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"America has two great dominant strands of political thought - conservatism, which, at its very best, draws lines that should not be crossed; and progressivism, which, at its very best, breaks down barriers that should never have been erected." -- Bill Clinton, Dedication of the Clinton Presidential Library, November 2004

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Thursday, September 07, 2006


peer review

posted by Aziz P. at Thursday, September 07, 2006 permalink View blog reactions
My position can best be summarized as follows, when it comes to a scientific debate with political overtones.

1. look at what the scientists are saying
2. look at what the critics are saying
3. see which side is using the peer review system and which is playing to the media.

if point 3 is false, and both sides are using peer review and there is no real consensus, then thats great! I refuse to have an opinion. Unless its my field and I am qualified.

otherwise, i'm with the peer review side. I trust the experts in a field to be the experts. Because I do on the whole have a faith in the scientific process - flawed as all human endeavours are - to be the best of all possible systems.


I trust the experts in a field to be the experts.

this is an important. the experts are often, in some fields usually, wrong. but, the important point about science is that it beats random expectation, it isn't a "sure thing," but, it is the "only thing" in many cases which can beat simply guessing wildly.


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About Nation-Building

Nation-Building was founded by Aziz Poonawalla in August 2002 under the name Dean Nation. Dean Nation was the very first weblog devoted to a presidential candidate, Howard Dean, and became the vanguard of the Dean netroot phenomenon, raising over $40,000 for the Dean campaign, pioneering the use of Meetup, and enjoying the attention of the campaign itself, with Joe Trippi a regular reader (and sometime commentor). Howard Dean himself even left a comment once. Dean Nation was a group weblog effort and counts among its alumni many of the progressive blogsphere's leading talent including Jerome Armstrong, Matthew Yglesias, and Ezra Klein. After the election in 2004, the blog refocused onto the theme of "purple politics", formally changing its name to Nation-Building in June 2006. The primary focus of the blog is on articulating purple-state policy at home and pragmatic liberal interventionism abroad.