Politics Has No Place in Science

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Politics Has No Place in Science

Postby TheVat on July 25th, 2019, 1:08 pm 

Politics has no place in science. I am an example of the less discussed methods the administration is using to destroy scientific research. I wasn’t fired and immediately told to leave; instead they sought retribution by discretely using governmental bureaucracy to apply pressure and gradually cut funding. I have been cut off from projects that I created and was working on, including one that would have provided the public with a valuable interactive way to see for themselves how sea level rise will impact our parks. This is why we need to support stronger protections for scientists.


https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfr ... -scientist

NOTE: This thread is to discuss the freedoms that scientists need, or don't need, to do good research and disseminate findings from research. The OP offers an opinion piece, based on the experience of a scientist who lost her job in Feb. 2019.
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Re: Politics Has No Place in Science

Postby Serpent on July 25th, 2019, 4:51 pm 

To start off:
there's politics, and then there's politics and then also politics.

On the positive side: we do need some kind of administration to protect the interest of the polity, and represent the sentiment (for want of a better word; the prevailing mind-set) of the polity.
Sometimes that means nobody's allowed to look inside a dead human, but it's perfectly all right to dissect a live dog. Today, some of us believe that's the wrong way around, but it was the attitude of most people at the time. In other times or cultures, it may have been acceptable to test chemical weapons on subject peoples, or it may be forbidden to use airborne chemical toxins in any circumstances.
All the same, the practices of science must have legal limits, regulation and oversight. Science can't be allowed to run amok; we can't have curious persons blowing up buildings or poisoning the water or abducting random experimental subjects.
Laws vary and we may disagree with them - but we must have influence in the making of them.
In order to ensure that, we have to have a transparent, coherent and comprehensive public policy regarding the sciences, and particularly scientific research. Only governments can make and enforce such a policy.

On the fence, there is the matter of funding.
Many projects are too big and important to rely on private enterprise - and too potentially harmful or beneficial to let private enterprise have sole control of them. Some projects, like the space exploration, epidemiology and climate research, are so far-reaching in their scope that only government-sized organizations can support them.
But governments tend to invest more of our money in weapons research than in medical research - not necessarily in our best interest.
Again, this makes it crucial that the population has influence over funding policies.

On the negative side, partisan politics - like commercial enterprise - can play all kinds of havoc with the orderly acquisition of knowledge and development of technology.

The solution is obvious: to have open referenda, rather than a legal minority representation, express the people's will on policy-making, and arms-length agencies, guided by independent experts, rather than political appointees, allocate funds for research.
(And, fps, put a limit on military research spending already! No matter how much money you give him, Dr. Feynman cannot make tank fuel out of sand!)

Here is a good start for thinking about government policy:
https://io9.gizmodo.com/10-science-policies-we-wish-the-government-would-enforc-5887189
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Re: Politics Has No Place in Science

Postby Forest_Dump on July 25th, 2019, 9:54 pm 

I think it is important to remember that science has always and probably only developed under certain political agendas. Darwin's voyage on the Beagle was a navy venture plotting coral reefs to improve navigation around the realm (okay mixed naval and commercial interests) and the documentation of plant and animal species, etc., was essentially taking stock of resources around the world. the big boom in science in the 60s and 70s was a product of post WW2 military spending and the realization that the US was falling behind the USSR following the launch of Sputnik. While there is no doubt that there are trends in interest and spending that are not good IMHO, I think sometimes a big problem is caused by too many in the scientific community either not knowing how to sell the relevance of what they do or not caring to. That being said, it is definitely also true that there are often anti-science backlashes happening for spurious and partisan political reasons and these d need to be paid attention to and learned from.
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Re: Politics Has No Place in Science

Postby kidjan on August 1st, 2019, 7:09 pm 

Your post reminds me of a quote I recently read:

Gus Speth wrote:I used to think that top environmental problems were biodiversity loss, ecosystem collapse and climate change. I thought that thirty years of good science could address these problems. I was wrong. The top environmental problems are selfishness, greed and apathy, and to deal with these we need a cultural and spiritual transformation. And we scientists don’t know how to do that.


