Day 3 at AGU – I didn’t learn much about science

Between a phone interview for a job, a rally, wandering around Fisherman’s Wharf like a tourist, and the Climate Science Legal Defense Fund dinner, I didn’t attend any actual science. Feeling guilty about that…

The shots of the rally that have been published make it look smaller than it was. It seems my amateur iPhone shot may be of use to people trying to demonstrate that the turnout was substantial.

While, to people who organize rallies, this amounted to a successful rally, I have to say that for me it was somewhat disappointing.

As you can see, there was a good turnout. But I have to say organizers wheeled out tired lefty script. I am not down with climate science aligning itself with Naomi Klein.

Oreskes & Mann each spoke briefly, but not really to the AGU crowd. Scientists in white lab coats was a nice eyecatcher for the press but I suspect perhaps a bit offputting for most geoscientists. A few of us do lab work, but most do either field work or computation.

The issue I have is that I did not come away with any sense of what scientists are supposed to do about all this.

Oreskes at least suggested joining 350 or CCL. Okay but that doesn’t seem to rise to the occasion.

I think we should separate out the fate of science from the fate of climate policy. They really are getting mixed up in the public’s mind, and I don’t think we should let left-idientity politics get away with this.

The threats to science are real. It’s time to separate the fate of climate science from the fate of the climate. They are different questions and they should be considered on separate merits, As goes climate science, so goes science as a whole.

Whether there is going to be science at all, or just Lysenkoism, is the question at hand. It’s not as if this hasn’t happened before. Russian biology was set back a century.

If the purpose of science is to flatter the poltical leadership it’s not just the discipline in the crosshairs that gets corrupted.

So it’s good to get a good turnout. (If anyone wants the full-resolution crowd pic let me know.) It’s good to stand up and be counted. But we have a problem, and we don’t have a strategy.

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I had various nice conversations at the CSLDF dinner, most notably with Jon Overpeck’s attorney, Mike Mandig (sp?) not to be confused with Mike Mann who was sitting just across the table from us.

It was interesting getting Mandig’s perspective of getting involved in the case and discovering just how malign the opposition is.

I enjoyed not being the fusspot, as the dinner was strictly vegan.

Comments:

  1. What would help me is seeing a mindmap/flowchart of established climate data and facts that BOTH sides of climate debate agree on (hot linked to sources, of course).

    Aside from obvious, this map/chart would make clear where disagreements lay, and keep the misleading interpretations to a minimum.

    But who would be able to create such a reliable map/chart? Is the inability to do this the achilles heel of 'consensus science'?

  2. There is no coherent opposition to the mainstream. There is no statement to which nobody objects. No matter what we say somebody will object to it. The greenhouse effect, the fact that CO2 is increasing, the fact that matter is conserved. It is not a flaw in the consensus that the people opposing it have no coherent theory and are mostly crackpots, con artists, or both.

    There are some individuals who claim to be part of the anti-consensus. Some few of them are somewhat reasonable. Ask them what points they'll concede. Don't ask us. We are not responsible for the quality of the opposition.

    Again, this is not the blog for discussing that sort of thing. Followups will be moderated down.


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  1. "The threats to science are real. It’s time to separate the fate of climate science from the fate of the climate. They are different questions and they should be considered on separate merits, As goes climate science, so goes science as a whole."

    Couldn't disagree more. The general public has been listening to over-hyped, hottest ever, we're all gonna drown, and my kids won't know what snow is BS for over 15 yrs. The hype didn't match reality, and even your average non-science working guy knows this, and laughs. The climate science message was over-egged, and now it's payback time. Personally, I'd hate to see all the other scientific fields punished because of the horridly poor job done by climates scientists. Even the staunchest AGW contrarians have never referenced or called out "all of science. Most of them are people who love science...they just don't like crappy, unsubstantiated, my "model tells me so" science.

    Science as a whole will do fine. People in general support science...clean up the sloppy climate cience mess and all will be well.

    Climate science is not science...maybe a religion, maybe a belief system, maybe a political movement...science it is not.

    "I think we should separate out the fate of science from the fate of climate policy"

    Good idea...now call Gavin and and ask him, for a scientist, why is he calling for a carbon tax. If that's not getting involved in "policy", I don't know what is.

    All will be well my science friends, just a little haircut to the worshipers at the temple of AGW, and all will be well.

    Best it happens now before this perverted ideology gets to the point of real financial harm to Joe public. If that were to happen, then you might be right. They very well may hold "all sciences" responsible, and that would be a shame

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