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The real-life practice of science has cost more lives and created more suffering than any other human endeavor.
I didn't wanted to bring this. But this is so deeply wrong that it matters to me even in a personal way (but I still going to see this from a neutral perspective). This is the core of...well nearly all pseudoscience and new-age magic thinking in our times. So since you have putted 9 examples inside those links of what you ment because I'm going to try to adress them one by one.
And before we get to the list I will spoil a conclusion about your discourse from what I think all of this conversation can show. That ignorance and inhability to connect properly that sparse knowledge you (surely) have is the main reason that moves you to state things like this. That in a very presumptuous and pedantic way you are putting yourself above "the masses" and "the populace" using a reasoning that can only end in a very poor vision about science, politics in science, science education and the scientific community. Particularly I would say that your possition in these debates has more in common with the masses (if that philosophical category has any meaning for any rational person) and the romanticism of the folk, typical of self-enlightened uncomprehended geniuses that end to be favorable to fringe theories about politics and science, than to the more prudent, well informed and thoughtful postion of a reasonable debater. What I mean is that thinking education has to be focused for the purpouses each person has been assigned by a society and making all the other non-related-to-his-category topics unnecessary is the closest one can get to be a Social Darwinist instead of a thinking-out-of-the-box opponent of the Ivy league (something I still trying to understand from all that you said). What I mean is also that thinking that technology is not science or that science has caused much more harm than any other human endevour is the closest you can be from that populace you talk about. With sparse knowledge I mean that you have a lot of knowledge (you have exhibited it) but you are making a mistake calibrating the importance of each part of it in the exact same way a member of a bar tertulia would. This reminds me of the people that say "things that we know are wrong now were proposed by science so if science was wrong then why think science is right now? they are constantly wrong, how can you believe physicians more than those that propose alternative medicine if they caused so much pain across history with their erroneous theories?", saying that while thinking of themselves as smart people or even detached from the vast majority of the masses when what they really are is just simple-minded reactionaries.
Sorry if you feel ofended with all of this (is not my goal here) but I think I'm actually making a point here not insulting (if you feel ofended I would erase the post at your will). Also I think debates (across history and currently in academia) have to smell like this, people that want to engange in such important thing have to be prepared to be roasted and at the same time prepared to roast anyone who say stupid things. Also I wanted to note this not because I think this is an argument (it would be a terrible straw-man) but because before we stars with the list of thing you mentioned I want to make you know that from all this conversation the only thing I've learned in the end is this, more about you than anything about what you were saying. I think you should be more humble when stating your arguments and points (you can say the same but with the ears and more open mind) because in the end you are been very categorical with everything you say and the debate ends to be you and your inmovable concepts against the rest of the world (the sheeple) with their lack of security on themselves. Let's have a debate, not a sermon please.First important note
Science doesn't tell you what to do in an absolute way nor in a way that is abstracted from everything, but is true that the scientific method can tell you what are the best procedures to tackle some problems if you have an issue that has been identified previously as a problem. No absolute problems nor absolute solutions exist, only relative to a framework of understanding (an understanding that could perfecly be esoteric if you want). A problem can be identified from political, sociological, personal or religious means (the world doesn't have only mathematical problems). Is very debatible if a certain problem is a problem and in the debate there are always definitions that can perfectly be unscientific. You can then use the scientific method over those definitions (and maybe unscietific categories) to have a rational construct over them, but that doesn't mean the supossitions are in anyway rationally inspired. Also do problems exist for science? Science as a way of thinking abstracted from the particular point of view of each scientist doesn't care about problems or solutions, like a hammer doen't care about nailing a painting on the way. So problems in general are introduced from outside of science (because of needs or not) and then science is used to search a way to solve them in the most esquisite way possible.Second important note
Science is not finalistic. Science has no goals. People has goals, science do not. And the goals imposed upon science can be of any nature; can be scientifically inspired by the "poetry" of science, can be military goals, or the goals of a sect. Science has nothing to do with the goals politicians or people in general have nor with the reasons of the legitimacy behing those goals.Third important note
Science is not the scientific community. Scientists are persons and in the end the scientific community is a collection of social interactions. The accademia is full of wrong desitions. Departments and scientists are always fighting, even in an irrational way sometimes. Science in the other hand is both the set of knowledge about the nature of reality gained through the scientific method and the scientific method itself. Science therefore is not the same as the scientists and decision makers inside science. The scientific community can indeed lack of perspective many times, can be wrong in solving some debates and can in general be intoxicated by the same fears and ideas as the rest of society (because they are not detached from society). Scientist can be influenced in their scientific opinions by their political view, by their historical context (since the context could change the importance of certain evidences), etc... Science as a method is above that in some sense. Science has no values, science has no expectancy about anything science is just a tool.
