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The big bang theory, a big let down? Major branch of science becoming dogmatic? An interesting article
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just Justin Whitson
(ArcturusBear)
The big bang theory, a big let down? Major branch of science becoming dogmatic? An interesting article on 01/02/2014 00:52:13 MST Print View

Well, i actually don't agree with the title of the article necessarily, but anyways, thought it was an interesting read. If it has elements of truth, and if there is that much "fudging" going on with such a public and focused on topic, kind of makes you wonder what kind of fudging is possibly going on in other areas of science. Just to briefly mention, i don't dislike science whatsoever, what i disagree with is dogma of any kind. At one point, i was really into science and really wanted to be a scientist. More specifically, i was obsessed with wanting to be a geneticist from the time i was 10 to 13 or so (i was a weird kid), until i started to have experiences that mainstream science deemed impossible at worst and highly improbable at least.

Before i copy/paste the link and entire article, would like to first share this brief excerpt, regarding the Big Bang theory, "Even observations are now interpreted through this biased filter, judged right or wrong depending on whether or not they support the big bang. So discordant data on red shifts, lithium and helium abundances, and galaxy distribution, among other topics, are ignored or ridiculed. This reflects a growing dogmatic mindset that is alien to the spirit of free scientific enquiry.

Today, virtually all financial and experimental resources in cosmology are devoted to big bang studies. Funding comes from only a few sources, and all the peer-review committees that control them are dominated by supporters of the big bang. As a result, the dominance of the big bang within the field has become self-sustaining, irrespective of the scientific validity of the theory."

If true, then perhaps it just underlines a psychological truth, scientists are humans too and humans by nature tend to be subjective, with beliefs not based entirely on pure logic/reason, but on various factors, some very subtle and unconscious and some more overt and in our faces.

Link and rest of article, http://rense.com/general53/bbng.htm

Big Bang Theory Busted
By 33 Top Scientists
5-27-4

Our ideas about the history of the universe are dominated by big bang theory. But its dominance rests more on funding decisions than on the scientific method, according to Eric J Lerner, mathematician Michael Ibison of Earthtech.org, and dozens of other scientists from around the world.

An Open Letter to the Scientific Community

Cosmology Statement.org (Published in New Scientist, May 22-28 issue, 2004, p. 20)

The big bang today relies on a growing number of hypothetical entities, things that we have never observed-- inflation, dark matter and dark energy are the most prominent examples. Without them, there would be a fatal contradiction between the observations made by astronomers and the predictions of the big bang theory.

In no other field of physics would this continual recourse to new hypothetical objects be accepted as a way of bridging the gap between theory and observation. It would, at the least, RAISE SERIOUS QUESTIONS ABOUT THE VALIDITY OF THE UNDERLYING THEORY.

But the big bang theory can't survive without these fudge factors. Without the hypothetical inflation field, the big bang does not predict the smooth, isotropic cosmic background radiation that is observed, because there would be no way for parts of the universe that are now more than a few degrees away in the sky to come to the same temperature and thus emit the same amount of microwave radiation.

Without some kind of dark matter, unlike any that we have observed on Earth despite 20 years of experiments, big-bang theory makes contradictory predictions for the density of matter in the universe. Inflation requires a density 20 times larger than that implied by big bang nucleosynthesis, the theory's explanation of the origin of the light elements. And without dark energy, the theory predicts that the universe is only about 8 billion years old, which is billions of years younger than the age of many stars in our galaxy.

What is more, the big bang theory can boast of no quantitative predictions that have subsequently been validated by observation. The successes claimed by the theory's supporters consist of its ability to retrospectively fit observations with a steadily increasing array of adjustable parameters, just as the old Earth-centred cosmology of Ptolemy needed layer upon layer of epicycles.

Yet the big bang is not the only framework available for understanding the history of the universe. Plasma cosmology and the steady-state model both hypothesise an evolving universe without beginning or end. These and other alternative approaches can also explain the basic phenomena of the cosmos, including the abundances of light elements, the generation of large-scale structure, the cosmic background radiation, and how the redshift of far-away galaxies increases with distance. They have even predicted new phenomena that were subsequently observed, something the big bang has failed to do.

