Opinion from a Libertarian ViewPoint

Posts Tagged ‘anti-hydroxychloroquine’

Doug Casey on How Fake Science is Used as Propaganda

Posted by M. C. on June 18, 2020

The main effect of COVID isn’t medical; it’s the hysteria that’s destroyed the economy. And political actions are even more insane than those after 9/11.

Politics thrives on hysteria. The politicization of everything is the real problem.

by Doug Casey

International Man: The Lancet recently retracted an anti-hydroxychloroquine study, which the media had used to attack Trump.

Trump had admitted to taking hydroxychloroquine as a preventative measure against the coronavirus. The media then went into a frenzy. The talking heads often cited The Lancet study as proof hydroxychloroquine was dangerous.

The bottom line is that bogus research made its way—likely deliberately—into one of the most prestigious peer-reviewed medical journals in the world. People then used this “science” as a political weapon.

What is your take on this?

Doug Casey: I’d say the whole charade is tragic, except that “tragic” has become the most overused word in the language today. It bears a short discussion.

Look at the recent death of a small-time career criminal, George Floyd. It’s as if “tragic” were part of his name. It’s as if people no longer understand the meaning of the word. A tragedy used to mean that a heroic protagonist succumbed to a cosmic force. There are no heroes in the degraded melodrama, just villains, where a costumed thug murdered a street thug under the color of law.

Sorry to go off on a tangent. But it’s a timely instance of another word whose meaning has been twisted. It’s Orwellian, like so many other things in our devolving society.

Let’s talk about something that’s actually tragic: the corruption of science over the last couple of generations.

I’ve subscribed to Scientific American, Discover, and New Scientist  for many years. During this time, I’ve noticed a distinct change in their respective editorial policies. They’ve all been politicized, captured by the PC left. These popular magazines are nowhere near the quality they once were. But this is just symptomatic of a bigger problem.

You might recall the 2018 hoax where three academics, disgusted with widespread incompetence and dishonesty in research, submitted absurd “spoof” papers to twenty leading journals. They were written in gobbledygook, full of made-up facts and flawed reasoning. But most, as I recall, were peer-reviewed and published.

If you research the subject a bit, you come to the conclusion half the peer-reviewed papers—absolutely in “soft” fields like psychology, sociology, political science, race and gender studies, etc.—are unreadable, dishonest, useless, and pointless.

Why might this be? If an academic wants to advance in today’s university system, he has to publish research. It’s Pareto’s Law in action, the 80–20 rule. It’s pretty reliable, 80% of this sort of thing is crap because it’s written mainly to fabricate credentials, not advance knowledge.

This is a bad thing.

It’s causing the average guy, who may not know anything about science but still has some respect for it, to lose that respect. That’s because science has become politicized.

You can see it with the conflicting information about COVID-19. Is it deadly or just another seasonal flu? Does it affect everyone, like the black death, or mainly the old and sick? Does almost everyone who contracts the virus get very sick or die or only a tiny percentage? Should you quarantine or live normally?

So far, as near as I can tell, the great virus hysteria has gone from being the next black plague to basically a big nothing. It’s not nearly as bad as the Asian Flu from the 50s or the Hong Kong Flu from the 60s. Forget about the Spanish Flu—there’s no comparison whatsoever. The main effect of COVID isn’t medical; it’s the hysteria that’s destroyed the economy. And political actions are even more insane than those after 9/11.

Politics thrives on hysteria. The politicization of everything is the real problem. And it’s not just about the total disruption of society and multitrillion-dollar deficits. For instance, I’ve played poker with a bunch of guys in Aspen every Monday night for years. Now, even though the lockdown in town is easing, the group is breaking up because most of them insist that everyone wear a mask. I won’t, nor will a couple of other guys. So, between that and a few guys who are now scared to socialize no matter what … game over. It may also mean the end of a larger Friday business lunch group I belong to that’s been around for decades.

There are millions of similar small rips in the social fabric taking place everywhere now. And they’re largely justified by “the science.”

The real problem is that the knock-on effects of the virus will last much, much longer than the trivial virus itself—which will soon burn out and be forgotten. The political, economic, and social changes, however, will linger for years, as will attitudes toward “science.”

International Man: What are the implications of people corrupting the scientific process to launder their political propaganda to shape mainstream opinions?

Doug Casey: You might think this is a new thing, but the left, in particular—who have always been advocates of social engineering— love using “science” to further their political agenda.

The first important instance of this was Karl Marx and his notion of “scientific socialism”—a totally bogus idea.

Since he first promoted it over 150 years ago, the concept has become ingrained in the culture, especially academia. People have been taught to believe there’s such a thing as “scientific socialism,” and that it’s not just inevitable, but desirable. In fact, it’s pseudoscience. But that’s just the first example of corruption of science in modern times.

Keynesianism is another example. Keynesians believe that they can manipulate the economy as if it were a machine.

A machine is a horrible analogy for the economy, however. It’s not a machine or a factory where you can pull levers to make magic happen—which is precisely what the Keynesians (who run the economic world today) think they can do.

The economy is more like a rainforest, which is very complex. It can’t be manipulated from outside by apparatchiks enforcing rules. And if you do try to manipulate a rainforest from outside, you’re likely to destroy it.

Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged: , , , , | Leave a Comment »