In this episode, we talk about why it's important to use your best judgment to avoid misinformation.
Should you trust the scientists? Should you trust the experts when it comes to Covid? And this is a very touchy subject that gets a lot of people really upset. I'm actually far removed from this entire political thing that's happening in the States between you know Covid deniers, mask deniers or whatever you might be. I'm actually just in beautiful Medellin Colombia, enjoying my life and not really paying attention to this.
However, there are a few posts that I see on social media where people will say trust the scientists. You know, trust the science, trust the experts. You're not a scientist you're not an expert. So just trust other people. So I have a very strong feeling about this because whenever we centralize powers into one organisation and we're just blindly trusting them... well this leads to a lot of problems. And there have been examples in the past where people have trusted the scientists where it led them to a path that was really devastating for them.
So one of them was the Tuskegee experiments, right? With syphilis and another one. I can't remember the name of the drug. But there was this drug where they did controlled studies and it turned out that the people who took the drug we're okay. However, their children were not. Their children they were being born without appendages. And if they had appendages, the appendages looked like flippers and they were called flipper babies. So there are cases in Science where the experts were definitely wrong.
And the thing about medicine. The thing about the Science of medicine itself. Well the first medical school that was ever set up in the US was in 1847. That's John Hopkins my alma mater. It was set up in 1847. That's not too long ago. That's like 150 years or so ago. Right? What this means is that our study of science is still primitive. We're still in the early stages, we're still trying to figure things out. And the way that science works right now is to be able to figure things out. It takes a lot of time. It takes time. It takes peer reviews, it takes consensus. So we've talked about the process of science and my previous episodes that talked about hypothesis testing. Well when you have all these scientists they're testing out different hypothesis. Then you'll have other scientists replicate those studies to see if they can get the same findings. See if they can break the study at all in any way.And then as this process goes on and this process can take years. It could take decades. It could take a long time. And we actually see science overturned after a long time as well.
So what this means is when it comes to trust in the scientist now for this pandemic. We just haven't had the time to come up with some real conclusive answers at this point in time, it's anyone's guess because getting peer reviews. Doing the actual process of science does take a lot of time and you might actually say "well, the best case is that these people are still experts and we should still trust them" and I would say "no definitely don't trust them". I mean you could listen to them and evaluate what they're saying but also you should be thinking about how can you break this? You should start thinking like a scientist as well. What are some of the flaws in their reasoning? What are some of the flaws in their thinking and that will just help you sharpen your idea on the topic in terms of how you want to handle this situation.
So when it comes to science behind the pandemic there has not been enough time to do peer reviews. In fact, not only has there not been enough time to do peer reviews. A lot of the peer reviews that are out there, that's exciting. non peer reviewed sources. And if those non peer reviewed sources have misinformation then everything is based off of misinformation. You're just having this massive scale of misinformation. There's actually an article posted in NIH and the public health database from the Croatian Medical Journal that looked at the spread of misinformation for Covid.
So because of all these factors we just haven't had enough time. Everyone's operating in haste. The conclusions are not definitive. So the jury is still out and whether you want to trust the experts or whether you want to trust the scientists, use your best judgment, use your best guess, find out the flaws in their reasoning and then come up with your own conclusion. Alright, hope this help. This is Robin Copernicus. Boom bam. I'm out.
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