For example: Newton had a lot of strange beliefs in numerology and esoterism around the bible. Was he then not a scientist? certainly he was a scientist and a well behaved one. Does the fact that he was a scientist makes his esoteric studies science? Not surely not.
Galileo believed in God! Einstein believed in God! Planck believed in God!
Do scientists prove that god exists? No.
Do scientists believe in god? Yes (some).
Do science proved god? No.
Do scientists thinking about god are thinking scientifically because they are scientists? No, no and no.
But I can understand the confusion between science and the scientific community, since of all the society the members of the scientific community are the least prone to unscientific thinking in general terms. They use the scientific method for their job and in their field of study, but they also try to be consequent with that way of thinking outside their field of knowledge and also they tend to bring their lives in harmony with that way of thinking, being rational when they have to take ordinary decisions or engage in a discussion with other people. I think that is espectable also. Scientists know how to use the scientific method and use it a lot so that their entire worldview can be adapted to that way of thinking in verious degrees. Many scientists don't do this. Many scientists believe stupid things, there are doctors that don't believe in the big bang, there are geologists that believe in homeopathy and there are chemists that think white people are superior to others, but none of them can support their opinion using scientific arguments even knowing the tools of science.
Also is important to note that the scientific community has a lot of social mechanism to prevent and reduce unscientific thinking between scientists. You have the critics, the stigmatization, the lost of credibility when not using a propper scientific method to back your statements.
A good scientists can make good science once and do pseudoscience in an other field or even in the same field but with another topic. Take for example Francis Crick, discoverer of the double helix of DNA and aplauded by other scientists for that but at the same time a man that claims that black people are genetically disposed to grow less intelligent (something unproved by the standards of the scientific method and even disproved by actual science), something that has been used in the scitific community to destroy his reputation. Or take Lynn Margulis, proponent of the magnificent endosymbiotic theory in biology but at the same time a 9/11 truther that has no propper evidence to back up her claims.EUGENICS
Do you really think Eugenics has something to do with actual science?
You have to bear in mind were Eugenics comes from. The darwininan theory of natural selection and newtonian mechanics are so powerfull as concepts and as explanatory and predictability machines that a few centuries ago a whole philosphy was born around it: Positivism. But positivism is not Science, is just a believe that science has god-like properties and in the way they asignet to it values and characteristics that are totally unscientific (something that many many scientists noted at the time). Glorifying science to the point of crying for the goddess of reason or to the point of saying that human beings are the epithome of natural selection is not glorifying science anymore, is just having faith and faith in some very mundane and irrational values. Positivism was awesome in many aspects but it was just another philosophical current. The fact that it was inspired by science and science success does not make it a science. Also the fact that many scientists were charmed by this current doesn't mean that science archived their conclusions in social matters for example (bear in mind the third important note). Also I don't think many of the scientists who addered to positivism were just persuaded by a cult, no, the idea of science as a new revolution was part of their historical context, and the fight was still harsh against the religious institutions that had the previous century tried to strnagle every attempt of a secular scientific vision on every day issues like the administration of the state etc... I don't blame them at all.
Positivism finally was deformed with our everyday scientifism (that has little to do with science). Many powerfull politicians understanded the importance of science for the empowering of nations (see politics in the industrial revolution) and thus the positivistic aproach of making science a valuable thing for social an political affairs (something I found very important for the establishment of social rights) was finally embeded in the ideology of the imperial, industrial and colonialistic England. The misc between scientifism (nothing to do with science once again) and the hegemonical ideology of the lords (something that has little to do with science also) ended in a philosphy called Social Darwinism. (we are getting closer to the thing that matters here).
