Anyone who doesn’t trust the researchers’ findings as a layman reaps a tremor in the head, and that’s usually true. But is there perhaps an unease about the social dynamics of the sciences behind them, which have good reasons? Try to dig deeper.
Ludwig Wittgenstein He was eccentric, bright mind. So clever that whatever he utters today is as faithfully analyzed as the revelation of an infallible sage. We must therefore also take seriously what can be read in the Miscellaneous Notes: “It is not absurd to think that there is nothing good or desirable in scientific knowledge, and that mankind, in its pursuit of it, has fallen into a trap.”
Oops. This goes against the current for us. It’s ridiculous to believe it. It evokes unpleasant images in us: of people who have taken to the streets because they suspect a global conspiracy behind vaccines, or reject climate research, or demonize evolution as an atheist mission. If you take them literally, these skeptics stay on the surface: They question the scientific consensus by confronting it with their own evidence. But this evidence is often so bad that we suspect it is a peculiar symptom of a more widespread malaise: a fundamental unease about science. Could it have good reasons, be reasonable?
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