Tuesday, December 08, 2009

Some Thoughts on Global Warming Etc.

Being a relativist is a lot like being fat. It takes little effort; you just open your mouth and swallow whatever you want.

There are rules for controlling one’s weight and there are rules for avoiding flabbiness of mind and soul.

It must be hard to be a relativist and a scientist, but if you must, let me suggest:

1. Listen to everyone.

2. Examine all evidence.

3. Don’t pre-judge.

4. If the facts disagree with your hypothesis, accept the facts.

5. Argue:

a. Attack the position not the person.

b. State you beliefs firmly and listen to the response.

c. Argue the issue not the argument.

d. Don’t pull you punches and never run away.

We are always hungry or forever fat; we love the truth or are stuck with false opinion.

11 comments:

Lysis said...

I originally posted this late last night, but I felt it lacked the support it needed for so important a topic as Global warming, and removed it. To my great delight "Finch" has posted some wonderful information on Global warming. I hope anyone interested in this important subject will please take the time to go back to the previous post on "Drawing Arms" and check out the comments there. They are powerful and helpful. Thank you Finch.

Lysis said...

Finch said...
Global Warming's Threat to Science
Part 1

Dear Lysis,
I read a short post on the blog last night at about 11:30 before I went to bed. It was about Global Warming and some other thoughts. The short post, obviously directed at me, was wonderful. When I woke up this morning I ran to the lab so that I could craft the response I have been thinking about all night. There are three parts to what I want to say. First, that I value a father’s advice above all other sources. Second, on the issue of global warming I believe we are not so distant. And third, you are my hero and I value your experience.

Throughout my life your advice has been in my thoughts and has factored into many of the decisions I make. For example, I remember my first broke heart as a teenager. You and I were driving in the suburban talking about it, and you told me that I would fall in love many times in my life. You were right. I have, and I continue to. The wonderful, freeing advice in that phase has meant the world to me. Example two: I remember when I left CCV to fly to Belize and you dropped me off at the ferry in Two Harbors. You handed me half of a pack of gum. I wrote a song about that day and that song is a song for my life. Example three: I remember a night, after I came home from the mission, when I was up late in the living room. I was lonely, missing my friends, and missing the sense of purpose that the mission gave me. I asked you for a blessing. You blessed me and said that a foundation had been laid for the eternity of my life. When I am lonely, I remember the warmth of your hands resting on my head.
On the issue of global warming I want to tell you what I believe and what I don’t believe. I chose this approach here because I think that the issue is not so much about global warming as it is about us. I believe in climate change as a natural process that influences the form and distribution of life on earth. I believe there is value in the awe and wonder that comes from encountering life – as a historian and as a scientist. I want to understand the processes and forces that have shaped, and that continue to shape, life and the earth. I do not believe that climate change is the same thing as global warming and more particularly the catastrophic changes that those who use global warming as a tool for power and manipulation predict.

Global warming is a powerful narrative, akin to the lies used by the self-serving social revolutionaries who forced communism onto hopeful people in many nations during the last century. The tenets of global warming are 1) that humans, by the use of fossil fuels and the cutting of forests, are causing the earth’s temperature to rise and 2)that rising temperatures, the result from industrial uses of fossil fuel, will have catastrophic effects that are environmental, economic, and political.

Global warming is branded as a religion because it is clearly not a science. Science is iterative and requires
(1) observation of naturally occurring phenomena
(2) formulation of one or multiple explanations of what is happening and why
(3) stating these explanations as testable hypotheses
(4) designing and conducting tests in order to disprove the hypotheses
(5) formulation of new explanations based on systematically gathered evidence

Global warming fails to meet these requirements. Furthermore, as a narrative that gives power to socialists, global warming is a threat to real science. There is a balance of power, among some or several of the agencies that fund scientific research, which favors the narrative of human-caused global warming with catastrophic consequences. As a result, many scientists ascribe to the narrative as a way of gaining support for their research. In turn they produce research that hollowly supports the narrative. In this way the machine is self-perpetuating and infects many otherwise honest scientists in the field. But that machine can be broken.
12:10 PM

Lysis said...

Finch said...
Global Warming's Threat to Science
Part 2

I believe that the powerful narrative of global warming, in science, is about to explode. Though I fear that it will live on in political and academic circles in the same way that communism has. I believe there are enough scientists that will engage the real science and expel the fallacies. As evidence I site a list of books published within the past two years (See appendix A). There are 22 books listed here. I have not read them all, but I want to draw attention to some points about the titles, where they are located in the library, and where they were published. This chart divides the books according to library of congress subject classification (based on call number) and compares whether the title suggests support for the tenets of global warming, neutrality on the issues, or explicit refutes of the tenets of global warming.

