Why Science is so Hard to Believe

We have trouble digesting randomness; our brains crave pattern and meaning.

Even for scientists, the scientific method is a hard discipline. They, too, are vulnerable to confirmation bias — the tendency to look for and see only evidence that confirms what they already believe. But unlike the rest of us, they submit their ideas to formal peer review before publishing them. Once the results are published, if they’re important enough, other scientists will try to reproduce them — and, being congenitally skeptical and competitive, will be very happy to announce that they don’t hold up. Scientific results are always provisional, susceptible to being overturned by some future experiment or observation. Scientists rarely proclaim an absolute truth or an absolute certainty. Uncertainty is inevitable at the frontiers of knowledge.

Featured imageThat provisional quality of science is another thing a lot of people have trouble with. To some climate-change skeptics, for example, the fact that a few scientists in the 1970s were worried (quite reasonably, it seemed at the time) about the possibility of a coming ice age is enough to discredit what is now the consensus of the world’s scientists:

Americans fall into two basic camps.  Those with a more “egalitarian” and “communitarian” mind-set are generally suspicious of industry and apt to think it’s up to something dangerous that calls for government regulation; they’re likely to see the risks of climate change. In contrast, people with a “hierarchical” and “individualistic” mind-set respect leaders of industry and don’t like government interfering in their affairs; they’re apt to reject warnings about climate change, because they know what accepting them could lead to — some kind of tax or regulation to limit emissions.

via Why science is so hard to believe – The Washington Post.

2 thoughts on “Why Science is so Hard to Believe”

  1. Why can there only be those two types of people? I find it very peculiar and interesting that 99% of people- even those types that reject our fraudulent two-party political system in America- still are confined to such black and white sentiments.

  2. many scientists must conform to the “hard discipline” of keeping their heads down and doing their job they are told to do. No papers on the convergence of massive eco destructive geoengineering worldwide. Weather warfare is a very useful tool, the main chemical dropped on us are nano-particulates of aluminum. Why do you suppose Mansatan has an aluminum resistant seed for that? geoengineeringwatch .com or aircrap. org or an Aussie down under… his links are good, website impressively done – bluenomore. com
    the government paid or university connected scientists depending on grants, a job or even a pension (gone with upcoming financial crisis ’16 or ’17) cannot approach the truth. All mainstream media is in the tank.
    but still, the media has to spin around the ‘inland hurricanes’ set upon areas of the U.S. Over 200 mile winds? ahem

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