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Date: Wed, 1 Jan 1997 10:33:28 -0500
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
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from: "dewey m. mclean" <dmclean@vt.edu>
Subject: Re: On Re-reading Freeman
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Al,

your posting on Margaret Mead provides excellent example of how too
much science is really done. Thanks.

Does anyone have recent information on Kenneth Ryan's efforts to
redefine scientific misconduct?

Dewey McLean
Date: Wed, 1 Jan 1997 15:21:27 EST
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from: foster lindley <vpacad20@uconnvm.uconn.edu>
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I am sure the point Al Higgins makes regarding Mead and Boas is well taken, as
well as his discussion of the influence of advisers in general. However, I thi
nk it is also true that students frequently "study with" professors whose views
they find agreeable, so the discipleship may not be altogether due to the pres
sure applied by the professor. Disciplines differ enormously in this respect a
lso. Some are so politicised and demand such fierce loyalties from their stude
nts that the students have little freedom. Others are not.

Foster Lindley
Date: Thu, 2 Jan 1997 02:22:20 EST
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: ted hermary <czth%mcgilla.bitnet@vm1.mcgill.ca>
Subject: Re{2}: On Re-reading Freeman
In-Reply-To: In reply to your message of Wed, 01 Jan 1997 10:33:28 EST

The intellectual/ideological context would seem to be more
complex than Al has it (though his points are relevant).
I think we'd have to see it in the context of Freud's theories
and some anthropologists' (including Mead's) view that there
must be some societies which did not make sexuality problematic.

Ted



Martin (Ted) Hermary (A.B.D.)
Department of Sociology
McGill University
855 Shebrooke Street West
Montreal, Quebec, Canada
H3A 2T7
e-mail: czth@musica.mcgill.ca
Date: Thu, 2 Jan 1997 02:36:20 EST
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: ted hermary <czth%mcgilla.bitnet@vm1.mcgill.ca>
Subject: Fate of the CRI Definition
In-Reply-To: In reply to your message of Wed, 01 Jan 1997 10:33:28 EST

Dewey McLean asks,

>Does anyone have recent information on Kenneth Ryan's o
>efforts to redefine scientific misconduct?

*** A Long Answer: ****
The most recent informtion I had was after the summer. A
working group had been struck to review the recommendations
of the Commission that Ryan chaired. Citing criticism
from the "scientific community" (I only know of statements
connected with two science societies) the working group
said that the Department of Health and Human Services
should publish an Advanced Notice of Proposed Rule-Making
(which would solicit "public comment" without commiting the
department to regulatory developmnt) where the proposed
definition, but agreed with the recommendation to develop a
government-wide definition. A different group was supposedly
working on the latter point during the summer, but I don't
know if anything came out of it.
Actually I could give an even longer answer, if anyone's
interested.

**** A Short Answer***
I don't think the CRI definition could have received a
more reticient reception without being outright rejected.

Ted



Martin (Ted) Hermary (A.B.D.)
Department of Sociology
McGill University
855 Shebrooke Street West
Montreal, Quebec, Canada
H3A 2T7
e-mail: czth@musica.mcgill.ca
Date: Thu, 2 Jan 1997 08:19:16 -0500
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: "armour,catherine" <caa@nserc.ca>
Subject: Re: Talking Ethics

Thanks Michael, I have been following the debate on scifraud

Hope you had good holidays

>catherine
Date: Thu, 2 Jan 1997 09:11:13 -0500
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sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: earl smith <smithea@wfu.edu>
Subject: Re: Re{2}: On Re-reading Freeman
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I am not sure what Mr. Hermary is trying to say. I , like others who
posted, felt that Al gave a good overview of the Freeman book nad some
insight into student-faculty relationships.
I read the book when it originally appeared and applauded Freeman then; I
still applaud him for uncovering some issues that had been accepted by
anthropologists and lay people alike about "others" that were just not true.
If Meads account is not fraud, then we are back to the posts asking what
is fraud?
Thanks Al for bringing the new edition of the book to our attention.
E. Smith


On Thu, 2 Jan 1997, Ted Hermary wrote:

> The intellectual/ideological context would seem to be more
> complex than Al has it (though his points are relevant).
> I think we'd have to see it in the context of Freud's theories
> and some anthropologists' (including Mead's) view that there
> must be some societies which did not make sexuality problematic.
>
> Ted
>
>
>
> Martin (Ted) Hermary (A.B.D.)
> Department of Sociology
> McGill University
> 855 Shebrooke Street West
> Montreal, Quebec, Canada
> H3A 2T7
> e-mail: czth@musica.mcgill.ca
>
Date: Thu, 2 Jan 1997 12:43:58 -0500
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from: al higgins <ach13@cnsvax.albany.edu>
Organization: Sociology Department UAlbany
Subject: (Fwd) On Re-reading Freeman
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Here after a brief delay is a posting from Jon Marks.

Al

Forwarded Message Follows


Date: Thu, 02 Jan 1997 10:19:18 -0500 (EST)
from: jmarks@yalevm.ycc.yale.edu (jon marks)
Subject: On Re-reading Freeman
to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>

I'm not sure how many anthropologists actually lurk on SCIFRAUD, but I might
as well put in a couple of cents' worth.
First of all, I don't think that Mead's work was all that influential in
anthropology. "Case studies" are always interesting, but that's all
ethnographies are. The idea that culture is the major variable in
among-group variation in human behavior does not stand or fall on Mead's
Samoa work nor with any other single body of work. Further, in the field
Mead was always regarded as a "popularizer", and I'm sure nobody needs to
recount how the scholarly community regards people with that label.
Second, nobody seems to think that Mead misrepresented anything
willfully. Freeman's strongest charge is that she was deceived by her
informants, and blinded by ideological prejudice. As for the latter, anyone
who reads Freeman will see that's the pot calling the kettle black. But as
for what was "really" going on in Mead's Samoa, that turns out to be a
really tough question. Freeman studied another part of Samoa a generation
later (there was a bit of a World War in between), so he can't really be
said to falsify her ethnography. Indeed, that contradiction led in the
1980s to strong shift in cultural anthropology was from scientific
aspirations towards exclusively humanistic ones. "Scientific" ethnographies
had essentialist aspirations -- thinking that they were uncovering the true
guts of what it was like to be Samoan or Nuer or Andamanese, for now and all
time. Much of it was self-consciously "salvage" ethnography, trying to
record traditional lifeways in the face of genocide or assimilation, time
being critical. Freeman/Mead brought home sharply the fact that ethnography
is at best a snapshot of people, highly contingent on time, situation, power
relations, recent history, and the observer. In other words, ethnography is
not a zero-sum game (as Freeman sees it) -- they could both have been
observing reasonably accurately.
And third, even if Mead's ethnography was faulty, hey, hindsight is
always 20/20, right? We have to be very careful not to judge earlier work
by later standards. Remember that Mead's ethnographic work was barely one
generation removed from James Frazer's anthropology, which involved sitting
in an armchair and cogitating about things that other people, like sailors
and missionaries, claimed to have seen. In the same way that Frazer made
Malinowski and Boas possible (emphasizing fieldwork-based anthropology),
Mead made Freeman possible (seeing similar people at a different time in
different ways).
To be bluntly honest (and I have absolutely no stake in Mead, Samoa,
or ethnography in general; I human evolution via genetics) I've never been
very impressed with the work of Freeman. His work is incredibly crude in
accusing Mead of being ideologically biased, and claiming himself to be
purely open-minded and objective. What I've read shows the the latter claim
to be false, and the former claim is now generally taken as axiomatic in any
ethnographic study undertaken.

--Jon Marks

--Jon Marks
Date: Fri, 3 Jan 1997 09:00:22 +1000
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: william grey <w.grey@mailbox.uq.oz.au>
Subject: Re: Re{2}: On Re-reading Freeman
in-reply-to: <199701020723.raa31736@dingo.cc.uq.oz.au>
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On Thu, 2 Jan 1997, Ted Hermary wrote:

> The intellectual/ideological context would seem to be more
> complex than Al has it (though his points are relevant).
> I think we'd have to see it in the context of Freud's theories
> and some anthropologists' (including Mead's) view that there
> must be some societies which did not make sexuality problematic.

I think that Al's very thoughtful contribution contained no serious
oversimplification. (The tone of Ted's response suggests that it made him
uncomfortable.) I certainly don't see why we should be compelled to view
Mead's work in the context of theories which there is good reason to treat with
suspicion.

There may be -- indeed I hope there are -- societies which don't make sexuality
problematic, but I don't see why "there must be" such societies. What sort of a
priori assumptions (or fanciful wishes) about human nature are embodied in that
suggestion? Maybe coming to terms with powerful biological drives is
inherently problematic. I hasten to add that I am not a social scientist, and
am only articulating intuitions that seem to me just as, or more, plausible
than those of Ted.

Al's comments about the training or inculturation of graduate students reminded
me of a remark of Kuhn's in his classic _Structure of Scientific Revolutions_
to the effect that training in science (or was it just physics?) was more
doctrinaire than anything outside dogmatic theology.

Cheers

William Grey
Department of Philosophy email: W.Grey@mailbox.uq.edu.au
University of Queensland Fax: + 61 7 336 51968
Brisbane QLD 4072 Tel: + 61 7 336 52099
AUSTRALIA http://www.uq.edu.au/~pdwgrey/
Date: Thu, 2 Jan 1997 21:39:21 -0500
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
Comments: Authenticated sender is <ach13@cnsvax.albany.edu>
from: al higgins <ach13@cnsvax.albany.edu>
Organization: Sociology Department UAlbany
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As fate would have it, I received the latest issue of the American
Anthropologist just after sending my last post. It contains the following
book review

--Jon Marks.

Not Even Wrong: Margaret Mead, Derek Freeman, and
the Samoans. Martin Orans. Novato, CA: Chandler and
Sharp Publishers, 1996. 200 pp.

PAUL SHANKMAN
University of Colorado

Another book about the Mead-Freeman contro-
versy? Yes. An important book about the controversy?
Yes. Martin Orans is one of the few anthropologists
who has examined Margaret Mead's Samoan field ma-
terials housed in the Library of Congress. In Not Even
Wrong he uses them to evaluate Coming of Age in
Samoa, as well as Derek Freeman's arguments against
Coming of Age. Orans is a self-confessed scientist who
is concerned with verifiability. He readily admits that
this position may be unfashionable, but it allows him
to focus on the data that Mead actually gathered and
to be critical of both Mead and Freeman.
After a brief introduction to the history of the con-
troversy, Orans recapitulates Mead's fieldwork in light
of her field materials, including field notes, letters, and
so forth. While not exemplary by today's exacting
standards, Orans credits Mead with leaving these ma-
terials for the public record. Then, having summarized
Mead's argument, Orans provides two long chapters
on Samoan adolescent sexuality. He finds that, despite
Mead's misleading generalizations about sexual per-
missiveness, she was well aware of and wrote about
the restrictions on the lives of adolescent girls. Al-
though Mead felt that these restrictions were often
ineffective, Orans believes that her field materials sup-
port a more restrictive view of Samoan sexual con-
duct,
In one of Orans's most interesting chapters, 'Who
Hoaxed Whom?", he addresses Freeman's now well-
known argument that Mead was duped on the subject
of sexual permissiveness by her young Samoan infor-
mants. One of them, a ceremonial virgin named
Fa'apua'a Fa'amu, swore under oath in 1987 that she
had joked with Mead about the nightly activities of
Samoan girls, not realizing that a naive Mead would
take as literal truth tales told in jest. Orans finds this
argument implausible for several reasons. First, Mead
was familiar with Samoan jolting and unlikely to be
taken in by it. Second, if Mead had actually believed
Fa'apua'a, she would never have written that ceremo-
nial virgins were sexually restricted. And finally, ac-
cording to her field materials, Mead's observations on
the restrictions surrounding ceremonial virgins were
made before her encounters with Fa'apua' and did
not change after Fa'apua'a allegedly duped her. This
chapter poses a major challenge to Freeman's recon-
struction of Mead's fieldwork.
Orans continues with chapters on Lowell
Holmes's restudy of Manu'a and 'agonistic' Samoa,
concluding with a chapter entitled "Lessons for Us
All." He is concerned about the magnitude of debate
given how little data there really is and how poorly
Mead and Freeman framed their arguments. In Mead's
case, Orans labels her argument unscientific and
therefore "not even wrong." He then criticizes Free-
man for believing that he can refute such an argument.
Orans hopes that anthropology will return to empiri-
cism in the future, but he is skeptical given the nonem-
pirical nature of much of the controversy.
Not Even Wrong takes the reader through the
Mead-Freeman controversy in a direct and sometimes
blunt manner. It may not please interpretivists and
postmodernists, but Orans's book is brief and easily
accessible and will become a significant reference
work. For those who teach the controversy, it will be
valuable supplemental reading. Is the controversy
over? No. It is, however, on firmer ground with the
publication of this book.

-- Jon Marks

A. C. Higgins ach13@cnsvax.albany.edu
College of Arts and Sciences VOX: 518-442-4678
Sociology Department FAX: 518-442-4936
University At Albany Albany, NY, USA 12222
Date: Fri, 3 Jan 1997 03:30:30 EST
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: ted hermary <czth%mcgilla.bitnet@vm1.mcgill.ca>
Subject: Re{4}: On Re-reading Freeman
In-Reply-To: In reply to your message of Thu, 02 Jan 1997 09:11:13 EST

I apologize if the wording of my previous message led anyone
to think that I was critical of Al Higgins' review of the
Freeman's book. I'll dig my hole just a little bit deeper
and try it again: While doubtless part of the ideological
and/or intellectual context to Mead et al.'s work *was* the
age-old nature-nurture debate, I believe Freudianism belongs
in the soup as well, most obviously where matters of sexuality
are at issue (though the general Freudian view of individuals
as fundamentally antisocial seems tied into this as well).
When Freud wasn't being opposed for a (perceived) reduction
of all sorts of behavior to sex - or more prudish reactions
still - there were arguments that his view was simply middle-
class, white, Austrian, etc. etc. and that *surely* there
are societies where sexuality is no big deal. To clear up
a second misunderstanding, that is not *my* argument; indeed,
I've yet to hear a clear-cut example of any society which didn't
have some kind of social control associated with sexuality,
even if not those Freud postulated. Perhaps Jon or other
more anthropologically fluent list-members could suggest one?

The short version: no slight meant to Al; only meaning to
give another interpretative context for Mead's and others
work.

Best,

Ted



Martin (Ted) Hermary (A.B.D.)
Department of Sociology
McGill University
855 Shebrooke Street West
Montreal, Quebec, Canada
H3A 2T7
e-mail: czth@musica.mcgill.ca
Date: Fri, 3 Jan 1997 12:09:29 -0500
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
Comments: Authenticated sender is <ach13@cnsvax.albany.edu>
from: al higgins <ach13@cnsvax.albany.edu>
Organization: Sociology Department UAlbany
Subject: (Fwd) Re: Re{4}: On Re-reading Freeman
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>I've yet to hear a clear-cut example of any society which didn't
>have some kind of social control associated with sexuality,
>even if not those Freud postulated. Perhaps Jon or other
>more anthropologically fluent list-members could suggest one?

Back in the old days a popular reconstruction of prehistory involved the
idea of "promiscuous hordes" from whom we socially evolved into civilized
beings. No evidence for such things exists; all cultures,.in Ted's phrase
"social control associated with sexuality." That is, of course, one
important function of the cultural universal known as marriage. Nonhuman
primates don't have marriage, but they certainly don't mate at random, either.

--Jon Marks

-- Jon Marks

A. C. Higgins ach13@cnsvax.albany.edu
College of Arts and Sciences VOX: 518-442-4678
Sociology Department FAX: 518-442-4936
University At Albany Albany, NY, USA 12222
Date: Fri, 3 Jan 1997 13:04:03 -0500
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: "dewey m. mclean" <dmclean@vt.edu>
Subject: Re: (Fwd) Re: Re{4}: On Re-reading Freeman
in-reply-to: <01idrxt9fi3i9i453l@cnsvax.albany.edu>
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Jon Marks wrote that:


> Nonhuman primates don't have marriage, but they certainly don't mate at
>random, either.

Jon, I'm enjoying the discourse on sexuality, but do have one
question concerning your posting.

My impression is that the chimps engage in rather "loose" sexual
behavior. Have I missed something somewhere?

Dewey McLean


Dewey M. McLean Telephone: 540-552-8559
Department of Geological Sciences E-mail address: dmclean@vt.edu
Virginia Polytechnic Institute
Blacksburg, VA 24061

Home Page: http://www.vt.edu:10021/artsci/geology/mclean/
Dinosaur_Volcano_Extinction/index.html

Home Page: http://www.vt.edu:10021/artsci/geology/mclean/
Creationism_vs_Evolution/index.html


Date: Fri, 3 Jan 1997 14:43:49 -0500
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sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: al higgins <ach13@louise.csbs.albany.edu>
Organization: Sociology Department, CAS UAlbany
Subject: Another Review
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Another Review

I can, off hand, think of a study of what it is to be a
medical student: (Howard S. Becker, et alia, Boys in White
(Chicago: U of Chicago Press, 1961) which attempts to describe
the culture of medical school. Those same authors also report on
what it's like to be an undergraduate at the University of
Kansas, (Howard S. Becker, et alia, Making the Grade (New York:
Wiley, 1968). And Scott Turow, One L. (New York: Putnam, 1977)
suggests what that first bitter year of law school does to
students. But personal reports of what graduate school is like
are rare. Here is my review of one book I could find.

++++++++++

\White, Pepper. The Idea Factory: Learning to Think at MIT.
New York: A Plume Book, 1992. Originally, Dutton, 1991).\

Pepper White earned his MS (Mechanical Engineering) at MIT
in 1984. He kept a journal during his years of study and eight
years later, provided this story of what it's like to earn a
graduate degree at that school. This is one of the few books to
describe what it's like to be a graduate student. The book is
not a day-by-day rendering of what happened while in training
but is, rather, a fictionalized account. As White suggests, he's
changed some names and his book "...is a mixture of nonfiction
and fiction. It is being marketed as nonfiction..." (Note, np)
It may be "fictionalized" but it "rings true." It is a good
story. And it is worth considering as a description of the
training one gets at a major research graduate school,
supposedly one of the best in the United States. (Indeed, the
unseemly references to the position of MIT in the hierarchy
of AAU members in the U.S. is noteworthy.) But it also raises
some very disturbing questions, e.g., Is this what we are trying
to do with the best and the brightest?

White describes several things but in this review focus is
on four topics: 1) what is learned (content?); 2) why it is
learned (motive?); 3) the faculty and students (who?); 4)
maintaining the system at MIT (how does it work?).

1) The Idea.

White's book is entitled "The Idea Factory." So, what is
the "idea" about which he writes. What is it that they teach at
MIT? What is this science, this technology? And the answer is
very clear: it's problem solving! "It doesn't really matter
what you study here. We teach you to think. We make you into a
professional. Then you can do whatever you want." (p. 13)

The idea is described:

I was taught objective, rational, logical modes of
thinking. I learned intuitive thinking by doing
research and by solving problems. And my heart was
educated, for good or for bad. (p. xvi)

You just keep saying that question over and over
again, looking for the answer, breaking the problem
down into smaller and smaller pieces. Eventually
you get to the point where you can actually solve
one or two of the pieces, or one of your
subordinates can. The trick with large systems is
to choreograph or orchestrate it
so that all the problems are soled at more or less the
right time and people aren't sitting around waiting
for some other abstraction to give them the
information they need to do the next thing they
need to do. (p. 219)

The approach is to find a similar problem for which
you have the answer and try to mimic it, try to
change it a little bit, and maybe luck out and reach
an answer. If the answer is like the one in the book
you can fool yourself into thinking you're learning
something...
But the only way really to learn, to internalize
the knowledge, is to concentrate, to focus, and to
break the problem down into its simplest pieces and
then to build the solution up out of the problems
pieces. (p. 221-222)

And this is what is being taught: How to take the
problems thrown at you by professors and "manage" them so as
to get the grades which will permit advancement. It is the finding
of an answer which, as it turns out, involves nothing more than
applying engineering's basics to the problem, that is to say,
seeing the problem in a way that engineering's basics can be
applied. Failing to find which of the basics apply means that
you're not up to MIT because, it is assumed, the problems are
all manageable if looked at properly.

2) Motives.

One thing is very, very clear: MIT is a place which is
focused on money. One does research for MONEY and Pepper White
is in it for the money. At several places in the book he writes
eloquently about his motive for being at MIT: "M-I-T, P-H-D,
M-O-N-E-Y" ( p. 167, p. 232); that theme is a recurrent one. "I
wanted to be Riiich..." (p. 278) And there is great admiration
expressed for those who have made a great deal of money, they
are held up for emulation:

...Ken Olsen graduated from MIT in '50, went on to
work with Professor Jay Forrester on computer
memory technology and Project Whirlwind, and from
there spun off a company Digital Equipment
Corporation, Ken is worth a billion or two and still
lives in a modest home.
Further on, I saw the fruit of (Professor)
Gyftopoulos's industry. Well, not the whole fruit,
because you can't see the whole house from the street
because the driveway's so long. Next door was the
house of the other Thermo Electron founder, George
Hatsopoulos. George showed that you don't have to be
a professor at MIT to make a million bucks. In this
case, a Ph.D. in mechanical engineering and a good
idea for how to measure the concentration of nitrogen
oxide in automobile exhaust were sufficient.
Back toward town Thermo Electron was less than a
five-minute drive from their houses. Maybe, if I
worked hard, I could emulate all of them. (p. 109)


Money drives the institute. "MIT is industry." (p. 51)
Or,"...(M)any at the institute had one foot in science, the other
in engineering, and two hands in the government's pockets..." (p.
61) "I have to do fundable research..." (p. 65) "...real work
of bringing in research funds..." (p. 98) Being at MIT means
being "...a quintessential grantsman..." (96)

3) Faculty and students.

Learning is done by students; faculty do not teach.
Faculty are too busy to do that unimportant stuff. "If you
can't figure it out for yourself, kid, you don't belong here." (pp.
251-252) And a faculty member describes the situation to White
this way: "It's important that you figure this out for
yourself. I could teach you, but there's a big difference between
learning and being taught." (p. 116)

The institute only admits people who can do it on their
own: "We try to let talented people who know what they want to
achieve it here; we try to stay out of their way." (p. 16)

"This isn't like what I'd read and heard about business or
law school, I thought. We're all taking our individual courses,
mostly on our own. We have to learn by searching our own
knowledge, by reasoning, by looking things up in books." (p.
29)

And faculty do not readily assist students in finding
funding: "These guys (faculty) are always closing on deals with
their industry contacts and their buddies at the Department of
Defense or Energy. Sometimes they need help right away and if
you(students) keep hounding them, eventually you'll be in the
right place at the right time and you'll get funding." (p. 35)


The session was a tutorial in the Oxbridge sense: at
Oxford and Cambridge there are no classes; instead
students meet regularly with tutots. I wished MIT
encouraged more of this, but it's very time-consuming
for the professor, and if he spends his time teaching
and explaining things, there won't be time for the
real work of bringing in research funds, consulting,
publishing and delivering papers, making a name for
oneself. Besides, if you can't figure out something
by yourself, you probably don't belong at MIT. And
they wonder why students kill themselves. (p. 98)

And suicide is a problem at MIT: When one of Pepper's
friends kills herself, he tries to understand her death in these
terms:

Perhaps (she killed herself because of) the hopeless
spurred on by MIT's overmechanistic world view, in
which logic and reason are gods and spirituality, soul
and humanity are dismissed as irrelevant at best and
nonexistent at worst." (p. 254)

There's this telling quote of a prelude to a lecture
where the instructor warns students about suicide:

Please. If you're unhappy, don't let it go that far.
Come and talk to me, or talk to your hall tutor, or to
'Nightline,' or to a religious counselor, or to the
psychiatric department, or to a friend if you have
one. And don't forget one option that you have.
You can leave the institute. It's not the only good
engineering school in the world. In fact, if you go
somewhere else where the professors aren't under such
pressure to produce research funding you might receive
a better education.


4) Maintaining the system.

MIT is enormously successful. The institute receives vast
sums of money from government, industry and from philanthropy.
The way that system works is described:

I read the signs on the doors... "Constant Volume
Combustion Bomb: Sponsor" Department of Energy";
"Square Piston Clear Engine: Sponsor: Industrial
Consortium"; "Clear Cylinder for Study of Piston Ring
Motion: Sponsor: General Motors." I asked Mary
whether she knew how these projects got funded.
"There are several avenues. Some of these
companies have research budgets they spend on
universities. Half the people in the automotive
industry's research departments have degrees from
here, and they remember their buddies when they
give out the grants. Some of the sponsors expect
real results, things that will apply to engines, but
mostly they're after advances in concepts and
understanding of the processes. They get that in
the papers the professor and students write that
are based on the research. Plus, they get
well-trained researchers who can hit the
ground running developing products for GM, Chrysler,
or Ford." (p. 90)

And maintaining close ties to those with money is
institutionalized:

Greene ran the Institute for Applied Systems
Engineering (ISAE), a midcareer retraining ground for
the engineering profession founded to do what Harvard
Business School and the Kennedy School of Government
do for their respective trades.
ISAE is on of the mechanisms by which MIT
maintains its close links to industry. Mid- to upper-
level engineers or research and development managers
come to MIT, take a few classes, maybe do a small
project, meet a lot of professors, and later hire the
professors they meet as consultants to figure out how
to solve their problems. (pp. 86-97)

MIT's faculty and students can solve problems rapidly
and when industry needs problems solved quickly, it is not
surprising that they come to MIT for quick fixes. And MIT has a track
record of doing the things industry wants done in terms which
industry and engineers can understand. It's no wonder that
industry and government keep coming back.

But at what cost? Pepper White comes to realize some of
the costs: "So now I'm a product of this place, I wondered.
Quicker, smarter, arrogant, impatient, directed, inhumane. I've
got to get out of here." (p. 231)

And he leaves, albeit reluctantly, when he fails to qualify
for his Ph.D. He wanted to be, right up until then, a
"...member of the club" but he doesn't make it. Clearly, he's
not the institute's material: he's retained enough humanity to
write this book.


A. C. Higgins
SS 359 SUNYA Albany, New York 12222
ACH13@CNSVAX.Albany.edu
Phone: (518) 442 - 4678; FAX: (518) 442 - 4936
SCIFRAUD@CNSIBM.Albany.edu
Date: Fri, 3 Jan 1997 16:37:00 -0500
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: "w. r. gibbons" <gibbons@northpole.med.uvm.edu>
Subject: Re: (Fwd) Re: Re{4}: On Re-reading Freeman
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On Fri, 3 Jan 1997, Al Higgins wrote:

> important function of the cultural universal known as marriage. Nonhuman
> primates don't have marriage, but they certainly don't mate at random, either.

I heard some monkeys are pretty wild, mating wise. But I could have
got it wrong; all I know about the sex life of monkeys I learned from
ETV.

Ray Gibbons Dept. of Molecular Physiology & Biophysics
Univ. of Vermont College of Medicine, Burlington, VT
gibbons@northpole.med.uvm.edu (802) 656-8910
Date: Fri, 3 Jan 1997 22:53:20 -0500
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Comments: Authenticated sender is <ach13@cnsvax.albany.edu>
from: al higgins <ach13@cnsvax.albany.edu>
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Subject: (Fwd) Re: (Fwd) Re: Re{4}: On Re-reading Freeman
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Date: Fri, 03 Jan 1997 14:23:59 -0500 (EST)
from: jmarks@yalevm.ycc.yale.edu (jon marks)
Subject: Re: (Fwd) Re: Re{4}: On Re-reading Freeman
to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>


>> Nonhuman primates don't have marriage, but they certainly don't mate at
>>random, either.
> Jon, I'm enjoying the discourse on sexuality, but do have one
>question concerning your posting.
My impression is that the chimps engage in rather "loose" sexual
>behavior. Have I missed something somewhere?
>
>Dewey McLean

Actually chimpanzees appear to have a complex set of mate-choice strategies.
Estrous females vary quite a bit in whom they will mate with, when, etc.
Some will sometimes pair off with one male for quite a while; the opposite
end of the spectrum is the famous Flo, Jane Goodall's original friend. As
it turns out, Flo was pretty sexy (as chimps go) and pretty loose (as chimps
go), and Goodall's wonderful descriptions of her mating with every male in
succession from "In the Shadow of Man" aren't characteristic of all chimps.
Chimps, having a prominent estrus, are quite different from humans,
and indeed from other apes. They are more vigorously sexually active, but
only at certain times. The bonobos ("pygmy chimps") are different even from
their closest relatives, the "common" chimpanzees; females are almost always
sexually active any time, and often with other females.
Let me tie this in to fraud before anyone complains.
As you old Scifrauders know, the classic genetic research in the
1980s purporting to show that chimps and humans are each other's closest
relatives was falsified, and is hardly ever cited by molecular
anthropologists any more (although the perps are still at large, because
there has never been a formal investigation or adjudication; my web
discussion is located at http://pantheon.yale.edu/~jmarks/dnahyb.html).
But an interesting outcome is that now, since there are a lot more
chimps than gorillas around for study, and a lot more people studying them,
the chimp behavior people like to be able to say they are studying "our
closest relatives," especially when competing for funds with people studying
gorillas. So they embrace the discredited work quite strongly. When I met
Jane Goodall in England last year for a TV show, she was unaware of the
problems with the work, and I did try and bring her up to speed. But in
Richard Wrangham's recent book, "Demonic Males" there is a 5-page discussion
of the very genetic work in question, with no indication of problems with
it. In the end-notes he mentions that the conclusions were challenged by
some, but fails to mention that the original authors admitted in 1990 that
their data did not actually support that conclusion.

--Jon Marks
Date: Sat, 4 Jan 1997 15:56:12 +1000
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: hiram caton <h.caton@hum.gu.edu.au>
Subject: On-rereading Freeman
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In March 1983, I wrote Derek Freeman to congratulate him on the splendid
success of _Margaret Mead and Samoa_. I was then at the National
Humanities Center (home base being Brisbane Australia) and could observe
the controversy from ring side. In 1984 we commenced regular exchanges
with a view documenting the controversy. In due course I edited _The Samoa
Reader: Anthropologists Take Stock_ (UPA, 1990), which is the only
comprehensive survey of the debate. So let me make some comments on the
rereading Freeman thread.

**Martin Orans's reading of Mead's field notes, and his criticism of
Freeman's construction of the hoaxing, is answered in Freeman's
forthcoming, _Franz Boas and the Flower of Heaven: Coming of Age in Samoa
and the Fateful Hoaxing of Margaret Mead_. Freeman has followed Orans'
research for some time; in fact, he withheld the completed mss from
publication so that he could answer Oransd in his book. The reasoning
quoted by Shankman in his review of Orans is of no weight in determining
whether Mead was hoaxed by Fofoa and
Fa'apua'a Fa'amu. Mead knew that ceremonial virgins (taupou) were subject
to supervision because she herself held that title (Flower of Heaven) (Mead
was married, but her hosts didn't know). Since Mead took two lovers, she
was free to think that other young 'virgins' might also fudge the rules.
Critical in all this is the fact that Fa'apua'a and Mead were bosom
friends, and that Fa'apua'a was a ceremonial virgin of highest social rank
in all of Manu'a. In these circumstances it was easy for Mead to be taken
in by the joke.

Freeman's forthcoming book examines every week, and where documentation
permits every day of Mead's Samoan sojourn. In a seminal essay (Freeman
1991), he statesthat Mead's primary activity in Samoa was collecting
materials for a Samoa ethnography that appeared in 1930 as _The Social
Organization of Manu'a_ . The funded, ostensible project ('A Study in
Heredity and Environment Based on the Investigation of the Phenomenon of
Adolescence among Primitive and Civilized Peoples') was stipulated by Baos.
Mead had no clue how to structure such an investigation (She wrote Boas
from the field: 'I have no idea whether I am doing the right thing or not,
or how valuable my results will be. It all weighs rather heavily on my
mind . . . Will you be dreadfully disappointed in me?'). Her predicament
was unmendable and entirely foreable, she had no knowledge of genetics and
related disciplines. In addition, she did not know the Samoan langauge.
Her one year grant made no provision of research expenses. A more quixotic
research venture is hard to imagine. It is scarcely to be wondered that
her investigation of Samoan adolescent females was perfuctory, or as
Freeman says, 'no research at all'. (Al's original posting of Dec. 30 and
Freeman 1991: 109-112).

The Context of Mead's field work. Al's summary of the nature/nurture
debate during the 1920s is described by Freeman and recently more by Carl
Degler (_In Search of Human Nature_). Freeman also covers Boas'
supervisory relation to Mead, and draws about the same conclusions as Al
did. Boas gave her no specific instructions about how to conduct the field
work nor any framework for discovery and testing. Mead wrote him three
letters with queries, to which he replied very briefly. The investigation
was in effect unsupervised. (NB: Mead was on a postdoc, not a doctoral
thesis).

'Not Even Wrong'. Orans and Freeman are proponents of objective knowledge.
Yet Orans thinks Mead's conclusions are too loose to be evaluated
scientifically while Freeman's examination assumes the opposite. I agree
with Orans that the famous conclusion of _Coming of Age_ is nowhere near a
testable scientific formulation (I assume backdating science to 1925). To
make matters even more vague, neither Mead nor her reviewers identified the
research literature on adolescent behavior to which Boas-Mead were
responding. The relevant literature is on juvenile delinquency (esp. urban
gangs) and on adolescent sexual development. Boas probably had in mind,
among others, G. Stanley Hall, the Clark University psychologist who
dominated the field of adolescent development, and who made much of sex
difference, its endocrine substrate, and the differences in nurture due to
boys and girls in light of their different natures. The historical
chapters of _Margaret Mead and Samoa_ should engage this background, since
it shows the SPECIFIC relevance of biology to Mead's problem. Yet Freeman
did not discuss it in _Margaret Mead and Samoa_, nor elsewhere. Truly
strange, since the literature on juvenile delinquency showed offenders were
90-95% male, consistent with male dominance of adult violent crime. This
profile continues to hold today, cross-nationally. Knowledge of the
endocrine substrate of this behavioral difference is far advanced over
1925. One would imagine, then, that Derek would make a big play of it, yet
he never discusses it. I do not know why. --Despite all this, Mead's
ethnography, like any ethnography, is testable. It is simply a matter of
identifying the questionable factual statements and examining the evidence
for and against. This is what Derek did. He styles his procedure a
Popperian 'refutation' (his book is dedicated to Karl Popper). This
confers the appearance of high epistemic dignity, but nothing more is
involved than common sense detective work. For me the fascination of the
controversy is the counter-measures that Mead's defenders used obstruct,
disparage, and dismiss evidence. Prominent among them were ad hominem
arguments that raise a chorus of boos: Freeman is on a vendetta against
Mead; he waited until the venerable woman was dead to publish, so that she
couldn't answer; an aggressive patriarch pistol-whips a defenceless woman;
his criticisms bring the whole of anthropology into disrepute; he is a show
boat; he is envious of Mead's reputation as a Samoan ethnographer; his
refutation is itself ideological eye-wash. And so on. Such screaming and
hollering was meant to shout him down and to divert attention from the
issues.

Another way of disrupting the factual examination was to toss a grenade
that obliterates knowledge by invoking an epistemic fatal flaw.
Postmodernism was then at high tide in American anthropology; it was
fashionable to dismiss all knowledge claims as positivist ideological rant.
One of these diversions is invoked by Jon Marks (2 January, via Al). Jon
writes

>>But as
for what was "really" going on in Mead's Samoa, that turns out to be a
really tough question. Freeman studied another part of Samoa a generation
later (there was a bit of a World War in between), so he can't really be
said to falsify her ethnography. Indeed, that contradiction led in the
1980s to strong shift in cultural anthropology was from scientific
aspirations towards exclusively humanistic ones. "Scientific" ethnographies
had essentialist aspirations -- thinking that they were uncovering the true
guts of what it was like to be Samoan or Nuer or Andamanese, for now and all
time. . . . Freeman/Mead brought home sharply the fact that ethnography
is at best a snapshot of people, highly contingent on time, situation, power
relations, recent history, and the observer. In other words, ethnography is
not a zero-sum game (as Freeman sees it) -- they could both have been
observing reasonably accurately.<<

This is the 'two Samoas' ploy, which says that ethnographic criticism isn't
possible because no two ethnographers observe the same object. When the
objection is fleshed out in philosophy, or in art, it becomes an extreme
solipsism where not even the ego is self-identical. But this is
obscurantism. The questions are simple factual ones: is it true, as Mead
claimed, that rape is unknown among Samoans? that children are reared in
common, without any element of parental attachment? that thanks to this
upbringing there is no adolescent/parent conflict? that there is no
juvenile delinquency? that sexual jealousy is absent? That frequent
copulation among unmarried youths did not result in lots of ex-nuptial
pregnancies/births? There many avenues for examining these claims; one is
court records at the time of Mead's investigation. When examined, they
show that rape and delinquency and crimes of passion do indeed occur. One
can also query Samoans themselves about 'what really goes on'. This can be
done directly, or indirectly, eg, sitting in on their village councils.
Derek did both. He found many Samoans who recalled Mead and of course the
Samoa of that time. They violently disagree with her description of them
because, in their eyes, it depicts them as licentious animals. They go
further: they say she disgraced the taupou title and disgraced herself by
'dancing bare-breasted'. One can also reference Mead's ethnography to
Samoan ethnography prior to her study. When that comparison is made, it
turns out that Mead is the only anthropologist to report Samoa as an island
paradise. To make it plausible, she had to omit one of the most salient
features of Samoan culture: their religion. Samoans were and remain
Christians of a puritanical stripe, celebrated among neighboring islanders
for their missionary work and their warlike spirit. Yes, Samoan men did
and do smile a lot, just as the tourist promos show them. But they have a
hair-trigger sensitivity to slight. Ask around in Auckland or San Diego or
Honolulu and you will soon learn from the cops and bar owners that Samoan
men are notorious for brawling. Finally, one can reference Mead's
ethnography to itself. Freeman makes much of this, showing that _Coming of
Age_ 'leaks' the truth in the many statements of the book that are
inconsistent with the paradise ethnography. It is also a notable
inconsistency between _Coming of Age_ and the _The Social Organization of
Manu'a_. In the latter work, which is based on standard Samoa ethnography,
there is no trace of the island paradise. Mead's field notes state quite
explicitly that Christianity is the central feature of the Samoan way and
that, as she wrote 'the whole emphasis of the protestant church in Samoa is
on physical chastity'. The two Samoas, then, are there in MEAD's published
and unpublished works.

So it is bilge to say that it is hard to find out 'what is really going on
in Samoa'. Samoans know, Mead knew, previous ethnographers knew, Derek
knows, any one who wants know can. However, I agree with Jon that problems
arise if we pursue >>essentialist aspirations -- thinking that they were
uncovering the true guts of what it was like to be Samoan or Nuer or
Andamanese<<. The problems are not peculiar to anthropology; they common
to any effort to understand 'what it is like' to be . . . a convict, a
Madonna fan, a Pakistani adolescent, a chimpanzee, an infant, a NASA
scientist duping the public about life on Mars. There are many natural and
formal heuristics for understanding the Other, none of them flawless.
Freeman does not believe, as Marks claims, that ethnography is a zero-sum
game. On the contrary, he ceased his ethnographic efforts because he does
not credit its essentialist premise. Ethnographic FACTS, on the other
hand, are for him verifiable.


Let me conclude with a few observations:

*Observers friendly to Derek said that he made his task far more difficult
than it need have been by mixing his ethnographic refutation with a
historical critique of Boasian anthropology; and by using that critique to
launch a crusade for a scientific, biologically based anthropology. This
is true. Had Derek published only a refutation, it probably would have
been well received. Many anthropologists (Marvin Harris, Edmund Leach)
disparaged her slap-dash ethnography, and ridiculed her role as soothsayer
and world healer. Mead had never been looked to as a field leader, and her
work had not been studied in graduate seminars for decades. Bradd Shore,
who in 1983 had just completed field work in Samoa, told the _New York
Times_ that 'people who work on Samoa know that Mead was wrong, and
Freeman's book shows that beyond doubt'. However, Freeman MEANT to call
anthropologists to account; MEANT to stir them up. And at that he
certainly succeeded. The storm produced amazing contortions. Marvin
Harris, regarded as Mead's chief critic, enrolled in the army of Freeman
detractors, and nobody blinked an eye. Why did he do this? Because for
the Marxist Harris, 'sociobiology' is even worse than Mead. And Bradd
Shore? Within a month of making the above statement to the _Times_, Shore
had changed tack to become one of Freeman's leading Postmodernist critics.
What turned him? Peer pressure.

*Was Freeman on a vendetta? Did he seek revenge on a colleague whose
authority made his own ethnography unpublishable? This was Mead's opinion,
which she spread after reading a letter (now a major document of the
controversy) Freeman wrote to Lowell Holmes on October 10, 1967 (first
published in Caton 1990: 316-320). The letter tells about a solemn
gathering of dignitaries of Sa'anapu and Ta'u (Mead's village) in which
they told Freeman of Mead's disgraceful conduct during her field trip. The
dignitaries believed that Mead, in attributing promiscuity to Samoans, was
'talking about herself'. They begged Freeman, in his office as a chief, to
restore their reputation among the palagis (westerners). Freeman, for his
part, was appalled by the disgrace Mead had brought on anthropology by
violating the trust of Samoans. So in his capacity as a chief (an office
that he takes seriously) and as anthropologist he resolved to 'set the
record straight' (Caton 1990: 5). The overmastering ferocity of Freeman's
counter-attack is the Samoan way (fa'aSamoa) of punishment. The
difference between justice and revenge is that just punishment is based on
a truthful finding of guilt, and it must be measured by law; revenge, by
contrast, is private justice.

*Did the controversy have any positive results? Did Freeman advance the
'scientific' approach to anthropos? The quick and dirty answer to the
second question is NO. The writings of the controversy are dominated by
rebuttal and point-scoring. Nowhere will a seeker find a discussion of
methods and principles of scientific study that goes beyond broad
programmatic statements to the nitty-gritty of empirical research. Freeman
did apply ethological and psychoanalytical methods in his Samoa research,
but they play a minor role in his refutation. His one writing on a
scientific field, sociobiolgy, is utterly critical (because it denies that
choice is a key variable, ie, it expresses biological determinism) (Freeman
1980). Freeman's criticisms do not address the technical apparatus of
sociobiological anthropology, nor do they evaluate any of the field work
reported at that time. The essay moves on a philosophical level and
expresses the mental set of Cambridge social anthropology reacting against
biologism. The Festschrift for his 70th birthday bore the humanistic title
_Choice and Morality in Anthropological Perspective_. None of the
contributors is a 'bioanthropologist'. Freeman's efforts to promote a new
'anthropology of choice' is much too schematic to attract the now large
number of people who incorporate biological and evolutionary variables into
their investigations. To be in the running, he would need to get down in
the trenches of technical details and empirical investigations. That is
not his metier. His effect is at another level--the Big Picture, the Long
View. Here he has made a deep impression. His exhortations on behalf of
biological approaches are admired and commended by many of the
contributors, including the field leaders. Freeman is a 'talking chief'
who shows the way, encourages the troops, validates values, and smites and
shames the enemy. But is it science? Jon Marks, himself a biological
anthropologist, dismisses it as 'incredibly crude' ideology. 'Ideology' is
the term invoked when we want to deny substantive truth to flashy oratory.
Leaving pejoratives aside, the enduring value of the controversy lies in
the intense and very public clash of values that anatomizes an academic
discipline and the many influences that impinge on the search for truth.
Freeman has published many statements of the meaning of it all. To those
interested, I would recommend the statement in Freeman 1991: 118-121.

Hiram Caton


References

Caton HP, ed. 1990. The Samoa Reader: Anthropoligists Take Stock. Lanham
MD: University Press of America.

Freeman JD. 1991. There's Tricks i' th' world: An Historical Analysis of
the Samoan Researches of Margaret Mead, Visual Anthropology Review 7:
103-128.


+ Prof. Hiram Caton Fax (61) 7 3875 7730
+ + Humanities Tel (61) 7 3875 7419
+
+ Griffith University Email: H.Caton@hum.gu.edu.au +
+ Brisbane 4111, Australia +
Date: Sat, 4 Jan 1997 00:57:46 -0500
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: brian siano <siano@cceb.med.upenn.edu>
Subject: Re: (Fwd) Re: (Fwd) Re: Re{4}: On Re-reading Freeman
in-reply-to: <01idskbi8sic9i453l@cnsvax.albany.edu> from "al higgins" at jan
3, 97 10:53:20 pm
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> My impression is that the chimps engage in rather "loose" sexual
> >behavior. Have I missed something somewhere?
> >
> >Dewey McLean
>
> Actually chimpanzees appear to have a complex set of mate-choice strategies.
> Estrous females vary quite a bit in whom they will mate with, when, etc.
> Some will sometimes pair off with one male for quite a while; the opposite
> end of the spectrum is the famous Flo, Jane Goodall's original friend. As
> it turns out, Flo was pretty sexy (as chimps go) and pretty loose (as chimps
> go), and Goodall's wonderful descriptions of her mating with every male in
> succession from "In the Shadow of Man" aren't characteristic of all chimps.

Sarah Hrdy did some field work with lemurs and came to some
similar conclusions: as long as she worked under the
males-competing-for-coy-females assumptions, their behavior didn't
seem to make sense. Once she started putting herself in their place,
she started noticing all sorts of fascinating strategies used by
female lemurs. The book's not exactly the most technical document in
the world, but you might want to have a look at _the Woman who Never
Evolved_ for the details.


Brian Siano - siano@cceb.med.upenn.edu
"The Internet is an elite organization. Most of the
population of the world has never even made a phone call."
-- Noam Chomsky
Date: Sat, 4 Jan 1997 13:10:39 -0500
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: robert barasch <robertb280@aol.com>
Subject: Re: (Fwd) Re: Re{4}: On Re-reading Freeman

In a message dated 97-01-03 12:09:49 EST, Jon writes:

<< Nonhuman
primates don't have marriage, but they certainly don't mate at random,
either. >>

I may be remembering inaccurately, but isn't it true that although primates
make lasting attachments, an oestrus female will mate with many members of a
bonded group? I make no claim to current knowledge -- I'm merely recalling
(or constructing) from a course I took a few decades ago.

Bob Barasch
robertb280@aol.com
Date: Sun, 5 Jan 1997 07:26:06 +1000
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: william grey <w.grey@mailbox.uq.oz.au>
Subject: Re: (Fwd) Re: Re{4}: On Re-reading Freeman
in-reply-to: <199701041810.eaa04905@dingo.cc.uq.oz.au>
MIME-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: TEXT/PLAIN; charset=US-ASCII

On Sat, 4 Jan 1997, Robert Barasch wrote:

> In a message dated 97-01-03 12:09:49 EST, Jon writes:
>
> << Nonhuman
> primates don't have marriage, but they certainly don't mate at random,
> either. >>
>
> I may be remembering inaccurately, but isn't it true that although primates
> make lasting attachments, an oestrus female will mate with many members of a
> bonded group? I make no claim to current knowledge -- I'm merely recalling
> (or constructing) from a course I took a few decades ago.

Isn't a bit loose to talk of the sexual behavior of "nonhuman primates"? I
think that most of the discussion is about chimpanzees, but patterns in
gorillas and orang-utans I gather are different. I think Jared Diamond in
_Rise and Fall of the Third Chimpanzee_ suggested that promiscuous sexuality
correlated with the size of testes -- on which measure humans are a relatively
monogamous species (at least compared with chimps) in the evolutionary scheme
of things.

Cheers

William Grey
Department of Philosophy email: W.Grey@mailbox.uq.edu.au
University of Queensland Fax: + 61 7 336 51968
Brisbane QLD 4072 Tel: + 61 7 336 52099
AUSTRALIA http://www.uq.edu.au/~pdwgrey/
Date: Sun, 5 Jan 1997 13:28:35 -0500
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
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from: al higgins <ach13@cnsvax.albany.edu>
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Date: Sat, 4 Jan 1997 22:56:04 EST
from: achiggins <ach13@cnsvax.albany.edu>
Subject: copy
To: ACH13@cnsvax.albany.edu
Here after considerable delay is a posting to Scifraud from Jon
Marks.

Al


<< Nonhuman
> primates don't have marriage, but they certainly don't mate at random,
>either. >>
>
>I may be remembering inaccurately, but isn't it true that although primates
>make lasting attachments, an oestrus female will mate with many members of a
>bonded group? I make no claim to current knowledge -- I'm merely recalling
>(or constructing) from a course I took a few decades ago.
>
>Bob Barasch
>robertb280@aol.com

Depends upon the species, sometimes the population, and even sometimes the
individual in question. The important thing is that unlike Victorian
conceptions of human ancestors, they are not like frat boys during Spring Break.

-- Jon Marks

A. C. Higgins ach13@cnsvax.albany.edu
College of Arts and Sciences VOX: 518-442-4678
Sociology Department FAX: 518-442-4936
University At Albany Albany, NY, USA 12222
Date: Mon, 6 Jan 1997 08:07:25 EST
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: stuart offenbach <sio@psych.purdue.edu>
Subject: CRI Definition and Report
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The report of the Commission on Research Integrity was referred to an
"implementation Group on Research Integrity and Misconduct" chaired by Dr.
William Raub, a Science Policy Advisor to Scretary Shelala. That group's
report, "Implementation proposals on recommendations by the Commission on
Research Integrity," was submitted in June of 1996. Regarding the
definition of research misconduct, the working group proposaed that an
Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemaking be published and general comments on
the definition be formally published. We now wait upon that process and the
Secretary's final determination of the Ryan Commission recommendations. The
working group report is available. Unfortunately, I cannot remember who I
had to call to get a copy. It probably was Raub's office at DHHS.

For those who are interested, I am chairing a symposium at the Annual
Meeting of the Association for Practical and Professional Ethics that will
discuss the Commission Report and the Implementation Group's
recommendations. More information on the meeting can be obtained from the
APPE home page at <http://ezinfo.ucs.indiana.edu/~appe/6annmtg.html>.

Stuart I. Offenbach (Stu)
Professor of Developmental Psychology
Department of Psychological Sciences
Purdue University
Phone: 317-494-6223
Fax: 317-496-1264
Date: Mon, 6 Jan 1997 15:47:57 -0500
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Subject: (Fwd) Phillip E Johnson <philjohn@uclink.berkeley.edu>: Lewont
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Date: Sun, 05 Jan 1997 21:34:21 -0500 (EST)
from: cboewe@juno.com (charles boewe)
Subject: Phillip E Johnson <philjohn@uclink.berkeley.edu>: Lewontin in NY
Review of Books
To: ach13@louise.csbs.albany.edu
Here is a posting from another board. Forgive me if it is a
duplicate of material you've already seen.

Al


from: phillip e johnson <philjohn@uclink.berkeley.edu>
To: Darwin-L@raven.cc.ukans.edu
Subject: Lewontin in NY Review of Books
Date: Wed, 1 Jan 1997 16:02:27 -0800
Message-ID: <199701020002.QAA09726@uclink.berkeley.edu>

Richard Lewontin on Science and Materialism

Richard Lewontin's review of Carl Sagan's last book appears in
the January 9 issue of the New York Review of Books (p. 28), with
the title "Billions and billions of Demons." It provides much
good material for reflection on the relationship of mainstream
science to pseudo-science, and on the culture war surrounding
Darwinism. I'll provide a few highlights in the form of indented
quotations, interspersed with my comments {in brackets}.

Lewontin begins by describing an occasion in 1964, when he and
Carl Sagan went to Arkansas to debate the positive side of this
proposition: "RESOLVED, That the Theory of Evolution is as proved
as is the fact that the Earth goes around the sun." Their
opponent was a biology professor from a fundamentalist college,
with a Ph.D from the University of Texas in Zoology. Lewontin
reports that "despite our absolutely compelling arguments, the
audience unaccountably voted for the opposition." Lewontin
himself saw the creation-evolution battle as a social conflict
that could only be understood in the context of American history;
Sagan saw it as a battle between ignorance and knowledge. Hence
Sagan became dedicated to bringing scientific knowledge to the
public. Lewontin thinks Sagan missed the main point}:

"The primary problem is not to provide the public with the
knowledge of how far it is to the nearest star and what
genes are made of.... Rather, the problem is to get them to
reject irrational and supernatural explanations of the
world, the demons that exist only in their imaginations, and
to accept a social and intellectual apparatus, Science, as
the only begetter of truth.... The case for the scientific
method should itself be scientific' and not merely
rhetorical. Unfortunately, the argument may not look as
good to the unconvinced as it does to the believer.
... Scientists and their professional institutions,
partly intoxicated with examples of past successes, partly
in order to assure public financial support, make grandiose
promises that cannot be kept. Sagan writes with justified
scorn that We're regularly bombarded with extravagant UFO
claims vended in bite-sized packages, but only rarely do we
hear of their comeuppance.' He cannot have forgotten the
well-publicized War on Cancer...."

{Lewontin describes how the much-hyped and very expensive hunt
for a viral cause of cancer was quietly abandoned for a genetic
strategy, which has also provided no tangible benefits.}

"The concentration on the genes implicated in cancer is
only a "special case of a general genomania that surfaces in
the form of weekly announcements in The New York Times of
the location of yet another gene for another disease....
Scientists apparently do not realize that the repeated
promises of benefits yet to come, with no likelihood that
those promises will be fulfilled, can only produce a
widespread cynicism about the claims for the scientific
method..."

{Lewontin cites as another example of science-hype the immense
fuss that budget-promoting NASA scientists and the President made
over the discovery of organic molecules in a Mars rock. He then
goes on to comment on three of the most prominent science
popularizers: E.O. Wilson, Lewis Thomas, and Richard Dawkins},

"each of whom has put unsubstantiated assertions or counter-
factual claims at the very center of the stories they have
retailed in the market. Wilson's *Sociobiology* and *On
Human Nature* rest on the surface of a quaking marsh of
unsupported claims about the genetic determination of
everything from altruism to xenophobia. Dawkins's
vulgarizations of Darwinism speak of nothing in evolution
but an inexorable ascendancy of genes that are selectively
superior, while the entire body of technical advance in
experimental and theoretical evolutionary genetics of the
last fifty years has moved in the direction of emphasizing
non-selective forces in evolution. Thomas, in various
essays, propagandized for the success of modern scientific
medicine in eliminating death from disease...."

{Lewontin laments that even scientists have to rely on authority
for matters beyond their personal knowledge}"

"Who am I to believe about quantum physics if not Steven
Weinberg, or about the solar system if not Carl Sagan? What
worries me is that they may believe what Dawkins and Wilson
tell them about evolution."

{Why, then, should we trust science? Here comes the main point
of the essay}:

"We take the side of science *in spite of* the patent
absurdity of some of its constructs, *in spite of* its
failure to fulfill many of its extravagant promises of
health and life, *in spite of* the tolerance of the
scientific community for unsubstantiated just-so stories,
because we have a prior commitment, a commitment to
materialism. It is not that the methods and institutions of
science somehow compel us to accept a material explanation
of the phenomenal world, but, on the contrary, that we are
forced by our *a priori* adherence to material causes to
create an apparatus of investigation and a set of concepts
that produce material explanations, no matter how
counterintuitive, no matter how mystifying to the
uninitiated. Moreover, that materialism is absolute, for we
cannot allow a Divine Foot in the door.... To appeal to an
omnipotent deity is to allow that at any moment the
regularities of nature may be ruptured, that miracles may
happen."

{Lewontin goes on to give a sympathetic account of the cultural
background of creationism.}

"Sentiment was extremely strong against the banks and
corporations that held the mortgages and sweated the labor
of the rural poor, who felt their lives to be in the power
of a distant eastern elite. The only spheres of control
that seemed to remain to them were family life, a
fundamentalist religion, and local education.... Then, in
the late 1950s, a group of biologists from the elite
universities together with science teachers from urban
schools produced a new uniform set of biology textbooks,
whose publication and dissemination were underwritten by the
National Science Foundation. An extensive and successful
public relations campaign was undertaken to have these books
adopted, and suddenly Darwinian evolution was being taught
to children everywhere. The elite culture was now extending
its dominance by attacking the control that families had
maintained over the ideological formation of their
children."

{That makes me wonder if Lewontin regrets the support that he has
given to that campaign for elite cultural dominance. Anyway, he
concludes his fascinating essay with this thought}:

"What is at stake here is a deep problem in democratic
self-governance.... Conscientious and wholly admirable
popularizers of science like Carl Sagan use both rhetoric
and expertise to form the mind of masses because they
believe, like the Evangelist John, that the truth shall make
you free. But they are wrong. It is not the truth that
makes you free. It is your possession of the power to
discover the truth. Our dilemma is that we do not know how
to provide that power.

{In conclusion, I'll try to help with that dilemma:

To provide the masses with the power to discover truth, we
have to start by teaching them to ask the right questions.
Instead of the naive Baconian proposition that Lewontin and Sagan
argued in 1964, let's put the issue the way the elites at Harvard
and the New York Review of books understand it:

RESOLVED, that we should accept scientific materialism as
the only begetter of truth, and hence reject as irrational all
explanations for our existence that invoke a supernatural cause.
It is not that we know that materialism is true because of any
facts that science has discovered. Rather, our *a priori*
adherence to materialism requires us to create an apparatus of
investigation and a set of concepts that produce material
explanations -- no matter how counterintuitive, no matter how
mystifying to the uninitiated. We cannot countenance the
existence of an omnipotent deity, because that would imply that
miracles may happen."

Professor Lewontin will argue the affirmative position. I'd
volunteer to argue the negative, but I don't think it will be
necessary.}

Phillip E. Johnson
Professor of Law
University of California, Berkeley


A. C. Higgins ach13@cnsvax.albany.edu
College of Arts and Sciences VOX: 518-442-4678
Sociology Department FAX: 518-442-4936
University At Albany Albany, NY, USA 12222
Date: Mon, 6 Jan 1997 17:34:24 -0800
Reply-To: siano@cceb.med.upenn.edu
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: brian siano <siano@cceb.med.upenn.edu>
Organization: University of Pennsylvania CCEB
Subject: Re: (Fwd) Phillip E Johnson <philjohn@uclink.berkeley.edu>: Lewont
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Al Higgins wrote:
>
>
> from: phillip e johnson <philjohn@uclink.berkeley.edu>
>
> {That makes me wonder if Lewontin regrets the support that he has
> given to that campaign for elite cultural dominance. Anyway, he
> concludes his fascinating essay with this thought}:
>
> "What is at stake here is a deep problem in democratic
> self-governance.... Conscientious and wholly admirable
> popularizers of science like Carl Sagan use both rhetoric
> and expertise to form the mind of masses because they
> believe, like the Evangelist John, that the truth shall make
> you free. But they are wrong. It is not the truth that
> makes you free. It is your possession of the power to
> discover the truth. Our dilemma is that we do not know how
> to provide that power.

One of the reasons I started subscribing to this list is that
I'm doing some research for an article for _Skeptic_ that touches
on this very topic: the inability of most people to possess that
power of discovering the truth, and why. (I'll be focusing on such
issues as the public relations industry, corporate influence
on university research centers, and the like; I'm still gathering
notes and outlining, so any suggestions would be helpful.)

> {In conclusion, I'll try to help with that dilemma:

> To provide the masses with the power to discover truth, we
> have to start by teaching them to ask the right questions.
> Instead of the naive Baconian proposition that Lewontin and Sagan
> argued in 1964, let's put the issue the way the elites at Harvard
> and the New York Review of books understand it:
>
> RESOLVED, that we should accept scientific materialism as
> the only begetter of truth, and hence reject as irrational all
> explanations for our existence that invoke a supernatural cause.
> It is not that we know that materialism is true because of any
> facts that science has discovered. Rather, our *a priori*
> adherence to materialism requires us to create an apparatus of
> investigation and a set of concepts that produce material
> explanations -- no matter how counterintuitive, no matter how
> mystifying to the uninitiated. We cannot countenance the
> existence of an omnipotent deity, because that would imply that
> miracles may happen."
>
> Professor Lewontin will argue the affirmative position. I'd
> volunteer to argue the negative, but I don't think it will be
> necessary.}
>
> Phillip E. Johnson

I dunno if this is going to make much sense, but I think
Lewontin is right when he says that we accept science because of
our a priori assumption of materialism. I would, however, argue
that this assumption of materialism is not based on any
sophisticated logical or philosophical argument; rather, it's
based on the convincing power of direct evidence and the obtaining
of results. In other words, the "intuition" that Johnson poses as
a _counter- to materialist assumptions can just as easily work
in _favor_ of the materialist assumption.
As far as mystification goes, I'm afraid that a double-
edged blade as well; I'm sure we're all familiar with the various
mysteries of spiritual faith, many of which seem extremely
counterintuitive to the uninitiated.

I gotta get ahold of Lewontin's essay. I've usually enjoyed
his work (okay, allowing for those famous lapses of decorum
during the sociobiology controversy), and Johnson's summary
makes it sound really enticing.

"Life is a continuous process of pain, anguish, loneliness, and despair.
However, we cannot let the occasional flashes of joy and happiness
distract us from this fact."
-- Brian Siano
Date: Mon, 6 Jan 1997 18:12:13 EST
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: ted hermary <czth%mcgilla.bitnet@vm1.mcgill.ca>
Subject: Re: (Fwd) Phillip E Johnson <philjohn@uclink.berkeley.edu>: Lewont
In-Reply-To: In reply to your message of Mon, 06 Jan 1997 15:47:57 EST

From Lewontin's review:

>
> "The primary problem is not to provide the public with the
> knowledge of how far it is to the nearest star and what
> genes are made of.... Rather, the problem is to get them to
> reject irrational and supernatural explanations of the
> world, the demons that exist only in their imaginations, and
> to accept a social and intellectual apparatus, Science, as
> the only begetter of truth.... The case for the scientific
> method should itself be scientific' and not merely
> rhetorical. Unfortunately, the argument may not look as
> good to the unconvinced as it does to the believer.

Huh? I'm really not sure what to make of this. I was always
under the impression that claims that Science is "the *only*
begetter of truth was scientism, not science, and rhetoric
at that. Also, he seems suggesting that science is a "closed
system", justified in its own (scientific) terms. Yet,
later in the review:

> "We take the side of science. . . . .
> because we have a prior commitment, a commitment to
> materialism.

which itself leads to Science. Aside from chicken-and-egg
scenarios (which Brian Siano started off on), I'm left
wondering whether this prior assumption is scientific
or somehow separate from (either cause or outcome of)
science.

Can anyone help me understand where he's coming from
on these points?



Martin (Ted) Hermary (A.B.D.)
Department of Sociology
McGill University
855 Shebrooke Street West
Montreal, Quebec, Canada
H3A 2T7
e-mail: czth@musica.mcgill.ca
Date: Mon, 6 Jan 1997 22:50:41 -0500
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: al higgins <ach13@louise.csbs.albany.edu>
Organization: Sociology Department, CAS UAlbany
Subject: Update on Fisher
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Note on Fisher's Suit

Here is a brief article from Science regarding Dr.
Bernard Fisher and his suit against the government.

The article is reproduced in its entirety.

++++++++++

\Kaiser, Jocelyn. Fisher Loses Appeal in Privacy
Suit," Science 274 (20 December 1996), p. 1999.\

University of Pittsburgh cancer researcher Bernard
Fisher has lost an appeal of his suit charging the
government with smearing his reputation. Fisher,
former director of a national breast and bowel cancer
study, had sued the Department of Health and Human
Services for attaching labels 2 years ago to
electronic citations of his papers containing
warnings such as "scientific misconduct-data
to be reanalyzed." The labels stemmed not
from a misconduct investigation of
Fisher, but from a co-author's admission of falsifying
data.

On 27 November, a panel of the U.S. District
Court in Washington, D.C., issued a motion
affirming a lower court's decision last June to
dismiss Fisher's suit. Fisher's lead attorney,
Robert Charrow, says his team will now submit
a motion asking the full court to hear
the case. "It's very difficult to say" what the out-
come will be, Charrow says, noting that "the
chances in the appellate process are never
good." If the motion is denied, Fisher can
appeal to the Supreme Court.


A. C. Higgins
SS 359 SUNYA Albany, New York 12222
ACH13@CNSVAX.Albany.edu
Phone: (518) 442 - 4678; FAX: (518) 442 - 4936
SCIFRAUD@CNSIBM.Albany.edu

A. C. Higgins ACH13@louise.csbs.albany.edu
College of Arts and Sciences VOX: 518-442-4678
Sociology Department FAX: 518-442-4936
University At Albany
Albany, NY, USA 12222
Date: Tue, 7 Jan 1997 09:03:00 EST
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: "gardenier, john s." <jsg6@nch11a.em.cdc.gov>
Subject: Re: (Fwd) Phillip E Johnson <philjohn@uclink.berkeley.edu>: Lewont

from: ted hermary

Can anyone help me understand where he's coming from
on these points?
The Lewontin quotes can be interpreted either in a limited or a broad
fashion. I believe Ted's confusion is very understandable relative to the
broad interpretation: Science is the only begetter of {any} truth {in any
context??!!} How can science teach us about the nature of God and
humanity's relation to God? How can science teach us about real world
phenomena which are conceivable, but not testable in any sense, such as what
preceded the Big Bang?

Personally, I read the quote in a narrow context, as pertaining to facts
about physical reality and the causes of its manifestations. Within that
narrower context, I see Lewontin as simply calling for reliance on
empiricism rather than on spirits or demons to explain observable phenomena.
That seems largely unproblematic. Religious scientists might allow some
small room for miracles; less religious scientists may only allow {as yet}
unexplained phenomena. Empiricism, of course, combines theoretical
structures with carefully controlled observation. Science includes the
formulation of theories which may not be {presently or even conceivably}
testable. Thus, much of Einstein's relativity could not be tested until
decades after his death. No problem. Hypotheses about what preceded the
Big Bang may never be testable. Doesn't bother me, but others might chose
to say that such issues are not strictly scientific - not refutable. I feel
science can and does accommodate that level of philosophical difference.

Ted and I have previously explored, but not resolved, the issue of what
other "begetters of truth" might exist, other than science. Conceding that
Divine Revelation, if one believes in it, would certainly qualify, my
question to Ted is: what other "begetters of truth" can we
postulate? :-)

John Gardenier
Date: Tue, 7 Jan 1997 14:33:26 -0500
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: al higgins <ach13@louise.csbs.albany.edu>
Organization: Sociology Department, CAS UAlbany
Subject: Fraud in Europe
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Fraud in The Netherlands

Here is a report on an apparent fraud from Europe.

The Science article is reproduced in its entirety.

++++++++++


\Enserink, Martin. "Fraud and Ethics Charges Hit
Stroke Drug Trial," Science 274 (20 December 1996),
pp. 2004-2005.\

AMSTERDAM, THE NETHERLANDS It should have been a
landmark study in stroke research, capable of changing
the way the disease is treated. But the Second
European Stroke Prevention Study (ESPS 2), a major
clinical trial of a drug to prevent repeat strokes-
involving almost 7000 patients in 13 European
countries-has become mired in controversy. A paper
describing promising results from the trial, published
earlier this month in the Jou@l of the Neurological
Sciences, was first turned down by The Lancet in part
because of ethical concerns over the use of placebos.
And it has been further tainted by allegations that a
physician at one of the 60 centers originally involved
in the trial fabricated data that led to the
disqualification of information on more than 400
patients. Although none of the suspect data were
included in the published paper, "this is bound to do
damage to neurological research," says neurologist
Peter Koudstaal of Erasmus University in Rotterdam.

The trial was designed to study the effect of
dipyridamole, also known by its brand name Persantin
Retard, in preventing a recurrent stroke in patients
who have already suffered a previous stroke or a
transient ischemic attack, a very mild stroke with
symptoms lasting less than 24 hours. Currently,
aspirin is the only generally accepted drug for this
purpose, but it prevents recurrent strokes in roughly
one in five patients only. Researchers had failed, so
far, to find any significant improvement on aspirin.
The CAPRIE study, a huge multicenter trial published
in The Lancet in November, showed that another
potential drug, clopidogrel, was only marginally
more effective than aspirin.

Like aspirin and clopidogrel, dipyridamole is an
antiplatelet drug it prevents blood from clotting
and thus cerebral arteries from getting blocked - and
has been a mainstay of the German drug giant
Boehringer Ingelheim for more than 15 years in
the treatment of all cardiovascular afflictions,
although its efficacy has been debated for many
years. The results of the Boehringer-sponsored
ESPS 2 trial indicate, however, that the drug has
great potential in preventing recurrent strokes.
Dipyridamole alone reduced the risk
of a new stroke by 16% during the 2 years the patients
were followed; aspirin, which was also tested, gave a
risk reduction of 18%; but combined the two lessened
the chances of a stroke by 37%, with relatively few
side effects. The death rates in all three treatment
groups were about the same, however, and did not
differ significantly from that of the placebo group.

But the encouraging news in the ESPS 2 results
was soured by the paper's guarded suggestions
of data problems discovered during the study. The
paper refers to "serious inconsistencies in patient
case record forms and compliance assay
determinations" at one center. Armand Lowenthal
of Middelheim Hospital in Antwerp, Belgium, who
chaired the trial's coordinating committee, says
that a thorough examination by an
independent lab revealed that some of the 438 patients
enrolled in the trial at that center turned out to be
"entirely made up."

Although Lowenthal declined to name the doctor at
the center of the allegations, others have identified
him as H. J. Gelmers of Twenteborg Hospital, a
regional clinic in Almelo, the Netherlands. Geimers
was originally a member of the trial's protocol and
publishing committee, but left the committee after
the alleged fraud was discovered in 1993; his
resignation is recorded in a 1995 paper by the
ESPS 2 study group in the Journal of the
Neurological Sciences. In this month's paper,
Gelmers was not listed as one of the
authors and Twenteborg Hospital was not listed among
the 59 institutions whose data were used in the study.

Gelmers denied in a brief telephone interview
with Science that he fabricated data in the trial and said
of alleged problems with blood samples: "It's more
probable that this happened elsewhere." Gelmers said
he was not allowed to comment further and referred
questions to H. J. Sissingh, the director of
Twenteborg Hospital. Sissingh says that he was
notified of the case some time ago by Boehringer
Ingelheim. "We subsequently had some
conversations and carried out an investigation,
but we were unable to establish either
guilt or innocence. So we left it at that," says
Sissingh.

Chris Verhorst, medical director of Boehringer
Ingelheim Netherlands, says the trial's organizers
first became concerned about the large number of
patients enrolled by a single physician and the
unusual dedication with which they took their daily
medication. Suspicions grew, says Lowenthal,
when blood pressure data submitted by the
physician turned out to be
distributed along a perfect Gaussian curve-which is
highly unlikely in a patient sample of this size.

According to the trial protocol, patient
compliance was tested by assaying drug levels in
plasma from 15% of the patients. Lowenthal
says analysis of the suspect samples showed
that all of them came from just two individuals,
and all contained both drugs, which would have
been very unlikely because only one in
four patients got a combination of both drugs. The
concentrations of the drugs also varied widely,
reaching impossibly high levels in some of the
samples, Lowenthal said.

Asked why the problems with the data went
undetected for years, Verhorst says this. was an old
study, and "monitoring was less careful and less
frequent than it would be today. ... But we did
discover the irregularities thanks to the monitoring."
Verhorst says Boehringer Ingelheim paid participating
centers about $1500 for each patient who completed the
trial, which would have amounted to about $640,000 for
the suspect data. Verhorst says that payments were
stopped after the alleged fraud was discovered, and as
far as Boehringer Ingelheim is concerned, the
case is closed - the company decided not to claim its
money back.


The Dutch Association for Neurology may not let
the matter rest, however. It is intending to set up an
independent committee to investigate, says Marianne de
Visser, chair of the association. "This is something
that bears on the reputation of Dutch neurology," she
says. "There may be something wrong, but we will
investigate the matter very carefully before drawing
conclusions."

While the neurology association investigates the
implications of the alleged fraud for Dutch neurology,
researchers in several countries have expressed
ethical concerns about the ESPS 2 trial. During the trial,
patients were divided into four groups, which were given
different treatments: dipyridamole alone, aspirin
alone, a combination of the two, and a placebo. A
placebo is generally used only when there is no proven
effective drug to test against, but critics argue that
aspirin had already been proven effective in reducing
the risk of recurrent stroke.

Clinical epidemiologist Michael Gent of Canada's
McMaster University in Hamilton, Ontario, who was the
principal investigator in the CAPRIE study, says that
"When they started this study in 1988, there was clear
evidence from a number of published studies that
antiplatelet drugs, particularly aspirin, prevented
stroke ... in these patients." The 1649 people in the
placebo group were unnecessarily exposed to a higher
risk, he says.

Erasmus's Koudstaal says that there may have been
room to doubt aspirin's efficacy at the beginning of
the trial. But later studies, such as the 1991
Swedish Aspirin Low-dose Trial (SALT) and
the "aspirin papers," a series of meta-analyses
published in the British Medical Journal in 1994,
"convincingly proved" that aspirin worked, he
says, and should have been reason to
stop the placebo arm of the trial. Yet, the study
continued until March 1995. "It was probably a
mistake at the time," adds Charles Warlow, a
neurologist at Western General Hospital in
Edinburgh, U.K. "I personally wouldn't have put
people in the trial. But there are many perfectly
respectable people who did.
People vary in what they regard as definite
evidence."

Verhorst and Lowenthal dismiss these criticisms,
arguing that the efficacy of aspirin, as well as the
optimal dosage, was not known when the trial started.
Says Verhorst: "The study was submitted to ethical
committees in every center. If 59 ethical committees
approve, then there is no ethical problem." And
Lowenthal says that the trial was monitored by a
central ethics committee, which discussed the study
each year. It reported in 1995 that use of placebos
was justified because of doubts about aspirin's
efficacy and side effects. However, Verhorst confirms
that the study was turned down by The Lancet largely
due to ethical concerns.

Neurologists are now debating whether the results
of the study should guide clinical practice. Some
previous studies have found no benefit from the
combination of dipyridamole and aspirin compared with
aspirin alone in stroke prevention, although one other
study, published 10 years ago by the same group,
reported very positive results with a smaller number
of patients. A meta-analysis of all relevant trials will
be needed to give a definitive answer. "There is some
discomfort about this," says Gent, "but the results
are interesting."


A. C. Higgins
SS 359 SUNYA Albany, New York 12222
ACH13@CNSVAX.Albany.edu
Phone: (518) 442 - 4678; FAX: (518) 442 - 4936
SCIFRAUD@CNSIBM.Albany.edu
Date: Tue, 7 Jan 1997 16:11:37 -0500
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
Comments: Authenticated sender is <ach13@cnsvax.albany.edu>
from: al higgins <ach13@cnsvax.albany.edu>
Organization: Sociology Department UAlbany
Subject: (Fwd)
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Date: Tue, 07 Jan 1997 09:37:56 -0500 (EST)
from: roy wolfe <wroy@rogerswave.ca>
To: SCIFRAUD@CNSIBM.ALBANY.EDU
Here after some delay is a posting to Scifraud.

Al

John S. Gardenier asks (7 Jan 1997):

>Ted and I have previously explored, but not resolved, the issue of what
other "begetters of truth" might exist, other than science. Conceding that
>Divine Revelation, if one believes in it, would certainly qualify, my
question to Ted is: what other "begetters of truth" can we postulate? :-)

How about poets?

Roy Wolfe


A. C. Higgins ach13@cnsvax.albany.edu
College of Arts and Sciences VOX: 518-442-4678
Sociology Department FAX: 518-442-4936
University At Albany Albany, NY, USA 12222
Date: Tue, 7 Jan 1997 15:19:26 -0800
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: james shea <shea@cs.uwp.edu>
Subject: Re: (Fwd)
in-reply-to: <01idxrfilz3g9km04o@cnsvax.albany.edu>
MIME-Version: 1.0
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Colleagues:

This matter of "begetters of truth" or "ways of knowing" promises to
develop into an interesting discussion. I would nominate the following
groups and would be interested to see what others think of the various
groups as providers of "truth".

1. Artists
2. Prophets, priests, shamans, etc.
3. Politicians
4. Psychics
5. Scientists
Return to 10 Years: Discussion in SciFraud Index.html
Jim Shea
Date: Wed, 8 Jan 1997 10:49:09 +1000
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: martin bridgstock <m.bridgstock@sct.gu.edu.au>
Subject: Re: (Fwd)
Mime-Version: 1.0
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I'm sorry, but I have to ask:

What sort of truth are you talking about? That is, what criteria separates
the "truth", from "false truth claims" etc? It would be dangerously easy to
make the criteria either too broad or too narrow.