Supporters of the big bang theory may retort that these theories do not explain every cosmological observation. But that is scarcely surprising, as their development has been severely hampered by a complete lack of funding. Indeed, such questions and alternatives cannot even now be freely discussed and examined. An open exchange of ideas is lacking in most mainstream conferences.

Whereas Richard Feynman could say that "science is the culture of doubt," in cosmology today doubt and dissent are not tolerated, and young scientists learn to remain silent if they have something negative to say about the standard big bang model. Those who doubt the big bang fear that saying so will cost them their funding.

Even observations are now interpreted through this biased filter, judged right or wrong depending on whether or not they support the big bang. So discordant data on red shifts, lithium and helium abundances, and galaxy distribution, among other topics, are ignored or ridiculed. This reflects a growing dogmatic mindset that is alien to the spirit of free scientific enquiry.

Today, virtually all financial and experimental resources in cosmology are devoted to big bang studies. Funding comes from only a few sources, and all the peer-review committees that control them are dominated by supporters of the big bang. As a result, the dominance of the big bang within the field has become self-sustaining, irrespective of the scientific validity of the theory.

Giving support only to projects within the big bang framework undermines a fundamental element of the scientific method -- the constant testing of theory against observation. Such a restriction makes unbiased discussion and research impossible. To redress this, we urge those agencies that fund work in cosmology to set aside a significant fraction of their funding for investigations into alternative theories and observational contradictions of the big bang. To avoid bias, the peer review committee that allocates such funds could be composed of astronomers and physicists from outside the field of cosmology.

Allocating funding to investigations into the big bang's validity, and its alternatives, would allow the scientific process to determine our most accurate model of the history of the universe.

Signed:

(Institutions for identification only)

Eric J. Lerner, Lawrenceville Plasma Physics (USA)

Michael Ibison, Institute for Advanced Studies at Austin (USA) /
Earthtech.org

www.earthtech.org

http://xxx.lanl.gov/abs/astro-ph/0302273

http://supernova.lbl.gov/~evlinder/linderteachin1.pdf

John L. West, Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of
Technology (USA)

James F. Woodward, California State University, Fullerton (USA)

Halton Arp, Max-Planck-Institute Fur Astrophysik (Germany)

Andre Koch Torres Assis, State University of Campinas (Brazil)

Yuri Baryshev, Astronomical Institute, St. Petersburg State University
(Russia)

Ari Brynjolfsson, Applied Radiation Industries (USA)

Hermann Bondi, Churchill College, University of Cambridge (UK)

Timothy Eastman, Plasmas International (USA)

Chuck Gallo, Superconix, Inc.(USA)

Thomas Gold, Cornell University (emeritus) (USA)

Amitabha Ghosh, Indian Institute of Technology, Kanpur (India)

Walter J. Heikkila, University of Texas at Dallas (USA)

Thomas Jarboe, University of Washington (USA)

Jerry W. Jensen, ATK Propulsion (USA)

Menas Kafatos, George Mason University (USA)

Paul Marmet, Herzberg Institute of Astrophysics (retired) (Canada)

Paola Marziani, Istituto Nazionale di Astrofisica, Osservatorio
Astronomico di Padova (Italy)

Gregory Meholic, The Aerospace Corporation (USA)

Jacques Moret-Bailly, Université Dijon (retired) (France)

Jayant Narlikar, IUCAA(emeritus) and College de France (India, France)

Marcos Cesar Danhoni Neves, State University of Maringá (Brazil)

Charles D. Orth, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (USA)

R. David Pace, Lyon College (USA)

Georges Paturel, Observatoire de Lyon (France)

Jean-Claude Pecker, College de France (France)

Anthony L. Peratt, Los Alamos National Laboratory (USA)

Bill Peter, BAE Systems Advanced Technologies (USA)

David Roscoe, Sheffield University (UK)

Malabika Roy, George Mason University (USA)

Sisir Roy, George Mason University (USA)

Konrad Rudnicki, Jagiellonian University (Poland)

Domingos S.L. Soares, Federal University of Minas Gerais (Brazil)

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: The big bang theory, a big let down? Major branch of science becoming dogmatic? An interesting article on 01/02/2014 09:59:28 MST Print View

Science has always been dogmatic and reluctant to accept new ideas, then when someone breaks through with a new idea they get a Nobel prize.

