We are developing the social individualist meta-context for the future. From the very serious to the extremely frivolous... lets see what is on the mind of the Samizdata people.

Samizdata, derived from Samizdat /n. - a system of clandestine publication of banned literature in the USSR [Russ.,= self-publishing house]

Samizdata quote of the day

Politically-correct academia has all the essential features of a cult. It’s a small group of people who reject mainstream society and believe that they alone know the truth. It is authoritarian and dogmatic and demands unquestioning obedience to nonsensical doctrines. Conformity is maintained through shaming, intimidation and the expulsion of unbelievers. But young acolytes must pay a fortune to reach even the lowest rank with little chance of progressing any further, while a few people at the top grant themselves ever more lavish rewards. It’s Gramscientology.

– Samizdata commenter AndrewZ

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45 comments to Samizdata quote of the day

  • Frank S

    Neat, with penetration.

  • Very retired

    AZ above is right on it. Not only a cult, but a form of gnostic heresy, in which the true believers actually believe themselves to be in possession of a form of “hidden knowledge” that supersedes and negates such ephemera as mere empirically derived results.

  • Johnnydub

    I think Internet Aristocrat absolutely nails it:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6B3WQPdqTNs

  • Patrick Crozier

    Golly, four pops at academe in a row. We’re not obsessed are we?

    Are we?

  • NickM

    Oh gimme a break! Does anyone care what the Professor of Obscene of Arts at the University of Little Gittering on the Wold thinks. You know what I think? Many Libertarian and similar blogs (including this one) are staffed and commentated upon by people who did the like of PPE and now find they ain’t liked within that community. It is railing at the wind. It is going into the tiger cage and then complaining about losing an arm. The basic consensus I see on libertarian sites with their bashing of academe is an assumption that the farts and huge manatees matter a wank into a Walker’s crisp packet.

    Can you folk quit with the bashing of academe is the complete refusal to accept that some of us graduates did STEM subjects (which involved no political indoctrination – from my XP). If you think the teaching of “the reflected sound as of as of underground spirits” is taught by commies then do fucking chemistry instead – which is generally a piece of piss anyway.

    This really annoys me.

  • It is certainly a self-perpetuating oligarchy because those who don’t have the correct (leftist) political views never seem to get offered positions which lead to tenure, no matter how well qualified they are.

    This is why we need a purge of the institutions, which can be achieved purely on the economic value of the courses being taught. Sure, if a student wants to study Physics, Chemistry et al, then these courses should have appropriate funding for the student and the university – preferably with tuition financed through scholarship.

    As for the rest of the primarily Liberal arts or sociology-type courses, these provide no obvious benefit to the economy as a whole, so attendance would require the student to fund this privately through direct payment of tuition fees or a loan from a public bank (none of this student loans company nonsense).

    See how many Marxist sociology or Women’s studies courses there are left.

    Not much need for a Marxist view on Chemistry or Physics is there?

  • Mr Ecks

    Ok Nick–if all this is a storm in a crispbag–why not do a little test?.

    Go on some public/social media and make some “mildly” derogatory comment about any of the lefts client groups. Do it on some media that you know will fall under the eye of SJW troops. And then just see what happens. If nothing then you are right. If however your employer suddenly decides (despite years of good service?) to reconsider your future in his employ then maybe there is a problem.(Not to mention all sorts of other pressure that might be brought).

    Consider the rocket man with the florid shirt. Why did he make a grovelling apology instead of just saying “Piss off you pack of humourless …”. It might be because he is a weak mangina. But it might be because it has been made clear to him that, top rocket scientist or not, his days as a rocket scientist would be numbered if he didn’t crawl. Or at least his days as a rocket scientist doing what he so clearly and obviously enjoys and is enthusiastic about might be numbered. He could easily spend the next 30 years as a rocket scientist doing administration if he doesn’t mind his Ps and Qs.

    So go ahead Nick–take the test and see if it is all just an academic fart.

  • bob sykes

    If only they would drink the Kool Aid.

  • Clovis Sangrail

    I shall take my life in my hands and agree with both sides.

    STEM academic speaking (Maths/stats if you must know).

    On the one hand, my department recruits (supposedly very good department FWIW) people we think are top rank researchers from around the world (less than 50% of faculty in my department are from the UK) and we pay no attention to PC in that process. Moreover my right-libertarain-ish views are tolerated by my mainly left-ish colleagues with good-humour, most of the time. And yes, they did put up with me as Head of Dept. for my 3-year term without complaint.