Martin Bridgstock

>Colleagues:
>
> This matter of "begetters of truth" or "ways of knowing" promises to
>develop into an interesting discussion. I would nominate the following
>groups and would be interested to see what others think of the various
>groups as providers of "truth".
>
> 1. Artists
> 2. Prophets, priests, shamans, etc.
> 3. Politicians
> 4. Psychics
> 5. Scientists
>
>Jim Shea
>
>
Date: Tue, 7 Jan 1997 22:43:16 -0500
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: brian siano <siano@cceb.med.upenn.edu>
Subject: Re: (Fwd)
in-reply-to: <pine.pcw.3.91.970107151540.9823f-100000@grnq-143.uwp.edu> from
"James Shea" at Jan 7, 97 03:19:26 pm
MIME-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: text/plain; charset=US-ASCII
Content-Transfer-Encoding: 7bit

> Colleagues:
>
> This matter of "begetters of truth" or "ways of knowing" promises to
> develop into an interesting discussion. I would nominate the following
> groups and would be interested to see what others think of the various
> groups as providers of "truth".
>
> 1. Artists
> 2. Prophets, priests, shamans, etc.
> 3. Politicians
> 4. Psychics
> 5. Scientists

Well, we're dealing with a fairly slippery definition of
"truth" here. Do you mean truth as in "a verifiable fact about the
universe," or "an idea that elicits a strong emotional certainty of
its truthfulness?"
In the cases of artists, religious figures, and psychics (to
some extent), we're talking about claims that are "verified" more or
less in the minds of the audience-- whether it _feels_ right or
not. (I remember reading somewhere that the sense of certainty is
exhibited in the mind in the limbic regions, which aren't exactly the
areas where cognition goes on-- those experiencing "limbic storms"
tend towards certain kinds of religious of revelatory mania. I'm
probably wrong in this, of course.)
So, a novelist might make an observation about human beings
that might strike one person as silly and cartoonish, and it might hit
another as the greatest insight he's ever encountered. (For example,
Ayn Rand's books have always struck me as oversimplistic fables, but
she seem to have a strong impact on others.) A prophet or shaman might
make some statement about how to live as a worthwhile person, and
others may take or leave that particular revelation. A psychic might
counsel his or her customer into breaking up with a lover, and it may
or may not be the better thing to do-- but what matters is whether it
_feels_ right to the customer.
The thing is, this is a standard of "truth" that is pretty
much unlike that of the scientific method; there, certainty is
elicited by evidence and careful theorizing. So I'm not certain the
question above can really be answered in these terms.


Brian Siano - siano@cceb.med.upenn.edu
"The Internet is an elite organization. Most of the
population of the world has never even made a phone call."
-- Noam Chomsky
Date: Tue, 7 Jan 1997 23:44:11 EST
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: ted hermary <czth%mcgilla.bitnet@vm1.mcgill.ca>
Subject: Re{2}: (Fwd)
In-Reply-To: In reply to your message of Tue, 07 Jan 1997 18:19:26 EST

Regarding John Gardinier's reply, my puzzlement is lessened
greatly if one interprets the remarks narrowl. However, I
have a difficult time doing so when someone chooses
absolutist diction like the "*only* begetter of truth".
My confusion owes partly to the same source being critical
of mere rhetoric. I'm pretty sure if a strong proponent of
sociology (believing it provides truths) wrote that it
was "the" path to truth, we'd all have a fit, and see it
for what it is.

Jim Shea provides our candidates for begetters of the truth

> 1. Artists
> 2. Prophets, priests, shamans, etc.
> 3. Politicians
> 4. Psychics
> 5. Scientists

Whoops - I guess sociologists aren't up for discussion.
(Probably a good thing.) Nor historians, or philosophers,
for that matter.

For medium-level controversy (no, not that kind of medium,
Jim), I think art is also a "begetter of truth". (Or,
more realistically, that some art, like some science,
begets truth.) The main difficulty here is debating the
point without it turning into either a scientific dicussion
of evidence and inferential logic or, conversely, waxing
poetically. Is there some means of judging the question
you ask without resorting to one or the other of the means
you've listed mention? Is there a neutral arbiter, so to
speak?

At this point in the discussion, someone usually chimes in
with the pragmatic solution: whatever works best. Usually
meaning "science", but you hear the same chime in support
of "pseudo-science". The problem with this, it seems to me
(and it seemed to seem that way to arch-pragmatist William
James too) is that this depends on what working means. To
gain a metaphorical appreciation of nature, for example,
one might not be well-advised to read science (even though
scientists do use metaphors), nor does it seem to fare as
well as a means to personal knowledge (Who am I?) or the
meaning of life (what the heck is it all about, anyways?).
At the very least, I think there are kinds of truth (though
some days I wonder if that isn't overstating the case).

If I correctly recall the context John G. alluded to (wow,
thi is ancient history) it concerned a course syllabus
or a course on feminist perspectives on science, where the
alternative ways, or gendered ways, or women's ways of knowing
(all meaning roughly the same thing in this instance, I've
found). I'm hardly the champion of feminist arguments, and
especially these kinds of feminist arguments. Never mind
the question of what perspective, means and/or bases allows
us (excuse me, feminists) to compare, if not actually rate,
what are apparently argued to be totally different kinds of
knowing. This seems to compound the problems with
arguments like my own. But could just be phallocentric
thought in action.:-)

Well, that probably stirred up the pot enough.


Martin (Ted) Hermary (A.B.D.)
Department of Sociology
McGill University
855 Shebrooke Street West
Montreal, Quebec, Canada
H3A 2T7
e-mail: czth@musica.mcgill.ca
Date: Wed, 8 Jan 1997 09:12:00 EST
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: "gardenier, john s." <jsg6@nch11a.em.cdc.gov>
Subject: Re: Begetters of Truth

6. Parents
7. Judges/Lawyers
8. Accountants/Auditors
9. Lobbyists
10. Salesmen
11. Consultants
12. "Experts"
13. etc. John Gardenier


from: james shea
To: Multiple recipients of list SCIFRAUD
Subject: Re: (Fwd)
Date: Tuesday, January 07, 1997 3:19PM
--
Colleagues:

This matter of "begetters of truth" or "ways of knowing" promises to
develop into an interesting discussion. I would nominate the following
groups and would be interested to see what others think of the various
groups as providers of "truth".

1. Artists
2. Prophets, priests, shamans, etc.
3. Politicians
4. Psychics
5. Scientists

Jim Shea
Date: Wed, 8 Jan 1997 09:27:11 -0800
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: james shea <shea@cs.uwp.edu>
Subject: Re: Begetters of Truth
in-reply-to: <32d32e34@smtpout.em.cdc.gov>
MIME-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: TEXT/PLAIN; charset=US-ASCII

Colleagues:

Hmmmmm! What is truth? If I knew the answer to that one I'd write a
book, make millions of dollars, and gain immense power. I'll admit I
could use a little extra cash, but the power I can do without.

Personally, I would probably endorse what is called the
"correspondence theory" of truth, that is, a statement is "true" if it
corresponds to the facts of the matter. However, I would acknowledge that
this view is at best incomplete and not totally satisfactory.

Incidentally, my original list should have included:

6. Philosophers (via logic)

A further thought on truth - those of us who are scientists would
probably claim that "truth" is that which is objectively verifiable.

Jim Shea
Date: Wed, 8 Jan 1997 14:15:01 -0500
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: al higgins <ach13@louise.csbs.albany.edu>
Organization: Sociology Department, CAS UAlbany
Subject: Government-Supported Research
MIME-Version: 1.0
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Government-supported Research

A news report in The Plain Dealer suggests that the
government's system for protecting human beings involved
in research is flawed. This report is consistent with previous
studies, previous reports on government-backed research:
government-sponsored researchers do not do a good job
of protecting human subjects.

Here is The Chronicle's article in its entirety.

++++++++++

\Walker, Paulette V. "Article Suggests That Subjects
in Medical Trials May Not Be Fully Informed," The
Chronicle of Higher Education, 10 January 1997, p.
A44.\

An analysis of U.S. Food and Drug Administration
documents shows that patients are not always fully
informed that they are guinea pigs in medical-
research studies, The Plain Dealer in Cleveland
reported last month.

The newspaper's report was published one day
before a Presidential committee began a
comprehensive review of the federal
government's system for monitoring research
on human subjects.

The government requires that researchers fully
explain to patients involved in research the potential
risks of experimental drugs. The patient must then sign a
consent form indicating his or her permission and full
understanding.

The Plain Dealer found that in 4,154 F.D.A.
inspections of clinical trials since 1977, 53 per cent
of the researchers had not clearly disclosed the
experimental nature of the work. In fact, the
newspaper discovered, F.D.A. reports revealed
that investigators involved in 46 clinical trials
tested new drugs on about 1,000 people without
first obtaining their written permission.

Mary K. Pendergast, associate commissioner of the
F.D.A.. told The Plain Dealer that those instances were
"representative of biomedical clinical research as
a whole."

In one case, the paper found, a 64-year-old woman
died in 1988 at the former Hahnemann University
Hospital in Philadelphia after being given an
infusion of methyl tertiary butyl ether, a solvent
also used as a gasoline additive.
Steven K. Teplick, the patient's doctor, wanted to
show that the substance would dissolve gallstones.
According to The Plain Dealer, the F.D.A. stopped the
experimental use of the solvent the following years,
but not before 9 of 29 patients had suffered
"adverse effects."

Dr. Teplick, now chairman of the department of
radiology at the University of South Alabama,
reportedly told The Plain Dealer that he had obtained
consent from all of the patients in the study. But
the Philadelphia patient's family members told the
newspaper that they had never been told that this
was an experimental therapy. F.D.A. files obtained
by The Plain Dealer said the consent forms had
"failed to adequately address the foreseeable risks."

When reached last month, Dr. Teplick declined to
talk with The Chronicle about the claims.

The Plain Dealer's conclusions are similar to
those reached in 1995 by the President's Advisory
Committee on Human Radiation Experiments. When
the committee examined patient-consent documents
from more than 100 government-backed research
projects, it discovered that "some consent forms
currently in use are flawed in morally significant
respects."

For years, ethicists, lawmakers, and some
scientists have complained that the government's
system for protecting human beings in
research is flawed. The newly formed National
Bioethics Advisory Commission is expected to
review the rules through its Subcommittee on
Human Subjects, which met for the first time
last month.


A. C. Higgins
SS 359 SUNYA Albany, New York 12222
ACH13@CNSVAX.Albany.edu
Phone: (518) 442 - 4678; FAX: (518) 442 - 4936
SCIFRAUD@CNSIBM.Albany.edu
Date: Wed, 8 Jan 1997 14:59:00 EST
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: "gardenier, john s." <jsg6@nch11a.em.cdc.gov>
Subject: Re: Government-Supported Research

Al posted an article from the Cleveland Plain Dealer on deficiencies in
Human Subject Protection. There are several implications in the wording of
the article I find unfortunate.

First, there are frequent references to "The Plain Dealer found . . ."
where the information the Plain Dealer "found" was from an in-depth
investigatory report by the FDA. The implication that THE PRESS had
uncovered government misconduct is misleading. At least within DHHS, there
are continuing efforts to uncover past deficiencies and to improve the
process. Care to contrast this with private research not involved with
government funding? There is some suitable ground for investigative
reporting.
Date: Wed, 8 Jan 1997 16:00:59 -0800
Reply-To: siano@cceb.med.upenn.edu
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: brian siano <siano@cceb.med.upenn.edu>
Organization: University of Pennsylvania CCEB
Subject: Re: Government-Supported Research
MIME-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: text/plain; charset=us-ascii
Content-Transfer-Encoding: 7bit

Gardenier, John S. wrote:
>
> Al posted an article from the Cleveland Plain Dealer on deficiencies in
> Human Subject Protection. There are several implications in the wording of
> the article I find unfortunate.
>
> First, there are frequent references to "The Plain Dealer found . . ."
> where the information the Plain Dealer "found" was from an in-depth
> investigatory report by the FDA. The implication that THE PRESS had
> uncovered government misconduct is misleading. At least within DHHS, there
> are continuing efforts to uncover past deficiencies and to improve the
> process. Care to contrast this with private research not involved with
> government funding? There is some suitable ground for investigative
> reporting.

This latter point-- potential misconduct in private research--
is something I'd like to get more information on for that article
I'd mentioned previously. Can anyone recommend any surveys, experts,
or sources?

--
"Life is a continuous process of pain, anguish, loneliness, and despair.
However, we cannot let the occasional flashes of joy and happiness
distract us from this fact."
-- Brian Siano
Date: Wed, 8 Jan 1997 15:37:00 EST
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: "gardenier, john s." <jsg6@nch11a.em.cdc.gov>
Subject: Re: Government-Supported Research

Ooops. Original sent prematurely. Here are some other thoughts on the
Plain Dealer article.

> In fact, the newspaper discovered, F.D.A. reports revealed
that investigators involved in 46 clinical trials tested new drugs
on about 1,000 people without first obtaining their written permission.<

Previously, oral permissions were acceptable in many cases. The rules keep
getting tighter, which may be good. Still, it would be good to clarify
whether the research met the ethical standards of the time, even given that
it would not meet today's standards.

> In one case, the paper found, a 64-year-old woman
died in 1988 at the former Hahnemann University
Hospital in Philadelphia after being given an
infusion of methyl tertiary butyl ether, a solvent
also used as a gasoline additive.
Steven K. Teplick, the patient's doctor, wanted to
show that the substance would dissolve gallstones.
According to The Plain Dealer, the F.D.A. stopped the
experimental use of the solvent the following years,
but not before 9 of 29 patients had suffered
"adverse effects."

Dr. Teplick, now chairman of the department of
radiology at the University of South Alabama,
reportedly told The Plain Dealer that he had obtained
consent from all of the patients in the study. But
the Philadelphia patient's family members told the
newspaper that they had never been told that this
was an experimental therapy. F.D.A. files obtained
by The Plain Dealer said the consent forms had
"failed to adequately address the foreseeable risks."<

Uh, pardon me, but the fact that the patient's family members had never been
told of the experimental nature of a therapy does not establish that the
patient had not been told or had not consented. Also, the first paragraph
suggests that people ought never come to harm in biomedical experiments.
There is always some risk of adverse effects even of established standard
therapies, more so with experimental therapies. In fact, sample sizes of
experimental treatments are set to allow for patient attrition from various
causes, including death and morbidity precluding continuing with the
experiment. Human subjects protection (HSP) cannot eliminate risk. Its
purpose is to balance benefits and risks to the patient and to society as a
whole. Then it requires informing patients of the expectations in the
experiment. It also requires stopping an experiment if preliminary results
show that the risks are much higher or the benefits are much lower than
originally expected when the informed consent was obtained. Unfortunately,
government, university, and private industry researchers have a bias toward
pursuing their pet hypotheses, sometimes beyond the point where failure (or
excessive risk) should be admitted. The enforcement mechanisms of HSP
certainly bear improvement. The greatest complaints about the improvements,
however, will come from the scientists involved, not from "the government."

> For years, ethicists, lawmakers, and some
scientists have complained that the government's
system for protecting human beings in
research is flawed. The newly formed National
Bioethics Advisory Commission is expected to
review the rules through its Subcommittee on
Human Subjects, which met for the first time
last month. <

Got news for you. All systems for protecting human beings are flawed.
That, in itself, is neither new nor is it a proper indictment of the
government's conduct. Again, the major implication of this paragraph is
that the government itself has recognized extremely serious problems both
with the existing system and with all proposed methods of solving the
problems. If we are too cautious, people rightly complain that citizens die
unnecessarily because we are too slow to approve beneficial innovations. If
we move too quickly, people rightly complain that people die in failed
experiments. Given the uncertainties of biomedical research, I will
predict, with 100% certainty, that the government will continue to make both
kinds of errors indefinitely! This will be true no matter what system is in
place at any given time. It is a statistical fact of life - and death. The
bureaucratic "solution," or "cop out" if you prefer, is to set up an
advisory commission of the best available experts. They cannot totally
solve a problem which is inherent in nature. Conversely, they cannot fail
to offer some improvements to the process. There will continue to be
disagreements about whether those are the "right" improvements. But, hey,
that is what commissions are for, ne c'est pas?

John Gardenier

Where are the complaints about the lack of statistical literacy?
Date: Wed, 8 Jan 1997 20:47:05 EST
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: ted hermary <czth%mcgilla.bitnet@vm1.mcgill.ca>
Subject: Re{2}: Begetters of Truth
In-Reply-To: In reply to your message of Wed, 08 Jan 1997 12:27:11 EST

> 6. Philosophers (via logic)
>
> A further thought on truth - those of us who are scientists wou ld
>probably claim that "truth" is that which is objectively verifiable.

At which point an especially adamant philosopher might cry:
Fallacy of affirming the consequent! (Quick, someone supply
the Latin -- is it Modulus pollen potato?)

Sorry, I'm in an especially silly mood tonight.

Regards,
Ted


Martin (Ted) Hermary (A.B.D.)
Department of Sociology
McGill University
855 Shebrooke Street West
Montreal, Quebec, Canada
H3A 2T7
e-mail: czth@musica.mcgill.ca
Date: Thu, 9 Jan 1997 16:50:45 +0100
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: lodewyckx herman <lodew@kh.khbo.be>
Subject: Re: Begetters of Truth
in-reply-to: <32d32e34@smtpout.em.cdc.gov>
MIME-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: TEXT/PLAIN; charset=US-ASCII

This is an old philosophical discussion. Many authors wrote many books and
articles about it. I think that Wittgenstein proposed the most acceptable
answer to this question speaking about language games. I understand it so
that different groups create their own language game: the rules are
understood in the group and than starts the powerplay to conquer other
groups, or the society, to make their 'language' the standard lanugage for
others. It's not a question of 'truth' as the duplication of a certain
reality, but as a 'story' about a bit of the reality that is commonly or
not accepted by the majority of the society. And because majorities can
change, the 'stories' may change, and also the truth.
This idea can be developped furthermore, but thas wil be the subject of
an new book.

Lodewyckx Herman
KIHWest-Vlaanderen
Zeedijk 101
B-8400 Oostende
Belgium
Tel.:(+32)59-50 89 96
Fax :(+32)59-70 42 15
E-mail: Lodew@kh.khbo.be



On Wed, 8 Jan 1997, Gardenier, John S. wrote:

> 6. Parents
> 7. Judges/Lawyers
> 8. Accountants/Auditors
> 9. Lobbyists
> 10. Salesmen
> 11. Consultants
> 12. "Experts"
> 13. etc. John Gardenier
>


> from: james shea
> To: Multiple recipients of list SCIFRAUD
> Subject: Re: (Fwd)
> Date: Tuesday, January 07, 1997 3:19PM
> --
> Colleagues:
>
> This matter of "begetters of truth" or "ways of knowing" promises to
> develop into an interesting discussion. I would nominate the following
> groups and would be interested to see what others think of the various
> groups as providers of "truth".
>
> 1. Artists
> 2. Prophets, priests, shamans, etc.
> 3. Politicians
> 4. Psychics
> 5. Scientists
>
> Jim Shea
>
Date: Fri, 10 Jan 1997 08:02:06 +1000
reply-to: william grey <w.grey@mailbox.uq.oz.au>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: william grey <w.grey@mailbox.uq.oz.au>
Subject: Re: Begetters of Truth
in-reply-to: <199701081416.aaa12591@dingo.cc.uq.oz.au>
MIME-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: TEXT/PLAIN; charset=US-ASCII

I think that some of the discussion about the capacity of various disciplines
to discover (or "beget") truth is a bit off-beam. What is relevant isn't the
discipline but the method of inquiry. But that is problematic because no one
has managed to provide a precise and detailed description of the scientific
method. However we can get along fine as long as we're a bit loose and vague.

A question arises: are there methods apart from observation and experiment
(i.e. science) which provide us with insights about the world and our
experience of it? Sure. Poets, historians--and psychics--in their different
ways provide us with comforting world-maps (or "narratives") which help us to
locate ourselves in the complex web of contingencies which constitute history.
But science does more than that; it uncovers a structure of organised
complexity which exists independently of us. (Or so say us scientific
realists.) Poetry and history are impressive, but parasitic on our existence.
Science is majestic: its world-maps depict a multi-layered world which
antedated, and will post-date, our descriptions and theories.

However there are lots of things that interest us apart from the domain of
science. And a lot of inquiry is concerned with immediate and practical issues
("Where's the Post Office?" etc) which don't penetrate very deeply into the
scheme of things. We don't need much theory to get by at a basic level. (And
that's where we have been for most of our species's history.) But we need the
comforts of poetry and art. These are fabricated structures and the error of
scientism is to dismiss them as useless or uninteresting because they are not
grounded in the world. (Scientism goes back to Plato.)

An obvious requirement for scientific theories which I don't think has been
mentioned in the current thread is that as well as being (directly or
indirectly) testable they should be consistent.

Finally, the correspondence theory of truth (recommended by James Shea) is
problematic because there is no straightforward way of characterising "the
facts" which is independent of our representations of them. (There's plenty
more which can be, has been and will be said about this problem.)

Cheers

William Grey
Department of Philosophy email: W.Grey@mailbox.uq.edu.au
University of Queensland Fax: + 61 7 336 51968
Brisbane QLD 4072 Tel: + 61 7 336 52099
AUSTRALIA http://www.uq.edu.au/~pdwgrey/
Date: Thu, 9 Jan 1997 17:02:37 -0500
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: al higgins <ach13@louise.csbs.albany.edu>
Organization: Sociology Department, CAS UAlbany
Subject: More on Junk Science
MIME-Version: 1.0
Content-type: text/plain; charset=US-ASCII
Content-transfer-encoding: 7BIT

More on Junk Science

Here, on the editorial page of the Wall Street Journal, is
an announcement of an ABC News special to be shown tonight.
Some on this board may be interested.

The article from the Journal is reproduced in its entirety
though a chart had to be simplified.

++++++++++


\Stossel, John. "Overcoming Junk Science," Wall
Street Journal, 9 January 1997, p. A12.\

For 20 years I was a consumer reporter. Every
week someone cam to me suggesting stories
about risks that "had to be exposed." I eagerly
reported the dangers, illustrated with
heart-wrenching testimony from victims. The most
compelling stories were those that warned of new,
unusual risks -- like Agent Orange, killer bees, or
flesh-eating bacteria. But did such stories really
give an accurate picture of life's risks? Tylenol
poisonings were a huge story in 1982 --
weeks of headlines and breathless news reports. Yet
the poisonings killed only seven people -- while care
kill more than 100 people every day. Most car
accidents just aren't "news."

I'm embarrassed to admit it took me years of
reporting scares to realize that I was doing a
disservice. The turning point came when a producer
rushed into my office pushing a story on cigarette
lighters. "Bic lighters are exploding," he said.
"They've killed four people!" But by then I
had compiled a "death list," a morbid document
based on fatality data from government agencies
and medical groups. The list provides invaluable
perspective. Once you know that more
people are killed by mundane things like beds and
plastic bags, that 50 Americans are killed every
year by ordinary buckets (most lychildren who fall
into them and drown), than it's harder to get hysterical
about , say, Bic lighters.

Risk analysts measure the costs of accidents by
how much each is likely to shorten the average life. So
with the help of physicist Bernard Cohen, I drew up a
chart (reprinted nearby) of some risks the media have
hyped, along with some more mundane risks that
you may not hear so much about. You'll notice the
media favorites for example, toxic waste sites like
Love Canal are at the least dangerous end of the
chart. Hyping small risks may cause more harm than the
risks themselves. People frightened about plane
crashes are more likely to take the car vastly
increasing their risk.

One big loser in this process of hyping scares is
science. Unfortunately, in our love of scare stories,
we in the media often find it effective to take a tiny and
insignificant datum or one sensational announcement
and run with it. This misinformation often gets picked
up by legislatures and courts.

The good news is that some are catching on to
"junk science." Recently, a federal judge in Oregon
threw out of court the plaintiffs' experts who had been
peddling the unproven theory that breast implants
cause a variety of maladies. But the media continue
to peddle plenty of other bogus scares. Here are
principles to keep in mind to avoid being misled by
junk science:

Association is not causation. Science author
Michael Fumento points out that if we see fat people
drinking diet soda, we shouldn't conclude that diet soda
causes obesity. When trying to understand less
familiar phenomena, we are more likely to see patterns
where there are none. Consider silicone breast implants. If
you know someone who was healthy before receiving
implants but developed a crippling disease after surgery,
it's natural to associate these events, but as the
Oregon judge recognized, that does not mean that A
caused B. About 10,000 women with breast implants
have developed connective tissue disease but
that's no higher than the rate among the general
population.

Clusters often mean nothing. Similar events,
such as people developing the same disease in
the same place, often happen by chance. You can
test this by repeatedly flipping a coin. Are five hears
in a row big news? No, just a streak.
We accept it with coins but panic when it comes to
something like cancer. Several American
communities have detected cancer
clusters and attributed them to, say, a nearby factory
or power lines. The power lines may look menacing, but
that does not make them the cause of tiny fluctuations
in the rate of disease. We are all exposed to the Earth's
magnetic field, and it's hundreds of times greater
than the energy most people get from power lines.

Natural isn't necessarily better. We fear DDT,
but malarial mosquitoes are worse. We get
queasy at the thought of silicone
in the body, yet silicone is chemically very
similar to our own carbon-based human
physiology. Natural chemicals in food are often
more toxic than synthetic pesticides.

Chemicals that hart animals don't necessarily
harm humans. The same chemicals can affect
different species in very different ways. Saccharine
was once banned because it caused cancer in rats.
We know now that saccharine causes cancer by
interacting with rat urine in ways that do not apply
to humans.

Science is highly politicized. Fifteen years
ago, the media used one small study of babies born
of cocaine-addicted mothers to convince America that
these children were handicapped for life. In fact, there is
no proof that "crack babies" are fated to do worse in
later life than anyone else, but the crack-baby scare
thrived because diverse constituencies found it
advanced their ideologies. Liberals pushed the story
to justify government programs; conservatives us it to
demonize cocaine uses. Beware of science that feeds
political agendas.

Some babies are born deformed purely by chance.
One in five pregnancies end in a miscarriage; 2% to 3%
of all babies have an inexplicable birth defect.
It's no one's fault, yet about 80% of U.S.
obstetricians have been sued anyway.

People don't deliberately choose to make mental
errors or to remain ignorant. Too often, through, we
seize the first plausible-sounding explanation
that appears to cut through the confusion of life.
Once we've formed a belief, we're inclined to
dismiss contrary evidence. We like to tell ourselves
that we're superior to the people who burned witches
centuries ago. People were often killed
for no better reason than a neighbor experiencing crop
failure or impotence. But we're still prone to the same
basic mental errors that killed the "witches"; seeing
patterns where there are none, finding causes where
there is only coincidence, and turning scanty evidence
in widespread panic.

++++++++++
Table I

Dangers Days off life

Waste Sites 0-4
Pesticides 0-4
Flying 4
House fires 18
Driving 182
20% overweight 303
Smoking 2580
Poverty 3600


+++++++++++


Mr. Stossel is a correspondent for ABC News. His
special "Junk Science: What You Know That May Not
Be So," airs tonight (10:00-11:00 pm, ET)


A. C. Higgins
SS 359 SUNYA Albany, New York 12222
ACH13@CNSVAX.Albany.edu
Phone: (518) 442 - 4678; FAX: (518) 442 - 4936
SCIFRAUD@CNSIBM.Albany.edu
Date: Thu, 9 Jan 1997 15:44:09 -0700
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: "david b. resnik" <resnik@uwyo.edu>
Subject: junk science
Mime-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: text/plain; charset="ISO-8859-1"

Thanks for posting the Wall Street Journal article.
I agree with most of the author's comments but they
also illustrate that there is a murky borderland between
pure junk science and genuine science. In between
we have something like "speculative science."
This might be science that has some basis in fact--
it is supported by some lines of evidence, but it
is still highly speculative. A recent case in point,
the controversy of aspartame. The major new revelation,
which was reported on ABC's 20/20 (some irony here) is
that there has been a significant rise in brain tumors since
aspartame was introduced on the market. The story
also reported that some animals developed brain tumors
in animal studies. Here we have two lines of evidence--
animal studies and an association. Is this enough to
tell people to stop using aspartame?
This is, I think, a classic example of a scare story.
What makes these scare stories all the more scary is
that they have some basis in fact. Is this junk science?
I'm not so sure, since it seems that legitimate, dedicated
scientists using sound methods have published these
results. Maybe the blaim lays with science reporters
who fail to make it clear to the public that good
science can be speculative and that one should not
put a great deal of stock in an idea or hypothesis until
it is well confirmed.

David Resnik, philosophy, University of Wyoming
resnik@uwyo.edu
Date: Thu, 9 Jan 1997 19:53:49 -0500
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: "dewey m. mclean" <dmclean@vt.edu>
Subject: Re: More on Junk Science
in-reply-to: <mailqueue-101.970109170237.256@louise.csbs.albany.edu>
Mime-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: text/plain; charset="us-ascii"

Al,

many thanks for posting John Stossel's "Overcoming Junk Science"
article. I wonder what Stossel might think of a _New York Times_ article
titled "Disaster Hurtling Our Way" by William Broad (6/30/91) that has the
following risks for an American over a 50-year period.

Risk of death by :
botulism: 1 in 2,000,000
fireworks: 1 in 1,000,000
tornados: 1 in 50,000
airplane crash: 1 in 20,000
ASTEROID IMPACT: 1 in 6,000
electrocution: 1 in 5,000
shooting: 1 in 2,000
homicide: 1 in 300
car wreck: 1 in 100

I liked Stossel's admonition to "Beware of science that feeds
political agendas."

Dewey McLean

> \Stossel, John. "Overcoming Junk Science," Wall
> Street Journal, 9 January 1997, p. A12.\
>
> For 20 years I was a consumer reporter. Every
> week someone cam to me suggesting stories
> about risks that "had to be exposed." I eagerly
> reported the dangers, illustrated with
> heart-wrenching testimony from victims. The most
> compelling stories were those that warned of new,
> unusual risks -- like Agent Orange, killer bees, or
> flesh-eating bacteria. But did such stories really
> give an accurate picture of life's risks? Tylenol
> poisonings were a huge story in 1982 --
> weeks of headlines and breathless news reports. Yet
> the poisonings killed only seven people -- while care
> kill more than 100 people every day. Most car
> accidents just aren't "news."
>
> I'm embarrassed to admit it took me years of
> reporting scares to realize that I was doing a
> disservice. The turning point came when a producer
> rushed into my office pushing a story on cigarette
> lighters. "Bic lighters are exploding," he said.
> "They've killed four people!" But by then I
> had compiled a "death list," a morbid document
> based on fatality data from government agencies
> and medical groups. The list provides invaluable
> perspective. Once you know that more
> people are killed by mundane things like beds and
> plastic bags, that 50 Americans are killed every
> year by ordinary buckets (most lychildren who fall
> into them and drown), than it's harder to get hysterical
> about , say, Bic lighters.
>
> Risk analysts measure the costs of accidents by
> how much each is likely to shorten the average life. So
> with the help of physicist Bernard Cohen, I drew up a
> chart (reprinted nearby) of some risks the media have
> hyped, along with some more mundane risks that
> you may not hear so much about. You'll notice the
> media favorites for example, toxic waste sites like
> Love Canal are at the least dangerous end of the
> chart. Hyping small risks may cause more harm than the
> risks themselves. People frightened about plane
> crashes are more likely to take the car vastly
> increasing their risk.
>
> One big loser in this process of hyping scares is
> science. Unfortunately, in our love of scare stories,
> we in the media often find it effective to take a tiny and
> insignificant datum or one sensational announcement
> and run with it. This misinformation often gets picked
> up by legislatures and courts.
>
> The good news is that some are catching on to
> "junk science." Recently, a federal judge in Oregon
> threw out of court the plaintiffs' experts who had been
> peddling the unproven theory that breast implants
> cause a variety of maladies. But the media continue
> to peddle plenty of other bogus scares. Here are
> principles to keep in mind to avoid being misled by
> junk science:
>
> Association is not causation. Science author
> Michael Fumento points out that if we see fat people
> drinking diet soda, we shouldn't conclude that diet soda
> causes obesity. When trying to understand less
> familiar phenomena, we are more likely to see patterns
> where there are none. Consider silicone breast implants. If
> you know someone who was healthy before receiving
> implants but developed a crippling disease after surgery,
> it's natural to associate these events, but as the
> Oregon judge recognized, that does not mean that A
> caused B. About 10,000 women with breast implants
> have developed connective tissue disease but
> that's no higher than the rate among the general
> population.
>
> Clusters often mean nothing. Similar events,
> such as people developing the same disease in
> the same place, often happen by chance. You can
> test this by repeatedly flipping a coin. Are five hears
> in a row big news? No, just a streak.
> We accept it with coins but panic when it comes to
> something like cancer. Several American
> communities have detected cancer
> clusters and attributed them to, say, a nearby factory
> or power lines. The power lines may look menacing, but
> that does not make them the cause of tiny fluctuations
> in the rate of disease. We are all exposed to the Earth's
> magnetic field, and it's hundreds of times greater
> than the energy most people get from power lines.
>
> Natural isn't necessarily better. We fear DDT,
> but malarial mosquitoes are worse. We get
> queasy at the thought of silicone
> in the body, yet silicone is chemically very
> similar to our own carbon-based human
> physiology. Natural chemicals in food are often
> more toxic than synthetic pesticides.
>
> Chemicals that hart animals don't necessarily
> harm humans. The same chemicals can affect
> different species in very different ways. Saccharine
> was once banned because it caused cancer in rats.
> We know now that saccharine causes cancer by
> interacting with rat urine in ways that do not apply
> to humans.
>
> Science is highly politicized. Fifteen years
> ago, the media used one small study of babies born
> of cocaine-addicted mothers to convince America that
> these children were handicapped for life. In fact, there is
> no proof that "crack babies" are fated to do worse in
> later life than anyone else, but the crack-baby scare
> thrived because diverse constituencies found it
> advanced their ideologies. Liberals pushed the story
> to justify government programs; conservatives us it to
> demonize cocaine uses. Beware of science that feeds
> political agendas.
>
> Some babies are born deformed purely by chance.
> One in five pregnancies end in a miscarriage; 2% to 3%
> of all babies have an inexplicable birth defect.
> It's no one's fault, yet about 80% of U.S.
> obstetricians have been sued anyway.
>
> People don't deliberately choose to make mental
> errors or to remain ignorant. Too often, through, we
> seize the first plausible-sounding explanation
> that appears to cut through the confusion of life.
> Once we've formed a belief, we're inclined to
> dismiss contrary evidence. We like to tell ourselves
> that we're superior to the people who burned witches
> centuries ago. People were often killed
> for no better reason than a neighbor experiencing crop
> failure or impotence. But we're still prone to the same
> basic mental errors that killed the "witches"; seeing
> patterns where there are none, finding causes where
> there is only coincidence, and turning scanty evidence
> in widespread panic.
>
> ++++++++++
> Table I
>
> Dangers Days off life
>
> Waste Sites 0-4
> Pesticides 0-4
> Flying 4
> House fires 18
> Driving 182
> 20% overweight 303
> Smoking 2580
> Poverty 3600
>
>
Date: Fri, 10 Jan 1997 09:38:00 EST
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
Comments: RFC822 error: <W> CC field duplicated. Last occurrence was
retained.
from: "gardenier, john s." <jsg6@nch11a.em.cdc.gov>
Subject: Responding to Creationists
Comments: cc: "Ingster, Lillian M." <LXI0@NCH11A.EM.CDC.GOV>

The Washington Post newspaper has a weekly supplement, "HORIZON: The
Learning Section." On Wednesday, June 8, 1997, one of the featured stories
was entitled, "How Science Responds When Creationists Criticize Evolution ."
If you have it or can get, you should. If not, I'll tell you how to get
appropriate material. First, the lead paragraphs:

>Maybe you've encountered them, the perfectly nice people who stop you with
a statement like, "Well, you know, evolution is just a theory, and it's very
controversial, even among scientists."

Or maybe they say,"There's no way a bunch of gears and springs in a junk
pile could suddenly fall together by accident and become a working watch.
The existence of a watch tells you there had to be an intelligent
watchmaker."

Sometimes they'll stump you by asserting that, on his deathbed, Charles
Darwin renounced his theory of evolution.

Usually, the people who say these things mean well. But the statements are
based on a faulty understanding of biology. Unfortunately, many of us
challenged by those who call themselves creationists are not well prepared
to respond.<

The article goes on to devastate these and other creationist arguments, in
part by using some compelling graphics which cannot be reproduced here. Not
to worry: they mostly claim in a tag at the end that their web site,
www.washingtonpost.com/horizon has "the most comprehensive website on
evolutionary biology, especially as it relates to creationism."

John Gardenier
Date: Fri, 10 Jan 1997 10:12:00 EST
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: "gardenier, john s." <jsg6@nch11a.em.cdc.gov>
Subject: A Brief History of the World

The Washington Post published Ann Landers' syndicated column containing "The
History of the World" on Sunday, January 3, 1997. It was compiled by a
teacher named Richard Lederer from lines in history and English papers
provided by teachers around the country. My favorite excerpts:

"The inhabitants of Egypt were called mummies. They traveled by Camelot.
Moses led the Hebrew slaves to the Red Sea, where they made unleavened
bread, which is bread made without any ingredients. David was a Hebrew king
who fought the Philatelists. Solomon, one of his sons, had 500 wives and
500 porcupines."

"The Greeks invented three kinds of columns - - Corinthian, Doric, and
Ironic. The mother of Achilles dipped him in the River Styx until he became
intolerable. In the Olympic Games, Greeks ran races, jumped, hurled the
biscuits and threw the java. The reward to the victor was a coral wreath.
Socrates was a famous Greek teacher who died from an overdose of wedlock."

"In the Renaissance, Martin Luther was nailed to the church door at
Wittenberg for selling papal indulgences. He died a horrible death, being
excommunicated by a bull. The painter Donatello's interest in the female
nude made him the father of the Renaissance. Gutenberg invented the bible.
Sir Walter Raleigh invented cigarettes, and Sir Francis Drake circumcised
the world with a 100 foot clipper."

"One of the causes of the Revolutionary War was that the English put tacks
in their tea. Benjamin Franklin invented electricity by rubbing cats
backward. Franklin died in 1790 and is still dead."

"Abraham Lincoln's mother died in infancy. He signed the Emasculation
Proclamation. In 1865, Lincoln got shot by an actor in a moving picture.
His name was John Wilkes Booth. This ruined Booth's career."

"Gravity was invented by Isaac Walton. It is chiefly noticeable in autumn,
when apples fall off trees."

"Samuel Morse invented a code for telepathy. Louis Patsteur discovered a
cure for rabbis. Madman Curie discovered radium. and Karl Marx became one
of the Marx Brothers."

What does this have to do with SCIFRAUD, you ask. My answer is that
scientific misinformation gets absolutely buried in the reams of
misinformation circulating about all the other subjects. :-)

John Gardenier
Date: Fri, 10 Jan 1997 17:38:58 EST
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: ted hermary <czth%mcgilla.bitnet@vm1.mcgill.ca>
Subject: Re: Responding to Creationists
In-Reply-To: In reply to your message of Fri, 10 Jan 1997 09:38:00 EST

Re: summary of the Washington Post story "How Science Responds When
Creationists Criticize Evolution ."

I'm curious, John, if this is about how science (scientists)
actually respond to creationists, or about how someone (say, a Post
writer) might (or should?) use scientific arguments to challenge
those who use creationist arguments. It's a bit difficult to tell
from John's summary, or from the Post story characterizes
creationism in terms of people (Creationists), which is not
obviously the case with "Science".

For example, does the Post article mention scientists responding to
creationists byasserting that "Science i the only beggeter of
truth" - or is that an aberrant event?


Regards,

Ted Hermary
czth@musica.mcgill.ca
Date: Sat, 11 Jan 1997 19:43:23 +1000
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: hiram caton <h.caton@hum.gu.edu.au>
Subject: Re: More on Junk Science
Mime-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: text/plain; charset="us-ascii"

Dewey

You quote Wm Broad that the probability of morality from asteroid impact is
1 in 6000. This comes out to a mortality of 78,000 per year world wide.
What is the evidence that 78,000 people a year are cold-cocked by
asteroids? What is the mortality from vocanoes?

hpc




+ Prof. Hiram Caton Fax (61) 7 3875 7730
+ + Humanities Tel (61) 7 3875 7419
+
+ Griffith University Email: H.Caton@hum.gu.edu.au +
+ Brisbane 4111, Australia +
Date: Sat, 11 Jan 1997 15:44:27 -0500
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: al higgins <ach13@louise.csbs.albany.edu>
Organization: Sociology Department, CAS UAlbany
Subject: Notice
MIME-Version: 1.0
Content-type: text/plain; charset=US-ASCII
Content-transfer-encoding: 7BIT

Notice

I have reproduced Lewontin's provocative review of
Carl Sagan's last book. It's already been the focus on some
discussion on this board.

The review is long, 34,000+ bytes. I have not
reproduced the footnotes,and took some other liberties with a
portion of the introduction, but the entire text is here.
Trouble is that most of the popular mailers will truncate text
that long. So, what I've done is broken the whole into three
parts, three installments as it were. Appended to this note is
the first section of the three. The others (2 and 3) will be
sent as separate files.

Lewontin's Review

There were a couple of postings and a thread developed on
the basis of Lewontin's review of the late Carl Sagan's book,
The Demon-Hunted World. I read the review and think it
important that it be made available to all with an interest in
Scifraud.


The review from the New York Review of Books is reproduced
in its entirety.

++++++++++

\Lewontin, Richard. "Billions and Billions of Demons," a
review of Carl Sagan, The Demon-Hunted World: Science as a Candle in
the Dark," (New York: Random House, 1996), New York Review of Books,
9 January 1997, pp. 28-30.\


I first met Carl Sagan in 1964, when he and I found ourselves in
Arkansas on the platform of the Little Rock Auditorium, where we
had been dispatched by command of the leading geneticist of the
day, Herman Muller. Our task was to take the affirmative side
in a debate: "Resolved, That the Theory of Evolution is proved as
is the fact that the Earth goes around the Sun." One of our
opponents in the debate was a professor of biology from a
fundamentalist college in Texas (his father was the president of
the college) who had quite deliberately chosen the notoriously
evolutionist Department of Zoology of the University of Texas as
the source of his Ph.D. He could then assure his students that
he had unassailable expert knowledge with which to refute
Darwinism.

I had serious misgivings about facing an immense audience
of creationist fundamentalist Christians in a city made famous by
an Arkansas governor who, having detected a resentment of his
constituents against federal usurpation, defied the power of Big
Government by interposing his own body between the door of the
local high school and some black kids who wanted to matriculate.

Young scientists, however, do not easily withstand the
urgings of Nobel Prize winners, so after several transparently
devious attempts to avoid the job, I appeared. We were, in
fact, well treated, but despite our absolutely compelling arguments,
the audience unaccountably voted for the opposition. Carl and I
then sneaked out he back door of the auditorium and beat it out
of town, quite certain that at any moment hooded riders with
ropes and flaming crosses would natch up two atheistic New York
Jews who had the chutzpah to engage public blasphemy.

Sagan and I drew different conclusions from our experience.
For me the confrontation between creationism and the science of
evolution was an example of historical, regional, and class
differences in culture that could only understood in the context
of American social history. For Carl it was a struggle between
ignorance and knowledge, although it is not clear to me what he
made of the unimpeachable scientific credentials of our
opponent, except perhaps to see him as an example of
the Devil quoting scripture. The struggle to bring scientific
knowledge to the masses has been a preoccupation of Carl
Sagan's ever since and he has become the most widely
known, widely read, and widely seen popularizer of science
since the invention of the video tube. His only rival in the
haute vulgarisation of science is Stephen Jay Gould,
whose vulgarisations are often very haute indeed, and
whose intellectual concerns are quite different.

While Gould has occasionally been enlisted in the fight to
protect the teaching and dissemination of the knowledge of
evolution against creationist political forces, he is primarily
concerned with what the nature of organisms, living and dead,
can reveal about the social construction of scientific knowledge.
His repeated demonstrations that organisms canonry be understood
as historically contingent, underdetermined Rube Goldberg
devices are meant to tell us more about the evolution of
human knowledge than of human anatomy. From his early
Mismeasure of Man, which examined how the political and
social prejudices of prominent scientists have molded what
those scientists claimed to be the facts of human anatomy
and intelligence, to his recent collection of essays, Eight
Little Piggies which despite its subtitle, Reflections on Natural
History, is a set of reflections on the intellectual history of
Natural History, Gould's deep preoccupation is with how
knowledge, rather than the organism, is constructed.

Carl Sagan's program is more elementary. It is to bring a
knowledge of the facts of the physical world to the
scientifically uneducated public, for he is convinced that only
through a broadly disseminated knowledge of the objective truth
about nature will we be able to cope with the difficulties of
the world and increase the sum of human happiness. It is this
program that inspired his famous book and television series,
Cosmos, which dazzled us with billions and billions of stars.
But Sagan realizes that the project of merely spreading
knowledge of objective facts about the universe is insufficient.
First, no one can know and understand everything. Even
individual scientists are ignorant about most of the body of
scientific knowledge, and it is not simply that biologists do not
understand quantum mechanics. ff I were to ask my
colleagues in the Museum of Comparative Zoology at
Harvard to explain the evolutionary importance of RNA
editing in trypanosomes, they would be just as
mystified by the question as the typical well-educated reader of
this review.

Second, to put a correct view of the universe into people's
heads we must first get an incorrect view out. People, believe
a lot of nonsense about the world of phenomena, nonsense
that is a consequence of a wrong way of thinking. The primary
problem is not to provide the public with the knowledge of
how far it is to the nearest star and what genes are made
of, for that vast project is, in its entirety, hopeless. Rather,
the problem is to get them reject irrational and
supernatural explanations of the world, the demons that exist
only in their imaginations, and to accept a social and
intellectual apparatus, Science, as the only begetter of truth.
The reason that people do not have a correct
view of nature is that they are ignorant of this or that fact
about the material world, but, that they look to the wrong
sources in their attempt to understand. It is not simply, as
Sherlock Holmes thought, that the brain is like an empty attic
with limited storage capacity, so that the accumulated clutter
of false or useless bits of knowledge must be cleared out in a
grand intellectual tag sale to make space for more useful
objects. It is that most people's mental houses have been
furnished according to an appallingly bad model of taste
and they need to start consulting the home furnishing
supplement of the Sunday New York Times in place of
the stage set of The Honeymooners. The
message of The Demon-Haunted World in its subtitle,
Science as a Candle in the Dark.

Sagan's argument is straightforward. We exist as material
beings in a material world, all of whose phenomena are the
consequences of physical relations among material entities. The
vast majority of us do not have control of the intellectual
apparatus needed to explain manifest reality in material terms,
so in place of scientific (i.e., correct material) explanations,
we substitute demons. As one bit of evidence for the bad state
of public consciousness, Sagan cites opinion polls showing that
the majority of Americans believe that extraterrestrials have
landed from UFOS. The demonic, for Sagan, includes, in addition
to UFOs and their crews of little green men who take unwilling
passengers for a midnight spin and some wild sex, astrological
influences, extrasensory perception, prayers, spoon-bending,
repressed memories, spiritualism, and channeling, as well as
demons sensu strictu, devils' fairies, witches, spirits, Satan
and his devotees, and, after some discreet backing and filling,
the supposed prime mover Himself. God gives Sagan a lot of
trouble. It is easy enough for him to snort derisively at men
from Mars, but when it comes to the Supreme Extraterrestrial he
is rather circumspect, asking only that sermons "evenhandedly
examine the God hypothesis.

The fact that so little of the findings of modern science
is prefigured in Scripture to my mind casts further doubt on
its divine inspiration.

But of course, I might be wrong.


I doubt that an all-seeing God would fall for Pascal's
Wager, but the sensibilities of modern believers may indeed be
spared by this Clintonesque moderation.

Most of the chapters of The Demon-Haunted World are taken
up with exhortations to the reader to cease whoring after false
gods and to accept the scientific method as the unique pathway
to a correct understanding of the natural world. To Sagan, as to all
but few other scientists, it is self-evident that the practices
of science provide the surest method of putting us in contact
with physical reality, and that, by contrast, the demon-haunted
world rests on a set of beliefs and behavior that fail every
reasonable test. So wh do so many people believe in demons?
Sagan seems baffled, and nowhere does he offer a coherent
explanation of the popularity at the supermarket checkout
counter of the Weekly World News, with its faked
photographs of Martians. Indeed, he believes that
"a proclivity for science is embedded deeply within us in
all times, places and cultures." The only explanation
that he offers for the dogged resistance of the
masses to the obvious virtues of the scientific way of knowing
is that "through indifference, inattention, incompetence, or fear
of skepticism, we discourage children from science." He does
not tell us how he used the scientific method to discover the
"embedded" human proclivity for science, or the cause of its
frustration. Perhaps we ought to add to the menu of Saganic
demonology, just after spoon-bending, ten-second seat-of-the-
pants explanations of social realities.

(end of part 1)
Date: Sat, 11 Jan 1997 15:44:54 -0500
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Organization: Sociology Department, CAS UAlbany
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Part II of the Review

Nearly every present-day scientist would agree with Carl
Sagan that our explanations of material phenomena exclude any
role for supernatural demons, witches, and spirits of every
kind, including any of the various gods from Adonai to Zeus.
(I say "nearly" every scientist because our creationist
opponent in the Little Rock debate, and other supporters of
"Creation Science," would insist on being recognized.) We
also exclude from our explanations little green men from
Mars riding in space ships, although they are supposed to
be quite as corporeal as you and I, because the evidence
is overwhelming that Mars hasn't got any.
On the other hand, if one supposed that they came from the
planet of a distant star, the negative evidence would not be so
compelling, although the face that it would have taken them such
a long time to get here speaks against the likelihood that they
exist. Even Sagan says that "it would be astonishing to me if
there weren't extraterrestrial life," a position he can hardly
avoid, given that his first published book was Intelligent Life
in the Universe and he has spent a great deal of the taxpayer's
money over the ensuing thirty years listening for the signs.
Sagan believes that scientists reject sprites, fairies, and the
influence of Sagittarius because we follow a set of procedures,
the Scientific Method, which has consistently produced
explanations that put us in contact with reality and in which
mystic forces play no part. For Sagan, the method is the
message, but I think he has opened the wrong envelope.


There is no attempt in The Demon-Haunted World to provide a
systematic account of just what Science and the Scientific
Method consist in, nor was that the author's intention. The book is
not meant to be a discourse on method, but it is in large part a
collection of articles taken from Parade magazine and other
popular publications. Sagan's intent is not analytic, but
hortatory. Nevertheless, if the exhortation is to succeed, then
the argument for the superiority of science and its method must
be convincing, and not merely convincing, but must accord with
its own demands. The case for the scientific method should
itself be "scientific" and not merely rhetorical.
Unfortunately, the argument may not look as good to the
unconvinced as it does to the believer.

First, we are told that science "delivers the goods." It
certainly has, sometimes, but it has often failed when we need
it most. Scientists and their professional institutions; partly
intoxicated with examples of past successes, partly in order to
assure public financial support, make grandiose promises that
cannot be kept. Sagan writes with justified scorn that

We're regularly bombarded with extravagant UFO claims
vended in bite-sized packages, but only rarely do we hear
of their comeuppance.

He cannot have forgotten the well publicized War on Cancer,
which is as yet without a victorious battle despite the
successful taking of a salient or two. At first an immense
amount of money and consciousness was devoted to the supposed
oncogenic viruses which, being infectious bugs, could be
exterminated or at least resisted. But these particular Un-
identified Flying Objects turned out for the most part to be as
elusive as the Martians, and so, without publicly calling
attention to their "comeuppance," the General Staff turned from
outside invaders to the enemy within, the genes. It is almost
certain that cancers do, indeed, arise because genes concerned
with the regulation of cell division are mutated, partly as a
consequence of environmental insults, partly because of
unavoidable molecular instability, and even sometimes as the
consequence of a viral attack on the genome. Yet the
realization of the role played by DNA has had absolutely no
consequence for either therapy or prevention, although it has
resulted in many optimistic press conferences and a
considerable budget for the National Cancer Institute.
Treatments for cancer remain today what they were before
molecular biology was ever thought of: cut
it out, burn it out, or poison it.


The concentration on the genes implicated in cancer is only
a special case of a general genomania that surfaces in the form
of weekly announcements in The New York Times of the location of
yet another gene for another disease. The revealing rhetoric of
this publicity is always the same; only the blanks need to be
filled in: "It was announced today by scientists at {Harvard,
Vanderbilt, Stanford} Medical School that a gene responsible for
{some, many, a common form of} {schizophrenia, Alzheimer's,
arteriosclerosis, prostate cancer} has been located and its DNA
sequence determined. This exciting research, say scientists, is
the first step in what may eventually turn out to be a possible
care for this disease."


The entire public justification for the Human Genome
Projectis the promise that some day, in the admittedly distant future,
diseases will be cured or prevented. Skeptics who point out that
we do not yet have a single case of a prevention or cure arising
from a knowledge of DNA sequences are answered by the
observations that "these things take time," or that "no one
knows the value of a newborn baby." But such vague waves
of the hand miss the central scientific issue. The prevention
or cure of metabolic and developmental disorders depends
on a detailed knowledge of the mechanisms operating in cells
and tissues above the level of genes, and there is no relevant
information about those mechanisms in DNA sequences.
In fact, if I know the DNA sequence of a gene I have no hint
about the function of a protein specified by that gene, or
how it enters into an organism's biology.

What is involved here is the difference between explanation
and intervention. Many disorders can be explained by the
failure of the organism to make a normal protein, a failure that
is the consequence of a gene mutation. But intervention
requires that the normal protein be provided at the right place
in the right cells, at the right time and in the right amount, or
else that an alternative way be found to provide normal
cellular function. What is worse, it might even be necessary
to keep the abnormal protein away from the cells at critical
moments. None of these objectives is served by knowing
the DNA sequence of the defective gene. Explanations of
phenomena can be given at many levels,
some of which can lead to successful manipulation of the world
and some not. Death certificates all state a cause of death,
but even if there were no errors in these ascriptions, they are too
general to be useful. An easy conflation of explanations in
general with explanations at the correct causal level may serve
a propagandistic purpose in the struggle for public support, but
it is not the way to concrete progress.

Scientists apparently do not realize that the repeated
promises of benefits yet to come, with no likelihood that those
promises will be fulfilled, can only produce a widespread
cynicism about the claims for the scientific method. Sagan,
trying to explain the success of Carlos, a telepathic charlatan,
muses on

how little it takes to tamper with
our beliefs, how readily we are led,
how easy it, is to fool the public
when people are lonely and starved
for something to believe in.

Not to mention when they are sick and dying.

Biologists are not the only scientists who, having made
extravagant claims bout their merchandise, deliver the goods in
bite-sized packages. Nor are hey the only manufacturers of
knowledge who cannot be bothered to pick up a return package
when the product turns out to be faulty. Sagan's own ranch of
science is in the same business. Anxious to revive a failing public
interest in spending large amounts on space research, NASA
scientists, followed by the President of the United States, made
an immense fuss about the discovery of some organic molecules a
Mars rock. There is (was) life (of some rudimentary kind) on
Mars (maybe)! Can little green men in space machines be far
behind? If it turns out, s already suggested by some
scientists, that these molecules are earthly contaminants, or
were produced in nonliving chemical systems, this fact surely
will not be announced at a White House press conference,
or even above the fold in The New York Times.

Second, it is repeatedly said that science is intolerant of
theories without data and assertions without adequate evidence.
But no serious student of epistemology any longer takes the
naive view of science as a process of Baconian induction from
theoretically unorganized observations. There can be no
observations without an immense apparatus of preexisting theory.
Before sense experiences become "observations" we need a
theoretical question, and what counts as relevant observation
depends upon theoretical frame into which it is to e placed.
Repeatable observations hat do not fit into an existing frame
ave a way of disappearing from view, and the experiments that
produced them re not revisited. In the 1930s well established
and respectable geneticists described "dauer-modifications,"
environmentally induced changes in organisms that were passed on
to offspring and only slowly disappeared in succeeding
generations. As the science of genetics hardened, with its
definitive rejection of any possibility of the inheritance of
acquired characteristics, observations of dauer modifications
were sent to the scrapheap where they still lie, jumbled
together with other decommissioned facts.

The standard form of a scientific paper begins with a
theoretical question, which is then followed by the description
of an experimental technique designed to gather observations
pertinent to the question. Only then are the observations
themselves described. Finally there is a discussion section in
which a great deal of energy is often expended rationalizing the
failure of he observations to accord entirely with a theory we
really like. and in which proposals are made for other
experiments that might give more satisfactory results. Sagan's
suggestion hat only demonologists engage in "special pleading,
often to rescue a reposition in deep rhetorical trouble,," is
certainly not one that accords with my reading of the scientific
literature. Nor is this a problem unique to biology. The
attempts of physicists to explain why their measurements of the
effects of relativity did not agree with Einstein's quantitative
prediction is a case no doubt well known to Sagan.

As to assertions without adequate evidence, the literature
of science is filled with them, especially the literature of
popular science writing. Carl Sagan's list of the "best
contemporary science-popularizers" includes E. 0. Wilson, Lewis
Thomas, and Richard Dawkins, each of whom has substantiated
assertions or counterfactual claims at the very center of the
stories they have retailed in the market. Wilson's Sociobiology
and On Human Nature' rest on the surface of a quaking marsh of
unsupported claims about the genetic determinate everything from
altruism to xenophobia. Dawkins's vulgarizations of Darwinism
speak of nothing in evolution but an inexorable ascendancy of
genes that are selectively superior, while the entire body of
technical advance in experimental and theoretical evolutionary
genetics of the last fifty years has moved in the direction of
emphasizing non-selective forces in evolution. Thomas, in
various essays, propagandized for the success of modern
scientific medicine in eliminating death from disease, while the
unchallenged statistical compilations on mortality show that in
Europe and North America infectious diseases, including
tuberculosis and diphtheria had ceased to be major mortality by
the first decade twentieth century, and that at age twenty the
expected further lifetime for a white male has gone up only two
years since 1950. Even The Demon-Haunted World itself sometimes
takes suspect claims as true when they serve a rhetorical
purpose as, for examples statistics on child abuse, or a story
about the evolution of a child's fear of the dark.
Date: Sat, 11 Jan 1997 15:46:23 -0500
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Organization: Sociology Department, CAS UAlbany
Subject: Lewontin's, Part III
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Lewontin's Review, Part III


Third, it is said that there is no place for an argument
from authority in science. The community of science is
constantly self-critical, as evidenced by the experience of
university colloquia "in which the speaker has hardly gotten 30
seconds into the talk before there are devastating questions,
and comments from the audience." If Sagan really wants to hear
serious disputation about the nature of the universe, he should
leave the academic precincts in Ithaca and spend a few minutes
in an Orthodox study house in Brooklyn. It is certainly true that
within each narrowly defined scientific field there is a
constant challenge to new technical claims and to old
wisdom. In what my wife calls the Gunfight at the O.K. Corral
Syndrome, young scientists on the make will challenge a
graybeard, and this adversarial atmosphere for the most part
serves the truth. But when scientists transgress the bounds
of their own specialty they have no choice but to accept the
claims of authority, even though they do not know how solid
the grounds of those claims may be.
Who am I to believe about quantum physics if not Steven
Weinberg, or about the solar system if not Carl Sagan?
What worries me is that they may believe what Dawkins
and Wilson tell them about evolution.

With great perception, Sagan sees that there is an
impediment to the popular credibility of scientific claims about
the world, an impediment that is almost invisible to most
scientists. Many of the most fundamental claims of science are
against common sense and seem absurd on their face. Do
physicists really expect me to accept without serious qualms
that the pungent cheese that I had for lunch is really made up of
tiny, tasteless, odorless, colorless packets of energy with
nothing but empty space between them? Astronomers tell us
without apparent embarrassment that they can see stellar events
that occurred millions of years ago, whereas we all know that we
see things as they happen. When, at the time of the moon
landing, a woman in rural Texas was interviewed about the event,
she very sensibly refused to believe that the television
pictures she had seen had come all the way from the moon,
on the grounds that with her antenna she couldn't even get
Dallas. What seems absurd depends on one's prejudices
Carl Sagan accepts, as I do, the duality of light, which is at
the same time 'wave and particle, but he thinks that the
consubstantiality of Father,Son, and Holv Ghost puts
the mystery of the Holy Trinity "in deep trouble."
Two's company, but three's a crowd.

Our willingness to accept scientific claims that are
against common sense is the key to an understanding
of the real struggle between science and the supernatural.
We take the side of science in spite of the patent absurdity
of some of its constructs, in spite of its failure to fulfill many of its
extravagant promises of health and life, in spite of the
tolerance of the scientific community for unsubstantiated
just-so stories, because we have a prior commitment, a
commitment to materialism. It is not that the methods and
institutions of science somehow compel us to accept
material explanation of the phenomenal world, but, on
the contrary, that we are forced by our a priori adherence
to material causes to create an apparatus
of investigation and a set of concepts that produce material
explanations, no matter how counterintuitive, no matter how
mystifying to the uninitiated. Moreover, that materialism is
absolute, for we cannot allow a Divine Foot in the door. The
eminent Kant scholar Lewis Beck used to say that anyone who
could believe in God could believe in anything. To appeal to an
omnipotent deity is to allow that at any moment the regularities
of nature may be ruptured, that miracles may happen.

The mutual exclusion of the material and the demonic has
not been true of all cultures and all times. In the great Chinese
epic Journey to the West, demons are an alternative form of
life, responsible to certain deities, devoted to making trouble for
ordinary people, but severely limited. They can be captured,
imprisoned, and even killed by someone with superior magic.' In
our own intellectual history, the definitive displacement of
divine powers by purely material causes has been a relatively
recent changeover, and that icon of modern science, Newton, was
at the cusp. It is a cliche of intellectual history that Newton
attempted to accommodate God by postulating Him as the Prime
Mover Who, having established the mechanical laws and set the
whole universe in motion, withdrew from further intervention,
leaving it to people like Newton to reveal His plan. But what
we might call "Newton's Ploy" did not really get him off the hook.
He understood that a defect of his system of mechanics was the
lack of any equilibrating force that would return the solar
system to its regular set of orbits if there were any slight
perturbation. He was therefore forced, although reluctantly, to
assume that God intervened from time to time to set things right
again. It remained for Laplace, a century later, to produce a
mechanics that predicted the stability of the planetary orbits,
allowing him the hauteur of his famous reply to Napoleon. When
the Emperor observed that there was, in the whole of the
Mecanique Celeste, no mention of the author of the universe, he
replied, "Sire, I have no need of that hypothesis." One can
almost hear a stress on the "I."

The struggle for possession of public consciousness between
material and mystical explanations of the world is one aspect of
the history of the confrontation between elite culture and
popular culture. Without that history we cannot understand what
was going on in the Little Rock Auditorium in 1964. The debate
in Arkansas between a teacher from a Texas fundamentalist
college and a Harvard astronomer and University of Chicago
biologist was a stage play recapitulating the history of American
rural populism. In the first decades of this century there was an
immensely active populism among poor southwestern dirt farmers
and miners.' The most widely circulated American socialist
journal of the time (The Appeal to Reason!) was published not in
New York, but in Girard, Kansas, and in the presidential
election of 1912 Eugene Debs got more votes in the poorest
rural counties of Texas and Oklahoma than he did in the
industrial wards of northern cities. Sentiment was extremely
strong against the banks and corporations that held the
mortgages and sweated the labor of the poor, who felt their
lives to be in the power of a distant eastern elite. The only
spheres of control that. seemed to remain to them were family
life, a fundamentalist religion, and local education.

This sense of an embattled culture was carried from the
southwest to California by the migrations of the Okies and
Arkies dispossessed from their ruined farms in the 1930s.
There was no serious public threat to their religious and
family values until well after the Second World War.
Evolution was not part of the regular biology curriculum
when I was a student in 1946 in the New York City high
schools, nor was it discussed in school textbooks.
In consequence there was no organized creationist
movement. Then, in the late 1950s, a national project was begun
to bring school science curricula up to date. A group of
biologists from elite universities together with science
teachers from urban schools produced a new uniform
set of biology textbooks, whose publication and
dissemination were underwritten by the National
Science Foundation. An extensive and successful
public relations campaign was undertaken to have these books
adopted, and suddenly Darwinian evolution was being taught to
children everywhere. The elite culture was now extending its
domination by attacking the control that families had maintained
over the ideological formation of their children.

The result was a fundamentalist revolt, the invention of
"Creation Science," and successful popular pressure on local
school boards and state textbook purchasing agencies to revise
subversive curricula and boycott blasphemous textbooks. In
their parochial hubris, intellectuals call the struggle between
cultural relativists and traditionalists in the universities and
small circulation journals "The Culture Wars." The real war is
between the traditional culture of those who think of themselves
as powerless and the rationalizing materialism of the modern
Leviathan. There are indeed Two Cultures at Cambridge. One is
in the Senior Common Room, and the other is in the Porter's
Lodge.


Carl Sagan, like his Canadian counterpart David Suzuki, has
devoted extraordinary energy to bringing science to a mass
public. In doing so, he is faced with a contradiction for which
there is no clear resolution. On the one hand science is urged
on us as a model of rational deduction from publicly verifiable
facts, freed from the tyranny of unreasoning authority. On the
other hand, given the immense extent, inherent complexity, and
counterintuitive nature of scientific knowledge, it is
impossible for anyone, including non-specialist scientists,
to retrace the intellectual paths that lead to scientific
conclusions about nature. In the end we must trust the
experts and they, in turn, exploit their authority as experts
and their rhetorical skills to secure our attention and our
belief in things that we do not really understand. Anyone
who has ever served as an expert witness in a judicial
proceeding knows that the court may spend
an inordinate time "qualifying" the expert, who, once qualified,
gives testimony that is not meant to be a persuasive argument,
but an assertion unchallengeable by anyone except another
expert. And, indeed, what else are the courts to do? If the judge,
attorneys, and jury could reason out the technical issues from
fundamentals, there would be no need of experts.

What is at stake here is a deep problem in democratic self-
governance. In Plato's most modern of Dialogues, the Gorgias,
there is a struggle between Socrates, with whom we are meant to
sympathize, and his opponents, Gorgias and Callicles, over the
relative virtues of rhetoric and technical expertise. What
Socrates and Gorgias agree on is that the mass of citizens are
incompetent to make reasoned decisions on justice and public
policy, but that they must be swayed by rhetorical argument or
guided by the authority of experts.

Gorgias: "I mean {by the art of rhetoric} the ability to
convince by means of speech a jury in a court of justice,
members of the Council in their Chamber, voters at a
meeting of the Assembly, and any other gathering of
citizens, whatever it may be."

Socrates:"When the citizens hold a meeting to appoint
medical officers or shipbuilders or any other professional
class of person, surely it won't be the orator who advises
them then. Obviously in every such election the choice
ought to fall on the most expert."'

Conscientious and wholly admirable popularizers of science
like Carl Sagan use both rhetoric and expertise to form the mind
of masses because they believe, like the Evangelist John, that
the truth shall make you free. But they are wrong. It is not
the truth that makes you free. It is your possession the power
to discover the truth. Our dilemma is that we do not know how
provide that power.

(End)




A. C. Higgins
SS 359 SUNYA Albany, New York 12222
ACH13@CNSVAX.Albany.edu
Phone: (518) 442 - 4678; FAX: (518) 442 - 4936
SCIFRAUD@CNSIBM.Albany.edu
Date: Sun, 12 Jan 1997 10:12:07 -0500
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: robert barasch <robertb280@aol.com>
Subject: Re: Lewontin's, Part III

In a message dated 97-01-11 23:11:10 EST, you write:

<< If Sagan really wants to hear
serious disputation about the nature of the universe, he should
leave the academic precincts in Ithaca and spend a few minutes
in an Orthodox study house in Brooklyn. It is certainly true that
within each narrowly defined scientific field there is a
constant challenge to new technical claims and to old
wisdom. In what my wife calls the Gunfight at the O.K. Corral
Syndrome, young scientists on the make will challenge a
graybeard, and this adversarial atmosphere for the most part
serves the truth. >>

My wife tells me that in "Who's Who in the Talmud," it is noted that when
Resh Lakish and Rabbi Yohanon studied together, Resh Lakish asked 40
questions of every statement by Rabbi Yohanon and this helped Rabbi Yohanon
to clarify his position on the Halachah (laws).

Bob Barasch
robertb280@aol.com
Date: Sun, 12 Jan 1997 13:53:57 -0500
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: al higgins <ach13@louise.csbs.albany.edu>
Organization: Sociology Department, CAS UAlbany
Subject: Nature On-Line
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This announcement appears in the 2 January 1997 issue of
Nature:

All Nature news stories -- including hard links to
referenced items in previous issues -- are
accessible without charge on the World Wide
Web at www.nature.com or
www.america.nature.com

I signed up using the form provided for that purpose at the
America's site. Only took a few minutes and it appears to be
very worthwhile. Many on this list may want to sign on.


A. C. Higgins
SS 359 SUNYA Albany, New York 12222
ACH13@CNSVAX.Albany.edu
Phone: (518) 442 - 4678; FAX: (518) 442 - 4936
SCIFRAUD@CNSIBM.Albany.edu




A. C. Higgins ACH13@louise.csbs.albany.edu
College of Arts and Sciences VOX: 518-442-4678
Sociology Department FAX: 518-442-4936
University At Albany
Albany, NY, USA 12222
Date: Sun, 12 Jan 1997 14:25:03 -0500
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: "dewey m. mclean" <dmclean@vt.edu>
Subject: Re: More on Junk Science
in-reply-to: <v01540b10aefd9d284c01@{132.234.192.97}>
Mime-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: text/plain; charset="us-ascii"

Hiram Caton wrote (1/11/97):

>You quote Wm Broad that the probability of morality from asteroid impact is
>1 in 6000. This comes out to a mortality of 78,000 per year world wide.
>What is the evidence that 78,000 people a year are cold-cocked by
>asteroids? What is the mortality from vocanoes?


Hi Hiram, it's good to hear from you, and thanks for the comments.

The mortality table that Broad presented in his _New York Times_
article came from the book _Cosmic Catastrophes_ by Clark Chapman and David
Morrison (1989, Plenum Press). Both are promoters of the Spacewatch
project. I offer some quotes from their book.

Immediately preceding the mortality table in their book, Chapman
and Morrison state:

"Where in this array of risks should we place the risk of
catastrophic destruction of civilization by collision with an asteroid or
comet? If the Spacewatch Workshop's best estimates are valid (and the
uncertainties are great), your risk of experiencing a civilization
destroying catastrophe is:"

{CHAPMAN AND MORRISON MORTALITY TABLE HERE}

And right after the table:

"All in all, an individual's risk of being involved in this cosmic
catastrophe--whether or not he or she actually dies in it--is something
like the chance a typical American will die by accidental electrocution, or
several times the chance of dying in a major airplane crash. You might
object and say, 'But people are electrocuted every day, and nobody has been
killed by an asteroid impact--the numbers must be wrong.' But the numbers
are roughly correct."

For evidence of 78,000 people a year getting killed by asteroids, I
do not know of a single instance in the 4.6 billion year history of earth
where it can be proved that an asteroid ever killed anything, human, or
otherwise {please note that I said "proved."}

For the yearly mortality from volcanoes, I've seen some numbers,
but I don't recall them offhand. Historically, individual volcanic
eruptions have killed many humans.

Cordially,
Dewey
Date: Sun, 12 Jan 1997 19:58:17 GMT
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: simon birnstingl <swb@pavilion.co.uk>
Subject: Re: More on Junk Science
Mime-Version: 1.0
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Hiram Caton wrote today:
>You quote Wm Broad that the probability of morality from asteroid impact is
>1 in 6000.

Does this feature in the debate as to alternative sources of truth?

I suppose I should be sorry for such a flippant posting, but I wonder if
there is such a thing as a freudian misprint? Some people over here think
our Guardian newspaper used to specialise in them.

Simon Birnstingl


Simon Birnstingl
Conformance Environmental
5a Livingstone Road
Hove, Sussex
BN3 3WP
United Kingdom

email:
environment@conformance.co.uk

tel: ++ 44(0)1273 204369
fax: ++ 44(0)1772 622279
Date: Sun, 12 Jan 1997 18:39:02 -0500
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: jim giglio <jgiglio@nova.umuc.edu>
Subject: Re: Lewontin's, Part III
in-reply-to: <970112101206_1343267694@emout08.mail.aol.com>
MIME-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: TEXT/PLAIN; charset=US-ASCII

> If Sagan really wants to hear serious disputation about the nature of
> the universe, he should leave the academic precincts in Ithaca and spend
> a few minutes in an Orthodox study house in Brooklyn.

And Sagan's answer, were he still among us, would be something along the
lines of "How well equipped are their labs?"

| Love Naugas, Don't Sit on Them |
jgiglio@nova.umuc.edu
Date: Sun, 12 Jan 1997 22:08:49 EST
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: ted hermary <czth%mcgilla.bitnet@vm1.mcgill.ca>
Subject: Re: Notice
In-Reply-To: In reply to your message of Sat, 11 Jan 1997 15:44:27 EST

>For me the confrontation between creationism and the science of
>evolution was an example of historical, regional, and class
>differences in culture that could only understood in the context
>of American social history.

Gosh, that sounds almost . . . sociological! Well, except
maybe that Lewontin's social and cultural explanation
(which doesn't really show up until the end of the essay)
seems to be offered mainly to explain why people accept
creationist beliefs, rather than the "elite's" acceptance
(or promotion) of evolutionary theory. In that limited
sense, it looks quite like a mirror image of Marxist
argumnts that it's the workers who see clearly.

Thanks to Al for the posting. Having the complete version
cleared up at least one thing For me (tho' only bit): whether
Lewontin felt that arguments for science should be themselves
scientific. (I see he was actually suggesting that this is
where Sagan's logic led.)

Regards,



Martin (Ted) Hermary (A.B.D.)
Department of Sociology
McGill University
855 Shebrooke Street West
Montreal, Quebec, Canada
H3A 2T7
e-mail: czth@musica.mcgill.ca
Date: Mon, 13 Jan 1997 16:02:34 +1000
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: martin bridgstock <m.bridgstock@sct.gu.edu.au>
Subject: Re: More on Junk Science
Mime-Version: 1.0
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I heard that the Guardian (a good paper, incidentally) once got its banner
wrong, so it came out as The Grauniad. Hard to believe.

. . .there is such a thing as a freudian misprint? Some people over here think
>our Guardian newspaper used to specialise in them.
>
>Simon Birnstingl
>
>
>Simon Birnstingl
>Conformance Environmental
>5a Livingstone Road
>Hove, Sussex
>BN3 3WP
>United Kingdom
>
>email:
>environment@conformance.co.uk
>
>tel: ++ 44(0)1273 204369
>fax: ++ 44(0)1772 622279
>
>
Date: Mon, 13 Jan 1997 10:20:28 GMT
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: simon birnstingl <swb@pavilion.co.uk>
Subject: Re: Lewontin, part II
Mime-Version: 1.0
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Lewontin writes:

" Dawkins's vulgarizations of Darwinism
speak of nothing in evolution but an inexorable ascendancy of
genes that are selectively superior, while the entire body of
technical advance in experimental and theoretical evolutionary
genetics of the last fifty years has moved in the direction of
emphasizing non-selective forces in evolution. "

This is a little unfair, as Dawkins is trying to put over the evolutionary
paradigm to the intelligent layperson, and in my mind does it very well. To
suggest that his work is not up to date in this way is to force a shaky
argument: The more contemporary work on non-selective evolutionary forces
is not exclusive of the more traditionally understood selective
evolutionary forces, but complementary. When one is trying to simplify a
theory like evolution, one can be quite justified to miss out some of the
finer points to avoid confusion.

Whilst I can see that a lot of what Lewontin writes about science and its
problems is true, I think what it emphasises most is that science is
conducted by people in all their frailties, a matter discussed by Scifraud
in the past. I still prefer it to its alternative: What kind of future do
the "Creation Scientists" and psychics etc. offer us? I think an element of
Sagan's thinking came from a simple expression of the Nietschian idea that
if humanity is to progress there comes a point where it must deny the
existence of any God (Hence his simple dismissal of the holy trinity). I am
not a philosopher, but I find this a satisfactory starting point for the
task he set himself.

Return to 10 Years: Discussion in SciFraud Index.html
Simon Birnstingl
Conformance Environmental
5a Livingstone Road
Hove, Sussex
BN3 3WP
United Kingdom

email:
environment@conformance.co.uk

tel: ++ 44(0)1273 204369
fax: ++ 44(0)1772 622279
Date: Mon, 13 Jan 1997 12:01:44 -0800
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: james shea <shea@cs.uwp.edu>
Subject: Re: More on Junk Science
in-reply-to: <v01540b10aefd9d284c01@{132.234.192.97}>
MIME-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: TEXT/PLAIN; charset=US-ASCII

Colleagues:

Although I have disagreed with Hiram on this list in the past, I
must admit that I loved his question about 78,000 people being "cold
cocked" by asteroids (meteorites) each year. That does seem a mite high.
For example, I know of only 50,000 for 1996.

Jim Shea
Date: Mon, 13 Jan 1997 13:57:01 -0500
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: al higgins <ach13@louise.csbs.albany.edu>
Organization: Sociology Department, CAS UAlbany
Subject: Science and imprecision
MIME-Version: 1.0
Content-type: text/plain; charset=US-ASCII
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Science and Uncomfortable Imprecision

The editor of Nature is here concerned with risk assessment
and he notes that 1996 was a year in which mistakes were made.
Consideration is given to some of the factors leading to errors
and the hope expressed that the public will come to understand
the hazards in risk assessment: it is an area of uncomfortable
imprecision. Well put!

Risk assessment is "overlaid by judgements that need to be
scrutinized."

Here is the editorial which leads the presentation of
several cases of risk assessment in 1996.

++++++++++


\Editor, "Risk and the Inadequacy of Science," Nature
385 (2 January 1997), p. 1.\

For scientists working on phenomena related to risk,
1996 proved to be an unusually challenging year.
Climatologists exchanged heavy bombardment with
industrial lobby groups, and advisers on the genetic
modification of crops and on spongiform
encephalopathies found themselves caught up in issues
in which important groups (not to mention nations) had
much at stake (see pages 6-11). The way forward in
such debates, one might think, is to analyse and
quantify the risks at the heart of them, and use the
results as a basis for prioritizing problems and
drawing up solutions. The plea from a British
government minister that scientists develop an
equivalent of the Richter scale for risks is a
reflection of the need for such communicable insight.
But the closer one looks at many risks - especially
those giving rise to controversy - the more elusive
attempts to summarize them seem to become. The
minister is doomed to disappointment in his apparent
naivete, but there are constructive ways forward
nevertheless.

