John Grant's Bogus Science: Some People Really Believe These Things PDF

By John Grant

ISBN-10: 1904332870

ISBN-13: 9781904332879

We satisfaction ourselves at the clinical tradition within which we are living, yet is it relatively so medical? Is it no longer the fact that huge elements of our society are awash with principles and preconceptions which can now not be additional divorced from technological know-how, even if usually they are wrongly or fraudulently defined as "scientific"?John supply, writer of the hugely profitable books Discarded technological know-how and Corrupted technological know-how, now turns his awareness to the substitute that too usually dons the mantle of technology from pyramidology to The Secret’s putative "Law of Attraction", from the common yet lost simple task that the mystical has been confirmed to the hunt for Bigfoot, Atlantis, perpetual-motion machines and human good points at the floor of Mars. In a textual content packed with witty observations, pleasant asides and deft skewerings, he's unafraid to talk fact to a few of our strongest fake ideals.

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Jess M. Ritchie personally promoted his own battery additive, AD–X2 Here’s an object lesson for us all concerning the day-to-day practical costs of laziness in resisting bogus science and of scientific illiteracy. In the aftermath of WWII the US suffered a shortage of lead, and this affected (among much else) the manufacture of car batteries. The search was on for additives that might extend battery life, and sure enough a number of these appeared on the market: Bat-Re-Nu and Duble Power were two.

The results of the NBS’s testing showed . . but you’re way ahead of me, aren’t you? So one of the Select Committee’s staffers asked MIT to run its own test on AD–X2. The MIT report was a mite less condemnatory than the NBS reports had been, but still found no reason to suspect AD–X2 might actually be useful. This was described by some unknown on the Select Committee or its staff as somewhat favourable . . and so the saga continued. In 1953 the Eisenhower Administration arrived in the White House, and with it Sinclair Weeks (1893–1972) as Secretary of Commerce; two of his first actions were to fire the head of the NBS and to suspend the publication of the NBS’s bulletins concerning the efficacy or otherwise of battery additives!

Three centuries later, the same sort of thing can happen to schoolteachers for the same sort of reasons. Most of the flat-earth crusaders over the succeeding centuries have been religious in their inspiration. One exception was Sir Richard Phillips (1767–1840), whose motives in promoting planism were so far divorced from religious in nature that he served time in prison for disseminating atheist literature! It wasn’t until the second half of the 19th century that the next major planist revival came.

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Bogus Science: Some People Really Believe These Things by John Grant

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