Yet another weird SF fan


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Yet another weird SF fan
 

Friday, March 28, 2008

Required Reading

Jake Young explains the apparent anti-science attitude among us wingnuts:

To summarize, I think some Republicans do not reject science per se, rather what they reject is the tendency for scientific facts to be used for planning. By planning, I mean active organization of a system to achieve a desirable (to some) outcome. Planning can be applied to any complex system -- societies, economies, climate, etc., and it is predicated on the assumption the knowledge of how a system works gives one the ability to control the outcome.

But wait, there's more. The very next post on the same blog includes a comment from MarkH explaining why we right-wing crackpots insist on extra evidence:

I think you've gone off the deep end here Jake. The doctors aren't having their rights violated. This is about criminalizing the poacher. And to some degree, doctors are the property of the state. It is impossible to have medical education without significant state subsidization, and although I don't know the specifics of every single country in Africa, that's a safe generalization to make.

For instance, here in the US, your medical education is heavily subsidized by the state. Probably on the order of 100k/student. Resident training programs also receive about 100k/resident from government entitlement programs.

In other words, the existence of a government program is used as a precedent for more government. That means we must take the disadvantage of a state-run fix for a problem and double it. Equivalently, we could insist on twice as much evidence as we would if there weren't a political solution planned. (In the hypothetical case of a government program that produced an attitude of “Not again! We've done that already.” it might make sense to insist on less evidence than usual.)

1 Comments:

Blogger Kevin said...

I came over here from a link at Baby Troll Blog. If Mark likes you, I figure I will, too.

I was right.

What Mr. Young exhibits is the collectivist/socialist/fascist urge - the apparent human need to make everything political, and control everything through central planning. Perhaps he ought to pick up a copy of Hayek's The Road to Serfdom. By his reasoning, we're all "property of the State" and therefore The State can plan everything in the "complex system" called "humanity."

The fact that this has been tried - multiple times - and failed spectacularly everywhere it has been is no deterrent. The philosophy cannot be wrong! Do it again only HARDER!

As someone else said so well:

The reason we should be on guard against Fascism is because it is opposed to the free expression of individual liberty as we lead our lives. Fascism in all its forms attempts to put us in a straight jacket, always and everywhere "for our own good." It not only tells us an innumerable number of things we can't do, but also tells us an equally long list of things we must do. That is not the concept behind the founding of America. In fact, it is a subversion of the American ideal.

--

The problem with all collectivist ideologies is that they are premised on a mistaken view of human nature. The genius of America's founding is that those who created the constitutional checks and balances understood the inherent fallen nature of man very well, seeing in themselves the flaws of all humanity.


Oh, and I'm an atheist, but I agree wholly with the "mistaken view of human nature" point.

I'm against "planning" of societies. Planning how to build a refinery? Fine. How to build a skyscraper? No problem. How to plant and raise crops? Terrific. How to make people do only what you think they should?

That's why I own firearms, buddy.

12:00 AM  

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