I used to be called a scientist back in my younger days. I worked with a professor as a research assistant to start and man did that man drive me nuts. He was so worried about peer review and committing the biggest publishing “crime” there is… Publishing something to then have others not be able to reproduce the same results. In 1989 researchers posted that they had discovered Cold Fusion. The excitement, the fame, followed by failure and ridicule. That is what you call a career-ender… So, I was put through the wringer. Every test is repeated. Every tool was tested and retested. If only that is where this story ended.
Later when I got involved in writing grant proposals, I got to learn the sad truth about science. How many of you have children and family to support and feel the pressure to go to work every day? The fear to change jobs or move somewhere and find a job? When it came to writing grant proposals it was like interviewing for a job over and over. No money, no work… A scientist’s reputation was their greatest asset in the world of grant writing. The competition for grant money was huge. And universities were forcing their staff to fight for grant money they were not simply paid to teach.
One of the things that many scientists would do is research in advance, the more they could convince people they were right in the proposal the more likely they would be successful in procuring that money. And what I observed was scientists would do the research on many projects and then write a slew of proposals. Then take the money they got from 1 of those grants and finish the research on that one project and use the rest of the time and money to do more research on many different topics and repeat the proposal writing process. You could call that the mass shotgun approach for more grant money. Just a vicious cycle. But the big lesson I got from it, is how efficiently inefficient researchers have become.
Where do you think this money came from? Three sources industry, governments, and “causes”. Here is where science stopped being good science. As a scientist, you used to get money to study something and then produce the research on what you found out. But that is not the case anymore. Do you really think Monsanto and similar companies are going to fund research to prove that GMOs in your food are bad for you? Do you think they are really going to fund generic research and let the chips fall where they may? Do you really think when you submit a proposal to the government it’s going to be generic? Does anyone think that the Obama administration would give megabucks to a researcher to prove that climate change is mostly natural when they campaigned on fixing man’s destructive use of fossil fuels? Do you think a solar panel manufacturer is going to pay for research to show that fossil fuels have a low impact on the environment with current technologies in engines? Etc. Science stopped being science when it became political and financially motivated. We want to believe our scientists are truly independent, but they can’t be. The lack of evidence or research to prove something is not proof it isn’t real; it most likely means a researcher could not find someone to pay for it. Or was afraid to do it because it might tweak the cancel culture and ruin that all so precious reputation. Just look how certain companies got attacked over a personal donation by a CEO. Yes, cancel culture is in science too…
I am not saying researchers will lie in the reports, but I found out that omission and implication are 2 very powerful tools when the simple truth cannot be spoken. Remember, statistics can be used to say all kinds of things, it all depends on how you present them. And remember, when you are looking for your next paycheck, do you think you are going to get it from the people that paid you to do research, and then you effectively spit in their face when you published the results? The best source of revenue is repeat customers. Grant money is just like any other business. The check writer’s beliefs are all that matter. Remember a researcher’s reputation is their greatest asset? What kind of money do you think they will get if they have a reputation of stabbing their financier in the back?
I know some scientists will read this and be offended. But everyone I have met that gets offended by this, lost the meaning of real science which is to challenge the very science you believe in. Instead, they learned to seek out proof of what they already believe or who will pay them to prove what they are told to believe. That is junk science by the way.
I am not saying that all science is junk science. Far from it! What I am saying is to better understand the results. You must also consider who paid for it. Do not use the media to explain it to you. Believe me, they look at all scientific papers to prove what they believe. I love the line that 90% of scientists believe climate change is real. Well, 100% of all scientists believe climate change is real. The debate is on how much is man-made vs how much is natural. After all the Midwest has seen many ice ages, surely you learned about glaciers and how they carved the land here in Iowa. That 90% number was asking all scientists. Not climate scientists or other scientists who know something about our planet. But scientists study many other fields that have nothing to do with our planet. We need to read beyond the headline. Do you think our current media is going to tell you about the Cutter incident? I wonder how people would think today about vaccines if every media outlet spent a week on the Cutter incident? Just like the media can create a sense of truth by the choice of coverage, the lack of coverage, the implications, the omissions, the clickbait headlines, and so on… So can money and politics in science.
We had a volcano a few weeks ago that caused tsunamis. Did you see the video of it erupting from space? How many modern cars do you think burning fossil fuels it would take to damage our planet compared with that one eruption? Climate change is real, but the debate will never truly be answered because we lost our way by involving money and politics in science.
Red rice and statin are just another example of money in control of science. Big pharma is not going to spend money telling you about natural remedies. Big pharma is all about protecting their cash cow right now. Someone might say Ivermectin is a big pharma product so why would they attack that? Simple, it’s old, generic, made by competitors, and cheap. Which product would you want to sell? The one that makes you $50 profit a dose and you can never be sued for it. Or the one you make pennies on, you have serious competition on, and could be sued over? I am not saying Ivermectin is a good treatment. What I am saying is we will never know the truth, because science has left the building in exchange for profits.
The list goes on and on…
The day that money and politics were not part of science is long gone.