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Author Topic:   Atheists control science
NoNukes
Member
Posts: 9920
From: Central NC USA
Joined: 08-13-2010
Member Rating: 3.3


Message 76 of 124 (671603)
08-28-2012 7:47 AM
Reply to: Message 50 by marc9000
08-26-2012 7:33 PM


But different people have different definitions of what a pseudoscientist is. Some think Michael Shermer is a pseudoscientist.

A pseudo scientist is not someone without scientific credentials who engages in science. A pseudo scientist is someone who does bad science.

Whatever Michael Shermer's credentials are, you are complaining about the fact that he writes for the Scientific American, which is a popular science magazine and not a scientific journal.

But since the NAS is in control, it defines someone like Michael Behe as a pseudoscientist.

Michael Behe's work in ID is properly considered psuedo science. It would not matter if the work were being done by Einstein or Newton. The issue is not about Dr. Behe's credentials at all.


Under a government which imprisons any unjustly, the true place for a just man is also in prison. Thoreau: Civil Disobedience (1846)

The apathy of the people is enough to make every statue leap from its pedestal and hasten the resurrection of the dead. William Lloyd Garrison.

“Choose silence of all virtues, for by it you hear other men's imperfections, and conceal your own.” George Bernard Shaw


This message is a reply to:
 Message 50 by marc9000, posted 08-26-2012 7:33 PM marc9000 has not yet responded

    
Modulous
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Posts: 7429
From: Manchester, UK
Joined: 05-01-2005
Member Rating: 4.0


Message 77 of 124 (671605)
08-28-2012 8:56 AM
Reply to: Message 75 by hooah212002
08-28-2012 12:48 AM


Re: Scientists control science
Because they don't exist. "Militant atheists" is a term, IMO, coined by the religious in an attempt to basically say "see, you atheists are just as dogmatic as us" due to the accusations of violence performed in the name of religion.

Well there was the League of Militant Atheists, Communist workers in the Soviet Union.

In fairness - militant really just means 'vigorous activist', and its etymological roots, while still apparent, are not part of the modern meaning.

The so-called 'New Atheists' are vigorously actvists, moreso than any time previously - presumably due to larger numbers and the aid of the internet.

Atheism+ is a different name for feminism and a new way to ostracize a group of people already all too familiar with being ostracized.

Well no, that's not accurate. Interesting to see it brought up here, given its a movement that's less than two weeks old (it was born August 18, though it already has a website!). One can be a theistic feminist. Atheism+ is meant to refer to a subset of atheists that are not just interested in atheism issues directly - but other issues they feel naturally fall from their philosophical roots that led to their atheism. As dcortesi suggested:

quote:
Atheists plus we care about social justice,
Atheists plus we support women’s rights,
Atheists plus we protest racism,
Atheists plus we fight homophobia and transphobia,
Atheists plus we use critical thinking and skepticism.

It isn't the same as feminism. The people being ostracized, or rather not being included are homophobic, misogynistic etc., atheists. I can see no objection to a movement of people who want to distance themselves from such people in some conditions.

I think deriding homophobes is a noble act, not an unnecessary one.

Science isn't something that can be controlled in the way the OP hopes to point out.

Maybe not to the extent marc had in mind - but its certainly true that government funding, tax structures and so on, can influence scientific focus.

I can also see marc's point to a certain degree. If the NAS was 90% Protestant - it'd surely raise some eyebrows. The Protestants would no doubt claim that its because smart and educated people accept Christ in the right way. Just as we might argue that the more educated a person is, the more likely they are an atheist (esp. in sciences) - so it stands to reason that some of the most educated people in the country (in sciences) are disproportionally atheist.

This is wholly untrue. Any creationist, IDist, Catholic, Lutheran, Methodist, Muslim, Mormon, Scientologist etc. is free to publish actual science.

And while a religious group might want to investigate their idea which cannot secure government funding - there is nothing in the world that prevents them from acquiring private funding. Indeed, IDists tend to have a problem with government interference, so they should relish in performing all that ID research with all those funds they receive.

