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View Diary: Want to see a real crisis? A *partial* counterpoint (44 comments)

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  •  Education (none)
    But the beauty of America is that we're all equal!  Who's to say that just because you've studied something intensively for ten or twenty years your opinion is worth more than mine?  

    Tell me about it.  

    My background is in the physical sciences.  I find it amazing that we have so many people in the U.S. who do something like this:

    1. Ask for, and pay for, an oil change (or home improvements, or...), because they don't think they can do it themselves.

    2. Give a decidedly unorthodox view of a scientific matter, while blowing off long-standing experts as "elitist" or worse.

    I'm sure experts in other professions can give corresponding examples.

    Of course, some of this attitude comes from education that doesn't really teach science (and how it's done) until well into a bachelor's degree in a science, but that's a rant for another day.

    •  blah ha ha ! (none)
      Very, very funny!  And painfully true.  

      Maybe we need to redesign curricula in the hard sciences so as to include a high-stakes, practical component.  

      Something like forcing students to leap off of cliff using a hang-glider that they've designed.  

      Sigh.  God help us.  

    •  Agree (none)
      It's always interesting to me that people who take great pride in refusing to learn how a nuclear plant works or how a reactor is shielded feel that they can accurately judge nuclear safety.

      It's always a puzzle to me that these same people distrust what scientists have to say about nuclear energy but believe what scientists have to say about global warming or species extinction.  As if there were two different scientific methods.

      And I find it curious that a lot of people do not trust the scientists of today to plan and execute safe disposal of spent nuclear fuel but do trust future scientists to invent something great to get rid of it.  And it turns out that most people have no idea of the detailed thought and experimentation that have gone into sequestering nuclear waste.  They appear to get their science from The Simpsons.

    •  words right outta my mouth... (none)
      Of course, some of this attitude comes from education that doesn't really teach science (and how it's done) until well into a bachelor's degree in a science

      No shit!!!!!!  I like the hang gliding idea, below...

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