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Thread: Kent Hovind "Doctor Dino"

  1. #1 Kent Hovind "Doctor Dino" 
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    Hi Friends:

    Many of you may be familiar with "Doctor" Kent Hovind. He might be described as a "young earth creationist" which is to say that he believes that the world was created 6,000 years ago in the fashion described in Genesis chapters 1 and 2. Hovind argues that not only is the Theory of Evolution wrong but that the Theory of Relativity (both special and general) and the Big Bang theory are wrong. Life did not evolve over millions of years, the earth is not millions of years old, and the speed of light is not constant.

    Rather than argue against Hovind's ideas I'm left wondering why he and many others hold such ideas to begin with. Creation of the world by the God of the Bible is a tenet of the Christian religion, of course, but it befuddles me how such a belief is said to be scientific or that the Theory of Evolution is not science but is a religion. Has our education system failed us, or is such opposition to science inevitable?

    Feedback would be appreciated!

    Jagella


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    Quote Originally Posted by Jagella View Post
    Hi Friends:

    Many of you may be familiar with "Doctor" Kent Hovind. He might be described as a "young earth creationist" which is to say that he believes that the world was created 6,000 years ago in the fashion described in Genesis chapters 1 and 2. Hovind argues that not only is the Theory of Evolution wrong but that the Theory of Relativity (both special and general) and the Big Bang theory are wrong. Life did not evolve over millions of years, the earth is not millions of years old, and the speed of light is not constant.

    Rather than argue against Hovind's ideas I'm left wondering why he and many others hold such ideas to begin with. Creation of the world by the God of the Bible is a tenet of the Christian religion, of course, but it befuddles me how such a belief is said to be scientific or that the Theory of Evolution is not science but is a religion. Has our education system failed us, or is such opposition to science inevitable?

    Feedback would be appreciated!

    Jagella
    I think it all goes back to the 7th Day Adventists. They seem to have gained traction, mainly in the US, with a literalist reading of the Old Testament that is not shared by most Christians. As to why it gained traction there, one can but speculate. My own feeling is that the US spirit of individualism sometimes brings with it a kind of breezy anti-intellectualism. Thus, systems of belief that do not recognise any authority, nor rely on bodies of prior scholarship, have a certain simple and direct appeal.

    Mainstream Christianity, by contrast, having doctrines that are taught by a clerical hierarchy, is built on the thought of scholars and theologians down the centuries. Since this has been studied in the same universities that have studied natural science, the theology, the hierarchies and thus the doctrines have to some degree adapted to these discoveries.

    Whereas the poor old fundamentalist, by rejecting all authority and relying solely on the words of the bible, is in the position of reinventing the wheel, often badly, for himself all the time.

    I think too that the much-discussed "culture wars", between educated and socially liberal metropolitans vs. rural, poorly educated, conservatives, also play a role. In this context, I have long held the view that the democratisation of knowledge brought to us by the internet, while it has many advantages, also has given rise to the "Stupid Society", in which idiotic beliefs are frequently given equal air time with sensible ones. Sometimes this is for the sake of some deluded idea of balance. Sometimes, as with the Murdoch machine, it is because a profitable market segment has been identified, consisting of ignorant people who will pay to have their prejudices confirmed.


