Global Warming/Climate Change, the Science.

#1
OK to not drag the other thread off topic I've opened this one.

Theres so much so called science quoted about this phenomena that I thought I'd put this up. Its a bit long I know but please try and read it all then think about it. Then lets start flinging the scientific papers around.

Imagine that there is a new scientific theory that warns of an impending crisis, and points to
a way out.

This theory quickly draws support from leading scientists, politicians, and celebrities around
the world. Research is funded by distinguished philanthropies, and carried out at prestigious
universities. The crisis is reported frequently in the media. The science is taught in college
and high school classrooms.

I don’t mean global warming. I’m talking about another theory, which rose to prominence a
century ago.

Its supporters included Theodore Roosevelt, Woodrow Wilson, and Winston Churchill. It
was approved by Supreme Court justices Oliver Wendell Holmes and Louis Brandeis, who
ruled in its favor. The famous names who supported it included Alexander Graham Bell,
inventor of the telephone; activist Margaret Sanger; botanist Luther Burbank; Leland
Stanford, founder of Stanford University; the novelist H. G. Wells; the playwright George
Bernard Shaw; and hundreds of others. Nobel Prize winners gave support. Research was
backed by the Carnegie and Rockefeller Foundations. The Cold Springs Harbor Institute
was built to carry out this research, but important work was also done at Harvard, Yale,
Princeton, Stanford, and Johns Hopkins. Legislation to address the crisis was passed in states
from New York to California.
These efforts had the support of the National Academy of Sciences, the American Medical
Association, and the National Research Council. It was said that if Jesus were alive, he would
have supported this effort.

All in all, the research, legislation, and molding of public opinion surrounding the theory
went on for almost half a century. Those who opposed the theory were shouted down and
called reactionary, blind to reality, or just plain ignorant. But in hindsight, what is surprising
is that so few people objected.

Today, we know that this famous theory that gained so much support was actually
pseudoscience. The crisis it claimed was nonexistent. And the actions taken in the name of
this theory were morally and criminally wrong. Ultimately, they led to the deaths of millions
of people.

The theory was eugenics, and its history is so dreadful—and, to those who were caught up in
it, so embarrassing—that it is now rarely discussed. But it is a story that should be well
known to every citizen, so that its horrors are not repeated.

The theory of eugenics postulated a crisis of the gene pool leading to the deterioration of the
human race. The best human beings were not breeding as rapidly as the inferior ones—the
foreigners, immigrants, Jews, degenerates, the unfit, and the “feeble minded.” Francis
Galton, a respected British scientist, first speculated about this area, but his ideas were taken
far beyond anything he intended. They were adopted by science-minded Americans, as well
as those who had no interest in science but who were worried about the immigration of
inferior races early in the twentieth century—“dangerous human pests” who represented “the
rising tide of imbeciles” and who were polluting the best of the human race.

The eugenicists and the immigrationists joined forces to put a stop to this. The plan was to
identify individuals who were feeble-minded—Jews were agreed to be largely feeble-minded,
but so were many foreigners, as well as blacks—and stop them from breeding by isolation in
institutions or by sterilization.

As Margaret Sanger said, “Fostering the good-for-nothing at the expense of the good is an
extreme cruelty…there is no greater curse to posterity than that of bequeathing them an
increasing population of imbeciles.” She spoke of the burden of caring for “this dead weight
of human waste.”
Such views were widely shared. H. G. Wells spoke against “ill-trained swarms of inferior
citizens.” Theodore Roosevelt said that “Society has no business to permit degenerates to
reproduce their kind.” Luther Burbank: “Stop permitting criminals and weaklings to
reproduce.” George Bernard Shaw said that only eugenics could save mankind.

There was overt racism in this movement, exemplified by texts such as The Rising Tide of
Color Against White World Supremacy, by American author Lothrop Stoddard. But, at the
time, racism was considered an unremarkable aspect of the effort to attain a marvelous
goal—the improvement of humankind in the future. It was this avant-garde notion that
attracted the most liberal and progressive minds of a generation. California was one of
twenty-nine American states to pass laws allowing sterilization, but it proved the most
forward-looking and enthusiastic—more sterilizations were carried out in California than
anywhere else in America.

