November 10, 2015

"It’s time for conservatives to start reclaiming science"

Joshua LiebleinRebel Blogger

It’s time for conservatives to start reclaiming science. Not just because we went through an election campaign where we basically let the concept of scientist-muzzling conservatives stand unopposed.

It’s also because the scientists themselves are about to have their heads flushed down the toilet by the fanatical left and their new hero of a Prime Minister -- and just like everyone else who’s been dropped by the left, the right needs to be there to pick them up.  

I’ve already covered how doctors are getting the equivalent of a surprise colonoscopy by left leaning governments, but Justin Trudeau’s people aren’t satisfied with that.

They don’t want big corporations funding medical research or growing food.

They don’t want medical professionals judging their bodies, questioning them when they diagnose themselves with autism, or suggesting that they may not actually be robots, dragons, elves, animals, angels, or any combination thereof.

They want the “real story” about vaccines and the pharmaceutical companies who provide them. That’s how the Toronto Star ended up in the midst of this embarrassing kerfuffle last year.    

And they want non-science -- homeopathy and “complementary and alternative medicine” -- taught alongside science at universities. (All this time, the creationists were doing it the hard way!)

But hey -- evidence based practice is what these Liberals have committed themselves to, remember?

Now, Trudeau, Wynne, or any of the Liberal figureheads are too smart to endorse this woo-woo.

No, instead they’re going to take a principled pass and allow the Jenny McCarthys, Jim Carreys, and Oprahs of the world lead the charge.

They know full well what’s going on, however.

They know that most people like to pick and choose when it comes to scientific principles. They promote handgun bans and lowered class sizes over the objections of experts, but are all too happy to stand behind other experts to give legitimacy to costly and unproven energy schemes and early childhood education.

(What they eventually come up with may bear only the slightest resemblance to what the expert originally wanted, but as you have probably guessed, that’s someone else’s problem to work out.)

Science, as any scientist worth their lab coat will tell you, is not a la carte. Sometimes science (just like non-science) supports ideas consistent with the liberal fantasy land, and other times, it doesn’t.  

Science also doesn’t care about feelings or ideology, which puts it at odds with an activist Liberal government like Trudeau’s from the get-go.

That means that Trudeau is sometimes going to have to choose between pushing his left-wing agenda and adhering to evidence based practice. I think you know which one is going to win out.   

So what can conservatives do?

Well, people will hate me for saying this, but conservatives need to stop being afraid of science.  It won’t force you to give up your deeply held beliefs if you don’t want to.

Only left-wing ideologues will -- but as we’ve seen, that’s not science’s fault.

In case you haven’t noticed, nobody outside of those left-wing ideologues have a problem with conservatives having beliefs.

The average voter does think conservatives are going to force their beliefs on others, however, and that’s a problem.

We need to make the case that left-wingers like Trudeau want to overturn the very idea of science so they can force their beliefs on everybody.  

Then, we need to call Trudeau out when he selectively listens to experts and scientists and pledge to do better.

Next week, if this column doesn’t get me fired, I’ll be back with a helpful primer on how conservatives can approach science-y stuff without having overly defensive meltdowns. Stay tuned!



Alberta’s NDP is using a fake "public survey" to push climate change policy.
JOIN THE FIGHT against Notley’s global warming junk science!

Believe that Muslim face coverings have no place in Canada?
The Rebel Store has the t-shirt for you: “Separation of Mosque and State”

READ Ezra Levant's bestselling books debunking environmentalist propaganda against the energy industry:
Groundswell: The Case for Fracking and Ethical Oil: The Case for Canada's Oil Sands

You must be logged in to comment. Click here to log in.
commented 2015-11-15 15:11:21 -0500
Also, I’d like to note that while we’re bashing Liberals, the CBC and Marketplace actually did a bit debunking Homeopathy, so we really don’t need to pretend this is entirely partisan. After all, Rona Ambrose and dozens of other Conservative Health Ministers over the years could have declassified Homeopathy as certified drugs.
commented 2015-11-15 15:05:45 -0500
The science of vaccines, just like the science of allergies, is complicated. While I agree that the Star article was a bit alarmist, the supposed proof of safety for the vaccine was based on epidemiological studies (themselves correlative), which don’t prove lack of causation, rather they prove tolerance in the majority of a population. So it’s entirely plausible that all of these supposed victims of vaccines are actual victims. The point of making an article about them is that all of their lives count and they shouldn’t be white-washed (even if only based on correlation – for now). People aren’t tested to determine their individual vulnerabilities to most things (foods and vaccine ingredients included) so there should be no surprise that there is a backlash to coerced vaccines, when there is an actual risk and actual harm may (and does, albeit usually minor reactions) occur.