    OTOH, my comments are made within my department. Outside that relatively narrow confine I’d self-censor like mad. My views expressed in the wider university are described as “trenchant”-mainly because I focus on practicality and high-level principles. I am very careful not to go more than 10% outside the left-wing comfort zone.

    Do I believe that my department is uncorrupted by Marxist=pseudo-nonsense in it’s teaching? Very largely, yes, although the bias must often shine through. Do I think that Politics, Philosophy and Sociology are deeply suspect and doctrinaire? Yes, yes I firmly do.

    What would happen if I followed Mr Ecks’s advice to NickM? I’m not sure. I fervently hope that many of my colleagues would pull a Voltaire and defend to the death etc but I strongly suspect that (10%) of the students would lynch me.

  • nemesis

    From the Pen of Theodore Dalrymple:

    Political correctness is communist propaganda writ small. In my study of communist societies, I came to the conclusion that the purpose of communist propaganda was not to persuade or convince, nor to inform, but to humiliate; and therefore, the less it corresponded to reality the better. When people are forced to remain silent when they are being told the most obvious lies, or even worse when they are forced to repeat the lies themselves, they lose once and for all their sense of probity. To assent to obvious lies is to co-operate with evil, and in some small way to become evil oneself. One’s standing to resist anything is thus eroded, and even destroyed. A society of emasculated liars is easy to control. I think if you examine political correctness, it has the same effect and is intended to.

    Courtesy of http://www.scifiwright.com/2014/11/quote-of-the-day-10/

  • Can you folk quit with the bashing of academe is the complete refusal to accept that some of us graduates did STEM subjects (which involved no political indoctrination – from my XP).

    Complete steaming pile. I know of Marxist mathematicians and physicists, and (real) libertarian professors of English and Economics. Indeed one of the worst Marxist cunts I ever met was a structural engineer.

  • NickM

    Yes, Perry but whilst someone might be a structural engineer and a Marxist it doesn’t connect the two. Sociology arguably does though I know of a vanishingly small number of right-thinking sociologists. The point I was trying to get at was the teaching of STEM (unless utterly demented – which in my case, at several unis it wasn’t) is politically neutral. The human “sciences” are not. They never have been. They can’t be. That is why by and large I couldn’t give a stoat’s chuff about them.

  • Well I know staunch capitalists who did PPE at Oxford.

  • JohnK

    Well I know staunch capitalists who did PPE at Oxford.

    Shame they didn’t go into politics.

  • Shame they didn’t go into politics.

    They are the sort of people who prefer to make money and create stuff. Hell, two of them have written for this blog on a few occasions.

  • CaptDMO

    nemesis
    From the Pen of Theodore Dalrymple:
    “Political correctness is communist propaganda writ small.”
    I couldn’t disagree more. PC academia, as well as PC “media” philosophy, isn’t small “It just hasn’t been done RIGHT yet!” at all. It’s all right there in the “Communist” instruction manuals written by the folks responsible for the premature deaths of MILLIONS!
    But “Socialism, decreed by (delusional)”untouchables, and enforced by Fascism, is simply “…by any other name.”
    I wonder why a certificate of attendance from “certain” schools is a tacit prerequisite for a Gub’mint job “appointment”?

    I’m only well accustomed with the blatant lies and projections of U.S. PC “warriors”.
    Your product may vary.
    I could be wrong, of course.

  • hennesli

    I studied a ‘useless’ subject (philosophy) and I would do it all over again.

    Those who talk describe the arts, philosophy or social sciences as ‘useless’ subjects simply reveal their own poverty of mind, viewing education only through the dull and narrow prism of instrumental reason.

  • Mr Ed

    Those who talk describe the arts, philosophy or social sciences as ‘useless’ subjects simply reveal their own poverty of mind, viewing education only through the dull and narrow prism of instrumental reason.

    A wholly unscientific assertion, attacking the people, not the argument, based on wild speculation.

  • I am with hennesli on this. Just because certain subjects in certain ‘marched through’ institutions are in the pocket of the enemy, it does not negate the value of the subject itself.

  • Perry and others: those who attack the liberal-arts academe here, are attacking the beast as it currently is. I don’t think that anyone here – other than maybe Nick M., bless him – is saying that the study of philosophy, or history, or literature is useless. Rather they, or at least I am, are saying that the infamous March Through has rendered those proverbial institutions useless, and even harmful. And of course, that is also a generalization, like almost everything else we may be saying here all the time. There are good and bad people everywhere, there are rules and there are exceptions, etc.

