Experts Abound — What Is An Expert?

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Over my lifetime, experts have been described as “someone with a briefcase, more than 25 miles from home” and “a former drip under pressure”.

Truly, behind every drip there is pressure.

The imminent theoretical physicist Richard Feynman promoted skepticism in the pursuit of genuine science, a “philosophy of ignorance.”

One dictionary defines science as, “a system of knowledge about the physical world, explaining or describing what it is and how it works in general laws, gained by observing, experimenting, and testing theories.” Absent from this definition are assumptions that have no place in the pursuit of truth.

Knowledge = verifiable, repeatable DATA.

Well-known Farmers Insurance’s slogan is, “At Farmers®, we know a thing or two because we’ve seen a thing or two®.” The actuaries of Farmers Insurance compute insurance premium rates, dividends, risks, etc., based on statistical DATA.

My fellow boomers will remember Wendy’s Hamburger slogan, “Where’s the beef?”

Should we discard the counsel of governmental experts? No, by no means. As a local preacher says, “Opinions are like noses; everybody has one.” Respecting the opinions of others is healthy. Skepticism of an opinion is not disrespectful. Skepticism is even acceptable to God who said, “Come now, and let us reason together…” (Isaiah 1:18)

God’s designated warrior, Gideon, wanted to be dead-certain about the will of God, so he experimentally captured genuine data and drew a scientific conclusion. (Judges 6:36-40)

I suggest we respect the opinions of government experts and demand to see the data behind their opinions.

Blindly following the advice of a former drip under pressure will not end well.

John White
Rockwall, Texas

Published by John White

A lifetime (over 50 years) of experiences with automation and control systems ranging from aerospace navigation, radar, and ordinance delivery systems to the world's first robotic drilling machine for the oil patch, to process-control systems, energy management systems and general problem-solving. At present, my focus is on self-funding HVAC retrofit projects and indoor air quality with a view to preventing infections from airborne pathogens.

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