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Monday, April 04, 2016

Liberals, not conservatives, hate science

As Maddox has amply demonstrated, they don't "fucking love science", they like pictures that remind them of science. Actual science, they hate, because it's not careful of their precious feelings and tends to gradually destroy their sacred narratives:
I first read Galileo’s Middle Finger: Heretics, Activists, and the Search for Justice in Science when I was home for Thanksgiving, and I often left it lying around the house when I was doing other stuff. At one point, my dad picked it up off a table and started reading the back-jacket copy. “That’s an amazing book so far,” I said. “It’s about the politicization of science.” “Oh,” my dad responded. “You mean like Republicans and climate change?”

That exchange perfectly sums up why anyone who is interested in how tricky a construct “truth” has become in 2015 should read Alice Dreger’s book. No, it isn’t about climate change, but my dad could be excused for thinking any book about the politicization of science must be about conservatives. Many liberals, after all, have convinced themselves that it’s conservatives who attack science in the name of politics, while they would never do such a thing. Galileo’s Middle Finger corrects this misperception in a rather jarring fashion, and that’s why it’s one of the most important social-science books of 2015.

At its core, Galileo’s Middle Finger is about what happens when science and dogma collide — specifically, what happens when science makes a claim that doesn’t fit into an activist community’s accepted worldview. And many of Dreger’s most interesting, explosive examples of this phenomenon involve liberals, not conservatives, fighting tooth and nail against open scientific inquiry.
It's probably not a book anyone who reads this blog regularly needs to read, but it may be one that most of us would like to give to someone we know. As Nassim Taleb explains, what passes for science simply isn't really science and it certainly isn't reliable.
What we are seeing worldwide, from India to the UK to the US, is the rebellion against the inner circle of no-skin-in-the-game policymaking "clerks" and journalists-insiders, that class of paternalistic semi-intellectual experts with some Ivy league, Oxford-Cambridge, or similar label-driven education who are telling the rest of us 1) what to do, 2) what to eat, 3) how to speak, 4) how to think... and 5) who to vote for.

With psychology papers replicating less than 40%, dietary advice reversing after 30y of fatphobia, macroeconomic analysis working worse than astrology, microeconomic papers wrong 40% of the time, the appointment of Bernanke who was less than clueless of the risks, and pharmaceutical trials replicating only 1/5th of the time, people are perfectly entitled to rely on their own ancestral instinct and listen to their grandmothers with a better track record than these policymaking goons.

Indeed one can see that these academico-bureaucrats wanting to run our lives aren't even rigorous, whether in medical statistics or policymaking. I have shown that most of what Cass-Sunstein-Richard Thaler types call "rational" or "irrational" comes from misunderstanding of probability theory.

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129 Comments:

Blogger Rye Bread April 04, 2016 1:21 PM  

Example 1 # Witness the undoing of Larry Summers for posing the possibility that there are structural differences between male and female brains resulting in variances in performance.

Example 2 # Question how evolution (which is supposed to result in variances between species and sub-species) applies to animals but magically becomes null and void when applied to humans.

Blogger kh123 April 04, 2016 1:30 PM  

" “You mean like Republicans and climate change?”"

Given that Al Gore's still breathing - most likely at 30,000 feet - this is like discussing Germany's gas chambers and ovens at a Politburo meeting.

Anonymous Toastrider April 04, 2016 1:33 PM  

Oh, not this shit again.

Galileo didn't get in trouble for 'heresy' -- that was just the charge they hung on him. The problem was that he was an unrepentant, offensive ass -- no matter if you're right or not, you can't call the Pope a moron in 17th century Europe and not expect repercussions. You can't refer to two highly-regarded Jesuit astronomers as drunks and buffoons, and not expect a little blowback.

People are people, and they can be very, very stupid sometimes. Even Galileo.

Anonymous A Paradigm Is More Than Twenty Cents April 04, 2016 1:37 PM  

The "I F*cking L*ve Science" droids mainly enjoy bothering fundies with half-baked Darwinism, when they are not bowing down for Gaia.

"Science" in their world is a skewer to stick into people they don't like, not a way of thinking that leads to a deeper understanding of the physical world.

They are cargo-cultists. You can make them really uncomfortable just by asking them to outline the scientific method in a few sentences.

Anonymous A Paradigm Is More Than Twenty Cents April 04, 2016 1:38 PM  

Example 2 # Question how evolution (which is supposed to result in variances between species and sub-species) applies to animals but magically becomes null and void when applied to humans.


Especially above the neck. Evolution stops at the neck. Because Science.

Blogger Salt April 04, 2016 1:41 PM  

Galileo’s Middle Finger

1.0 out of 5 stars Transphobic and Cissexist
Garbage. Just complete trash by a transphobe.
Published 6 days ago by Natalie Fortune


But, of course.

Anonymous Mr. Rational April 04, 2016 1:42 PM  

A Paradigm Is More Than Twenty Cents wrote:"Science" in their world is a skewer to stick into people they don't like, not a way of thinking that leads to a deeper understanding of the physical world.
Both sides have their dogma which is at odds to physical reality to some degree.  What's interesting is the clever way those bits of dogma have been arranged to benefit certain interests.

Anonymous Snick April 04, 2016 1:50 PM  

My favorite science to fling at them is DNA. They truly hate that one. You can put all the lipstick on Jenner you want to, but he is always going to be Bruce until he dies.

Blogger dc.sunsets April 04, 2016 1:57 PM  

Scientists (and those claiming to be scientists) are people.

People arrive at most of their decisions in their impulsive/emotional cognitive pathways, and then use their reasoning pathway to simply rationalize that prior decision.

Therefore scientists are rationalizers, too.

The smarter a person is, the better they are at supporting (rationalizing) the product of their biases...and ignoring the message of the common sense that belies their biases.

Blogger dc.sunsets April 04, 2016 2:03 PM  

There are quite a few Error Pyramids saddling us today. A few examples:
-HIV causes AIDS. (Recall just a few years ago when AIDS was widely expected to entirely depopulate Africa?)
-AGW (of course) and that "renewable" energy is the answer.
-Slathering on sunscreen makes people live longer.
-More access to medical care makes people healthier.

I do wonder how a society breaks with a deeply-embedded pyramid once billions of dollars depend on its continuation.

Blogger Eric Slate April 04, 2016 2:08 PM  

This is exactly the sort of issue the scientific method was intended to correct. Recording of specific methods allows results from similar experiments to be compared. Despite the cultural divide going on, or individual scientists failing, you can count on people who pursue the truth faithfully will eventually shine a light on all that we get wrong.

Anonymous Stickwick April 04, 2016 2:12 PM  

After enough encounters with the "I f---ing want to hump science's leg" crowd, you start to realize that for these people, saying "It's science!" is the equivalent of saying "Zeus did it!" or "It's magic!" It's quite primitive, when you think about it. For all their claimed love of science, they actually know astonishingly little about how it works. For them, "science" is simply a talisman or an invocation to be used against things they feel cannot or should not be true.

Blogger Ingot9455 April 04, 2016 2:19 PM  

The ultimate in renewable energy at this time is of course a plutonium breeder reactor. But no, can't have any of that!

Blogger professorastro April 04, 2016 2:22 PM  

What do you expect when the high priest of scientism dismisses all of the philosophy of science:

http://www.realclearscience.com/articles/2014/05/22/why_does_neil_degrasse_tyson_hate_philosophy.html

Blogger dc.sunsets April 04, 2016 2:24 PM  

@12 Stickwick,
So true, so true...
https://youtu.be/UlFVUozGWyU

Anonymous VFM #6306 April 04, 2016 2:28 PM  

If your most frequent experiments in college involved lesbianism, you might fucking love science.

If your hair is dyed to match a prismatic hue, you might fucking love science.

If your nutritional case studies consist primarily of Doritos, you might fucking love science.

If double-blind has been your proven method of achieving one night stands, you might fucking love science.

If you have ever contributed to code without coding, you might fucking love science.

Blogger wrf3 April 04, 2016 2:35 PM  

How can you find justice in science unless you can find justice by science? Because finding justice by science is equivalent to the universe telling us how to behave. What a s---storm that will be when they discover that there is something external to man that makes demands in our actions.

Anonymous Napoleon 12pdr April 04, 2016 2:37 PM  

If you can make something that works in the real world, it's engineering. All else is either guesswork or superstition.

And liberals love superstition. Guesswork is honest about what it is.

Anonymous Tom Thumb April 04, 2016 2:38 PM  

This is hardly a conservative vs liberal issue. People will approve of scientific studies that support their narrative and dismiss those that don't. The percentage of people who are not guilty of this is small, but they exist.

Blogger VD April 04, 2016 2:42 PM  

This is hardly a conservative vs liberal issue. People will approve of scientific studies that support their narrative and dismiss those that don't.

You're wrong. The studies have shown otherwise. Since you hate science, we can safely conclude you are a liberal.

Blogger dc.sunsets April 04, 2016 2:42 PM  

So is Arp the "modern Galileo?"

https://youtu.be/UlFVUozGWyU?t=25m12s

Or is every science subject to the limits of established dogma. Better yet, how does one tell the difference between scientific dogma and open assessment of challenges to orthodoxy?