  • pete

    ‘It’s a small group of people who reject mainstream society’

    No it isn’t.

    Politically correct academia is small group of people who accept all the bits of mainstream society which suits them and their comfortable, middle class lifestyle but who reject all the other bits.

  • Paul Marks

    I agree with the original quote – accept that it is more than “reject mainstream society”, the collectivists (the P.C. “Critical Theory” collectivists) want to remake society – in their own vile image.

    And to a great extent they have succeeded – via their control of the education system and much of the media, especially the entertainment media.

    Insane theories in academia become orthodoxy in society within a few years – via the control of education, teacher training and so on, and the media.

    People see sitcoms with the theory put into practice with wonderful results (for example almost every sitcom had a “Gay Marriage” before most people had heard the practice even existed), so it becomes “mainstream” and anyone who suggests there might be something wrong with X theory is denounced as reactionary capitalist heretic and made to publically recant.

    Not just in universities – just about everywhere.

  • NickM

    Pretty much what Alisa said. The social sciences are not in principle leftist but science (real science) is intrinsically apolitical. Whereas the social sciences are essentially politically driven.

  • Natural sciences, intrinsically apolitical? Hahahahahha. Hmm, hang on…

    If by that you mean the fundamental laws of physics (upon which the fundamental laws of chemistry and biology are ultimately derived) are not subject to political blather and operate whether you like them or not, then yes, I am in complete agreement.

    If, however, by that you mean that in general, the institutions and the people and the *prejudices* that build up around the natural sciences are mostly objective, heh. Heh heh. hehehhehehe.

    You don’t need to go very far. Just look at the issue of the legalisation of currently-illicit drugs, especially marijuana. Does weed actually help cure cancer or is otherwise a panacea? Does legalising it have a net positive effect (from a purely economic perspective)? Be damned if I know.

  • NickM

    Gregory,
    You miss my point. The laws of physics and maths are inviolate and just are. Ask Scotty. You then meander into social science in terms of cost/benefit arguments on marijuana which was not my point because at that point it isn’t physical science is it? It has entered the realm of socio-politics hasn’t it? How do you assess the ifs and buts of every MS sufferer who gains relief from cannabis with every dopehead who crashes their car? My point is about pseudo science and the idea that you can (or should) reduce the activity of humans making choices (being agents) into a faux-science is utter bollocks.

    Morality and religion and art are not sciences. This is not to say they don’t matter – they do of course – but they aren’t science. They have been manipulated in ways science hasn’t. Oh, I know about Lysenko and all that but most Soviet science was science.

    Where they got it wrong was to worship the great God of Science and believe everything was science or potentially science. Many things just aren’t.

    I am no philistine. I love the arts but I know they aren’t the sciences. They are very different and if you allow the two to be conflated then all Hell follows. And by the “arts” I include the bastardised middle of things like sociology or economics. The first is a haven for the useless and socialist (by and large – and almost by definition) and the second is a “science” dressed as Widow Twanky.

    Without theory empiricism can prove anything you want to. Without Empiricism theory can get away with murder (and it so has done). Unless the two can march in lock-step it isn’t a science but an opinion.

  • bob sykes

    I retired from a major US research university several years ago after teaching and doing research in civil engineering for 37 years. Over that time, the faculty went from being moderately conservative to being leftist. Their politics did not affect their research (unlike Gould and Lewontin), but frank discussions about the outside world became impossible, and hirings along sexual or racial lines became the norm.

    I think this latter trend is important. When hirings are controlled by non-academic and non-professional criteria, the quality of the faculty and its teaching and research must go down.

    If I were to advise a young person today, I would tell him to avoid an academic career. I would advise a young white man to avoid college.

  • Ockham's Spoon

    Without theory empiricism can prove anything you want to. Without Empiricism theory can get away with murder (and it so has done). Unless the two can march in lock-step it isn’t a science but an opinion.

    Yeah that would explain why all them scientists keep pushing the AGW bollocks. The subject don’t matter a fuck, once the institution is full of lefties, you get “socialists-science” or “feminist-science” or “national-socialist-science” or “whatevercuntisinpower-science”. I’m just a dumb old squaddie who was good at building bridges and even better at blowing ’em up, but I reckon its doesn’t matter much what the topic is, people with an agenda and a cash flow of someone else’s money twist it to their needs regardless of crap like truth or reality. Looking at the details is like arguing over the colour of the dripping snot, not actually seeing disease. My old CO, an old Etonian who was whip smart and hard as nails, upgraded my Dagenham bonce raised on Beano and Eagle & Tiger, to Willie of Ockham. Don’t fuck around with the “extraneous” details (I love that fucking word, haha), like which subjects produce the most wankers. They all can and all do and its the scientific climate cunts who have a shed load more potential to turn the UK into a third world turd plantation than any number of duff philosophers or sociologists.

