I am glad we have an understanding, more or less.

To be honest I had to look 'solipsism' up on wiki real fast to know the exact nature of the accusation. Real science has nothing to do with religion. Like you say, it is the exact opposite.



I have to think that science as a discipline would be very hard for any 'ruler' to control. But if one could it would be an excellent addition to the pieces on your chessboard. Especially because of its seeming opposition to the religious! You could move them in tandem or separately. You could set up a left wing, right wing construct, with one leaning to the tune of your scientific authority, and the other to that of your religious authority. Never destroying one another but always in opposition, like a giant wheel of political 'progress.'
I suppose you could do it, with enough money and or other mechanisms of leverage. I know you would want to do it, if you were at the top. One of the greatest forms of power is knowledge; which you would want to keep it in your own private storehouses as best as possible, and keep the river to the lowlands dammed up and controlled. One of the greatest foundations of national security is secrecy. For the sake of national security and social cohesion, you have to keep the flow of knowledge and information to the people under raps, of course without making it look like you are doing so.
Your religious establishment would be just fine, they stand on their own; their constituents already thinking they know everything. But a scientific establishment you would have to throw a juicy bone every once in a while if not quite often. The boys in lab coats and the students and teachers always itching for more, more, More! Any obvious attempt at restraining them would be met with immediate anger, suspicion, and political backlash, and would...

wait... where was I...
I kind of got carried away there.
at any rate...
Dara O'Briain; first time I have ever heard the guy. Thank you for introducing me, I will definitely have to look into his work.