‘Liberal’ bias is killing science

Caption: Political hacks who masquerade as “scientists” are ruining the good name of science.

John Stuart Mill, one of the founders of liberalism — actual liberalism, as opposed to the leftist authoritarianism which passes for “liberalism” today — was unequivocal about the importance of intellectual diversity.

In his classic On Liberty, Mill wrote that “it is only the cultivation of individuality which produces, or can produce, well developed human beings”. As Mill argued, those who are only ever exposed to one idea never have the opportunity to learn whether or not they might be mistaken.

Modern “liberals” have no truck with such rubbish. As much as they worship at the altar of “diversity”, “liberals” cannot bear diversity of thought. Quote:

A University of North Texas professor is warning fellow academics that a lack of conservative scholars is undermining the accuracy and integrity of scientific research.

In the new issue of The American Sociologist, UNT professor George Yancy published the piece titled “Yes Academic Bias is a Problem and We Need to Address it,” as a response to a professor who previously dismissed political bias among academics as a “myth.” End of quote.

In the face of all evidence, academics and leftists feverishly deny the overwhelming bias of contemporary academia. Yet, survey data as well as the anecdotal accounts of academics like Niall Ferguson, show that modern academia, most especially the Humanities, is overwhelmingly biased to the left. Quote:

As previously reported by Campus Reform, a 2018 study surveying 469 sociology professors found that only four percent of scholars in the field are conservative or libertarian, while 83 percent identify as either liberal or radical. End of quote.

This is not a matter of grousing about political preference. The simple fact is that groupthink is just poisonous to the academic endeavour. Quote:

According to Yancy, this overwhelming ideological discrepancy among faculty may cause the American public to lose trust in science.

“One of the most important assumptions of the scientific method is that scholars are disinterested in the results of the work,” writes Yancy, indirectly referring to the so-called scholar-activists who conduct research aligned with their social justice aims.

“Given the reality that academics are much more politically progressive and irreligious than the general population, one should be concerned about the potential of liberal and secular bias” in academic research, warns Yancy.

“We have to question whether scholars are as dispassionate about the results as they claim to be,” he adds. “Those like myself are also concerned about academic bias simply because such bias can lead to bad science.” End of quote.

One of the dirty secrets of modern science is that scientists by and large don’t really spend much time thinking about the fundamentals of their profession, except in the most narrowly technical sense. When I studied a university subject dealing with the fundamentals of scientific practice, it was a new and revolutionary study unit. Too many scientists don’t seem to spend much thinking about what science actually is — and what it isn’t.

Even worse, prominent scientists openly sneer at the very idea of a philosophy of science.

Thus, science is increasingly corrupted by activism. Science is descriptive, not normative: that is, it can only describe how things are, it can never dictate how things should be. As philosopher David Hume said, one cannot derive an “ought” from an “is”. You can be a scientist, or you can be an activist: you can’t be both. Quote:

Likewise, he argues that the lack of conservatives in academia is warping scientific literature in favor of liberal solutions, saying “it disturbs me that science cannot reach its full potential when the results are preordained by political and social concerns.” End of quote.

People have trusted science in the past, precisely because they trusted good science to provide disinterested knowledge. That fundamental trust is being broken by biased activists. Quote:

“There is a cost to this type of bias not always taken into consideration,” he notes. “When ideas in academia are dismissed, instead of debated, non-academics begin to lose their trust in our educational institutions.”

“Because of the particular political skew in academia, it is not surprising that political conservatives have dramatically lost faith in higher education over the past few years,” the scholar adds. End of quote.

“Liberals” whine about “denialism”, but the truth is that the public is simply disinclined to listen to hectoring activists in borrowed lab coats.


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Who is Lushington D. Brady?

Well, a pseudonym. Obviously.

But the name Lushington Dalrymple Brady has been chosen carefully. Not only for the sum of its overall mien of seedy gentility, reminiscent perhaps of a slightly disreputable gentlemen of letters, but also for its parts, each of which borrows from the name of a Vandemonian of more-or-less fame (or notoriety) who represents some admirable quality which will hopefully animate the persona of Lushington D. Brady.

To read my previous articles click on my name in blue.

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