RSSCategory: Anti-science

About people who are “Anti-Science”

May 2, 2017 | By | 8 Replies More

Good article in Scientific American reminding us that those who are science-adverse or science-ignorant in some ways embrace science in other ways.  That should be obvious, in that creationists are willing to fly in airplanes and those who reject vaccines love to use their smart phones.  But this article goes further, and warns us that slapping people with with a general anti-science label risks driving them further into scientific ignorance.

People’s relationship with science is much more complex and nuanced than “pro-science” or “anti-science.” We need to correct some of the misconceptions we have and show that what is often labeled as “anti-science” or “science denial” is often better understood as isolated incidents of motivated bias. In general, trust in science is much higher than we often realize, in part because it includes a lot of people we might often consider “anti-science.”

The conclusions of this article:

  • There is a deep respect for scientists and the scientific process.
  • People often use what they believe to be credible scientific findings to argue against actual, credible scientific findings.
  • It is often the implied solutions of scientific findings that motivate denial.
  • People often deny the relevance of facts, not just their correctness.
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Carl Sagan Warns of the Dangers of the Lack of Education.

December 1, 2016 | By | 1 Reply More

Carl Sagan, last interview with Charlie Rose before his death in 1996. He warns of the dangers of lack of education and the potential for tyranny.

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Time to end the “war on drugs”

November 12, 2014 | By | 1 Reply More

What’s the drug war about? American psychosis, born of racism, but now one humongous wholly misguided attempt to put children into a protective bubble. But now there is some hope for change in the right direction, according to Ethan Nadelmann’s TED talk. He is Director of Drug Policy Alliance. Brilliant talk, concluding with a call to end the drug war.

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NYT features the story of the skepticism of James (The Amazing) Randi

November 8, 2014 | By | Reply More

The NYT has recently featured the story of the skepticism of James (The Amazing) Randi. Excellent detail on the battle between Randi and con man Uri Geller.

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Why there are not any civilizations without temples – Video featuring Jonathan Haidt

October 31, 2014 | By | 1 Reply More

Jonathan Haidt explains why there are not any civilizations without temples, starting at minute 14 of this video. This is the 2013 Boyarsky Lecture at Duke University. About 10,000 years we went from an almost instantaneous transition from hunter-gathers to Babylon. A huge part of our evolutionary development is this newly learned ability of humans to circling around sacred objects (religious and political objects are two dominant examples) in order to form teams. As we circle around, we generate a social energy that knits the social fabric, but also encourages Manichean thinking–us versus them, blinding us to our own faults and faulty thinking. No shades of gray are allowed when we are intensely groupish. This kind of groupish thinking is radically incompatible with scientific thinking. Science is squeezed out, replaced by sacred objects, groupishness and authoritarian obeisance.

At min 24, Haidt gets to the crux of his talk. Those of us who focus on the “care” (empathy) foundation of morality, often circle about it bonding with others like us, rejecting and denigrating the impulses and ideas that tend to drive those who are politically conservative.

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Researchers: The U.S. used to value science

July 21, 2014 | By | 2 Replies More

Headline from The New Yorker: “Nation Apparently Believed in Science at Some Point”

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Plot idea regarding global warming

May 8, 2014 | By | Reply More

plot idea

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Ken Ham’s Lack of Wonder

February 7, 2014 | By | 1 Reply More
Ken Ham’s Lack of Wonder

By now, I’m sure, many people know about the debate between Bill Nye and Ken Ham.  Only 9% of respondents apparently saw Ham as the winner.  Of course that won’t be the end of it. 

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Bill Moyers discusses religion with Isaac Asimov

January 18, 2014 | By | 1 Reply More

In this 1988 interview, Bill Moyers discusses religion with Isaac Asimov. Can religion be “reconciled” with science? Asimov says yes, as long as the players are reasonable and as long as religion is not confused as science.

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