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Consensus Science
43

Consensus Science

Consensus Science

2
(OP)
We hear a lot right now that "97% of climate scientist agree that climate change is human caused". Always 97%. Ten different "independent" studies all find 97% of the climate scientists agree. I've done experiments with a far narrower band of uncertainty than a poll of scientists and gotten a range of answers that mostly fell within the error band of the instrument being used. Polls of people tend to have an error band upwards of +/-5%, but these studies keep finding 97%. An independent study in Michigan looked at 1200 peer-reviewed papers and contacted the authors and found that 97% agreed. In East Anglica an independent evaluation found the same thing. In Pittsburgh, still 97%. And on. And on.

If we go back into history we find that in the 1500's approximately 97% of the scientists vilified Johannes Kepler for applying the tools of physics (a branch of "natural philosophy") to astronomy (a branch of mathematics within liberal arts). This work was widely reviled and the giants of the time like Tycho Brahe (who had been his mentor) refused to even consider his heresy when first published. 97% of the scientists accepted Astrology as science and rejected astronomy. Consensus is simply not proof of anything.

Tycho Brahe published extensively on "Geocentrism". 97% of the contemporary scientists agreed. Copernicus and Kepler were reviled for the concept of heliocentrism at the time. Today's consensus is that the sun doesn't really revolve around the earth. Bet those 97% would be embarrassed that today's consensus is that the sun is moving in space and that the earth is revolving around it. Galileo was forced to spend much of his life under house arrest after the Inquisition found him "vehemently suspect of heresy" for supporting this theory. The consensus was against him.

97% of the worlds "intellectuals" once embraced the horror of eugenics. To the point where scholarly texts were cited in support of the morality of the Nazi death camps.

These are vivid examples of possible errors in "consensus science". There are many others. Today 97% of physicists find cold fusion to be a hoax. The best of them say that because it thus far has not been presented in a repeatable, verifiable protocol--fair assessment. The worst of them say it is "impossible" and turn their backs. I have a great deal of confidence that one day, an individual will develop that "repeatable, verifiable" protocol and the world will have control of fusion in some form, maybe even cold fusion. This proof will come from the mind of an individual, not from some stinking "consensus". Consensus is stagnation. Consensus is generating a representation of pi to a few thousand more decimal places.

That leads me back to "Climate Science". I could say that the "peers" who do "peer review" reject any paper with a thesis outside of the consensus, so interviewing "published climate scientists" is kind of a study in masturbation. I could say that the "proof" of AGW is bundled in self-fulfilling prophesies that are very reminiscent of the children's story "The Emperor's New Clothes" where everyone complemented the Emperor on his garments while he was parading naked until a child disagreed with the consensus and shouted that the Emperor was actually without clothing.

AGW us a theory based on an hypotheses. Nothing wrong with that. All scientific advances in the history of mankind have started with an hypotheses. Then they developed into theories that could be tested. Tests started out crude to show gross-level indications of the value of the theory. Over time the tests became more refined and allowed subtle evaluations and the new tests either supported (not proved) the theory or disproved it. We skipped a few of those steps with AGW. The hypotheses was postulated that certain gases seemed to be long-lived in the atmosphere and that these gases tended to insulate the heat on the earth from radiating into space. Very crude small scale experiments were designed that did not disprove the hypotheses. The next step should have been to larger scale, more subtle experiments, but instead we jumped to computational fluid dynamics to build climate models. Of course, without any physical controls, the models supported the hypotheses (it couldn't do anything else, a model can't be anything more than a reflection of the mind of its author). Things like urban heating (the so-called "heat island effect") and ocean currents couldn't be reconciled in the models so they became fudge factors that could be tweaked to force the models into compliance with the theory. By this time the media had latched onto this sound-byte theory and were stirring up fear and superstition among the masses. That led to government funding of climate science at unprecedented levels. After a few years of this ocean of funding going exclusively to people who showed results that seemed to be in support of the consensus hypotheses, people who's work did not support the hypotheses didn't get published anymore. They failed to get tenure. They found other ways to make a living. They left the 97%.

The only thing that I find less capable of predicting the future than computer models is polls of human beings. The only thing that I'm certain of is that some distant future historian (say in the year 2513) will look at this period in human history and write a footnote that one side or the other in this discussion was so obviously wrong headed that it is amazing that the race survived. One side says that the earth is warming and that actions by mankind both caused the warming and can reverse it via their actions. The other side says the climate is changing, the climate has always changed, and the climate will always change and the causes and effects have not been proven, nor are those causes and effects particularly relevant (because if the change is not one thing then it must be some other thing, i.e., if mankind isn't causing the change then it might be cosmic rays, sunspots, or volcanism).

My Engineering mentor once told me that a bit of work that I had done was very much like "lacquering a turd, you've made it all pretty and shiny, gotten rid of the worst of the odor, but it is still a piece of shit". I contend that the vast majority of work in climate science is exactly the same category of effort. There are no circumstances where I will accept a computer model as "proof" of anything. I use computer models to help me predict the outcome of experiments, not in lieu of experimentation.



David Simpson, PE
MuleShoe Engineering

"Belief" is the acceptance of an hypotheses in the absence of data.
"Prejudice" is having an opinion not supported by the preponderance of the data.
"Knowledge" is only found through the accumulation and analysis of data.
The plural of anecdote is not "data"

RE: Consensus Science

Einstein was not in agreement with 97% of his peers when he proposed Relativity.

RE: Consensus Science

(OP)
I just read an article translated from der Speigel that says the John Cook's study from the University of Queensland threw out 35% of the responses because they didn't support his hypotheses. Threw them out. Did not consider them in the study at all.

Then phrasing was important. The question "Do you feel that mans activities have had an impact on the global climate?" got 97% "yes". To say that a species representing 400 billion tonnes of organic reactions does not impact the planet would be tough to get your head around. Very much a "did you stop beating your wife yet?" kind of question.

David Simpson, PE
MuleShoe Engineering

"Belief" is the acceptance of an hypotheses in the absence of data.
"Prejudice" is having an opinion not supported by the preponderance of the data.
"Knowledge" is only found through the accumulation and analysis of data.
The plural of anecdote is not "data"

RE: Consensus Science

If you're going to mention "An independent study in Michigan (which) looked at 1200 peer-reviewed papers and contacted the authors and found that 97% agreed." we might as well include the link...

http://www.mtu.edu/news/stories/2013/may/story8964...

...so that people can judge for themselves whether it actually supports your apparent contention that anytime you see the term "97%" that you should immediately be skeptical of the claims being made.

Which begs the question; can you site sources which supports your claims about the OTHER "97%" examples that you referenced so that we can see if they too might be 'ginned-up' results, as you seem to imply that they are?

John R. Baker, P.E.
Product 'Evangelist'
Product Engineering Software
Siemens PLM Software Inc.
Industry Sector
Cypress, CA
Siemens PLM:
UG/NX Museum:

To an Engineer, the glass is twice as big as it needs to be.

RE: Consensus Science

I really do lament the state of science today. And it's not just climate science. There are multiple branches of science that seem to have fallen into the political trap and have committed many of the logical fallacies. David has presented the most popular (pun intended) of them: argumentum ad populum.

There was a time when scientists were actually taught the Philosophy of Science as a course. Hence the moniker given to the highest level of academic achievement: Doctor of Philosophy. Today, I am not aware of any Ph.D. programme in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) that requires a Ph.D. graduate to have successfully completed a course in the philosophy of science. Without this historical grounding, generations of STEM Ph.D.s are graduating without even understanding the most simple elements of logical - and their companion: the logical fallacies. Is it any wonder that we find ourselves in the position we are today.

It is true that history is replete with examples of the consensus being wrong. David mentions some, TheTick mentions another. For some people, that may be in the too-distant past. Here's a more modern one: h. pylori. For those not familiar with this lovely little bacterium, it has been demonstrated to be the cause of gastritis and stomach and duodenal ulcers. However, that wasn't always the case: prior to the discovery by Marshall and Warren, it was the consensus that stomach acids were the primary causes, and that furthermore, the acidic environment in the stomach was incompatible with even the existence of bacteria. As with all such discoveries, it only took one body of work to demonstrate that the consensus was wrong - even then it took almost 12 years for the consensus ship to turn around.

RE: Consensus Science

Are there instances where the consensus was wrong ??
Probably so.

Are there instances where the consensus was correct ??
Probably so.

How often is the consensus later proven wrong??

Regarding the completely accepted theory of greenhouse gasses, which demonstrate that the Earth would be significantly cooler without a heat trapping atmospheric effect. BTW it is fairly simple to calculate.

[The next step should have been to larger scale, more subtle experiments]
Of all the monied interests in this debate with the money supposedly at stake and yet no private funding for this simple experiment ??
Why??

One observation about 'proof'
'proof' is a loaded word. When any advanced Engineering project relies heavily on computer modeling to design a product that cannot be built up first and measured either due to physics constraints, financial costs, size..etc, are they using computer models as 'proof' of a concept before spending truckloads of money to build up the first piece and test it??

Today a very large part of Engineering is dependent on simulation, modeling.. etc to establish how to build things that no other technique can accomplish.

About statistical evidence.
Medical science and particularly pharmaceuticals rely on statistical evidence to arrive at 'proof' even though not every instance of a treatment or dosage is effective.
Our health care system operates on the lessons learn through experiment and probably outcomes.
Why should a potential environmental disaster require absolute 99.999999% confidence before action is warranted??

RE: Consensus Science

If 97% agree with man-caused global warming, do 97% also agree with the proposed solutions to the perceved problem? It is very difficult for me the believe that all those 97% also believe higher taxes is the only solution to man caused global warming. Or that is what we are being led to believe.

There seems to be a disconnect between the problem and the solutions. I haven't seen any studies on how many papers support wind and solar energy over coal or natural gas, or any other solutions. Right here is the leap from global warming------> right to here is the solution.

Agreed we should use more renewable sources, for no other reason than they are renewable, but we should be doing it in a smart manor, not by will of political half witts, and profit seekers.
Don't get me wrong, there is nothing wrong with profits, but fast Eddie dosen't always sell you the best car for your money.

RE: Consensus Science

With regards to the specific Climate Science™ claims, I look at as this: 97% of scientists who get grants from agencies to demonstrate that global warming has an overwhelming anthropogenic characteristic, show that global warming has a significant anthropogenic characteristic. In a way, I'm pretty disappointed that it's not 100%.

In the latest Cook et al (2013) paper, only 33% of the papers' abstracts examined were not neutral to the question. Of those, most only endorsed the consensus implicitly, in other words took AGW (or CAGW) as a given before proceeding with the paper. It is only a small subset that actually explicitly endorsed the IPCC consensus.

[aside]Actually, that's not exactly true either. The IPCC consensus is that human-generated CO2 is responsible for 90-100% of the warming in the industrial age. The question in the paper is whether or not the reviewer's interpretation of the papers' abstracts indicates an agreement that the majority - i.e. greater than 50% - of the warming is due to human influences. Did anyone else catch that little strawman?[/aside]

And even then, the reviewers employed in this review mis-classified some papers - here.

RE: Consensus Science

Quote (2dye4)

Regarding the completely accepted theory of greenhouse gasses, which demonstrate that the Earth would be significantly cooler without a heat trapping atmospheric effect. BTW it is fairly simple to calculate.
Right you are. That calculation provides a forcing sensitivity of about 1°C per doubling of CO2 levels. Of course that level is well within the range of natural changes, of which we don't really fully understand.

Are you trying to tell me that we are facing a catastrophe if global average surface temperatures increase 1°C from some start-point? Heck - I'd even let you pick the start-date (to avoid accusations of cherry-picking)!

Watch the shell-game very closely!

RE: Consensus Science

Quote (2dye4)

How often is the consensus later proven wrong??
Often enough that argumentum ad populum is a logical fallacy. Just because a particular hypothesis is popular (i.e. has a consensus), does not make it true. That's the entire point of David's (or at least my) posts.

What part of that does not compute?

We can argue the science itself 'til the cows come home, which is both healthy and necessary, and will likely lead to a more robust understanding in the end. What harms Science is the shutting down of debate/argument using logical fallacies.

What part of that do you not understand?

RE: Consensus Science

(OP)
2dye4,
Kind of all over the map there. Computer models can be useful tools. When I model something I get a range of results. I pick the best, the worst, and one in the middle to physically evaluate through actual models that have been designed to be "similar" (per the Buckingham Pi Thorem) and see if the results match the computer model. They rarely do and I have to go back and tweak the computer model to match the new data. Then I pick a result from the pack and see if that matches the computer. Sometimes it does. At that point I have a computer model that can evaluate other geometries within the same family. I can pick a new best and physically test it. Maybe pick the new worst and test it. If the math still holds up against the steel then I can build the version that the computer and physical model say has the best chance of success. The more expensive the final product is, the more I'm willing to spend on models.

In none of that was there an assertion that the model was proof of anything except that I could write code that (eventually) didn't crash.

Virtually everyone on earth "believes" in gravity. Even those that have no idea what the arithmetic is have confidence that if they set their keys on the table the keys will stay there. Now if someone discovers the "gravity boson" that can be used to manipulate gravitational fields it will throw a considerable monkey wrench into that consensus. Our understanding of nearly everything will need some adjustments. I don't know if anything like that will happen. I do know that if it does, the guy with the idea will be set upon like a bunny in a bear den by his "peers".

JohnRBaker,
Do I have support for my assertion the 97% of the contemporary scientists believed that Brahe's geocentrism was correct. No. Sorry. I made that number up. No apologies. It was a literary device intended to point out how utterly stupid the assertion that 97% of climate scientists agree on the tenants of AGW. There were enough academics to force a trial that resulted in forcing Galileo to spend the later years of his life under house arrest. Sounds like 97% to me. Might have been 94%, but probably not.

David Simpson, PE
MuleShoe Engineering

"Belief" is the acceptance of an hypotheses in the absence of data.
"Prejudice" is having an opinion not supported by the preponderance of the data.
"Knowledge" is only found through the accumulation and analysis of data.
The plural of anecdote is not "data"

RE: Consensus Science

Quote (zdas04)


Sorry. I made that number up. No apologies. It was a literary device...

Perhaps we should all be grateful that you don't work for some think-tank somewhere conducting 'global climate' research, eh?

John R. Baker, P.E.
Product 'Evangelist'
Product Engineering Software
Siemens PLM Software Inc.
Industry Sector
Cypress, CA
Siemens PLM:
UG/NX Museum:

To an Engineer, the glass is twice as big as it needs to be.

RE: Consensus Science

(OP)
I suppose we should, although I think making numbers up would make me fit right in, except I'm far too willing to admit I made stuff up to really fit in.

David Simpson, PE
MuleShoe Engineering

"Belief" is the acceptance of an hypotheses in the absence of data.
"Prejudice" is having an opinion not supported by the preponderance of the data.
"Knowledge" is only found through the accumulation and analysis of data.
The plural of anecdote is not "data"

RE: Consensus Science

Quote:

The question "Do you feel that mans activities have had an impact on the global climate?" got 97% "yes". To say that a species representing 400 billion tonnes of organic reactions does not impact the planet would be tough to get your head around. Very much a "did you stop beating your wife yet?" kind of question.

Well, someone berated me for making that point on this forum, so there you go.

The belief seems to be that it is impossible for man to do anything to impact the earth's climate. That's what I was told. So I'll leave it all up to you guys, because I don't see the point in discussing it.

RE: Consensus Science

Ah the primary difficulty is still the concept of 'proof'

It is wise to get out of the habit of lumping evidence into 'proof' boxes.
Proof is an illusory concept that really has no meaning other than when some person decides to end his critical though process and declare something proven.

You still cannot prove a rock dropped will fall to the floor. That is what it has done ever since man has dropped rocks but you see this still is only deductive reasoning.

The Earth would probably be 57 deg F cooler without 'any' greenhouse gas atmosphere.
http://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/cmb-faq/globalwarming.htm...

Curiously we can determine to wage war against another country without certainty and only likely results, but environmental catastrophes must have a higher standard ??

And lets not forget that this is really only about conservation, yes forced conservation but still only reducing usage of a necessary and limited resource.

Looks like this thread is gonna be another barn burner eh ??


