Monday, 5 May 2014


CE: a scientist speaks stands or falls by evidence... The problem arises when you have a scientific finding that reveals a problem that cannot be fixed by either the markets or government alone. Then, the ideologue is driven to attacking the science.
As one example, in the Soviet Union and satellite states, the dominant ideology was that all people are fundamentally equal, there are no hereditary differences and that the state was the only agency for ensuring that such an equal society functioned. That some were in Orwell’s words more equal than others, we will leave aside. Outcomes of this ideology dominating science included:
  • Trofim Lysenko’s anti-Mendelian pseudo-science whereby biology was perverted to suit the dominant ideology; dissent from his theories was outlawed in 1948, and his dominance of Soviet agricultural research set that country back a long way. 
  • conductive education – a Hungarian theory that disability caused by brain damage can be overcome by training. Again this fitted the Soviet-era ideology that all inequality is induced, but has no basis in evidence; the movement persists to this day, offering false hope to families of the disabled...
It goes on. I get lost.

The author is one Philip Machanick [sic], from Australia, who does things with computers at Rhodes University in South Africa. He also writes fantasy fiction, and his blog.


Machanick, P. (2014) Ideology and counter-ideology of climate change, Opinionations: Philip Machanick’s views on the world. 4 May

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