From Pfizer, Scientism and Self-Congratulation

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In the race to defeat the coronavirus, good fortune to Pfizer Inc., among others. The drug giant said last week “it will begin testing of its experimental vaccine in the U.S. as early as next week.” But this new ad from Pfizer goes over the top in its self-congratulation: They say: At a time when things are most uncertain, we turn to the most certain thing there is: Science. Science can overcome diseases, create cures, and yes, beat pandemics. Because when it’s faced with a new opponent, it doesn’t back down. It revs up, asking questions till it finds what it’s looking for. That’s the power of science. Well actually, that’s the power of creative ingenuity in general, a capacity unique to human beings, that is put to use in…
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How to Restore Science’s Lost Luster

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Scientists used to be among the most trusted individuals in society. The white lab coat marked an individual who was highly trained, very intelligent, and ultimately credible. Changes in the last century have cast severe doubt on that picture — and scientific organizations sometimes admit it themselves. Some are very worried about loss of public trust in their “expert” opinions. They should be worried. In his book Science and Scientism, J.P. Moreland helps put scientists in their place, as did C.S. Lewis before him. Moreland loves science. He trusts much of what scientists say. But he demonstrates that scientism is not credible, because it refutes itself. Many important fields of inquiry, he writes, are off-limits to science, and to the extent scientists invade areas outside their domain, their opinions have…
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Science as a Jealous God — Free Weekend Conference in Seattle for College Students

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Science, rather than opening minds and setting us free from drudgery, is increasingly a tool of coercion and intimidation. If you’re a college student, consider joining us at Discovery Institute on March 6-7 for a free weekend seminar, “Science, Scientism, and Society.” Scientism is a word that designates the impulse to turn science into a jealous god — not a method for exploring the natural world and responsibly harnessing its resources, but the exclusive source of knowledge about all things, including values and ethics.  More information and a simple online application are here. January 30 is the deadline to apply for this important, enlightening, and fun event, organized by the Intercollegiate Studies Institute (ISI) and held in Discovery Institute’s offices in Seattle. ISI will provide a travel stipend for students…
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