Monday, April 15, 2013

The Left’s War on Science

“We did not come to ask for mercy from nature,” Ivan Vladimirovich Michurin, the Lysenko of Soviet agriculture, once declared. “We must wrest it from her.”

Communist science was guided not by the journey from hypothesis to fact but by the dusty
proclamations of Marxist theorists. Soviet scientists were expected to reject capitalist science and formulate a science that matched the Communist worldview.

The Communist worldview insisted that every living creature could be completely transformed into anything. It rejected natural selection as having a competitive capitalist bent that suspiciously resembled a biological version of free market competition. And pseudo-scientists like Lysenko and Michurin matched bad science to bad ideology laying out an official dogma in which transforming the environment could transform any creature and in which intraspecies struggle did not lead to evolution.

The USSR’s politicization of biology crippled its agriculture. Its leaders rejected free market competition on the human level and in the plant and animal kingdoms. They insisted that nature had to follow Marxist dialectical materialism and locked up and murdered the scientists who disagreed. By the time the USSR fell, a land which had once exported wheat to the world had gone deep into debt to buy wheat from the United States.

But bad ideology driving bad science didn’t die with Lysenko and Michurin. The new Lysenkos are Warmunists like Michael Mann and James Hansen. The environmentalists, like the Communists, believe that human beings have total control over the environment and that the environment determines all. Where they differ is the perceived effect of that influence. Warmunism, like Communism, originates not from science, but from ideology. The Communists divided industry into two types by ideological classification; the good cooperative Socialist industry and the bad competitive Capitalist industry. The Warmunists similarly ideologically classify two types of industry; environmentally conscious green technology and dirty non-socially conscious brown technology.

The Warmunists, like the Communists, classify science and industry not by outcome, but by ideology, and then paper over that classification with bad science. Green technology is often dirtier and less efficient than the so-called brown technology, but like the collective farms and the idiotic ramblings of Michurin and Lysenko, it’s better because it more closely fits the Socialist vision of how things ought to work.

Scientists debate, but ideologues delegitimize. The Communists did not debate science. They declared dogma and locked up anyone who disagreed. The Warmunists don’t have the power to sentence their critics to prison, though some among them have broached the notion, instead they plot campaigns of character assassination against those who question the theories that they try to pass off as final facts.

The Warmunists, like the Communists, are not interested in learning how the world works, but in using their notions of how the world ought to work to develop a model of how human beings ought to behave.

The Communists rejected the free market and natural human competition. They extended that metaphor to all living things because they feared the dissonance between how the world worked and how their ideal society was meant to work. The Warmunists reject the free market and human industry because, like the Communists, they seek to use science to impose a centralized model of human society as a dangerously fragile existence in which unguided individual efforts are dangerously disruptive and only ideological compliance can lead to a better life for the collective planet.

While the left rejects the pseudo-science of Lysenko and Michurin when it comes to the plant and animal kingdoms, it still argues that people can be remade into any political identity without regard to biology. Lysenkoists believed that just as animals and plants could be transformed over short periods of time by altering their environment, human beings could also be transformed from their greedy and competitive selves by living under Socialism.

The new Lysenkoists place mind over biology. If a man wants to be a woman, then all he has to do is think that he is and he will be. The latest civil rights initiatives protect the rights of men to dress up as women and have the same legal status. A man by the name of Calliope Wong applied to Smith College, a top Ivy League all-girls college. Smith had not gone to the trouble of getting his genitals medically mutilated, a pseudo-medical ritual which is misleadingly referred to as a “Sex Change Operation”, but the media insisted that if he identified as a woman, then he was a woman.

Even the worst Soviet science didn’t insist that biology was so malleable that a man could click his heels three times and think himself a woman, but behind the push for the transgender dogma is that same idea that biology must be more malleable than politics and that in a conflict between the two, science must conform to ideology.

Like Lysenkoist science, the postmodern assertion that the choice of male or female sexual partners is rigidly fixed at a genetic level, but that gender is infinitely transformative, that gay men cannot turn back to straight, but that men can become women and women can become men, makes no logical sense. It makes even less scientific sense. But it makes perfect political sense.

