Lubos hurt by pro-science stand against Landscape?

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In summary, Lubos has a reputation for being a loose cannon and making irresponsible statements, but he has been allowed to continue this behavior for years without any repercussions from Harvard or his colleagues. However, after a recent blog post criticizing the "Landscape" theory in string/M theory, he claims to have been "leashed" by his superiors. This has led to speculation about whether he is being suppressed for speaking out against the trend of abandoning scientific principles in favor of the "Anthropic Landscape" theory. Some believe that he is being punished for taking a valuable stance and expressing it effectively, while others think he may be exaggerating or simply being controlled for propriety and scholarly decency. Evidence of this suppression can be found in Lubos
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Lubos may have been a loose cannon or said irresponsible things, maybe made unsubstantiated claims, attacked LQG people viciously without provocation AFAIK, and so on, but if so, that is not the issue.

whatever has been Lubos style behavior, it's been going on for at least a couple of years without Harvard authorities or any string colleagues reining him in. Now, suddenly, right after his great "Kennedy Landscape" blog, he says he has been "leashed".

If some superior of Lubos wanted to discipline him or rein him in he could be vulnerable by ordinary science discourse standards (like don't make irresponsible flamboyant statements and ad hominem attacks). But that is like a technicality. Why is he being muzzled right now?

And is he exaggerating or self-dramatizing about this?

well, I will gather some links on it and you can judge, if you are interested or care about it.

Personally I think the growing tide of Landscape in string/M is anti-science and the increasing tendency to appeal to what Motl calls "Anthropic Lack of Principles" (I will abbreviate A.L.o.P.) is a festering blight on string/M which does not augur well for its health. I think Motl deserves some credit for being one of the few articulate people in his field to come out uncompromisingly against Landscapery and reject ALoP and go public with this--- his blog gets a lot of hits so maybe that counts as public.

By comparison, other string people's objection to Landscape sound more like inhouse grumbling, not coming out in the open.

So is Motl being suppressed because of taking an intellectually valuable stance and expressing it effectively? Or is he just dramatizing and making it look like that? Or is he being controlled for simple considerations of propriety and scholarly decency? Or is he maybe not being pressured at all?

Personally I suspect the first. And that, if true, would make me disgusted with the harvard physics department. If one could determine that they are muzzling him because of his outspoken attacks on Anthropery/Landscapery then they would be beneath contempt and he would have been upholding an honorable scientific tradition, against those who should be its defenders. The tradition that basic features and proportions in nature you should at least try to explain and not cop out.
 
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this post has a link to lubos blog indicating he is being told he can't speak his mind
https://www.physicsforums.com/showpost.php?p=550690&postcount=5

here is another where he says the hot water he is in (presum. with colleagues or authorities at harvard) is beyond the ability of
Captitalistimperialistpig, the blogger, to imagine.
https://www.physicsforums.com/showpost.php?p=550885&postcount=12

here also a post with link to Lubos great "Kennedy Landscape" piece where he compares his fellow string/M theorists to the drunk who chose to look for his housekeys under the lamppost (because the light is better) instead of where he lost them, except, says Lubos, now string theory is worse than that and is looking for the keys out in the middle of the ocean ON THE OCEAN SURFACE without any map of the ocean.

https://www.physicsforums.com/showthread.php?t=72869

this is his happy image of the String Landscape, which sometimes in homely bucolic terms he also calls the haystack.

On the PF page I gave exerpts of what Lubos wrote, if you want the complete unabridged version it is here at his blog:

http://motls.blogspot.com/2005/04/kennedys-landscape.html

Here are some comments on the leashing of Lubos recorded at Woit's blog:
http://www.math.columbia.edu/~woit/blog/archives/000189.html

soon we shall have to call this fracas by a dignified name like The Haystack Sanction, or

The Affair Lubos
 
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  • #3


It is unfortunate that Lubos has been "leashed" and potentially censored for his pro-science stance against Landscape. While his behavior may not have always been appropriate, that is not the issue at hand. What is concerning is the fact that he is being muzzled for speaking out against a growing trend in his field that goes against basic scientific principles.

It is commendable that Lubos has been one of the few in his field to openly reject ALoP and the use of Landscape in string/M theory. His blog, which receives a lot of attention, provides a platform for him to express his views and potentially influence others in the field.

It is disappointing that other string theorists who may also have objections to Landscape are not speaking out as openly as Lubos. This could be interpreted as in-house grumbling rather than taking a strong stance against something that goes against the scientific method.

If Lubos is indeed being suppressed for his outspoken stance against Landscape, then it is a disheartening reflection on the Harvard physics department. Suppressing someone for speaking out against something that goes against scientific principles is unacceptable and goes against the very values that should be defended by a prestigious institution.

It is important for the scientific community to have open and honest discussions, even if they may challenge established ideas. If Lubos is being controlled for the sake of propriety and scholarly decency, then that should be made clear. But if he is being silenced for his pro-science stance, then that is a worrying trend that needs to be addressed. Ultimately, the truth should prevail in scientific discourse, and suppressing opposing views does a disservice to the pursuit of knowledge.
 

Related to Lubos hurt by pro-science stand against Landscape?

1. How did Lubos become hurt by his pro-science stand against the Landscape theory?

Lubos became hurt by his pro-science stand against the Landscape theory because he faced backlash from his colleagues and the scientific community for his outspoken and controversial views. He also received personal attacks and criticism, which affected him emotionally and psychologically.

2. What is the Landscape theory and why is it controversial?

The Landscape theory is a concept in string theory that proposes the existence of a vast number of possible universes. It is controversial because it challenges traditional scientific principles and is difficult to test or prove experimentally.

3. How did Lubos's pro-science stand impact the discussion on the Landscape theory?

Lubos's pro-science stand sparked a heated debate and brought attention to the controversial nature of the Landscape theory. His arguments and criticisms against the theory also prompted other scientists to examine and question its validity, leading to further research and discussion.

4. What were some of the main points of Lubos's pro-science stand against the Landscape theory?

Lubos argued that the Landscape theory was untestable and lacked empirical evidence, making it more of a philosophical concept rather than a scientific theory. He also pointed out flaws and inconsistencies within the theory and its implications on the scientific method.

5. How did the scientific community react to Lubos's pro-science stand against the Landscape theory?

The scientific community had a mixed reaction to Lubos's pro-science stand. While some supported and agreed with his views, others criticized him for being too dismissive and closed-minded towards a potentially groundbreaking theory. The debate also highlighted the need for open-mindedness and critical thinking in the scientific community.

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