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    I like your question, Jagella, and I appreciate exchemist's answer. it's good to see no one is lumping all Christian's together. However, don't you think that scientifically minded people are often stubborn and dogmatic as well? True scientists should never be so, but I find many champions of the scientific method and reason are often as set in their ways as the creationists. So, yes, opposition to science is inevitable; as is opposition to new scientific thought by the scientifically minded who are stuck in their set beliefs about science up until when they finished school. What I am saying is it is human nature to resist change to one's beliefs. The scientifically minded may think they are open to the destruction of their pet theories, but many of them are not.
    And what does the Lord require of you but to love justice, to be merciful and to walk humbly with Him?
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    Quote Originally Posted by 甘肃人 View Post
    I like your question, Jagella, and I appreciate exchemist's answer. it's good to see no one is lumping all Christian's together. However, don't you think that scientifically minded people are often stubborn and dogmatic as well? True scientists should never be so, but I find many champions of the scientific method and reason are often as set in their ways as the creationists. So, yes, opposition to science is inevitable; as is opposition to new scientific thought by the scientifically minded who are stuck in their set beliefs about science up until when they finished school. What I am saying is it is human nature to resist change to one's beliefs. The scientifically minded may think they are open to the destruction of their pet theories, but many of them are not.
    Possibly so, but I have yet to encounter a scientifically trained person who does not find new science, overturning previous ideas, exciting. That is what makes science live, after all. Just imagine: when I was a child, plate tectonics had not been formulated and I was taught mountains formed by the contraction of the Earth inside its skin as it cooled. But plate tectonics at a stroke explained all about mountain building, vulcanism, earthquakes and various other phenomena, such as magnetisation bands on the sea floor. Exciting!

    When I was at university, spontaneous emission by atoms and molecules had no explanation, but since then QED has come along and we know have a theory linked to vacuum fluctuations. Exciting!

    When I was young, people thought evolution was just a slow and uniform process. Today we have punctuated equilibrium and a number of different dynamic mechanisms for genetic change that were not known at all. Exciting!

    Where some non-scientists go wrong, it seems to me, is in failing to understand the difference between developments such as these on the one hand and pseudo-scientific ideas, such as Intelligent Design for example, or other pet notions they have, on the other. I have often seen such people moan that scientists reject such things due to being "closed-minded", when in fact that is not the reason at all - the ideas are simply not scientific ones in the first place.

    Do you have examples of scientists refusing to entertain specific scientific advances, or of what you call "pet theories" that they cling to unreasonably? It might be worth considering one or two cases so we can establish why that might be.
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    Quote Originally Posted by exchemist View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by 甘肃人 View Post
    I like your question, Jagella, and I appreciate exchemist's answer. it's good to see no one is lumping all Christian's together. However, don't you think that scientifically minded people are often stubborn and dogmatic as well? True scientists should never be so, but I find many champions of the scientific method and reason are often as set in their ways as the creationists. So, yes, opposition to science is inevitable; as is opposition to new scientific thought by the scientifically minded who are stuck in their set beliefs about science up until when they finished school. What I am saying is it is human nature to resist change to one's beliefs. The scientifically minded may think they are open to the destruction of their pet theories, but many of them are not.
    Possibly so, but I have yet to encounter a scientifically trained person who does not find new science, overturning previous ideas, exciting. That is what makes science live, after all. Just imagine: when I was a child, plate tectonics had not been formulated and I was taught mountains formed by the contraction of the Earth inside its skin as it cooled. But plate tectonics at a stroke explained all about mountain building, vulcanism, earthquakes and various other phenomena, such as magnetisation bands on the sea floor. Exciting!

    When I was at university, spontaneous emission by atoms and molecules had no explanation, but since then QED has come along and we know have a theory linked to vacuum fluctuations. Exciting!

    When I was young, people thought evolution was just a slow and uniform process. Today we have punctuated equilibrium and a number of different dynamic mechanisms for genetic change that were not known at all. Exciting!

    Where some non-scientists go wrong, it seems to me, is in failing to understand the difference between developments such as these on the one hand and pseudo-scientific ideas, such as Intelligent Design for example, or other pet notions they have, on the other. I have often seen such people moan that scientists reject such things due to being "closed-minded", when in fact that is not the reason at all - the ideas are simply not scientific ones in the first place.

    Do you have examples of scientists refusing to entertain specific scientific advances, or of what you call "pet theories" that they cling to unreasonably? It might be worth considering one or two cases so we can establish why that might be.
    Just what I see on forums such as this one. I know there are more than a few cranks and crazies who come on thinking Einstein was an idiot compared to themselves, but I also see people with new ideas and wanting to discuss them, a kind of informal cyber peer review, if you will, and the senior members and even the moderators calling him ignorant. Besides childish name-calling they will not say why the new idea is wrong. I really hate it when some wide-eyed newbie comes on with, " Why can't....?" And some hard-boiled troll with a PhD in 'Hard Science' simply responds, "Nope. Impossible."

