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  1. #2231
    Super Member 2LaneCruzer's Avatar
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    Default Re: Global Warming?

    Quote Originally Posted by IslandTractor View Post
    I wouldn't say that undergraduates studying science usually are doing research but rather preparing to do it if they continue with graduate studies. Yes they do small projects and might have a small role in big science projects but most people wouldn't call them scientists. MD training is certainly not research oriented and MD researchers acquire skills a research fellows or in combined MD PhD programs. MD training doesn't start to cover research or methodology issues in depth until after residency and the majority of MDs never study such things. They learn to read a paper but not how to generate publishable research. MDs are all clinicians but only a few are also research scientists.

    Anyone is entitled to hold an opinion but Crighton's opinion is just that of an educated thoughtful person with a background in medicine. Nothing wrong with that but it is hardly the opinion of a professional research scientist. As for whether Gore or Crighton is better qualified to judge the validity of climate science, I would rank them about equal and both well below any PhD in the field. I'd also rank both of them below a research scientist in an even vaguely related field.
    I would have to agree, given your definition of scientist...however, I find it difficult to exclude, say a "chemist", or a "biologist" or an "astronomer" because they do not do pure research or publish a lot of papers. I would agree that a research scientist has a unique set of skills, but so does an M.D. or a Chemist...they all use some of the same basic tools supplied by their education, but in a different manner. I believe your education and experience lends considerable credibility to any opinion you might have on the application of the scientific method, as opposed, to say an accountant...but as you very clearly state, who is the best qualified is an entirely different matter.
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  2. #2232
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    Default Re: Global Warming?

    Quote Originally Posted by 2LaneCruzer View Post
    I would have to agree, given your definition of scientist...however, I find it difficult to exclude, say a "chemist", or a "biologist" or an "astronomer" because they do not do pure research or publish a lot of papers. I would agree that a research scientist has a unique set of skills, but so does an M.D. or a Chemist...they all use some of the same basic tools supplied by their education, but in a different manner. I believe your education and experience lends considerable credibility to any opinion you might have on the application of the scientific method, as opposed, to say an accountant...but as you very clearly state, who is the best qualified is an entirely different matter.
    Whoa there... Plenty of chemists, biologists and astronomers do research and publish! Not all scientists publish or publish much. I'm a retired scientist. I have published, but not much. And no you can't read my stuff as it was published in a classified journal (JUA Journal of Underwater Acoustics). What is at issue here is not discipline vs discipline or whether or not a person has been or is a prolific publisher (some of us worked in publish or perish environments and some of us didn't.) Critical thinking and the application of the scientific method without emotional overtone prejudicing your conclusions is paramount. All too many folks first consideration is WIIFM (What's In It or Me) and what they want the answer to be and then they design their approach to give that result or bias their interpretation in support of their bassackwards method of deciding the answer then collecting support ignoring any detractors.

    The more confusion, muddying of the waters, can be engendered directly increases the likelihood of maintaining the status quo. If I wanted to just keep on keeping on with business as usual the most powerful tactic would be to create as much confusion and controversy as possible as this leads to stagnation with no clear way forward to a beneficial outcome. Deprived of clear unambiguous choices the vast majority of us will adopt a wait and see attitude. Unfortunately waiting to see is a terrible risk as by the time these waiting critics see the hand writing on the wall with sufficient clarity to be unambiguously compelled to accept what evidence is being provided it may be too late.

    I get an image of someone sawing through a limb between their feet and the tree trunk. Lots of people have expressed their opinions of how far you can saw safely and the damage you may receive if you fall. Some say you can saw 90% and be OK, others say 50% and offer analysis based on strength of materials texts with data of similar tree species. Some cry out that the data is inapplicable as the data was collected for a slightly different variant of tree with different climate rings and the various folks chime in with there anecdotal information, old wives tales, religious beliefs supported by quotes from their holy book, wishful thinking, what supports their stock prices, and multitudes of other slants. The forest products association hires indigents to dress up in tree costumes and protest. Meanwhile the poor would be apprentice arborist saws too far and falls down on top of several people, injuring them to various degrees and dies instantly of a broken neck.
    Never wrestle with a pig (however titled) as you just get dirty and the pig has all the fun.

