What irks me massively though, his how the word "sceptic" in this context has become a dirty word. Any scientist who comes out with a view that is considered sceptical is lambasted and treated like the anti-christ, which for me is totally unnaceptable. Whilst I don't particularly favour the views of most sceptics, their treatment on the most part is pretty outrageous. What is further problematic, is that most people's perceptions of what the position on global warming is inevitably comes from the media, which in most instances tends to demonstrate bias towards one side of the argument or the other.
In addition to this, I loathe this pernicious development of "Consensus science", it needs to be stamped out. I also dislike the precautionary principle a great deal, as I consider it's entire philosophy to be completely retrograde, though I can accept that it's deployment in the context of global warming is one of the few occasions in which it could be considered suitable or reasonable.
Last edited by Cevno; 16-11-2011 at 05:46 AM.
Yeah, the precautionary principle is crap, tbh, and bizarrely irrational until you remember that it's the brainchild of the environmental movement in the last few decades, for whom science is merely a useful tool when convenient to bash a larger agenda, and to be totally ignored when not (see: nuclear, nanotech, GM)
this sort of argument.
The problem with non-anthropogenically-driven climate change is that to explain it otherwise you have to resort to some seriously flawed - usually hilariously flawed - reasoning. The most popular of which is the solar cycle theory, which is just so horrendously bad I don't understand how it ever saw the light of day. Not least because the paper it was originally based on had some rather dodgy maths iirc.
I have it all in my notes so I can look them up. cbf though.
In saying that, considering the research to mistakes ratio, and comparing it to the anti AGW to gaping holes ratio, it's a no contest.
One of my favourites was some bloke claiming ice sheet meltwater isn't the main control of sea level, but expansion and contraction of water molecules. I'm not joking; it's on the Great Global Warming Swindle. When second year undergrads can tear an argument apart, it sucks.
On consensus science; I remember this from cricsim, and you were arguing in favour of what "consensus science" basically is iirc. You are completely on the money when yyou say who is right is what matters; it's just fellow scientists need to be able to reproduce your results. It's a perfect system really, since if hypothesis x is true then if the experiment is repeated then anyone should be able to reproduce it. The more it is reproduced, the harder the evidence and it becomes prevailing consensus.
Tomorrow, if some guy comes along and says "we don't need water to survive" and shows scientists results in favour of his experiment, after thinking he is bonkers the dudes will go away, repeat the experiment and if they get the same results, we have a new consensus.
Can't go into the minute science of it to a large degree but there are 3 aspects to it -
1)Is the cause of it man made?
2)Can it actually be stopped or not? Or even slowed down? And if so is it even possible to do what has to be done, to stop it?
3)Who does what on Policy front? Which country agrees to take the brunt to what degree and give up growth and money on possibly a unsettled issue?
There is room for skepticism on all these 3 tbh and voices on both sides. Can't really ignore either side and paint it black and white AFAIC.