last century; in the past critics have pointed out the weakness with the notion of natural selection, only to be ignored. But surprisingly, in his recent book The Greatest Show on Earth, Richard Dawkins, apparently with a straight face, declares that natural selection may not be the mechanism of evolution after all! This doesn’t bother him one bit, because he doesn’t care about real science or improving accuracy of his experimental and theoretical models, but rather, he is so dedicated to salvaging his material atheism that he sees evolution as a mere means to that end. Now then, I am probably more sympathetic to evolution than most, certainly more than most Christians, but the way evolutionary biologists shriek to the sound of rational inquiry is not helping them develop better theories on the origins of life.

Another example, but one that has sparked a little less public controversy, is string theory and the physicists’s quest for a “theory of everything.” The idea was popularized by Brian Greene in his book and subsequent documentary The Elegant Universe. String theorists have postulated that vibrating strings form the building blocks of matter and that this will unify Einstein’s General Relativity and Quantum Mechanics. The problem, however, is that the strings cannot be observed because they are supposedly so much smaller than a photon, the unit that allows you to see. In fact, the theory has never been tested, and strictly speaking should not be considered science; it is mere wishful thinking that is held to be true on aesthetic grounds. But this isn’t just harmless speculation on part of some obscure scientists; it has sucked a significant portion of the talent within the physicist circles. So instead of working on other potential routes, many physicists find themselves being locked in the confines of string-theory’s thought-mansion. This has been going on for decades.

And this problem isn’t limited to Evolution and String Theory. The global financial crisis has been the result of bad economic theory. And the reason the political ruling class is exacerbating the recession is because the mainstream economists that inform them espouse a deeply flawed Neo-Keynesian paradigm. In a similar manner, climatologists are more interested in their globalist, World government vision than actually understanding carbon cycles.

But once I express any doubt about the holy nature of science (or specifically, the profession of science), invariably someone jumps in with what they think is an irrefutable argument:

If you hate science so much, give up everything science has given you: your computer, modern transportation, medicine. Everything

After reading thus far, one may leap to the conclusion that I am anti-science. I am not. I have deep respect for the scientific method and the knowledge it has provided humanity. It is this appreciation for real science that causes me to criticize the current scientific establishment that hinders it.

And this is a remarkably ignorant argument, as it is not science that has produced much of the technology we take for granted, but free-market capitalism. Most inventors are either technologists or engineers innovating to improve business and have little connection with the scientific community. And while it is true that science has blessed humanity with a great number of things, it is not true that it has produced most, let alone all of them. And as has been demonstrated in no little detail, the modern incarnation of the scientific creature has largely served to cripple real scientific developments in favor of self-serving politics.

Being a natural scientist myself, and having a family of scientists and engineers, I am aware of the powers of the scientific method and the body of knowledge it has produced. I am simply cognizant of its practical and conceptual limits, and the contrast between science purely as a method and the science wielded by flawed human beings.

No comments:

Post a Comment