Quote Originally Posted by nonsequitur View Post
I guess what you want people to say is, "no, they (the general public) can't, obviously. you need to be trained for years and decades to even understand a portion of what's going on". What I personally believe is that scientists often over-state what they know, cover up assumptions and obfuscate what they don't know. I am speaking from personal experience and observation.
I think you make an excellent point. The fact is that the complexity of our understanding is always going to pale in comparison with the complexity of real systems. The fact is our beliefs are shaped by our experiences. In terms of a practising scientist, they might be an expert on the very narrow area(s) that they have focused their career on, but none of them will ever be an expert even on subfields "virology" or "fluid dynamics" or "health psychology" as even these subfields are too broad for full or logically consistent understanding.