The quantification of risk would seem to be
straightforward enough when applied to a well-
understood technology. For example, as was usefully
reviewed in the 1992 report of the United Kingdom's
Royal Society, Risk.- analysis, perception and
management, engineers can model and test pathways by
which a given hazard might arise in industrial plant,
and biologists can similarly estimate the impacts of
toxins and drugs on the human or animal body.

But judgements have to be made at many stages,
even in supposedly objective studies. Extrapolation
from animal models to human impacts of drugs carries
uncertainties; apparently reasonable assumptions can
turn out to be disastrously wrong witness, for
example, the significant underestimate of the impact
of Chernobyl fallout on livestock due to faulty
extrapolation of mobilities of elements in clays, or
the even more notorious misjudgements underlying the
explosion of NASAs Challenger shuttle. As was
emphasized by the US National Research Council in its
recent report Understanding Risk, even selecting the
appropriate measure of impact needs careful
consideration: accidental deaths of employees per ton
produced by the US coal industry have been falling in
recent years, but deaths per employee have been
rising. And where mechanisms are poorly understood
and epidemiological data sparse, as is the case in the
various types of Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease and the
associated prion hypothesis, then it is inevitable
that scientific judgement is uncomfortably imprecise.
In short, even highly objective analysis of risks is
overlaid by judgements that need to be scrutinized.

Then comes the problem of perception, and what
the insiders "multidimensionality", leading to different
responses by people to a perceived risk. A commonly
cited diagram in risk dies places specific hazards in
a space whose x-axis runs from poorly to well known or
understood, and whose y-axis ranges from controllable
or voluntary to uncontrollable and involuntary. Almost
regardless of relative probabilities, risks are much
likely to be accepted if they lie in the bottom left
quadrant familiar and voluntary), for example sports,
than if in the top right - radioactive waste and
genetic manipulation. And, of course, official
quantifications of risk will be distrusted by the
public once experts have been proved wrong (Chernobyl
fallout, BSE, infected blood) or if those responsible
for quantifying the risks have strong vested interests
(the nuclear industry in waste disposal, Shell with
the Brent Spar, Ciba-Geigy with genetically modified
corn). As the Challenger disaster illustrated, even
the best-intentioned and well-resourced
organizations can tend to severely underestimate
risks in complex new technologies.

Most people who worry about these things have
concluded that openness and participation by non-
scientists in the process of risk evaluation is
essential. It would be misleading to call this a
consensus-generating process. A detriment to some can
be a benefit to others - another aspect of risk's
multidimensionality. Agreement over how to apply
value judgements in evaluating such risks is bound to be
elusive - witness debates between developed and
developing countries on the value of human lives
potentially lost through climate change. But those
involved in providing scientific advice have found
that including non-experts at the outset sets
a broader scientific agenda that gives rise
to advice that is all the more useful. The use of
peer review and the circulation of preliminary
drafts of advice can highlight assumptions that
are hidden or poorly accounted for. And the
involvement of interest groups ensures not only
that all viewpoints have had their say
but also that a wider appreciation of the factors
underlying the risks and their uncertainties has been
gained.

As the NRC's report emphasizes, such openness and
participation will not solve all the problems - partly
because of differences of principle amongst those
involved, and partly because it can be impossible to
take into account those whose agenda is directly at
odds with the project. A company that feels it has
nothing to gain from broad risk estimation and even a
lot to lose might choose to boycott the exercise
altogether and, instead, hijack the regulatory process
that follows it. The communication of risk can also
be hijacked, as Greenpeace accomplished in the
case of the Brent Spar, making the engineering
assessments of risk undertaken by Shell effectively
redundant as far as the public were concerned.

All of this shows that attempting to reduce risk
to a universal scale is a dangerous notion. On the
other hand, understanding of the risks underlying a
hazard to public health, or to ecosystems, or to
nations, is, after all, an essential part of the
political process. There is no alternative to the
time and expense of developing such
understanding, and communicating it effectively
in a way, specific to each case, that allows the
media to encapsulate its multidimensional facets.
Standards of best practice need to be generated
as a goal of regulatory policy. The NRC has
provided an excellent step forward in that
process, particularly in its report's vivid deployment
of examples and case studies.

It is not uncommon to hear scientists (and
others) say that, if only people understood the
science, their perceptions of risk would be
much improved. But that sentiment is
misconceived. Lay people can understand
the science that they wish to more readily than many
scientists seem to credit. What is more critical is
that interested scientists and non-scientists alike
have examined the components, uncertainties and
perceptions of any particular risk. That in turn will
focus attention on the relevant science. In that
sense, improving the public understanding of risk is a
particularly appropriate goal for 1997.


A. C. Higgins
SS 359 SUNYA Albany, New York 12222
ACH13@CNSVAX.Albany.edu
Phone: (518) 442 - 4678; FAX: (518) 442 - 4936
SCIFRAUD@CNSIBM.Albany.edu
Date: Mon, 13 Jan 1997 12:52:00 EST
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: "gardenier, john s." <jsg6@nch11a.em.cdc.gov>
Subject: Re: Responding to Creationists

The Post article, by staff writer, Boyce Rensberger, tells any educated
person who believes in evolution how to counter creationist claims with
factual information. That information is available to lay persons,
including scientists who are not directly involved in evolutionary studies,
by reliance on the authority of science texts and experts. In a sense,
then, this sort of counter-argument against creationists is every bit as
"authoritarian" as the creationist argument. (Similar to Lewontin's point,
correcting Sagan.)

Basically, it boils down to whose facts, whose statements, and whose
authorities are the more credible. If one accepts science as the superior
arbiter of factual truth about nature, then the article is rather compelling
because its facts are relevant, consistent, and extensive. If, conversely,
if one accepts that Biblical accounts of "the true Word of God" are the
final and only arbiter of truth about nature, then it does not matter very
much what "the facts" are. Still, the article is helpful in defeating
claims of "creation science," inasmuch as that argues that the evidence for
evolution is fatally flawed or logically self-contradictory.

John Gardenier


from: ted hermary <czth%mcgilla.bitnet@vm1.mcgill.ca>
Subject: Re: Responding to Creationists
to: multiple recipients of list scifraud <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
--
Re: summary of the Washington Post story "How Science Responds When
Creationists Criticize Evolution ."

I'm curious, John, if this is about how science (scientists)
actually respond to creationists, or about how someone (say, a Post
writer) might (or should?) use scientific arguments to challenge
those who use creationist arguments. It's a bit difficult to tell
from John's summary, or from the Post story characterizes
creationism in terms of people (Creationists), which is not
obviously the case with "Science".

For example, does the Post article mention scientists responding to
creationists byasserting that "Science is the only beggeter of
truth" - or is that an aberrant event?


Regards,

Ted Hermary
czth@musica.mcgill.ca
Date: Tue, 14 Jan 1997 09:41:04 +1000
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: martin bridgstock <m.bridgstock@sct.gu.edu.au>
Subject: Re: Responding to Creationists
Mime-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: text/plain; charset="us-ascii"

Ted (or John: it's early morning and I'm half asleep)
wrote:
(snip)
In a sense,
>then, this sort of counter-argument against creationists is every bit as
>"authoritarian" as the creationist argument. (Similar to Lewontin's point,
>correcting Sagan.)
>
I see the point, but this is clearly a different meaning of the word
"authoritarian" than the common use( which is probably why Ted (or John) put
the word in quotes). An "authoritarian" regime, as I understand it, is one
which is not as bad as Stalin's, but which does impose by force upon its
subjects. This sort of meaning has to be stretched a fair way to fit the
equippping of people with useful arguments against creationism. I suppose
the key question is: if I set out to argue against creationism, how can I
NOT be "authoritarian", using this extended meaning?

>Basically, it boils down to whose facts, whose statements, and whose
>authorities are the more credible.

Yes. When I was involved in this debate, I pushed very hard the
unreliability of creationist quotes (about 90% grossly false and/or
misleading). Maybe that makes me non-authoritarian, I'm not sure.

If one accepts science as the superior
>arbiter of factual truth about nature, then the article is rather compelling
>because its facts are relevant, consistent, and extensive.

Yes, though it isn't simply a matter of starting with a basic assumption and
interpreting everything in those terms. The creationists pushed this view
pretty hard, as it leads directly to their "two models" stance. Science
_must_ involve an assumption that our views and theories of the world are in
some way affected by that world. Ultimately, it assumes that there are no
sacred beliefs which cannot be changed. Creationists start with assumptions
about the nature of the Bible and, from that, form a framework to interpret
observation.

If, conversely,
>if one accepts that Biblical accounts of "the true Word of God" are the
>final and only arbiter of truth about nature, then it does not matter very
>much what "the facts" are.

Hmmm. I'm not so sure. If one doesn't care about "the facts", then there
would seem to be no need for creation science. The fundamentalists would
just "know" the truth. I think that fundamentalists do have the same
interest in making sense of observation as the rest of us. They just have to
harmonise it with othr beliefs.

Still, the article is helpful in defeating
>claims of "creation science," inasmuch as that argues that the evidence for
>evolution is fatally flawed or logically self-contradictory.
>
Yes.

Bridgstock
>
Date: Tue, 14 Jan 1997 09:42:57 +1000
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: martin bridgstock <m.bridgstock@sct.gu.edu.au>
Subject: Re: More on Junk Science
Mime-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: text/plain; charset="us-ascii"

(GULP!)

Jim! Reassure me! Put a :-) or a ;-) after your claim, please

Martin Bridgstock

>Colleagues:
>
> Although I have disagreed with Hiram on this list in the past, I
>must admit that I loved his question about 78,000 people being "cold
>cocked" by asteroids (meteorites) each year. That does seem a mite high.
>For example, I know of only 50,000 for 1996.
>
>Jim Shea
>
>
Date: Tue, 14 Jan 1997 09:45:47 +1000
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: martin bridgstock <m.bridgstock@sct.gu.edu.au>
Subject: Re: Begetters of Truth
Mime-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: text/plain; charset="us-ascii"

I need a definition of truth PRONTO!

Martin Bridgstock

>6. Parents
>7. Judges/Lawyers
>8. Accountants/Auditors
>9. Lobbyists
>10. Salesmen
>11. Consultants
>12. "Experts"
>13. etc. John Gardenier
>


>from: james shea
>To: Multiple recipients of list SCIFRAUD
>Subject: Re: (Fwd)
>Date: Tuesday, January 07, 1997 3:19PM
> --
>Colleagues:
>
> This matter of "begetters of truth" or "ways of knowing" promises to
>develop into an interesting discussion. I would nominate the following
>groups and would be interested to see what others think of the various
>groups as providers of "truth".
>
> 1. Artists
> 2. Prophets, priests, shamans, etc.
> 3. Politicians
> 4. Psychics
> 5. Scientists
>
>Jim Shea
>
>
Date: Mon, 13 Jan 1997 19:53:46 -0800
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: shawn blore <shawnb@portal.ca>
Subject: Begetters of Truth
Mime-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: text/plain; charset="us-ascii"

A note on Richard Lewontin, Carl Sagan and the begetters of truth debate.
A very bright friend of mine - a chemist by trade - refuses to read anything
but non-fiction: newspapers and biography are acceptable. Fiction is not
true, and therefore false, and therefore a waste of time. Carl Sagan I'm
sure would have had a great deal of sympathy for this view.

A defense of the validity of writers as begetters of truth comes from the
Canadian writer Timothy Findlay, in his book Headhunter. The character being
spoken about (Marlow) is a senior psychotherapist at a Toronto reserach
institute.

Marlow used literature as psychotherapy. He believed in its healing
powers-not because of its sentiments, but because of its
complexities. No human life need ever be as knotted as Anna
Karenina's life had been- since the living had the benefit, as she
had not, of her own example. Many a suicide had been thwarted
because of Anna's death. The trouble was, with books, that no one
read anymore. That way, trains still claimed many victims.

Perhaps off topic, but its been a slow week for fraud, judging by the other
postings. Besides, it's a good book.
Shawn Blore
Vancouver, Canada
Date: Mon, 13 Jan 1997 20:55:25 -0800
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: dean costello <costello@earthlink.net>
Subject: Re: Begetters of Truth
Mime-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: text/plain; charset="us-ascii"

At 09:45 AM 1/14/97 +1000, you wrote:

>I need a definition of truth PRONTO!

I've got a bad feeling that the definition of truth is similar to the
definition of pornography: You can't define it, but you know it when you
see it.
-
Dean Costello
costello@earthlink.net
Date: Tue, 14 Jan 1997 03:40:59 EST
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: ted hermary <czth%mcgilla.bitnet@vm1.mcgill.ca>
Subject: Re: Science and imprecision
In-Reply-To: In reply to your message of Mon, 13 Jan 1997 13:57:01 EST

> All of this shows that attempting to reduce risk
> to a universal scale is a dangerous notion

Perhaps the editorial could have been titled the
risk of risk assessment?


Martin (Ted) Hermary (A.B.D.)
Department of Sociology
McGill University
855 Shebrooke Street West
Montreal, Quebec, Canada
H3A 2T7
e-mail: czth@musica.mcgill.ca
Date: Tue, 14 Jan 1997 03:55:29 EST
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: ted hermary <czth%mcgilla.bitnet@vm1.mcgill.ca>
Subject: Re{2}: Responding to Creationists
In-Reply-To: In reply to your message of Mon, 13 Jan 1997 12:52:00 EST

John Gardinier writes:

>The Post article, by staff writer, Boyce Rensberger, tells any educated
>person who believes in evolution how to counter creationist claims with
>factual information....

Thanks. That clarifies the point for me. I'm not sure if I'd
want to wade into murkier waters of whether it's authoriatrian,
or what that means (I get enough headaches trying to speak of
Left and Right), though it does employ the common rhetorical
strategy of presenting claims one wishes to discredit in terms
of people and the claims one wants to credit as somehow
independent from people. That seemed to be the case in the
article's title, as well as the "compelling graphics" etc.
that you (John) indicated were a main way Science was
represented there.



Martin (Ted) Hermary (A.B.D.)
Department of Sociology
McGill University
855 Shebrooke Street West
Montreal, Quebec, Canada
H3A 2T7
e-mail: czth@musica.mcgill.ca
Date: Tue, 14 Jan 1997 08:02:41 -0500
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: "dewey m. mclean" <dmclean@vt.edu>
Subject: Re: Begetters of Truth
in-reply-to: <199701140350.taa28284@kefron.portal.ca>
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Shawn Blore wrote:


>A note on Richard Lewontin, Carl Sagan and the begetters of truth
debate.

>A very bright friend of mine - a chemist by trade - refuses to read
anything

>but non-fiction: newspapers and biography are acceptable. Fiction is
not

>true, and therefore false, and therefore a waste of time. Carl Sagan
I'm

>sure would have had a great deal of sympathy for this view.




After reading Shawn's note, I pulled Sagan's 1985 book _Comet_ off my
bookshelf and rummaged through it again, thought about Sagan's TV
videos showing an asteroid/comet hitting the earth 65 million years ago
and turning it dark and cold and triggering the Cretaceous-Tertiary
mass extinctions, and the Department of Defense allocating $55 million
to study Sagan's (and others) "nuclear winter" concept (that emerged
from the asteroid impact blackout and cold). And then I thought about
the many students in my freshman Historical Geology classes who had
come to college with their minds already convinced of the "truth" that
an impact event caused the extinctions because Sagan, and other
popularizers of science, had convinced them it was so.


Popularizers of science, via their flashy TV videos and essays in
popular magazines, easy access to the public, and convincing
promotional sales styles, have great capacity to do good in "educating"
the public. On the other hand, they have great capacity to interfere
with the processes of science, and to miseducate the public. The latter
is especially troubling in cases where the popularizers might have
vested interests in the product they are promoting.


For those who might think that I am attacking Sagan because he is not
here to defend himself, I attach part of a letter that I wrote to him
in 1991--while he was very much alive--in the hopes of convincing him
that he ought to actually examine some data on the asteroid/comet
impact scenario that he was promoting to the public. He had never
written a scientific paper on the subject that I know of, and seemed
largely ignorant of the vast Cretaceous and Tertiary geobiological data
bases.


The point of my letter to Sagan was this: Do popularizers of science
have any responsibility to data on the scientific issues that they
present to the public?


From what I've seen, apparently not, at least on some topics.


"Truth." "Fiction." Nice words. We do not always know the difference
between them.


Dewey McLean


December 7, 1991<fontfamily><param>Times</param>




</fontfamily>Dr. Carl Sagan<fontfamily><param>Times</param>

</fontfamily>Space Sciences Building<fontfamily><param>Times</param>

</fontfamily>Cornell University<fontfamily><param>Times</param>

</fontfamily>Ithaca, NY 14853-6801<fontfamily><param>Times</param>


</fontfamily>Dear Dr. Sagan:<fontfamily><param>Times</param>


</fontfamily> The Alvarez asteroid, which is based on iridium whose
origin is equivocal; an "impact winter" global blackout and
refrigeration for which there is no evidence; and the assumption of
sudden, catastrophic, death of most of earth's life, which is
demonstrably false; is now literally accepted as "fact," and has given
rise to a huge, and costly, spin-off industry. Partially responsible
for selling the flimsy impact theory to the public are a few science
popularizers, and journalists, who have easy access to the public, but
who seem to play loose and easy with data.
<fontfamily><param>Times</param>


</fontfamily> Because of your association with the dinosaur extinctions
debate via your "nuclear winter" that emerged from the Alvarez asteroid
"impact winter," and because you are a visible, and influential,
popularizer of science, I raise the question: Do science popularizers
have any responsibility to data on the scientific issues that they
present to the public? I refer specifically to your videos and writings
stating that asteroid/comet impact with earth 65 million years ago
plunged earth into the blackness and cold of an "impact winter,"
triggering sudden, catastrophic, global extinctions, including those of
the dinosaurs.

<fontfamily><param>Times</param>

</fontfamily>

And on and on...
Date: Tue, 14 Jan 1997 07:55:42 -0800
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: james shea <shea@cs.uwp.edu>
Subject: Re: More on Junk Science
in-reply-to: <199701132342.jaa18673@enterprise.sct.gu.edu.au>
MIME-Version: 1.0
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Martin:

I apologize for my ignorance, but you've caught me. I don't have the
faintest idea what you're talking about.

The last sentence of my message was, of course, my feeble attempt at
humor.

Best regards,

Jim Shea
Date: Tue, 14 Jan 1997 10:13:36 -0800
Reply-To: siano@cceb.med.upenn.edu
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: brian siano <siano@cceb.med.upenn.edu>
Organization: University of Pennsylvania CCEB
Subject: Re: Begetters of Truth
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Shawn Blore wrote:
>
> A note on Richard Lewontin, Carl Sagan and the begetters of truth debate.
> A very bright friend of mine - a chemist by trade - refuses to read anything
> but non-fiction: newspapers and biography are acceptable. Fiction is not
> true, and therefore false, and therefore a waste of time. Carl Sagan I'm
> sure would have had a great deal of sympathy for this view.

Given that Sagan wrote a novel that was explicitly science
fiction (_Contact_), I don't think he'd have much sympathy at
all for your friend's view.

--
"Life is a continuous process of pain, anguish, loneliness, and despair.
However, we cannot let the occasional flashes of joy and happiness
distract us from this fact."
-- Brian Siano
Date: Tue, 14 Jan 1997 08:36:34 -0600
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: "john c. bailar iii" <jcbailar@midway.uchicago.edu>
Subject: Re: Begetters of Truth
Mime-Version: 1.0
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In response to, "I need a definition of truth PRONTO!"

A) A superficial answer is, See any good dictionary.

B) A deeper answer is, there can be no universally accepted definition.
"Truth" is a loaded word that carries with it a lot of baggage, the baggage
differs from person to person, and you have to decide what baggage you want
to be implied by your own use of the word "truth". Pick a definition you
find congenial, make sure that those who engage in discourse with you know
what it is, and then be consistent about it.


And I would add, do not expect others to use "truth" your way unless there
is some kind of prior agreement about the matter. If one person uses
"truth" to refer to the products of scientific inquiry and another to refer
to divine revelation, it is foolish to say that one use is correct and the
other is not, but it is far form foolish to recognize the difference and
accomodate it in the discussion. Otherwise you may end up shouting at each
other about things that do not merit shouts (though the substantive
argument behind the discussion of What Is Truth may merit a lit of noise).

Or so it ssems to me.

John

****PLEASE NOTE NEW AREA CODE BELOW****

John C. Bailar III
Dept. of Health Studies
University of Chicago
5841 S. Maryland Ave. MC-2007
Chicago, IL 60637
Phone 773-702-2453
Fax 773-702-1295
Date: Tue, 14 Jan 1997 11:22:00 EST
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: "gardenier, john s." <jsg6@nch11a.em.cdc.gov>
Subject: Re: Re{2}: Responding to Creationists

For Ted and (the other) Martin, I feel obliged to clarify what I meant by
"authoritarian." It was certainly NOT " the common rhetorical strategy of
presenting claims one wishes to discredit in terms of people and the claims
one wants to credit as somehow independent from people"

By "authoritarian," I meant relying on an authoritative person or reference
document as a "gold standard" of truth, as opposed to fact finding or
calculating or deducing on one's own. Thus, scientists or lay persons who
are not involved personally in research connected with evolution typically
rely on science texts or specific individual scientists or science
publicizers whom they believe fairly represent the factual evidence. This
is an appeal to authority. In that sense, as Lewontin notes, it is NOT
fundamentally different from a religious dogmatist relying on a holy book or
some particular interpretation of such a book. The resulting conviction
boils down to: I believe X because someone or some reference I trust says it
is so. In the case of either science or religion, the trusted source may
not, in fact, represent "the truth." In both areas, some of the "truth"
will be uncertain, tentative, or even speculative.

The distinction between scientific and religious truth is that the ultimate
standard for the former is empirical evidence as it bears on theory whereas
the ultimate authority for the latter is divine revelation. Authoritarian
arguments are only credible to the extent that one believes:
(a) in science, that the authority knows and fairly represents the
accumulated empirical evidence bearing on the issue at hand; or
(b) in religion, that the authority knows and fairly represents the
accumulated knowledge revealed by God (or the gods) to prophets, saints, or
other acknowledged holy persons.

In the context of the Washington Post article on creation, the author trips
up the creationists in their attempt to back up their argument with
empirical evidence. That does not "work" because they get the "facts"
wrong, examine the wrong (irrelevant) facts, or interpret the facts
incorrectly. Science is much better than religion at determining facts of
nature, as most mainline religious organizations acknowledge.

To the extent that creationists argue strictly from the Bible and rely on
divine revelation as their standard of truth, there really is nothing
science can offer to refute (or substantiate) their claim.

You see, Ted, it is not a rhetorical issue of attributing what one wishes to
discredit to "people." Instead, it is a matter of what sort of evidence one
believes those authoritative people offer. On the other hand, it is not a
matter of claiming that what one wishes to credit is "somehow independent of
people." Rather, it is a matter of believing that any person who
understands the science involved and, using that, examines the relevant
empirical evidence MUST come to the same conclusion. It is not independent
of people; it is common to all people who examine it knowledgeably.
(Similarly, Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas has stated a belief in
"Natural Law." That is a claim that all moral knowledge is basically
revealed knowledge common to all people. Thus, there can be no question
whether or not a law is just. It is just if it relies on the common
morality of natural law; unjust if it does not.) In religion and morality,
most of us, unlike Thomas, seem to observe that different perceivers
perceive different truths.

Oh rats! I am running on again, but, in this context, I really want to
address literary truth also. Anna Karenina, or any other literary figure,
incorporates elements of personality and judgment the author has observed in
life, or at least has read about in other literature. Some of it "rings
true" to a reader either about oneself or about other people one has known
or has heard about. The "gold standard" of truth in that context is
subjective credibility. Most of us enjoy some literary works both because
they "ring true" and because they help us to find new subjective insight
into ourselves or people we deal with. This is different from science
because each of several readers tends to take away different insights from
any particular literary work and that is to be expected. The author does
not claim that it is empirically true, unlike history or biography. It is
also different from religion because it does not purport to manifest the
revealed word of God (or gods.) Literature is also different from law,
accounting, or weights and measures, because there is no conventionally
accepted reference standard against which "the truth" can be assessed.

John Gardenier


from: ted hermary
To: Multiple recipients of list SCIFRAUD
Subject: Re{2}: Responding to Creationists
Date: Tuesday, January 14, 1997 3:55AM
--
{Excerpted}
I'm not sure if I'd want to wade into murkier waters of whether it's
authoriatrian,
or what that means (I get enough headaches trying to speak of
Left and Right), though it does employ the common rhetorical
strategy of presenting claims one wishes to discredit in terms
of people and the claims one wants to credit as somehow
independent from people. That seemed to be the case in the
article's title, as well as the "compelling graphics" etc.
that you (John) indicated were a main way Science was
represented there.

Martin (Ted) Hermary (A.B.D.)
Department of Sociology
McGill University
855 Shebrooke Street West
Montreal, Quebec, Canada
H3A 2T7
e-mail: czth@musica.mcgill.ca
Date: Tue, 14 Jan 1997 11:54:00 EST
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: "gardenier, john s." <jsg6@nch11a.em.cdc.gov>
Subject: Re: Science and imprecision

It is always gratifying to me to see someone as authoritative as the editor
of Nature take on the murkiness of "risk assessment." Still, this field is
even worse than he realizes. There are many more uncertainties, especially
in technological "low probability, high consequence" risks, like nuclear
waste storage or shipment of hazardous materials in bulk. Land mines have
traditionally been considered military technology and have been evaluated on
the basis of their risks versus probable benefits to a military user. In
recent years, however, it has become clearer that they also have very large
civilian risks, especially to children. There is no reason we should have
been slow to recognize this. We have long had sense enough to realize that
naval mines need to be picked up or destroyed after a war, else they persist
as threats to civilian shipping and recreational boating.

Some of us who waded in the "risk" muck for several years came to recognize
the fundamental problem of risk assessment: the uncertainty of even
recognizing, much less "assessing" all the uncertainties. Rather than
ramble on, I will simply submit that "risk assessment" (in the sense of the
search for quantitative estimates of probable damage from technologies with
which we lack extensive experience) is doomed to failure. Conversely, where
we have ample experience and firm knowledge of exposure denominators, as in
many aspects of public health analysis and medical diagnosis, risk
assessment can be on solid statistical footing.

Does that mean we should ignore risk in the new technology settings? Of
course not! As the Nature editor noted, risk analysis can help us to
recognize credible scenarios in which system failures may occur.
Understanding those, we can decrease their probability or minimize their
consequences or both. Fields called systems safety engineering and human
factors engineering can be especially helpful in that regard. More
important, in my opinion, is "risk management." By this, I mean a
commitment of intention, skills, and resources to investigate potential
risks in a technology, to research by analysis and experimentation ways to
mitigate the risks, and, above all, taking effective actions to preclude
serious harm from those the risks remaining after all reasonable elimination
of risk potential. To me, "risk assessment" is often a futile game. Even
if arrived at honestly, the resulting numbers are neither credible to the
affected public nor useful for policy decisions. When indulged in for
personal and professional gain by technologists who understand its futility
but fail to report that to the funding authorities, risk assessment is
definitely scientific fraud! Conversely, "risk management" and - - "risk
analysis" when subordinated to risk management - - are noble and effective
uses of scientific and technical resources.

John Gardenier

Where is the outcry against the lack of statistical literacy?
Date: Tue, 14 Jan 1997 12:07:51 EST
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: ted hermary <czth%mcgilla.bitnet@vm1.mcgill.ca>
Subject: Re{4}: Responding to Creationists
In-Reply-To: In reply to your message of Tue, 14 Jan 1997 11:22:00 EST

>For Ted and (the other) Martin, I feel obliged to clarify what I meant by
>"authoritarian." It was certainly NOT " the common rhetorical strategy of
>presenting claims one wishes to discredit in terms of people and the claims
>one wants to credit as somehow independent from people"

I didn't mean to say that. I suggested the rhetorical point
*instead of* wading into the murky waters of authoritatrianism
(which are considerably less murky following your reply).

About literary truth, I'd suggest a more appropriate "gold standard" s
than subjectivity is intersubjectivity. "Great art", if that can
serve more than a rhetorical purpose, is art that rings true for
numbers of people. Further, as much as it deals with experience
as the human condition, it is empirical. If literary types shy
away from calling their work empirical perhaps this is mainly
because of how that word has been narrowed to mean things
that are assumed to be there even when we aren't experiencing
them. Better stop now, before I find myself uttering Zen koans.



Martin (Ted) Hermary (A.B.D.)
Department of Sociology
McGill University
855 Shebrooke Street West
Montreal, Quebec, Canada
H3A 2T7
e-mail: czth@musica.mcgill.ca
Date: Tue, 14 Jan 1997 14:41:07 -0800
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: prof vince sarich <sarich@qal.berkeley.edu>
Subject: evolution and creation

Some thoughts on two recent postings:

First on the Rensberger piece in the Washington Post:

While we should all be thankful for any even small favors in this area (and this
piece is a large one), it does have some problems (what doesn't?).

Rensberger writes:

<There is abundant fossil evidence showing transitional diversifications among
mammals into rodents, bats, rabbits, carnivores, horses, elephants, manatee,
deer, cows, and many others. One of the most finely divided sequences of
transitions documents the evolution of apelike creatures through a half dozen
intermediate forms into modern humans. >

My comment: "don't we wish". First, there is a technical problem in mixing
higher (bats, rodents, carnivores ...) and lower (deer, cows) level taxa, but
the more general one is that the fossil record in fact provides few of the
lineages mentioned with much, if anything, in the way of transitional forms
along them. The classic example here is bats, which appear in the
early Eocene (50-55 million years ago) without anything in the way of
"intermediate" fossil forms leading to them. The first proto-manatees appear
perhaps 25 million years ago, although their lineage split from related ones
(those leading to elephants, hyraxes, and aardvarks) at least twice as long ago,
and there is nothing in the fossil record documenting those 25 million years of
manatee ancestor existence. Rabbits (along with pikas) were the subject of a
classic 1957 article entitled "What, if anything, is a rabbit?", and things
haven't gotten much better since then -- actually they've gotten worse because
currently paleontologists tend to associate rabbits with rodents, something the
molecular data (my bailiwick) make completely untenable. And so on. The fact is
that the question of interordinal relationships among mammals remains one of the
most vexing, and the fossil record is not especially helpful. We're somewhat
better off with the protein and DNA evidence, but that's not what people talk
about when discussing "transitional forms".

The statement: "One of the most finely divided sequences of transitions
documents the evolution of apelike creatures through a half dozen intermediate
forms into modern humans." is also somewhat misleading because it refers to the
development of only one of the two major differences separating us from our
closest living relatives (gorillas and chimpanzees), and ignores the fact that
the development of the features (those associated with the brachiating
adaptation) characterizing the ape lineage (as compared to monkeys) is virtually
undocumented in the fossil record. When hominids (our ancestors but not those of
chimps and gorillas) appear in the fossil record about 4 million years ago, they
are already clearly bipeds, but the transition from a brachiating to bipedal
adaptation is undocumented in the fossil record -- as is, as just mentioned, the
transition to brachiation in proto-apes.

The point here is, without belaboring it any further, that we can claim too
much, and this leaves us vulnerable.



My other comment refers to John Gardenier's statement that "...... Supreme Court
Justice Clarence Thomas has stated a belief in 'Natural Law'. This is a claim
that all moral knowledge is basically revealed knowledge common to all people.
Thus there can be no question whether or not a law is just. It is just if it
relies on the common morality of natural law; unjust if it does not. In religion
and morality, most of us, unlike Thomas, seem to observe that different
perceivers perceive different truths."

Here we again have, although it is not usually seen as such, an
evolution/creation issue. Gardenier, although I'm sure he is an "evolutionist",
is taking a creationist position (law was created by human beings); while
Thomas, who, I'd bet, though I certainly don't know, is a creationist, is in
fact taking the evolutionary position without being aware of it; that is, (1)
natural law is, and must be, consistent with human morality; (2) human morality
is a consistent given for the species; and (3) it, therefore, must have evolved
along with us (Thomas, no doubt, would take the position that it came along with
the soul when God infused it into the human line). The "morality is in our
genes" position has been best stated in recent years by James Q Wilson in The
Moral Sense (The Free Press, 1993) and Franz de Waal's Good Natured (subtitled:
the origins of right and wrong in humans and other animals) (Harvard, 1996). The
best expositions of the natural law position that I know of are to be found in
Hayek's various writings, and perhaps best put in volume 1 of his Law,
Legislation, and Liberty (Univ of Chicago, 1973). The book opens with a quote
from Montesquieu: "Intelligent beings may have laws of their own making; but
they also have some which they never made.", and discusses the point in Chapter
4 (The changing concept of law). Anyone interested in the real difference
between the evolution and creation positions with respect to the human condition
(of which the law is just one example) needs to read Hayek. I don't think we'd
have any more denigration of the natural law concept if Hayek were taken to
heart.

Vincent Sarich
Date: Wed, 15 Jan 1997 09:56:26 -0500
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: jason tiscione <tiscionj@vax.cs.hscsyr.edu>
Subject: Re: More on Junk Science
in-reply-to: <pine.pcw.3.91.970113115915.6607c-100000@grnq-143.uwp.edu>
MIME-version: 1.0
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On Mon, 13 Jan 1997, James Shea wrote:

> Colleagues:
>
> Although I have disagreed with Hiram on this list in the past, I
> must admit that I loved his question about 78,000 people being "cold
> cocked" by asteroids (meteorites) each year. That does seem a mite high.
> For example, I know of only 50,000 for 1996.
>
Assume that if a big asteroid lands, half of the world population dies.
That's about 3 billion people. In a couple years, it's 4 billion (we're
doing this calculation for the years to come, not for the past because we
know nothing killed us recently).

78000 people/year


4 billion people
that this will happen during any given year.

Actually even that seems a bit high. Most interplanetary rocks are
tracked and we hear months ahead of time if X will strike Y, and when, so
unless a newcomer from the Oort cloud or the Kuiper belt arrives we're
pretty safe.

I think there was a bad movie about this once.
Jason Tiscione
Date: Wed, 15 Jan 1997 10:18:00 EST
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: "gardenier, john s." <jsg6@nch11a.em.cdc.gov>
Subject: Re: evolution and creation

Prof Vince Sarich is certainly one of those who make the list interesting.
He strikes me as knowledgeable, contrarian, and acerbic without ever being
actually hostile - - a fine debater, whom I enjoy confronting.

Conceding his specific points of the fossil and molecular biological
evidence regarding many missing "transitional forms," his argument bypasses
the main thrust of Rensberger's point. The creationist claim is that all
animals, except man, were created in "one day" by God, with human beings
being completely separate and coming along one day later. Perhaps not all
of them read a God-day of Genesis as equivalent to our concept of a twenty
four hour period, but the essential point is the claim that all animals were
created contemporaneously and that human beings are a completely different
type of thing. Trying to support that position, some ("creation
scientists") argue that there is "no factual evidence" of (especially
hominid) transitional forms in the fossil record. Hence, there is no fossil
evidence which better supports evolution than creation.

Rensberger, although he is probably overstating the case, points out
correctly that the creation science argument is factually wrong. He gives
several examples of transitional forms in the fossil record, at least some
of which are supportable. Even a single example, along with a lack of
proven counter-examples, would be enough to defeat the creation science
claim. Although Rensberger does not pretend that the evolutionary fossil
record of humanity is complete, he does refer to several transistional forms
- with the caveat that not all of them lead directly to homo sapiens.
Still, he points out regarding our ancestral fossil record, ". . . exactly
as evolutionary theory predicts, the more apelike the species, the older the
geologic deposits in which its remains occur." Granted that Prof. Sarich's
"exactly as evolutionary theory predicts" demands considerably more detail
and sophistication than the same words as used by Mr. Rensberger, the thrust
of the latter's point remains valid, especially for the audience of
non-experts he is addressing.

As to natural law, Prof. Sarich is attempting to stand on quicksand when he
claims, preposterously:

> Gardenier, although I'm sure he is an "evolutionist",
is taking a creationist position (law was created by human beings); while
Thomas, who, I'd bet, though I certainly don't know, is a creationist, is in
fact taking the evolutionary position without being aware of it; that is,
(1)
natural law is, and must be, consistent with human morality; (2) human
morality
is a consistent given for the species; and (3) it, therefore, must have
evolved
along with us (Thomas, no doubt, would take the position that it came along
with
the soul when God infused it into the human line).<

In my understanding, a creationist believes in the divine original creation
of human bodies, souls, and morality, essentially instantaneously. My
confidence in evolution has no relationship to my belief about law. As a
matter of fact, I do not believe, strictly, "law was created by human
beings." With de Waal, I believe that there exist primitive "laws" in the
sense of observable commonly accepted norms of social behavior even among
many animal (and insect) communities. These may well have been partly
conditioned by evolutionary selection. Humans, even if they share an
evolutionary heritage of similar social adaptation, are quite different in
that they consciously and inventively modify their social norms. Also, I do
not accept that human "law (singular) was (past tense only) created by human
beings." Rather, I believe that many forms of laws have been, continue to
be, and will continue indefinitely to be, fashioned out of social processes,
including compromise, and specifically including moral compromise. For but
one example, Islamic law is both similar to, and quite different from, law
in predominantly Christian societies. There are many differences among
cultures, and within cultures, over the centuries. All societies are
constantly modifying their laws. In doing so, they confront differences in
perception and in moral values which require compromise.

Sarich, in my opinion, correctly portrays Justice Thomas's position only in
parentheses. The prior argument that Thomas takes an evolutionary position
"(3) it {law}, therefore, must have evolved along with us" cannot logically
follow from the stated premises, "(1) natural law is, and must be,
consistent with human morality; (2) human morality is a consistent given for
the species." In fact, if Sarich believes that Thomas is a creationist,
then it seems unlikely that Thomas would view the (single?) human morality
as a product of evolution, even in part. Actually, we (at least I) do not
know Thomas's position on creation. I think (hope) we have a common
perception of natural law as assuming a consistent basic human morality
across individuals, cultures, and time.

Finally, I do not "denigrate" (belittle the character of proponents of)
natural law; I disagree strongly with the position and have no reason to
suspect that reading Hayek would change my mind, however sophisticated his
argument. Similarly, I disagree with, but do not denigrate, "creationism"
as a religious belief. I do denigrate "creation science" for the simple
reason that it persists in making "factual claims" which are clearly
demonstrable as contrary to fact.

John Gardenier
Date: Wed, 15 Jan 1997 19:49:16 GMT
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: simon birnstingl <swb@pavilion.co.uk>
Subject: truth
Mime-Version: 1.0
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Dear Scifraud,

I decided to have a look in my old Penguin Dictionary of Quotations to see
what had been said about truth. A few quotes seemed apposite:

" I have never yet been able to perceive how anything can be known for
truth by consecutive reasoning - and yet it must be." John Keats

"Habit for him was all the test of truth,/ 'It must be right: I've done it
from my youth." George Crabbe

"He who begins by loving Christianity better than Truth will proceed by
loving his own sect or church better than Christianity, and end by loving
himself better than all." Mary Coleridge

"It takes two to speak the truth - one to speak, the other to hear." H.D Thoreau

"Truth, Sir, is a cow, which will yield such people no more milk, and so
they are gone to milk the bull." Dr. Johnson (Of Sceptics).

"Truth that peeps / Over the glasses' edge when dinner's done,/ And body
gets its sop and holds its noise / And leaves soul free a little." Robert
Browning

Simon Birnstingl


Simon Birnstingl
Conformance Environmental
5a Livingstone Road
Hove, Sussex
BN3 3WP
United Kingdom

email:
environment@conformance.co.uk

tel: ++ 44(0)1273 204369
fax: ++ 44(0)1772 622279
Date: Wed, 15 Jan 1997 19:12:14 -0800
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: dean costello <costello@earthlink.net>
Subject: Re: truth
Mime-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: text/plain; charset="us-ascii"

At 07:49 PM 1/15/97 GMT, you wrote:

>" I have never yet been able to perceive how anything can be known for
>truth by consecutive reasoning - and yet it must be." John Keats
>
>"Habit for him was all the test of truth,/ 'It must be right: I've done it
>from my youth." George Crabbe
>
>"Truth, Sir, is a cow, which will yield such people no more milk, and so
>they are gone to milk the bull." Dr. Johnson (Of Sceptics).
>
>"Truth that peeps / Over the glasses' edge when dinner's done,/ And body
>gets its sop and holds its noise / And leaves soul free a little." Robert
>Browning

Sometimes, for truth, you have to go to the master:

TRUTH, n. An ingenious compound of desirability and appearance.
Discovery of truth is the sole purpose of philosophy, which is the
most ancient occupation of the human mind and has a fair prospect of
existing with increasing activity to the end of time.

-Ambrose Bierce "The Devil's Dictionary".
-
Dean Costello
costello@earthlink.net
Date: Thu, 16 Jan 1997 23:06:35 +1000
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: hiram caton <h.caton@hum.gu.edu.au>
Subject: Re: evolution and creation
Mime-Version: 1.0
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Vince

Nice post. But then your posts are always thoughtful. Oh, I agree with
you about the high quality of Hayek's exposition of natural law. He's
correcting the excesses of the utilitarian tradition, which derived natural
law in order to expand the horizon of choice. Mill's essay, On Nature,
purports to refute any appeal to natural standards in human conduct. But
he doesn't discuss sex (he NEVER discussed sex!) nor population growth,
about which he worried a lot. I guess his definitive essay against nture
is the diatribe, The Subjection of Women. That's s o m e tantrum!

Hiram


+ Prof. Hiram Caton Fax (61) 7 3875 7730
+ + Humanities Tel (61) 7 3875 7419
+
+ Griffith University Email: H.Caton@hum.gu.edu.au +
+ Brisbane 4111, Australia +
Date: Thu, 16 Jan 1997 08:12:27 -0800
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: james shea <shea@cs.uwp.edu>
Subject: Re: evolution and creation
in-reply-to: <v01540b3daf0463d9db1e@{132.234.192.97}>
MIME-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: TEXT/PLAIN; charset=US-ASCII

Colleagues:

I find this discussion of "natural law" very interesting. When I was
young, the Catholic Church used to talk a lot about natural law and how
some sexual practices violated natural law.

Having learned at least a bit about scientific laws in the interim,
I have always wondered just what natural law it is that forbids
masturbation, fornication, adultery, sex for pleasure and bonding only,
and sex outside of monogamous lifelong marriage (partnerships). Every one
of these activities is practiced by various animal species too numerous
to mention, and the last is actually the exception rather than the rule
among animals.

I also learned that "scientific" laws (Are these the same as
"natural" laws?) are descriptive, not prescriptive.

Comments?

Jim Shea
Date: Thu, 16 Jan 1997 15:26:43 -0500
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: al higgins <ach13@louise.csbs.albany.edu>
Organization: Sociology Department, CAS UAlbany
Subject: Litigation Fears and Misconduct
MIME-Version: 1.0
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Litigation Fears and Misconduct

Here is a report from Nature which suggests some legal
complications for misconduct investigations. Can the accused
sue the university which accuses him or her of fraud? If a
university's investigators are liable for their judgments in
misconduct cases, clearly, those investigators will think long
and hard about their judgments. Indeed, it is suggested here
that "the scientific review of misconduct charges at the
university level... will be significantly damaged, if not
destroyed."

The article from Nature is reproduced in its entirety.

++++++++++

\Dalton, Rex. "'Misconduct' Dispute Raises Fears of
Litigation," Nature 384 (9 January 1997), p. 105.

San Diego. A legal dispute with potentially far-
reaching implications for the way universities
investigate scientific misconduct cases has been
generated by the conclusion of a report from Baylor
College of Medicine in Houston, Texas, that one of its
researchers published data that had been fabricated.

The dispute has raised the question of whether
universities should be immune from certain types of
civil lawsuit arising from investigations of research
misconduct carried out as required by National Insti-
tutes of Health (NIH) regulations.

The dispute centres on Kimon J. Angelides, a
neurobiologist who was fired by Baylor in early 1995
after officials concluded that he had falsified
research results described in five published papers
and in documents used in applications for NIH
grants (see Nature 383, 107; 1996).

Angelides subsequently moved to the University of
Durham in England. He filed a civil lawsuit against
Baylor, the scientists who had accused him of
improprieties, and members of various ad hoc
committees at Baylor that ruled that he had
committed scientific misconduct.

The civil lawsuit is for wrongful termination,
breach of contract, defamation and other actions.
These include an allegation of 'blacklisting', a
charge associated with the fact that Baylor
reported Angelides' alleged offences to the
NIH's Office of Research Integrity (ORI), the
body that investigates allegations of
research misconduct made against
scientists receiving NIH funds.

This lawsuit is before a federal appeals court,
where Angelides, Baylor and other interested parties
are arguing about whether a university should be
immune from certain civil lawsuits when
investigating misconduct.

In addition to the civil litigation, federal
prosecutors in Houston have opened a criminal inquiry
into Angelides' research activities. This raises the
possibility that he could be indicted for defrauding
the NIH of research funds.

Such criminal investigations are rare, with only
one scientist in recent years having been convicted of
a crime related to research misconduct.

In the civil case, the federal requirement that a
university that receives NIH grants should monitor its
scientists, investigate allegations of misconduct and
report the conclusions is clashing with an accused
scientist's right to due process.

Angelides denies any research misconduct, blaming
others for any discrepancies in his reported results.
His attorneys argue that he should be able to sue his
accusers for damages in a Texas state court, where his
civil lawsuit was filed.

But Baylor's attorneys reply that the university
is immune from such state court civil action as it is
acting for a federal agency, the NIH. They also argue
that if the verdict of a civil lawsuit is to be based
on the propriety of a university probe of a scientist,
the case should be heard in a federal district court,
not a state court.

Such issues have already attracted much interest
from the Association of American Medical Colleges
(AAMC), as well as the ORI, both of which have filed
briefs supporting Baylor's position.

Chris B. Pascal, acting director of the ORI, says
his agency fears that if Angelides' method of suing is
upheld, an already difficult process - the scientific
review of misconduct charges at the university level -
will be significantly damaged, if not destroyed.

Angelides' lawsuit against Baylor threatens the
"partnership" between the NIH and research
institutions, says Pascal. "This is a big issue for
us," he adds. "If an institution and its committees
of scientists are held liable for reporting to ORI, who
would write a report and put their name on it? They
wouldn't do it any more."

Similarly Joseph A. Keyes Jr, general counsel to
the AAMC, says his members believe that state court
lawsuits filed by scientists whose research has been
challenged by their peers would have a chilling effect
on the ability of universities to fulfil their
obligations to funding agencies to monitor the conduct
of research.

"Faculty members and {other} individuals called
to serve on investigating committees fear being
tied up in endless litigation," says Keyes, whose
organization represents 400 universities and
medical schools and 90 professional societies.

Such arguments are being made in legal briefs
before the US Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit
in New Orleans. A decision on the immunity issue is
expected in a few months, and could have broad
implications for scientific misconduct cases elsewhere
in the United States.

Meanwhile, the trial in Angelides' civil lawsuit
has been postponed until August, largely because of
the criminal probe of his activities. The existence of
the criminal inquiry surfaced last month during a
hearing on the civil lawsuit.

Angelides had flown from the United Kingdom to
Houston to be questioned by Baylor's attorneys in a
deposition. But, during a brief hearing with the
attorneys, Angelides' attorney argued that the
pending criminal probe might use his sworn
deposition testimony against him, and invoked
his Fifth Amendment privilege against self-
incrimination.
Return to 10 Years: Discussion in SciFraud Index.html
David H. Peck, the assistant US attorney in
Houston who is conducting the inquiry into Angelides'
actions, declines to comment on the federal probe.
Court records indicate that federal authorities are
expected to make a decision on whether to file
criminal charges within a month or so.

Angelides declines to comment on his situation.
But Rusty Hardin, his criminal attorney in Houston,
argues that, for a criminal violation, "someone must
conclude that he {Angelides} knowingly submitted false
information" to the NIH, which he "unequivocally" did
not.

"There is no issue {that} some wrong data was
submitted," says Hardin. "The question is: did he
know it was wrong when he submitted it? I am
satisfied there is no criminal violation."

Pascal at ORI declines to comment on how the
criminal inquiry may affect his agency's investigation
of Angelides, which started in spring 1995. The ORI
cooperates with federal prosecutors when they conduct
criminal inquiries, he says, and may delay or complete
its investigation, depending on what the federal
prosecutors may want.


A. C. Higgins
SS 359 SUNYA Albany, New York 12222
ACH13@CNSVAX.Albany.edu
Phone: (518) 442 - 4678; FAX: (518) 442 - 4936
SCIFRAUD@CNSIBM.Albany.edu
Date: Fri, 17 Jan 1997 16:55:41 -0800
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: james shea <shea@cs.uwp.edu>
Subject: Re: Litigation Fears and Misconduct
in-reply-to: <mailqueue-101.970116152643.320@louise.csbs.albany.edu>
MIME-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: TEXT/PLAIN; charset=US-ASCII

Paul Gross:

If you are monitoring this list, I would appreciate the favor of a
reply so I can contact you.

Thanks.

Jim Shea
Date: Mon, 20 Jan 1997 10:42:04 +1000
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: martin bridgstock <m.bridgstock@sct.gu.edu.au>
Subject: Re: More on Junk Science
Mime-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: text/plain; charset="us-ascii"

And I've forgotten, Jim. Let's forget it, eh?

Martin Bridgstock

>Martin:
>
> I apologize for my ignorance, but you've caught me. I don't have the
>faintest idea what you're talking about.
>
> The last sentence of my message was, of course, my feeble attempt at
>humor.
>
>Best regards,
>
>Jim Shea
>
>
Date: Tue, 21 Jan 1997 09:12:41 -0900
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: "douglas c. hintz" <dchintz@oregon.uoregon.edu>
Subject: Firing at Northwestern
MIME-version: 1.0
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Scifraud: Here is an excerpt from a posting to another list that I thought
might be of interest to this list, since it refers to a course on scientific
ethics and issues of academic freedom:

<<<I am writing to you concerning the case of Prof. Sheldon Epstein from
Northwestern University, who was just fired for putting material *against*
the Holocaust in his ethics and engineering course at the university.

Northwestern is home to the notorious Holocaust-Revisionist Arthur Butz,
another member of the Engineering Department. Protests against Butz at NWU
have been ineffective. The NWU administration supported his "academic
freedom" to place Holocaust-Revisionist material on the university's
computer as long as it was not done in his Engineering classes.

So Prof. Epstein located a course outline for Engineering where ethical
issues in modern science were to be taught. He developed a curriculum that
examined scientific ethics and how the scientific community was involved in
events during WW II.

For this, I understand, he was fired by the same university that tolerated
and defended Butz's Holocaust-Revisionism.

The full story is available at the WWW site: http://www.k9ape.com/c96/ in
the five files candor00.html through candor04.html.>>>

Douglas C. Hintz 68 PLC Hall
Mathematics Instructor University of Oregon
Academic Learning Services Eugene, Oregon 97403
dchintz@oregon.uoregon.edu phone:541-346-3226
Date: Tue, 21 Jan 1997 16:27:20 -0800
Reply-To: siano@cceb.med.upenn.edu
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: brian siano <siano@cceb.med.upenn.edu>
Organization: University of Pennsylvania CCEB
Subject: Re: Firing at Northwestern
MIME-Version: 1.0
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Douglas C. Hintz wrote:
>
> Scifraud: Here is an excerpt from a posting to another list that I thought
> might be of interest to this list, since it refers to a course on scientific
> ethics and issues of academic freedom:
>
> <<<I am writing to you concerning the case of Prof. Sheldon Epstein from
> Northwestern University, who was just fired for putting material *against*
> the Holocaust in his ethics and engineering course at the university.
>
> Northwestern is home to the notorious Holocaust-Revisionist Arthur Butz,
> another member of the Engineering Department. Protests against Butz at NWU
> have been ineffective. The NWU administration supported his "academic
> freedom" to place Holocaust-Revisionist material on the university's
> computer as long as it was not done in his Engineering classes.
>
> So Prof. Epstein located a course outline for Engineering where ethical
> issues in modern science were to be taught. He developed a curriculum that
> examined scientific ethics and how the scientific community was involved in
> events during WW II.
>
> For this, I understand, he was fired by the same university that tolerated
> and defended Butz's Holocaust-Revisionism.
>
> The full story is available at the WWW site: http://www.k9ape.com/c96/ in
> the five files candor00.html through candor04.html.>>>
>
This is one of the reasons why, even when it comes to stuff as
reprehensible as Holocaust Revisionism, a free-speech position is
necessary. Looking over Epstein's materials at the above URL-- and
assuming it's a fair account of what happened-- it appears that the
main concern of Northwestern was that, if they gave Epstein clearance
to discuss the Holocaust, then Arthur Butz would have a strong case to
demand the same. Rather than protecting the worst so that the better
is protected as well, Northwestern has decided that the better should
be punished so they may continue to punish the worst, too.

I admit that I wasn't that impressed with the materials Epstein
put on his page. Ethics and engineering would be a fascinating
area of inquiry. But Epstein's materials are very tightly focused on
the Holocaust, with its special and very unique issues; some more
attention on, say, the role of modern weapons manufacturers might
raise some truly interesting questions. Still, this is separate from the
speech and academic freedom issues.

--
"Life is a continuous process of pain, anguish, loneliness, and despair.
However, we cannot let the occasional flashes of joy and happiness
distract us from this fact."
-- Brian Siano
Date: Wed, 22 Jan 1997 19:22:58 +0000
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: neville goodman <nev.w.goodman@bristol.ac.uk>
Subject: barbie
MIME-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: TEXT/PLAIN; CHARSET=US-ASCII

Seeing as the list is quite quiet at the moment, here's something I
enjoyed. It came to me from a friend in the NZ Civil Service:




OK, the story behind this... There's this tripped out guy who
digs things out his back yard and sends the stuff he finds to the
Smithsonian Institute, labelling them with scientific names,
insisting that they are actual archeological finds. The really
weird thing about these letters is that this guy really exists and
does this in his spare time!

Anyway... here's a letter from the Smithsonian Institute from
when he sent them a Barbie doll head.


Paleoanthropology Division
Smithsonian Institute
207 Pennsylvania Avenue
Washington, DC 20078

Dear Sir:

Thank you for your latest submission to the Institute, labelled
"211-D, layer seven, next to the clothes line post. Hominid
skull." We have given this specimen a careful and detailed
examination, and regret to inform you that we disagree with
your theory that it represents "conclusive proof of the presence
of Early Man in Charleston County two million years ago."

Rather, it appears that what you have found is the head of a
Barbie doll, of the variety one of our staff, who has small
children, believes to be the "Malibu Barbie". It is evident that
you have given a great deal of thought to the analysis of this
specimen, and you may be quite certain that those of us who are
familiar with your prior work in the field were loathe to come to
contradiction with your findings. However, we do feel that
there are a number of physical attributes of the specimen which
might have tied you off to its modern origin:

1. The material is molded plastic. Ancient hominid remains are
typically fossilized bone.

2. The cranial capacity of the specimen is approximately 9 cubic
centimeters, well below the threshold of even the earliest
identified proto-hominids.

3. The dentition pattern evident on the "skull" is more
consistent with the common domesticated dog than it is with the
"ravenous man-eating Pliocene clams" you speculate roamed the
wetlands during that time. This latter finding is certainly one of
the most intriguing hypotheses you have submitted in your
history with this institution, but the evidence seems to weigh
rather heavily against it. Without going into too much detail, let
us say that:

A. The specimen looks like the head of a Barbie doll that a dog
has chewed on.
B. Clams don't have teeth.

It is with feelings tinged with melancholy that we must deny
your request to have the specimen carbon dated. This is
partially due to the heavy load our lab must bear in it's normal
operation, and partly due to carbon dating's notorious inaccuracy
in fossils of recent geologic record. To the best of our
knowledge, no Barbie dolls were produced prior to 1956 AD,
and carbon dating is likely to produce wildly inaccurate results.

Sadly, we must also deny your request that we approach the
National Science Foundation's Phylogeny Department with the
concept of assigning your specimen the scientific name
"Australopithecus spiff-arino." Speaking personally, I, for one,
fought tenaciously for the acceptance of your proposed
taxonomy, but was ultimately voted down because the species
name you selected was hyphenated, and didn't really sound like
it might be Latin.

However, we gladly accept your generous donation of this
fascinating specimen to the museum. While it is undoubtedly
not a hominid fossil, it is, nonetheless, yet another riveting
example of the great body of work you seem to accumulate here
so effortlessly. You should know that our Director has reserved
a special shelf in his own office for the display of the specimens
you have previously submitted to the Institution, and the entire
staff speculates daily on what you will happen upon next in your
digs at the site you have discovered in your back yard.

We eagerly anticipate your trip to our nation's capital that you
proposed in your last letter, and several of us are pressing the
Director to pay for it.

We are particularly interested in hearing you expand on your
theories surrounding the "trans-positating fillifitation of ferrous
ions in a structural matrix" that makes the excellent juvenile
Tyrannosaurus rex femur you recently discovered take on the
deceptive appearance of a rusty 9-mm Sears Craftsman
automotive crescent wrench.

Yours in Science,
Harvey Rowe
Curator, Antiquities



Well, I laughed anyway. I hope you did,
cheers,

Neville

Dr Neville W Goodman
Consultant Anaesthetist
Southmead Hospital
BS10 5NB UK
Nev.W.Goodman@bris.ac.uk

"There once was a brave academic
who was wont to deliver polemic
on the farce and the fraud
which most people ignored
that, alas, had become epidemic."
(AMSB of NWG, Xmas 95)
Date: Wed, 22 Jan 1997 14:52:41 -0500
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: gregory hennessy <gsh@libra.usno.navy.mil>
Subject: Re: barbie
in-reply-to: neville goodman <nev.w.goodman@bristol.ac.uk> "barbie" (jan 22,
7:22pm)
Mime-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: text/plain; charset=us-ascii

> Paleoanthropology Division
> Smithsonian Institute
> 207 Pennsylvania Avenue
> Washington, DC 20078

> Yours in Science,
> Harvey Rowe
> Curator, Antiquities

While I agree that the post has some humor, I'd like to point out that the
Smithsonian Museum of Natural History is located on Constitution Ave, not
Pennysylvania Ave, does not have a Paleoanthropology division (it has an
anthropology division and a paleobiology division, and has neither a Harvey
Rowe nor a Curator, Antiquities in its online staff directory.

So, what evidence do we have that the letter itself isn't a fraud?


--
Gregory Hennessy
Astrometry Department
US Naval Observatory
3450 Mass Ave NW
Washington DC 20392
Date: Thu, 23 Jan 1997 12:23:58 GMT
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: simon birnstingl <swb@pavilion.co.uk>
Subject: Clinton's inauguration speech
Mime-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: text/plain; charset="us-ascii"

Dear Scifraud,

There is a lot being made in the press over here in the UK about some of
the claims made by Bill Clinton in his inauguration speech. Claims that
America first split the atom (Rutherford, a New Zealander, did it at
Cambridge UK), invented the computer (Turing, UK, and others in Europe)
etc. are being seen as either ambitious revisionism or amazing ignorance,
and are giving us a bit of a laugh at the expense of the good old U.S. of
A.

On a more serious note, however, what hope for those of us everywhere
trying to promote scientific literacy when the leader of the most powerful
country in the world cannot find someone with scientific knowledge to check
his speeches?

Simon Birnstingl


Simon Birnstingl
Conformance Environmental
5a Livingstone Road
Hove, Sussex
BN3 3WP
United Kingdom

email:
environment@conformance.co.uk

tel: ++ 44(0)1273 204369
fax: ++ 44(0)1298 873801 ***PLEASE NOTE NEW FAX NUMBER***
Date: Thu, 23 Jan 1997 09:41:44 -0500
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: "dewey m. mclean" <dmclean@vt.edu>
Subject: Re: Clinton's inauguration speech
in-reply-to: <199701231223.maa00389@florence.pavilion.net>
Mime-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: text/plain; charset="us-ascii"

Simon Birnstingl wrote:
>
>There is a lot being made in the press over here in the UK about some of
>the claims made by Bill Clinton in his inauguration speech. Claims that
>America first split the atom (Rutherford, a New Zealander, did it at
>Cambridge UK), invented the computer (Turing, UK, and others in Europe)
>etc. are being seen as either ambitious revisionism or amazing ignorance,
>and are giving us a bit of a laugh at the expense of the good old U.S. of
>A.
>
>On a more serious note, however, what hope for those of us everywhere
>trying to promote scientific literacy when the leader of the most powerful
>country in the world cannot find someone with scientific knowledge to check
>his speeches?


I thank Simon for his interesting post. Unfortunately, "history,"
like "truth," is in the eye of the beholder.

I am engaged in a running commentary with the historian of the
asteroid versus volcano dinosaur extinction debate over what constitutes
the rightful "history" of the debate. I quote from my 1/15/97 note to him:

"I believe that in your book...does not address the core dynamics
that actually drove the K-T debate crisis. Those dynamics are:
intimidation, blacklisting, whisper campaigns, damaging opponents, and
_Science_ magazine's promotion of the asteroid theory and demotion of the
volcano theory, etc. I know that you are aware of these points.

By my reading, your version of how the K-T debate worked in a
crisis is a superficial and sanitized one. You have stated in the past, to
me, and to others, that you can never tell the true story while some
scientists are still alive. I worry over whether you will ever be able to
address the real story in your future works."

In our telephone conversation yesterday morning the historian
stated once again that his future works cannot include specifics on the
actions of some scientists--actions that molded the current public
perception of the status of the debate.

So, what really is "history" when it skates over the surface of
reality? Or, have I missed something? Are historians expected to put their
spin, slant, and slight onto their writings the same way journalists do?
And, if so, what is the historical value of such history?

Cordially,
Dewey McLean
Date: Thu, 23 Jan 1997 15:13:56 -0500
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: thomas zane <zanet@sage.edu>
Subject: Re: Clinton's inauguration speech
in-reply-to: <199701231223.maa00389@florence.pavilion.net>
Mime-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: TEXT/PLAIN; charset=US-ASCII

Clinton has also said that he is the President with the most experience
in agriculture. Has he forgotten Washington and Jefferson?

On Thu, 23 Jan 1997, Simon Birnstingl wrote:

> Dear Scifraud,
>
> There is a lot being made in the press over here in the UK about some of
> the claims made by Bill Clinton in his inauguration speech. Claims that
> America first split the atom (Rutherford, a New Zealander, did it at
> Cambridge UK), invented the computer (Turing, UK, and others in Europe)
> etc. are being seen as either ambitious revisionism or amazing ignorance,
> and are giving us a bit of a laugh at the expense of the good old U.S. of
> A.
>
> On a more serious note, however, what hope for those of us everywhere
> trying to promote scientific literacy when the leader of the most powerful
> country in the world cannot find someone with scientific knowledge to check
> his speeches?
>
> Simon Birnstingl
>
>
> Simon Birnstingl
> Conformance Environmental
> 5a Livingstone Road
> Hove, Sussex
> BN3 3WP
> United Kingdom
>
> email:
> environment@conformance.co.uk
>
> tel: ++ 44(0)1273 204369
> fax: ++ 44(0)1298 873801 ***PLEASE NOTE NEW FAX NUMBER***
>
Date: Thu, 23 Jan 1997 16:59:38 -0500
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: "w. r. gibbons" <gibbons@northpole.med.uvm.edu>
Subject: Re: Clinton's inauguration speech
comments: to: simon birnstingl <swb@pavilion.co.uk>
in-reply-to: <199701231223.maa00389@florence.pavilion.net>
Mime-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: TEXT/PLAIN; charset=US-ASCII

On Thu, 23 Jan 1997, Simon Birnstingl wrote:

> On a more serious note, however, what hope for those of us everywhere
> trying to promote scientific literacy when the leader of the most powerful
> country in the world cannot find someone with scientific knowledge to check
> his speeches?

Most of the presidents we have had could not pronounce "nuclear." Sad to
think they have had their fingers on the buttons to start "nucular" war.

Ray Gibbons Dept. of Molecular Physiology & Biophysics
Univ. of Vermont College of Medicine, Burlington, VT
gibbons@northpole.med.uvm.edu (802) 656-8910
Date: Thu, 23 Jan 1997 14:05:08 -0800
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: "stephen j. kramer" <kramer@seas.ucla.edu>
Subject: Re: Clinton's inauguration speech
in-reply-to: <pine.sol.3.91.970123151332.19280b-100000@hopper>
Mime-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: TEXT/PLAIN; charset=US-ASCII

On Thu, 23 Jan 1997, Thomas Zane wrote:

> Clinton has also said that he is the President with the most experience
> in agriculture. Has he forgotten Washington and Jefferson?

What about Carter?

Stephen Kramer
Graduate Researcher
UCLA Materials Science and Engineering
Los Angeles, CA 90095-1595
Date: Thu, 23 Jan 1997 18:39:15 -0600
Reply-To: acchaves@cariari.ucr.ac.cr
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: anny chaves <acchaves@cariari.ucr.ac.cr>
Subject: Re: barbie
MIME-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: text/plain; charset=us-ascii
Content-Transfer-Encoding: 7bit

Gregory Hennessy wrote:
>
> > Paleoanthropology Division
> > Smithsonian Institute
> > 207 Pennsylvania Avenue
> > Washington, DC 20078
>
> > Yours in Science,
> > Harvey Rowe
> > Curator, Antiquities
>
> While I agree that the post has some humor, I'd like to point out that the
> Smithsonian Museum of Natural History is located on Constitution Ave, not
> Pennysylvania Ave, does not have a Paleoanthropology division (it has an
> anthropology division and a paleobiology division, and has neither a Harvey
> Rowe nor a Curator, Antiquities in its online staff directory.
>
> So, what evidence do we have that the letter itself isn't a fraud?
>
> --
> Gregory Hennessy
> Astrometry Department
> US Naval Observatory
> 3450 Mass Ave NW
> Washington DC 20392




Dear Greg,

"Chill out man"


Regards,

Leslie du Toit, Ph.D

(Yours in laughter and a bottle of cold beer!)
Date: Fri, 24 Jan 1997 02:21:56 -0500
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: brant watson <brantw3@aol.com>
Subject: Re: barbie

Somebody HAS to get Harvey's permission to print his letter in Skeptical
Enquirer or some other skeptical journal!

Brant
Date: Fri, 24 Jan 1997 09:55:03 +0000
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
Comments: Authenticated sender is <reiersol@mail.online.no>
from: dagfinn reiersol <reiersol@online.no>
Subject: Re: Clinton's inauguration speech
MIME-Version: 1.0
Content-type: text/plain; charset=US-ASCII
Content-transfer-encoding: 7BIT

> Most of the presidents we have had could not pronounce "nuclear." Sad to
> think they have had their fingers on the buttons to start "nucular" war.
>
> Ray Gibbons Dept. of Molecular Physiology & Biophysics
> Univ. of Vermont College of Medicine, Burlington, VT
> gibbons@northpole.med.uvm.edu (802) 656-8910

Looks to me like this pronounciation is derived from "nuke". So the
correct spelling would be "nukular". I think. :)
>
>


Dagfinn Reiersol reiersol@online.no
Oslo, Norway
Date: Fri, 24 Jan 1997 04:22:38 -0500
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: brant watson <brantw3@aol.com>
Subject: Re: barbie

In a message dated 97-01-22 14:54:16 EST, you write:

<< While I agree that the post has some humor, I'd like to point out that the
Smithsonian Museum of Natural History is located on Constitution Ave, not
Pennysylvania Ave, does not have a Paleoanthropology division (it has an
anthropology division and a paleobiology division, and has neither a Harvey
Rowe nor a Curator, Antiquities in its online staff directory.

So, what evidence do we have that the letter itself isn't a fraud? >>


Oops! Were we taken? Is this another urban legend?

Brant
Date: Fri, 24 Jan 1997 09:41:52 -0800
Reply-To: siano@cceb.med.upenn.edu
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: brian siano <siano@cceb.med.upenn.edu>
Organization: University of Pennsylvania CCEB
Subject: Re: barbie
Comments: cc: skepticmag@aol.com
MIME-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: text/plain; charset=us-ascii
Content-Transfer-Encoding: 7bit

Brant Watson wrote:
>
> In a message dated 97-01-22 14:54:16 EST, you write:
>
> << While I agree that the post has some humor, I'd like to point out that the
> Smithsonian Museum of Natural History is located on Constitution Ave, not
> Pennysylvania Ave, does not have a Paleoanthropology division (it has an
> anthropology division and a paleobiology division, and has neither a Harvey
> Rowe nor a Curator, Antiquities in its online staff directory.
>
> So, what evidence do we have that the letter itself isn't a fraud? >>
>
> Oops! Were we taken? Is this another urban legend?
>
Sounds like it is: but it _was_ funny, wasn't it?
Date: Fri, 24 Jan 1997 10:38:56 -0800
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: prof vince sarich <sarich@qal.berkeley.edu>
Subject: Clinton, Birnstingl, et al

Simon Birnstingl wrote:

Dear Scifraud,

There is a lot being made in the press over here in the UK about some of the
claims made by Bill Clinton in his inauguration speech. Claims that America
first split the atom (Rutherford, a New Zealander, did it at Cambridge UK),
invented the computer (Turing, UK, and others in Europe) etc. are being seen as
either ambitious revisionism or amazing ignorance, and are giving us a bit of a
laugh at the expense of the good old U.S. of A.

On a more serious note, however, what hope for those of us everywhere trying to
promote scientific literacy when the leader of the most powerful country in the
world cannot find someone with scientific knowledge to check his speeches?

Simon Birnstingl



He who laughs last .......

Rutherford's classic experiment (1919) had nothing to do with "splitting the
atom", but with scattering. In it he bombarded a thin metal foil with alpha
particles, tesing the then-current notion of an atom as a sphere with a diameter
of about 10E-8cm and with its mass and charge rather uniformly distributed
throughout its volume. What he found, of course, that the results were
consistent with that 10E-8 being mostly empty space with the mass being
concentrated in a nucleus some 4 orders of magnitude smaller.

That atoms were splittable was first recognized by Frisch, Hahn, Meitner, and
Strassman in 1939, and the first controlled "splitting" occurred in the chain
reactor (atomic pile) built by Fermi and his co-workers and which went critical
on 2 December 1942 at the University of Chicago.

I am less conversant with the computer story, and there remains a great deal of
controversy with respect to who first did what when, but did Turing actually
build a working computer? If so, when, and what is a good reference? Indeed,
what would a good reference for "(Turing, UK, and others in Europe)"?

Vincent Sarich ---

OK, now shoot at me.
Date: Fri, 24 Jan 1997 12:49:21 CST
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: virginia metze <metze@vmetze.mrl.uiuc.edu>
Subject: Re: Clinton, Birnstingl, et al

>
> I am less conversant with the computer story, and there remains a great deal of
> controversy with respect to who first did what when, but did Turing actually
> build a working computer? If so, when, and what is a good reference? Indeed,
> what would a good reference for "(Turing, UK, and others in Europe)"?
>
This is well documented as an American deed (or misdeed
depending on your orientation toward computers); any
basic text in Information Processing ought to include
the story.

Of course some of the things that led to the development
of the computer happened in Europe, if one wants to go
back to running looms.

But the computer as we know it started here. I would
be glad to post more about this (my husband is pretty
knowledgeable about all of this, having worked on one
of the very early ones, Illiac, at the University of
Illinois, and was part of the design team for its Illiac II.

Ginny Metze

> Vincent Sarich ---
>
> OK, now shoot at me.
>
Date: Fri, 24 Jan 1997 12:52:35 CST
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: virginia metze <metze@vmetze.mrl.uiuc.edu>
Subject: Re: Clinton, Birnstingl, et al

This conversation reminds me of a standing joke that went around
during world war II. I was between 7 and 11 at the time, but
I still picked up on it and have remembered it all of the time:

"Our German scientists are better than THEIR German
scientists!"

This of course referred to the flow of some of the great scientists
of the time from Germany to this country just before and during
World War II.

Ginny
Date: Fri, 24 Jan 1997 15:06:04 -0800
Reply-To: siano@cceb.med.upenn.edu
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: brian siano <siano@cceb.med.upenn.edu>
Organization: University of Pennsylvania CCEB
Subject: Re: Clinton, Birnstingl, et al
MIME-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: text/plain; charset=us-ascii
Content-Transfer-Encoding: 7bit

Prof Vince Sarich wrote:
>
> That atoms were splittable was first recognized by Frisch, Hahn, Meitner, and
> Strassman in 1939, and the first controlled "splitting" occurred in the chain
> reactor (atomic pile) built by Fermi and his co-workers and which went critical
> on 2 December 1942 at the University of Chicago.

Times like this I wish I had my science librar ready at work:
I read the story of Clinton's speech, and thought, "Gee, didn't they
do that at the University of Chicago, when they conducted the
first controlled chain reaction?"

> I am less conversant with the computer story, and there remains a great deal of
> controversy with respect to who first did what when, but did Turing actually
> build a working computer? If so, when, and what is a good reference? Indeed,
> what would a good reference for "(Turing, UK, and others in Europe)"?

So far as I know, Turing never built a working computer. The first
actual computer, in the modern sense, was ENIAC, built right here at the
University of Pennsylvania. Also, the first computer built more or less
along modern lines was designed by John Von Neumann, when he was at the
Institute for Advanced Study at Princeton.
Turing's impact was certainly profound, but it was mostly in the
theoretical realm. There was his argument on how one might determine
when
a computer really was "intelligent," of course. However, if I recall, he
also formulated one of the best arguments against machine intelligence
(which Roger Penrose summarized well in _The Emperor's New Mind_). I'd
be more inclined to regard him asa mathematician with a familiarity with
computers and their attendant concepts, rather than a true "father" to
the computer.
Date: Fri, 24 Jan 1997 20:06:39 GMT
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: simon birnstingl <swb@pavilion.co.uk>
Subject: Re: Clinton, Birnstingl, et al
Mime-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: text/plain; charset="us-ascii"

>
>He who laughs last .......
>
>Rutherford's classic experiment (1919) had nothing to do with "splitting the
>atom", but with scattering. In it he bombarded a thin metal foil with alpha
>particles, tesing the then-current notion of an atom as a sphere with a
>diameter
>of about 10E-8cm and with its mass and charge rather uniformly distributed
>throughout its volume. What he found, of course, that the results were
>consistent with that 10E-8 being mostly empty space with the mass being
>concentrated in a nucleus some 4 orders of magnitude smaller.
>
>That atoms were splittable was first recognized by Frisch, Hahn, Meitner, and
>Strassman in 1939, and the first controlled "splitting" occurred in the chain
>reactor (atomic pile) built by Fermi and his co-workers and which went critical
>on 2 December 1942 at the University of Chicago.
>
>I am less conversant with the computer story, and there remains a great deal of
>controversy with respect to who first did what when, but did Turing actually
>build a working computer? If so, when, and what is a good reference? Indeed,
>what would a good reference for "(Turing, UK, and others in Europe)"?
>
>Vincent Sarich ---
>
>OK, now shoot at me

OK, I'm a biochemist anyway.
What is a computer? The first working stored-memory computer was Collosus,
built in the UK to work on Enigma. Alan Turing was involved, having done
previous theoretical work on how computers might work. Much of the theory
of computer architecture was, we are told, done by European mathematicians.
Clinton was correct, however, when he stated that the microchip was American.

Now I have a cutting to post:
"About the time that Rutherford moved (1919) to Cambridge to succeed
Thomson as director of the Cavendish Laboratory, he discovered artificial
disintegration--the artificial splitting of the atom--a signal discovery
that presaged his entry into the field of nuclear physics. Members of his
Cavendish team discovered the neutron and the disintegration phenomena
produced by artificially accelerated particles.

Rutherford was president (1925-30) of the Royal Society, which had given
him its highest award, the Copley Medal, in 1922. Rutherford was knighted
in 1914, raised to the peerage in 1931, and awarded the Order of Merit in
1921.

Erich Robert Paul

Bibliography: Andrade, E. N., Rutherford and the Nature of the Atom
(1964); Bunge, M., and Shea, W. R., eds., Rutherford and Physics at the
Turn of the Century (1979); Kelman, Peter, and Stone, A. H., Ernest
Rutherford: Architect of the Atom (1968); Wilson, David, Rutherford,
Simple Genius (1983).

Copyright 1995 by Grolier Electronic Publishing, Inc."

This is the first reference I looked to, an American CD-Rom Encyclopedia.
This is becoming as clear as mud. At least I was not suffering from some
kind of false memory!


Simon Birnstingl
Conformance Environmental
5a Livingstone Road
Hove, Sussex
BN3 3WP
United Kingdom

email:
environment@conformance.co.uk

tel: ++ 44(0)1273 204369
fax: ++ 44(0)1298 873801 ***PLEASE NOTE NEW FAX NUMBER***
Date: Fri, 24 Jan 1997 15:19:35 -0500
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: "sideris, john" <sideris.fpgnb3@mhs.unc.edu>
Organization: UNC
Subject: Re: Clinton, Birnstingl, et al
in-reply-to: <15e1e83201f60094@mhs.unc.edu>
MIME-Version: 1.0
Content-type: text/plain; charset="US-ASCII"
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Perhaps Clinton's biggest mistake was to say where these events happened
at all. So the atom was actually first split at the University of
Chicago and the first computer was ENIAC at Penn. Big deal. Neither
happened without the work of people from around the world. I certainly
hope that we are more inclined to view science as a process rather than a
series of outcomes.
Personally, I would be happier if Clinton had talked about a commitment
to continuing great science in the US instead of what we have already
done. So much for the bridge to the future.


