The Science

“The Science”. What a dullard’s sentence fragment. Reality comes in multiple levels. One level might have different rules to the one beneath it, but is built upon it. Understanding one level requires an understanding of the mathematical relationships between the things on all the underlying levels. The portion of human beings who can truly do this is tiny.

Much is written about the scientific method. About what is and what isn’t science. Generations of school children are taught to write their little reports starting with a hypothesis and ending with a conclusion. The truth is this: the tiny, tiny minority of human beings (of which I am NOT one) who are able to easily “see” those relationships are fully capable of devising their own methods for scientific investigation. And those of us who are not imbued with that ability to perceive can follow all the approved methods and still get things completely wrong.

There are two ways of operating in any field of competency. We all start by observing the things around us and by doing things the same way existing practitioners do. But one group of people, able to see the rules that relate one object to another, are able to trace things back to first principles. The other group, the majority of those “doing” science today are those lesser intellects such as ours. As much as they are, or should be, familiar with double blind trials, reducing errors and taking into account the effect on the final result of those errors which cannot be eliminated, the fact is that they conduct themselves by simply doing whatever is the accepted practice of the time.

Which mostly works. If you are a genetic engineer following the accepted and proven practices in the field you might discover all manner of interesting things, completely oblivious of the fact that you really don’t fully grasp the reasons for all the steps taken. Or the reasons have receded into the fuzzy past of undergraduate days and half remembered texts and lectures.

But the two things are in their nature totally different. One is science and the other is something less. Maybe best described as process.

Those processes, both physical and in evaluating, such as peer review, certain modelling types, statistical methods and formats of presenting discoveries, work well enough in the environment of universities staffed and enrolled with that tiny, tiny minority of humans who are capable of doing that other thing: tracing things back through first principles via the mathematical relationships between the objects that comprise the various layers of reality.

Climate science and what seems to now be occurring in the area of epidemiology indicate the shortfalls of those processes in an age when universities are no longer run to optimise the good work of that tiny, tiny minority.

28 thoughts on “The Science”

  1. When I hear the term “the science” I immediately envision this pair, because they’re like, so scientistic, man.

    The vast bulk of “Scientists” have been peddling preposterous fact and evidence free garbage my entire life, with gerbil worming being the most egregious example.

    They are a disgrace to their alleged profession.


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  2. Although it is, I agree, clear that the outliers to the positive can and do make a disproportionate contribution to society (in all respects, not just scientific) I don’t think it’s quite so difficult as you suggest to refine and generate knowledge in the scientific paradigm – and thus make a positive contribution.

    The bigger problem is one of widespread- pervasive and intensive, really – incentives to … well, not to put too fine a point on it, fraudulently … act in self- rather than scientific/societal-interest.

    The insurance industry calls this “incitement to moral turpitude” – this is the reason, eg, that maximum possible long term disability payments are restricted to 75% of previous earnings (we don’t want to encourage people to injure – or perjured – themselves); only people with an valid positive interest in the continuing existence of a person may take out a life assurance policy on them (we don’t want to encourage murder)…

    Sadly, Academe is spending our money, do it doesn’t have the same practical incentives.


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  3. “Replication crisis” anyone?

    If it cant be replicated, it wasnt science basically.

    The science replication crisis might be worse than we thought: new research reveals that studies with replicated results tend to be cited less often than studies which have failed to replicate.
    That’s not to say that these more widely cited studies with unreplicated experiments are necessarily wrong or misleading – but it does mean that, for one reason or another, follow-up research has failed to deliver the same result as the original study, yet it still gets loads of citations.

    Thus, based on the new analysis, research that is more interesting and different appears to garner more citations than research with a lot of corroborating evidence.

    Behavioral economists Marta Serra-Garcia and Uri Gneezy from the University of California analyzed papers in some of the top psychology, economy, and science journals; they found that studies that failed to replicate since their publication were on average 153 times more likely to be cited than studies that had – and that the influence of these papers is growing over time.