As far as funding, DI has plenty to test for ID or for any number of things, they just choose to donate to silly things like Ark replicas or creation theme parks.

Did the DI donate to those things? Hah!
But yeah, they seem to spend most of their days blogging and making the occasional appearance at court or a school board or something. They haven't got a huge budget, but bioinformatics is becoming a cheaper science by the year as far as I'm aware.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 75 by hooah212002, posted 08-28-2012 12:48 AM hooah212002 has responded

Replies to this message:
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hooah212002
Member (Idle past 434 days)
Posts: 3180
Joined: 08-12-2009


Message 78 of 124 (671607)
08-28-2012 10:41 AM
Reply to: Message 77 by Modulous
08-28-2012 8:56 AM


Re: Scientists control science
dooble post goodness

Edited by hooah212002, : double the pleasure, double the fun


"Science is interesting, and if you don't agree you can fuck off." -Dawkins

This message is a reply to:
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hooah212002
Member (Idle past 434 days)
Posts: 3180
Joined: 08-12-2009


Message 79 of 124 (671608)
08-28-2012 10:42 AM
Reply to: Message 77 by Modulous
08-28-2012 8:56 AM


Re: Scientists control science
Atheism+ is meant to refer to a subset of atheists that are not just interested in atheism issues directly - but other issues they feel naturally fall from their philosophical roots that led to their atheism

I'd love to discus it on a different thread where it is on topic because I feel completely different based on how those who claim to be A+ act, not what they claim A+ is. In short, if you aren't completely and 100% supportive of feminism or feminism isn't your number one goal, they label you as misogynist, homophobic etc. It's not that the people who are against the label actually are misogynists, those that lead the "movement" just say so as a form of moral superiority. Look what they (freethoughtblogs) did to thunderf00t, for example.

The people being ostracized, or rather not being included are homophobic, misogynistic etc., atheists.

Name one. There is a HUGE difference between not having feminism or homosexual equality as your NUMBER ONE goal for the freethought movement and being homophobic or misogynist. Feminazi's (Skepchic, here's looking at you) and now their friends (PZ, Matt Dillahunty for example) are throwing around the misogynist term left and right for anyone who slightly disagrees with them.

If the NAS was 90% Protestant - it'd surely raise some eyebrows. The Protestants would no doubt claim that its because smart and educated people accept Christ in the right way. Just as we might argue that the more educated a person is, the more likely they are an atheist (esp. in sciences) - so it stands to reason that some of the most educated people in the country (in sciences) are disproportionally atheist.

You'd have a point if atheism was some sort of dogma as opposed to a conclusion intelligent people come to when they look at the evidence and/or take off the blinders their religion has put on them. Atheism is not a religion and should not be compared to one.

Edited by hooah212002, : No reason given.


"Science is interesting, and if you don't agree you can fuck off." -Dawkins

This message is a reply to:
 Message 77 by Modulous, posted 08-28-2012 8:56 AM Modulous has responded

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NoNukes
Member
Posts: 9920
From: Central NC USA
Joined: 08-13-2010
Member Rating: 3.3


Message 80 of 124 (671609)
08-28-2012 11:46 AM
Reply to: Message 73 by jar
08-27-2012 3:01 PM


Re: Scientists control science
And in the end, it is reality that controls science despite what marc9000 might wish.

Reality controls the results of scientific inquiry, but there is certainly politics and ideology involved in determining what research gets public funding. Stem cell research is an classic example of a line of research that is a political football.


Under a government which imprisons any unjustly, the true place for a just man is also in prison. Thoreau: Civil Disobedience (1846)

The apathy of the people is enough to make every statue leap from its pedestal and hasten the resurrection of the dead. William Lloyd Garrison.