Eugenics research was funded by the Carnegie Foundation, and later by the Rockefeller
Foundation. The latter was so enthusiastic that even after the center of the eugenics effort
moved to Germany, and involved the gassing of individuals from mental institutions, the
Rockefeller Foundation continued to finance German researchers at a very high level. (The
foundation was quiet about it, but they were still funding research in 1939, only months
before the onset of World War II.)
Since the 1920s, American eugenicists had been jealous because the Germans had taken
leadership of the movement away from them. The Germans were admirably progressive.
They set up ordinary-looking houses where “mental defectives” were brought and
interviewed one at a time, before being led into a back room, which was, in fact, a gas
chamber. There, they were gassed with carbon monoxide, and their bodies disposed of in a
crematorium located on the property.

Eventually, this program was expanded into a vast network of concentration camps located
near railroad lines, enabling the efficient transport and killing of ten million undesirables.
After World War II, nobody was a eugenicist, and nobody had ever been a eugenicist.
Biographers of the celebrated and the powerful did not dwell on the attractions of this
philosphy to their subjects, and sometimes did not mention it at all. Eugenics ceased to be a
subject for college classrooms, although some argue that its ideas continue to have currency
in disguised form.

But in retrospect, three points stand out. First, despite the construction of Cold Springs
Harbor Laboratory, despite the efforts at universities and the pleadings of lawyers, there was
no scientific basis for eugenics. In fact, nobody at that time knew what a gene really was. The
movement was able to proceed because it employed vague terms never rigorously defined.
“Feeble-mindedness” could mean anything from poverty and illiteracy to epilepsy. Similarly,
there was no clear definition of “degenerate” or “unfit.” Second, the eugenics movement was
really a social program masquerading as a scientific one. What drove it was concern about
immigration and racism and undesirable people moving into one’s neighborhood or country.

Once again, vague terminology helped conceal what was really going on.

Third, and most distressing, the scientific establishment in both the United States and
Germany did not mount any sustained protest. Quite the contrary. In Germany scientists
quickly fell into line with the program. Modern German researchers have gone back to
review Nazi documents from the 1930s. They expected to find directives telling scientists
what research should be done. But none were necessary. In the words of Ute Deichman,
“Scientists, including those who were not members of the [Nazi] party, helped to get funding
for their work through their modified behavior and direct cooperation with the state.”
Deichman speaks of the “active role of scientists themselves in regard to Nazi race
policy…where [research] was aimed at confirming the racial doctrine…no external pressure
can be documented.” German scientists adjusted their research interests to the new policies.
And those few who did not adjust disappeared.
A second example of politicized science is quite different in character, but it exemplifies the
hazards of government ideology controlling the work of science, and of uncritical media
promoting false concepts. Trofim Denisovich Lysenko was a self-promoting peasant who, it
was said, “solved the problem of fertilizing the fields without fertilizers and minerals.” In
1928 he claimed to have invented a procedure called vernalization, by which seeds were
moistened and chilled to enhance the later growth of crops.

Lysenko’s methods never faced a rigorous test, but his claim that his treated seeds passed on
their characteristics to the next generation represented a revival of Lamarckian ideas at a time
when the rest of the world was embracing Mendelian genetics. Josef Stalin was drawn to
Lamarckian ideas, which implied a future unbounded by hereditary constraints; he also
wanted improved agricultural production. Lysenko promised both, and became the darling
of a Soviet media that was on the lookout for stories about clever peasants who had
developed revolutionary procedures.
Lysenko was portrayed as a genius, and he milked his celebrity for all it was worth. He was
especially skillful at denouncing his opponents. He used questionnaires from farmers to
prove that vernalization increased crop yields, and thus avoided any direct tests. Carried on a
wave of state-sponsored enthusiasm, his rise was rapid. By 1937, he was a member of the
Supreme Soviet.

