One thought on “Joffre The Giant: Dogmatic Science & Arrival of Native Americans: “Science By Press Release” & Career Advancement”

  1. A few years back I took a history of science class. (Imagine my joy upon discovering that a history course could fill one of my science requirements!) The instructor was a salty old prof whom I dubbed “the Magnificent Slob,” one of the best I instructors I experienced. The entire course was an instruction on how wrong almost all science had been throughout its entire history. In his last lecture, he laid it out plainly for anyone who might have been slow on the uptake. Science has been continually wrong. To illustrate that this wasn’t just a thing of the past, he explained that the physics textbooks that some of the class might be currently using (he called it “baby physics”) were already outdated and wrong. And the point? The only thing that sets science apart, the only thing that makes it the most useful system, is that its willingness to reexamine itself, to eventually disregard ideas that don’t work, and to move on. While this might not happen on an individual level, it does happen on the macro level.
    Arthur C. Clarke, who was both a science fiction writer and a scientist, put it this way in one of his famous laws:
    When an old and eminent scientist tells you that something is possible, he is almost certainly correct.
    When the same old and eminent scientist tells you that something is impossible, he is almost certainly incorrect.

    Dogma always manages to slip in on individual and professional level, but as a system, it doesn’t demand belief, it demands skepticism and results, which explains a lot about the amazing advances we have been able to achieve since a scientific world view replaced the “Age of Faith.”


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