Who doesn't have an ox at risk of goring?

Blogger praetorian April 04, 2016 2:43 PM  

people are perfectly entitled to rely on their own ancestral instinct and listen to their grandmothers with a better track record than these policymaking goons.

Nassim Taleb is a treasure. What a mensch.

What do you expect when the high priest of scientism dismisses all of the philosophy of science

People don't think it be like it is...

--Noted Rapist

Anonymous BGKB April 04, 2016 2:51 PM  

" “You mean like Republicans and climate change?”"

If we don't give globalists trillions of $$ NYC will be underwater by 2015. Remember my post from retraction watch that said "The corresponding author said the raw data were lost in a flood in Sri Lanka."

Question how evolution...applies to animals but magically becomes null and void when applied to humans

Easy evolution stopped at the neck in humans. No evolutionary trade offs for faster short distance runs, and resisting malaria(with sickle cell).

This is hardly a conservative vs liberal issue. People will approve of scientific studies that support their narrative

Retraction Watch is likely conservative just like those who post the die verse city in medical fraud/errors. http://retractionwatch.com/

Anonymous zapbrannigan1 April 04, 2016 2:51 PM  

"There’s a risk of getting too cute here, of drawing false, unwarranted equivalencies. In a sense, my dad was right in what he was getting at — conservatives have done a lot of damage to sound science in the United States. It’s conservative lawmakers and organizations who have refused to acknowledge anthropogenic climate change, who have rallied to keep evolution out of textbooks and comprehensive sex education out of classrooms, who have stymied life-saving research into stem cells and gun control."

This is my favorite part of the linked article.

After expending several thousand words above this passage describing two vicious witch-hunts perpetrated by progressives, the author can't stand the cognitive dissonance any longer and has to remind his audience that conservatives are still evil.

What makes me laugh is the fact that the comparison doesn't fit. The author doesn't appear to realize that, for every issue he provides, conservatives and the alt-right have leveled cogent scientific, legal, and moral arguments in support of their position. What they have NOT done is to resort to the character assassination, blatant lying, and outright threats described in the two prior examples. In fact, in many of these cases, progressives have done the most damage themselves:


Anthropogenic Climate Change:
- The Climategate scandal detonated the credibility of the climate-change solons.
- The climate-mongers' own models have failed in their predictions for over a decade.
- Anthony Watts has done yeoman's work dismatling this ideology by proving that it is impossible to recreate the results that led to the accepted warming model without cooking the numbers.

Evolution
- A theory that has a few very serious flaws, as has been pointed out here.
- Regardless of one's position on this, attempting to prevent a controversial subject from being taught in schools through democratic means (i.e. lawfully) is NOT the same as attempting to stamp out the theory altogether and destroy those who espouse it.

Sex Ed
- Studies have shown that sex education actually increases the likelihood of sexual contact among teenagers and has had either no effect or, in some studies, an inverse effect on the incidence of STDs and pregnancy; tell teens to go have sex and they will, what a shock.
- Again, conservative efforts against this push to indoctrinate their children are 1) legal and 2) completely in line with bedrock constitutional freedoms against a coercive federal government.

Stem Cells
- Unique DNA in embryonic stem cells proves indubitably that the cell in question is human. The conservative position is upheld by science and basic human decency.
- Oh, and again, fighting to establish laws against the use of these cells is lawful and protected...blah, blah, you know the drill.

Gun Control
- Our constitution explicitly protects a citizen's right to own a firearm. Again, conservatives argue from a position of strength backed legal precedent.
- It is the perogative and the responsibility of a man to protect himself and his loved ones from risks to life and limb. This predates the nation-state, the city-state, and stretches back to the times of tribes and family units.


Finally, you will once again note that in none of these issues can one find a high-profile example of an alt-right activist engaging in the kind of reprehensible character assassination detailed in the linked article.

Blogger John Wright April 04, 2016 3:02 PM  

"People arrive at most of their decisions in their impulsive/emotional cognitive pathways, and then use their reasoning pathway to simply rationalize that prior decision."

I have found this is only true of people who, like you, attribute such after the fact rationalizations to others. For example, Marx, who proposes that all reasoning is an after the fact rationalization, is indeed guilty of it. But, oddly, none of the people the accusers accuse are guilty of it.

Blogger James Dixon April 04, 2016 3:05 PM  

> Despite the cultural divide going on, or individual scientists failing, you can count on people who pursue the truth faithfully will eventually shine a light on all that we get wrong.

They found a fix for that: “It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends on his not understanding it.” - Upton Sinclair.

> Better yet, how does one tell the difference between scientific dogma and open assessment of challenges to orthodoxy?

Is the original data available and are the experiments supporting the position reproducible?


Blogger John Wright April 04, 2016 3:12 PM  

"This is hardly a conservative vs liberal issue."

Not on Mars. But here on Earth, Liberals use science as the battering ram to assault the Church, not because they like or understand science, but only because science has enough prestige to be used to attack the Church.

Even Marx dubbed his crackpot theory 'scientific' socialism.

I have talked with accredited physicists, who, if he was liberal, would not know what the scientific method was, or know the limits of the scientific method.

For example, once leftist physicist thought geometry was empirical.

For example, another believed science had disproved the existence of ghosts: but he was baffled when I asked him for he name and the experiment, so that I could reproduce it at my workbench at home and see for myself.

The same guy affirmed that the meaning of thoughts was a material property carried on the electrons of he nerve cells in the brain. I again asked him for the name of the experimenter and the experiment to confirm this, and he could not answer, and could not admit he could not answer.

NOT ONE conservative physicist in my experience suffers from these philosophical confusions or inexcusable ignorance about the nature and limits of science.

That is because conservatives do not worship science or pretend it can do something it cannot do.

Conservatism is a worldview that accords with reality, ergo one need not be neurotic to believe it. One need not force oneself never to look at facts. Liberalism is precisely the opposite.

Not all liberals are insane, but all liberals are obligated by their party loyalty to act insane and say insane things and defend insanity whenever called on to do so. Because they live in a world where only intentions matter and all goods and service are free, and money grows on trees, and no wolves prey on the sheep, so no sheepdogs need be armed.

Anonymous That Would Be Telling April 04, 2016 3:16 PM  

@3 Toastrider:

Oh, not this shit again.

Galileo didn't get in trouble for 'heresy' -- that was just the charge they hung on him. The problem was that he was an unrepentant, offensive ass....


As I understand it, it was worse than that. He had one of 6 competing theories at the time to explain the failures of the geocentric system, but his was wrong, and while the church was entirely willing to change their interpretation of the Bible on this, they weren't about to go to that much trouble for another incorrect theory. And being an ass, he disobeyed the church's orders and kept pushing his theory as The Truth.

Anonymous That Would Be Telling April 04, 2016 3:30 PM  

@24 zapbrannigan1:

As I understand it, and this is not a field I follow at all, embryonic stem cells turned out to be a dead end for medicine, they're (sufficiently) undifferentiated that injecting them into a human is akin to injecting them with cancer, albeit not hardly as bad. Without the right signals from their neighbors in the embryo, they develop into all sorts of crazy things and you tend to end up with a tumor of random and at best entirely useless cells.

I don't know that this is true, but about the time I read it I stopped seeing much of anything about embryonic stem cells, all the developments I've read of after then started with adult, differentiated stem cells, although sometimes they manipulated them to behave in less younger forms. Needless to say you have to "read the fine print" in the popular articles to notice this minor detail.

Blogger Jon M April 04, 2016 3:46 PM  

Zap: "What they have NOT done is to resort to the character assassination, blatant lying, and outright threats described in the two prior examples."

Woah now...let's not get crazy here. I am more than happy to engage in any of those things. I am just not stupid enough to think doing those things proves that I am right. But then, I have logic, reasoning, and evidence supporting my positions, so I don't really *need* to do those things.

Blogger Jon M April 04, 2016 3:50 PM  

I would remind people that the controversy was less 'stem cell research' and completely 'Federal funding of human embryonic stem cell research' with all of those pesky qualifiers being important. Equating the conservative position to opposition to all stem cell research was a blatant lie of ommission.

Blogger dc.sunsets April 04, 2016 3:52 PM  

This comment has been removed by the author.

Anonymous zapbrannigan1 April 04, 2016 4:01 PM  

@Jon M

Yes, you're right of course. It was opposition to using tax monies to fund the destruction of embryonic stem cells. Compelling a man to support with his hard-earned treasure something that he finds morally abhorrent. My post was already getting too long, so I didn't state that explicitly because I was fairly certain the audience here would know the basics of the issue. And I was right. :)

@That Would Be Telling

I've heard the same. For all the shrieking and moral posturing on the part of the scientific community and the NPR set, I remember reading that embryonic stem cells are far more unpredictable (probably not the right word, but the best that this non-scientist can muster) than adult stem cells. I, too, have noticed a decline in the coverage of embryonic stem cell research, but I don't know if that has to do with a shift in research priorities or a Keep-Your-Head-Down mindset among researchers involved in the practice.