My personal stand against coerced vaccines is in their use of fetal tissue, but I digress.
commented 2015-11-14 00:05:44 -0500
Hi Mr. Andrew Stephenson;
I appreciate your comments. I have no disagreement with the first part of your post. You are most certainly right that there is laboratory evidence that shows there are changes to bacteria in laboratory experiments. This has also been demonstrated with fruit flys as well. When discussing evolution we should exclude micro-evolution from the debate. I don’t know of anyone who disagrees that bacteria can adapt or change to new conditions. The examples you provide are excellent for supporting this well accepted and non controversial fact. We are in agreement here.
My point, and it was probably not made very well in my first attempt, is that laboratory experiments with bacteria or anything else have never produced a different species. Bugs stay bugs no matter what we do in the laboratory.
Micro-evolution should not be used as evidence for the grandiose claims that the mechanism of random variation and natural selection could produce a diversity of species from a common simple life form. There is no evidence to support this. I don’t think any evidence to draw this conclusion will ever be provided by the scientific community.
I think it is important to recognize that most people who have doubts about ‘evolution’ do not doubt the non-controversial science. Many of my ideas on this subject come from a man named David Berlinski. I admire Mr. Berlinski for his courage to publicly acknowledge the week points of the theory. I would recommend that you at least read some of David Berlinski’s thoughts on this topic. He is very well educated, highly intelligent, humorous, and is a refreshing change from herd mentality.

I want to advocate for clarity on points of agreement so that we can identify where the points of departure lie on these contentious topics. You are clearly formerly educated In biology and I am not. I will gladly and humbly acknowledge that I am not a biologist or have much knowledge in this field. Yet, I think I represent a segment of the public who cares about these questions and is skeptical about a class of people who are becoming increasingly dishonest. Scientists are no different than any other group of people and I am not so naive to think that there is never an agenda being pushed. Honesty is a very rare virtue these days and it is a failing not limited to just the conservative minded. We must both park our ideologies at the door. The beauty of science is that it cares nothing for politics or ideology. I fear that even science is being eroded by politics. I fear there is nothing that human beings touch that we do not pervert and that eventually becomes an object of cynicism. I encourage both of us and any serious minded person who reads this to have enough integrity in whatever they do to not feed the fire of cynicism.
commented 2015-11-13 23:22:21 -0500

Actually, there is considerable lab evidence of evolution. Go look up the long term E. coli evolution experiment – because bacteria multiply so fast, it’s possible to watch them over tens of thousands of generations, and they’ve found some interesting phenotypes. Most notably, one of their cultures has evolved to use citrate as a carbon source, something their input strain has no capacity for (missing a crucial transporter) but evolved a replacement for. You see it with antibiotics, too. A fair bit of that is horizontally transferred, but de novo resistance is pretty common. That’s evolution. My own Masters project took a year longer than planned because my experiments kept experiencing secondary mutations that perturbed the phenotypes to the point where the data were impossible to interpret. Even things like mosquito or headlouse resistance to pyrethrin insecticides, farm pests to Bt, etc… these are evolution in action. A mutation occurs, and due to selection, it becomes ingrained in the population, such that it evolves resistance.