    “Existing evidence also shows that experts predict well which papers will be replicated,” write the researchers in their published paper. “Given this prediction, why are non-replicable papers accepted for publication in the first place?”

    “A possible answer is that the review team faces a trade-off. When the results are more ‘interesting’, they apply lower standards regarding their reproducibility.”

    ….
    In psychology journals, 39 percent of the 100 analyzed studies had been successfully replicated. In economy journals, it was 61 percent of 18 studies, and in the journals Nature and Science, it was 62 percent of 21 studies.

    The differences in the prominent Nature and Science journals were the most striking: here, non-replicable papers were cited 300 times more than replicable ones on average.


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  4. ‘The Science’ is merely the Baal, Asherah Pole, Molech statue and Golden Calf of this age.

    Humans used to create gods in their own image. Then it became.kimda unfashionable. Now they are back.

    And to think that the same well-to-do and morally ‘upright’ person you might meet on your daily business, who scoffs at the concept in rural Kenya (as but one of many, many examples) of the superstitions of the witch-doctor, ‘Evil Eye’ and placating spirits out of terror, will blast you over your lack of masking or skepticism about enforced vaccinations and report you to the police for anything they feel might contradict ‘The Science…’

    Who is truly more enlightened?


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  5. Arky, we are getting first class seats at watching stupid people fuck things up. It’s been the story of my life, but now they’re doing it on a planetary scale.

    In my innocent youth, when I saw stupid people digging themselves into shit, I pointed it out to them and explained why they were shortly about to be in shit up to their ears. They never listened; I could see them thinking that if I wanted them to stop, it was for my benefit if they stopped and theirs if they carried on. So they did. And when I returned and found them up to their ears in shit and pointed out that had they listened and thought they wouldn’t be, were they grateful? Not a bit of it.

    So now I try not to watch, because nothing I can say or do will stop them fucking things up. On a massive scale, this time. The political class, pollies, bureaucrats, journos, are stupid and ignorant of the extent of their ignorance and stupidity. They don’t even know of the existence of the tiny, tiny minority who have done so much for us all in the past. If they did, they’d persecute them for disobedience.

    My solution is to keep trying to clamber up onto the shoulders of giants. I am working my way through a book called Basic Lie Theory. It’s about Lie (pronounced Lee) groups, not about mendacity. Keeps me busy and away from watching fools fuck things up


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  6. What Rex Anger said. Science is no longer rigorous at Universities.
    Just follow the money. Otherwise:
    Kiss my arse you lab coated poorly educated mercaneries.


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  7. Great post Arky.

    Various voices in the wilderness have been expressing concerned about peer review and statistical nonsense for decades but to no avail. The replication crisis is a huge indictment on the current standards of analysis.

    COVID has allowed Scientism to become the new religion for the masses. Scientists are more aware of the risk of scientism than most citizens. Yesterday I finished reading a book by the Nobel Laureate Frank Wilczek and he wrote at length about the need to acknowledge the limits of science. There is a huge gulf between what is written in scientific papers and how that is presented to the public. Scientific papers often contain important qualifiers that are ignored by politicians, journalists, and various talking heads. The result being that what is communicated to the general public are often gross simplifications masking uncertainty.

    Sadly though I agree with Dr. BG. There is nothing I can do about the situation.


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  8. Not to mention TheirABC’s huge database of ‘experts.’

    Every story with a typical TheirABC agenda talks about what ‘experts’ say, strangely and inevitably in concordance with the current received wisdom.

    To your broader point, and very topically, medicine is not science, no matter how they try to dress it up. Some aspects of medicine rely on science done by others, some is just the result of learned experience over the years, a lot of it is guesswork.