Blogger Matt April 04, 2016 4:03 PM  

Yes but conservatives are surely not better. She writes: "It's conservative lawmakers and organizations who have refused to acknowledge anthropogenic climate change, who have rallied to keep evolution out of textbooks and comprehensive sex education out of classrooms, who have stymied life-saving research into stem cells and gun control."

True.

Politicizing science is a problem as is confirmation bias. Both sides do it. But to conclude, as your headline does, that 'liberals hate science' is nothing but click bate and not accurate to the article you linked. Science should not enter the political realm but it sure does a lot. So the key is to clarify actual science from propaganda and political garbage.

Blogger dc.sunsets April 04, 2016 4:18 PM  

But, oddly, none of the people the accusers accuse are guilty of it.

Really. Show me the man who does not rationalize by filtering facts with belief (and belief includes self-interest and ego in this definition.)

People who work with maps too much forget there's actual territory.

Blogger SteelPalm April 04, 2016 4:25 PM  

Speaking as a professional scientist, yes, there is an awful lot of corruption and SJW brainrot present in many disciplines.

Also, athropogenic global warm...err "climate change" is utter bullshit, based on the available evidence I have read, as well as speaking to world-class climatalogists.

Or the fact that they had to re-brand it once it turned out that all 70 IPCC models predicting an increase in average global temperature were all wrong. (Average global temperature in 1997, 14.5 degrees Celsius, was the exact same in 2013)

The pseudo-scientific cult of "anthropogenic global warming/climate change" was likely championed because it gives leftist elites the opportunity to subjugate and oppress their peoples.

Blogger SteelPalm April 04, 2016 4:30 PM  

@34

Yeah, no. I don't know of a single piece of scientific research that was either not pursued or suppressed because of right-wingers.

I can name you mountains of work that was either killed or attacked by leftists, though.

Blogger Rusty Fife April 04, 2016 4:33 PM  

Matt wrote:Science should not enter the political realm but it sure does a lot. So the key is to clarify actual science from propaganda and political garbage

Unfortunately, politics is the Art of the Possible. Arguably, science defines the boundaries of the possible. Therefore, science defines the boundaries of politics.

If you are one of those Will to Power guys who don't believe in physical limits to your will; keep flapping your arms until you fly, then report back on your success.

As long as science influences politics; politicians are going to try to influence science.

Blogger John Wright April 04, 2016 4:33 PM  

"Show me the man who does not rationalize by filtering facts with belief."

I had assumed it was you yourself.

Are you telling me that this mental disease afflicts you, too?

If so, on what grounds should you, or anyone, believe your theory that all theories are after-the-fact rationalization?

There are only two possibilities:

Your theory is either an after-the-fact rationalization, ergo false; or your theory is not an after-the-fact rationalization, therefore the theory does not apply to you, hence does not apply to everyone, hence is false.

Either way, it is false,and you, not I have proved it false by your own testimony.

You are not alone. It is the primary characteristic of the modern mind that moderns utter self-refuting statements and never notice it.


Blogger John Wright April 04, 2016 4:40 PM  

"I don't know of a single piece of scientific research that was either not pursued or suppressed because of right-wingers"

If you only know of two pieces of scientific research, and both were not pursued by rightringers, let us say the first was a study of dieting habits of lesbian vegetarians, and the second was making psychic contact with Ascended Masters in the higher-vibration astral planes beyond Alpha Draconis, I suppose your outrageous statement could be true.

But if you are talking about something like the Manhattan Project or the Moonshot, or scientific studies of helicopter antisubmarine warfare, you will pardon my immense skepticism.

Anonymous SMith Ohlrig April 04, 2016 4:40 PM  

@Snick

"They still call me Bruce"

Blogger Matamoros April 04, 2016 4:49 PM  

By the way, Galileo recanted his position because he could not prove his assertions.

Blogger SteelPalm April 04, 2016 4:54 PM  

@40

Okay, what right-wingers do you believe suppressed further research and results from the Manhattan Project? I'm very familiar with all the major names, so I'm curious what you have in mind.

Blogger White Knight Leo #0368 April 04, 2016 5:00 PM  

Since science is supposed to be empirical, relying on the wisdom of our ancestors is technically scientific per se.

Blogger wrf3 April 04, 2016 5:01 PM  

JCW @27: For example, once leftist physicist thought geometry was empirical

He isn't entirely wrong. First, Euclid's geometry was the study of constructions produced only by a straightedge and compass. Do you think about those things and do them (idealism) or do those things and think about them (empiricism)? Second, his fifth postulate was based on experience, since we live in flat space. It wasn't until some 2,000 years after Euclid that we started studying elliptical and hyperbolic geometries.

Blogger Cataline Sergius April 04, 2016 5:20 PM  

I have now reached an age where my friends kids are in college.

From what I've learned from those kids there is now some very quiet territorial boundaries that have sprung up at the state colleges in the Mid West,(*) between real sciences and the social sciences.

I'm not talking about the professors, I'm talking about the students themselves. In particular, any college that has an Ag School as it's bread and butter. Those are now so self-segregated it's a nearly pre-civil war environment.

Yes, these lines have always been there in the past but they have never been uncrossable borders. Like Bloods vs Crips turf boundaries. There is no cross dating. There is no drinks together off campus. There is no contact. It is not done.

It says something horrible about me that I regard this as a positive development. There is long term hope for the hard sciences.



(* Caveat: I am only speaking about Mid West colleges. I can't tell you what's going on in SEC, Ivies (etc) *)

Blogger SteelPalm April 04, 2016 5:25 PM  

@45

To some extent, those boundaries have always existed. However, yes, I imagine they are worse than ever now, thanks to the increasing politicization of social science.

It's a tad difficult to politicize algebraic topology, optics, or polymerization, by contrast.

Blogger Rusty Fife April 04, 2016 5:31 PM  

SteelPalm wrote:It's a tad difficult to politicize algebraic topology, optics, or polymerization, by contrast

It's not difficult, just inane.

They politicise computer code, the very definition of logic FFS.

Blogger Jon M April 04, 2016 5:36 PM  

Zap: Figgered as much. I was talking to the cheap seats there.

Matt: "Politicizing science is a problem..."

Even the lefties acknowledge this to be true, with the OP serving as one demonstration. And yet the left also considers the mere suggestion that we solve the problem by halting the funding of science through political means to be anti-science, too.

Of course we all know that when they say, "we have to keep politics out of science," they really mean, "we have to keep YOUR politics out of science."

Blogger The Kurgan April 04, 2016 5:39 PM  

Mr. Wright,
Thank you for saying that so simply and clearly. I'm afraid if I had tried it I would have been foaming at the mouth and baying for blood.

Anonymous BGKB April 04, 2016 5:43 PM  

"I don't know of a single piece of scientific research that was either not pursued or suppressed because of right-wingers"

Right wingers couldn't even stop research as to why lesbians are fat,obviously too many wedding cakes.
http://www.salon.com/2014/10/13/erick_erickson_fat_lesbians_got_all_the_ebola_dollars/

That study should have fully mansplained why lesbians have to drink so much but no
http://nation.foxnews.com/government-waste/2013/03/19/feds-spend-27m-study-drunk-lesbians

they have even funded fake studies
http://retractionwatch.com/2015/05/30/weekend-reads-gay-canvassing-study-saga-continues-elsevier-policy-sparks-concern-a-string-of-scandals/

At least Milo got some cash:
"Almost unbelievably, the National Institutes of Health was given $800,000 in “stimulus funds” to study the impact of a “genital-washing program” on men in South Africa."
http://theeconomiccollapseblog.com/archives/government-waste-20-of-the-craziest-things-that-the-u-s-government-is-spending-money-on

Blogger The Kurgan April 04, 2016 5:48 PM  

JCW,
Either way, it is false,and you, not I have proved it false by your own testimony.

Indeed. I laughed.

Anonymous Tom Thumb April 04, 2016 5:53 PM  

@20

I'd love to see these studies proving me wrong, can you link them? Or just the search terms you would use to find said studies in a search engine?

Blogger John Wright April 04, 2016 5:56 PM  

"He isn't entirely wrong. First, Euclid's geometry was the study of constructions produced only by a straightedge and compass. Do you think about those things and do them (idealism) or do those things and think about them (empiricism)? Second, his fifth postulate was based on experience, since we live in flat space"

Ah, you are making the same mistake he is.

Empiricism is not the set of all objects seen or represented to the senses. Empiricism is the gaining of knowledge about particulars through the senses.

Euclid's Fifth Postulate (Playfair's axiom) was not presented by Euclid to his students as a truth which was learned through the experiences of the senses: it was presented as an axiom, to be accepted or rejected axiomatically. This is not empirical knowledge.

Empirical knowledge is things like Eratosthenes of Cyrene deducing the curvature of the Earth by comparing he shadows of perpendicular sticks at noon in Alexandria and Syene, and drawing a deduction.

Had the shadows been different lengths, the deduction of the size of the Earth would have been different. But no difference of any measured thing would or could get a different particular value for Playfair's Axiom (parallel lines do not converge) because no particulars, hence no empirical data, are involved.

