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Millions Wasted on Cancer Studies; or, What Sets Science Apart

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posted on Nov, 21 2007 @ 01:17 AM
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The following news item appears today on the BBC Web site:

Cancer Studies 'Wasted Millions'.

It is about how sloppy laboratory work and general carelessness have invalidated many scientific studies into cancer and wasted millions of pounds of money belonging to the British taxpayer. In one case, researchers were working on human tissue samples contaminated with cells from mice!

According to the article, the same sort of thing has been happening in America, and elsewhere too.

As a result, much research in this critical area of medicine has been invalidated. The results of the studies cannot be trusted. They'll have to be done all over again.


Stupid Scientists

Apart from indicating that experimental standards in this branch of science have been dangerously lax, what does this episode tell us?

I know what a lot of ATS members would say: It proves yet again what a mad, stupid, irresponsible bunch these scientists are. They're playing God and they can't even be bothered to take simple precautions. They're creating Frankenwhatsits that will surely - due to their irresponsibility and laxity - escape the lab and devastate the Earth. Arrogance, Satanic pride, overeducated morons never learn, etc...

I disagree. A scandal like this - and the reaction to it from scientists - actually demonstrates the strength and trustworthiness of the scientific method. It shows that science, unlike pseudoscience and superstition, is self-correcting, and that it moves on.


The Scientific Method in Action

This article is really about the process of experimental review in action; other people did the same tests as the original researchers, but got different results and wondered why, so they did more tests and found out. The result: humanity now knows more about cancer than it did before.

There have been, in history, any number of scientific blunders. Most of them were exposed by people who were themselves members of the scientific community. In every case the scientific establishment, after some initial (and understandable) resistance, acknowledged its errors and corrected itself.

This is what sets science apart from all other human methods of arriving at the truth. Have you ever heard the priests of any religion or cult admit that they were in error about some point of dogma? Have you heard any philosopher admit that he has lost his argument due to sloppy reasoning? Or a Marxist admit that the Labour Theory of Value is wrong, despite the wrongness of it having been demonstrated literally countless times?

Have you not noticed how, on this very board, the same canards about UFOs, free energy, lost continents, conspiracies of Jews and bankers and Freemasons and heaven knows who else, are repeated ad nauseam, despite having been debunked on this very board endless times before?

It is because superstition and pseudoscience, lacking a mechanism for distinguishing truth from error, merely shuffle around in circles, endlessly recycling the same old fantasies and lies. Meanwhile, science marches on.




posted on Nov, 21 2007 @ 01:28 PM
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Hmm the implications are so broad you could make a conspiracy thread about this. Millions wasted and much research and conclusions drawn (from that research) have been compromised. Does the healthcare industry need more ailments and less cures to stay lucrative?



I know what a lot of ATS members would say: It proves yet again what a mad, stupid, irresponsible bunch these scientists are. They're playing God and they can't even be bothered to take simple precautions.


Well it certainly proves even scientists make tremendous blunders. Although given the structures of organizations I would guess there is alot of pressure on scientists to analyze these experimental datasets they receive without questioning their legitimacy.

The article mentioned one example of an experimental culture of cancer cells used in labs for the past 20 years, turned out to be the wrong cancer. Perhaps procedures to check the cell lines were different 20 years ago than today. Twenty years is a long time!

In my mind it's just a symptom of a world built around cutting corners to try and turn profits.



It is because superstition and pseudoscience, lacking a mechanism for distinguishing truth from error, merely shuffle around in circles, endlessly recycling the same old fantasies and lies. Meanwhile, science marches on.


I totally agree on the self-correcting nature of the scientific method. Although I would disagree on the "debunking of UFOs." There is alot of garbage in ufology, but good compelling data exists and has proven difficult to debunk. But that's for another forum.



posted on Nov, 21 2007 @ 07:04 PM
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Originally posted by Scramjet76
Hmm the implications are so broad you could make a conspiracy thread about this. Millions wasted and much research and conclusions drawn (from that research) have been compromised. Does the healthcare industry need more ailments and less cures to stay lucrative?




This is the first thing that came to my mind also. There is no money in curing cancer but treating it sure does rake in the bucks. What a #ed up world we live in.



posted on Nov, 21 2007 @ 07:57 PM
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The Scientific Method of doing tests and getting results. When it comes to free energy, Their are a lot of anti free energy types who have a very difficult time with this concept.



posted on Nov, 21 2007 @ 10:52 PM
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reply to post by Astyanax
 





Have you ever heard the priests of any religion or cult admit that they were in error about some point of dogma?


As a matter of fact there was one notable cult that straightened it's core doctrines to conform with the gospel of Jesus Christ. It's a rather remarkable story of an organization willing to grow smaller, become less important and willing to give up large financial gain all in the name of nailing down the truth.

www.wcg.org...

