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Planet Janet has a new moon, called Irony

Janet Albrechtsen today in the Australian

IS it too much to ask for a measured climate change debate in 2010? Looking back at 2009, it’s hard to think of a more frustrating debate than the one about anthropogenic global warming.

Janet Albrechtsen October 28 2009

Monckton warned that the aim of the Copenhagen draft treaty was to set up a transnational government on a scale the world has never before seen.

Monckton says the aim of this new government is to have power to directly intervene in the financial, economic, tax and environmental affairs of all the nations that sign the Copenhagen treaty.

Was that one world government fear-mongering ‘measured’ Janet?

64
  • 1
    Posted January 20, 2010 at 8:46 am | Permalink

    Measured in dick inches me thinks. (The link is most probably safe for work.)

  • 2
    Dewgong
    Posted January 20, 2010 at 8:54 am | Permalink

    What does Janet wish to have a measured debate about? That Carbon dioxide is a greenhouse gas?

    Maybe she could try reading a science book first.

  • 3
    Posted January 20, 2010 at 9:37 am | Permalink

    Apparently Janet is interested in facts. Which makes her acceptance of Lord Monkton’s positions rather curious.

  • 4
    confessions
    Posted January 20, 2010 at 9:48 am | Permalink

    Apparently Janet is interested in facts. Which makes her acceptance of Lord Monkton’s positions rather curious.

    And also her past reliance on Nils Axel-Morner re rising sea levels.

  • 5
    couchy
    Posted January 20, 2010 at 9:49 am | Permalink

    That’s some nice pwning right there Dave

  • 6
    mondo rock
    Posted January 20, 2010 at 9:54 am | Permalink

    IS it too much to ask for a measured climate change debate in 2010?

    Translation: why won’t people elevate the totally uninformed, unsourced and ideologically-driven opinions of me and my right-wing stablemates to the same level as those of actual policy experts and climate scientists?

  • 7
    Posted January 20, 2010 at 10:07 am | Permalink

    Thanks couchy. Sometimes these things just need to speak for themselves.

  • 8
    Posted January 20, 2010 at 10:13 am | Permalink

    This has been a tactic of the culture-warriors since forever. Paint two opposing sides as ‘extremists’ and then proclaim yourself as the truth-seeking centrist who is ‘just asking questions’. Conclude by stating the the truth lies ‘somewhere in the middle’ and that only by ignoring the extremists on both sides can we come to an understanding.

    Meanwhile the ‘centre’ creeps further to the right. It’s all about positioning.

  • 9
    monkeywrench
    Posted January 20, 2010 at 10:18 am | Permalink

    Daniel@8
    The other hackneyed tactic is to misrepresent what climate scientists have been saying (“It’s going to get hotter every year without the slightest variation!”) and then point to weather variations as “evidence” that the scientists are “wrong”. Welcome to the Rule of Dumb.

  • 10
    baldrick
    Posted January 20, 2010 at 10:24 am | Permalink

    What the Australian Youth Climate Coallition considers as “debate” with Lord Monckton:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PDubnFU3BXE&feature=related

    They have rigorously censored the comments on this video. Before they culled the comments, there was not a single comment in support. After the cull, there is hardly a dissenting comment. Debate indeed.

  • 11
    Posted January 20, 2010 at 10:44 am | Permalink

    Apparently the mad cat lady from the Simpson was based on Janet. True story.

  • 12
    Frank Campbell
    Posted January 20, 2010 at 10:50 am | Permalink

    Just remember that the credibility of ratbags like Planet grows as doubts about AGW increase. Latest poll has 13% of Green voters saying AGW is “exaggerated”. As I’ve been saying for months on Crikey, AGW cult hysteria is self-defeating. Sandilands is making the same point.
    The ruddwong caravan in Copenhagen now looks ridiculous. 114 tosser-suits slunk back to Oz, with only duty-free and escort memories to console them

    Crikey comment is stuffed full of robotic AGW mantras- such as Mondo Rock here: “actual policy experts and climate scientists?”. Read the East Anglia emails. Check out the carpet-bagger Pachauri. The problem isn’t Thatcherite carcasses like Mad Monckton, it’s that the Left and Greens are preparing the ground for Mad Monk to capture power here.

