Is a BA in Political Science a Science Degree ?

Discussion in 'Politics, Religion, Social Issues' started by Plutonius, Apr 11, 2019.

  1. Plutonius macrumors 604

    Plutonius

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    #1
    A pretty funny (in my opinion) exchange happened at a Congress (House) global warming hearing.

    John Kerry testified at the hearing and Rep. Thomas Massie questioned Kerry's qualifications to be an expert on global warming.

    In my opinion, can't we do better then to have John Kerry as an expert witness (i.e. why is Kerry even testifying at the hearing) ?
     
  2. linuxcooldude macrumors 68020

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    #2
    Yeah, Kerry did get punked. Massie called it Psudoscience...lol.
     
  3. JayMysterio macrumors 6502a

    JayMysterio

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    #3
    Kerry didn't get punked, he literally voiced for what a lot of us have said about congress during this administration.

    Massie: Sec. Kerry, I want to read part of your statement back to you: “Instead of convening a kangaroo court, the president might want to talk with the educated adults he once trusted his top national security positions.” It sounds like you’re questioning the credentials of the president’s advisers, currently. But I think we should question your credentials today. Isn’t it true you have a science degree from Yale?
    Kerry: Bachelor of arts degree.
    Massie: Is it a political science degree?
    Kerry: Yes, political science.
    Massie: So how do you get a bachelor of arts, in a science?
    Kerry: Well it’s a liberal arts education and degree. It’s a bachelor…
    Massie: OK. So it’s not really science. So I think it’s somewhat appropriate that someone with a pseudo-science degree is here pushing pseudo-science in front of our committee today.
    Kerry: Are you serious?! I mean this is really a serious happening here?
    Massie: You know what? It is serious. You’re calling the president’s Cabinet a “kangaroo court.” Is that serious?
    Kerry: I’m not calling his Cabinet a kangaroo court, I’m calling this committee that he’s putting together a kangaroo committee.
    Massie: Are you saying it doesn’t have educated adults now?
    Kerry: I don’t know who it has yet because it’s secret.
    Massie: Well you said it in your testimony.
    Kerry: Why would he have to have a secret analysis of climate change?
    Massie: Let’s get back to the science of it.
    Kerry: But it’s not science, you’re not quoting science!
    Massie: Well, You’re the science expert. You have the political science degree.


    https://www.rollingstone.com/politics/politics-news/dumbest-moment-congressional-history-820690/
    Kerry has literally been involved with environmental concerns for decades, that's where his expertise comes from.
    http://scorecard.lcv.org/moc/john-kerry

    Meanwhile...
    http://scorecard.lcv.org/moc/thomas-massie

    If you aren't concerned about the environment, it doesn't matter what your degree is. Your thinking will find anyway to deny the science involved with climate change.
     
  4. RichardMZhlubb Contributor

    RichardMZhlubb

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    #4
    Wait, people actually watched that and did not come away thinking that Massie looked like an imbecile?
     
  5. linuxcooldude macrumors 68020

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    #5
    I'm for reasonible changes for environmental concerns. But I consider climate change/global warming psudoscience.
     
  6. jerwin macrumors 68020

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    #6
    How to get a Bachelor of Science degree in the Arts.

    http://catalog.mit.edu/degree-charts/literature-course-21l/
     
  7. JayMysterio macrumors 6502a

    JayMysterio

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    #7
    Shhh! Massie is trying to trade on the prestige of his degree from MIT. It makes him more 'sciencey' then some guy who's been involved in environmental causes for decades.
     
  8. jerwin macrumors 68020

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    #8
    to be fair, Massie's degree is in electrical engineering, but MIT seems to insist on granting a BS degree in most everything, including what Massie refers to as pseudoscience.
     
  9. JayMysterio macrumors 6502a

    JayMysterio

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    #9
    But Massie doesn't care. For a fleeting moment he imagined himself somehow superior, then he opened his mouth, and as they say "showed his :mad:".
     
  10. macsmurf, Apr 11, 2019
    Last edited: Apr 11, 2019

    macsmurf macrumors 65816

    macsmurf

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    #10
    John Kerry or Al Gore for that matter are not climate scientists. They are politicians. i don't think they've ever claimed otherwise.

    if congress has technical questions, by all means interview some climate scientists. They usually hold PhDs in a related field and have published papers about climate science in well-regarded peer-reviewed scientific journals.

    It is unlikely that dealing with climate change will have a purely technical resolution. That's why talking to politicians is relevant, even though they are not climate scientists.

