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Government: There Is More To Science Than Government-Funded Jobs

For the better part of this century, the federal government has promoted the notion that only government...

Bee Experts Challenge Environmental Claim That Wild Bees Are Near Extinction

Colony Collapse Disorder, the belief that honeybees, an important pollinator, are being killed...

NYU Journalism Department Scandal Grows - Fraud, Conflicts Of Interest, Denial

A group called US Right To Know is embracing the rich history of the anti-science movement; a history...

If RFK Jr. Wasn't Good Enough For Pres. Obama, He Shouldn't Be Good Enough For Trump

Earlier today, President-Elect Donald Trump met with Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. and, at least according...

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Hank CampbellRSS Feed of this column.

I'm the founder of Science 2.0® in 2006 and, since June of 2015, the President of the American Council on Science and Health.

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Okay, we all knew that cats manipulate women more than men but now science has confirmed it.   An article in Behavioural Processes says cats gravitate toward women and it isn't just because they are easier to bilk food from.  No, cats are even more devious than we previously believed.

You probably want to slap people who tell you they have pets when you ask if they have children - and, I confess, I have gotten dirty looks when people have asked me if I have pets and I tell them I instead have children, which are 'just like' pets - but the social bond that crazy cat lady has with her cats actually is like what people have with their children, say the researchers.
Evolution has no moral compass.  We all know that.  And it has no guiding hand.  For that reason, says Christian de Duve, professor emeritus at the Catholic University of Louvain and Nobel laureate (Medicine or Physiology 1974), we may be doomed.

And to get his point across to all sides, he uses an Original Sin metaphor.   
One of the subtleties of the human condition is that if you like or support someone or something, you can understand the nuances of what words mean differently than if you do not.   If you are a fan of WikiLeaks, for example, the ends justify the means and how they obtain information is unimportant whereas if you are a fan of the climate researchers behind the so-called ClimateGate, the fact that the emails about them were stolen is most important.    And if those researchers are cleared of scientific misconduct you say they are cleared.
If a site like the Huffington Post takes a fair use snippet of your article here and then links to you, their snippet will rank higher in Google than your actual article in keywords related to your article.

A little crazy but okay, you might say, they earned that, right?   With content and quality.
We'd like to believe the political blogosphere, and certainly the political populace, has confrontational overtones science does not, but who are we kidding?   If you get on the wrong side of a science blogging mullah's pet position, they will whip the faithful into a militant frenzy that would make any cult leader proud.

It's the science way; science is about clarity and facts and that means going after someone if they are wrong (and sometimes just if they disagree but that is less common) - the downside to that is it means everyone thinks they can tee off on scientists, including if the critics know nothing at all.
Science and religion have always been in something of a conflict.   Science seeks to explain the world according to natural laws while religion leaves larger questions as articles of faith.    There is some overlap - 40% of AAAS member scientists in their recent survey are also religious - but AAAS covers a broad cross-section of scientists whereas biology is ground zero for a conflict with religion over man as we exist today and how we came to be.  So there is less overlap in the life sciences but there have been ongoing attempts to reconcile the two camps, usually with scientists conceding that whatever 'sparked' life has no basis in current data so it is left to philosophy or religion as well.