Gus Speth was the dean of the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies.
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Re: Politics Has No Place in Science

Postby Forest_Dump on August 2nd, 2019, 7:38 am 

Coincidentally, I just picked up a book on the eruption of the Toba volcano ("When Humans Nearly Vanished" 2018 by D. R. Prothero) and the second chapter argues that the eruption of 74,000 years ago was discovered primarily due to serendipidous data collected while doing various kinds of military-related experiments and data gathering such as mapping and coring the ocean floor and glacial ice for military bunkers. In a sense, the discovery of this hypothesized cause of a genetic bottleneck about 70,000 years ago was the product of what could be called wasteful spending by the military-industrial complex during the post WW2 and cold war years. In fact it does seem that a lot of big scientific discoveries came about as a result of unanticipated offshoots from argueably inefficient targeted research and scientists running wild.
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Re: Politics Has No Place in Science

Postby Serpent on August 2nd, 2019, 9:13 am 

Forest_Dump » August 2nd, 2019, 6:38 am wrote: In fact it does seem that a lot of big scientific discoveries came about as a result of unanticipated offshoots from argueably inefficient targeted research and scientists running wild.


Of course they do! But isn't that horse in an awkward relation to its cart?
Is it your contention that governments need to/ ought to spend $quadrillions on military research, in case there is some serendipitous beneficial byproduct?
Military research never allows scientists to run even a little bit uninhibited, let alone wild: they're under strict gag orders - sometimes in compounds or bunkers - can't exchange information with their colleagues, nor publish their results; they duplicate research done by their counterparts in other countries and have no rights to the fruit of their labour, nor voice in its application.
I posit that we might glean more benefit from putting public resources toward positive, liberal science in the first place.
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Re: Politics Has No Place in Science

Postby Scott Mayers on August 4th, 2019, 10:19 am 

Science itself IS a politic. Science is merely the studies of nature based upon common agreement about what is minimally 'true' about some sets of observations and logic that derives reality apart from things like religious or cultural differences. This activity regarding 'agreement' works through institutions which themselves are 'governed'. This makes science vulnerable to politics merely based upon it requiring some subset of people.

Regarding the more particular example here with respect of science supports BY a general government of the people, even if that government's activities favored the scientific consensus, that too would necessarily be 'political', no matter how fitting it is to appropriate understanding of nature.

Politics OF science in the past often lead to authoritarian controls of knowledge that at some points then become a property of some 'elite' class that places higher standards against outsiders from participation in the institutes of intelligence of the day. When it then acts as a body that demands outsiders to have faith in the consensus for deeper issues respecting certain foundations, it begins to part from its role as being 'objective' as an institute.

Here is something that might help prove this: I notice that the 'liberal' side favoring science appropriate to the environmental issues also support a counter interest in the 'college' system set up by the voting public in the U.S.. The system of a "republic" originated from a concern that the demos could not suffice to decide what should or should not be good rules for government given the majority are less often intelligent enough to be cognizant of the logic underlying policy making. This is from Plato's concepts espoused by Socrates' disdain for the power of the 'sophistry' that occurs in large crowd decision making. Thus, the 'electoral college', in republics are intended to be a subset of wiser people that are philosophically endowed enough to make 'good' decisions. This is where the "philosopher king" idea originated.

My point here is that the very thing respecting how Trump got successfully elected: the representative power of the majority of the 'college elite' intellectuals to be the ones to decide who rules supersedes the actual democratic majority of the people. That the very same people who go against the means of the "electoral college" to have empowered someone like Trump, is being hypocritical if they also think that some other subset of people, namely the 'scientist', should be more respected over the larger class of the whole of society.

This example, if you share the coinciding paradox of opinion, may show an instance of HOW politics is still unable to be eliminated in the most ideal system set up for determining truth about nature: science.

NOTE too, that logic with science regarding evolution also proves that humans themselves are contradictory if they hold to some presumption of superior capacity to equate to 'fitness'. That the 'fittest survive' does not actually require meaning that what DOES survive is certainly the most 'superior' possibility among many, also has to mean that even our opinions about what is appropriate about some contingent politics for or against something scientifically accurate, has to reflect that it is also 'scientific' that some politicians succeed regardless of any actual 'superiority'. This means that whatever happens happens as meaning what is 'fair' to nature, even if that nature is politics.