Do you see the difference?

Anonymous Ezekiel Cassandros April 04, 2016 5:57 PM  

@Steel Palm, 37
Yeah, no. I don't know of a single piece of scientific research that was either not pursued or suppressed because of right-wingers.

Your grammar has caused confusion. Replacing "not pursued" with "avoided" or "ignored" would be clearer.

Blogger Matt April 04, 2016 6:01 PM  

#37 SteelPalm
According to a 2005 book ‘The Republican War on Science’ by Chris C. Mooney Republican politicians held back funding for such things as research into acid rain, global warming, sex education and preventing the spread of sexually transmitted diseases, the health impacts of excess dietary sugar and fat, the alleged link between abortion and breast cancer, the status of endangered species and the therapeutic potential of adult stem cells.

It’s no secret that the teaching of evolution, for instance, tends to be difficult in some conservative [Republican] areas of the U.S. That's a form of suppression.

Blogger John Wright April 04, 2016 6:05 PM  

"Okay, what right-wingers do you believe suppressed further research and results from the Manhattan Project?"

I cannot see the numbers on the comments, so I cannot tell if this question is directed at me, but, if so, please reread what I wrote. My claim is that rightwingers have not blocked or opposed any legitimate scientific research since the dawn of time. Nearly all the major scientific advances were make by Churchmen, or by men at universities founded by the Church, and the Church is the most conservative institute there is.

Leftist are antiscience by definition: Marx defined Marxism as the rebellion against the science of economics, and the promise that you could get something for nothing; Lysenko in Russia, lya Ivanovich Ivanov and his human-ape hybrids, Leftwing nutbag Hitler driving Einstein out of Germany and into America's conservative arms, all, all, all are examples of Leftists substituting politics for science and calling it science.

The idea that conservatives are antiscience is comical. And the only argument to be found is that we don't want tax money wasted on teaching junk science like Darwinism in school, or to fund anti-Second-Amendment propaganda by Leftists?

Blogger SteelPalm April 04, 2016 6:07 PM  

@56

"My claim is that rightwingers have not blocked or opposed any legitimate scientific research since the dawn of time."

That's the same claim I made that you responded to and disagreed with.

Blogger SteelPalm April 04, 2016 6:09 PM  

@54 Yeah, my wording might have been unclear.

Blogger wrf3 April 04, 2016 6:20 PM  

JCW @53: Ah, you are making the same mistake he is.

Well, let's see... You said: Euclid's Fifth Postulate (Playfair's axiom) was not presented by Euclid to his students as a truth which was learned through the experiences of the senses: it was presented as an axiom, to be accepted or rejected axiomatically. This is not empirical knowledge.

This doesn't quite capture what happened. It was presented as an axiom because no other possibility was imagined. All of their experience showed that planes were flat. The axiom arose out of their experience.

It's the same way with number theory. We don't believe that 2 + 2 = 4 because of Zermelo-Fraenkel set theory. We believe ZF because our experience is that 2 + 2 = 4. (cf. "Quantum Computing Since Democritus", pg. 10, Scott Aaronson)

But no difference of any measured thing would or could get a different particular value for Playfair's Axiom (parallel lines do not converge) because no particulars, hence no empirical data, are involved.

That's not true. Because of Einstein, we know that mass curves space. So if we lived in an area where space were more curved (say, near a black hole), then we would, in fact, measure a difference. Beings living in such a part of space would develop a geometry based on their experience and only later discover planar geometry.

Blogger Aeoli Pera April 04, 2016 6:28 PM  

It's probably not a book anyone who reads this blog regularly needs to read, but it may be one that most of us would like to give to someone we know.

I'd imagine it's a decent collection of reference material as well.

Blogger Aeoli Pera April 04, 2016 6:31 PM  

Also trending on nymag: Why Straight Men Have Sex With Each Other

Hmm...now admittedly I'm no scientist, but I think there's a problem in here somewhere.

Blogger SciVo April 04, 2016 6:43 PM  

Matt wrote:#37 SteelPalm

According to a 2005 book ‘The Republican War on Science’ by Chris C. Mooney Republican politicians held back funding for such things as research into acid rain, global warming, sex education and preventing the spread of sexually transmitted diseases, the health impacts of excess dietary sugar and fat, the alleged link between abortion and breast cancer, the status of endangered species and the therapeutic potential of adult stem cells.

It’s no secret that the teaching of evolution, for instance, tends to be difficult in some conservative [Republican] areas of the U.S. That's a form of suppression.


Then Jennifer Lawrence is suppressing my heterosexuality by not sleeping with me. That, or Republicans have a right to have a say in what their own money is spent on, and the mere deprivation of public funding is not "suppression" at all.

Blogger John Wright April 04, 2016 6:45 PM  

"Okay, what right-wingers do you believe suppressed further research and results from the Manhattan Project?"

I cannot see the numbers on the comments, so I cannot tell if this question is directed at me, but, if so, please reread what I wrote. My claim is that rightwingers have not blocked or opposed any legitimate scientific research since the dawn of time. Nearly all the major scientific advances were make by Churchmen, or by men at universities founded by the Church, and the Church is the most conservative institute there is.

Leftist are antiscience by definition: Marx defined Marxism as the rebellion against the science of economics, and the promise that you could get something for nothing; Lysenko in Russia, lya Ivanovich Ivanov and his human-ape hybrids, Leftwing nutbag Hitler driving Einstein out of Germany and into America's conservative arms, all, all, all are examples of Leftists substituting politics for science and calling it science.

The idea that conservatives are antiscience is comical. And the only argument to be found is that we don't want tax money wasted on teaching junk science like Darwinism in school, or to fund anti-Second-Amendment propaganda by Leftists?

Blogger John Wright April 04, 2016 6:46 PM  

"He isn't entirely wrong. First, Euclid's geometry was the study of constructions produced only by a straightedge and compass. Do you think about those things and do them (idealism) or do those things and think about them (empiricism)? Second, his fifth postulate was based on experience, since we live in flat space"

Ah, you are making the same mistake he is.

Empiricism is not the set of all objects seen or represented to the senses. Empiricism is the gaining of knowledge about particulars through the senses.

Euclid's Fifth Postulate (Playfair's axiom) was not presented by Euclid to his students as a truth which was learned through the experiences of the senses: it was presented as an axiom, to be accepted or rejected axiomatically. This is not empirical knowledge.

Empirical knowledge is things like Eratosthenes of Cyrene deducing the curvature of the Earth by comparing he shadows of perpendicular sticks at noon in Alexandria and Syene, and drawing a deduction.

Had the shadows been different lengths, the deduction of the size of the Earth would have been different. But no difference of any measured thing would or could get a different particular value for Playfair's Axiom (parallel lines do not converge) because no particulars, hence no empirical data, are involved.

Do you see the difference?

Blogger wrf3 April 04, 2016 7:05 PM  

JCW @65 claimed: Euclid's Fifth Postulate (Playfair's axiom) was not presented by Euclid to his students as a truth which was learned through the experiences of the senses: it was presented as an axiom, to be accepted or rejected axiomatically. This is not empirical knowledge.

It was presented as an axiom because no other possibilities were imagined then. All of their experience was that planes were flat (which is equivalent to the statement that parallel lines do not meet).

As Scott Aaronson observed in "Quantum Computing Since Democritus", we do not believe that 2+2=4 because of the Zermelo-Frankel axioms of set theory. We believe ZF set theory because of our experience that 2+2=4.

But no difference of any measured thing would or could get a different particular value for Playfair's Axiom (parallel lines do not converge) because no particulars, hence no empirical data, are involved.

That's not true. Einstein showed that mass curves space. So beings living near a black hole would experience space with a greater curvature than we do, so they would develop non-Euclidean geometry first, because their experience would be different.

Blogger Aeoli Pera April 04, 2016 7:06 PM  

John Wright wrote:"People arrive at most of their decisions in their impulsive/emotional cognitive pathways, and then use their reasoning pathway to simply rationalize that prior decision."

I have found this is only true of people who, like you, attribute such after the fact rationalizations to others. For example, Marx, who proposes that all reasoning is an after the fact rationalization, is indeed guilty of it. But, oddly, none of the people the accusers accuse are guilty of it.


Well Marx wasn't strictly wrong, but you can get trained/addicted to error correction either by training or simple necessity. That is, one still reasons post facto, but becomes capable of doing so without committing fallacies (ideally).

Blogger VD April 04, 2016 7:09 PM  

It’s no secret that the teaching of evolution, for instance, tends to be difficult in some conservative [Republican] areas of the U.S. That's a form of suppression.

I find it very, very strange to have to point out the obvious fact that teaching elementary school children is not performing scientific research.

Blogger Aeoli Pera April 04, 2016 7:10 PM  

wrf3 wrote:JCW @65 claimed: Euclid's Fifth Postulate (Playfair's axiom) was not presented by Euclid to his students as a truth which was learned through the experiences of the senses: it was presented as an axiom, to be accepted or rejected axiomatically. This is not empirical knowledge.

