So this is how science gets done now?

 
nonverbal
 
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nonverbal
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03 June 2021 18:05
 

Until just a week or two ago, no one was allowed to post comments in Facebook that intimated any possibility that covid-19 may have arrived in humanity other than how FB editors deemed to be honest and valid. When I say no one, that includes doctors and other science problem-solvers, most of whom are quite rational and genuine.

Facebook will no longer remove posts referencing the origination theory that COVID escaped from a laboratory in Wuhan, China, a company spokesperson told Politico Wednesday.
https://www.nationalreview.com/news/facebook-lifts-ban-on-wuhan-lab-leak-posts-amid-renewed-debate-over-theory/

So here we are, a year and a half since the laboratory leak or whatever, finally ready to look over the evidence. What’s that you say? The evidence no longer exists? What a shame.

Is anyone else as startled as I am by our national stupidity? I always knew we were nothing more than average, but the depths of our stupidity had never occurred to me because smart people used to be able to speak openly.

 
 
MrRon
 
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MrRon
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04 June 2021 06:31
 

I don’t use Facebook and I never have. So to me it seems silly that people would get their news from a social media platform like Facebook. On a personal note, my sister, who is the poster child for inaccurate news reporting, gets a lot of her “news” from Facebook. She believes everything from miracle cancer cures, to aliens built the pyramids, to Biden not being the legitimate President and that BLM - not Trump supporters - stormed the Capitol on Jan 6. Fuck Facebook.

And yes, I am also startled by our national stupidity.

 
nonverbal
 
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nonverbal
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04 June 2021 07:57
 

I dipped my baby toe into the FB water a few years back as a lurker with a pseudonym, never interacting. I soon lost track of my password and haven’t returned. I can tell that my already challenged mental health would not benefit from my actually using FB the way it gets used.

 
 
Skipshot
 
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Skipshot
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04 June 2021 11:11
 

George Carlin asked us to think about how stupid the average person is, then realize that half of the population is stupider than that.  Now the internet has amplified the marketplace of ideas to a world-wide audience, but has the level of intelligence increased with it?

Economics tells us that has specialization of skills and production of goods makes a society more prosperous, but that prosperity does not equate to a rise in intelligence or critical thinking, and I believe it is a mistake to make the comparison.  So when it comes to science, let’s trust them to do the right thing first, and allow them to follow the scientific method to make adjustments, rather than politicizing or religiousizing science. Science is not a popularity or dick-measuring contest.

 
nonverbal
 
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nonverbal
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04 June 2021 18:42
 
Skipshot - 04 June 2021 11:11 AM

George Carlin asked us to think about how stupid the average person is, then realize that half of the population is stupider than that.  Now the internet has amplified the marketplace of ideas to a world-wide audience, but has the level of intelligence increased with it?

Economics tells us that has specialization of skills and production of goods makes a society more prosperous, but that prosperity does not equate to a rise in intelligence or critical thinking, and I believe it is a mistake to make the comparison.  So when it comes to science, let’s trust them to do the right thing first, and allow them to follow the scientific method to make adjustments, rather than politicizing or religiousizing science. Science is not a popularity or dick-measuring contest.

Yes. So much has gotten politicized since Trump’s ascendency to power. Verbal fire over the past 5 years often resulted in highly-emotional decision making.

 
 
LadyJane
 
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LadyJane
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05 June 2021 06:33
 

This is why it’s important to recruit the perspective of experts.

 
 
EN
 
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EN
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05 June 2021 06:50
 

Undermining the perspective of experts is a favorite tactic of the right these days.  One reason is that science is messy, but baseless opinions come quick and easy.  Experts have to wait for facts and evidence, but non-experts can render opinions based on whim or emotion.  It takes time for the scientific method to chart its course.  The public, however, wants instant gratification.

 
nonverbal
 
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nonverbal
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05 June 2021 07:48
 
LadyJane - 05 June 2021 06:33 AM

This is why it’s important to recruit the perspective of experts.

I watched that Conan / Barr conversation the other day—admirable and insightful as usual. Bill is spot-on seeing no foul play on the part of the W. lab folks a year and a half ago. The obvious cover-up was not a result of attempting to hide evil intent, in my opinion. More likely, it was out of embarrassment and/or fear of future gigantic liability claims. Maybe that’s just as evil, but at least I’m able to viscerally understand it. I’ve fucked up plenty myself over the years.

But . . . does the world actually need researchers working on improving viruses in order to, uh, gain insight into how to get rid of them? It’s a crackpot idea in my opinion. But I’ve never been asked for my opinion about these kinds of questions the way I get asked to vote for a politician or kick a politician out of office, etc. I find it horrific, though. I’d never vote to fund anyone’s work on such a thing.

I admit that I wouldn’t mind a cure to the common cold and other disease nastiness, and if that sort of thing is what Anthony Faux-Chi was striving toward with honest intent, I get that. I’m just not crazy about the chosen methodology. If Faux-Chi were to write a book detailing his reasons for choosing to fund virus-engineering seeking gain-of-function rather than the self-congratulating book he recently wrote, I’d certainly read it, and maybe it would change my mind about manipulating and ramping up viruses.

Meanwhile, I don’t trust people to use gain-of-function research for humanitarian reasons because there’s too much potential for such research to do great harm. The whims of politicians everywhere are not to be sufficiently trusted. The risk seems too great.

 
 
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05 June 2021 13:43
 
nonverbal - 05 June 2021 07:48 AM

The whims of politicians everywhere are not to be sufficiently trusted. The risk seems too great.

Since people with antisocial personality disorder are most frequently found in politics and business, I concur.

 
Jb8989
 
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Jb8989
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09 June 2021 09:31
 
Skipshot - 05 June 2021 01:43 PM
nonverbal - 05 June 2021 07:48 AM

The whims of politicians everywhere are not to be sufficiently trusted. The risk seems too great.

Since people with antisocial personality disorder are most frequently found in politics and business, I concur.

Politicians are gods subject to corporate dirty work. The media are the new politicians and Big Tech is the new media. And social media made “you” think you’re newsworthy. Everything’s propped up.