Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Science as a Narrative: pomo post normal science

Closely related to pomo science to post normal science. Watch also here on YouTube - Hat tip: @justintempler - There is of course something very wrong in mixing science and political agendas -

De Staat van het Klimaat: "Paltridge: postmodern science is a dangerous beast", by MARCEL CROK

There is an excellent op-ed by Garth Paltridge on the Australian Financial Review. I agree with almost everything he writes. I also much enjoyed his short book The Climate Caper. Paltridge explains why climate science is far from settled (...)
(...) From the social and economic side of things, one might take much more notice of the global warming scare campaign if it were not so obvious that many of its most vociferous supporters have other agendas. There are those, for instance, who are concerned with preservation of the world’s resources of coal and oil for the benefit of future generations. There are those who, like the former president of France, Jacques Chirac, speaking at a conference on the Kyoto protocol in 2000, look with favour on the possibility of an international decarbonisation regime because it would be a first step to global governance (the president’s actual words were “For the first time, humanity is instituting a genuine instrument of global governance”.) There are those who, like the socialists of the 20th century, see international action as a means to force a redistribution of wealth both within and between the individual nations. There are those who regard the whole business mainly as a path to the sort of influence which, until now, has been wielded only by the major religions. More generally, there are those who, like the politically correct everywhere, are driven by a need for public expression of their own virtue.
Of course there is nothing wrong, or at least not much that is wrong, with the ideals behind any of the above agendas except perhaps the last couple on the list. But the battles over them should be fought in the open and on their own merits rather than on the basis of a global warming crusade whose legitimacy is founded on still-doubtful science and on massive slabs of politically correct propaganda. (...) >>>

June 24, 2012

How to exploit research results -

FatHeadMovie: "Science For Smart People" - Hat Tip: @m1self

Mar 14, 2012

'Scientific' postmodernism -

Anyone with half a braincell knew this was going on. Once Dutch sociologist Diederik Stapel had been exposed as a fraud, the flood gates opened. As was the case in the Soviet era with 'scientific Marxism-Leninism', in the war against reality any tactic is ethically legitimate. What stands out? Generalizations are evil, unless it is to indict the opponent: scientically proven, Conservatives are stupid. What else? The premises hardly have any relation at all with Conservatism. it's Conservatism according to Leftist narrative: it's a caricature! From there onwards it's garbage in/garbage out. Probably there's a lot more wrong with this particular 'research'. You parse it yourself for a bit -

Live Science: "Low IQ & Conservative Beliefs Linked to Prejudice"

Feb. 2, 2012

The EU has its priorities in order -

The EU once again shows it's true colors: in order to push an ideology - that states are the sole supplier of public potable water - an industry is bullied into dropping an advertising claim and reality itself  is assaulted -

Telegraph: "EU bans claim that water can prevent dehydration"

Brussels bureaucrats were ridiculed yesterday after banning drink manufacturers from claiming that water can prevent dehydration. (...) >>>

Nov. 21, 2011

The Sokal hoax of psychiatry -

Rush Limbaugh: ""Sybil" was Hoax That Became Accepted Science (Sound Familiar?)"

Something in the New York Post yesterday, a story by Kyle Smith. You remember the woman who had personality disorder, Sybil? Made a movie out of it? Total hoax. A total fraud. Never happened. Made up by the author and some psychiatrists for fun and profit. And since then there have been 40,000 cases of multiple personality disorder diagnosed. After the story of Sybil was published, multiple personality disorder became an officially recognized diagnosis, 40,000 unfortunate patients being diagnosed. Sybil was a real person, but her case and her story was a 100%, 24-karat hoax. And Kyle Smith wrote about it in the New York Post yesterday.

So here we have a real-life recent case of an agenda-driven hoax becoming scientific consensus and a popularly accepted concept that real decisions were based on. Sound familiar? Sound familiar, folks? Does it not sound exactly like what's happened with global warming? (...) >>>

Oct. 17, 2011

A good, hilarious spanking! -

WUWT?: "Unequivocal Equivocation – an open letter to Dr. Trenberth", by Willis Eschenbach

This essay from Willis appeared on WUWT overnight Saturday while I slept. After reading it this morning, I decided to make it a sticky at the top of WUWT (I also added the open letter reference) because it says everything that needs to be said about the current state of affairs in climate science and the skeptic position. I ask readers not only to read it, but to disseminate it widely at other websites and forums. Hopefully, the right people will read this. Thanks for your consideration, and thank you, Willis. (...) >>>

Jan. 18, 2011

Guess what? Twin science frauds exposed -

No Tricks Zone: "The Great Pacific Garbage Patch Turns Out To Be “Grossly Exaggerated” By A Factor Of More Than 200"



The first study to link a childhood vaccine to autism was based on doctored information about the children involved, according to a new report on the widely discredited research. The conclusions of the 1998 paper by Andrew Wakefield and colleagues was renounced by 10 of its 13 authors and later retracted by the medical journal Lancet, where it was published. Still, the suggestion the MMR shot was connected to autism spooked parents worldwide and immunization rates for measles, mumps and rubella have never fully recovered.