"It doesn't matter if it feels good; what matters is if it's true."
-- Carl Sagan
John H. Sideris
john_sideris@unc.edu
Date: Fri, 24 Jan 1997 15:28:07 -0500
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: al higgins <ach13@louise.csbs.albany.edu>
Organization: Sociology Department, CAS UAlbany
Subject: Fetal Tissue Research
MIME-Version: 1.0
Content-type: text/plain; charset=US-ASCII
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Fetal Tissue Research

Here is a small item from Nature. It is reproduced in its
entirety.

++++++++++

\Wadman, Meredith. "Embryo Researcher Is Sanctioned
for Using NIH Resources," Nature 385 (16 January
1997), p. 190.\

{WASHINGTON} The US National Institutes of Health
(NIH) confirmed last week that it has cut all research
links with a leading reproductive biologist for
breaching a ban on the use of federal funds for
research on human embryos.

According to Anne Thomas, spokeswoman for NIH
director Harold Varmus, the biomedical agency ended a
contract with Mark Hughes, director of Georgetown Uni-
versity's Institute for Molecular and Human Genetics
in Washington DC, last October.

"What concerned us was that {Hughes} used NIH
equipment and government-funded research fellows to do
pre-implantation diagnosis," says Thomas. This was
despite the fact that he had been told that NIH
resources could not be used in this manner.

Hughes had been working at the National Center
for Human Genome Research (NCHGR) under a
contract arrangement by which part of his salary was
paid by Georgetown with funding received from NIH.

The work that caused concern was not conducted at
NCHGR, where Hughes, an expert in single-cell biology,
was doing experiments that included creating CDNA
libraries from a single cell. Thomas says one or more
postdoctoral fellows complained to NCHGR officials
about separate research on which Hughes had asked them
to collaborate at the Montgomery Fertility Institute,
a private practice at Suburban Hospital, near NIH in
Bethesda, Maryland.

Hughes had been conducting preimplantation
diagnosis on test-tube embryos at the private
institute, removing a single cell at the eight-cell
stage to screen for genetic abnormalities and
implanting the remaining seven cells if none was
found.

The work is not illegal, and is done privately in
the United States, the United Kingdom and elsewhere.
But Congress banned federal funding for human embryo
research in 1996, and renewed the ban for the fiscal
year 1997, which ends on 30 September.

Neither Hughes, Georgetown University nor NCHGR
officials were available for comment this week.
Earlier, Hughes told The Washington Post that "there
has never been any intention of doing anything wrong."
The newspaper said that he regretted having used the
resources at the private clinic, made no apologies for
the work itself In the past, Hughes has opposed the
ban (see Nature 376, 288; 1995). He a member of an
expert NIH panel in 1994 concluded that human
research was acceptable - within strict constraints -
before the primitive streak appears, at day 14.

A. C. Higgins
SS 359 SUNYA Albany, New York 12222
ACH13@CNSVAX.Albany.edu
Phone: (518) 442 - 4678; FAX: (518) 442 - 4936
SCIFRAUD@CNSIBM.Albany.edu
Date: Fri, 24 Jan 1997 21:01:36 -0500
Reply-To: jjfreed@netreach.net
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: jerome freed <jjfreed@netreach.net>
Organization: 710 Davidson Rd, Phil'a PA, USA
Subject: Re: barbie
Mime-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: text/plain; charset=us-ascii
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To all-

Is this charming, perhaps apocryphal, tale a *hoax*, rather than a
*fraud*? Perhaps the errors in the address, etc, are meant to tell us,
if we would but listen, that our chain is being pulled.

After all, what would archeology be, without artefacts?

Jerry Freed
Date: Sun, 26 Jan 1997 15:19:56 -0500
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: al higgins <ach13@louise.csbs.albany.edu>
Organization: Sociology Department, CAS UAlbany
Subject: A New Biography
MIME-Version: 1.0
Content-type: text/plain; charset=US-ASCII
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A New Biography

I recall some of the scandal surrounding the death of Bruno
Bettelheim: some of his former colleagues told nasty stories
about the man. Well, here is a new biography which continues
these stories. According to this biographer, Bettleheim
fabricated his entire life.

Here is the review which appeared in the Book Review
section of the New York Times.

++++++++++


\Boxer, Sarah. "The Man He Always Wanted To Be," a review of
The Creation of Dr. B.: A Biography of Bruno Bettelheim, by
Richard Pollack (New York: Simon and Schuster, 1996), The New
York Times Book Review, 26 January 1997, pp. 14-15.\

Bruno Bettleheim's new biographer lays his cards on the table
right away: he thinks Bettelheim was a pathological liar.
Richard Pollak, the former executive editor and literary editor
of The Nation, got interested in the famous psychotherapist and
author in order to learn more about his own younger brother, who
died on a family vacation in 1948 when he slipped through a
hayloft chute during a game of hide-and-seek. The boy had been
at the Orthogenic School for emotionally disturbed children at
the University of Chicago for five years before he died, so, in
1969, Mr. Pollak figured Bettelheim, the director of the school,
could tell him about his dead brother.

Instead, Bettelheim called Mr. Pollak's father a simple-
minded "schlemiel" and his mother a false martyr. Then he
bluntly announced that the child had committed suicide. And, he
added, Mr. Pollak's mother was largely to blame, because she had
rejected him at birth. "What is it about these Jewish mothers?"
Bettelheim fumed.

Mr. Pollak left reeling. On reflection, though, something
seemed fishy. He recalled that the hayloft his brother died in
was so treacherous that he himself had almost fallen, too. And
his mother, whatever her quirks, was not the harpy Bettelheim
described. Mr. Pollak began exploring other options. What if
the great Dr. Bettelheim, the champion of emotionally disturbed
children and the author of "The Uses of Enchantment," "Freud
Man's Soul" and "The Empty Fortress," was in fact a bitter,
sadistic, anti-Semitic, mother-hating liar?

That is the hypothesis Mr. Pollak follows in "The Creation
of Dr. B." Although he declined to be interviewed for the book,
Mr. Pollak interviewed two of his three children, his first wife
a slew of colleagues, editors, students and friends. And many
ofthem agreed that, in the words of Jacquelyn Sanders,
Bettelheim's successor the Orthogenic School, "You couldn't
believe anything he said."

The trouble with the book is that Mr. Pollak seems to think
he must dig up malice and lies at every turn. The result a
shocking but curiously unnuanced biography of a psychologically
complex man. Here is a man who comes out of a concentration
camp with the idea that prisoners are like children, and later
stands the idea on its head to suggest children are like
prisoners. And here is a biographer who pursues this
disturbed man's fibs like an accountant.

According to Mr. Pollak, Bettelheim's alter ego, the self
he invented, did everything the real Bettelheim wished he
had done: he met Freud, took autistic children into his
home, earned three degrees from the University of
Vienna, was part of an underground movement to rid
Vienna of fascism, stood up to the Nazi guards
in Buchenwald and Dachau, was rescued from the
camps by Eleanor Roosevelt and never spanked
children.

The real Bettelheim felt that "people regarded him as ugly,
small and Jewish." He grew up in a bourgeois Viennese family;
his father played cards with him and his mother read him Grimms'
fairy tales. He wanted to be part of the intelligentsia. So he
studied art history at the University of Vienna and read Freud
backward and forward.

But when his father died of syphilis, Bettelheim suspended
his intellectual aspirations and took over the family's lumber
business. He married a teacher named Gina Altstadt. Then, came
the Anschluss. In June 1938, Bettelheim was taken by train to
Dachau, then to Buchenwald. That seems to have been the
dividing line between the real Bettelheim and the false one.

One of Bettelheim's lies, according to Mr. Pollak, was an
anecdote about his heroic, uncomplaining survival in Buchenwald
that Mr. Pollak calls "the Frostbite Story." Bettelheim said he
persuaded a guard to admit him to the camp clinic by asking him
first to cut away dead frost bitten flesh, thereby avoiding
"pleading, deference or arrogance." Vivid as the story is, Mr.
Pollak suggests it is probably false. In real life, he reports,
Bettelheim had a comparatively soft job in Buchenwald, mending
socks indoors. And, he says, Bettelheim's freedom was probably
bought by a bribe to the Nazis in 1939, before the war began.

Whether it was survivor guilt, shame, anger or the chance
to start over, once Bettelheim was freed, Mr. Pollak says,
he began creating Dr. B. He sailed to New York, was
reunited with his wife for a day, then after a few weeks went
on to Chicago, where he eventually married Trude Weinfeld,
whom he had fallen in love with before the Anschluss.

Soon after, Mr. Pollak says, he began inventing degrees he
never earned and even boasting that when he trained to be an
analyst (which he never did), Sigmund Freud (whom he never met)
said of him, "This is exactly the person we need for
psychoanalysis to grow and develop." He ended up claiming a
classic Viennese academic record, Mr. Pollak says: "14 years it
the University of Vienna, studies with Arnold Schoenberg, summa
cum laude in three disciplines, two books published, training in
all fields of psychology and membership in an organization that
studied the emotional problems of children and adolescents."

And why not create such a life? The Nazis, Mr. Pollak
says, "expunged the real one" and no one in America had the
gall to doubt a man who had spent time in concentration
camps. Soon, Bettelheim was wowing students with his
Viennese accent, his casual references to Freud and his
habit of psychoanalyzing students' dreams, memories
and parents.

In 1943 he sealed his reputation with the publication of
"Individual and Mass Behavior in Extreme Situations," a paper in
which he observed that the prisoners in concentration camps were
effectively turned into children. He said that rather than
fighting their captors, they fought with one another, daydreamed
and admired, even emulated, the Nazis. Thus, they were "more or
less willing tools of the Gestapo." The paper caused a huge
stir, catching the attention of Meyer Schapiro, Dwight
Macdonald, Dwight D. Eisenhower, Theodor Adorno and
Max Horkheimer.

Mr. Pollak, though, seems most impressed by Bettelheim's
shoddy science. He points out that although Bettelheim claimed
his article was based on interviews with at least 1,500
prisoners in five different barracks, this kind of research was
impossible since he lived in only two barracks.

Then Mr. Pollak goes on to the fib he thinks was the
foundation for Bettelheim's career: Bettelheim claimed that
Patsy, a troubled girl his first wife had taken in, was autistic
and that it was he who cared for her. Neither was true, Mr.
Pollak suggests. Later, Bettelheim embellished more, saying
there had been two autistic children. Partly on the basis of
this putative experience, Mr. Pollak writes, the University of
Chicago asked him to take over the Orthogenic School, which he
did in 1944.

There Bettelheim built a kingdom for children. With
another Viennese immigrant, Emmy Sylvester, he created
the first formal "therapeutic milieu," which Mr. Pollak
describes as a permissive, all-encompassing healing
atmosphere." The children painted their rooms whatever
colors they liked and ate from expensive china.
Meanwhile, though, in books like "Love Is Not Enough" and
"Truants rom Life," Bettelheim exaggerated his successes and,
Mr. PoIlak says, lied about how gentle his methods really were.

Bettelheim "sought to shape Orthogenic School in the
reverse image of the concentration camps," Mr. Pollak writes, and in
that new world, mothers were seen as villains, even Nazis.
Bettelheim ordered mothers not to visit their children at the school or
take them home. He praised the kibbutzim in Israel for removing
parents from their children's lives. And in his 1967 book "The
Empty Fortress," he attributed autism to bad mothering.

Mr. Pollak contends that despite Bettelheim's benign
mission, he was often cruel. He bullied his staff so much that
one counselor called his training style the "Nazi-Socratic
method." He made some of his patients undress and shower in
front of one another. And though Bettelheim said he was against
slapping "because it's a brutal and illogical method," he often
spanked his patients. Indeed, Mr. Pollack devotes an entire
chapter to Bettelheim and punishment.

When Bettelheim retired from the Orthogenic School in 1973,
he lost his strange kingdom and moved to California. There he
wrote the work for which he is best known, "The Uses of
Enchantment," in which he argued that such bloody tales as
"Hansel and Gretel" and "Sleeping Beauty" were a needed outlet
for children's fears and anxieties. Mr. Pollak shows that this
too was based on a lie; large chunks of book, he maintains, were
plagiarized from a 1963 volume, "A Psychiatric Study of Fairy
Tales: Their Origin, meaning and Usefulness," by Julius
Heuscher. Mr. Pollak gives a damning passage-for-passage
comparison of the two.

On March 12, 1990, the very the Nazis had invaded Austria
52 years earlier, Bettelheim, who at 86 was suffering from
circulatory problems his legs, heart trouble, diabetes, arthritis,
an enlarged prostate and a blockage in the esophagus,
"swallowed some drugs and whisky and tied a plastic bag
over his head."

He once said, "We must live by fictions - not just to find
meaning in life but to make it bearable." What is striking in
'Tbe Creation of Dr. B" is that most of the lies Richard Pollak
scribes to him seem so unnecssary. A counselor at the
Orthogenic School, commenting one of Bettelheim's inflated
reports of success there, put it well: "I felt like saying: 'You
don't have to exaggerate, Dr. B, it was dramatic enough.'" Mr.
Pollak's book is a startling and account of a life of lies. A
less vengeful biographer might have paused to analyze psychic
uses 'of the elaborate fairy tale Bettelheim constructed for
himself.


A. C. Higgins
SS 359 SUNYA Albany, New York 12222
ACH13@CNSVAX.Albany.edu
Phone: (518) 442 - 4678; FAX: (518) 442 - 4936
SCIFRAUD@CNSIBM.Albany.edu


A. C. Higgins ACH13@louise.csbs.albany.edu
College of Arts and Sciences VOX: 518-442-4678
Sociology Department FAX: 518-442-4936
University At Albany
Albany, NY, USA 12222
Date: Mon, 27 Jan 1997 10:32:38 GMT
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: simon birnstingl <swb@pavilion.co.uk>
Subject: Re: A New Biography
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Dear Scifraud,

I am not familiar enough with the history of the work of Bettelheim to
comment on this posting from Al in more than a general way:

1) I am always suspicious of wildly revisionist biographies published after
the death of their subject. One cannot libel the dead. It seems to me that
they tell us as much about the biographer than the subject, but not much in
either case!

2) If one is interested in the truth, such biographies can only at best be
of partial utility.

3) It is interesting to note a common theme in the success of Bettelheim
compared with the likes of contemporary figures such as Alvarez and
historic figures such as Dalton. These people all rose to the top of their
profession as much by astute politicking and manipulation as by merit. In
the end, the egos that drove them to such ends can be seen to have held up
debate and perhaps slowed down our search for truth. Where does the
objectivity scientists so proudly declare fit into all this?

Regards,

Simon Birnstingl


Simon Birnstingl
Conformance Environmental
5a Livingstone Road
Hove, Sussex
BN3 3WP
United Kingdom

email:
environment@conformance.co.uk

tel: ++ 44(0)1273 204369
fax: ++ 44(0)1298 873801 ***PLEASE NOTE NEW FAX NUMBER***
Date: Mon, 27 Jan 1997 09:32:10 -0500
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: "dewey m. mclean" <dmclean@vt.edu>
Subject: Re: A New Biography
in-reply-to: <199701271032.kaa00613@florence.pavilion.net>
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Simon Birnstingl wrote:

>1) I am always suspicious of wildly revisionist biographies published after
>the death of their subject. One cannot libel the dead. It seems to me that
>they tell us as much about the biographer than the subject, but not much in
>either case!

Simon touches upon an interesting point that affects many of us who
must deal with the legacy left behind by now-dead individuals. How does one
treat them? For extreme cases--such as Adolph Hitler and Joseph
Stalin--should biographers write only of their positive aspects, and
overlook the tens of millions of bloodlines terminated by their
actions--simply because Hitler and Stalin are not here to defend
themselves? Or, should a historian/biographer cut open the cadaver of
history and expose its tangled, stinking, and maggot-filled guts in the
hopes that exposure might help to prevent such people from coming to power
in the future? The dead deserve to have their histories recorded
accurately--good or bad. And, for those who cut corners--or heads--the
public has a right to know the truth about them.

Cordially,
Dewey McLean


Dewey M. McLean Telephone: 540-552-8559
Department of Geological Sciences E-mail address: dmclean@vt.edu
Virginia Polytechnic Institute
Blacksburg, VA 24061

Home Page: http://www.vt.edu:10021/artsci/geology/mclean/
Dinosaur_Volcano_Extinction/index.html

Home Page: http://www.vt.edu:10021/artsci/geology/mclean/
Creationism_vs_Evolution/index.html


Date: Mon, 27 Jan 1997 10:18:39 -0800
Reply-To: siano@cceb.med.upenn.edu
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: brian siano <siano@cceb.med.upenn.edu>
Organization: University of Pennsylvania CCEB
Subject: Re: A New Biography
MIME-Version: 1.0
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Simon Birnstingl wrote:

> 1) I am always suspicious of wildly revisionist biographies published after
> the death of their subject. One cannot libel the dead. It seems to me that
> they tell us as much about the biographer than the subject, but not much in
> either case!
>
> 2) If one is interested in the truth, such biographies can only at best be
> of partial utility.

Well, suspicion is warranted, but this shouldn't mean that
researchers can't speak ill of the dead-- not if they uncover new
information that wasn't available or couldn't be obtained when
the subject was alive. For example, Robert Caro (whose dandy expose on
Robert Moses, _The Power Broker_, was written when Moses was alive)
nailed down evidence that Lyndon Johnson's 1948 Senate victory was based
voter fraud and the hijacking of ballots.
What matters, of course, is the substance of the evidence, and the
interpretation the researcher presents. Sometimes it's pretty obvious
that the biographer loathes his subject, as with Albert Goldman and his
notorious biography of John Lennon, and a recent wave of crackpots
who furiously maintain that Alfred Kinsey was a demented pedophile.
And just to toss a lighted match into all of this, there are
the revisions over the Cyril Burt controversy. In the mid-1970's,
we had Gillie and Hearnshaw maintaining that Burt faked his data, and
Kamin arguing that Burt's statistics were simply impossible. Burt's
defenders claimed that the critics were taking politically motivated
cheap shots at a man who couldn't defend himself. On the other hand,
there were a couple of books published that purported to exonerate
Burt--
and I'm sure at least one reviewer complained that these were written
after Hearnshaw's death. (Kamin's still around, BTW.)

> 3) It is interesting to note a common theme in the success of Bettelheim
> compared with the likes of contemporary figures such as Alvarez and
> historic figures such as Dalton. These people all rose to the top of their
> profession as much by astute politicking and manipulation as by merit. In
> the end, the egos that drove them to such ends can be seen to have held up
> debate and perhaps slowed down our search for truth. Where does the
> objectivity scientists so proudly declare fit into all this?

It doesn't, really. Science is a human endeavor, and the story
of how science is done has to take into account the politicking,
the competition for resources, and other messy human issues.
Date: Mon, 27 Jan 1997 13:18:34 EST
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: emmanuel marin <100574.3414@compuserve.com>
Subject: Re: A New Biography

If you feel that Bettelheim's past in the concentration camps
makes it difficult for those of us, whose only difficulty in life
so far was to find a job, to criticize him, then you may read the
opinions from other death camps survivors on Bettelheim's
theories about the behaviour in the death camps.

Anna Bravo (sociologist) and Federico Cereja (historian)
collected in the 80's the more testimonies they could
from the survivors of the death camps, and their interview
with Primo Levi has been published two years ago here in
France. ("Le Devoir de Memoire", Primo Levi, Ed. Mille Et
Une Nuits, (c) Jan 1995")

In this interview, we learn that not only Primo Levi, but also
most of the survivors that the researchers met, were at
best indifferent, but expressed at worst a very vivid repulsion,
when asked about Bettelheim's "scientific work".

About Bettelheim's life after the WWII, well here in France
it is not the first time that I see such a cricism. I even
distinctly remember that "Bruno Bettelheim" was nicknamed
"Bruto" when it was revealed he used physical violence
to "cure" autistic kids.

And finally, about the topic of biography of dead celebrities,
I think you simply can't realize what is happening in
France these days, with the disclosure of the Soviet Union
archives ! By publishing their petitions in the mass media,
historians are fighting in front of the public about these
archives, which "reveal" that this dead celebrity was an
hidden communist agent, etc.. etc...

Emmanuel Marin
Paris, France
Date: Mon, 27 Jan 1997 15:35:22 -0500
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: jock friedly <jcfriedly@aol.com>
Subject: a story for your interest

To subscribers of SCIFRAUD:

For anyone interested in a different twist on the agonies of the so-called
"David Baltimore affair," check out my story in this month's (January 1997)
Boston Magazine. The story is titled "Trial and Error -- Legendary Nobel
Prize winners David Baltimore and Walter Gilbert had been friends until
Gilbert lined up against Baltimore in one of the great scientific fraud
scandals of the century. But now Baltimore has been exonerated and it is
Gilbert who is on the defensive." It explores issues of hypocrisy and hubris
in allegations of fraud.

To obtain a copy of the story, e-mail me or you can visit the Web site
www.boston.com/bostonmagazine/january/gilbert. Also, don't hesitate to send
comments about the story at jcfriedly@aol.com.

Enjoy!
Jock Friedly
Date: Mon, 27 Jan 1997 16:29:29 -0500
Reply-To: jlaurits@capecod.net
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: john lauritsen <jlaurits@capecod.net>
Subject: Re: a story for your interest
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Please send me a copy of the story on Gilbert and Baltimore.

John Lauritsen
Date: Mon, 27 Jan 1997 15:44:00 -0500
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: "r.cammer" <rcammer@pipeline.com>
Subject: Re: a story for your interest
Mime-Version: 1.0
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Return to 10 Years: Discussion in SciFraud Index.html
A List participant wrote, read his article, etc., about how "now {that}
Baltimore has been exonerated" it is a former friend who is on the
defensive -- and "exonerated" means: ___?

How "exonerated" -- other than ithat "fraud" was said in an intensively
lawyered construct not to have been proven by clear and convincing evidence
sufficient to sustain a quasi-criminal showing of "fraud" in some narrow
legal sense of the term?

Exonerated?

... from insisting on the prerogatives and seeking the benefits of having
one's name added as "author" to a paper one didn't write?
... from signing on to a paper whose data one hadn't actually read much
less carefully reviewed?
... from hounding and in effect helping to black-list a post-doc herself
guilty merely of raising some clearly scientifically and ethically
warranted questions?

"Gee, Ma!, I've been exonerated!! I haven't been found guilty by clear,
legally-sustainable evidence of having signed on to nor of trying to
cover-up actual 'fraud' as, meanwhile, "innocent" means merely severe
carelessness, extremely sloppy record-(non)keeping, as, after all (Whew!),
fortuitously the data seems less misleading than originally contended and
the investigators themselves may have been less than punctiliousness. Ah,
yes, the comfort of 'exoneration'!"
Date: Mon, 27 Jan 1997 17:18:27 -0800
Reply-To: siano@cceb.med.upenn.edu
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: brian siano <siano@cceb.med.upenn.edu>
Organization: University of Pennsylvania CCEB
Subject: Re: a story for your interest
MIME-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: text/plain; charset=us-ascii
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Jock Friedly wrote:
>
> To subscribers of SCIFRAUD:
>
> For anyone interested in a different twist on the agonies of the so-called
> "David Baltimore affair," check out my story in this month's (January 1997)
> Boston Magazine. The story is titled "Trial and Error -- Legendary Nobel
> Prize winners David Baltimore and Walter Gilbert had been friends until
> Gilbert lined up against Baltimore in one of the great scientific fraud
> scandals of the century. But now Baltimore has been exonerated and it is
> Gilbert who is on the defensive." It explores issues of hypocrisy and hubris
> in allegations of fraud.
>
> To obtain a copy of the story, e-mail me or you can visit the Web site
> www.boston.com/bostonmagazine/january/gilbert. Also, don't hesitate to send
> comments about the story at jcfriedly@aol.com.

The _New Yorker_ did a piece about the re-thinking of the
Baltimore case a few months back, too.
Date: Mon, 27 Jan 1997 18:14:08 -0500
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: al higgins <ach13@louise.csbs.albany.edu>
Organization: Sociology Department, CAS UAlbany
Subject: Another New Review
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Another New Review

Here is yet another new book on the Piltdown Man fraud.
And this reviewer makes some fascinating points about that
case and modern conditions. There should be some
discussion.

This review is reproduced from the New York Review of
Books.

++++++++++


\Jones, Steve. "Crooked Bones," a review of
Unraveling Piltdown: The Science Fraud of the
Century and Its Solution," by John Evangelist
Walsh. (New York: Random House, 1996) in
The New York Review of Books, 6 February
1997, pp. 23-24.\

"You interest me very much, Mr. Holmes. I had
hardly expected so dolichocephalic a skull or such
well-marked supra-orbital development. Would you have
any objection to my running my finger along your
parietal fissure? It is not my intention to be
fulsome, but I confess that I covet your skull."

Thus the meeting of Dr. Mortimer with Sherlock Holmes
in The Hound of the Baskervilles; and thus a crucial
clue for those who claim that Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
faked Piltdown Man, the scientific fraud of the
twentieth century. The fake, discovered in Sussex a
decade after Dr. Mortimer's 1902 adventure, was not in
fact a half-million-year-old human ancestor
Eoanthropus, "dawn man" but a crude amalgam of a
medieval human brain case with an orangutan jaw of the
same age. A few of the bones were painted with
household brown paid and others roughly stained to
resemble a fossil. They had, some said, been planted
by the founder of detective fiction.

Ridiculous? Well, consider the fact that Conan
Doyle (a trained anatomist) several times visited the
Piltdown dig. He was at the time writing The Lost
World. What better publicity for a missing universe
of ape-men than to find an extinct ape-faced human?
There are other clues: he had once collected fossils
in Malta (the real source of ancient hippopotamus
bones scattered at the Piltdown site) and was a
friend of an expert on 500-year-old orangutan
skulls used for ritual purposes in Borneo. What
is more, as a spiritualist Conan Doyle was anxious
to attack conventional science.
In the lost World he had gone so far as to write, "You
can fake a bone as easily as you can fake a
photograph."

There have been a hundred books on the Piltdown
case. Fifty name the Guilty Man (or Men, more than a
dozen altogether). When it comes to fraud, John
Evangelist Walsh is against it: the Piltdown fake was
"despicable, an ugly trick played by a warped and
unscrupulous mind." He writes as a private eye rather
than a biologist. His book both gains and loses as a
result.

The loser is science. There is almost nothing
here on the real facts of evolution, either as seen at
the turn of the century or in the radical new
landscape revealed by the genes that turn each
one of us into a living fossil. The gain is in the
sleuthing; the rejection of the impossible until
"whatever remains, however improbably, must
be the truth." Like The Hound of The Baskervilles,
it makes a rattling good read.

Whoever did the deed, Piltdown was a fraud. As
such, to a scientist it loses all interest; but to the
public and to John Evangelist Walsh it assumes a
fascination of its own. Unraveling Piltdown goes
through the unusual suspects. Earlier claims are
dismissed: evidence is "disappointingly superficial,"
"built on the veriest gossamer," or shows "a reckless
use of hearsay." This book, through, is different.
According to the cover, it exposes the true culprit,
and, I have to say, I am convinced. It does.

Nothing is more evocative of a period than its
crime. Sherlock Holes is the icon of Edwardian London
and much of the image of that time is contained in his
deerstalker hat and lantern jaw. Holmes has the
inconvenience of being fictional. Jack the Ripper was
an authentic embvlem of his age. Scores of books on
him, too, together with Ripper tours ofthe East End of
Londeon. The latest suspect is Queen Victoria's
nephew the Duke of Clarence (who had, it is said,
the hobby of dissecting the nether parts of
prostitutes on his days off). He was, as is well
known, murdered by the then Prime Minister, The
Marquis of Salisbury, to conceal the scandal.

Science and villainy are not supposed to overlap.
Usually they do not. However, science is the easiest
place for a villain to make a living. It is not at
all like working in a bank: far from the meticulous
process of cross-checking that it is its public image,
science is a profession that depends uniquely on faith.
Nearly all results are accepted and the question of audit
scarcely arises. Usually a fraud is safe enough.
More than half of all scientific papers are never referred
to again, even by their authors. No doubt there lurk
in the academic undergrowth great monsters of deceit.
Most, though, have done no harm apart from unmerited
tenure for their begetters.

No lie succeeds like a big lie; and some swindles
are enough to make the most cynical gasp and stretch
their eyes. Why bother to transplant skin from a
black to a white mouse when you can get the same
effect with a felt-tip pen? Why not claim that intestinal
worms cause cancer (a Nobel Prize was won for that)
or that water retains a memory of the substances once
dissolved in it even when diluted a billion billion times?
Sir Peter Medawar, the greatest scientific essayist of
all, once described science as "the art of the possible."
On the evidence of Piltdown and his successors,
"plausible" would be a better choice.

The remarkable aspect of the Piltdown fraud was
how long it took to be found out. The story is
simple. In 1912 an amateur paleontologist, a
Sussex lawyer called Charles Dawson, found
some fossilized bone fragments in a pit at Piltdown
in Sussex. With the assistance of - among others -
Arthur Smith Woodward (the geological doyen
of his day) and a priest, Tielhard de Chardin
(know for a book of Olympian vagueness linking
evolution to the Spirit of Christmas in gaseous
envelope called the noosphere), he made a
discovery that caused uproar.

The bones were sensational: fragments of a thick
human skull, with a piece of jaw closely resembling
that of an ape. Although the crucial joint between
jaw and skull was missing, the case for a Missing Link
seemed clear. It was clinched by Teilhard himself, A
year later he turned up an ape-like tooth in the pit.
Any doubts whether this might just be an accidental
conjunction of bones were laid to rest when two more
mixtures of ape and human remains were found in sites
nearby. Altogether more than forty fragments were
found at Piltdown, including pieces of the skeletons
of ancient hippopotami and elephants.

The bones support the "brain first" theory, that
we began in the mind, with the body (or at least the
jaw) following on an idea attractive to anyone of
clerical taste. It also suggestions an ancient
origin, half a million years ago. Most important,
it returned the cradle of intellect to where it
belonged - to England, and to the most idyllic
part of that largely industrial and despondent land.
Fossil nationalism is not dead. In 1995 one of the
archaeologists who discovered the (quite genuine)
half-million-year-old Boxgrove Man a few miles
from Piltdown said, bizarrely: "Now every
Englishman can stand a little taller."

The Piltdown relics were displayed at the
Geological Society in London. The Archbishop of
Canterbury himself came to see them. Their
Englishness was delightfully enhanced by the
discovery in the pit of a bone tool resembling a
cricket bat. On this evidence, Arthur Smith
Woodward (who returned to the site for twenty
years without finding anything else) was moved
to describe Piltdown in his book The Earliest
Englishman as someone who "expressed
himself at least as well as any of the existing
savages." Anthropology was led into a blind
alley for four decades.

It 1953 the truth emerged. Simple chemical tests
showed that every one of the Piltdown fragments was a
fake: either ancient animal bones moved from
elsewhere, or forgeries of quite startling crudity. Jaw
and skull came from different creatures. The teeth
had been filed to disguise their similarity to those
of an their real progenitor, an orangutan. Beneath
the brown paint was almost modern bones; carbon
dating gave Piltdown a history a thousand times
shorter than first calimed. The verdict caused a
sensation. Even the keeper of the
relics in the Natural History Museum was "quite taken
aback."

As in any whodunit, who did it and why? From the
point of view of paleontology, it matters not a whit;
but turning a scientific lapse into a detective story
has kept the tale alive for half a century. Some
denied that there was a crime at all. Teilhard, an
old man by the time of the fraud's exposure but
retaining all of his profession's skilled naivete,
suggested that someone had accidentally thrown
ape bones into a pit where they mixed with a
human burial. Stephen Jay Gould has claimed,
indeed, that Tielhard was himself
the culprit and had done it as a joke one that went
wrong only when it was taken seriously.

Walsh dismisses this and the various fingers
pointed at Conan Doyle, Sir Arthur Keith (Conservator
of the Museum at the Royal College of Surgeons), the
man who made and sold skull casts at the Natural
History Museum, a local jeweler, and all other
suspects. Instead he makes a convincing case that the
fraud was entirely the work of Charles Dawson, the
lawyer who located the site. He planted the original
find, and arranged that the tooth was in place just in
time to be unveiled by Teilhard. The priest was
dubious about his discovery (and remained oddly quiet
about it for the rest of his life) but was not an
accomplice. His sin was a sin of omission failing
to voice doubts rather than commission.

Dawson, it turns out, had a long history of
similar deceptions. He claimed to have found the
first piece of Roman case iron in England (in
reality a trinket bought in a French market), and
just as at Piltdown a second example turned up
as soon as the first was questioned. He had
also unearthed an interesting boat, intermediate
between ancient and modern vessels, together
with an early horseshow of transitional form.
Like Piltdown Man, these were each
missing links. Walsh shows that they, too, were crude
frauds.

None of this counted against Dawson when it came
to Piltdown Man. Suspicions should have been aroused
by his account of a sea serpent in the English Channel
(sixty feet long with loops eight feet up from the
sea: the photographs did not come out). They were
not, and he died -- but not, as he had hoped all his life,
as a Fellow of the Royal Society -- in 1916.

Many questions are unanswered about the Piltdown
hoax. Why was it so readily accepted? Fraud and
fossils tend to go together. Fossils, by their
nature, come singly rather than in multitudes and are
hard to authenticate. In addition, they bring a
message about ourselves which goes beyond
science and can suspend belief.

Those amused by all the evidence of British
gullibility so carefully amassed in this book should
remember the Cardiff Giant. In 1868, in upstate New
York, what seemed to be the remnants of a gigantic
human being were unearthed. Thousands came to see it
at a dollar a view. The director of the New York
State Museum -(supported by Oliver Wendell Holmes
and Ralph Waldo Emerson) called it "the most
remarkable object yet brought to light in this country."
The first human had been found and was American.
The Giant was in fact a badly made gypsum statue,
aged with ink, sand, and acid. The fraud became
obvious when Phineas T. Barnum was sued for
exhibiting a copy, and got off on the
grounds that it was not against the law to fake a
fake.

What to accept about the past is, too often, a
matter of the spirit of the time. The first human
fossil, Neanderthal Man, was, in 1856, dismissed as
the remains of a soldier who had crept into a cave
and died during Napoleon's retreat from Moscow.
A society later entranced by evolution was not
yet ready to believe even genuine evidence.
As soon as it was, though, the bones brought a
political message. The delighted Germans upon
whose territory Neanderthal Man was found
ascribed his prominent brow ridges to a habit of
frowning while deep in Teutonic thought.

Why, even in 1912, fall for a crook as banal as
Dawson? Part of his success was confidence, a
willingness to pronounce with authority (much of it
plagiarized) on subjects from Roman bricks to the gas
supply. In England, at least, scientific merit still
depends on social position; and Dawson moved in
elevated circles. Most of all, he was a member of a
species almost extinct, the scientific amateur taken
seriously by his peers. Once accepted and it did not
take much, no Ph.D. required -- his word had, almost
by definition, the weight of that of the most eminent
academic in the land. He did not in fact belong to
thecommunity of shared faith which is science but,
with a lawyer's skill, saw how fatally open it was to
abuse.

Charles Dawson saw both the strength and the
weakness of science: that, without collective trust,
it simply could not work. Instead there would be the
dismal apparatus of mutual suspicion familiar to any
accountant. Checking the scientific books in this way
would be a task as joyless as accountancy; and no
decent investigator would want to do it. That is why
fraud causes such dismay.

Nowadays, though, the clerks have taken over.
There is a new demand for double-entry bookkeeping.
Some years ago the US Congress set up the Office of
Research Integrity to check a supposed crisis of
scientific cheating. Its credentials were dubious,
but the inquisitors entangled many scientists in
a web of innuendo. More than a hundred fell into
its clutches. Nearly all were found innocent but
many had their careers damaged. The Nobel
Prize winner David Baltimore was eased from his
post as president of Rockefeller University just
because of his association with what was
trumpeted as a modem Piltdown. His
collaborator, the immunologist Thereza Imanishi Kari,
had been accused by an assistant of faking data.
The case against her was dismissed as not
proven after five years of scrutiny. The, ORI
used evidence later described as "irrelevant,
of limited probative value, internally
inconsistent and based on unwarranted
assumptions." Charles Dawson, with his lawyer's
instincts, would, no doubt, have been cleared at once.

All this highlights the central truth about
scientific fraud. It is quite extraordinarily rare.
The reason is simple. Science is a card game against
Nature, the ultimate opponent. The hope is to deduce
the hand she holds from the few clues she is willing
to disclose. It is possible to win every time by faking
one's own cards, but that removes the whole point of
playing the game.

The commonest form of delusion in science is not
fraud but self-delusion, persuading oneself that a
result is there when it is not. (It has happened to
me, but I do not propose to say how.) There is,
certainly, some dishonesty. Perhaps there is
more than there was. It is not gratuitous, as was
Piltdown. Instead it can be blamed on the
intrusion into the laboratory of the
morals of the marketplace.

Britain has just completed a Research Assessment
Exercise in which ten thousand scientists were graded
by their supposed peers. A low score means no more
money, a high one extra slice of cake. Its results
were predictable. Those who have (Oxford looms large)
get more; those who have not get nothing. Expect a
wave of fraud inquiries next time the government
inspectors come round. The deceits will be less fun
to unravel than was Piltdown since, unlike Charles
Dawson, those who commit them are making
pathetic efforts to save a career rather than
grandiose attempts at fame.

However exceptional the event that it describes,
John Evangelist Walsh's book is a thrilling account of
a classic of scientific deception. Surely, though,
there must be room for doubt: could not the Duke of
Clarence have had something to do with it?


A. C. Higgins
SS 359 SUNYA Albany, New York 12222
ACH13@CNSVAX.Albany.edu
Phone: (518) 442 - 4678; FAX: (518) 442 - 4936
SCIFRAUD@CNSIBM.Albany.edu
Date: Tue, 28 Jan 1997 09:48:31 +1000
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: martin bridgstock <m.bridgstock@sct.gu.edu.au>
Subject: Re: Clinton, Birnstingl, et al
Mime-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: text/plain; charset="us-ascii"

I'm not arguing about this, as the person who said that it was in fact a
joint, international effort was right. However - and I'd forgotten Colossus
altogether, which would be about spring 1940 - there is a blue plaque on a
wall at Manchester University saying that the world's first programmable
electronic computer was built there (I think that's what it said).

Now, Colossus was partly mechanical, and as I understand it, ENIAC was not
programmable but was pluggable. So by that definition . . .

Oh, who cares? It's all dissolved into definitions.

Martin Bridgstock



>>
>> I am less conversant with the computer story, and there remains a great
deal of
>> controversy with respect to who first did what when, but did Turing actually
>> build a working computer? If so, when, and what is a good reference? Indeed,
>> what would a good reference for "(Turing, UK, and others in Europe)"?
>>
> This is well documented as an American deed (or misdeed
> depending on your orientation toward computers); any
> basic text in Information Processing ought to include
> the story.
>
> Of course some of the things that led to the development
> of the computer happened in Europe, if one wants to go
> back to running looms.
>
> But the computer as we know it started here. I would
> be glad to post more about this (my husband is pretty
> knowledgeable about all of this, having worked on one
> of the very early ones, Illiac, at the University of
> Illinois, and was part of the design team for its Illiac II.
>
> Ginny Metze
>
>> Vincent Sarich ---
>>
>> OK, now shoot at me.
>>
>
>
Date: Mon, 27 Jan 1997 22:33:58 -0500
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: robert barasch <robertb280@aol.com>
Subject: query and story

If anyone knows of a study or studies of the personalities of people who
administer the death sentence (executioners), I would appreciate references.
My granddaughter is seeking this information for a paper she is writing as a
senior in high school.

Now, in return for the favor I've asked above, I will ply you with an
interesting bit of what might be considered an example of "soft" scientific
fraud. My wife, while shopping in our local food coop -- a place where the
word "sugar" is as unwelcome as tobacco smoke in a health-food restaurant,
saw a sign on a bulk bin reading "dehydrated cane juice." The bin contained a
white powder. Having grown up in Alabama, my wife immediately remembered her
childhood pleasure of chewing on sugar cane and surmised that the near-white
powder might well be sugar. (Of course, she said not a word about this to the
people in the coop, since we treasure our good standing there.)

Bob Barasch
robertb280@aol.com

Bob Bara
Date: Tue, 28 Jan 1997 10:42:30 -0500
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: "sideris, john" <sideris.fpgnb3@mhs.unc.edu>
Organization: UNC
Subject: Re: query and story
in-reply-to: <180dee3201f60094@mhs.unc.edu>
MIME-Version: 1.0
Content-type: text/plain; charset="US-ASCII"
Content-transfer-encoding: 7bit

I have seen similar instances of this kind of "soft" fraud. Our local
co-op stopped carrying Ben & Jerry's Cherry Garcia because the bits of
cherry contained traces of sulfites. I turned around and saw a couple of
hundred bottles of red wine, all containing sulfites in much greater
amounts.
I, thinking I was being a responsible scientists (plus I wanted my damn
ice cream), pointed out this inconsistancy to the clerk. He looked at me
quizically and just bagged the stuff I did buy.
Nonetheless, I think it is extremely important that we complain about
and point out doublespeak (dehydrated cane juice?!?!) and nonsense
whenever we see it.
js


"It doesn't matter if it feels good; what matters is if it's true."
-- Carl Sagan
John H. Sideris
john_sideris@unc.edu
Date: Tue, 28 Jan 1997 09:58:51 -0800
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: james shea <shea@cs.uwp.edu>
Subject: Re: query and story
in-reply-to: <970127223358_73884375@emout14.mail.aol.com>
MIME-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: TEXT/PLAIN; charset=US-ASCII

Bob Barasch:

I hope your wife purchased some of that white powder. If she did, or
still can, you could give it to an organic chemist and ask him to
determine whether it is, indeed, sugar.

Perhaps readers of this list are familiar with another of the current
health-food fads: "sea salt". Somehow this is supposed to be better than
salt that is mined. Image is everything you know.

Jim Shea
Date: Tue, 28 Jan 1997 11:34:01 -0800
Reply-To: siano@cceb.med.upenn.edu
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: brian siano <siano@cceb.med.upenn.edu>
Organization: University of Pennsylvania CCEB
Subject: Re: query and story
MIME-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: text/plain; charset=us-ascii
Content-Transfer-Encoding: 7bit

Sideris, John wrote:
>
> I have seen similar instances of this kind of "soft" fraud. Our local
> co-op stopped carrying Ben & Jerry's Cherry Garcia because the bits of
> cherry contained traces of sulfites. I turned around and saw a couple of
> hundred bottles of red wine, all containing sulfites in much greater
> amounts.
> I, thinking I was being a responsible scientists (plus I wanted my damn
> ice cream), pointed out this inconsistancy to the clerk. He looked at me
> quizically and just bagged the stuff I did buy.
> Nonetheless, I think it is extremely important that we complain about
> and point out doublespeak (dehydrated cane juice?!?!) and nonsense
> whenever we see it.

Might be a good idea not to complain to the clerks: they don't have
any clout in the matter.
This leads to a fascinating issue: exactly what constitutes a
misleading label? If I label something as "sucrose" versus "sugar,"
is that _more_ accurate (i.e., making a distinction between sucrose
and fructose) or _less_ accurate (in that many people wouldn't know
that sucrose is sugar)? One finds onself torn between using
colloquialisms,
or sounding like Beldar Conehead and his "fried chicken
embryos and starched extract of hooved mammals."
(For what it's worth, the only wine I know of that actually labels
itself accurately is this New York producer called Bully Hill: the
owner's a Taylor scion who objected to things like adding sulfites,
tank car wines, filtering through asbestos, etc. The wine's good, but
it tastes extremely strong.)
Date: Tue, 28 Jan 1997 17:19:18 GMT
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: simon birnstingl <swb@pavilion.co.uk>
Subject: Re: query and story
Mime-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: text/plain; charset="us-ascii"

>Bob Barasch:
>
> I hope your wife purchased some of that white powder. If she did, or
>still can, you could give it to an organic chemist and ask him to
>determine whether it is, indeed, sugar.
>
> Perhaps readers of this list are familiar with another of the current
>health-food fads: "sea salt". Somehow this is supposed to be better than
>salt that is mined. Image is everything you know.
>
>Jim Shea

Over here in the UK we have Gary Rhodes, a celebrity chef, extolling the
virtues of one brand of cane sugar as being "pure cane sugar". This is
interesting as, so far as I know, sucrose is very easy to purify to almost
100%. If this is the case, how can the source make any difference to the
product? The only difference to the UK is that we do not grow cane, but
sugar beet, so by buying cane sugar we are not supporting our own farmers.

Any more of these? I am interested as I love emailing UK consumer programs
with this stuff as it usually throws them completely.

Simon Birnstingl


Simon Birnstingl
Conformance Environmental
5a Livingstone Road
Hove, Sussex
BN3 3WP
United Kingdom

email:
environment@conformance.co.uk

tel: ++ 44(0)1273 204369
fax: ++ 44(0)1298 873801 ***PLEASE NOTE NEW FAX NUMBER***
Date: Tue, 28 Jan 1997 12:28:38 -0800
Reply-To: siano@cceb.med.upenn.edu
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: brian siano <siano@cceb.med.upenn.edu>
Organization: University of Pennsylvania CCEB
Subject: Re: query and story
MIME-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: text/plain; charset=us-ascii
Content-Transfer-Encoding: 7bit

Simon Birnstingl wrote:
>
> >Bob Barasch:
> >
> > I hope your wife purchased some of that white powder. If she did, or
> >still can, you could give it to an organic chemist and ask him to
> >determine whether it is, indeed, sugar.
> >
> > Perhaps readers of this list are familiar with another of the current
> >health-food fads: "sea salt". Somehow this is supposed to be better than
> >salt that is mined. Image is everything you know.
> >
> >Jim Shea
>
> Over here in the UK we have Gary Rhodes, a celebrity chef, extolling the
> virtues of one brand of cane sugar as being "pure cane sugar". This is
> interesting as, so far as I know, sucrose is very easy to purify to almost
> 100%. If this is the case, how can the source make any difference to the
> product? The only difference to the UK is that we do not grow cane, but
> sugar beet, so by buying cane sugar we are not supporting our own farmers.

We have the same stuff here, even in those little packets for
your tea or coffee. I think it was marketed under the name "Sucanat"
for a time. Its main benefit is that there's still a touch of
molasses in the stuff-- though molasses isn't exactly brimming with
vitamins and minerals and good ol' country goodness, either.
Date: Tue, 28 Jan 1997 17:07:00 EST
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
Comments: RFC822 error: <W> CC field duplicated. Last occurrence was
retained.
from: "gardenier, john s." <jsg6@nch11a.em.cdc.gov>
Subject: Things You (Hopefully) Never Knew Existed
Comments: cc: "Burwell, Audrey L." <azb2@NCH11A.EM.CDC.GOV>,
"Ingster, Lillian M." <LXI0@NCH11A.EM.CDC.GOV>,
"Vaive, Patricia A." <pav2@NCH11A.EM.CDC.GOV>,
Andy White <awhite@nas.org>

Selected offerings from a mail-order catalog with the subject title
(excluding the parentheses):

Video: Hoaglands' Mars: the U.N. Briefing "Hoagland's presentation to the
United Nations. Inside look at information that several governments have
viewed in private briefings. Makes a powerful scientific case for crucial
connections between ancient structures on Mars & the ruins of ancient
civilizations on Earth. Includes NASA 'UFO' footage. 115 min. VHS"

Book: Universal LAWS Never Before Revealed: Keely's Secrets. "Amazing
Lost technology - - Over 100 years ago an inventor/scientist/philosopher
named John Keely invented a device that worked on 'sympathetic vibration' to
create antigravity and free energy. Keely also developed a surprising
number of mind-blowing devices, all of which are depicted here in text,
photos & diagrams. Almost lost forever, this book finally compiles ten
years of research that explains the astounding technology. Chapters on
levitation, synthesized wave forms, etheric forces oscillation, much more.
Anti-gravity fans should not miss this book. 285 pages."

Handbook: The Free-Energy Device Handbook. "Alternative Energy - - Do
free-energy motors exist that will supplant combustion engines and nuclear
power? From the earliest concepts of free-energy to the genius of Nikola
Tesla & the modern day inventions, this handbook presents the truth. Packed
with patents, diagrams, descriptions & illustration of various devices from
around the world. No modern scientist or experimenter can ignore this book.
Power your own electric car or spacecraft with one of these generators.
306 page book will astound & inform."

Book: The Philadelphia Experiment Chronicles. "Biggest alleged
military cover-up of all time. Commander X, retired intelligence operative,
tells the inside story of a massive government conspiracy involving the
military, Albert Einstein & Nikola Telsa (sic). Reveals facts concerning a
massive black hole that was blown in our atmosphere that allowed negative
alien forces to enter our dimension. Details on time travel, teleportation,
alternative energy, anti-gravity. 136 pages."

An explanation for these offerings may be found on a later page of the
catalog:

Gelatin Brain Mold - - "Real Food For Thought. We're handing out brains.
Don't miss out this time , too!
Sorry, don't mind us, our brains have turned to gel from so much thinking.
Heavy duty dishwasher safe plastic brain mold makes a life-size
brain-shaped gelatin desert. . . . Complete with recipe for flesh colored
gelatin."

Gosh, these guys may give Social Text some real competition!!

John Gardenier
Date: Tue, 28 Jan 1997 17:25:50 -0800
Reply-To: siano@cceb.med.upenn.edu
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: brian siano <siano@cceb.med.upenn.edu>
Organization: University of Pennsylvania CCEB
Subject: Re: Things You (Hopefully) Never Knew Existed
MIME-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: text/plain; charset=us-ascii
Content-Transfer-Encoding: 7bit

Gardenier, John S. wrote:
>
> Gosh, these guys may give Social Text some real competition!!

That reminds me. I recently picked up the anthology _Science
Wars_, edited by Andrew Ross, which collects all the _other_ articles
from that notorious issue. (They do mention Sokal's piece, but
in passing, in the introduction. Just as well: there are
probably at least two books on the Sokal hoax in preparation
anyway.)
As much as I liked Sokal's hoax, it's sad to see that there
are actually a couple of decent pieces in the book, and that
they'll get ignored in favor of whatever lessons people take from
the Sokal affair. And there are one or two reviews of _Higher
Superstition_ that are definitely worth reading: I don't know if
they appeared in the original journal, but they raise a number of
criticisms of Gross and Levitt's book that are worth considering.
Date: Tue, 28 Jan 1997 17:48:00 EST
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: "gardenier, john s." <jsg6@nch11a.em.cdc.gov>
Subject: Re: Things You (Hopefully) Never Knew Existed

Brian Siano wrote:

As much as I liked Sokal's hoax, it's sad to see that there
are actually a couple of decent pieces in the book, and that
they'll get ignored in favor of whatever lessons people take from
the Sokal affair.


In all fairness, I should also mention that there are items for sale in the
catalog which may well serve the purpose advertised. They should not be
ignored simply because the science offerings are not credible.
:-)

John Gardenier
Date: Wed, 29 Jan 1997 00:18:23 -0500
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: leon mintz <lmintz@tiac.net>
Subject: Dehydrated cane juice.
Mime-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: text/plain; charset="us-ascii"

Some time ago, I noticed on a supermarket shelf a bottle of tomato juice
from "organically grown tomatoes" (at $3.79). I checked the same size
bottle of Campbell juice, it was $1.19. I have seen supermarket brands at
$1.00. Observing this "organically grown product" I realized that acronym
PCB can be applied not only to things like Social Text but has a literal
meaning.

"Grown with the best PCB!"

This reminded me of an old joke attributed to "Armenian Radio":

Q) We asked Armenian Radio: Why Armenian Brandy with five stars was awarded
a gold medal and Armenian Brandy with three stars did not get any awards
last year?

A) We had been surprised ourselves. We had bottled them from the same barrel.

Leon Mintz
Date: Wed, 29 Jan 1997 13:36:00 EST
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: "gardenier, john s." <jsg6@nch11a.em.cdc.gov>
Subject: Re: Clinton's inauguration speech

Simon Birnstingl wrote, in part:

Claims that America first split the atom (Rutherford, a New Zealander, did
it at
Cambridge UK), invented the computer (Turing, UK, and others in Europe)
etc. are being seen as either ambitious revisionism or amazing ignorance,
and are giving us a bit of a laugh at the expense of the good old U.S. of A.


This is largely another example of England and the United States being "two
countries divided by a common language." In substance, what Clinton said in
his inauguration speech is at least as accurate as the above. The problem
arises in the vagueness of terms. The truth, unsurprisingly, is much more
complex than a politician can capture in a sound bite.

Clinton was referring, more literally, to splitting the NUCLEUS of the atom.
That is what Americans generally refer to when we talk of "splitting the
atom." What Rutherford had done was split off the nucleus of the helium
atom (the alpha particle) from its electrons and use alpha particles to
convert nitrogen atoms to oxygen atoms. His science was magnificent,
although incomplete, and was an indispensable predecessor to the 1913 Niels
Bohr (Danish) model of the atom.

Referring to ENIAC as "the first computer" is, as Birnstingl claimed,
literally wrong, but no more inaccurate than the reference to Turing above.
ENIAC was, literally, "the first general-purpose electronic computer." We
Americans (of notorious historical ignorance) tend to think that the word
"computer" means a general-purpose electronic device for data storage and
calculation in many different applications. (I will summarize the truth
below.) Still, many of us do know, as Birnstingl should, that Turing never
created any form of computer. What he did was to work out some of the
mathematical abstractions on which modern computing is based. Great stuff,
of course, but hardly the invention of "the computer."

From Encyclopedia Americana, COMPUTER, History, pp. 490ff:

The root of the computer is the abacus - - of uncertain, but clearly ancient
origin. The first four function mechanical arithmetic calculator was built
around 1623-24 by Wilhelm Schickard in Germany. That work was lost and not
available to the 19-year old Blaise Pascal, when he invented a two function
(addition and subtraction) mechanical calculator in 1642. "Gottfried
Wilhelm von Leibnitz appended to Pascal's machine a device for automatically
doing multiplication and division." It was exhibited in 1673. That, and
later mechanical calculators performed multiplication by repeated additions.
In 1887, Leon Bollee built a multiplication table into a calculator.

It was in the early 19th Century, I was taught in my graduate studies, that
the real forerunner of the modern computer came on the scene. It was the
Jacquard loom (French.) Americana, under TEXTILES, History of Textiles,
puts a different "spin" on what some of us consider a noble and heroic
invention. Regarding improvements to the tools of weaving, it states, "From
the point of view of the art historian, the most important {improvement} was
the Jacquard attachment to the drawloom, which made the weaving of
elaborately patterned fabrics a mechanical process. But even more
destructive of artistic quality in textiles were the rising standard of
living and the increase in population." The Jacquard loom used punched
holes to control the motions of the loom, foreshadowing what later came to
be known as the "IBM card."

Charles Babbage of England began development of a "difference engine" and
later, in 1833, began development of the more important "analytical engine."
Babbage acknowledged that his idea for the use of punched cards to input
instructions and numbers into the engine came directly from the Jacquard
loom. The first "computer programmer," Lady Ada Lovelace, also English,
programmed the calculation of Bernoulli numbers on Babbage's analytical
engine. Babbage's devices remained incomplete, however, until some Swedes
completed the difference engine in 1853.

The first major data processing application was the use of punched cards by
Herman Hollerith to process the records of 63,000,000 people in the 1890 U.
S. census. He went on to found what later became the International Business
Machines Corporation or IBM.

The first really powerful computers, based on developments from 1897 to
1930, were quite different from today's. The used mechanical shapes,
drives, and motions to solve complex equations, including calculus, in "real
time." Because of their use of mechanical analogs of mathematical
processes, they were known as analog computers. During naval officer
training in 1960, my classmates and I were forced to memorize the schematics
for the analog firing control computers, developed before World War II, to
solve the surface and air naval gunfire problems. {Following the test, we
forget them as quickly as we had learned them.} Later, as a civilian deeply
interested in computer simulation, I was intitially taught that the superior
tool for simulations would ALWAYS be the hybrid computer, part analog and
part digital. That was actually true in some applications for about 10-15
years. But I digress.

"In 1937, Howard H. Aiken of Harvard University conceived the first
large-scale automatic digital computer. It was built by IBM in 1944." It
had mechanical components and punched cards or tape for input. Aiken built
a large relay computer in 1947, which was able to perform a multiplication
in about one second - fast for the time. "By the early 1940's, it was clear
that the relay as a computer component had been made obsolete by the
electronic circuit, which provided much higher operating speeds."

Work on the first all-electronic general purpose computer, ENIAC for
Electronic Numerical Integrator and Computer, began in 1943 and was
completed in the winter of 1944-45. It was a U. S. Army-sponsored project
at the University of Pennsylvania. During that time, a series of
special-purpose computers, the COLOSSI were built in England. "The COLOSSI
were special-purpose vacuum tube machines containing a single tape that
carried the input data." The project was supervised by mathematician M. H.
A. Newman. They contained about 2,000 vacuum tubes; they did not have
stored programs, but rather preset patterns. In contrast, ENIAC had 18,000
tubes, a high speed memory of 20 words and a read-only memory of 450 words,
which was a start but a very limited one.

In 1944, a study group consisting of A. W. Burks, J. P. Eckert, A. K.
Goldstine, J. W. Maunchly, John von Neumann, and a few others was formed to
improve on the ENIAC. The resulting ideas dominated computer design for the
next two decades. "These ideas were: (1) separation of storage, arithmetic,
and control functions; (2) random-access memory; (3) stored program; (4)
arithmetic modification of instructions; (5) conditional branching; (6)
choice between binary number and decimal number representation; and (7)
choice between serial and parallel operation. The ideas were embodied in a
paper by von Neumann" in 1945. The EDVAC machine it described was not
actually built until 1952, "but a group of English engineers headed by
Maurice V. Wilkes made a machine, the EDSAC (Electronic Delay Storage
Automatic Computer), at Cambridge University modeled on von Neumann's
report. This machine, placed in service in June 1949, was the first stored
program computer." AMERICANA, COMPUTERS, 4. History, p. 490.

The first commercially exploited computer was the American UNIVAC series;
the first one was built between August 1947 and March 1951.

So who built the first (modern) computer? Americans tend to think our ENIAC
was the first; it did have SOME memory after all. It is hardly inaccurate
for the British to claim they built the first true computer - - one
embodying the defining concepts of the modern computer. Those concepts,
however, were first specified in America based on experience with ENIAC.
ENIAC, in turn, was not predicated on COLOSSUS, a much more limited
contemporary. The discussion is basically silly. The first valuable
computing device was developed and utilized in Asia - the abacus. The
development of computers, and the concepts of computer programming are
irrevocably dependent on a host of Europeans and Americans. The computer
cannot truthfully be called the product of any one country, although it is a
product of the Western Hemisphere - - so far. Still, I would not put it
past the Eastern Hemisphere to generate the next major phase of computing
concepts - beyond simply decreasing size and increasing speed. They
certainly are trying.

Meanwhile, let us not reduce our view of science to an "ad patrium"
conception that is as misleading as any "ad hominem" argument.
Politicians, however, will continue to do their thing.

John Gardenier
Date: Wed, 29 Jan 1997 14:03:57 -0800
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: james shea <shea@cs.uwp.edu>
Subject: Re: Clinton's inauguration speech
in-reply-to: <32ef1c31@smtpout.em.cdc.gov>
MIME-Version: 1.0
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Colleagues:

I believe I read recently (in Scientific American) that a group of
Americans recently used modern machining capabilities to construct Babbage's
analytical engine and to demonstrate that it really can do what Babbage
expected it to do. My memory of the matter is hazy though.

Jim Shea
Date: Wed, 29 Jan 1997 15:30:55 -0500
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: jim giglio <jgiglio@nova.umuc.edu>
Subject: Re: Clinton's inauguration speech
in-reply-to: <pine.pcw.3.91.970129140115.9887i-100000@grnq-143.uwp.edu>
MIME-Version: 1.0
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On Wed, 29 Jan 1997, James Shea wrote:

> I believe I read recently (in Scientific American) that a group of
> Americans recently used modern machining capabilities to construct Babbage's
> analytical engine and to demonstrate that it really can do what Babbage
> expected it to do. My memory of the matter is hazy though.

Funny you should mention it; the issue is sitting on my desk. It's
February 1993. The author was Doron Swade, of the Science Museum in
London. They built part of the machine, and it did work.

| Science, like democracy, is the worst system |
| of its type - except for all the others. |
jgiglio@nova.umuc.edu
Date: Wed, 29 Jan 1997 12:47:00 -0900
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: "douglas c. hintz" <dchintz@oregon.uoregon.edu>
Subject: Re: Dehydrated cane juice.
MIME-version: 1.0
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Leon Mintz wrote, in part:
>Some time ago, I noticed on a supermarket shelf a bottle of tomato juice
>from "organically grown tomatoes" (at $3.79). I checked the same size
>bottle of Campbell juice, it was $1.19. I have seen supermarket brands at
>$1.00. Observing this "organically grown product" I realized that acronym
>PCB can be applied not only to things like Social Text but has a literal
>meaning.
>
The implication seems to be that the organically grown product is
artificially OVERpriced because it is "politically correct". Perhaps the
organically grown juice was more expensive because a lot of people want the
product but not enough farmers are growing tomatoes organically. (supply
and demand) They may want the product for reasons that are not supported by
research (health claims) or they may want the product for political or
social reasons, or perhaps that brand tastes better.
But, I feel that it is more accurate to argue that the commercially
grown product was artificially UNDERpriced. I have many friends involved
with the organic produce industry here on the west coast. The farmers and
distributors don't just mouth words as a marketing ploy - they carry the
idea of social responsibility to all facets of their operation. They pay
their field workers, who are often unionized, a good wage, including
benefits; they use processing plants where the workers are unionized with
good pay and benefits. Is the Campbell's brand cheaper because the field
workers and processors are paid below-subsistence wages, live in tents, have
no benefits, union organizers are beaten and deported, etc?
What about the hidden costs that are later picked up by taxpayers
when chemical plants that produce the fertilizers and pesticides need to be
cleaned up. Many pesticides and fertilizers are distilled from petroleum -
how many billions (and lives) were spent to make sure that oil would flow
uninterrupted from the Middle East in 1990-1991. Should we factor in the
cost of each life lost at Bhopal, India as part of the cost of using
chemicals in agiculture?
Douglas C. Hintz 68 PLC Hall
Mathematics Instructor University of Oregon
Academic Learning Services Eugene, Oregon 97403
dchintz@oregon.uoregon.edu phone:541-346-3226
Date: Wed, 29 Jan 1997 20:51:02 -0500
Reply-To: jjfreed@netreach.net
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: jerome freed <jjfreed@netreach.net>
Organization: 710 Davidson Rd, Phil'a PA, USA
Subject: Re: Clinton's inauguration speech
Mime-Version: 1.0
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John Gardenier wrote:

> The first really powerful computers, based on developments from 1890 to
> 1930, were quite different from today's. They used mechanical shapes,
> drives, and motions to solve complex equations, including calculus, in >"real time." Because
of their use of mechanical analogs of mathematical
> processes, they were known as analog computers.

Many thanks for this delightful synopsis of computer development.
However, it omits the powerful analog devices called slide-rules. In
the 1940s, the young engineer's ultimate weapon was the K&E 20-inch
LogLogDuplexDecitrig in its leather scabbard. Of course, it could not
add or subtract.
Date: Thu, 30 Jan 1997 07:42:22 -0600
Reply-To: acchaves@cariari.ucr.ac.cr
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: anny chaves <acchaves@cariari.ucr.ac.cr>
Subject: Re: Dehydrated cane juice.
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On a visit to one of our Antarctic bases in the summer of '79 / '80 I
was shown bottles of "Tomato Juice" supplied by a corporation in the
States for consumption by military personnel in the field. The
astounding thing is that the label declaimed:

"This product contains no natural ingredients"

No wonder nobody wanted to use the stuff!


Leslie du Toit
Date: Thu, 30 Jan 1997 07:54:43 -0800
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: james shea <shea@cs.uwp.edu>
Subject: Re: Clinton's inauguration speech
comments: to: jerome freed <jjfreed@netreach.net>
in-reply-to: <32effe85.3804@netreach.net>
MIME-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: TEXT/PLAIN; charset=US-ASCII

Colleagues:

In fact, as late as the late 1950s, the slide rule, particularly the
K&Es were the calculating device of choice for students. There were
"rotary" calculators (such as the Monroes and the Fridens) but they were
expensive and prone to breakdown. I used them in the early 60s and they
were, nevertheless, marvelous.

Jim Shea
Date: Thu, 30 Jan 1997 07:57:13 -0800
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: james shea <shea@cs.uwp.edu>
Subject: Re: Dehydrated cane juice.
comments: to: anny chaves <acchaves@cariari.ucr.ac.cr>
in-reply-to: <32f0a53e.32ae@cariari.ucr.ac.cr>
MIME-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: TEXT/PLAIN; charset=US-ASCII

Leslie:

If it contained "no natural ingredients", how could it be "tomato" juice?

Jim Shea
Date: Thu, 30 Jan 1997 08:53:00 EST
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: "gardenier, john s." <jsg6@nch11a.em.cdc.gov>
Subject: Re: Clinton's inauguration speech

Jerome Freed wrote:

Many thanks for this delightful synopsis of computer development.
However, it omits the powerful analog devices called slide-rules.


You are absolutely right, Jerome; it was the most ubiquitous problem-solving
computer for several decades. In fact, I remember when Hewlett-Packard
introduced its initial hand-held programmable calculator, the HP-35. To
maximize the market for it, they billed it as an "electronic slide rule."

John Gardenier
Date: Thu, 30 Jan 1997 17:35:58 GMT
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: simon birnstingl <swb@pavilion.co.uk>
Subject: Re: Clinton's inauguration speech
Mime-Version: 1.0
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>Colleagues:
>
> In fact, as late as the late 1950s, the slide rule, particularly the
>K&Es were the calculating device of choice for students. There were
>"rotary" calculators (such as the Monroes and the Fridens) but they were
>expensive and prone to breakdown. I used them in the early 60s and they
>were, nevertheless, marvelous.
>
>Jim Shea


Dear Scifraud,

My father, an engineer, taught me how to use one and I still have it. I do
not use it much but I cannot bring myself to throw it away, it is such a
nice piece. It languishes somewhere to hand on my desk, an anachronism to
most people today. Maybe if the prophets of doom are right and the world
ends soon I will be glad I kept it!


Simon Birnstingl


Simon Birnstingl
Conformance Environmental
5a Livingstone Road
Hove, Sussex
BN3 3WP
United Kingdom

email:
environment@conformance.co.uk

tel: ++ 44(0)1273 204369
fax: ++ 44(0)1298 873801 ***PLEASE NOTE NEW FAX NUMBER***
Date: Thu, 30 Jan 1997 14:02:06 -0500
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: al higgins <ach13@louise.csbs.albany.edu>
Organization: Sociology Department, CAS UAlbany
Subject: Towards a New Definition of Misconduct
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Towards a New Definition of Misconduct

Here's a brief notice of what may be coming in terms of a new
White House definition of misconduct in science.

The article from Science is reproduced in its entirety.

++++++++++


\Kaiser, Jocelyn. "Storm Brewing Over Misconduct
Definition Science 275 (24 January 1997), p. 467.\

An interagency White House panel has been laboring behind
closed doors since last spring on a new federal definition of
scientific misconduct, and no one is willing to say where it's
headed. But according to a source close to the issue, the draft
definition is much narrower than current rules-so much so that
National Science Foundation (NSF) staffers expressed
concern when they were briefed on it last month.

The new definition is being written by a White House group
called the Committee on Fundamental Science; it will
replace the disparate versions now used by several
agencies. The panel's draft, completed last month, is
being kept under tight wraps. But a source involved in
several high-profile misconduct cases has heard that
the definition is going to be controversial: It is limited
to fabrication or falsification of data and plagiarism
(FFP), and drops a fourth general category of "other
serious deviations" that is now part of NSF and
Department of Health and Human Services (HHS)
definitions. NSF staffers say they can't comment
until the proposal is public, but NSF has
vigorously defended the "other" category in the past.

Pittsburgh misconduct lawyer Deborah Parrish says that for
the fraud police -- HHS's Office of Research Integrity and
NSF's inspector-general -- dropping the "other" prong
would mean big changes. NSF considers all scientific
misconduct, ncluding FFP, to be "serious deviations"
and has pursued "other" cases such as sexual
harassment. And although ORI limits its investigations
to FFP, it has compelled universities to investigate
"other" misdeeds such as breaching confidential peer
review, Parrish says.

Ernest Moniz of the White House Office of Science and
Technology Policy says his office expects to brief other
agencies on the new definition in the coming weeks.


A. C. Higgins
SS 359 SUNYA Albany, New York 12222
ACH13@CNSVAX.Albany.edu
Phone: (518) 442 - 4678; FAX: (518) 442 - 4936
SCIFRAUD@CNSIBM.Albany.edu
Date: Thu, 30 Jan 1997 11:47:00 -0900
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: "douglas c. hintz" <dchintz@oregon.uoregon.edu>
Subject: Re: Clinton's inauguration speech
MIME-version: 1.0
Content-type: text/plain; charset="us-ascii"
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>>Colleagues:
>>
>> In fact, as late as the late 1950s, the slide rule, particularly the
>>K&Es were the calculating device of choice for students. There were
>>"rotary" calculators (such as the Monroes and the Fridens) but they were
>>expensive and prone to breakdown. I used them in the early 60s and they
>>were, nevertheless, marvelous.
>>
>>Jim Shea
>
>
>Dear Scifraud,
>
>My father, an engineer, taught me how to use one and I still have it. I do
>not use it much but I cannot bring myself to throw it away, it is such a
>nice piece. It languishes somewhere to hand on my desk, an anachronism to
>most people today. Maybe if the prophets of doom are right and the world
>ends soon I will be glad I kept it!
>
>
>Simon Birnstingl



I have two or three and I still use them in my college algebra classes when
we come to the section on the properties of logarithms. First we make a
"slide rule" that adds and subtracts by using two scales with equal
intervals. The best thing about slide rules is that it forces students to
estimate the answer first, since you have to keep track of the decimal place
yourself, unlike an electronic calculator. You can still find slide rules
at garage sales, right next to the 8-track tape cassettes.
Douglas C. Hintz 68 PLC Hall
Mathematics Instructor University of Oregon
Academic Learning Services Eugene, Oregon 97403
dchintz@oregon.uoregon.edu phone:541-346-3226
Date: Thu, 30 Jan 1997 15:13:22 -0500
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: jason tiscione <tiscionj@vax.cs.hscsyr.edu>
Subject: Re: Clinton's inauguration speech
in-reply-to: <199701301735.raa06699@florence.pavilion.net>
MIME-version: 1.0
Content-type: TEXT/PLAIN; charset=US-ASCII
Content-transfer-encoding: 7BIT

On Thu, 30 Jan 1997, Simon Birnstingl wrote:
> > In fact, as late as the late 1950s, the slide rule, particularly the
> >K&Es were the calculating device of choice for students. There were
> >"rotary" calculators (such as the Monroes and the Fridens) but they were
> >expensive and prone to breakdown. I used them in the early 60s and they
> >were, nevertheless, marvelous.
> >Jim Shea
>
> My father, an engineer, taught me how to use one and I still have it. I do
> not use it much but I cannot bring myself to throw it away, it is such a
> nice piece. It languishes somewhere to hand on my desk, an anachronism to
> most people today. Maybe if the prophets of doom are right and the world
> ends soon I will be glad I kept it!
> Simon Birnstingl

I bought a little one, when I was ten (i.e. in 1981) at a cheap department
store because I was curious about what they were supposed to do. I
learned how to use it from the little instruction sheet and I got pretty
good at reading all the little scales but I found the whole slide rule
experience to be a bit clunky. You had to make sure that your fingers
didn't slip and your eyes read the line right, and by the time you got
the least significant digit, you forgot what it was you were calculating.
My father had a larger slide rule but my little sister whacked me on the
head with it when I turned off her cartoons. Slide rules don't take well
to stuff like that- they irreversibly lose precision.

Having grown up after slide rules became extinct, it's almost
amazing for me to think that they were known at all in the popular
culture B.C. (before calculators). You never see them any more!
In the movie "Fantastic Voyage", which was about a spaceship-thingee that
shrinks to the size of a bacterium so that the crew can travel inside the
president's brain and blow away a tumor, there is a scene where a
bigshot general is worrying about how much time is left before the ship
expands again and blows the president's head wide open. He pulls out a
slide rule, and says something like "hmmm... 34 minutes." My brother
started laughing. He thought it was a ruler.
Jason Tiscione
Date: Thu, 30 Jan 1997 15:06:25 PST
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: edrie sobstyl <esobstyl@utdallas.edu>
Subject: Re: Clinton's inauguration speech
MIME-Version: 1.0
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One of the most fascinating things about the documentary film about the Apollo 13
disaster (the PBS version, not the Hollywood one) is the sight of the dozens of NASA engineers
etc., sitting around the control room and working out the complex calculations that enabled the
craft to re-enter the atmosphere and splash down safely, using slide rules, pencils and paper.
One wonders if the astronauts would have been saved had the mishap taken place today.

Edrie Sobstyl

On Thu, 30 Jan 1997 15:13:22 -0500 Jason Tiscione wrote:

> from: jason tiscione <tiscionj@vax.cs.hscsyr.edu>
> Date: Thu, 30 Jan 1997 15:13:22 -0500
> Subject: Re: Clinton's inauguration speech
> To: SCIFRAUD@CNSIBM.ALBANY.EDU
>
> On Thu, 30 Jan 1997, Simon Birnstingl wrote:
> > > In fact, as late as the late 1950s, the slide rule, particularly the
> > >K&Es were the calculating device of choice for students. There were
> > >"rotary" calculators (such as the Monroes and the Fridens) but they were
> > >expensive and prone to breakdown. I used them in the early 60s and they
> > >were, nevertheless, marvelous.
> > >Jim Shea
> >
> > My father, an engineer, taught me how to use one and I still have it. I do
> > not use it much but I cannot bring myself to throw it away, it is such a
> > nice piece. It languishes somewhere to hand on my desk, an anachronism to
> > most people today. Maybe if the prophets of doom are right and the world
> > ends soon I will be glad I kept it!
> > Simon Birnstingl
>
> I bought a little one, when I was ten (i.e. in 1981) at a cheap department
> store because I was curious about what they were supposed to do. I
> learned how to use it from the little instruction sheet and I got pretty
> good at reading all the little scales but I found the whole slide rule
> experience to be a bit clunky. You had to make sure that your fingers
> didn't slip and your eyes read the line right, and by the time you got
> the least significant digit, you forgot what it was you were calculating.
> My father had a larger slide rule but my little sister whacked me on the
> head with it when I turned off her cartoons. Slide rules don't take well
> to stuff like that- they irreversibly lose precision.
>
> Having grown up after slide rules became extinct, it's almost
> amazing for me to think that they were known at all in the popular
> culture B.C. (before calculators). You never see them any more!
> In the movie "Fantastic Voyage", which was about a spaceship-thingee that
> shrinks to the size of a bacterium so that the crew can travel inside the
> president's brain and blow away a tumor, there is a scene where a
> bigshot general is worrying about how much time is left before the ship
> expands again and blows the president's head wide open. He pulls out a
> slide rule, and says something like "hmmm... 34 minutes." My brother
> started laughing. He thought it was a ruler.
> Jason Tiscione
Date: Thu, 30 Jan 1997 16:41:15 -0800
Reply-To: siano@cceb.med.upenn.edu
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: brian siano <siano@cceb.med.upenn.edu>
Organization: University of Pennsylvania CCEB
Subject: Re: Clinton's inauguration speech
MIME-Version: 1.0
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Edrie Sobstyl wrote:
>
> One of the most fascinating things about the documentary
film about the Apollo 13 disaster (the PBS version, not the
Hollywood one) is the sight of the dozens of NASA engineers
> etc., sitting around the control room and working out the
complex calculations that enabled the > craft to re-enter
the atmosphere and splash down safely, using slide rules,
pencils and paper.
> One wonders if the astronauts would have been saved had
the mishap taken place today.
>
In the Hollywood version, there's a brief shot of
an engineer using a slide rule to work out some stuff. I
remember seeing that scene, and thinking two things.
The first was "Man, when was the last time I even _saw_
one of those things?"

The second was a little sarcastic: "Gee, if their
computers can do those nifty graphics, how come they
weren't using _them_?" (The movie got that wrong, y'see: the
screens at NASA in those days didn't do graphics.)


--
Brian Siano - siano@cceb.med.upenn.edu
Date: Fri, 31 Jan 1997 10:19:07 +1000
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: martin bridgstock <m.bridgstock@sct.gu.edu.au>
Subject: Re: Clinton's inauguration speech
comments: to: brian siano <siano@cceb.med.upenn.edu>
in-reply-to: <32f13fab.4ce6@cceb.med.upenn.edu>
MIME-Version: 1.0
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Yes, I've still got several slide rules. My pride and joy was a Pickett
and Eckel log-log monster, which I've still got: I never learned how to
use all the scales. Still, I used it in my first research job from
1971-2: I had to do dozens of significance tests, and used the slide rule
and a hand-cranked adding machine.

I remember a classic joke from the 60s, that an engineer is a person who,
when you ask him what three squared is, pulls out a slide rule, fiddles
and announces "Ummm ... about 8.98".

Martin Bridgstock
Date: Thu, 30 Jan 1997 19:20:06 -0800
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: dean costello <costello@earthlink.net>
Subject: Re: Dehydrated cane juice.
Mime-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: text/plain; charset="us-ascii"

At 07:57 AM 1/30/97 -0800, you wrote:

> If it contained "no natural ingredients", how could it be "tomato"
> juice?