  • 13
    couchy
    Posted January 20, 2010 at 11:34 am | Permalink

    The problem with the climate change debate is that the media loves and needs drama in their stories to sell units.

    Conflict is the best source of drama and so a “debate” is concocted where 50/50 equal weighting is given to two sides of the argument when in fact the general informed consensus on the issue is much more of a 99/1 weighting.

    A 50/50 debate allows people who would prefer that this problem wasn’t true (deniasaurs) to avoid facing it.

  • 14
    confessions
    Posted January 20, 2010 at 11:48 am | Permalink

    Crikey comment is stuffed full of robotic AGW mantras- such as Mondo Rock here: “actual policy experts and climate scientists?”.

    Actual policy experts and scientists are not endemic to the field of climate science. You’ll find such people in all disciplines. How this is a Crikey-specific phenomenon is simply beyond reason. What an utterly ridiculous thing to say.

    Read the East Anglia emails. Check out the carpet-bagger Pachauri.

    You mean read the edited, out of context bits from emails that are supposed to mean something? ANd I’m always amused when people screech about those supposedly benefiting financially from action on climate change, yet have no comment about the vast majority using AGW denial to continue benefiting through delaying action on climate change. I suppose Frank Campbell you’ve “checked out” the millions of taxpayer funds lavished upon the coal industry each year and are similarly outraged, but momentarily forgot about that in your quest to attack one individual person?

  • 15
    mondo rock
    Posted January 20, 2010 at 12:09 pm | Permalink

    Uh, Frank, if noting that the opinion of policy experts and climate scientists should be preferred over those of newspaper shock-jocks in relation to a (somewhat important) climate science debate is a “robotic matra”, then mantrify me up baby!!

    The alternative is to promote the acceptance of transparent stupidity.

    But I do agree with you about the self-defeating nature of hysterical doomsday predictions that are totally unsupported by the science. The Himalayan glaciers issue currently unfolding seems to be a good example . . .

  • 16
    Posted January 20, 2010 at 12:22 pm | Permalink

    While Monckton has no actual credentials, derides his opponents as Hitler Youth and preaches the most extreme of conspiracy theories, he nevertheless has “fact-based concerns”. Meanwhile, the IPCC, which by design consists of the entire spectrum of scientific opinion on climate change, merely has “activist enthusiasm” (not Janet’s own phrase, but one she chose to quote nonetheless).

    The notion that anyone takes Monckton seriously is itself quite staggering. Most denialists seem content merely to rail against the entire scientific community, call for peer review to be suspended, funding to be halted, etc. That’s mild compared to what Monckton would have happen. This man wants climate scientists to “stand trial alongside Radovan Karadzic”.
    http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2008/09/monckton_demands_that_mann_bra.php

  • 17
    John
    Posted January 20, 2010 at 12:47 pm | Permalink

    Here are some mantras:

    “The climate’s always changed!”
    “CRU! CRU!”
    “It’s actually cooling!”
    “It’s the sun!”
    “It’s cold in England right now!”
    “Global Warming is a SCAM!!!”

  • 18
    DeanL
    Posted January 20, 2010 at 1:08 pm | Permalink

    Interesting comments. Here’s one:

    Robert Stringer of yungaburra Queensl;and Posted at 9:50 AM Today

    The IPCC claims that carbon dioxide absorbs radiation from Earth and then re-radiates in all directions and in so doing sends energy back to the Earth. This re-radiation process the IPCC calls radiative forcing. Application of formula from the kinetic theory of gases, Quantum theory and data on the molar heat capacity of gases show that neither carbon dioxide nor methane can re-radiate and that therefore the IPCC claim of radiative forcing is false.

