Saturday, December 26, 2009

The Lap Dog Media and "Climategate"

I have been holding off in giving comment to the recent "Climategate" emails for the simple fact that the emails themselves were received by people like myself with a "Well of course." reaction. I was more interested in how the shills in the media would spin this and shift the scrutinizing eyes from the supposed "consensus of scientists" who were obviously guilty of fraud, to the people or person who broke the story.

This is precisely the sort of treatment to be expected when these sort of revelations come to the light of day, and climategate is no exception. In an AP article entitled "E-Mails don't undercut science" I believe we have a shining example of what lap dog media looks like.

I shall give a blow by blow evaluation of this piece (quotes from the article will appear in Blue), my reasoning primarily is to put on display how propaganda works. Also, I use the George Orwell phrase "doublethink" a few times if you do not know what the term means the wikipedia definition including Orwell's own definition from 1984 can be found here. The entirety of the AP article can be read here. That said I will begin my assessment, the article begins as follows:

"LONDON — E-mails stolen from climate scientists show they stonewalled skeptics and discussed hiding data — but the messages don't support claims that the science of global warming was faked, according to an exhaustive review by The Associated Press."

The first thing that stands out is the word "stolen", from the outset you are to get an opinion of who the real criminals are, namely the individual(s) that brought these emails to the light of day. Furthermore note the doublespeak, the sentence cites the fact that within the emails the scientists discussed "hiding data" (that made their claims less than convincing) but this fact doesn't indicate any fakery. Sure they may have talked about cooking the books and molding the data a bit but that doesn't discredit their claims. This is truly Orwellian double think.

"The 1,073 e-mails examined by the AP show that scientists harbored private doubts, however slight and fleeting, even as they told the world they were certain about climate change. However, the exchanges don't undercut the vast body of evidence showing the world is warming because of man-made greenhouse gas emissions."

Yet again, we have to engage in double think to swallow this rather distasteful elixir. It is announced that the scientists admit to having doubts, these are described as slight and fleeting by the AP. I wonder how the AP was able to determine the intensity of the internal doubts these scientists harbored simply through reading their emails. Furthermore, there is as always a reference to a "vast body of evidence" that warming is man made, this of course begs the question in light of the fact that this body of evidence comes from guys who talked about intentionally fudging data, and even doubt their own claims.

"The scientists were keenly aware of how their work would be viewed and used, and, just like politicians, went to great pains to shape their message. Sometimes, they sounded more like schoolyard taunts than scientific tenets."

I found this passage to be absolutely hilarious. I think it is supposed to comfort us that scientists in presenting their "findings" are just behaving like politicians. We are all used to politicians crafting a pack of lies, so well, the modern scientist should be viewed like Bush, Clinton, or Obama, you know they're lying but we are all expected to engage in the fiction that they mean what they say. Well, science is now kind of like politics, by its definition full of falsehoods and empty platitudes, this again is an attempt to reassure us that what these emails contain is no big deal, we see these sort of games all the time in the world of politics, therefore we should just accept them.

We are then introduced to an expert (Frankel), who again attempts to placate us stating:

"Frankel saw "no evidence of falsification or fabrication of data, although concerns could be raised about some instances of very 'generous interpretations.'"

So again we are back to double think, 1.There is NO EVIDENCE of falsehoods yet, 2.We can be concerned over "Very Generous interpretations"....Hmm, one would think that if someone knowingly gave a "very generous interpretation" that would be synonymous with fabricating data. I read stuff like this and what amazes me most is that this sort of propaganda actually works. One has to suspend reason for the above statement to seem coherent and consistent.

The article continues:

"One of the most disturbing elements suggests an effort to avoid sharing scientific data with critics skeptical of global warming. It is not clear if any data was destroyed; two U.S. researchers denied it."

Ok, this statement is an honest assessment of the material found within the emails, the scientists in the good ol boys club who roll with the UN and the likes of Al Gore had some data they thought it worth their while to keep from those who reject the man made global warming theory. Furthermore, given the already cited dishonesty of these fellows why should we trust their claim that they never destroyed like data they didn't want public?

"The e-mails show that several mainstream scientists [sic] repeatedly suggested keeping their research materials away from opponents who sought it under American and British public records law. It raises a science ethics question because free access to data is important so others can repeat experiments as part of the scientific method. The University of East Anglia is investigating the blocking of information requests."

