We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
Four decades later, Bruce Charlton, professor of Theoretical Medicine at the University of Buckingham in England, wrote that "that landing of men on the moon and bringing them back alive was the supreme achieve- ment of human capability, the most difficult problem ever solved by humans." That's a good way to look at it: the political class presented the boffins with a highly difficult and specific problem, and they solved it—in eight years. Charlton continued:
'Forty years ago, we could do it—repeatedly—but since then we have not been to the moon, and I suggest the real reason we have not been to the moon since 1972 is that we cannot any longer do it. Humans have lost the capability.
'Of course, the standard line is that humans stopped going to the moon only because we no longer wanted to go to the moon, or could not afford to, or something.... But I am suggesting that all this is BS. . . . I suspect that human capability reached its peak or plateau around 1965-75—at the time of the Apollo moon landings—and has been declining ever since.'
Can that be true? Charlton is a controversialist gadfly in British academe, but, comparing 1950 to the early twenty-first century, our time traveler from 1890 might well agree with him.
About 20 years ago one of the guest speakers at a National Lab where I was working gave a talk on Post-Modern Assault on Biology.
Despite his well-evidenced opinion that post-modern thought was attacking, and left unchecked would ultimately destroy his field of study and profession, neither he nor his colleagues nor my colleagues in attendance, would voice their objection to the leftist mindset behind it.
So the cowards have been cowering for decades now, and yeah, they are to blame.
I was originally surprised that this occurred in math, especially as the paper in question was quite unremarkable. It may be the collection of footnotes related to the wrongthink idea that set the alarm bells off. All sorts of uncomfortable evidence collected in one place, where frightening non-PC people have the research done for them. If it seems an overreaction on the part of the suppressors, there is another way of looking at that: they are intelligent enough to see where this particular train of thought leads, even at a great distance, and want to shut it down fast. In this, they are right. The theory of greater variability should not be that big a deal, as it is only going to affect a few people at the margin, mostly in the hard sciences. But it is one brick removed from the wall, and who knows what will happen when you start letting people think for themselves?
We live in a Dark Age of superstition and illiteracy. The Enlightenment of the 18th Century was supplanted on the Continent, and especially in Germany, by the Romantic Era of the 19th Century. All the evil “isms” of the 19th and 20th Centuries (socialism, communism, progressivism, fascism, naziism) are products of Romanticism. Today, Romanticism has conquered science, the ultimate gift of the Enlightenment. From now forward, no science and no scientist need be taken seriously.
Ah, but at the same time, (among others) German Chemiker und Physiker were busy building the foundations of modern science, isolating elements and making fundamental discoveries about electromagnetism.
There are and always have been those for whom finding truth is the foremost goal, and those who find truth to be "inconvenient." Your betters in the political world may, in fact, find it convenient to suppress some truths, but I do believe it was also contemporaneous Germans who sang "die Gedanken sind frei."
The breast milk matter is interesting because there is now some evidence that necrotizing enterocolitis, a severe newborn disease with a 50% mortality and severe morbidity, can be induced by feeding premature newborns formula instead of breast milk.