    I wonder if the “sceptics” will question somemone asserting that the whole theory of greenhouse gases is incorrect?

    If I was asked without knowing to guess which state such a comment might originate from, I would have said Qld…

  • 19
    DeanL
    Posted January 20, 2010 at 1:11 pm | Permalink

    The first sentence of Janet’s 2nd paragraph:

    One side says the science is settled and will not countenance dissent.

    No exagerration or distortion of truth there Janet.

    Will no one answer the questions and enter into the debate with the sceptics? These people are clearly left to piss into the wind…

  • 20
    DeanL
    Posted January 20, 2010 at 1:31 pm | Permalink

    Janet Albrechtesen:

    The debate about global warming is as much a political debate as it is about the science.

    I think that’s all you need to know about Janet’s view. She, like Bolt is fighting a political battle. What she can’t bear to acknowledge is that she ignores or denies the science in order to wage the political war. That is why these people should not be engaged by scientists in debate.

  • 21
    confessions
    Posted January 20, 2010 at 1:44 pm | Permalink

    Here was Janet in Nov last year. The deductive reasoning in that article goes something like this:

    1. In the 90s a lot of experts were warning about the Y2K bug. Many changes took place and a lot of money was spent to mitigate against it. 1.1.2000 came and nothing happened.

    2. Therefore Y2K was a hoax.

    3. A lot of experts are warning about AGW. They say changes need to occur and money spent to mitigate against it. Just like Y2K. Which was a hoax

    4. Therefore AGW is a hoax too.

    If there ever was a reservation for reasoned debate on climate change from Ms Albrechsten she clearly vacated it long ago.

  • 22
    twobob
    Posted January 20, 2010 at 1:46 pm | Permalink

    The truly amazing thing to me is that in one corner we have a situation where pollution, mining, and exceptional greed are threatening and in the other we have clean energy jobs, cutting pollution, and reducing dependence on fossil fuels.
    If only people like Janet would put their own greed aside and tell the story, the whole story….

  • 23
    dk au
    Posted January 20, 2010 at 1:52 pm | Permalink

    baldrick @ 10

    [The AYCC] have rigorously censored the comments on this video

    Your ideas about freedom of speech intrigue me and I would like to subscribe to your newsletter.

  • 24
    couchy
    Posted January 20, 2010 at 2:29 pm | Permalink

    By the way – something I forgot earlier – “that’s no moon, it’s a space station”

  • 25
    baldrick
    Posted January 20, 2010 at 3:04 pm | Permalink

    dk au @ 23 – what the hell are you on about?

  • 26
    Frank Campbell
    Posted January 20, 2010 at 3:05 pm | Permalink

    Confessions:”Actual policy experts and scientists are not endemic to the field of climate science. You’ll find such people in all disciplines. How this is a Crikey-specific phenomenon is simply beyond reason. What an utterly ridiculous thing to say.”

    You’ve missed the point, which is that Crikey comments (along with many other sites) simply assert the abstract ideal of science and oppose its dispassionate majesty against a putative mass of dribbling, raving Moncktons/wicked vested interests.

    What we actually have is a group of low-status scientists who have raised themselves to scary heights by means of computer modelling. They are now paranoid and punitive (read ALL the emails). In the end, observational science will decide the issue. The odds against the Cinderellas are lengthening, as they are all too aware. They fear ridicule and oblivion.

    This is routine history and sociology of science. It’s just that the stakes are a lot higher because the world is involved, not merely Bumcrack academic departments.

    Ignoring the sociology of this drama creates two camps of idiots: two sides of the same cult- deniers and believers. It also gives oxygen to the foam-flecked, swivel eyed preachers we could all do without- Calvin Hamilton, Monckton et al.

  • 27
    Frank Campbell
    Posted January 20, 2010 at 3:10 pm | Permalink

    Confessions: “You mean read the edited, out of context bits from emails that are supposed to mean something?”