A new examination found, by comparing the reported diagnoses in the paper to hospital records, that Wakefield and colleagues altered facts about patients in their study.

The analysis, by British journalist Brian Deer, found that despite the claim in Wakefield’s paper that the 12 children studied were normal until they had the MMR shot, five had previously documented developmental problems. Deer also found that all the cases were somehow misrepresented when he compared data from medical records and the children’s parents. (...) >>>

Jan. 6, 2011

The pomo effort to bring back authority - Better evidence of the Counter Enlightenment roots of Postmodernism is hardly imaginable -

PJM: "The Difference between ‘True Science’ and ‘Cargo-Cult Science’", by Frank J. Tipler

“Science is the belief in the ignorance of experts” is how the great Nobel Prize-winning physicist Richard Feynman defined science in his article “What is Science?” Feynman emphasized this definition by repeating it in a stand-alone sentence in extra large typeface in his article. (Feynman’s essay is available online, but behind a subscription wall: The Physics Teacher (1969) volume 7, starting page 313.)

Immediately after his definition of science, Feynman wrote: “When someone says, ‘Science teaches such and such,’ he is using the word incorrectly. Science doesn’t teach anything; experience teaches it. If they say to you, ‘Science has shown such and such,’ you should ask, ‘How does science show it? How did the scientists find out? How? What? Where?’ It should not be ‘science has shown.’ And you have as much right as anyone else, upon hearing about the experiments (but be patient and listen to all the evidence) to judge whether a sensible conclusion has been arrived at.”

And I say, Amen. Notice that “you” is the average person. You have the right to hear the evidence, and you have the right to judge whether the evidence supports the conclusion. We now use the phrase “scientific consensus,” or “peer review,” rather than “science has shown.” By whatever name, the idea is balderdash. Feynman was absolutely correct. (...) >>>

Aug 1, 2010

The ideology behind the "science" - The Heartland Institute (according to the left, partisan and in the pocket of "dirty oil") just issued following statement in the face of objective figures that it hasn't 'warmed' since a decade:

Heartland Institute: "NAS Climate Report: 'Partisan, Closed Minded'

The National Academy of Sciences Thursday reasserted its opinion that the Earth's climate has warmed to crisis levels and that human activity – the burning of fossil fuels – is the primary cause. In its 869-page report, the NAS, a group of American researchers that advises the U.S. government, urged Congress to adopt specific policy measures to halt the undesirable effects of global warming.

James M. Taylor, senior fellow for environment policy at The Heartland Institute, finds the NAS membership is fatally comprised of global warming activists who are pursuing a political agenda and ignoring competing scientific data. Taylor was project manager for the Fourth International Conference on Climate Change that concluded a three-day meeting in Chicago May 18. The conference was attended by more than 700 climate scientists, economists, policy makers, and opinion leaders.

You may quote from this statement or contact Taylor directly at, 941-776-5690.

Here's Nancy Thorner's report from the Heartland Climate Change conference

May 21, 2010

It was to be expected - the reprise of a successful number: the 'McCarthy-esque persecution' of warmists -

James Delingpole: "‘ManBearPig is real!’ declare top climate scientists. ‘And to prove it here’s a photo-shopped image we found on the internet of a polar bear on a melting ice floe.’"