Social darwinism is just a pseudoscience, a body of knowledge mixed with the idea that Europe has an historical trend of progress that makes it superior in all aspects to any other nation, the idea that races exist, that inteligence can be measured by measuring the skull, that porr people are less proactive and are like beasts, that the colonies existed because the indegenous where evolutionary adapted to perform the work of animals while the Aryans were capable of the intellectual experience that has modeled history, that disabled were a social problem in the sense they cantagiate their inhabilities to others and made man weaker and less pure etc... If you see something scientific about all of this tell me because I can't see it, and neither couldn't see the scientific arguments behind social darwinism many many scientist of the time. Phrenology is an example of this classist, racist, colonial thinking embeded with the importance of a really scientific theory like the one of darwinian evolution.
Eugenics is just an expression of those irrational believes that for political and historical reasons were put forward by the Social Darwinists. Nazis took Eugenics as an important part of their policy because the scientifism in eugenics gave their values an aura of scientific meaning. Scientist were not deceived by this at that time (at least the vast majority, but again bear in mind scientists are not Science) but fascists, imperialists and others were. They thought that is was a scientific fact that Europe and the US were superior in a genetically rooted way (there is no science behind that statement) and they used science as an excuse, but no actual science was involved in Eugenics, the programs were initiated by fascists and other political figures in Europe and the US. The terrible thing is that still today we have people (like you) deceived with the idea Eugenics was scientifically in its core when it was not.
Another very important thing to show why Social Darwinism and apendices like Eugenics are pseudoscience or mystical beliefs is to think about the why. Why? Why the fact that the weakest dies and the strongest survive in nature (something that is completly wrong from a darwinian point of view by the way) should be followed as a model for society? Does the fact that newtonian mechanics say that in a collision between two bodies moving at the same speed the massive object should tranfer more energy means that the richest should give more money to the poorer? Does the fact that Earth was formed by the acreation of millions of minor bodies means that to build a better personality I should smash many personalities together? Does the fact that Dinosaurs died means that I should kill all the lizards because that is their destiny?
No, it doesn't make sense. Those are the kind of connections proposed by Eugenics. Spurious non related subjective valorations that went connected not by scientists but by colonialists and conservative politicians that believed in the manifest destiny of their race and the danger of the weakneses. This all has to do with the first and second important notes you read before. If science can't establish the goals and can't tell you what is the universally "good" procedure, Who established the goals of science? and why they concluded science was telling them to sterilize disabeled persons?
Don't blame science for Eugenics, blame the unscientific thinking that eroded the scientific endevour since them with theosophy and other religious cults.NUCLEAR BOMBS
This is another example. You are blaming a political decision on science (not even on scientists). You think science told us to make nuclear weapons? No, we told us to make them.
Fourth important note: Science does not evaluate good or evil, those are subjective concepts or even social constructs (I would say that good and evil are in particular a dichotomical view of the universe that is specific for the abrahamic religions) that have nothing to do with science. Science can evaluate what's positive or negative for the acomplishment of a goal. In fact the main reason positivism is called like that is because they started showing that the good in science is called the positive acomplishment of an objective. Who points to the objective? Not the science that's for sure.
Look at it as an instrument. If your goal is to murder people nuclear physics can show you a path to that, if your goal is saving lives nuclear physics can also show you a path (look at all the medical aplications of the nuclear research when you havce a moment: it's really astonishing how many lives that has saved) or if your goal is to power the industry of a country nuclear physics has other solutions for you. In ANY way nuclear physics research has to be blamed for murder, blame nuclear powers and their exterior politics.
Also I might notice that a huge part of the scientific community aligned their goals with politicians (and viceversa) because the context were nuclear weapons were developed was the menace of fascism taking over the entire world (they feelt like that like the vast majority of Americans and Europeans since nazis were unstopable until the Soviets started to sacrifice their whole society to stop them). You can read about Einstein and Oppenheimer been very horrified by the use of nuclear weapons after the war and only having their hearts in place by the fact they trully though nazis had to be stopped (even if the military never used them against the nazis in the end). Also bear in mind that nazis were also developing the nuclear bomb so it was a matter of strategy not of science. Again, scientists fell with the same values of their context, if you want you can blame them, but don't blame science because science didn't told them to fight in the war, it was policitcal decisions, and fear who told them to do so. And even with that the vast majority of the scientific community was against nuclear armament (but non would have been against nuclear research) since they created many platforms to fight against them during the cold war.
