BS for detecting loyalty

PSI Blog 20170607 BS for detecting loyalty

In last week’s Blog I repeated my claim that the evolutionary purpose of religion was to instill and enforce loyalty. But how does one know whether that process has been successful? This question is important, not only for understanding religion and its wars, but also for understanding the current paradigm that binds regressive physics and cosmogony. Remember that in science, a paradigm is a set of theories, experiments, and interpretations that are used to advance a particular discipline.[1] A mature paradigm sponsors what Kuhn called “ordinary” science. To be financially rewarded in that discipline one must be loyal to the paradigm. As in religion, disloyalty can result in rejection or banishment. Unlike religion, it seldom results in imprisonment or execution (with rare exceptions such as Galileo and Bruno).

As one observing the current mainstream paradigm from the outside, I have been amazed by the utterly ridiculous and contradictory nature of many of its claims. For instance, long ago I was taught the First Law of Thermodynamics, the conservation of energy, which I have restated as the Fifth Assumption of Science, conservation (Matter and the motion of matter can be neither created nor destroyed). Thus I have always seen the idea that the universe exploded out of nothing to be borderline crazy. I think that I am now getting a better idea of why such contradictions do not seem to bother the mainstream. I have long known that religious folks tended to be immune to contradictions and that they generally thought that the universe was itself contradictory. I got a better focus on it after reading Matthew Yglesias’s pertinent essay on this website:

He referred to a famous essay by Prof Harry Frankfurt of Princeton in which he explained it this way:

It is impossible for someone to lie unless he thinks he knows the truth. Producing bullshit requires no such conviction. A person who lies is thereby responding to the truth, and he is to that extent respectful of it. When an honest man speaks, he says only what he believes to be true; and for the liar, it is correspondingly indispensable that he considers his statements to be false. For the bullshitter, however, all these bets are off: he is neither on the side of the true nor on the side of the false. His eye is not on the facts at all, as the eyes of the honest man and of the liar are, except insofar as they may be pertinent to his interest in getting away with what he says. He does not care whether the things he says describe reality correctly. He just picks them out, or makes them up, to suit his purpose. [2]  

Yglesias points out that bullshit has two purposes: 1) it is used to test loyalty and 2) to isolate followers into a distinct tribe. For “tribe” you can insert most any religious sect or hysterical group you wish. You also could insert “modern physicists” or “Big Bang theorists,” who comprise the current mainstream paradigm. This helps to explain the craziness (explosion of the universe from nothing, massless particles, 4D expanding universe, waves that are particles and particles that are waves, attraction, immaterial fields, matterless motion, etc.). Spreading any of these, especially to the public, proves your loyalty to the paradigm.

Frankfurt’s analysis also helps to explain the vehement reactions commonly used to defend both religious sects and mainstream physics. Trolls with too much time and loyalty roam the Internet guarding against suggestions that the current paradigm might be out of whack. In the mainstream, the censorship of the word “aether” is paramount, while massless particles, wormholes, and Einstein’s glorification are dirigeur.

In scientific disciplines other than physics and cosmogony contradictions and paradoxes generally are anathema. Nonetheless, contradictions appear where data and knowledge are missing. They often indicate the frontier in science. Any apparent contradiction provides grist for the next graduate thesis. All disciplines have their loyalists, of course, but in my experience the use of BS in defense against contrarian ideas is relatively mild—unless you dare to mention anything about climate.

To sum up, I go back to the original question… Is mainstream BS in physics and cosmogony a good test of loyalty? The obvious answer is clearly YES. Believers want to believe. Folks naïve enough to fall for BS are not particularly interested in details. You can find this out yourself by asking pertinent questions about the contradictions and the “facts” used to support them. For instance, you can ask most any physicist about whether those clocks flying around Earth proved Einstein right. Of course that experiment proved nothing at all. The raw data show that some of the side-by-side clocks sped up and some slowed down. The bogus manipulation of the unpublished raw data and the “Einstein is always right” conclusion was borderline fraudulent.[3] Those who teach that conclusion actually believe it along with the idea that the universe is four dimensional. They are not lying anymore than the ministers of all the other religious sects you oppose. They are simply spreading BS.

[1] Kuhn, Thomas S., 1962 [2012], The structure of scientific revolutions (With an Introductory Essay by Ian Hacking) (50th Anniversary ed.): Chicago; London, The University of Chicago Press, 264 p.
[2] Frankfurt, Harry, 1986 [2005], On bullshit:  [http://www.csudh.edu/ccauthen/576f12/frankfurt__harry_-_on_bullshit.pdf].
[3] Borchardt, Glenn, 2011, Einstein's most important philosophical error, in Volk, Greg, Proceedings of the Natural Philosophy Alliance, 18th Conference of the NPA, 6-9 July, 2011: College Park, MD, Natural Philosophy Alliance, Mt. Airy, MD, v. 8, p. 64-68 [http://doi.org/10.13140/RG.2.1.3436.0407].


Bligh said...

Doesn't GPS prove the time dilation in comparing one frame of Ref to another?
Do you define particles, as I do, as something with rest mass?

Glenn Borchardt said...

Light is motion and therefore cannot dilate. Relativity uses dilation to keep c constant in its calculations. The "gravitational redshift" results from a tiny increase in c due to the increase in aether pressure with distance from massive bodies. Nonetheless, GPS calculations can be performed without taking the redshift into account per Ron Hatch.

Particles (microcosms) are defined as xyz portions of the universe. They always contain submicrocosms and thus always have mass. There is no such property as "rest mass," since all microcosms are always in motion.