    How is such a response. How is such a person any better than Doctor Dino?

    But pardon me. I fear I am digressing from the original topic.
    And what does the Lord require of you but to love justice, to be merciful and to walk humbly with Him?
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    Quote Originally Posted by 甘肃人 View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by exchemist View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by 甘肃人 View Post
    I like your question, Jagella, and I appreciate exchemist's answer. it's good to see no one is lumping all Christian's together. However, don't you think that scientifically minded people are often stubborn and dogmatic as well? True scientists should never be so, but I find many champions of the scientific method and reason are often as set in their ways as the creationists. So, yes, opposition to science is inevitable; as is opposition to new scientific thought by the scientifically minded who are stuck in their set beliefs about science up until when they finished school. What I am saying is it is human nature to resist change to one's beliefs. The scientifically minded may think they are open to the destruction of their pet theories, but many of them are not.
    Possibly so, but I have yet to encounter a scientifically trained person who does not find new science, overturning previous ideas, exciting. That is what makes science live, after all. Just imagine: when I was a child, plate tectonics had not been formulated and I was taught mountains formed by the contraction of the Earth inside its skin as it cooled. But plate tectonics at a stroke explained all about mountain building, vulcanism, earthquakes and various other phenomena, such as magnetisation bands on the sea floor. Exciting!

    When I was at university, spontaneous emission by atoms and molecules had no explanation, but since then QED has come along and we know have a theory linked to vacuum fluctuations. Exciting!

    When I was young, people thought evolution was just a slow and uniform process. Today we have punctuated equilibrium and a number of different dynamic mechanisms for genetic change that were not known at all. Exciting!

    Where some non-scientists go wrong, it seems to me, is in failing to understand the difference between developments such as these on the one hand and pseudo-scientific ideas, such as Intelligent Design for example, or other pet notions they have, on the other. I have often seen such people moan that scientists reject such things due to being "closed-minded", when in fact that is not the reason at all - the ideas are simply not scientific ones in the first place.

    Do you have examples of scientists refusing to entertain specific scientific advances, or of what you call "pet theories" that they cling to unreasonably? It might be worth considering one or two cases so we can establish why that might be.
    Just what I see on forums such as this one. I know there are more than a few cranks and crazies who come on thinking Einstein was an idiot compared to themselves, but I also see people with new ideas and wanting to discuss them, a kind of informal cyber peer review, if you will, and the senior members and even the moderators calling him ignorant. Besides childish name-calling they will not say why the new idea is wrong. I really hate it when some wide-eyed newbie comes on with, " Why can't....?" And some hard-boiled troll with a PhD in 'Hard Science' simply responds, "Nope. Impossible."

    How is such a response. How is such a person any better than Doctor Dino?

    But pardon me. I fear I am digressing from the original topic.
    Well you have a point certainly, in that some people here are very unforgiving of those who know less than they do. Some are actually quite gratuitously rude on occasion and I don't defend them.

    However I think you need to distinguish between the innocent "Why can't……?" and the people who come to a forum to air their pet theory and then proceed to demonstrate total ignorance of the established science they are trying to replace, and quite often total inability to think scientifically, into the bargain. The rudeness of people here towards the latter is not evidence of stubbornness or inability to relinquish established ideas. It is simply intolerance of fools and nutters.

    I've often made the point that there is no obligation on the part of anyone, not even a scientist, to listen patiently to the ravings of every nutter on the street corner. If we did that, we'd waste all our time. Everyone is entitled to screen the utterances of another, especially if they have no prior record, to see if they are worth paying attention to or not.

