Tuesday, May 27, 2014


There is a ridiculous claim that has been around for some time, repeated by Obama and Kerry, that 97% of scientists agree that climate change is caused by humans.

Think about that one for a while. Sort of a "flat earth" claim. "Artery clogging cholesterol" comes to mind.

A friend recalled a question he posed to a fellow we both worked with decades ago, Charles "Chick" Thorne: "Chick, how do you remember the statistics you quote when asked a question by one of the members of the Finance Committee?"  His answer:  “I don’t.  I make them up as I go.”

Reasonable people agree that, over millions of years, the climate has changed. We really don't know why all the time, and it seems to me to be presumptuous to assume that we now know the answer to this complex and very important question.

The "97%" folks are quick to resort to name-calling when challenged. They want their voice to be the only one heard. It has become a religious matter, it seems.

I certainly don't have the answer, but it does seem that it is an important enough matter that it ought to be afforded lots of scientific attention. Have you ever heard of a government grant being awarded to a credible scientist who offers an alternative view? Blundering along with pseudo-science (think Framingham Heart Study that gave us margarine, fear of butter/eggs/fat and a variety of bad-science conclusions that enhanced the profit of Proctor and Gamble) just doesn't seem to be the right thing with something this important.

With an opinion like that, I will probably be branded with some pejorative label by the true believers. "We don't need no study, we already know the TRUTH!!"

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