And with legislation, I mean the important issues concerning education, government spending and science and technological proliferation (progress). Otherwise, neoliberal and capitalistic progress will be decadent (unsustainable) as Karl Marx pointed out 150 years ago, because it only serves to exploit exponentially the linear resources of Earth (both in human capital and natural resources).
And in the case of scientists legislating, these should not be businessmen to avoid conflict of interest in their decision making processes.
Ideally, scientists should decide legislation and politicians as lawmakers should lobby that legislation but not decide upon it.
This is a utopic concept, so let´s dream a little and explore it further, since it´s not really a difficult one to figure out:
“De opinio non disputandum est”, in matters of opinion, there is no debate”, or so they said in the roman senate. And that´s the problem: belief is one thing and science another.
Belief seeks to satisfy psicoemotional needs and wants based on lackings, cravings and fear, whilst science seeks bravely to find the truth and act accordingly to be congruent and consistent with the findings in a rational and responsible manner.
In the following link, we can clearly see and hear what happens when renowned physicist Brian Cox is confronted with and by the ignorance and stubborness (usually they go hand in hand), of a lawmaker, in this case, an australian senator who simply does not understand the facts, figures and graphs of climate change, so instead of rising up to the challenge, he takes the low road and prefers to belittle and oppose them, and yet, paradoxically, has the power to decide upon them.
And in this other link, the same dynamic occurs with republican supporter, climate change denier and GM ex-CEO, Bob Lutz, in an interchange with astophysicist Neil DeGrasse Tyson on the same subject:
And in this one, scientist Emily Cantrell explains the need for STEM literacy (Science, Technology and Math) to think and decide critically, especially in politics:
Which brings me to the following composed quote:
“People have the leaders they deserve and who are like them”. – Joseph DeMaistre & André Malraux.
Is that why STEM illiterate people have STEM illiterate leaders leading them to ecological disaster and other similar scenarios in otherwise critical topics?
Politicians are mostly lawyers and business men (who are not science-trained nor science knowledgeable), thus, their agendas are not about who´s or what´s right, but about who argues the best for the most money, and those who aren´t lawyers nor business men, learn the ropes soon and fast enough because they like money.
That being said, lawyers and business men are not altogether ignorant (they may not know nor understand science, but they do know and understand other things), and they are emotionally intelligent, so much so that they negotiate properly (with whom its convenient), after all, in the negotiation graph below, we can see that they ideally seek to score high on both (collaborate), where, concern for self = attaining their objective, and concern for other = maintaining the relationship (for further business opportunities):
In graph 1, we clearly see that solipsism (the idea that only your own concerns exist) has to be put aside.
Language is not innocent, it always seeks to sell something and in negotiating in business as in legislation, there is alway a seller and a buyer:
In graph 2, the Nash solution comes from John Nash´s governing dynamics model, in which you must do what´s best for you, but also what´s best for the other ( the famous win-win premise, as Stephen Covey would later express it.
Ok, so we´ve seen what´s best for one and for the other, so what´s best for all?
Ethics comes from the greek Ethikos, meaning habit, so does the latin word Mores, from which the word morality comes from. So what you do is your habit, what you are accustomed to, that is your ethics and morality. It does not mean good or bad, just what you do.
So the ethics of conducting business and legislation always go hand in hand as it´s businessmen who put politicians in power playing positions and the latter feel obliged to humour the former in a reciprocity dynamic.
That why it´s so double sided and double standard with dual moralities implications and it complies and obliges whomever uses it to their advantage.
Pertaining geopolitics, it´s hard to envision logic and rationale thinking scientists dropping bombs on each other if they disagree on monetary gains (as politicians do), moreover, their decisions would be intellectually based in what has to be done to improve advance and progress in the direction and knowledge, not in pleasing a small sector that wants or needs to get richer.
Obviously, scientists would ultimately fund more science related initiatives instead of the war mongering ones, and would this really be so bad?
Ultimately and unfortunately, everybody wants to own or rule the world, yet nobody wants to save it.
“The only thing necessary for evil to triumph is for good men to do nothing”. – Edmund Burke (credited to him).
Legislation (international and domestic) should be based on objective truths, not on some belief system and the truth is that politicians either don´t care or they haven´t got a clue about what´s happening with the environment or the ecology of land and sea.
And that´s either indifference or ignorance or both, terrible when someone legislates like this (as they evidently do).
Men usually take testosterone (a survival neurochemical) to the negotiating table in order to dominate others and get what they want (that´s why wars are waged), whereas women take oxcytocin (a bonding neurotransmitter) to the same negotiating table, and that´s why women -in principle- make for better negotiators than men, still, it would benefit greatly if said women were also science-educated for enhanced decision making skills.
Women also tend to think about the bigger picture (as they think about others and the world in general) as opposed to men who typically think more short term. Problem is, women in politics have become too men-like and act similarly to them.
When women are too conservative, traditional and religious, that never helps to negotiate or legislate objectively, even amongst their own gender.
So we need scientists (both men and women), getting involved, since they have better informed opinions. Also engineers´opinions are very important, since they build, measure and calculate things for the betterment of mankind (making them good, objective evaluators).
Legislation based on beliefs or the need to satisfy specific group interests, destabilize the foundations of an informed democracy, therefore, solipsism (the concept that only one´s own mind exists and thus, is the only important one), should be dropped altogether
The world is in such an uneven state of affairs due to people worrying more about political correctness than about legitimate correctness.
“In life, you don´t get what you deserve, you get what you negotiate”. – Anonymous (although at least three sources self-credit themselves with this quote).
Finally, we all know politicians lie on account of the hidden agenda they secretly lobby.
Enough said (or written), I rest my case.