I’ve decided to try to keep this blog more active and take a slightly different approach to reflect day to day things that are happening. Visitors have been growing without me doing much of anything, which is cool. But the uncool reason is that they get here mainly due to “Bigfoot” search results. That should tell me something. I probably need to write more on that but it’s painful and it comes with unintended consequences. Besides, that makes my head hurt because Bigfoot stuff today is VERY stupid. I don’t call things “stupid” lightly. But this is nothing new. Many of you are fully aware of my *facepalming* past regarding cryptozoology.
Meanwhile, everyday, I check out what is delivered by two of the absolute BEST blogs out there ever: Science-Based Medicine and Respectful Insolence.
Not only are they often entertaining to read but provide great expert commentary on health topics, questionable claims AND how science works (or doesn’t work, which is often more instructive).
Orac has a piece today on that mentions pseudoscience, being sciencey and scientism. Some of my favorite topics.
That’s right. If you can’t prove your woo works through science, accuse your critics of “scientism”! Works every time. Well, not really. It’s one of the oldest, most transparent gambits in the book. It’s also hilarious in that it is clearly designed to cut science down a notch or two, to make it just one of any other “ways of knowing.” So how do cranks do that? They liken science to a religion! Yet they blather on and on about “soul,” “innate intelligence of the body,” and other spiritual, mystic, or outright religious concepts that they value. Oh, sure, Ji and his ilk gussy them up with the language of science, throwing around terms like “quantum,” non-locality, faster-than-light communication, to make his woo sound like science. In this, Ji is nothing more than a cut-rate Deepak Chopra.
Scientism is a topic I’d like to visit someday soon. It’s on my list because I see people around me resort to it. And I’ve been accused of it myself. It’s when you say science is everything – it can solve all the world’s problems and it’s the bestest thing ever bar none. There’s more to it than that. But you get the idea. However, I have learned that’s not the case. I’ll explain why after I get my thoughts together on that. Meanwhile, read that piece linked above. It’s fun.
I’ll be back soon.