    Didn’t I make myself clear? Apparently not. I spent three weeks at Xmas reading the whole stupefying mass of emails, and edited them down from about 1m to 120,000 words.

  • 28
    mondo rock
    Posted January 20, 2010 at 3:45 pm | Permalink

    Crikey comments (along with many other sites) simply assert the abstract ideal of science and oppose its dispassionate majesty against a putative mass of dribbling, raving Moncktons/wicked vested interests.

    Well . . . yes.

    The alternative is to elevate the uninformed opinion of the politically motivated dribbling raving Moncktons (and Planet Janets) to the same level as that of professional scientists.

    It would be a mark of profound stupidity to do so.

  • 29
    confessions
    Posted January 20, 2010 at 3:53 pm | Permalink

    Frank Campbell: if as you claim you’ve read *all* the hacked emails in their entirety and still can’t see so-called climategate as the manufactured beat up it was, then all I can conclude is that you are gripped by a delusion so serious that it is clouding any hope of rational judgement and thought.

    And your conspiracy theories about “low status scientists” are frankly disturbing. If this is what happens when you read Crikey, then I think you owe it to yourself to find some new reading material. :D The simple reality is this: there are people who accept scientific evidence, built on rigorous research which has taken place over decades and has been replicated in other settings by other teams, and those who close their eyes and place their faith in people like Janet Albrechtsten and Andrew Bolt.

  • 30
    John
    Posted January 20, 2010 at 4:04 pm | Permalink

    Didn’t I make myself clear? Apparently not. I spent three weeks at Xmas reading the whole stupefying mass of emails, and edited them down from about 1m to 120,000 words.

    What a waste of Christmas.

  • 31
    Posted January 20, 2010 at 4:50 pm | Permalink

    I spent three weeks at Xmas reading the whole stupefying mass of emails, and edited them down from about 1m to 120,000 words.

    With an eye to understanding the context of the emails, and the stresses placed on their authors, no doubt. One who tries to find fault invariably succeeds.

    I don’t for a second pretend that scientists are inhumanly noble, relentlessly selfless and infinitely patient creatures, but trying to look for hidden truths in other people’s correspondence somehow misses the point.

    Scientific truths are revealed most lucidly in published, independently replicated results, not private communications between scientists. The latter are bound to contain misplaced thoughts and opinions as a matter of course, because they represent the process of collectively and informally thinking through a problem.

  • 32
    mondo rock
    Posted January 20, 2010 at 4:50 pm | Permalink

    I spent three weeks at Xmas reading the whole stupefying mass of emails, and edited them down from about 1m to 120,000 words.

    That’s pretty much the worst Christmas holiday that I’ve ever heard of.

  • 33
    Frank Campbell
    Posted January 20, 2010 at 4:52 pm | Permalink

    Mondo y Confesso:

    There youse go again: “professional scientists” vs raving loonies. Manichean myopia.

    “manufactured beat up”? Let the redundancy pass- of course it was a beat-up…what did you expect? The denialist cult, backed by vested interests and the hard right, barked like the dogs they are. And just like you, they didn’t bother to read the mass of info which actually gives context and meaning over nearly 14 years, all the way from Cinderella to the ball…not to mention the chronic weaknesses of “the science”, exposed on most pages…a raw, undeveloped, observationally-deprived, model-driven science. They’re flying high on a wing and a prayer. Read Kevin Trenberth’s 2009 paper for the endless uncertainties of climate science. All science is not equal.

  • 34
    zoot
    Posted January 20, 2010 at 5:53 pm | Permalink

    baldrick @10:

    Before they culled the comments, there was not a single comment in support. After the cull, there is hardly a dissenting comment.

    Pardon an old pedant, but if there were “not a single comment in support before the cull” surely there would be no comments at all after the cull?

  • 35
    Posted January 20, 2010 at 5:58 pm | Permalink

    They’re flying high on a wing and a prayer. Read Kevin Trenberth’s 2009 paper for the endless uncertainties of climate science. All science is not equal.

