posted on Dec, 3 2011 @ 01:40 PM
"There is no such thing as 'Science'."
"Who told you that?"
"No one -- I discovered it myself."
"I think that probably you are wrong."
"Oh? Consider this statement: 'Science tells us x'."
"What about it?"
"Well, where did you actually read 'x'?"
"Who wrote the article?"
"Never mind that -- I read the paper."
"Who wrote the paper?"
"J. M-- & B. P--, 'On x'. It's peer-reviewed."
"What sort of scientists are J.M and B.P?"
"So, 'geology tells us x'?"
"Yes... yes -- If 'science tells us x' then 'geology tells us x'."
"So geology tells us 'x'?"
"So the people who wrote the paper are geologists. And it was peer-reviewed."
"Who was on the peer-review board?"
"Well, I'm not sure, let me see... Ah -- These people: (L, H, T & Y) are on the peer review board, and A.D & B.W. were able to reproduce their
experiment, and came to the same conclusion: 'X is'."
"So: J.M, B.P, A.D, B.W, L, H, T, and Y all tell us that 'x' is?"
"Correct... but not just them: 95% of geologists agree that 'x' is (link to survey data) and furthermore --"
"Hold on a moment... 95% of geologists agree that 'x'?"
"That's what I said."
"How do they know?"
"Well, presumably they read the papers written by A.D. & B.W., and J.M & B.P., and arrived at the same conclusion I did."
"So they're no different than you."
"And science tells us 'x'?"
"Are you science?"
"Well... no, but I suppose I'm 'part' of science."
"Are you a scientist?"
"I have a university degree in a scientific discipline."
"But, do you work as a scientist?"
"Well, I work for a company that designs scientific instruments."
"Have you ever researched 'x'?"
"No, not personally."
"So if you're a part of 'Science', and Science tells us, 'x', you're telling us x?"
"Well, in this context, yes."
"But you've never studied x yourself."
"No, I have not."
"So what is 'Science'?"
"Well... it's the scientific method."
"Just that? So the scientific method tells us x?"
"But you said J.M. and B.P. tell us x."
"Well, they used the scientific method to arrive at their conclusions. So did A.D. and B.W."
"And you did as well, right?"
"Well, no, I already told you I've never personally researched x."
"So the scientific method itself didn't tell you x, A.D. & B.W., and J.M & B.P did."
"I suppose, but they used the scientific method, so in a way --"
"In what way?"
"Please don't interrupt. I was saying: In a way, the scientific method did tell me x."
"But only through the research of A.D. & B.W., and J.M & B.P, right?"
"Yes, I guess so."
"Are A.D. & B.W., and J.M & B.P, 'Science'?"
"Yes, they are. They're scientists. Scientists are a part of 'Science'."
"But I thought 'Science' was just the scientific method."
"Well, no, it's also all the scientists, and the institutions they belong to."
"Universities, research institutes, and the like?"
"What about magazines like Discover that present scientific findings to the public? Are they part of 'Science'?"
"Hmm... well, they might be. But, no, no I don't think so. Not exactly."
"Because they're not scientists, they're journalists and writers."
"Some of them are scientists, surely."
"Well, yes, I suppose some of them would be."
"Are the scientists who work for Discover magazine a part of 'Science'."
"Yes, I would say they are."
"But you said scientists and the institutions they belong to are a part of 'Science'. Discover magazine is an institution that scientists belong
"Yes, but it's not a 'scientific institution'."
"Like a research institute or a university?"
"Are all members of universities scientists?"
"Well, no, but all members of the science departments of universities are scientists."
"So only the science departments are universities are a part of 'Science'?"
"Well... I'm not sure I'd say that."
"I'm not sure exactly. I feel like you're trying to twist my words to prove a point."
"So you're being cautious now?"
"I think so."
"Very well, I will change directions: What about the students? Are they a part of 'Science'?"
"The science students?"
"They're future scientists."
"Are they a part of 'Science'?"
"I think they'd have to be."
"What about me, am I a part of Science?"
"Are you a scientist?"
"No, I'm a student."
"A student of the sciences?"
"No. But I could be one day."
"But you're not yet? Then you're not a part of Science."
"Why not? A science student is only a part of 'Science' because he's a future scientist. If I'm a future science student, I'm also a future
"I don't agree with your reasoning. Maybe you're a potential future scientist, but you're not a part of 'Science' yet -- but you could be, I
"Do I need to have a degree to be a scientist?"
"Well, not technically... Do you follow the scientific method when you conduct experiments? Do you have the necessary background in the field you
want to research?"
"Well, no, but I could get the background I need by reading books. And I could conduct my own experiments using sound methodology and the scientific
"Then you would be a scientist. An amateur scientist, but still a scientist -- assuming you actually used the scientific method, and didn't use
specious reasoning to make your arguments."
"Are amateur scientists a part of 'Science'?"
"Well, I don't know..."
"Weren't the first scientists amateur scientists?"
"Yes, I suppose they were. Amateur scientists are a part of 'Science'."
"So anyone, theoretically, could be a part of 'Science'?"
"What about companies that design scientific instruments -- like the one you work for. Are they a part of 'Science'?"
"I'm not sure... The scientists who work for them certainly are."
"Could your company ever be a part of 'Science'?"
"I suppose it could, if it's not already."
"How about this: Is 'x' a part of 'Science'?"
"It's a scientific finding."
"Are all scientific findings a part of 'Science'?"
"Yes, if they've been reproduced, verified, and accepted by scientists."
"But I thought 'Science' tells us 'x'?"
"But now you're saying that 'x' is a part of Science."
"Am I? Well, I see what you're trying to do here -- you're using word tricks to make my argument sound circular."
"I'm just asking questions. Which one is true? Does Science tell us x, or is x a part of Science?"
"They're both true."
"That's a contradiction."
"It's not, it just seems that way because you've used clever definitions and language games to over-simplify the issue."
"You're appealing to complexity."
"You're creating a false dilemma."
"If you say so."
"Let's backtrack: So 'Science' is the scientific method, all scientists, all scientific institutions to which they belong, all students of
science, and the collection of scientific findings verified by Science, and, potentially: All future scientists, all institutions to which scientists
belong, the companies that supply scientists with their instruments, the media institutions that share their findings with the public, and amateur
scientists who believe in the scientific method, and practice proper experimental methods."
"Your definition seems a little broad."
"I thought you were accusing me of trying to over-simplify the issue?"
"You were. You still are."
"You sound like a church man."
"Beg your pardon?"
"You're reasoning exactly like a believer in the supernatural."
"I don't see how."