Finally, the Left has Joined the Right in the War on Science

Brett Alan Williams
4 min readJun 20, 2023
Clash of two Medieval armies with swords on horseback, one dead, the other living
Birmingham Museums Trust on Unsplash

Many people know that the Old Right championed science after Russia’s 1957 launch of Sputnik. After that, the Old Right saw science as the means to a strong national defense. With the new gadgetry of the 1950s and 60s, the Old Right realized science was the foundation of entrepreneurial capitalism that created wealth from ideas made real by the scientific method. Apollo Eleven’s landing men on the moon was seen as a crowning achievement. Not only for its technological and economic output — for every $1 spent on NASA, $7 of economic output resulted in everything from engine tech to Velcro — but also for the political power of prestige, symbolic of democracy’s superiority over communism.

But it’s a new day. The New Right occupies a sizable share of its angertainment assaulting science as “liberal” because the facts of science threaten political creeds, conspiracy theories, and financial gain. As the late talk radio host Rush Limbaugh used to shout, “Science is one of the four corners of deceit!” And he did this over radio waves discovered by science, on electronics built by science. Today, elements of the New Right deny Apollo ever happened and, along with FOX’s furloughed Tucker Carlson, they favor an ex-KGB small man, Vladimir Putin, as their model leader.

How things have changed. Today, people believe the New Right is anti-science while the Left is pro-science.

Not so. The New Left and New Right are now on the same anti-science team.

Some scientists like Paul Gross and Norman Levitt have warned about the coming tsunami since 1997. Few listened. Practicing scientists prefer to let others busy themselves with fashionable thinking while science marches on, uninterested in nonsense today that’s replaced by nonsense tomorrow. In science, nature is the final judge. Only devices built in conformance to its laws will work. Science proves its validity through the success of its predictions. However, in the postmodernist social “sciences” of our university humanities — which are, in fact, social studies — any claim can be asserted without the need of validation in reality. The only requirement is obedience to the current fashion; today, that’s identity politics. In the hard sciences, nothing could be less relevant than this kind of political correctness (or Trump’s “scientific genius”).

Until now.

According to scientists and engineers from around the globe, “Identity-based ideologies seek to replace core liberal principles, essential for scientific and technological advances, with principles derived from postmodernism and Critical Social Justice (CSJ), which assert that modern science is ‘racist,’ ‘patriarchal,’ and ‘colonial,’ and a tool of oppression rather than a tool to promote human flourishing and global common good… Core principles of science, which have served us well for centuries, are under attack by [these] ideologies [which] view science as a tool of power, are hostile to the central liberal principle of free inquiry and open discussion, and are closed to calls to justify their claims on scientific grounds.”

What had been a cerebral contagion among the social studies, media, and pop culture, has finally breached the walls of science. Steven Pinker’s 2018 Enlightenment Now: The Case for Reason, Science, Humanism, and Progress; Johnathan Rauch’s 2021 The Constitution of Knowledge, and the Journal of Controversial Ideas’ 2023 bombshell, In Defense of Merit in Science, have all broken the glass to pull the alarm because Western civilization is in an emergency. As Creationists infiltrated high schools to teach religion in science class, so too, leftist warriors for the faith are converting university science departments into a single, harmonizing, Critical Social Justice church.

“Decolonization” is now underway worldwide. Like teaching “Intelligent Design” in America, in New Zealand “decolonization of the sciences [is enforced] by adding the mythological content from [pre-European Māori perspectives] to the science curriculum… actively pursued throughout schools and universities with the support of the government, and any criticism to this is termed racist.” Channeling Limbaugh, one supporter notes, “Decolonization is a movement to eliminate… the disproportionate legacy of white European thought and culture in education… dismantling the hegemony of European values, making way for the local philosophy and traditions that colonists had cast aside.” A proclamation of scientific illiteracy. And this from the apex scientific journal, Nature. This plague is now loose “in every domain of science, including publishing, hiring, and research funding.”

While the New Right institutionalized lie factories with demise of the Fairness Doctrine in the 1980s, New Left lie factories have been institutionalized in university humanities departments commandeered by postmodernists since the 1990s. While both are about power and money, the New Left couches their embrace of irrationality in terms of “social justice.” They sound like the Old Left concerned about equality, but the public persona is a veil for post-Marx, postmodern pogroms that seek to destroy the West and what they see as its foundation of power: science. After all, to the New Left, science is a “Eurocentric white male patriarchy of colonialization and oppression.” Science, the study of nature as it is, is to become “feminist science,” “queer science,” “African American science” — none of which have been defined, nor have they produced a single discovery, invention, or device — in the same way Stalin made “proletariat science” and Hitler created “Nazi science free of Jews.” Since science is built on Enlightenment reason, and reason is the source of Western governance, economics, and social structure, beneath the assault on science is an assault on reason. Reason, what that Eurocentric, white male patriarch of New Left dogma, Michel Foucault, designated as “a regime of oppression.”

Science is losing in academia, and as the home of fundamental science, if it loses there, it loses everywhere else. Except China. While no Chinese are Eurocentric white-males, even the PRC knows the difference between science and propaganda. China took the world’s top spot in science in 2022.

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Brett Alan Williams

Physicist / artist / author writes about science & religion, art & culture, philosophy & politics with an edge. On Medium, Goodreads and TheFatherTrilogy.com