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My biggest problem with the advocates of anthropogenic (man-made) global warming has always been their obvious closed-mindedness, which is utterly inconsistent with the principles of science. The "warmers" won't engage in debate. They demonize global warming agnostics and questioners as "flat-earthers." They question the motives of dissenters. They ignore any data that isn't consistent with their beliefs, which makes those beliefs appear predetermined. These characteristics of the warmers make them appear almost like cult members, driven by ideology. I can understand this from a political standpoint, because politics is often little more than thuggery. I can't, however, accept this type of behavior from a scientific standpoint. Science is supposed to be the pursuit of truth, not the pursuit of an agenda. Science is not fixed and unquestioned. It doesn't have an end. It is an ongoing endeavor.
Wikipedia explains the scientific method as follows:
The Scientific method refers to a body of techniques for investigating phenomena, acquiring new knowledge, or correcting and integrating previous knowledge. To be termed scientific, a method of inquiry must be based on gathering observable, empirical and measurable evidence subject to specific principles of reasoning. A scientific method consists of the collection of data through observation and experimentation, and the formulation and testing of hypotheses.
When existing scientific hypotheses are disproven, as the IPCC hockey stick graph has been disproven, then explanations or alternate hypotheses are called for. More scientific inquiry is called for. What we have witnessed with the Climategate e-mails has been precisely the opposite of science. We have witnessed scientists acting like ideologically-driven thugs (aka, politicians). The e-mails reveal scientists rigging data and attempting to squelch dissenting opinions. At the center of the storm are two man-made global warming advocates, the climatologists Michael Mann of Penn State, and Phil Jones, director of the University of East Anglia's Climate Research Unit, from which the e-mails were lifted. The Wall Street Journal describes some of the e-mail communiques between these two scientists:
The real issue is what the [e-mail] messages say about the way the much-ballyhooed scientific consensus on global warming was arrived at, and how a single view of warming and its causes is being enforced. The impression left by the correspondence among Messrs. Mann and Jones and others is that the climate-tracking game has been rigged from the start.
According to this privileged group, only those whose work has been published in select scientific journals, after having gone through the "peer-review" process, can be relied on to critique the science. And sure enough, any challenges from critics outside this clique are dismissed and disparaged.
This September, Mr. Mann told a New York Times reporter in one of the leaked emails that: "Those such as [Stephen] McIntyre who operate almost entirely outside of this system are not to be trusted." Mr. McIntyre is a retired Canadian businessman who checks the findings of climate scientists and often publishes the mistakes he finds on his Web site, Climateaudit.org. He holds the rare distinction of having forced Mr. Mann to publish a correction to one of his more famous papers.
As anonymous reviewers of choice for certain journals, Mr. Mann & Co. had considerable power to enforce the consensus, but it was not absolute, as they discovered in 2003. Mr. Mann noted in a March 2003 email, after the journal "Climate Research" published a paper not to Mr. Mann's liking, that "This was the danger of always criticising the skeptics for not publishing in the 'peer-reviewed literature'. Obviously, they found a solution to that—take over a journal!"
Mr. Mann went on to suggest that the journal itself be blackballed: "Perhaps we should encourage our colleagues in the climate research community to no longer submit to, or cite papers in, this journal. We would also need to consider what we tell or request of our more reasonable colleagues who currently sit on the editorial board." In other words, keep dissent out of the respected journals. When that fails, redefine what constitutes a respected journal to exclude any that publish inconvenient views.
Notice the circular logic contained in the above e-mail exchanges. Mann and Jones only want peer-reviewed journals to be taken seriously regarding man-made global warming, but when a peer-reviewed journal publishes anything that the warmers don't like, the warmers move to exclude them as a peer-reviewed journal, thus closing off the dissent (and the science). This is not science.
Here's more reported by Robert Tracinski at RealClearPolitics:
You can also see from these e-mails the scientists' panic at any dissent appearing in the scientific literature. When another article by a skeptic was published in Geophysical Research Letters, Michael Mann complains, "It's one thing to lose Climate Research. We can't afford to lose GRL." Another CRU scientist, Tom Wigley, suggests that they target another troublesome editor: "If you think that Saiers is in the greenhouse skeptics camp, then, if we can find documentary evidence of this, we could go through official AGU channels to get him ousted." That's exactly what they did, and a later e-mail boasts that "The GRL leak may have been plugged up now w/new editorial leadership there."
Not content to block out all dissent from scientific journals, the CRU scientists also conspired to secure friendly reviewers who could be counted on to rubber-stamp their own work. Phil Jones suggests such a list to Kevin Trenberth, with the assurance that "All of them know the sorts of things to say...without any prompting."
I love the part where the warmers say they "can't afford to lose" another group of climate researchers. What can't they afford to lose ? Their grants, their big salaries, their perks, or what ?
There are a number of other e-mails indicating the deception of the warmers.
Here's one about hiding the fact that global temperatures have been DECLINING:
I’ve just completed Mike’s Nature trick of adding in the real temps to each series for the last 20 years (ie from 1981 onwards) amd from 1961 for Keith’s to hide the decline.
Here's one that doubts global warming science:
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. The CERES data published in the August BAMS 09 supplement on 2008 shows there should be even more warming: but the data are surely wrong. Our observing system is inadequate.
Here's one about a global warming skeptic scientist:
Next time I see Pat Michaels at a scientific meeting, I’ll be tempted to beat the crap out of him. Very tempted.
Here's an attempt to hide the facts about the Medieval Warming Period:
Phil and I have recently submitted a paper using about a dozen NH records that fit this category, and many of which are available nearly 2K back–I think that trying to adopt a timeframe of 2K, rather than the usual 1K, addresses a good earlier point that Peck made w/ regard to the memo, that it would be nice to try to “contain” the putative “MWP”, even if we don’t yet have a hemispheric mean reconstruction available that far back….
More possible suppression of evidence:
Can you delete any emails you may have had with Keith re AR4? [the UN's Fourth Assessment Report]
Keith will do likewise. He’s not in at the moment – minor family crisis.
Can you also email Gene and get him to do the same? I don’t have his new email address.
We will be getting Caspar to do likewise.
This stuff is distrubing, to say the least. Perhaps all scientific credibility is not lost, however. Another climatologist at the East Anglia CRU, Mike Hulme, had this to say about the e-mails:
"This event might signal a crack that allows for processes of re-structuring scientific knowledge about climate change. It is possible that some areas of climate science has become sclerotic. It is possible that climate science has become too partisan, too centralized. The tribalism that some of the leaked emails display is something more usually associated with social organization within primitive cultures; it is not attractive when we find it at work inside science."
Amen to that.