Friday, June 26, 2009

scientific bigotry

In thinking about whatever one is drawn to in any particular facet of experience, first hand or otherwise, to reduce than into a single or few elements is essentially to force things into narrow-mindedness. Reductionism is a way to fool oneself or the masses by claiming that an understanding has been reached either by a scientific (as otherwise indisputable) stance, ideological or philosophical stance. This has plagued may different aspects of our present situation. This has been in large harnessed by a good/evil scenario: the most obvious being religion, nutrition (thank you Michael Pollen for the recent insight), politics, war, peace even, etc. The wording of reductionist evidence is such that makes is seem to be absolute which is inherently flawed in that assumption or appearance. Context, unknowns that will remain unknowns, inaccurate data, missing data, etc. all contribute to the falsehood of reductionism. Is this a form of scientific bigotry? Some could see it as such.

Similar to isolating a race and its overarching characteristics founded on assumptions and expectations which serve to elevate the bigot, these reductionist absolutes acts as vehicles to further perpetuate illusions to quell the emergence of a free thinking society. Forcefully spoon fed ideas from one end while being subversively given enimas of lies and deception, disguised as a shrink-wrapped pleasurable material good. What is best for Industry is the best for the country, is best for the economy is what we are told is best for the individual. Go ahead, eat more low-fat food. The low fat comes from more processing, more introduction of synthetic materials not intended for human consumption or barely studied to understand long-term effects, bridled by reductionist infatuation. High production and ease of acquisition has also sparked an industrial behavior that turns a blind eye to every questionable ethical action it is participating in. What is good for industry is good for the world. This kind of mindset has our livestock brimming with antibiotics because we have change their diet which would make them sick if they were not on medication. The hormones that we pump animals with have resulted in such a unbalanced size difference that some species of chicken can no longer mate with each other. The sex organs do not line up or the male is so abnormally large that it would kill the female in the act making the act counter productive to its intention. So for these species (and it would not surprise me in the slightest if there are others, not limited to birds) they must be artificially inseminated to stay on the planet and to be continually subjected to our constant tinkering with there physiological and biological make up to stay up to date with the reductionist way of thinking that has gone viral for this fleeting moment.
This subversive, existing in depths of seemingly neutral scientific rhetoric, stance on things is one example (potentially among many), of the powerful tightening their mastery of deception to control their populations. In the respect of food: if the majority of the population is obese and/or diabetic as a direct result from the food stuff that they are not only provided but also encouraged to consume, that lessens the chances for voicing opinions or staging demonstrations from sheer physical inability. The capitalist obsession of high production at minimal cost, baring no humanitarian expenses (in either manner of production, i.e. using child labor or environmentally detrimental materials or processes, effects of outsourcing labor to find cheaper overhead and what that does in the vacuum of unemployment in the host country, and the quality or lack there of, of the products at large) has such effects that are hard to perceive for some in daily observation especially when that is all one knows. This culture of convenience is one that once the trend has taken root it is almost impossible to treat, for it seems counter intuitive to revert back to any form of existence that feels any less convenient than has been previously experienced. After all, we go on vacation to get away from responsibility and the hardships of normal living, who in their right mind would choose normal living over a permanent vacation if given the chance? This of coarse is a rhetorical statement, understanding that not everyone adheres to these habits and chooses less comfortable ways to escape, backpacking is but one example.
How do we convince people that an excessive convenient lifestyle is commonly the root of their personal suffering. By taking the stairs instead of the elevator every now and then they are using their body for its intended function. If an automobile is kept in a garage for an inordinate amount of time without being driven, when finally approached to perform will be found with host of problems, to use a poor metaphor.

The subject of obesity is a tender one. As to not subscribe to any sort of reductionist prescriptions on the matter it seems fitting if not necessary to end this train of thought with the following:
A disclaimer may be or quite possibly depending on your outlook, should not be needed when putting personal thoughts out there, but it is of a belief that some subjects could warrant further explanation as to not offend anyone especially in the politically correct obsessed atmosphere that the West has adopted. There are plenty of times when a disregard for this p.c. redundancy could be justified but this case is not one.....I understand that the issue of obesity is much more than a politicized food industry run a muck at the hands of greedy uncompassionate fat cats. There are genetic and potentially addictive factors at play with some. There are factors of societal consequence that are rooted in a capitalist system that overplays appearance yet profits from disallowing the underprivileged (and some of the privileged) from achieving those unreasonable superficial standards. But beyond superficiality, the health implications and quality of life that are being effected create situations where the profits from companies like Kraft or McDonalds, who are allowed to act by shaky standards set by the American Food and Drug Administration (and are sharing the profits of the before mentioned), are tainted no matter what philanthropic veils, if any, their CEOs try to adnorn to the public at large.

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