What has happened to science?

Mark Latham puts a good question.

In the climate change debate, we are witnessing a puzzling shift in the foundations of public reason – the emergence of what might be thought of as anti-enlightenment. It is no longer sufficient for a large majority of scientists to compile the evidential facts of a matter and expect the public to accept them at face value. Other, more powerful influences are at work.

On a point of detail, I am prepared to bet a dollar that a large majority of scientists do not back climate alarmism. Due to the political influences at work we mostly get to hear about the minority who are active alarmists.

But we still need to explore the influences at work which have radically undermined the credibility of the scientific enterprise.

How about Big Government backing Big Science, the explosion of so-called “higher education”, the rise of the Normal Scientist, the downsides of professionalism and specialization in science, destructive fads and fashions in the philosophy of science and the premature burial of the most important philosopher of science in the 20th century.

Most likely Big Government and the politicization and corruption of everything that it touches is the major issue. Look at the governance and modus operandi of the IPCC as a paradigm case of crazy politics driving science.

To be continued. 

 

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102 Responses to What has happened to science?

  1. Thumbnail

    Have you seen this?

    It is written by Warren Meyer in rebuttal to Steve Zwick’s “Tennessee solution” to climate change deniers.

    We know who the active denialists are – not the people who buy the lies, mind you, but the people who create the lies. Let’s start keeping track of them now, and when the famines come, let’s make them pay. Let’s let their houses burn. Let’s swap their safe land for submerged islands. Let’s force them to bear the cost of rising food prices.

    They broke the climate. Why should the rest of us have to pay for it?

  2. Bill

    For one thing, people like Latham just dont understand that nearly all the sceptics accept that CO2 causes some warming, but think the “models” substantially overestimate the amount of warming.

    90% of pontificators on the “warmist” side share the same misconception. It’s just laziness and a taste for a black and white morality play.

  3. Ellen of Tasmania

    Peer group pressure.
    Funding pressure.
    Political pressure.
    Religious pressure.
    Cool-shame.

  4. The superficial sooky beta boys of the left are so angst and guilt ridden about the prosperity of capitalism they have to externalise that negativity onto everyone else.

    Like everything from the left it’s a chimera, a lie and a fraud designed to assuage their own guilt and nothing more.

    “peace love and mung beans”

  5. Winston SMITH

    My heroine was Marie Curie. Someone who fought against the odds to make a name for herself.
    She would be horrified at Science today.
    But not surprised.

  6. brc

    Well, is Latham asking the question to make a political point, or is he asking the question because he wants to know the answer.

    If he really wants to know the answer he should leave the echo chamber behind and go and actually listen to what the scientists that don’t agree with the IPCC are saying. And then check the facts.

    Trying to push this off onto the Australian people as some group of luddites isn’t going to cut it. The Australian people have somehow managed to inform themselves of the problems with IPCC science despite a PR barrage over a decade long. In reality they have informed themselves by looking out the windows and realising the fantastic claims don’t live up to scrutiny.

    The Luddites were people who wanted to smash up machinery of the modern age. The equivalent to modern-day Luddites are the Green party. After all, Bob’s big plan for Tasmania was a small state of arts and crafts villages. Exactly what the Luddites wanted.

  7. Rabz

    What has happened to science?

    In a nutshell, the debasement of the scientific method.

    AGW was always an untestable (and therefore unprovable) hypothesis. It is NOT a theory.

    The onus has always been on the catastrophists to prove the AGW hypothesis. Their attempts to do this have been through computer models, demonstrated via climategate to be the results of fabricated, tricked up and cherrypicked data – GIGO, in other words.

    It’s most noisy public proponents have been unqualified, utterly ridiculous, brazenly dishonest, hypocritical self-parodies, who’ve now been proven wrong beyond any doubt.

    The earth is not warming

    The oceans are not warming nor are sea levels rising

    The poley ice caps are not disappearing

    Poley bears are not in danger of extinctification

    Increased atmospheric CO2 levels do not drive global temperature increases

    CO2 is not a pollutant

    Humanity has thrived during periods of higher global temperatures

    A tax on air will not solve a non-existent problem

    Etc, etc, etc.

    As I’ve stated before, I have been putting up with this all pervasive, preposterous, anti-scientific, fact and evidence free commie excrement for well over two decades now.

    Enough.

    Stick a cork in it, FFS.

  8. .

    I’m really sick of this alpha beta male crap.

    I refuse to have psychology rewritten by “pick up artists” that are good at selling books to lonely guys but never seem happy.

    http://www.pualingo.com/wp-content/uploads/2008/12/pick-up-artist.jpeg

  9. brc

    Enough.

    Stick a cork in it, FFS.

