November 30, 2009

Mark Steyn: The Chicago Machine Politics of International Climate "Science"
— Ace

That's not actually Steyn's phrase or headline; he borrowed it from James Lewis (and I tarted it up a little too).

Steyn uses it to describe the utter corruption of the peer-review process of climate "science" -- essentially, the Climate Conspirators try to get fired any editor who publishes a dissenting article or who otherwise threatens the Grand Pretend Consensus.


Here’s what Phil Jones of the CRU and his colleague Michael Mann of Penn State mean by “peer review.” When Climate Research published a paper dissenting from the Jones-Mann “consensus,” Jones demanded that the journal “rid itself of this troublesome editor,” and Mann advised that “we have to stop considering Climate Research as a legitimate peer-reviewed journal. Perhaps we should encourage our colleagues in the climate research community to no longer submit to, or cite papers.”

So much for Climate Research. When Geophysical Research Letters also showed signs of wandering off the “consensus” reservation, Dr. Tom Wigley (“one of the world’s foremost experts on climate change”) suggested they get the goods on its editor, Jim Saiers, and go to his bosses at the American Geophysical Union to “get him ousted.” When another pair of troublesome dissenters emerge, Dr. Jones assured Dr. Mann, “I can’t see either of these papers being in the next IPCC report. Kevin and I will keep them out somehow — even if we have to redefine what the peer-review literature is!”

Which in essence is what they did. The more frantically they talked up “peer review” as the only legitimate basis for criticism, the more assiduously they turned the process into what James Lewis calls the Chicago machine politics of international science. The headline in the Wall Street Journal Europe is unimproveable: “How To Forge A Consensus.” Pressuring publishers, firing editors, blacklisting scientists: That’s “peer review,” climate-style.

...

“Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?” wondered Juvenal: Who watches the watchmen? But the beauty of the climate-change tree-ring circus is that you never need to ask “Who peer-reviews the peer-reviewers?” Mann peer-reviewed Jones, and Jones peer-reviewed Mann, and anyone who questioned their theories got exiled to the unwarmed wastes of Siberia. The “consensus” warm-mongers could have declared it only counts as “peer-reviewed” if it’s published in Peer-Reviewed Studies published by Mann & Jones Publishing Inc (Peermate of the Month: Al Gore, reclining naked, draped in dead polar-bear fur, on a melting ice floe), and Ed Begley Jr. and “Andy” Revkin would still have wandered out glassy-eyed into the streets droning “Peer-reviewed studies. Cannot question. Peer-reviewed studies. The science is settled . . . ”

Here is my hope -- actually, my belief, because I think this is going to happen.

I think that most scientists have stayed on the sidelines on this. If you're in a different field than "climate modeling" (whatever the hell that "field" is -- it seems to be nothing but sloppy coding and using off-the-shelf statistical software) you have little incentive to get involved or speak out.

Let's face it -- your spouses and friends want to believe this, and they consider it something of a holy duty to promote the "green" agenda. Even if you know that there is something rotten and filthy going on here, what's it to you? Who can fight city hall? Or worse than city hall -- the strong sentiments of your peers and friends and wives and children. Vox populi, vox dei, the voice of the people is the voice of God.

Sure, science is being corrupted, but not your corner of it, and climate "science" isn't really even science in the first place, and their end goals are (supposedly) laudable, so....

People have very big incentives to keep out of this -- and very big disincentives to involve themselves. People always find it easier to ignore a problem and pretend it away than to confront it. And given the choice, they'll do that 99% of the time. It takes a fearless and determined individual to go against groupthink -- and even a bit of a prick, too, because, let's face it, careers can (and should!) be ruined here.

But that sort of individual is rare, unfortunately, even in science, where supposedly only the truth counts and individual relationships and colleagues' careers don't matter.

But now... I don't know if scientists have the choice anymore of ignoring the problem. This case is getting enough attention -- and the details are hair-raising enough for anyone who does science for the science and not just the paycheck -- that others will have to weigh in here, about whether the special papal dispensation afforded for climate secret science is legitimate... or if it is hopelessly corrupting.

Scientists will have to weigh in: Is it "science" when data and methodologies are kept secret and only the conclusions published, stripped of any backing evidence that can be criticized (or even merely examined)?

What the hell is that? If you want to keep your evidence secret, keep your conclusions secret too. You cannot offer naked conclusions -- assertions without a shred of evidence backing them -- as you conspire in secret to delete data rather than disclose it and "hide behind IPR claims." (Intellectual Property Rights, that is.)

Conclusions without evidence deserve the the precise level of seriousness their proponents invest them with: None at all. Because if they meant to be taken seriously, they'd offer their data and methodology to the world.

Some liberals have whined about the plight of these poor climate "scientists," being harrassed to death with thousands of FOIA requests and inquiries and pesterings about data and methods. They have so little time to deal with these things, the apologists whine; who can blame them for getting exasperated and cutting a few corners?

The only reason, however, there were so many requests and follow-up questions and inquires is because they were determined from the outset to reveal nothing. Had they simply done what all other scientists do, and reveal their data and methods upfront and without prompting, they would not have to answer all these pesky FOIA demands.

It is precisely because they are determined to conceal this stuff that it takes so much of their precious jury-rigging time. It is because they are determined to conceal that they spend so much time contriving spurious refusals to legal FOIA demands and so much time plotting to delete emails.

If they weren't spending so much time being dishonest, lying advocates, it sure would free up a lot of their time to do some actual science.

I think this is the time when other scientists get over their fear and denial and start calling out the charlatans posing as their "colleagues."

Posted by: Ace at 01:27 PM | Comments (93)
Post contains 1128 words, total size 8 kb.

1 An Army of Martin Luthers

-

write that book, ace, and you'll make meeeelyons.

... most of which you'll end up giving to Glenn Reynolds due to infringement or some such.

.

Posted by: BumperStickerist at November 30, 2009 01:34 PM (ruzrP)

2 the scientific method does not apply to liberals, neither does basic math where 1+1=2.

