Most of pre-Auschwitz "Mainstream Science" (not its technology - its technology was wonderful !) was Junk Science.
Modernist Mainstream Science, to put it in military terms, secured its place at the right hand of Civilization's throne by successfully mis-interpreting (at the strategic/big picture level) the new data it gathered up so accurately at the operational and tactical level.
Rather like Hitler's military, it won every battle and lost every war.
The superstructure upon which the whole fragile edifice of Modernity uneasily rested was a false and artificial separation of the stupid self-replicating blobs of culture-destroying protein (germs) at the bottom
versus the big complex culture-making and culture-bearing human civilizations at the top.
It had long seemed that the very best way to prove that the top human civilizations had a right to enslave the human beings slightly below them was to focus our attention away from those unfortunate humans and turn our eyes instead towards the supposedly stupid, evil and primitive little blobs at the very bottom of life, originating from the very start of life.
Seen this way, Progress was the steady growing ever upwards growth from stupid little killers to big intelligent culture-producing civilizations, with our morals growing in tandem.
(Against this is the facts as we know them today - but also 'publicly' known but not 'popularly known' in the those pre-Auschwitz days - that much of what allowed trees , animals and human to grow to the size they have, were the results of the direct horizontal gifting of unaltered unimproved microbial genes into these larger beings.)
So the powerful desperately needed someone like Koch who ripped microbes out of their parallel complex little multi-species civilizations and stuck pure samples of them in laboratory oceans of water and then convincing shout out"there - see! - I told you ! - solitary planktonic blobs, totally incapable of any social or complex behavior."
Koch had his critics then, people unknown today - who showed that microbes were capable of complex behavior - but their voices were never raised up in honour and taught to every school kid - very far from it.
I am struck - or and over - that almost all the so called "new" discoveries about just how sophisticated and intelligent microbes are were in fact discovered much much earlier.
Very pre-Auschwitz, even published in the scientific literature, but all ignored and dismissed by the elites of mainstream modernist science.
Most of those elite scientists are long forgotten nonentities today, but in their day they made good coin by routinely dismissing any new scientific idea that threatened the mental universe of the rich and powerful.
They trafficked - mostly - in what I call 'popular science' not 'published science'.
For almost any well researched scientific effort by a determined scientist would eventually find some sort of home in published science, even back then.
Home or tomb - in practise, anything scientifically threatening won't be censored but merely deeply buried in some well regarded but narrow little scientific journal read by a hundred specialists in just one country.
To become 'popularly known' in scientific terms, your article had first to be not just published in a handful of leading global journals but also mentioned in the editorial pages of those same journals - the only bits of those leading journals likely to be read by most scientists around the world.
Even more importantly, your vision has to be subscribed to by the scientifically powerful who are always being quoted in the New York Times, the Daily Express, Life Magazine and the like; the men who wrote the leading textbooks taught to new generations of scientists and to the new generations of teachers of undergrads and high school kids.
In other words, your vision had to become part of the doggerel of science known to all even half educated people worldwide.
And not much socially subversive stuff passed through that narrow needle.
The holders of that needle, after all, were hired and maintained by the world's powerful.
And what those powerful wanted most was a worldview that said the surface of Reality (their known visible world) was indeed as complex and as unpredictable as they feared but that reassuringly the deep structure of reality below them really was simple-minded, knowable, controllable.
In a word, not just the aboriginal but also the atom was perfectly enslave-able.
And that given enough time and resources, Reality's deep structure's simplicity and order can be re-stored to the surface of Reality as well.
Scientists generally then voted Conservative and Republican back then, just as most today vote Democrat and Liberal-Socialist.
That was because voting and thinking Conservative was precisely how most got hired as fulltime tenured academic scientists in the first place, at a time when such jobs were as rare as hen's teeth and the hiring bodies for them were controlled by the rich and powerful.
To keep their sinecures, they like Koch knew they had to sing for their supper - a task made much easier by the fact that most of them genuinely thought as a Conservative, not just play-acted as such....