So while I share the frustrations, politics is still placed in science as an institute. The reasoning of those going against 'climate change' issues is not on the surface expressed as is. They are playing a game of sorts in which the belief of the right is such that it can believe that the climate is changing by people BUT know that they require playing against this using an appeal for popularity by the lowest standards of the intellectual listeners in order to hide or distract us from this concern. This is related to the fact, for instance, that an asteroid could literally hit us tomorrow such that no matter what politics we may impose to favor the progeny of humanity, our sacrifice for some future catastrophe prevents us from optimizing our conditions today.

The anti-climate science is NOT about going against science but about believing that those enjoying their power today have no moral superiority to maintain their power if it were to respect the population as a whole. That the people as a whole would go against a minority that appeals to selfishness (a 'natural' reality of us as animals) and trade it in for some 'religion' of serving the whole now and into the future, is a realistic threat against those in power that lack this same compassion. As there is no appeal that COULD satisfy the whole regardless of intelligence, those attempting to go against climate change science, are attempting to defeat the POLITICAL belief that the "majority view matters".

I think even Karl Marx, contrary to his own support of Communism, argued how politics in general historically run in cycles that begin 'good' by some majority standard, but always end in a future devolution into 'bad' governments that are oppressive to the majority. This has to be true of even 'science' where it is authorized through real institutes. In fact, I posit that much of religious past scripture likely originates as secular non-religious 'science' of the day that turned into religion through these cycles.

Thus, there is no escape of politics IN science.
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Re: Politics Has No Place in Science

Postby TheVat on August 4th, 2019, 11:14 am 

The current consensus on climate change is based on compelling evidence, not an institutional vote. Can you offer an example of a scientific fact or theory that was actually arrived at by some form of elite taking a vote? I think that would strengthen your essay a bit, if you could.

Also the analogy between electoral processes and deferring to the knowledge of scientists may need some work. In a representative democracy, we don't require expertise from constituents in order for them to identify their policy interests and select a representative who will advance said interests. In science, highly technical skills and knowledge are required to do sound data collection and analysis of data. The pharmaceuticals that saved your friend's life, and maybe the jet that got him to a specialist medical center, were not derived from a popular vote. If they had been, they might have opted to go to another country for treatment. :-)
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Re: Politics Has No Place in Science

Postby Scott Mayers on August 4th, 2019, 12:42 pm 

TheVat » August 4th, 2019, 10:14 am wrote:The current consensus on climate change is based on compelling evidence, not an institutional vote. Can you offer an example of a scientific fact or theory that was actually arrived at by some form of elite taking a vote? I think that would strengthen your essay a bit, if you could.

Also the analogy between electoral processes and deferring to the knowledge of scientists may need some work. In a representative democracy, we don't require expertise from constituents in order for them to identify their policy interests and select a representative who will advance said interests. In science, highly technical skills and knowledge are required to do sound data collection and analysis of data. The pharmaceuticals that saved your friend's life, and maybe the jet that got him to a specialist medical center, were not derived from a popular vote. If they had been, they might have opted to go to another country for treatment. :-)

The Big Bang theory versus Steady State, is an example. But without having to bother with that, just think of a "trolley problem" thought experiment that demonstrates a 'political' example:

If you are tied down to one track while the rest of the population was tied to another parallel to that one, AND you have the switch next to you that can either opt to save yourself OR all the rest, the choice to select to favor yourself over the rest of the population, while not favorable to the whole, is still as equally 'rational' with respect to science: that we are animals that evolved without favor to some universal law of which is more 'favorable' (either for one person to exist versus all others, in my example). In this way, it is NOT irrational for someone to act with pure selfish motivation. So if the switch was actually on the side of the majority, it would be your 'selfish' rationale that might argue against any 'science' that might suggest that humanity as a whole would do better to sacrifice me. That is, it is 'scientifically valid' that humanity would be best served to sacrifice me for all the rest. But, from my perspective, I would not be able to argue against that given they are the ones holding the power to kill me. Instead, my 'politic' would be to attempt to dismiss the 'science' that favors humanity.

My point here is that the conservative fight against climate change is itself only a political means to dismiss the relevance of the future progeny as a whole. It too can be argued with 'scientific' rationale: that we are selfish animals in which all that matters is our present comforts. However, this rationale would not appeal to the majority and would actually hinder the success of such an appeal because this can also be argued 'fair' for the majority as a complementary type of 'individual' (as a whole).