  3. #2233
    Super Member 2LaneCruzer's Avatar
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    Default Re: Global Warming?

    Quote Originally Posted by patrick_g View Post
    Whoa there... Plenty of chemists, biologists and astronomers do research and publish! Not all scientists publish or publish much. I'm a retired scientist. I have published, but not much. And no you can't read my stuff as it was published in a classified journal (JUA Journal of Underwater Acoustics). What is at issue here is not discipline vs discipline or whether or not a person has been or is a prolific publisher (some of us worked in publish or perish environments and some of us didn't.) Critical thinking and the application of the scientific method without emotional overtone prejudicing your conclusions is paramount. All too many folks first consideration is WIIFM (What's In It or Me) and what they want the answer to be and then they design their approach to give that result or bias their interpretation in support of their bassackwards method of deciding the answer then collecting support ignoring any detractors.

    The more confusion, muddying of the waters, can be engendered directly increases the likelihood of maintaining the status quo. If I wanted to just keep on keeping on with business as usual the most powerful tactic would be to create as much confusion and controversy as possible as this leads to stagnation with no clear way forward to a beneficial outcome. Deprived of clear unambiguous choices the vast majority of us will adopt a wait and see attitude. Unfortunately waiting to see is a terrible risk as by the time these waiting critics see the hand writing on the wall with sufficient clarity to be unambiguously compelled to accept what evidence is being provided it may be too late.

    I get an image of someone sawing through a limb between their feet and the tree trunk. Lots of people have expressed their opinions of how far you can saw safely and the damage you may receive if you fall. Some say you can saw 90% and be OK, others say 50% and offer analysis based on strength of materials texts with data of similar tree species. Some cry out that the data is inapplicable as the data was collected for a slightly different variant of tree with different climate rings and the various folks chime in with there anecdotal information, old wives tales, religious beliefs supported by quotes from their holy book, wishful thinking, what supports their stock prices, and multitudes of other slants. The forest products association hires indigents to dress up in tree costumes and protest. Meanwhile the poor would be apprentice arborist saws too far and falls down on top of several people, injuring them to various degrees and dies instantly of a broken neck.
    Hey, Patrick...good to hear from you again...how's the fishing?
    I take from your response that you think that I believe that a Chemist is not a scientist unless he publishes; and a "scientist" is not a scientist if he does not publish. To the contrary; what I was trying to convey was that a Chemist or a Biologist or an Astronomer have some entitlement to the title "scientist"; however, the expertise they may exhibit in one particular area may differ greatly, although they all have the basic tools to understand the issues. I would not limit the title "scientist" exclusively to a person who does pure research and has lots of publications...I would however, prefer Einstein as an expert witness on the properties of light, over say Michael Crighton.
    Have Wings, Will Travel.

  4. #2234
    Super Star Member toppop52's Avatar
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    Default Re: Global Warming?

    My wife is a scientist, her medical degree says so, as a medical doctor she is "scientist of medicine".
    Randy
    Southern boy and proud to tell it! Liberalism, a disease of the mind...

  5. #2235
    Super Star Member IslandTractor's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by patrick_g
    Critical thinking and the application of the scientific method without emotional overtone prejudicing your conclusions is paramount. .
    Bingo. Give the man a gold star.

    Bad and biased science will be outed in due course. It is tragic when actions and policy are I initiated based on bad science but those mistakes do not often last for long if good science is allowed to continue. Russia had some very bad genetics in the ?1930's that Stalin supported and set the whole field of biology back fifty plus years there. Today we all know of valid Russian contributions in physics, chemistry, math and aeronautics but almost none in biological sciences or medicine. That is largely because Stalin impeded the natural process of biological science for political reasons.

