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February 19, 2007

Comments

Brian,

To quote you, "There's a big difference between skepticism and ignorance." That point is illustrated no better than by your letter to the editor above, in which you either ignorantly or intentionally misrepresent George Taylor on almost every point discussed.

You can learn about GT's actual views in this response by him to a 2005 WW piece: http://www.ocs.orst.edu/page_links/publications/taylor_response.html
His last line prophetically does a spot on job of describing your editorial letter when he says, "Unfortunately, this issue has become such a divisive and angry one that ad hominem attacks have replaced dialogue."

You can learn more about GT's views and the truth about the scientific debate he puts forth by watching the conference on GW that he and Washington State Climatologist Phil Mote chaired recently at OMSI. The video is here: http://www.omsi.edu/media/Adult_Learning/Climate_Change_013007_109k.asx
Mote's presentation slides are here: http://www.omsi.org/misc/mote.pdf
Taylor's slides are here: http://www.omsi.org/misc/taylor.pdf

Note, Brian, that contrary to what you claim above, Mote acknowledges agreement between he and Taylor in his opening remarks, making it clear from the outset that the two agree on many points including that global average surface temp has increased over the 20th century by 0.6C. and that concentrations of atm. GHG's and their radiative forcing have continued to increase as a result of human activities.

DJ, the plain fact is that George Taylor is wrong when he expresses his skepticism about the scientific consensus on global climate change.

Wrong. Wrong. Wrong. It's a fact. Check out this article about an analysis of the peer-reviewed research:
http://www.sciencemag.org/cgi/content/full/306/5702/1686

None of 928 papers disagreed with the consensus position that global warming is occurring and humans are a big part of causing it. None.

But George Taylor believes that he knows better, even though he's never published any research. He thinks that global warming is caused by a natural cycle.

Every shred of scientific evidence says, "Taylor is wrong." That's a fact. The article on the Science web site ends with:

"Many details about climate interactions are not well understood, and there are ample grounds for continued research to provide a better basis for understanding climate dynamics. The question of what to do about climate change is also still open. But there is a scientific consensus on the reality of anthropogenic climate change. Climate scientists have repeatedly tried to make this clear. It is time for the rest of us to listen."

Please listen. Don't close your mind to the truth. The future of our planet depends on open minds.

Brian,
Try this on for scientific consensus:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Category:Global_warming_skeptics
Furthermore, try this:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_scientists_opposing_global_warming_consensus

Among the scientists listed above is Richard Lindzen, contributer to Chapter 4 of the "IPCC Second Assessment", "Climate Change 1995". In the following 2006 opinion piece he explains why dissent in the world of government grant funded research is almost unheard of, creating the faux consensus you speak of above.
http://www.opinionjournal.com/extra/?id=110008220

Key excerpts and examples:
- Scientists who dissent from the alarmism have seen their grant funds disappear, their work derided, and themselves libeled as industry stooges, scientific hacks or worse. Consequently, lies about climate change gain credence even when they fly in the face of the science that supposedly is their basis.
- In fact, those who make the most outlandish claims of alarm are actually demonstrating skepticism of the very science they say supports them. It isn't just that the alarmists are trumpeting model results that we know must be wrong. It is that they are trumpeting catastrophes that couldn't happen even if the models were right as justifying costly policies to try to prevent global warming.
- So how is it that we don't have more scientists speaking up about this junk science? It's my belief that many scientists have been cowed not merely by money but by fear. An example: Earlier this year, Texas Rep. Joe Barton issued letters to paleoclimatologist Michael Mann and some of his co-authors seeking the details behind a taxpayer-funded analysis that claimed the 1990s were likely the warmest decade and 1998 the warmest year in the last millennium. Mr. Barton's concern was based on the fact that the IPCC had singled out Mr. Mann's work as a means to encourage policy makers to take action. And they did so before his work could be replicated and tested--a task made difficult because Mr. Mann, a key IPCC author, had refused to release the details for analysis. The scientific community's defense of Mr. Mann was, nonetheless, immediate and harsh. The president of the National Academy of Sciences--as well as the American Meteorological Society and the American Geophysical Union--formally protested, saying that Rep. Barton's singling out of a scientist's work smacked of intimidation.
- In Europe, Henk Tennekes was dismissed as research director of the Royal Dutch Meteorological Society after questioning the scientific underpinnings of global warming.
- Aksel Winn-Nielsen, former director of the U.N.'s World Meteorological Organization, was tarred by Bert Bolin, first head of the IPCC, as a tool of the coal industry for questioning climate alarmism.
- Respected Italian professors Alfonso Sutera and Antonio Speranza disappeared from the debate in 1991, apparently losing climate-research funding for raising questions.
- And then there are the peculiar standards in place in scientific journals for articles submitted by those who raise questions about accepted climate wisdom. (Read the article to find out what they are).

Lindzen concludes, "Alarm rather than genuine scientific curiosity, it appears, is essential to maintaining funding. And only the most senior scientists today can stand up against this alarmist gale, and defy the iron triangle of climate scientists, advocates and policymakers."

As Phil Mote and George Taylor understand well, scientific debate is tool to be leveraged toward greater understanding. Brian, you may not have the power or credentials to put George Taylor out of a job, but you do a disservice with your editorial anyway by attempting to emulate the poor stewardship of those who do.

Kudos to George Taylor for standing strong against the iron triangle.

DJ, I'll be writing today about the incredible blindness of those who refuse to see the scientific evidence that points decisively toward the reality of global warming caused in large part by humans.

You conveniently ignored the evidence I linked to previously: the 100% of peer-reviewed scientific articles that supports my position.

It's always possible to find scientists who hold a contrary view. I'm sure there are scientists who believe the earth is flat, or the sun goes around the earth.

Scientific debate in this area has been active for decades. The debate has been settled in favor of the truth. No matter how much you deny this "inconvenient truth," the truth remains.

Lastly, the Bush administration has been the main culprit in trying to stifle open scientific debate. See:
http://www.iht.com/articles/2007/01/31/news/science.php

Brian, you are the blind one in denial. My response via the Lindzen piece pulls back the wool on the faux consensus implied by the so-called 100% peer-reveiwed articles. (If you'd read the Lindzen piece, you'd already know that). Dissent (and true consensus by extension) is not possible when the dissenters have been drummed out of town.

The fact is, money creates conflict of interest on BOTH SIDES of the anthro-GW debate. I have a background in engineering, including thermodyanics, fluid dynamics, physics and heat transfer. My skepticism is born out of issues I have with the science itself. Nevertheless, the more I dig into the politics that drives the upward spiral of government grants that result from increasing alarmist-driven political stakes, the more my scientific skepticism is reinforced.

GW is a reality. It will be interesting to see if your forthcoming piece actually cites scientific evidence that GW is predominantly anthropogenic, or whether it will merely reflect what everyone already agrees upon - that the planet is currently in a warming phase.

Finally, if you caught the Oscars last night, as Gore and company filed to the stage to accept their award - you heard the moderator make commentary to the viewers about how the AIT documentary so prophetically predicted the Katrina and Rita disaters. In fact, as the Lindzen piece points out, there is no evidence of such a link, despite the so-called 'peer-reviewed' IPCC's reliance on the since discredited work of Michael Mann. Nevertheless, to this day the media (including the Greenies at the Oscars) spread this misinformation as fact to a scientifically unsophisticated public.

As the most famous dissenter, Galileo, once said, "The crowd of fools who know nothing is infinite."

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