Posted by: x11b1p at November 30, 2009 01:34 PM (ejoAx)

3 Dems, "Quick! We need loudmouth jackass Sen. Grayson to come in and spew insanity to divert attention!"

Posted by: Hussein the Plumber at November 30, 2009 01:35 PM (r1h5M)

4 Chicago Machine Peer Review.

A review that the agreed to result/conclusion was achevied and that the correct colors were used in the charts and graphs

Posted by: Buzzsaw at November 30, 2009 01:36 PM (tf9Ne)

5 You neo-con global warming deniers are all just racists.    You'll be sorry when all the polar bears are dead or living in Toronto.

Posted by: gus at November 30, 2009 01:37 PM (Vqruj)

6 The East Anglia CRU nexus is to science what Charles Ponzi is to financial investing.  The same principle applies: investment in a Ponzi scheme is "peer-reviewed" by all the other suckers who got into the pyramid ahead of you.

Posted by: stuiec at November 30, 2009 01:39 PM (7AOgy)

7

2+2 now equals 5.

No, we won't provide our data or methodology.

Deniers will have a rat cage strapped to their faces until their thinking is corrected.

Posted by: Warden at November 30, 2009 01:41 PM (jNkHq)

8 Rush had a point about the Sanctity of the Data being important with regard to Big Tobacco.  The left was all stricken and afflicted about the quality and nature of the science reports being put out by Big Tobacco.

My independent, originally conceived, but not necessarily unique observation is this:

What the CRU is doing is identical to what Bernie Madoff did.

Bernie asserted that his investment scheme was legit.

Bernie didn't share his raw data.

There were skeptics who doubted that Bernie's investment strategy was legit.

But ...

The statements put out by Bernie Madoff's company were "peer reviewed" by a government regulatory agency.  So the skeptics were simply kooks who didn't understand investing - despite many of the skeptics having expertise in the area of finances and regulations.

seriously, though, is there a meaningful distinction between the processes and procedures used by the CRU and those used Bernie Madoff's company before the fraud was found out?

.




Posted by: BumperStickerist at November 30, 2009 01:41 PM (ruzrP)

9

Maybe we should float the rumor that all of these guys are really chiropractors.  You know how easy it is for MD's to look down on them!

Posted by: Hussein the Plumber at November 30, 2009 01:41 PM (r1h5M)

10 You neo-con global warming deniers are all just racists. You'll be sorry when all the polar bears are dead or living in Toronto.

Posted by: gus at November 30, 2009 06:37 PM (Vqruj)

Hey, apparently the big culinary craze in Canada at the moment is seal meat.

Global warming just makes it easier to get to the seals -- less ice in the way.

Posted by: stuiec at November 30, 2009 01:42 PM (7AOgy)

11 This sort of thing infects 'science' up and down the disciplines and is far from solely a problem in climate research.

Posted by: ECM at November 30, 2009 01:43 PM (nYKDd)

12 I think most people have an overly idealistic view of "science". I have worked with an managed many scientists and these are the people that could not get a job after their BS so they stayed on and got a PhD. This is science and it is as ugly petty, competitive and corrupted as well, .. everything else.
The problem is not the science, it is the socialist agenda that is using the science as an excuse. The problem is the bazillion the government is pissing away in grants and funding.

Posted by: jcp at November 30, 2009 01:43 PM (DHNp4)

13

What's stands out to me is what many of these scientists give as a reason for entering their field. It's always "To save the planet!" or some variant thereof. In other words, they began by assuming the problem and then spent their careers trying to prove it. I find it striking how little actual inquiry is on display here, how little intellectual curiosity -- even as contrarian thought-experiment.

It's no accident that most of these doom-mongers are academics and public servants. The mindset on display in the filched emails is on daily display at nearly every university and publicly-funded institution in the land. "Consensus" and "peer review" are simply different words for "conformism", and it's led to the usual problems associated with inbreeding.

 

Posted by: Monty at November 30, 2009 01:43 PM (sYaae)

14 Nice data set youse got dere. Be a shame if sumtin' happened to it.

Posted by: Mr Science, M.O.U.S.E at November 30, 2009 01:44 PM (4Kl5M)

15

O/T:

 

Saw this on another site.  IF YOU GET AN EMAIL SAYING 'NAKED PICTURES OF NANCY PELOSI'  DO NOT OPEN IT.  It contains actual pictures of a naked Nancy Pelosi.

Posted by: fightobama at November 30, 2009 01:45 PM (6IV8T)

16 Let's face it -- your spouses...

Imagine a world where being a "denier" would get you so laid. Flying '55 Chevys belching smoke black and heavy as asphalt, robot whores belching...whatever, the whole hairy-chested laser-totin' sci-fi world grandpa told us we'd live to see.

But nooooo. Bitches set us up!

Posted by: oblig. at November 30, 2009 01:51 PM (rQ95J)

17 Why are you creationists posting here, did you forget that all of you are BANNED from the interwebs !!!111!!11!

BTW, please buy crap on amazon to support me. kthxbye

Posted by: Chuckles Johnson at November 30, 2009 01:52 PM (Cxsey)

18 Ace, I'm sorry but this is the last straw.

You're banned.


Posted by: Charles Johnson at November 30, 2009 01:52 PM (FCWQb)

19 Charles, blow me

Posted by: mbruce at November 30, 2009 01:55 PM (t/GDA)

20 I once shot a polar bear in my pajamas.

Posted by: sifty at November 30, 2009 01:55 PM (15gto)

21 So... are we saying that liberals should not be scientists? Because I'm OK with that.

Posted by: shibumi at November 30, 2009 01:56 PM (OKZrE)

22 And the result? The politicians and their science whores ignore it and move on the kill our prosperity and control every aspect of our lives, down to how many lights you may turn on and your thermostat settings.

We are pissing in the wind here, people.

Posted by: MCPO Airdale at November 30, 2009 01:56 PM (UGAk/)

23

Its funny to watch the believers react to this news.  To them, global warming is their new God.  To question it, blasphemy.

That doofus Ed Bagely jr. (sp?) was on Cavuto last week after the news broke, and was asked about it.  This dude who I thought was calm and rational went from 0 to batshit crazy in 2 seconds spewing nonsense at the host and even said something about 'death panels' in his insanity laced reply.

Truly frightening.  Wow

Posted by: Billy Barty at November 30, 2009 01:57 PM (IMSJ7)

24
I went all the way to Copenhagen and all I got was a green ring around my dick.

Posted by: barry obama at November 30, 2009 01:58 PM (Oxen1)

25 Please, PLEASE get these "scientists" run out on a rail. They keep feeding me computer disks and printer paper. Have you ever tried to crap a floppy disk?

Oh, what I'd give for some kibble....

Posted by: The Dog that ate the AGW homework at November 30, 2009 01:58 PM (l1Wlr)

26 I once shot a polar bear in my pajamas.

Wow, you must wear some pretty big pajamas!

Posted by: Wolf J. Flywheel at November 30, 2009 01:58 PM (aC0uO)

27 Cock! I love cock!

It's science!

Posted by: erg at November 30, 2009 01:59 PM (u6zet)

28 "You're banned. "

Banns are used to celebrate marriage - which is an affront against Gaia.

So, membership in the neo-Luddite elite revoked Chucky.

Posted by: Al at November 30, 2009 02:00 PM (0lyUI)

29 You know, I find it fascinating that the warm-mongers keep accusing the "deniers" of being anti-scientific and ignoring the scientific process and all of that.  Well, no wonder those accusations were flying, that's what the supposed scientists on the global warmy side were doing.

Throwing away the data is mind bottling.  Not only that, it's the hook that everyone can understand.  You don't just heave out the original data unless you've got something to hide.

Posted by: alexthechick at November 30, 2009 02:00 PM (rfBP3)

30 11 This sort of thing infects 'science' up and down the disciplines and is far from solely a problem in climate research.

Posted by: ECM at November 30, 2009 06:43 PM (nYKDd)

I call it the "social scientific method" because those people have been doing it for decades.

Anyone who has done a High School or University college class in a lab science knows how to fudge data.

The real answer here is the funding.  Nobody in, say, computer science is going to sit by quietly while a scam gets absurd amounts of federal funding.  Much of the climate science cash comes from DOE and NSF with a huge part of NASA's budget going there, but there are people, notably in physics, who have changed their research focus because of the huge dollars in that area.  Roy Spencer, leading skeptic, was trained in meteorology and not climatology.

Of course, the big money is NIH research.  I was thinking of submitting a proposal for NIH to not cure cancer.  You see, I can fail to cure cancer just like the current scientists are failing to cure cancer, but I can do it faster and cheaper.

Posted by: AmishDude at November 30, 2009 02:00 PM (T0NGe)

31 Ed Begley Jr. is about what you'd expect him to be. And I really can't make up anything worse than that to call him. He's that much of a f-up in real life.

Ed Begley Sr. should have worn a rubber.

Posted by: sifty at November 30, 2009 02:00 PM (15gto)

32 I think Obama wants to go to Copenhagen to get away from the Wookie. Damn the science.

Posted by: Dr. Spank at November 30, 2009 02:01 PM (GGgoa)

33 What's stands out to me is what many of these scientists give as a reason for entering their field. It's always "To save the planet!" or some variant thereof. In other words, they began by assuming the problem and then spent their careers trying to prove it.

That's in the ads for majoring in environmental science.  "Save the world.  Avoid the math."

Well, part of that might be made up.

Posted by: AmishDude at November 30, 2009 02:03 PM (T0NGe)

34

I was having a discussion with a non-religious friend of mine not long ago, and he asked me how I could be both a believing Christian and an empiricist at the same time. Our conversation tended towards what we consider to be a "scientific fact".

My friend told me that lots of scientific "facts" aren't amenable to physical experimentation -- some because technology is not advanced enough, and some (like string-theory) possibly not provable even in principle. I told him that "science" without experiment is not science at all, but metaphysics. The Rutherford-Bohr model of the atom existed as theory for quite a while before it was confirmed experimentally; you cannot therefore call it a "fact" until it was confirmed by experiment (and even then it is more an approximation than an actual description). The ancient Greeks postulated the existence of 'atoms' long before there was any empirical support for their existence.

My point is that science does not depend on positive proof, but rather on negative proof. A truly scientific theory is one that is falsifiable -- if it makes empirical claims, those claims can be invalidated through certain experiments and thus disprove the theory. Global-warming doomcriers offer no falsifiable claims (or simply wave off experiments that conflict with their theory.)

Is there really such a thing as AGW? Possibly, but the warmists have not yet remotely made the case for it, even before evidence of their shoddy methodology was leaked. This whole bromide of AGW being "settled science" is hogwash, and will remain so until it makes testable assertions, and those tests can be reliably repeated. Until then, AGW lies in the same realm as other religious beliefs: something you take on faith alone.

 

Posted by: Monty at November 30, 2009 02:03 PM (sYaae)

35 Ay! That's a spicy-a meatball!

Posted by: Giordano Bruno at November 30, 2009 02:03 PM (Nn6P3)

36

A commentator made a great point over at the Atlantic.  If Gore had won in 2000 and had managed to push through his warmening agenda, is there any doubt at all that right now, the "experts" would be telling us that Fat Albert's  wise and glorious programs singlehandedly halted AGW?  Temperatures are cooling!  The polar bears are florishing!  All due to St. Al!  Hail the Gorebot! And give us more of your money!

Posted by: Donna V. at November 30, 2009 02:04 PM (x4lE5)

37

I think Obama wants to go to Copenhagen to get away from the Wookie.

Ha, I bet Michelle's got a new dress all whipped up by forty serfs.  No way Michelle's missing the Peace prize ceremony.  It will be the second time in her life she'll be proud to be an American.

Posted by: huerfano at November 30, 2009 02:06 PM (vtuZz)

38 Did anyone else's Mom used to say "There's something rotten in Denmark" when something didn't look legit?  Who knew she understood climate science so well?

Posted by: sherlock at November 30, 2009 02:07 PM (2ajJo)

39

As far as it goes, I've never believed the notion that we as humans are warming the globe.  If anything, I would be more likely to believe in cooling, due to smoke, and other particulate matter reflecting more of the suns energy.

Now, for what it's worth, I am all for some form of so-called "green" energy, or many forms of it.  As long as it works.  I would love nothing more than to have a good solar panel and effective battery system to power my home or business 24/7 reliably, and never have a light bill.  I would absolutely love to install some kind of magic crystal on my dashboard and drive ten thousand miles without paying for fuel.

However, none of those things exist.  When they do, and the tech has advanced enough to be mass produced and sold (relatively) cheaply, I'll be happy to buy it.  And that's the key; some schmoe has to invent it, patent it, test it, and bring it to market.  No amount of guvmint bribery is going to speed that process up, in fact, it will probably slow it down.

In 1978, a dude invented a hydraulic transmission and installed it on a large Ford car.  The principle was the engine turned a hydraulic pump, sending fluid to a hydraulic motor on the rear axle, moving the car.  When one applied the brakes, the engine cut off, the forward motion of the car turned the axle motor into a pump, filling a high pressure hydraulic accumulator.  When you let off the brake when the light turned green, the accumulator dumped fluid pressure back to axle, starting the car moving, and refiring the engine.  (Does this whole process sound familiar?)  It effectively doubled the gas milage of that old Ford from 20 to 40.

The gentleman  applied for a patent (not sure how that worked out) and was trying to get it tested for large-scale application.  The Carter Energy Department declined to proceed with testing, instead funding and promoting some form of wieghted flywheel or some such stuff, effectively killing one of the first successful "hybrid" cars, at a time when fuel costs were high and people were worried about the environment.

Anyway, the point is, the government has no business getting involved in these things.  The potential for personal profit is a wonderful motivator, both to the inventer themselves, as well as investors if the inventor can show a promising product will come from it.  When the government simply subsidizes the research, all they get is more and more research with little in the way of reliable results.

Posted by: JamesLee at November 30, 2009 02:08 PM (LmJuL)

40 Lorenz is spinning in his grave, seeing what these hacks have done with some cheap computing time, lots of government dollars, and bagfulls of lies and pseudo-scientific distortions.

As to other scientists sticking their necks out to comment about the absurd rantings of the climate pseudo-scientists ... don't bet on it. It's too easy for their own funding to dry up (no matter what field they are in) and for them to be made pariahs in their academic coccons. Any scientist with some balls has already spoken, as the pseudo-scientific rantings of the climatologists has been clear for years.

Posted by: progressoverpeace at November 30, 2009 02:09 PM (A46hP)

41 Giordano Bruno at November 30, 2009 06:59 PM (u6zet)

When.......The......Erg hits your eye like a big pizza pie thats'a moron!

Everybody sing along!

Posted by: Dean Martin at November 30, 2009 02:11 PM (aC0uO)

42

Not many people remember that James Clerk Maxwell's first passion was writing romance novels.

A fully excited Millie Amp went ohm! ohm! ohm! but her capacity was insufficient and she finished the encounter feeling drained.

 

Posted by: Monty at November 30, 2009 02:14 PM (sYaae)

43 Ergie, did the Department of Education ever teach you any other insult than "knucklehead"?  It's either that or you have a severe case of Asspergers. 

You fuckin' retard.

Posted by: Kratos (on the back of Gaia, scaling Mt Olympus) at November 30, 2009 02:15 PM (otlXg)

44

Man, this is like standing in front of a giant boulder that has been rolling down the side of a mountain for half a mile shouting "I'll stop it, I'll stop it." The man-made global warming boulder is too big for one man to stop, Ace. You are a voice crying in the wilderness, my friend. Until a much larger body of reputable folks put up a hue and cry that stops the presses, nothing will change. I admire  and agree with your thoughts, but I sure wish more people like you had access to a much larger audience. There is so much money and power behind the GWT by now, and so many people have been brain-washed in the theory that it is going to take a mighty powerful bunch of believers to change things.

Nothing like being able to state the obvious, huh?

Posted by: mikeyslaw at November 30, 2009 02:16 PM (QMGr1)

45

Is there really such a thing as AGW? Possibly, but the warmists have not yet remotely made the case for it, even before evidence of their shoddy methodology was leaked. This whole bromide of AGW being "settled science" is hogwash, and will remain so until it makes testable assertions, and those tests can be reliably repeated. Until then, AGW lies in the same realm as other religious beliefs: something you take on faith alone.

Posted by: Monty at November 30, 2009 07:03 PM (sYaae)

Indeed, the shocking thing is that the sum of the evidence for AGW, if you accept the warmist viewpoint is:

The amount of CO2 in the atmosphere has gone up since the Industrial Revolution started. Temperatures have generally gone up during the same time frame. Therefore CO2 emissions from human activity are raising the world's temperature to an unacceptable amount that will cause widespread destruction in the very near future.Or the midterm future. Or like 100 years from now.

That's it. Causality is now Causation.


Posted by: Phil Jones at November 30, 2009 02:16 PM (bgcml)

46 Oops, my sock was stuck. The real Phil Jones would never be caught engaging in logic.

Posted by: 18-1 at November 30, 2009 02:17 PM (bgcml)

47 Vox populi, vox dei

Or as William T. Sherman opined, Vox populi, vox humbug!

Posted by: I R A Darth Aggie at November 30, 2009 02:19 PM (kay6f)

48 Logic?

Never heard of it.

Posted by: The Real Phil Jones at November 30, 2009 02:20 PM (GGgoa)

49 Science proves that people who listen to obscure, shitty bands are really really super smart.

I win. It's science, wingers.

Posted by: erg at November 30, 2009 02:21 PM (u6zet)

50

Did anyone else's Mom used to say "There's something rotten in Denmark" when something didn't look legit?  Who knew she understood climate science so well?~sherlock

Yeah, or had actually read Shakespeare's "Hamlet" in high school.

Posted by: Speller at November 30, 2009 02:23 PM (7Ldd7)

51 50  Every generation, the rightwing knuckleheads rise up and shake their fists at science. If it's not refutation of demonstrated proof of environmental damage from dioxibns or DDT, it's some other horseshit that arsenic and mercury is actually good for you.

I stand with you Bruno.

Posted by: Malaria at November 30, 2009 02:24 PM (GGgoa)

52

A partial list of Little Blue Toadstool's "partners":

Fatburners:

Boda Extract No.3 Best fat burner pill ever!

Fundraisers:

ABC Fundraising. Includes links to highest fund raising cookie doughs, candles and pretzels.

Alternative Medicine:

Medical Marijuana Group. Stoned = healthy.

Online casino:

Casinò On Line. A great place to lose money if you understand Italian.

Chucky certainly has an eclectic group of  borderline criminal friends.

Posted by: Tinian at November 30, 2009 02:25 PM (7+pP9)

53 @36 Donna V.

If Gore had won in 2000 and had managed to push through his warmening agenda, is there any doubt at all that right now, the "experts" would be telling us that Fat Albert's  wise and glorious programs singlehandedly halted AGW? 

If ManBearPig successfully stole the 2000 election, he wouldn't have gotten into the AGW scam in the first place.  AGW was just a hissy fit outlet for his insane jealousy over having been beaten by his better.

Posted by: MikeO at November 30, 2009 02:29 PM (Ce+tv)

54 @54 self

Oops.  I should have said, "had successfully stolen."


Posted by: MikeO at November 30, 2009 02:30 PM (Ce+tv)

55 50  Every generation, the rightwing knuckleheads rise up and shake their fists at science.

Yeah, you got us there, ergie.  We fabricate data, throw out prodigious amounts of raw data, and conspire to keep dissenting views out of scientific journals - all to smite science.  Damn you, science!  Oh wait, isn't that all what people like Jones and Mann did?

If it's not refutation of demonstrated proof of environmental damage from dioxibns or DDT, it's some other horseshit that arsenic and mercury is actually good for you.

It's a good thing that DDT was banned, Gaia only knows how many more people might have not gotten malaria and lived.  We can't have all those extra people on the Earth, can we, Paul Ehrich follower?  And, you knucklehead, who on the right said that arsenic and mercury are good for you?  Must be a Kos talking point.


Every generation. And it's all about preserving what knuckleheads imagine as the "freedom" to deny the existence of negative externalities.

That English degree's working just fine with you, ergie.  "Negative externalities".

It's a good thing you usually are ignored.

Alas, not by you, oh Guardian of Science!

Posted by: Kratos (on the back of Gaia, scaling Mt Olympus) at November 30, 2009 02:31 PM (otlXg)

56

environmental damage from dioxibns or DDT

Well, Rachel Carson got her wish and DDT was banned. The millions of people who later died of malaria bred by mosquitoes would no doubt thank her. Except they were dead. Of malaria. Which could have been prevented by...spraying DDT. (Which in any case was nowhere near as toxic as Carson and other alarmists asserted, but by the time the evidence was in the damage was done.)

You and your ilk belong to a Gaia cult, nothing more and nothing less. If what you do is science, then so is the shaking of chicken-bones at the sun to bring the rain. Sure, it may rain the next day and vindicate the witch-doctor...or the drought might continue and the witch-doctor gets stoned to death for lying. If you're so sure of your science, then offer up some testable hypotheses.

1. What is an "unacceptable" amount of CO2? If you don't know, then how do you know that we have too much?

2. If "global warming" is unacceptable, you must have some "proper" global climate in mind. What is it? If you don't know, how will we know when we get there?

3. Assuming the first two questions, are there any reliable, cost-effective ways of removing CO2 from the atmosphere in the amounts necessary to reverse AGW? Are any such developments realistically expected in the next decade? If not, then what's the point of the entire exercise?

4. How do you plan to reduce global emissions without getting China and India on board? How will enlisting America into whatever carbon-reducing scheme you choose influence China or India to do the same? Doesn't this lead to a "prisoner's dilemma" that ends up crippling the US's economy while doing almost nothing to solve the (purported) problem?

As The Goracle might put it: inconvenient truths.

 

Posted by: Monty at November 30, 2009 02:32 PM (sYaae)

57 I know this environmental scientist in the pay of Big Energy. (Cue hissing from the watermelons.)
Her take is thus:
For $20K she would have no trouble in finding some hack who would come to a scientific conclusion favourable to her clients. 
Her clients would've wasted that twenty grand, because that study wouldn't stand up to rigorous scrutiny. 
Being Evil Energy, everything they do is checked with a tunneling electron microscope.
Which is why she commissions  multi million dollar studies.  A favourable result would be nice* but the science irregardless, better be unassailable. 
*An adverse finding doesn't mean they pack up and go home, it just means they need to revisit how they intend to get from A to B, project-wise. 
The added bonus is that everyone, watermelons included, gets put a little fucking knowledge, should they care to pay attention.

Posted by: lotocoti at November 30, 2009 02:34 PM (9v2CP)

58 "Every generation, the rightwing knuckleheads rise up and shake their fists at science. "

I'd rather rise up and shake my fist at math - it just isn't right to have numbers and letters together like that.

Give me P.E. or study hall any day.


Posted by: Intrepid at November 30, 2009 02:34 PM (92zkk)

59 Begley Jr. monitors the amount of water his wife uses in the shower. Let that sink in for a minute.

Posted by: Blackford Oakes at November 30, 2009 02:37 PM (DtTM9)

60

I'd rather rise up and shake my fist at math - it just isn't right to have numbers and letters together like that.

And then there's all those stupid characters that aren't even American. Curse you, epsilon! May you and delta and zeta rot for eternity! And take your miserable kin with you!

 

Posted by: Monty at November 30, 2009 02:39 PM (sYaae)

61 I think most scientists looked at global warming like they do... uh, certain other areas of science, in which they presume the people involved know what they're talking about and are doing their job properly. They see any disagreement or doubt signs of doubt for the entire profession and a negative statement about themselves, not just "climate science." They are part of the team, and you're attacking the team when you doubt the word of an accredited scientist, especially one with peer review.

So they stick up for their guys without even knowing the data or information. Yet, as Ace says later above: they're starting to read that information. The legacy media doesn't care about this but scientists do and when they see this stuff, it pisses them off more than it does you or I.

This makes them look like asses. This makes the entire profession look bad. It smears them, not just the ones involved. Their professional credibility and even funding is on the line.

Posted by: Christopher Taylor at November 30, 2009 02:39 PM (PQY7w)

62 I don't know if scientists have the choice anymore of ignoring the problem.

Speaking as one, with a PhD that I got not because I could not get a job after my BS (I got one and worked at it a while before going back to school) but so that I could be an industrial scientist, I think the time is as good as any to weigh in.

I'm a chemist by training. In my real job, I do a little wet chemistry, but mainly I program computers (in LabVIEW and C++, not FORTRAN, thank God) to control instrumentation to do all sorts of weird experiments, and spend about as much time trying to make sense of the data. All my stuff is secret, but of course, it is privately funded. I went through the peer-review process, though, and have a dozen or so academic papers with my name somewhere on the author list. I hated the process, because it was like having someone inspect your privates and make critical remarks, but I feel like it kept our science sharp. I got crazy, incoherent responses from some reviewers, and a lot of nit-picky stuff that made me be go back and make sure I was right. We bitched to editors when the refs were incoherent, but generally, we just tried to satisfy them. It did make things better, overall.

I am a little biased, I suppose, in that I tend to not think of much outside the physical sciences, and some of the more molecule-based biology, as 'real' science. I don't think that something like climate science is unimportant, but rather, that it is always likely to be kind of uncertain, hand-wavy, and kind of, ah, full of shit. It is just too damned complicated to understand in the same way you do a gyroscope or a Diels-Alder reaction. And those are pretty hard, really, when you dig into the details.

So, if it were not being used to bludgeon everyone, I would probably ignore all of the AGW stuff. If they were just yelling "The sky is falling", I'd keep on doing what I was doing, and might think "Whatever. How'd that "population bomb" work out. Now hush, I'm concentrating."

Since it looks like the various governments are going to use this to make me make a lot of changes, I'd inquire thusly:

1. We are coming out of an ice age, and more recently, a 'little ice age". So I need to be convinced that the warming observed is unusual. With good, checkable data.
2. Projections are not data. So they do not count as evidence. They are an attempt to prove you understand something, at first, then a tool to predict stuff, knowing that your output is no better, and very much worse, than input.
3. Are there temperature records independent of the Hadley and Nasa sets? Are there copies of the real, ugly data, not the massaged, 'corrected' data? In the absence of these, I think we are hard-pressed to  double check the work, and while I have no reason to distrust climatologists in general, I don't have any reason to trust them, either. Nullius in Verba, or something like that.
4. Where is the overwhelming evidence that the earth is warming, if the temp record is hosed? I just looked at satellite data of the ice caps. There's a lot more now than at the same time 10 years ago. My eyes are naive, and I'm not an expert, but if you want my money, you'll have to convince me that I can't trust what looks obvious.
5. Some smart computer science type make us a graph that links the strands of evidence, and show me that the data doesn't all link back to the same few groups, and to the same funky data sets.

Finally, I'd say this: I am not qualified to check their work. Generally, I rely on trusting experts outside my field. But after looking at the Hadley code a bit, I am not going to be more than agnostic until some stuff gets sorted out.

Posted by: Dave Eaton at November 30, 2009 02:43 PM (3PnBa)

63 #62  This makes them look like asses. This makes the entire profession look bad. It smears them, not just the ones involved. Their professional credibility and even funding is on the line.

Indeed.  I remember reading a poll a few years ago (but it was Newsweek, alas) showing that among the listed professions, scientists were one of the most trusted professional people.  If Climategate gets out more, that's going to take a big hit.

Posted by: Kratos (on the back of Gaia, scaling Mt Olympus) at November 30, 2009 02:44 PM (otlXg)

64 It's capitalism's fault that I don't get paid more to surf the internet at my taxpayer funded "job".

Posted by: erg at November 30, 2009 02:44 PM (u6zet)

65 And again: what other "settled" and "the consensus is solid" areas of science are like this, areas which everyone on the side of considers people idiots for questioning, accuse anyone who points to flaws as anti-scientific, and uses as a litmus test for stupidity and intelligence?

I'm just saying, a little cynicism is warranted here, even about things you've always presumed to be true.

Posted by: Christopher Taylor at November 30, 2009 02:46 PM (PQY7w)

66 Hey, do you get tenure working at the Colorado Department of Education?? I'm thinking no on that one. 

Figures that Erg turns out to be just another faceless, soul-less bureaucrat checking if Boulder has enough left-handed half-Eskimo half-Samoan C6 quadriplegics on their varsity field hockey team, or no matching funds for them!!!!!! What a life.

Posted by: Sort-of-Mad Max at November 30, 2009 02:46 PM (aC0uO)

67

"The gentleman  applied for a patent (not sure how that worked out) and was trying to get it tested for large-scale application.  The Carter Energy Department declined to proceed with testing, instead funding and promoting some form of wieghted flywheel or some such stuff, effectively killing one of the first successful "hybrid" cars, at a time when fuel costs were high and people were worried about the environment."

*******************

That story just has to be garbled.   When you apply for the patent you are not applying for government money to help you test it and fund its development.  A patent grant simply gives you the right to exclude others (for a limited term of years) from making, using or selling your invention, or from incorporating it in something else.

The Patent Office would not deny a patent application simply because "the government" wanted to put its money someplace else. Maybe you just mean that the inventor couldn't get public or private money to fund development after he received his patent ??

That happens a lot.  Most patented inventions go nowhere. Many stories exist about this industry or that "suppressing" patents (which are public documents) or buying them up and putting them in a drawer.   It doesn't make much sense -- unless one wants to believe, for example, that GM "sat on" a patent for a chemical tablet that would turn a tank of water into gasoline. (that's one of the stories).    

The thing is,  and this relates to the CRU scandal, you can't be granted a patent unless you describe your invention in terms that others "skilled in the art" of whatever it relates to will be able to reproduce it.  That's the trade-off:  you get an exclusive right, but you have to tell the world what you've done so that others can use that knowledge to promote the "Progress of Science and  the Useful Arts". (See the US Constitution,  Art. I, Sec .  You don't get to say "trust me. It works".

Posted by: effinayright at November 30, 2009 02:53 PM (0M2oB)

68 Monty,

A much simpler view is: There are 3 categories in philosophy: rational, irrational (i.e., 'against' reason), and "arational" (i.e., neither rational nor irrational, but outside either).  Everyone should believe in the rational and shun the irrational.  However, whereas the simplistic atheists reflexively shun the arational, logic actually tolerates religious belief within the arational realm.  The theist need not prove that God's existence is true, simply that it is rationally acceptable. Unless you have sand in your vagina, like Charles Johnson.

