"Beat the Crap Out of Him" is Scientific Jargon

November 25, 2009

The keynote speaker at our annual environmental luncheon is featured prominently in the current scandal involving the e-mails hacked from the University of East Anglia's Climate Research Unit (CRU). The e-mails, from some of the most outspoken global warming alarmists, show how deeply politics has influenced the "science" they produced for the UN's Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.

Pat Michaels, a Past President of the American Association of State Climatologists, is mentioned in one of the e-mails in a rather unscientific tone. Michaels raised alarm bells that scientific data used by Phil Jones of the CRU had been destroyed rather than shared as is required by the scientific process. Despite that destruction, the EPA used Jones' conclusions as part of their justification for decision to regulate CO2 as a pollutant under the Clean Air Act.

One of Jones' colleagues offered his sympathy to Jones that he had to deal with the unreasonable demand that his science be transparent:

From: Ben Santer

To: P.Jones

Subject: Re: CEI formal petition to derail EPA GHG endangerment finding with charge that destruction of CRU raw data undermines integrity of global temperature record

Date: Fri, 09 Oct 2009 11:07:56 -0700


I’m really sorry that you have to go through all this stuff, Phil. Next time I see Pat Michaels at a scientific meeting, I’ll be tempted to beat the crap out of him. Very tempted.

You can listen to Michaels discuss these revelations on the Laura Ingraham show here.

The e-mails also discuss efforts to prevent science that contradicts their own from being published and efforts to punish journals that did publish alternative science.

The great philosopher of science Thomas Kuhn wrote fifty years ago that "One of the strongest, if still unwritten, rules of scientific life is the prohibition of appeals to heads of state or to the populace at large in matters scientific." The reason for this rule was to prevent politics from corrupting science. Despite loud claims that the IPCC and global warming alarmists are simply "following the science," these e-mails demonstrate that they were eager to use politics to fill in the gaps of their own science and silence others


re: "Beat the Crap Out of Him" is Scientific Jargon

Politics in science? Dread the thought. Objectivity reins. My science is "science" and the other fellows is "junk science." And ever shall it be when serious policy issues are discussed and "science" is put on the table as being "the decider." Global warming and endangered species. The list goes on. Policy leaders need to listen to the scientists, weigh the science, judge the science, and then "make a policy decision." Shielding yourself with "science" may be tempting but it is a slippery slope that leads to more and more "policy science" episodes.