    I'd also point out that new advances in science, such as those I gave as examples, are reported in the press after papers have been published and get widely discussed. People who have done original work like that do not come first to an internet forum to tell the world about it, do they?
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    I may have given this example on the forum before. I have an interest in, among other things, Martian meteorites. That is meteorites from Mars, not meteorites that fall on Mars. I have in excess of one hundred and twenty (120) research papers on the subject. I have studied these and other material on the web and in text books.

    On the basis of this I feel I am entitled, were the opportunity to arise, to ask someone well versed in this area some basic questions on the topic. I do not feel I have the right, or - more importantly - the background - to postulate a new theory about Martian meteorites. I might just have enough justification and knowledge to ask a tentative question that might suggest a new perspective on these objects. I would expect the expert answer would very likely clarify my thinking and demonstrate that I was headed in the wrong direction.

    This is not false modesty on my part. I am not a modest person. This is an objective and realistic assessment of the intellect and knowledge required to come up with a radical new hypothesis.

    Yet we get a stream, never-ending it seems, of persons who with far less meaningful study have a new take, not just on a fringe area like Martian meteorites, but upon Relativity, or evolution, or the Big Bang. They claim to think outside the box, but have no idea where the box is, or what it contains.

    The truth is there are silly ideas and there are silly people only to ready to create, or believe in silly ideas. It is right to dismiss them promptly and directly.
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    Quote Originally Posted by exchemist View Post
    My own feeling is that the US spirit of individualism sometimes brings with it a kind of breezy anti-intellectualism. Thus, systems of belief that do not recognise any authority, nor rely on bodies of prior scholarship, have a certain simple and direct appeal.
    I have noticed that many religious people seem defiant towards science and other modern disciplines. I'm not sure why. Perhaps they resent the lack of any kind of promised paradise on the part of science.

    Mainstream Christianity, by contrast, having doctrines that are taught by a clerical hierarchy, is built on the thought of scholars and theologians down the centuries. Since this has been studied in the same universities that have studied natural science, the theology, the hierarchies and thus the doctrines have to some degree adapted to these discoveries.
    Ironically, I was taught the Theory of Evolution by my Catholic schooling. Most of the Christians I know do not accept the Theory of Evolution, however.

    I think too that the much-discussed "culture wars", between educated and socially liberal metropolitans vs. rural, poorly educated, conservatives, also play a role. In this context, I have long held the view that the democratisation of knowledge brought to us by the internet, while it has many advantages, also has given rise to the "Stupid Society", in which idiotic beliefs are frequently given equal air time with sensible ones.
    I've seen plenty of "idiotic beliefs" online and not just on the part of the religious. I'll never forget an atheist in an online forum who became angry with me because I oppose euthanasia. He cursed at me and told me that upon entering a cancer ward I would want to see the patients there dead! So that's the solution to cancer; if you can't cure it, then kill everybody who gets it.

    Jagella
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    Quote Originally Posted by 甘肃人 View Post
    it's good to see no one is lumping all Christian's together. However, don't you think that scientifically minded people are often stubborn and dogmatic as well?
    It might seem like some scientists are dogmatic, but if they are dogmatic, then they're not practicing good science. Science should always be open to change if the evidence warrants it.

    What I am saying is it is human nature to resist change to one's beliefs.
    Such resistance is normally wise. Many of us spend many years developing ways of thinking that seem right to us. It would be foolish to change such beliefs at the first objection to them. Resistance to change is good if a person has good reasons to be wary of that change. Again, change in one's thinking is prudent only if the evidence warrants it.

    Jagella
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    Quote Originally Posted by exchemist View Post
    Do you have examples of scientists refusing to entertain specific scientific advances, or of what you call "pet theories" that they cling to unreasonably? It might be worth considering one or two cases so we can establish why that might be.
    Einstein rejected quantum mechanics insisting that "God does not play dice with the universe." Einstein's objection was based more on his philosophy than his science.

