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"If you thought that science was certain - well, that is just an error on your part." Richard Feynman    
     
Playful Planets children's book    
     
The Way Forward    
     
Progress    
     

It is often joked that science progresses in three stages:

1. New theories are ignored and/or ridiculed
2. Their importance is denied
3. It is pretended that the new theory was known all along

The trouble is, many a true word is spoken in jest, and right now we seem to be somewhere betweens stages 1 and 2, with the occasional foray into 3. For how much longer can the importance of Cosmical Electrodynamics be overlooked?

  "Ideas needed: The hunt for a theory of everything is going nowhere fast." Headline, New Scientist, 10th December 2005
     

At the very least it must be time for scientists from different disciplines to sit down and compare notes.

The following is quoted from Thunderbolts.info 6th April 2005.

"As plasma physicists look at astronomy and astronomers look at plasma, the respective languages, cultivated over many decades, can only accentuate the gap in viewpoints. The language of 'plasma cosmology', describing the formation of galaxies, stars, and planets, includes many terms more familiar to electrical engineers than to astronomers — Langmuir sheaths, z-pinches, glow discharges, arc discharges, plasmoids.

"Astronomers have cultivated a different language. Having banished charged plasma from space, they concentrate on the much simpler behaviour of a 'magnetized gas', not the charge. Their equations for the behaviour of plasma are typically those used to describe flowing water and blowing wind, with a modification due to magnetic effects — the math of classical mechanics. Thus, their lexicon reflects their perspective, with words one might expect from a weatherman — winds and jets, bowshocks and shock waves, winds and rains of charged particles, wind socks, etc.

"What NASA scientists call a 'surprising rain of charged particles' in the vicinity of Jupiter’s moon Io is interesting and dangerous weather for spacecraft. But in an electric universe the phenomenon means much more than a cosmic weather report. It is a signature of electrical activity that could not fail to produce a continuous stream of surprises for those unaccustomed to the behaviour of electrified plasma."

 
Interstellar plasma
 
 
 
 
"Men occasionally stumble over the truth, but most of them pick themselves up and carry on as if nothing ever happened." Winston Churchill
An Open Letter to the Scientific Community    
     

A number of leading Scientists, Electrical Engineers, and Independent Researchers decided to voice their concerns in 2004, and signed a petition attached to the Open Letter. It raised a number of issues, and was dubbed 'An Open Letter to Closed Minds' in some quarters.

It was published in the New Scientist, May 22, 2004, and can be viewed here
http://www.cosmologystatement.org/

The letter focussed on a number of areas of concern, notably the Big Bang's increasing reliance on hypothetical entities, a reluctance to consider alternative views, and the effective bias of the Peer Review system, dominated as it is by 'Big Bangers'. Many of the signatories are involved in Plasma related research.

  Sir Fred Hoyle
     

"I have always said that the problem is the American Graduate School System... When I qualified the best way to get ahead was to thumb your noses at the old ones... But now you have to do what you are told... In the Graduate school system you have to learn what the professors are teaching you... You get a few places like Harvard and they set the fashion for every place... The road ahead is hammered out."
Sir Fred Hoyle

"I think there is a problem with graduate education. I don't think it teaches students to think or to become independent researchers..."
Jack Sulantec, Observational Astronomer

  "In the end the universe will have its say." Sir Fred
Hoyle

In many ways we might seem to live in a liberal and enlightened age, but the price of liberty, as they say, is eternal vigilance.

   
     
The Peer Review System    
     

There are some who regard the Peer Review system as infallible, but such a view is naive in the extreme, even if we make allowances for occasional petty politics and personal biases. Hannes Alfvén, as ever, summed-up the situation eloquently:

“The peer review system is satisfactory during quiescent times, but not during a revolution in a discipline such as astrophysics, when the establishment seeks to preserve the status quo.”

  "The extraordinary thing is that scientists accept the Big Bang and in the same breath deride the Creationists." Wallace Thornhill
Big Science as The Medieval Church    
     

"This is far from the first time this parallel has been noted. The church, still in Galileo's time, was the ultimate authority on the most important matters. The church hierarchy was handsomely supported by princes and working people, and the lifestyle of the cardinals depended on having people believe their pronouncements were important and profound. Due to complex political, economic, and internal events, the church gradually lost power to those who protested.

"After the ideals of the enlightenment and the heady rise of astronomy and physics, however, we have the present day situation where all authority in natural law has passed to science. In return for important and profound pronouncements on the nature of the universe, academics are supported with high salaries, expensive facilities, travel, prestige, and life time security. They also bestow the power of this institution onto successors of their own choosing."
From chapter 10, Seeing Red, Halton Arp

 

"We live on an island surrounded by a sea of ignorance. As our knowlegde grows, so does the shore of our ignorance."
John Archibald Wheeler

Mythography    
     

In this thought provoking video, Dr David Avery explains why the Electric Universe could be the idea that changes the world. Is today's society based on an outdated mythology?

 

"...the sole purpose of human existence is to kindle a light in the darkness of mere being.” Carl Jung

 

 

 

"When you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change." Max Planck

     
The reason why many new ideas are dismissed as Conspiracy Theories    
     

The dismissal of new ideas — no matter how reasonable and empirical — is an old problem. Thomas Kuhn has documented many such controversies throughout history in his masterpiece The Structure of Scientific Revolutions.

Chris Reeve examines the more recent trend for attacking new ideas by labelling them as conspiracy theories, very often by uninformed and sensational would-be opponents.

  "The real crisis in cosmology is that discovery does NOT change anything." Wal Thornhill
     
 

 

"A new scientific truth does not triumph by convincing its opponents and making them see the light, but rather because its opponents eventually die, and a new generation grows up that is familiar with it." Max Planck