“Choose silence of all virtues, for by it you hear other men's imperfections, and conceal your own.” George Bernard Shaw


This message is a reply to:
 Message 73 by jar, posted 08-27-2012 3:01 PM jar has responded

Replies to this message:
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jar
Member
Posts: 29363
From: Texas!!
Joined: 04-20-2004
Member Rating: 3.2


Message 81 of 124 (671610)
08-28-2012 11:57 AM
Reply to: Message 80 by NoNukes
08-28-2012 11:46 AM


Re: Scientists control science
Mostly in the US. The reality is that other nations will step up and do the research and the US will simply get left behind yet again.

Religion has often been a stumbling block where science is concerned, but in the long run religious interference simply loses. An example was the delay in medicine caused by religious objections to autopsies on human bodies.


Anyone so limited that they can only spell a word one way is severely handicapped!

This message is a reply to:
 Message 80 by NoNukes, posted 08-28-2012 11:46 AM NoNukes has acknowledged this reply

  
Modulous
Member
Posts: 7429
From: Manchester, UK
Joined: 05-01-2005
Member Rating: 4.0


Message 82 of 124 (671643)
08-28-2012 5:41 PM
Reply to: Message 79 by hooah212002
08-28-2012 10:42 AM


Re: Scientists control science
I'd love to discus it on a different thread

See Message 122 in The war of atheism.

If the NAS was 90% Protestant - it'd surely raise some eyebrows. The Protestants would no doubt claim that its because smart and educated people accept Christ in the right way. Just as we might argue that the more educated a person is, the more likely they are an atheist (esp. in sciences) - so it stands to reason that some of the most educated people in the country (in sciences) are disproportionally atheist.
You'd have a point if atheism was some sort of dogma as opposed to a conclusion intelligent people come to when they look at the evidence and/or take off the blinders their religion has put on them. Atheism is not a religion and should not be compared to one.

The reasoning you present was exactly as I predicted it would be. And I'm sure the hypothetical Protestants would have made much the same argument to explain their data.

I have no idea why I only have a point if atheism was some sort of dogma, or was in some sense comparable with religion.


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 Message 79 by hooah212002, posted 08-28-2012 10:42 AM hooah212002 has acknowledged this reply

    
dwise1
Member
Posts: 2956
Joined: 05-02-2006
Member Rating: 4.2


Message 83 of 124 (671667)
08-28-2012 11:48 PM
Reply to: Message 26 by marc9000
08-22-2012 8:03 PM


Re: Marc Yet Again Failed to Define Atheist
Tsk, tsk, tsk. Failed yet again to provide a working definition of "atheist", or are you trying to deceive us and Admin? That was very wicked of you!

You stated in your reason for editing: "To conform to requirements of message 28." In Message 28, Admin says:

Admin writes:

Hi Marc,
I'm going to disallow your definition of atheist. Use the standard dictionary definition or I'll close your thread.

Your response was:

marc9000 writes:

http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/atheism?show=0&...

You'll find two words under ~number 1~ definitions of atheism; "ungodliness" and "WICKEDNESS". So "wickedness" is my dictionary definition of how I define atheism specifically for this discussion.

Well, here is what that link actually says (my emphasis added in bold):

quote:
Definition of ATHEISM

1
archaic : ungodliness, wickedness
2
a : a disbelief in the existence of deity
b : the doctrine that there is no deity
See atheism defined for kids »
Origin of ATHEISM

Middle French athéisme, from athée atheist, from Greek atheos godless, from a- + theos god
First Known Use: 1546


marc, are you really unaware of what "archaic" means? If so, then you would indeed be a mental midget, so I can only assume that you misquoted the dictionary out of pure and deliberate wickedness with that drive to deceive possessed by so many creationists.

An archaic meaning is one that is antiquated, out-of-date, no longer in use! As such, an archaic meaning is not the standard definition of the word! You failed to comply with or to conform to Admin's Message 28.

You still need to provide a workable and working definition for "atheism" and for "atheist". It has to be a real definition, not one that you imagine or just pulled out of a particular bodily orifice as you have been doing so far.