This reminds me a lot about the argument: "If kids didn't played so much to those violent videogames there would not be so many muerderers". Well, no, If a guy murders someone the fault is from him not from the videogame he played. Also one should suspect that a guy capable of murder does not need a videogame to be a psycho in the first place.
This is similar. The political and the military wanted a nuclear bomb. They financed research for that. People need to eat and toi feed their families (also scientists), an agressor was developing the same weapons so it had to be counteracted. But in any way you can say science did that. It was people, people that was wrong (or not) about their decissions.GREAT LEAP FORWARD
I don't know exactly what you mean with this. Don't confuse the political program of the Great Leap Forward with the actual implementation, don't confuse the actual implementations with industrialisation, don't cunfuse industrialisation with death. By blaming science on this you are firstly evaluating a political program out of contect and after that accusing the lest probable agent in the entire affair. Politics made the Great Leap Forward.
Even if I accepted that this makes any sense I will tell you that the basics of the agricultural reform were (initially) inspired by pseudoscience not by science. Trofim Lysenko was a pseudobiologist of the soviet union that had much power because certain parts of soviets politics considered it to be usefull for some purpouses (they then retracted also, and it was never a matter of science but a matter of political fight between sectors of the soviet bureau). The guy and his theories had never much credit from the scientific community, even in russia the accademia condemned the election of that guy. It was a clear pseudoscientists in the face of all legitimate science. He even denied darwinian evolution. The soviet decission with this was considered by soviet politics as a big error. But a big political error. Science has nothing to do with this. The chinese adopted part of lysenkoism in the agricultural reform.
But that is not to blame on science but pseudoscience and bad political decissions when tools as agronomics and biology are used without knowledge of the actual position of the scientific community.EXTERMINATION CAMPS
Really? One of the goals of nazis was to exterminate as much as posible and as fast as posible. They put the problem they signaled the goal. It was a political goal, inspired by irrational beliefs. Science can't say what is the goal and we are blaming according to the goal of the project. Don't blame science on this also please.
Do you think that the chemical compostion of the gas used to kill the Jews, the Communists, the Romani people and others inspired them to do so? It's just a gas. Discovering it doesn't make you murder. Murdering make you a murder. And yeah I don't care if that gas was designed to kill, because scientist that created that are not the science behind that, just scientists with their irrational values as any other people. Just scientists forced to create that as there are soldiers forced to kill directly. Or just scientists that wanted to kill as there are soldiers that really want to kill other people.
Blame nazi ideology and early-century german society not Science.
By the way you might be curious about one thing. Fritz Haber, the man that created the gas utilized in the gas chambers is at the same time the scientist who invented the synthetic fertilizer, a "thing" that have made the malthusian catastrophe avoidable for the entire world for a long time with an estimated impact of 2.72 billion lives saved from possible starvation. Those are more people that the entire nazi regime tried to kill. What do I mean with this? First what I don't mean: I don't mean a sacrifice must be done (that would be the most stupid conclusion), I don't mean this was a great man or scientist either (his methods were monstruous and he was an ultranationalist protofascist so no simpathy here), I don't mean that science brings light and darkness (as if there was a mystical karma-like thing creting unfathomable equilibriums). What I really mean is that here you have an example of how science (even in the same field of research and even in through the same scientists) can be applied for very very different goals. And in this case the example is interesting since the net result of those researches went in lives saved after all (at least many societies took the decission of implementing those fertilizers for something more positive for the goal of having more helthy societies instead of continuing with the murder thing).
What? Here you were really runing out of examples didn't you? This is just an outdated hypothesis (not even a theory).
The only thing I can think of that would make sense for citing this is the consequences I talked before in the creation of certain racial theories. But again this makes no sense.
By the way you can certainly blame science for destroying Polygenism once and for all thanks to Darwinian evolution. If there is any harm in Polygenism such that you can compare that with the holocaust at least bear in mind that Science was the one proving it wrong. And today it is a pseudoscience that some sects and cults follow, not science.SIGMUND FREUD
Okay I really want to know the brutal harm to humanity of Freudism.