RE: Consensus Science

Sorry to add so quickly but one difference between the current consensus science about MMGW and historical issues of scientific consensus that were overturned is that there was likely reasonable bit of science that was available contradicting the consensus and was ignored.

Where is this body of ignored science today??
And quickly let me add that even if the mainstream journals won't publish it that does not affect it at all in todays
internet communications era.
Takes nothing but a web site to distribute it.

So, where is the science that is credible and that disputes MMGW convincingly and wholly ( not isolated parts ).

RE: Consensus Science

Quote:

"97% of climate scientist agree that climate change is human caused"

Loaded question, that.

100% human caused, or 10%? 5%? 1%?

And caused entirely by carbon? Or caused by other factors of which carbon is just one piece of the larger puzzle?

And what percentage of climate scientists think Al Gore Cap and Trade will stop climate change?

Hydrology, Drainage Analysis, Flood Studies, and Complex Stormwater Litigation for Atlanta and the South East - http://www.campbellcivil.com

RE: Consensus Science

2dye4 - you still don't get it.

Quote (2dye4)

Where is this body of ignored science today??
And quickly let me add that even if the mainstream journals won't publish it that does not affect it at all in todays
internet communications era.
Takes nothing but a web site to distribute it.
Have you not been paying attention to the zealous attacks by those who claim that anything not published in the anointed mainstream journals is not Science™? You can't it both ways.

RE: Consensus Science

(OP)
57°F cooler? NOAA really did say that. My understanding of the climate (admittedly limited) is that there would be permafrost down to about Montana, maybe into Colorado. Ability to feed a lot fewer people. We spend a lot of time quibbling over 2-5 C. By "all" I guess they mean without any atmosphere since each gas has some amount of insulating ability. Kind of a trivial finding, because without an atmosphere we wouldn't have the interwebz (or any life for that matter), then where would we argue about this stuff?

The statement

Quote (2dye4)

Curiously we can determine to wage war against another country without certainty and only likely results, but environmental catastrophes must have a higher standard ??
Is interesting to me. Your discipline tag indicated "Military" so you might have information I don't, but I can't think of a single war that was started based on any scientific information at all. One country wants to take some economic asset away from another country and goes to war to accomplish that economic transfer. The Civil War seems to be more about the theory of states rights (i.e., the Confederate States believed that the federal government had usurped certain rights that they felt had been reserved to the states in the Constitution), but it was still economic rather than scientific. In other words we don't need ANY scientific standards to go to war.

If this were simply a discussion of scientific principles then it would be an interesting academic exercise. Instead, the conjecture that people are causing the world to heat up without bound is leading to real economic hardship, and the potential for economic devastation is quite real. When I look at the amount of money that is being sequestered by "Carbon Taxes" and "Cap and Trade" I see a potential for economic harm that I postulate will be greater than any war ever fought.

I find these economic risks to have a higher level of confidence than the risk that people are going to turn the planet into an oven.

David Simpson, PE
MuleShoe Engineering

"Belief" is the acceptance of an hypotheses in the absence of data.
"Prejudice" is having an opinion not supported by the preponderance of the data.
"Knowledge" is only found through the accumulation and analysis of data.
The plural of anecdote is not "data"

RE: Consensus Science

isn't that the key ... ask the question in a manner that you can interprete as you want to ...

Quando Omni Flunkus Moritati

RE: Consensus Science

Regarding "proof"...

If I were a warmist, as opposed to a skeptic, I would be taking the following approach:

It is true that proof to 100% or even five (or more) 9's can never be positively demonstrated. However, because this is not an academic exercise, but something upon which the future of humankind depends, perhaps a different burden of "proof" is required. In criminal law, the burden level is beyond a reasonable doubt. In civil law, the burden level is balance of probabilities. As a warmist, I would submit that the civil law burden has been met, and that should be sufficient for action.

As a skeptic, I would agree that the criminal burden of proof has definitely not been achieved - even the argumentum ad populum of consensus at the 97% has ceded that ground. As far as the civil law burden, I would argue that such a burden has not yet been achieved - due to the lack of factual understanding of the natural cycles: the null hypothesis.

To those who completely agree with the consensus - why do you keep applying an obvious logical fallacy to support your side? If the science were so good and solid, why fall back to such indefensible positions?

Quote:

If you have the facts on your side, pound the facts.
If you have the law on your side, pound the law.
If you have neither on your side, pound the table.

RE: Consensus Science

Quote:


Loaded question, that.

100% human caused, or 10%? 5%? 1%?

And caused entirely by carbon? Or caused by other factors of which carbon is just one piece of the larger puzzle?

And what percentage of climate scientists think Al Gore Cap and Trade will stop climate change?

Good question, but I was told by some of the experts on this forum that it is impossible for human activity to have ANY effect on the global climate.

So there you have it. Completely impossible for any human endeavour to have even the slightest impact on climate.

Case closed.

RE: Consensus Science

So if consensus is bad, what's the alternative?

RE: Consensus Science

No one said that consensus was bad, just that it is a logical fallacy to presume that because there is consensus on a particular topic that the truth is "known".

RE: Consensus Science

Quote:

Good question, but I was told by some of the experts on this forum that it is impossible for human activity to have ANY effect on the global climate.

I think statements that mankind has definitively zero effect on our climate are probably just as improbable as statements that carbon "cap and trade" would have any effect on the climate.

Smart people take the wide view, and be careful not to jump to conclusions. "Mankind probably has some affect on our environment, therefore we must pass carbon cap and trade" is a very sloppy conclusion. There are many intermediary steps in that chain of logic, each of which needs to be looked at critically. The lack of critical thinking on the policy side of the climate equation is alarming, and speaks to who's actually pulling the strings on environmental policy. (not scientists)

Hydrology, Drainage Analysis, Flood Studies, and Complex Stormwater Litigation for Atlanta and the South East - http://www.campbellcivil.com

RE: Consensus Science

In Science, we should both have consensus (hypotheses repeatedly tested) and challenging of the consensus. Consensus is a good snapshot of "where we are" - challenging consensus is how we move to a better understanding of the universe.

Sometimes it is merely refinement

"The earth is flat" worked pretty well on a local level for a looong time.
"The earth is a sphere" worked well at the next level (circumnavigation)
"The earth is an oblate spheroid" was the next refinement
"The earth is an oblate spheroid with a moving tidal bulge" was the next.

RE: Consensus Science

Are we talking about science group think, good directed question asking, or creative statistic math? Either way I doubt 97% of any crowd will come to the same conclusion without help.

And all this from the man who created the internet.

RE: Consensus Science

So the MMGW consensus has taken a beating here.

Lets hear from the opposing consensus, the group of scientist with a coherent position challenging the 97%.

RE: Consensus Science

I just have a funny feeling that there are more than 3% of scientists challenging the 97%, we just do not hear from them.
B.E.

RE: Consensus Science

We do not say that it is true because there is consensus. We say that there is consensus because it is true. The experts on the subject agree because the evidence is compelling. I see nothing here that suggests otherwise.

Johnny Pellin

RE: Consensus Science

JJPellin - if it is true, then why not 100%? Oh right - because there is at least reasonable doubt. Heck, we don't even understand the why and how of clouds. What we could fill a large beaker. What we don't know could fill the ocean (literally. We have only been measuring deep ocean temperatures for a little over 10 years - ARGO - to say that we know much about how the ocean works is unbelievable arrogance).

That you see nothing here that suggests otherwise means that your eyes are closed, unwilling to look. Sad, yet typical.

RE: Consensus Science

(OP)
2dye4,
I started this thread with a rant AGAINST consensus science. I am unwilling to even look for a consensus on this subject. I operate my Engineering practice on the premise that something is true because it is true, not because I've been told it is true. The (few) things that I absolutely accept as best practices are things that many of my clients have rejected because of consensus Engineering holds a contrary view. Sometimes I convince them that the consensus is wrong and I'm right. Other times I do not convince them and they call me again in a few years asking why the consensus Engineering has provided unacceptable results and is it too late to fix the dumb. I make a very good living as a contrarian. I am not going to pick up a single pinky to try to prove any consensus.

David Simpson, PE
MuleShoe Engineering

"Belief" is the acceptance of an hypotheses in the absence of data.
"Prejudice" is having an opinion not supported by the preponderance of the data.
"Knowledge" is only found through the accumulation and analysis of data.
The plural of anecdote is not "data"

RE: Consensus Science

2
Stop. Stop. Stop.

The "97% consensus science agrees" comes from ONE specific "study" that was specifically loaded to specifically create just THAT SPECIFIC TALKING POINT.

Approximately 3500 surveys were sent out to a variety of "scientists" by one researcher (funded by the government) after government approval of his government grant request after his government grant/funding requests were reviewed by government grant people. (Starting to get the picture?)

Of these 3500 surveys, approximately 1100 were returned. It was NOT a scientifically selected sample, nor a random sample of qualified scientists, nor a 100% sample of specific experts or scientists in any single specific field. These 1100 replies were self-selected, and thus their replies were self-selected and, by definition, biased.

There were 5 questions in the survey.

Only 2 of the 5 were reported:
"Is the earth warmer now than in the past?"
"Is mankind responsible for some of that warming"?

1. (Not defining "the past" is important, several times the earth has been much, much warmer than now. We ARE heating up from the Little Ice Age of 1650, and so "global warming" cannot be denied by anybody!


2. Not defining "what percent of the warming" is due to human influence, and how much is natural warming - from ANY cause - is important. If humans are responsible for 3% of one global warming-contributing gas, and that gas is responsible for 1% of the global warming, YES, we are responsible for PART of the current warming.

If humans are responsible for 95% of the current warming, then the answer is ALSO "yes".

We do NOT know what the other 3 questions were. We do NOT know what the repies were to those questions.

From the replies to these 2 questions, the "researcher" ranked the replies by the number of papers written by the person writing back, and by how often the scientist in question had written papers ("official" peer-reviewed papers only - Again, a bias because the CAGW community has deliberately fired editors of scientific journals who disgree with their CAGW religion. In hundreds of other cases, the CAGW community has delayed critical papers, rejected papers critical if global warming dogma, and has rejected journals (boycotted) that have published papers critical of the CAGW religion. In all of those cases, that a paper critical of global warming is delayed or ignored or rejected reduces the self-selection criteria and ranking of the person relying to this survey!

Once all of the replies were ranked, ONLY those relies from people employed BY the government, or funded directly BY the government were selected.

Of these 77 "scientists", 75 said "Yes, the global is warming."
Of these 77 "scientists", 75 said "And mankind is responsible for some or all of that warming."

Now ..... What was actual percent replying "Yes, humans are responsible"?

75 of 3500 who were asked?
75 of 1100 who replied?
Or 75 of 77 who are paid BY the taxes that can ONLY COME if the government convinces 51% of their low-information voters that the government needs 1.4 3 trillion in new taxes from global warming fees and carbon-trading?

RE: Consensus Science

www.wattsupwiththat.com has been awarded "Best Science Blog" for several years in a row now.

It has now over 1,035,000 replies and comments - passing the 1,000,000 comment mark the first days of April 2013. Almost all of its articles and discussions are about global warming (or the lack of it for the past 16 years as the world has cooled), or of scientific errors and research and corrections and - of course - the supposed "consensus" about CAGW.

Today, in the thread below, this 97% claim is (again) falsely claimed, promptly analyzed, and just as promptly, debunked. Again.

http://wattsupwiththat.com/2013/05/21/cooks-97-con...

(I'm a moderator, reader, writer, and poster over on that forum as well.)

RE: Consensus Science

Challenging the consensus is fine, IF you have a body of scientific work with which to do so..

Challenging the consensus based on the fact that it 'might' be wrong is irrational.

Again we make decisions to invest much of our resources on only probable calamities like I said before concerning decisions to go to war. To tackle possible but not certain calamities.

Why should climate catastrophes be any different??

And remember all that is being asked is to conserve a limited resource.

I do agree that the 97% statistic is fairly silly, but I also believe that among the qualified scientists there is a 'consensus' that we are warming the planet and serious consequences are in the making.

RE: Consensus Science

Any time I see that vast-majority statistic, it reminds me of the old Crest toothpaste commercials. Four out of five dentists prefer Crest.

I always wanted to talk to that fifth dentist and see why he thought differently.

I do believe that the consensus group carries so much weight that it suppresses the three percent's dissemination of opinion. Global warming is an exception.

Best to you,

Goober Dave

Haven't see the forum policies? Do so now: Forum Policies

RE: Consensus Science

Quote:

Only 2 of the 5 were reported:
"Is the earth warmer now than in the past?"
"Is mankind responsible for some of that warming"?

Aha.

So if I believed mankind were responsible for 1% of the warming we've seen since the Little *Ice Age*, did not believe carbon emissions had anything to do with that warming, and opposed with full gusto any attempt to pass Carbon Cap and Trade regulations, I would still show up as a "yes" in that study .. one of the 97%.

Gotcha.

That's basically what I was asking above.

Hydrology, Drainage Analysis, Flood Studies, and Complex Stormwater Litigation for Atlanta and the South East - http://www.campbellcivil.com

RE: Consensus Science

(OP)
Why do you need a "body of scientific work" to challenge a consensus? I am qualified to look at the methodology of the current processes and see that the support for the consensus is computer models and adulterated data with an (un)healthy dose of media hysteria and government intervention. I really don't need anyone to tell me that models cannot prove anything or even be used to support a proof. I really don't need anyone to tell me that if the raw data has been "corrected" prior to first storage then it really doesn't prove anything or add value in support of a proof. I really don't need anyone to tell me that all the world's mainstream media claiming that an hypotheses has been "settled" doesn't make it so.

This thread is about consensus science. It is about "proofs" that rely on the dubious "fact" that there is a consensus of scientists that believe the hypotheses. I don't care who "believes" what (I find that beliefs are the acceptance of an hypotheses in the absence of data). What can you prove, what data has been collected and protected, what methods/tools did you use to develop that proof, are those tools appropriate to the task, and would a reasonably competent person be able to apply those tools to that data and reach the same conclusion? If not, then it isn't science, it is conjecture.

David Simpson, PE
MuleShoe Engineering

"Belief" is the acceptance of an hypotheses in the absence of data.
"Prejudice" is having an opinion not supported by the preponderance of the data.
"Knowledge" is only found through the accumulation and analysis of data.
The plural of anecdote is not "data"

RE: Consensus Science

Quote (2dye4)

Challenging the consensus based on the fact that it 'might' be wrong is irrational.
lol

Nope - that is science in its most raw form. Everything is challenged, nothing is sacred.

Quote (2dye4)

I do agree that the 97% statistic is fairly silly, but I also believe that among the qualified scientists there is a 'consensus' that we are warming the planet and serious consequences are in the making.
Well, we're starting to make some progress. At least we all seem to agree that the 97% statistic is silly. Now, quantify this supposed consensus: how much have we warmed the planet (be sure to differentiate between natural warming and anthropogenic warming), how much will the planet be warmed (specifics here, too - testable hypotheses are another foundation of science), and quantify those consequences(who, what, when, where, and how).

RE: Consensus Science

Cap and trade is simply another method by which Wall St can make money by buying and selling paper that is deemed to have an underlying value by someone.

The reason that it is a popular solution is because the Wall St people want their bonuses, and will make everyone believe it is a solution.

It's a tremendous sham, but some will stand to make a lot of money out of thin air.

That said, I do believe we have some obligation to mitigate the damage to the environment that our society causes.

RE: Consensus Science

zdas04 - thank you very much for starting this thread.

This whole malarkey about the Science being settled, and that people smarter than we have determined this, so shut up and take the medicine is such a load of , it truly is a wonder that there are still rational people who buy it and believe it. Not that I am saying that rational people can't believe in what they believe to be the science, but that the science is soooo settled.

There are only political purposes to the meme of consensus. True science is aware of the whole suite of logical fallacies and tries to avoid them. Politics generally operates on principle that the populace is too stupid to appreciate what a logical fallacy is, and hence uses them to their advantage.

Notice, too, that whenever most of the consensus climate scientists are presented with an opportunity to debate the actual science, they decline. Really, if your position were that solid, you would use every opportunity to completely demolish the opposition. Instead, they run away, claiming that the science is so settled that there is no point in debating. For me, this was my Waterloo moment, when my eyes were opened to the political purposes of this topic. It was never about the science.