    Jagella
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    Surely, Einstein's position on this was more a matter of "I can see the evidence supports this concept, but I don't like it". That's a different thing.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jagella View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by exchemist View Post
    Do you have examples of scientists refusing to entertain specific scientific advances, or of what you call "pet theories" that they cling to unreasonably? It might be worth considering one or two cases so we can establish why that might be.
    Einstein rejected quantum mechanics insisting that "God does not play dice with the universe." Einstein's objection was based more on his philosophy than his science.

    Jagella
    Yes John G is right. Einstein in fact got his Nobel prize for a piece of quantum physics (the Photoelectric Effect). He was philosophically troubled by the implications of QM but had no hesitation in recognising its success as a model.
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    Quote Originally Posted by exchemist View Post
    Einstein in fact got his Nobel prize for a piece of quantum physics (the Photoelectric Effect). He was philosophically troubled by the implications of QM but had no hesitation in recognising its success as a model.
    I believe Einstein's main objection to quantum mechanics was that it maintained that there are some things we cannot know with certainty. He and two other associates published a paper which stated that Quantum Mechanics was "an incomplete view of reality." Many years later John Bell proved them wrong.

    Or so that's the way the story goes!

    Jagella
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    Universal Mind John Galt's Avatar
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    So, that leaves us still waiting for you to respond to exchemists challenge: Do you have examples of scientists refusing to entertain specific scientific advances, or of what you call "pet theories" that they cling to unreasonably?
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    Quote Originally Posted by John Galt View Post
    So, that leaves us still waiting for you to respond to exchemists challenge: Do you have examples of scientists refusing to entertain specific scientific advances, or of what you call "pet theories" that they cling to unreasonably?
    Unfortunately, there are many, I'll mention just a few:

    1. Maurice Allais, Nobel Prize for Economics, polymath, known for anti-relativity publications.
    2. William Shockley, Nobel Prize for Physics, known for his theories on dysgenetic effects.
    3. Other anti-relativists: Louis Essen (of atomic clock fame), Herbert Ives (of the Ives-Stilwell experiment, oh, the irony!), Friedwardt Winterberg (also of atomic clocks/GPS fame, Nazi sympathizer), Phillip Lenard , Johannes Stark (Nobel Prize for Physics, fullblown Nazis).
    Last edited by Howard Roark; September 27th, 2014 at 06:56 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Howard Roark View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by John Galt View Post
    So, that leaves us still waiting for you to respond to exchemists challenge: Do you have examples of scientists refusing to entertain specific scientific advances, or of what you call "pet theories" that they cling to unreasonably?
    Unfortunately, there are many, I'll mention just a few:

    1. Maurice Allais, Nobel Prize for Economics, polymath, known for anti-relativity publications.
    2. William Shockley, Nobel Prize for Physics, known for his theories on dysgenetic effects.
    3. Other anti-relativists: Louis Essen (of atomic clock fame), Herbert Ives (of the Ives-Stilwell experiment, oh, the irony!), Friedwardt Winterberg (also of atomic clocks/GPS fame, Nazi sympathizer), Phillip Lenard , Johannes Stark (Nobel Prize for Physics, fullblown Nazis).
    Thanks for this, Howard. I'm not sure whether our friend with the Chinese characters is still reading this thread, but these examples are possibly instructive. I notice 3 out of 7 had extreme politics (being Nazis or Nazi sympathisers) and two of the other 4 refused to accept science in areas outside their own field of expertise.

    I was not trying to argue it never happens - scientists are liable to the same human frailties as other people - but I would argue it is unusual enough to attract ridicule, rather than being typical of scientists.
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    Quote Originally Posted by exchemist View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Howard Roark View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by John Galt View Post
    So, that leaves us still waiting for you to respond to exchemists challenge: Do you have examples of scientists refusing to entertain specific scientific advances, or of what you call "pet theories" that they cling to unreasonably?
    Unfortunately, there are many, I'll mention just a few:

