Re: [asa] Undoing the war on science

From: David Clounch <>
Date: Thu Dec 04 2008 - 00:17:21 EST

I think John is on to something.

From the article:

"It is an attitude, a stance towards measuring, evaluating and describing
the world that is based on skepticism, investigation and evidence."

I have found that people who talk about evidence are accused of being
creationists merely for talking about evidence as a subject.

I have found that skepticism is simply not allowed. It is punished by
personal attack.
I'm thinking Dean Kenyon (Biochemical PreDestination, SF State, did I get
the name right?),
Jerry Bergman, Gonzalez. The list gets longer. By punishing them the
western secular monolith (and arguably the academy itself) doesn't have to
deal with their uncomfortable skepticism and dissent.

For example, let me give a personal anecdote. Arthur Strahler,
Understanding Science, p 138, discusses quality of hypothesis, and shows a
graph from Percy Bridgeman, Harvard professor and Nobel Laureate. Between
meetings I showed the graph to a member of the Minnesota Science Standards
Committee, Jamie Crannel, and he immediately leaped to the conclusion that
the graph is some sort of creationist conspiracy. What is behind that?
Could it be *gasp* Politics? Could he have been on the committee because
he was on a mission to bash demon creationists? I mean, of course
everyone knows that anyone who questions the words of the high priests
must by definition be a demon creationist, right? My point is, this was a
government policy maker with a background in teaching high school chemistry
bashing a graph from a Nobel Laureate. Very disappointing. Maybe he is
actually a Bush administration official in disguise?

Speaking of evidence, does the article on the horrible Bushies actually
establish the connection between high level policy making Bush
Administration officals and layers of middle management bureaucrats who
broke the arms of all those who allegedly resigned in frustration? What
they are claiming might be true or it might not be true, but where did the
authors show any evidence to back up their position? Maybe my browser
jumped to the wrong web page? I do agree with Olivia on one point.
World-View taints everything. It is a legitimate issue. Could it be this
is why the scientific method's effect (or side effect) is so important:
Elimination of personal biases?

-Dave C (ASA member)

On Thu, Dec 4, 2008 at 8:53 PM, John Walley <> wrote:

> Although there is a kneejerk "war on science" reaction from the church,
> this reveals that the authors of this article have a war of their own, on
> Christian values.
> John
> --- On Wed, 12/3/08, gordon brown <Gordon.Brown@Colorado.EDU> wrote:
> > From: gordon brown <Gordon.Brown@Colorado.EDU>
> > Subject: Re: [asa] Undoing the war on science
> > To:
> > Date: Wednesday, December 3, 2008, 9:26 PM
> > On Wed, 3 Dec 2008, John Burgeson (ASA member) wrote:
> >
> > >
> >
> > >
> > > is an interesting essay on "the war on
> > science."
> > >
> > > -- Burgy
> > >
> >
> > Although I agree with most of this article, I disagree with
> > the assertion that abstinence-only sex education is an
> > assault on science. Maybe, as they say, it doesn't work,
> > but there is no reason why it must involve denying the facts
> > of science.
> >
> > Gordon Brown (ASA member)
> >
> >
> >
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> > message.
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Received on Thu, 4 Dec 2008 23:17:21 +1800

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