Monday, December 18, 2017 Text is available under the CC BY-SA 3.0 licence.

Phil Plait


Dr Philip Cary Plait is an astronomer and skeptic who runs the website BadAstronomy.
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Phil Plait
However, science isn't just about showing when you're right; it's also about showing when you're wrong.
Plait quotes
I’m tired of ignorance held up as inspiration, where vicious anti-intellectualism is considered a positive trait, and where uninformed opinion is displayed as fact.
Plait
They say that even the brightest star won't shine forever. But in fact, the brightest star would live the shortest amount of time. Feel free to extract whatever life lesson you want from that.




Plait Phil quotes
What I have discovered in 20 years of studying the universe, from here to there to everywhere, is that the universe is complicated, and when things happen, it is almost never like ‘A happened and therefore B’. No, A happened and therefore B, C, D and E, but then there is this thing F, and that had a 10% effect, and that prompted G to go back and tip over A, and it is always like this – everything is interconnected. And so a lot of these far-right fundamentalist religion people, and a lot of these people who are anti-global warming, anti-evolution, anti-science, what they do is they take advantage of the fact that things are complicated, and their lives are based on things being simple – if we do this, then this will happen – if we invade Iraq, we will be treated as liberators, if we pray, then good things will happen, and this stuff is wrong. But we have a culture where people are brought up to believe in simplicity, and if A then B. And so when you point out that scientists say the earth is warming, but we had a really devastating winter this year, then these people will say “oh, obviously global warming is wrong”. No, global warming can cause worse winters locally. It’s complicated. But people don’t want to hear “it’s complicated”, and boy, the conspiracy theorists and anti-scientists take full advantage of that.
Plait Phil
Just like people, stars can be important without being terribly bright.
Phil Plait quotes
If a little kid ever asks you just why the sky is blue, you look him or her right in the eye and say, "It's because of quantum effects involving Rayleigh scattering combined with a lack of violet photon receptors in our retinae."
Phil Plait
Other job markets may lay claim to the title, but astronomy is actually the world's oldest profession.
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