    1. Maurice Allais, Nobel Prize for Economics, polymath, known for anti-relativity publications.
    2. William Shockley, Nobel Prize for Physics, known for his theories on dysgenetic effects.
    3. Other anti-relativists: Louis Essen (of atomic clock fame), Herbert Ives (of the Ives-Stilwell experiment, oh, the irony!), Friedwardt Winterberg (also of atomic clocks/GPS fame, Nazi sympathizer), Phillip Lenard , Johannes Stark (Nobel Prize for Physics, fullblown Nazis).
    Thanks for this, Howard. I'm not sure whether our friend with the Chinese characters is still reading this thread, but these examples are possibly instructive. I notice 3 out of 7 had extreme politics (being Nazis or Nazi sympathisers) and two of the other 4 refused to accept science in areas outside their own field of expertise.

    I was not trying to argue it never happens - scientists are liable to the same human frailties as other people - but I would argue it is unusual enough to attract ridicule, rather than being typical of scientists.
    Yes, I agree, it is not typical but there are surprisingly large numbers. I have had the pleasure of meeting Winterberg, he is a piece of work.
    There are a lot of lesser "scientists" that I have had the "honor" to meet, all of them full professors (Mohammad Shafiq Khan, Santosh Devasia, C.S. Unnikrishnan, SJG Gift, H.Thim) , just to name a few (there are more) all of them antirelativists. It is fun winding them just to see them trip over themselves.
    Last edited by Howard Roark; September 28th, 2014 at 05:25 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jagella View Post
    Hi Friends:

    Many of you may be familiar with "Doctor" Kent Hovind. He might be described as a "young earth creationist" which is to say that he believes that the world was created 6,000 years ago in the fashion described in Genesis chapters 1 and 2. Hovind argues that not only is the Theory of Evolution wrong but that the Theory of Relativity (both special and general) and the Big Bang theory are wrong. Life did not evolve over millions of years, the earth is not millions of years old, and the speed of light is not constant.

    Rather than argue against Hovind's ideas I'm left wondering why he and many others hold such ideas to begin with. Creation of the world by the God of the Bible is a tenet of the Christian religion, of course, but it befuddles me how such a belief is said to be scientific or that the Theory of Evolution is not science but is a religion. Has our education system failed us, or is such opposition to science inevitable?

    Feedback would be appreciated!

    Jagella

    It may be a failure of education, reinforced by words that have evolved through popular usage.

    A few years ago ex-pres Bush suggested (in a way that sounded fair minded to some) that we should "teach both theories" in public schools.

    The two theories were creationism and evolution, and a theory is viewed as synonymous to a guess.

    His science adviser at the time later qualified this by stating (as I remember) "Intelligent design is not a scientific theory."


    Those religious beliefs and anti-science credos are often supported by friends, family, community, plus important leaders...why change 'em just because some overly intellectualized guy is saying you're wrong.

    Moreover, your religious beliefs and your god is "the same yesterday, and today, and forever" and this god has clearly stated "Be not carried about with divers and strange doctrines."

    Science comes up with divers and strange ideas.



    I think some of the creation science guys are caught up in a mission.

    At one time I posted on a history board, but I tired of working to refute the infinitesimal nagging bits of "information and evidence" thrown out by an active contingent of holocaust deniers.

    They'd use a scatter-gun approach to press their agenda and shape discussion.

    I sometimes wondered if they were true believers, or enjoyed the limelight, or just liked the fragile sense of superiority it may have provided.



    I can understand skepticism in response to some science vs. religion concepts... Big Bang or God as originator of the universe?

    Neither aligns with my intuition- or reflects the world I experience- let's call it the Furious Fart instead of the big bang.

    The Furious Fart theory plus the planet Uranus should serve to hold middle-schooler's interest in science.

    It'd be a start.
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    Quote Originally Posted by John Galt View Post
    So, that leaves us still waiting for you to respond to exchemists challenge: Do you have examples of scientists refusing to entertain specific scientific advances, or of what you call "pet theories" that they cling to unreasonably?
    To whom are you addressing this question, Mr. Galt?