    Scientists talk about uncertainty all the time because that’s where science exists. There’s no point having scientists publishing papers that simply marvel about how much they know. All the interesting and useful discussion concerns what we don’t know.

    This is no different to discussing the uncertainties of evolutionary theory, or uncertainties in the nature of gravity. Science is a never-ending process; there are always new lines of inquiry opening up.

    However, the basic facts of climate science – the ones that inform policy – are quite certain. Yes, the computer models do show uncertainty, and Trenberth and others naturally want to do better. But considering the level of certainty we need to formulate policy, the models are actually pretty good.

  • 36
    confessions
    Posted January 20, 2010 at 6:30 pm | Permalink

    info which actually gives context and meaning over nearly 14 years, all the way from Cinderella to the ball

    I see. So 14 years worth of private email communication, including those which call the denialists nasty names, brings into question 100+ years of climate, meteorological, environmental and geological research?

    I apologise. I haven’t underscored your delusion sufficiently enough.

  • 37
    Posted January 20, 2010 at 6:40 pm | Permalink

    Before they culled the comments, there was not a single comment in support. After the cull, there is hardly a dissenting comment.

    Pardon an old pedant, but if there were “not a single comment in support before the cull” surely there would be no comments at all after the cull?

    Perhaps they were overzealous, and culled more dissenting comments than actually existed. The resulting negative number of dissenting comments would look to the casual observer like a positive number of supporting comments.

  • 38
    AR
    Posted January 20, 2010 at 8:02 pm | Permalink

    I’m constantly bemused by the failure to apply the simple test of cui bono? to any argument but esp. one posing the greed & venality of a (tiny) minority against the survival of the majority.
    The raving Right (with no apologies to the foam flecked Alex Cockburn – Claude must be writhing in his grave) must oppose anything which demonstrates the failure of their beloved neocon thatchereaganomics otherwise they would have to beg forgiveness for their moral myopia.
    Those with most to lose naturally fight the dirtiest. Those with less (read ‘bugger all’) can only be comforted by the increasingly rabid rantings of the futile.

  • 39
    DeanL
    Posted January 20, 2010 at 9:08 pm | Permalink

    What amazes me is that the evidence for AGW has never been so compelling and the effects so obvious even to the layperson. Yet the denial is actually where the zealotry and extremism has increased to a shrill whine.

    Ironically, from the same people, chiefly, that couldn’t admit how wrong they and “their side” got it wrt Iraq.

    They can’t admit that Y2K was an issue (with the exaggeration and chicken little scare-mongering that is always resorted to) despite what the IT experts say now (see Albrechtsen, Henderson, Akermanand Bolt who all raise this for evidence of this assertion).

    The ozone hole is the same.

    The point is, the low chance but high risk outcomes are part of the whole equation and must be taken into account when planning mitigation. Simple risk management stuff.

    “Are Conservative always wrong and never able to acknowledge it” seems a valid question to ask.

  • 40
    quantize
    Posted January 20, 2010 at 10:01 pm | Permalink

    I noticed the Y2K comparison being trotted out in the frothing comments on said article.

    It’s frankly, just utterly embarrassing that we live in a day and age where people flagrantly use the pig ignorant logic of ‘it didn’t affect me, therefore it didn’t happen’.

    It defies the real history of the enormity of preparation that was put in to preventing serious consequences…Denialists humiliate themselves and insult everyone’s intelligence to suggest that because ‘the world’ didn’t ‘come to an end’, did not mean there were not possibly serious consequences if the business community had not prepared.

    Please lets raise the debate, not lower it.

  • 41
    confessions
    Posted January 20, 2010 at 10:11 pm | Permalink

    “Are Conservative always wrong and never able to acknowledge it” seems a valid question to ask.

