Monday, July 27, 2009

Politicized science? Surely not

This summer is turning out to be fairly cold and wet in Britain, under average in North America and about average in Europe. Have not checked temperatures in Asia but shall do for an update. In other words, nothing to prove that the ever-threatened AGW climate change is having any effect on the weather as it has been promised for years.

Furthermore, ever more scientists are coming out of the closet, so to speak, and the whole theory of global warming is having a bad time, what with their spokespersons refusing to debate the subject openly but relying on smear tactics and ad hominem attacks on the messengers.

Not to worry. There is plenty of money from that patient (though ever less patient on the other side of the Pond) milch-cow, the taxpayer, as Dan Mitchell writes on his blog, International Liberty. (Well, I think my title is more stylish but each to their own.)

He calls the posting: "Probably Junk Science, Definitely Politicized Science". The two are often synonymous as the infamous Lysenko case in the Soviet Union demonstrated and as we have seen, on a lower level, with such disasters as the Foot and Mouth epidemic in Britain.

Let's face it, whenever scientific research is funded exclusively by government you are going to have problems. Firstly, there is no government in the world that will give money without strings. You could argue that it is right and proper as the money is the taxpayers' and it should be carefully husbanded but that brings me to my second point, which is that there is no direct link between the funder and the recipient. It is not the taxpayer those scientists are answerable to but to the functionaries who dole out the dosh and who decide, on the basis of their own political preferences, what outcome they want to see.

Finally, in scientific research as in all things, there should be competition. At the very least there should be competition in the funding and structures of the research organizations. One reason why scientific research, in general, has moved ahead faster in the United States (often thanks to British scientists who prefer to work there) is because there is no government monopoly in funding. Except for man-made global warming, unsurprisingly the least acceptable of all "sciences".


  1. The warmists are going to go into panic mode soon and through even more insults at 'deniers'. Stuff 'em. I am not a scientist but I do know that in the real world you cannot predict weather in 50 or 80 years or whatever. Try getting tomorrow's weather correct would be a good start. It is all just a con to tax us even more.

  2. Check out

  3. Concerns have been expressed that following recent FOI requests made to the Met Office and the University of East Anglia, the Climate Research Unit may have deleted three files from their data directory.

    Once FOI requests have been made for information, public authorities are not permitted to “alter, deface, block, erase, destroy or conceal any record held by the public authority, with the intention of preventing the disclosure by that authority of all, or any part, of the information to the communication of which the applicant would have been entitled.”

    Of course, it could be nothing more sinister than data ‘housekeeping’. But if so, the CRU couldn’t possibly have chosen a worse time to do it.

  4. For NASA, climate change/AGW obviously brings in a lot of funding. So you get stuff like this "Fears of accelerating climate change have been raised after an astronaut said the Earth's polar caps appeared to have melted since he was in orbit 12 years ago." That was in the Daily Mail (yes, I know) this week. The Guardian chipped in with this
    I suppose NASA is doing what it has to do to survive - even if that means riding the wave of Apollo 11 feelgood nostalgia to plug the climate change agenda. Shame about the failed launch of their Orbiting Carbon Observatory satellite in February. But then maybe the warmists wouldn't have liked what it would have told them if it had been successful. Given the astronomical amounts of money flung at climate change research (never mind the sums spent keeping General Motors afloat), it seems odd that they don't seem to have decided what to do about replacing the OCO. Another 300 million dollars or so would do it. It looks as if they are planning to build a "carbon copy" (geddit?) OCO, but then again maybe not:

  5. See the Sydney Morning Herald, August 1st. 15 scientists with their arses on the line write that the world is spinning out of control due to global warming and it is too late, almost, to save their jobs.

  6. Normally there are three models of a satellite built.

    The development model; the engineering model, which is used for testing; and the flight model, which flies.

    The engineering model is normally also the backup. There is already one to go, baring a few tweaks.