Or we could go what you said: " the definition of an atheist is one that everyone knows - a lack of belief in a god or gods." Even though that's the definition of "atheism" and not of "atheist". That means that you cannot apply the term "atheist" to any theist. That also means that in order to claim that them members of the NAS are atheists, you will need to prove that they are not theists. That means that you cannot magically redefine theists as atheists as you have repeatedly tried to do. Instead of engaging in your characteristic wickedness, you will need to be honest -- give it a try this once; you might even find that you like it.

BTW, replacing the entire message stinks of wickedness (if you're such an atheist in your own mind, why do you hate them so much?). Instead, leave the old definition stand, though with the new definition either as an addendum or in a separate message referred to by your old message.

For those who want to know what marc's old "definition" was, you will find it in Dr. Adequate's Message 31 and in Tangle's Message 33.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 26 by marc9000, posted 08-22-2012 8:03 PM marc9000 has not yet responded

    
dwise1
Member
Posts: 2956
Joined: 05-02-2006
Member Rating: 4.2


Message 84 of 124 (671668)
08-29-2012 12:19 AM
Reply to: Message 44 by marc9000
08-26-2012 6:45 PM


Re: Scientists control science
DWise1 writes:

Why are so few scientists Republicans? It's very simple. Scientists are both intelligent and sane, two qualities that are incompatible with the wing-nut travesty that the GOP has now become. Let's face it, who in their right mind could even consider voting Republican?

Since statistics show that only 6% of scientists are Republicans, the above statement probably reflects the overwhelming opinion of those making decisions about scientific employment and (to a significant percentage of the population) morally troubling decisions like embryonic stem cell research, cloning, the effects of abortion, etc.

As I already said in Message 34, that was a snarky remark made because your entire tirade about how few scientists are Republicans was so comical. While it is true that the GOP has become the party of wing-nut ideologues (just witness the parade of clowns in the GOP primary race), I've offered another explanation; again from Message 34:
DWise1 writes:

Overall, the Republican party is anti-science. Whether actually believed or merely driven by the misguided beliefs of their constituents, Republicans take hard stances against science; eg, stem cell research, candidates' by-the-book creationist pronouncements. Democrats do not do the same. Why would any intelligent, sane, person align himself with a political party that is so doggedly and adamantly against his own profession?

Then in my Message 61 (where I also responded to your ridiculous "It's actually not the Republicans who have changed, it's the Democrats who have changed."), I added (though it has also been pointed out by others here):

DWise1 writes:

OK, so please explain why more Republicans don't become scientists. Nothing's keeping anybody from studying the sciences nor in becoming scientists. So why don't they? You know full well that politics have nothing to do with it, so how can you explain it?
Now of course, one problem is how many scientists used to be Republicans, but then found that position to be untenable? After all, the GOP has changed radically. Another problem is that the Republican Party now envelopes itself in ideology. While ideology is a normal part of religion, it has absolutely no place in science, which dedicates itself to reality. The Republican Party is inextricably enmeshed in ideology, whereas the Democratic Party deals with reality. So right from the start, Republican ideology is foreign to science.

So, to return to your original question of why more Republicans don't become scientists: we find that Republicans find themselves enmeshed in so much anti-science, anti-reality ideology that they simply do not gravitate to the sciences.

The fault is not within your imagined "atheists", but rather within yourselves.

Funny how you completely avoided those explanations. So what's so wrong with Republicans that they are incapable of becoming scientists?


This message is a reply to:
 Message 44 by marc9000, posted 08-26-2012 6:45 PM marc9000 has not yet responded

Replies to this message:
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Coyote
Member
Posts: 5989
Joined: 01-12-2008
Member Rating: 3.5


(2)
Message 85 of 124 (671670)
08-29-2012 12:44 AM
Reply to: Message 84 by dwise1
08-29-2012 12:19 AM


Re: Scientists control science
So what's so wrong with Republicans that they are incapable of becoming scientists?

You are painting with a pretty broad brush.

