There is little doubt that we live in an age when reason and the scientific revolution are under concerted assault – from all sides. The left like to demonise the right as “anti-science”, but they might want to take a long, hard look in the mirror. The religious right might get all antsy about evolution but, from climate change to transgenderism to Critical Race Theory, the left are blasting science and reason to Kingdom Come.

With the China Virus pandemic, they’ve turned the attack nuclear. The worst offenders are the quislings in the scientific establishment.

Consider, for instance, the strong possibility that the virus emerged from the Wuhan laboratory.

Scientists, bureaucrats, journalists and executives of Big Tech companies suppressed the story not out of fear of imprisonment or death, but of their own volition, out of ideological or even venal motives […]

It’s not simply that the lab-leak theory was “debunked,” as news organizations repeatedly told us when anyone tried to raise it a year ago. It wasn’t even permitted to be considered. Discussion of the topic was deliberately extinguished on tech platforms, in the respectable scientific journals and in newsrooms.

This is completely contrary to the practice of good science, where any idea, however ideologically threatening, must be allowed to be discussed on its merits. But rather than do so, even the most once-respected journals, such as Nature and The Lancet, simply dismissed the lab-leak theory out of hand as a “conspiracy theory”.

We now know that at least some of them were outright lying – not least to cover their own sorry arses.

Thanks to a recent release of emails under the Freedom of Information Act, we now know that some of the scientists dismissing the idea had themselves expressed concerns that the zoonotic explanation they were publicly championing might not be right. We also know that in the case of the Lancet letter, some of the correspondents were involved in similar research and had a strong professional interest in denying the possibility of an engineered virus.

The Wall Street Journal

Such traducing of proper scientific practice is a direct consequence of what climate ‘scientist’ Stephen Schneider touted as “post-normal science”. In as blunt a statement as any of the ideological bastardisation of science by climate alarmism, Schneider’s “post-normal” colleague Mike Hulme (he of “Climategate” notoriety), stated that scientists “must trade (normal) truth for influence”.

So, it was policy influence first, rigorous scientific truth-telling second.

In this pandemic era too many scientists have pursued policy influence with the rapacity of Soviet commissars. Anyone dissenting – and, to their credit, thousands of scientists did – from the policy prescription of lockdowns, was brutally silenced.

Lockdown moved instantly from untested theory to unchallengeable orthodoxy: where dissenters face personal attack. Understandable on social media perhaps, but it has now crept into the British Medical Journal (BMJ) in a recent article about the Great Barrington Declaration (GBD).

The GBD advocated, not wholesale lockdowns, but focused protection. This is entirely in line with decades of carefully-prepared pandemic plans: plans (from the likes of WHO and the CDC) which explicitly rejected lockdowns as late as November, 2020. Then, the China Virus hit: in two senses. Not only the physical, SARS-CoV-2 virus emerged from China: in tandem with it came a viral madness that seized the Western elite, a headlong rush to imitate China’s own brutal lockdown policies.

In another pale imitation of China, dissenters were ruthlessly suppressed.

We are smeared as ‘the new merchants of doubt’ – as if scepticism and challenge is regarded by the BMJ as something to be condemned.

In a particularly egregious attack on not just the GBD, but the very basics of science and reason, the BMJ smeared the scientists of the GBD with an “article… full of errors that ought to have never found their way into any publication”.

Like the “post-normal” climate alarmists, the BMJ attack openly encourages anti-scientific, irrational thinking.

The BMJ article urges people to use ‘political and legal strategies’ rather than scientific argument to counter our views on the pandemic. It also calls for people to adhere to the ‘scientific consensus’ as represented by a Memorandum published by the Lancet […]

That such an article was published exemplifies the decay in standards of scientific journals.

Spectator Australia

As Martin Kulldorff gloomily concludes, “scientists, we must now tragically acknowledge that 400 years of scientific enlightenment may be coming to an end”.

Scientific enlightenment has been under sustained attack by, yes, elements of the religious right, but even more damagingly, from within, by the rabid ideologues of the left. After 400 years one of the most profound and beneficial revolutions in human thinking is under dire threat of being expunged.

So long, science: it was nice knowing you. Can the last one to leave the lab turn the lights out? Got to think of the planet, after all.

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Has COVID Dealt a Death-Blow to Science?
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Lushington D. Brady

Punk rock philosopher. Liberalist contrarian. Grumpy old bastard. I grew up in a generational-Labor-voting family. I kept the faith long after the political left had abandoned it. In the last decade...