RE: Consensus Science

(OP)
TGS4,
I can't say how much I appreciate the sentiment. It means a lot.

TenPenny,
I am sure that Wall Street will (is) making a ton of money from Cap & Trade and Carbon Taxes, but those fortunes are really just the spill over from the real sharks. In the States, we were weeks away from forming a Cap & Trade Board on the pressies of the Chicago Board of Trade to facilitate trading carbon credits in 2009 (I believe, the exact time sequence has gotten fuzzy in my mind). The national version was killed by a narrow margin in Congress. But there is other stupidness to look at
  • Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative - This is a consortium of 6 mid-Atlantic states that have Cap & Trade. It has been in operation 6 years and so far the 19 auctions have netted $1.2 billion. Of the $1.2 billion, $765 million has gone to the states and the rest seems to be "administrative fees". This particular version only covers power plants larger than 25 MW, so it is just going after the easily quantifiable quantities. This is still the primary auction stage, reasonably limited opportunities for sticky fingers. The after-market trades are where the big money is made and that doesn't look like it has started yet
  • California - Program went into effect this year and they've held three auctions. Again it is just primary market so far, but the May 3 auction ripped $300 million out of the California economy to give it to politicians. Their after market is still in its infancy, but with the scope of coverage of this law, it will be brisk
  • European Trading Scheme - The big carbon generators in Europe quickly switched over to natural gas and the scheme is suffering from the lingering effects of a European Depression. The secondary market was marked by multi-billion euro scandals in the early days, but the primary market auction price is so low today that graft has slowed in the secondary market, but it hasn't disappeared.
In the U.S., so far the focus is on power generation, not "industrial sources". When it gets to that step, instead of 40-50 players in the auction, the number will be thousands of individual companies. Speculators (the Wall Street guys) will take positions betting on companies needing credits. The speculators credits will be traded in a brisk secondary market which will take a percentage of every transaction. So instead of billions of dollars, expect trillions of dollars to leave productive employment. Billions is bad enough.

David Simpson, PE
MuleShoe Engineering

"Belief" is the acceptance of an hypotheses in the absence of data.
"Prejudice" is having an opinion not supported by the preponderance of the data.
"Knowledge" is only found through the accumulation and analysis of data.
The plural of anecdote is not "data"

RE: Consensus Science


Challenging a scientific hypothesis must go beyond blind paranoia, it really must be some serious qualified analysis
on the same level as the challenged theory or methods.

Ignorant suspicion is meaningless.

The data collected by climate researchers is intentionally adulterated or modified.
BUT this is done to correct known errors, it is meaningless to just parrot the phrase 'adulterated data' as though that means something. Where is the proof that this adulteration drives the error larger.

Again one of the earliest 'models' was a partial differential equation. Are all PDE equal to 'computer models' and therefore completely useless for 'proving' things????
I think many engineers would be surprised at that assertion.

Zdas have you publicized your analysis that supports the problems you highlight, I would think someone would be willing to pay you handsomely to produce a credible and logical piece of research that shows clearly that the errors you assert exist in the climate research. Not a philosophical discussion of what is or isn't science but a real mathematical analysis showing the errors.

Zdas where is the information about the data being corrected prior to first storage, a link perhaps ??

As far as your assertion that models do not prove a hypothesis, what is your standard for 'proof'
Example:
Models show a particular transistor geometry to behave in a desired and necessary way on a piece of silicon, based on this 'model' and nothing else a chip is fabricated. In the companies experience this method works 97% of the time i.e. refining the model produces the function desired. Are they using their models as 'proof'??

RE: Consensus Science

What if we were to mine iron, convert it to steel pipes, and spread it across the gas producing states of the US, which would change the earth geomagnitic field altering the global weather patterns?

I can think of altertives of what the theories say, and no one refutes them. Does that make me more correct than the 97%? Does any of my theory make even the sligest difference?

The point is the shutting off of debate, by funding and otsterising, of denighers does not make a theory correct.

I do agree some part of the man caused warming is correct, but am not willing to accept the goverment offered solutions as the only solutions.

RE: Consensus Science

2dye4,

I would have a lot more confidence in the conclusions if the data were all available both in raw form, and adulterated form together with the precise methodology used to perform the corrections.

Without the raw data, even the best papers are all on the basis of "trust me, you don't need to know the details."

Maybe someone slipped a decimal. Maybe equally valid but different assumptions could be used to correct the data in a different way.

We just don't know.

RE: Consensus Science

Quote (2dye4)

Challenging a scientific hypothesis must go beyond blind paranoia, it really must be some serious qualified analysis on the same level as the challenged theory or methods.
Two responses: why? And what makes you think that the challenges are not serious?

There are four parts to the so-called science of CAWG. Each one will be challenged right here, before your very eyes. No blind paranoia, just good, solid engineering-based scientific approach.
1) The earth is warming. Well, we have instrument data measuring the air temperature going back maybe 150 years. The spatial distribution of that data became sufficiently uniform for ~80% of the land area maybe 50 years ago - Antarctica still has very few data points. That data is mostly highs-lows for 24 hour periods. The data is contaminated by urban heat island effects (truly, these are effects of anthropogenic nature), time of observation effects, and lack of humidity data. We have satellite-based data since 1979. Setting aside that the data is adjusted (some of the adjusted data had the adjustments lost in a "dog ate my homework" kinda way), stations were dropped, and spatial distribution issues, the data appears to indicate that the globe has increased in temperature, somewhat, since ~1850. And, we have ocean heat content data of reasonable spatial distribution starting in 2007, when the ARGO buoy set was fully deployed (deployment started in 2000) It is indeed a reasonable endeavour to question all of these details - and much research is still being done here. Nothing is settled. However, the generally-accepted figure is that the globe has heated about 0.7°C since ~1850. Does it make a difference if the number is 0.65°C or 0.75°C - damn straight it does. And we don't even have enough good-quality ocean heat content data for a full solar-cycle.
2) The observed warming is, at the 90%-100% confidence interval, caused by human emissions of CO2. This is a biggie. I think that we agree that, all else being equal, the experimental data (going back to Arrhenius) indicates that a doubling of CO2 will result in about a 1°C increase in temperature. Of course, on earth, nothing is ever equal. There are non-linear effects, chaos effects, random volcano eruptions, varying solar and galactic cosmic ray inputs, aerosols, black carbon, and of course, the water cycle. Oh yes, and the natural cycles, especially of the oceans, of which we know so very little about. There are so many fundamentals here that are not even understood, let alone synthesized, that it would be foolhardy to claim otherwise. And the output of a computer simulation that was designed to show that only the CO2 values have an effect, proves or demonstrates nothing. So, nothing settled here, either. Definitely there is much investigation needed into these natural phenomenon.
3) The warming will continue at a rate unprecedented in the earth's history, and the magnitude of the warming, combined with the rate of warming will generate catastrophe that threatens the entire biome. This part comes purely from the models that were used in 2) above. I work with models every day - they are only as good as the weakest link in the chain. Given that their predictive ability (even when they are trained to do so, most fail to hindcast last century's climate when only given the initial value of the state in 1900 and the dates/locations/intensity of volcanic activity and the known forcings - in fact some are so bad that a constrained random number generator would be better) is lousy, I'm going to say that the science here is definitely NOT settled and worthy of further investigation.
4) Humans can mitigate the catastrophe in 3) above by enacting carbon[sic]-taxes/cap and trade/emissions limits without damaging civilization as we know it, and that this approach is more economical than mitigating any damage as-it-comes. This pillar of CAGW rests firmly on 1), 2), and 3) being correct, AND they are also based on certain theories of economics that are also assumed to be correct. All of the solutions seem to involve more state-control of everyday activities, and less personal freedom. Is this part settled science - hell no. Even if it were settled, there are issues of individual freedom and rights that remain to be handled.

So, which part of the above do you think is settled so far beyond a reasonable doubt that it is irrational to question?

I'm not saying that I have all the answers, but I have some damn good questions. It would be irrational for me to not ask them. And I'm not the only one - racookpe1978 references a VERY popular blog - and those numbers that he quotes are only comments, the site itself generally ranks in the top 25,000 websites (per Alexa) in the entire world, which is usually one or two orders of magnitude above any blog discussing the "consensus". (As an aside, eng-tips.com ranks about 47,000th in the world).

RE: Consensus Science

2dye4 - your assumption that the "theory of greenhouse gasses..." is completely accepted - does not seem to be the consensus on this forum, it is a postulate, an assumption advanced for the purpose of debate, primarily by government paid "researchers". These are the same researchers paid to measure the amount of methane in cow farts. Now cows are also causing additional global warming. This postulate has not been advanced to the level of theory yet. It is far from a proven fact. Since there is no consensus on this formum, then it must be considered to be incorrect. (it would be totally irrational to assume otherwise)

RE: Consensus Science

(OP)
2dye4,
"Blind paranoia", "Ignorant suspicion is meaningless", " it is meaningless to just parrot the phrase 'adulterated data' as though that means something". You are in a bit of a snit aren't you?

In the Global Warming Marathon Before Last (I don't even remember the name of the thread), everyone involved posted links to every possible view on every possible subject. One of those links went on at length to explain that each data point is "owned" by a particular individual (actually institution, but there is almost always one individual who is stuck with the incoming data). Each owner is expected to provide a "usable" data set which includes an adjustment for the Urban Heat Island effect (for example). The owner's are responsible for defining those adjustments and applying them to the raw data on the way into the database. Every definition is different and the magnitude and direction of the adjustment is not published. So one researcher may decide that urbanization adds 18C to every "urban" dataset. The next guy might decide that it is 8 C at night and 14 C during the day. Another may decide that certain stations require a 20C reduction. There are dozens of these aggregation points. I am quite certain, actually I "believe" that the "heat island effect" wouldn't know what nation or institution it belongs to, so if it is only 6 C, but gets a 18 C adjustment then you have introduced a bias into the data. Storing raw data and allowing researchers to apply their own fudge factors would be more sanitary. Do I KNOW that this is messing up the results? No. And neither does anyone else since the unadulterated data is destroyed in the process. If you go back to that thread and read through the 400 posts you should be able to find the link if it still exists ("Denier" sites tend to vanish with some regularity), but I'm not going to waste my time finding it for you. If you don't accept my assertion you are not going to accept the assertion of the article.

To get to the last point you described, those companies ran models, built prototypes, tested the prototypes, adjusted the computer model, repeat until you have confidence that the model can predict a single time step forward. A perfect use of computer models. They are not trying to "prove" anything. They are trying to apply computer models to a tangible, verifiable outcome. The model says "build it like this", they build it like that, it either works or it doesn't, no assertions required. If it doesn't work, then the model was "wrong" and they adjust their model parameters to fit reality. In other words the model is only predicting one step into the future. One step. If I have a climate model I have to assume a temporal granularity that will yield meaningful results. If I select a year, then seasonal variations get lost. If I pick a day the day/night variations get lost. If I select a second and it takes 25 million iterations per time step to converge and I have to do 86,400 time steps per day then it takes 8x10^16 iterations to predict a century. Letting a model run 10^16 iterations unchallenged is just a random number generator. Do you see the difference?

Your differential equation example is simply fun with words. I took an Econometrics class in college. That field is full of partial differential equations that try to predict behavior of economies over time. The individual differential equations have a strong basis in reality. Applying them to predict tomorrow's economic condition nearly makes sense (if you could get data of the quality required, which you can't). Applying them iteratively to predict changes in the economy next month or next year has not proven to develop a result that is very close to reality.

And no, I am not going to try to publish any analysis on Global Warming. I don't have the credentials. Only Tenured Professors of Climate Science need submit papers on this subject. I'm none of those things. I do find it funny that my Dad always said "If they have to call it 'Science' it isn't--Physics is 'Science', "Computer Science" isn't."

David Simpson, PE
MuleShoe Engineering

"Belief" is the acceptance of an hypotheses in the absence of data.
"Prejudice" is having an opinion not supported by the preponderance of the data.
"Knowledge" is only found through the accumulation and analysis of data.
The plural of anecdote is not "data"

RE: Consensus Science

tgs4
Generally, it is well to ask all the questions that anyone needs to ask, but lack of answers does not imply failure of the science.

So for number 1 you outline many issues.
Can these issues be dealt with to improve climate estimation accuracy?
Can you prove that these issues cause errors of such magnitude that the underlying data is only recoverable to a certain confidence or better give error probability distributions vs time for these issues. This would constitute a good counter analysis.

Number 2
I agree that there are many hard to calculate details but much of this seems to not be terribly relevant to captured heat.
Some factors mentioned are extraneous to the issue of climate sensitivity such as volcanoes, cosmic radiation, solar flux..etc are not important to the issue. They may alter our climate but they are not alterable by us.
How many of these issues affect the heat flux balance through our atmosphere and can you or others make a sound scientific 'model' to demonstrate their importance in CO2 sensitivity that lowers predicted rises in temp.
No climate scientist or climate model has claimed ONLY CO2 has an impact on temperature and nothing else matters.

Number 3
I wish we could discuss this 'models' thing a little better. F=MA is a model, V=IR is a model and yet they are assumed
to be without any error in practice. Partial differential equations are models too, some devolve into chaos and some settle into stable solutions for time eternal. So are you and maybe Zdas really questioning models that devolve into chaos after a period of cycles?
The earliest climate model from 1980 was a stable PDE that did pretty well predicting temp rises to this day without considering circulations and many other listed factors.

Number 4
Is a separate but important question that has no bearing on the investigation into CO2 expected warming. It would be silly to not investigate because we don't have the answer yet.

Lastly I contend that small scale speculation like 1-4 does not challenge climate change science. To seriously challenge it would require detailed analysis with provided numbers on par with the analysis done by climate scientists. It simply is not sufficient to raise speculative issues unless someone pursues them in detail.
So by all means ask your questions, but please withhold judgement until you or others do the serious analysis.

Watts up with that is nothing but a political blog in disguise, Mr watts has been caught advocating to his supporters to disrupt reasonable debate with talking points and "shouting them down" to use his words.
I look at the site occasionally but every time i go there i find the same thing, unsubstantiated speculation, attacks on minor issues as though they were the whole, and suggestive writing tactics.

CVG

Yes the theory of greenhouse gasses is a widely accepted model. So another opportunity for researchers to disprove it, just go looking for the money. Many people in the carbon industry would pay millions if you could credibly cast doubt on it.


RE: Consensus Science

"Not a philosophical discussion of what is or isn't science but a real mathematical analysis showing the errors." ... start with the research by Steve McIntyre (google "debunking the thockey stick")

Quando Omni Flunkus Moritati

RE: Consensus Science

It's hard enough to get a small group of people to report reliable data on something simple like the length of a board. I can't imagine what sort of reporting hijinx are happening with the global weather database. But, we gotta start somewhere.

RE: Consensus Science

Zdas

If you you say is true of a significant portion of the incoming having non documented and inconsistent adjustments then of course you are correct that this is BS.

It can't be that simple, but I will investigate on my own.

I think when you speak of models you are referring to equations that dive into chaos after some time and that also have parameters that are unknown or only estimated. These are definitely very difficult models to deal with.
I still question whether the climate needs this level of modeling to accurately estimate the heat flux through the atmosphere but I dunno so much bout this.

Reminder of the simple stable PDE that did quite well modeling the temp rise. Not all models are so difficult to stabilize, say for instance thermal conduction in a homogenous medium of simple geometry. The PDE analysis could run on this till the sun burns out and still give essentially the same answer.






RE: Consensus Science

2dye4,

So, I can hand in a set of "adjusted" numbers, not tell you how I adjusted them or allow access to the raw data, and you will accept it?

Would you accept that for say, a bridge design? Trust me, the bridge will hold traffic loads up to 100,000 lbs live load. I calculated it. No need to see how I did it.

RE: Consensus Science

Here's why consensus matters. You're absolutely right that it doesn't prove anything. And in a perfect world everybody would be able to investigate the claims of climate scientists and come to their own conclusions. But in the real world the average person doesn't have the time or interest in staying up to date on the latest climate science. Scientific consensus is really the best thing the average person has. If you go to 100 doctors and the overwhelming majority of say you have cancer and need to start treatment right away, you should probably listen to the majority. Every single person on this forum knows this is how it works. I'd be willing to bet that very few people on this forum understand quantum mechanics, let allow done any experimentation regarding it, yet (I would hope) everyone accepts it as true. And you do so because there is a scientific consensus about it, not because you've verified for yourself that it is true. The same goes for every scientific theory that you aren't an expert in.

