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Old Aug 31st 2017, 11:58 PM   #1
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True philosophic question

Until early in the 20th century anyone who considered themselves educated or sought to be such could attend lectures by noted scientists and get a genuine understanding of the issues at hand. After Einstein Mathematics became the sine qua non to understanding physics. The unfortunate outcome of this for the layman is that we have become instead of a lay audience trying to understand what the latest science tells us to something of a congregation who must listen to mass in Latin and rest assured that the priest knows the truth and we must trust him. Since we cant understand the mathematics we can only base our belief on the authority of the scientist who is speaking at the moment. The problem in argument from authority is that there are equally cogent arguments from others quite as proficient in the mathematics which point to completely different conclusions. My question is thiso you think consensus is an adequate basis upon which to rest the mantle of truth in cosmology? Does the question itself make sense?
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Old Sep 1st 2017, 02:03 AM   #2
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The first requirement for a physics Theory is:
Does it accurately model the Observations?
A subsequent supporting feature might be:
Does it predict new, interesting, testable Physics?
Lastly is probably:
Is it aesthetically/intellectually pleasing?

Note that the "Truth" does not come into it.
I would suggest that few if any Physics theories are true (and then only by complete coincidence).
They are just the best (or as you suggest the most popular) models we have at the moment.
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Old Sep 1st 2017, 03:53 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by jlr01 View Post
Until early in the 20th century anyone who considered themselves educated or sought to be such could attend lectures by noted scientists and get a genuine understanding of the issues at hand.
Now we have Youtube and anyone with internet can attend

After Einstein Mathematics became the sine qua non to understanding physics. The unfortunate outcome of this for the layman is that we have become instead of a lay audience trying to understand what the latest science tells us to something of a congregation who must listen to mass in Latin and rest assured that the priest knows the truth and we must trust him.
That's why it is usually more instructive to find out what actual experiments were conducted and what the results were. Then an enterprising fellow maybe able to come up with better more pleasing explanations for the results. We have to be careful that we don't, as some do, who ignore the experiments and try to rewrite their own reality.

Since we cant understand the mathematics we can only base our belief on the authority of the scientist who is speaking at the moment. The problem in argument from authority is that there are equally cogent arguments from others quite as proficient in the mathematics which point to completely different conclusions.
Einstein once said "As far as the laws of mathematics refer to reality, they are not certain, and as far as they are certain, they do not refer to reality."
https://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/quotes/a/alberteins102390.html"

I also read somewhere that physicists often have to make unrealistic assumptions in order to arrive at mathematics that are actually solvable. I have asked similar questions on this forum. See: Is there something fishy about the wave equation?

My question is this: Do you think consensus is an adequate basis upon which to rest the mantle of truth in cosmology? Does the question itself make sense?
I think it matters not what wrongfully held views some might have. I also think there is much dubious research and conclusions held by "respected" physics journals. I think a better question might be "why do they get all the research grant money?".
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Old Sep 1st 2017, 09:17 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by jlr01 View Post
Until early in the 20th century anyone who considered themselves educated or sought to be such could attend lectures by noted scientists and get a genuine understanding of the issues at hand. After Einstein Mathematics became the sine qua non to understanding physics. The unfortunate outcome of this for the layman is that we have become instead of a lay audience trying to understand what the latest science tells us to something of a congregation who must listen to mass in Latin and rest assured that the priest knows the truth and we must trust him. Since we cant understand the mathematics we can only base our belief on the authority of the scientist who is speaking at the moment. The problem in argument from authority is that there are equally cogent arguments from others quite as proficient in the mathematics which point to completely different conclusions. My question is thiso you think consensus is an adequate basis upon which to rest the mantle of truth in cosmology? Does the question itself make sense?
Brilliant post ....

This has also occurred in the Arts ....Used to be the 'layman' could appreciate a painting or the work of a sculptor . Now , on visiting an art gallery we are presented by works like this ....



