By Richard Larsen
Published – Idaho State Journal, Published 12/13/09
In his State of the Union address, President Obama said “We will return science to its proper place…” That is a noble goal, one that I concur with. But when the scientific method is sacrificed for ideology, it’s no longer science.
Science is a branch of knowledge which deals with facts and data systematically in order to prove the operation of general laws, whether biological, environmental, or physical. Yet it’s becoming increasingly obvious that what Obama meant was that science would be used not in proving theories and making sound policy based on empirical data, but it would instead be used selectively in order to advance predetermined policy, even with doctored data.
As explicated in my last column, the United Kingdom based Hadley Climate Research Unit, which is responsible for ground temperature readings from which NASA’s satellites are calibrated and which is replete with “global warming” myrmidons, has been engaged in unethical scientific practices. Phil Jones, director of the Unit, has since stepped down, and Michael Mann is under investigation by Penn State for systematic doctoring and erroneous reporting of data used by the climate monitoring gurus.
And it’s not just for doctoring the data, which they have failed to produce in spite of repeated official requests. Their unethical practices go beyond that. They sought to suppress research of global warming skeptics and polluted the system which defined “peer reviewed” studies. These dubious activities have even embarrassed fellow scientists who likewise believe in man-made global warming. These more serious scientists recognize that “Climategate” has contaminated the scientific community, and reeks of selling out legitimate scientific pursuit in order to advance a cause.
Nate Silver, renowned statistician, called the Unit’s actions “unethical,” and that “it happens all the time.” Tim Ball, former climatology professor, said it marked “the death blow to climate change,” while Patrick Michaels, former state climatologist for Virginia, told the New York Times, “This is not a smoking gun; this is a mushroom cloud.” Former NASA climatologist John Theon said, “This whole thing is a fraud.
This adulteration of the scientific process is not only a blemish on the scientific community, but it is the primary source of the information, data, and computer modeling utilized by the United Nations’ Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, or IPCC. Consequently, all climatic and environmental policy and treaties being proposed by the United Nations as well as our own government, based on the fraudulent data and research generated by the Hadley group is fallacious. If the premise of the man-made global warming argument is predicated upon faulty data, models, and conclusions, any governmental policy based upon the same falls like a house of cards.
The White House response to this scientific manipulation was, “I don’t think there’s any scientific dispute of this.” In other words, it doesn’t matter that the scientific process has become corrupted, it mattered that their ideological agenda was supported. The data the White House bases its conclusion on is the very data doctored by the Hadley Research Unit!
Carbon dioxide emissions have increased steadily since 1998, which according to Mann’s climate model, means global temperatures should have increased commensurately. However, it is clear the temperatures have not increased but have actually dropped in the same time period, erasing a century of “global warming,” and thereby challenging the premise of the global warming alarmists. This disconnect between CO2 emissions and global mean temperatures is captured in the CRU’s Dr. Trenberth comment, “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.” Empirical scientific evidence of a causal relationship between carbon emissions and global warming is lacking, and the computer models are not predictive. Nonetheless, there are some in the scientific, academic, journalistic, and governmental communities who have swallowed hook, line and sinker, and promulgated the now obviously false notion that cataclysmic consequences await mankind if we don’t dramatically curtail our CO2 emissions - colloquially referred to as reducing our carbon footprint.
These people have been the gatekeepers of the data, contaminated the peer review process for publication, and conspired to silence and pressure critics. In short, any “peer reviewed” studies or publications even remotely connected to these climate research gatekeepers is of dubious scientific value.
Investor’s Business Daily recapitulated the actions at the Hadley Center, “With the revelations from what is now being called “Climate-gate,” many people are beginning to see a grand scam in which data were deliberately distorted; peer review was gamed by manipulating and stacking the process; critics were smeared, black-balled, de-funded and even fired; opposing papers were kept from publication; and politically savvy scientists worked in concert with journalists, politicians, bureaucrats and interest groups to deceive both opinion leaders and the public to further their agenda.”
Since their data is contaminated, their process corrupt, and their computer models flawed, the argument that man is causing the earth to warm has officially collapsed. When scientists have to rig the data and scam the system to sell their conclusions, the whole thing is officially bogus.
Even if the U.S. Senate fails to ratify the Copenhagen Treaty, the successor to the Kyoto Treaty to reduce carbon emissions, the Obama administration has a “plan B” to gain control over our energy consumption. Last week the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced that they will treat carbon dioxide (CO2) as a “dangerous pollutant.” This ruling will give them the power to control all areas of our energy consumption without so much as a legislative vote.
What’s ominous about this is the fact that the EPA is basing that ruling on the fraudulent data provided by the Hadley Center. Dr. Alan Carlin, an EPA senior research analyst at the National Center for Environmental Economics wrote that the EPA finding is based on the data manipulation of the CRU.
Earlier this year the President said of those scientists working in stem-cell research, “It's about letting scientists do their jobs, free from manipulation or coercion, and listening to what they tell us, even when it's inconvenient -- especially when it's inconvenient. It is about ensuring that scientific data is never distorted or concealed to serve a political agenda -- and that we make scientific decisions based on facts, not ideology.”
He is exactly right. But the principle has to be applied universally to all scientific disciplines including climate science. Otherwise, the computer input rule of “garbage in, garbage out” will have more specific application to environmental science than computer science.