On puzzles, science and Real Reality


In a comment at WUWT, Roger Carr wrote on October 10, 2010 at 8:41 pm…

feet2thefire says: (October 10, 2010 at 7:50 pm) I’ve also asked quite a few questions here without getting very many responses.

I do read your questions, Feet, and puzzle; but I do not have the science which would give my answers any value — so your musings do have an effect (and I read timeline left to right…).</blockquote>

Thanks, Roger, for the feedback.

Roger, I am a generalist mostly, with a lot of off-topic info that I meld into my thinking processes.  I very much appreciate the more focused folks here, and know enough to ask them what I hope are decent and thought-expanding questions.  With a wide array of info sitting around in my head, sometimes non-obvious questions come to mind.

All the scientists of old that I look up to were also metaphysicians and natural philosophers.  Most of them were seeking answers to the wider questions of reality.  To be that way they had to have taken a “liberal education” quite seriously, to have been able to take up the baton handed them by their forebears and run with it.  So, while the narrow focus of most of these posts and comments are on AGW and specifics of scientific progress, discoveries, surprises and skepticism among factions, there is a broader picture that a Newton or a Hooke or a Franklin or a Laplace would have brought to the fray.  I think the greatest development of Western Society was the Scottish Enlightenment, which began with the first universal education in the world.  Our world would not have been possible without the concept of “every person is entitled to be educated.”  (They included adult education in that, beginning in 1700 – and many, many adults began studying Greek and Latin so they could read the ancient books in their original tongues.)

Education is not about acquiring PhDs and then attaining tenure and the admiration of academic peers.  Education is about people acquiring understanding of the real world around them – and having a perspective that incorporates that knowledge into a populace of good and decent people.  Part of that is the assumption that educated people live more productive and happier lives.
I am not going to ever contribute anything major over at WUWT or here on this blog.  All I can hope for is that I might trigger some discussion in new directions, by sometimes bringing in commentary on the broader picture.  The science I of AGW I grasp for the most part; the statistics I get the bare bones of; the future of inquiry is what I am most concerned with.  I see the Michael Mann types of the world attempting to bully the minds of everyone, trying to shut down the inquisitiveness and practical thinking of everyone else – to tyrannize people, in short.  I side with those he is trying to victimize, skeptics and warmers both.  I FEEL for Keith Briffa, that he had to distort his work, against his will, just so he could remain a part of “the team.”  I happen to think that it was Phil Jones who leaked the Climategate files (and then hid away for months), because he couldn’t stomache the lying.  I feel for all the world that something has been put forth as true that simply is not true, and I think some people on the inside feel the same way.

I fully expect that by 2100 80% of our current paradigms will prove to have been misguided (as in wrong).  And that isn’t only because of wrong thinking.  History shows this to be the case, more or less.  And with our acquisition of information increasing all the time, the turnover rate in paradigms is increasing, not decreasing.

I have come to see blogs as a clearing house of ideas, which interchange will trigger thought toward what I call “real reality” – the science that isn’t just paradigms, but REALLY based on the underlying processes that science is only just just beginning to learn.  A lot of what is thought to be known now is wrong – dead ends.  As Tom van Flandern and the late David Bohm have pointed out, the clues come when you see patches upon patches, epicycles upon epicycles – then you know we have to back up, and find out how far to back up, in order to move forward again.  There will be a lot of unlearning to do.

Given the state of conformity in science, the overthrow of the present concepts won’t come from the inside – <em>e.g., look at the warmers</em> – how many new ideas are coming out of that camp?  Everything is incremental or “filling in the gaps.”  There is just a LOT of assumption that “the science is settled,” so we can only build on what others have done.  And yet, like this vent article shows, they bump up against reality and some of them begin to wake up.  It amazes me, however, how little humility they show in between bumping into something that blows their ideas out of the water.  It is <em>hubris-hubris-hubris-BUMP!-humility-regroup-hubris-hubris-hubris</em>…

A lot of the hubris is them thinking that no one without credentials has the capacity for logical thought or capacity to put two and two together – or to understand anything more complicated than 4th grade science.  (Hence <em>every</em> article on these subjects is 90% repetition of 4th grade science – if that – 5% new facts and 5% barely supported speculation.)  That is the source of their disdain and mockery and discounting and downright ridicule of WUWT and CA.  They also do not acknowledge their own speculations as such, but if non-credentialed folks mull things over on their own, well that won’t do.  Especially if the outsiders don’t blindly accept the science as being settled, which we aren’t entitled to do.

Granted, some of us do NOT know how to think un-sloppily (on both sides of the AGW issue).  Hopefully I don’t do that often.  I try my best, but asking good questions does mean taking a leap sometimes.

It is all about the questions.  We will never get to <em>real reality</em> if we do not ask the right questions.  One would think that a PhD and a thorough exposure to the fundamentals would allow them to start asking the right questions.  Something is wrong with science when that exposure takes them farther from real reality.

I am a generalist of sorts, with a lot of off-topic info that I meld into my thinking processes.  I very much appreciate the more focused folks here, and know enough to ask them what I hope are decent and thought-expanding questions.  With a wide array of info sitting around in my head, sometimes non-obvious questions come to mind.  All I can hope for is that I might trigger some discussion in new directions.

I fully expect that by 2100 80% of our current paradigms will prove to have been misguided (as in wrong).  And that isn’t only because of wrong thinking.  History shows this to be the case, more or less.  And with our acquisition of information increasing all the time, the turnover rate in paradigms is increasing, not decreasing.

I have come to see blogs as a clearing house of ideas, which interchange will trigger thought toward what I call “real reality” – the science that isn’t just paradigms, but REALLY based on the underlying processes that science is only just just beginning to learn.  A lot of what is thought to be known now is wrong – dead ends.  As Tom van Flandern and the late David Bohm have pointed out, the clues come when you see patches upon patches, epicycles upon epicycles – then you know we have to back up, and find out how far to back up, in order to move forward again.  There will be a lot of unlearning to do.

Given the state of conformity in science, the overthrow of the present concepts won’t come from the inside – <em>e.g., look at the warmers</em> – how many new ideas are coming out of that camp?  Everything is incremental or “filling in the gaps.”  There is just a LOT of assumption that “the science is settled,” so we can only build on what others have done.  And yet, like this vent article shows, they bump up against reality and some of them begin to wake up.  It amazes me, however, how little humility they show in between bumping into something that blows their ideas out of the water.  It is <em>hubris-hubris-hubris-BUMP!-humility-regroup-hubris-hubris-hubris</em>…

A lot of the hubris is them thinking that no one without credentials has the capacity for logical thought or capacity to put two and two together – or to understand anything more complicated than 4th grade science.  (Hence <em>every</em> article on these subjects is 90% repetition of 4th grade science – if that – 5% new facts and 5% barely supported speculation.)  That is the source of their disdain and mockery and discounting and downright ridicule of WUWT and CA.  They also do not acknowledge their own speculations as such, but if non-credentialed folks mull things over on their own, well that won’t do.  Especially if the outsiders don’t blindly accept the science as being settled, which we aren’t entitled to do.

Granted, some of us do NOT know how to think un-sloppily (on both sides of the AGW issue).  Hopefully I don’t do that often.  I try my best, but asking good questions does mean taking a leap sometimes.

It is all about the questions.  We will never get to <em>real reality</em> if we do not ask the right questions.  One would think that a PhD and a thorough exposure to the fundamentals would allow them to start asking the right questions.  Something is wrong with science when that exposure takes them farther from real reality.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s