Posts Tagged 'Steve McIntyre'

The Tyranny of the Scientific Consensus

Professor Paul Reiter, in his submission to the House of Lords Select Committee on Economic Affairs, declared

In the age of information, popular knowledge of scientific issues – particularly issues of health and environment – is awash in a tide of misinformation, much of it presented in the “big talk” of professional scientists. Alarmist activists operating in well-funded advocacy groups have a lead role in creating this misinformation. In many cases, they manipulate public perceptions with emotive and fiercely judgmental “scientific” pronouncements, adding a tone of danger and urgency to attract media coverage. Their skill in promoting notions of scientific “fact” sidesteps the complexities of the issues involved, and is a potent influence in education, public opinion and the political process.

In his testimony to the United States Senate he stated

A galling aspect of the debate is that this spurious ‘science’ is endorsed in the public forum by influential panels of ‘experts.’ I refer particularly to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC)… [which] publishes a ‘consensus of the world’s top scientists’ on all aspects of climate change…such consensus is the stuff of politics, not of science…A public that is unaware of this is vulnerable to abuse.

The so-called ‘scientific consensus’ is being used to ram through huge measures of political control. We are told that there is a scientific consensus on this or that, when there is no consensus at all. To question the consensus, or whether such a consensus exists, is to be a ‘denier’ or a modern-day heretic, who must be silenced, or at the very least humiliated. Scientists who challenge the ‘consensus’ are being increasingly marginalized, especially in areas where the big money is flowing to support a particular political line – for example, in the climate change area. Those who present evidence contrary to the so-called consensus are called ‘traitors’ ,

…and we need to start treating them like traitors

says Robert F. Kennedy Jr, so there are calls for them to be tried for treason, ‘crimes against humanity’ and genocide. As The Daily Telegraph reported last month of James Hanson, director of the NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies:

Hansen has been for 20 years the world’s leading scientific advocate of global warming (and Al Gore’s closest ally). But in the past year a number of expert US scientists have been conducting a public investigation, through scientific blogs, which raises large question marks over the methods used to arrive at his figures…

Hansen himself is notoriously impatient of any criticism of his methods: earlier this month he appealed to Congress that the leaders of those who question global warming should be put on trial.

Continue reading ‘The Tyranny of the Scientific Consensus’

Advertisements

Archives