Peer review is not the gold standard in science

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2024-05-12 12:00:07

Peer review as we know it today was introduced very late, over a century after the scientific revolution. It happened after Einstein’s time… arguably the most productive era in science. Current scientists often equate a success with the publication in a selective peer-reviewed venue. But that was never the scientific paradigm. In fact, it is pre-scientific thinking. Back in Einstein’s time, many scientists believed in the ether. It would have been difficult to dismiss the ether as a concept. The prudent approach would have been to pay lip service to the ether. Similarly, most scientists believed in eugenics. They believed in forced sterilization for the greater good. Many of the racist laws in the US followed straight from progressive science. Opposing eugenics would have been difficult in the context of peer review. It would have been difficult to challenge eugenics openly as a scientists.

Recently, people like Matt Ridley challenged the idea that the SARS-Cov2 virus originated from nature. Back when he published his book on the topic, it would have been difficult to pass peer review.

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