Maybe, kind of like Velveeta ("The Cheese That Cannot Die"), it was actually
labeled:

Tomato-Like Juice Product
-
Dean Costello
costello@earthlink.net

"Back off, man. I'm a scientist."
-P. Veckman
Date: Thu, 30 Jan 1997 23:28:04 -0500
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: leon mintz <lmintz@tiac.net>
Subject: Who's hubris?
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The Court of Appeals reversed decision on Pamela Berge case. You can find
the complete text on the web. Go to http://www.law.emory.edu/4circuit/,
then to January 1997, then to United States v. Board of Trustees.

The most interesting and deep thoughts are around page 15:

"The hubris of any graduate student to think that such grants depend on the
results of her work is beyond belief. That is not the way Big Science works."

I can wonder, what judges would say about the hubris of a clerk in a patent
office who was not considered by his professor to be qualified to go to
graduate school and who thought of challenging Newton?(1)

What about the hubris of a schoolboy to think to make significant
contributions to several branches of mathematics?(2) Is the hubris of a
retired soldier to think about the development whole chapters of philosophy
and mathematics beyond belief?(3) And what about the hubris of a glass
maker to write about philosophy and the essence of god?(4)

As Donald Simanek requested long time ago, I am providing answers:

  1. Albert Einstein (obviously),
  2. Evariste Galois,
  3. Rene Descartes,
  4. Baruch Spinoza.


Donald wrote: "Fortunately a few people excel in particular fields in spite
of their education and training."

I did not say that these people did not have education or training. These
people did not have important titles.

Leon Mintz January 30, 1997
Date: Fri, 31 Jan 1997 07:49:19 -0800
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: james shea <shea@cs.uwp.edu>
Subject: Re: Clinton's inauguration speech
in-reply-to: <pine.sol.3.91.970131101432.7496a-100000@kraken>
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Colleagues:

In my undergraduate circle the joke was that an engineer was a
person who thought 2 x 2 was 3.99.

Jim Shea
Date: Fri, 31 Jan 1997 10:04:42 -0500
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: "dewey m. mclean" <dmclean@vt.edu>
Subject: Re: Towards a New Definition of Misconduct
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I thank Al for his 1/30/97 posting on "Towards a New Definition of
Misconduct" which addresses a new White House definition of misconduct in
science.

> The new definition is being written by a White House group
> called the Committee on Fundamental Science; it will
> replace the disparate versions now used by several
> agencies.

> It is limited to fabrication or falsification of data and plagiarism
> (FFP), and drops a fourth general category of "other
> serious deviations" that is now part of NSF and
> Department of Health and Human Services (HHS)
> definitions.


Blacklisting and whisper campaigns to damage scientists,
threatening scientists to silence them, collusion by some to hurt others,
reaching into scientists' departments to damage their careers, attempts to
block publications of opponents, and editorial suppression of publications
that involves conclict of interest, etc., would seem to be as important to
the processes of science as FFP.

However, those actions--if they ever were seriously considered as
misconduct--seem to have been lumped into a general "other" category. Now,
it looks like the *Fundamentalists* will eliminate the "other" category.

I commend the NSF for its concern on the matter.

Dewey McLean


Dewey M. McLean Telephone: 540-552-8559
Department of Geological Sciences E-mail address: dmclean@vt.edu
Virginia Polytechnic Institute
Blacksburg, VA 24061

Home Page: http://www.vt.edu:10021/artsci/geology/mclean/
Dinosaur_Volcano_Extinction/index.html

Home Page: http://www.vt.edu:10021/artsci/geology/mclean/
Creationism_vs_Evolution/index.html


Date: Fri, 31 Jan 1997 09:23:39 -0700
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: "david b. resnik" <resnik@uwyo.edu>
Subject: Re: Towards a New Definition of Miscondu
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A major problem with trying to define "misconduct in science"
is that this approach implies that anything that is not misconduct
is in some way okay. This reduces the discussion of ethics
in science to a narrow, legalistic view. "Misconduct" becomes
equated with "illegal" and by implication, other conduct becomes
legal. I prefer an approach to research ethics that affirms a half dozen
or so important principles of research, like a code of conduct, and then
approach questions of misconduct in terms of serious violations of
these basic principles. Fabrication, falsification, and plagiarism (FFP)
represent extreme violations of a principles of honesty in research,
but there could be other serious violations of other principles. For
instance, a scientist that sabotaged a competitor's work would be
guilty of violating a principles of mutual respect. Although FFP
are serious violations of research ethics, it is possible that there
are other improprieties that can be even worse in some instances,
such as sabotage, sexual harassment, failure to obtain informed
consent, etc. Consider how silly it would seem if we defined
misconduct in medicine as "murder, gross negligence, and theft."
Would this definition give us an adequate or realistic approach to medical
ethics?

David Resnik, Department of Philosophy, University of Wyoming
resnik@uwyo.edu
Date: Fri, 31 Jan 1997 15:19:34 -0500
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: robert barasch <robertb280@aol.com>
Subject: Re: Towards a New Definition of Miscondu

In a message dated 97-01-31 11:24:44 EST, David Resnik wrote:

<< ...... Fabrication, falsification, and plagiarism (FFP)
represent extreme violations of a principles of honesty in research,
but there could be other serious violations of other principles. For
instance, a scientist that sabotaged a competitor's work would be
guilty of violating a principles of mutual respect. >>

While I sympathize with the desire to clean house -- that is, to rid the
scientific community of bad behaviors, I think there is value in a narrow
definition of "fraud," as opposed to including within the definition as many
bad behaviors as can be identified as morally indefensible and unwelcome
within rigorously civilized communities. I imagine there are ample legal
remedies that can deal with people who sabotage others' work, steal, lie on
application forms, etc.

Bob Barasch
robertb280@aol.com
Date: Fri, 31 Jan 1997 16:38:00 EST
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: "gardenier, john s." <jsg6@nch11a.em.cdc.gov>
Subject: Re: Towards a New Definition of Misconduct

I imagine there are ample legal
remedies that can deal with people who sabotage others' work, steal, lie on
application forms, etc.

Bob Barasch


Bob, I am afraid my imagination is not as good as yours. If someone
destroys a ream of your notes, the law is likely to recompense you with a
ream of blank paper. We already have documented cases on this net that
lying on application forms - for employment, tenure, grants, etc. may well
be rewarded instead of punished. We have seen that blacklisting of
whistleblowers is a fairly commonly accepted practice. Then there are the
discrimination and harassment issues, which often merit no punishment or
merely a raised eyebrow under the law. Discrimination against a minority or
female scientist is no different under the law than discrimination against a
dishwasher in a restaurant, but it can do much more harm to science.

Furthermore, the claim that FF&P are clear, egregious, and readily punished
flies in the face of experience, as well. Each of these has sometimes been
claimed to be reprehensible and unacceptable, but not misconduct. The
result is, again, a mild "tsk, tsk" which fails either to enforce the
current regulations or to correct the behavior of the offender. Oftentimes,
these are investigated by the very people who have the most to gain by
hushing up any scent of misconduct - the laboratory or department head, for
example, who does not want his organization's name sullied. As the
competition for funds increases, as it inevitably will, the situation can
only be expected to become worse, until more effective corrective measures
are in place. Unfortunately, scientists, like politicians, are clearly
unwilling to deal with their misconduct until forced to by an angry mob with
pitchforks (or adverse votes or denial of research funds.)
No wonder the politicians of science are so sympathetic to stonewalling
needed reform.

John Gardenier
Date: Sat, 1 Feb 1997 12:52:26 -0600
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: mike miller <mbmiller@sirronald.wustl.edu>
Subject: Researcher Profited After Study by Investing in Cold Treatment
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February 1, 1997

Researcher Profited After Study by Investing in Cold Treatment

By PHILIP J. HILTS

A Cleveland researcher whose study showed that zinc lozenges might be an
effective cold treatment said Friday that he had invested in the company
that makes the lozenges before the paper announcing the results was
published. Once the paper appeared, the company's stock soared, and he
sold some shares for a profit of about $145,000, he said.

The researcher, Dr. Michael L. Macknin, of the Cleveland Clinic
Foundation, bought private stock from the company, Quigley Corp., in
December 1994 and January 1995, just after he found that the data in his
study showed that the zinc lozenges appeared to be effective in
alleviating cold symptoms.

Universities and federal agencies have a wide range of policies on what
constitutes a conflict of interest, or an appearance of conflict, and
there is no indication that Macknin violated any ethics rules of the
institutions involved.

Macknin said that at the time he had gotten approvals from an ethics
committee at the Cleveland Clinic and from his lawyer, and that he had
disclosed the stock purchase to The Annals of Internal Medicine, the
journal that published the study.

The journal, which sometimes adds a note describing a potential conflict
of interest to studies it publishes, carried no disclaimer on Macknin's
study.

Dr. Alex Capron of the University of Southern California, director of the
Pacific Center for Health Policy and Ethics, said: "In a case like this, I
think the author has an obligation to disclose his interest, and the
journal has an obligation to make the fact of a financial interest known
to both the reviewers of the paper, and the readers of the journal.

"That doesn't mean that the paper is tainted, but readers ought to be able
to make the choice to about whether to take the paper with a little more
salt."

The editor of the journal, Dr. Frank Davidoff, said he would not discuss
the particulars of this case for reasons of confidentiality. But he said
in general: "My principal concern is whether the possible conflict has any
reasonable likelihood of affecting the scientific credibility of the
piece. If it does, I make it clear to readers. If not, I decide not to put
the information in print."

Davidoff said he and other editors had debated whether to make routine
disclosure of all possible sources of bias in articles, "but we haven't
chosen to go that way yet."

Asked in a telephone interview whether his profiting from the research was
an ethical problem, Macknin said: "I've thought a lot about that and I
don't know the right answer. If the perceived conflict undermines the
confidence of the general public in my research or other people's
research, and I contributed to that, I feel awful about it. But in my
personal situation, I bent over backward to do it the right way and I
don't think I had a conflict."

He said he had not owned any interest in the company when he started the
research. It was only after first the study results that he considered
buying stock.

"I couldn't believe it," he said. "I didn't expect it to work at all. But
when it did, I asked my lawyer whether there was any way that I could
legally profit from this. He said that if I did not buy publicly traded
stock, it was no problem. So I felt it was something I should do. I owed
it to my family. And how often do you get a chance to invest in something
that might be a cure for the common cold?"

He bought 9,000 shares of stock from the company in a private sale. The
article was published in The Annals of Internal Medicine a year and a half
later, in July 1996. The stock rose sharply after the article appeared,
and when he sold the stock last month, Macknin made a profit of about
$145,000.

Since that time, he has also received options from the company options to
buy 10,000 shares, gaining a paper profit of $185,000. And he has also
begun a second study on the cold lozenge, this time in a group of 220
school children in Cleveland, with money from Quigley.

To help avoid a more serious conflict, he said, he accepted the options on
the basis that he could not sell the stock for at least two years.

"I do have a conflict now," he said of the second study. He also offered
to step back from being the chief author of the second study and has asked
a researcher with no ties to the company to do an independent analysis of
the data. He said he did not want anyone to think the data were tainted,
he said.
Date: Sat, 1 Feb 1997 12:53:58 -0600
reply-to: mike miller <mbmiller@sirronald.wustl.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: mike miller <mbmiller@sirronald.wustl.edu>
Subject: Researcher Profited After Study by Investing in Cold Treatment
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I should have mentioned that the article by Hilts "Researcher Profited
After Study by Investing in Cold Treatment" was published in the New York
Times.
Date: Sat, 1 Feb 1997 14:02:30 -0500
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: al higgins <ach13@louise.csbs.albany.edu>
Organization: Sociology Department, CAS UAlbany
Subject: On Insider Trading
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On Insider Trading

There's a rule which often produces laughter among insiders
of the stock market: "No insider trading." One would have to be
a fool not to use knowledge in trading in the market. And,
about scientists? Do they ever use their knowledge, derived from
their research, to make a buck? Well, if they do, what's wrong with
that?

Here is a small item from the New York Times, reproduced in
its entirety, which focuses on just such a case.

++++++++++

\Hilts, Philip J. "Researcher Made Profit After
Study," New York Times, 1 February 1997, p. 6.\

A Cleveland researcher whose study showed that zinc
lozenges might be an effective cold treatment said
yesterday that he had invested in the company that
makes the lozenges before the paper announcing the
results was published. Once the paper appeared, the
company's stock soared, and he sold some shares for a
profit of about $145,000, he said.

The researcher, Dr. Michael L. Macknin, of the
Cleveland Clinic Foundation, bought private stock from
the company, the Quigley Corporation, in December 1994
and January 1995, just after he found that the data in
his study showed that the zinc lozenges appeared to be
effective in alleviating cold symptoms.

Universities and Federal agencies have a wide
range of policies on what constitutes a conflict of
interest, or an appearance of conflict, and there is
no indication that Dr. Macknin violated any ethics
rules of the institutions involved.

Dr. Macknin said that at the time he had gotten
approvals from an ethics committee at the Cleveland
Clinic and from his lawyer, and that he had disclosed
the stock purchase to The Annals of Internal Medicine,
the journal that published the study.

The journal, which sometimes adds a note
describing a potential conflict of interest to studies
it publishes, carried no disclaimer on Dr. Macknin's
study.

Dr. Alex Capron of the University of Southern
California, director of the Pacific Center for Health
Policy and Ethics, said: "In a case like this, I think
the author has an obligation to disclose his interest,
and the journal has an obligation to make the fact of
a financial interest known to both the reviewers of
the paper, and the readers of the journal.

"That doesn't mean that the paper is tainted, but
readers ought to be able to make the choice to about
whether to take the paper with a little more salt."

The editor of the journal, Dr. Frank Davidoff,
said he would not discuss the particulars of this case
for reasons of confidentiality. But he said in
general: "My principal concern is whether the possible
conflict has any reasonable likelihood of affecting
the scientific credibility of the piece. If it does, I
make it clear to readers. If not, I decide not to put
the information in print."

Dr. Davidoff said he and other editors had
debated whether to make routine disclosure of all
possible sources of bias in articles, "but we haven't
chosen to go that way yet."

Asked in a telephone interview whether his
profiting from the research was an ethical problem,
Dr. Macknin said: "I've thought a lot about that and
I don't know the right answer. If the perceived
conflict undermines the confidence of the general
public in my research or other people's research,
and I contributed to that, I feel awful about it. But
in my personal situation, I bent over backward to
do it the right way and I don't think I had a conflict."

He said he had not owned any interest in the
company when he started the research. It was only
after first the study results that he considered
buying stock.

"I couldn't believe it," he said. "I didn't
expect it to work at all. But when it did, I asked my
lawyer whether there was any way that I could legally
profit from this. He said that if I did not buy
publicly traded stock, it was no problem. So I felt
it was something I should do. I owed it to my family.
And how often do you get a chance to invest in
something that might be a cure for the common cold?"

He bought 9,000 shares of stock from the company
in a private sale. The article was published in The
Annals of Internal Medicine a year and a half later,
in July 1996. The stock rose sharply after the article
appeared, and when he sold the stock last month, Dr.
Macknin made a profit of about $145,000.

Since that time, he has also received options
from the company options to buy 10,000 shares,
gaining a paper profit of $185,000. And he has
also begun a second study on the cold lozenge,
this time in a group of 220 school children in
Cleveland, with money from Quigley.

To help avoid a more serious conflict, he said,
he accepted the options the basis that he could
not sell the stock for at least two years.

"I do have a conflict now," he said the second
study. He also offered step back from being the chief
r of the second study and has d a researcher with no
ties to the company to do an independent analysis of
the data. He said he did not ant anyone to think the
data were tainted, he said.

++++++++++++

A. C. Higgins
SS 359 SUNYA Albany, New York 12222
ACH13@CNSVAX.Albany.edu
Phone: (518) 442 - 4678; FAX: (518) 442 - 4936
SCIFRAUD@CNSIBM.Albany.edu
Date: Sat, 1 Feb 1997 16:09:36 -0500
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: david m levy <dlevy@vms1.gmu.edu>
Subject: Re: On Insider Trading
in-reply-to: <mailqueue-101.970201140230.416@louise.csbs.albany.edu>
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A couple years back Robin Hanson had a neat argument in
*Social Epistemology* that science could be self-financing
by creating a market in which to bet on ideas. Good
ideas will cash out.

When I read the piece in the *Times* I thought of Hanson's
argument. Think of this 'insider' trading as a terrific replacement
for the NSF. Brokerage firms will go into the business of
supporting scientific research and the like.

David M. Levy
Center for Study of Public Choice
George Mason University
Fairfax VA 22030
703-993-2319 (fax) 703-993-2323
Date: Sat, 1 Feb 1997 17:55:03 -0800
Reply-To: siano@cceb.med.upenn.edu
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: brian siano <siano@cceb.med.upenn.edu>
Organization: University of Pennsylvania CCEB
Subject: Re: On Insider Trading
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David M Levy wrote:
>
> A couple years back Robin Hanson had a neat argument in
> *Social Epistemology* that science could be self-financing
> by creating a market in which to bet on ideas. Good
> ideas will cash out.
>
> When I read the piece in the *Times* I thought of Hanson's
> argument. Think of this 'insider' trading as a terrific replacement
> for the NSF. Brokerage firms will go into the business of
> supporting scientific research and the like.

The Zinc research story reminded me of a case I'd read
about a few years back. A researcher with a strong financial
interest in a biotech startup company published results that
said the company's product was safe, and only after he'd made
some bux on the stock did other research indicate that his
original findings were somewhat exaggerated. I'll look this
up when I get home, and post a summary.

--
Brian Siano - siano@cceb.med.upenn.edu
"Life is a continuous process of pain, anguish, loneliness, and despair.
However, we cannot let the occasional flashes of joy and happiness
distract us from this fact."
-- Brian Siano
Date: Sat, 1 Feb 1997 19:11:32 -0500
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: robert barasch <robertb280@aol.com>
Subject: insider trading?

Was Macklin really doing what is generally called "insider trading"? He was
not a part of the company, with knowledge of company plans to sell a piece of
real estate and reap a windfall profit, merge with another company, etc. He
capitalized on his own knowledge. I assume that his research findings were
not intentionally kept secret so he could also capitalize on the unnecessary
ignorance of the public.

Years ago, my grandfather took my son to the stock market and explained to
him that people were buying companies. My son, who was then about six (and is
now 46), asked if he could buy part of Spalding, because he knew that he was
losing those pink rubber balls that he bounced against our house and was
replacing them frequently. As I recall it, he bought a share of Spalding and
he did make a profit. Now, I'm not so dumb that I don't see the difference in
his and Macklin's situation, but I think both were acting out of
self-interest, taking advantage of their experiences, and not taking unfair
advantage of anyone.

Now, the second batch of options might be a more difficult question.

Finally, is anyone suggesting that Macklin fudged data, then bought stock
options knowing that fabricated data would drive the stock up?

Is there an official ethicist on line?

Bob Barasch
robertb280@aol.com
Date: Sat, 1 Feb 1997 21:35:57 -0500
Reply-To: jjfreed@netreach.net
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: jerome freed <jjfreed@netreach.net>
Organization: 710 Davidson Rd, Phil'a PA, USA
Subject: Re: On Insider Trading
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Macklin's problems do not seem to me to be a matter of insider trading.
As the story in the Times noted, his attorney pointed out to him that
this was not an SEC-defined, public stock transaction. Since he
acquired his stock by private sale, it was not an insider transaction.
Pretty neat lawyering...

However, he was left with a conflict of interest. This is a structural
matter. It has nothing to do with the SEC. Nor does it require evil
intent. He had an obligation to disclose his conflict. He did not do
so, and so suffers opprobrium.

Apparently he is aware of his error and is trying to do the right thing.

As has been said, the desire for money is the root of all evil.

So it goes.

Jerry Freed
Date: Sun, 2 Feb 1997 04:33:35 EST
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: gary carson <gary530@juno.com>
Subject: Re: insider trading?

On Sat, 1 Feb 1997 19:11:32 -0500 Robert Barasch <RobertB280@aol.com>
writes:
>Was Macklin really doing what is generally called "insider trading"?
>He was
>not a part of the company, with knowledge of company plans to sell a
>piece of
>real estate and reap a windfall profit, merge with another company,
>etc. He
>capitalized on his own knowledge. I assume that his research findings
>were
>not intentionally kept secret so he could also capitalize on the
>unnecessary
>ignorance of the public.

I have no idea if Macklin was involved in insider trading. But, insider
trading does not require that you be part of the company. Trading on
information that is not public is insider trading. I don't know, but it
wouldn't suprise me if the SEC would try to prosecute someone who traded
based on a conversation he heard in a bar if they thought it was
non-public information (hearing it in a bar might make it public, who
knows) Trading on your interpretation of information (which is the
category your anecdote about spaulding fits) is just fine.

gary carson
Date: Sun, 2 Feb 1997 15:25:25 -0500
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: al higgins <ach13@louise.csbs.albany.edu>
Organization: Sociology Department, CAS UAlbany
Subject: Update on the Berge Case
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Update on the Berge Case

Here is a case that's been around for some time. An
appeals court judge has overturned a jury's finding and a
judge's award.

The item from the New York Times is reproduced in its
entirety and a list of some relevant references is appended.

++++++++++


\Hilts, Philip J. "Jury Award Voided in Scientific
Research Case," New York Times, 2 February 1997, p.
17.\

A Federal appeals court has overturned a jury's
finding that the University of Alabama and four re-
searchers there stole the work of another scientist.

The decision, by the United States court of
Appeals for the Fourth Circuit, on Jan. 22 in
Baltimore, reversed a decision that awarded $1.9
million to an epidemiologist, Dr. Pamela Berge, in May
1995.

The case is unusual because Dr. Berge did not
take her dispute to the Office of Research Integrity at the
Department of Health and Human Services, which usually
investigates such cases. She went to court under the
Federal False Claims Act, a statute rarely used in
cases involving scientific misconduct.

Some scientists had expressed fears that the jury
verdict would encourage graduate students to go to
Federal court whenever they felt that their professors
had used their work without having given them proper
credit.

Dr. Berge, who is a scientific adviser for a New
York law firm, was a graduate student at the
University of Alabama in 1987 when she studied
pregnant women infected with cytomegalovirus and
their babies. She said she compiled data from
many computer files at the university and analyzed
them to produce her doctoral thesis.

In her suit, she said four university scientists
took that work and claimed it as their own when they
applied for a grant from the National Institutes of
Health. The scientists Drs. Charles A. Alford,
Karen Fowler, Robert F. Pass and Sergio B. Stagno
said that the data belonged to them and that Dr.
Berge's work was relatively unimportant.

A three-judge panel has ruled that the jury was
wrong. It said no reasonable jury would have decided
in Dr. Berge's favor. "Once the surface is
scratched," the court wrote, "there is nothing to
Berge's claim except her complaint that Fowler
did not give Berge's work the notice she felt she
deserved."

The lawyer for the university scientists, William
A. Bradford, said, "At most this case was a citation
dispute, and this court properly said such a dispute
doesn't give rise to Federal rights to be adjudicated
in court."

Dr. Berge's lawyer, Alexander T. Bok, said he
would appeal to the full appeals court."



References

\Hilts, Philip J. "A University and 4 Scientists Must Pay for
Pilfered Work," New York Times, 19 May 1995, p. A20.\

\Dalton, Rex. "Ruling Brings Cash Windfall in U.S. Fraud
Case," Nature 375 (25 May 1995), p. 270.\

\Taubes, Gary. Plagiarism Suit Wins; Experts Hope It Won't
Set a Trend," Science 268 (26 May 1995), p. 1125.\

\Dalton, Rex. "...as U.S. Reviewer Resigns Over Slur," Nature
375 (15 June 1995), p. 529.\

\Stone, Richard. "Alabama Challenges Fraud Award," Science
272 (26 April 1996), p. 473.\

A. C. Higgins
SS 359 SUNYA Albany, New York 12222
ACH13@CNSVAX.Albany.edu
Phone: (518) 442 - 4678; FAX: (518) 442 - 4936
SCIFRAUD@CNSIBM.Albany.edu

A. C. Higgins ACH13@louise.csbs.albany.edu
College of Arts and Sciences VOX: 518-442-4678
Sociology Department FAX: 518-442-4936
University At Albany
Albany, NY, USA 12222
Date: Sun, 2 Feb 1997 18:23:31 -0600
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: mike miller <mbmiller@sirronald.wustl.edu>
Subject: Court Voids Jury Award to Scientist in Lawsuit on Research
MIME-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: TEXT/PLAIN; charset=US-ASCII

NY Times
February 2, 1997

Court Voids Jury Award to Scientist in Lawsuit on Research

By PHILIP J. HILTS

A federal appeals court has overturned a jury's finding that the
University of Alabama and four researchers there stole the work of another
scientist and used it as their own.

The decision, by the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, on Jan. 22 in
Baltimore, reversed a decision that awarded $1.9 million to an
epidemiologist, Dr. Pamela Berge, in May 1995.

The case is unusual because Dr. Berge did not take her dispute to the
office of research integrity at the Department of Health and Human
Services, which usually investigates such cases. Instead, she went to
court under the Federal False Claims Act, a Civil War-era statute rarely
used in cases involving scientific misconduct.

Some scientists had expressed fears that the jury verdict would encourage
graduate students to go to federal court whenever they felt that their
professors had used their work without having given them proper credit.

Dr. Berge, who is a scientific adviser for a New York law firm, was a
graduate student at the University of Alabama in 1987 when she studied
pregnant women infected with cytomegalovirus and how often that led to
infections of their babies. She said she compiled data from many computer
files at the university and analyzed them to produce her doctoral thesis.

In her suit, she said four university scientists took that work and
claimed it as their own when they applied for a grant from the National
Institutes of Health. The scientists said that the data belonged to them
and that Dr. Berge's work was relatively unimportant. The defendants were
Drs. Charles A. Alford, Karen Fowler, Robert F. Pass and Sergio B. Stagno.

A three-judge panel has ruled that the university was right and that the
jury was wrong. The court said: "The hubris of any graduate student to
think that such grants depend on her work is beyond belief. That is not
the way Big Science works."

It said no reasonable jury would have decided in Dr. Berge's favor.

"Once the surface is scratched," the court wrote, "there is nothing to
Berge's claim except her complaint that Fowler did not give Berge's work
the notice she felt she deserved."

The decision added that Dr. Berge could not claim the work as her own,
because "as a general proposition, ideas are simply part of the public
domain."

The lawyer for the university scientists, William A. Bradford, said, "At
most this case was a citation dispute, and this court properly said such a
dispute doesn't give rise to federal rights to be adjudicated in court."

Dr. Berge's lawyer, Alexander T. Bok, said he would appeal to the full
appeals court. He said, "We are surprised and dismayed at the decision,
made without hearing witnesses or considering all the written evidence."
Date: Sun, 2 Feb 1997 18:52:57 -0600
reply-to: mike miller <mbmiller@sirronald.wustl.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: mike miller <mbmiller@sirronald.wustl.edu>
Subject: recent schizophrenia gene study
MIME-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: TEXT/PLAIN; charset=US-ASCII

Here's something I posted recently at a schizophrenia site. I think it is
very relevant to the interests of this group. I'm not accusing anyone of
fraud, just pointing out some inflated rhetoric and a possible conflict of
interest. The study described was published in the 21 Jan 1997
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences -- it is available (full
text but you'll have to fill out a very short questionnaire) at:

http://www.pnas.org/cgi/content/full/94/2/587

You can get a *very* nice reprint of the article in Adobe PDF format at
http://www.pnas.org/cgi/reprint/94/2/587

I'll discuss the possible conflict of interest data in another posting.

Mike


I have already read a minimum of six news articles (API, UPI, Reuters, NY
Times, LA Times, and Scripps-Howard) on the topic of this new study in
genetics of schizophrenia. In addition, I have a copy of the original
research paper in front of me. The discrepancies between Robert Freedman's
quoted statements and the actual findings of the research are a little
disturbing to me. This is what was actually found:

The study shows evidence that some gene on a certain part of chromosome 15
is causing some people (most of whom also have schizophrenia in the
present study) to show a psychophysiological abnormality. The study
doesn't show which gene it is. There are probably more than 300 genes in
that region. Freedman knows from earlier studies that there is good reason
to suspect that one of the genes in the implicated region, the alpha-7
nicotinic receptor gene, is the gene causing the abnormality. But it could
be a different gene. We also know from other studies that the
psychophysiological abnormality is more common in schizophrenic patients
and their families. There is also a relation of cigarette smoking both
with the abnormality and with schizophrenia: cigarette smoking is more
common in schizophrenia patients and cigarette smoking also works as a
very short-lived treatment for the psychophysiological abnormality.

In the press, Freedman has been claiming that a mutation of alpha-7
nicotinic receptor is affecting risk of schizophrenia, risk of the
psychophysiological abnormality, and smoking behavior. Unfortunately,
these relations are only theoretical and have not yet been established.
Here are some quotes from the press:

Scripps Howard, Jan 21, 1997:

"We had viewed the excessive use of nicotine as just a bad
habit or a means for dealing with boredom," Freedman said,
"but in fact, it was an attempt to specifically target what
was going wrong with this defect."

Associated Press, Jan 20, 1997:

"Schizophrenics are the most heavy smokers of any psychotic
patients," said Dr. Robert Freedman of the Denver Veterans
Affairs Medical Center. "They had discovered this (effect)
before we had, and it had been overlooked as a clue to the
biology of schizophrenia."

Reuters, Jan 20, 1997:

"Left to their own devices, many will smoke three or four
packs a day, they'll smoke until it makes them nauseous,"
Freedman said. "Now we realize that they were trying to
self-medicate."

Yes, schizophrenic patients are often heavy smokers, but do they smoke to
compensate for a particular genetic defect? That is just Freedman's
theory. It is not something "we now know." This was pointed out by some
scientists quoted in the press.

NY Times, January 21, 1997:

Dr. Solomon Snyder, director of the department of
neuroscience at Johns Hopkins University ... did not accept
the proposed link between schizophrenia and smoking; the
causes and effects of smoking are too complex to be so
neatly explained, he said.

Unless Freedman was misquoted, he clearly overstated the strength of
evidence for his theory when interviewed by Scripps Howard:

And the study also demonstrates for the first time "that a
group which smokes heavily has a specific genetic
predisposition that alters their brain's biological response
to nicotine," said Dr. Robert Freedman...

Maybe it will turn out to be true, but it was not demonstrated in his
study. There was no demonstration of "a specific genetic predisposition."

Don't get me wrong, it still looks promising. It's just that we don't know
enough yet to make such definitive statements. Here's what we don't know:

1. We don't know if the nicotinic receptor gene is the gene causing the
psychophysiological abnormality. This was pointed out in some of the news
articles...

NY Times, Jan 21:

Although Freedman thinks the gene his group is hunting will
turn out to be the one for the nicotinic receptor, they have
not proved it yet.

Associated Press, Jan 21:

Dr. Elliott Gershon, neurogenetics chief at the National
Institutes of Health ... cautioned that while Freedman has
strong evidence linking this schizophrenia trait to the
nicotine receptor gene, he doesn't yet have proof --
especially because Freedman has not found the gene mutation
that would cause it.

2. We don't know if the gene has anything to do with cigarette smoking.
(See above.)

3. We need to know more about the relationship between schizophrenia and
the psychophysiological abnormality. The study establishes the relation of
the chromosome 15 region with the abnormality, not the relation of the
region with schizophrenia.

Los Angeles Times, Jan 21, 1997:

Steven Moldin of the National Institute of Mental Health ...
said he would like to see more proof that the defect
Freedman studied actually plays a crucial role in
schizophrenia before he concludes that the gene is important
as well.

At this point we should be hopeful but skeptical. The study shows a
relation of a chromosomal region with a certain defect. We need to
determine which gene in that region is the important one. It might be the
nicotinic receptor. We need more research on the relation of the defect to
schizophrenia. We need to know what the relation is of mutations in the
candidate receptor gene to schizophrenia, smoking and the defect. There is
much more to be done. This could turn out to be a major breakthrough. It
is not impossible that it will be a major flop. Let's hope for the former!

Regards,

Mike

Michael B. Miller, M.S., Ph.D., M.P.E.
Department of Psychiatry (Box 8134)
Washington University School of Medicine
4940 Children's Place, St. Louis, MO 63110
office phone: (314) 286-2253 FAX: (314) 286-2265
WWW Homepage: ftp://sirronald.wustl.edu/pub/mbmiller/mike.htm
Date: Sun, 2 Feb 1997 19:11:57 -0600
reply-to: mike miller <mbmiller@sirronald.wustl.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: mike miller <mbmiller@sirronald.wustl.edu>
Subject: schizophrenia gene study: conflict of interest?
MIME-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: TEXT/PLAIN; charset=US-ASCII

Aside from Freedman's exaggerations, two things I noticed in the news gave
me reason to suspect that he might have a conflict of interest. There is
at least an appearance of such. These two paragraphs are from the
Associated Press report of 20 Jan 1997:

Still, "it's an important step forward" that points to a
potential new target for drug therapy, Gershon said.
Indeed, while Freedman is searching for the mutation, he has
begun working with drug companies to find treatments that target
this receptor.

The appended article is a PR announcement of SIBIA Neurosciences, released
the day after the schizophrenia study was published. According to the
report, SIBIA currently has collaborations with Eli Lilly and Company,
Ciba (Novartis) and Bristol-Myers Squibb Company. I don't know if
Freedman has any connection with any of these companies. He might even be
working as an unpaid volunteer with no stock options or holdings.

I am not accusing anyone of anything. I'm just pointing out that things
I've read make it appear that there may be a conflict of interest. I have
no reason to suspect that such a conflict, if it existed, would have had
any influence on the study or reports thereof.

Mike
Return to 10 Years: Discussion in SciFraud Index.html

SIBIA Neurosciences Issued Patent on Nicotinic Receptor Compound,
SIB-1508Y, and its use in Treating Parkinson's Disease

LA JOLLA, Calif., Jan. 22 /PRNewswire/ -- SIBIA Neurosciences, Inc.
(Nasdaq-NNM: SIBI) today announced that it has been issued U.S. Patent No.
5,594,011 on a series of compounds, including its lead compound SIB-1508Y,
that modulate nicotinic acetylcholine receptors. The patent provides
coverage for the composition of the compounds as well as their use for
treating Parkinson's disease.
SIB-1508Y, and the broader series of compounds, represent one of
several new classes of compounds discovered by SIBIA that target specific
human receptor subtypes in the brain. These receptor subtypes modulate
communications between nerve cells and play a key role in a variety of
neurological disorders. SIB-1508Y is selective for certain nicotinic
acetylcholine receptor subtypes that regulate the release of dopamine and
acetylcholine, both relevant in the deficits caused by Parkinson's disease.
SIBIA plans to commence a Phase I clinical trial of SIB-1508Y under an
Investigational New Drug (IND) application recently filed with the U.S.
Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
Commenting on the patent, William T. Comer, Ph.D., SIBIA president and
chief executive officer stated, "There is a growing body of scientific
evidence establishing the link between certain nicotinic receptors and a
variety of nervous system disorders, including Parkinson's disease,
Alzheimer's disease and schizophrenia. We believe SIBIA has one of the
strongest technology positions relative to nicotinic receptors and ligands,
and the issuance of this patent further establishes our proprietary
position. With this new patent, we now have coverage on both the target
receptor molecules as well as compounds that modulate them."
SIBIA Neurosciences, Inc. is engaged in the discovery and development
of novel, small molecule therapeutics for central nervous system disorders
based on its unique approach to characterizing the molecular processes
involved in such disorders. SIBIA is focusing its efforts on developing
compounds for the treatment of Parkinson's disease, Alzheimer's disease,
stroke, head trauma, epilepsy, chronic pain, schizophrenia and other
disorders. The Company currently has collaborations with Eli Lilly and
Company, Ciba (Novartis) and Bristol-Myers Squibb Company.
This press release contains forward-looking statements that involve
risks and uncertainties. As a result, actual results could differ
materially from those discussed herein. These risks and uncertainties
include SIBIA's early stage of development, the new and uncertain state of
SIBIA's technologies, SIBIA's future capital needs and the uncertainty of
receiving additional funding, uncertainties regarding patents, proprietary
rights and regulatory matters, and other research, development and market
risks. These and other risks and uncertainties are more fully set forth in
SIBIA's Prospectus included in its Registration Statement on Form S-1 filed
in connection with its initial public offering, as well as in SIBIA's most
recently filed Form 1O-Q.

SOURCE Sibia Neurosciences Inc.
-0- 01/22/97
/CONTACT: Michael J. Dunn, Vice President, Business Development of
Sibia Neurosciences, 619-452-5892/
(SIBI)
Date: Mon, 3 Feb 1997 14:48:00 EST
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: "gardenier, john s." <jsg6@nch11a.em.cdc.gov>
Subject: FW: NASSNL IV: 9 - SELECTIONS on "Junk" Science

Items of possible interest FYI. John Gardenier


from: nassnl
Subject: NASSNL IV: 9--Part 2 of 2
Date: Friday, January 31, 1997 11:24PM
--
N A S S C I E N C E N E W S L I S T

VOL. IV, Issue 9: 15 January 1997
ISSN 1091-8485 www.nas.org/nassnl.htm

The NAS Science News List (NASSNL) is an electronic resource established in
March 1995. It presents randomly-ordered and unedited topics reflecting the
myriad views held about science and technology in today's society and in
academe. The purpose of the NASSNL is strictly informative. The content does
NOT necessarily reflect the opinions of the National Association of
Scholars.

This issue of the NASSNL can be found at http://www.nas.org/nassnl/4-10.htm
Search and find past issues at http://www.nas.org/nassnl/contents.htm

Questions, comments, or back issues? e-mail: science@nas.org


SELECTED CONTENTS

1) CONFERENCE: "Women's Health, Law, and the Junking of Science"
5) JUNK SCIENCE: A television program on "Junk Science: What You Know
That May Not Be So"


1) CONFERENCE: "Women's Health, Law, and the Junking of Science" is the
topic of a conference to be held at the National Press Club, Washington,
D.C., on Thursday, 20 February. Sponsored by the Independent Women's Forum,
the one-day conference will examine the ways in which junk science and the
legal system harm women and women's health. The topics include:

MEDICAL DISINFORMATION IN THE COURTS
Scientifically dubious legal claims are increasingly brought against
manufacturers of health products for women. And these allegations,
driven by emotion rather than objective evidence, are succeeding in
the courts.

CUTBACKS IN RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT
Since companies are finding it impossible to fight legal battles when
scientific evidence is ignored, they have little recourse but to withdraw
women's health products (e.g., the morning sickness drug Bendectin and
the contraceptive sponge) from the market and cease research and
development on many promising cures.

NEEDLESS FEAR AND ANXIETY
The recent furor over silicone breast implants has led to their banning
by the FDA, in spite of the absence of any scientific link to
immunological disease. As a result, reconstructive options for women
with breast cancer have been limited, and many healthy implant recipients
are suffering needless anxiety, even undergoing unnecessary implant
removals.

DOES FEMINISM CAUSE JUNK SCIENCE?
Women's studies programs instruct students that logic is a tool of
patriarchal oppression, and that clinical intervention, especially
reproductive medicine, is tainted by male dominance and the "medical-
industrial" complex. Has scientific evidence become irrelevant?

Included among the panelists will be experts in clinical medicine,
biomedical research, health policy, consumer affairs and law, such as:

DR. MARCIA ANGELL
author of SCIENCE ON TRIAL and editor of THE NEW ENGLAND
JOURNAL OF MEDICINE

MONA CHAREN
syndicated columnist

PAUL R. GROSS
University Professor of Life Sciences, Emeritus at the University
of Virginia and Visiting Scholar at Harvard University and co-author
of HIGHER SUPERSTITION: THE ACADEMIC LEFT AND ITS QUARRELS WITH
SCIENCE

WALTER OLSON
Manhattan Institute Fellow and author of THE LITIGATION EXPLOSION

CHRISTINA SOMMERS
scholar and author of WHO STOLE FEMINISM?

For more information contact: Barbara J. Ledeen, 202-833-4553,
or Anita Blair, 703-243-8989, or the Independent Women's Forum,
1-800-224-6000 or 703-243-8989.


5) JUNK SCIENCE: Thursday, 9 January 1997, television reporter, John
Stossel was in print and on-air with an op-ed in THE WALL STREET on
"Overcoming Junk Science" (A12), and as host of an hour-long special on ABC
television about "Junk Science: What You Know That May Not Be So"
(10PM/EST). Interestingly, "junk science" was also the topic on other
recent ABC shows as written about in the following promotional spot from
the "ABC Spotlight" page on the ABC television web site at
http://www.abc.com/spotlight/archive/010997.html. This is what they say:

> Can Vitamin C stop a cold? Can spinach make you stronger? Do you REALLY
> need to cut back on salt? How did two Utah scientists persuade
legislators
> that they could produce the energy of the sun from a cold cup of water?
>
> We have been assaulted by amazing claims, fantastic promises and dire
> warnings, many of them promulgated and authenticated by "science." But,
> as John Stossel reports throughout the week on ABC News "20/20," "Good
> Morning America," and finally in a one-hour ABC News Special, "Junk
> Science: What You Know That May Not Be So," it's time to distinguish
> between the contributions science has made and claims--supposedly based
> on science-- which are truly "junk." Stossel examines how "junk science"
> is made and how greed and the pursuit of power or fame can distort
science.
>
> Friday, January 3 (10:00-11:00 p.m., ET), on "20/20," Mr. Stossel reports
> on people who claim to be allergic to their environment. Beginning
Monday,
> Jan. 6, his four-part special series on "Junk Science" will air on "Good
> Morning America." The one-hour ABC News Special, "Junk Science: What You
> Know That May Not Be So," airs THURSDAY, JAN. 9 (10:00-11:00 p.m., ET),
> on the ABC Television Network.
>
> Polls indicate that we trust scientists more than other professionals. In
> light of the remarkable things scientists have achieved--including the
> exploration of space, the eradication of many infectious diseases--this
> trust is understandable. With such a stunning track record, many of us
> began to believe that science could cure everything, even the common cold.
>
> When Linus Pauling, a Nobel Prize-winning scientist, said that megadoses
of
> Vitamin C could ward off colds, people immediately believed. While
Vitamin C
> may relieve some cold symptoms, more than a dozen studies found no
evidence
> it will reduce the risk of getting a cold at all. Even though Pauling was
> wrong, the pills remain best-sellers.
>
> For generations, Americans were told that spinach was the healthiest food
in
> the world. Why? It seems scientists simply made a mathematical mistake;
a
> slip of a decimal point led them to believe that spinach contains ten
times
> more iron than it actually possesses.
>
> Similarly, our government spends tax money telling us to eat less
salt--much
> less. Yet the vast majority of experts surveyed by ABC News say there's
no
> need for most Americans to cut back on salt. You may be giving up your
> favorite foods because of "junk science."
>
> Mr. Stossel also reports on how junk science sometimes creates benefits
for
> its proponents. The "discovery" of "cold fusion" by two Utah scientists
> sparked ecstatic headlines several years ago. Bypassing the peer-review
> process, which serves as a safeguard for new claims, the scientists
convened
> a press conference and boasted that they had tapped an inexhaustible and
> cheap source of energy by creating fusion in a cup of cold water. Within
> weeks, their claims began to unravel and their reputations were
discredited
> in the United States. However, the scientists did convince Toyota and
some
> other Japanese companies to build them a new, multi-million-dollar
> laboratory in the south of France.
>
> Mr. Stossel also contrasts how two communities--one in Italy, the other in
> Times Beach, Missouri--responded to a spill of the chemical dioxin in
> their environment. The Environmental Protection Agency is spending
hundreds
> of millions of dollars to destroy and totally "clean up" the dirt in the
> Missouri town. Although residents in Italy were exposed to ten thousand
> times more dioxin, the Italian government simply leveled the chemical
> factory responsible and created a popular public park.
>
> Several years ago some doctors began to suspect that breast implants
caused
> connective tissue disease. Lawyers brought women into court, claiming
that
> the implants must have caused auto-immune disease or cancer. Juries
awarded
> multi-million-dollar settlements and Dow Corning, the leading maker of
> breast implants, declared bankruptcy. Mainstream scientists, however,
have
> found no significant increase in connective tissue diseases in women who
> have implants vs. women who do not. An Oregon judge, overseeing breast-
> implant litigation, recently ruled that plaintiffs were unable to produce
> any "scientifically valid" evidence linking breast implants with systemic
> disease. Yet people still believe the initial reports.
>
> People also still believe that "crack babies" are "doomed," or
"permanently
> damaged." Stossel reports how the media jumped on one small, preliminary
> study of babies born of crack-addicted mothers and used it to convince
> America that these children are handicapped for life. "Beware of science
> that feeds political agendas," says Stossel. "Doomed' crack babies met
the
> needs of liberals and conservatives. Conservatives wanted to demonize
crack
> users; liberals wanted more money for their programs. The truth is that
> there is no proof that, in later life, crack babies are fated to do worse
> than anyone else."
>
> "Junk Science: What You Know That May Not Be So" is an ABC News Special.
> Victor Neufeld is executive producer. David Sloan is senior producer.


FYI: ALAN SOKAL S PARODY, "TRANSGRESSING THE BOUNDARIES: Towards a
Transformative Hermeneutics of Quantum Gravity," from the Spring/Summer
1996 issue of SOCIAL TEXT is available at:
http://www.nyu.edu/gsas/dept/physics/faculty/sokal/index.html.

> COURT RECOGNIZES JUNK SCIENCE WHEN IT SEES IT
>
> A federal judge in Oregon ruled last month that lawyers can't present
> evidence that silicone breast implants cause disease because their
> evidence is "junk science." Judge Robert E. Jones said "The Supreme Court
> charged district courts with the duty to act as `gatekeepers' to ensure
> that any and all scientific testimony or evidence admitted is not only
> relevant but reliable." Among the junk scientists singled out by the
> judge was Eric Gershwin of UC Davis. Last year, Gershwin was awarded a
> $1M grant by the NIH Office of Alternative Medicine.

--From Vic Stenger, "Hawaii Rational Inquirer," Vol. 2, No. 17, 2 January
1997.
Date: Mon, 3 Feb 1997 16:03:30 -0500
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: al higgins <ach13@louise.csbs.albany.edu>
Organization: Sociology Department, CAS UAlbany
Subject: Political Science
MIME-Version: 1.0
Content-type: text/plain; charset=US-ASCII
Content-transfer-encoding: 7BIT

Policical Science

Politicians use science in a variety of ways: politicians
want good reasons for what they do and so they turn to science
for those explanations. Too often, scientists cannot answer
questions politicians want answered. Scientists "debate" one
another and the spectacle is not one which reflects well on
science. After all, science is supposed to have the answers.

Scientists may "confuse" politicians and confused
politicians are hardly generous to those who have confused them.
It can be expensive for scientists to argue in public.

So, it is suggested by savvy politicos that scientists
educate congressional staff behind closed doors. Scientists are
advised, for the good of all, to keep the disagreements down and
to keep personal views distinguished from scientific facts.

This admission of the politics of Big Science is called, of
all things, "education."

++++++++++

\Reichhardt, Tony. "Science Advisors Face
'Credibility Crisis,'" Nature 385 (23 January 1997),
p. 284.\

Washington. A group of leading environmental
scientists was warned last week by two senior
congressional staff members that a series of
politically charged debates in coming months could
exacerbate a continuing "crisis of credibility" for
scientists who advise policymakers.

The congressional officials also said that
scientists should make a point of meeting members of
congress and their staff members to explain not only
the benefits of science, but also its limitations in
helping to resolve difficult social issues.

The advice came in an unusual hour-long briefing
to the executive committee of the Environmental
Protection Agency (EPA)s Science Advisory Board, the
congressionally mandated 100-member body of outside
experts that reviews research produced by the
agency and its contractors.

The executive committee invited both Republican
and Democratic staff members to the briefing, but only
representatives of the minority Democratic party were
able to attend. They were Michael Rodemeyer, chief
Democratic counsel to the House of Representatives
Science Committee, and Thomas Sliter, minority staff
director for the Senate Committee on Environment and
Public Works.

Both said their remarks reflected their personal
opinions rather than those of their respective
committees. But they agreed that, despite a broad
respect for science among politicians, there is "a
very disturbing confusion between science and
policy" in Congress.

"Congress expects too much of science," said
Rodemeyer, and is often puzzled or angry when
scientists cannot deliver a single, clear answer to
some difficult environmental question
such as how clean-air laws should be written.
Scientific uncertainty "maybe one of the most
difficult concepts for Congress to deal with", said
Sliter.

The risk for scientists is that uncertainty
becomes expressed in public in an adversarial way,
with "duelling experts" giving conflicting testimonies
that cancel each other out. According to
Rodemeyer, this contributes to a growing
perception among politicians and the public
that 'science really doesn't have anything to
contribute to policy debates."

Both said that one solution is for scientists,
both in groups and as individuals, to educate
congressional members and their staff behind the
scenes. "There is no substitute on Capitol Hill for
face-to-face meetings," said Rodemeyer.

Sliter predicted that proposed EPA regulations on
pollution from ozone and airborne particulates will be
a 'very hot political issue in this Congress (see
Nature 384, 392; 1996). His committee will hold
hearings on the subject next month.

Many controversial environmental issues left
unresolved by the previous Congress - such as the
protection of endangered species and wetlands, and
clean water - will also be up for discussion. The
debate is expected to be less hostile this year than
last. But Republicans are still to oppose tighter
environmental regulation.

Meanwhile, EPA's Science Advisory Board is
struggling over how to handle the controversy that
frequently arises from its reports. Several members of
the board's Clean Air Scientific Advisory Committee,
which was divided in its review of the proposed EPA
regulations on ozone and particulates, have publicly
expressed doubts about the scientific foundations of
the new rules.

In a draft report prepared last month, the
subcommittee agreed that board members should
always be careful to distinguish between personal
views and a committee's view, and should stand
behind a report once it is completed.

Meanwhile, as it braces itself for the con-
gressional debate on dean-air laws, EPA also is
continuing to work on ways to shore up its scientific
credibility. The Office of Research and Development
(ORD) - the main producer of basic environmental
research in an agency that is primarily geared toward
regulation - was given authority last week to review
the way in which other EPA offices responsible for
air, water and solid-waste and other regulations
conduct peer review of their research products.
That gives Robert Huggett, the head of ORD and a
respected scientist, more oversight of the agency's
research.


A. C. Higgins
SS 359 SUNYA Albany, New York 12222
ACH13@CNSVAX.Albany.edu
Phone: (518) 442 - 4678; FAX: (518) 442 - 4936
SCIFRAUD@CNSIBM.Albany.edu
A. C. Higgins ACH13@louise.csbs.albany.edu
College of Arts and Sciences VOX: 518-442-4678
Sociology Department FAX: 518-442-4936
University At Albany
Albany, NY, USA 12222
Date: Mon, 3 Feb 1997 19:08:41 EST
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: ted hermary <czth%mcgilla.bitnet@vm1.mcgill.ca>
Subject: Re: Towards a New Definition of Misconduct
In-Reply-To: In reply to your message of Thu, 30 Jan 1997 14:02:06 EST

> It is limited
> to fabrication or falsification of data and plagiarism
> (FFP), and drops a fourth general category of "other
> serious deviations" that is now part of NSF and
> Department of Health and Human Services (HHS)
> definitions. NSF staffers say they can't comment
> until the proposal is public, but NSF has
> vigorously defended the "other" category in the past.

As I understand it, the "NSF argument" against dropping
such a phrase is only partly premised on the idea that
it would allow them to look into alleged practices
that couldn't be readily labelled within the Holy
Trinity of FFP. It is not even that the words which
follow FFP in the definition are "another category"
- which seems to be how Kaiser, several Scifrauders,
and who knows how many scientist-critics, etc.
have read it. Rather (as Kaiser's later sentences
begin to suggest) that "other catgory" contains what
NSF (or its staff) have argued to be operative to
what constitutes misconduct in a regulatory sense.

1. That misconduct is a serious deviation. Many
definitions of, say, plagiarism, do not make
such distinctions. e.g., "copying words
without attribution", which some might count
as a simple clear, definition, could include
copying two words from a source.

2. That the interpretive context for definition
is the (accepted practices/standards of) the
scientific community. Without this context,
one could use anybody else's standards for
judging whether some copying of words
constituted misconduct.

Apparently paradoxically, the implication is that
less could be more. Try to boil everything down to
"FFP" and you open regulatory leeway for pursuing
trivial cases of plagiarism, minor misrepresentations
of practice, etc. according to the standards of



I find the argument interesting, and the reaction
at least as much so. Months back when an NSF staff
member offered this view in a letter to _Science_,
the reply from a biologist (F. Grinnell, author of
_The Scientific Attitude_) seemed to suggest that
there is no scientific community, or at least
everything's so ambiguous, who can say what an
accepted practice is these days? Feyerabend couldn't
have put it any better; in science, anything goes.




Martin (Ted) Hermary (A.B.D.)
Department of Sociology
McGill University
855 Shebrooke Street West
Montreal, Quebec, Canada
H3A 2T7
e-mail: czth@musica.mcgill.ca
Date: Tue, 4 Feb 1997 09:28:00 EST
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: "gardenier, john s." <jsg6@nch11a.em.cdc.gov>
Subject: Re: Towards a New Definition of Misconduct

Martin (Ted) Hermary (A.B.D.) posted:

I find the argument interesting, and the reaction
at least as much so. Months back when an NSF staff
member offered this view in a letter to _Science_,
the reply from a biologist (F. Grinnell, author of
_The Scientific Attitude_) seemed to suggest that
there is no scientific community, or at least
everything's so ambiguous, who can say what an
accepted practice is these days? Feyerabend couldn't
have put it any better; in science, anything goes.

Including ripping off the taxpayers big-time, destroying other's reputations

to preserve or enhance one's own, stifling science at small organizations in
order to
maintain oligopolies at "name" institutions even when they cannot produce,
lying, cheating, stealing, vandalizing, committing harassment and (illegal)
discrimination,
and forming cozy circles that provide mutual awards and grants for inferior
work.

The smirking claim that everything else (other than FF&P) is covered by
state or local law, and therefore has no business in a definition of science
misconduct, implicitly condones the above because the relevant laws are
often unenforceable in the circumstances under which they occur.

As to Ted's claim that plagiarism could be charged for lifting "one or two
words," that is patently ridiculous. In fact, the problem is that there is
little enforcement when multiple consecutive paragraphs are lifted. Even
when someone gets a huge grant based on a totally fraudulent application and
gets caught, the punishment is merely a slap on the wrist - i.e. can't get
another grant for three years or whatever. In what percent of cases do
major universities revoke a doctorate after the dissertation is later found
to contain extensive plagiarism? When was the last time membership in a
National Academy or a fellowship in a professional society was revoked
because the science for which the recognition was given was later found to
be fraudulent or useless?

"In science, anything goes" does seem to be the way of the "ruling class."
Fortunately, there are a lot of "dumb but honest" people in science - else,
it seems likely, little of value would get done.

Not that I am cynical or anything, you understand, John Gardenier
Date: Tue, 4 Feb 1997 10:02:08 -0500
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: "john w jacobson, ph.d." <jacobsjw@nysomr.emi.com>
Subject: Science and Policy
Comments: To: "scifraud(a)cnsibm.albany.edu"@missive.WPC.NYSOMR.EMI.COM
MIME-Version: 1.0
Content-Transfer-Encoding: 7BIT
Content-Type: Text/Plain; charset=US-ASCII

Worth noting:

NAS has come out with a series of position/advisory papers
regarding the impending century and the contributions that
science can make to the improvement of US society through
technology and research.

These reports, available through the NAS web site, address topics
such as science and education, technology and the environment,
health care and technology. There are 6-8 such reports with a
similar number to follow. There are hot buttons to connect to all
citations used in the reports.

I have had an opportunity to download and scan the education
report, which contains about a dozen recommendations spanning
public K-12 education, undergraduate education, graduate and
post-graduate education, and technology issues. It contains a
very small section on learning (which is where one *might* expect
a scientific-oriented report to focus, i.e., better instructional
technology as a foundation for educational excellence) which is,
unfortunately, very cursory, and has as a primary resource a
monograph (on enhancing human performance), published previously
by NAS, which presents a very broad perspective on instructional
development (i.e., pedagogical considerations) inclusive of a
strong focus on adult work groups. I have not fully reviewed that
NAS monograph but have looked at some excerpts on the web site
and they seem consistent with this characterization.

Based on the above, NAS appears generally indifferent to the
behavioral science research (as opposed to general educational
research) on instructional effectiveness and seems not to be
addressing the technological pedagogical concerns that underpin
the effectiveness of educational systems.

John W. Jacobson, Ph.D. OMRDD Planning and Service Design
JACOBSJW@NYSOMR.EMI.COM 44 Holland Avenue
Phn: 518-474-4904 Albany, New York 12229-0001
Fax: 518-473-9695
Date: Tue, 4 Feb 1997 07:21:55 -0900
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: "douglas c. hintz" <dchintz@oregon.uoregon.edu>
Subject: dehydrated cane juice
MIME-version: 1.0
Content-type: text/plain; charset="us-ascii"
Content-transfer-encoding: 7BIT

Following up on the recent thread of food frauds, here is a short notice
from our local community college paper:
"Doesn't that rich coffee smell which erupts from a sealed can or jar of
coffee make you delight in the purity and freshness of the grinds? It
shouldn't. Just before these containers are filled and sealed, their
insides are sprayed with chemically concentrated coffee aroma. Indeed, a
patent has been granted for this process. It's called Reincorporation of
Aroma. - Source: WNYC Radio"
Douglas C. Hintz 68 PLC Hall
Mathematics Instructor University of Oregon
Academic Learning Services Eugene, Oregon 97403
dchintz@oregon.uoregon.edu phone:541-346-3226
Date: Tue, 4 Feb 1997 11:39:02 -0800
Reply-To: siano@cceb.med.upenn.edu
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: brian siano <siano@cceb.med.upenn.edu>
Organization: University of Pennsylvania CCEB
Subject: Re: Science and Policy
MIME-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: text/plain; charset=us-ascii
Content-Transfer-Encoding: 7bit

John W Jacobson, Ph.D. wrote:
>
> Worth noting:
>
> NAS has come out with a series of position/advisory papers
> regarding the impending century and the contributions that
> science can make to the improvement of US society through
> technology and research.

Is this NAS the National Academy of Sciences, or
the National Association of Scholars?

--
Brian Siano - siano@cceb.med.upenn.edu
"Life is a continuous process of pain, anguish, loneliness, and despair.
However, we cannot let the occasional flashes of joy and happiness
distract us from this fact."
-- Brian Siano
Date: Tue, 4 Feb 1997 10:53:44 +0000
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: simon birnstingl <swb@pavilion.co.uk>
Subject: Re: Political Science
Mime-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: text/plain; charset="us-ascii"

Dear Scifraud,

To quote Sir Peter Medawar in 1968,"Ask a scientist what he conceives the
scientific likelihood to be, and he will adopt an expression which is at
once solemn and shifty-eyed: Solemn because he feels he ought to declare an
opinion: Shifty-eyed because he is wondering how to conceal the fact that
he has no opinion to declare." (Induction and Intuition in Scientific
Thought, Methuen, 1969, p11).

The idea that scientists should give their evidence to advisers In Camera
seems to me to be an admirable solution to the kinds of confusion the poor
ignorant legislators experience when trying to find the "truth" from
scientists. One of the problems of comprehension is due to the difference
in mind-set between scientists, used to their own standards of evidence,
and lawyers/legislators with a more legalistic idea of a standard of proof.


Rosalind Malcolm writes in her book "A Guidebook to Environmental Law"
(Sweet & Maxwell, 1994) p9, "Science establishes partial or provisional
truths. It is a tenet of science that all scientific statements are known
to be wrong insofar as they can be expanded or qualified. The criminal
court, however, requires truth beyond reasonable doubt, not a scientific
debate about the validity or otherwise of some scientific statement or
method.
Any case which a lawyer may handle may require the assimilation of
information which is unfamiliar. Indeed, it is one of the skills of a
lawyer to absorb new information quickly and accurately. Some competence in
the environmental terminology is, therefore, critical... when exhibiting
forensic skills in the courtroom."

This surely also applies to the legislative case in question.

Simon Birnstingl


Simon Birnstingl
Conformance Environmental
5a Livingstone Road
Hove, Sussex
BN3 3WP
United Kingdom

email:
environment@conformance.co.uk

tel: ++ 44(0)1273 204369
fax: ++ 44(0)1298 873801 ***PLEASE NOTE NEW FAX NUMBER***
Date: Tue, 4 Feb 1997 12:05:17 -0500
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: "john w jacobson, ph.d." <jacobsjw@nysomr.emi.com>
Subject: Science and Policy
Comments: To: "scifraud(a)cnsibm.albany.edu"@missive.WPC.NYSOMR.EMI.COM
MIME-Version: 1.0
Content-Transfer-Encoding: 7BIT
Content-Type: Text/Plain; charset=US-ASCII

It is the national academy of sciences.
Date: Tue, 4 Feb 1997 12:28:03 -0500
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: "dewey m. mclean" <dmclean@vt.edu>
Subject: Re: Political Science
in-reply-to: <mailqueue-101.970203160330.416@louise.csbs.albany.edu>
Mime-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: text/enriched; charset="us-ascii"

Al's 2/4/97 "Political Science" posting contains valuable lessons for
some scientists to think about before they alienate the source of
funding for all American science. Scientists who present themselves as
experts to Congress--when they clearly are not--can hurt us all.


If I recall correctly, a few years ago I saw a TV video about the
popularizer of science, Stephen J. Gould, testifying at a Senate
Hearing on how the Alvarez asteroid killed the dinosaurs. To my
knowledge, he had never written a refereed scientific paper on the
dinosaur extinctions. His popular writings exposed considerable
ignorance on the topic. In spite of his obvious lack of expertise,
Gould seemed to be presenting himself as an expert advisor to Congress.
If I am incorrect, I invite Gould to publicly correct me.


I believe it safe to state that Gould has been one of the primary
promoters of the Alvarez asteroid to the public. Luis Alvarez notes in
his autobiography, _Alvarez_, that "I watch with pleasure as the
distinguished Harvard paleontologist Steve Gould runs interference for
us."


The next time some "expert" (or some staff writer writing for
_Science_ magazine) tells you that the Alvarez asteroid death of the
dinosaurs has been proven, think about the following.


The American public--and Congress--does not know that scientific
articles, essays, and flashy TV videos are just someone's
interpretations, and are often controversial. In the dinosaur
extinction debate virtually every issue is controversial. The impactors
argue among themselves over whether an impacting object was an asteroid
or a comet, or over whether one object, or several, hit earth at the
time the dinosaurs died. Other impactors argue over the size of the
impacting object, and others over whether the impact might, or might
not, have injected enough material into the stratosphere to cause
extinctions. Other scientists argue over whether an object even hit
earth at the time of the extinctions. Other scientists argue that most
of the K-T data are explained by the Deccan Traps volcanism; others
argue over whether the K-T iridium--supposed proof of an impact--is
from impact, or volcanism. Paleontologists argue among themselves over
whether the dinosaurs died out slowly, or suddenly. Others argue over
whether earth turned cold, or hot, or whether the oceans were moving
over, or off the continents, at the time the dinosaurs died, and on and
on and on.


In this ridiculous confusion of data and interpretation, and endless
arguing, anyone who tries to convince you--or Congress--that the case
for the asteroid death of the dinosaurs has been proven needs to be
examined closely for credibility.


Cordially,

Dewey McLean




> Policical Science

>

> Politicians use science in a variety of ways: politicians

>want good reasons for what they do and so they turn to science

>for those explanations. Too often, scientists cannot answer

>questions politicians want answered. Scientists "debate" one

>another and the spectacle is not one which reflects well on

>science. After all, science is supposed to have the answers.

>

> Scientists may "confuse" politicians and confused

>politicians are hardly generous to those who have confused them.

>It can be expensive for scientists to argue in public.

>

> So, it is suggested by savvy politicos that scientists

>educate congressional staff behind closed doors. Scientists are

>advised, for the good of all, to keep the disagreements down and

>to keep personal views distinguished from scientific facts.

>

> This admission of the politics of Big Science is called, of

>all things, "education."

>

> ++++++++++

>

> \Reichhardt, Tony. "Science Advisors Face

> 'Credibility Crisis,'" Nature 385 (23 January 1997),

> p. 284.\

>

> Washington. A group of leading environmental

> scientists was warned last week by two senior

> congressional staff members that a series of

> politically charged debates in coming months could

> exacerbate a continuing "crisis of credibility" for

> scientists who advise policymakers.

>

> The congressional officials also said that

> scientists should make a point of meeting members of

> congress and their staff members to explain not only

> the benefits of science, but also its limitations in

> helping to resolve difficult social issues.

>

> The advice came in an unusual hour-long briefing

> to the executive committee of the Environmental

> Protection Agency (EPA)s Science Advisory Board, the

> congressionally mandated 100-member body of outside

> experts that reviews research produced by the

> agency and its contractors.

>

> The executive committee invited both Republican

> and Democratic staff members to the briefing, but only

> representatives of the minority Democratic party were

> able to attend. They were Michael Rodemeyer, chief

> Democratic counsel to the House of Representatives

> Science Committee, and Thomas Sliter, minority staff

> director for the Senate Committee on Environment and

> Public Works.

>

> Both said their remarks reflected their personal

> opinions rather than those of their respective

> committees. But they agreed that, despite a broad

> respect for science among politicians, there is "a

> very disturbing confusion between science and

> policy" in Congress.

>

> "Congress expects too much of science," said

> Rodemeyer, and is often puzzled or angry when

> scientists cannot deliver a single, clear answer to

> some difficult environmental question

> such as how clean-air laws should be written.

> Scientific uncertainty "maybe one of the most

> difficult concepts for Congress to deal with", said

> Sliter.

>

> The risk for scientists is that uncertainty

> becomes expressed in public in an adversarial way,

> with "duelling experts" giving conflicting testimonies

> that cancel each other out. According to

> Rodemeyer, this contributes to a growing

> perception among politicians and the public

> that 'science really doesn't have anything to

> contribute to policy debates."

>

> Both said that one solution is for scientists,

> both in groups and as individuals, to educate

> congressional members and their staff behind the

> scenes. "There is no substitute on Capitol Hill for

> face-to-face meetings," said Rodemeyer.

>

> Sliter predicted that proposed EPA regulations on

> pollution from ozone and airborne particulates will be

> a 'very hot political issue in this Congress (see

> Nature 384, 392; 1996). His committee will hold

> hearings on the subject next month.

>

> Many controversial environmental issues left

> unresolved by the previous Congress - such as the

> protection of endangered species and wetlands, and

> clean water - will also be up for discussion. The

> debate is expected to be less hostile this year than

> last. But Republicans are still to oppose tighter

> environmental regulation.

>

> Meanwhile, EPA's Science Advisory Board is

> struggling over how to handle the controversy that

> frequently arises from its reports. Several members of

> the board's Clean Air Scientific Advisory Committee,

> which was divided in its review of the proposed EPA

> regulations on ozone and particulates, have publicly

> expressed doubts about the scientific foundations of

> the new rules.

>

> In a draft report prepared last month, the

> subcommittee agreed that board members should

> always be careful to distinguish between personal

> views and a committee's view, and should stand

> behind a report once it is completed.

>

> Meanwhile, as it braces itself for the con-

> gressional debate on dean-air laws, EPA also is

> continuing to work on ways to shore up its scientific

> credibility. The Office of Research and Development

> (ORD) - the main producer of basic environmental

> research in an agency that is primarily geared toward

> regulation - was given authority last week to review

> the way in which other EPA offices responsible for

> air, water and solid-waste and other regulations

> conduct peer review of their research products.

> That gives Robert Huggett, the head of ORD and a

> respected scientist, more oversight of the agency's

> research.

>


<bigger><bigger>




Dewey M. McLean Telephone: 540-552-8559

Department of Geological Sciences E-mail address: dmclean@vt.edu

Virginia Polytechnic Institute

Blacksburg, VA 24061



Home Page: http://www.vt.edu:10021/artsci/geology/mclean/

Dinosaur_Volcano_Extinction/index.html


Home Page: http://www.vt.edu:10021/artsci/geology/mclean/

Creationism_vs_Evolution/index.html


></bigger>
Date: Wed, 5 Feb 1997 09:23:05 +1000
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: william grey <w.grey@mailbox.uq.oz.au>
Subject: Re: Political Science
in-reply-to: <199702041647.caa00822@dingo.cc.uq.oz.au>
MIME-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: TEXT/PLAIN; charset=US-ASCII

On Tue, 4 Feb 1997, Simon Birnstingl wrote:

> To quote Sir Peter Medawar in 1968,"Ask a scientist what he conceives the
> scientific likelihood to be, and he will adopt an expression which is at
^^^^^^^^^^
> once solemn and shifty-eyed: Solemn because he feels he ought to declare an
> opinion: Shifty-eyed because he is wondering how to conceal the fact that
> he has no opinion to declare." (Induction and Intuition in Scientific
> Thought, Methuen, 1969, p11).
>
This quote from Medawar's wonderful short treatise contains several trivial
but one important and puzzling error: substitute "method" for "likelihood".

Cheers

William Grey
Department of Philosophy email: W.Grey@mailbox.uq.edu.au
University of Queensland Fax: + 61 7 336 51968
Brisbane QLD 4072 Tel: + 61 7 336 52099
AUSTRALIA http://www.uq.edu.au/~pdwgrey/
Date: Tue, 4 Feb 1997 21:04:42 EST
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: ted hermary <czth%mcgilla.bitnet@vm1.mcgill.ca>
Subject: Re{2}: Towards a New Definition of Misconduct
In-Reply-To: In reply to your message of Tue, 04 Feb 1997 09:28:00 EST

>As to Ted's claim that plagiarism could be charged for lifting "one or two
>words," that is patently ridiculous. e is

Just to clarify: What I mean is that there is nothing in
most (perhaps all) written definitions of plagiarism
that are offered (when any is offered) by the FFP advocates
that would prohibit such a reading. It's a darn good
question (assuming it's true) why no one is charged when
two words are copied without attribution. The alternative
argument re: the definition (alternative to FFP advocates')
is that it is owing to the *context* that is used to
interpret the definition, a context implied in the
"accepted practices of the scientific community" part of the
phrase that critics of current definitions want to chop
out.

On a related aside, I also find it interesting how critics
of current definition often abbreviate the definition
as "fabrication, falsification and plagiarism, and other
practices, et cetera" (sic) suggesting that they don't
really get that, for others, the "et cetera" is the
defining phrase.

Have I just muddied the mud with this?

Regards,

Ted.


Martin (Ted) Hermary (A.B.D.)
Department of Sociology
McGill University
855 Shebrooke Street West
Montreal, Quebec, Canada
H3A 2T7
e-mail: czth@musica.mcgill.ca
Date: Wed, 5 Feb 1997 13:58:10 -0500
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
Comments: Authenticated sender is <ach13@cnsvax.albany.edu>
from: al higgins <ach13@cnsvax.albany.edu>
Organization: Sociology Department UAlbany
Subject: (Fwd) Graduate Research Ethics Education Workshop
MIME-version: 1.0
Content-type: text/plain; charset=US-ASCII
Content-transfer-encoding: 7BIT

I'm reasonably sure that some on Scifraud will be interested in this
announcement.

Al


Date: Tue, 04 Feb 1997 16:40:16 -0500
from: afowler <afowler@aaas.org>
Subject: Graduate Research Ethics Education Workshop
to: multiple recipients of list aaasest <aaasest@gwuvm.gwu.edu>
Reply-to: Perspectives on Ethical Issues in Science and Technology
<AAASEST@gwuvm.gwu.edu>

FYI...

Alex Fowler,
AAAS
Subject: Graduate Research Ethics Education Workshop
Author: Association for Practical & Professional Ethics <appe@indiana.edu> at
Internet
Date: 2/4/97 3:51 PM


GRADUATE RESEARCH ETHICS EDUCATION
A Workshop at
Indiana University
June 4-8, 1997

Application Deadline: April 1, 1997


Supported By:

*The National Science Foundation
*Office of Research and the University Graduate School, Indiana
University
*Association for Practical and Professional Ethics
*Poynter Center for the Study of Ethics and American
Institutions, Indiana University



Research Ethics in Education
The current generation of science and engineering graduate
students will be called upon to provide leadership in ethics in
their professional communities and to provide ethics education
for future generations of students. Such leadership requires a
broad and deep understanding of ethics, a multidisciplinary
historical perspective on problems of misconduct and issues of
reseach ethics and a broad understanding of the scientific
enterprise and its social implications. This workshop is
designed to prepare the leaders of the next generation of
scientists and engineers to confront significant issues in
research ethics such as:

* Responsible use of data in publication of research, data
ownership,responsible sharing of data.

* Ethical issues in the use of computers.

* Ethical issues in the mentor-student relationship.

* Social and environmental responsibilities of scientists and
engineers.

Workshop Objectives


Workshop participants will gain a conceptual understanding of
research ethics and ethical thinking and an awareness of the
ethical literature that informs these approaches. The historical
context in which scientific misconduct has developed will be
discussed as well as variations in conventions and expectations
among differing disciplines. Participants will be asked to do
some advance preparation for the workshop including the
development of a research case drawn from their own experience
and share cases and materials with colleagues or students at
their home institutions.

Topics:


* "The Nazi Doctors: Significance for the Ethics of Scientific
Research"--Robert Proctor, History of Science , Pennsylvania
State University
* "Social /Historical Context of Engineering Ethics" --Taft
Broome, Engineering, Howard University
* "Statistical Analysis and the Responsible Use of Data" --David
DeMets, Medical Biostatistics, University of Wisconsin-Madison
* "Impact of Science and Technology on the Environment" --Aarne
Vesilind, Civil Engineering, Duke University
* "Computers, Ethics and Social Values" --Deborah Johnson,
Department of Science and Technology Studies, Rensselaer
Polytechnic Institute.
* "Ethical Issues in the Mentor / Student Relation" --Deborah
Johnson
* "Owning Scientific Information" --Vivian Weil, Director, Center
for the Study of Ethics in the Professions, Illinois Institute
of Technology.
* "Standards of Conduct in the Sciences and Variations in
Conventions" --Vivian Weil
* "Case Studies in Research Ethics" --Karen Muskavitch, Biology,
Indiana University
* "The Relation of Ethical Theory to Teaching" --Michael
Pritchard, Western Michigan University
* "Ethical Theory and Concepts Underlying Research on Human
Subjects" Brian Schrag, Indiana University

Activities


Discussions of case studies and videos and the writing of case
studies will develop participants' capacity to recognize and
analyze ethical issues and to apply moral principles to ethical
situations.

Participant Support


Participants will receive up to $400 for travel, all meals and
lodging at the workshop, books in research ethics valued at $200,
and stipends of $200. To facilitate continual ethical discussion
and support participants in their professional growth, they will
have access to an electronic network for the length of the grant,
which will promote networking among peers and mentors concerned
with research ethics. Participants will be given membership in the
Association for Practical and Professional Ethics for the duration
of the grant and will be invited to submit papers on research
ethics for the Annual Meeting.

Eligibility and Nomination
Post-doctoral fellows, graduate students in the physical and
natural sciences who have completed at least two years of work,
and engineering students who have completed at least one year of
graduate work are eligible to apply. Applicants must be
nominated by their mentors and must submit a two-page essay on
why they wish to be a participant. THE DEADLINE FOR APPLICATIONS
IS April 1, 1997.

Graduate Research Ethics Education will be held annually for
three years on the campus of Indiana University. The 1997
workshop will convene at 3:00 p.m. on Wednesday, June 4, and will
end at 3:00 p.m. on Sunday, June 8.


WORKSHOP FACULTY
Core faculty


* Deborah Johnson, Ph.D., Professor of Philosophy, Department
of Science and Technology Studies, Rensselaer Polytechnic
Institute. Author of Computer Ethics and Co-author of
Computers, Ethics and Social Values.
* Karen M. Muskavitch, Ph.D., Assistant Scientist and Assistant
Professor of Biology, Indiana University; Fellow, Indiana
Institue for Molecular and Cellular Biology, Contributing
Author, Research Ethics: Cases and Materials
* Michael Pritchard, Ph. D., Professor of Philosophy; Western
Michigan University; Director, Center for the Study of Ethics
in Society; co-author, Ethics in Engineering: Concepts and
Cases
* Aarne Vesilind, Ph.D., Professor of Civil Engineering, Duke
University; co-author, Environmental Pollution and Control.
* Vivian Weil, Ph.D., Professor of Philosophy and Director,
Center for the Study of Ethics in the Professions, Illinois
Institute of Technology; author, "Owning and Controlling
Scientific Data," in Communications, Ethics and Technology; co-
Author, "Normative Issues in Data Sharing," in Sharing Social
Science Data.
* Brian Schrag, Ph. D. ( Project Director), Senior Scholar,
Poynter Center, Indiana University; Executive Secretary,
Association for Practical and Professional Ethics


Visiting Faculty


* Taft Broome, M.S.E., Sc.D., Professor of Engineering, Howard
University
* David L. DeMets, Ph.D., Professor of Medical Biostatistics,
University of Wisconsin-Madison
* Robert Proctor, Ph.D. , Professor of the History of Science,
Pennsylvania State University



The Association for Practical and Professional Ethics is an
international association founded to promote high quality
scholarship and teaching in practical and professional ethics.
The Poynter Center for the Study of Ethics and American
Institutions was founded in 1972. Major projects in recent years
have focused on ethics education for faculty and assisting
faculty to incorporate the discussion of ethical issues into
their courses.