And lets be honest here. No "skeptic" on this forum is in any position to be challenging climate science. I'm sure you guys all think you have good reasons to doubt it. But do you guys honestly think that all your armchair questions haven't been thought of and answered by climate scientists? And let me be clear ... I don't have a problem with people questioning climate science (or any other science for that matter). My issue is with random people on the internet who think they are so smart that they've somehow debunked an entire field of study.

RE: Consensus Science

I feel that 2dye4 and Zdas are just missing each other, so perhaps I can clarify a little. I think that both would agree that in order to convince the scientific community of something, you should be able to provide evidence of your claim. From 2dye4's point of view, AGW is already accepted, so to contradict it, someone would need to provide evidence that AGW does not exist. 2dye4 thinks the burden of proof is on Zdas to *disprove* AGW. From Zdas's perspective though, AGW never made a compelling case as to its existence, so Zdas thinks the burden of proof is still on the AGW folks to prove that it does exist.

RE: Consensus Science

Brad1979 - thank you very much... for bringing up the next in the round of logical fallacies: argumentum ad auctoritatem - the appeal to authority.

In a way, though, you are completely correct. I mean, after all, Newton's Laws were established facts for hundreds of years; heck, that's why they're called Laws of Science. That patent office clerk with little in the way of formal education was really in no position to challenge the consensus of the day. What's that random person, who thinks he's so smart that they've somehow debunked an entire field of study. I guess it's all Relative, right?

Puleeeeeze. I would wager that your average mechanical engineer has more training and experience with radiative heat transfer than your average Climate Scientist™. Same thing goes with computational fluid mechanics, of which any proper climate model would have to be. And furthermore, most Professional Engineers are bound by strict rules regarding ethics - a concept that seems to be foreign to many Climate Scientists (Peter Gleick, anyone). So, we are not dealing with random idiots on the street here - we are dealing with professionals who expertise meets or exceeds those of the Climate Scientists.

RE: Consensus Science

(OP)
Brad1979,
Quantum Mechanics is a really good example. The Reader's Digest version of the discipline that I've read seems very plausible and the (few) processes that I know about look to be sound science to me, and more importantly no one is trying to take billions of dollars out of the economy to change the spin of a quark through political fiat. My problem with Global Climate Change (or whatever it is called this month) is that we jumped from an "hypotheses" to "hysteria" without a pause at "contemplation". If it wasn't for the political/economic component, I would be looking at advances in climate science with interest instead of abject fear. The "greenhouse effect" is an interesting hypotheses that should have been evaluated before it became media fodder. Once the mainstream media got hold of it the chance for sober contemplation vanished. Now there is too much money on the table to walk away.

Chris3eb,
Read through the other 3 of these threads. What you described has been the common thread in all four now. Neither side of the discussion will ever accept the other side's givens.

2dye4,
The models get more fine-grained every year. The current state of the art has a grid size about the size of the state of Colorado. All fluid interactions within a grid block are homogeneous and the only interaction is at the cell walls. That says that a cell that overlaid Colorado would see the border with Kansas/Nebraska, New Mexico, Utah, and Wyoming. It treats Aspen the same as Lamar (about 8,000 ft elevation difference). Then when you lay the same grid over the Japanese current, it vanishes like the Colorado River does in that grid. Same with the Gulf Stream. The homogenizing effects of grid selection turn the data into pure chaos.

David Simpson, PE
MuleShoe Engineering

"Belief" is the acceptance of an hypotheses in the absence of data.
"Prejudice" is having an opinion not supported by the preponderance of the data.
"Knowledge" is only found through the accumulation and analysis of data.
The plural of anecdote is not "data"

RE: Consensus Science

2dye4 - thank you for your answers to my points. Reading through your responses, I kept thinking that maybe you were actually getting my perspective. The answer to a lot of those questions is that we don't have answers. That's not to say that we shouldn't study them, or that they are unimportant. On the contrary, they are vitally important. However, that there are so many dangling questions also indicate that: a) the science isn't settled, b) with more questions than answers, why the certainty that the answers of today are correct? I am very much open to the possibility that CAGW is true - but based on even a balance-of-probabilities level of "proof", the hypothesis as presented fails today.

You seem to be accepting that the science is not settled. So, perhaps you can explain to me why so many who accept the consensus want to shut down discussion and debate. I just don't get it.

Quote (2dye4)

Watts up with that is nothing but a political blog in disguise, Mr watts has been caught advocating to his supporters to disrupt reasonable debate with talking points and "shouting them down" to use his words.
I look at the site occasionally but every time i go there i find the same thing, unsubstantiated speculation, attacks on minor issues as though they were the whole, and suggestive writing tactics.
Those are interesting talking points from the likes of SkepticalScience (can you say projection??). I'm been reading that website off and on for more than 6 years, and I haven't observed that. In fact, if you want to see some real science done, you should see the crowd-review for the Watts et al 2012 paper. There were some issues related to time-of-observation that were not captured appropriately in the paper. Although the conclusions were politically-correct for the readership, the commenters were ruthlessly skeptical and appropriately tore the paper apart. Whereas the same cannot be said of the consensus blogs about the abomination that is Cook et al 2013 - the subject of zdas04's OP. Now, on that basis, which are the political blogs?

RE: Consensus Science

No doubt SkepticalScience is biased politically like wattsupwiththat.

Neither is absolutely real science.

chris3eb is correct in his analysis of this debate.

I think the burden is on challengers to put up serious scientific work that challenges the warming predictions.
Why there is none is a very curious question for me, and no, mainstream publication censorship would not preclude the research.

I do think that there is an much more extensive body of credible work that supports climate change and nearly NONE that adequately challenge the hypothesis of warming.

The hockey stick temp spike is valid and occurring despite the decade long flattening in temperature which can be caused by many things.

The key is the duration of the effect. MMGW theory suggests that the warming will increase with CO2.
Historical temp trends have displayed a random character that is of a different nature than the steady rise in observed temps.

One trick used is to model a zero mean random process as the response of a linear system to a white noise input. When the linear system is chosen such that the statistics match the observed then inferences about probability can be made on the upward trend.

It is necessary to check such a statistical model of the random component of climate measurements for the likelihood of an occurrence of such a rise as the industrial era spike.
Put more simply, consider the rate of rise and the overall shape of the hockeystick during the 100 year industrial period.
Now in the last 2000 years of reconstructed data there are 20 opportunities for such a random process to manifest this shape. It has not done so in those 2000 years if you believe the reconstructions. So we have a (1/20) probability event occurring exactly in sync with the theoretical prediction.







RE: Consensus Science

Puleeeeeze is right. If you had paid attention in that philosophy course you were talking about you'd know that nothing I said was a fallacy. Appeal to authority is not always fallacious. For example, I in no way said anything was true just because experts say it is. That would be a fallacy. All I said is that for the average person, he or she is quite correct in accepting what the consensus of the climate scientists. In the same way you are quite right in accepting the consensus of every science you aren't an expert in.

"we are dealing with professionals who expertise meets or exceeds those of the Climate Scientists"

First you have absolutely no evidence of that. Second, I think these 2 threads have pretty much proven that engineers don't know what the hell they are talking about when it comes to climate. The fact that you know heat transfer or fluid dynamics doesn't mean you know the first thing about the climate.

RE: Consensus Science

zdas04,

"and more importantly no one is trying to take billions of dollars out of the economy to change the spin of a quark through political fiat."

This about sums it up. People are perfectly fine accepting expert opinion on almost everything unless it conflicts with their political beliefs. Thank you for admitting to that.

RE: Consensus Science

Brad1979 - you were indeed fallacious by implying that we were incapable of having a learned opinion because we were not among the anointed Climate Scientists. Hence my sarcastic comment about Einstein (in case you didn't catch either the sarcasm or who that was referring too).

Quote (Brad1979)

I think these 2 threads have pretty much proven that engineers don't know what the hell they are talking about when it comes to climate.
. Other than applying one of the above-noted logical fallacies, please do tell how you have come to this opinion. Would that be the engineers that support the consensus or those who disagree with the consensus?

Have you ever been trained in radiative heat transfer? If you were, you would understand that the entire premise of the greenhouse gas effect is purely a radiative heat transfer effect, due to specific absorption and re-radiative bands. How is that not climate? Who would you "trust" more to know about feedbacks in complicated systems: a climate scientist or an electrical/electronics engineer?

RE: Consensus Science

2
(OP)
Brad1979,
Are you being purposefully obnoxious. I did get interested in this subject when people started proposing carbon taxes. Is that a political belief? I would be surprised if a liberal was happy that a billion dollars has left the California economy this year on the alter of bad science. My point was I am fine accepting an expert opinion about things that do not have the potential to alter my standard of living in a hugely negative way. Before I will accept a reduction in my standard of living I'm going to look into the underlying assumptions. Sorry if you find that political. I find it self interest.

David Simpson, PE
MuleShoe Engineering

"Belief" is the acceptance of an hypotheses in the absence of data.
"Prejudice" is having an opinion not supported by the preponderance of the data.
"Knowledge" is only found through the accumulation and analysis of data.
The plural of anecdote is not "data"

RE: Consensus Science

TGS4,

You are capable of having any opinion you want. I don't think I implied otherwise. But it is no fallacy to point out the obvious fact that compared to somebody who researches the climate full time, the people on this forum don't know squat.


"Would that be the engineers that support the consensus or those who disagree with the consensus?"

Both. Being able to understand the basic mechanism behind the greenhouse effect is a lot different than understanding the climate. And I will choose a climate scientist over an engineer any day when it comes to the later.


RE: Consensus Science

2dye4 ... "The hockey stick temp spike is valid" ... i think the concensus is that the hockey stick is fiction. and that's not just my opinion (i wouldn't give much for that either), that the result of research/analysis.

Quando Omni Flunkus Moritati

RE: Consensus Science

3
Appeal to authority is only a logical fallacy if the authority appealed to is imaginary or not a true authority.

An overwhelming majority of the scientists actually qualified by training and experience to offer an opinion on the subject, are concerned about the risk of fossil CO2 emissions to the atmosphere on global climate. That these emissions are responsible for the near-doubling of atmospheric CO2 concentrations since the 1700s is settled science based on measurement, not modelling and supposition. That these emissions are also in the process of acidifying the upper strata of the earth's oceans is also not something that can be challenged.

The prevailing scientific opinion on a subject can persist despite compelling contrary evidence, but not forever and rarely for long. I'd charge the AGW deniers with a new logical fallacy that I've made up, which I call the "appeal to conspiracy". Their hypothesis seems to be that substantially all the people who make a living studying the climate are in cahoots, ignoring and falsifying both data and analysis of that data in aid of a self-serving political agenda.

I'm not going to prattle with David, as he's shown repeatedly over the years that his position on this subject is ideological and dogmatic rather than scientific. In my opinion he is not qualified to offer a credible opinion on the subject any more than I am, and I freely admit that I am not qualified to do so either. That his opinion, unlike mine, challenges the consensus of people who ARE qualified to offer a truly informed opinion on the subject makes his position very difficult to give any credence.

RE: Consensus Science

Statistics: The ability to believe in nothing with absolute confidence or certainty. Often used just "so far" as to show support for a position. wink

Bruce Youngman
http://www.dynamicsolutions-mi.com

RE: Consensus Science

The hockey stick is valid.
Check here for many charts.

http://www.woodfortrees.org/plot/hadcrut4tr

The first inclination of government on this issue was to just directly tax carbon emissions, it was only later that some thought a market oriented approach would be better.
The market approach allowed more flexibility.
1 A business could innovate and reduce their carbon emissions and sell the credits to others.
2 A business could emit more when they needed to.

The specific benefit of trading carbon credits is the revenue positive aspect that theoretically should spur innovation in carbon emission reduction.

Now if you would rather see this rolled back to a strict tax with no incentive to reduce beyond the baseline then write your congressman.

Not surprisingly i agree with Brad that Engineers are amatures in climate science and tend to be just a little arrogant.

How many of those questioning the science have read and understood any serious papers on the methods used.
http://www.scitechnol.com/GIGS/GIGS-1-103.php
http://www.scitechnol.com/GIGS/GIGS-1-104.php
www.knmi.nl/cms/mmbase/attachments/106181

Lets read them fully then discuss them here..



RE: Consensus Science

but a different graph (at the same site shows something quite different) ... http://www.woodfortrees.org/plot/wti

and i was referring to the Mann hockey stick, which has been refuted.

and then there's carbon credits ... ok, fine it's possibly "better" than a tax 'cause businesses can try to reduce their output. however, where's the money going ? and why such under-developed countries have a carbon output allowance that they'll never use ? (ok, so they try to develop or some such) but where's the money going ? if it even gets to an under-developed country, i'm sure it won't benefit the poor working sods (but rather end up in some swiss bank a/c).

sorry but i disagree with the approach that you have to be an expert to have an opinion. in my mind that harkens back to my parent's opinion of medcial advice "do what the doctor says, he knows better"; these days i think there's a little more kick back "why should i do that ? what are my alternatives ?". i've done some reading on climate change and i don't think the case is proven (to any standard of proof) that burning fossil fuels is having a catastrophic effect of global climate. Mu opinoin of "global warming" is that it is a boogie man created to get people to do what some individuals see is the right thing ... to be more "green", to conserve our resources and be more efficient in using them. these are surely laudable goals, but the ends doesn't justify the means.

the "poster boy" for "global warming" was the Mann hockey stick, and this has been refuted; and surely you have to wonder why it was created, and how it passed peer review.

Quando Omni Flunkus Moritati

RE: Consensus Science

Brad1979 - thank you very much for your truly insightful comment. Unfortunately, what you have described is not science, but a priesthood. According to you, only those ordained and anointed as Climate Scientists™ are worthy of even questioning the basic tenants of the faith. Sure, got it. So, do you consider yourself an acolyte, or merely a follower?

Which brings another interesting issue - what is climate? If, by virtue of my education and experience in radiative heat transfer, computational modelling/numerical method, basic physics, control systems, and meteorology, I am deemed to be unworthy to even question the consensus, who truly is? How about advanced degrees in Mathematics/Applied Mathematics, or maybe Astronomy and Physics, or perhaps even Condensed Matter Physics/Semiconductor Physics combined with Geology?

RE: Consensus Science

(OP)
MoltenMetal,
"Prattle with David"? "shown repeatedly over the years that his position on this subject is ideological and dogmatic rather than scientific"? "That his opinion, unlike mine, challenges the consensus of people who ARE qualified to offer a truly informed opinion on the subject makes his position very difficult to give any credence"? You've crossed a number of lines here, so let me join you on your side of the line.

I guess it is a good thing that you don't work for the American Petroleum Institute or the members of the now-defunct Western Climate Initiative since both organizations have paid me handsomely to express my dogmatic views on this subject officially into the records of the EPA and WCI you ignorant twit. Your "opinions" seem to have been gleaned from an extensive study of the words of Oprah and Katie Couric. I have been very consistent, maybe even dogmatic, in challenging the methodology used in support of the religion of AGW, methodology that I actually am something of an expert on. The methodology being used is much like trying to fix a vehicle with a chainsaw, the chainsaw really makes a terrible screw driver. Computer models really make a terrible basis for laws and regulations.

So please, don't prattle with me since I have heard what Oprah and Katie have to say on the subject and I am not convinced of their authority so I can't imagine it having much value second hand.

David Simpson, PE
MuleShoe Engineering

"Belief" is the acceptance of an hypotheses in the absence of data.
"Prejudice" is having an opinion not supported by the preponderance of the data.
"Knowledge" is only found through the accumulation and analysis of data.
The plural of anecdote is not "data"

RE: Consensus Science

I think you just proved moltenmetal's case...

John R. Baker, P.E.
Product 'Evangelist'
Product Engineering Software
Siemens PLM Software Inc.
Industry Sector
Cypress, CA
Siemens PLM:
UG/NX Museum:

To an Engineer, the glass is twice as big as it needs to be.

