Questions & Answers

  • asked in Environment 27th Sep '17:

    Based on your experience, what is the latest on anthropogenic activities?.

    Les Kaufman replied 9th Oct '17:

    I do not understand the question. We all know that climate chamge, mass extinction, overpopulation and inequity are bad andvall are the result of anthropogenic activities. The only "latest" is that our leadership and institutions are failing us, most especially in the US. What were you getting at?

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  • asked in Natural Sciences 3rd Aug '15:

    To what extent, based on your experience, do experts in the field of Natural Sciences disagree about the answers they give to important questions?

    Les Kaufman replied 3rd Aug '15:

    On matters of the nature of the world and how things work, scientific agreement is proportional to the volume and quality of evidence that is available. Lots of good data, lots of agreement on what they mean.

    If the question concerns a choice or action to be taken, on issues of huge importance to the world today, such as mass extinction, climate change, overpopulation and and inequity,
    agreement is very strong. As soon as we enter the spheres of strictly societal and individual human concerns other than health, agreement may weaken. The difficulties of studying human behavior cast a shroud over our understanding of and agreement about how people come to act as they do. Even here, however, in that subset of natural science called "social science" when objective analysis is possible, replication and agreement can soon follow.

    Also, wherever we leave the domain of evidence-based reasoning, we also cross out of science altogether, and hence away from.opportunities for independent verification, the basis for agreement in science.

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