    A friend of mine who is a serious biochemist told me that a lot of the time nobody really knows why particular drugs work. They make up explanations after the event, but in reality they have no idea. That is why a drug developed for one problem sometimes turns out to be very useful for a totally different and unrelated problem – Ivermectin is a great example. It is truly a wonder drug, but anyone who says they know how and why it works for so many disparate diseases is lying.


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  9. A friend of mine who is a serious biochemist told me that a lot of the time nobody really knows why particular drugs work. They make up explanations after the event, but in reality they have no idea. That is why a drug developed for one problem sometimes turns out to be very useful for a totally different and unrelated problem – Ivermectin is a great example. It is truly a wonder drug, but anyone who says they know how and why it works for so many disparate diseases is lying.

    I read recently that nobody actually understands how general anaesthesia works.


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  10. johannasays:
    September 15, 2021 at 4:11 pm
    Not to mention TheirABC’s huge database of ‘experts.’

    Every story with a typical TheirABC agenda talks about what ‘experts’ say, strangely and inevitably in concordance with the current received wisdom.

    To your broader point, and very topically, medicine is not science, no matter how they try to dress it up. Some aspects of medicine rely on science done by others, some is just the result of learned experience over the years, a lot of it is guesswork.

    A friend of mine who is a serious biochemist told me that a lot of the time nobody really knows why particular drugs work.

    Good points Johanna but I counter that we do have a good understanding of how some drugs work, though the huge exception is psychiatric drugs. Complete mystery there. Drugs often have multiple effects. I read a study on cannabidiol and it was found to have 60 effects!

    A few months ago I read a fascinating book on Quantum Biology. It addressed some key issues that had long puzzled me, electron transport and receptor-ligand interactions. Perhaps it is time to start thinking about quantum effects in biological processes. I always considered the idea of quantum effects being irrelevant in a classical context but that book made me think that quantum biology may open up entirely new vistas for understanding biology.


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  11. They don’t even know of the existence of the tiny, tiny minority who have done so much for us all in the past. If they did, they’d persecute them for disobedience.

    Time for that Heinlein quote:
    “Throughout history, poverty is the normal condition of man. Advances…are the work of an extremely small minority, frequently despised, often condemned, and almost always opposed by all right-thinking people. Whenever this tiny minority is kept from creating…the people then slip back into abject poverty.”


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  12. Good post, Arky. I agree with your sentiment, but argumentatively it’s just an unproven assertion.

    In my innocent youth, when I saw stupid people digging themselves into shit, I pointed it out to them and explained why they were shortly about to be in shit up to their ears. They never listened; I could see them thinking that if I wanted them to stop, it was for my benefit if they stopped and theirs if they carried on. So they did. And when I returned and found them up to their ears in shit and pointed out that had they listened and thought they wouldn’t be, were they grateful? Not a bit of it.

    Quite so, Beaugy. In the absence of being able to reason and deduce logic, stupid people, who are now everywhere, are well rewarded for no more than loyalty to the dominant tribe, for whom reason is unimportant beside the superior trait of moral righteousness, judged by them alone and enforced by the threat of violence from the pig state pigs.

    While we aren’t prepared to fight for our freedoms, we are destined to be dominated by those who have persuaded the state to use violence against their enemies.

    One way or the other, those of us who believe in freedom will be forced to fight for it in the coming years. There can be no squibbing it; you’ll have to declare yourself or surrender to the bullies of the pig state.


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  13. Probably the most accessible book on the topic is “A Demon-Haunted World: Science as Candle in the Dark” written by Carl Sagan in 1995.

    The most memorable and pertinent line is:

    “Accept no argument from Authority”


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  14. Tomsays:
    September 15, 2021 at 4:49 pm
    Good post, Arky. I agree with your sentiment, but argumentatively it’s just an unproven assertion.

    One way or the other, those of us who believe in freedom will be forced to fight for it in the coming years. There can be no squibbing it; you’ll have to declare yourself or surrender to the bullies of the pig state.

    History demonstrates that the majority will surrender and the few that declare themselves do so at very great cost.


