Very well said as usual, Herb. Some time ago I put a link to an article
which addresses the current phase of irrationality, puts it in a historic and social context, and discusses what science can do to exorcize the "demons" of distrust and suspicion which burden it.
Bob Ogden

From: herb fox <[log in to unmask]>
To: [log in to unmask]
Sent: Monday, July 23, 2012 3:10 PM
Subject: Re: Discussion about Energy

In my youth there was an orgone fad.  Quite a few persons with whom i was acquainted had or built orgone boxes.  None was a scientist and there has never been any proof that there is such a thing as orgone.  Ouija boards were also the fad.  Today the majority in the US believe in Astrology.  I have not seen any investigation of popular attitudes towards science and scientists, but it appears that we are not trusted or believed as perhaps we once were.  Were i not a scientist i might also have a cynical attitude towards them, since the majority are contributors to the military, big pharma, or big agra, or others of that ilk.

I didn't contribute to the discussion Mitchel's post provoked because after reading Petros' and Joel's remarks i realized that anything i might say would be dismissive.  I anticipated that they would then simply dismiss me as another brainwashed scientist.

Now it seems necessary to speak to the underlying problem.  It is not that there are funky ideas around.  It is not that there are imaginative alternatives to currently accepted concepts.  These are good.  In some other society they would provoke experiments by qualified scientists that would produce results that would be believed by the non-scientist majority.  But in this society Capitalism is hegemonic   It owns us.  It owns the scientists and their science.  We are tainted.  We are not to be believed by a cynical public.  Unfortunately our practice is sufficiently arcane that the popular masses cannot easily grasp exactly what we do.  They have to trust us; but they don't.  The only cure for this problem is Science for the People--that scientists, like firemen and nurses, demonstrate by their acts that their first concern and obligation is to help people, to rescue them from an unjust social order.  We are tainted.


On 7/23/2012 2:39 PM, Mitchel Cohen wrote:
The researchers I was talking about new nothing about Reich. Orgone energ was something that Joel Carlinksy added on his own, but I was specifically asking about Tesla, etc. which may or may not overlap with Reich's constructs.

The  fact that Reich was imprisoned for his research and that the US government burned his books in the 1950s doesn't prove anything one way or the other about the validity of his work, but it does make  one curious,  no?


-----Original Message-----
From: Michael H Goldhaber
Sent: Jul 23, 2012 11:29 AM
To: [log in to unmask]
Subject: Re: Discussion about Energy

Nearly 40 years ago, Carolyn Iltis, a historian of science, was in Berkeley SftP. She was interested in topics such as witchcraft, but also played around with Wilhelm Reich's concepts, and had an orgone box.  Reich was of course the follower of Freud who first tired to combine his work with marxism and was interested in various bodily energies. He got in trouble with the US government and was eventually declared insane because he believed in little green men or something like that. The orgone box was a box that was supposed to trap and reflect bodily produced orgone, which was somehow related to orgasm. I suspect Wikipedia must have an article on it. 


On Jul 23, 2012, at 8:16 AM, Romsted, Laurence wrote:


Two more things.

Without searching through past emails, I want to stipulate that I misrepresented you intentions.  I did not scan them before I wrote the email below either.  I went on my memory.  My mistake.

However, you could have at any time responded to my question to you, Joel and Petros.  You have not.  Please do.  If you need the question restated, I will locate it in my old emails.


From: Larry Romsted <[log in to unmask]>
Reply-To: Science for the People Discussion List <[log in to unmask]>
Date: Monday, July 23, 2012 10:41 AM
To: <[log in to unmask]>
Subject: FW: Discussion about Energy


Please.  I felt I should tell this list why the potential discussion disappeared.

From my perspective  (obviously): You started the discussion by circulating Joel email without explanation.  I was struck by a passage that made no sense to me concerning energy and chemistry.  I offered to discuss it on the SftP list.  Joel did not want to.  You lost interest.  Petros was willing to discuss stuff with me off list.  We are sort of doing that now.

I take very seriously the idea that the fundamental ideas of science that have developed over the past several centuries do not include important energy concepts.  I do not know of any.  So I asked.  You have not responded either.

If your going to circulate statements and idea that are contrary to established scientific ideas (that is OK), explain why you are circulate them, what they are about, and what the published and reviewed evidence is for them with references.  It took me several email exchanges before I learned that Orgone was the missing energy.  I do not know what Orgone is.


From: Mitchel Cohen <[log in to unmask]>
Reply-To: Science for the People Discussion List <[log in to unmask]>
Date: Monday, July 23, 2012 4:19 AM
To: <[log in to unmask]>
Subject: Re: Discussion about Energy

Larry, this is untrue, at least as far as I am concerned (and I believe it holds for Petros as well). How you come to this, I don't know,  as I wrote the exact opposite -- that I did not want to discuss this privately but wanted to do so on the list. Joel Carlinsky declined, not  me.

-----Original Message-----
From: Larry Romsted
Sent: Jul 22, 2012 10:48 AM
To: [log in to unmask]
Subject: Discussion about Energy


Remember those few emails about energy that sort of started after Mitchel sent an email from a guy name Joel and I volunteered to discussion the ideas?

Joel, Mitchel and Petros, also involved a bit, decided that they did not want to discuss them in a discussion list.

The end,