    But fucked if I can figure out what sociologists actually do.

  • Slartibartfarst

    I saved this very apposite comment some time ago:

    “Political correctness is a doctrine, fostered by a delusional, illogical minority, and rabidly promoted by an unscrupulous mainstream media, which holds forth the proposition that it is entirely possible to pick up a piece of shit by the clean end.”

    (Texas A&M website)

  • Indeed, Nick. And Spoon, too 🙂

  • Mr Ed

    Ockham’s Spoon

    But fucked if I can figure out what sociologists actually do.

    Love it, and all your post, more power to your elbow.

    My future sister-in-law is the daughter of a sociologist, we had a falling out once, talking about PC theatrical casting she said ‘No, you just suspend your disbelief‘ and I said ‘Oh yes, like a sociology lecture‘.

  • Under totalitarian regimes, even hard sciences were subject to politicking. There was ‘Aryan physics’ and ‘Soviet biology’, for instance. Of course, social sciences are more vulnerable. Sociology and political science are probably most infested with political parasites, economics and history being next. Pure maths and nuclear physics not so much.

  • Julie near Chicago

    “Pure maths and nuclear physics not so much.”

    And this despite the heroic efforts of Dr. Sokal…. 🙁 :>)!

  • The Sanity Inspector

    Gramscientology is a wonderful portmanteau; AndrewZ wins the blog for this weekend!

  • Nick (natural Genius) Gray

    By its’ nature, sociology would be about studying groups, not individuals. Those with a strong inclination towards groups and groupisms would thus be attracted to sociology as a way of justifying their beliefs scientifically.
    Contrarily, why would a capitalist or enterpreneur have much of an interest in sociology?

  • NickM

    Westbourne,
    But neither lasted. The German experiment in this was too short but it would have finished by abject failure. The Chinese Communist and Soviet attempts did fail and by the ’70s the hard sciences were conducted much the same way they were elsewhere. It sort of makes my point. Science is naturally apolitical. You can attempt to make it so but it never works for long. Ever, anywhere. Well, maybe the DPRK.

  • Craig Hamilton

    Five Pillars of Progressivism

    The belief system of the modern progressive rests upon five basic principles. These are often unrecognized, but inherent in their actions and policies. They are similar to those of socialism, but not identical. Each follows logically from the previous one:

    1. People are evil. Therefore, we need government and laws to prevent them from doing evil. Our ever-increasing legal and regulatory dead load is a testament to this assumption.

    2. There are too many people. This follows from the first pillar, and promotes child reduction through birth control, homosexuality and devaluing marriage and parenthood.

    3. Technology is bad. The earth supports more people than ever before. Advances in agriculture, production and distribution must therefore be curtailed through environmentalism and misuse of the precautionary principle.

    4. Free markets don’t work. Markets contribute to industrialization and development and foster independent effort and success. They are anathema to the idea of central economic control.

    5. Freedom is an illusion. The only rights we have are those our society grants us. We have no right to judge other individuals or cultures, especially poorer and unsuccessful ones.

    A capitalistic reactionary conservative notes that the whole progressive edifice collapses when you do not grant the first assumption. If we believe that people in general are great, then they need to be free to do great things. Government may be a necessary evil, but it is more evil than necessary.

  • @NickM: Actually, I did not miss your point (my first question to you was to clarify it, after all, which you did, and with which position I am not in any argument). But perhaps you may have missed mine.

    The natural sciences are intrinsically apolitical in that the laws of physics aren’t subject to change. But that’s tautological, because politics is the art of dealing with either people or with their governance. Once you get *people* involved with the sciences, it becomes political. Don’t believe me? Look at the debate between pro-legalisers and anti-legalisers of currently-illicit drugs. Or between evolutionary biologists and ID/creationist biologists. Or between climate-change proponents and climate-change opponents. They all use the ‘science’ label. They all use appeals to studies and measurements and mathematical models. And none of it can be empirically-rooted (not even the drug issue, because different people react differently).

    So, you can, of course, say that “that’s not true science”. True science is the kind of science that allows you to build bridges that won’t collapse when a stiff breeze blows, maybe. Sure, and then your boss will tell you that building that sort of bridge will be too expensive. That’s politics, too, in a way. No, the natural sciences don’t get a free pass. Every time you have people involved in any kind of endeavour, you will get politics.