By then, Lysenko and his theories dominated Russian biology. The result was famines that
killed millions, and purges that sent hundreds of dissenting Soviet scientists to the gulags or
the firing squads. Lysenko was aggressive in attacking genetics, which was finally banned as
“bourgeois pseudo-science” in 1948. There was never any basis for Lysenko’s ideas, yet he
controlled Soviet research for thirty years. Lysenkoism ended in the 1960s, but Russian
biology still has not entirely recovered from that era.
Now we are engaged in a great new theory, that once again has drawn the support of
politicians, scientists, and celebrities around the world. Once again, the theory is promoted
by major foundations. Once again, the research is carried out at prestigious universities.

Once again, legislation is passed and social programs are urged in its name. Once again,
critics are few and harshly dealt with.
Once again, the measures being urged have little basis in fact or science. Once again, groups
with other agendas are hiding behind a movement that appears high-minded. Once again,
claims of moral superiority are used to justify extreme actions. Once again, the fact that some
people are hurt is shrugged off because an abstract cause is said to be greater than any human
consequences. Once again, vague terms like sustainability and generational justice—terms
that have no agreed definition—are employed in the service of a new crisis.

I am not arguing that global warming is the same as eugenics. But the similarities are not
superficial. And I do claim that open and frank discussion of the data, and of the issues, is
being suppressed. Leading scientific journals have taken strong editorial positions on the side
of global warming, which, I argue, they have no business doing. Under the circumstances,
any scientist who has doubts understands clearly that they will be wise to mute their
expression.

One proof of this suppression is the fact that so many of the outspoken critics of global
warming are retired professors. These individuals are no longer seeking grants, and no longer
have to face colleagues whose grant applications and career advancement may be jeopardized
by their criticisms. In science, the old men are usually wrong. But in politics, the old men are
wise, counsel caution, and in the end are often right.
The past history of human belief is a cautionary tale. We have killed thousands of our fellow
human beings because we believed they had signed a contract with the devil, and had
become witches. We still kill more than a thousand people each year for witchcraft. In my
view, there is only one hope for humankind to emerge from what Carl Sagan called “the
demon-haunted world” of our past. That hope is science.
But as Alston Chase put it, “when the search for truth is confused with political advocacy,
the pursuit of knowledge is reduced to the quest for power.”

That is the danger we now face. And that is why the intermixing of science and politics is a
bad combination, with a bad history. We must remember the history, and be certain that
what we present to the world as knowledge is disinterested and honest.
 
#2
Iheard a professor of meteorology (can't remember which University) on Radio 4 a while ago explaining that the climate always changes and that the last time the world experienced similar climate/temperatures as we are today was in the mid-18th Centaury when there was no "global warming" to blame. He went on to say that the main driver of climate change was the Sun's activity. In essence pollution CO2 etc are not the cause of climate change, but that they probably don't help.
 
#3
In addition, there is a strong argument that CO2 levels rise as a direct result of warming. The higher the temperature the less CO2 remains dissolved in sea water. The average global temperature has always fluctuated - often widely without any impact from a largely irrelevant human population.

If aviation accounts for about 2% of green house gas emmissions - how about takling the other 98% before ruining my business and holidays?

I can fully understand why many British politicians are a bit wary about eugenics. I think I know where most of us would start the cull to improve the gene pool.
 
#6
The theory of eugenics postulated a crisis of the gene pool leading to the deterioration of the human race. The best human beings were not breeding as rapidly as the inferior ones
Anyone else reminded of the current belief that the worker bees (ie those that contribute to society) are not producing kids as fast as the Dole claiming bees? I think the current thinking was that one set had kids at 30 ish, and only two or three. Where as the other set had kids in their early 20s, and knocked out 4 -5... on average.

