Skip to comments.Scientific Skeptics Have a Right to be Heard
Posted on 12/27/2007 2:32:59 PM PST by CedarDave
In the 16th century a large, powerful institution saw itself as threatened by heretics - people who didnt agree with all its dogmas - so it began to identify and punish those dissidents. Five hundred years later a similar effort is under way. In the 16th century it was the Roman Catholic church; today it is Big Science. The only real difference is that today heretics are simply deprived of their livelihood; burning at the stake is no longer in vogue.
Exhibit One in this contention is found on Page A2 of the Dec. 14 Enquirer: Global-warning skeptic says hes being vilified. This is from an economist, but scientists who express similar doubts about the fashionable view (global warming is due to generation of CO2 by humans) are similarly marginalized.
Exhibit Two is the denial of tenure to Guillermo Gonzalez by the astronomy department of Iowa State University, despite a stellar record of scientific publications. His crime? He co-authored a book ("The Privileged Planet") that suggested that the unusually benign (for life) situation of the Earth might have been due to an intelligent designer.
As a doctoral student I was taught that good science sought reliable facts about the world around us, and hypotheses followed wherever those facts lead. Sadly, that no longer seems to be the case. Instead, selected facts have led to politicized conclusions, and countervailing facts are no longer tolerated. This is not good science.
To end this Inquisition, scientists dedicated to good science must defend the right of skeptics to be heard.
(Excerpt) Read more at icecap.us ...
Clyde E. Stauffer earned a Ph.D. in biochemistry at the University of Minnesota, has done research at Procter & Gamble, and has been involved in more applied science for the last 30 years.
Another established scientist speaking out. As mentioned in other articles, its the senior scientists who are speaking up regarding the global warming scam, those who already have established reputations, have tenure or are nearing retirement. The younger ones, though they may agree with naysayers, speak their doubts only to colleagues, avoid publishing their opinions and speaking out in meetings, except as questions to presenters.
The intimidation is real and as the author says threatens livelihoods and does not contribute to the advancement of true science, characterized by presenting a hypothesis and testing it for validity. Science and all mankind is the loser as a result.
New!!: Dr. John Ray's
Ping me if you find one I've missed.
Being heard is not identical to being hired.
As for being published... that costs money. Who pays?
This is Humean nonsense.
Hey I followed the link, but can not find the part of the article that was “snipped” out.
In the 16th century, the Church was going on what THEY knew at the time, without internet access, television, and widespread publications, amounting to pure ignorance on their part. With what we know today, and the info we have access to that disputes pinko junk science, we are witnessing a true inquisition.
That’s my biggest gripe with Big Science. Rather than keep an open mind, they pull stuff like this.
Look what they did to astronomers, et al who agreed with some of Velokivsky’s theories.
There is a second link in the story itself.
As for being published... that costs money. Who pays?
Prestigious scientific journals are usually peer-reviewed and the makeup/orientation of the reviewers determines who gets published. Usually you don't pay to get published, but if you want reprints to handout to colleagues, then you put out the cash.
Read this link to see how a prestigious journal can be corrupted by its selection of a biased editor: $cience Mag Jumps on Global Moneywagon
You really did not respond to either point.
According to your source Gonzalez has a “stellar” (humor intended?) publication record. So, he was heard. Just not hired.
And, “Who pays” is not answered by pointing out aspects of the peer review structure. It is properly answered by identifying who buys, or otherwise subsidizes, the journal (not the reprints).
This is great news! Hopefully more and more scientists will start crawling out of the woodwork and doing the same. Bravo Dr. Stauffer!
When I was a kid, after much to do, they banned cyclamates in soft drinks because they were determined by scientific experiments to be the most carcigenic substance known to man. Now they say cyclamates don’t even cause cancer.
Imagine that, that any thinking person could look at the universe in all it's beauty, order, and complexity and come to the conclusion that it was created instead of just happening.
Dontcha know that it makes more sense to declare that everything appeared out of nowhere, all on its own, exploded itself, organized itself, established its own laws, and gave rise to complex, intelligent life, all just by chance? Really, to think that someone could have designed and created it. How silly....
I’d like to see the list of things that science hasn’t changed its mind about at some time or other. It shouldn’t be a long read.
Beauty, order, and complexity are subjective. We create those things. As to whether 'it' was created we can never know but we also cannot prove it wasn't either. Some things are beyond the power of reason.
And, Who pays is not answered by pointing out aspects of the peer review structure. It is properly answered by identifying who buys, or otherwise subsidizes, the journal (not the reprints).
I assume you know that most scientific journals have a hefty subscription fee, reduced by only a few dollars by membership in the associated scientific society. Additional funds are raised by scientific conferences held once a year or every two years that require a registration fee for professionals attending and a similar fee for conference exhibitors. Sometimes a conference will have multiple sponsors so as to attract a maximum number of registrants and split the costs accordingly. And I have both published and presented papers in my professional career, beginning in college, though I am not now associated with a university or research institution.
The subscription fees for top scientific journals are way beyond my means anymore. Fortunately a university with apparently unlimited library funding is just three miles up the road.
Being heard and being given equal respect are two different things. Good science always drives bad science out in the long run, and just because it’s a new theory or explanation does not mean it’s good science.
Sometimes it is.
But every new explanation or theory should be attacked relentlessly. If it stands up, it moves into the good science category.
Maybe they did’t like how he parted his hair.
You are aware, are you not, that there is no obligation to hire any specific individual?
As for publishing, as you have just pointed out, subscriptions cost an arm and a leg. Do you think the libraries and universities would pay as much for non-peer reviewed journals?
It sounds like Guillermo’s problem is not that he couldn’t get heard, but that he was heard and judged short of his school’s tenure standards.
The proponents of intelligent design need to propose some testable hypotheses, conduct research based on them, analyze the data, and publish the results in a manner consistent with usual scientific procedure. Until they do so, 99.99% of scientists are not going to recognize ID as science.
The refusal to play by the same rules as everyone else, not their supposed challenge to CW, is their problem. They ought to stop whining and get to work.
So what scientific, observable, testable basis did scientists come use to the conclusion and the universe was not intelligently designed that it should become the standard to compare everything else to?
How did the universe bringing itself into existence and establishing itself become the default option to be accepted by *real* scientists and the position of ID became the one to prove?
What evidence is there to support the contention that something like what we see all around us, all the order, complexity, and intelligence does not need intelligence to exist or function?
Proponents of ID present it as an alternative to the modern synthesis of evolutionary theory. Evolutionary theory is not about how the universe came into existence, i.e. it is not about "who created the heavens and the earth." It is about the process by which species change and evolve.
I have my doubts that falsifiable hypotheses can be generated by ID proponents. I once saw a list of three or four that proponents claimed were testable. My personal opinion was that none actually were. However even if I am wrong, the fact remains that they have yet to test a single one. And until they do, the credibility that they seek in the scientific community will elude them.
I truly believe that if they would get serious about doing research they would find themselves more welcome than they believe possible.
I do hope this is helpful.
Yes, this was a good one; thanks for the ping!