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November 25, 2009

CONSENSUS WATCH – 11/25/2009

An ongoing series dedicated to vigorously monitoring emerging threats to The Consensus that global warming is real, caused by humans, and must be addressed at all costs. Because without consensus, scientific conclusions would remain vulnerable to new data.

 Controversy continues to swirl around the release of confidential files from the Climate Research Unit (CRU) at the University of East Anglia, one of the premier global warming Consensus supporters in the world, that seemed to suggest that data was deliberately manipulated, competing scientific theories were suppressed and documents illegally destroyed.

What casual readers probably don’t realize is that scientific progress has long been founded on the timeless principles of subterfuge, deception, and trickery.

For example, some critics suggest that this statement from a private email sent by climate researcher Kevin Trenberth to Penn State’s Michael Mann illustrates inner doubt within CRU that was never expressed publicly:

“The fact is that we can’t account for the lack of warming at the moment and it is a travesty that we can’t.”

But compare that to similar doubts Isaac Newton expressed regarding his theories on gravity, in a private letter to English scholar, Richard Bentley:

"That one body may act upon another at a distance through a vacuum without the mediation of anything else, by and through which their action and force may be conveyed from one another, is to me so great an absurdity that, I believe, no man who has in philosophic matters a competent faculty of thinking could ever fall into it."

What if some nefarious character had hacked into Bentley’s oak secretary desk and released this letter to the public?  Sure, Newton could try and claim that the statement was taken out of context but by then, the damage would have been done.

And that whole apple-falling-on-his-head story?  A complete fabrication of little scientific value intended as nothing more than an emotional appeal to the masses.  Imagine what might have happened had this come to light at the time. Gravity-deniers would use the revelation to cast doubt on Newton’s work. He would lose all credibility, as would his ideas.  The consequences?  Think of all the ways Newtonian physics lay at the foundation of our modern way of life:  Satellites.  Commercial air transport.  Donkey Kong.

Another source of controversy to emerge from the hacked files are the inaccurate data sets, fundamentally flawed climate models, and hopelessly corrupted results.

However this recalls an earlier innovator, Thomas Edison, who famously said, in explaining his 10,000 failures in developing a storage battery:

“I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.”

You see, Consensus supporters haven’t failed to prove that humans are causing sustained global warming through emissions of carbon dioxide that must be addressed immediately if we are to prevent climate catastrophe.

They’ve just found 10,000 ways that don’t prove that humans are causing sustained global warming through emissions of carbon dioxide that must be addressed immediately if we are to prevent climate catastrophe.


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November 25, 2009 at 12:58 PM in Global Warming with CONSENSUS WATCH | Permalink


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OK, I actually get the full context having read the carbonfixated piece a couple days ago. But are you mocking the parody? I didn't feel that your angle was clear, at least through the first half.

Posted by: Amarsir | Nov 26, 2009 2:14:00 AM

I had some concern about that while I was writing it. But the intent was to draw a contrast between real science in which hypotheses can be tested and are indifferent to personalities and spin, and Consensus science in which it's all about personalities and spin.

Truth be told, these subtleties often exist only in my own mind and from time to time, when I read a piece from a year or two ago, I have no idea what I was trying to get at!

Posted by: Planet Moron | Nov 26, 2009 7:04:55 AM

Newton"s apple-on-the-head" thing? Strictly anecdotal. Where is the supporting reasearch? I have seen no evidence that other lazy people lying (laying?) under an apple tree have verified the wild claims. Therefore, the whole theory is called into question.

Posted by: barryjo | Dec 5, 2009 1:10:03 PM

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