Monday, October 10, 2016


Shawn Otto posts (9 October) on Scientific American HERE
He described ( as the award-winning author of "The War on Science: Who's Waging It, Why It Matters, What We Can Do About It" ( He is cofounder and chair of Scientific American is media partner to the ScienceDebate project.“A Plan To Defend Against the War on Science”. 
He writes:
“The challenge of creating a public able to parse evidence-free “facts” rests with the press, educators and other thought leaders”
…”When Adam Smith first offered the libertarian idea of the self-regulating market’s “invisible hand,” the world was effectively unlimited and relying only on market forces to produce the highest good seemed reasonable because one was never concerned with waste that wouldn’t flow away or resources that wouldn’t replenish.
But the model becomes a problem when the world is limited, population has grown exponentially, we are swimming in waste and facing dwindling resources, and our cumulative exhaust is warming the planet. These are scientific facts, and facing them implies regulation of the free market. It’s no surprise, then, that the science has divided along political lines between those on the left, who favor personal morality and collective responsibility via regulation and those on the right who favor collective morality and personal responsibility through regulation’s removal.
You would think that a scientist concerned with the anti-science denials of climate change would be circumspect in his reference to Adam Smit’hs use of the metaphor of ‘an invisible hand’, which categorically had nothing to do ”the libertarian idea of the self-regulating market’s “invisible hand.” 
See other entries on Lost Legacy on Smith’s use of the now famous misunderstandings - and outright fabrications - of Smith’s use of the metaphor.


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