New book: The left’s stealth war to redefine science
|October 2, 2012||Posted by News under Science, Books of interest, News|
And you thought it was all coming from the right?
In “Stealth war to redefine science” (USA Today, September 27, 2012), Alex Berezow, editor ofRealClearScience, and Hank Campbell, founder of Science 2.0 argue that “social sciences” are not really sciences:
Not all studies within the hard sciences measure up. The majority of studies do, though. However, while there are notable exceptions, a substantial proportion of studies in the social sciences are not considered scientifically rigorous because the human experience is highly subjective and changeable across culture and time.
Second, the politics. It’s not a secret that academia, particularly the humanities, skews heavily left.
A recent survey by economics professor Daniel Klein revealed that Democrats outnumbered Republicans by a whopping 30-to-1 ratio in anthropology; 28-to-1 in sociology; nearly 10-to-1 in history; and nearly 7-to-1 in political science. In economics, which is widely considered “conservative” by other social fields, Republicans are merely outnumbered 3-to-1.
As psychology professor Jonathan Haidt, the liberal-turned-centrist would say, “This is a statistically impossible lack of diversity.” Yet, some progressives in academia and the news media justify it by referring to Democrats as “pro-science” and the Republicans as “anti-science,” rather than addressing the obvious lack of political tolerance in the modern world of universities. That partisanship has brought with it a willingness to discard science that refutes pet ideological causes appealing to the left. [Tell us something else we don’t know … ed.]
Thus, attempts to legitimize alternative medicine, to demand labels for genetically modified food and to ban plastic bags have taken hold.
An atmosphere like that invites scandals around misuse of data, such as the ones we’ve covered in recent years.
They have a new book out, Science Left Behind: Feel-Good Fallacies and the Rise of the Anti-Scientific Left: