For anyone who has been educated in the history of science and scientific method, this whole issue of “Global Warming” or “Climate Change” is an embarrassing and painful exercise.
I studied the history of science and scientific method at the undergraduate and graduate levels. That is necessary in order to critically evaluate scientific articles in your area of study. I have published a few peer-reviewed research articles. I served as a reviewer and associate editor of a small scientific journal and received articles for review after my retirement.
As I said, I understand scientific method, and find it to be a painful and embarrassing exercise to witness the debate about “Global Warming” or “Climate Change.” I recently wrote an article for Stumptalk about the influence of political correctness in science. Now I am witnessing the use of political power to move government policy using pseudoscientific arguments presented as established fact. In April of this year, Harvard professor Robert Stavins (professor of business and government) revealed that at a Berlin conference, government officials representing “all of the main countries and regions of the world” forced him to change an influential scientific report on climate change to suit the government interests (money). If Obama is successful, our national energy policy will be crippled to no good purpose and will be enormously expensive for our society.
It is necessary to show that the current climate characteristics are unprecedented if there is a problem to be solved. That has not been accomplished. There is considerable evidence that indicates there are no good data to support that idea, and a lot of historical evidence to indicate there is nothing new happening.
The scientific process is, by its very nature, a point-counterpoint process, with multiple viewpoints and hypotheses in play. It is expected that those supporting one hypothesis will provide results and observations in a public manner that permits others to duplicate their methods and observations and respectfully interact with those with whom they may disagree. I have never heard legitimate established scientists accuse those with whom they disagree of being “heretics” or “denialists” or “skeptics” or any of the other strange accusations being thrown about by “warmists.”
This is a variation of the legal dictum, “If you don’t have the law, you argue the facts; if you don’t have the facts, you argue the law; if you have neither the facts nor the law, then yell.” They have no good facts, so they are yelling. James Hansen of NASA (retired) who absurdly yells that coal trains are “death trains.” Adam Weinstein of the Gawker blog wants deniers to be jailed. “Heretic, denialist and non-believer” are all the language of cults and religions. They want us to believe as a matter of faith, not science. Susan Brooks Thistlethwaite is a former United Church of Christ seminary professor. She has found a new religion, let us call it The Cult of Climate Change. According to her, “superstorms” aren’t an “act of God,” but an act of willful disregard for God’s creation, and the neglect of the human responsibility to care for the planet.”
Thus “There is moral evil to be seen in these super storms, I believe, on two levels. First, there is the moral evil of continuing to pump fossil fuels into the atmosphere, producing global warming. Second, however, is the moral evil of climate change denial, that is, those who would continue to deny, in the face of mounting evidence, that violent climate change is upon us and it is accelerating.”
Susan, nobody I know of pumps fossil fuel into the atmosphere.
Paul Krugman the supposedly sophisticated paragon of liberal elitism and columnist for the New York Times wants deniers to be punished in the afterlife and calls climate-warming denial “an almost inconceivable sin.” In the meantime, increasing numbers of legitimate scientists such as Dr. David Kear, UN consultant, declares that warming fears are “based on unfounded scientific beliefs.” But, on his way to proselytize about the “settled science,” Obama said in his recent speech at the California Wal-Mart, using the language of the cultists, that “inside of Washington we’ve still got some climate deniers who shout loud, but they are wasting everybody’s time on a settled debate.” He hadn’t read the fine print in his own White House 800 page report. “There has been no universal trend in the overall extent of drought across the continental U.S. since 1900,” the authors observe, and “trends in severe storms, including the intensity and frequency of tornadoes, hail, and damaging thunderstorm winds, are uncertain and are being studied intensively.“
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Stumptalk is published weekly in the Crossville Chronicle. The opinions expressed in this column are not necessarily those of the Chronicle publisher, editor or staff. To contact Stumptalk, email coordinator Jim Sykes at firstname.lastname@example.org.