Climate of Fear

The scientific consensus says we’re all gonna fry—but since when did consensus have anything to do with science?

Given that climate change has been all the rage in Paris these days, I thought it might be a good idea to post a refresher on what all the hubbub is about. In a nutshell, French president Emmanuel Macron, like most good progressives, is very concerned about a warming planet. And, like most good progressives, he also believes that human activity is the primary driver of that warming. So he imposed a tax to make fossil fuels, which are widely derided for pumping so-called greenhouse gases into the atmosphere, more expensive so as to discourage their use. In Macron’s view, it was a simple equation: Less fuel burned = less pollution = less global warming.

The only hitch was that the French public, already tired of being taxed up the schnoz, decided that if they couldn’t burn gas at a reasonable price they’d burn Paris to the ground instead. So much for reducing those carbon emissions, right?

Well, the good news is that Macron has decided to ax the tax—not just for the six months that his prime minister Edouard Phillipe wanted, but permanently. Whether that represents a victory for the common man or caving in to mob rule is in the eye of the beholder, I guess; but it does suggest that while Joe Sixpack is fine doing doing his bit for the environment by recycling aluminum cans and maybe driving a Prius, he draws the line firmly when it comes to taking a hit to his pocketbook.

Which brings us full circle back to the question about how this all happened in the first place. Why is it that blokes like Macron, along with so many elites from around the world, seem so convinced that we’re all doomed if we don’t immediately change our fossil fuel ways? And how is it that they‘ve gotten so many people, particularly in the younger generations, to believe that fires, floods, hurricanes, tornadoes, famine, disease and lingering death await them in the near future unless DO SOMETHING about climate change RIGHT NOW?

Well, it’s because there’s a scientific consensus that says so.

Ask any scientist, they’ll tell you. Like, 99.9% of them agree that the planet is heating up like a disco inferno, and it’s mankind’s fault that we’re all gonna burn, baby, burn. On top of that, all the climate models—you know, those computer programs that can’t accurately predict where Hurricane Ohmygodwereallgonnadie is going to make landfall a week from now, but can totes predict down to the decimal point what mean surface temperatures will be decades hence—are in agreement. Hundreds of scientists all standing together, shoulder to shoulder, can’t be wrong, can they?

Maybe. But before you answer that question, you might want to refer to this lecture given at Cal Tech by the late, great author Michael Crichton. Here’s what he had to say about scientific “consensus”:

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.

Mind you, this was from a lecture Crichton delived back in 2003*,* three years before Al Gore released his slide-show-cum-documentary An Inconvenient Truth, and long before the phrase “climate denier” entered the lexicon. Even then, he recognized the fallacy of larding up the rigorous discipline of actual science with the vagaries of consensus. And Crichton knew from whence he spoke—he was a medical doctor, well versed in the scientific method, before he segued into the world of entertainment.

The bottom line: Science is what you can demonstrate and prove, with results that other scientists can replicate again and again. Period. There are no such results when it comes to anthropogenic global warming, because the theory is impossible to test under controlled conditions.

And why is that? Well, if you happen to meet a climate scientist—even one who believes that human activity drives global warming—ask this very simple question: Have all of the variables that affect worldwide climate have been accounted for? If that scientist is honest, the answer will be, “Of course not.” Climate is a complex system, in which it is literally impossible to know what all the variables are, much less their values. And if you can’t even account for factors that could potentially have a significant effect on temperatures, how can the climate models—which are based on those variables—be considered accurate?

The really inconvenient truth is, they can’t. And no amount of consensus is going to change that.

In Crichton’s lecture, he goes on to cite many other times throughout history when the scientific consensus was dead wrong—often with deadly consequences. Sometimes it took decades for scientists to finally accept that what they firmly believed was, in fact, demonstrably false. That’s because, despite what some would have you believe, scientists are human beings, and as such they are susceptible to the same political and social pressures as anyone else. They can also be wedded to an idea or theory that is so entwined with their careers that to have it disproven would be devastating to them personally. In other words, while the notion of the dispassionate scientist—interested only in truth—is an ideal, real people can and often do fall short.

