February 15, 2011 - February 8, 2011
. Lake, our AGW expert, sent me this email today:
Of course we're interested. Here's a slice of what we call punk
science, from the second link above:
The biggest problem with Judith’s proposal is her claim that the issue is that climate scientists have not understood how to present their ideas to the public. Judith, I respect you greatly, but you have grabbed the wrong end of the stick. The problem is not how climate scientists have publicly presented their scientific results. It is not a communication problem.
The problem is that 71.3% of what passes as peer reviewed climate science is simply junk science, as false as the percentage cited in this sentence. The lack of trust is not a problem of perception or communication. It is a problem of lack of substance. Results are routinely exaggerated. “Scientific papers” are larded with “may” and “might” and “could possibly”. Advocacy is a common thread in climate science papers. Codes are routinely concealed, data is not archived. A concerted effort is made to marginalize and censor opposing views.
And most disturbing, for years you and the other climate scientists have not said a word about this disgraceful situation. When Michael Mann had to be hauled in front of a congressional committee to force him to follow the simplest of scientific requirements, transparency, you guys were all wailing about how this was a huge insult to him.
An insult to Mann? Get real. Mann is an insult and an embarrassment to climate science, and you, Judith, didn’t say one word in public about that. Not that I’m singling you out. No one else stood up for climate science either. It turned my stomach to see the craven cowering of mainstream climate scientists at that time, bloviating about how it was such a terrible thing to do to poor Mikey. Now Mann has been “exonerated” by one of the most bogus whitewashes in academic history, and where is your outrage, Judith? Where are the climate scientists trying to clean up your messes?
The solution to that is not, as you suggest, to give scientists a wider voice, or educate them in how to present their garbage to a wider audience.
The solution is for you to stop trying to pass off garbage as science. The solution is for you establishment climate scientists to police your own back yard. When Climategate broke, there was widespread outrage … well, widespread everywhere except in the climate science establishment. Other than a few lone voices, the silence there was deafening. Now there is another whitewash investigation, and the silence only deepens.
And you wonder why we don’t trust you? Here’s a clue. Because a whole bunch of you are guilty of egregious and repeated scientific malfeasance, and the rest of you are complicit in the crime by your silence. Your response is to stick your fingers in your ears and cover your eyes.
And you still don’t seem to get it. You approvingly quote Ralph Cicerone about the importance of transparency … Cicerone?? That’s a sick joke.
You think people made the FOI (Freedom of Information) requests because they were concerned that the people who made the datasets were the same people using them in the models. As the person who made the first FOI request to CRU, I assure you that is not true. I made the request to CRU because I was disgusted with the response of mainstream climate scientists to Phil Jone’s reply to Warwick Hughes. When Warwick made a simple scientific request for data, Jones famously said:
Why should I make the data available to you, when your aim is to try and find something wrong with it?
When I heard that, I was astounded. But in addition to being astounded, I was naive. Looking back, I was incredibly naive. I was so naive that I actually thought, “Well, Phil’s gonna get his hand slapped hard by real scientists for that kind of anti-scientific statements.” Foolish me, I thought you guys were honest scientists who would be outraged by that.
So I waited for some mainstream climate scientist to speak out against that kind of scientific malfeasance … and waited … and waited. In fact, I’m still waiting. I registered my protest against this bastardisation of science by filing an FOI. When is one of you mainstream climate scientist[s] going to speak out against this kind of malfeasance? It’s not too late to condemn what Jones said[;] he’s still in the news and pretending to be a scientist[;] when is one of you good folks going to take a principled stand?
But nobody wants to do that. Instead, you want to complain and explain how trust has been broken, and you want to figure out more effective communication strategies to repair the trust.
We l-i-i-i-ike it. We really do. The Honorary Punk Award is yours, Mr.
Thank you, Lake.
. I've linked this so many times, but they keep taking it
Damn the Internet. So. It's here. For a moment. Maybe that's how
everything works. Enjoy.
UPDATE. Commenter poetry -- "A cold and a broken. This song is the sweetest musical ache never to depress me."
Why we do what we do.