It was presented as an axiom because no other possibilities were imagined then.


That's not how axioms work. When Gino Fano wrote down the axioms of his geometry, it wasn't because that was the only sort of thing he could imagine. It is, in fact, quite difficult to wrap your head around his geometry.

Anonymous Nxx April 04, 2016 7:14 PM  

Leftists and Science: A Tale of Human Sacrifice

Robert Watson, Nobel Prize and founder of modern genetics said, "[I am] inherently gloomy about the prospect of Africa [because] all our social policies are based on the fact that their intelligence is the same as ours—whereas all the testing says not really."

The leftists react by screaming for Watson to be sacrificed because their neo-aztec religion holds that any mention of racial differences will cause their God, the Evil God Hitler, to arise and blot out the sun unless speaker eviscerated before court of public opinion.

The religious fanatics succeed and Watson is ritualistically sacrificed before the altar of political correctness; he is permanently forced out of academia and eventually sells his Nobel Prize for $30,000 to make ends meet.

The leftists rejoice as the sun continues to shine on the world thus proving that the human sacrifice succeeded in saving the world from their Evil God.

To date no answer as to why the religious fanatics never sacrifice marxists. After all Stalin killed more than Hitler. It appears the leftist religion has little to do with history despite its ritualistic incantations of the "lessons of history".

Blogger Aeoli Pera April 04, 2016 7:20 PM  

I will grant that this is how axioms work for engineers.

Nxx wrote:To date no answer as to why the religious fanatics never sacrifice marxists.

You have to get enough of them at once for it to be worth being turned in to the police by your friends, loved ones, church family, and community leaders for imprisonment and rape (and torture within my lifetime, unless I miss my guess).

OpenID basementhomebrewer April 04, 2016 7:28 PM  

@46 The separation has less to do with hard science vs soft science and more to do with the fact that Animal rights activists are actively attacking, while simultaneously attempting to converge AG and Vet schools.

So far they have been very successful at converging Vet schools. Michigan State used to be a highly ranked Vet school but now students don't even get to look at a real animal until their final year.

The Ag schools, so far, have fared better at repelling leftists.

Blogger Matt April 04, 2016 7:31 PM  

SciVo
>>"Republicans have a right to have a say in what their own money is spent on, and the mere deprivation of public funding is not "suppression" at all."<<

If Republicans want to keep kids ignorant of science that is there business. But don't pretend it is not suppression of knowledge. Clearly it is.

Blogger Aeoli Pera April 04, 2016 7:37 PM  

basementhomebrewer wrote:The Ag schools, so far, have fared better at repelling leftists.

Seems Jefferson was right.

Blogger Scott6584 April 04, 2016 7:42 PM  

Laugh it all off if you want to. Trump shot himself. I didn't do it. Denying that only helps Cruz. So keep on keeping on, suckers...

Blogger Scott6584 April 04, 2016 7:45 PM  

This comment has been removed by the author.

Anonymous BGKB April 04, 2016 7:49 PM  

Scott I think you meant to post that in the Cruz snake thread, the one where you are verifying the intactness of marital hymens. The Train is fine.

Blogger Rusty Fife April 04, 2016 7:49 PM  

VD wrote:I find it very, very strange to have to point out the obvious fact that teaching elementary school children is not performing scientific research

It would be a blessing if they actually did research the teaching of children; rather than never measuring results and only theorizing.

Anonymous BGKB April 04, 2016 7:59 PM  

It would be a blessing if they actually did research the teaching of children; rather than never measuring results and only theorizing.

They did do research. Education Realist blog has covered how everything they did that increases black student scores also increases everyone else's. So of course those things don't get pushed. Liberals got especially pissed at schools that set up free salad bars only to have everyone but blacks utilize it.

"Damn it there must be some white guy in a robe stopping blacks from using the free salad bar by saying YOU SHALL NOT PASS."

When they went to see how Atlanta narrowed the non Asian minority achievement gap, in order to replicate it, they had to arrest 137 teachers.

Blogger Jake Carver April 04, 2016 8:03 PM  

But that ítself is science. You must be rationalizing as well

Blogger Rusty Fife April 04, 2016 8:16 PM  

@79

You consistently astound me with how much of the Internet you have internalised.

Present. Arms!

Anonymous bgkb April 04, 2016 8:18 PM  

It would be a blessing if they actually did research the teaching of children

Talk about answers they don't want to hear. Throwing money at students managed to produce worse results.

Money And School Performance: Lessons from the Kansas City Desegregation Experiment...

Kansas City spent as much as $11,700 per pupil--more money per pupil, on a cost of living adjusted basis, than any other of the 280 largest districts in the country. The money bought higher teachers' salaries, 15 new schools, and such amenities as an Olympic-sized swimming pool with an underwater viewing room, television and animation studios, a robotics lab, a 25-acre wildlife sanctuary, a zoo, a model United Nations with simultaneous translation capability, and field trips to Mexico and Senegal. The student-teacher ratio was 12 or 13 to 1, the lowest of any major school district in the country.

The results were dismal. Test scores did not rise; the black-white gap did not diminish; and there was less, not greater, integration.

Anonymous PhillipGeorge©2016 April 04, 2016 8:22 PM  

Mr Rational
Both sides have their dogma

are you sure it's only a dichotomy Mr Rational.

How are your laboratory results going? Turning E-coli into Siphonphores?

Fruit Flies are also relatively short lived. How about giving them scales or gills. You could make that a two or three generations project. Easier than building the pyramids - surely.

For all it's/ he's worth Rupert Sheldrake is among the most original men in science and most ignored.

What does it take to be the most ignored man in science? A paradigm people can't cope with?

Viva La Xenophiles

Blogger Matt April 04, 2016 8:24 PM  

Nxx
>>”Robert Watson, Nobel Prize and founder of modern genetics…”<<

Actually his name is James Watson. And many of his views are more than controversial. They are downright weird, scientifically suspect at best and border on KKK science at worst. Look up his statements about people with 'dark skin' as regards to intelligence and sexual drive. He actually said, "That's why you have Latin lovers." Which could be a joke but, really? His views of skinny people and fat people and people 'in the north' are equally troubling and not proven. Winning a Nobel prize doesn't make one automatically revered for all their opinions. Nor should it. [See Obama on that one].

Blogger clk April 04, 2016 8:25 PM  

I always love these right vs left science threads... as if science is either right or left... any endevor, when involving men.. including science and religion is open to perversion and corruption by those seeking to control others... but given the two extremes .. science is slightly less...you guys just need to hang out with better scientists... and for the biologists are not scientists...real science requires math.

Blogger SciVo April 04, 2016 8:31 PM  

Matt wrote:SciVo

>>"Republicans have a right to have a say in what their own money is spent on, and the mere deprivation of public funding is not "suppression" at all."<<

If Republicans want to keep kids ignorant of science that is there business. But don't pretend it is not suppression of knowledge. Clearly it is.


No, it is not. Many works on the subject are readily available, even for free, at the library and on the internet. It's amazing, 1A is working so well that you literally don't even know what suppression of knowledge is.

Blogger psychegram April 04, 2016 8:53 PM  

Matt wrote:Actually his name is James Watson. And many of his views are more than controversial. They are downright weird, scientifically suspect at best and border on KKK science at worst. Look up his statements about people with 'dark skin' as regards to intelligence and sexual drive. He actually said, "That's why you have Latin lovers." Which could be a joke but, really? His views of skinny people and fat people and people 'in the north' are equally troubling and not proven. Winning a Nobel prize doesn't make one automatically revered for all their opinions. Nor should it. [See Obama on that one].

The point is not that Mr. Watson should be revered as an oracle whose every pronouncement is beyond question. The point is that he made the mistake of giving voice to a hatefact, and was for this indiscretion set upon by a howling mob. In other words, it was not enough merely to disagree with him: he had to be ruined, his career destroyed, his reputation shredded. The mob didn't quote studies, they didn't refute him with the science they fucking love so much. They acted like a mob. The fact that your response to this incident is, "Oh, well, this doesn't prove leftists are anti-science irrationalists, because look at his weird opinions, he's in the KKK man!", is frankly bizarre.

Actually no, come to think of it, it's isn't bizarre at all.

Anonymous Eric the Red April 04, 2016 9:01 PM  

re Matt @73...

Ensconced in their mindless oblivion, leftists make this same mistake in logic over and over again, also making them the most hard-core manicheans in the history of failed philosophies. The absence of something is not necessarily the same as the opposite of that something. The absence of black is not the same as the presence of white. If I don't send flowers to my wife every day, that does not mean I don't love her. When leftists accuse the right of being binary thinkers, it's the most laughably egregious example of projection ever conceived. Leftists like Matt repeatedly prove that they are not only evil, they are irredeemably stupid.

Keep up the good work, chuck-0, you're a real credit to your side.

Blogger Matt April 04, 2016 9:03 PM  

SciVo
>>Many works on the subject are readily available...<<

Well that’s an interesting view. This flies in the face of many conservative views that students are being indoctrinated in 'liberal' universities. If all the information students need to become good conservatives is in libraries and on the internet then why be concerned with what’s in textbooks and taught in classes? You can't have it both ways. Therefore what is taught in classes and in textbooks is important because most students will not go beyond the classroom to investigate.