“Fostering the good-for-nothing at the expense of the good is an
extreme cruelty…there is no greater curse to posterity than that of bequeathing them an increasing population of imbeciles.” She spoke of the burden of caring for “this dead weight of human waste.”
Such views were widely shared. H. G. Wells spoke against “ill-trained swarms of inferior citizens.” Theodore Roosevelt said that “Society has no business to permit degenerates to reproduce their kind.” Luther Lurbank: “Stop permitting criminals and weaklings to reproduce.”

 
#7
As I said in the other thread... please go and read Real Climate.

It can be hard going at times (I'm no expert, but climate change influences my work so I have to be at least aware of the subject), but these lads are actually working on the subject (unlike Crichton who is a novelist FFS!) and back their comments up with reference to published science.

Note the contrast with "some bloke said on the radio/down the pub/in the Sunday Times" as is usually trotted out in debates like this.
 
#8
Bert_Preast said:
Ord_Sgt's quote is from Crichton's 'State of fear'. A novel.
Yes you are quite right but you fail to mention that he backs up his arguments with research. Read the appendix and not the book. That never the less does not change what is there. Eugenics took the world of science exactly as described.

I am not quoting anything from the novel, but the supporting scientific evidence. Try opening your mind not following blind dogma.

Have you read his speech about comparing enviromentalism to religion? Very revealing.
 
#9
Ord_Sgt said:
Bert_Preast said:
Ord_Sgt's quote is from Crichton's 'State of fear'. A novel.
Yes you are quite right but you fail to mention that he backs up his arguments with research. Read the appendix and not the book. That never the less does not change what is there. Eugenics took the world of science exactly as described.

I am not quoting anything from the novel, but the supporting scientific evidence. Try opening your mind not following blind dogma.

Have you read his speech about comparing enviromentalism to religion? Very revealing.
and I'm sure he will get a rousing reception here

they will probably pay him $10K to come....
 
#10
Ord_Sgt said:
Bert_Preast said:
Ord_Sgt's quote is from Crichton's 'State of fear'. A novel.
Yes you are quite right but you fail to mention that he backs up his arguments with research. Read the appendix and not the book. That never the less does not change what is there. Eugenics took the world of science exactly as described.

I am not quoting anything from the novel, but the supporting scientific evidence. Try opening your mind not following blind dogma.

Have you read his speech about comparing enviromentalism to religion? Very revealing.
Backs his arguments up with research? Yes - just the research is carefully selected to make his point, and bears no relation to what respected scientists are coming out with. Why should I open my mind to ranting loonies with agendas? That makes you insane, not open minded. Crichton's books sell loads because of the controversy surrounding him - controversy he creates.

If you want mind opening gear stick to Whyohwhy's documents from the Royal Society linked above.
 
#11
Schleswig-Holstein said:
Ord_Sgt said:
Bert_Preast said:
Ord_Sgt's quote is from Crichton's 'State of fear'. A novel.
Yes you are quite right but you fail to mention that he backs up his arguments with research. Read the appendix and not the book. That never the less does not change what is there. Eugenics took the world of science exactly as described.

I am not quoting anything from the novel, but the supporting scientific evidence. Try opening your mind not following blind dogma.

Have you read his speech about comparing enviromentalism to religion? Very revealing.
and I'm sure he will get a rousing reception here

they will probably pay him $10K to come....
The problem with your argument is that you start from the position that anybody not an enviromentalist scientist has no valid argument.

We are all open to persuasion on this subject but blindly telling us we are simply wrong is nothing more than fundamentalism. Think about it.

I'm reading through your link as we speak but you need to argue with facts about your case. Dismissing another point of view because it was put by someone who writes novels doesn't help your case. Debunk his research not dismiss him in the haughty voice of someone who knows best.
 
#12
Bert_Preast said:
Ord_Sgt said:
Bert_Preast said:
Ord_Sgt's quote is from Crichton's 'State of fear'. A novel.
Yes you are quite right but you fail to mention that he backs up his arguments with research. Read the appendix and not the book. That never the less does not change what is there. Eugenics took the world of science exactly as described.

