“Things Exist Outside of Science” – or: Science as a Panacea

I often get into somewhat heated debates about the role of science. Specifically, one thing I hear relatively often is that science does not have all the answers. That science is “limiting”, and that there are things that exist outside of what the scientific method can observe. To which my response would be: what things?

 

I googled “God Photshop” and was not disappointed.

The idea that things exist beyond science’s purview is bizarre to me. Not because it’s wrong, per se. There may very well be things which we cannot establish scientifically. We have no way of knowing.

 

…Spot the problem?

 

Seems like a rather innocuous claim, but accepting it leads to some questionable conclusions. The issue is this: we have no way of knowing. If something exists which cannot be established scientifically, how would you ever demonstrate it? Let me translate this for you who are still confused.

 

“X exists, and it is outside of what science can detect”

Is the same thing as

“X exists, and it is impossible, even in principle, to provide evidence for it”

 

Yeah, if that sounds stupid, it’s because it’s supposed to. Without the lens of science, how can you possibly provide evidence for something? I mean, correct me if I’m wrong, but I have been looking and I have not found any other mechanism for reliably establishing the truth of a system. Empiricism is all we have, and the scientific method is the single most reliable filter beyond that. No other mechanism works. Divine revelation? There’s no reason for anyone else to believe it, and trusting it leads to us needing to accept mutually exclusive conclusions. “Feelings”? Like divine revelation, just without the assertion that there’s an omniscient being behind it. Pure experience? It’s just empiricism, but without the filters science offers to remove obvious and crippling biases and errors. If it’s something that can be shown to be true through pure personal experience, and it actually is true, there is no reason why it would be beyond science.

 

But I’m prattling on and on about epistemology, and I haven’t even gotten to the reason I wrote this blog. I’ve had a rough week, and I feel like spending a little time blowing off steam, so I’m going to grab my shotgun, huddle around this barrel, and take it out on some motherfucking fish. But what fish? Well, I found a post on a forum I frequent funny. Really, really, really funny. . It was titled “Science is not a Panacea”, and it goes something like this.

 

I’ve always had a problem with most Skeptics’ viewpoints but could never properly express my attitude until now.
I recently watched “Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade” and can now put my perspective into words.
The reason I don’t like Skeptics (or anyone claiming to have a skeptic’s philosophy) is because I equate Skepticism with Nazism.

 

Seriously, you see that link up there? Click it. Read the whole thing. This is the funniest thing you will read all week. He fulfills Godwin’s Law within the first three sentences of his own thread. Now, I’m going to be honest and admit I haven’t watched Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade. Maybe the Nazis in that movie are very skeptical, waiting for hard evidence before going after leads for so-called “supernatural” artifacts. Would be a bit of a tone shift from the first movie, and the fourth movie (yes, I saw Crystal Skull but not Last Crusade. My nerd cred is shot, I know.)… Also, isn’t Indie himself kind of a skeptic and a scientist? You know, an archaeologist? Working for a university? Who is skeptical of the ark of covenant during the first movie? But okay, let’s hear it. Why are skeptics like Nazis?

 

I know that such a comparison will most likely blacklist me but allow me to explain…
Skeptics have no problem doing anything to destroy any ideology that suggests Science might not have all the answers.
Skeptics would burn books, destroy artifacts, even raze entire cities to promote their own agenda — JUST LIKE THE NAZIS!!
Anything having to do with Astrology, Witchcraft, Zen, the Occult, and especially GOD or anything else Science cannot address or considers “bullshit” is on their Banishment List.

Like I said, this guy is hilarious. The modern skeptical movement is a whopping 60 years old. Before that, no skeptic ever had any significant degree of power. In the last 60 years, can anyone remember a radical group of scientific skeptics razing a city? Or hell, anyone razing any city in the places where skepticism was popular or widespread? Yes, Skeptics – razing cities to the ground, burning books, eating babies, giving people the plague. Just like the Nazis.

 

I tried to find Carl Sagan eating a baby. Then I tried to find Richard Dawkins eating a baby.  Dammit internet, you have disappointed me.

Just pretend that sandwich is baby meat. Delicious, delicious baby meat.

If you claim you would never go to such extremes, you are lying to yourself.
Even if you think you would never personally participate in such activities, you would not intervene in such activities from others.
You would stand idly by, allowing such measures to go on, never defending the rights of individuals to believe what they want to believe, even if you disagree with such beliefs.
Most skeptics would go to any length to wipe out any beliefs they don’t agree with — JUST LIKE THE NAZIS!!

 

Yeah, I mean, it’s not like prominent skeptics side with prominent christians on the subject of church-state separation. It’s not like liberal skeptics have gotten flak for siding with Muslims on their ability to build Mosques. It’s not like Thunderf00t actually stood up for a creationist who got false-flagged. It’s always fun to convince yourself that your enemies are the kind of people who would kick puppies up and down the block and laugh, and who are immune to logic. Christians do that too – the bible says in a couple of places that non-believers could see proof of god and ignore it. It’s just a shame that it’s simply not true.

 

“I’m not Jewish so I don’t have any problem with them hauling away Jews.”
“I’m not a Gypsy so I don’t have any problem with them hauling away Gypsies.”
“I don’t believe in Astrology so I don’t have any problem with them hauling away Astrologers.”
“I don’t believe in God so I don’t have any problem with them hauling away anyone who believes in God.”

 

“I’m not an idiot so I don’t have any problem with them hauling away this guy.” Or the HIV denialists. Seriously. Get those guys right the fuck out of here. Send them to Siberia or something.

If you think people are “ignorant” for believing in such “nonsense”, you are no different than the Nazis.

 

Yes! Because calling people who believe in nonsense which they cannot prove is real “ignorant” is the same thing as rounding up and systematically slaughtering millions. Go team retard!

 

That team stayed home on account of not being able to figure out how to breathe.

…Not THAT retarded. Please.

 

Live and let live.
Allow people to arrive at their own conclusions, even if you don’t agree with them.
Simply because someone may not agree with Science doesn’t mean they are ignorant!
It simply means they are questioning this world, which, as I understand it is the whole point of Science.
I love Science and I love Technology.
But I believe there is far more to this Universe than what Science can explain.
And if you call me ignorant, you are a Nazi.
SIEG HEIL!!

 

 

I have nothing to add to this. This part is just perfect.

 

Anyways. Fish, barrel. Maybe at some point I’ll get around to actually blogging about something that isn’t easy pickings. This was just a lovely little look into the brain of a total moron. Or troll. Either way, it’s funny. See, the thing is, science is a panacea. It is a one-stop, silver-bullet solution, because it’s all we have. I recall fondly a video from VenomFangX, where he spoke about atheists living in a bubble of what they can perceive. Well yes – that bubble is called reality. If we can’t establish that something exists with science, we have literally no other tool to rely on. We don’t have any way outside of science to establish, to ourselves or anyone else, that something exists or works. Everything outside the “bubble” of science cannot be established to exist in the first place. It’s pure fantasy.