The left’s version of the old racist “one-drop rule” that treated anyone with even one drop of black blood as black is to treat anyone with even the loosest claim to minority status as a minority and to mandate the irrevocable nature of that minority status. That is why Obama is black, rather than half- white, why Elizabeth Warren can be a Cherokee and why a straight man can become gay, but a gay man cannot become straight. It is why a man can become a woman or a woman can become a man and gain an entirely new transgender minority status.

The scientific principle at work here is the conservation of minority status. The left’s policies are meant to diminish the size of the majority and enlarge the size and number of minorities.

Political diversity when applied to science logically leads to immutable homosexuality and mutable gender. It leads to a construct of race governed by a politically correct version of the one-drop rule in which racial identification always trends toward minority status, rather than majority status. The science is bad, but the political calculation is impeccable. Biology is just as irrelevant in 2013 America as it was in 1923 Russia. How the human body works doesn’t matter. How the body politic ought to work is of obsessive importance. The individual is a metaphor for the collective. The power of the state to transform the individual from male to female is a metaphor for its power to transform the entire nation through the transformation of language.

“In the end the Party would announce that two and two made five, and you would have to believe it,” George Orwell wrote in 1984. “It was inevitable that they should make that claim sooner or later: the logic of their position demanded it. Not merely the validity of experience, but the very existence of external reality, was tacitly denied by their philosophy. The heresy of heresies was common sense.”

Compelling people to believe irrational things is the ultimate triumph of a totalitarian ideology. It is the achievement of a state that transcends reality and manufactures its own reality. The ultimate power of the state depends on the malleability of man. Even if the state cannot make 2 + 2 = 5 or transform a man into a woman, it can more importantly compel everyone to believe that it is so.

The left cannot change global temperatures, human biology, plant growth or basic mathematics. But it can change the mind of man to think that its spending sprees and deep debts, its bizarre notions of agriculture and even more bizarre notions of human biology are absolute verified facts. It can replace a science of facts with a science of ideologies with hardly anyone being the wiser.

In California, a bill has been put forward mandating that insurance companies have to provide infertility treatments to homosexuals. While normal industry practice is to provide infertility treatments only to natural couples, the modern Marxist Michurins refuse to be at the mercy of mere biology. They did not come to ask mercy of nature. Instead they are here to tell nature what latest developments in lefty thinking it is expected to conform to.

“Coverage for the treatment of infertility shall be offered and provided without discrimination on the basis of... gender, gender expression, gender identity, genetic information… sexual orientation,” the bill states.

While infertility treatments can be offered without regard to gender, fertility cannot exist without regard to gender. A man can claim that his marriage to another man is just like a marriage to a woman, but no amount of empty words or lawsuits will wrest a child from his body. A man can claim that he is now a woman, but no amount of mandated fertility treatments will enable him to conceive life.

The Lysenkoism of attempting to force science to conform to politics always leads to a biological dead end. Homosexuals are not infertile. They are not in the class of relationships that are biologically capable of conceiving life. It makes as much sense to speak of infertility between a man and another man as it does between a sheep and a cow.

Since every homosexual couple is infertile, every such couple would be entitled to infertility treatments. But no amount of such treatments will enable them to conceive a child without the biological intervention of a member of the opposite sex at some point in the process. And no law can mandate otherwise. All the law can do is mandate an expensive policy whose only purpose is to burden the public with the high cost of pretending to defy biology in the name of politics.

Toward the end, the Soviet Union was running low on wheat. The United States and Europe are running low on children and on industry.

The Western left declared war on science and science is winning. The Warmunists demand that the West cut off its industrial nose to spite its environmental face. And while the factories of China boom, Americans and Europeans go jobless and hungry. The left insisted that family and gender don’t matter, that the ideal society is full of unmarried men and women, men pretending to be women and men shacking up with other men. And the elderly hippies of the establishment are running out of children to pay for their post-gender, post-sexual and post-family paradise. To make up for the gap their countries are filling up with Muslim immigrants whose families are patriarchal and polygamous.

