Mainstream science wrong again, for two decades
Posted by Henry Bauer on 2009/04/20
In 1989, I was stunned when I saw, purely by chance, the announcement by Martin Fleischmann and Stan Pons that they had generated in an electrochemical cell energy of a magnitude explainable only by a nuclear and not chemical process. Disbelievers, especially physicists, pooh-poohed the claim, on the basis of first principles and also a few very hurried experiments that could not match what Fleischmann and Pons had developed over the course of years.
Science pundits and groupies, very much including the self-styled “Skeptics” groups, accepted the statements of the physicists as authoritative, and “cold fusion” became as synonymous with proven pseudo-science as astrology, Loch Ness monsters, pyramid power, etc.
Soon there were no research funds from mainstream sources to examine rigorously the claims of Fleischmann and Pons, but dozens and later hundreds of scientists continued to look into the claims with whatever resources they could muster. Reproducibility improved, theoretically plausible explanations were proposed, international conferences were held, but the mainstream continued to dismiss “cold fusion” as disproved.
So I was astonished, as well as pleasantly surprised, to see Martin Fleischmann being asked, last night on “60 Minutes”, how he felt about having his claim vindicated at last:
“60 Minutes” had persuaded an independent expert to actually examine in detail ongoing experiments in Israel, and he was convinced that there was a source of energy being tapped that exceeded in magnitude what could be explained by chemical processes. He had been among the mainstream pooh-poohers in 1989.
So here’s another, contemporary, instance where the mainstream wrongly rejected the minority views of highly competent scientists. Fleischmann is as distinguished an electrochemist as Duesberg is a distinguished retrovirologist, but their admitted high achievements didn’t prevent the mainstream the pundits, the science groupies from denigrating them viciously.
If “60 Minutes” were able to persuade an independent biologist — biostatistician or epidemiologist, say — to actually look at the data on positive “HIV” tests, then Duesberg too would be pronounced as finally vindicated.
The mainstream experts refused to look through Galileo’s telescope. They refused to look through the microscope at the bacteria that cause ulcers. They long refused to look at the “cold fusion” experiments. And they continue to refuse to look at what HIV Skeptics and AIDS Rethinkers say, and persistently refuse even to produce the publications that they claim to know about that prove HIV to be the cause of AIDS.
The mainstream Defenders of the HIV/AIDS Faith are the real “denialists” — they are in denial that their Emperor has no clothes.