Re: virus: science's mememic place

Jason McVean (
Wed, 25 Sep 96 16:46:52 MDT

At the risk of going over material that has already been covered
I'm going to comment on a pretty old message. I'm still wading
through old messages because I'm pretty busy but I can't resist
this steamy discussion.

Martin Traynor wrote:
> > Another difference is that much of science can be verified or
> > disproved by individuals that are sufficiently motivated. Raw
> > data is readily obtainable...
> And is tested by using the scientific method. Once again, you must
> accept the tenets before you can proceed. Your argument seems to be
> 1) The scientific evidence that is available convinces me that
> science works
> 2) Because science works, scientific evidence is acceptable
> Circular.

I agree this seems pretty circular but it isn't quite as bad as
it looks. The term "scientific method" is pretty overblown. It's
not that complicated of an idea. The gist of it is that you
observe what you see, interpret it, and see if you can predict
anything from your observations. Perhaps it is just my scientism
speaking but that seems like a pretty reasonable place to start
your investigation of the universe.

In fact, religious investigations seem to work at least partially
along those lines. The main difference is that need to predict
isn't emphasized, or if it is, the need for accuracy isn't.


Dept. of Physics and Astronomy            University of Calgary

"All my life I've been waiting, and watching, and waiting for flesh that smells familiar." Sara Craig - Thank You (Very Much) ---------------------------------------------------------------