Reasonable Nuts

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Monday, November 05, 2007

Is Nutrition Scientific Science Not Really Science?



A NYT article (of all places!) about how an elite group of people claiming to have a monopoly on truth, and claiming to have a moral imperative to make us live according to that truth, end up being victims and perpetrators of an especially pernicious strand groupthink strand of memetic virus.

The older I get, the more "science" just appears to be tales spun by wizen old men who live in enclosed communities immune from economic and ethical pressures of modern life (i.e. universities and government research labs). After years of hard-work, mindbreaking study and self-enforced hyper-maturity they are now where they've wanted to be since childhood: In the nursery playpen, where judgments of good and evil, cause and effect, and scarcity and plenty are completely under their control.

These "so-called" scientist perform ceremonies known as "experiments", a cascade of physical reactions they set in motion in an aim to determine their preconceived notions. They are rarely disappointed.

The exegesis of their doctrine are varied but all with a similar theme, like different colored threads on the same pattern of weave: "nature comes from natural and not supernatural processes", "pollution cause by CO2 cause by automobiles cause by people driving around doing stuff", "following you instincts about what to eat and drink will kill you . . . sooner than wanted."

All the outcomes of all their experiments are all aimed to prove one hypothesis, whether latently or overtly, "people who think and do differently from us think and do worse than us". Thus is exhibited the (natural) philosophers will to power--scientists interpret the universe as being one where scientists are the ideal of the universe.

Occasionally a rogue, contrarian, heretic scientist tries to upset their doctrine. Sometimes he's heroic, a nihilist who is wiling to throw himself and all his peers under the bus if, at one point in his life he can find something to believe, or at least something not to disbelieve. Other times he too operates under his own prodigious will to power; when he can't get himself crowned Pope, Antipope will do.

Either way, the beneficial effect is the same, and has been the same throughout all the generations: doctrine is exposed as being just that, and the old monks rearrange their doctrine as something that better imitates actual empirical truth before settling into the old, comfortable routine of chants and incantations to prove their holiness.

The older I get, the smarter Nietzsche gets.

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3 Comments:

Blogger Christopher said...

a couple of things re: the postmodern interpretation of "science" which irk me to no end:

1. conflating reductionism with science in all cases. it's more proper to do so in the hard sciences (as in biology can be reduced to chemistry, to physics, etc.), but this is not all that science is.

2. the notion of a "soft science" as being science at all, when often it is more art... highly subjective. the simple fact that 2 highly schooled individuals in the same field of study (e.g. economics) can arrive at mutually exclusive conclusions and be published in peer reviewed journals as authoritative sources of "science"... should tell one that this is hardly science. examples of oxymorons: "social scientist", "political scientist"... i could go on all day.

this embrace of #2 in our day has led inexorably to anyone with any sway of any kind being afforded authoritativeness in fields of study with which they have laughable levels of experience. e.g. Al Gore and climatology, Meryl Streep and pesticides, Oprah Winfrey and anything and all things.

11/20/2007 11:31 AM  
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Anonymous Anonymous said...

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