    "I had to re-read the entire thread to determine that you were addressing the OP. It is conventional, as a courtesy to other members, that you indicate to whom you are replying." - John Galt (Post #10)


    And what does the Lord require of you but to love justice, to be merciful and to walk humbly with Him?
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    Quote Originally Posted by Howard Roark View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by exchemist View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Howard Roark View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by John Galt View Post
    So, that leaves us still waiting for you to respond to exchemists challenge: Do you have examples of scientists refusing to entertain specific scientific advances, or of what you call "pet theories" that they cling to unreasonably?
    Unfortunately, there are many, I'll mention just a few:

    1. Maurice Allais, Nobel Prize for Economics, polymath, known for anti-relativity publications.
    2. William Shockley, Nobel Prize for Physics, known for his theories on dysgenetic effects.
    3. Other anti-relativists: Louis Essen (of atomic clock fame), Herbert Ives (of the Ives-Stilwell experiment, oh, the irony!), Friedwardt Winterberg (also of atomic clocks/GPS fame, Nazi sympathizer), Phillip Lenard , Johannes Stark (Nobel Prize for Physics, fullblown Nazis).
    Thanks for this, Howard. I'm not sure whether our friend with the Chinese characters is still reading this thread, but these examples are possibly instructive. I notice 3 out of 7 had extreme politics (being Nazis or Nazi sympathisers) and two of the other 4 refused to accept science in areas outside their own field of expertise.

    I was not trying to argue it never happens - scientists are liable to the same human frailties as other people - but I would argue it is unusual enough to attract ridicule, rather than being typical of scientists.
    Yes, I agree, it is not typical but there are surprisingly large numbers. I have had the pleasure of meeting Winterberg, he is a piece of work.
    There are a lot of lesser "scientists" that I have had the "honor" to meet, all of them full professors (Mohammad Shafiq Khan, Santosh Devasia, C.S. Unnikrishnan, SJG Gift, H.Thim) , just to name a few (there are more) all of them antirelativists. It is fun winding them just to see them trip over themselves.
    What a mischievous fellow you are. Are these people all actually employed to teach physics? At what institutions?
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  22. #21  
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    Quote Originally Posted by exchemist View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Howard Roark View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by exchemist View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Howard Roark View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by John Galt View Post
    So, that leaves us still waiting for you to respond to exchemists challenge: Do you have examples of scientists refusing to entertain specific scientific advances, or of what you call "pet theories" that they cling to unreasonably?
    Unfortunately, there are many, I'll mention just a few:

    1. Maurice Allais, Nobel Prize for Economics, polymath, known for anti-relativity publications.
    2. William Shockley, Nobel Prize for Physics, known for his theories on dysgenetic effects.
    3. Other anti-relativists: Louis Essen (of atomic clock fame), Herbert Ives (of the Ives-Stilwell experiment, oh, the irony!), Friedwardt Winterberg (also of atomic clocks/GPS fame, Nazi sympathizer), Phillip Lenard , Johannes Stark (Nobel Prize for Physics, fullblown Nazis).
    Thanks for this, Howard. I'm not sure whether our friend with the Chinese characters is still reading this thread, but these examples are possibly instructive. I notice 3 out of 7 had extreme politics (being Nazis or Nazi sympathisers) and two of the other 4 refused to accept science in areas outside their own field of expertise.