We don't get it ... don't see how this could be worth $1,000,000 , when we could have produced something similar ourselves .... But the 'experts' assure us it's a masterpiece , we have to believe them ,they're the experts .....

We now know from declassified documents that modern art was a "CIA weapon" ... Modern art was CIA 'weapon' | The Independent , Not as this article says to attack the russians , but to attack society in general .....

I believe for the same reason , science has been steered into abstract theories and unintelligible mathematics , bark mater ,string theory , all with very little foundation in experiment ... this is to make us doubt our own judgment , think were stupid , so we leave everything in the hands of experts and politicians ...

A fuller understanding of all this comes from a study of conspiracy theory ...
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Old Sep 2nd 2017, 03:27 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by kiwiheretic View Post
Now we have Youtube and anyone with internet can attend
...
I think a better question might be "why do they get all the research grant money?".
Yes there is some excellent stuff of the internet but there is also a lot of (polite self censorship) rubbish.
...
If you can't blind them with science, baffle them with bullshit.
(whoops that one got past the censor)
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Old Sep 2nd 2017, 06:06 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by oz93666 View Post
A fuller understanding of all this comes from a study of conspiracy theory ...
I believe that conspiracy theories are part of a conspiracy, spread by people who want to disrupt the status-quo.
I am no great fan of the status-quo, there are plenty of things quite obviously imperfect with it.
However I see no need to invent conspiracies to account for these problems;
they are simply the result of the human imperfections inherent in the individuals who grasp responsibility.

Regarding the picture in your post, I can happily regard it as ascetically pleasing.
A flower meadow ( for example) is just seemingly random splashes of colour, but is definitely ascetically pleasing.
As for the price tag, it is far more an indication of the nature of the art snobs who promote themselves (far more than they promote the art or artists),
than it is any denigration of the art itself.
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Old Sep 2nd 2017, 01:43 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by Woody View Post
I believe that conspiracy theories are part of a conspiracy, spread by people who want to disrupt the status-quo.
I think that is sometimes true but sometimes I think conspiracies are real. Conspiracies are real in the sense that there are self serving hidden agendas and a lot of gate keepers are driven by greed and selfish ambition rather than ethical fair play. Maybe this doesn't happen much in USA or UK but we see it a lot in the political arena in NZ.
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Old Sep 2nd 2017, 09:56 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by Woody View Post
....As for the price tag, it is far more an indication of the nature of the art snobs who promote themselves ...
Have a look at the link I provided ... it is now admitted that the CIA , using taxpayers money , created the whole modern art phenomena....

As for conspiracy in general ....9/11 is the best place to start for those new to this subject , scientists and engineers should check out Dr Judy Wood .
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Old Sep 4th 2017, 02:02 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by jlr01 View Post
My question is thiso you think consensus is an adequate basis upon which to rest the mantle of truth in cosmology?
No. And if you're a scientist in any shape or form, nor should you. Consensus told us the Earth was flat. Consensus told us the Earth was located at the centre of the Universe. Hard scientific evidence says otherwise.

Originally Posted by jlr01 View Post
Does the question itself make sense?
Yes of course it does. But note that when it comes to cosmology, there are some topics which are supported by evidence, and some which are not. For example we have good scientific evidence that there is something very small and very massive situated at the centre of our galaxy. I would venture to say that we have good scientific evidence that black holes exist. However we have no scientific evidence for Hawking radiation.

IMHO you can divide cosmology up into the good stuff and the not-good stuff. But IMHO you should not throw out the baby with the bathwater.
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Old Sep 4th 2017, 06:44 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by jlr01 View Post
After Einstein Mathematics became the sine qua non to understanding physics.
That has never been true. The theories of mechanics, thermodynamics, electrodynamics etc. all require a strong math background to fully understand the physics. That didn't start with Einstein by any means. It dates back hundreds of years back to Newton, Leibniz, Euler etc.

Where did you ever get the impression that it started with Einstein?
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