It’s not everyday that you get to tell a world-renowned physicist that he is wrong. Really, really wrong.
Popular astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson, a best-selling author and television personality, is a witty and engaging man — hence his TV popularity. Unfortunately, he’s also got a stringent political worldview based on atheism and leftist politics, and despite his style, his words often reveal the elitism that drives away those not of his political persuasion.
This was most recently revealed in a tweet to his 6.5 million followers (that is a very popular astrophysicist!)
That is an astonishingly inaccurate implication from a scientist — and note the tens of thousands of retweets and likes. For a man who is constantly promoting truth over what we want to be true — that’s generally a shot at religion — it is easily shown to be false.
But this is part and parcel with his worldview; varying degrees of a anti-Americanism, or maybe pro-globalism. But certainly not accepting the idea of American exceptionalism, despite overwhelming evidence.
Here are several areas showing Tyson is just dead wrong in his downer assessment of the past 45 years. And to a degree so is President Trump, in that America never stopped being great, and this shows it.
45 years later, quality of life is soaring
- 45 years later, extreme poverty globally has been slashed, perhaps the greatest achievement of the second half of the 20th century. In 1980, 43 percent of the world population lived in extreme poverty. But due to more capitalistic economic reforms and streams of technological advances — driven primarily by the United States — extreme poverty globally is down to 17 percent and continuing to decline, according to the World Bank.
- 45 years later, we’ve all but eradicated hunger and poverty in the United States. According to the Pew Research Center, “The U.S. stands head and shoulders above the rest of the world. More than half (56%) of Americans were high income by the global standard, living on more than $50 per day in 2011…Another 32% were upper-middle income. In other words, almost nine-in-ten Americans had a standard of living that was above the global middle-income standard. Only 7% of people in the U.S. were middle income, 3% were low income and 2% were poor.”
- 45 years later, the infant survival rate is up 70 percent since 1972. It’s still too high, but the decline has been precipitous.
- 45 years later, life expectancy has soared. In 1972, life expectancy in the United States was 71. Today it is 80. In 1966, average life expectancy globally was only 56 years. Today it’s 72, a 29 percent increase, according to Human Progress. Huge.
- 45 year later, the computers we carry in our pockets as smart phones are more powerful than the array of computers that put man on the moon. Our ability to google information is transforming knowledge. Even in third-world countries, cell phones are everywhere. There are 7 billion cell phone subscriptions on earth.
- 45 years later, pollution has plummeted in the United States. Between 1970 and 2000, the American population grew by 36 percent and energy consumption by 45 percent, but air pollutants decreased 29 percent. U.S. pollution has continued to decline since 2000.
45 years later, space accomplishments are breathtaking
- 45 years later we have a fully manned space station. Mankind has been constantly living in space for many years, now. That’s kind of wow.
- 45 years later, we have probes on Mars, tooling around the red planet of science fiction fame and sending back images and data. From Mars!
- 45 years later, we managed to land a robot on an icy comet barely two miles wide, 300 million miles away. Oh, and the comet was hurtling through through space at 50,000 mph. Pretty amazing accomplishment
One would think an astrophysicist like Tyson would think such things were pretty impressive, and not to be hidden in the periods of a snarky ellipsis.
And then there was this.
But he tweets things that are demonstrably not true. The consistency is that they fit a predictable worldview. He takes the position that since he is smarter than everyone else (which he might be, but smart does not mean right, and it sure doesn’t necessarily equate to wisdom) then we should all just accept what he says.
Well, no. And his tweets show why.
This final example tweet reveals his elitist gene in full bloom.
This is why worldview matters. While Tyson is an engaging man and trained astrophysicist, it is his worldview that informs the anti-American sentiments, from us not accomplishing anything noteworthy in 45 years to taking a shot at the most popular sport in the nation.
But worldview also may explain the example he chose from 45 years ago. In our long list since 45 years ago, none of them were high-profile, big government operations such as the moon landing. They were largely incremental increases of the market driven by private-sector capitalism.
And that is a truth unacceptable to some worldviews.
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EDITORS NOTE: This column originally appeared in The Revolutionary Act.