Science – Physics
S: 4, 10,
N: 3, 7, 12, 13, 14
R: 1, 6, 11, 16, 17, 21, 22

Science – Astronomy
S: 15

Social Science
S: 2, 5, 20
N: 8

Technology
S: 9, 18

Twelve of the 15 books in the physics and astronomy category are either neutral, attempt to avoid, or are openly opposed to the powerful narrative of human-caused global warming. There are two books in the science categories that, from their titles, appear to support the powerful narrative. Number 4 was published at Yale University by the Center for the Study of Globalization. This suggests that it is probably a miss classification and may more accurately be placed with the social sciences. Number 10, written by Wallace Broecker the man who coined the term global warming back in the 1970s, can more appropriately be placed in the technology category because of its focus on engineering artificial trees to remove CO2 from the atmosphere. Clearly, there are credible atmospheric scientists who are opposed to the powerful narrative, and who are publicly outspoken. Unfortunately, as of yet, the leaders of the opposition are British and Australian, perhaps evidence that American scientists are bowing to the machine.

Perhaps not surprisingly, it is the social scientists, and the neo-socialists among them, who are the strongest proponents of the powerful narrative. The other supporting books are categorized with technology rather than science.

Supporters of the powerful narrative often site scientific consensus as evidence. This is the worst affront to science because the claim is non falsifiable and irrelevant, since even if scientists agreed about the catastrophic effects of human-caused global warming they could easily be wrong – honest scientists will admit that much.
Science does not support the powerful narrative. This is the chief reason why the pseudo-scientific rhetoric used by proponents of global warming is falling apart. Look at yesterday’s editorial in the Salt Lake Tribune entitle “Climate Conference.”(http://www.sltrib.com/ci_13946284?IADID=Search-www.sltrib.com-www.sltrib.com) There is no science in the article but there are plenty of claims, some false and some falsifiable. The editorial is just another to add to the list of repetitions of the global warming narrative by those who are clearly motivated by their own desire for attention and power.

So, the question is, can there be a real, viable study of climate change and its effects on the forms and distribution of life? I certainly hope so? The threat to this type of ecological climatology is the same threat that spoiled the president’s opportunity to make a clear speech about the objectives and mission for the war in Afghanistan. It is the treat that Lysis opposes, and which I oppose as well – global warming and socialism are tools of the same evil.

That is why your simple advice last night was so meaningful. “Listen to everyone,” “Argue.” (I should have written down all the points but I thought they would still be up today.)
12:18 PM

Lysis said...

Finch said...
Global Warming's Threat to Science
Part 3

Remember the first three verses of the book of 1 Nephi. “I, Nephi, having been born of goodly parents, therefore I was taught somewhat in all the learning of my father… the language of my father, which consists of the learning of the Jews and the language of the Egyptians.”

There are three important points in these verses. Nephi was born of goodly parents therefore he was taught somewhat in all the learning of his father. It is significant that his goodly parents endeavored to teach him something about all that they knew. That he was taught somewhat is also significant, because it is not comprehensive and Nephi had to learn much through his own study and experience. And third, the language of his father consists of both content (learning) and the communication (language). In study we learn both the information and how to converse about it. There is both a science and an art to all learning. (Another topic)

I am a young man and I know very little, but I am not discouraged because I have a great model – a hero – to look to, who has traveled his own uncertain paths and found joy, experience, friendship, purpose, and fulfillment in his journey.

Last night I saw you, in my mind, standing at the end of a long and beautiful path. You were calling to me – giving caution and advice – of the kind that mountaineers give each other as they work together to reach the summit. Perhaps I appear lost to you. Perhaps I am lost. But I am hopeful and I have a core foundation that I can look to for strength. I am brave. I am filled with love. Compassion is the guiding principle of my life. I do not say these things of myself to boast, only so that you will see and trust that we can succeed. I would never want to go through this without you.

Love,
Finch
12:19 PM

Lysis said...