    And Amen to that. 20 years has gone past and things are much the same as they were, while co2 concentrations have raced ahead faster than predictions. All the carbon taxing/trading and restricting in the world has come to naught.

    Lives have been ruined, prosperity abandoned, unthinkable amounts of time have been squandered. And it’s all for nothing.

    Perhaps like all malignant human ideas and religions, it will actually take armed conflict somewhere to skewer this properly. I hope it doesn’t come to that.

  10. johno

    The really important question is will the Coalition have the balls to declare the alarmist scare campaign is a crock and dump their ridiculous amd damaging ‘direct action’ policies.

  11. m0nty

    Latham’s piece is not concerned with Rafe’s conspiracy theorising. It’s actually a decent article which concludes that climate change is real, science is credible as it ever was, and it is only wider society that has changed in its respect for science. Latham does a good job of skewering the likes of Rafe and other dilettantes who assume they know better than the vast majority of experts in a specialised scientific field.

    Thanks for linking it Rafe, it’s a good piece of analysis as to why people like you are dumb enough to fall for anti-science mumbo-jumbo.

  12. brc

    The really important question is will the Coalition have the balls to declare the alarmist scare campaign is a crock and dump their ridiculous amd damaging ‘direct action’ policies.

    Sadly, no they won’t. All they can do is take the Howard line of mumble platitudes and wait until it all goes away, as it will. They can also choke funding to boondoggles.

    Hopefully the direct action policy is watered down before the election, or implemented in very small pieces afterwards.

    If I were a Liberal strategist, I would be looking at a sharp policy turn about now.

    Declare that, due to lack of international action, all environmental spending would be on local causes where clear results could be seen. River system cleanups, weed and feral pest eradication, that sort of thing. Administer this by providing $x million in grants to local councils who bid for the money for cleanup projects, and require a % of donated time by local citizens. That way, only the areas where people are motivated to clean up the problems get the cash. Make it a condition of funding that no capital city based consulting firm can receive any of the funding, and that 90% of the money must be proven to be going into actual action instead of paperwork.

    Overturn the ‘think global act local’ into ‘think and act local’. Mumble promises to monitor the international situation closely. Make a 5 man team under Dept Environment to go to conferences and take notes and call it the climate change taskforce or something. Give it $1mil/year as a total budget and some unused warehouse space in Wagga Wagga to operate from, with an NBN connection to show how broadband can mean even public servants can work remotely.

    But somehow I’m not expecting the phone to ring.

  13. brc

    climate change is real, science is credible as it ever was

    You never even read the climategate emails did you.

    Did you look through the supplied code.

    ;;APPLY A VERY ARTIFICAL CORRECTION

    Yeah, credible as it ever was. I’m sure Einsteins notes were peppered with that type of thing.

  14. cohenite

    AGW science is NOT science; it is at best computer modelling; those models have been proven to be wrong by observations continually; the models are so bad they cannot even hindcast, that is predict, the past where the temperature and climate is known; Koutsoyiannis has proven this. This in turn explains why there is so much ‘adjustment’ of past temperature records going on by the ‘official’ science bodies.

    The Bureau of Meteorology is up to its neck in this practice of ‘adjusting’ temperature. BOM has just published its ACORN revision of the old High Quality temperature network. The author of the technical manual, Brett Trewin, acknowledges that past adjustments did have a warming bias but that it is so slight, 0.1C, that it has been ignored in the new ACORN data. However, the new ACORN data now finds a temperature trend which is 1C for the approximate 100 year period instead of the previous 0.8C.

    In short, despite acknowledging the superseded temperature data had, at least, a warming bias of 0.1C, the new, improved temperature data has found another 0.2C of heating!

  15. Uber

    “But we still need to explore the influences at work which have radically undermined the credibility of the scientific enterprise”.
    How about the love affair with the evolutionary paradigm, which is in fact a falsified hypothesis being driven by worldview. Fix the core problem, and science might return to empiricism.

  16. cohenite

    science is credible as it ever was,

    You are an implacable moron, monty. As I wrote above before reading your nonsense, climate science is NOT science.

  17. cohenite

    How about the love affair with the evolutionary paradigm, which is in fact a falsified hypothesis being driven by worldview.

    Oh, ok, this is fuckwits Friday; my mistake, carry on.

  18. dakingisdead

    James Delingpol has some interesting information upon how the 97% of CLIMATE Scientists agreed with AGW.

    Interesting how the word “climate” is always dropped out of this quote when used by warmists and their sheeple press.

    But then why let facts and honesty stuff up the grants gravey train.

  19. 2dogs

    The “independent expert” of the past is dead. The GFC taught us that.

  20. Samson Agonistes

    It’s simply paranoia to believe that the science is made up.

    Its more sensible to stick to the winnable argument that its better to contribute to a global policy if and when it’s put in place.