Posted by: wooga at November 30, 2009 02:54 PM (2p0e3)

69 Begley Jr. monitors the amount of water his wife uses in the shower. Let that sink in for a minute.

Posted by: Blackford Oakes at November 30, 2009 07:37 PM (DtTM9)

Disgusting.  He should be licking her clean, not letting her waste precious water in the shower.

Posted by: stuiec at November 30, 2009 02:55 PM (7AOgy)

70

43 "A fully excited Millie Amp went ohm! ohm! ohm! but her capacity was insufficient and she finished the encounter feeling drained."

They fluxed all night....

Posted by: effinayright at November 30, 2009 02:56 PM (0M2oB)

71 @40: In 1978, a dude invented a hydraulic transmission and installed it on a large Ford car...

effectively killing one of the first successful "hybrid" cars...

Ferdinand Porsche designed a hybrid in 1901.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Lohner_Porsche.jpg

Posted by: Air-cooled, Rear-engine Anachronda at November 30, 2009 03:00 PM (1OYcp)

72

Saw this on another site.  IF YOU GET AN EMAIL SAYING 'NAKED PICTURES OF NANCY PELOSI'  DO NOT OPEN IT.  It contains actual pictures of a naked Nancy Pelosi.

Posted by: fightobama at November 30, 2009 06:45 PM (6IV8T)

Those pictures have destroyed a lot of flat-screen monitors.  No, not because her hideousness makes the monitor commit suicide: it's because the monitor owners have melted their screens trying to iron out the wrinkles.

Posted by: stuiec at November 30, 2009 03:01 PM (7AOgy)

73

66 And again: what other "settled" and "the consensus is solid" areas of science are like this, areas which everyone on the side of considers people idiots for questioning, accuse anyone who points to flaws as anti-scientific, and uses as a litmus test for stupidity and intelligence?

Well, Darwinism springs to mind.  How many doobies have been smoked, how much bong water has been drunk, how many threads have been hijacked by "debates" between Darwinists and Creationists?

NOT that I am starting such a debate here!!!

Posted by: effinayright at November 30, 2009 03:04 PM (0M2oB)

74 70  Disgusting.  He should be licking her clean, not letting her waste precious water in the shower.

Don't be so short-sighted. Licking leads to sex, sex leads to breeding. Without legitimate authority to confiscate potential embryos (as of this writing), we'll just have Ed Begley 3, 4, 5, and 6 running around consuming resources.

Posted by: Jazzy Johnny Holdren at November 30, 2009 03:06 PM (DtTM9)

75 It takes a fearless and determined [prick] to go against groupthink...

Your welcome.  That green shit has invaded the electronics industry in the form of lead free BS.  The lead free crap has some problems, it can be made to work, but it's pointless.  It takes a prick like me to tell the sales people pushing the lead free process to go die in a fire.

Posted by: John Galt at November 30, 2009 03:08 PM (Ylv1H)

76 Desire for reputation corrupts scientific objectivity...

Posted by: Lan at November 30, 2009 03:09 PM (mxbH9)

77 Saw this on another site. IF YOU GET AN EMAIL SAYING 'NAKED PICTURES OF NANCY PELOSI' DO NOT OPEN IT. It contains actual pictures of a naked Nancy Pelosi.

I got that. It ruined my computer. And by "ruined my computer" I mean a beat my computer into tiny pieces with an axe handle after vomiting uncontrollably like Big Red from that SNL ad in the 70s.

Posted by: Christopher Taylor at November 30, 2009 03:15 PM (PQY7w)

78

@74 Oh no.  Please don't compare climate-gate with evolution.  Evolution is a fact which has been observed for 150 years.  Its been tested using real science (unlike AGW) using predictions and other hypothethis which was confirmed years later.

Creationists aren't using the scientific method to disprove evolution either.  What they do is called 'anomaly hunting'... questioning one issue and concluding that the entire theory is false.

Anti-evolutionists will give ammo to the global warming eco-marxists.  Don't allow it to happen

That is all

Posted by: Hey, lets destroy our economy on purpose!! Great idea Rahm at November 30, 2009 03:19 PM (IMSJ7)

79 Please don't compare climate-gate with evolution

AGW is best compared with eugenics. During the 20s and 30s, all the smart, cool people believed in eugenics. After all, it was science. Also, it was a way to let others know how smart and how cool you were.

Posted by: OregonMuse at November 30, 2009 03:25 PM (6kI9E)

80 During the 20s and 30s, all the smart, cool people believed in eugenics. After all, it was science. Also, it was a way to let others know how smart and how cool you were.

Hey, it sold a shit-load of corn flakes, buddy!

Posted by: John Harvey Kellogg at November 30, 2009 03:31 PM (aC0uO)

81

I hope the well-timed email leak is only step One of a real plan to blow the Global Warming idealogues out of the water.

Step two would be for credible skeptics to show up in force to confront the Warmers on their multiple crimes. (Intervention!) Step three would be a mass defection of Warmer supporters (scientists, journalists and wonks) during the event, or a mass demand to get the science straight before they will support the proposed policies. Step four, the exposure of the socialist groups behind this fraudulent UN/Warmer global ‘governance’ take-over scheme.

Here’s ObamAyres in March, 2009, in his Memorandum on Scientific Integrity (http://tinyurl.com/dkhf89):

The public must be able to trust the science and scientific process informing public policy decisions. Political officials should not suppress or alter scientific or technological findings and conclusions. If scientific and technological information is developed and used by the Federal Government, it should ordinarily be made available to the public. To the extent permitted by law, there should be transparency in the preparation, identification, and use of scientific and technological information in policymaking.

Well.  That's ok with me.  Make it so, ObamAyres. 

Posted by: Satrboardhelm at November 30, 2009 03:42 PM (SgSfB)

82 Interesting take on the idea of scientists not wanting to rock the boat (so that they fall out of it).  It seems like a good parallel to Islamists--the "moderate Muslims" have no good reason to criticise the radicals, because A) they become targets themselves and B) hey, if the radicals win and impose Islam on the world, everyone wins.