Blogger Matt April 04, 2016 9:20 PM  

psychegram

I don’t approve of mob mentality. Never said I did. But mob mentality is a human thing. Not a leftist thing. Unless you’re offering some odd scientific view that says otherwise? So on that score I disagree with the methods that lead to Watson’s suspension and resignation. But if he said something that controversial he DOES deserve scrutiny. If you think freedom of speech is a one way street then you’re not understanding freedom of speech. People do howl. Including you. Any university would distance themselves from those views. Note too Watson apologized and said he doesn’t know why he said what he said. Personally I have no animosity for Watson.

Blogger Escoffier April 04, 2016 9:27 PM  

Or the fact that they had to re-brand it once it turned out that all 70 IPCC models predicting an increase in average global temperature were all wrong. (Average global temperature in 1997, 14.5 degrees Celsius, was the exact same in 2013)

Of course this was their second bite at the Apple. When I was in school in the seventies the same people were peddling a new ice age and shockingly enough the solution was lots more government control.

Blogger James Dixon April 04, 2016 9:31 PM  

> "It's conservative lawmakers and organizations who have refused to acknowledge anthropogenic climate change,

False. The dust bowl years are proof enough that humans affect the climate, as is the expansion of the Sahara desert. Now, AGW, that's another matter, as it was a scam from the beginning.

> ... who have rallied to keep evolution out of textbooks

Also false. They demanded that it be taught as exactly what it is, and unproven theory.

> ... and comprehensive sex education out of classrooms,

And what does sex education have to do with science exactly?

> ... who have stymied life-saving research into stem cells

False. The refused to fund it with government money. That's not the same thing.

> ... and gun control."

The only life saving research on gun control is that increased gun ownership reduces crime. Somehow I don't think that's what she had in mind. So another lie.

> True.

0 for 4.

> Your theory is either an after-the-fact rationalization, ergo false;

Now John, you know that's not true. The fact that a theory is an after-the-fact rationalization does not automatically make it false. Blind hog, acorn.

> According to a 2005 book ‘The Republican War on Science’ by Chris C. Mooney Republican politicians held back funding for such things as research into acid rain, global warming, sex education and preventing the spread of sexually transmitted diseases, the health impacts of excess dietary sugar and fat, the alleged link between abortion and breast cancer, the status of endangered species and the therapeutic potential of adult stem cells.

The government not funding something is not suppression. Or if it is I demand that the government stop suppressing my retirement.

> It’s no secret that the teaching of evolution, for instance, tends to be difficult in some conservative [Republican] areas of the U.S. That's a form of suppression.

A blanket assertion presented without any proof. And even if true it's not suppression.

> But don't pretend it is not suppression of knowledge. Clearly it is.

Not teaching specific knowledge to children at a specific time is not suppression of science or scientific research.

Blogger psychegram April 04, 2016 9:37 PM  

@89 Oh, no, no animosity at all, personally. He's just in the KKK and stuff, and totally deserved what was done to him, because free speech means, er, getting punished for speech. And as for you, why, you take no pleasure in that at all: you have no 'personal animosity', it's just a regrettable outcome of events and all just entirely understandable.

Spare me the passive-aggressive moral relativism, Gamma, and just acknowledge what happened here: Watson was crucified by a leftist mob. That is to say, a mob of leftists. To repeat it in another fashion, a group of humans, with a particular political persuasion, which is to say leftist, which is to say also specifically that political inclination that most readily and repeatedly lends itself towards the formation of mobs.

I've not, in my life, yet seen an angry mob go after any researcher, that was not composed of leftists. This is true about: climatologists who disagree with global warming; clinical researchers pointing out problems with vaccines; social scientists noting human biodiversity; economists pointing out uncomfortable facts about the gender wage (non-)gap; psychologists who disagree that gender dysphoria is anything but a mental illness; and so on. In case after case, leftists insist not just that the researchers are wrong on the merits of their arguments, but on a moral basis, and go on to propose that their opinions and very results be made illegal.

The right has not behaved in this fashion. Not even once.

Anonymous Eric the Red April 04, 2016 9:54 PM  

Freedom of speech does not just include the First Amendment. Following the cultural traditions of white, patriarchal, Christian society, the following was the norm in the US until the left destroyed it:

1) A person is allowed to freely and completely say anything they want without interruption or any attempts to silence them in any way, within their own venue; that venue is something they either own or rent or have been invited to use within an allotted time.

2) Anything a person says may not be punished by suspension of their job or livelihood, or loss of life or further freedom of expression, or fear of retribution in any way to themselves or their families.

3) If another person disagrees with what is said, then that person's sole method to counteract is to exercise their own freedom of speech. Any other act of recrimination is disallowed.

4) If a person's speech includes slander, then the object of same may take proper measures in court. Any other acts to silence the first party are disallowed.

5) If a person's speech contains a clear and first-causal direct threat against the life of another ("I'm going to kill him"), then the object of same can take recourse with the police, who are then required to take action.

The right, in their naivete, assumed that the left would embrace these same rules. They never did, with the resulting evil, hatred and chaos now spread out before us.

Blogger Michael Maier April 04, 2016 10:14 PM  

63. SciVo April 04, 2016 6:43 PM

Then Jennifer Lawrence is suppressing my heterosexuality by not sleeping with me.

Dude... up your game. You have some pathetically low standards. I see hotter girls working at the local Papa Johns.

Blogger Michael Maier April 04, 2016 10:17 PM  

68. VD April 04, 2016 7:09 PM
It’s no secret that the teaching of evolution, for instance, tends to be difficult in some conservative [Republican] areas of the U.S. That's a form of suppression.

I find it very, very strange to have to point out the obvious fact that teaching elementary school children is not performing scientific research.


And I would throw down a $20 that those SAT-bottom-dwellers that are teaching those elementary school children are committing fraud by using falsified embryology charts... that have been KNOWN to be frauds for decades now.

And yet university texts still publish the pictures. Why? Why are these lying pricks publishing known lies in their textbooks?

Because they have to. They have no facts. Just lies.

They have earned their flames in Hell.

Blogger Lazarus April 04, 2016 10:17 PM  

OT but related:

Cuckbortionism

Blogger Dr. Mabuse April 04, 2016 10:24 PM  

I remember when they first began to be able to take pictures of babies in utero. The pro-abortion feminists loved those fuzzy early pictures. Just look at that thing! they'd crow. Call that a *baby*? It looks more like a seahorse! Just goes to show that fetuses barely even count as humans, let alone persons. Then as the technology got better and better, they became less interested. By the time instruments could show that unborn babies had *fingerprints*, they'd had enough. I remember one letter to the editor of our paper complaining that there was far too much interest on pictures of unborn babies, they should just stop running them anymore.

Anonymous Cheddarman April 04, 2016 10:34 PM  

Matt you might want to sit down in your fainting couch as you read this but science has shown repeatedly that sub saharran blacks have an average iq of 70. That is 2,standard deviations below white Europeans and americans.

Blogger Valtandor Nought April 04, 2016 10:59 PM  

Regarding the teaching of evolutionary theory in school:

What about it (evolutionary theory, and in particular a prehistorical narrative of human origins) is so important that it, unlike (say) differential equations or the doings of Imperial China, must be taught as fact in school at taxpayer expense, or Science(TM) or at least knowledge is somehow being suppressed?

If the answer is, "Because (unlike DEs or Imperial China) widespread acceptance of the evolutionary account is needed if people are to behave correctly towards the government, each other, and the environment," doesn't that really mean that teaching evolutionary theory is not about science or knowledge at all, and instead it's about moral and religious instruction?

Blogger JaimeInTexas April 04, 2016 11:34 PM  

The politicization ocurred the moment government got into the funding business. Government is politics.

Anonymous VFM #6306 April 04, 2016 11:41 PM  

Despite these people fucking loving small children, elementary school is not science.

The fact that this must be written makes us all more retarded.

Blogger wrf3 April 04, 2016 11:50 PM  

Aeoli Pera @69: That's not how axioms work.

Sure it is. You are confusing the presentation of an axiom -- as being true without proof -- from the reason why it is believed to be true. Euclid presented his 5th axiom the way he did because, in his experience, parallel lines did not meet. It was just obvious -- the way 1+1=2 is obvious.

When Gino Fano wrote down the axioms of his geometry, it wasn't because that was the only sort of thing he could imagine.

That's not what I said. I said "no other possibilities were imagined then". Once we realized that things with which we had experience could be combined in ways with which we did not have experience and that did not result in an internal contradiction, all sorts of geometries began to be developed. Some of them useful, many of them not.

Blogger SciVo April 05, 2016 1:14 AM  

This flies in the face of many conservative views that students are being indoctrinated in 'liberal' universities.

No, it does not.

If all the information students need to become good conservatives is in libraries and on the internet then why be concerned with what’s in textbooks and taught in classes?