    These people are not Conservative. Conservatives would own the issue of climate change on risk management grounds at the very least. In my view people who openly deny clear evidence, who seek to subvert a democratically elected government acting on its clear mandate, who would even eat their own rather than face the harsh reality, and who openly cheer at the prospect of an over-heated planet and the chaos which would correspondingly ensue, are nothing more than radicals. They really ought to be treated with the utter contempt they deserve.

  • 42
    DeanL
    Posted January 20, 2010 at 10:47 pm | Permalink

    Fully agree Confessions

  • 43
    bitpattern
    Posted January 20, 2010 at 11:16 pm | Permalink

    Reactionary rather than conservative

  • 44
    baldrick
    Posted January 21, 2010 at 12:47 am | Permalink

    Zoot, I saw the video three or four days after they posted it. There was about 100 comments all in the negative, pointing out the childish nature and stupid antics of the “kids”. The next day there was only 10 comments – all in favour of the action taken. It has since grown. I reposted my original comment which was polite and pointed out that to be taken seriously, sticking notes on peoples backs is not a good way to go about it. It did not get through.

    Time, the fourth dimension.

    As a side note, why did this (any many other) threads degenerate into “conservative” psychology 101? The most basic thing holding back the climate change debate is the issue of money – namely who get’s taxed, who recieves the money and will my quality of life cost more? Thats the major issue for everyone I have talked to about the subject. Closely followed by “Why should we give money to “developing” nations when there is no guarantee that combating climate change is what it will be used for.”

    Oh, and calls for the end of capitalism (especially from our good friend Chavez) as a solution don’t help. His speech at Copenhagen gave the loonies a lot of ammunition for their socialist world government conspiracy theories. By the way Hugo, are you going to stop using and exporting petroleum to save the planet?? Considering petroleum in his country is the cheapest in the world.

  • 45
    DeanL
    Posted January 21, 2010 at 8:21 am | Permalink

    Oh, and calls for the end of capitalism (especially from our good friend Chavez) as a solution don’t help. His speech at Copenhagen gave the loonies a lot of ammunition for their socialist world government conspiracy theories. By the way Hugo, are you going to stop using and exporting petroleum to save the planet?? Considering petroleum in his country is the cheapest in the world.

    The end of capitalism? No one realistically believes that is what is being called for. In fact, most people see capitalism as the means to change and improve the situation. Hence the use of markets and the economy in an attempt to fix the problem.

    And yet strangely, who are the recalcitrants in coming on board?

    Conservatives don’t want the political situation changed to fix the problem and they don’t want the economy and the markets changed to fix the problem. Let’s face it: they just can’t handle change and are therefore unable and unequipped to deal with problems and changing real-world scenarios. All they have left is head-in-the-sand-Denial.

    The most basic thing holding back the climate change debate is the issue of money – namely who get’s taxed, who recieves the money and will my quality of life cost more?

    And who is it being held back by? Making markets and economies responsible for the true cost of using energy and its associated commodities is 21st-century sensible.

    Which side of politics is scare-mongering over “who get’s taxed, who recieves the money”, etc?

    As usual, it’s the conservatives asking “what’s in it for me and am I going to lose what I have?” Self-interested, self-absorbed and stupid. i.e. Conservative.

  • 46
    John
    Posted January 21, 2010 at 11:48 am | Permalink

    Global warming is a capitalists wet dream. Not only is there green technology to invest in, it’s generally agreed that a market based ETS is the best way to deal with it.

    So much for Nick Minchin’s paranoid fantasy of communists “deindustrialising the west”.

    And since when did communists deindustrialise anything?

  • 47
    mondo rock
    Posted January 21, 2010 at 12:48 pm | Permalink

    I’m going to change things up a bit here and try to sympathise with some of the complaints from the Right.

    While I think it’s utterly ridiculous to reject the science establishing that:

    – the world is warming, and
    – human activity is either causing or contributing to that warming

    I think it is valid to criticise some of the hysterical predictions being drawn from the above facts. Many of these are not based on science at all, but seem to be emanating from a large contingent of carpetbaggers who have latched on to the AGW movement and who see some sort of benefit in hyping the issue.

