Climate Skepticism the new Creationism?
Those who thought that the war was won and the forces of junk science—who prop up the climate change alarmists—were sent packing need to think again. With the new year, a new assault on climate skepticism is being waged on multiple fronts. Editorials in Nature and Science herald the resurgence of the climate catastrophists and their attempt to bamboozle the public, mislead government officials and brainwash our children. Wake up and smell the steer manure, the battle against the bogus boffins of climate hysteria is far from over.
With the the Arab Spring, recession and national default looming in Europe, and America being distracted by its quadrennial presidential circus there has been precious little mention of that old bugaboo global warming in recent days. So little news that the casual observer might think that the mater is settled and rationality has put paid to the alarmist rabble. Not so! To start off 2012, the editorial section of the British journal Nature has sounded a clarion call for a climate change resurgence.
In an editorial titled “Reach out about climate,” scientists of the world are urged to put 2011 behind them and rejoin the fight in 2012:
With US politics in gridlock, Europe in financial turmoil and minimal progress at the climate conference in South Africa in December, 2011 was a bad year for political progress in tackling climate change. In addition, surveys of public opinion show a declining belief that climate change is an urgent problem. Clearly, the need to make the public aware of the threat has never been greater. In the face of climate-change contrarians and denialists, some of them with political clout and voices amplified by the media, climate scientists must be even more energetic in taking their message to citizens.
By their own admission, 2011 was a very bad year for the purveyors of alarmist tripe. On most fronts they have been stymied and governments have turned a deaf ear to their ever shriller protestations. Worst of all, the public has grown tired of the climate Cassandras and their constant droning on about doom and destruction. But the true believers are using the distractions of the current news cycle as cover while they lick their wounds, marshal their forces and plan a new offensive. Again quoting from the Nature editorial:
Two challenges face those who communicate the science of climate change to the public. The first is to make the messages from models and observations as vivid as possible while maintaining scientific probity — avoiding the blurring of dispassionate discussions of the science and the equally important individual right of advocacy. The second is to find the right ways of conveying uncertainties without losing grip on the central, generally agreed, conclusions.
Bemoaning government difficulties in achieving “clarity of national action on climate change,” they nonetheless urge the climate faithful forward. “[S]cientists and their organizations need to do more to help citizens engage with the issues and not be misled by travesties of the evidence.” Travesties of evidence? As in there is no convincing evidence backing the climate cabal's claims? This ongoing guerrilla war on rationality is the only travesty here.
The view from Europe is echoed by the even shriller climate activists at American journal Science. In a January 17the online article, under the title “Education Advocates Enter the Climate Tempest,” the question is posed: “Is climate change education the new evolution, threatened in U.S. school districts and state education standards by well-organized interest groups?”
This is not the first attempt to place climate skeptics on the same disreputable level as creationist. The inference is that doubting climate change dogma is the same as denying Evolution—the province of religious fanatics and fringe science loonies. Sorry, science doesn't work that way. Disbelief in a poorly formed theory supported by scanty evidence in no way implies belief or disbelief in any other unconnected theory. Real scientists would know better.
Yet the National Center for Science Education (NCSE) in Oakland, California, which fights the teaching of creationism, announced that it's going to take on climate change denial as well. In the article from Science, NCSE environmental education expert Mark McCaffrey states “There's a climate of confusion in this country around climate science.” Amazing! Wasn't this supposed to be settled science? How can something so supposedly well accepted by science meet with such resistance? Surely the climate change alarmists have incontrovertible proof of their assertions. Oops.
NCSE expects opposing climate skepticism to be much harder than fighting creationism. “The forces arrayed against climate science are more numerous and much better funded,” says NCSE Director Eugenie Scott. Armed with contradicting facts and rational arguments those cheeky skeptics are better able to get their message across in the mainstream media. I've got news for you, Eugenie, it's not the funding. The fight against climate skepticism is so hard because the warmists' evidence is so unconvincing.
Victor Frankenstein was a better scientist than the climate alarmists.
This is supposed to be a scientific debate, yet the warmists are putting their efforts into propaganda, particularly propaganda aimed at the young. Better to teach our children the scientific method, at the heart of which is the principle of hypothesis rejection by contrary empirical evidence. As one poster on Slashdot recently said, “neither the IPCC, nor NOAA, nor the Royal Meteorological society have made any clearly falsifiable hypothesis statement about Catastrophic Anthropogenic Global Warming.” In short, global warming doesn't even qualify as a scientific theory.
So gird your intellectual loins and man the ramparts, the forces of crap science are mounting a counter attack. Their evidence has not improved, their models have not miraculously become a stand-in for the real world, the validity of their weak, ad hoc theory has, if anything, diminished. But yet they yammer on, after all there are buckets of grant money at stake. We skeptics must remain strong and objective, for the cost of freedom from crackpot science is eternal vigilance.
Be safe, enjoy the interglacial and stay skeptical.