  21. cohenite

    The 97% figure comes from the The Doran and Zimmerman ‘survey’ [DOZE]. DOZE is a farrago, a dolt’s nose-pick and can be ridiculed on a number of counts including the sample size of 2 vagrants, 34 bureaucrats and various odds and sods. A good account of DOZE is here:

    http://scienceandpublicpolicy.org/images/stories/papers/originals/consensus_opiate.pdf

  22. Viva

    Nigel Calder, former editor of New Scientist writes:

    Twenty years ago, climate research became politicised in favour of one particular hypothesis, which redefined the subject as the study of the effect of greenhouse gases. As a result, the rebellious spirits essential for innovative and trustworthy science are greeted with impediments to their research careers.

    And while the media usually find mavericks at least entertaining, in this case they often imagine that anyone who doubts the hypothesis of man-made global warming must be in the pay of the oil companies. As a result, some key discoveries in climate research go almost unreported.

    http://www.redicecreations.com/article.php?id=506

    PS It is unsurprising the field of climate science became politicised as over time it has been colonised by environmental activists.

  23. Bruce

    Samson – The ‘science’ is mostly wrong. But that is because if, for financially lucrative reasons, you put your head up your own orifice, then you won’t see what the data is saying.

    Read up on the Svensmark hypothesis.

    Bruce (BSc hons 1, PhD)

  24. Uber

    cohenite, yes clearly it is fuckwits Friday. Beligerent ignorance does not excuse you.

  25. brc

    It’s fascinating how the creativity and innovation has been driven out of science in general, but climate science in particular. A lack of creativity, innovation and general rebelliousness is a sure-fire way to destroy any particular field. Creative destruction is central the process of renewal, you can’t generally can’t come up with new ideas without throwing out some old ones.

    Whenever you get a rigid, state-enforce dogmatic view of anything – from climate science to employee/employer regulations – you squash human progress. Whenever you stifle dissent instead of admitting you were wrong, someone ends up paying for it.

    Just shows how easily the English language can be mangled that self-styled ‘progressives’ are always the ones stifling progress the most.

    In the same way a murder investigation will never be solved if the police focus all their resources on the one suspect, no matter how many alibis they have, climate science hasn’t progressed at all for 30 years because everyone has been paid to look in the wrong spot. Ultimately, they will destroy their field, and they’ll all rename themselves to ‘atmospheric scientists’ or something like that to avoid the connotations with this dire period in the story of scientists.

  26. .

    Had a look at “‘skeptical’ ‘science’”‘s page on Svensmark.

    Stupid, arrogant, desperate pricks.

  27. cohenite

    Beligerent ignorance does not excuse you

    .

    I am not ignorant; and learn how to spell; unless it was intentional, in which case: how witty.

  28. Maws

    Every politicain should be made to read Donna Laframboise’s book (which I’m currently reading). Even if they are on the climate change bandwagon, this could change their minds about the independence of the IPCC.

    Not saying that everything ‘exposed’ in the book has happened, but it does raise some serious questions.

  29. Bruce

    Yes, Dot, the IPCC luvvies don’t like Prof Svensmark. Or his colleague Friis-Christensen. So they try and bury their work in waffle.

    Anyone who wants can graph pSCL against the temperature record and see how much solar activity affects temperature…a lot. The IPCC climateers don’t want to know about solar magnetic effects and they don’t want to know about oceanic cycles. And for good reason. If they are ever forced to actually look at the climate data as scientists they will do themselves out of cushy jobs and frequent trips to Cancun, Rio and other such 5 star places. Saving the world is so painful.

  30. brc

    the IPCC climateers don’t want to know about solar magnetic effects and they don’t want to know about oceanic cycles.

    No tax potential. The IPCC was always about setting up a taxation arm for the UN, so it could stop begging for money. You can’t be a government until you have your own source of cash.

  31. Samson Agonistes

    Svenskmark’s ideas are interesting enough, but it will take a long time before it usurps the alternative theory, if ever.

  32. cohenite

    Svenskmark’s ideas are interesting enough, but it will take a long time before it usurps the alternative theory, if ever.

    What alternative theory?

  33. Samson Agonistes

    Now, you know what it is and it doesn’t go away because you think its not a real THEORY.

  34. Viva

    it will take a long time before it usurps the alternative theory, if ever.

    Ah but it will take around 1000 years to confirm that the climate is responding to global carbon dioxide abatement – just ask Tim Flannery.

  35. cohenite

    Samson, how does AGW work? I mean what is the heating mechanism created by increased CO2 concentration?

  36. Bruce of Newcastle

    Samson – the stress theory of ulcers went away overnight because Barry Marshall was forced to give himself gastritis then cure it with antibiotics, just to satisfy the knockers. A billion dollar industry was dust within days.