Posted by: BeckoningChasm at November 30, 2009 03:50 PM (eNxMU)

83 Evolution is a fact which has been observed for 150 years.

This is exactly what I'm talking about. It is neither fact nor observed, not species evolution. All that's been observed and fact is adaptation. The presumption is that means the whole shebang is correct. Is it? That would be good to be sure of before making broad generalizations and attacks on people who disagree, don't you think?

Nutrition is another area: fat is bad for you, salt is bad for you, sugar is bad for you. Are you sure? Can we trust this?

Posted by: Christopher Taylor at November 30, 2009 04:00 PM (PQY7w)

84 Let's imagine you are a scientist who studies ants for a living. Its pretty boring, unglamorous, and you attend so-so conventions in Tampa or San Diego. Its not a bad life and you love your work. Now imagine, that somehow super mutant ants were found that threatened the entire planet and mankind's survival. Dude, you're a rock star now. You fly first class to Bali, Copenhagen, Brisbane, for conferences. You have instant respect, more resources and money in grants. etc. Then one day you find that the super ants will all die out in a few years. Do you release this finding? Or do you fly to Paris and hob nob with the presidents of the world? Hmmmmmm.

Posted by: sexypig at November 30, 2009 04:14 PM (ON5IV)

85 And what's the result if you don't release the findings and they all die?

What's happening now. I'm not saying "evolution is a lie" or "we can eat anything we want" or "you can go the speed of light, Einstein was a fraud."

I'm saying scientists have lost the benefit of the doubt. That we can't trust them to do their job correctly when money or worldview or politics become involved.

Posted by: Christopher Taylor at November 30, 2009 04:18 PM (PQY7w)

86

This is exactly what I'm talking about. It is neither fact nor observed, not species evolution. All that's been observed and fact is adaptation.

Dare I wade in? I dare, I dare!

"Adaptation" and "evolution" are different words for the same idea. Creationists like "adaptation" for some reason; apparently "evolution" carries a foul odor that "adaptation" does not.

And speciation has most assuredly been observed, and not just once but several times, both in the wild and in the lab. Species drosophilia melanogaster (the fruit fly) has been selectively evolved into completely different species (cannot cross-breed, different chromosomal patterns, different morphology). The same effect, only this time spontaneous, was observed among certain species of Northwester moth and some South American birds.

But the birds are still birds! the cry goes. The moths are still moths! Well...yes and no. The line between species is not as clearly defined as some think. Is a coyote the same as a dog? Is a dingo? Is a hyena? (The answer is no, in case you're wondering.) And the morphology changes ever more, generation to generation, until...a moth is no longer a moth, but sometime else entirely. A wasp loses its wings and becomes an ant (or an ant keeps its wings and becomes a wasp). How can whales and dolphins and manatees be explained except by evolution? Or mastodons and wooly mammoths -- they're not elephants, but they're like elephants in the same way that chimps are like humans. They share common ancestors, though they are different species.

Evolution, unlike AGW, has more than a century of robust experimentation and predictive science behind it, and has passed with flying colors. No other model even comes close to matching the Modern Synthesis for robustness.

(And I always feel compelled to add: and I am a committed, believing Christian. It takes nothing from me spiritually to accept the reality of evolution. I cannot fathom why so many Christians find it so difficult to accept.)

 

Posted by: Monty at November 30, 2009 04:33 PM (sYaae)

87 "...and even a bit of a prick..."

Oh, baby. I love it when you talk dirty.

Posted by: MlR at November 30, 2009 04:52 PM (op9m5)

88 But the birds are still birds! the cry goes. The moths are still moths! Well...yes and no.

There's no "no" about it. They change within their genetic code, not across it to something else. That moth didn't become a beagle.

But that wasn't my point as I said later. Its about not being able to trust these guys like people always have. Its about them losing the benefit of the doubt.

Posted by: Christopher Taylor at November 30, 2009 05:36 PM (PQY7w)

89

They change within their genetic code, not across it to something else.

...which is what separates one species from another. It's not a clean cut, as I said before; it's a transition. There's more genetic difference between a mouse and a rat than there is between you and a bonobo or a chimpanzee. Why is that so difficult to accept? You can prove it to yourself, if you master the necessary biology and chemistry; it's not as if it's some cruel hoax perpetrated to make you feel bad.

The whole concept of biological cladistics (kingdom/phylum/class/order/family/genus/species) is a lot looser than most laymen think it is. There are few sharp lines or clear dividing points. The family tree is more like a crazy-ass bush than a tree. You (and I) did not evolve from chimps; we share a common ancestor with chimps. And we and the chimps have a commmon ancestor with gorillas even further back. And so on.

If and when we ever discover extraterrestrial form(s) of life, it will be interesting to see if they also use the same chemistry of life as we do (DNA, carbon-based, etc.).

 

Posted by: Monty at November 30, 2009 05:45 PM (sYaae)

90 JMO, but I think engineers and physicists and others in the hard sciences have suspected or believed this to be a crock for a long, long time.  Everyone expected it to blow over like the coming ice age scare.  Unfortunately it was more like the nuclear energy fear mongering.  Scientists will to a man tell you that fear of nuclear energy is way overblown.  Warming or not, climate change is also overblown.

No one listens.  The alarmists have a bigger and more exciting spiel.  Everyone gets to feel like they are saving the planet while they fight progress and modernity.




Posted by: Voluble at November 30, 2009 05:47 PM (nZNTl)

91 That green shit has invaded the electronics industry in the form of lead free BS.

Don't get me started on that Eurotard RoHS shit.  Those dipshits legislatively mandated massive waves of electronic system failures 10 years down the road due to tin whisker formation that's common on the high-tin solders.


Posted by: Purple Avenger at November 30, 2009 06:43 PM (sUghd)

92 Monty all I'm trying to say is: don't believe it just 'cause a scientist told you so. They've lost that right, don't you think?

And also: don't treat people who disagree with you like an ignorant cretin. You never know what it is they are aware of and have studied, or on the internet who they really are.

Posted by: Christopher Taylor at December 01, 2009 10:52 AM (PQY7w)

93 xxx

Posted by: Fish at December 02, 2009 09:30 AM (6mfq0)

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