Wednesday, January 1, 2014

#853: Christopher LaFond

Christopher LaFond is an astrologer, and this entry could really end just there. At least LaFond attempts to spell out the connection between science and astrology – when the Star Tribune ran an article that was moderately critical of his discipline, LaFond responded by pointing out that scientists really had no clue about these things. You see, there are three kinds of zodiacal interpretations, the Sidereal, the Tropical, and the Constelllational, and while science may have pointed out certain worries with one of them, his version of astrology emerges unscathed. LaFond does “medieval astrology”, which has its own rules (apparently it must be different from “traditional astrology”, which one Valerie Livina tries to defend not entirely successfully here).

Of course, being dimly aware that his favored system of myths might not align particularly well with scientific evidence either, LaFond does in the end just assert that scientist should stay away from astrology (his points are nicely summed up here). As he puts it: “Being a Spiritual Science, if you will, astrology will never be proven correct, true, or valid to the satisfaction of the modern academy, which is still held captive by the materialist/atheist world view. I’m not suggesting that astrologers ignore everything that modern scientists say about astrology (or any other field), but why would we give it such weight? Is their goal to work with us? In most cases, their goal is to debunk astrology completely,” which I am not sure adds up to a validation of the discipline.

Apparently astrology is not supposed to issue empirically testable claims – the results that astrologers arrive cannot be measured or observed. Which I am not sure even counts as special pleading.

Diagnosis: super-kook, of the standard kind who reacts rather bizarrely when reality fails to line up with how he wants it to be (ordinary, sane people would modify their beliefs). Probably relatively harmless.

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