Post Reply
Page 1 of 4  •  1 2 3 4 Next
Switch to Forum Live View The Conservative Anti-Intellectual Ideology
3 years ago  ::  Mar 31, 2012 - 7:54PM #1
solfeggio
Posts: 9,346
A new, peer-reviewed research paper, from the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill, and published in the journal American Sociological Review, has shown that self-described conservatives - and also frequent churchgopers - seem to be rebelling against the role science plays in American society today. 

Science develops knowledge that in turn develops governmental policy.  And the conservative subculture feels threatened by this trend and is challenging it.  In other words, conservatives are lumping scientific and political agendas together.

articles.latimes.com/2012/mar/29/nation/...

scienceblog.com/53012/study-conservative...
Quick Reply
Cancel
3 years ago  ::  Mar 31, 2012 - 9:37PM #2
REteach
Posts: 14,796

If we understand science, research and statistics, then we understand that groups can differ significantly while their members may overlap.  So pointing out that some conservatives believe in science means nothing. Nobody said that no conservatives trust science.  


As a group men are taller than women. Pointing out that you know some women who are taller than some men is speaking generally and does not detract from the fact that men as a group are taller than women.  

Moderated by Merope on Apr 01, 2012 - 03:28AM
I know you believe you understand what you think I said, but I am not sure you realize what you heard was not what I meant...
Quick Reply
Cancel
3 years ago  ::  Apr 02, 2012 - 11:46AM #3
TemplarS
Posts: 6,865

Mar 31, 2012 -- 7:54PM, solfeggio wrote:

Science develops knowledge that in turn develops governmental policy.  And the conservative subculture feels threatened by this trend and is challenging it.  In other words, conservatives are lumping scientific and political agendas together.

articles.latimes.com/2012/mar/29/nation/...

scienceblog.com/53012/study-conservative...



 


I see this as being largely true.  But the fascinating thing is, there are two entirely different and unrelated phenomena at work.


There are the economic conservatives, who choose to ignore scientific findings on things related to (generally)  the environment, because they see it leading to increased government intervention, or "interference" with free enterprise.


Then (in the US anyway- I do not know that this phenomenon exists much elsewhere) there are the Christian fundamentalist conservatives, who choose to ignore science on things like evolution.


There is no real reason for these to be linked, other than political convenience (and shrewd strategizing by the Republicans). 

Quick Reply
Cancel
3 years ago  ::  Apr 02, 2012 - 2:06PM #4
mindis1
Posts: 7,920

Mar 31, 2012 -- 7:54PM, solfeggio wrote:

A new, peer-reviewed research paper, from the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill, and published in the journal American Sociological Review, has shown that self-described conservatives - and also frequent churchgopers - seem to be rebelling against the role science plays in American society today. 


Solfeggio, did you read the study? What if the data show something quite different from what you just described? For instance, what if the data show that there is an increasing trend among people who are more educated to express skepticism about the claims of people who speak about science?


Or what if the data show that people who identify as “conservative” more often express an opinion that you associate with the scientific method?


Or what if the data show that there are no statistically significant differences in opinions relating to scientific topics among people of different political ideologies?


Would any of that change your mind about this study?

Quick Reply
Cancel
3 years ago  ::  Apr 02, 2012 - 5:01PM #5
vra
Posts: 6,403

The data here is really not new at all as studies that I saw back in the '60's and since pretty much saying the same thing.  When we look at the issues of evolution and global warming, both of which have overwhelming scientific evidence for, we see far more self-proclaimed conservatives who are opposed, certainly not based on scientific evidence, which has actually grown stronger, but on politics and/or religion. 


As an anthropologist (now retired), it was unbelievable what some of these students were being told by their ministers and/or parents.  And when I see the stat even today that just slightly over half actually "believe" in evolution, can there be no wonder why we are falling further and futher behind science and mathematics in our schools?      

