July 30, 2015

The Spirit of Science


Across the board, in general and at every point of detail, science affirms and supports agroecology and Food Sovereignty and condemns the failures, poison, and destruction wrought by corporate agriculture.
Rationally speaking, science is a tool whose goal is the practical well-being of humanity. It should work to improve our health, increase our prosperity, and enhance our freedom of action. For some science is also a passion. The spirit of science is the mindset, out of passion or practicality or both, which seeks to use this tool this way, or which admires and respects science where it serves humanity and only where it serves humanity.
True science is the province of the active people, especially where we engage in our own democratic work, toward our individual and community weal, unalienated by any anti-human artificial system. The most important science was preceded by the empirical work of the active labor field, usually by regular people without any formal, specifically scientific training. Isaac Newton, not known for his humility, affirmed that scientists merely “stand on the shoulders of giants”. The best example of this is the ten thousand years of practical agronomic development by regular farmers, as part of their day-to-day work. In modern times this massive empirical foundation has been supplemented with theoretical scientific work. The result is that the science of agroecology and organic farming now stands as the most fully researched and developed, demonstrated, and ready-for-deployment science of all. Organic agriculture stands ready as science at the pinnacle of potential human benefit. It was built primarily by the people, it’s the province of the people, and it shall be deployed by the people, from the bottom up, in accord with the need and will of the people.
This can stand as the ultimate example, which sets the pace for all other human endeavor. We were, for thousands of years, successful empiricists, and barring artificial, self-inflicted woes, we can continue to be for the rest of humanity’s tenure. Make no mistake – science is a luxury. As a passion it’s merely the province of a small intellectual elite, similar to the small elite group who can find psychological succor from secular philosophy instead of spirituality/religion. And of course in practice both scientism and philosophy usually contain a high admixture of mysticism.
Therefore we confirm that science has built upon its prerequisite foundation, and this gives us the general principle for how to use science in the most humanly constructive, beneficial, and just way, and the way most productive of knowledge. The key, as I described in my Food Sovereignty pamphlet, is to apply science to regionally developed and adapted empirical knowledge. No one who lacks this foundation knowledge can be an authority in any practical context. Anyone who lacks a foundation but tries to assert authority is an intellectual drifter at best, more likely a corporate propagandist and thug. The scientist who wishes to contribute to the human condition either provides general propositions which he sets free in the world to be regionally adapted, or she becomes such an adaptive worker herself.
But the corporate/government system says science only trickles down from formally accredited cadres. Only such credential-holders can participate in scientific analysis, from which all political policy must then flow in the form of technocracy. Anyone outside this bureaucratic process who disagrees with this and rejects it is attacked as being “anti-science”. That’s almost always the only thing the brain-dead “anti-science” epithet means today: Rejecting this manifestation of authoritarianism and might-makes-right.
The truth is the opposite. True science, practical science, starts with experimentation which leads to empirical success. Thus for ten thousand years farmers have proven themselves by far the most successful proto-scientists of the human project. Meta-knowledge of empirically established truth can then follow. For science the preliminary induction leads the way, with science as a version of deduction then later building upon that. Ironically, the only place where the mythical “scientific method” really applies is to the empirical prehistory of science. Those who deny this, like the “pure” (i.e. pro-corporate) scienticians of today, are merely engaging in a version of being born on third base and claiming they hit a triple.
I said that true science is the most productive of knowledge. By contrast, corporate “science” is destructive of knowledge and of the very processes of thinking.
1. Its monoculturism, in ideology and practice, seeks to constrain severely the range of agronomic knowledge in the first place, limiting it to mechanical poison-based algorithms. (I’ll add in passing that it also seeks to restrict severely the genetic range of agriculture. Monsanto’s original cluelessness about germplasm wasn’t just flat-earth arrogance. The attitude was hard-wired into the corporate agricultural ideology, and remains so. I’ll be returning to this subject.)
2. It actively suppresses much of the knowledge that does exist. It systematically withholds from the public and from science most of the data it gathers. It releases only what it chooses to release, and only in tendentious propaganda forms.
3. Wherever challenged it resorts, not to open, rational debate, but to a massive money-amplified lie machine.
From these we can see how corporate “science” is the radical enemy of science and knowledge.
So science starts with and builds upon what works. At every point it follows the empirical evidence. By contrast, today’s corporate scientism (including the vast majority of credentialed technicians) starts by deducing from corporate ideology and the profit imperative, preemptively asserts dogmatic “conclusions” like “GMOs are equivalent to regular crops and are therefore safe”, and then denies the contrary empirical evidence that follows, however massive its accumulation. Publicity of the evidence is left to non-credentialed citizens and to the few real scientists who are still practicing. From the official point of view, we are disenfranchised and relegated to the official unscience and anti-science category.
This remains true no matter how much the evidence and therefore science itself reject lies like “GMOs increase yield” or “GMOs reduce pesticide and herbicide use” or best of all “GMOs are needed to feed the world”. As always we must stress the overwhelming implicit proof provided by the corporations and regulators themselves.
1. Government and corporations systematically refuse to perform legitimate scientific studies of GMOs or any other agricultural poison.
2. The corporation will always lie, so any test it does perform will be rigged in several ways. There are no exceptions to this. Government regulators knowingly base their own assessments on nothing but this worthless junk science while rejecting any real scientific evidence generated by independent studies.
3. They suppress, cover up, keep secret the large amounts of adverse evidence even their own rigged tests generate. “Secret science” is a contradiction in terms. By definition science has to be public. Anything kept secret, under whatever fraudulent pretext (“trade secret” is their favorite), is by definition not part of science, and can have no place in scientific discussion other than as implicit proof that the evidence is against whichever party wants to keep it secret.
Together these three facts prove that corporate “science” is nothing but a top-heavy tower of lies. It proves that governments and corporations themselves live in absolute terror of what would become of them and their poisons if true science were to prevail.
Thus we have a final conflict between true, human science, and prostituted corporate anti-science. Most of the professionals are on the side opposed to humanity and the earth.
This struggle between science and corporate anti-science is in turn one of the array of battlefields comprising the final war between humanity and corporate domination. In the next of these orientation pieces I’ll discuss the abdication of establishment science, its complete surrender to corporate domination and its complete embrace of the corporate “science” paradigm.




