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That and the fact that this belief system is masquerading as academic modelling and prediction.

- Jake

Friends come and go. Enemies accumulate.

by JakeS (JangoSierra 'at' gmail 'dot' com) on Wed Mar 30th, 2011 at 02:41:54 AM EST
[ Parent ]
You have scientist who arrive at theories, and do modelling and prediction based on these theories, in all good faith. They may be pretty sure of the validity of their theories, and obviously find great gratification, not to speak of career prospects, when these theories are widely adhered to. If these theories tend to reinforce the prejudices of the deciders and the opinion-makers, a vulgarized, simplified, dumbed-down version will become part of the belief system of these people.

The fact that, in the general case the deciders and opinion makers don't actually understand what underlies the modelling and prediction, is what makes the whole thing religious.

In the case of the nuclear industry, it's not the nuclear scientists who are at fault. The industrials and the politicians are at fault, because of wilfully poor risk assessment. The modelling and prediction can only be as good as the politically-determined parameters permit.

In the case of economics... the theories are bunk anyway, and the deciders and opinion makers have been taken for a ride. They are slowly discovering that there is no Santa Claus, but they are trying to hide that from the kids.

It is rightly acknowledged that people of faith have no monopoly of virtue - Queen Elizabeth II

by eurogreen on Wed Mar 30th, 2011 at 04:39:27 AM EST
[ Parent ]
I've been watching what lawyers do recently. And it's obvious that it's a key principle of law is that truth is whatever you can get away with.

If you have a court case where your client is responsible for an event that harms people, you use FUD to confuse the jury, you spread the blame around, you use legal precedent to limit the evidence that's presented in court, you find expert witnesses who agree with you, and so on. If you can lie without being caught for perjury, you'll do it.

Truth is irrelevant. Persuading the jury is all that matters.

Many politicians are lawyers. This is how their minds work. The scientific ideal of impartial research and peer reviewed discussion is completely alien to them.

And the financial elites are even less sophisticated. They care about the end of quarter balance sheet.

Meanwhile CEOs and other board level bobble heads care more about their income and personal status than they do the businesses they "lead." Any event, organisation, movement or principle which interferes with their aims is bad.

So you have different groups playing by completely different rules, and they all assume their own rules are the only ones that matter.

No wonder it's a mess.

by ThatBritGuy (thatbritguy (at) googlemail.com) on Wed Mar 30th, 2011 at 05:12:05 AM EST
[ Parent ]
I have been thinking that CEOs and other board level bobble heads in companies that own nuclear reactors should be mandated to report for clean-up duties if a serious incident occurs at one of the plants the company owns. Regardless of if the accident happens during or after their term in office.

Sweden's finest (and perhaps only) collaborative, leftist e-newspaper Synapze.se
by A swedish kind of death on Wed Mar 30th, 2011 at 02:18:07 PM EST
[ Parent ]
As long as theyre only allowed to push brooms and shovels. Last thing you want is them interfering in the actual clearup

Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.
by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Wed Mar 30th, 2011 at 03:42:52 PM EST
[ Parent ]
They can get to hold the dosimeter.

- Jake

Friends come and go. Enemies accumulate.

by JakeS (JangoSierra 'at' gmail 'dot' com) on Wed Mar 30th, 2011 at 03:50:22 PM EST
[ Parent ]
from experience you'd not want them to read the readings off them

Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.
by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Wed Mar 30th, 2011 at 04:17:15 PM EST
[ Parent ]
...the deciders and opinion makers have been taken for a ride.

Charitably, perhaps for the most of them. But there have been and are people who understand what is at stake and pay well to insure that favorable views prevail.

"It is not necessary to have hope in order to persevere."
by ARGeezer (ARGeezer a in a circle eurotrib daught com) on Wed Mar 30th, 2011 at 10:19:52 AM EST
[ Parent ]

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