The short of the story is, researcher meets data, researcher publishes paper examining data, researcher gets attacked by scientists, researcher gets dragged through the mud and has to aggressively protect their reputation, and finally researcher becomes jaded and cynical regarding the real motivations of her peers.
A naïve researcher published a scientific article in a respectable journal. She thought her article was straightforward and defensible. It used only publicly available data, and her findings were consistent with much of the literature on the topic. Her coauthors included two distinguished statisticians. To her surprise her publication was met with unusual attacks from some unexpected sources within the research community. These attacks were by and large not pursued through normal channels of scientific discussion. Her research became the target of an aggressive campaign that included insults, errors, misinformation, social media posts, behind-the-scenes gossip and maneuvers, and complaints to her employer. The goal appeared to be to undermine and discredit her work. The controversy was something deliberately manufactured, and the attacks primarily consisted of repeated assertions of preconceived opinions. She learned first-hand the antagonism that could be provoked by inconvenient scientific findings. Guidelines and recommendations should be based on objective and unbiased data. Development of public health policy and clinical recommendations is complex and needs to be evidence-based rather than belief-based.sciencedirect.com
The moral of the story is The Science can’t be trusted because it’s delivered by human scientists with their own agendas. People need to look critically at the information that’s being pushed and use their common sense as to whether or not things make sense. If a researcher is met with so much vitriol and hatred over the science of obesity that doesn’t fit the “consensus” or the current “narrative” then how much worse do you think it must be with COVID-19, Ivermectin, and our wonderful experimental vaccines?
At least we have one more researcher in the world that has been awakened to the systemic corruption of the scientific community.
At first, I was startled, but eventually I came to expect partisan attacks masquerading as scientific concerns. I had expected some modest interest in our findings, pursued through normal channels of scientific discussion. I had not expected an aggressive campaign that included insults, errors, misinformation, behind-the-scenes gossip and maneuvers, social media posts and even complaints to my employer – many more instances than I have space to describe here. It seemed that some felt that our work should be judged not on its merits but rather on whether its findings supported the goals and objectives of the interlocutors. I saw first-hand the antagonism that can be provoked by inconvenient scientific findings.sciencedirect.com
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