The science of cosmology is really just the extension of the same physical principles we have discovered on the Earth and have incorporated into our technology. See some of my previous posts on this topic:
- “Real“ Science vs. “Cosmological“ and “Origins“ Science
- Testing Science at the Leading Edge...
- Testing Science at the Leading Edge... II
- 'Out There' Astrophysics Impacts Technology (again)
The Cosmos In Your Pocket: Expanded & Revised
The technological leadership the United States enjoyed in the post WWII era was due in no small part to the emphasis of science in the U.S. educational system in that time frame. The decline of U.S. leadership in these fields can easily be tied to the decline of science understanding among the general population and pseudo-science has certainly been a component of that decline.
One of the problems run into by pseudo-scientists is that when they deny some well-established aspect of modern astronomy or cosmology, such as the energy source of stars, etc., they are denying a knowledge base is tightly connected to the same understandings of nuclear physics, atomic physics, electromagnetism, etc. used in technologies we use every day.
To defend their ignorance, the pseudoscientists eventually reach the point that they must deny how a number of well-established technologies work. In the process, they sometimes manufacture alternative explanations which they try to make consistent with whatever alternative 'framework' they are trying to maintain. For all intents an purposes, their alternative explanations evokes a quote from Arthur C. Clarke:
“Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.” - Arthur C. Clarke (wikipedia)For lack of a better term, I'll call such an individual a technomystic.
Here's a few examples:
* Geocentrism: Our ability to travel in space depends on Newton's laws of motion and gravity, theories which do not define an absolute origin in space. These equations are invariant under translation and rotation - the interactions between planetary bodies and spacecraft depend only on their RELATIVE positions, and not on any absolute spatial reference frame. This is why we can use the exact same mathematics to get a spacecraft in orbit around other planets in the solar system as we use to orbit the Earth. Some Geocentrists go so far as to deny space flight even takes place (such as claimed at Moving World - Deception). The equivalence of all reference frames is built into modern star trackers used in the navigation of satellites (see Ubiquitous Aberrations) so this theory is actually tested 24/7 on satellites around the solar system.
* Relativity Denial: This is often a component of Geocentrism but it is also often invoked by Electric Universe supporters and some Young-Earth Creationists. A number of modern technologies require high-precision measurement, with accuracy on the nano-second time scales, where relativity has already been demonstrated to become important in technologies such as the GPS system. Most of the deniers invoke claims by researchers who are, at best, peripherally involved with GPS technologies, and I have yet to find one that has actually done the critical clock synchronization and/or signal time-of-flight analyses. (see Scott Rebuttal. I. GPS & Relativity, GPS, Relativity & Geocentrism)
* Space Weather: The Electric Sun model advocated by the Electric Universe supporters, claims the region of space from the Sun to the heliopause is radically different from the conditions discovered by mainstream astronomy. Conditions in this region can be hazardous to the operation of satellites and even the lives of astronauts. Yet while mainstream astronomy and heliophysics understands the environment sufficiently to setup forecasting systems to protect assets in space (Space Weather Prediction Center), EU supporters evade demonstrating an equivalent capability, even when the data to do it are all publicly available.
* Young-Earth/Young-Universe Creationism: Young-Earth creationists try to get around technology implications of their 'science' by moving their changes back in time or far in space, such as the work by Barry Setterfield (see A Changing Speed of Light?). However, this still creates problems for atomic/nuclear physics & applications as we detect a number of nuclear and atomic spectral lines in distant space with the same characteristics in Earth laboratories. In this case, the safest theology are various flavors of Old-Earth Creationism (such as advocated by Reasons to Believe, etc.).
In most cases, it is difficult to get these technomystics to explain HOW many of the affected technologies actually work in their 'worldview'. Short of claiming the technology itself is an outright fraud, the only clear answer we can get from them is that the technology does NOT work the way the physicists and engineers who designed and built the critical components say that it work and documented in many textbooks and design specifications. I have found no examples of these technologies being developed and built by those who deny the fundamental physics, though we have many 'reinterpretations' of how these technologies work from those who, at best, were peripherally involved in the development.
Next: More exploration of the science & technology connection...