I liked this article. The subject was "Is Modern Mathematics Reliable". This refers to research-level Mathematics, and not the calculus/algebra/logic/topology that everyone knows.
The problem is that, when a Math professor publishes a paper, he does not publish a fully detailed proof. He merely gives an outline. In turn, this makes the paper incomprehensible to someone who isn't already an expert. For most math papers, there are only 3-5 people who could read the proof and fully understand it, and even then it'd take them a few months.
This means that a lot of research level Mathematics may be wrong. There's nobody who bothers to check that published results are actually true. With "peer review" and State-funded research grants, the incentive is to do small incremental improvements of previous research. There is no incentive to read old results, polish them, and republish them in readable format.
That certainly matches my experience in Math grad school. Over 98% of the lectures I attended were incomprehensible. How can you determine which Math professors are good and which are lousy, when none of them know what each other is talking about? The "peer review" system makes academics a popularity contest, instead of supporting truly original research.
I liked this comment.
Is mathematical complexity then an excellent cover for the most intricate of deceptions?
Yes. In economics research, there are lots of fancy calculations and derivations. Such calculations are useless when your assumptions are wrong. Most economics papers have several major mistakes that are hidden assumptions:
- Taxation is not theft.
- The CPI is a fair and unbiased measure of inflation.
- The Fed Funds Rate is the fair market-determined interest rate.
- The USA has a fair monetary system.
Legal language is another example of Mathematical obfuscation. Legal language is incredibly complicated, on purpose. This makes law inaccessible to the average person. Legal language is intentionally hard to read, because lawyers are protecting their turf. There is no reason for legal language to be so hard to read, except that lawyers intentionally obfuscate the law. Just like there's an obfuscated C contest, lawyers have an "obfuscated law contest".
Whenever you see unnecessary complexity, that's a sure sign that some funny business is occurring.