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Quoting Richard Peirce <firstname.lastname@example.org>:
There's a story in today's New York Times about a fellow, Marcus Ross, who
recently was granted a Ph.D. In vert paleo from the University of Rhode
Island. Incredible? No, it's for real.
Stepping around the specific topic at hand, if someone were to master
all the analytical skills necessary to write a good dissertation on how
the fluid dynamics of earth's (spherical) outer core give rise to the
planet's magnetic field, I would have no problem with granting that
person a Ph.D. in geophysics, even if in his/her heart of hearts, s/he
believed the earth to be flat.
Now, if said person were to go out on the stump saying things like "The
earth is flat. I know; I've got a Ph.D. in geophysics," where what the
person was claiming fundamentally clashed with the nature of the work
that earned the degree, then we would have a problem.
Department of Linguistics
University of Michigan
"Creativity is the sudden cessation of stupidity."
--Edwin H. Land