December 2009

YouTuber potholer54 has a video response to Climategate/SwiftHack:

There must be a lot of people on YouTube who think being able to activate a webcam qualifies them to assess the veracity of climate science. Chalk it up to the superiority bias. To quote the science blog, Stoat:

just about everyone knows they aren’t able to understand, or make a meaningful contribution to, general relativity or quantum mechanics or number theory (except Cantors diagonal proof, of course, which every wacko knows is wrong). Somehow, however, people imagine that they understand climate science 😦

Apparently he’s already forgotten about those who wanted to shut down the Large Hadron Collider due to fears it would create a blackhole that would swallow up the Earth. And just as in that case where LHC physicists were receiving death threats, climate scientists are also being similarly harrassed. So I’d amend that quote to:  People imagine that they understand the science, any science, especially if they don’t agree with it.

A lot is being made of the decline in the belief in global warming amongst the American public, and the trending topic for “Climategate”. However, I’ve noticed that a formerly right-wing blog has actually joined the fray on the side of the climate scientists. Although the descent of human-induced climate change denialists into pure conspiracy nuttery might have had something to do with that blog author’s recent conversion,  looking through his archived posts on global warming shows the flip-flop occurred around the 2007-2008 timeframe. Prior to that, LGF posts would echo the same sort of rubbish you’d find on global warming denialist sites. Curiously around the same time LGF was actively debunking creationism and Intelligent Design.  I guess this blogger (Charles Johnson) and many of his readers noticed that the same tactics that the Creationists were using against the science of evolution, very closely mirrored tactics being applied against climate science, so something had to give. Unfortunately, the rest of his readership has since disowned him and wandered off to a spin off denialist site.

Charles Johnson is late to the AGW camp but so is this acknowledgement. His rational thinking is most welcome to the blogosphere.