For the Public Understanding of Scientists
(Perig, aka Pierre-Alain Gouanvic) Contact : <pierre.alain.gouanvic AT gmail DOT com>
One of the most satisfying aspects of investigations of a philosophical nature is the discovery of simple facts and key ideas that help to suddenly see the whole picture; these facts are frequently brushed under the carpet as "anomalies" that will be understood one day (while in fact they are incommensurable with the current habits of thinking); these key ideas are generally viewed as useless and void by those who perceive intellectual life as a continuous accumulation of mental wealth (while in fact these key ideas are dangerously destructive).
The lack of curiosity of most intellectuals about so-called scientific matters (about the world, really) is a mix of cowardice (why downgrade to the status of mere student of Science when you can issue broad statements about "Life Sciences", "Biopower", "Technoscience", etc, etc, or pretend to be an inquisitive Socrates when you're a low grade1 Sophist, really) and of plain old narrowmindedness disguised as wisdom.
What is needed is a new 'Seattle': another large-scale grassroots movements of citizens reclaiming control, not over the economic sphere (although it is still obviously needed), but over the production of scientific knowledge. Like the Seattle protests, this revolutionary movement will owe much to the Internet as a means to rebuild communities. Accordingly, I see the PI site as a 'place' where people should feel at home, where the highest standards of collaboration are maintained and where people can finally experience what other projects such as Wikipedia promised, but never delivered. Citizendium was buit upon the "real names policy" as an alternative to the mob rule of Wikipedia; what is needed is more demanding: a real person policy, whereby we treat fellow members exactly as if they were in front of us. The growing use of Web cams, in Vlogs and Podcasts, for instance, expresses such a need for a real presence to others.
It is important to recognize philosophy as a practice that can, that is, practised early in life. It might seem 'cliché' to say that children are wiser than we think, and ask questions that we tend to forget to ask. Perhaps less 'cliché' is to say that children often pose the same questions that most of Humanity has asked and still ask... while we, the Enlightened, courageously face the intricacies of a complex, but still mechanistic world2.
I will devote special care to the scientific issues that citizens really want to know about, but are afraid to ask. If you are an academic, a scientist or an insider of some sort concerning such issues, please contact me.
You can visit my workspaces, where you will find nascent texts and investigations. Some of them are locked for editing, others are not even visible (just ask me, and I'll probably let you in).
Go to the workspaces
Can life after death be proven?
What motivates British Neocons?
Why is difference feminism so unpopular among feminists?
Can Civilization Be Based On A Coincidence?
Can the Internet ever become the elusive Library of All Knowledge?
What is Transhumanists' Cure for Humanity?
Translated to French State of the Evidence 2008: The Connection Between Breast Cancer and the Environment
Edited by Janet Gray, Ph.D., published by the Breast Cancer Fund (L’État des connaissances 2008 : La relation entre l'environnement et le cancer du sein)
Consumer protection consulting: advertising to children, health effects of cosmetics and household products.
Terminologist (Scientific and Technical Division), Translation Bureau (Government of Canada)
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