Monday, August 5, 2013

Exposing the Myths of "Settled Science"

“We obtain for the first time a direct determination of a galactic-scale electric current (~3 x 1018 A).” – Phillip Kronberg, et. al, Astrophysical Journal Letters, 2011
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This is the first segment of David Talbott's recent talk at the annual meeting of the Natural Philosophy Alliance, University of Maryland, July 10-13, 2013.

Is it possible that the foundational assumptions of the theoretical sciences all express a common misunderstanding—the idea that gravity alone, seen through the lens of general relativity, rules the cosmos?

From cosmology, the "queen of the sciences," a core dogma of the 20th century filtered down through every discipline, constraining our ideas about galaxy and star formation and ultimately (from the same underlying assumptions) all of the space sciences, infecting our views of earth history and even our sense of what it means to be human. Dispelling this most common misconception has become the essential requirement for scientific progress.