But there is some truth in it. I'm both a scientist and a libertarian, and when I am at some specific scientific gatherings it is not unusual for many academics to bash anyone and anything to the right of Lenin. That gets pretty old after a while, and can be a real turn-off for students who otherwise might make good scientists.

What does someone who disagrees do? We generally remain silent so as not to start a fight, as there is nothing more intolerant than a leftie who has been disagreed with when he expected his ideas to meet with universal agreement. Diversity does not apply to ideas in our modern academic world.

Fundamentalists are about as bad, having an equal lack of tolerance for ideas outside of their ken.

The following might apply to both:

Forgive him, Caesar – he is a barbarian and considers that the customs of his tribe are the laws of nature.

G.B.Shaw, Caesar and Cleopatra


Religious belief does not constitute scientific evidence, nor does it convey scientific knowledge.

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crashfrog
Inactive Member


(3)
Message 86 of 124 (671676)
08-29-2012 6:42 AM
Reply to: Message 85 by Coyote
08-29-2012 12:44 AM


Re: Scientists control science
I'm both a scientist and a libertarian, and when I am at some specific scientific gatherings it is not unusual for many academics to bash anyone and anything to the right of Lenin.

Come on. There's zero constituency in the US, anywhere, for anything but left-centrist market liberalism.

And look. I don't know a single scientist over the age of 45 who isn't a Rush Limbaugh listener, who doesn't espouse just the most brain-dead politics despite their intelligence in any other field. I took quantitative chemistry from a PhD'd professor who took an entire afternoon to shit all over (absent any evidence, of course) the scientific consensus on global warming. The last lecture in Organic Chemistry was a thinly-veiled - and, thankfully, not on the test - defense of intelligent design and the notion of "information" as the "fourth state of matter." The campus's most vocal chemistry professor was a right-leaning libertarian who railed against all tax collection and universal health care even as he continued to cash his government paycheck and enjoyed the state's health coverage (in other words, he was a completely conventional libertarian.)

The notion that you as a right-leaning individual are somehow a solo act in a vast sea of liberals is just horseshit. Sure, conservatives tend to avoid the sciences, just as they avoid the academy in general. Why?

Because it doesn't pay for shit! Why would a conservative work for a living when they stand to make ten times as much under wingnut welfare from the Koch brothers, the Heritage Foundation, or any one of a hundred dozen other heavily-funded "right-wing think tanks"? (There's a contradiction in terms.) Taking a huge pay cut to contribute to academia is a liberal deal because liberals have always viewed education and research as one of the sacraments. Conservatives have done nothing but disparage the very notion of an educated elite for decades. Why on Earth would they volunteer to be part of it, when evolution and climate-change denial are out there as the path to acclaim and the big bucks?

Diversity does not apply to ideas in our modern academic world.

How did you get the idea that the scientific community is a place where error is tolerated without comment? Have you even met a scientist? Just fucking curious.


This message is a reply to:
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Replies to this message:
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Theodoric
Member
Posts: 5765
From: Northwest, WI, USA
Joined: 08-15-2005


Message 87 of 124 (671678)
08-29-2012 8:50 AM
Reply to: Message 85 by Coyote
08-29-2012 12:44 AM


Re: Scientists control science
You are painting with a pretty broad brush.

and when I am at some specific scientific gatherings it is not unusual for many academics to bash anyone and anything to the right of Lenin.

Broad brush, hyperbole? Aren't they all part of the something?

To the right of Lenin? Give me a freaking break. Do you understand a damn thing about Lenin?

Edited by Theodoric, : No reason given.


Facts don't lie or have an agenda. Facts are just facts

"God did it" is not an argument. It is an excuse for intellectual laziness.


This message is a reply to:
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Dr Adequate
Member
Posts: 15950
Joined: 07-20-2006
Member Rating: 4.6


(1)
Message 88 of 124 (671680)
08-29-2012 10:02 AM
Reply to: Message 85 by Coyote
08-29-2012 12:44 AM


You mean people who disagree with you disagree with you?

