Thursday, November 26, 2009

Who are the deniers now?


UPDATE: Here are a couple of the more interesting takes on this scandal, one from the Wall Street Journal which agrees with my view that the most serious charge to be laid against Jones and Mann, et al. is the manipulation of the peer review process to deny an opportunity for contrary research to be published, and one from a statistician in the National Post who plows the same soil previously tilled by McKitrick and thinks that the only international agreement that is required from Cophenhagen is an agreement that compels scientists to reveal their data for review by others.

The reverberations from the disclosure of e-mails obtained by a hacker and published on the Internet of the doings of the top AGW climate scientists still continue to reverberate around the globe.

The allegation that they cooked the global warming data to fit the AGW theory is not new and doesn’t require confirmation from these e-mails. It was first exposed about six years ago in the book: Taken By Storm: The Troubled Science, Policy and Politics of Global Warming by Ross McKitrick and Christopher Essex. That exposé was followed up by official investigations and other research that confirmed the conclusions of McKitrick and Essex.

The real devastation to the catastrophic climate change side comes in under the rubric of “integrity”.

I once made a statement to a friend who is a robust advocate for drastic measures to combat climate change and a committed believer in human caused global warming that environmentalists (i.e., people like him) can do harm. He was astonished that anyone would think that a “right-minded, altruistic” environmentalist could cause harm.

Right now, over a 100 countries are meeting in Denmark to plot a course that will ultimately result in shocks to the economies of many developed countries. This is all based on a 15-year successful campaign by global warm mongers to scare the snot out of politicians and to mobilize public opinion to further cause them angst.

Other scientists and researchers have been casting doubt on the entire premise on which this is based; i.e. that humans are largely responsible for climate change. Those dissenters have been vilified as dishonest because they are allegedly being paid off by energy industries who want to derail public policy based on global warming, and they are characterized as being irrelevant for the sin of being retired, and, in the final insult, they are dismissed as unimportant because they have not contributed research papers to respected scientific journals to be “peer reviewed”. In short, unlike the pro global warming crowd, the others lack integrity.

I am always suspicious of people whose first, and seemingly only, line of defence is ad hominem attacks on their critics.

There is a special label the AGW crowd has attached to the dissenting group, which, in normal science parlance (i.e. science unpolluted by politics) would be called skeptics. They are called deniers in the hope that the opprobrium that attaches to Holocaust deniers will trickle down and discredit these people. Consistent with that below the belt tactic are statements made by a number of AGWers that such deniers should receive criminal consequences and jail terms.

Now we find that the AGW group conspired to try to prevent research that did not conform to their published views from being “peer reviewed” in scientific journals.

They have become the deniers and perhaps they should be the ones looking at criminal consequences. Their integrity is shot, even if the science of climate change muddles on.