You want to talk about why conservatives and science are incompatible? This is a prime example. You are letting your ideology blind you to the overwhelming evidence towards the theory you choose to deny. Yes, there is an enormous body of evidence supporting evolution. You choose to ignore it, because it disagrees with your personal point of view. That is dogma if ever there was some.
commented 2015-11-12 02:14:12 -0500
I cannot stop from commenting on this topic. Science and it’s intersection with politics and human affairs is a very important subject that rarely gets discussed intelligently. In my humble opinion the vast majority of people are completely unaware of the foundations of science. People are very ignorant of the history of science. And most certainly most are completely ignorant of the philosophy of science. To the uninformed and untrained these subjects may seem obscure, trivial, or even irrelevant. That thinking is a big misstep and a sure way for humanity to fall into ignorance. We must first make a distinction between technology and science. These are not the same things. There certainly is a relationship between science and many modern technologies but science is an enterprise that should not be equated with technological advancements.
Some of the most important and critical under-pinnings of science are:

1. Rationality and a rational mind precedes scientific enterprise.
2. The natural world must be governed by fixed laws that can be observed and understood by a rational mind.
3. Out of nothing, nothing comes.
4. The law of cause and effect. If something begins to exist then it must have a cause.
5. If it cannot be measured or substantiated mathematically it is almost assuredly not scientific or accessible to the scientific method.

The significance of these principles/axioms may be taken for granted or may be trivialized but only at the expense of science itself.
This is where I am going to alienate myself by saying some very politically incorrect things and question some sacred cows. Science has ventured into territory it has no business being in. Not only does it have no business there it cannot survive in this other market place of thought and rationality. Science is a category of knowledge that is strictly fact based yet this enterprise has been given domain to answer questions it simply can never answer. We allowed science to tell us that the mechanism of random variation and natural selection can explain biological life on this planet. This is one example of a laughable ‘scientific’ creed that cannot be questioned or debated yet there is no evidence that such a mechanism could ever produce the diversity of biological life found in the fossil record or found in the world we live in today. Yet this narrative is unquestionable even though there is a complete absence of laboratory evidence, computer models, or anything else to substantiate it. Is it any wonder that the climate change ‘debate’ has become another sacred cow that only an ignorant ‘denier’ would question. Have you ever heard a substantive scientific debate or discourse on this topic from both points of view? Why is that? There is data. There are statistics and computer models. There are intelligent scientists who should be able to park biases and examine the data, evaluate findings, test hypotheses, and draw conclusions. Why is this topic so political? It is for the same reasons that the mechanism claimed to support the macro-evolutionary process cannot be questioned. Science has been usurped by philosophies that would shock the great pioneers the natural sciences. Newton wrote in his Principia Mathematica that he expected to find law in nature because there was a law giver. Today many scientists expect the government grant money to flow because of a political agenda. What? You think scientists are some priestly class that would never fudge data? Scientists don’t have egos or political agendas?
How much science is naval gazing? Is science in the 21st century moving in a straight line or going in circles? Is the anti-religious, post modern agenda of the progressive, leftist, elitist scientist so bent on trying to substantiate their beliefs and philosophies that actual science is falling by the way side? I’m just asking. If it’s a fair question for the Intelligent Design crowd then it’s a fair question for everyone else too.
commented 2015-11-11 17:57:25 -0500
Dave Bainard…I disagree that some should be given free rein.
Thats precisely the point I am making, that they should not.
In who’s world should an employee, public or private be able to openly advocate and broadcast their own biased opinions as government or company policy?
Such a person should understand that there is a high risk of being fired ‘for cause’. Many did understand this and that’s why they went underground and complained to the media and big money environmental org’s.
I venture to say you would be hard pressed to find even one gov’t. scientist in the climate sciences field that would go against the climate alarmist gov’t position.
Even retired ones won’t speak out for fear of retribution from their past co-worker friends.
Their pension is the great silencer.
commented 2015-11-11 16:21:22 -0500
It’s pretty common that scientist, engineers,researchers etc in private industry must sign contracts ensuring their silence as conditions of employment. This is just to safeguard proprietary info. (ie patents). Sure there may be a few areas where government scientist where silence maybe critical but there are a few areas that they should be given free rein over their findings and opinions. Climate change comes to mind here because I’m sure there are lots of them out there that would go totally against the governments “the science is settled” talking points.
commented 2015-11-11 15:35:37 -0500
Canadian Government Science ‘Muzzled’?