    How does this relate to climate science? Just let the climate scientists do their jobs without pressure from either deniers or Goreniks and we will get to the truth soon enough. If the accumulated evidence to date from that community suggests action is needed, then decisions should be made based on the best consensus data and interpretations available at the time. Columbus did not need to wait for final consensus on his round world theory or to persuade the last flat earth advocate before setting sail. I don't want to have to convince people like Rick "oops" Perry or Michelle Bachman before taking action on man's contribution to climate change.

  6. #2236
    Super Star Member toppop52's Avatar
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    Default Re: Global Warming?

    ust let the climate scientists do their jobs without pressure from either deniers or Goreniks and we will get to the truth soon enough. If the accumulated evidence to date from that community suggests action is needed, then decisions should be made based on the best consensus data and interpretations available at the time.
    Problem is almost none of today's pro man caused global warming is without the taint of agendists, for that matter neither is the science of those opposed. So you act based on that and maybe cause untold catastrophes. Almost nobody doesn't believe the earth had a warming period recently, most of us just believe it's the same natural cycles that have gone on time immemorial.
    Randy
    Southern boy and proud to tell it! Liberalism, a disease of the mind...

  7. #2237
    Super Star Member IslandTractor's Avatar
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    Default Re: Global Warming?

    Quote Originally Posted by toppop52 View Post
    Problem is almost none of today's pro man caused global warming is without the taint of agendists, for that matter neither is the science of those opposed. So you act based on that and maybe cause untold catastrophes. Almost nobody doesn't believe the earth had a warming period recently, most of us just believe it's the same natural cycles that have gone on time immemorial.
    Let me guess, you were amongst the first to accept evidence that there was indeed global warming/climate change and you are unbiased with regard to man's role. You have an open mind always read primary sources or at least peer reviewed journals and science writing rather than depending on the echo chamber political blogisphere or talk radio or Andromeda Strain/Jurassic Park novelists for your scientific information. If so I find your biased use of language to be surprising. I don't believe I've ever heard the word "agendist" before but can imagine in this context what you mean. I don't have difficulty with an honest skeptic as that is part and parcel of the scientific process. On the other hand, there is another word for someone who accuses others of being "agendists" when they themselves have a clear political agenda. That word is hypocrite. I suspect that most non scientists who start off their posts with criticism of climate research and end up with a diatribe about energy costs or the need for more drilling or their rights to consume as much fossil fuel as they please are agendists and hypocrites both. Just say'n.

    Constructive criticism of science is hard. It is not nitpicking or conspiracy mongering. It involves delving into the details of methodology and analysis in ways that are frankly beyond most of our abilities if we are not specifically trained in that field. 99% of the criticism of climate research I see alluded to in this thread (I haven't read the whole thing) is trash talk rather than criticism. I forget the percent of climate scientists who accept that the warming trend over the past 50 years is due to human activities but it is somewhere in the 90% plus range. Of the major scientific bodies who continue to deny man's role, virtually all are geology organizations (speaking of bias due to what side your bread is buttered on). Even though legitimate questions remain, the preponderance of evidence seems to reasonably agree with the anthropogenic warming hypothesis at least according to the vast majority of scientific bodies and national academies of science that have taken a stance. Even the American Association of Petroleum Geologists has apparently finally withdrawn their negative statement and is now "non committal" on the evidence. That is like the American Tobacco Institute agreeing that perhaps tobacco does cause cancer after vehemently denying it for decades.

  8. #2238
    Gold Member Rainbody's Avatar
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    I love the talk about how you have to be in the field to talk about someone's work/research/option. The whole public money thing aside, this really isn't a road to be on. When you box in your "group" you get drift from the main stream. I really like that mentality, only people on my field can judge me. Somehow I doubt they default to their medical doctor under the same pretense. Or matters of economics or military. Goes right back to the elitism. I know better than you, how dare you challenge me.
    I know your not clinging to this idea that scientist are above agendas because that's just ridiculous.
    There is always a motivate, always a reason. And by some act of god, you find this pure of heart scientist who's self funded, I would be excited to read his studies. But I'm also waiting to win the lotto, my chickens to lay golden eggs, and the fields to plant themselves.
    I guess all the agenda behind promoting AGW fell on deaf ears. Your own leaders of the movement words weren't enough. At some point, people will figure out this out. You can't insulate these studies enough. I just hope the blowback doesn't take all the good in an attempt to right the bad.