    And yes, the question of whether marijuana has a positive effect in killing cancer cells should have a straightforward, non-political answer. It should be fairly simple to design an experiment or a study to test such a hypothesis. There’s no sociological component to it, is there? But here, too, it’s bound up in politics. You can’t escape it.

    I will say that a properly-grounded, open-minded scientist is *less* likely to be political. But that’s as far as I’m willing to go.

  • hennesli

    why would a capitalist or enterpreneur have much of an interest in sociology?

    Well for a start if they were thinking of advertising or marketing their product/service.

  • Allen Farrington

    Nick: By its’ nature, sociology would be about studying groups. Those with a strong inclination towards groups and groupisms would thus be attracted to sociology as a way of justifying their beliefs scientifically.

    True, but historically misguided. Almost all early prominent Sociologist, particularly English speaking ones, would nowadays be described as Libertarian. See/read Herbert Spencer and William Graham Sumner specifically, the latter of which’s The Forgotten Man is an absolute classic. Even in earlier European roots, de Tocqueville, Max Weber and later Emile Durkheim will have self-identified in now anachronistic and confusing terms, but are interesting in an historical sense and translate far closer to modern libertarianism than anything else currently going.

    I think you are right though. It certainly seems more attractive to an academically and economically lazy narcissist than somebody otherwise inclined towards theoretical physics, say, or capitalistic endeavour. The only justification I can think of for the historical observation above is that the odd liberty-minded academic thought it worthwhile trying to utilise their incidental scientific inclination to explain irrational and immoral group behaviour rather than just avoid it. Then again, La Wik lists Marx as one of the subject’s founders along with Spencer and Durkheim, so perhaps it was doomed from the start.

    I would think, in summary, that sociology is yet another perfectly worthy discipline that has been inevitably and irretrievably co-opted by The March …

  • Mr Ed

    Sociology as a discipline certainly can be a valid area of study, is it not a bit like anthropology for modern times, stripped of the examination of bones and tools etc? It is possible to observe interactions in societies and describe what is seen and what happens, whether or not the study is scientific is another matter, not everything renders itself open to scientific study.

    As hennesli points out, suppose you wished to sell to a niche market, say a ‘style tribe’, it might be worthwhile knowing your market (or at least, knowing what can be discerned about it from study).

  • Greg

    In “gradual school” we once had for our weekly guest lecturer in the physical chemistry seminar, a VP of some large chemical company (his division was a $2B business and that was long ago when a billion dollars was real money!). He was a long ago graduate of our department with a PhD in P-Chem (and our department, UW-Madison, is “top 10” in that business) who chose a career in business. The point of his lecture was that training in the hard sciences is a great way to prepare for a career in business: both have to solve complex problems with less than perfect information with, the business career, the additional pressure of also not having enough time for as thorough an analysis as one would like. And the point of my long intro is that he had the bona fides to speak on this topic.

    In this thread, I think he might say that scientific methods, if not “the scientific method”, can be applied in many areas. It’s called “analysis” and proceeds from an idea or need (what to study and why), to postulating questions to be answered quantitatively if possible, to gathering of information and data, to pattern recognition and organizing of info/data, to fitting of the data to some model even if the “fitting” is not by mathematical means, to…

    And that’s a hallmark of the softer sciences and pseudo-sciences: no rigor in analysis, not following methods like this.

    Another thing missing from the pseudo-sciences is the breaking down of complex problems into simpler parts: divide and conquer! Example: I don’t understand some process within a living cell, so I divide it up into its constituent parts and test how each responds to stimuli, eventually examining the basic chemical and physical processes at the finest scale that is still biology and not atomic physics or chemistry that is independent of the cell I’m interested in. This approach, which could lead to hard questions, in climate change studies for example, that nevertheless might be addressed by experiment and theory, is also missing from pseudo-science and social science. I might not have a chance in hell now of modeling the weather, let alone climate, but perhaps I can make small steps in that direction (of course, it’s harder to get funding if I can’t scare the bejeezus out of actors and politicians AND provide them a reason to argue for expanding State power!)

  • Watchman

    How many commentators on the political correctness of academia actually work in a university? Yes, there is a tendency for public pronouncements for academics to be politically correct, but this is because of two factors: activism and commissioning.