There are one or two others like this. For the most part however, the cults rarely change erroneous beliefs. Also the fact is, science rarely changes it's core beliefs either and usually tries to suppress dissenting positions. Virtually every major discovery was viciously suppressed at one time. It's just human nature and human pride at work, the problem is universal really.



posted on Nov, 22 2007 @ 03:30 AM
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reply to post by SevenThunders
 
Herbert W. Armstrong was the guy who wrote MILLIONS NOW LIVING WILL NEVER DIE, right?

As a former adman myself, I recognize the influence of Rosser Reeves and the doctrine of the Unique Selling Proposition. Is that the dogma they admitted the error of? They shouldn't have; it works, even in these jaded days.



posted on Nov, 23 2007 @ 01:14 AM
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reply to post by Astyanax
 


They had a lot of baggage actually. They were a strange combination of christian idenity (British Israelism actually), seventh day adventists and Jehova witnesses. Their appeal was that they 'reexamined' all doctrines of the christian faith and came up with their own, sometimes strange interpretations. For example they denied the Trinity and believed the Holy Spirit was an impersonal force (sort of like the star wars force) and even had some Mormon you can be a god too teaching thrown in.

They are now pretty much orthodox evangelical christians and recognized as such. It's pretty amazing. The change took a lot of humility on the part of their leadership.



posted on Nov, 24 2007 @ 12:42 AM
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Originally posted by graysquirrel
The Scientific Method of doing tests and getting results. When it comes to free energy, Their are a lot of anti free energy types who have a very difficult time with this concept.

Well, that's understandable. When you test free energy concepts and devices, the results you get show that the energy is not free. Whatever you may have learnt from the Internet, not one 'over-unity' device has ever been successfully demonstrated and - thanks to the irrepealable Second Law of Thermodynamics, none ever will be.

Free energy fans are always going to hate the scientific method, because the scientific method always proves them wrong.

[edit on 24-11-2007 by Astyanax]



posted on Nov, 24 2007 @ 01:01 AM
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Gold in them thar tumours


Originally posted by Golack
There is no money in curing cancer but treating it sure does rake in the bucks.

Why shouldn't there be money in curing cancer?

It's not as if all the cancer sufferers in the world are all going to be cured simultaneously in one big healing event, is it?

Each sufferer would have to be treated individually.

And people are not going to stop getting cancer just because there's a cure for it. There'll always be new sufferers in need of a cure.

That's a lot of cures to be manufactured, sold, distributed and administered. A lot of money to be made by pharmaceutical and medical-technology companies, health-care professionals and the rest of the medical establishment.

Besides, the 'cure', whatever it turns out to be (actually, there would probably have to be many different ones, for cancer comes in so many different forms) is highly unlikely to a simple one-shot therapy, a pill or an injection; it would probably involve a fairly lengthy course of treatment. Still more money to be made.

Any cancer cure would be a goldmine. That is why scientists around the world are working like demons to find some. No-one is suppressing a 'cure for cancer'.



posted on Nov, 24 2007 @ 11:29 PM
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reply to post by Astyanax
 


There is a miss understanding here, I have a free energy device (a Synthetic Tornado) available and ready for testing. All we need is for a “Credible Scientist” to step up to the plate and do some actual testing.



posted on Nov, 25 2007 @ 07:46 AM
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Earlier post removed so as not to divert thread.

Can we leave the free energy debate out of this, please? We're talking about the scientific method in general here.

Thank you.

[edit on 25-11-2007 by Astyanax]



posted on Nov, 25 2007 @ 09:29 AM
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Excellent opening post! I can't believe I missed this one... I thought it was another one of those science bashing threads, so I avoided it. That was until I took a closer look at who the thread author was.

Good job!



Originally posted by Scramjet76
The article mentioned one example of an experimental culture of cancer cells used in labs for the past 20 years, turned out to be the wrong cancer. Perhaps procedures to check the cell lines were different 20 years ago than today. Twenty years is a long time!


It could've been worse. Like the scientific consensus on the origin of birds for example. In 1863, Christian Erich Hermann von Meyer noted the similarities in the fossil of a certain dinosaur (later identified to be a species of archaeopteryx) to that of birds. But it wasn't until the 1960s that the idea was actually given serious thought, and it took another 30 years before it became widely accepted, as the evidence against other theories began to emerge.

Like Astyanax mentioned in his opening post, science corrects itself. It takes time, it takes effort, but eventually it corrects itself.

One last thing -- free energy is the new term for perpetual motion. The only real "free energy" is the one that comes from our primary -- the Sun.




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