David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
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Topoi 23 (2):153-163 (2004)
US testing of nuclear weapons has resulted in about 800,000 premature fatal cancers throughout the globe, and the nuclear tests of China, France, India, Russia, and the UK have added to this total. Surprisingly, however, these avoidable deaths have not received much attention, as compared, for example, to the smaller number of US fatalities on 9-11-01. This essay (1) surveys the methods and models used to assess effects of low-dose ionizing radiation from above-ground nuclear weapons tests and (2) explains some of the epistemological and logical problems (with these methods and models) that have caused scientists to decide against health screening of the most likely test victims. It also (3) argues that, once the faulty presuppositions and question-begging frames about testing and screening are recognized, there are compelling arguments in favor of nuclear-test nations'' screening fallout victims, at least among their citizens. Finally, it (4) suggests that logically and epistemically flawed fallout studies/recommendations against screening are more like to occur when scientists adopt a Laudan-style comparativist rationality, rather than when they adopt a metascience more like that of Kuhn and others.
|Keywords||Philosophy Philosophy Philosophy of Science Philosophy of Technology|
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References found in this work BETA
Tom L. Beauchamp (2009). Principles of Biomedical Ethics. Oxford University Press.
Thomas S. Kuhn (1962). The Structure of Scientific Revolutions Vol. The University of Chicago Press.
L. Laudan (1977). Progress and its Problems: Toward a Theory of Scientific Growth. University of California Press.
G. E. Moore (1903/2004). Principia Ethica. Dover Publications.
Deborah G. Mayo (2001). Error and the Growth of Experimental Knowledge. International Studies in the Philosophy of Science 15 (1):455-459.
Citations of this work BETA
José Luis Luján, Javier Rodríguez Alcázar & Oliver Todt (2011). Practical Values and Uncertainty in Regulatory Decision-Making. Social Epistemology 24 (4):349-362.
Oliver Todt & José Luis Luján (forthcoming). Non-Cognitive Values and Methodological Learning in the Decision-Oriented Sciences. Foundations of Science:1-20.
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