    Activism is where some academics believe in a cause (generally, but hardly invariably, related to their research) to the point that they present their conclusions and then advise what should be done with them – this is most prominent in global warming and in some areas like race relations. It tends to be ‘correct’ state-action supporting causes that attract activists, probably for the simple reason that the majority of academics (even sociologists) are far more interested in producing work (either to meet their targets or because it is what they want to do/all they know how to do) than being seen publically engaging on matters: you need to have a level of almost religious belief to get engaged with a cause in this way as an academic, the same as in any other job. The normal academic is the guy who does a couple of interviews after his paper hits the jackpot of national press opinion, then retires back to chasing marmosets or studying wax tablets in a library somewhere in happy obscurity. The guys you see being politically correct and continually appearing in the public eye are doing this not because of the nature of universities but because universities allowing freedom of opinion means that these people can do this in response to their own priorities (which may well skew their research).

    Commissioning also has an effect. Whilst all media probably want to talk to a scientist about landing a small machine on a flying rock or blasting loud noises at elephants (an academic I know did that and got interviewed a lot as a result), to want to have an academic commentator otherwise is generally a product of thinking that respects an authority as being the answer to a problem, and therefore is likely to be ‘left-wing’ or statist (which by definition have to allow for there to be a correct authority). This belief that academics have knowledge that can be imparted (rather than address problems – a better libetarian view of what academics do) is therefore likely to be present in those seeking authorative guidance, and they will seek it in areas they see as important, which is those areas that they see as ‘failing’ (in things they often fail to understand such as ‘inequality’ or the lack of mineral reserves), and in the interest of producing a good article of the type they want (not one saying ‘there is no problem’) they have to select commmentating academics who will claim there is a problem as well, which is a self-selection of like-minded thinkers. The fact that the basic commissioning is selective of those likely to reinforce a viewpoint that expert opinion states that we need state guidance or interference therefore means that most media-active academics have this sort of politically-correct point of view.

    As someone who works in a university, I’m happy you can have libertarian views almost anywhere. Some departments have become bastions of certain ideas – you can identify them by their spiral into obscurity – but in general what academics want most is a challenge, not a script that all must follow. They may resent people questioning their base assumptions, but I’ve been examined by Marxists who were happy to allow my criticisms of Marxist theory and emphasis of the importance of the individual (also an ideological viewpoint) through without a problem, because I’d done the work and constructed a methodological argument. There are those who do want to limit free debate on subjects in universities – but mostly they are actually the wannabe politicos in the NUS, not the academics (who were almost never those people in their own generation remember). The universities may never give the libertarian image in the same way as they can give a cultural Marxist one in the media, but that is hardly a shock considering that universities imply a centralism of teaching and research that is not naturally part of libertarianism.

  • Rich Rostrom

    There’s one huge difference. Scientology’s resources are limited to the money they can pull out of suckers’ pockets.

    Academia has (besides what they extract from suckers in tuition) enormous revenues from the public purse and control of vast endowments (Harvard has over $30B; they are the largest).

    In addition, academia contains and thus controls many important functional elements of culture and society. All lawyers are trained and credentialed through academia; likewise physicians, engineers, and scientists. Their technical training may not be directly contaminated by the PC cult, but all students are exposed to the PC atmosphere, subjected to PC conditioning as a condition of attendance, and catechized on PC doctrine in off-major classes.

    And even relatively “hard” sciences are contaminated. Read Stephen PInker’s The Blank Slate for a terrifying discussion of how PC deeply infects biology and psychology. Climatology and meteorology are completely in thrall to PC orthodoxy about “global warming”.

    Scientology controls nothing beyond its worthless self. PC academia controls major institutions, some of them centuries old, which house ancient libraries and modern laboratories where important work goes on every day. If Scientology was annihilated tomorrow, what would be lost? But who would want to burn down Oxford, or Dartmouth, or the Sorbonne, or U. of Texas?

    That makes PC academia far more damaging than Scientology.

  • Greg

    Watchman…this is really good:

    This belief that academics have knowledge that can be imparted (rather than address problems – a better libertarian view of what academics do) is therefore likely to be present in those seeking authoritative guidance, and they will seek it in areas they see as important, which is those areas that they see as ‘failing’ (in things they often fail to understand such as ‘inequality’ or the lack of mineral reserves), and in the interest of producing a good article of the type they want (not one saying ‘there is no problem’) they have to select commentating academics who will claim there is a problem as well, which is a self-selection of like-minded thinkers.

    Thanks

  • Mr Ed

    Here’s another cult, Catholic Bishops, who have presumably found biblical support for its position on banning fossil fuels.

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-30408022