Chris Devers/Flickr

技术官僚安魂曲

石溪—2010年,路易斯安那州州长鲍比·金达尔(Bobby Jindal)发起了一项2.2亿美元的计划,用沙堤阻挡英国石油公司油井中的原油流入墨西哥湾。科学家们反对这一计划,指出这样做只会伤害当地生态系统。即在使全国委员会调查了漏油情况并宣布该计划失败、只拦截到漏入墨西哥湾的五百万桶原油中的1,000桶后,金达尔仍拒绝妥协,声称委员会的陈述“康纳税人之慨行党派修正主义之实。”

金达尔的反应体现了一种让决策原理科学基础的倾向,这种倾向可谓方兴未艾,并且有可能带来灾难。但我认为二十一世纪的政治不会如此。20世纪70年代,当我还是文科研究生时,我的导师猛烈抨击即将到来的技术官僚国家。他们告诉我,政客很快就将只听命于让人本价值为效率让路的专家,普通公民的声音将被淹没。

要是这一情景真的发生就好了。如今,在什么才是真正重要的事实这一问题上——比如,转基因食品的安全性、提炼页岩油气的风险性以及全球变暖的影响等——争论完全不顾科学证据,或使用扭曲、偏颇的信息论证预先选定的立场。政客和活动家将这些问题包装成社会斗争或道德表演:大公司与小农民之争、镇压者与解放者之争,或者用阴谋论蒙骗天真的公民。

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