Finch said...
Global Warming's Threat to Science
Part 4

Appendix A
1. Bowen, Mark (Mark Stander). Censoring science: inside the political attack on Dr. James Hansen and the truth of global warming. New York, N.Y.: Dutton, c2008. - QC 981.8 .G56 B69 2008
2. Dumaine, Brian. The plot to save the planet : how visionary entrepreneurs and corporate titans are creating real solutions to global warming. New York : Crown Business, 2008. - HD 75.6 .D84 2008
3. Encyclopedia of global warming and climate change. S. George Philander, editor. Los Angeles: SAGE, c2008.- QC 981.8 .G56 E47 2008 vol.1; QC 981.8 .G56 E47 2008 vol.2; QC 981.8 .G56 E47 2008 vol.3
4. Global warming: looking beyond Kyoto. Ernesto Zedillo, editor. New Haven, Conn.: Center for the Study of Globalization, Yale University; Washington, D.C.: Brookings Institution Press, c2008. - QC 981.8 .G56 G57442 2008
5. Gonzalez, George A. Urban sprawl, global warming, and the empire of capital. Albany: State University of New York Press, c2009. - HT 384 .U5 G66 2009
6. Horner, Christopher C. Red hot lies: how global warming alarmists use threats, fraud, and deception to keep you misinformed. Washington, D.C. : Regnery Pub., c2008. - QC 981.8 .G56 H676x 2008
7. Houghton, John Theodore. Global warming : the complete briefing, 4th ed. Cambridge; New York: Cambridge University Press, 2009. - QC 981.8 .G56 H68 2009
8. Hufbauer, Gary Clyde, Steve Charnovitz, and Jisun Kim. Global warming and the world trading system. Washington, DC : Peterson Institute for International Economics, 2009. - HF 1379 .H86 2009
9. Krupp, Fred. Earth, the sequel : the race to reinvent energy and stop global warming. New York : W. W. Norton & Co., c2008.- TJ 163.4 .U6 K78 2008
10. Kunzig, Robert and Wallace Broecker. Fixing climate: the story of climate science - and how to stop global warming. London: GreenProfile/Sort Of Books, 2008. - QC 981.8 .C5 K86x 2008
11. Lawson, Nigel. An appeal to reason : a cool look at global warming. London; New York: Duckworth, 2008. Library call number - QC 981.8 .G56 L39x 2008
12. Maslin, Mark. Global warming: a very short introduction. Oxford; New York: Oxford University Press, c2009. - QC 981.8 .G56 M38 2009
13. Natural climate variability and global warming: a Holocene perspective. edited by Richard W. Battarbee and Heather A. Binney. - QC 884.2 .C5 N38 2008
14. Nordhaus, William D. A question of balance: weighing the options on global warming policies. New Haven, Conn. ; London : Yale University Press, 2008. - QC 981.8 .G56 N65x 2008
15. Officer, Charles B. When the planet rages: natural disasters, global warming, and the future of the earth. Oxford; New York: Oxford University Press, c2009. - QB 631 .O34 2009
16. Paltridge, Garth W. The climate caper: facts and fallacies of global warming. London : Quartet Books, 2009. - QC 981.8 .C5 P35x 2009
17. Plimer, I. R. Heaven + earth : global warming : the missing science. London: Quartet Books Ltd., 2009. - QC 981.8 .G56 P56x 2009
18. Powell, James Lawrence, 1936- Dead pool : Lake Powell, global warming, and the future of water in the west. Berkeley : University of California Press, 2008. - TC 557 .C62 G54 2008
19. Seethaler, Sherry. Lies, damned lies, and science [electronic resource]: how to sort through the noise around global warming, the latest health claims, and other scientific controversies. http://proquest.safaribooksonline.com/?uiCode=ualc&xmlId=9780137008889. Upper Saddle River, N.J. : FT Press, c2009.
20. Simms, Andrew. Ecological debt: global warming and the wealth of nations. London; New York, NY: Pluto Press, 2009. - HC 79 .E5 S45x 2009
21. Singer, S. Fred and Dennis T. Avery. Unstoppable global warming: every 1,500 years. Updated and expanded ed. Lanham, Md. : Rowman & Littlefield, c2008. - QC 981.8 .G56 S553 2008
22. Spencer, Roy W. Climate confusion: how global warming hysteria leads to bad science, pandering politicians, and misguided policies that hurt the poor. New York : Encounter Books, 2008. - QC 981.8 .G56 S645 2008
12:20 PM

Taylor and Jodi said...

Fantastic thoughts both- I have long waited this day when the hysteria surrounding man caused climate change would start crashing down.

I totally agree with Finch's comments about the narrative being self-propagating as well! If you write an NSF (national science foundation) or DOE (department of energy) grant you literally have a far lower chance of receiving funding if you don't bow at the altar of man caused climate change. I have written 2 in graduate school so far and was mocked by colleagues and professors alike and termed a flat-earther because I refused to put them in my papers.

The overt exposure of scientists falsifying data and colluding against individuals and journals who are skeptical of climate change should signify the beginning of the end of "the machine" as Finch calls it.

While still early in my scientific career I had an amazing teacher at U of U who told us one day out of the blue "Never falsify your data. If you don't get the result you're expecting, try and figure out why. Never sweep facts under the rug, never be dishonest in your presentations" This advice (and many others) have been guiding principles in my research ever since.

Dan said...

I love reading words from those who understand science better than I. I, if anything, would have to be classified as a social scientist and have never been one to grapple in earnest with the complex ideas of physics et. al. However, I have long had a very strong opinion about this issue and a great frustration with how it is dealt with. I will leave the science up to the scientists, though I feel there has been a drought of science in most of what I hear of global warming.