This is shocking news. Who'd have thought that people who disagree with you would be so intolerant as to disagree with you?

Of course, you have been known to disagree with people whom you disagree with, but that's not intolerance. When you do it it's freedom of speech ... I guess you're just lucky that way. I hope this good fortune compensates you for your apparent inability to grow a pair.

Edited by Dr Adequate, : No reason given.


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Blue Jay
Member (Idle past 228 days)
Posts: 2843
From: You couldn't pronounce it with your mouthparts
Joined: 02-04-2008


(1)
Message 89 of 124 (671683)
08-29-2012 11:36 AM
Reply to: Message 86 by crashfrog
08-29-2012 6:42 AM


Re: Scientists control science
Hi, Crash.

crashfrog writes:

I don't know a single scientist over the age of 45 who isn't a Rush Limbaugh listener, who doesn't espouse just the most brain-dead politics despite their intelligence in any other field.

This hasn't been my experience. I work in an agricultural department, where conservatism is more the norm than in other areas of the biological sciences, and I still think at least 75% of the faculty are left-leaning. I think even the biology department at BYU, where faculty have to be Mormons, was (slightly) left-leaning (though politics was kind of a taboo subject there).

Admittedly, I'm still young and relatively new to the scientific community, so I may very well have a skewed perspective, but what Coyote says seems to hold so far: liberals are common and vocal at scientific conferences, while conservatives are rare and silent.

Certainly, I think "bash anyone and anything to the right of Lenin" is hyperbole, but I don't doubt that that's how it feels to conservative scientists: I've heard the bashing on multiple occasions. Sure, I don't blame a conspiracy of atheists and "lefties" for the lack of political diversity in science, but, I also don't think atheists and "lefties" are perfectly innocent in this, either.


-Bluejay (a.k.a. Mantis, Thylacosmilus)

Darwin loves you.


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Replies to this message:
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NoNukes
Member
Posts: 9920
From: Central NC USA
Joined: 08-13-2010
Member Rating: 3.3


(1)
Message 90 of 124 (671686)
08-29-2012 12:13 PM
Reply to: Message 89 by Blue Jay
08-29-2012 11:36 AM


Re: Scientists control science
Sure, I don't blame a conspiracy of atheists and "lefties" for the lack of political diversity in science, but, I also don't think atheists and "lefties" are perfectly innocent in this, either.

So what role would you assign to atheist and lefties for chasing conservatives out of science so that only 6% of the scientists identify themselves as Republican? Are classrooms so hostile to conservatives that they find the only bastions of conservatism on campus? Do conservatives find the environment at work so hostile as to send them back to school for an MBA credential?

I think even the biology department at BYU, where faculty have to be Mormons, was (slightly) left-leaning (though politics was kind of a taboo subject there).

So what could possibly explain the left leaning of the biology department, given the taboo on politics? Surely not the campus environment.

I'm quite skeptical that any of those excuses contribute significantly to the dearth of conservatives in the sciences. If you have even anecdotal evidence suggesting otherwise, let's hear it.

I tend to think dwise1's tongue in cheek comment is at least partly on the mark and partially explains the lack of diversity among science. While a scientist might well identify and hold conservative values and even vote for Republican candidates, large parts of the Republican platform are anti-science, and I just cannot see how very many scientists would identify with such a platform. For example, the number of science who reject man-made climate change must surely be a tiny number.


Under a government which imprisons any unjustly, the true place for a just man is also in prison. Thoreau: Civil Disobedience (1846)

The apathy of the people is enough to make every statue leap from its pedestal and hasten the resurrection of the dead. William Lloyd Garrison.

“Choose silence of all virtues, for by it you hear other men's imperfections, and conceal your own.” George Bernard Shaw


This message is a reply to:
 Message 89 by Blue Jay, posted 08-29-2012 11:36 AM Blue Jay has responded

Replies to this message:
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