Friday, 1 November 2013

Conspiracy Theory Thinking Summed Up Nicely

Doesn’t it strike you as remotely strange that the world’s scientists should accept a framework which is so obviously flawed any idiot can see through it? 
I mean, if it’s really this simple, they’re either a bunch of fools, or engaged in some huge confidence trick. 
The former seems contradicted by the fact they can build something like the Hubble. The later seems incredibly unlikely. It requires the sort of conspiracy theory normally attributed to shadowy, possibly non-existent groups like the Freemasons or the Illuminati, but unlike them is a completely open ‘organisation’ that virtually anyone can join simply by enrolling in a science degree at a suitable tertiary institution, or even just subscribing to a suitable journal. 
I put ‘organisation’ in scare quotes because unlike the Freemasons, there is no overarching hierarchy, no way of making collective decisions, and no really effective means of punishing people for not toeing the line. You might not be able to get your creationist ideas published in peer-reviewed journals, but no-one will stop you publishing your chemistry papers because you hold unpopular opinions in other areas. 
At the higher echelons of professional scientists, there are millions of people from all around the world involved, many of them are Christians or members of other faiths.Under these circumstances, it’s really hard to see how a conspiracy could possibly work, especially as according to you it’s ‘covering up’ things which are transparently obvious.
H/T James McGrath

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