Skip to comments.Science Cannot Police Itself
Posted on 12/08/2009 8:26:34 AM PST by GodGunsGuts
In his new book, The Deniable Darwin (Discovery Institute Press, 2009), published just before the ClimateGate scandal broke, mathematician David Berlinski explained that scientists should not be trusted to check themselves--no more than anyone else on the planet, and maybe less so, since grant money is involved. Now he writes on his blog, "I Told You So."
From The Deniable Darwin:
My own view, repeated in virtually all of my essays, is that the sense of skepticism engendered by the sciences would be far more appropriately directed toward the sciences than toward anything else. It is not a view that has engendered wide-spread approval. The sciences require no criticism, many scientists say, because the sciences comprise a uniquely self-critical institution, with questionable theories and theoreticians passing constantly before stern appellate review. Judgment is unrelenting. And impartial. Individual scientists may make mistakes, but like the Communist Party under Lenin, science is infallible because its judgments are collective. Critics are not only unwelcome, they are unneeded. The biologist Paul Gross has made himself the master of this attitude and invokes it on every conceivable occasion.
Now no one doubts that scientists are sometimes critical of themselves. Among astrophysicists, backbiting often leads to backstabbing. The bloodletting that ensues is on occasion salutary. But the process of peer review by which grants are funded and papers assigned to scientific journals, is, by its very nature, an undertaking in which a court reviews its own decisions and generally finds them good. It serves the useful purpose of settling various scores, but it does not and it cannot achieve the ends that criticism is intended to serve.
If the scientific critic finds himself needed wherever he goes, like a hanging judge he finds himself unwelcome wherever he appears, all the more reason, it seems to me, that he really should get around as much as possible.
“Science Cannot Police Itself”...especially government science!!!
IBT.... you know.
And this time I’m sure...
A cautionary tale for those who would make medical science even more beholden to the gummit than it is already.
This time there is no doubt, you made it in before the Creation Opposition Groupies (COGs). You’re fast, Metmom! Very fast!!!
Scientists are not exempt from all the human foibles the rest of us are, no matter how objective they claim to be, how pure their motives supposedly are in the search for *truth* or whatever it is they're currently claiming to look for, no matter how intellectually superior they try to pass themselves off as.
There's simply too much to be gained by lying. We don't trust politicians for the same reason.
Follow the grant money.....
Far too many “scientists” are little more than agenda driven, radical leftists and whores for government handouts. Imagine what the truly great and talented scientists of the past would think of these brainless thugs.
Lack of trust is becoming institutionalized in our society. It’s the only sensible approach, and it’s really sad to see it come to this.
Indeed...climategate adds some emphasis to the point. However, do not throw the baby out with the (admittedly smelly) bathwater. Science has made incredible discoveries, added insights and developed awe-inspiring products (e.g., drugs, space ships, the Sham Wow) to help humankind. Scientists are human, though...
No it can’t.
Exactly, as if any structure or method can cure the excesses of man’s inherently sinful nature. It was in part this very recognition that prompted our founders set up a government with separate powers, all checking on each other, and all jealous of their delegated powers....and not even that was enough to prevent man’s sin from finding a way to muck things up!
I love science. I love technology. I'm constantly amazed at the wonderful truths which we discover about this amazing world.
I'll even (for the sake of discussion) grant that the mechanism of evolution (one species giving rise to a different species) COULD be true. But I have a problem with much of the information pushed by Evolutionists, and I resent (very much) the notion that the unproven worldview of Evolution is pushed, and pushed, and pushed throughout every government school, while the notion that we were all created by God is completely banned.
This whole "settled science" business and the "We're right, and you people are crazy, so shut up already" attitude is NOT doing science any favors.
Yeah there’s plenty of good science being done and it can usually be found where there is healthy debate. That debate is exactly what was missing from climatology.
Personally I suspect many of these climatologists were sipplying the data they were paid to provide. When we hear that General Electric was doing research, I suspect much of that research was done by colleges on grant money. If a Climatologist didn’t provide what GE or other agenda drivers didn’t want to hear, they lost funding and a climatologist who would provide it gets the funding. The net result was the death of debate.
exactly, all the little evos who use that pathetic whine about science being ‘self correcting’, uh-huh...this climate change, another movement masquerading as ‘science’, has had years to ‘self correct’, but hasnt until real people who know lies, POINTED IT OUT TO EVERYONE ELSE...
hmmmm....what a joke.
now the evos will claim their ‘science’ is above such subterfuge....HAHAAHAHAHAHHAHAH please.....i almost laughed my coffee out through my nose just typing that one....
One potentially good thing that could come out of this, once American’s become thoroughly fed up with being taxed and regulated half to death (without representation), is a movement of angry Americans with torches and pitchforks, where every butcher, baker and candlestick maker comes out of the woodwork, and lay siege to the EPA through their elected representatives, pulling it apart brick by brick, until there isn’t enough left of it to put under a microscope!
The brainless thugs would turn on him, close ranks, and destroy his career, and history would never learn of him.
