Occupy their Expert Heuristics

How do we know which public expert to trust? It’s the one that looks and sounds like the one we would trust, of course. The one that occupies our public expert heuristics.

Flo Débarre, an evolutionary ecologist at the French National Center for Scientific Research, tweeted the following last month in the wake of a letter in Science signed by 18 scientists calling for an investigation into the origins of COVID-19:

Débarre’s is a common scientist position — what a shame scientists let such non-scientific factors such as name recognition and hero worship obscure scientific merit.…