RE: Consensus Science

Having an opinion is good.
Knowing its limitation is priceless.

RE: Consensus Science

6
Scientific “consensus”
There’s a lot of confusion regarding what exactly a consensus is. People seem to think (or wish to believe, in order to strengthen their viewpoint) that a “consensus” is a formed by a group people sitting around a table and voting on how they feel about a meeting agenda item. The scientific community didn’t wake up one day, wander into a meeting room and vote on whether they believed in the CAGW theory or not.

A scientific consensus is formed through the result of a compelling body of evidence that supports one theory over another. This body of evidence is formed through different, independent studies. As the amount of research/papers/data supporting the theory grows, so does the strength of the theory (for a nice look back on the history of climate science see this link. There are also challenges against the theory which are either rejected or accepted through further study; if accepted the theory is either revised to include the new information, if the challenges are minor, or dismissed entirely, if the challenges are robust enough or attack the fundamental tenets of the theory. The stronger the body of evidence is for the theory, the stronger the counter-arguments need to be in order to completely overturn it (*note: in the last thread I detailed what the fundamental tenets of the CAGW theory are and how it could be falsified, I won’t repeat it here but you are welcome to look at what I wrote). In most cases, given a sufficiently large body of evidence supporting the theory, a counter-argument must not just challenge the assertions of the theory but it must also provide an alternative, and improved, explanation for the mechanism that original theory dealt with (i.e. it hasn’t warmed in X years is a nice “sound-byte” but it provides no alternative explanation. It hasn’t warmed in X years because the sun was doing Y and when it was warming the sun was doing Z, and here’s my evidence and data and graphs and pretty pictures, is a valid counter-argument worthy of discussion and it has been and is being discussed).

Now, back to the consensus, as this body of evidence grows, the theory begins to gain support from the scientific community at large. By “consensus”, what you really mean is that the majority of the scientific community agrees with the theory based on the result of a growing, solid body of evidence.

What a consensus means
A Consensus reflects the strength of the body of evidence in a theory but it IS NOT evidence in it of itself. Appeals to the consensus as proof of the theory is not appropriate and I agree with many of you on this. I will discuss this more below.

The issue with the “consensus”?
I’m not sure I understand what the problem is here (nor do I think that some of you do), so I need to break it down into what I think your issues might be:
1) That there is no consensus?
2) That there is a consensus but the consensus is wrong?
3) That there is a consensus but it should not be used as an argument to prove the theory?
4) That a “consensus”, or maybe more accurately, “any consensus” in science is a problem because it leads to group think and “pal review”?

1) Hopefully I can dismiss this claim. It’s pretty evident that the body of research is large and acceptance of the theory in the scientific community is widespread. However, this is challenged repeatedly by people which makes other react by conducting studies demonstrating that there actually is one. In this regard, the “appeal” to consensus is not really an “appeal” but defending the fact that there actually is one. I have no issues with that nor do I think (or hope) any of you do.

2) Fine but how is it wrong? Again, it is fallacious to think that when you think you are attacking the “consensus” you are attacking the results of some poll; you are attacking the body of evidence of the theory. There is nothing wrong with that, it is healthy, it is welcome and it is science. However, you need to provide details as to why the body of evidence is wrong and why another theory more accurate describes what we are seeing. If your argument or counter-theory is shot down, it doesn’t mean that there is a conspiracy against your theory it just means that your evidence/theory was not as accurate as the current theory. The fact you think that is because this has become an emotionally, politically and economically charged debate. Non-experts on both sides of the debate have interwoven their feelings into the science and it makes it hard to look at any data with unbiased eyes. There is a good talk on this that you can find here and a good article here. Another great paper on how cultural cognition comes into play when looking at the data. This leads nicely into point 3...what’s the point of a consensus to the non-expert?


3) I agree that a consensus is not proof the consensus is correct. However, as stated many times, this consensus is not a vote, it’s the confidence in a body of evidence. That body of evidence does provide weight to the theory. That confidence in the body of evidence by experts is a powerful statement to non-experts. However, given the gravitas of the climate change debate, I don’t feel this is adequate and I, like you, don’t like it when people dismiss points purely because it goes against their viewpoint. I feel people need to do a better job understanding the data and forming their own opinions. However, this brings us back to the papers and talks that I provided in point #2; the bias filter of incoming data means that even when people seek out the information they can lead themselves astray or not detect bias that supports their bias. Does promoting a consensus help with that? No.

4) This one is an odd argument. As another person point out, the scientific method is empirical. We perform tests, we study the results and we make conclusions. Because science is empirical, we can’t be 100% certain that the conclusions are true, in an epistemological view, because we can’t perform the tests an infinite amount of times. Now, having said that, we are all confident, to the point of certain, that when I drop a rock on Earth, it’s not going to float up. However, we still need to refer to gravity as a theory (insert welcome to test, jump off a bridge joke here…but don’t worry, I’m not about to use this as a “case” for creationism). We have formed a consensus that the theory of gravity is true. Note that I’m not trying to compare the strength of the gravitational theory with the strength of the CAGW theory, obviously the former is much stronger. The point is, we form consensuses around all core theories; consensus is not the boogie-man of science, it’s part of science.

The examples given in the first post to discredit (I guess) consensuses are just silly anecdotes (but I guess the plural of anecdotes is “data” for some people).
- Astrology – this is like saying that most ancient Greeks believed that thunder was caused by Zeus therefore consensuses are wrong. What is your point? That primitive cultural attributed natural phenomenon to magic/gods, therefore the CAGW consensus is just as bad? Before science developed, everything was magic. As Steve Weinberg said, “science doesn’t make it impossible to believe in God, it just makes it possible to not believe in God”. So are you honestly saying that CAGW is to modern era climate change, what Zeus was to ancient Greek thunder? At times you sound like it but you are just being intellectually disingenuous and purposefully inflammatory.
- Geocentrism – again you fall victim to one of the most common errors in the field of history, which is to fail to understand things as a product of their time. Ya, Geocentrism seems foolish in the satellite era but it took some darn smart people, given primitive experimental equipment, to correct that perception. The connection to CAGW is no-doubt that if their lack of experimental equipment lead to a false theory, it could be repeated today. However, you need to understand that in that era the lack of experimental equipment and fundamental physics meant that natural senses and intuition were required to develop theories and interpret data. More importantly, religion was so invasive in politics, society and science, that views that went against the religious dogma were punished by death, so Geocentrism held for longer than it should have because of this fear. Now, with the invention of more powerful microscopes and telescopes we understand things outside our normal scale of perception, with quantum mechanics we’ve learned to leave intuition at the door when examining nature and religion has lost his strangle hold on our world view, science is less these advancements have
- Holocaust – I’m not going to dignify this with a rebuttal, it has nothing to do with CAGW or your point; again, it’s just intellectually disingenuous and purposefully inflammatory. Last post it was the Inquisition, this time you’ve up the ante.


As to the (continued) assertion (without any evidence…) that there is a conspiracy within the scientific community that blocks all research and papers against the CAGW theory or that scientists are crucified by the scientific community for speaking out against the CAGW theory, you need to provide more than just an emotionally charged statement (remind me what belief without evidence is?). I will agree and sympathize that there are non-experts that will blindly reject a counter-theory (it bugs me just as much as it bugs you) but that’s not what the scientific community/peer review process, at large, is doing. Just because a paper from a popular blogger can’t get published isn’t because it can’t get through “pal review”, it’s because it has technical gaps or does not provide new insights into the field. Some have asked why the percentage of papers supporting the CAGW theory isn’t 100%, well it’s because papers that go against the theory and are technical sound still get published. If you disagree, we can have a rational discussion about it without superfluous references to Hitler, the Spanish Inquisition, etc. For example, you could start off with something like, “there is absolutely “pal review” in the scientific community; look at the Climate Research journal from 1997 to 2003 with the editor Chris de Freitas”.

Wrapping things up (TL;DR)
- The majority of the scientific community, especially those in the field of climate science, agree with the CAGW theory. This alone doesn’t mean that much but it’s not that debatable.
- If your issue with the consensus is that you think it supports a false theory, fine, the discussion needs to transition back to evidence/counter-evidence.
- I agree that the fact there is a consensus is not proof the consensus is true. There’s a lot of evidence out there that supports the theory and it’s better to point to that, then a consensus, as justification for an opinion. Again, the discussion should transition back to evidence/counter-evidence.
- Consensuses are not in
- I’m getting really tired of silly anecdotes relating this discussion with the Inquisition, the Holocaust and other horrific acts in human history. If you want to discuss a bias in the scientific community or the peer review process, then let’s have a rational discussion.

RE: Consensus Science

(OP)
rconnor,
Did you read my post or just extract the odd word here and there? There was a scientific consensus that geocentrism was a valid theory, there seems to be a historical consensus on that observation, that historical consensus may be wrong, but I have no reason to refute it. I don't care if the consensus on geocentrism was right or wrong. I don't care about the "times". I merely stated that there was a consensus and that people with alternate views were harmed by the priests and scientists lining up to refute the "deniers". An anecdote, not intended as data, intended to illuminate the current situation. Big difference.

As to the ancient Greeks believing that Zeus caused thunder, that is actually another good example of a consensus being at odds with later theories. There are many more examples available.

The point of my original post and the point of this thread, if there is one, is that consensus does not ensure that a theory is in line with the facts. It also does not ensure that the theory is not in line with the facts, but when people tell me that I must be full of crap because I disagree with the consensus of people "qualified" to have an opinion I get tense. When you tell me that a computer modeler sees no problem in doing a peer review of a scholarly article that uses nothing but computer models to "prove" his thesis I have to call BS.

As to the rest of your points, I'll leave them to others to address, I'm tired.

David Simpson, PE
MuleShoe Engineering

"Belief" is the acceptance of an hypotheses in the absence of data.
"Prejudice" is having an opinion not supported by the preponderance of the data.
"Knowledge" is only found through the accumulation and analysis of data.
The plural of anecdote is not "data"

RE: Consensus Science

rconnor - one of the more well thought out posts. In a manner of speaking, I believe that we are coming to an agreement on this particular aspect of the topic. I have no disagreement with the data respecting the number of papers accepting AGW. I am glad that you agree that consensus on its own does not imply truth. I also think that we can agree that the purpose of the Cook et al (2013) paper was to indicate otherwise. I also agree that we should focus on the science.

Regarding your 4 points:
1) I am curious to know the actual number of papers (that haven't been subsequently refuted) that explicitly endorse any one of the four pillars of the AGW hypothesis that I laid out earlier. And compare that o the actual number of papers that differ. Specifics matter in this discussion, to. For example, a paper showing a sensitivity of 1.2°C/doubling CO2 is very different from one showing 3°C/doubling CO2. What is the "consensus"? Are the explanations sufficient to explain ALL of the natural and anthropogenic variations, including prior ice ages? Is there truly a consensus that warming is "bad"? Again, the answer may be in the degree (pun intended).

2) Fair enough. But if questioning the science is right and proper, why the overwhelming desire to shut the debate down - "the science is settled"?

3) Agreed.

4) Just out of curiosity, how many papers have you written/published and reviewed? I used to be big believer in the power of peer review. However (and completely independent from the climate science issues), lately I have become more and more cynical of the entire process. This cynicism was furthered by the Climategate e-mails - "I'll keep that paper out (of the IPCC report) if I have to redefine what peer-reviewed means" - as well as efforts to have editors fired who published opposing viewpoints' papers. These aren't conspiracy theories - these are actual words written by actual people, depicting actual events.

RE: Consensus Science

twenty stars to rconner for a very very well though out and written post.

If we all read and ponder this post the discussion should be more productive.

RE: Consensus Science

All of that discussion of 'consensus' is great, except that, once governmental and quasi-governmental agencies are involved, some of the studies that appear are not studies, they are summaries of existing studies, so counting them as part of the consensus is an incestuous move, and completely distorts the whole exercise.

So much of the literature on climate change is simply summarizing and reviewing other people's studies and reports that it's not simple to actually find the scientific research.

RE: Consensus Science

People are people, regardless of occupation. Many people today who castigate a CEO for maximising profit for their company will assume that if the government takes that profit and allows politicians to spend it, it will be spent more wisely and fairly than the CEO would. Many people assume those in government service are somehow less flawed than those in corporate industry, even though the leaders of both went to the same schools, joined the same fraternities, have the same networks and carry the same human flaws.

Scientists are human too. Thus scientists are JUST as likely to falsify data or mislead the public about experiments that didn't reach the "correct" result as any government bureaucrat is to hide policy failures to stay in office and any CEO is to misuse company funds for personal profit. Scientists also fall for the herd effect just as do politicians and CEO's too. The real answer is to follow the money. Who pays the bills?

Scientists will skew results to keep the money flowing just like politicians will skew results to buy votes and CEO's will skew results to earn bonuses, all to maintain or increase their access to money, power and/or sex...the three main drivers of human effort. Occasionally a scientist will stick their neck out for the truth as will the occasional politician or CEO, but they are very rare, and will almost always be persecuted rather than encouraged.

My point is I don't give a d**n about consensus. If a given theory does not yet allow an engineer to build something that works, that theory is too immmature to allow politicians to publicly fund "fixes". If an engineer can build something that works based on the theory, then there might possibly be some value to that theory. Otherwise spending billions to do anything is stupid except for possibly funding more research. In fact the more members of a given culture group that "agree" among themselves about any theory, the more likely I am to assume they are lying for profit. And if any politicians are within a hundred miles of the "consensus", then I KNOW they are lying for profit.

RE: Consensus Science

Firstly, it looks like some of my comments were truncated/messed up when copying it over, my apologies.

Zdas,

Yes I did read your post zdas and, as I admitted before, I found the purpose behind it a little obscure. I offered 4 possible interpretations and gave responses to all of them. However, judging by your response, I’m not sure if you read mine. Admittedly it was long winded and with some copy/paste errors.

Regarding my challenge against the anecdotes you provided, I’m not questioning that the historical accuracy of your statements or that those consensuses supported a theory that turned out to be false, I’m questioning the relevancy they have to this discussion.

I pointed to the idea that when considering historically events, you must judge the actions based on the knowledge at the time, which you choose to bluntly (and blindly) reject, so allow me to reiterate. You cannot bring back modern scientific understanding to judge 16th century scientific consensuses/actions. You also cannot bring forward 16th century scientific understanding to judge modern scientific consensuses/actions. The fact that geocentrism (or any of the other anecdotes) was the consensus at the time, which turned out to be false, says very little (to nothing) about whether the consensus surrounding the CAGW theory is wrong. The understanding of basic physics/science, experimental equipment, background research in the area and socio-political climate between then and now is far too different to draw a meaningful comparison. There is also nothing in the comparison that would differentiate the consensus in the CAGW theory with any other scientific consensus. By this logic, geocentrism was wrong therefore receiving vaccinations is likely wrong or String theory is likely wrong. So not only is your point lacking comparative relevancy, it is also ambiguous. This, in of itself, would not have bothered me if you left out the connections to the holocaust.

The rest of your post I addressed in my first post and, in fact, you’ll find it in agreement with some of what you said.

TGS4,

I appreciate the compliment. Although we don’t agree on some of the points, I find that most of your posts open the floor for a rational conversation as well (I gave you a star for your last post in the last GW thread because the language and tone was really amicable and it invited conversation). I’ll touch on your points later but I just wanted to tip my hat back to you. (also, thanks 2dye4, I hope they do give it some thought as well..looks like TGS4 has)

RE: Consensus Science

(OP)
rconnor,
You have a whole lot more faith in the micro-evolution of our species than I do. I like to read historical fiction and I don't see much difference in human motivation, venality, and nobility as described by Homer, Dickens, or Grisham. Folks just pretty much keep being folks. I would be amazed if cavemen were not as henpecked as I am. Different ages tend to satisfy Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs to different extents, but in the time of Kepler there was a leisure class and I would be shocked if they didn't have much the same discussions as are happening in East Anglica, Berkeley, and the University of Queensland today. Something like "I'm not sure I understand Joe's point, but he backed my theory so I have to line up behind him". "Yeah we'll shun the jerk that is disrespecting him, maybe we can get the [Bishop/Dean] to [subject him to the Inquisition/deny him tenure]" Big minds can and do (and have always done) some amazingly small things.

