For those of you who, much like myself two days ago, don’t know who Lou Baldin is – let me enlighten you. He’s an author with quite an impressive number of books available for purchase (at least to someone like myself, who has never written a book) and commonly writes about Extraterrestrial Life, describing himself as covering “the paranormal and the extraterrestrial influences that reach into this world and affect most people’s lives (on some level).” He’s a Vietnam vet, which is something I respect him for. He also has been a ghost writer for many science fiction films. I have no problem whatsoever with any of what I just said. I respect the man for both his service, and for putting forth the effort in writing as many books as he has, because it takes guts to put your work out into the public sphere like that.
What I do disagree with is his view on science, as shown in one of his blog posts, where he talks about Trump deciding on whether or not to follow through with the Paris Agreement. He says: “Billions of humans (people) have been led astray (dumbed down) by religious lies and made to believe stupid ideas and concepts about the existence of life on this planet. Yeah, sure sometimes and often times a gun or sword held to their heads and their lives and the lives of their families threatened. But just as often people simply fall for dumb ideas for various reasons. Speaking of stupid ideas, the so-called intellectual crowd made up of scientists and deep thinkers who boast about their MENSA memberships at cocktail parties while chasing after cocks and tails. Mistakenly believing that size of the brain, if not body junk count. The ability to remember more dumb information than the average person is not really an indication of being intelligent, any more than a small handheld device that cost two or three dollars and holds within its circuitry all the information of an encyclopedia and much more is proof that those memory chips are brilliant intellectuals. Anyway, a whole lot of “brilliant so-called intellectuals around the world who know as much about global weather phenomena as the religious piranhas know about achieving world peace wants the whole world to fall in line with the Paris boondoggle of all time. Just say, HELL NO! The Paris agreement Mr. President.”
While I don’t disagree with people being “dumbed down” by religious lies (not saying all religious people are idiots, but rather that religion can tend to hinder scientific advancement) and made to believe lies about our planet, I can’t say the same for anything past that. He tries to go from religious indoctrination to the shaming and discounting of today’s scientists. While I can agree that MENSA isn’t some insanely respected group, nor should it be, I can’t get on board with calling scientists “the so-called intelligent crowd,” like they’re faking their intelligence. Yes, believe it or not, actual, legitimate scientists tend to be smart. His next line, “The ability to remember more dumb information than the average person is not really an indication of being intelligent, any more than a small handheld device that cost two or three dollars and holds within its circuitry all the information of an encyclopedia and much more is proof that those memory chips are brilliant intellectuals.” is something that I completely agree with. He’s right that human intelligence is so much more than memorization. There are so many different ways for someone’s intelligence to be expressed that it’s impossible to quantify something so versatile. He loses me, however, when this quote is put into context. He’s trying to say that the only quality possessed by members of the scientific community is a great memory. That statement couldn’t be further from the truth; so much more is needed to actually become a respected and successful scientist. Not only do you need to be able to remember and fully understand very difficult concepts, you also need to have an inquisitive nature, you need to be curious about the world around you. You can’t be okay with settling for good enough. You have to be able to dream up ways to probe at the world around you to gather new information. You need to be able to analyze this new data and form new, sometimes unforeseen, connections. Having a great memory isn’t the only qualifying factor for the position of “scientist.” If that were true, computers would be our most advanced researchers.
He attempts to use his previous line to justify avoiding the Paris Agreement: “a whole lot of “brilliant so-called intellectuals around the world who know as much about global weather phenomena as the religious piranhas know about achieving world peace wants the whole world to fall in line with the Paris boondoggle of all time.” Yes, these “intellectuals” that you’re referring to actually do advocate for joining the Paris Agreement. However, comparing them to “religious piranhas” who say they know the way to world peace is asinine. While this’ll be covered in another post another day, those religious folk don’t have any proof of what they’re claiming. These intellectuals, as you call them, have done extensive research into climate change. While the chances they’re 100% accurate is small, I’m willing to bet they’re not far off. While I don’t advocate for blindly trusting whatever you’re told, the studies on climate change are peer-reviewed, they’re verified, they’re tested by other parties. That’s the beauty of science. Anyone, regardless of things like gender, race, or religion, will get the same results from the same exact experiment. These people are our best bet. Since the next best thing would be me going to years of school to verify their claims, having many peer-reviewed studies is a good enough substitute for me. Besides, what’s the worst case scenario if they’re wrong? We clean up the environment and create a healthier world for our children?
Again, no personal disrespect is meant to Mr. Baldin. I’m simply pointing out flaws I see within his arguments and reasoning. It seems he has a misunderstanding of how science works, based on his post, and I’m simply giving my thoughts on his thoughts.