I thought that was nonsensical, until I realized you were projecting. In my view, education should not have a political indoctrination purpose in the first place.

Therefore what is taught in classes and in textbooks is important because most students will not go beyond the classroom to investigate.

At the college level, students should be taught all sides of an issue and how to reason and argue about them. They are instead being taught falsehoods as if it were literally immoral to question them. That is educational malpractice.

There is no contradiction with omitting discussion of one minor, complex and controversial topic at a lower level, where there's much more to teach than time to teach it in. Moreover, leftists argue against "teaching the controversy," so you can't even score any points there. They want indoctrination.

Blogger rho April 05, 2016 1:20 AM  

As Maddox has amply demonstrated, they don't "fucking love science", they like pictures that remind them of science. Actual science, they hate, because it's not careful of their precious feelings and tends to gradually destroy their sacred narratives

Maddox was making fun of people Liking meaningless Facebook posts with nice pictures. Complicated quotes from Dreger's book won't make in on Facebook.

These are not the same things.

As I've understood my exposure to "science," you'll get some libs and some cons. They tend to agree on the science.

(None of my experience is in socio-sexual science. I don't equate socio-sexual science with science.)

Blogger James Dixon April 05, 2016 3:38 AM  

> This flies in the face of many conservative views that students are being indoctrinated in 'liberal' universities.

Students are now being indoctrinated by liberal propaganda at all educational levels. At the lower levels, those who don't take well to it are being medicated until they do.

> ... If all the information students need to become good conservatives is in libraries and on the internet then why be concerned with what’s in textbooks and taught in classes?

"We" aren't. You are. If the left wants to raise indoctrinated idiots, that's their business. There's a reason so many at this site home school.

> You can't have it both ways.

But you can, apparently.

> ... doesn't that really mean that teaching evolutionary theory is not about science or knowledge at all, and instead it's about moral and religious instruction?

As SciVo notes above, and Matt actually makes the mistake of mentioning, the word you're looking for is indoctrination.

Blogger Gordon April 05, 2016 6:21 AM  

bgkb wrote:Test scores did not rise; the black-white gap did not diminish; and there was less, not greater, integration.

We're going through this in Minneapolis (again). There's a large gap between education results between white kids and black kids. There has been for many years. Much yelling and spending results from the unwillingness of people to acknowledge the key fact: White kids in the upper midwest test out significantly higher than elsewhere. Black kids test out about the same as elsewhere. The gap isn't because black kids get treated badly. It's because white kids here do better.

Of course, one does not get fat state grants by pointing out truth.

Anonymous Mr. Rational April 05, 2016 7:32 AM  

Ingot9455 wrote:The ultimate in renewable energy at this time is of course a plutonium breeder reactor. But no, can't have any of that!
That's how you can tell the real environmentalists from the fossil industry's greenwashing front groups (like Sierra Club and RMI).  All the real environmentalists are either pro-nuclear or agnostic on the issue.  Did you know that Sierra Club's original motto was "Atoms Not Dams"?  Their reversal was purchased.

Blogger CM April 05, 2016 8:17 AM  

There's a large gap between education results between white kids and black kids.

I understand that administrators and education theorists are trying to diminish the impact of parents, but most teachers acknowledge the impact parents have on education, specifically reading.

Learning culture starts at home and if a child doesn't pursue reading at home, then they are unlikely to ever learn.

That black box is untouchable which is why liberals HATE it.

Anonymous LastRedoubt April 05, 2016 11:30 AM  

@Mr Rational

And some came to approve of nuclear late in life. Can't recall the name now but one of the Greenpeace founders came out as having changed his mind on nuclear to the pro side.

No, GP and others did not take well to that.

Blogger Roger GibsonJr April 05, 2016 1:00 PM  

A very *scientific* review. Science!

Anonymous Mr. Rational April 05, 2016 2:24 PM  

@110 You mean Patrick Moore, and my understanding is that he was never anti-nuclear power per se.  Then again, he was the only technical person involved in the founding of Greenpeace International.

It should be no surprise that GPI has tried to write him out of their history, no more so than the various anti-nuclear associations of "scientists" are run by lawyers and pols.

Blogger Akulkis April 05, 2016 3:15 PM  

@75 ScotiaNumbers

Scotia, are you STILL threatening to not have sex with Trump?

You know, that threat never works when you're TOO DAMNED FAT.

Blogger Akulkis April 05, 2016 3:15 PM  

@75 ScotiaNumbers

Scotia, are you STILL threatening to not have sex with Trump?

You know, that threat never works when you're TOO DAMNED FAT.

Blogger Blastman April 05, 2016 3:55 PM  

"It's the same way with number theory. We don't believe that 2 + 2 = 4 because of Zermelo-Fraenkel set theory. We believe ZF because our experience is that 2 + 2 = 4."

We believe 2+2=4 because it is self-evident that this is true. Our experience only confirms this, but it is not needed to know it is true.

"You are confusing the presentation of an axiom -- as being true without proof -- from the reason why it is believed to be true. Euclid presented his 5th axiom the way he did because, in his experience, parallel lines did not meet. It was just obvious -- the way 1+1=2 is obvious."

It's "obvious" because mathematics and geometry can use logic to prove and assert its postulates. Mathematical proofs are done on paper and while we can use mathematics to model and describe the empirical world around us, empirical data is not required for the proofs and assertions of mathematics.

"Because of Einstein, we know that mass curves space. "

To be more precise, we don't know that mass curves space -- we think it does based on a theory (ie Einstein's theory postulates this). It is entirely possible that Einstein's theory of gravity could be chucked into the garbage bin in a future scientific understanding of the cosmos.

Blogger wrf3 April 05, 2016 4:30 PM  

Blastman @115 wrote: We believe 2+2=4 because it is self-evident that this is true. Our experience only confirms this, but it is not needed to know it is true.

It appears that you contradict yourself. How can you know that something is self-evidently true apart from experience?

It's "obvious" because mathematics and geometry can use logic to prove and assert its postulates.

One doesn't prove postulates. One asserts them as being true.

empirical data is not required for the proofs and assertions of mathematics

What part of "self-evident" isn't empirical? As smart as my Golden Retriever was, she didn't know -- she couldn't know -- that 2+2 is 4. She couldn't experience it. We can.

It is entirely possible that Einstein's theory of gravity could be chucked into the garbage bin in a future scientific understanding of the cosmos.

Sure, it's possible. But any new theory will have to reproduce everything currently explained by relativity that has been verified through observation. The A-bomb (from E=mc2), gravitational lensing, the orbit of Mercury, contraction of space and dilation of time, ...


Blogger Akulkis April 05, 2016 5:43 PM  

@100. Valtandor Nought

You lack patience.

Here's how you do it:

1. Ask the question
2. Wait for the answer
3 THEN and ONLY THEN do you spring the trap.

Blogger Paul Widdecombe April 05, 2016 6:30 PM  

Always worth reminding self congratulatory atheists that modern genetic theory owes more to the devout Christian monk Mendel famous for his experiments with wrinkly peas than it does to Darwin and his tortoises. The former gave an empirically demonstrable theory on the mechanisms of recessive gene heredity that is still used today, whereas the later gave us pages of pseudoscientific guff about how nature "favours" certain races strong enough to dominate. One gave us the tools to deal with debilitating genetic conditions, the other inspired syphillitics like Nietzsche to pen paens about how apex alpha (Grrrrrr!) they were, how pansyish religion was and led to the some of the worst slaughter that world will hopefully ever see.

If that isn't convincing enough, point out that for three or four millennia religious types have not been "begging stuff off imaginary sky daddy" but have expressed their awe at the act of creation by declaring the Lords true name which is variously translated as I am / will become / will create that which I am, or will become or will create, to be ineffable. This suggests two things - first that they understood the first mover paradox better than Dawkins & his cohort. Second, that their sense of awe at the creation was something beyond "I fucking love science"

If you sense an opening - point out that the reason that some still today find the four letters of the Lord's name to be ineffable might be borne of respect for it's creative power. The name does not merely explain, describe or indicate the Lord's creative might - nor does it merely annotate an attribute of the deity, it is a term that directly and uniquely expresses the relationship between the creator and the creation which is itself imbued with the power to itself invoke creation of an image of the same in the mind of the true believer.

Then point out that, as they have been so ungracious as to ignore that our team correctly proposed the big bang theory that they claim to fucking love so much, we dot expect them to recognise that this expression of the creation in four letters rather neatly matches both the number of elements that make up the DNA molecule (carbon, hydrogen, nitrogen, oxygen) and the four primary amino acids needed for its construction (adenine, guanine, cytosine, thymine) and that an omniscient deity would obviously know every single possible combination of these sets of four at the moment of creation, but quite obviously would not have physically instantiated them all at once - which is what they insist in telling everybody is what us religious types believe.

For the coup de grace, point out that "evolution" comes from a Latin term meaning "to unfold" used by early (presumably church funded) biologists to describe the matryoshka theory that all of humanity from the beginning to the end of time could be found in Eve's womb.

Then point out that even Mendel probably fudged his data...