Trusting consensus in any age is: (a) the end of innovation in that field; and (b) comfortable. People keep telling me that "the science is settled" on AGW, "all competent investigators agree". If those statements satisfy your curiosity, them have a happy life. They don't satisfy me. I read hundreds of Peer Reviewed papers on the subject in preparing one of the Oil & Gas Industry's responses to EPA GHG regulations for the API (check the docket on public comments to the 2011 modification to the Glean Air Act, Subpart OOOO). Every one of them relied upon computer modeling to project some parameter forward decades, and expressly ignored inconvenient data (as in "the ice core data from xxxx and yyyy do not correlate with the rest of the data so the data from these cores is assumed to be of questionable quality"). That is the quality of work that passes peer review in this field. I gotta say that the science is anything but settled.

David Simpson, PE
MuleShoe Engineering

"Belief" is the acceptance of an hypotheses in the absence of data.
"Prejudice" is having an opinion not supported by the preponderance of the data.
"Knowledge" is only found through the accumulation and analysis of data.
The plural of anecdote is not "data"

RE: Consensus Science

OK.

Now, read in detail! - all of the this thread at WattsUpWithThat.

It discusses in detail the method and "professionalism" and "scientific analysis" that purports to be behind today's CAGW theists:

http://wattsupwiththat.com/2013/05/25/historical-s...

As a WordPress.com site, you will need to establish a login ID before writing comments. Otherwise, please feel free to jump in that analysis.

Now, when reading how these "adjustments" of 01.2 to 0.3 degree on every Surface Seawater Temperature (SST) data point before 1941 was adjusted by the "experts" read in detail what assumptions they make in their programs: air temperature, ship speed, depth of the water sample, deck height, bucket, canvas bag, sea water engine intake, evaporation rates of the sample, calibration (or lack thereof) for the thermometers used, stability of the thermometer and how it was stored, how long it was left in the water, where the bucket was stored and how long it was stored before taking the measurement, accuracy of location of the sample, size of the bucket.....

Now, since the entire earth has warmed only 0.1 degree from its baseline in 1975 to April's satellite global measurements, just how valid is a "scientific theory" that requires its baseline measurements be "adjusted" - BASED ONLY ON ASSUMED SEA WATER METHODS - to change tens of thousands of ship measurements over a 150 year period - when that one "adjustment" is three times the size of the signal being analyzed?

RE: Consensus Science

racookpe

The only thing i got from the wattsup link you posted is that the researchers made good efforts to correct for known errors.

Also i noticed the 'new' format the author used with only the talking points bolded for the busy climate change denier.

So is the author unhappy that corrections were made at all??
I found no serious analysis proving the corrections resulted in less accurate estimates, only speculation.

You know comparisons to a monthly data point are not really relevant.

RE: Consensus Science

2dye4 - I've just about had it with your blinders and "denier" talk. Please, do tell us what "climate change" the you think some of us are "denying". I would throw it back in your face and say that you are the natural-cause climate change denier. You seem to deny that any climate change is natural and that all we have been seeing is man-made. Who's the denier now?

Quote:

...researchers made good effort to correct for known efforts
Apparently you didn't actually read the article. The early measurements were, in no way, scientific. Trying to make adjustments to crappy data still results in crappy data.

Try pulling your head out of your a$$ for all of five seconds and maybe you might learn something. Then, you are welcome to shove it back up there and join this "data".

RE: Consensus Science

tgs4

Sorry that you don't approve. But I think its time for some to fight back against the 'citizen scientist' effort to cast doubt on climate change theory with mush headed emotional arguments.

And wattsup website is a fine example of this nonsense. Nothing but isolated sniping at scientific work they cannot or choose not to understand and generation of talking points and suspicion to keep the appearance that the debate is still raging.

So let the games begin.

RE: Consensus Science

What - you think that only the approved priesthood is permitted to "do science"? I see that you still have your head stuffed so far, it's cutting off the oxygen to your brain.

Besides, the burden of proof is still on the CAGW folks to demonstrate that what is going on is not "natural". Perhaps you've heard of a little thing called the null hypothesis? No doubt needs to be cast on something that has not yet proceeded beyond hypothesis.

All that post showed was that the sea surface temperatures and sea-depth temperatures from the pre-ARGO times are crap. There was no scientific method used. So, any "adjustments" to the record is just polishing a turd.

Perhaps if the CAGW hypothesis were so solid, based on solid data, solid evidence, solid science, then all of these questions would be answered.

I, for one, am very happy to see the citizen science movement, with the help of blogs scattered across the world, come to pass. It helps to shine light on the dirty little secrets hiding in the shadows. Sunlight is definitely the best cleaner.

RE: Consensus Science

3

Quote (From one of the SST papers ...)

Global Ocean Surface Temperature Atlas (Gosta) M. Bottomley, C. K. Folland, J. Hsiung, R. E. Newell and D. E. Parker, Meteorological Office (Bracknell) and Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 1990. No. of Pages: iv + 20; No. of plates: 313
http://badc.nerc.ac.uk/data/gosta/intro.html#RTFTo...

A. Provisional corrections

The models assume that the freely evaporating water in an uninsulated canvas bucket with an open-top water surface is kept agitated and so has uniform temperature. Account is taken of the heat fluxes arising from the following causes during the process of measurement, given climatological winds and temperatures (derived from MOMMDB for 1951-80) and humidities and cloudiness (derived from CDS for 1949-79):

1. The difference between the external air temperature and the temperature of the water in the bucket;

2. The difference between the atmospheric vapour pressure and the saturation vapour pressure of the freely evaporating surface, assumed to be at the temperature of the water in the bucket;

3. The strength of the wind around the bucket, based on climatological data but with allowances for sheltering by the ship’s structure and for an assumed mean ship’s speed of 4 m s-1, assuming random ships’ headings relative to the wind;

4. The influence of the mass of the thermometer, having a fixed assumed thermal capacity and considered to be initially at the air temperature, when plunged into the bucket;

5. The short-and long-wave radiation incident on the bucket.

The combination of (1), (2) and (3) and to some extent (4) renders uninsulated bucket SST values too cold in mid-latitude winter; whereas (5) and to a small extent (4) can make uninsulated bucket SST values less cold, or even a little too warm, in mid-latitude summer. The net result is spurious annual cycles of pre-war SST anomalies relative to a post-war SST climatology which contains a much smaller proportion of uninsulated bucket data. Corrections based on a variety of models (assuming, for example, different sizes of bucket or different degrees of reduction of the wind speed by the ship’s structure) were found to be very similar, so long as the period allowed for heat transfer was varied until the corrections, when applied to observed SST, minimized the spurious annual cycles. The corrections applied, for a given calendar month and location, were the average of the corrections derived from several models. In view of the possibility (Brooks 1926, quoting Krummel 1907) that buckets were more often exposed to direct solar radiation in the 19th century, a set of models assuming the incidence on the bucket of full climatological direct monthly mean solar radiation was used for the period 1856-1900, whereas for 1901-41 25% of climatological direct solar radiation was assumed, yielding corrections which were more positive by 0.02 deg. C to 0.04 deg. C than the corrections for the same calendar month and location for the earlier period. The corrections are described as Scheme B in Table 2. Further details of the technique are given in Folland and Parker (1990), who, however, used corrections as in Scheme C in Table 2, i.e. intermediate between the “provisional” and “refined” corrections used in this Atlas.

So in Step 3 they estimated “the strength of the wind around the bucket” prior to 1942, based on climatological data” “derived from MOMMDB for 1951-80″, made “allowances for sheltering by the ship’s structure”, “assumed mean ship’s speed of 4 m s-1″ and assumed “random ships’ headings relative to the wind”. Step 3 of the “Provisional Corrections” alone seems to offer enough estimates, allowances and assumptions to allow for any conclusion desired…

All to move the data by 0.3 degrees C (in the "right" direction to show the warming they want to see after 1950), to look for a change over 150 years that totaled 0.5 degrees?

RE: Consensus Science

racookepe1978, and don't forget that these adjustments are made on uncontrolled data.

You are right, though, all to show what they think that the data should say, in order to fit the data to the hypothesis.

I guess the citizen scientists have to take the role of little children in The Emperor's New Clothes tale. None if the anointed will point it out, so it takes a little child to point out that the Emperor is naked. Guess what, the CAGW hypothesis is naked, too!

RE: Consensus Science

racookpe

It is not really clear what you are trying to say.

1 The data could never be of any use to anybody for anything because it was gathered under ___ circumstances ??
2 The corrections made by researchers actually increased the error of the SST temp estimates.
3 The corrections indicated were 'designed' to increase error??
4 Would the raw uncorrected data be better??

Or is there something I missed?

Next

Does the inclusion of this historical measured water temp data invalidate all climate change theory??

RE: Consensus Science

The corrections are dubious, and not based on any sound engineering or scientific basis. They are assumptions piled on assumptions, mostly unrelated to the actual data or how it was gathered.

In these cases, the raw data is preferred to the adulterated data. At best, such a proposed adjustment can be used to expand the error-bars of the original data.

Quote:

Does the inclusion of this historical measured water temp data invalidate all climate change theory??
Well, if the water temperatures 50-100 years ago were comparable to today, then there is no warming, ergo no man-made warming, therefore no CAGW.

Kinda like how the air temperatures in the 1930's were warmer than today.

Kinda like how there hasn't been any statistical warming in the last 15-17 years (depending on the choice of data set).

RE: Consensus Science

""The corrections are dubious, and not based on any sound engineering or scientific basis. They are assumptions piled on assumptions, mostly unrelated to the actual data or how it was gathered.""

Opinion only, prove it.

How has the expected SST estimate error been made worse using the 'corrections'.

Assuming historical accounts of the collection methods are valid can you show the estimation errors to be so large as to make the data useless.

Can you prove estimation errors were biased so that they average to a nonzero and significant estimate error.

No one has tackled these questions especially no one at wattsupwiththat. Where is the real counter analysis of the methods.

RE: Consensus Science

You really are dense. You are so blinded by you devotion to your beliefs with a religious zeal, that you can't even comprehend what's being handed to you. When there is prima facia evidence of assumptions piled on assumptions (as racookepe1978 handed to you), you ask for "proof"? If I had any engineering report presented to me with that, I would laugh and garbage it. But, I guess when such a paper now forms a part of your religious texts, you fall prostrate before it.

I understand now, that you understand nothing of any of the science, and probably wouldn't, even if it smacked you upside the head.

I suppose that you think that extreme weather is caused by CO2 and man-made global warming, too?

Your emperor has no clothes. All I can do is point that out to you. You can accept that or deny it, but your concept of "proof" is a little mind-boggling.

RE: Consensus Science

Tgs

Sorry but your unsupported opinions are not enough for me to change my mind.
I asked several necessary questions and you only insult.
The questions were basic and should not boggle an engineers mind.

I will bet a craft beer that you haven't looked at the papers where the assumptions were outlined to
see if there is credible support for them built up by real science.

You would much prefer the simpler route of indignation and 'belief' that there was bad science than to
take the time to look it up for yourself and post a single counter analysis explaining why a particular technique
( only one will do ) resulted in the estimation error growing instead of shrinking.

Nothing in racooks post was anything other than an opinion without support.

I really don't expect you to do this as it would be quite a bit of work, but you could withhold judgement
until someone does this analysis and makes a good case for it, and that is exactly my point.
If there was a 'there' there somebody would have done it. No credible research contradicting much of anything
WRT Climate Science.
Now why would that be ??

RE: Consensus Science

(OP)
2dye4,
I've done that work and find the quote that RAcookpe1978 included above to be one of the more "scientific" references that I recall, some are much shakier. When you parse all the words in that quote you see that:
  1. The basic data came from a mercury thermometer read in bright sunlight on a moving surface. I've tried to do that and got an error bar wider than 0.5 C
  2. Most of the data points did not include wind velocity or ship's movement so the effect of wind on the evaporation component must be assumed to be a constant 4 m/s (about 8 mph). I've been to sea and found both the wind and the vessel speed relative to the wind to be anything but constant. This velocity makes a huge difference to the "natural evaporation" calculation. Far more than 0.5 C
  3. There are no records of how long the bucket was outside of the ocean before the thermometer was read. This is a case where the act of observing has a profound impact on the observed conditions
  4. The actual location fix was questionable so "little" things like the boundary between the Japanese Current or the Gulf Stream and the rest of the ocean (for example) or the impact of tidal flats and deltas gets kind of blurry.
I look at that data and ask "is this a dataset that can stand up to 20-30 million iteratations per time step?" The answer is a categorical "NO". Is it a set of data that is of adequate quality to allow "adjustments" to be made to make it "accurate". Oh my god, NO. This dataset is of a slightly lower value than a well-tuned random number generator. That is what we have "settled" the science on, and that is what we are writing laws on. Simple fields of dreck.

David Simpson, PE
MuleShoe Engineering

"Belief" is the acceptance of an hypotheses in the absence of data.
"Prejudice" is having an opinion not supported by the preponderance of the data.
"Knowledge" is only found through the accumulation and analysis of data.
The plural of anecdote is not "data"

RE: Consensus Science

you guys are having too much fun, slagging off at one another !

FWIW, i think the science has become too politicalised (if that's a word). there is an answer required of the data and i believe that answer is rendered. i don't believe that the data is intentionally manulipated, i do suspect that "fudge factors" are played with untill the required answer is produced by the model.

Quando Omni Flunkus Moritati

RE: Consensus Science

Quote:

Nothing in racooks post was anything other than an opinion without support.
Facepalm. It (his post @ 26 May 13 20:59) was a quote from the paper that MADE the adjustments. It is a statement of exactly WHAT they did. It was not an opinion on what the adjustments were based on, but the ACTUAL PAPER! What part of that do you not understand. Yes, I insulted you, because you were handed, on a silver platter, the "science", and somehow looked at it as an opinion.

I too, like David, have read the actual papers (where they are not paywalled) that this whole charade is based on. Based on my education and experience, I rendered a professional opinion on these - that many of them are not worth the paper that they are printed on. Based on the quotation that racookepe1978 posted above @ 26 May 13 20:59, do you think that these are appropriate assumptions, sufficient to modify a complete set of millions of data points, the exact locations of which, and experimental methodologies of which, are unknown? One question for you only.

RE: Consensus Science

Why are there so many skeptics out there? Simple.

One simple action that would result in the reduction of a lot of misdirected investment (that stimulates a lot of unnecessary greenhouse emissions) which represented by fiat money inflation and interest rates not set by the time preference of someone saving (conserving) resources in order to make available the necessary capital for those investments is never considered by anyone in power. Monetary inflation results in the confiscation of resources and reallocation to those who are profligate and wasteful with those resources. I will know someone is serious about the problem and the solution once he seriously discusses fraudulent structure of the world economy and rectifying that as a possible solution. Consider that these same fraudsters are set to gain the most by the proposed "solutions", I have reason enough to believe that their is something amiss.

My suspicion is further raised when the debate takes on a religious fervor, with the "scientists" taking the place of the "priests" from medieval times in debates. I get the feeling in the end the guy with the gun will be used to gain my agreement and that somehow the powers that be do not really wish to convince me with the science. Consider that in Australia Carbon taxes was introduced together with a multitude of benefits bribes to the masses.

RE: Consensus Science

That first sentence in the second paragraph is a doozy. But by the time I got to the end of your post, I understood.

RE: Consensus Science



" The basic data came from a mercury thermometer read in bright sunlight on a moving surface. I've tried to do that and got an error bar wider than 0.5 C
"
What was the mean value of the error?? that is all that matters..

" Most of the data points did not include wind velocity or ship's movement so the effect of wind on the evaporation component must be assumed to be a constant 4 m/s (about 8 mph). I've been to sea and found both the wind and the vessel speed relative to the wind to be anything but constant. This velocity makes a huge difference to the "natural evaporation" calculation. Far more than 0.5 C
"

This would depend on the amount of time exposed, it would take time for the water temp to change. In some instances the water warmed and in some it cooled, depending on where it was taken and the time of year. They did include air temp corrections in the SST estimates, again is the error average decidedly positive or negative.

" There are no records of how long the bucket was outside of the ocean before the thermometer was read. This is a case where the act of observing has a profound impact on the observed conditions
"

Yes this one is a serious problem, but then again sometimes the water warmed and sometimes it cooled, the average of the error is the important factor.

