science denialism (Page 5)
theHating: Here's a neat website
War on Science
(Redirected from Anti-science)
“”Reason and science you despise,
The highest powers of the mind?
Hell's willing slave! With others of your kind,
you are the profits of my enterprise.
—Satan, quoted in Karl Popper's In Search of a Better World
The War on Science is an attempt by a vocal anti-science minority to directly or indirectly attack science through modified school curricula, uncertainty tactics, and discrediting of the scientific method. Any person or organization that promotes their ideology over scientifically-verified evidence is a partisan in favor of the antiscience position in the War on Science.
(Edited by theHating)
theHating: With such fun topics as:
Style over substance
F. W. H. Myers
Moon hoax (français)
Drowning Christian story
National Review Online
Patriot Action Network
Shaken baby syndrome
The Resistance Manifesto
kittybobo34: to those that are ignorant of the sciences, there is no way they can tell where the truth and the lies are when they read the creationist propaganda.
Campion: Over the last while I have been pondering a phenomenon that has actually been going for a very long time. I am referring to Denialists and Conspiracy Theorists. While they might seem to be different behaviours, I think they have a commonality in the sort of mind that subscribes to them. What also struck me as curious is the number of them that are centered around science, technology and medicine. Let me list a few.
>> the link between tobacco and cancer, particularly lung cancer
>> the fluoridation of water supplies to prevent tooth decay
>> the role of chlorofluorinated hydrocarbons in the deterioration of the ozone layer
>> the build up of DDT in the food chain and its effect on both reproduction success in birds and human health.
>> the link between HIV and AIDS
>> the role of vaccination in causing other health issues
>> the historicity of the moon landings
>>UFOs and aliens
>> the human role in CO2 production and climate change
This is hardly an exhaustive list and it is easy to also point out others that have very little, if any, linkage to science, technology or medicine. For example, the historicity of the Holocaust, of the Twin Towers, of the assassination of President Kennedy and of both President Obama's birth place and religion.
What most puzzles me most is the state of mind of both those who advocate these theories and those who so readily subscribe to them. I will throw out a few random thoughts here in the hope that they will generate some discussion.
>> fear and powerlessness --- people feel overwhelmed by events that are beyond their control and require a scapegoat on which to pin their frustration and their anger.
>> fear and ignorance --- people are frightened by their own lack of understanding of the concepts and issues involved and suggest that 'the intellectuals' are trying to put one over on them.
>> the 'little guy syndrome' --- people fear big organizations, big government in particular, and feel the need to lash out at them by suggesting that the little guy is being somehow exploited.
>>contrarianism --- some people love to be different just for the sake of it
>>special knowledge syndrome --- a form of elitism where people like to feel they have some special or secret knowledge that makes them feel smarter and/or better informed than the rest, even if it doesn't have much practical application.
>> religion and political ideologies --- in at least a few cases the culprit is viewed as challenging religious and/or political beliefs.
To illustrate this last point we could look at two examples.
Political --- the fluoridation of water supplies to prevent tooth decay was opposed as a tactic by communists to poison the whole nation. This was particularly effective in the days of the 'red menace' but has a modern counterpart in the paranoia surrounding international terrorism.
Religious --- new technologies are viewed as challenging religious understandings. This goes back a long way in history. Two hundred years ago Timothy Dwight, Presbyterian minister and president of Yale University wrote “If God had decreed from all eternity that a certain person should die of smallpox, it would be a frightful sin to avoid and annul that decree by the trick of vaccination.” Today we see an echo of that religious fear in the debate surrounding stem cell research.
My final observation is that it seems to me that denialists, conspiracy theorists, and biblical fundamentalists / creationists are often the same people.
murrayduan: camp great post.
Do they really believe what they say they do or is it just for attention? Some are actually fairly smart yet buy into the nonsense.
I have had a running discussion with a zeff, and he isn't dumb just acts like he is.
