One of the remarkable things about academics is that they still have public respect. If “research shows”, people will generally believe this comes from rigorous and property executed science. Politicians and media have already destroyed the trust with the public, but academics and scientists have some way to go.
16 years ago, a doctor published a study. It was completely made up, and it made us all sicker.
The entire study was fabricated.
Once upon a time, a scientist named Dr. Andrew Wakefield published in the medical journal The Lancet that he had discovered a link between autism and vaccines.
After years of controversy and making parents mistrust vaccines, along with collecting $674,000 from lawyers who would benefit from suing vaccine makers, it was discovered he had made the whole thing up. The Lancet publicly apologized and reported that further investigation led to the discovery that he had fabricated everything.
We trust doctors. We trust “Dr” someone, even if they aren’t medical doctors. We trust them to play fair. But the truth is that many are hopelessly compromised.
None of this would ever happen in New Zealand of course. Everything our academics and scientists say is gold plated blue chip bet your bottom dollar true.
I hope you find the irony comforting.
– Star Tribune, Upworthy