'COMPELLING' evidence is still irrelevant if the evidence suggests that YOU are the one that requires being sacrificed. This is because such a 'sacrifice' would actually be a scapegoat when you are recommending others to be the ones that require sacrificing. It is especially troublesome if those speaking are feigning that they are 'sacrificing' when no matter what they 'sacrifice' they don't lose from their actual conditions.

As to an example for how a prior 'scientific' view devolved to religion, let me just use the example of Genesis where it speaks of a being called, "God", who "separated the waters above from the waters below". Originally, this likely referenced 'fluids' of water versus air. And the "Spirit" that "hovers" over the waters below was more about an intellectual reflection about the fact that air, being invisible, carries a power that provides something necessary for life. That this expression about something 'secular' and relatively "science" of its day has turned into now appearing as though nature is this magical being with a weird explanation that sounds as mystically confusing as Alice in Wonderland, shows how appropriate rationale at a time in the past based upon what they would have thought of as 'science' in its day, has turned into absurdity through a political evolution holding authority over it.
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Re: Politics Has No Place in Science

Postby charon on August 4th, 2019, 12:49 pm 

...

"Politics Has No Place in Science"

Possibly, but the Guardian article gives the lie to that. I think it's highly unlikely that science will ever operate, or be allowed to operate, independently of the political world.

Really the article is just the story of one scientist who fell foul of the regime she worked for. There are many who work quite happily for their masters. Unfortunately.

If scientists suspect their findings will be regulated by their employers then perhaps they shouldn't have joined in the first place. And if they complain they have to rely on such employers for a job there's not much one can say.

The question is whether that's true. I doubt it. Although, if the issues are contentious enough, even non-political science may well not escape interference sooner or later.
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Re: Politics Has No Place in Science

Postby Scott Mayers on August 4th, 2019, 1:27 pm 

TheVat » August 4th, 2019, 10:14 am wrote:The current consensus on climate change is based on compelling evidence, not an institutional vote. Can you offer an example of a scientific fact or theory that was actually arrived at by some form of elite taking a vote? I think that would strengthen your essay a bit, if you could.

Also the analogy between electoral processes and deferring to the knowledge of scientists may need some work. In a representative democracy, we don't require expertise from constituents in order for them to identify their policy interests and select a representative who will advance said interests. In science, highly technical skills and knowledge are required to do sound data collection and analysis of data. The pharmaceuticals that saved your friend's life, and maybe the jet that got him to a specialist medical center, were not derived from a popular vote. If they had been, they might have opted to go to another country for treatment. :-)

This is an added response from my last post more specific to your response. You mention a "current consensus on climate change". If for whatever reason the present environment just happened to be over-ruled by something 'natural' without respect to human influence, as long as this possibility exists, whatever is 'compelling' and 'scientific' is also about nature conditionally. That there CAN be a possibility, however remote from human's means to measure it, it is irrelevant that any amount of scientists' opining about what is or is not true should it argue AGAINST human causes (in direct opposition to today's consensus) because the LOGIC regarding humans to have influence still holds with or without consensus. That is the appeal to popular appeal itself is anti-rational, regardless of whether it speaks on the side of science or not. Reality could care less about our opinion.

On the analogy of the electoral college versus the institution of science, both are equal in meaning with respect to the intention. Socrates was arguing the same: that nature doesn't care about opinion and that what works suffices to prove what is valid for the whole. Science is not immune to this and to opine that it has certain features that behave with more credibility than the voting college for its technical degree of accuracy is moot. The original idea of the 'college' WAS a reference to whatever it meant to be those who are officially understood to be as intellectually accurate (as scientists are presumed to be in today's standards.)
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Re: Politics Has No Place in Science

Postby TheVat on August 4th, 2019, 2:15 pm 

My key question was:

Can you offer an example of a scientific fact or theory that was actually arrived at by some form of elite taking a vote?


The appeal to popular opinion is possibly not what drives the research on atmospheric physics but it is rather driven by the data. And the data comes from observing reality, i.e. the external world. In which case, the appeal is to evidence and not popularity. Given that I agree "reality could care less about our opinion," I find the focus on evidence and observation to be a good one.
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Re: Politics Has No Place in Science

Postby charon on August 5th, 2019, 10:22 am 

Politics is about expediency. Politicians will defer to the knowledge of scientists if it's in their interests, and not if it isn't.