    I was not trying to argue it never happens - scientists are liable to the same human frailties as other people - but I would argue it is unusual enough to attract ridicule, rather than being typical of scientists.
    Yes, I agree, it is not typical but there are surprisingly large numbers. I have had the pleasure of meeting Winterberg, he is a piece of work.
    There are a lot of lesser "scientists" that I have had the "honor" to meet, all of them full professors (Mohammad Shafiq Khan, Santosh Devasia, C.S. Unnikrishnan, SJG Gift, H.Thim) , just to name a few (there are more) all of them antirelativists. It is fun winding them just to see them trip over themselves.
    What a mischievous fellow you are. Are these people all actually employed to teach physics? At what institutions?
    Sadly , they are. Thim is retired (thankfully), SJGift is someplace in Trinidad & Tobago, Santosh Devasia is at U of Washington, "prof" C.S. Unnikrishnan is at Tata Institute of Fundamental Research, Mohammad Shafiq Khan claims to be a lecturer but I think he is lying.
    Last edited by Howard Roark; September 29th, 2014 at 11:11 AM.
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  23. #22  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Howard Roark View Post
    Sadly , they are. Thim is retired (thankfully), SJGift is someplace in Trinidad & Tobago, Santosh Devasia is at U of Washington, "prof" C.S. Unnikrishnan is at Tata Institute of Fundamental Research, Mohammad Shafiq Khan claims to be a lecturer but I think he is lying.
    …and I notice Devasia is an Engineer, not a physicist. So again, someone playing well out of position - and who consequently ends up speaking ex ano.

    We had another thread speculating on why it often seems to be engineers that go in for crackpot science…….
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    Quote Originally Posted by exchemist View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Howard Roark View Post
    Sadly , they are. Thim is retired (thankfully), SJGift is someplace in Trinidad & Tobago, Santosh Devasia is at U of Washington, "prof" C.S. Unnikrishnan is at Tata Institute of Fundamental Research, Mohammad Shafiq Khan claims to be a lecturer but I think he is lying.
    …and I notice Devasia is an Engineer, not a physicist. So again, someone playing well out of position - and who consequently ends up speaking ex ano.

    We had another thread speculating on why it often seems to be engineers that go in for crackpot science…….
    Yep, I had the pleasure to smack him around. It was a lot of fun.
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  25. #24  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Howard Roark View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by exchemist View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Howard Roark View Post
    Sadly , they are. Thim is retired (thankfully), SJGift is someplace in Trinidad & Tobago, Santosh Devasia is at U of Washington, "prof" C.S. Unnikrishnan is at Tata Institute of Fundamental Research, Mohammad Shafiq Khan claims to be a lecturer but I think he is lying.
    …and I notice Devasia is an Engineer, not a physicist. So again, someone playing well out of position - and who consequently ends up speaking ex ano.

    We had another thread speculating on why it often seems to be engineers that go in for crackpot science…….
    Yep, I had the pleasure to smack him around. It was a lot of fun.
    Ah yes, the game we all secretly love, of "Whack-a-Crank".

    (By the way this is one reason why I am not sure Dwyddyr would be a good choice for Mod: he'd get rid of the cranks, but we might end up a bit bored, twiddling our thumbs and waiting for someone to say something scientific.)
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  26. #25  
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    Quote Originally Posted by exchemist View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Howard Roark View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by exchemist View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Howard Roark View Post
    Sadly , they are. Thim is retired (thankfully), SJGift is someplace in Trinidad & Tobago, Santosh Devasia is at U of Washington, "prof" C.S. Unnikrishnan is at Tata Institute of Fundamental Research, Mohammad Shafiq Khan claims to be a lecturer but I think he is lying.
    …and I notice Devasia is an Engineer, not a physicist. So again, someone playing well out of position - and who consequently ends up speaking ex ano.

    We had another thread speculating on why it often seems to be engineers that go in for crackpot science…….
    Yep, I had the pleasure to smack him around. It was a lot of fun.
    Ah yes, the game we all secretly love, of "Whack-a-Crank".

    (By the way this is one reason why I am not sure Dwyddyr would be a good choice for Mod: he'd get rid of the cranks, but we might end up a bit bored, twiddling our thumbs and waiting for someone to say something scientific.)
    This is exactly what I promised to do. There are enough educated cranks , like MagiMaster to whack around. They are a lot more interesting than the uneducated ones.
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  27. #26  
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    Seeing as Howard is currently unable to defend himself, I'll just point out that that is solely his opinion. (I can't just leave that statement completely uncontested.)
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