Humans Are Humans–Even Scientists

We shouldn’t be surprised that humans are humans. Even scientists are humans. It’s not a conspiracy. It’s not that they decide to be dishonest. It’s human nature. Everyone has a perspective. Everyone has an inner paradigm, a way they think reality is. Sometimes, we even call this inner fake-reality “your reality.” I’ve heard it called, “your truth.” It’s a complete inner fake-reality that seems more real than real reality. Everyone has one.

It’s also human nature to go with the flow. Even if we disagree, we’re uncomfortable being the only one making waves. We go along. We insert the group-held fake-reality into our own fake-reality. If mechanisms of coercion exist within the group, that heightens our motivation to shut up and fit in.

A personal fake-reality is powerful for filtering our perceptions. Whatever is outside the bounds of our fake-realities seems, to each of us, crazy, insane, and unreal. Changing fake-realities generally requires a powerful experience. Group-held fake-realities are much harder to change than personal fake-realities.

<quote from Real Faith & Reason, vol 2>

Scientific Bias in Peer Review

Many problems exist with the way that scientists currently do science. And these problems aren’t surprising since scientists are humans, and humans make mistakes. Just like everyone else, scientists sometimes make honest mistakes and sometimes commit outright fraud. Sadly, the peer review process isn’t effectively exposing either of these.

Outright fraud:

Report only the desired results.

Don’t report unwanted results.

Knowingly falsify data.

Misuse statistics.

Choose only methods that will yield the desired result.

Work the problem backward from the desired solution, and make the right assumptions (or tell the right stories) to make it appear that the observations support the target solution.

Adjust numbers to fit the desired result.

Stop checking or retesting once the desired result is achieved.

The system is rigged to protect the status quo.

Those who are loyal to the status quo also control the funding.

Those who are loyal to the status quo control the peer review bodies, in effect, censoring divergent viewpoints.

The peer review process effectively stops those who don’t conform.

Godless politicians have loaded the courts with judges who protect the established system.

Those who are loyal to the status quo use pressure and coercion against those who don’t buy in.

Independent thinkers risk their careers.

The system encourages confirmation bias.

It appears that several forces promote scientific bias. Sometimes, the money motive is more important than reality. For example, scientists make decisions to make sure they keep their funding. Since much of this funding comes from the government, science has become political. Also, personal pride plays a huge role, and personal biases against morality or God come into play. Since these political considerations favor certain desired results, the system is designed to bring pressure to bear against anyone who bucks the system.

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