" The actual location fix was questionable so "little" things like the boundary between the Japanese Current or the Gulf Stream and the rest of the ocean (for example) or the impact of tidal flats and deltas gets kind of blurry
"

This one is hard to correct admittedly, however it is only in certain geographical locations where the SST gradient is high and again was the net average error positive or negative.

This is a good post zdas, actual consideration of errors.

Watssupwith article has mostly only 'suggestive phrases' and misleading quotes without context.

Here is one of the quotes with the following sentences restored for clarity.
{How do we know that these corrections are trustworthy? The agreement of SST anomalies with largely independently corrected NMAT anomalies (Section 7 and Figure 7) is the strongest support to the results, and suggests that the impacts of future refinements and reduction of uncertainties in this area will be small. On a global decadal average, error bars of the systematic corrections do not appear to exceed 0.1 °C (Figure 7), and are much smaller than the 0.5 °C climate signal.}

My point is that the presentation at wattsupwithat is selective and incomplete and designed to incite opinion one way.




RE: Consensus Science

All I see out of this "My dad can beat up your dad" squabling is the goverment wants more of my money to give the so called climate science.

Have you noticed that goverments rarely develop solutions that don't involve money changing hands. That simple solutions seem to elude goverment tirates.

RE: Consensus Science

This topic has resulted in yet ANOTHER 100+ post thread and which appears to have changed no one's mind or even lessened the rhetoric on either side. I suspect that there's a message here which may have to be left to more unbiased minds to unravel. Twenty years from now graduate students will be writing their doctoral thesis not on the effects of 'Global Warming' or even 'Climate Change' but rather on the vitriol of the public utterances made by the protagonists in this Kabuki Play that had been going on these past several years.

John R. Baker, P.E.
Product 'Evangelist'
Product Engineering Software
Siemens PLM Software Inc.
Industry Sector
Cypress, CA
Siemens PLM:
UG/NX Museum:

To an Engineer, the glass is twice as big as it needs to be.

RE: Consensus Science

I'm surprised nobody has commented on this one:

"The models assume that the freely evaporating water in an uninsulated canvas bucket with an open-top water surface is kept agitated and so has uniform temperature."

It's in the preamble to the corrections from the paper quoted above, rather than listed as a correction factor - but assuming the bucket was "kept agitated" every time is just flat wrong, something self-evident to anyone who has spent time in a paint shop where they apply zinc based primer.

The metallic zinc in the primer is much denser than the binder and solvent, and it tends to settle out rather rapidly - so much so, that most of the manufacturers ship the zinc separately as powder to be mixed in. Otherwise, it settles hard in the bottom and is difficult to redisperse.

Virtually all the specifications and manufacturer instructions require continuous agitation of the zinc primer during application. There are specialized paint pots to do so, and you also generally also have a higher powered mixer for the initial combining of the zinc powder with the paint liquids. For the specialized pot, all the painters have to do is put the lid on the bucket and turn a small air valve. Easy.

Despite having two different methods for agitating, specification requirements to do so, internal fab QC plans requiring verification of it, manufacturer data sheets requiring it and previous discussions about needing to fulfil the requirements: When I check out the paint side at a steel fab - more often than not, the primer is not getting continuous agitation. The same thing happens with field painting all the darn time as well.

I just cannot fathom a random sailor on a ship already juggling a canvas bucket, thermometer, log book and writing utensil in a moving deck finding something to efficiently agitate the bucket of water using his 4th hand and routinely doing so every time. He doesn't even have a QC watching him daily, plus a customer's inspector checking him periodically.

RE: Consensus Science

John

I agree, the fascinating thing is how people form their opinions.

Obviously an individual cannot see climate change at this point because the effect is masked by weather and it is only observable when large averages are constructed to average out weather. So the issue is one of the first to put society in a rather helpless position of trusting a scientific body. Clearly at this point it isn't going well.
A significant portion of the population believes in UN conspiracies, colluding dishonest scientists..etc.
Then again what to expect from a public where a large portion of the population believes the Earth is less than 10k years old.


Fascinating to me are engineers opinion on the issue. Many of them want to believe climate science is a hoax and look just far enough into it for 'evidence' that can fulfill their wish. Usually engineers are very logical and thorough professionals but the positions taken WRT climate science that i have seen are truly amazing. All that logical procession from cause to effect is just thrown out the window and they are willing to form their opinions based on wattsupwithat provided talking points. Just look at TGS4 berate me for not accepting the copied material from wattsup.
"It is a statement of exactly WHAT they did"
Yes but what about the judgement of 'WHAT they did' ????
It seems to TGS4 that the clipped text is wholly proof of something without any support.
I truly hope we can emit millions of years of stored carbon into the atmosphere without any serious consequences but that question is not settled completely, although one would think that merely high probabilities of serious consequences would suffice for action to curb consumption of a limited resource. It seems win-win unless you are in the carbon fuel supply business.

RE: Consensus Science

Quote:

A significant portion of the population believes in UN conspiracies, colluding dishonest scientists..etc.
Do you happen to have a citation for that opinion?

Quote:

Then again what to expect from a public where a large portion of the population believes the Earth is less than 10k years old.
Citation? Quantification?

Quote:

Just look at TGS4 berate me for not accepting the copied material from wattsup.
"It is a statement of exactly WHAT they did"
Yes but what about the judgement of 'WHAT they did' ????
It seems to TGS4 that the clipped text is wholly proof of something without any support.
2dye4 - you still don't get it, do you. That quotation from racookepe1978 is not from the wattsupwiththat.com article, it is a quotation from the ACTUAL PAPER that did the "corrections", and it was a statement of what they ACTUALLY did. Why is this so difficult for you to understand? I offered no opinion on the quotation, all I asked was questions of you to see if you would critically evaluate what was done. Apparently you were unable to do so on your own.

RE: Consensus Science

JohnRBaker - I submit that the reason for the vitriol is the use, by one side of the argument, to use logical fallacies to shut down debate. "The Science Is Settled" kind of stuff.

Science is NEVER settled. There are more questions than answers. And some find even the answers given to be lacking. I'm all for having a robust discussion of the science. That can likely be done. I have already stated that I am open to the possibility of the CAGW hypothesis being right, provided the evidence/observations answer more questions than they raise. Are you willing to state the opposite - that you are open to the possibility that the CAGW hypothesis is wrong?

RE: Consensus Science

As I said, I suspect that this will be a hot topic for future doctorial research, the only question being, will this be coming from the school of Political Science or Phycology?

John R. Baker, P.E.
Product 'Evangelist'
Product Engineering Software
Siemens PLM Software Inc.
Industry Sector
Cypress, CA
Siemens PLM:
UG/NX Museum:

To an Engineer, the glass is twice as big as it needs to be.

RE: Consensus Science

smile Likely both. Too bad there aren't any doctoral student in Philosophy of Science.

I sure hope it is not Social Psychology...

RE: Consensus Science

"" I offered no opinion on the quotation, all I asked was questions of you to see if you would critically evaluate what was done. Apparently you were unable to do so on your own""

You did put up several opinions
"" The early measurements were, in no way, scientific. Trying to make adjustments to crappy data still results in crappy data.""

""The corrections are dubious, and not based on any sound engineering or scientific basis""

You did NOT ask me to critically evaluate anything, if so point it out.

""it was a statement of what they ACTUALLY did""

It is a statement of 'some' of what they ACTUALLY did, and yes i know the source is the paper but the selection is from wattsup.


As far as evaluating what they did I really don't have the expertise to do so, after all I am only an engineer.
I will leave that to climate scientists.

You have issues opinions without anything to back them up, see my previous post.

"logical fallacies" ??
such as requiring evidence to back up opinions??



RE: Consensus Science

Science is never settled.

Believing "the science is settled" is ipso facto proof that you do not understand Science.

Progress in science is rarely a matter of agreeing with the consensus.

Who are the big scientific names in history? Why are they big? Because they upset conventional understanding.

Copernicus - who went against the geocentric theory of the universe and put together the heliocentric theory of the solar system. Totally bucked convention. His degree was "doctor of canon law."

Newton - whose "laws" (theories) of motion revolutionized industrial production and are the basis (along with calculus) for a hell of a lot of engineering? Upset a lot of conventional wisdom.

Einstein - who set Newton's theories on their ear with special relativity. Failed his college entrance exams the first time around and had to take remedial courses. Worked first as a patent examiner after college. Did actually have a PhD in his subject of study.

Faraday - who apprenticed as a bookbinder at age 14, upset scientific convention hugely with his theories on electricity and magnetism, electromagnetic rotation (basis for the electric motor) and basically organizing centuries (milennia?) of groping. "Laws" of electrolysis. Huge variety of chemical discoveries. Created the first material to be repelled by a magnet (impossible!) Basis for another huge chunk of engineering. Bookbinder's apprentice who read a lot.

Darwin - whose theory of evolution so upset the consensus, that we STILL have plenty of people fighting over the whole concept. Had issues in medical school, so took up taxidermy instead.

RE: Consensus Science

Quote:

As far as evaluating what they did I really don't have the expertise to do so, after all I am only an engineer.
I will leave that to climate scientists.
You are welcome to abdicate your responsibility to the Climate Scientists™. However, we have, in this eng-tips community, a wealth of people with a wide range of education and experiences. I prefer to hear from them, too, before rendering my verdict. Based on what I read from the Climategate files (not what others have read and provided opinions, but what I read myself), my trust level for the Climate Scientists is pretty low...

Climate Science is one of those fields of study that is so wide and diverse, that it is sometimes difficult to put a demarcation around it. It involves: physics, radiation physics, high-energy physics, high-temperature physics, chemistry, organic chemistry, meteorology, geology, remote sensing, statistics, heat transfer, thermodynamics, biology, biochemistry, vulcanology, glaciology, solar physics, numerical methods, metrology, to name just a few. Take the last one, as an example: metrology, the science of measurement - if you're going to defer to experts, is it going to be a Climate Scientist, or perhaps an expert in metrology? Take as another example: statistics - if you're going to defer to experts, is it going to be a Climate Scientist or an expert Statistician?

RE: Consensus Science

Tom, those are good examples of scientific pioneers whose efforts and insight changed our understanding and perception of the universe we live in. But as brilliant as they all were, in some ways the theories that they proposed were not all completely correct, even though they are largely accepted as foundations of scientific knowledge today. Take for example Newton's and Einstein's theories of gravity. They each have impressive predictive capabilities, and there is a tremendous amount of historical evidence to support them both. Based on Newton's law of gravity, perturbations that were detected in the orbit of the planet Uranus lead Urbain Joseph Le Verrier (and independently John Couch Adams) to predict the existence of the planet Neptune. Based on his analysis, Le Verrier was able to approximate the location of this new planet. And in 1846 at the Berlin Observatory Johann Galle observed Neptune orbiting in close proximity to the predicted location. So Newton's theory of gravity correctly led to the prediction of the existence of a planet that had not yet been discovered. Pretty impressive. When Newton's law was found to be inadequate to explain the observed precession of mercury's perihelion advance, Einstein's theory of gravity came to the rescue. Both theories can explain a tremendous amount of observed phenomena. And they are largely accepted by physicists the world over as proven scientific theories. Scientists are mainly satisfied that they are right. But like all theories, they have limitations (as Einstein demonstrated regarding Newton's law of gravity for example).

When it was discovered that the stars in spiral galaxies do not rotate about the galactic centers in the way that Newton and Einstein predicted (i.e. flat rotation curves), the concept of dark matter was born. It was proposed to account for the discrepancies that were observed. Decades after it was first proposed, there has still not been any independent scientific evidence to support the existence of dark matter. None at all. Yet there appears to be a preponderance of physicists who steadfastly adhere to this concept because they are unwilling to modify or abandon the existing theories of gravity that have served them well. While some scientists have proposed alternative theories to account for the behavior that has been observed on these grand scales, these efforts have been largely ignored by the majority of their peers. The consensus claims that Newton and Einstein are exactly right, and that the proposed alternative theories are wrong, period. And there is no political agenda behind the scenes that I am aware of here. Just a fundamental disagreement on the interpretation of what is being observed. It seems blatantly obvious to me that our laws of gravity need to be modified in order to properly account for these new observations. But I appear to be in the minority, and may remain there for a long time given the scientific climate today.

One problem of recent origin that reminds me of the AGW discussion is the Pioneer anomaly. It involves the two Pioneer spacecraft that were launched in the early 1970s. After several decades in deep space, a curious observation was made by the scientists who were monitoring the movement of these spacecraft. They were not where they were supposed to be. They were closer to the sun than what was predicted by Newton's and Einstein's theories of gravity. Many theoretical explanations were proposed to account for the discrepancy, but the one that has taken hold is the theory of asymmetrical heat dissipation by the spacecraft's thermonuclear generators. And this conclusion was based on a series of computer simulations where scientists used many unproven approximations and "fudge factors" to make the models agree as closely as possible to the already known data sets. And where this data disagreed with their models, they suggested that the data itself was wrong. How's that for scientific reasoning? The bad science associated with AGW is not limited to that topic alone. I see it in various forms in lots of different places. And it brings me to a larger question regarding the quality of the training that scientists today receive. I also question their motivations and the biases that they may have as a result of their funding.

Truly valid theories stand the test of time. And the ones that don't fall by the wayside. AGW will be no different.

Maui

www.EngineeringMetallurgy.com

RE: Consensus Science

What if we quit questioning the data, and ask how can we trust the model predictions if the results can't be verified? How do we know any of the proposels being offered at the point of a tax collecter, will have any effect?

The question that should be asked is what will it cost, and what effect it will have? If the answer to either of these is we are unsure of the ballpark (I don't believe we can be exact), then the answer to any responce should be "do nothing". If you can't calculate it, you can't engineer it.

But what we hear from the news sources is "the sky is falling". That just dosen't work for many of us.

RE: Consensus Science

(OP)
JohnRBaker,
We have disagreed on just about every aspect of this discussion, but finally find an area that we can totally agree on.

Quote (JohnRBaker)

Twenty years from now graduate students will be writing their doctoral thesis not on the effects of 'Global Warming' or even 'Climate Change' but rather on the vitriol of the public utterances made by the protagonists in this Kabuki Play that had been going on these past several years.

May not take 20 years, but the best theses will be in that time period.

David Simpson, PE
MuleShoe Engineering

"Belief" is the acceptance of an hypotheses in the absence of data.
"Prejudice" is having an opinion not supported by the preponderance of the data.
"Knowledge" is only found through the accumulation and analysis of data.
The plural of anecdote is not "data"

RE: Consensus Science

Lots of Einstein factoids being bandied about, some more true than others. One thing is true: Einstein arrived at his conclusions about relativity because he trusted the data and dismissed the people who dismissed the data.

RE: Consensus Science

Since he was a patent clerk Einstein had the opportunity to ponder and perfect his special theory of relativity without any of the pressure associated with maintaining an academic position (i.e. the publish or perish syndrome). That type of freedom in academic pursuits is a rarity today.

www.EngineeringMetallurgy.com

RE: Consensus Science

I put the same faith in computer models of the global climate as I do in the computer models that allowed people to put a factor on the risk of a bunch of worthless mortgages all bundled together, and call it a good investment.

That said, I still believe that man's activity has SOME effect on the earth, it's inconceivable that it has no effect whatsoever.

RE: Consensus Science

(OP)
That effect can be significant in micro-climates like the LA Basin, the East River, London, or Shanghai. It is the theory that man's activities are driving a change in world climate direction that I can't see support for.

David Simpson, PE
MuleShoe Engineering

"Belief" is the acceptance of an hypotheses in the absence of data.
"Prejudice" is having an opinion not supported by the preponderance of the data.
"Knowledge" is only found through the accumulation and analysis of data.
The plural of anecdote is not "data"

RE: Consensus Science

Put your money where your mouth is. What are you willing to pay to make the perceved problem go away?

I say perceved, because we seem to see the problem differently. But what's it worth? That is what the goverment is dictating to us, what we need to pay to fix it.

We each should quntify the problem, and estimate the value to fix it, then decide if it is worth that much to fix.

Why argue over the measurments, if the value is small or large. However, because there is an arguement over the measurments, the value must be neather small or large, so the point must be to quntify the value.