I mean remember that this is regarded as pseudoscience today. Also the scientific part of Freudism was instrumental in the foundation of psychology and psychiatry as sciences. Is regarded as a very important step (even if wrong and with bad methods) in the comprehension of human psychology, also he brought the idea of mental illneses could be treated pharmacologically, something that has been very important to save many lives and to heal depressions etc... Sociologically it has also been important (again, even if wrong) since it was one of the first proponents of theories about sexual religious repression and with that many social rights have been introduced in the political discussion of some European contries.
But maybe you are refering at the contribution of freudism to modern social darwinism. Remember, this is matter of opinion, ideology, etc... not science. Science has declared freudism a pseudoscientific aproach (ven if historicaly instrumental for the acquisition of the scientific method in a discipline that was before him a nest of charlatans and gurus that trully hamred people with their "knowledge").
Social darwinism is not science again. Blame Freud for freudism if you want but not science.LOBOTOMY
This one is a good one I recognise it. But is missleading.
Lobotomy is a practice to solve some mental illneses that is in fact wrong. Wrong because its evil? no. Wrong because it does not accomplish the goal of erasing the illness. Science has a lot of trial and error in it (but is not that, please don't get with that). Scientists where wrong. Okay now science has shown that this practisce does not work but yeah it's true that once sciecne showed that it could work. So was it medical negligence?
Well. First of all, psychiatry is a very very recent scientific field, this means that their methods are not pulished. The scientific criteria and standards of psychiatrists are terrible. They need more science not less. If they had the current methods they would have known that lobotomy is not helpfull (they have those current methos now and they have realized that so no hypothetical scenarios here). Second is the fact that here were also political decisions involved that had nothing to do with science and perpetuated this method over some decades in psychiatrical institutions. Also the scientific community (not science remember) in this field has the worst preventive mechanism at the time.
But third I think is important to note that lobotomy worked partially (so their theories were at lest pointing in the correct direction). When you have people that is convulsing on the ground you can choose to not do nothing (passive murder and real negligence), to make a decission based on intuition, on religious belief or other random arguments, or to search for a solution in the most rigorous and precise way (using knowledge from medicine, biology and chemistry) to have an educated guess and try to solve the problem. The solution was wrong, yes. But what would have been better? Would you solve the problem based on a preconceived idea? Would you kill the person just by not doing nothing or just by trying without an in depth research? What is wrong with doing science here?
I'm not saying that this could have been prevented but with the means they had at the time, in a fairly new science with little standards (lobotomy served to fix those standards) and with the need to solve a problem, isn't trying science the best bet to make it?
They would have probably killed many and make other suffer a lot just by not doing it or by choosing another way of inquiry into this problem.
but yeah, I agree is a shame that perfecting the scientific method in psychiatry was impeded by political decisions and academical egos. But are those science crimes?HUMORISM
You think this is science? Hahahahaha
Maybe for a certain period of anciet greece it was considered a science (the concept and the term can be compared but they are totally different things since when we refer to the scientific method we talk about the one started by Galileo, Descartes, Newton,... not the ancient ideas). These ideas remind me of aristothelic medicine, it was half based on assumptions of metaphysical nature, and half based in mythological references. They didn't allowet to dissect corpses because of religion so their entire idea of the body was at best pure speculation. This is not science. Science without epistemology is impossible. And Humorism is not science, so what are you trying to blame here?SCURVY
Well, I hope you understand that science didn't created scurvy. But I get your point here. This is close to the lobotomy thing. Scientists concluded (using science) that certain cures were ideal when they were terrible enhancements of the disease. Okay.
But they trully performed experiments that showed that that was a good idea. Would you have prefered to have a random solution based on anything but evidence or a scientifically educated guess?
At this time they knew very little so this error couldn't have been prevented. It's true, they were wrong, but Science came an repaired it. Because science is the one that eradicated scurvy in the end not the one that created it. In the process there was harm, that's true. But I'm willing to hear you if you have any idea of what could they have done at that time with their knowledge and technology. The knowledge of the method doesn't works came from the exact same people after they understanded it was going the other way.
It's true that they could have realized that before if they had more stricts standards and a more profund understanding of statistics as we have now. But still scurvy was defeated by a science that was still in its infancy at that time.
So... are you blaming science for saving people from sucurvy? because that's exactly what science did.