The fact that they, to rationalize new observations, have to create dark energy and dark matter which are a vast majority of total energy and matter shows there are problems.

Hubble observed that further away stars are red shifted more, which could be explained by a big bang. But light can get red shifted by other causes, like if it comes out of a gravitational field.

Someone will come up with new ideas and equations, and there will be experiments to verify, and then there'll be a new theory. This sure is a great time to be alive.

Ryan Smith
(ViolentGreen) - F

Locale: Southeast
Re: Re: The big bang theory, a big let down? Major branch of science becoming dogmatic? An interesting article on 01/02/2014 11:14:21 MST Print View

"scientists are humans too and humans by nature tend to be subjective, with beliefs not based entirely on pure logic/reason, but on various factors, some very subtle and unconscious and some more overt and in our faces."

This is what folks seem to forget. People are people, and we naturally slant things to prove what we already suspect or believe. A Ph.D doesn't change this nor does the title of researcher.

Ryan

just Justin Whitson
(ArcturusBear)
Re: Re: Re: The big bang theory, a big let down? Major branch of science becoming dogmatic? An interesting article on 01/02/2014 17:16:23 MST Print View

Good point Ryan.


It's some of the specifics that more so bother me, in that, it seems that parts of scientific community in some areas is de-evolving into almost a kind of good ole boy club, where only those who agree with current theories are allowed to join and prosper.

Those who vocally disagree tend to get ignored, shunned, or shut up. Must have consensus i guess.

How will things progress under an ever tightening system of forced conformity?

This is not the first media piece i've seen about this growing issue. Dr. Paul LaViolette also talks about it, how he and other researchers have been black listed from being peer reviewed, having their findings published, etc.

Not quite directly related, but interesting nonetheless, there is even a site wherein scientists can anonymously share their own personal experiences which don't fit into current scientific dogma, experiences related to lack of better terms, nonphysical, mystical, spiritual, or consciousness beyond physical reality.

Kind of sad that they have to meet in a back door kind of way, scared to share their experiences openly for fear of ridicule, back lash, etc.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Re: Re: Re: The big bang theory, a big let down? Major branch of science becoming dogmatic? An interesting article on 01/03/2014 08:00:39 MST Print View

"How will things progress under an ever tightening system of forced conformity?"

Always been that way, not "ever tightening"

Matthew Perry
(bigfoot2) - F

Locale: Oregon
The big bang theory. on 01/04/2014 12:48:31 MST Print View

Justin,
If you want REAL science, look to what the Catholic church is doing these days. The Vatican scientists really are the only scientists looking at things totally unbiasedly (sounds contradictory, but it's true). They are especially making great strides on the "God particle" and cosmology in general. BTW, the creator of the Big Bang theory was a Catholic priest, Georges Lemaître. Theology can work hand in hand with science.

Part 1: A Vatican scientist:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u8wLH4z7tn4

Part 2: A Vatican scientist:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L234FRxovqc


Science:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mSy1NQx2bJE

Edited by bigfoot2 on 01/04/2014 14:43:33 MST.

Craig W.
(xnomanx) - F - M
The big bang theory, a big let down? Major branch of science becoming dogmatic? An interesting article on 01/04/2014 15:20:43 MST Print View

NM, carry on.

Edited by xnomanx on 01/04/2014 17:22:00 MST.

Daryl and Daryl
(lyrad1) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest, USA, Earth
Re: The big bang theory. on 01/04/2014 19:02:51 MST Print View

Mathew,

I watched the first video.

Thought provoking.

Edited by lyrad1 on 01/04/2014 19:03:22 MST.

just Justin Whitson
(ArcturusBear)
Re: The big bang theory. on 01/04/2014 21:37:18 MST Print View

Thank you for the links Matthew. Didn't know that about the originator of the Big Bang theory.