    Pseudoscience are things such as phrenology or homeopathy. Calling climate science pseudoscience just makes you sound ignorant. Not knowing how to spell pseudoscience does not help.
     
  11. lostngone macrumors 65816

    lostngone

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  12. blackfox, Apr 12, 2019
    Last edited: Apr 12, 2019

    blackfox macrumors 65816

    blackfox

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    #13
    As I remember it, it a BA or a BS in say, Political Science depends on your focused course load towards that end. More diffuse? BA. More specific to that end? BS. Yet, have your fun...
     
  13. Huntn macrumors P6

    Huntn

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    #14
    Why?
     
  14. Plutonius thread starter macrumors 604

    Plutonius

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    #15
    I have been a baseball fan for decades and have followed it closely. Does that mean that Congress should call me as an expert witness for hearings on baseball ?

    I'm still looking for a good reason why was Kerry invited to testify at the hearing ?
     
  15. tshrimp macrumors 6502

    tshrimp

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    #16
    It depends if the point of view fits the persons narrative. If you believe in man made climate change, the people like Kerry are science experts, and if you don't he is a moron. I may think the later, but not exclusively due to his stance on climate.
    --- Post Merged, Apr 12, 2019 ---
    It is like any job. You can read all you want, but until you have done it you are not an expert. Maybe there are exceptions, but don't think science is one of those.
     
  16. ericgtr12 macrumors 65816

    ericgtr12

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    #17
    While we're talking about qualifications here... It's worth noting that Republican climate change denier Jim Inhofe is the Chair of the Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works and he carries a BA in economics from 1973.

    So what, exactly, qualifies him?

    [​IMG]
     
  17. Shanghaichica macrumors G4

    Shanghaichica

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    #18
    That’s not always accurate. My first degree was in molecular biology and genetics and was a BSc. That was an obviously a scientific degree. Later on I did a nursing degree in psychiatric nursing. It’s classified as a BSc but I don’t see it as a scientific degree.
     
  18. blackfox macrumors 65816

    blackfox

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    #19
    it's been 20 years. As memory serves - and it depends on the Institution and degree. I appreciate the clarification.
     
  19. yaxomoxay macrumors 68040

    yaxomoxay

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    #20
    Massie is an idiot. Political science is a serious degree which involves into looking at the political section of the human experience. Since politics (from polis, that is what concerns the polis, or the cities) is a fundamental element of everything we do as a society (that is, societas, or what concerns a group of people).
     
  20. jerwin macrumors 68020

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    #21
    His written testimony is here:

    https://oversight.house.gov/sites/d...v/files/Testimony - Secretary Kerry HOC_0.pdf

    Your mission, should you choose to accept it, is to establish through expert testimony, that climate change represents a credible threat to national security.

    Dr Mann, you are a climate scientist, are you not?
    That's correct.
    Have you ever worked in a leadership capacity within the Departments of State, the National Security Council, or the Department of Defense?
    No I haven't.
    Ever worked on capitol Hill?
    No.
    Then what gives you the right to....
     
  21. Plutonius thread starter macrumors 604

    Plutonius

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    #22
    Just like Kerry, he isn't qualified.

    Back to the original question. Why is Kerry testifying at the climate change hearings. If the problem is real and has been proven, it should not be hard to find credible scientific witnesses ?
     
  22. Rogifan macrumors Core

    Rogifan

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    #23
    So someone with a liberal arts degree is a fraud if they’re not an artist? It’s perfectly fine to question why John Kerry is considered an expert in climate science but let’s not forget Republicans have had Candace Owens and Diamond and Silk testifying on Capitol Hill.
     
  23. sracer macrumors G3

    sracer

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    Apr 9, 2010
    #24
    I agree. Kerry shouldn't be testifying.

    Regarding climate change... i believe that the climate is changing. I think spewing greenhouse gasses into the atmosphere is not a good thing... but how much doing that affects the climate is open to debate. In general though, it is better not to spew than to spew. :)

    I don't think we (collectively) know what, if anything, we can do to change the climate and what direction that change will go in. But that doesn't stop people from claiming with absolutely certainty that they know.

    Serious concern about the climate has been going on for 50 years. In the late 70's/early 80's people were concerned about man-made influences to the climate resulting in the next ice age. A decade or so later, they were concerned about "global warming". It was changed to a more generic term, "climate change" as an acknowledgment that they really aren't as certain as they originally claimed.
     
  24. ericgtr12 macrumors 65816

    ericgtr12

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    #25
    Why are you so dismissive of this? The man sits on a committee directly responsible for climate legislation and has far more impact than Kerry and an anecdotal argument from people who have no real ability to make change.
     

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