Bob Hoye, who also publishes superb economic commentaries, wrote an excellent article on global warming. We noticed that almost all of our favorite contrarian economic commentators called global warming for what it is, a giant scam.
whereas most government-backed ‘scientists’ we follow seem to ‘believe’ in global warming.
We explained why it is so in an earlier commentary. The alarming forecasts of global warming are based on an economic model, which the ‘scientists’ refuse to investigate. Yet, when they write grants, they are no less shy to wear global warming hat to justify their projects.
Many readers objected, when we talked about decay of scientific culture in USA, even though we did not make our comment lightly. Readers commented that learning about banking or economic models are not relevant for bioinformaticians, but what if your metagenomics project is funded to look at global warming? The drive to produce more and more specialists is a sign of terminal phase, as we discussed in a different commentary on Dimitry Orlov’s book.
Ironically, Kohrs effort failed precisely because of the vast scale of the contemporary intellectual endeavor. Kohr pointed out that most of the great advances in learning and the arts occurred in small communities in ancient Greece, medieval Europe and other places where everyone knew everyone, where the entire sweep of human affairs could be taken in at a glance and where one could be well regarded as what was once called a Renaissance Man a generalist. But the vast scale at which contemporary society operates makes it impossible for anyone to observe the whole of it with any degree or precision or insight, forcing everyone to specialize in one thing or another; the vaster the scale, the more circumscribed the realm in which one can gain sufficient expertise to understand what is happening and be in a position to predict what might happen next. The proliferation of experts who know almost everything about almost nothing is a sure sign that the pursuit of knowledge has been carried to an excessive scale, but the existence of these same experts makes it impossible to claw knowledge back from the brink of utter irrelevance, because that can only done by a generalist. In turn, generalists are not allowed among specialists: to a specialist, as Kohr pointed out, a generalist is either irrelevant (unable to advance knowledge in the specialists narrow field of expertise) or an impostor (someone not even interested in advancing knowledge in the specialists narrow field of expertise).
We will get back to the above concepts in a follow up commentary we are preparing on personal genomics. The ‘personal genomics revolution’ is following a course that is intellectually challenging for scientists, but could be ultimately useless for the society. The real revolution will likely follow a different course altogether.