    This is a trillion dollar industry. Like a zombie it doesn’t yet understand it is dead. But it is very very dead, and fifteen years of flat temperatures say ’tis so. This fits Svensmark, it does not fit the IPCC high sensitivity hypothesis.

  37. Big Jim

    “destructive fads and fashions in the philosophy of science and the premature burial of the most important philosopher of science in the 20th century.”

    I assume this reference is to Karl Popper. While your general point may be valid I think much of the debate has been framed in Popperian terms, ie, has the theory been falsified or not? So its not the absence of Popper but rather the mootness of the points that has characterised those parts of the debate that could be called serious.

    However, later philosophers of science such as Thomas Kuhn have been quite helpful in terms of understanding the bigger picture here. Paradigm formation, paradigm defence and finally paradigm shift are all very much in evidence. Thus we hear laughable quasi-sociological defences of the IPCC reports framed in terms of consensus.

    And here’s the thing: The vigour of the real (Popperian) debates about hockey sticks and feedback loops is entirely at odds with the apparent sociological ‘calm’ in the scientific community, where 97%, don’t ya know, are said to be in wholesome agreement.

    This very consensus, in the face of such tenuous and contested evidence, is a sure sign of a rotten stinking episode of craven groupthink.

  38. jrm

    There is increasing concern that most current published research findings are false. The probability that a research claim is true may depend on study power and bias, the number of other studies on the same question, and, importantly, the ratio of true to no relationships among the relationships probed in each scientific field. In this framework, a research finding is less likely to be true when the studies conducted in a field are smaller; when effect sizes are smaller; when there is a greater number and lesser preselection of tested relationships; where there is greater flexibility in designs, definitions, outcomes, and analytical modes; when there is greater financial and other interest and prejudice; and when more teams are involved in a scientific field in chase of statistical significance. Simulations show that for most study designs and settings, it is more likely for a research claim to be false than true. Moreover, for many current scientific fields, claimed research findings may often be simply accurate measures of the prevailing bias.

    Ioannidis JPA (2005) Why most published
    research findings are false. PLoS Med 2(8): e124.

  39. Samuel J

    The problem with the alarmist side is the assertion that climate models are science. This is at the crux of the errors in analysis.

    Climate models are worse than useless – they have cost the world’s economies huge amounts of lost wealth and condemned many people to remain in poverty. Why? Because their results have been misused and formed the basis of an assertion that science warns of catastrophic global warming.

    Climate models should be ignored. It is hubris to model the climate – it is impossible.

    Climate modellers are alchemists, trying to turn lead into gold.

    They are not scientists.

  40. John Comnenus

    Theodore Dalrymple made the following very astute observation of the role of Communist propaganda:

    “In my study of communist societies, I came to the conclusion that the purpose of communist propaganda was not to persuade or convince, not to inform, but to humiliate; and therefore, the less it corresponded to reality the better. When people are forced to remain silent when they are being told the most obvious lies, or even worse when they are forced to repeat the lies themselves, they lose once and for all their sense of probity. To assent to obvious lies is…in some small way to become evil oneself. One’s standing to resist anything is thus eroded, and even destroyed. A society of emasculated liars is easy to control. I think if you examine political correctness, it has the same effect and is intended to.”

    I think it is very clear that the Global Warming theory is pursued by the elite as a means to obtain social control.

  41. m0nty

    In the end, contrary to the best efforts of cranks, pseudoscientists, and quacks to portray its conclusions as indicating that science is “basically fraudulent,” remember that Ioannidis’ work does not give any succor at all to advocates of pseudoscience, be they alternative medicine mavens, HIV/AIDS denialists, or any other. In fact, it is work like his that differentiates science and evidence-based medicine from pseudoscience and alternative medicine. Ioannidis looks at how we as a profession do biomedical research and clinical trials and finds the faults even in studies thought to be the gold standard, all with a mind to improve how we do research, suggesting more replication, more care, and to be cautious about initial findings.

  42. Gab

    Ditto Finkelstein’s Ministry of Truth.

  43. Bruce of Newcastle

    Samuel – The problem with any statistical model, which GCM’s are effectively, is that when you leave out significant variables the other variables will ‘take over’. In these cases CO2 takes over because the two biggest missing variables are solar magnetic activity (for which I use pSCL as a proxy) and ocean cycles.

    I suspect if the climate modellers included these they would get both better hindcasts and better forecasts. But the problem for the modellers is if they include these significant variables they will remove the reason for their own funding, because they will have disproven CAGW. In effect if they succeed they get sacked – a perverse incentive to not succeed.

    I have done much modelling in my field, and models do work pretty well when you have included everything. But here the solar activity and ocean components add up to about 5/6ths of temperature rise in the 20thC, which is the training period for the models. Leave these out and its no wonder calculated CO2 sensitivity is ‘way too high.

