Is Science a value system?

Discussion in 'The Cesspool' started by Magical Realist, Jan 15, 2015.

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  1. Magical Realist Valued Senior Member

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    Reported for trolling...
     
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  3. Russ_Watters Not a Trump supporter... Valued Senior Member

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    You've already been reported for trolling -- but please feel free to keep reporting your own trolling.
     
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  5. paddoboy Valued Senior Member

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    I see.

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    Another conspiracy adherent story again. Ho bloody hum!
     
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  7. James R Just this guy, you know? Staff Member

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    Does anybody want to discuss the topic any more, or do you all just want to accuse each other of trolling? If it's the latter, I'll close the thread.
     
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  8. Russ_Watters Not a Trump supporter... Valued Senior Member

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    James, have a read of a few pages of the thread. The original topic - the one in the title - was never intended to be the topic. There really isn't any disagreement about the fact that science isn't a value system. A few posts in, he changed to talking about scientism (science as religion) being bad, and nobody disagrees about that either. But what he really wants - what he really started the thread to do - was just toss baseless insults at science itself (or argue that all science/scientists is/are scientism/ists). I asked him explicitly and repeatedly what was left to discuss since we all agree on those two early points, and he never responded (despite responding to the rest of my posts), he just switched to random anti-science rants.
     
    Last edited: Jan 17, 2015
  9. Jason.Marshall Banned Banned

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  10. exchemist Valued Senior Member

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  11. Jason.Marshall Banned Banned

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  12. Yazata Valued Senior Member

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    Why do you say that? I think that it was.

    Then I will disagree with that supposed 'fact'. Science clearly seems to me to be a value system. The values that science seeks to maximize are objective truth and logical consistency.

    I believe that it was Exchemist who introduced the word 'scientism' and MR agreed that was the idea that he was trying to get at.

    I would define 'scientism' as the idea that the only legitimate intellectual methods in all realms of life are the methods employed by the natural sciences. In other words, all other areas of intellectual life should model themselves on the natural sciences and are only intellectually respectable to the extent that they do so.

    MR seems to have been using the word 'scientism' in another closely related sense, to refer to the idea that many people have entertained since the 18th century that science can and should be what give direction and meaning to individual and social life. It was the fundamental doctrine of faith in the so-called 'Age of Reason' that if the rest of human life could only be organized on the same basis as Newtonian physics, then the Earth could be transformed into a paradise. Religious 'obscurantism' and political 'old regimes' would finally be swept aside and replaced by utopian social engineering. It was this vision and this program that motivated the 19th century development of the so-called 'social sciences'.

    Blasphemy! I hope that you can see that all of the over-the-top angry reactions to his perceived sacrilege only underlined the point that MR seemingly wanted to make.
     
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  13. exchemist Valued Senior Member

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    A rather perceptive commentary, if I may say so.

    (Although in fairness to the irritated science supporters, there has been an extensive side-track running in parallel, somewhat along the lines of "What have the Romans ever done for us?" : )
     
  14. Magical Realist Valued Senior Member

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    Precisely. The emotional overdefensiveness of what people are calling science here only serves to demonstrate this use people make of science as some sort of sacred and value laden enterprise. Yet at no point have I denigrated science beyond just pointing out that its information--the body of knowledge it provides us with--is without value in itself, and certainly without recommendations for how to use it. The value of science depends entirely on how it is used, which can vary from manufacturing atomic bombs to kill people, to curing diseases, to synthesizing meth or crack in a lab. The assertion that science is somehow inherently good or morally-driven has been challenged here. That's all this thread has done. That this itself is now construed as an immoral act by me, similar to how religion condemns heretics for defying its authority, simply proves my point. That people are indeed adhering to scientism in this day and age, using science to enforce personal and subjective moral values that are not in fact derivable from science at all.
     
  15. Yazata Valued Senior Member

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    The 19th century's easy "modern" confidence that scientific progress was the path to the promised Kingdom (the Eiffel tower in Paris was built to symbolize that idea) collided violently with World War I, with its machine-guns and poison gas and with World War II, with its 'holocaust' and nuclear weapons. Western intellectual life has been reverberating from that collision ever since, which is the source of the so-called "post-modern" currents in the humanities.

    You certainly aren't the first one to give voice to it, MR. The realization that the 18th century 'Enlightenment' faith in the ability of science to guide the unfolding of human life wasn't working out as expected was one of the fundamental intellectual forces shaping 20th century intellectual life.
     
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  16. krash661 [MK6] transitioning scifi to reality Valued Senior Member

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    MR, yazata. understand that it's not such things as this topic. but humanity itself. it's that simple.

    " You are too inquisitive not to want to know. You seem to find no tranquillity in anything. You struggle against the inevitable. You thrive on conflict. You are selfish, yet you value loyalty. You are rash, quick to judge, slow to change. It's amazing you've survived. Be that as it may, as species, we have no common ground. You are too aggressive. Too hostile. Too militant. "
     
  17. Magical Realist Valued Senior Member

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    Some are even questioning the consequences of modern technological advancement even today. The use of GMOs and pesticides and additives in foods, the exposure of private information and finances via the internet, the perhaps woefully underresearched effects of microwave and EMF on the human body, the longterm effects of medications on the kidneys, heart, and liver, the effects of carbon emissions and waste products on the environment, etc. And dare anyone sponsor a study on the overall effects of watching TV or being on computers on the human body? A growing epidemic of obesity, diabetes, heart disease, and strokes? (Wait a second! They DID do a study! See below) This is not to impugn scientific research itself mind you. But it IS a heads up regarding this automatic enthusiasm for anything scientific research has resulted in. This faith of scientism in the unquestioned value of the increasing automation and "virtualization" of daily human existence.
    =================================================================
    "The average American adult spends about four and a half hours a day watching TV-- and that's more than enough to take a toll on their health and longevity.

