Introdution: So far we have discussed:
Voodoo Science: The Road from Foolishness to Fraud by Robert Park of the University of Maryland's Department of Physics is a book you will read in the sophomore colloquium. Today, you get a preview of its contents. Park uses voodoo science as a general term for science that, in some way, violates the ethos of the scientific method. Remember, science can contain mistakes and still be proper, non-voodoo science. Indeed, the whole point of the scientific method is to identify our mistakes in data collection and pattern recognition. To be voodoo science, there must be some violation of the scientific method. This can be self-deception, fraud, or naive non-comprehension of the method.
Park recognizes three major categories:
Example: J. B. Rhine's research into ESP during the 1950s.
A voodoo scientist's toolbox: there is no voodoo science equivalent to Sagan's toolbox, but if there were, it might read like this.
For a good dose of the pseudoscientific "philosophy" consider the career of Franz Mesmer, the father of hypnosis.
Forget for a while all of your knowledge of physics...Remove from your mind all objections that may occur...Never reason for six weeks... Be very credulous; very persevering; reject all past experience, and do not listen to reason...Never magnetize before inquisitive persons.