Conclusion: Climite change is not huge as argued, and is not zero as argued. So stop discussing those two extreams, because they are not relistic.

RE: Consensus Science

(OP)
I nearly stopped reading at

Quote:

97% global warming consensus meets resistance from scientific denialism
The robust climate consensus faces resistance from conspiracy theories, cherry picking, and misrepresentations

But I did read on. What a load of garbage. It is going to take days for my blood pressure to go down. And no, I am not going to refute the article point by point, so please don't ask. Calling AGW a "fact" over and over is just an example of the article trying to shout down the opposition. No one that is skeptical (and as defined by the article as engaging in "false science") will be convinced by this diatribe. Everyone who belongs to this religion will nod and smile. The audience is the congregation not the unbelievers.

David Simpson, PE
MuleShoe Engineering

"Belief" is the acceptance of an hypotheses in the absence of data.
"Prejudice" is having an opinion not supported by the preponderance of the data.
"Knowledge" is only found through the accumulation and analysis of data.
The plural of anecdote is not "data"

RE: Consensus Science

"the researchers made good efforts to correct for known errors"

garbage in, garbage out. you just cant make good data out of bad, no matter how "well" you adjust it. Without adequate data, no computer model will be worth a load of crap.

RE: Consensus Science

2dye4 - you do understand that the author of the grauniad article is one of the co-authors of the original Cook et al (2013) study? Not very independent, right?

How about this article - Here? How many data points does it take to invalidate this study?

RE: Consensus Science

2
A Vast Machine
Computer Models, Climate Data, and the Politics of Global Warming
Paul N. Edwards

http://books.google.ca/books?id=K9_LsJBCqWMC&p...

From the Introduction
"Unless you have been in a coma since 1988, you have certainly heard or
read a story that goes something like this: Global warming is a myth. It ’ s
all model predictions, nothing but simulations. Before you believe it, wait
for real data. “ The climate-studies people always tend to overestimate their
models, ” the physicist Freeman Dyson told an interviewer in April 2009.
“ They forget they are only models. ” 1 In the countless political controversies
over climate change, the debate often shakes out into a contest: models
versus data.
This supposed contest is at best an illusion, at worst a deliberate deception
— because without models, there are no data . I ’ m not talking about the
difference between “ raw ” and “ cooked ” data. I mean this literally. Today,
no collection of signals or observations — even from satellites, which can
“ see ” the whole planet — becomes global in time and space without first
passing through a series of data models."

RE: Consensus Science


[
Conclusion: The Cook et al. (2013) study is obviously littered with falsely classified papers making its conclusions baseless and its promotion by those in the media misleading.
]

9/1200 are misclassified.

I see nothing about random sampling of the papers to scrutinize.

Without knowing how the individuals were selected or even if all the selections had
their results posted and not just the ones that were found in disagreement
there is no way to draw any conclusion about the results.

So the claim that Cook et al. is 'littered' with falsely classified papers is not supported.
Statistics and sampling is basic engineering coursework.

Next !!

RE: Consensus Science

I don't know why we're even arguing about consensus, when the facts are in, and all 12 IPCC climate models were wrong about the last decade.

Hydrology, Drainage Analysis, Flood Studies, and Complex Stormwater Litigation for Atlanta and the South East - http://www.campbellcivil.com

RE: Consensus Science

(OP)
We're having this discussion because people are making laws based on the wrong models (as though there were a "right" model) and the "settled science" (what an offensive term).

David Simpson, PE
MuleShoe Engineering

"Belief" is the acceptance of an hypotheses in the absence of data.
"Prejudice" is having an opinion not supported by the preponderance of the data.
"Knowledge" is only found through the accumulation and analysis of data.
The plural of anecdote is not "data"

RE: Consensus Science

The claim was not that 9 of 1200 were misclassified, it was that (an admittedly cherry-picked) sampling of that 1200 found 9 that were misclassified. Very different case. That in and of itself may not invalidate the entire paper, but it raises sufficient questions about the quality of the work, no?

RE: Consensus Science

(OP)
At this point I'm not sure what is worse for the future of mankind--that the 97% number is wrong or that 97% of scientists agree and are not looking for alternative explanations.

David Simpson, PE
MuleShoe Engineering

"Belief" is the acceptance of an hypotheses in the absence of data.
"Prejudice" is having an opinion not supported by the preponderance of the data.
"Knowledge" is only found through the accumulation and analysis of data.
The plural of anecdote is not "data"

RE: Consensus Science

What a waste of time, both sides seem to be blovating, and no one lisening. I am offended that anyone would call this a debate. This looks more like a debate of religous zellots, where nothing will ever be accomplished.

RE: Consensus Science

(OP)
I haven't seen anyone calling any thread on any forum a "debate". Nothing to be offended about. Places like this are here to let people talk at each other to satisfy our need to express our opinions. No one ever convinces anyone that their opinion was wrong or silly or ill informed. We would have to do the internet equivalent of "listening" for that to happen. Don't hold your breath.

David Simpson, PE
MuleShoe Engineering

"Belief" is the acceptance of an hypotheses in the absence of data.
"Prejudice" is having an opinion not supported by the preponderance of the data.
"Knowledge" is only found through the accumulation and analysis of data.
The plural of anecdote is not "data"

RE: Consensus Science

cranky108 - that's probably because each side thinks that the other side holds onto their opinions like religious beliefs.

However, the battle is not for those firmly entrenched in their positions, but for those who are undecided - especially those who may not chime in and post to these threads. These silent majority are watching and listening.

On that note, having had tonnes of experience debating (where, in many cases you are required to vigorously debate both sides of an argument), I have to laugh. In many cases, I think that I could argue the "other side" better than those on the other side - when the audience is the undecided. They do an absolutely fantastic job of preaching to the choir/committed, but don't see that they're losing the rest.

[shrugs shoulders]

RE: Consensus Science

I think the burden is on the climate change skeptics.
The guardian article that i linked made zdas so mad he claimed he would need several days to recover.
I find the article accurate in that climate skeptics usually employ many illogical arguments, just view this post history.

The simple fact is that climate change skeptics frequently base their opinion on feelings and their
gut instinct which serves them well in most engineering situations..

Lets consider this quote

[3. The strength of the wind around the bucket, based on climatological data but with allowances for sheltering by the ship’s structure and for an assumed mean ship’s speed of 4 m s-1, assuming random ships’ headings relative to the wind;
]

Now i suspect that that most engineers would be highly suspicious of this statement.
After all anybody who has been on a ship at sea or large inland lake knows the wind blows wildly.

I think engineers see something like this and say "how can the results be accurate if the wind has to be blowing 4 m/sec."

But the accuracy does not depend on a constant wind speed. Simply put the average wind speed is the most important and the wind effect could be nullified entirely in the final result by an accurate average wind speed.

To sum it up, I have great respect for my fellow engineers but really if they are going to claim to be scientific evaluators of climate change theory then they have to step up a bit and understand the big picture which is complex,statistical, multivariate, and mathematically sophisticated.

At the very least some understanding of principle component analysis is required.

RE: Consensus Science

"this isn't an argument, it's a contradiction"
"no it isn't"

Quando Omni Flunkus Moritati

RE: Consensus Science

Interesting discussion, but I wonder if Mr. Cook (et al) even understands the meaning of 'consensus'. The 33% agreed that AGW is real, but 66% had not opinion. That doesn't fit my definition of consensus.

"I want to pause here and talk about this notion of consensus, and the rise of what has been called consensus science. I regard consensus science as an extremely pernicious development that ought to be stopped cold in its tracks. Historically, the claim of consensus has been the first refuge of scoundrels; it is a way to avoid debate by claiming that the matter is already settled. Whenever you hear the consensus of scientists agrees on something or other, reach for your wallet, because you're being had.

Let's be clear: the work of science has nothing whatever to do with consensus. Consensus is the business of politics. Science, on the contrary, requires only one investigator who happens to be right, which means that he or she has results that are verifiable by reference to the real world. In science consensus is irrelevant. What is relevant is reproducible results. The greatest scientists in history are great precisely because they broke with the consensus.

There is no such thing as consensus science. If it's consensus, it isn't science. If it's science, it isn't consensus. Period."”
― Michael Crichton

Not to be unkind to zdaso4, TGS4, et al, but Mr Crichton did have a way with words.

RE: Consensus Science

(OP)
He did indeed. I wish the sorry SOB hadn't up and died, I always looked forward to his next book and the last one he wrote was such a disappointment.

David Simpson, PE
MuleShoe Engineering

"Belief" is the acceptance of an hypotheses in the absence of data.
"Prejudice" is having an opinion not supported by the preponderance of the data.
"Knowledge" is only found through the accumulation and analysis of data.
The plural of anecdote is not "data"

RE: Consensus Science

If you're talking about Micro, he didn't really write it himself. He had some of it penned and a co-author finished it up. I didn't care for it either, but I think this had more to do with it being written piecemeal by two different people than by the basic premise (which had potential).

If you're talking about Pirate Latitudes (his last "real" work), I enjoyed it, though nowhere near as much as Jurassic Park or Andromeda Strain. Of course, State of Fear was also particularly good, and also germane to the topic at hand. I'm sure that it pissed off a lot of people.

RE: Consensus Science

(OP)
I also liked Pirate Latitudes a lot.  Micro was the mess that I didn't enjoy.  It was an interesting premise, but failed so miserably.  In the mood of "preaching to the converted", I re-read State of Fear every year or so, about as often as I re-read Atlas Shrugged, both pieces of fiction have a lot to say about the state of governance today.  One line from Atlas Shrugged that is particularly germane to this discussion is "'Government Science'? That is a contradiction in terms".

David Simpson, PE
MuleShoe Engineering

"Belief" is the acceptance of an hypotheses in the absence of data.
"Prejudice" is having an opinion not supported by the preponderance of the data.
"Knowledge" is only found through the accumulation and analysis of data.
The plural of anecdote is not "data"

RE: Consensus Science

I often get "the long stare" when people who've read Atlas Shrugged make the connection between one of the protagonists in that book and me.

Maui

www.EngineeringMetallurgy.com

RE: Consensus Science

2
Yes, Atlas Shrugged does have a lot to say about the current state of government. To quote Obama:

"Ayn Rand is one of those things that a lot of us, when we were 17 or 18 and feeling misunderstood, we'd pick up. Then, as we get older, we realize that a world in which we're only thinking about ourselves and not thinking about anybody else, in which we're considering the entire project of developing ourselves as more important than our relationships to other people and making sure that everybody else has opportunity — that that's a pretty narrow vision. It's not one that, I think, describes what's best in America. Unfortunately, it does seem as if sometimes that vision of a 'you're on your own' society has consumed a big chunk of the Republican Party”

Another quote I like from John Rogers:

“There are two novels that can change a bookish fourteen-year old's life: The Lord of the Rings and Atlas Shrugged. One is a childish fantasy that often engenders a lifelong obsession with its unbelievable heroes, leading to an emotionally stunted, socially crippled adulthood, unable to deal with the real world. The other, of course, involves orcs."

RE: Consensus Science

It is interesting that people buy into the Ayn Rand concept, but it does take all kinds to make the world go round.

If being selfish is the path to greatness, we are definitely moving there.

RE: Consensus Science

(OP)
rconnor,
That John Rogers quote is priceless. The Obama quote is not so good. If you read the book instead of the Cliffs Notes you'll see that all of the "unbelievable heroes" cared deeply about their employees and their clients. To the point of breaking laws to keep the doors open. What they simply don't care about is entitled jerks who are unwilling to act in their own best interests. A "welfare state" is unsustainable under any economic model. An economy with over half of the people living off of a government check (even those that are working and making real contributions to the economy suck capital from the private sector) must collapse of it's own bloated mass.

David Simpson, PE
MuleShoe Engineering

"Belief" is the acceptance of an hypotheses in the absence of data.
"Prejudice" is having an opinion not supported by the preponderance of the data.
"Knowledge" is only found through the accumulation and analysis of data.
The plural of anecdote is not "data"

RE: Consensus Science

"" What they simply don't care about is entitled jerks who are unwilling to act in their own best interests:""

Interesting, I have yet to hear any company executive tell his workers that he expects them to act solely in their own self interest as Rand would have it.

I have asked directly before and none will do it..

RE: Consensus Science

"I re-read State of Fear every year or so, about as often as I re-read Atlas Shrugged, both pieces of fiction have a lot to say about the state of governance today."

This explains so much...

RE: Consensus Science

(OP)
And you got a star for that sleaze. Fine, I'll back off and let you girls talk among yourselves.

David Simpson, PE
MuleShoe Engineering

"Belief" is the acceptance of an hypotheses in the absence of data.
"Prejudice" is having an opinion not supported by the preponderance of the data.
"Knowledge" is only found through the accumulation and analysis of data.
The plural of anecdote is not "data"

RE: Consensus Science

2
It's OK, David. They're peers, and they are peer-reviewing each others' statements. Don't you know that this is what passes for peer-review these days? There's a consensus on the topic, don't ya know?

Brad1979, so, if I am to understand you, then your beliefs in this topic are political, and not scientific, if you are to denigrate others' political beliefs?

RE: Consensus Science

2
Ayn Rand's "the Fountainhead" is a shameless piece of agitprop masquerading as fiction. Rand's ubermensch protagonist isn't just a champion of individualism and self-determination: he literally says stuff like "the world's evils are the result of altruism", and tries to tell people that compassion is a bad idea.

That book is self-affirmation for sociopaths.

And yes, I read every word of it. I was able to stomach it because I don't know much about architecture, which was the book's theme (her ubermensch is an architect).

I was unable to finish Atlas Shrugged, because in contrast to Rand I actually do know something about engineering.

RE: Consensus Science

(OP)
One of my son's friends (early 20's) recently read Atlas Shrugged for the first time. His comment was "what's the big deal? Compared to Washington today it seems like we're right on track for Wesley Mooch by 2020 and Directive 10-289 by 2025". I guess it is all about perspective.

David Simpson, PE
MuleShoe Engineering

"Belief" is the acceptance of an hypotheses in the absence of data.
"Prejudice" is having an opinion not supported by the preponderance of the data.
"Knowledge" is only found through the accumulation and analysis of data.
The plural of anecdote is not "data"

RE: Consensus Science

(OP)
Yeah, and I heard today that then new boogyman is "Global Climate Disruption". Feels very much like a cat scratching on a tile floor for a "settled science".

David Simpson, PE
MuleShoe Engineering

"Belief" is the acceptance of an hypotheses in the absence of data.
"Prejudice" is having an opinion not supported by the preponderance of the data.
"Knowledge" is only found through the accumulation and analysis of data.
The plural of anecdote is not "data"

RE: Consensus Science

Professor Lu's paper reports a "correlation coefficient as high as 0.97". Familiar number, David?

RE: Consensus Science

(OP)
That number sure seems to come up a lot in this discussion. Probably just a coincidence. I've seen data with a 0.97 correlation, but it came from the output of a single instrument. Re-do the same experiment with a different instrument and you'll get a different (but possibly still very high) correlation. I've never seen multiple instruments give that tight a dataset. Probably just a lack in my work with experiments and statistics. With real world data, I call success anything better than about 0.80 and I'll shade that to 0.70 if the data collection is noisy. I've read a lot of learned work that was happy over 0.50 for real-world data. 0.97 is pretty tight.

David Simpson, PE
MuleShoe Engineering

"Belief" is the acceptance of an hypotheses in the absence of data.
"Prejudice" is having an opinion not supported by the preponderance of the data.
"Knowledge" is only found through the accumulation and analysis of data.
The plural of anecdote is not "data"

RE: Consensus Science

My comment wasn't sleaze. Rand's philosophy is sleaze.

TGS4, that wasn't a political comment. I truly meant it explains a lot. I'd be willing to bet that of the people who re-read Rand yearly, a high number of them are AGW skeptics. I wouldn't say the opposite, BTW. I wouldn't bet that a high number of AGW skeptics re-read Rand yearly. For example, you don't strike me as somebody who is a fan of Rand.

RE: Consensus Science

"And you got a star for that sleaze. Fine, I'll back off and let you girls talk among yourselves. "

Now there's an ignorant comment, which seems to include a health amount of disdain for women as well.

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