On a bit of a different note from what has been laid forth previously, I see a totally separate danger in the false science and the propogation of falsification or pre conceived results as has been spoken of by Taylor and Finch. For me, I cannot speak to the science of how man's actions affect the climate, but I do feel that in many ways as a people we are unwise stewards of the land, and I think we can do better.

The problem is, when change becomes inextricably tied to this seemingly religion like 'science' it becomes nearly impossible to convince people that a desire to become more responsible with our actions is not the same as accepting the tenets of the Al Gore's of the world. I believe we should be anxiously engaged in constantly finding better more efficient, and cleaner ways of doing all we do, regardless of whether our actions are heating up the earth or not.

Unfortunately, I believe the call and drive for more responsible and consistently changing standards to live by is overshadowed by the blame and attack filled demand for everyone to change now with the threat of catastrophic climate changes.

Lysis said...

Thank you all for posting your thoughts.

Taylor: I appreciate your perspective on Science. You, like Finch, are a credit to that discipline and give me great hope for the future. I am following the proceedings in Copenhagen with interest. It is fascinating to see the luminaries paraded by the media, and the volume and "sureness" of their pronouncements. That they spend their speeches in ad-homonym attacks against those who challenge their “religion” rather than sighting facts that might refute the growing skepticism, is instructive. I hope that, as more and more courageous students of the truth come forward, it will become safe to reason in the open.

Dan: You cut right to the “problem”. Over generalization is a trick of Relativist Philosophy; pushing every case to its extreme, the stock and trade of that deception. If you love trees - you must hate paper; if you like grizzly bears – you must drive the Boy Scouts from the woods; if you value privacy – you must deny the life of unborn children. You cannot draw a reasonable line for if it is possible then the worst will always result. Everything ends in catastrophe because fear is the source of their power.

The truth dispels fear; it enables reason.

Anonymous said...

Jeff said,

Finch,

You write so well! I'm hesitant to post. When compared to your prose, I fear my written comments will be exposed as lacking. Nevertheless, I will add briefly to the discussion.

Dan commented:

"I believe we should be anxiously engaged in constantly finding better more efficient, and cleaner ways of doing all we do, regardless of whether our actions are heating up the earth or not."

Wisdom, with a caveat. Who should be "anxiously enganged?" Government? Dan doesn't imply that. Neither do I. But if not government, then who?

Engangement must be driven either personally or through markets. Government cannot be trusted to be a wise steward. Taylor and Jodi's comment is instructive:

"If you write an NSF (national science foundation) or DOE (department of energy) grant you literally have a far lower chance of receiving funding if you don't bow at the altar of man caused climate change."

Money and power are at the root of the hoax. We will be safe only when we collectively use our franchise to strip authority from those who would, according to Taylor and Jodi, " falsify(ing) data and collud(ing) against individuals and journals who are skeptical of climate change.

I'm not a scientist, I'm a salesman. It doesn't take a scientist to know that any discipline, when it is agenda driven, cannot produce truth. Science must exist independent of government. If not, we are headed back to the dark ages.

Taylor and Jodi,

I used license with your comments. I don't think I've taken them out of context. It was not my intention to do so.

Lysis said...

As some small empirical example of the tainted “pronouncements” of the luminaries of Copenhagen let me reference the bellows by the “prophet-in-chief” of the Global Warming Sect, Al Gore.

First: is Al Gore’s continued reference to all who ask for evidence for the claims made by his religion as “Global Warming / Climate Change Deniers”. This is a not so subtle ploy to cast those who question his “Inconvenient Truth” with the deniers of the Holocaust. Questioning baseless claim does not make one a neo-Nazi nitwit. One may as well denounce Santa Clause deniers. The proper way to deal with those who question your science is to exonerate your method. Gore steadfastly refuses to do this.

Second: When pushed to the wall, Al Gore just lies. When questioned by Slate Magazine about the e-mails revealing the nature of the Global Warming Scam, Gore claimed that “the most recent one [of the e-mails] is more than 10 years old.” The fact is that many of the e-mails are far more recent, the most recent being from November of this year, 2009.

Finch alludes to the “Big Lie” of Communism. Copenhagen is full of, and will continue to be filled with, dishonesty, which will then be referenced as fact in the spread of this new “secular” faith. We must carefully monitor and expose the lies.

Dan said...

To my comment, and anonymous' question, who is the we?

First, I am. I am gladly participating in the BLUE SKY program by Rocky Mtn power that purchases part of my alloted energy consumption from wind energy, it costs a very small premium, but is something that I can do to help the market forces turn towards some alternative energy sources.

Second, the we includes govt. The biggest we that can be evidenced is We the People. We, as in everyone (including the govt.) can be expected to be better, and if we are not, we can hold ourselves accountable. The only danger is when we expect others to solve the problem. There is no other, no mystical third player that will step in and solve these dilemas, only we can change it. That may seem intangible, but its all we have. Change has to come from all of us, I can only do what I can do, and hope that others do as well.