Quick Reply
Cancel
3 years ago  ::  Apr 02, 2012 - 10:02PM #6
Erey
Posts: 18,940

Apr 2, 2012 -- 2:06PM, mindis1 wrote:


Mar 31, 2012 -- 7:54PM, solfeggio wrote:

A new, peer-reviewed research paper, from the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill, and published in the journal American Sociological Review, has shown that self-described conservatives - and also frequent churchgopers - seem to be rebelling against the role science plays in American society today. 


Solfeggio, did you read the study? What if the data show something quite different from what you just described? For instance, what if the data show that there is an increasing trend among people who are more educated to express skepticism about the claims of people who speak about science?


Or what if the data show that people who identify as “conservative” more often express an opinion that you associate with the scientific method?


Or what if the data show that there are no statistically significant differences in opinions relating to scientific topics among people of different political ideologies?


Would any of that change your mind about this study?




Thanks Mindis, you read more than the headline. 


I think some conservatives feel that people are abusing science to push political agendas ala global warming - which is no longer refered to as "global warming".  And Mindis you are correct that many people alive today, especially those that are educated and enjoy reading to further their education have lived through enough false scienfic agendas that latter proved false. In earlier generations the cycle was alot longer but now it moves so quickly you don't have to be very old to see things declared as the new truth and in the next breath dismissed as scientificaly irrelevant. 


Hence this thread makes about as much sense as some journalist writing an article declaring that liberals will believe any BS touted by anyone who has a phd after their name.  That would certainly not be flattering, would it?  Yet would it be accurate? 

Quick Reply
Cancel
3 years ago  ::  Apr 03, 2012 - 8:42PM #7
vra
Posts: 6,403

The fact of the matter is that there has without any doubt whatsoever been global warming over the last century that has been verified by hard data (actual measurments and not estimates), and the researchers are 90-95% certain that it is mostly due to higher levels or CO2 in our atmosphere.  And the effects of higher levels of CO2 are hardly new information and it was even well known back in the late 1800's based on experiments then that it could lead towards a gradual warm-up.  And information released late last week is indicating that the warm up is actually occuring at a faster rate than expected.


The unfortunate reality is that there are some with political agendas, plus a small handful of scientists that seem to have agendas of their own, who are denying even this hard data.  Yes, it's a process in science that we treat everything with a certain amount of skepticism, and research will continue in this area, but for the time being it's rather obvious to the experts that they are seeing this warm-up and that there's going to repercussions with weather patterns, as we're already seeing. 


I would suggest that if anyone has any doubt about this whatsoever, that they get into back copies of Scientific American, which is a peer-reviewed publication, and see what the research is pointing to.  However, the reality is that most people would rather have their knee-jerk opinions than to actually peruse the research.

Quick Reply
Cancel
3 years ago  ::  Apr 03, 2012 - 9:54PM #8
Fodaoson
Posts: 11,158

What the surprise?  Conservatives are opposite progressives, science improve life , improvement is change, change for the better is progress( better living through chemistry) conservatives oppose  progress, ergo conservative must oppose science.

“I seldom make the mistake of arguing with people for whose opinions I have no respect.” Edward Gibbon
Quick Reply
Cancel
3 years ago  ::  Apr 03, 2012 - 10:01PM #9
rangerken
Posts: 16,408

Apr 3, 2012 -- 9:54PM, Fodaoson wrote:


What the surprise?  Conservatives are opposite progressives, science improve life , improvement is change, change for the better is progress( better living through chemistry) conservatives oppose  progress, ergo conservative must oppose science.




A lot of us who are conservatives, AND also scientists, separate science and religion easily.


Science is about HOW things happen.


Religion is about WHY things happen.


There need not be any conflict.


Ken

Libertarian, Conservative, Life member of the NRA and VFW
Quick Reply
Cancel
3 years ago  ::  Apr 04, 2012 - 3:16PM #10
mindis1
Posts: 7,920

Apr 2, 2012 -- 5:01PM, vra wrote:


The data here is really not new at all as studies that I saw back in the '60's and since pretty much saying the same thing.  



