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One of the things we regularly discuss here on TDG is the difficulty in getting serious attention for new or ‘heretical’ scientific ideas. I’m sure then that many readers will enjoy reading Against the Tide. A Critical Review by Scientists of How Physics and Astronomy Get Done (free PDF download available via the link, or buy from Amazon US / UK):

This book deals with the tension between the scientific establishment of a given time, and scientists with radical or heretical ideas, who work outside the mainstream, and have difficulties in having their ideas accepted or even seriously critiqued…much of the scientific activity at the present time confirms [sic] to a set of ideas and paradigms which are unquestionably accepted by the vast majority of practising scientists. Most work is done within this framework, and those who disagree with it find it difficult to survive academically, because they are denied grants, positions, research facilities like observing time on telescopes, invitations to speak at conferences, the opportunity to publish in the best research journals, and even to post their papers on open electronic archives heavily used by the community. These difficulties make it impossible to air radical ideas, or glaring inconsistencies in experimental or observational data, which challenge the very foundations of mainstream science. This suppression of dissent and challenging new ideas, without examining them carefully for correctness and applicability, prevents progress in human knowledge, and the vast resources expended on science go in vain, merely perpetuating unqualified beliefs and dogmas… The book should be read by everyone working in science, to become acquainted with the anguish that some people feel at the way they have been treated by the scientific establishment…

I think that in many ways, the exclusion of new ideas initially acts well as a safeguard against a mass of incorrect suppositions not backed by evidence. But there are also many other cases where a good deal of evidence has been gathered, which should at least bring these new ideas to a point where they are seriously discussed in an objective manner, but they aren’t. So I don’t think the argument is cut-and-dried, but there is certainly room for some criticism of over-zealous defenders of the paradigm.