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Forum Post: OWS needs a science group

Posted 2 years ago on March 24, 2012, 4:47 p.m. EST by francismjenkins (3713)
This content is user submitted and not an official statement

Just sayin, how many people with an academic background in the sciences serve on groups like the "Environmental Solidarity" group?

Science and math can be our friend :)

The worse thing we can do for the environmental cause is to speak on matters without any regard for or understanding of the underlying science. When our public statements lack scientific acumen, they're easily discredited, and this hurts environmentalism.

I'm quite sure we can find some people with at least some undergraduate training in science within the OWS ranks. We could also invite concerned professionals from the scientific community (who are experts in areas such as global warming) to give speeches, or webnars, or something to that effect, to better inform OWS supporters.

For every bad scientist, there's probably ten good ones (and I'm sure that's an understatement). Scientists tend to be the most concerned group when it comes to human well being (and the well being of our ecosystem), and we should embrace this awesome human resource.

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9 Comments


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[-] 1 points by Dumpthechump (96) 2 years ago

Science is vital for OWS but even more vital is to get the underlying philosophy right. Much of what is called science today is NOT that - it is mere mathematical speculation.

Physics is the worst offender - e.g. the mathematical speculation surrounding Hawking and Einstein.

Social science is always bad too but this is because the ground rules in different specialties are very different - hence the radically opposed interpretations of the meaning of racial IQ differences and the still more desperate attempt to ignore them or cover them up.

Happily, biology is much less polluted by such ideas - while earth sciences and chemistry are essentially unpolluted.

[-] 2 points by francismjenkins (3713) 2 years ago

Many of Einsteins theories do not reduce to mere mathematical speculation. For example:

That light appeared to bend in gravitational fields in line with the predictions of general relativity was found in 1919 but it was not until a program of precision tests was started in 1959 that the various predictions of general relativity were tested to any further degree of accuracy in the weak gravitational field limit, severely limiting possible deviations from the theory. Beginning in 1974, Hulse, Taylor and others have studied the behaviour of binary pulsars experiencing much stronger gravitational fields than found in our solar system. Both in the weak field limit (as in our solar system) and with the stronger fields present in systems of binary pulsars the predictions of general relativity have been extremely well tested locally.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tests_of_general_relativity

That so much has yet to be discovered in physics, doesn't mean that what has been discovered so far is any less accurate or important.

[-] 0 points by Dumpthechump (96) 2 years ago

What is wrong with physics today is not that it is "less accurate or important" but that certain theories i.e. those based on Einstein's relativity theories, lead to logical paradoxes when applied to physical situations. The philosophers of science never seem to deal with this pressing issue either but instead confine themselves to trivialities e.g. A. F. Chalmers in his "What is this Thing called Science".

You have not understood the background behind the claims of GR - and popular literature will never discuss this issue in any adequate detail. In 1803 Joachim von Soldner predicted the Newtonian deflection of light and found it to be one-half of what was eventually observed.

Einstein came up with the same deflection as Soldner in about 1911 (Soldner had been forgotten in the meantime), and - luckily for Einstein - the outbreak of WW1 prevented his claim being disproved in Crimea in August 1914 where German astronomers were already setting up for the eclipse observations!

Nevertheless, Einstein doubled his prediction in 1915-1917, in a series of papers using bizarre mathematics e.g. Christoffel tensors.

Hence the doubling of Soldner's deflection claim supposedly proved GR when the deflection of light by gravity was measured in 1919.

The true answer is nothing of the sort. The reason for the doubled Newtonian deflection of photons is because ordinary matter (protons, neutrons and electrons) are spin-half particles. Photons in contrast are spin-1 particles. This discovery was only made by Heisenberg and others about 1926.

Hence the deflection of photons by gravity is twice that of ordinary matter and combines Newtonian mechanics with quantum theory. GR has nothing to do with it whatsoever. Like relativity generally it is spurious drivel parasitizing science with its mathematics-based nonsense.

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[-] 1 points by francismjenkins (3713) 2 years ago

Curious, what is your opinion regarding thorium?

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[-] 1 points by francismjenkins (3713) 2 years ago

Thank you ... it's good to have an expert's insight, and I completely agree (even though I'm not a nuclear expert). I think we went with uranium reactors because of its dual use (nuclear weapons, at a time when building them was a priority). But of course from a safety and proliferation standpoint, uranium is obviously not an ideal solution. I think we built a thorium reactor back in the 1960's (a demonstration plant), but we dropped the idea because we needed nuclear warheads (to compete with the Soviet Union). Most of my science background is in biology (I'm current pursuing a grad degree in bio & I'm also an attorney), but I think OWS needs input from scientists if it plans on trying to address issues like the environment.

[-] 1 points by johnmbowen1951 (3) from Laramie, WY 2 years ago

Well, I would be interested in being on this forum. While I don't have a degree in biology, I have a PhD in Analytical Chemistry and am a life member of Sierra Club. I am also an enthusiastic supporter of the OWS movement, though I've not directly participated, and would be interested in helping. I am listed under johnmbowen1951.

[-] 1 points by francismjenkins (3713) 2 years ago

With a PhD in chem I think you're probably more qualified to speak on environmental issues than virtually anyone else (besides others with a PhD in chemistry of course), since as you must know better than me, our atmosphere is composed of chemicals. At the top of this page is a link for the NYCGA (NYC General Assembly) and they have numerous working groups, among them is the "Environmental Solidarity" group. You can simply register on the NYCGA site (it's as easy as registering on any web forum) and join that group. From there, you'll be able to participate in discussions, and attend meetings (if you're able to).

[-] 1 points by gnomunny (6587) from St Louis, MO 2 years ago

You are an asset to the OWS cause. I welcome you (belatedly).

[-] -3 points by Reasonistheway (-13) 2 years ago

With a government job, in all liklihood.

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