For More Information:
Brian Schrag, Ph.D.
Project Director
"Graduate Research Ethics Education"
Association for Practical and Professional Ethics
410 North Park Avenue
Bloomington Indiana, 47405
(812) 855-6450 FAX (812)-855-3315
APPE@ INDIANA.EDU (Internet)
APPE@INDIANA (Bitnet)


* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
Association for Practical and Professional Ethics
410 North Park Avenue
Bloomington, IN 47405
Phone (812) 855-6450 Fax (812) 855-3315
appe@indiana.edu
http://ezinfo.ucs.indiana.edu/~appe/home.html
* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
A. C. Higgins ach13@cnsvax.albany.edu
College of Arts and Sciences VOX: 518-442-4678
Sociology Department FAX: 518-442-4936
University At Albany Albany, NY, USA 12222
Date: Wed, 5 Feb 1997 14:02:28 -0500
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
Comments: Authenticated sender is <ach13@cnsvax.albany.edu>
from: al higgins <ach13@cnsvax.albany.edu>
Organization: Sociology Department UAlbany
Subject: (Fwd) Re: dehydrated cane juice
MIME-version: 1.0
Content-type: text/plain; charset=US-ASCII
Content-transfer-encoding: 7BIT

Here after some delay is a posting for Scifraud.

Al



Date: Wed, 05 Feb 1997 08:21:21 -0500
from: howard dess <dess@rci.rutgers.edu>
Subject: Re: dehydrated cane juice
to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>

Our morning coffee in bad odor?? Is nothing sacred?

The only thing that makes me a bit sceptical about this is that even after the
initial opening, you still get that wonderful coffee aroma every time you open
the can or jar or bag. That surely must come from the coffee beans themselves
and not the piped in aroma, which probably dissipates after the first
unsealing.

Addie, how did you ever find a group named 'scifraud'?

Howard

On Feb 4, 7:21am, Douglas C. Hintz wrote:
> Subject: dehydrated cane juice
> Following up on the recent thread of food frauds, here is a short notice
> from our local community college paper:
> "Doesn't that rich coffee smell which erupts from a sealed can or jar of
> coffee make you delight in the purity and freshness of the grinds? It
> shouldn't. Just before these containers are filled and sealed, their
> insides are sprayed with chemically concentrated coffee aroma. Indeed, a
> patent has been granted for this process. It's called Reincorporation of
> Aroma. - Source: WNYC Radio"
> Douglas C. Hintz 68 PLC Hall
> Mathematics Instructor University of Oregon
> Academic Learning Services Eugene, Oregon 97403
> dchintz@oregon.uoregon.edu phone:541-346-3226
>
>-- End of excerpt from Douglas C. Hintz



--
Howard M. Dess
Chemistry and Physics Librarian
Library of Science and Medicine
Rutgers University
Piscataway, NJ 08855-1029

dess@rci.rutgers.edu
tel.: 908-445-3526 fax: 908-445-3208






A. C. Higgins ach13@cnsvax.albany.edu
College of Arts and Sciences VOX: 518-442-4678
Sociology Department FAX: 518-442-4936
University At Albany Albany, NY, USA 12222
Date: Wed, 5 Feb 1997 14:23:38 -0500
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: "dewey m. mclean" <dmclean@vt.edu>
Subject: Re: Towards a New Definition of Misconduct
in-reply-to: <mailqueue-101.970130140206.384@louise.csbs.albany.edu>
Mime-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: text/plain; charset="us-ascii"

Al's 2/5/97 posting "Towards a New Definition of Misconduct"
discusses how a White House group called the Committee on Fundamental
Science recommends restricting the definition of scientific misconduct to
fabrication or falsification of data and plagiarism (FFP). The committee's
recommendations makes one wonder if it has any real understanding of the
dynamics that drive science, or doesn't want to come to grips in a
responsible way with a messy topic, or doesn't really want to constrain
scientific misconduct.

The "other" category, that the committee would eliminate, contains
actions that can influence the directions taken by science. Science is
driven as much by politics--and doing what it takes to win, at any cost to
others--as by data and interpretation.

In the K-T dinosaur extinction debate, actions in the "other"
category by some individuals largely determined the outcome of the debate.
These actions are not trivial. They corrupted K-T science, miseducated the
public on the true status of the K-T debate, and cost the public much money.

That what went on in the K-T dinosaur extinction debate is likely
commonplace in science is attested by a conversation I had with a female
lawyer publicized in the misconduct field. A few years ago, I called her
and explained some of the activities that characterized the debate: threats
by powerful scientists to shut up their opponents, collusion by scientists
to hurt others, whisper campaigns to damage opponent's credibility,
editorial delay of publication via conflict of interests, etc.

Her response: "Oh, that goes on all the time." Beyond that, she
seemed little interested in details that could involve actual scientific
misconduct.

The problem for people who are interested in controlling scientific
misconduct is that people like that woman get onto committees that make
important decisions that affect all the rest of us.

Cordially,
Dewey McLean

Towards a New Definition of Misconduct
>
> Here's a brief notice of what may be coming in terms of a new
>White House definition of misconduct in science.
>
> The article from Science is reproduced in its entirety.
>
> ++++++++++
>
>
> \Kaiser, Jocelyn. "Storm Brewing Over Misconduct
> Definition Science 275 (24 January 1997), p. 467.\
>
> An interagency White House panel has been laboring behind
> closed doors since last spring on a new federal definition of
> scientific misconduct, and no one is willing to say where it's
> headed. But according to a source close to the issue, the draft
> definition is much narrower than current rules-so much so that
> National Science Foundation (NSF) staffers expressed
> concern when they were briefed on it last month.
>
> The new definition is being written by a White House group
> called the Committee on Fundamental Science; it will
> replace the disparate versions now used by several
> agencies. The panel's draft, completed last month, is
> being kept under tight wraps. But a source involved in
> several high-profile misconduct cases has heard that
> the definition is going to be controversial: It is limited
> to fabrication or falsification of data and plagiarism
> (FFP), and drops a fourth general category of "other
> serious deviations" that is now part of NSF and
> Department of Health and Human Services (HHS)
> definitions. NSF staffers say they can't comment
> until the proposal is public, but NSF has
> vigorously defended the "other" category in the past.
>
> Pittsburgh misconduct lawyer Deborah Parrish says that for
> the fraud police -- HHS's Office of Research Integrity and
> NSF's inspector-general -- dropping the "other" prong
> would mean big changes. NSF considers all scientific
> misconduct, ncluding FFP, to be "serious deviations"
> and has pursued "other" cases such as sexual
> harassment. And although ORI limits its investigations
> to FFP, it has compelled universities to investigate
> "other" misdeeds such as breaching confidential peer
> review, Parrish says.
>
> Ernest Moniz of the White House Office of Science and
> Technology Policy says his office expects to brief other
> agencies on the new definition in the coming weeks.
Date: Wed, 5 Feb 1997 13:43:52 PST
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: edrie sobstyl <esobstyl@utdallas.edu>
Subject: Re: (Fwd) Re: dehydrated cane juice
MIME-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: TEXT/PLAIN; CHARSET=US-ASCII

This request has nothing to do with dehydrated cane juice, artificial tomato flavoured
product, or plexiglass cheese. I've promised an off-list friend to do some scouting about *good*
evidence on the risks of using melatonin, and the Scifraud list is one of the first stops on my
hunt.
Reply privately if you wish, although perhaps the list might enjoy kicking this one around.

Thanks.

Edrie Sobstyl
University of Texas at Dallas
Date: Wed, 5 Feb 1997 16:35:06 -0500
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: "r.cammer" <rcammer@pipeline.com>
Subject: Court Voids Jury Award to Scientist in Research Lawsuit
Mime-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: text/plain; charset="iso-8859-1"
Content-Transfer-Encoding: quoted-printable

UNITED STATES COURT OF APPEALS - FOR THE FOURTH CIRCUIT
No. 95-2811

UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, ex rel., PAMELA A. BERGE,

Plaintiff-Appellee,

and

UNITED STATES OF AMERICA,
=20
Intervenor,
v.

THE BOARD OF TRUSTEES OF THE UNIVERSITY OF ALABAMA;
ROBERT F. PASS, Professor of Pediatrics; SERGIO B. STAGNO,
Professor and Chairman, Department of Pediatrics, CHARLES=20
A. LFORD, Professor of Pediatrics; KAREN B. FOWLER,

Defendants-Apppellants.
=20
and

AMERICAN COUNCIL ON EDUCATION; THE AMERICAN ASSOCIATION
OF STATE COLLEGES & UNIVERSITIES; THE NATIONAL ASSO-
CIATION OF STATE UNIVERSITIES AND LAND-GRANT COLLEGES
AMERICAN ASSOCIATION OF COMMUNITY COLLEGES; COUNCIL OF
GRADUATE SCHOOLS; THE REGENTS OF THE UNIVERSITY OF MINNE-
SOTA; THE UNIVERSITY OF TEXAS SYSTEM; THE UNIVERSITY OF
COLORADO, THE REGENTS OF THE UNIVERSITY OF CALIFORNIA
THE REGENTS OF THE UNIVERSITY OF MICHIGAN; xASSOCIATION
OF AMERICAN MEDICAL COLLEGES; EUGENE DONG, M.D., J.D.;
ROBERT L. SPRAGUE, B.V.Sc., M.R.C.V.S., Ph.D.; TAXPAYERA AGAINST
FrAUD, THE FALSE CLAIMS ACT LEGAL CENTER,

Amicus Curiae.

Appeal from the United States District Court
for the District of Maryland, at Baltimore.
Edward S. Northrop, Senior District Judge.
(CA-93-158-N)
Argued, December 4, 1996 -Decided, January 22, 1997
Before ERVIN and WILKINS, Circuit Judges, and MICHAEL,
Senior United States District Judge for the
Western District of Virginia, sitting by designation.
Reversed by published opinion.=20
Judge Ervin wrote the opinion, in
which Judge Wilkins and Senior Judge Michael joined.

OPINION

ERVIN, Circuit Judge:

Defendants-Appellants appeal from a denial of their motion for
judgment as a matter of law following a jury verdict awarding the
United States, after trebling and the imposition of a civil penalty,
$1.66 million, 30% of which ($498,000) is to be awarded to Relator-
Appellee Pamela A. Berge (Berge), on a False Claims Act claim, and
awarding Berge $265,000 in compensatory and punitive damages on
a pendent state law claim for conversion of intellectual property.=20

We reverse.
I.
At the time the events at issue occurred, Pamela Berge was a=20
doctoral candidate in nutritional sciences at Cornell University. The
individual Defendants-Appellants Sergio Stagno, Charles Alford, and
Robert Pass were medical researchers and professors at Defendant-
Appellant The University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB). Defendant-
Appellant Karen Fowler was a doctoral candidate at UAB supervised by=20
Pass.

Scientists at UAB have been studying cytomegalovirus (CMV), the
most common infectious cause of birth defects, since 1971, and over
the years have accumulated the leading database on maternal and con-
genital CMV in the world. A significant part of the funding for this
research has been provided by grants from the National Institutes of
Health (NIH), in particular grant HD-10699, "Perinatal Infections,
Immunity and Maldevelopment Research Program Project," administerred
by NIH's National Institute of Child Health and Human Development
(NICHD). This grant is renewable every five years, with years 11 to 15
relevant to this case. Alford was the principal investigator for this pro=
ject,
although Stagno and Pass were closely associated with it. All three are=20
internatonally recognized as leading authorities on CMV.

Berge decided to do her dissertation on CMV as a possible cause
of low birth weight. She arranged access to and extensive assistance
with UAB's database through Stagno, and she worked closely with
Stagno and his colleagues while she was in residence as a visiting
graduate student at UAB from February to August 1987. After Berge
returned to Cornell, she resisted others' attempts to use the collected
data and began to complain about Cornell faculty members ,including her
thesis chairman. She made three further trips to Birmingham during=20
which she made presentations of her work. She completed her thesis=20
n May 1989 and received her Ph.D. Berge thereafter attempted to
publish papers based on her thesis, but she was rejected repeatedly
by Journal of the American Medical Association, Epidemiology, and
Journal of Infectious Diseases.

In the meantime, Defendant-Appellant Fowler decided in June
1988 to do her dissertation on the relationship between CMV and
sexually-transmitted diseases and began working with Pass. After
Fowler had begun her data analysis, based in part on UAB's existing
database and in part on original medical records, she consulted com-
pleted theses, including Berge's, to choose a format. She defended her
dissertation in May 1990. The following month, Fowler presented her
research at a meeting of the Society of Epidemiological Research.
Berge was in the audience and became shocked at what she considered
to be plagiarism of her own work by Fowler.

Berge brought her allegations to Stagno's attention but did so
in such a way that ultimately Stagno and his colleagues determined
the=F9 could no longer collaborate with her. Two investigations of the
allegations were conducted at UAB, but the allegations were found to
b=E5 baseless. Unsatisfied with these results, as well as those produced
from the other avenues she pursued, Berge next obtained copies of
UAB's grant applications through a Freedom of Information Act
(FOIA) request and then brought this litigation.

As the basis for her qui tam action under the False Claims Act,=20
31 U.S.C. s. 3729-3733, Berge alleged that UAB had made false=20
statements to NIH in its annual progress reports under its grant. In=20
particular, these false statements were that (1) UAB misled NIH in=20
year 11 about the amount of data that had been computerized; (2) UAB=20
had included an abstract of Berge's work in year 12 without mentioning
her name, thereby overstating UAB's competence and progress in epi-
demiology; (3) UAB, although including Berge's name on the abstracts
in years 13 and 14, had "submerged" her research so that serious=20
questions about one of UAB's central theses would not be noticed; and=20
(4) UAB misled NIH in year 15 by including abstracts of Fowler's work=20
which plagiarized Berge's. Although Berge also alleged a number of=20
pendent state law claims, only the conversion of intellectual property=20
is at issue on this appeal. After this action was filed, the government=20
aturally investigated to determine whether it would choose to proute=20
the matter on its own behalf. The Office of the Inspector eneral
(OIG) of the Department of Health and Human Services conducted=20
such an investigation and recommended that no action be taken. Its=20
report stated:

This investigation, which has involved the interview of NCHD grant=20
officials, interview of University officials, and he examination of=20
documents of relator, NICHD and the University of Alabama, has=20
found no evidence that the subjects committed a criminal violation=20
in connection with grant applications or progress reports ubmitted=20
to the Government. Information has been obtained however, which=20
shows many of the assumptions behind the relator's allegations tobe=20
in error or exaggerations of the truth. J.A. at 179 (emphasis added).=20

The government accordingly declined to become involved in the=20
litigation below pursuant to 31 U.S.C. 3730. This OIG report was=20
never submitted into evidence at trial.
=20
The parties make various contentions as to why this is so and=20
whether the district court abused its discretion in failing to allow=20
it. Given our disposition of this case, we do not reach this issue.
After a ten-day jury trial, the jury returned a verdict in favor of
Berge, finding False Claims Act liability against all defendants except
Fowler but assessing damages only against UAB in the amount of
$550,000. Pursuant to 31 U.S.C. 3729(a), this amount was trebled
to $1.65 million, and the district court imposed a civil fine of $10,000
against all the defendants, jointly and severally, except Fowler. Pursu-
ant to 3730(d)(2), the district court awarded Berge as relator 30%
of the United States' total recovery, or $498,000. The jury also found
the four individual defendants liable for conversion of intellectual
property in differing amounts, imposing a total of $50,000 in compen-
satory damages and $215,000 in punitive damages. The district court,
without opinion, denied defendants' motions for judgment as a matter
of law and a new trial. This appeal followed.

II.
Berge instituted the action below under the False Claims Act, 31
U.S.C. s 3729-3733. Subject matter jurisdiction of the district court
was thus based on the federal question statute, 28 U.S.C. 1331. Sup-
plemental jurisdiction over the pendent state law claims was pursuant
to 28 U.S.C. 1367. This appeal arises from a final judgment below,
and thus we possess appellate jurisdiction under 28 U.S.C. 1291.

Normally that would end our jurisdictional inquiry, but the=20
defendants and various amici raise issues concerning the constitu-
tionality of the False Claims Act, whether qui tam relators possess=20
standing, and whether state instrumentalities can be held liable=20
pursuant to the Act under the Eleventh Amendment, especially in light=20
of Seminole Tribe v. Florida, 134 L. Ed. 2d 252 (1996). None of these=20
issues were raised below, but to the extent they partake of jurisdic-
tional matters, we may properly consider them. Because we reverse on=20
the facts of this case, we naturally see no need to reach the issue of=20
the constitutionality of the Act itself. We do, however, briefly=20
address why we consider the general issue of standing to be unproble-
matic, why the government, as the real party in interest, possesses=20
standing under the facts of this case, and why Seminole does not=20
change our view that Eleventh Amendment immunity is a red herring in=20
these circumstances.

We have previously held that the "United States is the real party
in interest in any False Claims Act suit, even where it permits a qui
tam relator to pursue the action on its behalf." United States ex rel.
Milam v. University of Tex. M.D. Anderson Cancer Ctr., 961 F.2d 46,
50 (4th Cir. 1992). Although Milam arose in the pre-Seminole context
of a claim of Eleventh Amendment immunity, which was denied since=20
states may be sued in federal court by the United States, we see Milam=20
as resolving the general issue of standing in this circuit. The=20
Seventh Circuit has concluded that "{o}nce we accept the premise that=20
the United States is the real plaintiff in a qui tam action, it stands=20
to reason that challenges to the standing of the government's repre
sentative are beside the point." United States ex rel. Hall v. Tribal=20
Dev. Corp., 49 F.3d 1208, 1213 (7th Cir. 1995). Similarly, the Ninth=20
Circuit has analyzed extensively whether the qui tam provisions of the
False Claims Act conflict with Article III or violate the principle of
separation of powers, the Appointments Clause, or the Due Process
Clause, points which various amici raise again here, and our sister=20
circuit concluded they do not. United States ex rel. Kelly v. Boeing=20
Co., 9 F.3d 743, 747-60 (9th Cir. 1993), cert. denied , 510 U.S. 1140
(1994). That court has recently affirmed its rejection of these same
arguments in United States ex rel. Schumer v. Hughes Aircraft Co.,
63 F.3d 1512, 1520-21 (9th Cir. 1995), cert. granted in part, 117 S.
Ct. 293 (U.S. Oct. 15, 1996), and we note that the Supreme Court has
granted certiorari to consider, inter alia, whether the lower courts
erred "in asserting jurisdiction over this action under qui tam provi-
sions of FCA." 65 U.S.L.W. 3283, 3292 (U.S. Oct. 15, 1996).=0D=8A
Although we would not hazard to predict what the Supreme Court
may do in Schumer or whether it will even reach the question on
which certiorari was granted, given that our disposition reverses the
liability of the defendants in toto, we decline to enter into a long=20
disquisition on the standing issue.

However, it must be admitted that, notwithstanding a qui tam=20
relator's general standing as the government's representative, the=20
government, as the real party in interest, must still have suffered an=20
injury in fact. See Lujan v. Defenders of Wildlife, 504 U.S. 555=20
(1992). Amicus Association of American Medical Colleges contends that
Berge lacks standing because the United States suffered no injury in
fact, as evidenced by the OIG report. We find this argument meritless.
In the first place, the OIG report was more concerned with possible
criminal violations, which would put the Government to a higher bur-
den of proof than in a civil action as here. ond, and most impor-
tantly, the plain language of the Act clearly anticipates that even=20
after the Attorney General has "diligently" investigated a violation=20
under 5 U.S.C. 3729, the Government will not necessarily pursue=20
all meritorious claims; otherwise there is little purpose to the qui=20
tam provision permitting private attorneys general. Cf. id. at =20
3730(a) ("If the Attorney General finds that a person has violated
or is violating tion 3729, the Attorney General may bring a civil=20
action under this tion against the person." (emphasis added)) with=20
id. at 3730(c)(3) ("If the Government elects not to proceed with
the action, the person who initiated the action shall have the right
conduct the action." (emphasis added)); see also United States ex rel.=20
McGough v. Covington Techs. Co., 967 F.2d 1391, 1397 (9th Cir. 1992)=20
(stating that "{t}o hold that the government's initial decision not to=20
take over the qui tam action is the equivalent of its consent to a=20
voluntary dismissal of a defendant with prejudice would require us to=20
ignore the plain language of 3730(b)(1)"). The OIG report is not=20
an admission by the United States that it has suffered no injury in=20
fact, but rather it amounts to a cost-benefit analysis. Here the=20
Government surmised -- and, as we decide this case, it turns out=20
rightly -- that the costs of proceeding on Berge's claims outweighed
the anticipated benefits. Finally, we note that injury in fact is not to
be judged post hoc. The logical outcome of amicus's position is that any
losing plaintiff relator would not have possessed standing in the first p=
lace.
In this context, it is worth noting that the district court determined in=
a=20
lengthy memorandum that Berge's allegations of false statements were=20
sufficient to overcome a motion for summary judgment. See United States e=
x=20
rel. Berge v. Board of Trustees of the Univ. of Ala., Civil No. N-93-158 =
(D.=20
Md. filed Mar. 14, 1995), at 9-14. As a final jurisdictional matter, we=20
recognize that no court has yet considered the interposition of the Eleve=
nth=20
Amendment to the False Claims Act in the wake of Seminole. Amici Regents =
of=20
the University of Minnesota et al. make an interesting case that the Fals=
e=20
Claims Act was not intended to apply to the states, which they think take=
s on=20
added significance post-Seminole. Amici American Council on Education et =
al.=20
also suggest we need to take another look at Eleventh Amendment immunity =
in=20
the qui tam context. We disagree.

Seminole's relevant holding here is its reconfirmation that=20
Congress must use unequivocal statutory language if it intends to=20
abrogate the sovereign immunity of states in suits brought by and for=20
private parties. Seminole, 134 L. Ed. 2d at 266. But as we already=20
said in Milam, this is a non-issue in the False Claims Act context.=20
Milam, 961 F.2d at 50 n.3. There is simply no question of abrogation=20
of immunity here. Seminole certainly left intact what is beyond=20
purview: that the federal government may sue states in federal court.=20
Seminole, 134 L. Ed. 2d at 276 n.14 (citing United States v. Texas,=20
143 U.S. 621, 644-45 (1892), for the proposition that such power is=20
necessary to the "permanence of the Union"); see also West Virginia v.=20
United States, 479 U.S. 305, 311 (1987). The United States is the real=20
party in interest. The Act itself states that the "action shall be=20
brought in the name of the Government." 5 U.S.C. 3730(b)(1). We=20
affirm our reasoning in Milam: "{T}he states have no Eleventh=20
Amendment immunity against the United States ab initio. Therefore,=20
there is no reason Congress would have displaced it in the False=20
Claims Act." Milam, 961 F.2d at 50 n.3.

Continued Next Message

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III.
Turning to the merits, appellants assign at least seven points
of error to the district court below. We reach only three of them in
reversing the entire judgment below: the lack of materiality to the
government's funding decisions of the alleged false statements; the
insufficiency of the evidence that appellants even made false state-
ments to the government, as merged into the first issue on the False
Claims Act claim; and the preemption, by federal copyright law, of
the state law conversion of intellectual property claim.1 We address
the materiality and insufficiency of evidence issues in this tion and
the preemption issue in the next tion.

The civil False Claims Act provides in relevant part:
(a) Any person who --
(2) knowingly makes, uses, or causes to be made
or used, a false record or statement to get a false
or fraudulent claim paid or approved by the Gov-
ernment; . . .
is liable to the United States Government for a civil=20
penalty of not less than $5,000 and not more than $10,000,=20
plus 3 times the amount of damages which the Government
sustains because of the act of that person . . . .

31 U.S.C. 3729(a).=20

We have previously suggested that the civil False Claims Act=20
requires a materiality element. See United States v. Snider, 502 F.2d=20
645, 652 n.12 (4th Cir. 1974) (construing the FCA's predecessor=20
statute, 31 U.S.C. 231). If previously unclear, we now make=20
explicit that the current civil False Claims Act imposes a mate-=20
riality requirement. See also Tyger Constr. Co. v. United States, 28
Fed. Cl. 35, 55 (1993) ("{T}he FCA covers only those false statements
that are material.").

On this materiality issue, however, we must initially determine
whether the issue is to be properly decided by the court. In the=20
context of the criminal false statements statute, 18 U.S.C. 1001,=20
we had previously held that materiality is a question of law whose=20
test is=20

The other four assignments of error are that the district court=20
failed to set aside a flawed damages award on the False Claims Act=20
claim since the verdict was inconsistent, the court abused its=20
discretion by excluding the OIG report, the court erred in its=20
instructions on the state law claim, and there was insufficient proof=20
of conversion.

"whether the false statement has a natural tendency to influence
agency action or is capable of influencing agency action." United
States v. Norris, 749 F.2d 1116, 1122 (4th Cir. 1984) (citations omit-
ted), cert. denied, 471 U.S. 1065 (1985). In the criminal context,=20
that holding can no longer stand as a result of United States v.=20
Gaudin, 132 L. Ed. 2d 444 (1995). In Gaudin, a unanimous Court held=20
that the materiality of false statements was an element of the crime=20
under 18 U.S.C. 1001 to which a defendant has a constitutional=20
right under the Fifth and Sixth Amendments for a jury to determine=20
guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. Id. at 458. Berge's expansive=20
interpretation that Gaudin's rationale must apply even in civil cases=20
where there is a right to jury trial under the Seventh Amendment is=20
unwarranted. The Court expressly declined to reach that issue, stating=20
that "the courts' power to resolve mixed-law-and-fact questions in=20
civil cases is not at issue here; civil and criminal juries' required=20
roles are obviously not identical, or else there could be no directed=20
verdicts for civil plaintiffs." Id. at 454; see also id. at 460=20
(stating that the "Court properly acknowledges that other mixed=20
questions of law and fact remain the proper domain of the trial=20
court") (Rehnquist, C.J., concurring). Moreover, the Court refused to=20
overrule its unanimous opinion in Kungys v. United States, 485 U.S.=20
759 (1988), a civil denaturalization case, that the "materiality=20
requirement under . .. statutes dealing with misrepresentations to=20
public officers" is one for the court,2 id. at 772 (citations=20
omitted), since the constitutional ramifications were differ-
ent. Gaudin, 132 L. Ed. 2d at 458.

In addition, we have already indicated our reluctance to construe
Gaudin broadly. See, e.g., United States v. Daughtry, 91 F.3d 675,
675 (4th Cir. 1996) (stating that "Gaudin held only that in prou-
tions for violations of {18 U.S.C.} 1001, the element of materiality
must be submitted to the jury" (emphasis added)); see also United
States v. Klausner, 80 F.3d 55, 61 (2d Cir. 1996) (holding that even
in some criminal contexts materiality remains a purely legal question
after Gaudin). Thus, in light of our earlier det
inclination not to give an expansive interpretation to Gaudin, we hold=20
that in the context of the civil False Claims Act the determination of=20
xmateriality,*
* Although the Court was split on the judgment, the Court was=20
unanimous in the opinion that materiality was a question for the court.

although partaking of the character of a mixed question of fact and law,=20
is one for the court. See also United States ex rel. Butler v. Hughes=20
Helicopter Co., No. CV 89-5760 SVW, 1993 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 17844, at
*43-44 (C.D. Cal. Aug. 25, 1993) (holding that the materiality of false s=
tate-
ments under the False Claims Act is a legal question for the court), aff'=
d on=20
other grounds , 71 F.3d 321 (9th Cir. 1995). Moreover, we see no reason t=
o=20
depart from the test we enunciated in Norris, even though the remainder o=
f=20
its holding cannot stand post-Gaudin, that is, the materiality of the fal=
se=20
statement turns on "whether the false statement has a natural tendency to
influence agency action or is capable of influencing agency action." Norr=
is,
749 F.2d at 1122; see also Kungys, 485 U.S. at 770 (recognizing that a=20
"misrepresentation is material if it has a natural tendency to influence,=
or
was capable of influencing, the decision of the decisionmaking body to w=
hich
it was addressed" (internal quotation marks omitted)).=20

In any event, even the Gaudin Court acknowledged that there always=20
remains as a threshold question of law whether the case for materiality i=
s=20
"so weak that no reasonable juror could credit it." Gaudin, 132 L. Ed. 2d=
=20
at 454. In the instant case, our de novo review, see, e.g., Benedi v.=20
McNeil-P.P.C., Inc., 66 F.3d 1378, 1383 (4th Cir. 1995) ("We review a=20
denial of a motion for judgment as a matter of law de novo." (citation=20
omitted)), of the alleged false statements plainly shows they were not=20
material to NICHD's funding decisions, and, furthermore, are so lacking i=
n=20
materiality, indeed, are not even false, that no reasonable jury could=20
have so found.

As a general matter, NICHD's program officer with responsibility
for UAB's grant testified that Berge's contributions were not central
to UAB's project and that the progress reported by UAB was satisfactory=20
for a recommendation of continued funding without Berge's contribution. A=
s=20
even the government notes in its brief as intervenor on appeal, "NICHD=20
determined that the information Berge alleged was false or misrepresented=
=20
was not material to its funding decisions." Br. of United States as=20
Intervenor at 34. =20

More particularly, Berge's assertion of UAB's alleged=20
misstatement concerning the extent of computerization in year 11 is=20
belied by the fact that information on upwards of 20,000 patients had=20
been com puterized by that time. Even accepting Berge's assertion that=20
only 124 cases of congenitally-infected babies were computerized, that=20
fact is irrelevant to the greater computerization effort, and, moreover,
is one fully consistent with Berge's own dissertation claim that congenit=
al
infection affects only 0.2%-2.4% of all live births. Furthermore, the=20
program officer testified that the principal purpose of the project was
the collection of data, not its computerization. Thus, not only did UAB
not mislead NIH about the extent of computerization, but UAB fully
reported the number of subjects of the project every year and thereby
complied with NIH's expectation on the collection of data. In fact, the
program officer stated that UAB's data collection "is considered to be
the largest single source of information on maternal and congenital CMV
in the world." J.A. at 1510.

ond, the year 12 omission of Berge's name from an abstract
submitted as part of the progress report cannot possibly be material.
In the first place, NIH did not even require the inclusion of her=20
name, or anyone's name. There can only be liability under the False=20
Claims Act where the defendant has an obligation to disclose omitted=20
information. United States ex rel. Milam v. Regents of the Univ. of=20
Calif., 912 F. Supp. 868, 883 (D. Md. 1995). More importantly, the=20
abstract itself was included, and was required to be included, because=20
Stagno appeared on the abstract as a co-author. Berge expended=20
considerable effort in attempting to convince us, both in her briefs=20
and at oral argument, that the jury properly found this failure to=20
attribute the abstract to her and obtain her permission to use it was
a material false statement. The report, in fact, did not attribute the=20
abstract to any of its authors; it simply "abstracted" the study for=20
the purpose of reporting on project activity. Under federal copyright=20
law, Stagno, as co-author, is a coowner of copyright in the work. See=20
17 U.S.C. 201(a). Coowners are treated as tenants in common with=20
each coowner having an undivided, independent right to use the work,=20
subject only to a duty of accounting for profits to other coowners.=20
See H.R. Rep. No. 1476, 94th Cong., 2d Sess., at 121 (1976), reprinted=20
in 1976 U.S.C.C.A.N. 5659, 5736; Erickson v. Trinity Theatre, Inc., 13=20
F.3d 1061 (7th Cir. 1994). Thus it was perfectly proper for Stagno to=20
use the abstract as he did, and that use therefore is not a false=20
statement, let alone a material one capable of affecting NIH's funding=20
decision. Third, Berge's claim of the "submergence" of her work in the=20
progress reports for years 13 and 14 is inexplicable. In each year's=20
progress report, fully half of the discussion of activity under=20
Specific Aim #1 of Project 1 is given over to quoting in full from=20
Berge's abstracts, with attribution. If Berge's work supported the=20
hypothesis that there was a downside risk to a live vaccine, the=20
development of which she claims was a central goal of UAB's project,=20
then it was incumbent upon her to note that implication in her work,=20
which she did not. The omission is her own fault, not UAB's. An ex=20
post facto realization of the possible importance of this implication=20
cannot support a charge of falsity at the time the report was=20
submitted. Moreover, NIH's expectation that only the abstract would be=20
included in the progress report cannot form the basis for liability=20
for an omission in any event. While it is true that the reports=20
mistakenly referred to Berge as a "postdoctoral graduate student from=20
the Department of Biostatistics" at Cornell, see J.A. at 1188, 1202,=20
when, in fact, she was in year 13 a doctoral candidate in nutritional=20
results of her work is beyond belief. That is not the way Big Science=20
works. Assuming arguendo that all of Berge's allegations were true and
UAB had made these false statements, it is hard to imagine that NIH's
decision-making would have been influenced by them.

Reviewing all this evidence in the light most favorable to Berge,
it is abundantly clear that substantial evidence upon which the jury
could have found for Berge is lacking. See Benedi v. McNeil-P.P.C.,
Inc., 66 F.3d 1378, 1383 (4th Cir. 1995) (citation omitted). Her evi-
dence amounts at most to a scintilla, which is insufficient to sustain
the verdict. See Trandes Corp. v. Guy F. Atkinson Co., 996 F.2d 655,
660 (4th Cir.), cert. denied, 510 U.S. 965 (1993). At best, Berge=20
fails on her burden of showing materiality; at worst, she cannot even=20
show the statements were false. In either case, judgment as a matter=20
of law is appropriate for appellants on the False Claims Act claim=20
since Berge has "failed to make a showing on an essential element of=20
{her} case with respect to which {s}he had the burden of proof."=20
Singer v. Dungan, 45 F.3d 823, 827 (4th Cir. 1995) (internal quotation=20
marks and citation omitted). We reverse the judgment below on the=20
False Claims Act claim in its entirety.

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IV.
We turn now to the claim of conversion of intellectual property
under Alabama law. The Alabama conversion statute provides:=20

The owner of personalty is entitled to possession thereof.
Any unlawful deprivation of or interference with such pos-
session is a tort for which an action lies.
Ala. Code 6-5-260.=20

Whether federal copyright law preempts a state law claim is a=20
question of law that we review de novo. Rosciszewski v. Arete Assocs.,=20
Inc., 1 F.3d 225, 229 (4th Cir. 1993). Berge's conversion claim in=20
this instance is clearly preempted by federal copyright law. tion=20
301(a) of the Copyright Act provides in pertinent part:

{A}ll legal or equitable rights that are equivalent to any of
the exclusive rights within the general scope of copyright as
specified in tion 106 in works of authorship that are fixed
in a tangible medium of expression and come within the
subject matter of copyright as specified by tions 102 and
103 . . . are governed exclusively by this title.{After January
1, 1978}, no person is entitled to any such right or equiva-
lent right in any such work under the common law or stat-
utes of any State.
17 U.S.C. 301(a).=20

We have recently held that the statute thus sets up a two-prong=20
inquiry to determine when a state law claim is preempted: first, the=20
work must be "within the scope of the `subject-matter of copyright' as=20
specified in 17 U.S.C. s 102, 103," and ond, "the rights granted=20
under state law" must be "equivalent to any exclusive rights within=20
the scope of federal copyright as set out in U.S.C. 106."=20
Rosciszewski, 1 F.3d at 229 (quotation marks and citation omitted).

There can be no doubt that Berge's work --her dissertation, to
which she if affixed a copyright mark; her abstracts; her drafts,
etc.--falls within the scope of the subject-matter of copyright. All=20
of these written works are clearly "original works of authorship fixed=20
in a{ } tangible medium of expression." 17 U.S.C. Sec 102(a). Berge's
argument that her conversion claim is not preempted because it is her
"ideas and methods," which are specifically excluded from copyright
protection, see id. at ' 102(b), that have been converted rests on a=20
fallacious interpretation of the Copyright Act. In other words, Berge
wants to argue that ideas embodied in a work covered by the Copy-
right Act do not fall within the scope of the Act because the Act spe-
cifically excludes them from protection. But scope and protection are
not synonyms. Moreover, the shadow actually cast by the Act's pre-
emption is notably broader than the wing of its protection.

The second prong of the preemption test is satisfied unless there=20
is an "extra element" that changes the nature of the state law action=20
so that it is "qualitatively different from a copyright infringement=20
claim." Rosciszewski, 1 F.3d at 229-30 (emphasis in original)=20
(internal quotation marks and citation omitted); see also Trandes=20
Corp. v. Guy F. Atkinson Co., 996 F.2d 655, 659-60 (4th Cir.), cert.=20
denied, 510 U.S. 965 (1993). It is hornbook law that a "state law=20
action for conversion will not be preempted if the plaintiff can prove=20
the extra element that the defendant unlawfully retained the physical=20
object embodying plaintiff's work." Paul Goldstein, Copyright, Patent,=20
Trademark and Related State Doctrines 777 (3d ed. 1993) (quoting Paul=20
Goldstein, Copyright (1989)); see also Melville B. Nimmer & David=20
Nimmer, Nimmer on Copyright ' 1.01{B}(1)(i) (1995) ("The torts of=20
conversion and trespass relate to interference with tangible rather=20
than intangible property . . . ."). However, ' 301(a) will preempt a=20
conversion claim "where the plaintiff alleges only the unlawful=20
retention of its intellectual property rights and not the unlawful=20
retention of the tangible object embodying its work." Goldstein,=20
supra, at 777; see Dielsi v. Falk, 916 F. Supp. 985, 992 (C.D. Cal.=20
1996) (holding that a claim for conversion of a television script was=20
preempted since there was no extra element to the essential claim that=20
the ideas were misappropriated); compare Patrick v. Francis, 887 F.=20
Supp. 481, 482, 484 (W.D.N.Y. 1995) (holding a conversion claim=20
preempted where the action actually sought to recover for unauthorized=20
copying of the work, concepts, and ideas of a research paper), with=20
Oddo v. Reis, 743 F.2d 630, 635 (9th Cir. 1984) (conversion of=20
tangible property not preempted). It could hardly be clearer that=20
Berge's conversion claim is preempted. We have already dismissed=20
Berge's argument that her "ideas and methods" are not within the scope=20
of copyright's protection or preemption as to the first prong. See=20
supra. As to the second prong, what is crucial is that Berge makes no=20
claim that appellants converted any tangible objects embodying her=20
intellectual property. Berge attempts to salvage her conversion claim
first by claiming that Alabama recognizes the conversion of intangible=20
property and, second, by claiming that the extra element is=20
unauthorized use.*=20
Return to 10 Years: Discussion in SciFraud Index.html
* We summarily reject Berge's additional arguments that the extra=20
element in this conversion claim may be supplied by (1) the severe=20
harm she suffered as a result of appellants' alleged "scooping" of=20
her work, i.e. publishing her ideas before she could do so herself,=20
that in turn led to the rejection of her work by academic journals=20
and thence to the ruin of her career, and (2) breach of trust in=20
her relationship with Stagno. We find these to be facially=20
implausible as extra elements to a conversion of intellectual=20
property claim in these circumstances. Berge cites no authority
for the proposition that severity of harm has any effect on copy-
right preemption. We decline to erode the preemption provisions of
the Copyright Act. The evidence is abundantly clear that Berge's
work did not merit publication on the basis of its quality alone,
notwithstanding any possibility that she had been "scooped."-

She must founder on both attempts. Although the Alabama Supreme=20
Court has held that "{i}n appropriate circumstances, intangible=20
personal property can be converted," National Sur. Co. v. Applied=20
Sys., Inc., 418 So.2d 847, 850 (Ala. 1982), it was a specific computer=20
program that was converted there, at a time when the manner of the=20
applicability of copyright law to computer programs was unclear. If=20
National Surety holds only that intellectual property may be converted=20
in particular circumstances, then it is unexceptional. However, if it=20
holds that such intellectual property can be converted without an=20
extra element beyond copyright infringement, then it must be=20
repudiated as contrary to the Copyright Act under the Supremacy=20
Clause. Perhaps recognizing the weakness of that reed, Berge also=20
grasps onto G.S. Rasmussen & Assocs. v. Kalitta Flying Serv., 958 F.2d=20
896 (9th Cir. 1992), cert. denied, 508 U.S. 959 (1993). But Kalitta=20
only held that a conversion claim did not run afoul of copyright=20
preemption where an unauthorized copy of a Supplemental Type=20
Certificate from the Federal Aviation Administration had been used=20
improperly

To support her claim that breach of trust provides the extra element=
,
Berge cites Sargent v. American Greetings Corp. , 588 F. Supp. 912
(N.D. Ohio 1984). But Sargent held only that a claim for breach of confi-
dential relationship was not preempted by the Copyright Act, not that a
claim qualitatively the same as a copyright infringement claim could be
made into one qualitatively different from it if it involved a breach of
confidential relationship. Id. at 923-24. The tort for breach of confiden=
-
tial relations involves a wholly different proof scheme than the tort of
conversion, and Berge was not required for purposes of her conversion
claim to show any such breach, nor did she. Cases that find breach of
trust important are ones involving claims whose core consists of a breach
--such as trade secret cases--and cases where the cause of action
requires that breach of confidentiality or the like be shown. See, e.g.,
Avtec Sys., Inc. v. Peiffer, 21 F.3d 568, 574 (4th Cir. 1994);
Rosciszewski, 1 F.3d at 230; Bateman v. Mnemonics, Inc., 79 F.3d 1532,
1549 (11th Cir. 1996); Data General Corp. v. Grumman Sys. Support
Corp., 36 F.3d 1147, 1164-65 (1st Cir. 1994).

to obtain an airworthiness certificate from the FAA. Id. at 904. In=20
distinguishing Kalitta, the Fifth Circuit properly recognized in=20
Daboub v. Gibbons, 42 F.3d 285 (5th Cir. 1995), that where the core of=20
the state law theory of recovery, as in conversion, goes to wrongful=20
copying, in its case, the plagiarism of an entire song, it is=20
preempted. Id. at 289. Recognizing the broad and absolute preemption=20
of ' 301, "stated in the clearest and most unequivocal language=20
possible, so as to foreclose any conceivable misinterpretation of its=20
unqualified intention that Congress shall act preemptively, and to=20
avoid the development of any vague borderline areas between State and=20
Federal protection," H.R. Rep. No. 1476, 94th Cong., 2d Sess. (1976)
reprinted in 1976 U.S.C.C.A.N. 5659, 5746, the Daboub court con-
cluded that "if the language of the act could be so easily circum-
vented, the preemption provision would be useless, and the policies
behind a uniform Copyright statute would be silenced." Id. at 290 &
n.8. Berge's charge of plagiarism and lack of attribution can only
amount to, indeed, are tantamount to, a claim of copyright infringe-
ment, for Berge has certainly not been prevented from using her own
ideas and methods. See Garrido v. Burger King Corp., 558 So.2d 79,=20
82 (Fla. Dist. Ct. App. 1990) (holding that where the gravamen of a
conversion claim was the unauthorized taking or use of ideas, the ele-
ments of the claim were not qualitatively different from copyright
infringement).

Berge complains that if the Copyright Act's idea-expression
dichotomy, see 17 U.S.C. Sec 102(b), and' 301's preemption provision
be read this way, then there is "no legal remedy for the theft of {my}
intellectual property. Intellectual property which can be stolen with-
out fear of legal punishment ceases to be property." Br. of Appellee
at 41. But what Berge fails to realize is that, as a general propo-=20
sition, ideas are simply part of the public domain. See, e.g., Hoehling
v. Universal City Studios, Inc., 618 F.2d 972, 979-80 (2d Cir.)=20
(holding that, in non-fiction works, since facts, themes, and research=20
"have been deliberately exempted from the scope of copyright=20
protection to vindicate the overriding goal of encouraging contri-
butions to recorded knowledge, the states are pre-empted from=20
removing such material from the public domain"), cert. denied, 449=20
U.S. 841 (1980); see also Nimmer and Nimmer, supra, at ' 16.01=20
(stating that "{t}he concept that ideas are `free as air' is of=20
ancient origin, and is well rooted in our jurisprudence" (footnotes=20
omitted)). It is not that this form of intellectual property ceases to=20
be property, rather it is just not intangible personalty. See, e.g.,=20
Richter v. Westab, Inc., 529 F.2d 896, 902 (6th Cir. 1976) ("The law=20
does not favor the protection of abstract ideas as the property of the=20
originator."). Berge wants to fence off the commons, but the only part=20
she may rightly claim is the original expression of her ideas fixed in=20
a tangible medium. The law recognizes her stake there and accords it=20
copyright protection.

Berge's conversion claim is preempted by federal copyright law.
We therefore reverse the judgment below on this claim in its entirety.
V. For the foregoing reasons, we hold that the district court erred
eeeeeee improperly denied appellants' motion for judgment as a mat-
ter of law, both as to Berge's False Claims Act claim and to her con-
version claim. The judgment of the district court is therefore

REVERSED.=20
Berger
Date: Thu, 6 Feb 1997 10:50:43 +0000
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: "n.p.a.s. johnson" <npasj2@cus.cam.ac.uk>
Subject: Declaring financial interests
MIME-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: TEXT/PLAIN; charset=US-ASCII

This item appeared in the Science pages (p.20) of London's *The
Independent* newspaper on Monday 3rd February.

---

"Should scientists, like MPs, have
to declare their financial interests in
research? A study in *Science and
Engineering Ethics* found that 34% of
the lead authors of 789 papers drawn from
a range of journals had a financial interest
in research being described. For example,
the writers may have been listed as an
inventor in a patent application, or
as a shareholder of a company with
commercial interests. But *Nature* reports
critics saying that papers should be judged
on the merits of the science they describe,
not the authors' "alleged biases"."

----
au revoir

niall johnson
Email: npasj2@cam.ac.uk
Department of Geography ^^ University of Cambridge ^^ England ^^ CB2 3EN
Date: Thu, 6 Feb 1997 09:51:00 -0700
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: "david b. resnik" <resnik@uwyo.edu>
Subject: Re: Declaring financial interests
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Of course scientists should have to declare financial interests.
This is required in order to disclose apparent or real conflicts
of interest. The mere fact that someone has a financial
interest in an item of research does not, by itself, invalidate the
research. However, it is important for peers and the public
to be aware of these financial interests in case they want
to scrutinize the work more carefully in light of a possible
research bias. If a scientist who has shares of stock in Quaker Oats
publishes a paper demonstrating soluable fiber's role
in preventing Cancer, then editors, reviewers, and the public
should be told about his financial interests. It is often important
to know who is supporting research or who has an interest in
its validity.

David Resnik, Dept of Philosophy, University of Wyoming


from: discussion of fraud in science
To: SCIFRAUD
Subject: Declaring financial interests
Date: Thursday, February 06, 1997 10:50AM

This item appeared in the Science pages (p.20) of London's *The
Independent* newspaper on Monday 3rd February.

---

"Should scientists, like MPs, have
to declare their financial interests in
research? A study in *Science and
Engineering Ethics* found that 34% of
the lead authors of 789 papers drawn from
a range of journals had a financial interest
in research being described. For example,
the writers may have been listed as an
inventor in a patent application, or
as a shareholder of a company with
commercial interests. But *Nature* reports
critics saying that papers should be judged
on the merits of the science they describe,
not the authors' "alleged biases"."

----
au revoir

niall johnson
Email: npasj2@cam.ac.uk
Department of Geography ^^ University of Cambridge ^^ England ^^ CB2 3EN
Date: Thu, 6 Feb 1997 13:47:00 EST
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: "gardenier, john s." <jsg6@nch11a.em.cdc.gov>
Subject: Re: Declaring financial interests

David Resnik wrote in part:

If a scientist who has shares of stock in Quaker Oats
publishes a paper demonstrating soluable fiber's role
in preventing Cancer, then editors, reviewers, and the public
should be told about his financial interests. It is often important
to know who is supporting research or who has an interest in
its validity.


This is fine for privately funded research. For a real example, Ocean
Spray, the country's largest producer of cranberry products, funded Harvard
Medical School (HMS) to study the effects of cranberry juice on urinary
tract infections. It has long been considered a fold remedy, or at least
folk preventative. The HMS study showed that there was a beneficial effect,
in fact. Due to the funding, some people believe the results; others do
not.

For federally sponsored research, this is insufficient. It will not due to
have, say, half the taxpayers believing that research money was well spent
and the other half believing it was a sneaky form of corporate welfare. Key
participants in government funded studies are required not only to disclose
financial interests, but also to divest any such interests if they are
substantial.

John Gardenier
Date: Thu, 6 Feb 1997 17:11:26 -0500
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: al higgins <ach13@louise.csbs.albany.edu>
Organization: Sociology Department, CAS UAlbany
Subject: An Interpretation
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An Interpretation of The Gallo Case

At least since the mid-1980s, Dr. Robert C. Gallo has been
a focus of controversy. He has been accused of stealing
from the French the discovery of the AIDS virus, of
inappropriately claiming credit for the discovery of the
AIDS virus, of filing for a patent for the AIDS test wrongly,
and of assorted and sundry misconduct in science. Indeed,
he was found guilty of scientific misconduct by ORI only to
have that "conviction" dropped. Next to the
Baltimore case, the case of Robert C. Gallo has,
undoubtedly, been one of the major cases of the last decade
of interest to Scifraud.

The Institute of Human Virology recently sent me a copy of
the history of the Gallo case prepared by Dr. Gallo's attorney,
Joseph Onek. This is a history prepared by one who is charged
with defending the accused and cannot be considered an
unbiased statement. It is designed to tell Gallo's side of the story.
And it does so very well. I was so impressed by the statement I
thought it appropriate to post it here.

Along with this statement, Mr. Onek has distributed
"supporting documentation" which are not included here. For
example, there is a letter among those supporting documents from
John D. Dingell (D-Mich.) ranking member of the Committee on
Commerce of the U. S. House of Representatives in which he very
clearly disavows the "draft report" of his former committee, a
report which, on its face, severely criticizes Dr. Gallo. That
letter may be summarized: "We cannot vouce for the authenticity
or accuracy of the papers provided to you. They were not
reviewed, much less evaluated, by the staff director, the
Chairman, or any other Member of the Subcommittee." Now that
report was posted to the Internet and circulated but, please
note: the Congressional Committee does not vouch for it.

So, too, do the other accusations against Dr. Gallo lack
merit, at least according to this history.


++++++++++


BACKGROUND PAPER
HISTORY

In 1979 and 1981 Dr. Robert Gallo's laboratory at NIH (the
Laboratory of Tumor Cell Biology, LTCB) discovered the first two
human retroviruses -- HTLV-I and HTLV-II. As a result of these
discoveries, Dr. Gallo (along with Prof. Max Essex of Harvard)
proposed in 1982 that a retrovirus might be the cause of the new
and deadly disease AIDS. His laboratory and others around the
world began to look for such a retrovirus. The techniques used
involved growing human blood T-cells (T-lymphocytes) in
laboratory cultures with interleukin-2 (II-2), the T-cell growth
factor discovered by Dr. Gallo and his co-workers in 1976.

Dr. Gallo's laboratory always assisted colleagues
throughout the world. In particular it worked closely
with the Institut Pasteur in Paris. Two people from that
laboratory received training in Dr. Gallo's laboratory. The
laboratory provided Pasteur scientists with a protocol for
growing a retrovirus in human umbilical cord blood T-cells
and with the reagents necessary to distinguish the retrovirus
they ultimately found from HTLV-I and HTLV-II.

In early 1983, the Institut Pasteur prepared a paper for
Science describing the retrovirus they had found. Dr. Gallo was
given that paper to review by Science. He reviewed it highly
favorably and urged that it be published. He even coordinated
publication of his laboratory's work relating to viruses
detected in people with AIDS (and recommended that
Essex coordinate publication of his work on the subject)
so that the three papers could be published in the same
issue. And when the Pasteur scientists neglected to provide
an abstract for the paper, he prepared one for them with their
approval.

The May 1983 paper by the Pasteur scientists was the first
publication of the virus later proved to be the cause of AIDS.
But the May 1983 paper did not demonstrate and indeed did not
contend that the virus described was the cause of AIDS. Much
work needed to be done before such a conclusion could be
reached.

During this period, Dr. Gallo's laboratory also found
retroviruses in AIDS patients that were different from HTLV-I
and HTLV-II and that turned out to be the AIDS virus.
However he and his co-workers were unable to grow these
viruses well enough to study them effectively at that time.
The LTCB recognized that the problem in large part was
that these retroviruses were cytopathic; they killed the
cells they infected. Indeed, the Pasteur scientists had
stated that it was difficult to grow their virus in primary
cell lines and that they were unable to grow it
in a permanent cell line.

Dr. Mika Popovic, a leading researcher in Dr. Gallo's
laboratory, dedicated himself to the problem of how to get the
virus to grow successfully. Dr. Popovic and a few technicians
in Dr. Gallo's laboratory were among the first to expose
themselves regularly to specimens derived from patients
with AIDS at a time when the risks were largely unknown.
Dr. Popovic was working with blood samples from AIDS
patients sent to the laboratory by physicians throughout
the United States. In July and again in September 1983,
the laboratory also received samples from the
Institut Pasteur. Beginning in late October, Dr. Popovic
attempted to put the French virus in a permanent cell line. The
virus -- called LAV by the Pasteur -- grew at low levels. The
tests conducted in Dr. Gallo's laboratory confirmed that it was
a retrovirus different from HTLV-I and HTLV-II. In December
of 1983, Dr. Popovic informed Dr. Montagnier of this fact and
that "we knew how to work" with this type of virus.

Shortly after his first attempt at putting LAV in a cell
line, Dr. Popovic began to put viruses from the LTCB in cell
lines. In one instance, he pooled several American viruses
together and put them in a cell line. Dr. Popovic soon found
that the viruses from the LTCB -- especially MOV, the pool
(later called IIIB), and RF -- grew as well or better in cell lines
than LAV did. Working with these viruses, he developed
the process for producing large quantities of virus and thus
opened the way for effective research. With more virus
available to study, Dr. Gallo and his colleagues performed
a series of serological tests (tests for specific antibodies in
patients' sera) that strongly suggested that isolates of this
type were the cause of AIDS. Further confirmation came
as LTCB scientists and their collaborators found in
parallel experiments similar isolates in
the blood of numerous AIDS patients. And, at the same time, Dr.
Gallo, Dr. Schupbach, Dr. Sarngadharan and their collaborators
developed an accurate method (ELISA plus Western Blot) for
testing for the presence of the virus in the blood stream.

The work of Dr. Gallo and his colleagues was described in
four separate papers submitted to Science on March 30, 1984 and
published on May 4, 1984, and a fifth paper published in Lancet
in June 1984. These papers revolutionized the field of AIDS
research. Prior to their publication, there was no consensus on
what caused AIDS. Indeed, in March, 1984, a leading NIH
scientist (and an Institute) proposed that a fungus was the
cause of AIDS, and not until the papers were published and
the data reviewed was a major contract for 30 million dollars
to find the cause of AIDS withdrawn from another NIH Institute.
Now it was possible for all researchers and health officials
to focus their efforts on the newly discovered AIDS virus and
how to combat it.

In addition, the four papers paved the way for the
development of a blood test. By this time, the blood supplies
of the world were being contaminated by the AIDS virus and
many persons, especially hemophiliacs, were being
infected. The blood test would effectively eliminate this
AIDS threat to the public health. Moreover, the
systems for routine culture and replication of the virus
made it possible to test drugs such as
AZT for their ability to inhibit HIV infection.

One of the four papers (Popovic et al.) discussed the
Pasteur paper of May 1983 and noted that there appeared to be
differences between the French and American viruses. The paper
stated that these differences might mean the two viruses were
different but also might mean simply that the French had not yet
accurately characterized their virus because it had not yet been
adequately cultured (that is, not produced in a continuous cell
line).

Dr. Gallo visited The Institut Pasteur during the first
week of April 1984, one week after submission and several
weeks prior to the publication of the papers. He summarized
the results of the papers and proposed to the Pasteur
scientists that the two laboratories jointly prepare papers
comparing their respective viruses and jointly publish the results.
Dr. Gallo requested that his collaborator, Dr. M. Sarngadharan,
take viruses and other test materials to the Pasteur Institut,
and beginning in mid-May, scientists from the two
laboratories began the comparison of the French and
American viruses.

By the late summer-fall of 1984 it became clear that the
French and American viruses seemed to be the same type of virus.
During the same period, Dr. Gallo and others published papers
indicating that the AIDS virus, unlike HTLV-I and HTLV-II, were
very heterogeneous, i.e., isolates from different patients had
fairly different molecular sequences. It became clear that the
isolate that the French called IAV and one of the isolates from
Dr. Gallo's laboratory and the one the laboratory had used for
the blood test -- HTLV-IIIB -- were similar enough that it
appeared they might come from the same patient. Thus the
possibility emerged that the virus samples the Institut Pasteur
sent to Dr. Gallo's laboratory in September 1983 might have
contaminated the pool that produced the isolate HTLV-IIIB.

Shortly before publication of the Science papers, a patent
was filed by Dr. Gallo and his colleagues. That patent covered
the process for growing the AIDS virus and the method for
developing the blood test. Dr. Gallo had never previously
patented any of his discoveries and did not initiate the patent
filing here. HHS officials insisted that he file the patent so
they could control which licensees would manufacture the blood
test. The HHS officials understandably wanted to make sure that
only competent companies would be permitted to manufacture and
distribute a blood test. It was not until 1986, two years after
the patent filing, that a directive from President Reagan
enabled government employees like Dr. Gallo to obtain
significant financial rewards (limited to $100,000
annually) for their patents.

In 1985, Dr. Gallo visited the Institut Pasteur and was
told by Dr. Francois Jacob that the Institut Pasteur deserved
a share of the patent royalties. Dr. Gallo had no objection
to this and so informed NIH officials on his return to
Washington. Dr. Gallo was told-that this was a legal not
a scientific issue and was none of his concern.

There ensued a lengthy patent fight between the United
States government and the Institut Pasteur. The dispute
resulted in a settlement in March 1987 in which the parties
divided the credit and the royalties for the discovery of the
AIDS virus. The settlement was meant to put an end to
the dispute and to an recriminations. Regrettably that
has not proved to be the case.

II. ISSUES

1. Who Discovered the AIDS Virus?
In 1982, Dr. Gallo proposed that a retrovirus might be the
cause of AIDS. His laboratory subsequently provided the
Institut Pasteur with the protocol and reagents necessary
to search for such a retrovirus. In May 1983, scientists at
the Institut Pasteur reported the first isolation of a retrovirus
subsequently shown to be the cause of AIDS. The May
1983 Science paper did not contend, let alone prove,
that the retrovirus described was the cause of AIDS.
Dr. Gallo and his colleagues were the first
to publish the strong evidence that convinced the scientific
community that a new retrovirus, now called HIV, was the cause
of AIDS. They did this in the four papers published in
Science in May 1984.

In light of this history and of the assistance which the
American and French laboratories gave to each other, it is
appropriate that the laboratories be considered the co-
discoverers of the AIDS virus. This, of course, was the
agreement reached as part of the 1987 settlement and became the
basis of two co-authored documents by Drs. Gallo and Montagnier
(Nature 1987 and Scientific American 1988).

2. Who Developed the AIDS Blood Test?
Dr. Gallo and his colleagues were the first to properly
grow the AIDS virus in a cell line and to develop a
workable blood test to screen the blood supply and to
diagnose individual patients. As a result of this work,
the United States was screening its blood supply five
months before France. Indeed, there is now a major
scandal in France because the French
government delayed approval of the American blood
test until the French blood test could be readied for
market, thereby failing to prevent many AIDS infections.

The Pasteur scientists filed a patent application for a
blood test several months earlier than Dr. Gallo and his
colleagues. This blood test was not workable, however. The
application itself stated that the test scored positive in only
20 percent of patients known to have AIDS. In addition, the
application stated mistakenly that the sera of diseased patients
do not recognize the envelope protein of the virus. Whatever the
merits of Pasteur's patent claims, which were settled in 1987,
there can be no doubt that Dr. Gallo and his colleagues
developed the first workable blood test. They thus saved
thousands of lives and allowed health officials a scientific
means to follow and attempt to control the AIDS epidemic
for the first time.

3.The Misappropriation Issue
A. Did the LTCB use a virus given it by the Pasteur in
its blood test?
By mid-1985 it became clear that the isolate the LTCB used
for its blood test -- HTLV-IIIB -- was very similar to the
isolate the Pasteur called LAV-Bru. The similarity was greater
than would be expected for two isolates from different patients.
Thus, the possibility arose that IIIB derived from one of the
samples of LAV sent to the LTCB by the Pasteur in September
1983.

Dr. Gallo long acknowledged this possibility, but was
reluctant to embrace it as a probability or certainty because of
the fact that on various occasions LAV had reacted differently
from HTLV-IIIB in Dr. Gallo's laboratory. For example, LAV did
not appear to grow in the cell line H9, the same cell line which
grew HTLVIIIB and other isolates so well.

In 1990, scientists at the LTCB studied several of the 1983
samples sent to it by the Pasteur. The study found that the
isolate called LAV-Bru was not in fact similar to IIIB. In this
paper, the LTCB acknowledged that one of the several 1983
samples from the Pasteur -- LAV-Bru (MT2B) -- had been
unavailable for study. (The LTCB had made numerous
requests from the Pasteur for an of the samples sent by the
Pasteur to LTCB in 1983 but these requests had been denied.)

In 1991, Pasteur scientists published a study with a
startling conclusion. They disclosed that the isolate that
Pasteur had been calling LAV-Bru was not from the patient Bru
after all. The isolate LAV-Bru had been contaminated in the
Pasteur laboratory by an isolate from the patient Lai (HIV-Lai).
This contaminated sample, the study surmised, had been
inadvertently sent to the LTCB along with LAV-Bru in 1983. This
study provided a likely explanation for why "LAV" did not grow
in the H9 cell line, while HTLV-IIIB obviously had grown so well:
the Pasteur may have unknowingly sent two different isolates to
the LTCB. After reviewing the Pasteur article, Dr. Gallo
generously acknowledged that it now appeared likely that the
French virus had contaminated viruses at the NIH.

B. Was the Use of HIV-Lai Intentional?
The charge has been made that the LTCB deliberately used
HIV-Lai in the development of a commercial blood test.
Obviously, there is no way to definitively disprove the charge.
But the charge of deliberate misappropriation, as opposed to
accidental contamination, has no logical basis.

First, of course, it is well known that accidental
contaminations are common in laboratories working with many
virus cultures and that HIV-Lal was an isolate that even more
readily contaminated other samples. It contaminated
samples at the Institut Pasteur and several other institutions.
Significantly, when HIV-Lal appeared to contaminate
cultures at Robin Weiss' laboratory in London, Dr.
Montagnier stated in Science that he was certain that
the contamination was accidental. Furthermore,
laboratory records from the LTCB provided to NIH investigators
demonstrate that HIV-Lai apparently contaminated some other
virus samples in the LTCB in 1984 besides IIIB.

Second, as the Office of Scientific Integrity (OSI) at NIH
has confirmed, the LTCB had found numerous other HIV isolates in
late 1983 and early 1984 including one (HIV-RF) which could have
been used for the blood test within the same time frame as HTLV-
IIIB. Dr. Popovic had, in fact, recommended using HIV-RF
initead of IIIB, but Dr. Gallo had rejected this because RF was
derived from a Haitian patient (and therefore might be a different
strain of HIV) and because RF was a few weeks behind IIIB in
development. Thus, the LTCB had no motive to deliberately use
the French virus in a commercial blood test. (It should
be noted that the use of RF would not have delayed publication
of the Science papers or submission of the patent application; it
might have slightly delayed the production of a commercially
available blood test.)

Third, the OSI has confirmed that the virus samples Dr.
Popovic put in the pool that ultimately grew IIIB contained
several genuine HIV isolates that are different from IIIB and
"LAV." Thus, Dr. Popovic, the scientist who conducted the key
experiments, had no reason to believe that the virus production
he saw in the pool was the result of contamination by "LAV."

Fourth, Dr. Popovic always treated LAV and IIIB separately
in all his work. He also treated the isolate MOV (a March 1984
sample of which turns out to be HIV-LAI) separately. For
example, after completing the ELISA assays using MOV, he
repeated the assays using IIIB.

Fifth, Dr. Popovic never hid in any way his work with LAV.
Indeed he mentioned that work in his early drafts of the Science
paper and later used samples from his work to do comparative
studies with the French. This is hardly consistent with the
theory that Dr. Popovic deliberately contaminated his HTLVIIIB
pool with "LAV."

Sixth, it was the LTCB which conducted the studies that
demonstrated the likelihood that HTLV-IIIB and "LAV" were the
same isolate. The LTCB published the first studies on the
heterogeneity of the AIDS virus and then published the gene
sequences of IIIB, thus providing the fingerprint of the virus.
Again, this conduct is hardly consistent with the theory of
deliberate misappropriation.

In light of all these factors, it is clear that the
contamination of the NIH pool by the French samples was
accidental.

4. Issues of Credit
There have been allegations that Dr. Gallo did not give
sufficient credit to the Institut Pasteur for LAV or to the
American scientists who developed the T-cell line HUT 78. These
allegations are without merit.

A. The Institut Pasteur provided the LTCB with virus
samples, supposedly from the patient Bru, in July and September
1983. The LTCB made only limited use of these samples. Dr.
Popovic grew "LAV" in cord blood cells and was able to infect
malignant T-cell lines with it in late October 1983. After
these first cultures died out, Dr. Popovic grew IAV again in two
T-cell lines for approximately two months during November
and December of 1983 and froze the cultures in early
January 1984. During November and December of 1983
several of the LTCB's own HIV isolates were also put into
permanent T-cell lines, including HTLV-IIIB (the "pool"),
MOV, SN, HP and RF. (By the time of
submission of Dr. Gallo's May 1984 Science papers, several other
HIV isolates had also been put into T-cell lines, including HIV-
MN, an isolate now being considered as a strong candidate for
use in an AIDS vaccine ali over the world, including at the Institut
Pasteur.) "IAV" was never intentionally grown on a large enough
scale to provide reagents for a blood test in the LTCB or
intentionally used in the ELISA and Western Blot assays that
provided the data to prove the etiology of AIDS.

Dr. Gallo chose not to publish any information about the
LTCB's use of LAV in the May 1984 Science papers because he
thought he should first describe the LTCB's own findings and
because the only new data the LTCB had on the virus received
from Dr. Montagnier was that it had grown for a time in T-cell lines.
This was in direct contradiction to Dr. Montagnier's statements
that LAV was impossible to grow in a cell line. Dr. Gallo did
not think that his publication was the proper place to make
unilateral claims about similarities and differences between the
viruses without more data and without co-authorship with the
Pasteur scientists. Since the comparison would require
extensive presentation of data on the two viruses, it was more
appropriately a separate publication.

Dr. Gallo actively pushed for a joint comparison of HTLV-
IIIB and LAV. On April 4, 1984, before publication of the
Science papers, he visited the Institut Pasteur, described some
of his data and arranged for a collaboration to compare the two
viruses. Approximately two weeks after publication of the
Science papers, one of Dr. Gallo's associates visited the
Pasteur and began the initial comparison of the viruses.
That summer and fall further analysis took place, resulting
in two joint manuscripts. (Ultimately Dr. Montagnier chose
not to publish the two manuscripts because the separate
sequencing work of each laboratory was moving ahead
so rapidly.)

B. In her statement released to the press at the April
1984 press conference announcing the discovery of the cause of
AIDS, Secretary of Health and Human Services Margaret
Heckler gave significant credit to the Pasteur:

"I especially want to cite the efforts of the Institut
Pasteur in France, which has, in part, been working in
collaboration with the National Cancer Institute. They
have previously identified a virus which they have linked to
AIDS patients, and within the next few weeks we will
know with certainty whether that virus is the same one
identifiedthrough the NCI's work. We believe it will
prove to be the same."

Dr. Gallo made a very similar statement at the press
conference.

"The laboratory at the Institut Pasteur and my laboratory
have been friends for about 15 years .... we have active
collaboration in the coming month. If what they identified
in Science a year ago is the same as what we have now
produced ... I will certainly say so, and I will say so
with them in the collaboration.... We think the two
laboratories are very likely to come together, although
I cannot say at this point whether the viruses are
identical."

Later in the same press conference Dr. Gallo said to a
reporter "...before you keep saying HTLV, say'HTLV-III', and say
that it may in time be the same as what has been called LAV in a
couple of publications."

In short, Secretary Heckler and Dr. Gallo gave credit to
the Institut Pasteur and to LAV at the press conference
announcing the discovery of the cause of AIDS.

C. The Popovic et al. paper described the cell line "HT"
that was used to grow IIIB and other isolates. Subsequently
"HT" was clearly identified as the cell line HUT-78, created by Drs.
Paul Bunn, Adi Gazdar and colleagues. The -contention has been
made therefore that Drs. Gallo and Popovic should have stated
in their paper that they used HUT-78. This contention is
incorrect.

The Gallo laboratory had grown HUT 78 in the early 1980s
primarily in attempts to find a leukemia virus in it. Perhaps
because of co-culturing HUT 78 with other cells, the cell lines
labeled "HUT 78" in the laboratory were all different. Dr. Dean
Mann, who had done HIA typing on the lines, cautioned Dr.
Popovic that the "HUT 78 cell lines were a mess." As a result, Dr.
Popovic did not know whether he was using the original HUT 78
when he began to infect it with virus samples in late 1983. He
turned to single cell cloning as a way of avoiding mixed
parentage cell lines. Moreover, by December 1983 he began using
an alternative designation for the cell line ("HT"). He did not
call the cell line "HUT 78" even in the earliest drafts of his
1984 Science paper.

Dr. Gallo and Dr. Popovic decided to use the term HT in the
Science paper. Dr. Gallo did not believe it made sense to delay
publication of the paper in order to track down the origins of
HT. After publication he arranged for Dr. Popovic to go to Dr.
Paul Bunn, one of the original authors of the HUT 78 paper, to
obtain the necessary clarification. Unfortunately, analysis of
the cell line Dr. Bunn provided to Dr. Popovic at that time
showed a cell type different from those in the LTCB and
different from the original HUT 78, since the patient from whom
HUT 78 was derived was male and the cells obtained from
Dr. Bunn were of female origin. Thus, the issue was not
promptly clarified and required more analysis.

No effort was made by the LTCB to deny others the use of
the H9 clone or to hide the origins of the parental line.
Records indicate that the LTCB made H9 available to at
least 45 laboratories in 17 different countries in 1984 alone. Dr.
Popovic reported the HIA pattern of the H9 cell clone in Lancet
in 1985. Thus, scientists throughout the world had the
opportunity to determine for themselves the relationship of H9
to one or another HUT 78. This includes Drs. Bunn and
Gazdar, who were early recipients of H9.

Finally, the Gallo et al. patent application did not claim
HT or H9 as a patentable discovery. The patent application
described a process for growing HIV in a cell line and, as
amended in August 1984, made clear that HIV could be grown in
several different T-cell lines.
Joseph Onek


++++++++++


A. C. Higgins
SS 359 SUNYA Albany, New York 12222
ACH13@CNSVAX.Albany.edu
Phone: (518) 442 - 4678; FAX: (518) 442 - 4936
SCIFRAUD@CNSIBM.Albany.edu
A. C. Higgins ACH13@louise.csbs.albany.edu
College of Arts and Sciences VOX: 518-442-4678
Sociology Department FAX: 518-442-4936
University At Albany
Albany, NY, USA 12222
Date: Thu, 6 Feb 1997 16:32:16 -0700
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: "david b. resnik" <resnik@uwyo.edu>
Subject: Re: Declaring financial interests
Mime-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: text/plain; charset="ISO-8859-1"

"Key participants in government funded studies are required not only to
disclose
financial interests, but also to divest any such interests if they are
substantial."

John Gardenier

>>>I agree with you John, but now we're moving to the realm of conflicts
of interest and obligations to avoid them. Disclosure of financial interests
comes first, then we move to dealing with conflict of interest issues.
----David Resnik
Date: Fri, 7 Feb 1997 10:22:00 EST
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: "gardenier, john s." <jsg6@nch11a.em.cdc.gov>
Subject: Re: An Interpretation

Al, I have to agree that is a beautiful piece of - - lawyering. We seldom
see work like this because we cannot afford it and tend not to know anyone
who can. This represents hundreds, perhaps thousands, of billable hours by
a top attorney, supplemented with a lot of help from bright young
assistants. It had to cost in excess of a million dollars. I am not saying
that much was spent for this one piece of writing. Rather I am saying that
the cumulative expenditures for years of legal services were necessary to
reach the point where even a top lawyer could produce such a finely crafted
document.

Similarly, apparently like yourself, I do not really know whether "the true
facts" would support Gallo as strongly as this document does; however, this
certainly gives pause to anyone predisposed to condemn him. That, of
course, is exactly what it is intended to do. That, in turn, is why only a
lawyer could write it.

Having been fortunate enough to take a year of "Jurisprudence" at a top law
school as an undergraduate, here are a few elementary things I learned:

1. The Western, especially English and American, legal system is
deliberately designed as an "adversarial" system. Nothing can enter such a
system unless there exist two diametrically opposed positions.

2. It is not the job of an attorney to decide whether an individual is
right or wrong, guilty or innocent. That is the job of the court system.
(Nonetheless, if a lawyer does have actual indisputable knowledge that a
potential client is wrong or guilty, legal ethics dictate that s/he should
not take the case. That simply means, of course, that the party will find
another equally skilled lawyer who lacks that knowledge.)

3. Once an attorney takes a client, all work should be directed to that
client's benefit. (There are some specific exceptions where the attorney
has an even greater duty to the court that to the client, but those are
exceptions.) The attorney is ethically prohibited from pursuing "the
truth." (Recall, finding the truth is the court's job.) The attorney must
assiduously pursue all potentially available facts, all potentially relevant
case law, all technicalities of the functioning of the court system, and all
useful means of presentation and persuasion, which will BENEFIT the client.
In other words, it is the duty of the attorney to be VERY SELECTIVE in
research, case management, and in presentation.

4. In theory, the adversarial court system works well because of the BALANCE
of two equally skilled and motivated attorney teams finding all the relevant
facts and presenting their opposing views in the best possible light to an
impartial judge or jury. In practice, of course, there are many cases where
such balance is lacking. That is one reason it is far easier for a rich
person to be win a court case than a poor one. Some might say that if you
can outspend the government on research and quality of lawyers, you can
literally get away with murder. (I do not say that, but I understand where
it is coming from.)

5. There are some compensating factors for this general tendency. There is
a tendency for juries to favor domestic over foreign corporations. There is
a tendency for juries to feel sorry for an underdog and to decide for such a
person against, say, an insurance company which is seen as having "deep
pockets." This goes on and on to such an extent that there are now many
special consultants who use scientific methods such as focus groups and
other social research to advise attorneys what sorts of people they WANT on
a jury for a specific case as opposed to whom they want to get rid of at any
cost.
That again drives up the cost, of course.

Oh, oh, rambling again. OK, back to the point. Al's document represents
superb work by a highly skilled attorney who has assiduously formulated and
presented the best possible case for Dr. Gallo. That is what a lawyer
should do, given the skill and the resources. BUT, it is explicitly
designed to be ONE SIDE of an adversarial procedure. In legal theory, one
can arrive at the truth of these issues only by weighing this against an
equally well formulated and presented opposing argument. If such an
opposing argument and presentation does not exist, again in legal theory,
the possibility of arriving at the truth is diminished.

John Gardenier
Date: Sat, 8 Feb 1997 10:07:25 -0500
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: robert barasch <robertb280@aol.com>
Subject: Re: Declaring financial interests

In a message dated 97-02-06 11:51:26 EST, David Resnik wrote::

<< Of course scientists should have to declare financial interests.
This is required in order to disclose apparent or real conflicts
of interest. >>

BUT, in the case we've been reading about, the financial interest occurred
after the scientist did his research (reportedly). His findings prompted him
to invest in the company that would be likely to benefit from the findings. I
am not sure about the ethics of all this, but I think it important to keep
the record intact. Is it written somewhere that a scientist in such a
situation should not capitalize on his knowledge?

Bob Barasch
robertb280@aol.com
Date: Mon, 10 Feb 1997 10:28:09 -0500
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: gregory hennessy <gsh@libra.usno.navy.mil>
Subject: Re: Declaring financial interests
in-reply-to: robert barasch <robertb280@aol.com> "re: declaring financial
interests" (Feb 8, 10:07am)
Mime-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: text/plain; charset=us-ascii

> Is it written somewhere that a scientist in such a
> situation should not capitalize on his knowledge?

Said scientist may be acting on inside information if they use information not
generally available to the public.


--
Gregory Hennessy
Astrometry Department
US Naval Observatory
3450 Mass Ave NW
Washington DC 20392
Date: Mon, 10 Feb 1997 09:53:44 -0700
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: "david b. resnik" <resnik@uwyo.edu>
Subject: Re: Declaring financial interests
Mime-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: text/plain; charset="ISO-8859-1"

> Is it written somewhere that a scientist in such a
> situation should not capitalize on his knowledge?

I think we need to distinguish between
(a) having a financial interest while engaging in research
vs.
(b) acquiring a financial interest after research has been completed

Situation (a) raises ethical questions about apparent or real conflicts of
interest

Situation (b) does not necessarily raises these questions
although if the financial interests involves the purchase of
stock it raises ethical questions related to "insider trading."
I am not as well versed in the ethics of insider trading, however,
it does make a difference whether and how the information is
available to the public...If a scientists publishes a paper and
then makes an investment after publication, this does not
seem like unethical trading because the information is
available to the public. If the scientist never publishes the
results or purchases the investments before publication,
then this trading could be considered unethical.

---David Resnik

--
Gregory Hennessy
Astrometry Department
US Naval Observatory
3450 Mass Ave NW
Washington DC 20392
Date: Mon, 10 Feb 1997 13:33:00 EST
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: "gardenier, john s." <jsg6@nch11a.em.cdc.gov>
Subject: Fraudulent Warranties?

Reposted extract from NetNotify:

Software Buyers Should Demand Warranty Up Front
"As I See It"
By Jeff Fishbein

The Patriot recently joined a host of media organizations in
supporting various state attorneys general who are investigating the
pricing practices of America Online (Editorial, Dec. 15). While I agree
that the state's top police officer -- and the media -- have an
obligation to protect citizens, I think this is a case of misdirected
concern.

