How are science and skepticism related? Is skepticism a part of science, or is science a tool of skepticism? Dr. Eugenie C. Scott, Executive Director of the National Center for Science Education, discusses these questions, and explores the importance of teaching both science and skepticism.
Eugenie C. Scott
Eugenie Scott, a former university professor, is the Executive Director of NCSE. She has been both a researcher and an activist in the creationism/evolution controversy for over twenty-five years, and can address many components of this controversy, including educational, legal, scientific, religious, and social issues.
She has received national recognition for her NCSE activities, including awards from scientific societies, educational societies, skeptics groups, and humanist groups. She holds six honorary degrees from McGill, Rutgers, Mt. Holyoke, the University of New Mexico, Ohio State, and the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. A dynamic speaker, she offers stimulating and thought-provoking as well as entertaining lectures and workshops.
Scott is the author of Evolution vs Creationism and co-editor, with Glenn Branch, of Not in Our Classrooms: Why Intelligent Design Is Wrong for Our Schools.
Dr. Eugenie Scott, Executive Director of the National Center for Science Education, distinguishes between empirically based knowledge and "revealed knowledge," or knowledge gathered from a higher power.
She uses the Bhaktivedanta Institute's disbelief in the 1969 moon landing as an example of revealed knowledge.
Philosophical doubting of knowledge claims in various areas. From ancient to modern times, skeptics have challenged accepted views in metaphysics, science, morals, and religion. Pyrrhon of Elis (c. 360272 BC) sought mental peace by avoiding commitment to any particular view; his approach gave rise in the lst century BC to Pyrrhonism, proponents of which sought to achieve suspension of judgment by systematically opposing various knowledge claims. One of its later leaders, Sextus Empiricus (2nd or 3rd century AD), strove for a state of imperturbability. Modern skeptical philosophers include Michel de Montaigne, Pierre Bayle, and David Hume.
All would be well if the blind faith Dr. Scott has on scientific process was true, but as Dr. Michael Cremo has demonstrated in " Forbidden Archeology " there IS a scientific orthodoxy that filters out well documented evidence that does not fit with the current scientific narrative. His book illustrates many hundreds of cases and it has made a great impact in the academic world.
I wonder if Fora may invite him to do a lecture.
Can't comment on the video, as I cannot view it. There are serious problems with your website.
1) Site says it wants "at least Flashplayer 9": I have the latest version, which is 11. Website Flashplayer version detection is incorrect. This error occurs in a linked page, see below.
3) I checked the page's code at validator.w3.org. It reports 186 errors, and 90 warnings. This includes the linked pages, but I did not bother to dig deeper. That's your job.
4) I also use NoScript (on Firefox), so that I can and do selectively allow the linked pages. You have far too many of those. The most serious issue is that the videos are not hosted on your main page, but on somebody else's. Any errors they make will of course make your site look bad, and they do make errors. Eg, the Flashplayer and JS errors occur in linked pages.
The internet link that she shows at the top of the screen, at about 30:30 , for the Australians debunking water-witching has been updated. See these two links instead: this one , which links to more than one video on water-witching, and this one , which seems not to have a video associated but rather a detailed description of water-witching experiments performed by a member of the Society.
I was skeptical of this at first, but Dr. Scott really managed to steer clear of the obvious dangers. Someone should mail this to the CRU.
The big hole in her argument is the core ideas. Science as it stands right now has a real weakness for moving things to the core too quickly, often on the basis computer print-outs or inscrutable math (often statistical), and has an institutional bias against revising the core.
It is important to remember that there is no essential difference between Amazon tribesman and the Oxford academic. Scientism is not immune to the failures of human reasoning, the true skeptic must be skeptical of the scientific method and those who profess to employ it as well.
In one documentary there was a version that astronauts just went around the moon but never landed and pictures from the moon are faked. At my point of view scepticism arise usually in the case of very big not well founded hypothesis which causes anxiety in the public mind like currently forgotten ozone hole and nuclear winter or nowadays popular theory of antropogenic global warming.