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Re: [evol-psych] Re: Asteroids and the Scientific Method

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  • Julienne
    ... In other words, Wade, it s too complicated for you. Perhaps medical doctors should follow your way of thinking - maybe just delineate 10 diseases, and fit
    Message 1 of 89 , Dec 6, 2012
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      At 02:20 AM 12/6/2012, Wade wrote:

      >Thanks Julienne for the more detailed account of how you operate.
      >What this tells me is that you take into consideration so many
      >possible astrological factors - with no real way of assigning any
      >weight to their relative importance, that it is entirely possible to
      >come up with any answer that one cares to regarding something like
      >who will win a presidential election.
      >What you are really doing is coming up with a forecast based on
      >your own political insight, hopes, fears etc just like any of the
      >rest of us, then putting on a hocus pocus Astrologers hat and
      >dressing the thing up as some sort of astrological analysis. The
      >more complex one can make it the more planets, the more charts one
      >can come up with the better, the more "professional" and "credible"
      >it might sound to the feeble minded. Your problem is that this is
      >supposed to be a science so at least in theory it should not attract
      >people who are incapable of seeing through this charade.

      In other words, Wade, it's too complicated for you.

      Perhaps medical doctors should follow your way of thinking - maybe
      just delineate 10 diseases, and fit all of us into those 10 so
      everyone doesn't get too confused.

      What's sad is that you think you're being so insightful - and others
      will, as they already have, praise you blindly.

      I won't bother confusing your little mind with so many details again.

      Nor do you deserve my taking time out of my life to try to explain it to you.


      Perpetual devotion to what a man calls his business, is only to be
      sustained by perpetual neglect of many other things. Robert Louis Stevenson
    • Andy Anderson
      Julienne, Can you help me understand how astrologers do experiments? What would an astrological experiement look like? How would another scientist repeat the
      Message 89 of 89 , Dec 10, 2012
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        Can you help me understand how astrologers do experiments?  What would an astrological experiement look like?  How would another scientist repeat the experiment?  Assuming science doesn't prove anything, it only falsifes hypotheses, what has been falsifies by astrologers?   
        As a x-genetist, I can understand how a scientists do organic chemistry, microbiological or genetic experiments.  There was a time when I could cross to corn inbreds that another scientist had crossed and repeat his experiment or tweak his hypothesis (outcome) by following a specific methodology.  May be you could discribe an astrolgoical experiemental methodology for me.


        To: evolutionary-psychology@yahoogroups.com
        From: julienne@...
        Date: Sat, 8 Dec 2012 20:53:16 -0500
        Subject: Re: [evol-psych] Re: Asteroids and the Scientific Method

        At 10:17 PM 12/7/2012, Fred Feinberg wrote:

        Hi Andy,

        I can't speak for anything like the majority of statisticians or users of statistical methodology. However, if I were to write one of those Freakonomics type books where I had to say what Science or Statistics really meant, it would boil down pretty much to this:

             Science helps us overcome known biases in human perception in helping determine what's true.

        The reason I emphasize this is that there are systems, like Astrology, divining, bloodletting, and thousands of others (not to mention whole religions!) that were believed in not only by some very bright people, but by very bright people who based their belief on what they took to be EVIDENCE. "Evidence" isn't enough. How it's collected is.

        It's like Richard Feynman said, in one of the most insightful and important remarks I've ever heard: that, if you are a real scientist, you put equal energy into supporting and refuting your theory, looking for evidence on both sides. Very few people do that. Most have a horse in the race.

        Edgar and Julienne have whole fleets of horses in the race. Each of them is completely committed to a final position, and endpoint in their debate. Neither is even trying to pretend to be equally arduous in collecting evidence in favor or against Astrology. Personally, I don't care about Astrology, and what I've seen of its predictive successes is, putting it mildly, inconclusive. Julienne does make a good point: if we decide in advance what is possible, we will not take a close look at things that may surprise us.

        I have come to the point now, Fred, where I think you are just in a coma. It  doesn't matter what I
        say, you can't take it in.

        I founded The International Society for Astrological Research for exactly the purpose of conducting
        sound and comprehensive research into astrology, because, in my twenties, I was frustrated with the
        level of astrology I saw being done, and the misinterpretations of it in the media - such as equating
        it with sun sign rubbish.

        I organized conferences all over the world, and travelled all over the world - over 80 countries,
        gathering together physicists, medical doctors, historians, mathematicians, psychiatrists,
        therapists of many kinds, biologists, geneticists, astronomers, and more, to bring their expertise'
        and their information and work to explore what was or was not to be found in astrology.

        You sit there smugly telling me what I believe in order to comfort yourself. I have always said,
        when asked, on, for instance, interviews on TV or radio, or for various publications, why I
        "believed" in astrology, that I don't believe in it - any more than I believe in biology. I've
        lived long enough, Fred, to see information taught us in school as gospel, be unmasked - not
        necessarily as fraud, but as incomplete, sometimes flatly wrong, sometimes needing fine tuning,
        sometimes exploding the current levels of information. Even this week - we knew (were told)
        there was no water on Mars - and now, guess what? - there seems to be water at the Martian poles.

        But you insist on lying and claiming that it is a religion to me, and that I do "believe"
        in it - and you appeal to the rest of the group here to join you in your belief. Seems to me,
        Fred, that the believer is you - trying to convince yourself in your pretend role of reasonable
        mediator, that you are being open and objective. But you're not.

        I sent, as requested, "sTARBABY", and the "CSICOP" article, and you simply brushed them aside
        as containing information which was confusing to you.

        Edgar knows nothing about astrology, and you know that - but you got a kick out of
        using him as a "balance" against me. Ignorance isn't a balance against a quest for
        knowledge and understanding, Fred - it's just ignorance.


        I think it was Erasmus Darwin who said we should do crazy experiments from time to time, like to play a trumpet every day for a month to daffodils, and see what happens. Most of the time, nothing. But, sometimes, we may question the very way we see the universe.

        I don't know if this sort of answer is what you were after. Obviously, it's a subject that intrigues me.


        Re: Asteroids and the Scientific Method
        Fri Dec 7, 2012 6:46 pm (PST) . Posted by: "Andy Anderson" nd_ndrsn


        In your sense of having “…a specific
        way of dealing with data and empirical questions,” would you say that is
        similar to a position of experiential, experimental observation, from a clearing
        free of “artificial scaffolding?”

        I for one would like to hear more of your
        position. It seems to me there are few
        places on the internet and few news groups that are not full of true believers proselytizing
        their beliefs, projecting thier fear. ]You articulate an
        important position. Thank you,


        Few people are capable of expressing with equanimity opinions which differ from the prejudices of their social environment. Most people are even incapable of forming such opinions.
                    -- Albert Einstein

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