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  15. They make up explanations after the event, but in reality they have no idea

    This is because Medical Science must use statistical analysis to determine efficacy.

    Outside of simple organisms, all non-clonal life forms exhibit different outputs to the same input.

    Consider that penicillin will both save and kill life.


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  16. Eyriesays:
    September 15, 2021 at 4:18 pm

    I read recently that nobody actually understands how general anaesthesia works.

    This is the leading hypothesis:

    How Energy Supports Our Brain to Yield Consciousness: Insights From Neuroimaging Based on the Neuroenergetics Hypothesis

    Therefore, one may postulate that anesthetics interfere with brain energy homeostasis, including alterations in spatiotemporal firing patterns, a reduction in the neural metabolic activity below the threshold required to support neural signal transmission across the whole brain, and an interruption in neural computing sufficient to induce the loss of consciousness.

    Anesthesia-induced reduction in cerebral metabolism may be related to mitochondrial dysfunction. Several experimental studies have shown that volatile anesthetics and intravenous anesthetic propofol depolarized neural mitochondria and inhibited the ATP synthesis in both rat and human nerve terminals by directly inhibiting respiratory chain complex I activity (Bains et al., 2006, 2009), which sufficiently causes ATPase reversal.



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  17. The most memorable and pertinent line is:

    “Accept no argument from Authority”

    That would be the Royal Society, founded in 1660. ‘Nullius in verba.’

    I just checked their website, and while they admit (briefly) to this embarrassing slogan, mostly they now care about diversity and da Planet.


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  18. Great post Arky.
    I don’t know enough about science in the abstract or how science is practised to affirm your key assertion, but the phenomenon of intelligent credentialled people who know what they’re doing but not why certainly exists in other fields.
    One minor thing – you say:
    “Generations of school children are taught to write their little reports starting with a hypothesis and ending with a conclusion.”
    I hope you’re right, but I suspect that it’s really “were taught” rather than “are taught”.


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  19. Most of what is promulgated by the elite class lately is religion, not science. It’s an interesting sociological evolution. First they abandoned Christianity, then swept their room nice and clean, only for a whole new religion to move into it. That religion is green-progressivism. Very little of it can be backed by real world science, but it has so hardened up that the elite class now dare not reject any of the doctrines, on risk of being anathemized. Which is very painful and very expensive.

    The most recent accretion to the religion is Covid stuff. For example masks. They must all trumpet the need for masks despite numerous studies showing they don’t work and are actually worse than useless. And since they are annoying to wear the elites have taken to forcing the staff to wear them while they don’t.

    The Masking Of The Servant Class: Ugly COVID Images From The Met Gala Are Now Commonplace (14 Sep)

    Vaccination is likewise: it too has been accreted into the religion despite the current vaccines being rather ineffective.

    “Life Has Not Improved By As Much As We Hoped” – Singapore Outbreak Worsens With 80% Vaccinated (14 Sep)

    But if you question holy vaccines or masks you get cast into the outer darkness where their is gnashing of dentally perfect teeth. And if by some happenstance you mention the “i” word (ivermectin) the deluge upon you will be like an avalanche. Despite many perfectly scientific studies showing it works at least as well as the vaccines.

    Against all this doctrine, and the vast amount of money and power behind it, truth has a really hard time to be heard.


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  20. First they abandoned Christianity, then swept their room nice and clean, only for a whole new religion to move into it.

    Funny that. Someone knew all about that phenomenon … long ago.

    Matthew 12:43-45


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  21. Against all this doctrine, and the vast amount of money and power behind it, truth has a really hard time to be heard.

    Zealotry has defeated reason and sanity many times in history. Remember Hypatia, and the destruction of the great library of Alexandria.


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  22. Anaesthesia will do your head in.

    Looking at someone out on the table and then having explained they still need pain relief to stop the bodies usual reaction to pain/ stress.
    And being able to see that through heart rate/ bp etc.


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