  9. #2239
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    Default Re: Global Warming?

    Quote Originally Posted by toppop52 View Post
    Problem is almost none of today's pro man caused global warming is without the taint of agendists, for that matter neither is the science of those opposed. So you act based on that and maybe cause untold catastrophes. Almost nobody doesn't believe the earth had a warming period recently, most of us just believe it's the same natural cycles that have gone on time immemorial.
    Actually your actions are determined at birth and it's very unlikely logic or rational thought will persuade.

  10. #2240
    Elite Member /pine's Avatar
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    Default More in re. Crichton...

    Because of Crichton's views on climate change he would naturally be a target of the over zealous al gore disciples...
    It is typical for the misguided to attempt to discredit or neutralize anyone with opposing views...

    Crichton spent hundreds of hours in top level research labs...more time than he spent at a word processor writing the novels that were based on facts and discoveries that top tier research labs were working on...He was very familiar with laboratories, research scientists and students...read some of the forwards and "author's notes" in his books...

    I hardly think that comparing him to a politically/commercially oriented, misguided jackass like al gore (that is credited with falsely taking credit for "inventing the Internet") who is nothing more than a profiteer that preys on the gullible and naive is ludicrous at best...Granted, he (Crichton) was not another Einstein but he was a scientist who fully understood top tier research science and all the associated (funding) machinations.

    As a matter of fact, and fodder for the al gore Henny Penny's and a number of respected but misguided fellow scientists...Crichton was one of the original detractors (and targets) of the established AGW theory and it's advocates.(remember there was a time when the consortium of "scientists" thought the world was flat)...

    Crichton extended and expanded his views on the subject (climate change) in his work of fiction 'State of Fear'...needless to say he received much scorn and discrediting from "the industry" which even at that time (2004) was significant. BTW...This is one of the few novels of Crichton's I have not read...

    Below are some of Crichtons thoughts on the subject...(remember, from 2004)

    A novel such as State of Fear, in which so many divergent views are expressed, may lead the reader to wonder where, exactly, the author stands on these issues. I have been reading environmental texts for three years, in itself a hazardous undertaking. But I have had an opportunity to look at a lot of data, and to consider many points of view. I conclude:


    We know astonishingly little about every aspect of the environment, from its past history, to its present state, to how to conserve and protect it. In every debate, all sides overstate the extent of existing knowledge and its degree of certainty.

    Atmospheric carbon dioxide is increasing, and human activity is the probable cause.

    We are also in the midst of a natural warming trend that began about 1850, as we emerged from a four-hundred-year cold spell known as the 髀訴ttle Ice Age.

    Nobody knows how much of the present warming trend might be a natural phenomenon.

    Nobody knows how much of the present warming trend might be man-made.

    Nobody knows how much warming will occur in the next century. The computer models vary by 400 percent, de facto proof that nobody knows. But if I had to guess only thing anyone is doing, really I would guess the increase will be 0.812436 degrees C. There is no evidence that my guess about the state of the world one hundred years from now is any better or worse than anyone else. (We cant assess the future, nor can we edict it. These are euphemisms. We can only guess. An informed guess is just a guess.)

    I suspect that part of the observed surface warming will ultimately be attributable to human activity. I suspect that the principal human effect will come from land use, and that the atmospheric component will be minor.

    Before making expensive policy decisions on the basis of climate models, I think it is reasonable to require that those models predict future temperatures accurately for a period of ten years. Twenty would be better.

    I think for anyone to believe in impending resource scarcity, after two hundred years of such false alarms, is kind of weird. I don't know whether such a belief today is best ascribed to ignorance of history, sclerotic dogmatism, unhealthy love of Malthus, or simple pigheadedness, but it is evidently a hardy perennial in human calculation.

