Dear Dr Paul Bain…sincerely, Joanne Nova

Dear Paul,

Thank you most sincerely for writing to reply to my email. Thank you for taking the time to contact Nature, and thank you for the recognition that the term “denier” causes offense.

Do we also agree that the term denier fails basic English, and cannot be defined as a scientific label because you still are unable to say what deniers deny?

“I think if you understood where skeptics were coming from it would help you design surveys that produced useful results. Basic research, like reading what leading skeptics were saying, would seem a bare minimum requirement before designing a study.”

As far as I can tell, I suspect what you feel deniers deny (though you appear reluctant to actually state it) is not any scientific observation, but the pronouncements of the highest authority of climate science (which you deem to be the IPCC).

“I do believe that the technical aspects of this debate should be between climate scientists, as with complex multi-disciplinary issues it is very easy for findings to be misconstrued by non-experts. Whether you like it or not, the majority of climate scientists agree that there is a high likelihood that anthropogenic climate change exists and is likely to be a problem”

Since the IPCC, and all climate scientists are government funded, “deniers” then are the people who doubt the propaganda, the dictat, and in other times you would call people like these “dissidents”, or “heretics”, or indeed, the true scientists — since they keep asking for evidence. You are essentially asking us to believe in authority, a fallacy known since Aristotelian times, and a concept deeply anti-scientific.

You say it’s definitely valid to debate climate science, but then say that only “climate scientists”TM can do it. Which means, you do think it’s invalid for us to debate climate science, or to ask questions of the registered approved government appointed hierarchy. We should all be obedient citizens right? — even if those experts broke the law by hiding their data, lost entire global record sets and make “skill free” predictions too?

Is Jo Nova inconsistent? She “talks about politics and funding too”.

Should I chastise myself for delving into social issues? Dearest Paul, here’s the brutal truth. I’ve been utterly consistent in my 850 articles — when I  make conclusion about the climate, I use observations from the planet. When I make conclusions about socio-political matters, I talk money, politics, and people.

There are dual separate strain of topics of which evidence from one stream never crosses into the other:

Planetary Temperature (measured in C) –– > depends on Sun, moon, types of gases, orbits, dust, cosmic rays from the centre of the universe etc etc —> Uses observations from thermometers, proxies, coral slices, ice cores, stalagmites, tree rings, mud layers –> predicts (not much yet) … more cycles like the last ones.

Consensus  (a “Yes-No” thing) –> depends on opinions, research, fashion, money, best estimates, personal motivations, political parties, demographics of peer group surveyed, and decade  —> measured in dollars usually, and occasionally votes. (Subject to change rapidly)

I have never said: The IPCC are wrong because the government funds them (which would be an ad hom). The IPCC are wrong because 28 million weather balloons, 6,000 boreholes, 3,000 ocean buoys, and hundreds of thousands of original raw surface stations suggest the IPCC are exaggerating the future temperature increases by around 6 – 7 fold.

The reason why a science institution could be so wrong, when so much evidence points against them, is a socio-political discussion, and I go there, but I don’t mix up the reasoning. (Will it stretch the friendship if I say that you do?). You ask me to believe the world will warm by 3.3 degrees because a government appointed agency (the IPCC) says so, and to corroborate that, you mentioned that the IPCC has “even” convinced governments to act on its’ policies? Is there a more circular form of argument-from-authority that this?

I always know which point I’m making. But when you say the future temperature of the planet is measured in consensuses, I wonder what the standard deviation is, and I suspect it’s not normal.

Here’s Denial: The real socio-political evidence that many won’t “see”

Keep reading  →

About Tom Harley

Amateur ecologist and horticulturalist and CEO of Kimberley Environmental Horticulture Inc. (Tom Harley)
This entry was posted in Climate, comedy, Environment, media, Oz politics, science, weather and tagged , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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