Did you ever see a more moving picture? (Well, apart from all the other moving pictures involving polar bears). What particularly moves me is how wafer thin that ice is and how oh-so-far it is from land. Weep, oh readers, weep for the terrible plight of poor Ursus maritimus, the bear we all helped kill because of our selfish refusal to change our lifestyles! (Hat tip: Philippe Monthoux)

Well, anyway that’s what 255 members of America’s National Academy of Sciences want you to believe. The floating Polie was used to illustrate a letter they’ve just had printed in Science magazine in which they whinge about the McCarthy-esque persecution they’ve been suffering at the hands of those evil truth-seeking types who so unfairly think it’s wrong of scientists to lie and embezzle grant money and fake data and exaggerate risks and hide evidence and bully rival scientists into silence. (...) >>>

May 13, 2010

Of aliens and open and closed minds -

Salvo: "Science, Stephen Hawking, and Free Minds"

Last night my 11-year old daughter Sally asked me if I’d like to watch "Into the Universe with Stephen Hawking" with her. How could a mom refuse that invitation? So we cozied up in our jammies and tuned in. It was a great show, and highly educational. But not in the way you might think. (...) >>>

April 28, 2010

Meet the modern heretic -

Faultline USA: "Science under the microscope: Unprofessional behavior raises questions", Commentary by James H. Shott

Most people do not recognize the name Peter Duesberg. They don't know that he is a professor of Molecular and Cell Biology at the University of California, Berkeley, or that he was the first scientist to isolate the human cancer gene in 1970 through his work on retroviruses, and that he mapped the genetic structure of those viruses, resulting in his election to the National Academy of Sciences in 1986. Dr. Duesberg is also the recipient of a seven-year Outstanding Investigator Grant from the National Institutes of Health.

Yet, despite these impressive accomplishments and sterling credentials he is looked down upon by some of his peers because, as it turns out, the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) — known as the “AIDS virus” — is a retrovirus, a subject about which Prof. Duesberg is an authority, and based upon his knowledge of retroviruses Prof. Duesberg concluded that HIV, does not cause AIDS. Despite his background and accomplishments, his research and scientific opinion on HIV are given no credibility among the HIV = AIDS faction of scientists, and instead he is vilified and punished.

The purpose here is not to defend Prof. Duesberg's theory about HIV/AIDS — readers can investigate that on their own and draw their own conclusions, or not, as they choose. The purpose is to call attention to the decidedly unscientific behavior on the part of those scientists who believe the AIDS orthodoxy, and who demean and vilify a highly qualified peer who disagrees with a popular theory. (...) >>>

Apr 21, 2010

When theory becomes religion - "Apparently, for evolution to predominate, something other than science will be required" ... yeah, when reason fails, good old leftist coercion -

The Dartboard: "No Intelligence Allowed"

(...) In August of 2009 Eugenie Scott, graying, grandmother-like, and still executive director (of the non-profit National Center for Science Education (NCSE)), advised scientists to choose their words carefully when discussing evolution. Labeling anyone who critically examines evolution a creationist, Dr. Scott explained, “Creationists have done a splendid job of convincing the public that evolution is weak science ….” Instead of saying you “believe” in evolution as one might “believe” in God, Dr. Scott suggested, “you might say you ‘accept evolution.’” To keep evolution safe, she called on scientists and people who care about science to pay attention to local elections and vote for the right people. “Ultimately the solution to this problem is not going to come from pouring more science on it.” Apparently, for evolution to predominate, something other than science will be required. (...) >>>

Apr 15, 2010


- "Greenism" - dossier includes the Climategate journal
- "Live Ethics" - dossier includes pro life issues, genetics, eugenics, euthanasia, abortion, etc.

To the archive >>>

Introduction to subjective, nominalist strands of thinking, currently rife in academe, Pragmatism, Skepticism, Positivism, all are in one way or another relativist in nature. This is bad enough in the humanities, but it's downright destructive in exact science. Postmodern (relativist) thinking rejects objective truth on principle: to them science is but a Western, subjective narrative. We should not be surprised that 'consensus' - the postmodern arbiter of 'truth' - has taken the place of objective knowledge?

This is still a hypothesis, but there may be a pattern: it's like the history of Emmanuel Kant is repeating itself in Climategate. Kant went into non-contradictory philosophy - the traditional vehicle to truth since Aristotle and St Thomas of Aquinas - and rendered it useless by stretching it to such irrational lengths that it seemed to disprove itself: as an Orwellian avant la lettre, he called it Pure Reason. Since that time we have the 'speculative' version of philosophy, which has given the entire field a bad name. Kant's ideological crime is that he did it purposefully so as to "make room for the faith".

Ever since, contradiction is not viewed as a symptom of error, but rather that "something interesting is going on". As a result, anything goes - provided that it supports the argument, usually an article of political ideology. It is reminiscent of Climategate. Truth and billions of taxpayer's money are at stake here, but the real victims might well be science and humanity itself. Already there are commentators declaring science invalid for having produced untruth. Time will tell where this is going. After philosophy, will we lose science too?
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