    So I do not agree with your sentiment entirely. But the climate modellers are in the worst sort of Catch 22, since if they ever even hint that CAGW doesn’t exist the vast amount of funding they get will dry up like an icecube in hell.

  44. Token

    M0nty,

    Latham does a good job of skewering the likes of Rafe and other dilettantes who assume they know better than the vast majority of experts in a specialised scientific field.

    I read the article M0nty, and it is fundementally it is a puff piece about the man who competes with Flim-Flam Flannery as Australia’s most dishonest intellectual.

    Unlike Rafe, I believe this paragraph highlights how little credibility we should place on the writings:

    Manne attributes the shift in public sentiment to the mobilisation of right-wing ideology. Vested corporate interests, the Murdoch media and conservative think-tanks have combined to disparage climate science and convince the middle class there is no need to alter the carbon-fuelled material comforts of suburban life. In the choice between consumerism and environmentalism…

    Really? If this is what you, Manne & Latham believe, it is clear you are all out of your tree.

    The coalition of people that reject AGW crosses so many boundaries, you would need to be a tin-foil hat wearing wingnut to believe those conspiracy theories.

  45. Token

    M0nty:

    It’s actually a decent article which concludes that climate change is real, science is credible as it ever was, and it is only wider society that has changed in its respect for science.

    As I noted last week, there is a correlation in society whereby the locations with greater numbers of people that people in AGW, also have the greatest proportion of people who do not believe in immunisation of their kids.

    Typical lefty smorgosboard approach to “…respect for science.”

  46. Viva

    Manne attributes the shift in public sentiment to the mobilisation of right-wing ideology. Vested corporate interests, the Murdoch media and conservative think-tanks have combined to disparage climate science and convince the middle class there is no need to alter the carbon-fuelled material comforts of suburban life. In the choice between consumerism and environmentalism…

    I guess you either resort to this kind of long-winded rationale or finally succumb to the inevitability of three little words

    “truth will out”

  47. Bill

    The funding is going to dry up anyway. Imagine how much “clean climate funding” there is in Queensland today, compared to just before that election?

    If outfits like the BOM, CSIRO, (and hundred of others in the western world), become just agents of the left-of-centre parties, then what happens if right-of-centre wins an election? mOnty needs to get snout in trough while he still can.

  48. dover_beach

    “In the end” that was an incredible attempt to spin Ioannidis’ conclusion, by Shiny, which is that the vast majority of peer-reviewed papers are false. He avoids this obvious conclusion by moving thimbles around the table. As usual, some are spell-bound by such tricks.

  49. dover_beach

    Apologies to Shiny, it seems he was off that week and the baton at scienceblogs was in another hand.

  50. Elizabeth (Lizzie) B.

    I have done much modelling in my field, and models do work pretty well when you have included everything.

    I’ve done a bit of modelling too, both statistical and the other sort. :)

    In both, the outcome depends upon the inputs and a lot of tweaking of various things can occur that can alter the picture substantially. Sometimes the tweaking is very well hidden, the result comes out well anyway, and who’s to know? Other times, it becomes increasingly apparent that the wrong model has been selected to do the job. For instance, I was never tall enough for the catwalk.

    In climatic models, there’s been a lot of tweaking to make things ‘fit’, but the AGW outfit is looking increasingly less fashionable. In fact, it’s now quite apparent that AGW due to CO2 increase is the wrong model, in the wrong parade.

    I’ve studied applied statistics sufficiently to know that climatologists, epidemiologists, demographers, economists and other modellers are sometimes so tied up with the nature of their techniques that they fail to see limitations in the design of their working constructs. So, as had been elaborated above, GIGO and game over for AGW. So sad for them.

  51. Pingback: Latham on denialism « Harry Clarke

  52. Samuel J

    Bruce

    So I do not agree with your sentiment entirely. But the climate modellers are in the worst sort of Catch 22, since if they ever even hint that CAGW doesn’t exist the vast amount of funding they get will dry up like an icecube in hell.

    But isn’t that an ethical question? If a climate modeller is willing to sell his or her soul for money that is hardly ethical behaviour.

  53. cohenite

    If a climate modeller is willing to sell his or her soul for money that is hardly ethical behaviour.

    Not all of them are in for the money; ego plays a part and some are just nuts.

  54. Bill

    Nearly everyone is in what they do partly for the money. But in science you are supposed to be paid more if you get it right. In climatology you are only paid if you get it politically correct.

    Climatology is Lysenkoism, it isnt science.

  55. Viva

    game over for AGW

    Many people used to agree with AGW because they didn’t want to seem old fashioned and out of step.