    There are many reasons to shift away from fossil fuels, and we will do so in the next century without legislation, financial incentives, carbon-conservation programs, or the interminable yammering of fearmongers. So far as I know, nobody had to ban horse transport in the early twentieth century.

    I suspect the people of 2100 will be much richer than we are, consume more energy, have a smaller global population, and enjoy more wilderness than we have today. I don't think we have to worry about them.

    The current near-hysterical preoccupation with safety is at best a waste of resources and a crimp on the human spirit, and at worst an invitation to totalitarianism. Public education is desperately needed.

    I conclude that most environmental principles (such as sustainable development or the precautionary principle) have the effect of preserving the economic advantages of the West and thus constitute modern imperialism toward the developing world. It is a nice way of saying, we got ours and we don't want you to get yours, because you cause too much pollution.

    The precautionary principle, properly applied, forbids the precautionary principle. It is self-contradictory. The precautionary principle therefore cannot be spoken of in terms that are too harsh.

    I believe people are well intentioned. But I have great respect for the corrosive influence of bias, systematic distortions of thought, the power of rationalization, the guises of self-interest, and the inevitability of unintended consequences.

    I have more respect for people who change their views after acquiring new information than for those who cling to views they held thirty years ago. The world changes. Ideologues and zealots don't

    In the thirty-five-odd years since the environmental movement came into existence, science has undergone a major revolution. This revolution has brought new understanding of nonlinear dynamics, complex systems, chaos theory, catastrophe theory. It has transformed the way we think about evolution and ecology. Yet these no-longer-new ideas have hardly penetrated the thinking of environmental activists, which seems oddly fixed in the concepts and rhetoric of the 1970s.

    We have not the foggiest notion how to preserve what we term wilderness, and we had better study it in the field and learn how to do so. I see no evidence that we are conducting such research in a humble, rational, and systematic way. I therefore hold little hope for wilderness management in the twenty-first century. I blame environmental organizations every bit as much as developers and strip miners. There is no difference in outcomes between greed and incompetence.

    We need a new environmental movement, with new goals and new organizations. We need more people working in the field, in the actual environment, and fewer people behind computer screens. We need more scientists and many fewer lawyers.

    We cannot hope to manage a complex system such as the environment through litigation. We can only change its state temporarily-usually by preventing something with eventual results that we cannot predict and ultimately cannot control.

    Nothing is more inherently political than our shared physical environment, and nothing is more ill served by allegiance to a single political party. Precisely because the environment is shared it cannot be managed by one faction according to its own economic or aesthetic preferences. Sooner or later, the opposing faction will take power, and previous policies will be reversed.

    Stable management of the environment requires recognition that all preferences have their place: snowmobilers and fly fishermen, dirt bikers and hikers, developers and preservationists. These preferences are at odds, and their incompatibility cannot be avoided. But resolving incompatible goals is a true function of politics.

    We desperately need a nonpartisan, blinded funding mechanism to conduct research to determine appropriate policy. Scientists are only too aware whom they are working for. Those who fund researches whether a drug company, a government agency, or an environmental organization always have a particular outcome in mind. Research funding is almost never open-ended or open-minded. Scientists know that continued funding depends on delivering the results the funders desire. As a result, environmental organization studies are every bit as biased and suspect as industry attitudes.

    Government studies are similarly biased according to who is running the department or administration at the time. No faction should be given a free pass.

    I am certain there is too much certainty in the world.

    I personally experience a profound pleasure being in nature. My happiest days each year are those I spend in wilderness. I wish natural environments to be preserved for future generations. I am not satisfied they will be preserved in sufficient quantities, or with sufficient skill. I conclude that the exploiters of the environment include environmental organizations, government organizations, and big business. All have equally dismal track records.

    Everybody has an agenda. Except me.


    Again for more of his views and more of his experience with research science, research scientists and their studies...read the forwards and notes in his books...and there's always google (and of course I.T.'s Alma mater, wikipedia)
    Slash Pine
    blunt and succinct but sincere...in the immortal words of Popeye..."I yam what I yam"

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