Monday, August 10, 2020

Timely indeed …

… Reflections on Science and Society - Econlib. (Hat tip, Dave Lull.)

… in Polanyi’s time, the arrogance, dogma, and ignorance espoused by the fascists was also evident among communists, and so scientific inquiry was truncated not only in Germany but in Soviet Russia. Furthermore, the “men of science” in the UK and the US were parroting the arguments about the purpose of planning in the planned state as the model for scientific advancement.  The very foundation of the scientific enterprise and of the free give-and-take of the scientific community was threatened. The consequence wasn’t just slower progress on fundamental questions, or slightly more quackery on the margins of science, but the destruction of careers, and despair among scientists as knowledge was either destroyed or corrupted by the authorities in power.

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