Ideologies have consequences. The Soviet Union found that out the hard way. Now the Socialist republics of what used to be the free world are finding out the same thing. You can replace science with political pseudo-science, and you can convince or compel everyone to pay fealty to its false claims, but you cannot escape the consequences of your actions.

You can declare war on science… but science will always win.


Anonymous said...

When I was in nursing school, a fellow classmate with long flowing locks came into the ladies room and was told to leave. He said he was taking hormones to become a woman and he was entitled to use the women's bathroom. He flunked the quarter. Later I heard from another classmate that he had met a woman online and had changed his mind about becoming a woman.

mindRider said...

Defying science is actually the Religion of The Left's way of, in a Nimrodian manner creating a miracle, we traditional believers have accepted to have happened in the distant past of our respective religions, much in defiance of scientific possibilities.
Theirs wil collapse like the tower of Babel while ours shall remain standing as mythical signposts.

Naresh Krishnamoorti said...

A corollary to your excellent essay: You can declare war on God; but God has already won.

Anonymous said...

profound. as usual

-- spanky

SShendeR said...

Sorry Daniel, what science exactly are you talking about with regards to Global Warming? I'm pretty sure you have not laid your eyes on a single scientific paper (sorry, political science doesn't count) in your life, and yet you preach about science. You erect a straw man - by appealing to the most egregious example of ideology-driven pseudoscience as being on par with AGW - and then triumphantly knock it down.

Unfortunately, as is so often the case, you are guilty of the same sin of political bias you detect among the Warmunists. If anything, your "skepticism" of the science of AGW is not the result of an extensive research, but rather the knee-jerk reaction of an ideologue who does not like the implications and therefore attacks the scientists as ideology-driven con-men and their findings as deliberate falsifications.

If you truly care about the truth of not just the AI conflict, you'd do well to listen to the Global Warming related videos by on potholer54 on Youtube.

fizziks said...

Well, you're wrong from the very start.

Contrary to what you say, climate scientists do not believe that mankind has "total control over the environment". Rather, they recognize the global climate as a complex system with myriad positive and negative feedback effects, and the best efforts to model the system have converged in agreement that anthropogenic climate forcing is real and has potential consequences for sea level, precipitation distribution, and storm severity.

So right at the beginning a ridiculous straw man is set up, and then presumably taken down. Oh well.

I think you have a lot of insight when it comes to certain issues, but you, and sadly most of the American Right, are way off base on this one. It is a shame because both the contemporary Left and the Right have anti-scientific tendencies, leaving the rational, evidence-driven people like myself in the political wilderness.

Anonymous said...

SShendeR I have and while throwing toxins into the air, many studies are having the same problem as the UK one. Scientific theory was not followed because the testers were too convinced they were right. I bet you fall into that category.

Edward Cline said...

The Left is waging a war not just on science, but on reason itself, on which science is founded. So, it isn't just a matter of their dissimulating on homosexuality and environmentalism and so on. They lie and fabricate on economics and politics and health. There's no limit to their depredations, because all of reality is their enemy. Reality must conform to their hatred of reason. For example, what started out as an annoying hippie celebration of "Earth Day" in the late 1960's morphed into a vast bureaucracy with enormous powers, the EPA. This acquisition of power was more by default than by any intrinsic power of the environmentalists; it was nudged along those who opposed it but had no philosophical argument against environmentalism other than it wasn't "practical" or that it was "too costly." The opponents "sort of" believed in being nice to the earth, but only a "little bit." But that "little bit" sanctioned the rise of the power lusters. They believed in the efficacy of reason, but only "a little bit." In that conflict, the more consistent party won, and that was the environmentalists. Apply that scenario to every realm of human action, and you have an explanation of why we're under siege on all fronts.

Anonymous said...

SShendeR accuses Daniel of political bias. Well no kidding. This article is a discussion of the politics, not the science. As such, it is right on, although I don't think I would use the term 'War on Science'. I would characterize it more as the Corruption of Science.