He comes up with the usual points for denial of Science discoveries and progress then goes off the rails with his other beliefs,
He tries to disclaim science with the usual tactics of trying to show certain things he wants as proof not being put forth by Science. He claims without the mentioned scenarios there is no proof of Sciences' conclusions.
Then he offers proof for his ideologies with, for example the "bible" and his interpretation of it.
Good idea pick one of the most fictitious works as support for ones position.
Then interpret the book as proving Aliens Created everything? Here is someone who believe Science is laughable, while he believes the Biblical account leans towards Aliens. Go figure
Ho do they get to this conclusion living in the same world we all do? I try to come up with an answer and have no clue? He isn't alone in his idiocies he has lots of company.
For the most part they are walking contradictions of their own beliefs. Was just chatting with one who claims scientists were over reacting to the virus by promoting quarantines, His reasons were the scientists were working for Big Pharma.
So in his disturbed mind Big Pharma Scientists wanted people to Social Distance which is opposite of what their employers would benefit from? I give.
More on the enemies of science . . .
What kinds of things does one have to say in order to be labelled a "science denier" or "anti-science"? Historian of science Steven Shapin begins his essay "How to be Antiscientific" with the following claims that are liable to do the trick:
1. There is no such thing as "The Scientific Method".
2. Modern science lives only in the day and for the day; it resembles much more a stock-market speculation than a search for truth about nature.
3. New knowledge is not science until it is made social.
4. An independent reality in the ordinary physical sense can neither be ascribed to the phenomena nor to the agencies of observation.
5. The conceptual basis of physics is a free invention of the human mind (cf. the oft heard criticism "religion is man-made" - Achilles)
6. Scientists do not find order in nature, they put it there.
7. Science does not deserve the reputation it has so widely gained . . . of being wholly objective.
8. The picture of the scientist as a man with an open mind, someone who weighs the evidence for and against, is a lot of baloney.
9. Modern physics is based on some intrinsic acts of faith.
10. The scientific community is tolerant of unsubstantiated just-so stories.
11. At any historical moment, what pass as acceptable scientific explanations have both social determinants and social functions.
Good grief! Why, these sound like the kinds of depraved ravings only a rabid, sadistic, let's-return-to-the-Dark-Ages, science-hater would say!
Why, they sound like the kinds of things *I* might say, and HAVE said, in these forums, only to be publicly lynched.
Shapin now spills the beans...
"None of these claims about the nature of science that I have just quoted, or minimally paraphrased, does in fact come from a sociologist, or a cultural studies academic, or a feminist or Marxist theoretician. Each is taken from the metascientific pronouncements of distinguished twentieth-century scientists, some Nobel Prize winners."
(Exact sources available upon request)
Now, no one presumably is about to call Albert Einstein or Niels Bohr -- who are among the list above -- "anti-science". It would appear, then, that the problem is not so much what is said as who says it.
Or else, of course, those who brand people such as myself "anti-science" are simply unaware that distinguished scientists -- particularly those knowledgeable on "metascientific" issues -- routinely advance claims not unlike those I make myself.
"Accordingly, we can be clear about one thing: it cannot be the claims themselves that are at issue, or the claims themselves that must proceed from ignorance or hostility. Rather, it is WHO HAS MADE such claims, and what motives can be attributed--plausibly, if often inaccurately and unfairly--to the KINDS OF PEOPLE making the claims. So one of the very few, and very minor, modifications I have made in several of the quotations above is the substitution of the third-person "they" or "scientists" or "physicists" for the original "we". We are now, it seems, on the familiar terrain of everyday life: members of a family are permitted to say things about family affairs that outsiders are not allowed to say. It is not just a matter of truth or accuracy; it is a matter of decorum. Certain kinds of description will be heard as unwarranted criticism if they come from those thought to lack the moral or intellectual rights to make them".
AchillesSinatra: I believe philosophers can be divided into two kinds: those who believe philosophers can be divided into two kinds and those who don't.