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Re: (Dr/PhD) Global Warming?

All physicists at my company (General Atomics) -where there are a few
hundred PhD physicists - go by their first names. There are no Dr. or PhD.
on name or office tags. In general, none of us use our Dr. titles in our
everyday life either - it has taken some of my neighbors 10 years to find
out that I had a PhD.
Nevertheless, in formal dealings at work, such as business cards, email and
proposals to the government and other sources of income, we all use our
titles. The government and other companies tend to be more assured that
their money will be wisely used if the people in charge of spending it have
had some experience is solving difficult problems. The PhD lets them know
that we have solved at least one difficult problem and can do original
research and development.
I use the same signature in my email to everyone, so the Dr. just goes
along for the ride - even when it probably does not belong. Clearly in
this group, no one should put any weight into the affiliation or background
of the participant. It's easy for anyone to make a normal human mistake.


At 8:35 AM -0800 2/17/2001, Leigh Palmer wrote:
I was quite stricken at the time, and still consider
it something of a loss of innocence with regard to the
media and academia (most of these people had Ph.D
after their name).

I've never understood why anyone would want to put PhD after his
or her name. It has always seemed an affectation of a pretentious
nature to me. I suppose that's cultural. Our daughter does it;
our sons do not. One's arguments should stand on their intrinsic
merits. That it matters by whom the arguments are made is the
actual meaning of the *ad hominem* logical fallacy. That it could
matter what letters appear after the name is an illogicality of
an even higher order.

Please don't take what I say here as critical of the many members
of this group who do use the form I disdain. As I said, it's
cultural, and I'm somewhat tolerant - "present company excepted,
of course".


Dr. Lawrence D. Woolf; General Atomics, 3550 General Atomics Court, Mail
Stop 15-242, San Diego, CA 92121