Well, the data that are the subject of Gauchat’s study, from the General Social Surveys from 1974 to 2010, do indicate a change in the opinions expressed (at least using Gauchat’s method of analysis). Specifically, in the earliest surveys, people self-identifying as “conservative” or Republican expressed the highest degree of confidence in “the people running the institutions” of “the Scientific Community,” compared to people identifying as “moderate”/”independent” and “liberal” or Democrat. There is no significant difference in the answers to the question asked between “conservatives”/Republicans and “liberals”/Democrats until well into the 1990s; and “moderates”/”independents” show no difference with "conservatives"/Republicans after 1998. See Figure 1:  www.asanet.org/images/journals/docs/pdf/...So, if one were to use these data to conclude something derogatory about self-identifying “conservatives”/Republicans today, then certainly one needs to conclude the same derogatory thing about “moderates”/”independents” and “liberals”/Democrats throughout most of the period of these surveys. Does one conclude from these data that “conservatives” have an “anti-intellectual ideology,” as the thread title claims? Then an “anti-intellectual ideology” is what “moderates” and “liberals” have had throughout most of the period from 1974 to 2010.


The thing is that the question asked really has nothing to do with a person’s degree of “intellectualness” or beliefs about “science” or conclusions drawn using the scientific method. The question concerns a person’s “confidence” in “the people running the institutions” that are claimed to represent “the Scientific Community”. Indeed, expressing blind faith in public personalities is, to my mind, about as far from expressing something akin to a scientific attitude as one can get. Gauchat doesn’t say who were “the people running the institutions” that were asked about. I might not express “confidence” in the people that were asked about. Who are the people “running the institutions” that supposedly represent “the Scientific Community” today? Name names. Who are the people “running the institutions” of “the Scientific Community” whom you have a high degree of confidence in?


The other biggie problem is that Gauchat really had to assault the numbers in order to get a statistically significant group-specific change over time. His first two methods for specifying the time variable did not yield a statistically significant change over time among the groups. He doesn’t bother to give any detail of the method he eventually used to get a statistically significant group-change result. His only statistical test seems to be a determination that the time variable was auto-correlated.



The fact of the matter is that there has without any doubt whatsoever been global warming over the last century that has been verified by hard data (actual measurments and not estimates), and the researchers are 90-95% certain that it is mostly due to higher levels or CO2 in our atmosphere.



I am sure that someone who abides by the principles of the scientific method would not just throw out “facts” or “statistics” that s/he cannot substantiate. On the basis of what evidence did “the researchers” arrive at this 90-95% certainty that “global warming over the last century. . .is mostly due to higher levels of CO2 in our atmosphere”? Can you link to this evidence that provokes such terrific certainty?


When you say that “global warming over the last century . . . has been verified by hard data (actual measurements and not estimates),” are you claiming that what the IPCC calls data that have been “adjusted” for “inhomogeneities” are “hard data” or “estimates”?  


If it were true that data that have not been “adjusted” for “inhomogeneities” demonstrate “global warming,” then why does the IPCC only use data that have been “adjusted” for “inhomogeneities”?


Let’s look at some of the raw, “unadjusted” data of the Global Historic Climate Network (GHCN). See Figure 4 here:  wattsupwiththat.com/2009/12/08/the-smoki... Why doesn’t that smoothed red line show warming from 1880 to 2000? I think Australia has been part of the globe for the past 120 years.


More importantly, how do you explain why that smoothed red line doesn’t at least track the ever-increasing atmospheric CO2 levels of the 20th century?

Quick Reply
Cancel
Page 1 of 4  •  1 2 3 4 Next
 
    Viewing this thread :: 0 registered and 1 guest
    No registered users viewing
    Advertisement

    Beliefnet On Facebook