  1. Hey Russ – I am really impressed by your recent posts. Hope you are writing a book. I am busy this time of year without much time for writing comments but I am subscribed to your list and am reading!

    Comment by Ellen Anderson — July 30, 2015 @ 9:54 am

    • Thanks Ellen. Yes, I am writing my first book, which I expect to finish within a year. My recent online quiet was because I was focusing on finishing the preliminary research for part of it. How’s the farm going?

      Comment by Russ — July 30, 2015 @ 11:09 am

      • What Ellen said… good to have you back. Similarly, Dr. Thompson of the CDC just blew a big whistle on his corporate front group institution for literally “tossing away” studies that revealed damning information on MMR vaccinations. Get ready for a combination of media black out and personal assault to discredit the source…

        “Just as startling, the CDC scientist, Dr. William Thompson, says the study co-authors “scheduled a meeting to destroy documents related to the study. The remaining four co-authors all met and brought a big garbage can into the meeting room, and reviewed and went through all the hardcopy documents that we had thought we should discard, and put them into a huge garbage can.”

        The…co-authors…brought a big garbage can into the meeting room… [and put the documents]…into a huge garbage can. –CDC Senior Scientist Dr. William Thompson


        Pharmaceutical Industry “Science” 101:

        1) Create pre-determined outcome for product safety and effectiveness.

        2) Pay “scientists” to produce & rig studies to support pre-determined outcome.

        3) Pay journals to publish and TV people to regurgitate.

        4) Take real, ethical, scientific studies that contradict pre-determined outcome and toss them in the rubbish bin.

        Boom. Wet it, wipe it, good night. Mandatory shots for everyone…. oh, and tax payers, you get to pick up the tabs for the damage.

        Comment by Pete — July 30, 2015 @ 1:19 pm

      • That’s corporate science all right. If things are as they claim, then why all the lies and secrecy? And why the liability exemption.

        I’m still waiting for an answer to the question in my Proxxer post, How can profit be justified even by capitalist standards if the profiteer is running zero risk?

        Of course I know the real answer, but it would be amusing to hear a troll try to lie his way out of that one.

        Comment by Russ — July 30, 2015 @ 3:53 pm

  2. […] As I wrote in my post on science, science is the action of the people engaged in our democratic work toward our individual and […]

    Pingback by The Abdication of Establishment Science | Volatility — August 2, 2015 @ 3:14 pm

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