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Modern The Science & The Unpersoning Of Evidence
There is no typo in the title. We are discussing The Science, and not science. Science-sans-article is chugging along, doing okay there, and poorly there, the whole decaying for all the reasons we’ve discussed many times. We won’t go into these reasons today.
Today we are interested in The Science. Which is defined as science-sounding claims by rulers, elites, and Experts whch they demand we swear allegiance to.
Last week, the Regime trotted out their hired-for-her-Diversity-and-sexual-interests spokescreature and had her recommend masking. Again. One summary: “White House Spokesperson Karine Jean-Pierre reminds the press that per current CDC COVID guidance based on hospital admissions, approximately ‘93% of the country’ should be considering mask mandates”.
Ian Miller, an old-fashioned small-s scientist of the School of Reality reacted to this, saying, “This is the problem with letting the CDC get away with endless misinformation — they’re never going to stop recommending masks now because COVID is never going away and they’re never going to stop pretending they work.”
This led me to ponder the role evidence plays in modern The Science. It begins with the realization that all evidence contradictory to a beloved or useful theory can just be ignored.
Contradictory evidence is unpersoned. All right-thinking people pretend not to see it. And, except for some fringe Realists, nobody cares.
It is not that evidence against the Regime-sponsored theory, which is what all The Science is, has been examined by top Experts and its weaknesses laid bare in the same way as a pathologist conducts a post-mortem. It is that it is not examined at all. It lies unacknowledged.
The best an Expert will do, when pressed, and pressed hard, is to say the evidence in question has already been refuted. He won’t say why or by whom. Except that other Experts have found the evidence unworthy, and so he does, too.
All know the story of Einstein and Bohr and the first Solvay Conference. Evidence uncomfortable to everybody’s beliefs was presented during the day, thought about in the evenings, and argued over the following day. Back and forth. Openly—which is how we know about it—and not always in quiet temper. This is not to say that the results of that conference were therefore true. Indeed, the foundations of quantum mechanics are debated to this day. Though more quietly.
Even, say, twenty years ago, presenting arguments in front of peers could turn into querulous affairs. Not all of the heat was truth-directed, of course. Scientists are if anything even more temperamental and histrionic than non-scientists when their cherished ideas are attacked. Ideas are all scientists have.
But because, inter alia, of the Great Nicening, occurring for obvious reasons and enforced by administrators and HR, battle scenes are now far less common.
That is only one reason why silence is the most common kind of disagreement. The more important reason in The Science is that contradictory evidence is deemed hostile. Or even “hate”. And so it is, in the minds of Experts, rightly ignored.
This applies even to evidence you would think, given the hersteria over certain theories, would should be seen as good news. Take polar bears and coral reefs. Both were said to be disappearing because of The Science of “climate change.” When, instead, the nasty white seal killers increased in number and the corals flourished, news which you’d suppose would be greeted with great joy—the world is not ending after all!—the news was ignored. The failed theories which predicted demise survive. The Science, contradicted by Reality, lives on.
This most obvious case is The Science of masks. Acres—nay, hectares, even continents—of evidence, compiled over a century of diligent investigation, show the kind it became a crime not to wear are worthless.
But when there has been a minuscule uptick in mostly harmless variant of coronadoom, the same sad The Science was shrieked from on high, and masks became mandatory again. The recent well trumpeted Cochrane review (in link above) which compiled great swaths of evidence disproving masks? Ignored.
The Fabulous Fauci was out lying about masks recently, pretending contradictory evidence doesn’t exist. “There’s no doubt that masks work. Different studies give different percentages of advantage of wearing it, but there’s no doubt that the weight of the studies…indicate the benefit of wearing masks,” lied the inveterate liar.
So ludicrous was Fauci’s fornicating of the truth that the lead author of the Cochrane study, Tom Jefferson, was moved to publicly state:
“So, Fauci is saying that masks work for individuals but not at a population level? That simply doesn’t make sense,” said Jefferson.
“And he says there are ‘other studies’…but what studies? He doesn’t name them so I cannot interpret his remarks without knowing what he is referring to”…
“It might be that Fauci is relying on trash studies,” said Jefferson. “Many of them are observational, some are cross-sectional, and some actually use modelling. That is not strong evidence.”…
…”There were no randomised studies, no new evidence to justify [Fauci’s] flip-flop. That’s simply not true.”
Quite a rare reaming (read the rest). If evidence still mattered in The Science, Facui would be walking bow-legged the rest of this life.
As it is, those in the Cult of Safety First!, all prime consumers of The Science, will gobble up his lies—and keep issuing new mandates.
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