According to the company's usage statistics, most AOL users will see a
net decrease in their online bill with the service's new unlimited-
access pricing. In fact, AOL joined the fledgling Microsoft Network in
making this change, mostly in response to consumer demand. While the
attorney general is hard at work attacking a company that's trying to do
you a favor -- and the media is lending its support -- there are numerous
other companies that are working to rip off the computing public, and
I've yet to see a mention of it in the paper. Sadly, these are not
fly-by-night hackers trying to make a quick buck, these are reputable and
well-known software companies, who have found a new weapon in the fight
against consumers' rights: warranties.

When was the last time you actually read all the way through a
warranty for any product? It's all fairly standard wording, and most of
us assume the companies we buy products from will stand behind those
products. But in the software industry, warranties are often written to
disclaim responsibility. Would you buy a car if the dealer specifically
stated that the car was not guaranteed when used as a mode of
transportation? Probably not ... but chances are, a good bit of your
software is warranted with either or both of these phrases:

"(The software is provided) 'as is' without warranty of any kind,
either expressed or implied, including but not limited to the implied
warranties of merchantability or fitness for a particular purpose. "(We)
do not warrant that ... the operation of the software will be
uninterrupted or error-free, or that defects in the software will be
corrected."

Both of the above come from actual software products I own. Another
company whose products I have used has gone so far as to state in its
warranty that the purchaser is liable for the cost of any corrections the
software company must make if their program is faulty. Is there any other
industry in America that could get away with this? This doesn't mean that
all technology companies are charlatans, but the ranks grow each year. In
fact, the newest version of Intuit's "Quicken," the top-selling home
finance program, includes just such a non-warranty. How can you be on the
lookout for a ripoff? Sadly, it's often hard to know before you open the
box -- that's where the warranty is -- and once you've opened the box,
you've implicitly agreed to the terms of the license and warranty.

A great example is the Cybermedia program "Oil Change," (recently
reviewed in The Patriot-News by Dwight Silverman, whose column appears
each Tuesday). The CD-ROM is sealed with a sticker that says you accept
the license when you break the seal. The license is stored in digital
form on the CD -- there's no paper version in the box -- so you have to
accept it before you can read it.

Even the most reputable companies will use logic-defying legal
opinions to protect them from liability. Macromedia, a large design
software company, marketed a product which recommends "Windows 3.1 or
higher," but it won't run on Windows 95. Microsoft, another reputable
company, has claimed that Windows 95 is NOT a higher version of Windows,
but is instead an entirely new product -- even though it is sold as an
upgrade, and the Microsoft manual uses the phrase, "If you are upgrading
from an earlier version of Windows ..." The end result is that a user who
switched to Windows 95 was virtually forced to replace an entire software
library because the new operating system couldn't live up to its promises
-- at a cost of hundreds to thousands of dollars. But that isn't why the
Justice Department went after the software giant -- the government was
apparently more worried about Bill Gates' growing wealth through good
deal-making than with the suffering and frustration of consumers.

And none of this even touches the issue of technical support, which has
essentially become an extra source of revenue for software companies.
Again, would you consider your car warranted if you had to pay for
covered repairs? Even during a "free" tech support period, you usually
have to pay for the call.

How can you protect yourself? Read the warranty that comes with every
software product you own. If the company doesn't warrant that the
software will perform substiantially as stated in the documentation for a
period of at least 90 days, buy a competitor's product. If the software
is a major application, make sure it includes at least 30 days of free
tech support from the first call, not from the day you register. Finally,
if you agree that the software industry is taking advantage of you as a
consumer, take action. But plan on a lonely battle, because the attorney
general and the media probably won't offer any help.

--Jeff Fishbein is an internet consultant based in Selinsgrove. He owns
an internet commerce site for local businesses; the URL is
http://www.riverweb.com

Reposter: John Gardenier
Date: Mon, 10 Feb 1997 23:00:28 -0500
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: al higgins <ach13@louise.csbs.albany.edu>
Organization: Sociology Department, CAS UAlbany
Subject: You Ignorant Slut
MIME-Version: 1.0
Content-type: text/plain; charset=US-ASCII
Content-transfer-encoding: 7BIT

You Ignorant Slut!

The gutsy side of science is hardly the side written about
in texts, promoted by scientists or written about (usually) in the
press. Science is, rather, usually presented as something special
with noble and dignified characters fully justified in being
supported with the lavish billions a grateful nation spends on
them. But every once and a while, one gets an image of what
really goes on in cutting edge science where personalities
clash and big egos sometimes get bruised.

The discovery last summer of evidence which might be taken
to mean that life may have existed at one time on Mars has
evoked a continuing controversy which is, as it were, a revealing
battle about Big Science and Big Scientists. And, while there
may be nothing new or different here from anything that goes on
in normal science, this is a unique story in that it tells the public
about the controversies and the gutsiness of Big Science. Here
is a picture of how the game usually gets played.

The following article is reproduced in its entirety from
Newsweek.

++++++++++


Begley, Sharon and Rogers, Adam. "War of the
Worlds," Newsweek, 10 February 1997, pp. 56-57.\

Even before scientists from NASA and Stanford
University stunned the world last August by
announcing that a meteorite contained evidence of past life
on Mars, their research deviated a bit from
run-of-the-mill science. For instance,
the NASA team withdrew a paper submitted to a
scientific meeting last March because they worried that
"someone might ask a question that would force us to
give away our major finding," says planetary scientist
Everett Gibson of NASA's Johnson Space Center.
"If you were on to the biggest scoop of your life, would
you tell people?" And Stanford chemists who were
asked to collaborate with the NASA group, by analyzing
meteorite slices for compounds indicative of life, were
not even told what they were looking at. Samples were
dubbed Goofy, Micky and Minnie.

But the usual secrecy pales next to what has been
happening in the six months since the announcement.
It is normal for scientific claims to be criticized.
Rebuttal follows, and eventually the original claim
stands, falls or is modified. But the debate over the
claim for life on Mars has become filled with acrimony,
sometimes at the level of "you ignorant slut!" Both
sides pretty much agree that the meteorite fell from
Mars and landed in Antarctica 13,000 years ago. Then the
shouting begins. On eminent meteorite researcher, who
prefers to keep his invective anonymous, calls the NASA
team "an inferior group of people {who} are
setting the agenda for others who have real science to
perform." NASA's Gibson calls one of his critics "someone
who has been in this country for 32 years and
hasn't held a permanent job.

This would all make for a fine spectator sport,
except for one problem. As the bitterness of the debate
stiffens positions, putting careers and reputations on
the line, there is real concern about whether the
claim of past life on Mars which, after all, would be the
discovery of this or any other millennium will
ever be properly sorted out. Chemist Edward Anders,
one of the deans of meteorite science, worries that the
bitterness "will work against the usual
scientific process" and hurt efforts to find out
whether the potato-shaped meteorite truly harbors
evidence of life.

Already the polarization may be taking a toll.
Soon after the August announcement, NASA slapped
a temporary moratorium on distributing samples
of the meteorite known as ALH84001 to scientists
until it can sort out all the requests (probably by late
spring). In the meantime, what Jeffrey Bada of the
Scripps Institution of Oceanography calls a "black
market." in slices of 84001 has sprung up. "It seems
like the only people who have gotten the remnants are ones
who are likely to be supportive of the original
findings," charges Bada. Researchers at Caltech,
for instance, received a piece when a member of the
original NASA tem at Houston's Johnson Space Center
visited last September. At next month's 28th Lunar and
Planetary Science meeting in Houston, the
Caltech geologists will present data that support the
life-on-Mars idea. NASA's David McKay, who led the
84001 team, says, "I don't think we influenced their
position."

Scientific disagreements usually get their
fullest airing at professional conferences. There
researchers present their most cutting-edge data (the stuff that
gets published in journals is months if not years
old). Then critics take their best shots. But with the
bitterness surrounding the Martian meteorite, this crucial step
in the scientific process may be undermined:
organizers invite scientists who agree with their position,
or researchers choose to attend meetings of the like-
minded. Next month, for instance, at the
planetary-science meeting, some 30 papers will address
the question of life on Mars. "More than 80 percent will
support our hypothesis," says Gibson. At the American
Chemical Society meeting in Sam Francisco, a session on
84001 organized by Bada is expected to be mostly critical
of the life forces. And skeptics have been "begging to be on the
program" of a Mars workshop at JSC in April, says
Bada, "but so far no invitation has been forthcoming. This is
simply an awful way to conducting science."

Amid all the acrimony, it is easy to lose sight
of the substantive debate over the Martian meteorite. The
NASA-Stanford team offered four lines of
evidence last August to support the conclusion that
84001 contains signs of ancient Martian life. First, the rock
contains little globules of carbonate. These
molecules could have gotten there when carbon dioxide
that was dissolved in water (think seltzer) percolated
through fissures in the rock; water is a
requirement for life. Second, iron sulfide and a
mineral called magnetite are in the rims of the globules;
on Earth, primitive bacteria excrete such sulfides
(consider them microbe droppigs) or produce magnetite
to serve as tiny internal compasses. Third, tubelike
structures in the rock could be "nanofossils," the
mineralized remains of ancient bacteria. Last, 84001
is full of organic molecules called polycyclic aromatic
hydrocarbons; on Earth, PAHs are often the by-
products of the decomposition of living things.

Unfortunately, no one can think of a definitive
experiment that would prove not only that something
in 84001 could which no one disputes but that
it did. Each and every bit of "evidence" for ancient
life can also be produced by chemical, geological
or other nonbiological processes... That was the fist of an
exchange of letters between scientists skeptical of
the life-in-the-meteorite conclusions and the NASA-
Stanford team in a recent issue of the journal Science,
which published the original claim. Anders describes
the NASA-Stanford team as "heading straight for
biological interpretations without considering inorganic
alternatives." As he added to Newsweek, "They have a
blind spot." The point-counterpoint in highly abstruse
(don't expect to follow it if you don't know your
greigite from your pyrrhotite). To take just two of
the issues, the simplified version goes like this:

On the claim that the megnetite is a likely sign
of life: Researchers led by John Bradley, an expert
microscopist at MVA Inc. in Geogia, published a paper in
December showing that the magnetite in 84001 takes the
form of rods, ribbons and platelets. Some of the rods
grew like a spiral staircase. On Earth, such
magnetite is found at steaming-hot fumaroles
(volcanoes without the mountain), suggesting that
84001's magnetite also foumed at temperatures
between 500 and 800 degrees Celsius. In that caldron,
says planetary scientist John Kerridge of the
University of California, San Diego, "life could not
hae survived." No, says McKay's group: a 1990
paper reports whiskery and ribbony magnetites produced
bybacteria at normal temperatures.

On the claim that PAHs "can be the product of the
decay of living matter," as McKay says: "Can be"? No
question. But Anders dug up a paper from 1862
(he gripes that "no one pays attention to papers more
than three years old anymore") showing that
nonbiological matter easily forms PAHs, too. And Jeff
Bada and Luann Becker of USCD will soon publish an
analysis showing that PAHs like those in 84001 are
also in meltwater from Antarctic ice. The NASA
team's response: yes, the PAHs could arise without
life, but they are "are equally consistent with the
decomposition of biological matter."

One needn't have a Ph.D. in logic to realize that
something is amiss here. "The NASA team has
tended to answer criticism by saying 'Yes, what you say my
be true. But what about...' and then they introduce
something extraneous," says John Bradley. "I detect
some obfuscation." Planetary geologist Robert Walker of
Washington University complains that the NASA group
has "tried to shift the argument so that others have to
prove that the observations are not due to fossil
life." Usually, the burden of proof lies on those
making the new claim. The NASA scientists have
committed another unorthodoxy, in the eyes of critics: they
admit that none of their four lines of evidence makes
the case for life on Mars, but then assert that taken
together they do precisely that. It's sort of like admitting
that none of the four legs of a stool is long enough
to reach a countertop, but claiming that all of them
together will reach. "They lowered the standards of
evidence rather than raised them, which is what you
would expect for a claim this extraordinary," says
meteorite expert Allan Treiman of the Lunar and Planetary
Institute. In fact, Newsweek has learned, that
NASA-Stanford team got ahead of its evidence from
the start, in the eyes of some: an eminent astronomer who
advised Science on whether to publish the paper calls
the first version "even more assertive. Even the title
something like 'Life on Mars: Evidence From
Meteorites';" which was eventually toned down to
"Possible Relic Biogenic Activity in Martian
Meteorite ALH84001."

No one charges that the NASA-Stanford team got
its numbers wrong, or misread an instrument dial. The
controversy turns, instead, on different, subjective
interpretations of the same data. And that's about as personal as
science gets. Still, says McKay, "I didn't expect
that it would become so personal and exaggerated."
Why has it? Truman attributes the bitterness to a "profound
fear" by meteorite scientists "of what this might do
to our field. We're at the bottom of the pecking order in
NASA's budget, and people are concerned that if
this turns out to be as tupid as cold fusions we'll be
out on the street."

Six months after it made headlines, the
life-on-Mars claim is battered but still standing.
"Meteoriticists are virtually unanimous in being highly skeptical,"
says Anders. But the farther you get from this
discipline, the more scientists accept it. When Harry
McSween of the University of Tennessee gives talks at
universities about his finding that crystals in 84001
likely formed at temperatures too hot for life, "the
questions I get from scientists are really hostile. They try to
twist our data so that they will be compatible with
the hypothesis of life." Next month those rooting for
life on Mars will get more ammunition. NASA's Ev
Gibson and colleagues will unveil data that 84001
contains "biofilms," he says, "organic molecules that
drape across crystals when bacteria move. We will also
present data showing that there is a chain of
magnetite crystals within the carbonates, and that the
chain is identical to those produced by {certain} bacteria."

While the case for life on Mars is far from
settled, one thing is clear. The bitterness of the debate
has hurt what used to be a congenial community, and has
shown the public that, contrary to the idealized
portrait painted in textbooks, "the scientific process is
overprinted with personalities and personal prejudices," as
University of Washington astronomer Don Brownlee
says. Adds McSween, "We'd all like to think that science
is perfectly objective, but it's an intensely
human experience." And that, of course, might given
reason to hope life could evolve a bit differently on Mars.

++++++++++

A. C. Higgins
SS 359 SUNYA Albany, New York 12222
ACH13@CNSVAX.Albany.edu
Phone: (518) 442 - 4678; FAX: (518) 442 - 4936
SCIFRAUD@CNSIBM.Albany.edu
A. C. Higgins ACH13@louise.csbs.albany.edu
College of Arts and Sciences VOX: 518-442-4678
Sociology Department FAX: 518-442-4936
University At Albany
Albany, NY, USA 12222
Date: Tue, 11 Feb 1997 09:40:48 -0500
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: "dewey m. mclean" <dmclean@vt.edu>
Subject: Re: You Ignorant Slut
Mime-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: text/plain; charset="us-ascii"

Al's 2/10/97 posting "You Ignorant Slut" provides excellent insight
into the way Big Science and Big Scientists operate to take what they want.
I comment on the television show "Three Minute to Impact" aired 9 February
1997 which also involves NASA and other space agency scientists, and
members of the asteroid impact community.

>Science is, rather, usually presented as something special
>with noble and dignified characters fully justified in being
>supported with the lavish billions a grateful nation spends on
>them. But every once and a while, one gets an image of what
>really goes on in cutting edge science where personalities
>clash and big egos sometimes get bruised.


The "Three Minute to Impact" television show represents a brazen
attempt by the space agencies and their impactor cohorts to terrorize and
extort the public into giving them money. Some parts of the "science"
presented on the K-T extinctions are science fiction. Unfortunately, the
innocent public--and Congress--cannot often differentiate between the two.
Comments to the effect that an impact apocalypse "will happen" and "The
reign of humankind is over" are terror statements pure and simple.

If asteroid impacts are so globally lethal then why are not the
biggest impacts in earth history associated with mass extinctions? Anyone
who presents television videos, movies, essays, and reports in _Science_
magazine that an impact death of the K-T and dinosaur extinctions is proven
is either ignorant of the facts, or a charlatan.

Intelligent scientific and political leadership would take measures
to protect our civilization from all natural disasters: earthquakes,
hurricanes, floods, greenhouse climate change, and impact events.
Unfortunately, it doesn't always work that way. Big Scientists operating in
one field might attack those working in other fields, using any tactic
whatsoever to wreck their credibility.

For years, I remained silent on sordid actions that corrupted the
K-T asteroid versus volcano dinosaur extinction debate, hoping that science
would "correct" itself. I did not want to hurt science. Now, I see clearly
just how naive I was. Big Science will no more correct itself than will the
Mafia. And it will resist all efforts to control it. Big Science wants to
operate freely in taking what it wants. And if it takes subterfuge and
terror to get what it wants, then so be it. Now, I believe that it is in
the best public interest to expose actions that turned the K-T pathogenic.

Unfortunately, the K-T seems representative of what goes on in all
science where the stakes are high. This country needs a Code of Ethics for
science.

Cordially,
Dewey McLean

> ++++++++++
>
>
> Begley, Sharon and Rogers, Adam. "War of the
> Worlds," Newsweek, 10 February 1997, pp. 56-57.\
>
> Even before scientists from NASA and Stanford
> University stunned the world last August by
> announcing that a meteorite contained evidence of past life
> on Mars, their research deviated a bit from
> run-of-the-mill science. For instance,
> the NASA team withdrew a paper submitted to a
> scientific meeting last March because they worried that
> "someone might ask a question that would force us to
> give away our major finding," says planetary scientist
> Everett Gibson of NASA's Johnson Space Center.
> "If you were on to the biggest scoop of your life, would
> you tell people?" And Stanford chemists who were
> asked to collaborate with the NASA group, by analyzing
> meteorite slices for compounds indicative of life, were
> not even told what they were looking at. Samples were
> dubbed Goofy, Micky and Minnie.
>
> But the usual secrecy pales next to what has been
> happening in the six months since the announcement.
> It is normal for scientific claims to be criticized.
> Rebuttal follows, and eventually the original claim
> stands, falls or is modified. But the debate over the
> claim for life on Mars has become filled with acrimony,
> sometimes at the level of "you ignorant slut!" Both
> sides pretty much agree that the meteorite fell from
> Mars and landed in Antarctica 13,000 years ago. Then the
> shouting begins. On eminent meteorite researcher, who
> prefers to keep his invective anonymous, calls the NASA
> team "an inferior group of people {who} are
> setting the agenda for others who have real science to
> perform." NASA's Gibson calls one of his critics "someone
> who has been in this country for 32 years and
> hasn't held a permanent job.
>
> This would all make for a fine spectator sport,
> except for one problem. As the bitterness of the debate
> stiffens positions, putting careers and reputations on
> the line, there is real concern about whether the
> claim of past life on Mars which, after all, would be the
> discovery of this or any other millennium will
> ever be properly sorted out. Chemist Edward Anders,
> one of the deans of meteorite science, worries that the
> bitterness "will work against the usual
> scientific process" and hurt efforts to find out
> whether the potato-shaped meteorite truly harbors
> evidence of life.
>
> Already the polarization may be taking a toll.
> Soon after the August announcement, NASA slapped
> a temporary moratorium on distributing samples
> of the meteorite known as ALH84001 to scientists
> until it can sort out all the requests (probably by late
> spring). In the meantime, what Jeffrey Bada of the
> Scripps Institution of Oceanography calls a "black
> market." in slices of 84001 has sprung up. "It seems
> like the only people who have gotten the remnants are ones
> who are likely to be supportive of the original
> findings," charges Bada. Researchers at Caltech,
> for instance, received a piece when a member of the
> original NASA tem at Houston's Johnson Space Center
> visited last September. At next month's 28th Lunar and
> Planetary Science meeting in Houston, the
> Caltech geologists will present data that support the
> life-on-Mars idea. NASA's David McKay, who led the
> 84001 team, says, "I don't think we influenced their
> position."
>
> Scientific disagreements usually get their
> fullest airing at professional conferences. There
> researchers present their most cutting-edge data (the stuff that
> gets published in journals is months if not years
> old). Then critics take their best shots. But with the
> bitterness surrounding the Martian meteorite, this crucial step
> in the scientific process may be undermined:
> organizers invite scientists who agree with their position,
> or researchers choose to attend meetings of the like-
> minded. Next month, for instance, at the
> planetary-science meeting, some 30 papers will address
> the question of life on Mars. "More than 80 percent will
> support our hypothesis," says Gibson. At the American
> Chemical Society meeting in Sam Francisco, a session on
> 84001 organized by Bada is expected to be mostly critical
> of the life forces. And skeptics have been "begging to be on the
> program" of a Mars workshop at JSC in April, says
> Bada, "but so far no invitation has been forthcoming. This is
> simply an awful way to conducting science."
>
> Amid all the acrimony, it is easy to lose sight
> of the substantive debate over the Martian meteorite. The
> NASA-Stanford team offered four lines of
> evidence last August to support the conclusion that
> 84001 contains signs of ancient Martian life. First, the rock
> contains little globules of carbonate. These
> molecules could have gotten there when carbon dioxide
> that was dissolved in water (think seltzer) percolated
> through fissures in the rock; water is a
> requirement for life. Second, iron sulfide and a
> mineral called magnetite are in the rims of the globules;
> on Earth, primitive bacteria excrete such sulfides
> (consider them microbe droppigs) or produce magnetite
> to serve as tiny internal compasses. Third, tubelike
> structures in the rock could be "nanofossils," the
> mineralized remains of ancient bacteria. Last, 84001
> is full of organic molecules called polycyclic aromatic
> hydrocarbons; on Earth, PAHs are often the by-
> products of the decomposition of living things.
>
> Unfortunately, no one can think of a definitive
> experiment that would prove not only that something
> in 84001 could which no one disputes but that
> it did. Each and every bit of "evidence" for ancient
> life can also be produced by chemical, geological
> or other nonbiological processes... That was the fist of an
> exchange of letters between scientists skeptical of
> the life-in-the-meteorite conclusions and the NASA-
> Stanford team in a recent issue of the journal Science,
> which published the original claim. Anders describes
> the NASA-Stanford team as "heading straight for
> biological interpretations without considering inorganic
> alternatives." As he added to Newsweek, "They have a
> blind spot." The point-counterpoint in highly abstruse
> (don't expect to follow it if you don't know your
> greigite from your pyrrhotite). To take just two of
> the issues, the simplified version goes like this:
>
> On the claim that the megnetite is a likely sign
> of life: Researchers led by John Bradley, an expert
> microscopist at MVA Inc. in Geogia, published a paper in
> December showing that the magnetite in 84001 takes the
> form of rods, ribbons and platelets. Some of the rods
> grew like a spiral staircase. On Earth, such
> magnetite is found at steaming-hot fumaroles
> (volcanoes without the mountain), suggesting that
> 84001's magnetite also foumed at temperatures
> between 500 and 800 degrees Celsius. In that caldron,
> says planetary scientist John Kerridge of the
> University of California, San Diego, "life could not
> hae survived." No, says McKay's group: a 1990
> paper reports whiskery and ribbony magnetites produced
> bybacteria at normal temperatures.
>
> On the claim that PAHs "can be the product of the
> decay of living matter," as McKay says: "Can be"? No
> question. But Anders dug up a paper from 1862
> (he gripes that "no one pays attention to papers more
> than three years old anymore") showing that
> nonbiological matter easily forms PAHs, too. And Jeff
> Bada and Luann Becker of USCD will soon publish an
> analysis showing that PAHs like those in 84001 are
> also in meltwater from Antarctic ice. The NASA
> team's response: yes, the PAHs could arise without
> life, but they are "are equally consistent with the
> decomposition of biological matter."
>
> One needn't have a Ph.D. in logic to realize that
> something is amiss here. "The NASA team has
> tended to answer criticism by saying 'Yes, what you say my
> be true. But what about...' and then they introduce
> something extraneous," says John Bradley. "I detect
> some obfuscation." Planetary geologist Robert Walker of
> Washington University complains that the NASA group
> has "tried to shift the argument so that others have to
> prove that the observations are not due to fossil
> life." Usually, the burden of proof lies on those
> making the new claim. The NASA scientists have
> committed another unorthodoxy, in the eyes of critics: they
> admit that none of their four lines of evidence makes
> the case for life on Mars, but then assert that taken
> together they do precisely that. It's sort of like admitting
> that none of the four legs of a stool is long enough
> to reach a countertop, but claiming that all of them
> together will reach. "They lowered the standards of
> evidence rather than raised them, which is what you
> would expect for a claim this extraordinary," says
> meteorite expert Allan Treiman of the Lunar and Planetary
> Institute. In fact, Newsweek has learned, that
> NASA-Stanford team got ahead of its evidence from
> the start, in the eyes of some: an eminent astronomer who
> advised Science on whether to publish the paper calls
> the first version "even more assertive. Even the title
> something like 'Life on Mars: Evidence From
> Meteorites';" which was eventually toned down to
> "Possible Relic Biogenic Activity in Martian
> Meteorite ALH84001."
>
> No one charges that the NASA-Stanford team got
> its numbers wrong, or misread an instrument dial. The
> controversy turns, instead, on different, subjective
> interpretations of the same data. And that's about as personal as
> science gets. Still, says McKay, "I didn't expect
> that it would become so personal and exaggerated."
> Why has it? Truman attributes the bitterness to a "profound
> fear" by meteorite scientists "of what this might do
> to our field. We're at the bottom of the pecking order in
> NASA's budget, and people are concerned that if
> this turns out to be as tupid as cold fusions we'll be
> out on the street."
>
> Six months after it made headlines, the
> life-on-Mars claim is battered but still standing.
> "Meteoriticists are virtually unanimous in being highly skeptical,"
> says Anders. But the farther you get from this
> discipline, the more scientists accept it. When Harry
> McSween of the University of Tennessee gives talks at
> universities about his finding that crystals in 84001
> likely formed at temperatures too hot for life, "the
> questions I get from scientists are really hostile. They try to
> twist our data so that they will be compatible with
> the hypothesis of life." Next month those rooting for
> life on Mars will get more ammunition. NASA's Ev
> Gibson and colleagues will unveil data that 84001
> contains "biofilms," he says, "organic molecules that
> drape across crystals when bacteria move. We will also
> present data showing that there is a chain of
> magnetite crystals within the carbonates, and that the
> chain is identical to those produced by {certain} bacteria."
>
> While the case for life on Mars is far from
> settled, one thing is clear. The bitterness of the debate
> has hurt what used to be a congenial community, and has
> shown the public that, contrary to the idealized
> portrait painted in textbooks, "the scientific process is
> overprinted with personalities and personal prejudices," as
> University of Washington astronomer Don Brownlee
> says. Adds McSween, "We'd all like to think that science
> is perfectly objective, but it's an intensely
> human experience." And that, of course, might given
> reason to hope life could evolve a bit differently on Mars.


Dewey M. McLean Telephone: 540-552-8559
Department of Geological Sciences E-mail address: dmclean@vt.edu
Virginia Polytechnic Institute
Blacksburg, VA 24061

Home Page: http://www.vt.edu:10021/artsci/geology/mclean/
Dinosaur_Volcano_Extinction/index.html

Home Page: http://www.vt.edu:10021/artsci/geology/mclean/
Creationism_vs_Evolution/index.html


Date: Tue, 11 Feb 1997 09:20:28 -0600
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: jim whitehead <jwhitehe@plains.nodak.edu>
Subject: Re: You Ignorant Slut
comments: to: "dewey m. mclean" <dmclean@vt.edu>
in-reply-to: <v03020901af25e917fbb4@{128.173.37.170}>
MIME-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: TEXT/PLAIN; charset=US-ASCII

On Tue, 11 Feb 1997, Dewey M. McLean wrote:

> Al's 2/10/97 posting "You Ignorant Slut" provides excellent insight
> into the way Big Science and Big Scientists operate to take what they want.

Perhaps I could go along with this view if the word "sometimes" appeared
before "operate" in the sentence. Al and Dewey--do you really assert
such an absolutist view as the sentence above conveys?

Jim Whitehead.
Date: Tue, 11 Feb 1997 11:32:00 EST
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: "gardenier, john s." <jsg6@nch11a.em.cdc.gov>
Subject: FW: Tuskegee Syphilis Study--Related Information
comments: to: *aaasest <aaasest@gwuvm.gwu.edu>,
*AAASMSP <AAASMSP@GWUVM.GWU.EDU>,
"*S&T Ethics (ListServ)" <LISTSERV@GWUVM.GWU.EDU>

Efforts to move beyond the Tuskegee study and to regain the trust of
minority communities for participation in future research. An uphill, but
necessary, effort. John Gardenier



from: od announcements
To: x_ALL_CDC/ATSDR; x_OD_OFFSITE; x-ALL NIP FIELD STAFF; ALL-ODOD1/ATL;
ALL-ODOD1/NON_EMPLOYEES
Subject: FW: Tuskegee Syphilis Study--Related Information
Date: Tuesday, February 11, 1997 9:36AM
Priority: High

On February 22, 1997, at 9 p.m., the cable movie channel, HBO, will
premiere Miss Evers' Boys, a fictional dramatization of the PHS Tuskegee
Study of Untreated Syphilis in the Negro Male. Approximately 400
African-American men with syphilis--most of them poor with little
education--were recruited for the Study. Even when penicillin became the
recommended therapy for syphilis in 1947, these men remained untreated, and
the Study continued. We recognize that the manner in which the Study was
conducted was, therefore, wrong and unethical.

Miss Evers' Boys will be viewed by a diverse audience including our
professional colleagues and partners; friends and family. Because this
dramatization may be deeply disturbing for many persons, I am providing the
following information (attached):

A brief history of the Tuskegee Syphilis Study;

A Syphilis Fact Sheet;

Information from the Tuskegee Syphilis Study Legacy Committee;

Guidelines on the protection of research participants that summarize
the rights of
individuals who participate in research studies, and the processes to
safeguard these
rights.

We (employees of CDC and biomedical researchers) must all be well-informed
and remain vigilant to protect the rights, dignity, and well-being of
persons who participate in research studies so that research studies such as
the Tuskegee Study are not repeated.

CDC and its public health partners remain committed to strengthening the
trust between the public health community and all people who volunteer to
participate in such studies. We will continue to work to ensure that
scientific researchers honor moral and ethical principles related to the
protection of research participants.




David Satcher, M.D., Ph.D.

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end

Continued Next Message

Date: Tue, 11 Feb 1997 11:32:00 EST
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: "gardenier, john s." <jsg6@nch11a.em.cdc.gov>
Subject: FW: Tuskegee Syphilis Study--Related Information
comments: to: *aaasest <aaasest@gwuvm.gwu.edu>,
*AAASMSP <AAASMSP@GWUVM.GWU.EDU>,
"*S&T Ethics (ListServ)" <LISTSERV@GWUVM.GWU.EDU>

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end

Continued Next Message

Date: Tue, 11 Feb 1997 11:32:00 EST
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: "gardenier, john s." <jsg6@nch11a.em.cdc.gov>
Subject: FW: Tuskegee Syphilis Study--Related Information
comments: to: *aaasest <aaasest@gwuvm.gwu.edu>,
*AAASMSP <AAASMSP@GWUVM.GWU.EDU>,
"*S&T Ethics (ListServ)" <LISTSERV@GWUVM.GWU.EDU>

The following binary file has been uuencoded to ensure successful
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end

Continued Next Message

Date: Tue, 11 Feb 1997 11:32:00 EST
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: "gardenier, john s." <jsg6@nch11a.em.cdc.gov>
Subject: FW: Tuskegee Syphilis Study--Related Information
comments: to: *aaasest <aaasest@gwuvm.gwu.edu>,
*AAASMSP <AAASMSP@GWUVM.GWU.EDU>,
"*S&T Ethics (ListServ)" <LISTSERV@GWUVM.GWU.EDU>

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end

Continued Next Message

Date: Tue, 11 Feb 1997 11:32:00 EST
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: "gardenier, john s." <jsg6@nch11a.em.cdc.gov>
Subject: FW: Tuskegee Syphilis Study--Related Information
comments: to: *aaasest <aaasest@gwuvm.gwu.edu>,
*AAASMSP <AAASMSP@GWUVM.GWU.EDU>,
"*S&T Ethics (ListServ)" <LISTSERV@GWUVM.GWU.EDU>

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7\=,!%@`&!`````$`I/```((!```6`-/@
`
end
Date: Tue, 11 Feb 1997 10:35:36 -0700
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: "david b. resnik" <resnik@uwyo.edu>
Subject: Re: You Ignorant Slut
Mime-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: text/plain; charset="ISO-8859-1"
Return to 10 Years: Discussion in SciFraud Index.html
Does this topic suggest that a standard like
"respect for colleagues"
"respect for the profession"
"professionalism" or
"civility"
should guide scientific conduct?
Civility would appear to promote
objective inquiry and open discussion
(as this posting suggests).
--David Resnik
Date: Tue, 11 Feb 1997 13:52:00 EST
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: "gardenier, john s." <jsg6@nch11a.em.cdc.gov>
Subject: Re: You Ignorant Nut

It seems to me that the aggressors and terrorists are mainly male. In fact,
the behaviors do not look terribly different from those of territorial male
animals or birds staking out and defending territory. I have changed the
subject line slightly because I fail to see the denigration of females as
relevant here. (Not that they are all "sugar and spice," of course.)

Dewey said: "This country needs a Code of Ethics for science."

It has two, now. The one focusing on FF&P is to hide behind. The
potentially more effective and compelling one by the Ryan Commission is to
run away from.

John Gardenier
Date: Tue, 11 Feb 1997 14:34:13 -0500
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: linda sweeting <sweeting@midget.towson.edu>
Subject: Re: FW: Tuskegee Syphilis Study--Related Information
in-reply-to: <3300248c@smtpout.em.cdc.gov>
MIME-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: TEXT/PLAIN; charset=US-ASCII

I have seen the play and it is powerful theater. I can also recommend a
book for further information "Bad Blood: The Tuskegee Syphilis
Experiment" by James Jones.


Dr. Linda M. Sweeting
Department of Chemistry
Towson State University
Baltimore, MD 21204

sweeting@midget.towson.edu
(410)-830-3113


Date: Tue, 11 Feb 1997 12:57:19 -0700
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: "david b. resnik" <resnik@uwyo.edu>
Subject: male aggressors
Mime-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: text/plain; charset="ISO-8859-1"

"It seems to me that the aggressors and terrorists are mainly male."

John Gardenier

If John's observation is pretty close to the truth---and I know many female
colleagues who will at least confirm it---then questions about civility and
aggression in science also raise questions relating to the inclusion of
women
in science. One way of excluding women is to make the research environment

aggressive, hostile, and competitive. Of course, this environment may also
drive many men away from science---we don't need to assume any
sexual stereotypes here---but I think the environment can have a
particularly
adverse impact on women in science. Any female colleagues care to comment?

David Resnik, philosophy, University of Wyoming
Date: Wed, 12 Feb 1997 09:23:37 +1000
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: martin bridgstock <m.bridgstock@sct.gu.edu.au>
Subject: Re: FW: Tuskegee Syphilis Study--Related Information
Mime-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: text/plain; charset="us-ascii"

Goodness, I'd love to see it, but the small matter of 8,000 miles of Pacific
Ocean means I won't . Any chance of some kind person taping the thing and
sending me a copy? I'll reimburse costs. (I do have an earlier documentary
on Tuskegee, broadcast here a couple of years ago).

Martin Bridgstock
Griffith University
Queensland
Australia

Oh, and I heard, just in passing, a historical programme about the USSR
which stated that unethical experiments were carried out on inmates of the
Lubianka Prison during Stalin's time in power. Does anyone know anything
about this.

M
Date: Tue, 11 Feb 1997 22:48:16 -0500
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: "w. r. gibbons" <gibbons@northpole.med.uvm.edu>
Subject: Re: FW: Tuskegee Syphilis Study--Related Information
comments: to: martin bridgstock <m.bridgstock@sct.gu.edu.au>
in-reply-to: <199702112323.jaa00178@enterprise.sct.gu.edu.au>
Mime-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: TEXT/PLAIN; charset=US-ASCII

On Wed, 12 Feb 1997, Martin Bridgstock wrote:

> Goodness, I'd love to see it, but the small matter of 8,000 miles of Pacific
> Ocean means I won't . Any chance of some kind person taping the thing and
> sending me a copy? I'll reimburse costs. (I do have an earlier documentary
> on Tuskegee, broadcast here a couple of years ago).
>
> Martin Bridgstock
> Griffith University
> Queensland
> Australia

Before anyone tries to tape this for Martin, please be aware that the tape
formats in the US and Australia may not be compatible. Better check this
first. If they are different, he would need access to a machine that
handles both formats.

WRG
Ray Gibbons Dept. of Molecular Physiology & Biophysics
Univ. of Vermont College of Medicine, Burlington, VT
gibbons@northpole.med.uvm.edu (802) 656-8910
Date: Wed, 12 Feb 1997 09:38:13 -0500
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: "dewey m. mclean" <dmclean@vt.edu>
Subject: Code of Ethics with Teeth
in-reply-to: <33004509@smtpout.em.cdc.gov>
Mime-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: text/plain; charset="us-ascii"

John Gardenier wrote (2/11/97):

>It seems to me that the aggressors and terrorists are mainly male. In fact,
>the behaviors do not look terribly different from those of territorial male
>animals or birds staking out and defending territory.
>
>Dewey said: "This country needs a Code of Ethics for science."
>
>It has two, now. The one focusing on FF&P is to hide behind. The
>potentially more effective and compelling one by the Ryan Commission is to
>run away from.


Hi John,

Thanks for the comments.

Re the "aggressors and terrorists are mainly male," that statement
certainly does apply to the K-T dinosaur extinction debate.

A thought just came to mind--how about developing a Code of Ethics
with castration as a cure for excessive testosterone-driven aggression that
threatens to disrupt the orderly processes of science?

A few such "operations," replete with hooded headsman, chopping
block, and basket, and all the national TV crews filming away, is what I
have in mind. The video could then be publicly televised, sort of like the
"Three Minutes to Impact" terror video. Even some of the Big Scientists in
that video might get the message. Or, more happily, the axe.

Most Big Scientists just laugh deeply and lustily at existing
"codes." Any laughter after the operation would be with higher pitch and
immediately recognizable by Congress and granting agencies, etc.

Re the two codes, one that actually works would be nice.

Cordially,
Dewey
Date: Wed, 12 Feb 1997 10:42:57 -0500
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: "dewey m. mclean" <dmclean@vt.edu>
Subject: Re: You Ignorant Slut
in-reply-to: <pine.sol.3.91.970211091545.17942a-100000@plains>
Mime-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: text/plain; charset="us-ascii"

Jim Whitehead wrote (2/11/97):


>On Tue, 11 Feb 1997, Dewey M. McLean wrote:
>
>> Al's 2/10/97 posting "You Ignorant Slut" provides excellent insight
>> into the way Big Science and Big Scientists operate to take what they want.
>
>Perhaps I could go along with this view if the word "sometimes" appeared
>before "operate" in the sentence. Al and Dewey--do you really assert
>such an absolutist view as the sentence above conveys?


Jim,

You raise good points that deserve explanation on my part.

Re the "sometimes" comment, when I speak of Big Science I usually
have Big Scientific Movements in mind. These involve big enterprises, going
for big stakes, and big bucks, and Big Scientist leadership that knows how
to politically develop and attain agendas.

I enjoy studying how Big Scientific Movements get started and grow.
Re the Big Movements I am aware of, all seem to have involved politics of
some sort. Here, I must ask for some help. Is anyone aware of any Big
Movements that have not involved politics?

Re "absolutism," I suspect that it, like "truth" and "history", is
in the eye of the beholder. We all write out of our perspectives of the
worlds we live in, perspectives that are molded by our experiences.

A few years ago, I didn't know how to cope with hardball politics
(I'm still learning). I tried working "within" science by writing letters
to scientists, editors and journalists at _Science_, presidents of AAAS,
senators, and some popularizers of science, hoping to establish some kind
of reason. I discovered that trying to work "within" science is useless.

Then I discovered Scifraud. A person on Scifraud told me frankly
that if I wanted to cope effectively with the hardball politics of science
I would have to become more assertive. Since that good lesson, I have
become more publicly assertive. But, "absolutist"? I simply call the shots
as I see them.

Cordially,
Dewey McLean
Date: Tue, 11 Feb 1997 23:04:22 -0500
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sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: al higgins <ach13@louise.csbs.albany.edu>
Organization: Sociology Department, CAS UAlbany
Subject: Chain Gang
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Chain Gang?

Here is an amazing story. As reported in Time magazine,
and reproduced here, there is something rotten in the State of
Florida.

This should produce some discussion.

++++++++++


\Dowell, William. "Intellectual Chain Gang," Time,
10 February 1997, p. 64.\

Peter Taborsky doesn't fit the part of a hardened
convict. Born into a Czech family that immigrated to
the U.S. when he was six, he is articulate and soft-
spoken, an idealistic 34-year-old science nerd who
hopes someday to conduct cancer research. He is also
principled and somewhat stubborn-so stubborn, in fact,
that the state of Florida put him on a chain gang last
year, and now holds him in a minimum-security
facility.

His crime? In a case with widespread
implications for universities increasingly dependent
on corporate research grants, he was jailed for
"stealing" his own notebooks and ideas and then
refusing a judge's orders not to exploit them. He is
fighting for what he believes are the intellectual
property rights of thousands of faculty members
and graduate students.

Taborsky's Kafka-like ordeal began in 1987, when
as a student at the University of South Florida, he
took an $8.50-an-hour lab-assistant job to help pay
his tuition. He was assigned to a $20,000 project
contracted by a subsidiary of Florida Progress, a
local power company, to determine if bacteria can
be used to extract ammonia from clinoptilolite, a
clay used in filtering water. The clay, similar to Kitty
Litter, absorbs ammonia from water and can be
cleaned and used over and over.

Unfortunately, the clay also absorbs calcium, and
in the cleaning process used by the power company, the
calcium forms a sludge that clogs the machinery. If
bacteria were used for the cleanup, the company
reasoned, only the ammonia would be extracted, and the
problem would be solved.

It soon became apparent, however, that the
bacterial approach wouldn't work, and the project was
terminated. Taborsky's supervisor, Professor Robert
Carnahan, assigned him to menial jobs in the lab and,
because the Florida Progress grant had terminated,
began paying him from other budgets.

Still, Taborsky remained intrigued by the
clinoptilolite challenge and continued tinkering with
the clay after hours -eventually stumbling onto what
he thought might be the answer. Ever inquisitive, he
had been heating the clay and charting its behavior
to determine how much its absorption diminished with
increasing temperatures. One day, while looking at
his graphs, he discovered that above 1,500 F the
clinoptilolite starts rejecting calcium.

At that temperature, Taborsky concluded, the
small pockets in the clay that absorb calcium close
down while the ones that accept ammonia remain
open. By spring 1988, he had gathered enough data
to make his case to Carnahan and a Florida
Progress representative, who told him that his
idea could be "worth millions."

And what might his share be? Taborsky asked.
"Nothing," said Carnahan, explaining that under terms
of the Florida Progress contract, the process he had
developed belonged to the company. But Carnahan
proposed a consolation prize. If Taborsky would
voluntarily turn the rights of his discovery over to
Florida Progress, the company would offer him a staff
job.

Taborsky would not be bought. Taking his
notebooks with him, he dropped out of school and
delegated his newly wed wife Jennifer to field a
barrage of frantic calls from Carnahan, who finally
asked the university police to confiscate Taborsky's
notes. The university, concerned that Taborsky's
recalcitrance might set a precedent, filed criminal
charges accusing him of grand theft of trade secrets.

Says Noreen Segrest, the school's general
counsel: "It is irrelevant to us who invented
{the process}. We own it."

The 1990 jury trial was, in Jennifer's view, a
"massacre." "It was like a movie," she says. "They
butchered him on the stand." Found guilty of theft -
despite the fact that both the ideas an note-books
were his - Taborsky was given a year's
suspended sentence, a year under house arrest
and 15 years' probation. And, the judge ordained,
he was forbidden to use or profit from his notes or
his invention.

Despite the court's admonition, Taborsky on the
very next day defiantly filed for a patent. Nine
months later, having pored over Taborsky's notebooks,
Carnahan and a Florida Progress officer filed for the
same patent. But the U.S. Patent Office in 1992
granted two patents to Taborsky. Infuriated, the
university appealed to the district court judge, who
ordered Taborsky to assign his patents to the
university or be sent to prison. When Taborsky
balked, he was sentenced to 3 1/2 years. Jennifer,
exhausted by the legal battles, left him. "I decided
that the case was more important than our
marriage," says Taborsky.

Finally, last year, his appeal to a higher court
turned down, Taborsky was sent to a minimum-security
facility, where for two months he was kept in
shackles, clearing brush. Now scheduled for
release in April, he has refused an offer of a pardon
by Florida Governor Lawton Chiles. Accepting the
offer, he says, would mean admitting he is guilty,
and he is confident that he will eventually be
vindicated. Despite his travails, he says, "I'm
seeking justice and seeking the truth. I believe
in the system of justice in the United States."


A. C. Higgins
SS 359 SUNYA Albany, New York 12222
ACH13@CNSVAX.Albany.edu
Phone: (518) 442 - 4678; FAX: (518) 442 - 4936
SCIFRAUD@CNSIBM.Albany.edu
Date: Wed, 12 Feb 1997 13:47:00 EST
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: "gardenier, john s." <jsg6@nch11a.em.cdc.gov>
Subject: Big Science & Politics

re: the discussion between Jim and Dewey about absolutism.

A candidate for a relatively well-behaved, apolitical Big Science project is
the Human Genome Project. It definitely originated with scientists. It is
too big to be totally controlled by any small group. It took huge bucks so,
of course, politicians had be found to put up the money. It does raise some
hackles - especially of the big-science-drives-out-little-science kind, but
that is an economic issue, not an ethical one. Ethics is certainly
involved, but not of the kind some of our members have suffered from.

Another candidate is the Hubble telescope. There are probably many more.

The best hope for reforming the highly unethical areas of science comes from
the realization that there is plenty of ethical science - of all sizes.

John Gardenier
Date: Wed, 12 Feb 1997 16:45:38 -0500
Reply-To: jjfreed@netreach.net
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: jerome freed <jjfreed@netreach.net>
Organization: 710 Davidson Rd, Phil'a PA, USA
Subject: Re: Chain Gang
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Comments on the Taborsky story. The crux of his problem seems to be
here:

> Still, Taborsky remained intrigued by the
> clinoptilolite challenge and continued tinkering with
> the clay after hours -eventually stumbling onto what
> he thought might be the answer.

Most patent agreements that I have seen would retain the rights for the
institution when the invention is so closely related to the employee's
assignment and even makes use of the institution's facilities, as seems
to have been the case here. That he kept on even after his supervisor
lost interest is a credit to him. Alas, it could not make the invention
his property in court.

Whatever led him to think that the notebooks were "his"?

Sounds like he needed a decent scientific mentor. Or a decent lawyer.

Jerry Freed
Date: Wed, 12 Feb 1997 17:16:05 -0500
Reply-To: jjfreed@netreach.net
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: jerome freed <jjfreed@netreach.net>
Organization: 710 Davidson Rd, Phil'a PA, USA
Subject: Re: Chain Gang
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Here is another take on the Taborsky story. It seems he never signed a
patent or confidentiality agreement; my earlier comments are a bit off
the mark. Nevertheless, I fault Professor Carnahan for being an
apparently inadequate mentor.

Jerry Freed


This was forwarded from the newsgroup sci.research:

Subject:
Florida Student Jailed
Date:
12 Feb 1997 14:23:04 GMT
From:
Geoffrey A. Landis <Geoffrey.A.Landis@lerc.nasa.gov>
Organization:
Ohio Aerospace Institute at NASA Lewis Research Center
Newsgroups:
sci.research.postdoc, sci.research


Here's an interesting case, reported in the Feb/Mar issue of
_Technology Review_, page 23.

Petr Taborsky, an undergraduate student at the University of Southern
Florida, invented an improved type of kitty litter, patented it, and was
then
sentenced to prison for patenting his invention! Apparently the
University of Southern Florida considers anything invented by a student
of theirs to belong to them, despite the fact that the Taborsky was
never
actually asked to sign an agreement giving them rights to the invention.

The weird story starts when Taborsky was arrested for
taking two notebooks out of the laboratory, in violation of a
confidentiality agreement. Unfortunately, it seems that Taborsky never
signed a confidentiality
agreement either! Nevertheless, he was found guilty of grand theft and
sentenced to probation plus community service. He then applied for a
patent on his invention, and the patent office, turning down the
counter-claim
by the university, ruled that Taborsky was the rightful inventor and
awarded
him three patents. The university, however, argued that filing for a
patent on
his invention was a violation of the terms of Taborsky's probation
(by making use of the notebooks that he "stole").
Francis Borkowski, the president of USF, appealed to the judge,
who sentenced Taborsky to three and a half years prison, which in
Florida means working on a chain gang (although apparently
because of media attention to the case, he was later moved to a minimum
security
prison--after intervention by the governor.)

The legal counsel to Florida's governor recently told the press that
perhaps "the government overreached in this young man's case."
Gosh, really? Not according to the university, whose spokesman said
that
it's "no different a former student stealing something like precious
books
from the library." The president of the Association of American
Universities commented that "To the extent that patent income is
there, there is no reason the university should give it away."

(The relevance to this topic? Stay away from U. Southern Florida!!)

Geoffrey A. Landis
Ohio Aerospace Institute at NASA Lewis Research Center
http://www.sff.net/people/Geoffrey.Landis


Date: Wed, 12 Feb 1997 16:24:12 -0500
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: "r.cammer" <rcammer@pipeline.com>
Subject: Re: Chain Gang
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Mr. Freed's "another take on the Taborsky story" SNIPPED as he also wrote:

> The relevance to this topic? Stay away from U. Southern Florida!!


Another take on the relevance of this story:

If in such a predicament:

- be more self-interested and aggressive in shopping
for and in retaining more capable counsel;
- fight harder; and
- sue the Bastards.
Date: Thu, 13 Feb 1997 08:46:35 +1000
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: martin bridgstock <m.bridgstock@sct.gu.edu.au>
Subject: Re: FW: Tuskegee Syphilis Study--Related Information
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That's OK, Thanks. WE have equipment here that can read the US format.

Martin

>On Wed, 12 Feb 1997, Martin Bridgstock wrote:
>
>> Goodness, I'd love to see it, but the small matter of 8,000 miles of Pacific
>> Ocean means I won't . Any chance of some kind person taping the thing and
>> sending me a copy? I'll reimburse costs. (I do have an earlier documentary
>> on Tuskegee, broadcast here a couple of years ago).
>>
>> Martin Bridgstock
>> Griffith University
>> Queensland
>> Australia
>
>Before anyone tries to tape this for Martin, please be aware that the tape
>formats in the US and Australia may not be compatible. Better check this
>first. If they are different, he would need access to a machine that
>handles both formats.
>
>WRG
> Ray Gibbons Dept. of Molecular Physiology & Biophysics
> Univ. of Vermont College of Medicine, Burlington, VT
> gibbons@northpole.med.uvm.edu (802) 656-8910
>
>
Date: Thu, 13 Feb 1997 00:40:13 -0500
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: al higgins <ach13@louise.csbs.albany.edu>
Organization: Sociology Department, CAS UAlbany
Subject: Objective Science
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Objective Science

It would appear that a significant proportion of journal
article authors are involved in touting "science" in which they
have a direct financial interest. I know it's old hat to remind
people of R. K. Merton's so-called norms of science but, the
norm of disinterestedness no longer seems to hold in a
large number of cases. Has this, in fact, always been the
case? Has science always been done in terms of
self-interest in one way or another and is this inevitable?

Some major journals now require authors to own up to their
financial interests in their science. That ought to help.

Here's an article from Nature on this problem.

++++++++++


\Wadman, Meredith. "Study Discloses Financial
Interests Behind Papers," Nature 385 (30 January
1997), p. 376.\

{WASHINGTON} The debate about whether scientists
should declare their financial interest in research
published in leading journals has been rekindled
by a study of almost 800 original articles published
in 1992 by academics from research institutions in
Massachusetts.

The reviews, which covered papers appearing in 14
journals of cell and molecular biology and medicine,
found that one-third of lead authors had a direct
financial interest in the published research.

The journals covered in the study, which was
published last month in Science and Engineering
Ethics, include Nature, Nature Genetics, Science,
The New England Journal of Medicine (NEJM),
The Lancet and the Proceedings of the National
Academy of Sciences(PNAS).

Overall, 15.3 per cent of 1,105 lead authors
(defined as the first and last authors named) had a
financial interest in at least one of the articles.
Lead authors of 34 per cent of the 789 papers had a
financial interest in the research they were
describing.

'Financial interest' was defined as: the author
being listed as an inventor in a patent or patent
application closely related to the published work
(this occurred in 22 per cent of the articles studied);
serving on a scientific advisory board of a company
developing products related to the author's expertise
(20 per cent); or serving as an officer or major
shareholder of a company with commercial interests
related to the research (7 per cent).

Consultancies, personal financial holdings and
honoraria were excluded, on the grounds that such
links could not be adequately documented.

"If we're serious about making financial interest
a part of the ethics of science, then we have to
address the magnitude of the commercial ties that
scientists have with their work," says Sheldon
Krimsky, professor urban and environmental
policy at Tufts University in Medford,
Massachusetts, the lead author of the new study.

Krimsky suggests policy that now applies to
scientists seeking federal grant money in the US
Public Health Service, which includes the
National Institutes of Health. This requires grant
applicants to disclose "significant" financial
interests of more than $10,000 that reasonably appear
to be affected by the proposed research. The National
Science Foundation has a similar policy.

Krimsky argues that such a disclosure should also
be required of all federally funded scientists seeking
to publish papers in scientific journals. At present,
some journals require authors to disclose associations
that might pose a conflict of interest. Others
reouire disclosure to the journal's editors when authors
submit articles. Neither policy is universally accepted.

Some scientists protest that why they describe as
an implicit suggestion of wrongdoing by authors who
have financial interests in their subjects risks
creating an atmosphere of 'scientific McCarthyism.'
"It's crucial in science to judge a work by its merit
and not by the author or authors' alleged biases,"
says Kenneth Rothman, a professor of public health
at Boston University and editor of Epidemiology.

Rothman attacked the mandatory disclosure
policies of some journals in a 1993 essay in the
Journal of the American Medical Association
(JAMA) (269, 2782-2784; 1993). The growing
aversion of editors to publishing work by authors
with financial interests in their subjects "diminishes
scientific interchange, in the long run reduces
objectivity and harms scientific method," he says.

But others say that the study has thrown useful
light on an important trend. George Lundberg, the
editor of JAMA, says that financial conflicts of
interest among scientific authors are "widespread" but
that readers are largely unaware of them "because so
many editors are not following what we consider to be
good editorial practices of requiring and publishing
financial disclosures routinely." (JAMA, which was
not part of the study, requires financial disclosure by
its authors.)

Among the 14 journals studied, four require
financial disclosure by authors: Science, NEJM, The
Lancet and PNAS. But in 1992 - the year of the
study - only NEJM required disclosure. Science
introduced its disclosure policy in July 1992, the
Lancet in 1994 and PNAS in 1996.

++++++++++

A. C. Higgins
SS 359 SUNYA Albany, New York 12222
ACH13@CNSVAX.Albany.edu
Phone: (518) 442 - 4678; FAX: (518) 442 - 4936
SCIFRAUD@CNSIBM.Albany.edu
A. C. Higgins ACH13@louise.csbs.albany.edu
College of Arts and Sciences VOX: 518-442-4678
Sociology Department FAX: 518-442-4936
University At Albany
Albany, NY, USA 12222
Date: Sun, 16 Feb 1997 15:30:38 -0500
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: al higgins <ach13@louise.csbs.albany.edu>
Organization: Sociology Department, CAS UAlbany
Subject: Update on Sokal
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Update and Sokal's Hoax

Last summer's hoax by Alan Sokal set off a debate in
America on the nature of scientific knowledge. Here is an
editorial and a report from Nature suggesting the debate
has reached Europe and shows no sign of stopping.

The pieces from Nature are reproduced in their entirety.

++++++++++


\Editor, "Science Wars and the Need for Respect and
Rigour," Nature 385 (30 January 1997), p.373.\


Ever since the Scientific Revolution of the
seventeenth century, scientists have been challenged
with a disturbing question: do the fruits of their work
provide them with privileged access to 'reality'?
Initially, the most persistent questioning came from
those who felt that their religious beliefs were under
threat. More recently, the baton has passed to
sociologists and philosophers who seek to study
science as a belief system, using a range of
techniques shared by anthropologists and social
scientists alike.

The outcomes of these new analyses have not
always coincided with the traditional self-image of
scientists. This has been particularly true of the
conclusions of so-called 'social constructivists' who
claim that science is as much the product of a
continuous dialogue between scientists as it is of
controlled, isolated experimentation. While such
views remained contained within relatively limited
intellectual and political groups, little attention
was paid to them by the mainstream scientific
community. But, over the past few years, their
influence has appeared to flourish not only in the
academic world - including school-teaching - but
also in the wider community, where it no longer
appears so heretical to equate 'scientific truth'
with 'the truth as seen by scientists'.

The backlash has, perhaps, been inevitable' Nor
is it surprising that it started in the United States,
where 'Science studies' has, despite its intellectual
roots in Europe, taken on a more institutionalized
role through the growth of university departments.
Initially the backlash had a strong and admitted
political component. The achievement of Alan Sokal,
the physicist at New York University who brought the
issue to wide public attention with his celebrated
hoax last summer in the journal Social Text, has
been to highlight the extent to which the issues
transcend simple political ideologies or
motivations and reach to the heart of contemporary
ideas about science, truth and reality.

The debates triggered by Sokal's hoax have
revealed to a wider audience that there is indeed some
shoddy thinking, not to say blatant misrepresentation
of the results of scientific research, to be found
under the banners of constructivism and postmodernism.
This lack of rigour is wholly at odds not only with
the intellectual standards of the natural sciences but
also with those of scholarship in the humanities. Some
non-scientific writers, for example, have appealed to
scientific concepts, ranging from relativity theory to
natural evolution, to illustrate or legitimize their
ideas with a crassness guaranteed to embarrass or
anger most readers of this journal. It is only too
easy to pick out isolated statements that lack
appreciation of scientific realities, such as the
extent to which experimental data provide both
a framework for and constraint on debate about
their significance. And it is hard to find clear
evidence that insights from science studies have
had a positive effect on thedevelopment of
scientific knowledge itself.

But it would be wrong to tar all of science
studies with the same dismissive brush, or to perceive
them as wholly irrelevant to scientific progress.
Many working researchers would accept much of
what the constructivists say about the importance
of social processes in science, ranging from the
influence the design of experiments to the
negotiations that take place through the
peer-review process. The intellectual world of
the scientist is not a clinical, passionless void,
but personal and interpersonal feelings. That as
often have little impact on what eventually
becomes accepted as scientific truth. But, as is
implied by those who continually urge journalists
to write about the 'human face' of science, it
remains an essential ingredient of scientific
progress.


Increasing public understanding
More significantly those who have been developing our
knowledge of science from this perspective are
playing an increasingly important role in mediating the
relationship between science and society. In France,
many of those engaged in what others call science
studies identify themselves as sociologists of
innovation, and often participate actively in the
painful process of managing tech change. In both
Britain and the United States, such individuals are
coming to play a key role in debates about the public
perception of science-related risks. Similarly, the
results of their research have become an integral part
of the intellectual pool to which those seeking to
assuage public fears of the new genetics are turning
for and guidance.

Indeed, one of the ironies of the present debate
is that the goal of the so-called constructivists is
one that, in principle, many of their critics avidly
endorse: the increased public understanding of
science. It is in nobody's long-term interests that such
understand be uncritical: propagating an idealistic
image of science is, in many ways, as dangerous as the
purely relativistic image that some (but only some)
constructivists seek to impose.

In a welcome development, the public debate
sparked by Sokal last summer in the United States
appears to have ignited a similar conflagration in
Western Europe (see below). Equally welcome is the
fact that the debate has, perhaps by virtue
fascination with embarrassment and ridicule,
escaped the confines of relatively isolated corners
of the academic world and the left. The stakes on both
sides are high. On the one hand, some scientists
believe that they are fighting for the intellectual
credibility of an enterprise that remains essential for
human well-being. On the other, many social
scientists argue equally convincingly that only a
deep understanding of science
as a social (as well as intellectual) process will
enable us to strengthen the bridge between the worlds
of science and politics that is essential if this
well-being is to be achieved.

Where public perceptions of science are
undermined by slipshod scholarship and
misrepresentation, let battle continue. But
scientists who reflect at all
about the wider significance of work stand to benefit
from a sharpened awareness of the genuine insights
that science studies can offer.

++++++++++

\Dickson, David. "The 'Sokal Affair' Takes
Transatlantic Turn," Nature 385 (30 January 1997) ,
p. 381.\

{LONDON} A dispute that has been simmering since last
summer in the United State,, over the validity of
'postmodernist' idea,, about the nature of scientific
knowledge ha@ finally reached the point where many
such ideas originated - the banks of the river Seine in
Paris.

Over the past month, the newspaper Le Monde has
been running a series of articles triggered by an
account of the widely publicized hoax perpetrated last
year by Alan Sokal, a theoretical physicist at New
York University, on the journal Social Text.

The hoax took the form of an article submitted to
and accepted by the journal. It purported to
demonstrate the social and political origins of ideas
in quantum mechanics - but in fact was fabricated out
of miscellaneous (but accurate) quotations from
prominent postmodern writers and dubious statements of
scientific 'fact'.

Sokal's article has added fuel to a conflict that
has been growing in recent years between scientists
who argue that science is based on empirical fact,
and sociologists of science who argue that much of
scientific knowledge is 'constructed' out of debates
between researchers (see, for example, Nature 375,439;
1995).

In the United States, the hoax article and its
implications - namely that sociologists of science
have little regard for empirical truth and are more
interested in intellectual fashions - has set off a
wide debate on university campuses. "The reaction has
been a factor of ten bigger than I expected," says
Sokal. "And it is not letting up."

Until now, the response in Europe has been
relatively muted, even though many of the writers
quoted tend to be European, usually either British or
French. The main reaction has been a defence of
European academics whose work and US colleagues have
come under attack.


Positions, postmadernism and politics.
Last October, for example, many of those attending a
joint meeting of the US-based Society for Social
Studies in Science and the European Association for
Studies of Science and Technology, held in Bielefeld
in Germany, signed a petition protesting that some of
the recent US criticism of work by sociologists of
science could, in Europe, be regarded as potentially
defamatory.

But the recent series of articles in Le Monde,
widely regarded as the main public forum for both
intellectual and political debate in France, as well
as coverage in French publications Liberation and
Le Nouvel Observateur, indicate that the issue is
now hotting up in Europe too.

Further evidence comes from the fact that an
article by Paul Boghassian, a philosopher also at New
York University, attacking postmodernist views of
science, which appeared in the Times Literary
Supplement in December, has already been published in
Die Zeit, one of Germany's leading newspapers.

One of Sokal's strongest supporters is Jean
Bricmont,a theoretical physicist at the University of
Louvain in Belgium. He is writing a book with Sokal
on what both argue is the frequent misuse of scientific
concepts by prominent - and mainly French intellectual
figures ranging from the psychoanalyst Lacan to Bruno
Latour, an influential sociologist of science.

When is a fact is not fact?
Bricmont wrote in his contribution to the debate in Le
Monde that such allusions tended to be "at best
totally arbitrary and at worse erroneous". He says
he is keen to see a reinstatement of ideas
about science based on empiricism and the
analytical philosophy of individuals
such as the mathematician Bertrand Russell, rather
than those of German idealists such as the philosopher
Martin Heidegger.

He says he is concerned at a growing tendency to
see ideas in socially relative terms, criticizing, for
example, official guidelines on epistemology used by
highschool teachers in Belgium for stating that a fact
is not an empirical truth, but "something that
everyone agrees upon".

Like Sokal, Bricmont says that he has been
surprised by the level of interest he has stirred up.
"I seem to have put my finger on something bigger than
I realized," he says.

But some of those under attack, having initially
held back from the fray on the grounds that the debate
was primarily based on issues internal to the United
States, are now fighting back, arguing that it is
their critics who have an idealistic - and increasingly
outdated - vision of science and its role in contempo-
rary culture.

Last week, for example, Latour, who teaches the
sociology of innovation at the Ecole Supericure des
Mines in Paris, one of France's so-called 'grandes
ecoles, complained in Le Monde that he and fellow
sociologists were being treated as "drug peddlers" who
were corrupting the minds of American youth.

In fact, says Latour, one of his main concerns
has been to demonstrate how modern society - as
reflected in the public response to concerns about
bovine spongiform encephalopathy ('mad cow
disease') is transforming itself from a culture "based
on Science, with a capital S", to one based on
research more broadly, including the social sciences.

He writes: 'In place of an autonomous and
detached science, whose absolute knowledge
allows us to extinguish the fires of political
passions and subjectivity, we are entering a new
era in which scientific controversy becomes part of political
controversy.

The latest salvo in the French debate comes from
Sokal himself. In a response due to be published this
week, Sokal repeats his claim that every scientist is
aware that, although scientific knowledge is always
partial and subject to revision, "that does not
prevent it from being objective."

Sokal eschews charges of chauvinism, saying that
his target is not as some have suggested - French
intellectuals as such,
but "certain intellectuals who happen to live in
France." He also dismisses the criticism that his
concern about the growing influence of group of
'constructivist' ideas about science reflects worries
about a decline in both funding for physics and the
social status with the end of the Cold War.

Differences in culture and education
But Latour, too, who makes both claims, has his
supporters - and anot just in France. Simon Shaffer,
a lecturer in istory and philosophy of science at the
University of Cambridge, points to the irony that
Latour and others are trying to develop the public
understanding of science that, in other contexts,
Sokal and others argue is essential if they are to
retain respect.

Shaffer also points to the different cultural
environments, partly a product of different
educational traditions, in which French and
American scientists operate. "In France,
everyone believes that the
sciences are self-validating, and that the social
science refer to a world that exists outside
themselves," he says.

In contrast, he argues, the empircism that tends
to dominate the Anglo-American approach to science
means that "no one in the scientific community sees
themselves as an epistemologist or a constructivist."

With Europe facing important issues concerning
the relationship between science and politics -
ranging from the likely science policy of the British
Labour party if it wins the imminent general election,
to the squeeze by Germany on international
spending on particle physics - the public debate
set alight by Sokal appears unlikely to die down
rapidly.

++++++++++
A. C. Higgins
SS 359 SUNYA Albany, New York 12222
ACH13@CNSVAX.Albany.edu
Phone: (518) 442 - 4678; FAX: (518) 442 - 4936
SCIFRAUD@CNSIBM.Albany.edu
A. C. Higgins ACH13@louise.csbs.albany.edu
College of Arts and Sciences VOX: 518-442-4678
Sociology Department FAX: 518-442-4936
University At Albany
Albany, NY, USA 12222
Date: Mon, 17 Feb 1997 08:45:49 +0000
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: simon birnstingl <swb@pavilion.co.uk>
Subject: Cosmic impact
Mime-Version: 1.0
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Dear Scifraud,

Can anyone shed some light on the NAS announcement today of the findings in
core samples of evidence that a cosmic impact did indeed "Lead to the death
of the dinosaurs"? Is it, as it sounds, an exaggerated claim?

Regards,

Simon Birnstingl


Simon Birnstingl
Conformance Environmental
5a Livingstone Road
Hove, Sussex
BN3 3WP
United Kingdom

email:
environment@conformance.co.uk

tel: ++ 44(0)1273 204369
fax: ++ 44(0)1298 873801 ***PLEASE NOTE NEW FAX NUMBER***
Date: Mon, 17 Feb 1997 10:27:20 +0000
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: simon birnstingl <swb@pavilion.co.uk>
Subject: Re: Update on Sokal
Mime-Version: 1.0
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On 17th Feb, Al posted:

> In fact, says Latour, one of his main concerns
> has been to demonstrate how modern society - as
> reflected in the public response to concerns about
> bovine spongiform encephalopathy ('mad cow
> disease') is transforming itself from a culture "based
> on Science, with a capital S", to one based on
> research more broadly, including the social sciences.
>
> He writes: 'In place of an autonomous and
> detached science, whose absolute knowledge
> allows us to extinguish the fires of political
> passions and subjectivity, we are entering a new
> era in which scientific controversy becomes part of political
> controversy.
>

These paragraphs ring true from what I have observed in the UK over the BSE
issue in particular. However, they do not mean that scientific method in
itself is not the most effective and powerful way of discovering and
analysing almost any aspect of the universe. What is represented here is
more the politicisation of some scientists then the scientification (?) of
politics.

In the UK the government is using scientific uncertainty as an excuse for
doing as little as possible in the face of a real crisis. There is even
some evidence that research has been suppressed, and given that the funding
in agricultural research in this area is mostly government funded one
suspects a political motive in the suppression. This clearly shows the
danger of to science of entering the political debate in a partisan manner:
Scientists are seen to have nailed their colours to the mast and all hope
for scientific objectivity is lost in a flurry of political bickering. The
lack of understanding of science by lay-people, as often cited in Scifraud,
contributes to the problem when the public become disillusioned by
scientists being unable to give them a simple and overriding truth.

The whole debate toched on in Al's posting is fascinating and very
important to all who value the contributions science can make to our lives.
It is well overdue and in my opinion can eventually only lead to a clearer
understanding of science and a strengthening of its position in society at
a time when the forces of irrationality and anti-science are burgeoning.

Regards,

Simon Birnstingl


Simon Birnstingl
Conformance Environmental
5a Livingstone Road
Hove, Sussex
BN3 3WP
United Kingdom

email:
environment@conformance.co.uk

tel: ++ 44(0)1273 204369
fax: ++ 44(0)1298 873801 ***PLEASE NOTE NEW FAX NUMBER***
Date: Mon, 17 Feb 1997 08:00:30 -0800
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: james shea <shea@cs.uwp.edu>
Subject: Re: Cosmic impact
in-reply-to: <199702170845.iaa17538@florence.pavilion.net>
MIME-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: TEXT/PLAIN; charset=US-ASCII

Colleagues:

I heard the "smoking gun" news report on TV news and was surprised
that the evidence would be accorded such definitive strength. Impact
deposits and other sedimentary evidence of the Chixulub impact have been
known and described in the literature for some time now. The finding of
previously unknown sedimentary evidence of the impact on the sea floor
hardly seems new and compelling.

It seems that either the media or some individual or group may be
generating some hype to support his/its work. Personally, I am waiting
for more complete reports before jumping to any conclusions.

Jim Shea
Date: Mon, 17 Feb 1997 08:10:13 -0800
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: james shea <shea@cs.uwp.edu>
Subject: Re: Update on Sokal
in-reply-to: <199702171027.kaa21999@florence.pavilion.net>
MIME-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: TEXT/PLAIN; charset=US-ASCII

Colleagues:

One of the least known but most discouraging aspects of the growth
of belief in the social and relativistic nature of science is the
wholesale adoption of constructivism in science education, even by
scientist educators who should know better. Has anyone else noticed this
very surprising trend?

As Editor of the Journal of Geoscience Education, I certainly have.
Many of the articles we receive more or less automatically adopt a
constructivist viewpoint. Some will even specifically adopt and state the
strong constructivist position, that is, that science is entirely
socially constructed and that laboratory and field work exert little if
any control on "scientific" results.

I find it very difficult to understand this position, yet it is
clearly making enormous inroads into science education. And if this is
so, can science itself be far behind?

Jim Shea
Date: Mon, 17 Feb 1997 09:17:30 -0500
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: "dewey m. mclean" <dmclean@vt.edu>
Subject: Re: Cosmic impact
in-reply-to: <199702170845.iaa17538@florence.pavilion.net>
Mime-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: text/plain; charset="us-ascii"

Simon Birnstingl wrote (8:45 AM 2/17/97):
>
>Can anyone shed some light on the NAS announcement today of the findings in
>core samples of evidence that a cosmic impact did indeed "Lead to the death
>of the dinosaurs"? Is it, as it sounds, an exaggerated claim?

Since 1980, impactors have claimed to have "proved" that an impact
65 million years ago triggered the K-T extinctions. Whenever they find
something new they claim, "this time we _really_ have proof." Now, again,
they _really_ have proof.

This morning's newspaper has an Associated Press article titled
"Giant killer from space left print below ocean." Quotes from the article
include:

"Scientists...have found proof that a huge asteroid smashed into
the Earth 65 million years ago..."

"...unmistakable signature of an asteroid impact about 65 million
years ago."

"It is proof positive of the impact."

"Robert Corell...of the National Science Foundation, said the core
samples are the strongest evidence yet that an asteroid impact caused the
extinction...the most significant discovery in the geosciences in 20
years." And, "The impact of the asteroid featured in tonight's NBC-TV show
is peanuts compared to the real thing faced by the world 65 million years
ago."

I didn't see anything in the article on how the layer was dated, or
whether a hiatus exists in association with the layer. For the "rusty brown
layer" which is claimed to be "vaporized remains of the asteroid itself," I
saw no proof that the layer is not made up of volcanic debris. For some
"green glass pebbles," I saw no proof that they are not of volcanic origin.
Also, this latest report claims that the impacting body was an asteroid,
whereas most impactors claim that the Yucatan structure was produced by a
comet.

The impactors tell us one minute that the K-T extinctions were
caused by a covey of comets (to account for stepwise extinctions) and, the
next, that one impacting body did it all. Or, that it was a comet, or an
asteroid. Or that the Yucatan crater represents the "greatest impact in the
inner solar system," or not. That the K-T geobiological record is a complex
mess, and is still being analyzed, does not stop them from making egregious
claims of "proof." They get a lot of help from their media friends.

Richard Kerr, staff writer at _Science_ magazine has told the
public repeatedly for years that the impactors have "proved" that an impact
caused the K-T extinctions. I wonder what he will do with the new data:
claim that now they _really_ have "proof."

In less than one week, the American public is getting impacted by
three impact-oriented TV shows: (1) "Three Minutes to Impact," (2)
"Asteroid," and (3) "On a Collision Course with Earth." The first two shows
present the asteroid/comet death of the dinosaurs as factual. The last show
has not yet aired but, knowing who will be on the show, I suspect that it
will likely be presented as factual there also. What a lucky happenstance
that the new claims of "proof" are being reported on the same day that the
"Asteroid" show is being televised.

A physicist, Sokal, is getting rave reports for huckstering a
scientific journal. Some scientists in the impact community have been doing
the same thing via egregious claims that range into science fiction since
1980, and nobody much raises an eyebrow. The difference is that the latter
has cost the public much money, and has created a world of "true
believers."

Cordially,
Dewey McLean


Dewey M. McLean Telephone: 540-552-8559
Department of Geological Sciences E-mail address: dmclean@vt.edu
Virginia Polytechnic Institute
Blacksburg, VA 24061

Home Page: http://www.vt.edu:10021/artsci/geology/mclean/
Dinosaur_Volcano_Extinction/index.html

Home Page: http://www.vt.edu:10021/artsci/geology/mclean/
Creationism_vs_Evolution/index.html


Date: Mon, 17 Feb 1997 10:03:43 -0800
Reply-To: siano@cceb.med.upenn.edu
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: brian siano <siano@cceb.med.upenn.edu>
Organization: University of Pennsylvania CCEB
Subject: Re: Update on Sokal
MIME-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: text/plain; charset=us-ascii
Content-Transfer-Encoding: 7bit

Simon Birnstingl wrote:
>
> > In fact, says Latour, one of his main concerns
> > has been to demonstrate how modern society - as
> > reflected in the public response to concerns about
> > bovine spongiform encephalopathy ('mad cow
> > disease') is transforming itself from a culture "based
> > on Science, with a capital S", to one based on
> > research more broadly, including the social sciences.
> > He writes: 'In place of an autonomous and
> > detached science, whose absolute knowledge
> > allows us to extinguish the fires of political
> > passions and subjectivity, we are entering a new
> > era in which scientific controversy becomes part of political
> > controversy.
> These paragraphs ring true from what I have observed in the UK over the BSE
> issue in particular. However, they do not mean that scientific method in
> itself is not the most effective and powerful way of discovering and
> analysing almost any aspect of the universe. What is represented here is
> more the politicisation of some scientists then the scientification (?) of
> politics.
>
> In the UK the government is using scientific uncertainty as an excuse for
> doing as little as possible in the face of a real crisis. There is even
> some evidence that research has been suppressed, and given that the funding
> in agricultural research in this area is mostly government funded one
> suspects a political motive in the suppression. This clearly shows the
> danger of to science of entering the political debate in a partisan manner:
> Scientists are seen to have nailed their colours to the mast and all hope
> for scientific objectivity is lost in a flurry of political bickering. The
> lack of understanding of science by lay-people, as often cited in Scifraud,
> contributes to the problem when the public become disillusioned by
> scientists being unable to give them a simple and overriding truth.

