Nobel disease

From RationalWiki
Jump to: navigation, search
Part of the series on

Logic and rhetoric

Icon logic.svg
Key articles
General logic
Bad logic

The Nobel disease is a term used to describe a phenomenon in which Nobel Prize-winning scientists endorse or perform "research" in pseudoscientific areas in their later years. In reality, this "disease" most likely demonstrates that even the most brilliant people are not immune to crank ideas and belief in such ideas will persist to some degree even among Nobelists. It also makes for a convenient argument from authority for lesser cranks, because if a Nobel Prize-winning scientist says it, it must be true!


[edit] (In)famous Victims of Disease

[edit] Inverted Nobel Disease

In a more bizarre case, Tu Youyou[wp] received the 2015 Nobel Prize in Medicine for the discovery of artemisinin, a drug used to treat malaria and saving millions of lives. She discovered this while testing thousands of different herbs that were in her field of study; Traditional Chinese Medicine. It should be noted that if the Scientific Method had not been developed yet, many parts of TCM would be proto-science rather than pseudo-science. Shamans, medicine men, witchdoctors, and the like would often observe that there was a correlation between herb or practice X with ailment Y, and would pass down the knowledge. It wasn't always true of course, and a lot of superstitions were formed in this manner, but without things like rapid communication or well funded laboratories, any better form of acquiring knowledge was simply unavailable. Then when society did reach a point where a city could afford the resources for the labs, many early scientists began testing all the various herbal remedies that had been passed down from the shamans. What worked was carefully recorded and kept, such as aspirin from willow bark tea, while what didn't was thrown away. Tu Youyou tested various herbal remedies and found another important drug.

[edit] See also

[edit] External links

[edit] Footnotes

  1. Pierre Curie bio
  2. John William Strutt bio
  5. Charles Richet bio
  9. My View of the World Erwin Schrödinger chapter iv. What Is life? the physical aspect of the living cell & Mind and matter — By Erwin Schrödinger
  12. Chain, 1971, “Social Responsibility and the Scientist in Modern Western Society,” Perspectives in Biology and Medicine, Spring 1971, Vol. 14, No. 3, p. 368
  15. Creativity and intuition : a physicist looks at East and West / by Hideki Yukawa ; translated by John Bester (1973)
  16. Bill Shockley bio
  17. Fury at DNA Pioneer's Theory: Africans are Less Intelligent than Westerners, The Independent
  18. [1], where Watson clarifies he speaks as "people who have to deal with black employees".
  19. Eccles, John (1973). "6 'Brain, Speech, and Consciousness'". The Understanding of the Brain. McGraw-Hill Book Company. p. p. 189. ISBN 0-07-018863-7.
  22. Hannes Alfvén, Cosmology—Myth or Science? J Astrophysics and Astronomy, vol. 5, pp. 79-98, (1984).
  23. Ivar Giaevar, DeSmog Blog
  24. Pioneer of the Paranormal
  25. [2]
  28. Outside the Box or Around the Bend? Photon in the Darkness
  29. Eisenberg, L. (2005). "Which Image for Lorenz?". American Journal of Psychiatry 162 (9): 1760. doi:10.1176/appi.ajp.162.9.1760.
  30. [ Late Austrian scientist Konrad Lorenz stripped of doctorate for lying about Nazi past Fri, 18 Dec 2015 World Jewish Congress
  31. Beyond Kary Mullis: The Alien Conspiracy Theory of AIDS, Denying AIDS
  32. Kary Mullis — Personal Views[wp], Wikipedia
  38. A. Zeilinger, Dance of the Photons, Farrar, Straus and Giroux, New York, 2010, p. 266.
Personal tools