Blogger James Dixon April 05, 2016 6:34 PM  

> It appears that you contradict yourself. How can you know that something is self-evidently true apart from experience?

What is the definition of two? What is the definition of four?

From those definitions, it is indeed self evident that 2+2=4.

> As smart as my Golden Retriever was, she didn't know -- she couldn't know -- that 2+2 is 4.

A: Your dog doesn't know the definitions. B: Your dog is probably smarter than you give it credit for. If your dog is female and has 4 pups, I can almost guarantee you that she would know how many she had.

Blogger wrf3 April 05, 2016 7:23 PM  

James Dixon @119: asked: What is the definition of two? What is the definition of four?

They are arbitrary labels that we give to collections of objects. Why? What did you think they were?

If it's self-evident that 2+2 = 4, then why does it take so long to teach children how to count and add? They learn by experience; they don't learn by starting with Zermelo-Fraenkel.

Blogger Blastman April 05, 2016 10:54 PM  

wrf3 ...
It appears that you contradict yourself. How can you know that something is self-evidently true apart from experience?

I thought from the context of your statements you were using "experience" in an empirical experimental science sense -- I used it in that sense too. Yes, one can experience mathematical thoughts, if that is what you meant.

One doesn't prove postulates. One asserts them as being true.

I stated as much. But further ...


Mathforum ...

The goal of an axiomatic system is to reduce the number of assumptions we make to a minimum (as far as possible) so that all our reasoning is based on readily accepted 'facts'. So postulates should be as 'obvious' as possible; yet the fact that something seems obvious is not enough to make it a postulate, since it may be provable from existing postulates, so that it would be redundant. On the other hand, it is not required that we prove a set of postulates is minimal in order to use them.

- Doctor Peterson, The Math Forum

What part of "self-evident" isn't empirical? As smart as my Golden Retriever was, she didn't know -- she couldn't know -- that 2+2 is 4. She couldn't experience it. We can.

Something can be reasoned to be self-evident, and reasoning something is not considered empirical evidence from a scientific viewpoint.

Sure, it's possible. But any new theory will have to reproduce everything currently explained by relativity that has been verified through observation. The A-bomb (from E=mc2), gravitational lensing, the orbit of Mercury, contraction of space and dilation of time, ...

These things have "supposedly" been verified. The data confirming dilation of time has been cherry picked. The bending and contraction of space is logically absurd. Gravitational lensing can be explained by other means (diffraction) and so on. Quantum field theory and General relativity are incompatible. My bet is that quantum theory will be left standing and GR will be abandoned.

Blogger Blastman April 06, 2016 12:26 AM  

wrf3 ... If it's self-evident that 2+2 = 4, then why does it take so long to teach children how to count and add? They learn by experience; they don't learn by starting with Zermelo-Fraenkel.

One can certainly learn that 2+2=4 by experience in the sense that it is taught and learned as true. But what is meant by 2+2=4 is self-evident, is that it is a self-evident truth, and not something that can be proved. Can one prove 1 = 1 ? No. 1 = 1 is simply a self-evident truth and not something that can be proved. The foundation of mathematics is self-evident truths that are not proved.



ax·i·om ... /ˈaksēəm/ ... noun

noun: axiom; plural noun: axioms

def... a statement or proposition that is regarded as being established, accepted, or self-evidently true.

To a mathematician, a self-evident truth is called an axiom.

Blogger M Cephas April 06, 2016 3:30 AM  

"Galileo was Wrong" is a book worth looking into.

If you want to hear about scientists doing absurd mental gymnastics to avoid the empirical evidence before them, I could not think of a more enlightening book.

Anonymous Mr. Rational April 06, 2016 7:45 AM  

Paul Widdecombe wrote:modern genetic theory owes more to the devout Christian monk Mendel famous for his experiments with wrinkly peas than it does to Darwin and his tortoises. The former gave an empirically demonstrable theory on the mechanisms of recessive gene heredity that is still used today, whereas the later gave us pages of pseudoscientific guff about how nature "favours" certain races strong enough to dominate.
Mendel got a good start on the "how", Darwin finally sussed out the "why" that had eluded "natural philosophers" for generations.

the other inspired syphillitics like Nietzsche to pen paens about how apex alpha (Grrrrrr!) they were, how pansyish religion was and led to the some of the worst slaughter that world will hopefully ever see.
If it's a mistake to attribute most of the world's wars to religion (and even so, Islam killed tens of millions in greater India by its own accounting), it's an even greater mistake to attribute anything to Darwin when substantial parts of the power structure forbade the teaching of his theories.  The entire Soviet Union went Lysenkoist, against Darwin... in order to support the theory of the "Soviet man".  Get some un-slanted history.

Blogger JaimeInTexas April 06, 2016 10:15 AM  

http://www.gocomics.com/calvinandhobbes/2016/04/04

Blogger wrf3 April 06, 2016 10:46 AM  

Blastman @122: To a mathematician, a self-evident truth is called an axiom.

Right. I'm a mathematican (at least that's what my college diploma claims.) But that isn't what this argument is about.

The argument is whether or not something that is self-evident is empirical (which all got started with JCW's comment in @27: "For example, once leftist physicist thought geometry was empirical. ")

To this, in @121 you said: Something can be reasoned to be self-evident, and reasoning something is not considered empirical evidence from a scientific viewpoint.

I think you're incorrectly using 'reason' when the correct term should be 'experience'. We experience that 1 + 1 = 2. It is only after that fact that we create reasons for it. I'll repeat what Scott Aaronson said in "Quantum Computing Since Democritus":

   How can we state axioms that will put the integers on a more secure foundation, when the very symbols and so on that we're using to write down the axioms presuppose that we _already_ know what the integers are?
   Well, precisely because of this point, I _don't_ think that axioms and formal logic can be used to place arithmetic on a more secure foundation. If you don't already agree that 1 + 1 = 2, then a lifetime of mathematical logic won't make it any clearer!



Blogger Blastman April 06, 2016 1:46 PM  

wrf3 ... I'll repeat what Scott Aaronson said in "Quantum Computing Since Democritus:

"How can we state axioms that will put the integers on a more secure foundation, when the very symbols and so on that we're using to write down the axioms presuppose that we _already_ know what the integers are?

Well, precisely because of this point, I _don't_ think that axioms and formal logic can be used to place arithmetic on a more secure foundation. If you don't already agree that 1 + 1 = 2, then a lifetime of mathematical logic won't make it any clearer!"



Bingo. This gets to the heart of the matter.

Scott understands the problem but doesn't see the way out of this corundum. What he is essentially stating, is that you have to start a mathematical system with some axioms, or assumptions. But then how do you prove these starting assumptions true within the very system you just assumed is true? You end up with a tautology, or circular reasoning corundum. The logic that proceeds from your assumptions may be sound, but if the original statements (axioms) cannot be proved, have no bearing in reality, and may not be true, then the logical conclusions from those assumptions may not be true in reality either. In other words -- he doesn't see any foundation upon which to build a coherent system of logic for mathematics, so he ends up saying you just have to accept or believe that 1 + 1 = 2.

What he doesn't seem to understand, as is evident from that last sentence, is that some axioms (ground rules and system) don't have to be proved themselves, and aren't really assumptions at all, but are propositions that have to be true in the sense that they are self-evidently true. This is how to start the logic bolt upon some foundation which things can be deduced as true -- from self-evident propositions.

One doesn't have to prove the assumptions (axioms) true if they are self-evident truths, as the evidence or proof that they must be true is contained within the very statements themselves. It's a philosophical position that takes these self-evident truths as having to be true, otherwise, we could not make a correct logical statement about anything. There would be no logic to begin with, and the world around would make no sense.

Philosophy provides the way out of this corundum (a correct philosophy based on sound first principles of self-evident truths), but modern philosophy has been so corrupted at our universities that it is viewed as next to useless for anything.

Greek philosophers like Plato and Aristotle, laid out the 3 traditional laws of thought ...

1. non-contradiction
2. excluded middle
3. identity

Aristotle ...

According to Aristotle, first philosophy, or metaphysics, deals with ontology and first principles, of which the principle (or law) of non-contradiction is the firmest. Aristotle says that without the principle of non-contradiction we could not know anything that we do know.

These are self-evident truths.

Blogger wrf3 April 06, 2016 2:02 PM  

Blastman @127: These are self-evident truths.

Of course they are. For the several'th time, that's not the issue.

Blogger M Cephas April 08, 2016 2:11 AM  

“The falsity of the Copernican system should not in any way be
called into question, above all, not by Catholics, since we have
the unshakeable authority of the Sacred Scripture, interpreted
by the most erudite theologians, whose consensus gives us
certainty regarding the stability of the Earth, situated in the
center, and the motion of the sun around the Earth. The
conjectures employed by Copernicus and his followers in
maintaining the contrary thesis are all sufficiently rebutted by
that most solid argument deriving from the omnipotence of
God. He is able to bring about in different ways, indeed, in an
infinite number of ways, things that, according to our opinion
and observation, appear to happen in one particular way. We
should not seek to shorten the hand of God and boldly insist on
something beyond the limits of our competence ....”

-Galileo

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