But when is this bickering clearly scientific or clearly political?
The fact is, in a number of politically controversial issues, it's not
difficult to find a scientist willing to make an authoritative statement
on any particular side of the issue.
In some cases, the matter really _is_ a matter of scientific
controversy, and the attempt to explain the controversy to the lay
public may be frustrating for scientists and lay people alike. In
others,
the controversy is a matter of conflicting interests that have little
to do with science, i.e., a corporation wanting to protect its markets
and investments, a government program perpetuating its existence,
a class-action suit, etc.
For one example, Monsanto had developed a bovine growth hormone
that, theoretically, would help cows provide more milk. There were
several problems with the product: for one thing, it required that cows
drastically increase their protein intake, and given that a lot of
high-protein cow feed incorporates... well, rendered cow materials, to
be perfectly blunt... there were all sorts of bovine illnesses that
are associated with the consumption of tainted feed stocks. (One
of these is BSE, oddly enough.) Turned out Monsanto had cooked some of
the research data they'd submitted to the FDA on the matter as well,
and farmers using the product haven't exactly been pleased with the
results. But I'm certain it wouldn't be difficult to find a
scientist willing to say how safe and beneficial the stuff is.
Or, take one of those examples presented as "junk science," the
issue of whether silicone breast implants are a factor in certain
illnesses. This was one of the topics John Stossell covered in his
recent ABC special. (At one point, Stossell announced that there
were _telve studies_ saying that the implants were safe, as graphics
of medical journals floated past.) Frankly, I don't trust Stossell,
so after the show I did an OVID search on the topic.
The results were, well, sobering. One major study was
conducted by Dow Corning, the manufacturers of the implants. This
doesn't mean that the study was bogus, of course, but it does make
one skeptical. I recall that there were two other major studies, with
no apparent reason for such doubt, that reported no ill effects
directly attributable to silicone implants. However, there was a
number of studies that apparently indicated some incidence of a
certain kind of rheumatism with leakage in silicone implants, and
a number of other papers that suggested caution in their use.
(Which ain't exactly difficult: so far as I know, saline solutions
in implants work just as well, and aren't associated with any
ill effects.)
In short, if I were going by what I could see of the
literature, I'd regard the matter as being open to debate-- and
it wouldn't be difficult to compile scientific, peer-reviewed
materials arguing either way. (And this is on the basis of skimming
a few abstracts in the OVID-Medline database-- certainly not as
informative as reading the papers, but more informative than
watching ABC News.)
I don't think we can dismiss this variance of opinion as
being a product of "politics," loosely defined. It seems to me that,
when we say that this variance of opinion is due to politics, this
rests on the assumption that proper science provides a single,
objective answer to such matters, and if scientists would put
all other considerations aside, they'd be in near-unanimous
agreement.
--
Brian Siano - siano@cceb.med.upenn.edu
"Life is a continuous process of pain, anguish, loneliness, and despair.
However, we cannot let the occasional flashes of joy and happiness
distract us from this fact."
-- Brian Siano
Date: Mon, 17 Feb 1997 14:21:56 -0500
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: al higgins <ach13@louise.csbs.albany.edu>
Organization: Sociology Department, CAS UAlbany
Subject: More on Cook and Peary
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More on Cook and Peary

Over the years there have been several postings to Scifraud
concerning the continuing controversy over the "discovery" of
theNorth Pole. There were two claimants in 1909: Dr. Frederick A.
Cook and Admiral Robert E. Peary. Both had their supporters and
both, according to a new book, were knowing frauds. Now that is
different.

There's a new book, "Cook and Peary: The Polar Controversy
Resolved," (Stackpole press). Of course, there probably can be
no resolution of the controversy at this point, nearly 90 years
have passed. And a careful reexamination of new evidence points
to no smoking gun. But the author, Robert M. Bryce, has done a
service in suggesting that both men faked it because "there was
so much at stake."

Here is the news article in the Times.

++++++++++


\Leary, Warren E. "Who Reached the North Pole First?
Researchers Lays Claim to Solving the Mystery," New
York Times, 17 February 1997, p. 10.\

Washington, Feb. 16 - It has been a question debated
in the annals of exploration for almost 90 years. Who
was the first man to reach the North Pole, Admiral
Robert E. Peary or Dr. Frederick A. Cook?

The answer may be neither of the above.

Robert M. Bryce, a historical researcher who
spent, 20 years studying the great polar controversy,
says evidence gleaned from the journals and diaries of
the explorers themselves, as well as unpublished
papers and accounts of companions and others
involved in the Arctic expeditions, prove that neither
man actually stood at the top of the world, though
each man claimed he had.

The expedition papers of both men show that they
made genuine attempts to reach the pole by dogsled in
1908 and 1909, he said, but were thwarted by harsh
Arctic conditions, like the moving ice packs on which
they were forced to travel, as well as limitations of
the navigational instruments of the time.

"Perhaps no one could have reached the true pole
at that time, with the massive amounts of supplies
that would have been needed, the instruments of the
day and the conditions they encountered," Mr. Bryce
said in an interview. "But neither man was willing
to admit failure So much was at stake."

In his book, "Cook & Peary: The Polar
Controversy, Resolved," published this week by
Stackpole Books, Bryce contends that neither
explorer made his purportedly
bogus claim based upon an honest mistake or
misconception. "The evidence to both claims as
frauds, and knowing frauds," Mr. Bryce said, not self-
deception, but purposeful."

In the history of geographic exploration,
conquering the polar regions was considered one of the
last great prizes because of their inaccessibility and
the difficulty of the task. Those who dared became
instant heroes, with the promise of more fame and
fortune for the successful.

The controversy over the North Pole began in
September 1909, when Admiral Peary and Dr. Cook
emerged from the Arctic within five days of one
another and each man cabled backers that he
had reached the pole. Admiral Peary said he,
accompanied by two Eskimos and
his assistant, Matthew Henson, attained the pole on
April 6, 1909. Dr. Cook, whose message got out to the
world days before his rival's, claimed he had reached
the goal with two Eskimo companions almost a year
earlier, on April 21, 1908.

Each of the veteran explorers, and his
supporters,immediately attacked the credibility
of the other's claim, a public battle that included
assaults on the character and veracity of the
opponent. Admiral Peary's financial and
professional backers, including
the National Geographic Society and The New York
Times, supported his claim based on little more
than his word and a cursory investigation of
his records. Dr. Cook's advocates, including
The New York Herald, weighed on
his behalf even though there were inconsistencies and
gaps in his expedition logs. The debate has continued
since, with generally more credence given to Admiral
Peary's claim.

Mr. Bryce, a 50-year-old librarian and document
preservation expert at Montgomery College in
Germantown, Md., said his long interest in the
controversy led him to begin work eight years ago on a
Cook biolgraphy, which grew into the current work.
Several years ago, the Frederick A. Cook Society in
Hurleyville, N.Y., asked Mr. Bryce to evaluate its
document collection and report on its preservation.
The author was given access to Dr. Cook's personal
papers and the unrestricted right to publish excerpts
from unpublished diaries and papers, he said.

Mr. Bryce said he started out hoping to find
evidence suporting Dr. Cook's claim. The author said
he felt Admiral Peary, whom he described as aloof,
cold and manipulative, and his influential backers,
had been unfair to the more personable Dr. Cook.
"I wanted Dr. Cook to win," he said. "Who would
want Peary to win? He was so unlikable."

The book does not prove to be Dr. Cook's
vindication. In examining the explorer's journals and
letters, as well as documents from other members of
his polar expedition, Mr. Bryce found evidence that
Dr. Cook had erased and doctored entries. Four of
Dr. Cook's surviving notebooks, preserved in the
Library of Congress, contained cross-referenced
entries that refer to two missing notebooks. In
making inquiries for his book, Mr. Bryce
discovered that a photographic copy of
the of these missing logs exists in the Danish
National Archives.

Dr. Cook submitted a notebook to support his
claim to the University of Copenhagen in January
1910, and it was returned to him a year later. But
unknown to him, Mr. Bryce said, the Danes made
a photographic copy of it that ended up forgotten
in the Royal Astronomical Observation Library.
The notebook full of erasures and
crossovers, which Dr. Cook sent to Denmark with 17 of
its 176 pages missing, contains no "smoking gun"
proving fraud, Mr. Bryce said, but it reinforces
doubts.

Mr. Bryce said missing and renumbered pages
appear to coincide with reports by Dr. Cook's
colleagues that he departed his Greenland base
for his run to the pole a week later than he later said
he left. All dates in Dr. Cook's official account of his
trip are based upon the earlier departure, Mr. Bryce
said, which was necessary to support the explorer's
claim that he returned from the pole before the
winter ice broke and made travel impossible.

Dr. Cook apparently was adjusting dates to match
purported observations, Mr. Bryce said, including the
claimed sightings of Arctic land masses that do not
exist.

Russell W. Gibbons, executive director of the
Cook Society, said there are many Arctic experts
who have not completely ruled out Dr. Cook's
polar claim, and find the account of his
expedition more convincing that the one by
Admiral Peary. Mr. Gibbons said he had
seen some advanced pages from Mr. Bryce's
book and not the final version, but questioned
the author's assertion that the controversy was
now resolved.

"I find it hard to believe that this is the final
word," Mr. Gibbons said, "You'll never get a final
word in any historical debate like this. I tend to
be a Cook partisan and don't think much of the
credibility of Peary."

Will Steger, who in 1986 led a team of six
explorers who became the first since the Cook-Peary
era to reach the North Pole assisted only by dogs,
also said the controversy never will be resolved.

"You see a book like this every decade or so and
realize there is only so much you can learn from
studying writings," Mr. Steger said in a telephone
interview. "You need to experience ice with dogs to
see what could or could not have been done."

The explorer, who studied the books of his
predecessors, said a look a Dr. Cook's innovative sled
design, one that could fold into a kayak, suggests
that it never would have held up with the loads it was
supposed to have carried. Admiral Peary, who Mr.
Steger said did himself and injustice by failing to
disclose enough details about his trip, probably could
have come close to the pole in the way he described,
he said.

If neither Admiral Peary nor Dr. Cook made it to
the pole, then the first person to actually set foot
there was Joseph Fletcher, who stepped off an Air
Force C-47 plane that landed at the pole in 1952.

Supporters of Admiral Peary also attacked Dr.
Cook's credibility about the polar expedition because
of an earlier claim that he was the first to climb
Alaska's Mount McKinley in 1906. Critics attacked as
fake photographs that Dr. Cook said had been taken at
the summit and Ed Barrill, Dr. Cook's companion, later
recanted his corroboration of the feat after being
paid to do so.

Mr. Bryce said the recently recovered expedition
diary of the climb, and his discovery of Mr. Barrill's
original diary and finding an uncropped version of an
important summit photograph that showed it was taken
on another peak prove conclusively that Dr. Cook faked
the Mount McKinley claim.

Admiral Peary's claim to have reached the North
Pole fares little better than that of his rival, Mr.
Bryce said. There have been five books in recent
years casting doubts on whether the naval officer
reached the pole, according to the author. Mr.
Bryce said his reading of the evidence also
concludes that Admiral Peary probably did not
get within 100 miles of his target, despite a 1989
study by the Navigation Foundation, underwritten
by the National Geographic Society, that
concluded the explorer was no more than
five miles from his goal, based upon a reexamination
of photographs and ocean depth measurements
taken in 1909.

Mr. Bryce said his book on Dr. Cook ended up
dwelling a lot on Admiral Peary. "Peary and Cook are
like Siamese twins," he said. "If you separate them,
you lose of vital parts of each. You can't look at
one and not the other."

+++++++++++

A. C. Higgins
SS 359 SUNYA Albany, New York 12222
ACH13@CNSVAX.Albany.edu
Phone: (518) 442 - 4678; FAX: (518) 442 - 4936
SCIFRAUD@CNSIBM.Albany.edu
A. C. Higgins ACH13@louise.csbs.albany.edu
College of Arts and Sciences VOX: 518-442-4678
Sociology Department FAX: 518-442-4936
University At Albany
Albany, NY, USA 12222
Date: Mon, 17 Feb 1997 13:11:43 EST
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: emmanuel marin <100574.3414@compuserve.com>
Subject: Re: Update on Sokal

As a French reader of this list and of _Le Monde_, and furthermore
as a member of the "French skeptics" (the quotes mean the
organization is quite unformal), not only do I own copies of all
the texts _Nature_ writes about, but I also have some
behind-the-scenes info about what may be going to happen.
For instance, the "Union Rationaliste" has been urged by
a very famous European philosopher I won't name to react
to Latour and al's texts, otherwise he'll violently react himself
in _Le Monde_'s columns in the near future. If Sokal's
hoax and his consequences on French relativists is of
interest to the readers of this list, I'll keep you informed
up-to-date with the events, just ask me so.

Latour's "answer" to Sokal's hoax is actually even more
preposterous that what you may have thought in your
worst nightmares. He simply lies : he claims that
"Social Text" is a bad journal, that it has no peer-review
system, that Latour is not amongst the targets since
he "knows about science", etc... Sokal answered Latour
and debunked these claims, in a very ironic tone. He
writes, for instance, that Latour is too modest, since
he calls a journal he writes in, a bad journal. He adds
that Latour's text in "Social Text", which is about the
consequence of general relativity on social delegation,
puzzled many colleagues of Sokal, who told him that
it was too bad someone had already the idea to make
an hoax to the journal.

Duclos' "answer" to Sokal was also incredibly
preposterous, in my opinion. The main point of
the paper is that Sokal did his hoax only because
he wanted to criticize France. In a similar fashion,
Latour writes that Sokal's hoax is the consequence
of the end of the cold war : according to him, US
scientists need to find new enemies !!!!

Sokal was not the only person to answer Latour and
Duclos. Belgian scientist Bricmont, who is currently
writing a book with Sokal about the misunderstanding
of scientific theories amongst the relativists, made
a nice comparison between a very recent text by Latour
in _Le Monde_ about Le Pen and a speech by..
Mussolini. The comparison is not far-fetched, and
Latour's text on Le Pen had already been answered
by a colleague of Latour (!) in a similar tone : Latour's
sudden "purism" ("Le Pen is the only person who
actually does some politics") was very strange.

"Finally", a French writer also published last week in
_Le Monde_ a "layman's answer" to Duclos and Latour.
In this answer, he uses the words "le son d'une
baudruche qui se degonfle", for which I cannot find
a nice translation (word-to-word according to
my dictionnary : the sound of a humbug that goes
down), but it is an understatement to write that it
is a strong criticism.

But as Nature says, the consequence of the hoax in
the little world of the (French) relativists is far from
being over.

It may also be of interest to the readers of this list
to learn that these texts are flooding into _Le Monde_
just a few days after a 3 x 2 pages long paper about
Jacques "Memory of water" Benveniste in the
same newspaper, which also caused a lot of
stir in the scientific community, since it is a
strong defense of Benveniste : in this long
paper it is even written that _Nature_ has no
scientific credibility ! Don't ask me how such
a thing is possible, since _Nature_ and _Le
Monde_ works together (a weekly science
page in _Le Monde_ is written with journalists
from _Nature_..). The main argument of the
paper is that Benveniste has been able to
send by the Internet coded messages that
contain the spectrum of the molecules : you
simply have to record the electronic noise of
a molecule, to send it by the Internet to someone
else, and the sender simply will have to play
the sound towards a tube of water, and the
water will have the memory of the molecule.
Ie : you won't find the molecule by spectral
analysis, for instance, but a biological system
will react to it... And the only proof of it is
that Benveniste succeeded in several experiments
conducted over the Internet with the help of
a scientist in Chicago, who is well-known but
wants to remain anonymous...

Emmanuel Marin
Paris, France
Date: Mon, 17 Feb 1997 11:33:52 -0800
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: shawn blore <shawnb@portal.ca>
Subject: Intemperate comments by scientists
Mime-Version: 1.0
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There's an AP article in my daily paper this morning about Robert Norris, a
scientist in charge of a drilling expedition that is looking for further
evidence of a dinosaur-killing asteroid impact. In the article Norris is
quoted as saying "We've got the smoking gun. It is proof postive of the
impact."

Now is it just me, or is that not a remarkaby intemperate comment for a
scientist? As a science writer I have at times been frustrated by the way
scientists like to hedge their opinions with phrases like "It appears that'
or "To the best of our knowledge", but I understood their caution; at the
cutting edge of science it's extremely rare to be 100% sure of anything.
Lately, however, I've been noticing more and more statements like the one
above from Norris. It may not be fraud, but it does appear to be stretching
the truth a bit. I'm wondering what's behind this tend. Have media
consultants been doing the rounds, training researchers on how to give juicy
quotes? Is this yet another symptom of more researchers chasing fewer
dollars? Comments? (Perhaps someone could upload the article?)
Shawn Blore
Vancouver, Canada
Date: Mon, 17 Feb 1997 13:45:09 CST
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: virginia metze <metze@vmetze.mrl.uiuc.edu>
Subject: Re: Intemperate comments by scientists

>
> There's an AP article in my daily paper this morning about Robert Norris, a
> scientist in charge of a drilling expedition that is looking for further
> evidence of a dinosaur-killing asteroid impact. In the article Norris is
> quoted as saying "We've got the smoking gun. It is proof postive of the
> impact."
>
> Now is it just me, or is that not a remarkaby intemperate comment for a
> scientist? As a science writer I have at times been frustrated by the way
> scientists like to hedge their opinions with phrases like "It appears that'
> or "To the best of our knowledge", but I understood their caution; at the
> cutting edge of science it's extremely rare to be 100% sure of anything.
> Lately, however, I've been noticing more and more statements like the one
> above from Norris. It may not be fraud, but it does appear to be stretching
> the truth a bit. I'm wondering what's behind this tend. Have media
> consultants been doing the rounds, training researchers on how to give juicy
> quotes? Is this yet another symptom of more researchers chasing fewer
> dollars? Comments? (Perhaps someone could upload the article?)

I have a suspicion that this is because of those
people who are so vocal these days about science
being just another 'belief system' -- an idea
promulgated by anti-science types to put science
and religion on the same level. The caution of
scientists has worked against them in the public
arena.

> Shawn Blore
> Vancouver, Canada
>
Date: Mon, 17 Feb 1997 14:54:10 -0800
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: james shea <shea@cs.uwp.edu>
Subject: Re: Update on Sokal
in-reply-to: <970217181143_100574.3414_ghw86-1@compuserve.com>
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Colleagues:

My thanks to Emmanuel Marin for his posting. It was very interesting.

I can't help but comment on his use of the word "violent" to
describe how someone is going to react in print. Actually this usage has
become quite common. Nevertheless it is an inappropriate adjective, IMHO,
to use when describing printed material, no matter how vitriolic, vigorous,
ad hominem, strong, etc., etc., etc. To me, a violent response would be
one involving physical attack, shooting, pushing, punching, throttling,
or something of that sort.

I apologize in advance for criticizing someone writing in a language
not his own. His ability to do so clearly exceeds my own.

Jim Shea
Date: Mon, 17 Feb 1997 23:19:57 +0000
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: neville goodman <nev.w.goodman@bristol.ac.uk>
Subject: impact factor fraud
MIME-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: TEXT/PLAIN; CHARSET=US-ASCII

There is an interesting article in the news section of the British
Medical Journal of 15th Feb (BMJ 1997; 314: 463):



Journal accused of manipulating impact factor

Richard Smith, Editor BMJ

The journal 'Leukemia', which is owned by Macmillan
magazines, has been accused of trying to manipulate its impact
factor, the measure used to rank the importance of scientific
journals. The accusation comes from Terry Hamblin, consultant
haematologist at the Royal Bournemouth Hospital and editor of
'Leukemia Research', a rival to 'Leukemia'.

Dr Hamblin has sent the 'BMJ' a copy of a letter received by
authors who had submitted a paper to 'Leukemia' in October
1996 asking them to increase the number of references to papers
published in 'Leukemia'. This would increase the journal's
impact factor, which is calculated by dividing the number of
citations of paper in the journal by the number of papers that
could be cited. The impact factor has become much more
important in recent years because many countries consider the
impact factors of the journals in which researchers publish when
judging the researchers and making decisions about future
funding (p 498 {this is a reference to Seglen PO. Why the impact
factor of journals should not be used for evaluating research.
BMJ 1997; 314: 498-502}).

The letter from 'Leukemia' said: "Manuscripts that have been
published in 'Leukemia' are too frequently ignored in the
reference list of newly submitted manuscripts, even though they
may be extremely relevant. As we all know, the scientific
community can suffer from selective memory when giving credit
to colleagues. While we have little power over other journals, we
can at least start by giving you and others proper credit in
'Leukemia'. We have noticed that you cite 'Leukemia' {once in
42 references}. consequently, we kindly ask you to add
references of articles published in 'Leukemia' to your present
article."

"This is a blatant attempt to increase the journal's impact factor,'
sald Dr Hamblin. 'I accept that authors sometimes do not cite
relevant papers, but I have never encountered a journal that
specifically requested an increase in the number of times that
journal is cited in the bibliography."

Dr Nicole Muller-Berat, the editor of 'Leukemia', denies that the
journal is trying to manipulate its impact factor. "We introduced
the policy of asking people to cite 'Leukemia' for two main
reasons.. Firstly, we have received, and published, letters from
authors saying that papers we have published have neglected to
cite important papers published in 'Leukemia'. Secondly, our
reviewers remember important papers published in major
journals like 'Blood', 'Cell', and the 'British Journal of
Haematology', but they forget about important papers published
in 'Leukemia'."

Dr Muller-Berat believes that Dr Hamblin is motivated to make
his accusation by professional jealousy. She founded 'Leukemia
Research', the journal he edits, with her husband, but he became
the editor in 1986. Since then the impact factor has fallen from
2.7 to 1.179. She and her husband also founded 'Leukemia' in
1987, and by 1991 it had an impact factor of 3.059. Following
changes in the editorial team, the impact factor fell to 1.7 but has
now risen to 2.35.

David Pendlebury, an analyst at the Institute of Scientific
Information in Philadelphia, which calculates journals' impact
factors, said: "We have never heard of a case like this before. It
is a distortion of the scientific process." Richard Horton, editor
of the 'Lancet', said: "Given the importance attached to impact
factors this manipulation seems an appalling lapse of editorial
judgment."



I agree with David Pendlebury, except that I think that the use of
impact factors, and just about every other method of measuring
the worth of academics, is intellectually bankrupt and usually
just an easy way of avoiding having to read the academic's
output. In this, I am simply re-stating the last sentence of
Seglen's article (see above), which is a quote (which, as Seglen
points out, is itself incorrectly cited!!) from Sidney Brenner:
"What matters absolutely is the scientific content of a paper, and
nothing will substitute either knowing or reading it." However,
that still leaves us with having to decide whether Prof A, who is
a geologist, is 'better' than Dr F, who is a biochemist, or better
than Prof X, who is a mathematician and has locked himself
away to work on a theorem, the answer to which could be a
lemon.

Dr Neville W Goodman
Consultant Anaesthetist
Southmead Hospital
BS10 5NB UK
Nev.W.Goodman@bris.ac.uk

"There once was a brave academic
who was wont to deliver polemic
on the farce and the fraud
which most people ignored
that, alas, had become epidemic."
(AMSB of NWG, Xmas 95)
Date: Tue, 18 Feb 1997 09:46:48 +1000
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: martin bridgstock <m.bridgstock@sct.gu.edu.au>
Subject: Re: Update on Sokal
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If Sokal's
>hoax and his consequences on French relativists is of
>interest to the readers of this list, I'll keep you informed
>up-to-date with the events, just ask me so.
>

Yes please! This is quite amazine!

Martin Bridgstock
Date: Mon, 17 Feb 1997 19:00:46 -0500
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: "dewey m. mclean" <dmclean@vt.edu>
Subject: Re: Update on Sokal
in-reply-to: <pine.pcw.3.91.970217144546.6615e-100000@grnq-143.uwp.edu>
Mime-Version: 1.0
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Jim Shea wrote (2:45 PM 2/17/97):

>My thanks to Emmanuel Marin for his posting. It was very interesting.

> I can't help but comment on his use of the word "violent" to
>describe how someone is going to react in print. Actually this usage has
>become quite common. Nevertheless it is an inappropriate adjective, IMHO,
>to use when describing printed material, no matter how vitriolic, vigorous,
>ad hominem, strong, etc., etc., etc. To me, a violent response would be
>one involving physical attack, shooting, pushing, punching, throttling,
>or something of that sort.
Hi Jim:

My _Webster's New Collegiate Dictionary_ has for the word "violent"
the following definitions: "marked by extreme force or sudden intense
activity"..."notably furious or vehement"..."excited or mentally disordered
to the point of loss of self-control."

The word "furious" is defined as "exhibiting or goaded by
anger"..."giving a stormy or turbulent appearance...." The word "vehement"
is defined as "marked by forceful energy...intensely emotional...deeply
felt...forcibly expressed...."

My _Webster's New Dictionary of Synonyms_ has the following.

"intense, vehement, fierce, exquisite, violent are comparable when
meaning extreme in degree, power, or effect. Although several of them often
are used interchangeably without clear distinction, they can be employed in
ways that reveal many differences in implications and applications."

For the word "violent," these examples are included:

"his intense faith and his _violent_ spiritual agonies are
experiences which few of us today are able to share," and

"an unreasoning passion of despair descended upon them both,
_violent_ yet essentially slight."

It seems, if I interpret Webster correctly, that the word "violent"
might reasonably accomodate literary works marked by intense emotions,
forcibly expressed, etc.

Cheers,
Dewey
Date: Mon, 17 Feb 1997 20:06:30 -0500
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
Comments: Authenticated sender is <ach13@rachel.albany.edu>
from: al higgins <ach13@cnsvax.albany.edu>
Organization: Sociology Department UAlbany
Subject: (Fwd) Re: Intemperate comments by scientists
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Here, after a short delay, is a posting to Scifraud from Jon Marks.

Al


Date: Mon, 17 Feb 1997 15:53:37 -0500 (EST)
from: jmarks@yalevm.ycc.yale.edu (jon marks)
Subject: Re: Intemperate comments by scientists
to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>

>Now is it just me, or is that not a remarkaby intemperate comment for a
>scientist? As a science writer I have at times been frustrated by the way
>scientists like to hedge their opinions with phrases like "It appears that'
>or "To the best of our knowledge", but I understood their caution; at the
>cutting edge of science it's extremely rare to be 100% sure of anything.
>Lately, however, I've been noticing more and more statements like the one
>above from Norris. It may not be fraud, but it does appear to be stretching
>the truth a bit. I'm wondering what's behind this tend. Have media
>consultants been doing the rounds, training researchers on how to give juicy
>quotes?

I agree with Shawn Blore's observation.
I'm a bit old-fashioned, perhaps, but my scientific training
involved the value of understating one's case. On the one hand, it
strengthens your case to show that you have considered and rejected other
explanations, and therefore your "enemies" have nothing more to contribute;
but from a purely pragmatic standpoint, it's just that much more difficult
to show you up.
Lately, certainly in my field (human evolution/variation/genetics)
there is now a very strong tendency to take a little bit of data,
over-interpret it wildly, and leave it to skeptics to refute your
interpretation. I teach that that is a trademark of quackery; for the
burden of proof is not on the skeptic to prove the work is wrong, but on the
scientist to prove it's right. (That's why we do controls, after all.) But
more and more of the scientific literature seems to be in just that vein.
I see two forces at work. The first is the abrogation of the
responsibility formerly incurred by scientists to disseminate their work to
the public; that is now almost entirely taken over by journalists, who are
generally less interested in the details or methodology (which is boring,
but which is really what defines the work as competent or not) than they are
in the conclusions. About 5 years ago I was called by a journalist for
*Science* and asked to comment on the work of So-and-so, who had
definitively shown such-and-such, which was counter to my understandng of
the extant data. I asked where it had been published, and I'd be happy to
comment on it. The journalist replied that it had not been published, but
was going to come out in a few months, and had been presented at meetings.
I told her that a lot of shit gets said at meetings that doesn't make it
into print, and how the hell can I be expected to comment on something I
haven't read, anyway? I further told her I didn't like the idea of writing
up as news an unpublished paper; but she just persisted in asking me what I
though of the conclusion. She wrote the story anyway (helping Dr.
So-and-so's career, like getting mentioned in Hedda Hopper's Hollywood
column in the 1930s), and quoted me to the mealymouthed effect that "Marks
says, 'It would be very premature to close the door on this question
presently." A few months later, the paper was published in the PNAS and I
could see it had half-a-dozen gaping holes in it -- none of which I had been
able to call to the journalist's attention. The journalist had successfully
made a poor paper into a newsworthy fact.
Not that it is the journalist's fault. The journalist was doing her
job, reporting what she heard. The problem is that scientists are finding
that they can get more headlines with an overstatement than with an
understatement, and headlines count for something these days. (And yes,
peer-review sometimes leaves much to be desired!) Thus, the second force I
see at work is the nature of university politics, in which headlines bring
notoriety, and that makes administrators happy. Reactive criticisms don't
bring headlines, and deans don't hear about that.
At any rate, science is very different now than it was a very few
decades ago. Overstatements are no longer considered immature and foolish;
I suspect we shall have to learn to live with it. (For what it's worth, Dr.
So-and-so just got tenure at Harvard.)

--Jon Marks


A. C. Higgins ach13@cnsvax.albany.edu
College of Arts and Sciences VOX: 518-442-4678
Sociology Department FAX: 518-442-4936
University At Albany Albany, NY, USA 12222
Date: Mon, 17 Feb 1997 20:10:39 -0500
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
Comments: Authenticated sender is <ach13@rachel.albany.edu>
from: al higgins <ach13@cnsvax.albany.edu>
Organization: Sociology Department UAlbany
Subject: (Fwd) Lab head supervision: journalist query
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Date: Sun, 16 Feb 1997 23:15:53 -0500 (EST)
from: billy goodman <goodmanb@idt.net>
Subject: Lab head supervision: journalist query
to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
Cc: goodmanb@idt.net

Here is a posting to Scifraud which, to some, may be an invitation.

Al

+++++++++++


I am a contributing editor at The Scientist and am researching a story on
whether lab heads who may be relatively removed from the hands-on aspects
of research in their laboratories are becoming vulnerable to dishonesty by
those actually carrying out the research. The recent case of Francis
Collins comes to mind. Is a hands-on or hands-off mentoring style a
contributor to misconduct in the lab? Is it even relevant?

If anyone has first-hand knowledge or informed opinion about this issue,
I'd appreciate hearing from you privately at goodmanb@styx.ios.com or
goodmanb@idt.net or at 201-746-4835.


Thank you.
Billy Goodman

A. C. Higgins ach13@cnsvax.albany.edu
College of Arts and Sciences VOX: 518-442-4678
Sociology Department FAX: 518-442-4936
University At Albany Albany, NY, USA 12222
Date: Mon, 17 Feb 1997 20:28:13 -0500
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: al higgins <ach13@louise.csbs.albany.edu>
Organization: Sociology Department, CAS UAlbany
Subject: Media Blitz
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Media Blitz

Science continues its promotion of the "...great impact theory..."
as in this announcement of the media blitz on impacts shows.

One can interpret the way this is written to suggest that
there is no serious question about the Age of the Dinosaurs
ending with a catastrophic meteor impact. But there are serious
questions.

In only one of the media events described here is the science
described as "shaky." One might expect a blitz like this to draw
attention from concerned scientists. After all, there are very
serious questions to be answered. But here there are no
questions at all.

++++++++++

\Vogel, Gretchen. "Stand By For A Comet's Media
Aftershocks," Science 275 (7 February 1997), p. 761.\

Comet Shoemaker-Levy 9 broke up and crashed into
Jupiter more than 3 years ago, but shock waves from the
impacts are only just beginning to hit Earth. In the coming
weeks, the media will rock the United States with a slew of
extraterrestrial impacts, described in everything from
a New Yorker piece to a TV miniseries.

The New Yorker unleashed the first blast in a
muted but provocative article in the 27 January issue
by science writer Timothy Ferris titled "Is This the
End?" After detailing the flood, fire darkness, cold,
and famine thought to have followed the great
impact 65 million years ago at the end of the age of the
dinosaurs, Ferris concludes that "scientists are
seriously worried." They worry not so much about
another once-in-a-hundred-million-years
global catastrophe as about a more frequent
city-killer.

NBC's miniseries Asteroid, airing 16 and 17
February, has those in abundance, although the
science is shaky, according to impact specialist William
Bottke of the California Institute of Technology. But
two documentaries later this month - a two-parter on
The Discovery Channel and a National Geographic
Special on NBC - could make up for that with less
special effects and more hard facts. And if you
want more Earth-shattering explosions and impact
hazard statistics, there's always the movies. Two
impact films - Armageddon and Deep
Impact - begin shooting this spring.

Whether all the media attention will education
the public to the very real threat from the skies is not
yet clear. It could do worse than focus attention on
plans for finding most of the thousand or more
kilometer-size objects thought to cross Earth orbit,
says Davis Morrison of NASA's Ames Research
Center in Mountain View, California. A 1995 report
found that new-technology telescopes
could identify almost all potential Earth impacters
within 10 years at a price of $5 million per year -
the equivalent of one smash-'em-up
feature film.

++++++++++

A. C. Higgins
SS 359 SUNYA Albany, New York 12222
ACH13@CNSVAX.Albany.edu
Phone: (518) 442 - 4678; FAX: (518) 442 - 4936
SCIFRAUD@CNSIBM.Albany.edu

A. C. Higgins ACH13@louise.csbs.albany.edu
College of Arts and Sciences VOX: 518-442-4678
Sociology Department FAX: 518-442-4936
University At Albany
Albany, NY, USA 12222
Date: Tue, 18 Feb 1997 10:59:30 +0100
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: per dalen <per.dalen@helsingborg.se>
Subject: Re: Update on Sokal
Comments: cc: James Shea <shea@cs.uwp.edu>,
Emmanuel Marin <100574.3414@compuserve.com>,
"Dewey M. McLean" <dmclean@vt.edu>
Mime-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: text/plain; charset="iso-8859-1"
Content-Transfer-Encoding: quoted-printable

At 14:54 17-2-97 -0800, Jim Shea wrote:
>Colleagues:
>
> My thanks to Emmanuel Marin for his posting. It was very=
interesting.
>
> I can't help but comment on his use of the word "violent" to
>describe how someone is going to react in print. Actually this usage has
>become quite common. Nevertheless it is an inappropriate adjective, IMHO,
>to use when describing printed material, no matter how vitriolic, vigorous,
>ad hominem, strong, etc., etc., etc. To me, a violent response would be
>one involving physical attack, shooting, pushing, punching, throttling,
>or something of that sort.

To which Dewey McLean replied:

> It seems, if I interpret Webster correctly, that the word "violent"
>might reasonably accomodate literary works marked by intense emotions,
>forcibly expressed, etc.

I think Dewey is right. I searched the Oxford English Dictionary (2nd ed.,
CD-ROM) in which this word occurs more than 2300 times, in definitions and
quotations. First, the definitions:=20

<belching>
The action of voiding wind from the stomach through the mouth; eructation;
also, the utterance of foul or violent language; the eruptive action of
volcanoes.

<blusterer>
a. One who utters loud empty boasts or menaces; a loud or violent inflated
talker, a braggart.

<blustering>
3. Violent in speech and demeanour; loud-talking, self-assertive, hectoring,
boastful, swaggering.

<diatribe>
2. In modern use: A dissertation or discourse directed against some person
or work; a bitter and violent criticism; an invective.

<filthy>
In early use often hardly more emphatic than the mod. dirty; it is now a
violent expression of disgust, seldom employed in polite colloquial speech.

<invective>
1. A violent attack in words; a denunciatory or railing speech, writing, or
expression.

<inveigh>
5. intr. To give vent to violent denunciation, reproach, or censure; to rail
loudly.=20

<lie>
In mod. use, the word is normally a violent expression of moral reprobation,
which in polite conversation tends to be avoided, the synonyms falsehood and
untruth being often substituted as relatively euphemistic.

<scold>
a. Originally, to behave as a scold; to quarrel noisily, to brawl; to rail
at or wrangle with some one; to use violent or unseemly language in
vituperation; said chiefly of women. Obs.

<slangwhang> Chiefly U.S.
To assail with, to make use of, violent language, abuse, or vituperation.

<storm>
3. intr. To complain with rough and violent language; to rage.=20

<violent>=20
6. Of persons, their temper, etc.: Displaying or exhibiting passion,
excessive ardour, or lack of moderation in action or conduct.
7. Of language, or writings: Resulting from, indicative or expressive of
strong feeling.


And now for a selection of quotations, most of which are more than a hundred
years old:

1853 J. Buchanan Let. 12 Nov. in J. F. Rhodes Hist. U.S. (1893) II. 26 A
violent..article in the Washington Union charging them with an intrigue with
Spain to "Africanize" Cuba.

1937 V. Gollancz in "G. Orwell" Road to Wigan Pier p. xviii, Mr. Orwell..is
at one and the same time an extreme intellectual and a violent
*anti-intellectual.
Return to 10 Years: Discussion in SciFraud Index.html
1806 J. Beresford Miseries I. vii. 145 A perpetual blister; =96 alias, a
sociable next-door-neighbour, who has taken a violent affection for you.

1853 Arab. Nts. (Rtldg.) 661 The courtiers..could not avoid bursting into a
violent fit of laughter.

1874 Mahaffy Soc. Life Greece v. 157 The most violent contortions of=
grammar.

1777 Priestley Philos. Necess. 183 All your violent declamation falls
upon..my devoted head.

1837 Carlyle Fr. Rev. III. iii. i. (1872) 100 The distributive Citoyennes
are of violent speech and gesture.

1929 R. Aldington Death of Hero i. ii. 52 Isabel..displayed signs of
that..talent for violent invective she afterwards developed to such Everest
peaks of unpleasantness.

1958 Listener 27 Nov. 897/3 Expressionism implies an uncompromisingly
violent utterance, coupled too often with a self-pitying sensibility.

1807=AD8 W. Irving Salmag. xvii. (1860) 391 This outrageous merriment..threw
the whole family into a violent fit of wondering.

1836 Mech. Mag. 6 Aug. XXV. 317 In a contemporary journal there appears a
violent tirade against the word gradient as at present used by civil=
engineers.

1871 Ruskin Fors Clav. I. i. 6, I am a violent Illiberal; but it does not
follow that I must be a Conservative.

1710 Shaftesbury Charac. (1737) II. i. i. 189 A violent Desire..to know the
Knack or Secret by which Nature does all.

1960 Spectator 3 June 809 The prose background to his {sc. Swinburne=92s}
violent, cerebral, masturbatory poetry.

1957 Listener 20 June 1008/1 An artist who packs such a violent literary
punch might be expected to make use of a savage, expressionist line.

1828 Macaulay Ess., Hallam (1851) I. 56 They might be violent in innovation
and scurrilous in controversy.

1877 Froude Short Stud. (1883) IV. i. iv. 47 The Archbishop of York
peculiarly irritated Becket, and was silenced by a violent answer.

1927 Daily Tel. 22 Nov. 10/3 A violent denunciation of "Stalinism" and its
"terrorising of the party".

1725 Watts Logic ii. iii. iii. =A76 Some Persons have a violent and turgid
Manner both of Talking and Thinking... They..pronounce concerning everything
in the Superlative.

1965 Times 16 Mar. 13/4, I cannot refrain from a violent protest against the
ever increasing use of "this" instead of "that": e.g., "Will you come to
supper tomorrow?" Answer: "This would be very nice."

1842 =97 in L'Estrange Life (1870) III. ix. 159 The most trenchant and=
violent
writer of the "Times".

1826 Disraeli Viv. Grey v. xi, He wrote violent letters, protesting his
innocence.

Maybe there was a bit more of French temperament in English usage up to the
end of the 19th century ;-).

Cheers,

Per
Per Dalen <per.dalen@helsingborg.se>
Date: Tue, 18 Feb 1997 05:31:43 EST
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: emmanuel marin <100574.3414@compuserve.com>
Subject: Re: Update on Sokal

>I apologize in advance for criticizing someone writing in a language not his
own.
>His ability to do so clearly exceeds my own.
>Jim Shea

Given that I am far much worried when English readers keep their comments about
my misuse of some English terms for them and let me continue to write
ambiguous words for weeks, I am not going to ask you to apologize. (Ironically,
there seems to be some differences on the topic of "physical violence" vs.
"verbal
violence" between English and French, since one of the most epic
misunderstanding
I had on the Internet occured when I used the word "to attack" as a synonym to
"to sue" -
the French word is the same ("attaquer")).

I am definitely conscious I am far from being fluent in English, and as a matter
of fact
that is one of the reason why I posted my comments of the texts instead of
posting a translation
of them - or a translation of the most significant excerpts of them. I know a
bit how to express
my own opinions even if, interestingly, my knowledge of some English rhetorical
tricks and
my lack of knowledge of some others may shape my posts far more than what I
really want
to say :-)

But I definitely do not know very well how to translate other's opinions,
especially
in the case of Sokal's hoax. Latour's words are already strange enough in
French,
my translation of them certainly would add even more weirdness, and my opinion
of what the weirdness really means would have direct consequences upon my
translation.
At least when I give my opinion upon his texts or when I write a summary of
them, the
fact that my biases play a role in the final result is clear for everyone.

Sokal's words are definitely less weird, but another problem appears : I don't
think
Sokal speaks French, so his text was certainly written originally in English.
So if
I translate it "back" into English, I will write things like "Sokal writes :
"<English words>..".

Then, one may forget that these English words will not be Sokal's own, but
Sokal's own
twisted by the Eng -> Fr -> Eng process. A French famous pop star experienced
the
problem it causes when an interview he gave in English in the US came back in
France,
translated "back" into French, and then everyone could read (in French) he
thought the
"French were rude", which is something he never meant :-)

That's why, unless I am asked to provide some specific quotes, I prefer not to
post
"translations" of the texts.

Emmanuel Marin
Paris, France
Date: Tue, 18 Feb 1997 10:05:28 -0500
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: "sideris, john" <sideris.fpgnb3@mhs.unc.edu>
Organization: UNC
Subject: Re: (Fwd) Re: Intemperate comments by scientists
in-reply-to: <149e093301f60094@mhs.unc.edu>
MIME-Version: 1.0
Content-type: text/plain; charset="US-ASCII"
Content-transfer-encoding: 7bit

Just want to comment briefly on Jon Marks excellent remarks.
He said, in part:
<<< The first is the abrogation of the
responsibility formerly incurred by scientists to disseminate their work
to
the public; that is now almost entirely taken over by journalists, who
are
generally less interested in the details or methodology (which is boring,
but which is really what defines the work as competent or not) than they
are
in the conclusions. >>>

This is sadly true. While I see nothing wrong with journalists writing
about science, in fact I think it is a great thing that there are so many
interested in doing so, this does not absolve scientists of this
responsibility. Experimental psychologists (my background is in psych)
have been particularly bad about shirking their responsibility and as a
result people have some frightenly misguided ideas ideas about everything
from memory to self-esteem. One need only to look at the "Self-Help"
(self-damage is more likely) section of any bookstore to see evidence.
Yet psychologists insist on only talking to each other. One notable
exception is William Swann's _Self-Traps_, which I recommend to any one
interested in the self and self-esteem. I also recommend it as an
excellent example of writing about science and research for
non-scientist.


<<<< The journalist had successfully
made a poor paper into a newsworthy fact.
Not that it is the journalist's fault. The journalist was doing
her
job, reporting what she heard. The problem is that scientists are
finding
that they can get more headlines with an overstatement than with an
understatement, and headlines count for something these days.>>>>

I don't agree that the journalist was doing her job. Her job is to
present the facts acurately. She should be as suspiscious as any
scientist about grand scientific claim. "what she heard" is not nearly
good enough. Journalists are under the same burden as scientists to
verify their findings.

Thanks, Jon, for your contribution to this list.
js


"May your effect sizes be large and your p values be small"

John H. Sideris
john_sideris@unc.edu
Date: Tue, 18 Feb 1997 18:43:20 +0000
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: neville goodman <nev.w.goodman@bristol.ac.uk>
Subject: cosmic impact
MIME-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: TEXT/PLAIN; CHARSET=US-ASCII

Dewey: here is a report from today's 'Guardian', a London
broadsheet newspaper (feb 18, pg 3, col 1-4).

Neville



SCIENTISTS FIND 'DINOSAUR KILLER'

Seabed drill samples confirm that asteroid wiped out giant
reptiles

Ed Vulliamy in New York

SCIENTISTS drilling hundreds of feet below the bed of the
Atlantic Ocean have found what they say is proof that the
dinosaurs were obliterated by a giant asteroid 65 million years
ago. "Weve got the smoking gun," said Richard Norris, leader
of the team. "It is proof positive of the impact."

The asteroid would have detonated an energy release more
powerful than all the world's nuclear weapons being exploded at
once. It is said to have crashed to earth just off the Yucatan coast
in the Gulf of Mexico, and to have been 12 miles wide.

The "proof positive of the impact" was found in what the
scientists call the "fireball layer" of the seabed - a thin brown tier
of vapourised asteroid dust. Three small hard samples of the
asteroid debris were uncovered.

Robert Corell, the assistant director for geophysics at the United
States National Scientific Foundation, called the find "the most
significant discovery in geosciences in 20 years."

The expedition has been working from the ship Joides
Resolution, off the east coast of Florida, some 500 miles north-
east of the point of impact, where the sea is 8,500 feet deep.

Although the impact occurred in the southern Gulf of Mexico,
Mr Norris went to the Atlantic Ocean, near the edge of the
continental shelf. He reasoned that the violence of the impact,
followed by huge waves, would have churned the Gulf of
Mexico so much that it was unlikely that clear core samples
would be found there. Instead the waves from the impact would
have washed across Florida, depositing debris in the Atlantic.
And so it proved.

The drill cores penetrated more than 300ft beneath the sea bed,
past layers of sediment laid down at the time of the dinosaur
extinction. At the deepest layers, the team found fossils of
animals which inhabited the ecologically vibrant ocean just
before the asteroid impact.

Above the fossils is a collection of green pebbles which the team
believe to be debris from an old ocean bed melted by the energy
from the asteroid.

Thousands of tons of soil, rock vapour and sulphur would have
been been flung skywards, reaching space and blotting out the
sun. Then it would have rained down as a fine powder, coating
the entire globe.

Above the green pebbles was the brown "fireball layer" which
Mr Norris believes to be the melted remnants of the asteroid
itself. Just above the brown layer is a two-inch layer of grey clay
with strong evidence of a nearly dead world.

This dead zone lasted 5,000 years, Mr Norris said, and then the
core samples showed evidence of renewed life. "It is amazing
how quickly the new species appeared."



Dr Neville W Goodman
Consultant Anaesthetist
Southmead Hospital
BS10 5NB UK
Nev.W.Goodman@bris.ac.uk
Date: Tue, 18 Feb 1997 13:48:55 -0500
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: "dewey m. mclean" <dmclean@vt.edu>
Subject: Re: Media Blitz
in-reply-to: <mailqueue-101.970217202813.288@louise.csbs.albany.edu>
Mime-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: text/plain; charset="us-ascii"

Thanks, Al, for your "Media Blitz" posting (8:28 2/17/97) which
includes _Science_ magazine's "Stand By For A Comet's Media Aftershocks"
(_Science_ 275, 1997, p. 761).

I have stated many times that responsible leadership ought to
prepare our civilization for all kinds of potential catastrophes: diseases,
earthquakes, volcanos, storms, climate change, and impacts. But scientists
studying these phenomena should operate from the best science available,
and be honest with the public about the strengths and weaknesses of their
interpretations, and historical foundations that they build upon. And,
above all, scientists operating in one field should allow scientists
operating in other fields to do their work.

Unfortunately, it did not operate this way in the asteroid versus
volcano K-T debate. The leadership of the impact community often acted
aggressively to damage the credibility of the volcanists, and even to
squelch the volcano theory.

The _Science_ article cites David Morrison, Director of Space at
the NASA Ames Research Center in California. He provides leadership for the
impact community. He was in the "Three Minutes to Impact" TERRORVISION
show. Following is a quote from the Clark Chapman and David Morrison book
titled _Cosmic Catastrophes_ (1989).

"Even to this day, some traditional geologists imagine volcanic
explosions to be the mightiest catastrophes. They reject the inevitability
of huge asteroidal impacts as causes for mass extinctions, such as the
demise of dinosaurs 65 million years ago. At most, they acknowledge that
such impacts might have triggered widespread volcanism, which is what (they
believe) _really_ "did in" the dinosaurs...Such intellectual inertia is the
legacy of Lyell's uniformitarian law."

This content of that paragraph seems largely inaccurate. I have
told impactors that if they will provide hard evidence that an impact 65
million years ago caused the K-T extinctions, I would accept it.

Morrison's "intellectual inertia" comment is an inaccurate cheap
shot, and a disgusting one to make about scientists who are trying to
understand the role of volcanism in extinctions. Because volcanism is a
dynamical, vast, and on-going natural process, its role in influencing
earth's variable greenhouse--and bioevolution and extinction--must be
understood. Based on my experience in studying ancient extinctions, I have
basis for arguing that a major greenhouse is the most dangerous
global-scale natural phenomenon that life of this planet can experience.

Study of ancient greenhouses provides the best understanding of how
a modern greenhouse might affect our civilization. We are in dire need of
knowledge in this area. And, if predictions of some climatologists turn out
to be correct, a greenhouse could begin to materialize in the not too
distant future. Our civilization could get hit by a greenhouse before it
gets hit by an asteroid.

All who study potential natural hazards should be allowed to do
their work free from vicious partisan politics that would demean them,
undermine their credibility, and damage their careers.

Dewey McLean
Date: Tue, 18 Feb 1997 14:56:03 -0500
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: "dewey m. mclean" <dmclean@vt.edu>
Subject: Re: cosmic impact
in-reply-to: <simeon.9702181820.a@muahost.bris.ac.uk>
Mime-Version: 1.0
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>Dewey: here is a report from today's 'Guardian', a London

>broadsheet newspaper (feb 18, pg 3, col 1-4).

>

>Neville



Hi Neville:


Many thanks for going to all the work to reproduce the _Guardian_
report on the "Dinosaur Killer." It is similar to the AP article I read
here in the U. S., which also contains claims of "proof."


I guess we'll have to wait until the scientific papers come out to
examine the "proof positive" evidence. But, even then, the scientific
paper that gets published, probably in _Science_ or _Nature_, will
likely have been lightly reviewed only by impactors who have vested
interests in the asteroid theory.=20


I can't wait to read Richard Kerr's (staff writer for _Science_)
report.


That Robert Correll, an assistant director from the National Science
=46oundation, would call the find "the most significant discovery in
geosciences in 20 years" seems strange. I don't recall ever hearing
about him in the K-T debate, and must wonder if he understands the K-T
data base sufficiently to be qualified to make such a statement.=20


But then, in early 1981, just as the K-T asteroid versus volcano
debate was beginning, the NSF allowed itself to be used as a platform
to publicly undermine opponents of the Alvarez asteroid. I attach my
12/15/91 letter to Warren Kornberg, then editor of the NSF's _Mosaic_
magazine.=20


Cordially,

Dewey

=09


December 15, 1991<fontfamily><param>Times</param>



</fontfamily>Dr. Warren Kornberg<fontfamily><param>Times</param>

</fontfamily>Mosaic<fontfamily><param>Times</param>

</fontfamily>1800 G Street, NW Room
527<fontfamily><param>Times</param>

</fontfamily>Washington, DC 20550<fontfamily><param>Times</param>

</fontfamily> <fontfamily><param>Times</param>

</fontfamily>Dear Dr. Kornberg:<fontfamily><param>Times</param>


</fontfamily> On this 200th anniversary of ratification of our Bill of
Rights, my thoughts reflect upon how First Amendment freedoms may have
been used by some to abridge freedom of expression by others, in the
process, contributing to creating one of the great episodes of
pathogenic science in history. The episode involves the debate on cause
of the K-T (dinosaurian) extinctions of 65 million years ago that, for
the past decade, has been polarized between the Alvarez asteroid and
volcanism. One might argue that the National Science Foundation's
_Mosaic_ magazine contributed to pathogenicity of the K-T debate.
<fontfamily><param>Times</param>


</fontfamily> I refer specifically to an article by Arthur Fisher, "The
world's great dyings," in the March/April, 1981, issue of _Mosaic_ that
appeared during the critical, formative, stages of the K-T debate. In
that article, opponents of the Alvarez asteroid were dumped into a
special blue-outlined box titled "Just So" with an insulting lead-in
noting that "Modern catastrophic theories of the mass extinctions come
in all shapes and sizes. Some of them rely on unlikely phenomena; some
of the proponents abide in lofty isolation." That article incorrectly
cast me as a "catastrophist." It did not include my latest work on K-T
volcanism showing that the iridium (the basis for the Alvarez asteroid
theory) was possibly volcanic in origin. That "Just So" stamp followed
me to the October, 1981, Snowbird I conference where I presented the
sole volcanic opposition to the Alvarez asteroid, and beyond. My
mammalian extinctions work, also stamped "Just So," had not even been
published yet. I believe that _Mosaic_ hurt acceptance of much of my
theoretical work, including that in which I have isolated out a
fundamental greenhouse physiological killing mechanism that shows how a
modern greenhouse could devastate mammalian populations, including
humans. <fontfamily><param>Times</param>


</fontfamily> The National Science Foundation should not engage in
weakening theories in their critical, formative, stages. Those stages
of development of a scientific theory are akin to the first few stages
of cell division of a fertilized egg. An unhealthy environment can
impair development of the embryo, and even kill it. Public ridicule by
a prestigious journal such as _Mosaic_ can damage the intellectual
environment that new theory must develop in. By creating an unhealthy
intellectual environment, journalists can impair, or even kill,
pioneering new approaches to science.=20
<fontfamily><param>Times</param>


</fontfamily> My June 24, 1981, letter to you (enclosed) noted factual
inaccuracy in the Fisher article, and the status of my work. In a
subsequent telephone conversation, you noted that you had created the
"Just So" box based on the "Just So" comments by David Raup (p. 5), a
paleobiologist at the University of Chicago. Raup, as it turns out, had
strong vested interests in the Alvarez asteroid. As I will outline in
this letter, politics by some vested-interest scientists, and actions
by elements of the press, literally knocked me out of the K-T debate
for several years, and nearly out of a career. For anyone who thinks I
am blowing this issue out of proportion, I provide background.
<fontfamily><param>Times</param>


</fontfamily> From the beginning, the Alvarez asteroid has had flimsy
support from the K-T geobiological data record. The iridium on which
the asteroid theory was based is equivocal as to origin (McLean, 1981);
the proposed "impact winter" global blackout and refrigeration,
supposedly triggered by impact dust blocking out sunlight, never had
any demonstrable data support (McLean, 1991); and the assumption of
sudden, catastrophic, death of most of earth's life at the K-T
boundary, is demonstrably false. Unfortunately, elements of the press
promoted the Alvarez asteroid while demoting, demeaning, and even
excluding its volcanic opposition, building the asteroid literally to
the status of "fact," and fueling the many vested-interest groups that
are using the asteroid as a basis for the own spin-off
agendas.<fontfamily><param>Times</param>


</fontfamily> Some notable spin-offs include: "Spacewatch," "nuclear
winter," "death star," "neocatastrophism," searches around the globe
for iridium and the hypothetical impact crater, drilling the Manson
Crater in Iowa to study its role in the dinosaurian extinctions (it may
not even be an impact crater, according to some scientists), and
literally countless other asteroid-generated career and funding
opportunities that have already cost the taxpayer dearly, and could
wind up costing several hundreds of millions of dollars more. The
taxpayers deserve some accountability.<fontfamily><param>Times</param>


</fontfamily> Now, I will outline my role in the formative stages of
the asteroid versus volcano debate at about the time _Mosaic_ published
=46isher's article, and note how politics, including those of the press,
affected my work, and career.<fontfamily><param>Times</param>


</fontfamily> In the early 1980s, while the Alvarez team was developing
its asteroid-"impact winter," I was concurrently developing a
competitive volcanism-"greenhouse" theory. The current asteroid versus
volcano debate originated at the May, 1981, Ottawa K-TEC II Conference,
where I first met, and debated, the Alvarez team for two days.
<fontfamily><param>Times</param>


</fontfamily> Prior to K-TEC II, I had proposed that a K-T carbon cycle
perturbation had killed the dinosaurs (_Science_, 1978). By 1979, I was
integrating the perturbation with the Deccan Traps mantle plume
volcanism. When Luis Alvarez discovered iridium at the K-T boundary,
and proposed it as proof of an asteroid impact with earth 65 million
years ago (_Science_, 1980), I proposed it as a result of earthly,
volcanism (January, 1981, AAAS Toronto Conference), showing that the
K-T iridium could _not_ be used as unequivocal evidence of an asteroid
impact. However, the asteroid was already providing new opportunities
for powerful scientific groups. In June, 1980, NASA's Advisory Council
had sponsored a "new directions" symposium at Woods Hole,
Massachusetts, with a "Spacewatch" subgroup that included Luis Alvarez.
Based on the Alvarez theory, the group concluded that threat to our
civilization from asteroid impact was significant, and proposed
"Project Spacewatch" to deal with it. <fontfamily><param>Times</param>


</fontfamily> Thus, when I first debated Luis Alvarez at the K-TEC II,
he already had vast plans in mind for his asteroid, and "Project
Spacewatch." He did not know that I had already proposed a volcanic
source for the iridium. He became upset at my belief that the K-T
iridium, the basis for his asteroid theory, could not be used as
unequivocal evidence of an asteroid impact. Alvarez moved to
prematurely shut down any debate over legitimacy of his asteroid, and
threatened my career if I publicly opposed
him.<fontfamily><param>Times</param>


</fontfamily> Following the K-TEC II Conference, Luis Alvarez did an
intensive word-of-mouth attack upon my scientific credibility. It got
into my Department of Geological Sciences. The stresses caused by his
politics, and the undermining of my career in my own department, caused
my health to fail. I spent the year of 1984 in a physical hell with
nearly every joint in my body so inflamed, and swollen, and painful
that I could function only with difficulty. Much of my muscle mass
atrophied. Physical debilitation lasted through much of 1985. Out of
that episode, I developed a Pavlovian response to the K-T such that,
even today, I address it with difficulty. Alvarez's politics that had
gone on for about seven years were finally publicly exposed in a
January 19, 1988, _New York Times_ article. Incidentally, numerous
other scientists are now investigating the Deccan Traps volcanism, and
increasing numbers are evoking a K-T greenhouse, so it seems that my
originality was opening up valid new areas of science, after all.
<fontfamily><param>Times</param>


</fontfamily> Based on my decade-long experience with scientists who
are so powerful that they can trample the right of opponents with
impunity, and journalists who would openly promote the Alvarez asteroid
while, at the same time, demoting, and even ignoring its opposition, I
would implore the federal government to establish an authority over
science and journalism to create, and enforce, codes of conduct for
both to prevent abuses of our First Amendment freedoms that can give
rise to episodes of destructive and costly pathogenic science.
<fontfamily><param>Times</param>


</fontfamily> At the very least, I would hope for establishment of a
=46airness Doctrine like that proposed by Jerome A. Barron, former dean
of the National Law Center of George Washington University, in his book
_Freedom of the Press for Whom? The Right of Access to Mass Media_
(1973), and especially so for some scientific magazines with a
powerful, almost monopolistic, "wavelength" by which to influence, and
mold, public opinion. <underline><fontfamily><param>Times</param>

</fontfamily></underline> <fontfamily><param>Times</param>

</fontfamily>Sincerely yours,<fontfamily><param>Times</param>






</fontfamily>Dewey M. McLean<fontfamily><param>Times</param>

</fontfamily>Professor and Director of Earth Systems and Biosphere
Evolution Studies<fontfamily><param>Times</param>



</fontfamily>cc: Dr. Walter E. Massey, Director of the National
Science Foundation<fontfamily><param>Times</param>


</fontfamily>=A9 1997 Dewey M. McLean
Date: Tue, 18 Feb 1997 17:49:16 -0500
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: linda sweeting <sweeting@midget.towson.edu>
Subject: Re: Cosmic impact
in-reply-to: <pine.pcw.3.91.970217075357.6615a-100000@grnq-143.uwp.edu>
MIME-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: TEXT/PLAIN; charset=US-ASCII

I read about the new evidence in the newspaper and it sounded like
terrific hype of the same old iridium layer - a mysterious brown layer.
I am not in this field but have gotten interested in it and read the
recent book. I am convinced that there cannot be just one cause - the
time period was too long, volcanism was rampant (and has been shown to
cause recent small climate changes and probably the Permian extinctions)
plus continents were moving and the great basin in N. America, the last
refuge of the dinosaurs, was being uplifted and turned into the great
american desert (now known as the midwest, I guess). I understand that
lots of other species became extinct during this period, indicating some
global calamity. Well, I expect you will get better information from
Dewey McLean, so I'll stop babbling.


Dr. Linda M. Sweeting
Department of Chemistry
Towson State University
Baltimore, MD 21204

sweeting@midget.towson.edu
(410)-830-3113


Date: Tue, 18 Feb 1997 21:33:08 -0500
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: al higgins <ach13@louise.csbs.albany.edu>
Organization: Sociology Department, CAS UAlbany
Subject: Financial Correctness
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Financial Correctness

Several journals have taken stands concerning financial
interests: if authors have a financial stake in the articles they
submit for publications, those interests must to admitted to the
editors and readers of the journal. Some editors feel,
apparently, that financial interests may sway interpretations
and objectivity and, to promote the norm of
disinterestedness, financial interests must be admitted
by authors.

Nature's editor clearly does not feel this way and has
given his opinion in a recent editorial. Though clearly out of
step with the editors of several leading journals, here is a clear
statement and a bit of mockery, from the editors of Nature.

The brief editorial is reproduced in its entirety.

+++++++++++

\Editor, "Avoid Financial =91Correctness,'" Nature 385
(6 February 1997), p. 469.\

It comes as no surprise to find (Nature 385, 376; 30
January 1997) that about-third of a group of life scientists
working in the biotechnology rich state of
Massachusetts had financial interests in work that
they published in academic journals in 1992. Nor,
given the absence of policies of most journals at the time,
is it surprising that those interests were seldom
declared in their papers. Morerecently, those
interests were seldom declared in their papers. More
recently, some journals have insisted on declarations
of interest, either to editors only or in published
papers.

This journal has never required that authors
declare such affiliations, because the reasons
proposed by others are less than compelling. It
would be reasonable to assume, nowadays,
that virtually every good paper with a
conceivable biotechnological relevance emerging from
the west and east coasts of the United States, as well as
many European laboratories, has at least one author
with a financial interest - but what of it? The
measurements and conclusions are
in principle unaffected, as is the requirement that
uncertainties be made clear. Would the impact on
readers of a declaration of interest differ from that of a
statement that the success of the next grant
application will be that much greater as
a result of publication? And who is to police
disobedience? Such appeals for openness are
selective - other pieces of information
would be just as (ir)relevant to a paper's content.

The work published (Science and Engineering
Ethics 2, 395; 1996) makes no claim that the
undeclared interests led to any fraud, deception of
bias in presentation, and until there is evidence
that there are serious risks of such malpractice,
this journal will persist in its stubborn
belief that research as we publish it is indeed
research, not business.

++++++++++

A. C. Higgins
SS 359 SUNYA Albany, New York 12222
ACH13@CNSVAX.Albany.edu
Phone: (518) 442 - 4678; FAX: (518) 442 - 4936
SCIFRAUD@CNSIBM.Albany.edu
A. C. Higgins ACH13@louise.csbs.albany.edu
College of Arts and Sciences VOX: 518-442-4678
Sociology Department FAX: 518-442-4936
University At Albany
Albany, NY, USA 12222
Date: Wed, 19 Feb 1997 04:00:47 EST
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: emmanuel marin <100574.3414@compuserve.com>
Subject: Error Alert p.2 - "Sokal hoax"

{My message + Sokal's message}

Dear Mr. Sokal,

Thank you for the message. The first update I typed for the SCIFRAUD
list was from memory, which explains some of the errors. As it
turned out many persons were interested in being up-to-date with
the events, I quickly typed another message in which I used my
archives instead of my memory. That's how I myself corrected the
Bricmont/Salomon error in a message to SCIFRAUD before I received
your post.

However, I definitely misunderstood some parts of the story, and
I could have continue for weeks to claim Latour wrote in _Social Text_
if you had not pointed out this error to me, for instance.

Your message is forwarded to the SCIFRAUD list in the same time
as this message.

Skeptically yours,

Emmanuel Marin
Paris, France



A : Emmanuel Marin, 100574,3414
DATE : 18/02/1997 18:13

RE : Re: "Update on Sokal" to SCIFRAUD list

sender: sokal@acf4.nyu.edu

Dear Mr. Marin,

Many thanks for sending your "Update on Sokal" to the SCIFRAUD list.
It was later forwarded to me by a SCIFRAUD subscriber. I am pleased
to hear about the activities of rationalists in France and elsewhere
in Europe.

In the interest of accuracy, I'd like to correct a few minor errors
in your account. Since I'm not a SCIFRAUD subscriber, I'd be very
grateful if you could post this message to the SCIFRAUD list on my behalf.

Many thanks, and best wishes! -- Alan Sokal



> Latour's "answer" to Sokal's hoax is actually even more
> preposterous that what you may have thought in your
> worst nightmares. He simply lies : he claims that
> "Social Text" is a bad journal, that it has no peer-review
> system, that Latour is not amongst the targets since
> he "knows about science", etc...

Latour's first claim is a matter of opinion, but in *my* opinion it is false
(Social Text frequently *does* publish good articles);
the third claim is a gross lie, which I debunked in my _Le Monde_ article.
However, the second claim is *true*: submissions to Social Text are apparently
reviewed by their editorial committee but *not* by outside specialists.
(Of course, in my opinion Social Text *should* use outside specialists
when the subject matter of the article makes it advisable; but that is
a different question.)


> Sokal answered Latour
> and debunked these claims, in a very ironic tone. He
> writes, for instance, that Latour is too modest, since
> he calls a journal he writes in, a bad journal. He adds
> that Latour's text in "Social Text", which is about the
> consequence of general relativity on social delegation,
> puzzled many colleagues of Sokal, who told him that
> it was too bad someone had already the idea to make
> an hoax to the journal.

I said that Latour is too modest, because he failed to note that he was
cited prominently in my Social Text article writing nonsense about
relativity. But this paper on relativity was published in Social Studies
of Science (a rather respectable sociology-of-science journal), *not* in
Social Text. To my knowledge Latour has never written for Social Text.
After criticizing Latour's silly article about relativity, I observed
that some colleagues consider it to be, like my article, a hoax.


> Sokal was not the only person to answer Latour and
> Duclos. Belgian scientist Bricmont, who is currently
> writing a book with Sokal about the misunderstanding
> of scientific theories amongst the relativists, made
> a nice comparison between a very recent text by Latour
> in _Le Monde_ about Le Pen and a speech by..
> Mussolini. The comparison is not far-fetched, and
> Latour's text on Le Pen had already been answered
> by a colleague of Latour (!) in a similar tone : Latour's
> sudden "purism" ("Le Pen is the only person who
> actually does some politics") was very strange.

Bricmont's article in Le Monde (14 January if I remember correctly)
was excellent. However, if memory serves me, the Le Pen/Mussolini
remark appears in a later article on this same "affair" by Jean-Jacques
Salomon, which appeared on the same day as mine (31 January).


Let me also mention that an important paragraph of my _Le Monde_ article
was unfortunately deleted in the published version. The full original
text is available in both French and English on my Web site:
http://www.physics.nyu.edu/faculty/sokal/index.html

Best wishes,

Alan Sokal
Date: Wed, 19 Feb 1997 04:00:55 EST
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: emmanuel marin <100574.3414@compuserve.com>
Subject: Copie de : Sokal : Le Monde's references so far

{I sent this message to Listserv first :-(
This is only a copy of the original message,
even though I know there is an error,
corrected in Sokal's answer - EM}



De : Emmanuel Marin, 100574,3414
A : Listserv_Scifraud, INTERNET:listserv@cnsibm.albany.edu
DATE : 18/02/1997 21:48

RE : Copie de : Sokal : Le Monde's references so far

All these papers have been published in
_Le Monde_, except for (NL), in which is
published all the French significant papers
on Sokal's hoax so far. Except for (NW)
they all have been published in _Le Monde_'s
opinion columns.

_Le Monde_ (about 350,000 buyers each
day in 93), and _Liberation (about 170,000
in 93) are the two biggest left-center French
national daily newspapers. The texts' length
varies from about, say, 6Kb to 20Kb.

I first include two references about Latour
and Le Pen, since Salomon (*) refers to
this in his text. Summaries are my own.
They are a bit "useless" since the papers
are very dense, but it gives you an hint
on the controversy.

(BL1)"A new offence : to do some politics"
Bruno Latour, 4 Oct 96.
->Those who wants to censor or to
answer Le Pen when he claims races
are inequal does not understand science
should not interfer with politics.
Furthermore, science cannot prove that
races are not inequal.

(AH)"It is wise to forbid"
Antoine Hennion, 15 Oct 96.
-> A criticism of (BL1). The title refers
to the French famous slogan from May 68
"It is forbidden to forbid", since AH
thinks BL's dangerous and unexpected
purism seems to be ages old. AH answers
BL in his own field, using his own words,
which is not surprising since AH is head
of the departement BL is working in.

(NL) "Sokal's Hoax", _Liberation_,
Natalie Levisalles, 3 Dec 96.
->NL is a journalist at _Liberation_.
Like _Nature_'s paper, it writes about
the facts only, plus an interview with
Sokal and an interview with BL. BL
criticizes Sokal for putting all
the humanities in the same bag, while
"people like me have a scientific
background".

(NW)"The pedagogical hoax of Pr. Sokal",
Nicolas Weill, 20 Dec 96.
->NW is a journalist at _Le Monde_.
He writes about the facts of the
controversy in the US.

(DD)"Sokal is not Socrate",
Denis Duclos, 3 Jan 97.
->(NW) is wrong. Sokal's hoax should not
be taken seriously. It is meaningless,
except to prove that US scientists who
criticize French intellectuals as well
as Freud, are anti-Europeans. DD is
a sociologist.

(JB)"The true meaning of the Sokal
affair", Jean Bricmont, 14 Jan 97.
-> (DD) is wrong. The true meaning is
to catch some attention upon the lack
of rigor in humanities. JB is writing
with Sokal a book on the errors
and the impostures by the post-
modern philosophers. JB is teacher
in theoretical physics in Belgium.

(PG)"French rail against the US
professor", Pierre Guerlain,
14 Jan 97.
-> (DD) is wrong. What does DD
read ? Sokal's hoax is not just
an isolated "coup" : DD may not
believe it, but there are some
US scientists who are thinking
about the problem with the
relativists for quite a long time.
Sokal is not anti-European, but
(DD) may well be anti-American.
PG teaches a course in American
Civilisation in France.

(BL2)"Is there a science after the cold
war ?", Bruno Latour, 18 Jan 97
-> (JB) is too modest. The only
interesting thing is why does this
hoax interest so many people ?
_Social Text_ is a bad journal, it
has no peer-review system, and if
Sokal help us to make this journal
disappear, BL will applaud to it.
But the true interest is explained
by the fact that after the cold war,
the US physicists need to find new
enemies : for them France is a new
Columbia, which produces very
dangerous "intellectual drugs".

(AS)"Why I wrote my parody",
Alan Sokal, 31 Jan 97.
-> (BL) is too modest. He writes
a journal he writes in is a bad
journal. It has a peer-review
system, despite what BL wrote.
And, in Sokal's opinion, _Social
Text_ can publish very interesting
issues. Furthermore, if it is
a matter of physicists looking for
new enemies because they are
searching for new reasons to receive
funds, why are many other scientists
joining him ? And BL is wrong in
(NL) : he is amongst the targets,
Sokal's parody contains some excerpts
from BL's papers. AS explains that
BL's tactic to defend his field is
to present it without all the
significant developments : BL
simply writes about the now well
accepted conclusions that nobody,
including Sokal, ever considered
to criticize. AS also writes that
BL is deliberately ambiguous :
he can be understood in a way
provocative enough so that it
will make his books sell a lot,
and in the same time he is able
to answer "I have never said that"
when he is faced with criticism
by scientists.

(JS)"Sokal's burst of laugh",
Jean-Jacques Salomon, 31 Jan 97.
-> AS reminds us that relativism
is also an opportunity to write
everything you want. Even in
the field of politics : JS
gives an excerpt of a speech
by Mussolini which looks a lot
like (BL1). JS is a teacher in
technology.

(MR)"Thanks to heaven, Sokal, and his
peers", Michel Rio, 11 Feb 97
-> a strong, funny, criticism of (DD)
and (BL2), by a novelist, who is not a
specialist in the field, but who dares
to give his opinion since the words
seemingly have an huge role in the
controversy. From his point of view,
(DD), (BL) and al, should not only
learn some science, but should also
learn to write. To his ears, the
words of (BL) and (DD) are nothing
more than the "sound of a humbug
that goes down".

This last paper so far is the longest
of the lot, and one of the most
easily understandable by the man in
the street, in my opinion. So far
(BL) has lost the battle of the words
in _Le Monde_, in my opinion.

Emmanuel Marin
Paris, France

(*) Error ALERT : in my previous post I wrote
it was Bricmont who made a comparison
between Latour's text and Mussolini's speech,
but my memory was faulty : it is actually
Salomon.
Date: Wed, 19 Feb 1997 09:14:30 +0000
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: simon birnstingl <swb@pavilion.co.uk>
Subject: Us
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Dear Scifraud,

The recent postings under the banner of Cosmic Impact have led me to wonder
about the purpose of this group. Is our purpose to note and debate what we
see to be questionable acts and rash statements in a purely academic
manner, or do we want to attempt to do something about them?

It would seem to me that the area covered by the Cosmic Impact postings is
one where we have a consensus that the impactors have acted against the
spirit of open debate in science. In cases such as this should we act or
simply note them in our archive for future reference? As a Skeptic I often
find myself badgering the media after they report on "Facts" about crystal
healing, UFOs and the like. I feel that in cases such as the Cosmic Impact
debate we should act in a similar way: If a journal prints an uncritical
article we should let them know the full story. (I have posted the Guardian
here and the radio programs that have reported the NSA claims).

I would be interested to know what other members of this group think.

Regards,

Simon Birnstingl


Simon Birnstingl
Conformance Environmental
5a Livingstone Road
Hove, Sussex
BN3 3WP
United Kingdom

email:
environment@conformance.co.uk

tel: ++ 44(0)1273 204369
fax: ++ 44(0)1298 873801 ***PLEASE NOTE NEW FAX NUMBER***
Date: Wed, 19 Feb 1997 13:42:56 +0100
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: jan =?iso-8859-1?q?t=e5ngring?= <jan@cs.umu.se>
Subject: Less fraud in technical research?
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Is scientific fraud/misconduct less of a problem in the field of technical
research?

I have been looking hard for incidents of misconduct in the field of
technical research in Sweden, but without success. On the other hand I've
found lots of examples from for example, medical research.

Clearly, in Sweden, more attention has been paid to the problem within the
medical field. For example, the existing research on scientific misconduct
comes from the field of medical ethics.

Another example: a board of experts is being created to assist
investigation of suspected misconduct in medical research, but no
corresponding initiative has been taken on the technical side.

Is there something in the nature of technical research that makes it less
susceptible to misconduct than for example medical research? Or would the
examples start popping up if more attention was paid to it?

/Jan Tangring
Date: Thu, 20 Feb 1997 10:41:29 +1000
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
from: martin bridgstock <m.bridgstock@sct.gu.edu.au>
Subject: Re: Less fraud in technical research?
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As a first step, what exactly is "technical research"?

Martin Bridgstock

>Is scientific fraud/misconduct less of a problem in the field of technical
>research?
>
>I have been looking hard for incidents of misconduct in the field of
>technical research in Sweden, but without success. On the other hand I've
>found lots of examples from for example, medical research.
>
>Clearly, in Sweden, more attention has been paid to the problem within the
>medical field. For example, the existing research on scientific misconduct
>comes from the field of medical ethics.
>
>Another example: a board of experts is being created to assist
>investigation of suspected misconduct in medical research, but no
>corresponding initiative has been taken on the technical side.
>
>Is there something in the nature of technical research that makes it less
>susceptible to misconduct than for example medical research? Or would the
>examples start popping up if more attention was paid to it?
>
>/Jan Tangring
>
>
Date: Wed, 19 Feb 1997 21:05:21 -0500
reply-to: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
sender: discussion of fraud in science <scifraud@cnsibm.albany.edu>
Comments: Authenticated sender is <ach13@rachel.albany.edu>
from: al higgins <ach13@cnsvax.albany.edu>
Organization: Sociology Department UAlbany
Subject: (Fwd) Conference: Knowledge and Its Discontents
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Here is a conference in which several may be interested.

Al
Subject: Conference: Knowledge and Its Discontents
Author: Lillian Isacks <li10@cornell.edu> at Internet
Date: 2/19/97 10:08 AM


The Department of Science and Technology Studies, Cornell University,
announces a conference on expertise, organized with support from the
National Science Foundation. "Knowledge and Its Discontents: Science,
Expertise, Modernity" will be held in Ithaca on May 2-4, 1997. Leading
American and European scholars in the field of science and technology
studies will examine the changing social and political meanings of
expertise and its role in the making of modern culture. The design of the
conference is thoroughly interdisciplinary, with panels on the following
topics: Law, Science, Expertise (Margaret Berger, Sheila Jasanoff, Martha
Nussbaum); Modernity and Expertise (Yaron Ezrahi, Helga Nowotny, Theodore
Porter, Brian Wynne); Custom, Specialization and Skill (Harry Collins,
Peter Galison, Michael Lynch, Steven Shapin); Science, Self and Public
(Wiebe Bijker, Adele Clarke, Aant Elzinga, Steven Yearley); Science's
Responsibilities to Its Publics (John Beatty, Thomas Eisner, Evelyn Fox
Keller, Peter Weingart). In conjunction with the conference, there will be
a day-long workshop organized by the Science and Technology Studies
graduate students on Friday May 2nd. Further information and a
registration form for the conference are available from the Cornell Science
and Technology Studies website at http://www.sts.cornell.edu/Workshop.html.
Registration forms and information can also be obtained from Lillian
Isacks, Department of Science and Technology Studies, 726 University
Avenue, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY 14850, USA. Tel: 607-255-6234; fax:
6