How Mr. Dynamite Might End Up Saving Our Species

by Charles Lyell on July 4, 2011

“It wasn’t until the Nobel Prize that they really thawed out. They couldn’t understand my books, but they could understand $30,000.”  – William Faulkner

Alfred Bernhard Nobel, dynamite’s inventor, amassed a personal fortune from the explosives, cannon, and armaments companies he founded. After changing the course of history, and destroying the lives of countless millions, Mr. Nobel used his boodles to establish a major-league dopamine-inducing prize.

Today, with our species perched at the edge of history, the Nobel Prize has the potential to again change history. As mentioned many times on this site, scientists share a vested interest in maintaining the denial that has so far prevented earnest investigations into the accumulating research that conclusively establishes dopamine addiction’s existence.

This should come as no surprise to anyone who understands the link between addictive behaviors, self-deception, and denial. It would be illogical to expect scientists who suffer from safety addiction to notice any connections that might lead to their risking years of hard work, titles, funding, grants, or positions. Researchers who are crippled by dopamine related peer-approval addiction can not be expected to invite rejection by proving that their peers are suffering  from a shared addiction to dopamine-induced peer approval.

Esteem addicts are another matter. On the one hand, dopamine induced esteem addiction can be counted on to keep most scientists zealously protecting their status instead of recklessly provoking ridicule. On the other hand, the same dopamine manufactured in some of those same brains can drive a few esteem addicts to take a shot at the ultimate jackpot — the Nobel Prize. After all, Mr. Nobel’s award comes with more respect, admiration, and dopamine than most esteem addicts can handle.

If you are a scientist:

I’d like to leave you with a few things to think about.

Do you have what it takes to step up to open your colleagues eyes to what they don’t want to see?

If the answer is resounding “yes” or even a tepid “maybe” why not start thinking about what you can do to be among the first to put all that schooling and hard work to good use?

You’ll not only be doing the right thing, if you act now, as a bonus for attaching your names to one of the biggest scientific breakthroughs of the decade you just might score a Nobel prize.

Someone’s going to get it. Why not you?

If you aren’t a scientist:

Do you know any scientists who might appreciate learning about this golden opportunity? You don’t have to actually know them, knowing about them is fine. If you’d be so kind, please make a list and send each one of them a link to this post. And, in the subject area, write: “Here’s your chance to win a Nobel Prize?”

Thank you,

Charles Lyell


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