    Now more people disagree because they don’t want to look gullible if not downright stupid.

  56. brc

    Many people used to agree with AGW because they didn’t want to seem old fashioned and out of step.

    I would argue that if you agree with it, or at least brazenly force your opinion on others, you’re well out of step.

    I don’t know anyone who is a walking advocate of global warming anymore. I used to know people who talked it up all the time. I remember a conversation with a business associate once. He was genuinely worried if his kids would have a decent life because of AGW. He doesn’t bring it up now, I’m sure he’s embarrassed about his earlier panic.

  57. Bruce of Newcastle

    “But isn’t that an ethical question? If a climate modeller is willing to sell his or her soul for money that is hardly ethical behaviour.”

    Samuel – sure, on the surface. But you underestimate the ability of humans to really believe in something which happens to help pay their mortgages.

    Scientists are like any other person. That can rationalise black as white if it fits their mindset and the mindset of their friends, colleagues and everyone they know.

    So is this dishonesty? I think yes. Is it conscious dishonesty? Maybe not. Is it going along with the flow, yes almost certainly. When your boss doesn’t want to address a certain question then you generally come to understand this pretty quickly. After a while you don’t think to ever ask the question as the inertia of getting the next project milestone is always there to be met. Why argue when all it would do is prevent you from working in your chosen field, gain recognition, success and finances? Humans are best at fooling themselves if there is a really pressing reason that they should.

    A lot of people are going to be very unhapy when this house of cards falls over. But that was the case also for all the salespeople for quack ulcer cures.

  58. Bruce of Newcastle

    “Sometimes the tweaking is very well hidden, the result comes out well anyway, and who’s to know?”

    One of my jobs was to convert others’ process models over to different platforms and for different uses. I learned a lot of tricks that way. : )

  59. Monty
    I think your point is that some “sceptical scientists” are dodgy and so what? I am sure some are. Some of the conspiracy theories aren’t helpful either. This does not change the fact that many scientists who are not getting money and are not conspiracy theorists do not believe in Catostrophic Global Warming. Now lets mention the economics. Use less fuel save money pretty simple right. Apparently not as we have all these economists suggesting really weird schemes and spending incredible amounts of money. Lets look at the Aus solution. We spend all this money and increase emmissions. Aspects of the carbon tax and other government policy is to increase emissions trains versus trucks, gas versus oil and promotion of Aus gas guzzlers etc. Coalition policy is not much better as it may increase emissions at high cost also through the MRET. Is there something I am not understanding?

  60. Jim Rose

    it is no longer sufficient for a large majority of scientists to compile the evidential facts of a matter and expect the public to accept them at face value

    the greens accept the views of a large majority of scientists when its suits them, otherwise the precuatonary principle is used to suspend judgment and demend more and more evidence.

    Have you seen BAPTISTS? THE POLITICAL ECONOMY OF POLITICAL ENVIRONMENTAL INTEREST GROUPS By Todd J. Zywicki, 53 Case W. Res. L. Rev. 315 (2002-2003)

    Zywicki specifies three testable implications on the public interest model of the activities of environmental interest groups:

    (1) A desire to base policy on the best-available science;
    (2) a willingness to engage in deliberation and compromise to balance environmental protection against other compelling social and economic interests; and,
    (3) A willingness to consider alternative regulatory strategies that can deliver environmental protection at lower-cost than command-and-control regulation.

    On all three counts, Zywicki found that the public-interest explanation for the activities of environmental interest groups fails to convincingly describe their behaviour. Instead, evidence on each of these three tests is consistent with a self- interested model of the behaviour of environmental groups.

  61. sdfc

    Samson, how does AGW work? I mean what is the heating mechanism created by increased CO2 concentration?

    Sunlight strikes the earth which then emits infrared radiation which is soaked up by greenhouse gases and radiated back to the earth as heat. CO2 is a greenhouse gas. Has this basic science been overturned since I went to high school?

  62. cohenite

    soaked up by greenhouse gases and radiated back to the earth as heat.

    Wow, that is basic science, we’re getting somewhere; could you now apply Beers Law to the incremental increase in CO2 and its effect on CO2′s soaking up capacity and explain how the backradiation heats the oceans?

  63. John H.

    Ioannidis JPA (2005) Why most published
    research findings are false. PLoS Med 2(8): e124.

    There is a huge problem with his research but of course who is critiquing his research? Have you read any of his papers or are you just accepting his claims at face value?

  64. Peter Patton

    What has happened to science?

    Is this for real? You are asking this on a blog, which has been taken over and pack-raped by a gang of stark, raving Roman Catholics!? Oh dude. Mirror. Look. Pot. Kettle.

  65. hzhousewife

    It’s pretty simple –

    Pure science is just fine.