When scientists recommend a more efficient warhead, they'll listen. When scientists recommend not subscribing to high revenue-creating multi-nationals destroying the environment, they probably won't. Or they'll leave it till crisis-point and then reluctantly concede.

Which is exactly what's happening with the climate change issue. I believe the European Commission on climate change has some sort of plan to reduce this or that by 2050.

2050? That's 30 years away. I'll be dead by then if I'm not killed off sooner by the heat :-)
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Re: Politics Has No Place in Science

Postby TheVat on August 5th, 2019, 11:23 am 

It does seem like politicians, with their intense and self-serving focus on what is short-term, love nothing as much as "arranging deck chairs on the Titanic." In such cases, science does the public no favor when it tries to avoid being alarmist. Alarm is needed. I used to have a chuckle at a popular book that was titled "50 Easy Ways to Save the Planet." The joke, for anyone paying attention, was that the one thing saving the planet will not be is easy. The book served only to make those in thrall to mass consumption feel good about putting things in the recycle bin and not using paper plates and perhaps, weather permitting, riding their bikes one day a week. It was deck chair arrangement at its finest.
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Re: Politics Has No Place in Science

Postby Serpent on August 5th, 2019, 11:43 am 

Can we agree, then, that poorly-functioning political arrangements have no place in science, or the other way around?
If you think of "politics" in terms of your own currently malfunctioning / imploding / crumbling government, you'll find that it has no place in human affairs in general.
But if you think of "politics" in the simple meaning of the word: activities associated with governance; making decisions that apply to members of a group; co-ordinating the efforts and interests of a community; allocating and distributing the resources of a society. If you think of politics as the confluence of civics, then it has a place in all human endeavours - just as science has a place in policy.
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Re: Politics Has No Place in Science

Postby charon on August 5th, 2019, 2:50 pm 

Serpent » August 5th, 2019, 4:43 pm wrote:If you think of "politics"... you'll find that it has no place in human affairs in general.


:-)
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Re: Politics Has No Place in Science

Postby Serpent on August 5th, 2019, 3:04 pm 

charon » August 5th, 2019, 1:50 pm wrote:
Serpent » August 5th, 2019, 4:43 pm wrote:If you think of "politics"... you'll find that it has no place in human affairs in general.


:-)

I wish you had not attributed that demi-quote. Someone might ask what I propose in its stead.
Alternatively, I'm asking you:
In the absence of politics - what?
It's possible that a scientocracy or technocracy would be preferable to professional politician....
but that just means scientists and technicians conducted all the politics - and they might not appreciate having to deal with so many mundane issues - let alone the civil service.
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Re: Politics Has No Place in Science

Postby charon on August 5th, 2019, 8:52 pm 

Serpent -

In the absence of politics - what?


In the absence of power-seeking, isolationist, nationalistic, ambitious, ideological, hypocritical, lying, corrupt politicians?

How about humanitarian, global-thinking, non-aggressive, competent people?
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Re: Politics Has No Place in Science

Postby hyksos on August 5th, 2019, 11:14 pm 

A top climate scientist quit USDA, following others who say Trump has politicized science. Lewis Ziska, a 62-year-old plant physiologist who’s worked at USDA’s Agricultural Research Service for more than two decades.


https://www.politico.com/story/2019/08/ ... mp-1445271
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Re: Politics Has No Place in Science

Postby Serpent on August 5th, 2019, 11:23 pm 

charon » August 5th, 2019, 7:52 pm wrote:
In the absence of power-seeking, isolationist, nationalistic, ambitious, ideological, hypocritical, lying, corrupt politicians?


This is a description of the malfunction I had already cited and answered. Why go around the same bush again? The mulberries aren't even ripe yet.

How about humanitarian, global-thinking, non-aggressive, competent people?

Wonderful! Have them report to the political recruitment office asap.
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Re: Politics Has No Place in Science

Postby charon on August 5th, 2019, 11:45 pm 

I wouldn't take on the job myself because nobody would do what I said. So we've probably got the politicians we deserve. It's our fault :-)

P.S.