In April, 2013, the ‘Environmental Law Centre at University of Victoria’ and ‘Democracy Watch’ an ethics advocacy group filed a complaint to the Federal Information Commissioner, Suzanne Legault titled ‘Muzzling Civil Servants : A Threat to Democracy’? Claiming that taxpayer funded science across six government departments and agencies is being suppressed or prepackaged etc.
Ok so we already know because of the organizations complaining, this is about Global Warming / Climate Science and the complainants want to use public scientists at taxpayer expense for the purpose of promoting their enviro-ideology activist causes.
“Environment Canada forbids scientists from speaking publically on issues such as Climate Change”…(Canadian Press).
Well I should hope so, you can’t have public employees releasing or announcing contentious ideology influenced information (propaganda or not) in all directions.
Anyone with a job knows you can’t go over your bosses head and make announcements on behalf of your employer to suit your own ideological agenda.

So called ‘public scientists’ and bureaucrats with some science background who work for us taxpayers in structured government departments should report within the established chain of command.

It’s natural protocol that government departments assign the work and control the process of that work, determine the worthiness of information release and who is authorized to publically release it. It’s normal worldwide that government scientists have less freedom to speak publically than independent or university scientists.

Validity of Climate Science Discredited…Climategate and other Scandals.
It’s no secret that high ranking climate scientists were caught (leaked emails) manipulating/falsifying temperature measurements, collaborating to alter data to suit their ideological preconceived purpose and climate models.
Canadian Senate Climate Hearings, were held ‘Energy, the Environment and Nat Resources’, Dec. 15, 2011, with 4 prominent Canadian Climate experts, see video of hearings.
The science of ‘Climate’ and every other field of science is constantly changing.
commented 2015-11-11 00:11:16 -0500
What kind of dogma could possibly be reconciled with the scientific method?
commented 2015-11-10 23:54:55 -0500
Andrew who just closed down a plant for dumping carrot juice, while allowing raw sewage to go unchecked? INTELLECTUALS? LMAO
commented 2015-11-10 23:53:18 -0500
Andrew what a crock of sh*t please show me what you base your comment on? And sorry but left wing dogma is about fake science more often than not. Try some reality or give me some examples. Or do you believe all the ice melted last year?
And sorry but disagreeing with elitist liberals does not make anyone anti intellectual. Our new liberal PM is a f*cking idiot and liberals voted for this clown.
commented 2015-11-10 21:27:16 -0500
Leaving aside the simple fact that the Right has more than its fair proportion of open anti-intellectualism, there is also dogma on both sides of the partisan spectrum, whereby left wing dogmas are fundamentally more compatible with the scientific method than right wing dogma.

You will be hard-pressed to find a right-leaning scientist pretty much anywhere. Economists, perhaps, but that’s more of an art than a science. That should be pretty indicative of how incompatible right wing talking points are with science.
commented 2015-11-10 21:06:31 -0500
The issue isn’t whether you endorse McCarthy and Oprah, Jack. The issue is whether progressive governments continue to let them do their thing unchallenged.
commented 2015-11-10 19:53:31 -0500
Jack Carter DeGrasse is not reputable , he says you cannot debate climate change,. that is not science. All the people you mention are liberals you halfwit, and the ones who believe the Jenny Mcarthy BS are usually affluent progressives oyu stunned fool.
commented 2015-11-10 18:18:45 -0500
The non-sciencing of science is bigger than just Canada. Consider that 47 of 53 landmark cancer studies cannot be replicated:

In the rush to vilify sugar and all other aspects of modern life, everything causes cancer. But anything that can’t be replicated isn’t science.

And then there’s “social science”:

(The video is long and in a foreign language, but worth watching.) Some “scientists” don’t understand the difference between their personal hypothesis and objective evidence. Not that they’ll ever be called on it or fired if their hypotheses are on the “proper” side of thinking.
commented 2015-11-10 17:13:26 -0500
Is Neil De Grasse Tyson and Bill Nye reputable when it comes to science for you? Because there is no fucking way as a liberal – that I give a shit about what Jim Carrey, Jenny McCarthy or Oprah have to say.