Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Burn the witch !

This blog has been decidedly non-topical simply because i don't keep up with the news. The human world disgusts me and i've largely given up on ever finding any worth in it. That's why i spend my time in imaginary worlds. I do however glance at wikipedia's "in the news" section now and then, just for the sake of masochism.

"Six scientists and a former government official, accused by prosecutors of "falsely reassuring" the public of the 2009 L'Aquila earthquake's unlikelihood, are convicted of multiple manslaughter."

Sweet merciful mother of crap, just when you think they couldn't get dumber! I don't even know where to start.
Earthquake prediction is one of the most notoriously inexact offshoots of scientific research in the first place.
The predictions made by scientists are always a matter of likelihood, not certainty, because they're based on real-world events and not the fairy-tale reassurances of priests and politicians.
Unlikely events do happen!

I don't even care about the specifics, the scientists in question could for all i know have been deliberately trying to deceive the public or not. They were working in an atmosphere of political pressure to keep quiet for fear of alarming the public, if one is to judge the reference to another scientist who was censored in the press and harrassed by the police for causing panic by predicting the quake. It doesn't matter whether they were guilty or not because this should never have been a legal case, because the precedent set by such a farce will do long-term damage to science as a whole. It's bad enough that scientists in both industry and academia are terrified of making a single move for fear of PETA and fundamentalists, now you can be attacked for being too cautious as well.

It's so wonderful that the public that's too dumb to even understand the research being done thinks itself capable of judging those few individuals actually moving human thought forward.

No comments:

Post a Comment