This is a description of the malfunction I had already cited


I didn't see it, I only went a couple of posts back. In any case, I'm glad we agree.
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Re: Politics Has No Place in Science

Postby Serpent on August 6th, 2019, 1:43 am 

charon » August 5th, 2019, 10:45 pm wrote:I wouldn't take on the job myself because nobody would do what I said.

just as well. The job of a public servant is not to order people around. It's to attend to their needs and fulfill desires to the best of his [ethical] ability.

So we've probably got the politicians we deserve. It's our fault

Of course.



I didn't see it,

Funny! It was what you cut out of the truncated quote:
If you think of "politics" in terms of your own currently malfunctioning / imploding / crumbling government, you'll find that it has no place in human affairs in general.
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Re: Politics Has No Place in Science

Postby charon on August 6th, 2019, 6:59 am 

Serpent -

Just as well.


Not at all. If the world isn't run by good people what sort of people will run it?

The job of a public servant is not to order people around. It's to attend to their needs and fulfill desires to the best of his [ethical] ability.


Order people around? Is that what good people would do?

It was what you cut out of the truncated quote:
If you think of "politics" in terms of your own currently malfunctioning / imploding / crumbling government, you'll find that it has no place in human affairs in general.


Oh, that bit. Well, that's not quite what I said, but still.

I truncated it because the use of the word 'your' made it personal. It's unclear whose government you're referring to. Although it could very well be said it applied to most of them.

The point is that it would be excellent to have globally-minded good people organising the world. Not national groups but a global government. Not ideologically but functionally.

But of course whether it would work would depend on everybody else. And I'm not sure about that.
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Re: Politics Has No Place in Science

Postby Serpent on August 6th, 2019, 8:23 am 

charon » August 6th, 2019, 5:59 am wrote:[Serpent - Just as well.]

Not at all. If the world isn't run by good people what sort of people will run it?

How do I know you are a good person? I know you're not a particularly conscientious one, or you wouldn't keep misrepresenting what others say.
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Re: Politics Has No Place in Science

Postby charon on August 6th, 2019, 9:27 am 

Serpent -

How do I know you are a good person?


You don't.

I know you're not a particularly conscientious one, or you wouldn't keep misrepresenting what others say.


It may not be a deliberate misrepresentation, it may be simple misunderstanding. What did you actually mean, that you think I misrepresented?
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Re: Politics Has No Place in Science

Postby charon on August 6th, 2019, 9:41 am 

hyksos » August 6th, 2019, 4:14 am wrote:
A top climate scientist quit USDA, following others who say Trump has politicized science. Lewis Ziska, a 62-year-old plant physiologist who’s worked at USDA’s Agricultural Research Service for more than two decades.


https://www.politico.com/story/2019/08/ ... mp-1445271


Yes, very good report and absolutely typical of the current bunch of ignorant thugs. Trump may not be impeached but let's hope the electorate vote with their feet next time. If they've got any sense.

I'm glad Lewis Ziska has already found another job. All power to him.
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Re: Politics Has No Place in Science

Postby Scott Mayers on August 7th, 2019, 1:48 am 

TheVat » August 4th, 2019, 1:15 pm wrote:My key question was:

Can you offer an example of a scientific fact or theory that was actually arrived at by some form of elite taking a vote?


The appeal to popular opinion is possibly not what drives the research on atmospheric physics but it is rather driven by the data. And the data comes from observing reality, i.e. the external world. In which case, the appeal is to evidence and not popularity. Given that I agree "reality could care less about our opinion," I find the focus on evidence and observation to be a good one.

I'm saying that people are ignoring the actual motives of the conservatives attacking climate change. This is a LOGICAL question but is successfully being turned INTO an argument about the science. Because most 'believe' in science (for good reasons) those countering the conservatives attempting to argue WITH science by referencing quantity of studies or consensus are feeding equally into the stupidity for NOT recognizing the actual reasoning behind these tactics.

As to your question to find an example of scientific FACT, the very question is coming from a bias of assuming that the the particular facts about climate changing SUFFICES to ALL people's future. Had the dinosaurs, for instance, had the mind we have and had figured out that they needed to be concerned about the environment, the FACT that an asteroid destroyed the Earth is proof that any opinion to BE more attentive about present conditions matters.

