Patrick Foley patfoley at csus.edu
Fri Oct 13 15:40:41 EDT 2000

Jacob Groth wrote:

>  Hi Patrick, I don't make my conclusions based upon "how many" people
> believe certain facts.  I try to let the facts form my conclusions.
> So far, Bruce is one of the only scientists that presents real numbers
> for examination.  Many of the others simply propose "hypothetical"
> situations of "what if" type scenario's.  It's easy to say that
> something "could" be harmful.  All I have ever heard from these
> majority scientists is that releases "could" be harmful, but I have
> yet to hear of numbers or studies that would prevent evidence to
> support this opinion.  Whereas, Bruce supports his opinion with real
> numbers and scientific reasoning.  That is what wins my opinion.  The
> doom-sayers know that it is impossible to prove a null hypothesis, so
> as long as they couch their words in non quantifiable "coulds and
> woulds," they can never be pinned down and proven wrong.  If I were to
> say walking could be harmful to butterflies, could you prove me
> wrong?  No.  But, if I said walking could kill 100 butterflies per
> hour, then you could start debating with me scientifically.  Bruce is
> the only one willing to put himself under examination by presenting
> real numbers and real scenario's.  I'd be more willing to believe the
> other side of the opinion spectrum if they would simply start
> presenting case studies with real numbers to analyze. Jacob
>      ----- Original Message -----
>      From: Patrick Foley
>      To: jacob at swallowtailfarms.com
>      Cc: Leps List
>      Sent: Thursday, October 12, 2000 7:50 PM
>      Subject: Re: Poll?
>       Jacob,
>      I did not call a poll scientific. I said that Bruce's views
>      did not represent a scientific consensus. A consensus
>      involves the shared opinions of people. Is it your
>      experience that most scientists involved in population
>      biology share Bruce's view that the random release of
>      butterflies is safe for all species of butterflies? Would
>      most butterfly population biologists welcome such releases?
>      Patrick
>      Jacob Groth wrote:
>     > Patrick wrote: "let us conduct a meaningful poll of active
>     > researchers in population biology who have given the
>     > matter any thought."
>     >
>     > You call that scientific?
>     > Jacob

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