Posted By Confutus

I have long been something of a skeptic of the theories of global warming. Although I am not a climatologist, I had the impression from my scientific reading that climate research was comparitively in its infancy, so that claims of "The science is in" seemed to be premature. It appears, with the recently uncovered evidence of scientific fraud, at the Climatic Research Unit at the University of East Anglia in the United Kingcom which is being dubbed "ClimateGate", that my skepticism was well justified. 

 

The late Nobel-prize winning physicistt Richard Feynman gave a commencement address in 1974 , entitled "Cargo cult Science". The whole thing is worth reading, but the central thesis is especially applicable.

 

But there is one
feature I notice that is generally missing in cargo cult science.
That is the idea that we all hope you have learned in studying
science in school--we never explicitly say what this is, but just
hope that you catch on by all the examples of scientific
investigation. It is interesting, therefore, to bring it out now
and speak of it explicitly. It's a kind of scientific integrity,
a principle of scientific thought that corresponds to a kind of
utter honesty--a kind of leaning over backwards. For example, if
you're doing an experiment, you should report everything that you
think might make it invalid--not only what you think is right about
it: other causes that could possibly explain your results; and
things you thought of that you've eliminated by some other
experiment, and how they worked--to make sure the other fellow can
tell they have been eliminated.

Details that could throw doubt on your interpretation must be
given, if you know them. You must do the best you can--if you know
anything at all wrong, or possibly wrong--to explain it. If you
make a theory, for example, and advertise it, or put it out, then
you must also put down all the facts that disagree with it, as well
as those that agree with it. There is also a more subtle problem.
When you have put a lot of ideas together to make an elaborate
theory, you want to make sure, when explaining what it fits, that
those things it fits are not just the things that gave you the idea
for the theory; but that the finished theory makes something else
come out right, in addition.

In summary, the idea is to try to give all of the information to
help others to judge the value of your contribution; not just the
information that leads to judgment in one particular direction or
another.


 
Not only did the CRU fail to practice this kind of scientific integrity, but it actively conspired to manipulate data to support the preferred theories, hid and suppressed data that would counter it, and attempted to silence and stifle critics. This is not science. It is politics of the nastiest kind. This is not scientific integrity, but  fraud.  Everything the CRU has published on climate research is now  tainted, and none of it can be regarded as scientifically trustworthy. The whole subject will have to be reviewed, and more carefully, too.

 


 
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