    The INTERPRETATION of which has become extremely
    suspect………..

  66. Splatacrobat

    My heroine was Marie Curie. Someone who fought against the odds to make a name for herself.
    She would be horrified at Science today.

    She would be glowing rolling in her grave right now.

  67. entropy

    methinks poor old mark has confused politics with science.

  68. Jim Rose

    It is no longer sufficient for a large majority of scientists to compile the evidential facts of a matter and expect the public to accept them at face value. Other, more powerful influences are at work.

    most important advance in the age of enlightenment, says Popper is we are willing to listen to valid criticism and accept reasonable suggestions to improve society.

    Popper classed as pseudo-science, devoid of any serious intellectual basis, both Marxism and psychoanalysis. The both of them are based on dogmatism, since by definition eliminates all attempts to contradict them.

    Marxists automatically assign to an opponent a class bias: if you say this is that you are objectively complicit in our opponents, so your arguments are not admissible.

  69. Rabz

    Whoever the f*ck harry clarke is, he’s a denialist dinosaur.

    P.S. No more unintended visits to your shite, either, you pseudo intellectual pillock.

  70. sdfc

    Cohenite
    Cohenite

    Mmm, thought not.

    Mmm played FIFA with one of my boys, cooked dinner, and then watched the footy.

    Way to sound like a tosser though, full marks.

    I notice you failed to answer my question, in amongst all of that self gratification.

  71. Samson Agonistes

    The trouble with Popper’s views is that the entirety of economics and psychiatry don’t meet his definition of science, and not just Marxism and psychoanalysis.

    Marxism does not work on the basis of class bias. Bias is a psychological concept and you won’t find a trace of it in his entire opus.

  72. John H.

    The trouble with Popper’s views is that the entirety of economics and psychiatry don’t meet his definition of science

    Economics is not a science. too mathematical and insufficiently empirical. I sometimes get the impression economists develop mathematical models then merrily ignore reality. Psychiatry is a clinical discipline not a scientific discipline.

  73. sdfc

    You sometimes get the impression?

  74. John H.

    You sometimes get the impression?

    OK, put it this way. Tonight myself and a few people came up with a hypotheses regarding calcium, inflammation, atherosclerosis, and heart failure. We then searched for the relevant data and hey presto there is something to look at there and it raises some fundamental questions about age related conditions. Calcification could well be a leading driver of many age related conditions, it figures very prominently in cerebral and vascular health. We have found hundreds of articles pointing the importance of 3 key nutrients. But that is all we have, it would take several months to examine all the relevant data etc etc. In economics oh fuck looking for evidence the maths is so nice and it just makes so much sense. Hint: never trust “what makes sense”, that feeling is a heuristic and often a very bad one. Economists don’t think like my friends, we think data first model second, they think model, model, model.

  75. sdfc

    I wasn’t disagreeing. I was just surprised you only sometimes think economic models ignore reality.

  76. John H.

    I know you weren’t disagreeing sdfc, it is just that I am ignorant about economics so couldn’t be that confident. I could have used much more trenchant remarks, as is the way of this forum, but I’ll leave that poison to all the people here who think insults and lies are the way to truth. They like winning arguments more than the truth.

  77. cohenite

    I notice you failed to answer my question, in amongst all of that self gratification.

    When I self-gratify I don’t have time for stupid questions.

    Anyway, how do I know when and where you went to school?

  78. trax

    A study has shown there has been a very large Rise in scientific retractions far outpacing the rise in publications. This would indicate there is a big problem with fraud and more errors occurring in ‘science’.
    I suspect there is some sort of systemic problem resulting from financial and political pressures and nowhere is there more financial and political pressure than climate science.

  79. .

    I wasn’t disagreeing. I was just surprised you only sometimes think economic models ignore reality.

    This from a Keynesian crank who isn’t up on the literature on monetary economics.

    Wow, just wow.

  80. Mother Hubbard's Dog

    My heroine was Marie Curie.

    The only person to win two Nobel Prizes in different areas of science.

  81. Alphonse

    Nice to see a solid cohort of denialists here. Those wishy washy sceptics who think there just might be something to it, so we need to take measures as insurance in case there is something to it, they might as well be statist greenie alarmists.

  82. sdfc

    Dot

    This from a Keynesian crank who isn’t up on the literature on monetary economics.

    Point me to the literature that denies that banks create money. I’ll pull it apart for you.

  83. JC

    Point me to the literature that denies that banks create money. I’ll pull it apart for you.

    SDFC, you clearly don’t understand how money is created and incorrectly believe credit is money when it’s not.

    You can’t even pull an elastic band apart let alone money creation.

  84. JC

    Let’s go through this again.

    Central banks change the quantity of money through open market operations. The impact works through the banking system through the credit multiplier.

