>> Saturday, February 27, 2010
When I mentioned to a friend I was writing a post with that title, he responded by betting his mother's life that someone had already made that claim and set out in search of that idiot. That was five minutes ago but have no fear his mother can breathe easy. Only now I'm not sure what to do with the rest of the post I'd planned to write. I thought it'd be amusing to demonstrate how the deliberately (and defiantly) uninformed worldview of those who think scientific progress is teleological (for example) creates an environment in which any failed hypothesis represents further proof of gross negligence or professional misconduct. But it isn't amusing: it's depressing.
Because of these pig-ignorant people, any scientific finding that doesn't correspond to the dominant scientific paradigm becomes "another nail in the coffin" for that paradigm. That the tsunami that struck Hawaii didn't manifest as a 300-foot-tall wall of water is, for such luminaries, further proof that scientists simply suck at predicting anything that involves heightened sea-level. They leap from a televisually disappointing tsunami to stock global warming denialism because they believe a single failure undermines an entire enterprise, i.e. they have no understanding of or investment in the scientific method.
Like I said: it's depressing.