Look, it's easy to see how it happens. The reality is that no one gets research funding to look at non-problems. The more alarmist the threat, the more likely research grants will flow. So the data gets massaged, the computer models get modified with 'fudge factors', the message becomes more dire, and before you know it, emails about hiding the decline start flying around, the 'in' group starts manipulating the peer-review process to exclude non-believers, skeptics are pummeled with words like overwhelming consensus (is there a more political term than 'consensus'?). Then, the real bucks start to move in setting up scams like carbon credit schemes, and various other shakedowns, massive subsidies for 'green' companies (Solyndra anyone?) that suddenly vanish.

Are the scientists evil? No, just in over their heads. Instead of admitting that perhaps their conclusions may not be right, they stupidly doubled down on their assertions and it's all falling apart. The models can't predict worth a damn and even friends are starting to distance themselves.

Well, crap like this can only be sustained for a while. Eventually, even the true believers will realize they have been had. By then, the real scam artists will be long gone and clueless governments (i.e. the taxpayers) will be left holding the bag.

Sadly, we will not learn from this fiasco. The Green cult will continue and the process will repeat itself using some other threat that pops up.

Chris said...

Akin to the youthful idealism of the Left (re: the Beatle's song "Imagine") wherein the world is viewed as how they "imagine" that it SHOULD be without any regard for the real-world in which we operate (re: Star Trek's oft-quoted Chief Engineer, "Ye canne change the laws of physics!"). If the dire predictions of the AGW algorithms (not to be confused with Al Gore rhythms) are correct, then plugging in past data should match historically-observed temps, etc., as output. Thus far, zip zilch nada zero nuttin'.

Old circa 1960's editorial cartoon depicting NYT journalist talking with Pravda journalist --
NYT guy says, "We have a motto: All the news that's fit to print!"
Pravda guy replies, "So do we: All the news that's printed fits."

IgorR said...

Stalin once wrote a paper called "Marxism and Problems of Linguistics" which propelled him to become a noted linguist. When you control the narrative, you can create experts out of whole cloth. Of course you also need millions of useful idiots, and you need to denounce "skeptics" as either enemies of the state or enemies of science.

Eventually Soviet science did abandon Lysenko, because not participating in genetics research was just too costly and he affected the crop yields too much, although Michurin always remained a hero, but in truth he was not nearly as anti-intellectual as Lysenko.

There is one difference between Soviet science and western liberal science: however misdirected the Soviet scientists were playing for their team to win, while the western one's are playing for the humankind to lose. In their own way, like Muslims, they love death more than normal people love life. In their case it's the death of civilization. They also want to get rich in the process, but their motivation seems a lot more ideological than that of the Soviet leaders who were the ultimate pragmatists and ruthlessly did what they had to do to maintain power. I don't profess to know what really drives someone like Hansen, it could be a combination of factors. He doesn't seem to be in it purely for personal gain although he has gained a lot. I don't even know if Al Gore is 100% cynical, although he probably is. Somehow "progressive science" seems more convoluted than anything the Soviets did.

As everyone has been reminded with Maggie Thatcher's passing that the problem with socialism is that eventually you run out of other people's money, and the liberal anti-science as everything else the liberals do promotes this outcome. The real problem is that the millions of idiots who tolerate this "science" reach the wrong conclusions when the results don't add up to their expectations. Like Krugman, they always interpret too much as not enough.

The world truly is going to hell in a handbasket. Irrational ideologies like liberalism and Islam, whose practitioners truly do believe that the Jews are literal descendents of apes and pigs, are on the ascendency, all while their economic, scientific, and moral failures are growing. What can't go on forever will not, but the "realignment" of right and wrong will not be pretty.

Anonymous said...

The Koch brothers daddy Freddy spent years helping Russia build their energy infrastructure . Stalin and Freddy spent a lot of time together , they were good buddies . Now the Koch bros control the right wing . R-cons commies same thing .

Edward Cline said...

To paraphrase Daniel's closing line, "You can declare war on science… but science will always win," in fact, one can declare war on reality, but reality will always win.

Anonymous said...

Everything the Libs declare war on has been a failure,Science,Drugs Poverty,Women.


Anonymous said...