    Please learn basic monetary economics and we can then teach you how the fiscal stimulus is a poor way of trying to achieve the goal of stimulating the economy.

  85. sdfc

    Central banks don’t target money and even when they tried they failed because the majority of the money supply is created by credit. Central banks these days target interest rates.

    I don’t know why you are denying the existence of bank created money and in the same breath talking about credit multipliers. Just can’t bring yourself to use the term money multiplier can you? That would smash your whole silly argument to pieces.

  86. sdfc

    Fiscsl policy increases the money supply through the credit channel.

  87. sdfc

    Should have written deficit spending increases the money supply.

  88. Doc Simmons

    “Should have written deficit spending increases the money supply.”

    You are a two-time liar. You are a liar two to the power of two. You know that we have a central bank you lying piece of filth. So you know that its up to the central bank to decide what the money supply is. So you are giving us this antiquated scenario of Rothschild expanding the money supply in some racket where he’s lending to the government circa 1760.

    Listen people. SDFC is now a known liar. Enough time has passed for all of us to SEE THROUGH his prevarications.

    I always chided him that to make his jive work, he had to keep mixing his head up on the difference between fiscal and monetary policy. But with this last statement we can see that he is a liar. Not a patriot. He has no pride. He is not a righteous white man.

    In short he is white trash. And on the wrong side of all issues.

  89. Doc Simmons

    Let it be not implied by the above that this “JC” is in any way decent, or is in any way a “human” as we might usually accord characteristics to that term.

  90. sdfc

    The central bank does not inject money into the economy. It lays the playing field for bank money creation. Calling people liars only adds to your foolishness.

    The funniest thing is that you bang on about the evils of FRB but have no idea what it is.

  91. Doc Simmons

    It doesn’t matter what the central bank is doing now you liar. The fact is that the central bank COULD inject cash. It COULD inject cash enough to hit any business revenue target it aimed at.

    No sorry sdfc. You are a proven liar. This was not proven early on, because someone could have plausibly thought you had gotten the wrong end of the stick.

    But we know now that you are a liar. For it is the case that a central bank on purely fiat currency can hit any business revenue target it aims at, through new cash injection as the accelerator and increases in the reserve asset ratio as the break.

    And I happen to know that this fact has been pointed out to you a number of times, so I know that you are a liar.

  92. Doc Simmons

    R.I.P. sdfc

    A proven liar.

    He never did no good.

    He never was no good.

    Got his comeuppance by his dishonestly failing to admit that a central bank, with a fiat currency, can hit any (internal) business-revenues target that it aims at.

  93. sdfc

    Let’s put aside your foolishness.

    Inject cash where?

  94. Doc Simmons

    What is this? Some Stalinist “play dumb and win” ploy?

    A government, or a mint, or a central bank can add cash to the economy, when in surplus, in deficit, when taking care of business, or just clowning around.

    Now just you stop your lying.

  95. sdfc

    So you don’t know the transmission mechanism from the central bank to the economy blowhard. No surprise there.

  96. Doc Simmons

    NO you are a liar. Now lets get this right. You are a filthy fucking liar. The transmission method can be SPENDING ….. can be BUYING EXISTING ASSETS ….. can be FACTORING OF PRIVATE DEBT

  97. Doc Simmons

    Can be factoring of private debt, can by the paying off of existing government debt.

    Its all just spending truckloads of newly minted cash from the printing presses.

    But not local obscurantism can change the fact that you are a proven liar. That it has been pointed out to you thousands of times that the central bank can determine EXACTLY what internal business revenues will be from the two tools of new cash injection, a reserve asset ratio.

    You are such lying filth that you’ve never even once denied this.

  98. Doc Simmons

    Any specific target of business revenues within a currency region can be effected by way of a dual policy of controlling the reserve asset ratio of private banks, and controlling new cash release ………… FROM THE MINT …. if I can be forgiven for being so bold amidst the usual flotsam and jetsam and banker sycophants.

    So now that we know this, Keynesian, in the modern era, in the post-Bretton-Woods era, ought to be seen as antiquated, on grounds of straight logic.

  99. Adrien

    On a point of detail, I am prepared to bet a dollar that a large majority of scientists do not back climate alarmism.

    Isn’t this exactly the kind of twisting of reason that Latham (and shitloads of others have noted? It is perfectly possible, in science, for some individual to be correct and everyone else to be wrong. It’s also imperfectly impossible for any of us to assess who is correct in this matter due to said twisting of reasoning perpetrated by interests on both sides of this very ideological argument. Climate alarmism versus AGW? That’s very slippery Agent Champion.

    How about Big Government backing Big Science

    And how ’bout Big Business backing Big Antiscience? :)

    It’s a big fat elephant a chewin’ on yer couch Rafe.

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