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Posts tagged as “science”

Ranking the sciences by how evil they are

11. Biologists

I actually think in their heart of hearts all biologists want to be mad scientists. The problem is that they’re really bad at it. You try attaching a chimp’s head to a man — that’s, what, half a casualty? That’s nothing! Even if you put the tinfoil hat on and say, ah, but lab leaks and viruses and whatnot — if we’re going to rank the sciences on their ability to do a pandemic, covid isn’t a particularly good showing when all most people under 90 remember of it is being really bored, sticking uncomfortable Q-tips up their nose, and baking sourdough bread.

They’re in dead last because of all the sciences in this list, biology has the largest negative kill count, having saved billions of lives and thus making themselves known as utterly incompetent at being evil.

10. Astronomers

Like biologists, every astronomer dreams of waking up to an imminent asteroid impact. (This isn’t a particularly secret ambition, either.) They’ve read and written all the sci-fi lit there is, and theoretically have a pretty good grasp on how to destroy the world.

Un­for­tu­nately when a mad astronomer says the world will end it carries the same tenor and believability of that snotty-nosed kid on the playground saying his uncle works for Nintendo. A gamma-ray burst will end all life on Earth? When’s that, sweetie? Oh? Two trillion years from now? That’s nice, dear. Ooooh, an asteroid that has a 0.001% chance of passing by the moon? Terrifying.

9. Computer scientists

If they really wanted to, the computer scientists definitely could kill everyone and break all electronics forever. Un­for­tu­nately they’d be out of a job if they did that, so i don’t think we have much to worry about.

8. Sociologists

The good news for sociologists is that they are, genuinely, completely fucking insane. The bad news is that they don’t even know how to write a paper with replicable results, let alone take over the world. If they ever figure out how to distinguish a fake article about toxic masculinity in dog parks from a real article about toxic masculinity in dog parks they might move up a bit in the ranks.

7. Linguists

This is actually a statistical error caused by Spiders Noam and should be ignored.

6. Psychologists

Psychologists have really fallen off since the initial publication of the Haber–Haber Scale of Scientific Evil back in 1932. They used to rip monkeys from their families and put them in cages, get people to administer lethal electric shocks, put people in prison for the lulz — now, alas, they seem content to let their perfectly developed evil skillset go to waste and futz around figuring out how to make people subscribe to emails instead. Sad!

5. Chemists

Chemists are great at doing evil. They can make poisons, kill people with radiation, pretend “α-(5,6-Di­methyl­benzi­mida­zo­lyl)co­ba­mid­cyan­ide” is a totally normal thing to say — the list goes on! The main thing bringing them down is that they don’t seem at all interested in doing evil. They know the nega-utils from working at big pharmaceutical companies are going to the economists here, right?

4. Physicists

Ah, physics, the “fuck around and find out” of the sciences, whose practitioners never met a death, destroyer of worlds they didn’t like. Ever since the atom bomb they’ve been a consistent presence in the upper tier, and it’s not hard to see why. Even when they’re not literally killing millions, they’re sticking heads in particle accelerators, developing new and innovative ways to undo the fundamental forces of the universe, and causing chaos among the general population by convincing them their collider would destroy the universe. Their fourth place position says more about the quality of those who ranked ahead of them than any faults of physics specifically.

3. Mathematicians

Mathematicians are barely holding on to their humanity. They haven’t seen the sunlight in days. They think quantum physics is just too soft and people-y. In this lies their danger: the possibility that they might snap.

Take Grigori Perelman, a mild example. He was a prodigy, proving conjectures that had stood unproven for hundreds of years — and then, at the apex of his career, the million-dollar prize… he just stopped. He just left the field, became a hermit, and was never seen again. Mr Perelman’s story is the best-case scenario.

The worst-case scenario? Well — the real reason mathematics is so high is that they have the dubious distinction of being the only field on this list to have spawned an actual terrorist. If it were up to me, i’d keep the mathematicians under 24/7 CCTV surveillance.

2. Economists


1. Geologists

Geologists? What? Surely they’d be at the bottom: all they do is study rocks!

That was my thinking too. But then i thought about it. And thought about it. And uncovered the dark secret of geology. No, they can’t make earthquakes happen on demand, or turn themselves into lava. That’s theory. But what of applied geology?

Applied geology has other names. Chief among them: mining, fracking, and drilling. The geologist plan is a slow burn. They dig, and dig, and dig, guzzling up all the coal and oil they can muster, spewing their flames into the atmosphere. And by the time anyone noticed… it wasn’t their problem anymore. Oh, they say, that’s not us, that’s Nasa, that’s the biologists, that’s the economists, it could never be us humble innocent rock nerds. But they know. They know, deep down, that when the last forest burns itself up, when the last city falls into the sea — the geologists will look over the rubble, and the geologists will be king.