Limbaugh was right many years ago when he predicted the fall of Communism would send many Communists and Communist sympathizers into the environmental movement.

SShendeR said...

I find it quite amazing how many commenters here are willing to indulge conspiratorial excesses to bridge the dissonance of what they would like to believe and what scientists find in the real world. We can trust the scientific method alright, except when it conflicts with my preconceived ideological biases, in which case scientists are all of a sudden guilty of cooking the books to get more grants or any other such nonsense.

I am left with little other than to echo fizziks' frustration with ideologues' on both sides.

DrJay11 said...

Science will not win in our lifetimes... as long as the Left decides what articles are published... and they do.... scientific progress in the US is stymied. It started when bureaucrats were put on granting committees, and the honest researchers had no way to defend themselves. That is why O parades brain-mapping as a new goal... his lackeys will get the grants.

Anonymous said...

"You can declare war on science… but science will always win."

Someone also wrote, "We cannot break God's Laws; they are unbreakable. We only break ourselves when we attempt to do so."

Sibyl Smith

Anonymous said...

"We cannot break God's Laws"writes Sibyl
God is the inventor of science. His law does not run contrary to the science he put in place

Anonymous said...

War is Peace...or so they would say.
@Daniel: My one disappointment with the article was your of the word 'gender' incorrectly. Gender refers to whether a word is masculine or feminine, not a human being. To refer to a human being, you use the word sex. A human is either of the male or the female sex, not gender. The progressives purposely started using this word to refer to humans so as they could confuse the discourse and frame their arguments to their advantage. A small thing, but a pet peeve of mine. Otherwise another very insightful and thought provoking article.

Anonymous said...

Global warming is the biggest con-job in the history of the world, and I give due credit to its proponents (Al Gore, Enron, etc.) for having the moxie to try and pull it off and enrich themselves. However, after the curtain is pulled back and the wizard exposed, continuing on with the same old con gets rather insulting. Furthermore, when one starts using force, whether a gun or government, to fleece your targets, it is no longer a confidence scheme but out and out robbery and should be dealt with as such.

Anonymous said...

I would be terribly interested in what peer reviewed study you where referring to when you typed " best efforts to model the system have converged in agreement that anthropogenic climate forcing is real and has potential consequences for sea level, precipitation distribution, and storm severity."
Some 30 years in Meteorology/Climotology and Numeric Weather Prediction (i.e. modeling) and I have not seen this definitive paper as of yet, though not for lack of looking.

Drewski said...

Does anyone here believe in physics?

What do you think happens when heat-trapping gas is added to the atmosphere?

1 trillion tons of man-man CO2 has been added to the Earth's atmosphere since 1850. This equates to almost 2 extra watts of energy for every square meter of the Earth's surface (including oceans). This is not a matter of anyone's opinion -- this is a physical fact.

If the earth did not warm from the additional greenhouse gas, then down is up and white is black which is exactly what I am hearing from most of the posters here.

Anonymous said...


CO2 is not a pollutant! (Regardless of what the EPA declares.) It is an essential part of the biosphere and is constantly getting recycled. Is it a greenhouse gas? Well of course it is. But its effects are dwarfed by other influences including water vapour and natural sun cycles. Are we warming? Likely, but then again we are still coming out of the last ice age.

But this article is not about physics. It is about how politics corrupts science. And on that note, it is right on.

As for SShendeR decrying the 'conspiratorial excesses' of responders, kindly spare us your condescension. If you think science is not being corrupted and manipulated, than you are quite simply childishly naive. It happens all the time in all fields, especially when the stakes are high. But it doesn't have to be a conspiracy. Bias can creep in in all kinds of ways. Look up Ioannidis' work on bias in clinical trials for example.

Anonymous said...

BASIC physics:
For every action there is an equal and opposite reaction.
If we have Ice Ages, it stands to reason we would have Fire Ages.
Global warming? Maybe. Man Made Global warming? Almost assuredly not

christian soldier said...

Off thread--

May I post your April 13 post-to the site of LA Lutherans for Life ?—


Daniel Greenfield @ the Sultan Knish blog said...

Yes sure

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