What does it mean to those who are RELIGIOUS, for instance, who believe nature is itself 'God' and that only a non-popular select few would get favored by their God in the end? The FACT that the majority of people are still religious alone makes the point ABOUT the potential future irrelevant for ALL and so the counter BY those conservatives against the science is about merely seeking 'science' that shows nature still CAN throw us a counter reality against any efforts we may use to prevent disaster.

To the conservative arguer, they are attacking the science as being 100% certain to assure that our impact matters. They cannot argue the literal logic against our influence because it would look incompassionate to the whole with obvious repercussions.

Here is an example of a logical argument: If you live in a small house, do the humans living in that household not have the potential to affect their environment by certain actions? In this limited example, it would be rational to argue that it is not wise to permit any member of this household to be careless about where and when they light up a fire, or opt to smoke some drug that impacts upon the welfare of others.

It is LOGICAL THAT humans can affect the environment. To the conservative who sees those 'scientists' putting forward 'science' that proves we have ANY affect, is merely an obvious insult because the only rationale for putting money INTO science on this is itself POLITICAL. The attempt of supporting a popular support of the science regarding climate change is the problem. This is because it presumes that the welfare of the majority (now and into the future) have meaning when it doesn't attend to the specific virtue of that 'majority'. If you happen to have no children, for instance, WHY should it matter that you sacrifice your comfort today for the sake of some other people (or equally, any other species) when or should that same 'majority' today could care less about you specifically?

I personally think that permitting unrestricted population growth based upon the whims of particular people's choices is itself something we need to stop because this affects the welfare of the whole. I could set up studies to show how human birthing contributes to global warming. In fact, obviously if we DO have an impact in today's climate science with certainty, then MORE people living to abuse this Earth should suggest that we make laws BASED ON THIS SCIENCE to restrict people's independent rights to have children.

If we had many studies done to point out how more human density affects the environment AND if there was extensive such studies by some particular INTERESTS, would this not suggest to you that the purpose of these interests is suspect? I mean, given the logic suffices with LESS, any extended efforts appears itself to be acting to influence the stupidity of the crowds in disrespect of their intellect.
Scott Mayers
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Re: Politics Has No Place in Science

Postby charon on August 7th, 2019, 6:03 am 

Scott -

Sorry if I haven't understood your thoughts correctly but are you saying that, because someone can produce a study showing that practically anything can have an ecological effect, it means the findings of people like Lewis Ziska are suspect or phony?
charon
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Re: Politics Has No Place in Science

Postby Scott Mayers on August 7th, 2019, 6:45 am 

charon » August 7th, 2019, 5:03 am wrote:Scott -

Sorry if I haven't understood your thoughts correctly but are you saying that, because someone can produce a study showing that practically anything can have an ecological effect, it means the findings of people like Lewis Ziska are suspect or phony?

I can't speak for who Lewis Ziska is or is not with sufficient depth. If he's one of the anti-climate change promoters, then given the conservatives merely seek to rhetorically denounce the efforts of those promoting a reason to favor the population as a whole, the counter 'science' against humans affecting climate change CAN be either trivial, shallow in thought, or relatively suspect in some way. But this is also true OF the expense granted to studies attending to climate change studies of those with legitimate efforts. Why overkill on science that is sufficiently obvious when it is unnecessary? The point is that politics plays a role here regardless of what science is used. The conservatives may be faking their opposing concern against actual shared understanding IN FACT about the environmental issues, but have to ACT as though any evidence, however strong, has flaws when it goes against other counter interests that ALSO have natural validity but go against the appeal of the whole if presented sincerely and with equally powerful science.

[Here, the 'powerful science' might be about animals' means to be self-serving and without concern for the whole. That one might point to such science for conservatives though might also be detrimental to another 'scientific' reality: that people are best capitalized upon when they are anti-scientific.]
Scott Mayers
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Re: Politics Has No Place in Science

Postby charon on August 7th, 2019, 11:49 am 

Scott -

If he's one of the anti-climate change promoters


You don't appear to have done any checking. He's not a promoter, he's a respected top-level climate change scientist who has just resigned from his job because his findings were being suppressed by Trump & co. There's a link in the posts here, just above.
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