I am not quoting anything from the novel, but the supporting scientific evidence. Try opening your mind not following blind dogma.

Have you read his speech about comparing enviromentalism to religion? Very revealing.
Backs his arguments up with research? Yes - just the research is carefully selected to make his point, and bears no relation to what respected scientists are coming out with. Why should I open my mind to ranting loonies with agendas? That makes you insane, not open minded. Crichton's books sell loads because of the controversy surrounding him - controversy he creates.

If you want mind opening gear stick to Whyohwhy's documents from the Royal Society linked above.
But that is precisely what you are doing. Give me evidence not opinion.
 
#14
Ord_Sgt said:
We are all open to persuasion on this subject but blindly telling us we are simply wrong is nothing more than fundamentalism. Think about it.
I'm blindly telling you Crichton's wrong. Because I'm a clueless twat rather than a scientist. But if you're bright enough to grasp what the scientists waffle on about, you'll find there are plenty out there debunking Crichton point by point. Even though they have rather more important things to be doing with their time these days.
 
#16
Bert_Preast said:
I'd say the Royal Society's writings could be classed as evidence. And Crichton's could be classed as novels.
But nobody is quoting his novels. Show me what I've said thats not true?

You are attacking the messenger and not the message, not a good argument.
 
#17
Schleswig-Holstein said:
Ord_Sgt said:
Why should I open my mind to ranting loonies with agendas?

But that is precisely what you are doing. Give me evidence not opinion.
Let me get this right - you are saying that the Royal Soc are "ranting loonies with agendas?" :roll:
Not at all but there are plenty out there in the 'Green' movement who are which muddies the water somewhat. I'm asking for clear scientific proof that we are causing global warning.
 
#18
Ord_Sgt said:
Bert_Preast said:
I'd say the Royal Society's writings could be classed as evidence. And Crichton's could be classed as novels.
But nobody is quoting his novels. Show me what I've said thats not true?

You are attacking the messenger and not the message, not a good argument.
I'm not attacking you at all. If your message is that Crichton has a point, then yes I'll attack that. Crichton's wrong, and the quote of his you used in the opening post is supposed to mean what exactly? We should ignore science and listen to artists as scientists have possibly been wrong before?
 
#19
Ord_Sgt said:
Not at all but there are plenty out there in the 'Green' movement who are which muddies the water somewhat. I'm asking for clear scientific proof that we are causing global warning.
No denying there are ranting loonies out there on the green side too. Doesn't mean the Royal Society are wrong though.

If you want scientific proof I suggest you look for it in the same place you'd look for scientific proof of gravity. There isn't any - but what there is is a shedload of evidence and well thought out conclusions that draw on the evidence.

For the layman you just have to look at a city like Athens on a hot summer day. Blurry, isn't it? And the air's stinking. Can't be good for you, really.
 
#20
Bert_Preast said:
Ord_Sgt said:
Bert_Preast said:
I'd say the Royal Society's writings could be classed as evidence. And Crichton's could be classed as novels.
But nobody is quoting his novels. Show me what I've said thats not true?

You are attacking the messenger and not the message, not a good argument.
I'm not attacking you at all. If your message is that Crichton has a point, then yes I'll attack that. Crichton's wrong, and the quote of his you used in the opening post is supposed to mean what exactly? We should ignore science and listen to artists as scientists have possibly been wrong before?
No the point, I though clearly, was that when science is hijacked for political agendas you need to be sceptical.

This is exactly what is happening with the global warming science. A lot of is is speculative at best.

Computer models are a prime example. I use one every day and it can sometimes be spectacularly wrong, but people in my industry take it as gospel. That is putting faith in something that is manifestly wrong on occasions.

I'm not saying you are wrong but trying to shout down an opposing viewpoint is not evidence.

Stop thinking this is about Crichton, its not, I simply took his Eugenics comments to illustrate the point.
 

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