Science does just fine. It is when the politicians get involved that everything goes to Hell.
Science does just fine. It is when the politicians get involved that everything goes to Hell.
Coming from a source who’s very name is a fraud. very good.
This has had tremendous political ramifications. None good.
Science did better before the grant money became available.
It again becomes a matter of separating the scientific theory of evolution from the ideology of Darwinism.
And for some reason, most evos seem to be incapable of that.
Rejecting Darwinism and it’s ideologies is not rejecting the theory itself; it’s rejecting the misuse and abuse of the theory for political and social gains and it’s misuse as a weapon with which to discredit and malign those who don’t adhere to it, be they IDers or creationists, or just people who aren’t sure.
The saying is that there is a sucker born every minute and you continue to prove that you took a couple days worth of minutes all at once.
“Scientists are not exempt from all the human foibles the rest of us are, no matter how objective they claim to be, how pure their motives supposedly are in the search for *truth* or whatever it is they’re currently claiming to look for, no matter how intellectually superior they try to pass themselves off as.
There’s simply too much to be gained by lying. We don’t trust politicians for the same reason.”
Heresy! Sacrilege! (of course you’re right, but...) Blasphemy!
Well, that issue is not a matter for scientists. They seek knowledge through a variety of means. Anyone holding a religious view that keeps them from seeking knowledge is a theologian, not a scientist.
Sure it’s an issue for scientists.
For one thing, many of them participate and vocally support the actions of those who misuse science, and the ToE so they have already involved themselves in it.
The other is that if they see someone doing that, they need to speak out against it, otherwise, by their silence they are condoning that.
They can’t ignore it and pretend it doesn’t exist or that it will go away.
Actually, your comment proves the point of the article.
By denying that crossing the line between Darwinism and the ToE is an matter for scientists, you are demonstrating that there is no policing of science by those practicing it.
Thanks for the ping!
With the supposition that the police are honest.
And the body that polices science is what?
If some body of peers was set up to police science would it not be subject to the corruption as we see now?
I once heard the following account:
Louis Agassiz, the greatly admired and much-beloved professor at Harvard, gave an impassioned lecture attacking Darwin largely on religious grounds. When he had finished and left the lecture hall, his students, who out of courtesy had remained seated, sat for some time in silence.
Finally, one student said in a small but audible voice, I dont know, but Darwin makes sense to me.
There was a general murmur of assent, and the students rose and left the room.
Science can correct itself, if left alone by politicians and religionists.
My point exactly.
And that’s exactly what’s happening.
“The other is that if they see someone doing that, they need to speak out against it, otherwise, by their silence they are condoning that.”
No way. I’m not going to go out publicly every time some nitwit talks and provide an opposing viewpoint. That line of thought is impractical and illogical. They made the statements, you can hold THEM accountable.
What do you propose think we should do about it? Eliminate peer review?
This article is about scientists policing themselves.
You refuse to police science.
This is exactly what the article is dealing with.
You keep proving its point.
“you are demonstrating that there is no policing of science by those practicing it.”
How did I possibly demonstrate that?? You simply have a position and will lie, cheat and steal to try to shoehorn everyone and anything into it.
Scientists practicing religion are not acting as scientists, and if you want to buy into their BS then go ahead and do so or not do so. Just because someone is a professional scientist and says something doesn’t mean that reflects on all scientists no more than just because you as a Freeper say something the rest of us agree with you and it reflects upon us.
Lumping people together is an intellectually lazy thing to do. Don’t lump people together simply because they have similar business cards.
What's the reason to keep it?
Save yourself a headache - don’t feed the professional troll’s assistant.
“You refuse to police science.”
“police science”? What the Hell is that? A demand we return to Papal oversight? I am a scientist. You try to “police” me and I’ll punch your sorry ass straight to Hell. Just who do you think you are, Ms. Busybody, God?
The same reason we keep laws against murder and have courts and trials? We have those, and yet people still commit murder.
I’m a bit slow on the uptake. I just read camel’s silliness and it was dullifying.
Its “Snap Your Finger” time again.
Could you please explain your understanding of the peer-review process?
Just what good has peer review done for science?
Has it stopped the fraud?
It didn’t do much to stop the AGW scam and Climategate.
It got in the way of getting a treatment for ulcers when the first researchers discovered that bacteria caused it.
“The peer response showed the same scepticism that greeted Warren’s initial observations, and for a number of years the majority of the medical profession dismissed the hypothesis.”
And for years people suffered needlessly.
The researcher, Marshall, reached the point of actually infecting himself to prove his point. That’s desperation. Peer review really worked there, didn’t it? He came to the wrong conclusion, one that went against prevailing scientific consensus and could go nowhere with it.
They didn’t evaluate his work based on the quality, but on the conformity to dogma.
What good have laws and courts and jails done?
Has it stopped the fraud?
Have laws and courts and jails stopped crime?
It didnt do much to stop the AGW scam and Climategate.
And OJ got away with murder.
You're demanding that they either make it perfect, or tear it all down, knowing it can never be made perfect.