    A new study, published today in Journal of the American Heart Association, found that adults who watch TV three hours or more a day may be twice as likely to die prematurely than those who watch an hour or less.

    Previous research has shown that too much time spent sitting in general is detrimental to people's health, but this latest research found that watching TV specifically can have an even more negative effect than other types of sedentary activity.



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    Play VIDEO
    Sedentary lifestyle doubles disability risk in seniors, study finds

    The study authors cited previous research suggesting that about half of U.S. adults are leading sedentary lifestyles.

    "Television viewing is a major sedentary behaviorand there is an increasing trend toward all types of sedentary behaviors," study author Miguel Martinez-Gonzalez, a professor and chair of the Department of Public Health at the University of Navarra in Pamplona, Spain, said in a statement."====http://www.cbsnews.com/news/watching-too-much-tv-could-shorten-your-life/
     
    Last edited: Jan 17, 2015
  18. paddoboy Valued Senior Member

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    Nothing has ever benefited mankind more then science. That is a fact.
    Without science, we would be back in the dark ages. Another fact.
    Anything else is just philosophical claptrap.
    As I said, and as has been stubbornly ignored by our philosophical dreamer, for those that see science as giving no benefits, Let them find an isolated Island somewhere, let them go there, without any mod cons, not even cooking utensils.
    Let them do there best to live out their lives, as best they can, in such an environment.

    In the mean time, here's a nice little quote from imho, the greatest educator of our times.....and one from an earlier time by another great of another era.

    "We live in a society exquisitely dependent on science and technology, in which hardly anyone knows anything about science and technology".
    Carl Sagan:


    "By denying scientific principles, one may maintain any paradox".
    Galileo Galilei


     
    Last edited: Jan 17, 2015
  19. dumbest man on earth Real Eyes Realize Real Lies Valued Senior Member

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    • Members should refer to others by their chosen screen name. Please do not bait or troll. Stay on topic.
    Heck...AstroBoy does not even know the difference between the words "then" and "than" or "their" and "there"...nor how and when to properly use those words.

    But...AstroBoy demands that everyone accept his skewed version of "mainstream" science...???

    Meh...
     
  20. paddoboy Valued Senior Member

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    To all and sundry...
    dmoe is an old infatuated friend of mine, who has had a few threads moved to the fringe sections and who has trouble sometimes accepting that most of my opinions align with accepted science.
    dmoe, is also a anti science sympathiser who rejects the BB, and has trouble interpreting correctly, many factual scenarios re astronomy/cosmology particularly where I am involved.

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    His involvement of late has been absent. Perhaps he took my previous advice of taking an aspro and having a good lay down.

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    It appears for his own good, he should do it again. Just trying to help dmoe.

    ASTRO BOY was my handle on another forum, of which I am still a member.
    His weird sense of humour in raising that is only known to himself.
     
  21. Russ_Watters Not a Trump supporter... Valued Senior Member

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    He said it in Post #96:
    Not that that's 100% accurate: he's not making a distinction, he's making a false comparison. Still, yes, science as/vs scientism was the main point.
    No, MR did in post #6:
    That's the fight MR was looking for when he posted the thread; saying science is (and and accusing members of) using science as a religion.
    Sorry, I didn't realize you disagreed. Perhaps there is a quibble here over is vs has, but to say science is a value system would logically mean that every pursuit by humans is a value system, from a football game to a grocery store.

    In either case, not even MR disagrees with this. That's why the discussion devolved as it did: there's no logical argument between MR and everyone else, so there was nothing left for him to do but just start flaming (not that he didn't take his jabs earlier, like the one in post #6).
    Indeed, actual psychological research exists that shows that arguing vociferously with crackpots often just hardens their opinions. But don't make the mistake of thinking that that means their conclusions are correct. It's not: it's just a demonstration of a psychological flaw.

    Specifically, here, you are saying that vigorous (even emotional) defense of science is proof of science being emotional. That would only be true if the charges being levied were true. When the charges being levied are false - lies and flaming, even - then a vigorous (even emotional) defense is justified, because he's not really attacking science, but rather insulting scientists by lying about how they think/behave.

    Perhaps more to the point, this thread isn't where science is "done", so reactions of people to MR's trolling don't necessarily have anything at all to do with how science actually works. Indeed, you'd never see such reactions in, say, a technical journal, because guys like MR just aren't on their radar.

    Or to say it more succinctly: Angrily responding to a lie/insult doesn't make the lie/insult become true.
     
  22. Russ_Watters Not a Trump supporter... Valued Senior Member

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    That's not true: you've used everything from false statistics to goalpost shifting to personal insults.
    No one has made that assertion, as I've said repeatedly.
    As I requested before: please name one prominent scientismist. I've never met or even ever heard of one. And I've met a lot of scientists.

    MR, if you want this discussion to be productive, you have to make it so. We can't do it for you -- it's your thread.
     
  23. Russ_Watters Not a Trump supporter... Valued Senior Member

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    The best irony here isn't the heated discussion proving him right, it's the very existence of the discussion -- the fact that he used a computer to post it on the internet -- that continuously proves him wrong!
     
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