Rog Tallbloke
(tallbloke) - F

Locale: DON'T LOOK DOWN!!
Science is always evolving, just pretty slowly sometimes on 01/13/2014 13:49:32 MST Print View

After an injury at work, I took a time out to do a degree in the History and Philosophy of Science. It was a fascinating three years, I'll never be bored again. A seminal work in this discipline is Thomas kuhn's 'Structure of Scientific Revolutions'.

Kuhn describes how once a paradigm (such as the Big Bang Theory) is established, normal science plods along within it and tenured people will be very resistant to anything which challenges the theory at a fundamental level. But inconsistencies can only be swept under the carpet for so long until someone comes u wit a theory which encompasses not only the subject matter of the old one, but deals with major probloems it had been hiding too.

If the new theory has sufficient exlpanatory power that it is actually useful in an important way (Quantum Electrodynamics), or has great mathematical elegance (e=mc^2), then it has a chance of becoming revolutionary science as people get behind it and sweep away the old order. Plate tectonics was the province of cranks in the 1940s, but anyone not teaching it by the end of the 60's was a has-been.

Recently deceased, Halton Arp found the red shifts of adjacent galaxies were sometimes very different, which was an impossibility under the Hubble scheme, and threatened big bang theory. The powers that be solved the issue by denying him access to the powerful telescopes and refusing to allow his work to be published in the learned journals.

What isn't so well known is that Hubble himself had pretty much given up on the theory by the mid thirties, when a bigger 'scope revealed galaxies with such big red-shifts their velocity was beyond anything he could contemplate as realistically possible. In his own words he abandoned the theory to 'the mathematical cosmologists and philosophers'.

Time Magazine carried this piece on Dec 14, 1936


Shift on Shift

The brilliant, whimsical popularizing of Sir Arthur Stanley Eddington has made ”the expanding Universe” almost a household word. But the telescopic observations of a universe which seems to be blowing up like the fragments of an explosive shell have come mainly from Mount Wilson Observatory’s brilliant Astronomer Edwin Powell Hubble. Beginning in 1928, Hubble and his coworker, Milton LaSalle Humason, showed that the light from the most distant nebulae (clouds of stars) which he could photograph in Mount Wilson’s giant telescope was shifted far toward the red end of the spectrum. Such a redshift is observed in the light of a star known to be retreating from Earth, so it was assumed that the distant nebulae were retreating in all directions. On these observations, and on the theoretical expanding universes formulated by de Sitter and Lemaitre before any observations were made, the case for the expanding universe rested.


Sir Arthur has never lost his enthusiasm for this cosmic soap bubble. But the speeds indicated by the amount of redshift, some of which now equal 25,000 miles per second, have made many astronomers doubt. Other causes for the redshift were suggested, such as cosmic dust or a change in the nature of light over great stretches of space. Two years ago Dr. Hubble admitted that the expanding universe might be an illusion, but implied that this was a cautious and colorless view. Last week it was apparent that he had shifted his position even further away from a literal interpretation of the redshift, that he now regards the expanding universe as more improbable than a non-expanding one.

To the National Academy of Sciences Dr. Hubble communicated the results of his most recent survey of the distant nebulae. The distribution of these bodies in space forced him to conclude that a non-expanding universe theory “is more economical and less vulnerable.” If the red-shifts do not really indicate velocity, he wrote, one has a “rather simple and thoroughly consistent picture of a universe in which . . . the large-scale distribution of nebulae is uniform throughout the sample available for inspection.” On the other hand, to assume that the shifts really indicate receding velocity forces one to adopt a very curious model of the universe. “The model is closed and very small—a large fraction can be observed with existing telescopes—and is packed with matter to the very threshold of perception—. The rate of expansion has been slowing down so that the past time scale is remarkably limited. In short, the necessary adjustments and compensations suggest that the model may be a forced interpretation of the data.” In plainer language, this meant that Astronomer Hubble is now willing to abandon the expanding universe to mathematical cosmologists and philosophers, pending a further development of theory, or the erection in 1940 of Caltech’s 200-inch super telescope, which may finally settle the question.

just Justin Whitson
(ArcturusBear)
Re: Science is always evolving, just pretty slowly sometimes on 01/14/2014 22:24:16 MST Print View

Interesting information and history there Rog.