We forget that at our own peril. Just ask Macron.

Comments
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Oregun
Oregun

Back in the 70's when I was in school the climate alarmist were warning of a coming ice age and advocating salting the polar caps with coal. Thank God they were ignored. There has allways been chicken little alarmist clown science. You have to have freedom to think and experiment. You do not have to take the clown data serious or ruin everyones life and enviroment by making it public policy.

DriverZn
DriverZn

Sure the experts are in near unanimous agreement on global warming, but wait, here is an author looking to make a profit selling books. Let's believe him. That he has no expertise on the subject, no problem, he says what we want to hear.

Just a couple months ago the authors here were decrying the "mob" of people peacefully protesting. Now in France, there is an actual angry, violent, mob burning things down, why are you not calling them a mob? Is it just their position?

I've decided that the way I am going to deal with this disinformation is that each time it's posted, I'll dedicate some time or money to go help the scientists or action groups working on global warming.

esotericwy
esotericwy

The Leftist/Progressive/Modern Liberal/Democrat Party/Praetorian Guard Media/RINO WHIG Do NOTHING Democrat Lite Party are proving that they are Ignorant often times bordering on Stupid when it comes to Science. I have come to the conclusion that they have NEVER read a Science book, every engaged in a Scientific Experiment or understand the Scientific Method. Sciencebuddies.org defines the Scientific Method as "The scientific method is a process for experimentation that is used to explore observations and answer questions." The Scientific Method includes: 1. ask a question 2. do background research 3. construct a hypothesis 4. test with an experiment 5. procedure working 6. analyze Data & draw conclusions 7. communicate results Wikipedia defines the Scientific Method as "an empirical method of knowledge acquisition which has characterized the development of science since at least the 17th century. It involves careful observation, which includes rigorous skepticism about what is observed, given that cognitive assumptions about how the world works influence how one interprets a percept. It involves formulating hypotheses, via induction, based on such observations; experimental and measurement-based testing of deductions drawn from the hypotheses; and refinement (or elimination) of the hypotheses based on the experimental findings. These are principles of the scientific method, as opposed to a definitive series of steps applicable to all scientific enterprises."

Michael Crichton hits a grand slam Home Run with "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."

The Leftist/Progressive/Modern Liberal/Democrat Party/Praetorian Guard Media/RINO WHIG Do NOTHING Democrat Lite Party is driven by a myopic , delusional and very destructive IDEOLOGY that believes that it can and will create Paradise on Earth. That drives the Collective bus to DENY anything and everything that does not conform to the IDEOLOGY. They reject the Past unless it agrees with the IDEOLOGY. The Present is NOTHING but a stepping stone to read h the future. The Future is the realization of the IDEOLOGY. It is the IDEOLOGY, Stupid.

The Leftist/Progressive/Modern Liberal/Democrat Party/Praetorian Guard Media/RINO WHIG Do NOTHING Democrat Lite Party demonstrates their utter contempt for their opposition. That opposition is a direct threat to their fantasy of Paradise. Therefore, to sustain the IDEOLOGY, add converts to the Collective and label the opposition as EVIL and as EVIL they MUST be destroyed to benefit the Collective. There can be NO Common Ground, Compromise or opposition, period.

The Collective is arrogant, narrow minded, live in an Alternative Reality where the IDEAL is continually reinforced and INDISCRIMINATION as explored b Evan Sayet is the building block for all that follows.

Badmoon
Badmoon

Besides knowing all the variables in system knowing there significance is another key factor. I have a new theory. That when the sun goes in to solar minimum like it is now that the CO2 goes up to compensate for the reduced heating by the sun. Therefore moderating the swings caused by solar activity or lack thereof. Models are only as good as the model maker.