    While the science behind the warming itself is both logical, measured and very difficult to refute (without resorting to idiotic wingnut tactics like ‘climategate’), the predictions of what that warming will mean seem to me to be vastly more speculative, and vastly less scientific. We really don’t understand our natural systems all that well, and it is difficult to take seriously many of the more hysterical predictions being thrown about.

    What do you guys think?

  • 48
    Posted January 21, 2010 at 2:30 pm | Permalink

    We really don’t understand our natural systems all that well, and it is difficult to take seriously many of the more hysterical predictions being thrown about.

    What do you guys think?

    Predictions should be qualified by the level of uncertainty surrounding them (something more fine-grained than “it’s uncertain”). If a prediction can’t be traced back to an expert in the field, then it should probably be disregarded altogether.

    I cringe when I hear the word “hysterical”, because it’s the word denialists use when they’re about to construct a double-strawman:
    1) they portray all AGW-related predictions as hysterical, by bringing to mind the very worst predictions and failing to draw a line; and
    2) they portray scientists as hysterical by drawing attention to non-scientists who’ve merely latched on to AGW, failing to distinguish between the two.
    The word is used so vaguely and with such disdain that it colours everything, and yet says nothing.

    I’ve no doubt there are many who see some sort of ideological justification in the science of AGW. Some people do get carried away to the point of suggesting that the human civilisation is doomed and the human species will become extinct, etc., which are plainly nonsense. However, we shouldn’t dismiss such predictions because they’re catastrophic; we should dismiss them because they’re not based on science.

    There are dire predictions that, though uncertain, are nevertheless based on science, and these we must take seriously (e.g. a possible rise in temperatures of 10 degrees or more in some regions under a “plausible worst case scenario“).

  • 49
    Frank Campbell
    Posted January 21, 2010 at 2:33 pm | Permalink

    “We really don’t understand our natural systems all that well,”

    Exactly Mondo. Especially climate.

    Dave C: “This is no different to discussing the uncertainties of evolutionary theory, or uncertainties in the nature of gravity.”

    Oh yes it is. Very different. Climate scientists often refer to the “chaos” of natural interacting systems. Your argument is a variant of the majesty, purity and certainty of science. No problem with gravity and evolution. Big problems with climate. Raw and undeveloped.

    and also Dave C:

    “Scientific truths are revealed most lucidly in published, independently replicated results, not private communications between scientists. The latter are bound to contain misplaced thoughts and opinions as a matter of course, because they represent the process of collectively and informally thinking through a problem.”

    Science as pure again: nothing wrong with the ideal type- but if you read the climate emails you’ll find a constant strain of exclusion and denigration of scientific opponents, one manifestation of which is the struggle to control “peer review”. They tried to play the system and when that failed they tried to rig the system. There were numerous discussions about “reliable” reviewers, “acceptable” journals, backsliders, etc. (Academics behaving normally, but no one usually cares.) Read the emails.

  • 50
    mondo rock
    Posted January 21, 2010 at 2:59 pm | Permalink

    Exactly Mondo. Especially climate.

    This may be true Frank, but your position also embraces the completely illogical and unscientific assertion that human activity has not led to global warming. You are, after all, a climategate believer are you not?

    For the record, noting that the outcome of AGW is difficult to predict is very different to denying AGW entirely.

    However, we shouldn’t dismiss such predictions because they’re catastrophic; we should dismiss them because they’re not based on science.

    Absolutely – I can’t see any rational way of disagreeing with that.

    There are dire predictions that, though uncertain, are nevertheless based on science, and these we must take seriously (e.g. a possible rise in temperatures of 10 degrees or more in some regions under a “plausible worst case scenario“).

    Indeed, although as a layperson I sometimes have trouble distinguishing these from the nutty ones. The apparently false claim made in the IPCC report about Himalayan glaciers disappearing is a good case in point.

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