This again can stand on its own, the scientists (in a looser sense of the word) state that they had data they didn't want scientists holding to rival theories to get a hold of. This again is dishonesty, yet we are supposed to view the findings of scientists like a papal decree...the majority has spoken, sit down and shut up. This shows how shaky this sort of science is, it is based upon mob rule rather than hard empiricism. That being the case the mob in favor with the powers that be and part of the inner circle or round table must keep a tight lid over undesired information, lest the unwashed masses of independent scientists get a hold of it.

The article then unfortunately goes on and tries to justify hiding data. It then gives an attempt to justify the clear vitriol for the scientists who are skeptical of the anointed theory. Ultimately when attempting to justify dubious behavior it is always best to invoke "experts":

"As part of the AP review, summaries of the e-mails that raised issues from the potential manipulation of data to intensely personal attacks were sent to seven experts in research ethics, climate science and science policy.

"This is normal science politics, but on the extreme end, though still within bounds," said Dan Sarewitz, a science policy professor at Arizona State University. "We talk about science as this pure ideal and the scientific method as if it is something out of a cookbook, but research is a social and human activity full of all the failings of society and humans, and this reality gets totally magnified by the high political stakes here."

The experts on "research ethics" have spoken, let us humbly submit to their proclamations. Given the fact that these fellows no doubt have no objective reference point to guide their ethical judgements their proclamations are rather weightless. All we can conclude is that some "experts in ethics" have put their crayons to paper and determined that no ethical wrongdoing has taken place.

I suppose this would mean that lying, hiding findings, and hating people who disagree with your position are all within the boundaries of upright behaviour when it comes to research. We should however accept their statements about the political nature of science, and this indeed murkies the waters. Anytime something becomes political the incentive to lie and spin comes to life.

We must also accept the proclamation that science is far less objective then we often think, a lesson my Atheist friends would do well to heed. It is chalked full of subjective agents, with their own wants and needs necessarily coming to bear on their findings. This is particularly true in the soft sciences (Anthropology, Sociology, Psychology, Archeology, and Climate science) harder sciences are less prone to this sort of fudging as they really can fully apply the scientific method these would include (Mathematics, Physics, Chemistry etc). It is sciences of the softer variety that we seem to receive an embarrassing amount of crack pot theories that are held due to the necessary mob rule that reigns in these sciences.

This following excerpt is another great example of how propaganda works given the Left vs Right false paradigm we are all supposed to accept:

"In the past three weeks since the e-mails were posted, longtime opponents of mainstream climate science [sic] have repeatedly quoted excerpts of about a dozen e-mails. Republican congressmen and former vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin have called for either independent investigations, a delay in U.S. Environmental Protection Agency regulation of greenhouse gases or outright boycotts of the Copenhagen international climate talks. They cited a "culture of corruption" that the e-mails appeared to show.

That is not what the AP found. There were signs of trying to present the data as convincingly as possible."

This is the ace of spades the establishment can always throw out no matter what the issue. Why was it necessary to tell the reader that the congressmen who have cited these damning emails were "Republicans"? Why do the writers of this article have to bring up Sarah Palin and her doubts of the IPCC's findings?

The answer is simple, to make it a partisan issue. Almost everybody sees Sarah Palin as an uneducated rube, so in order to discredit the sensible reaction that these emails indicate fraud in the research the climate change posse has been putting forth, you bring up Sarah Palin and her opinion. This makes it a left vs. right issue, thus inherently pitting people on one side or other given which brand of soda they like to purchase. Link a position to Sarah Palin and every sensible person will out of respect for his own intellectual dignity want to react and say, "Well if she holds to X then I DO NOT."

Its a simple game, and again it is rather amazing that it continues to work.

Furthermore note in the above quote that it says that the emails only "appear" to show fraud. We just went through a number of citations where I don't know how one can read them as anything but fraud, yet we are to conclude that they merely appear to be engaged in fraud...after all we have to look at all of this in context.

The AP has not found fraud, just trying to present the "data as convincingly as possible". Well this of course begs the question as the reliability of the data is the very thing being questioned, and the very thing that the scientist's comments within the emails show that we should indeed question. All in all this is a very delicate way of saying the AP found that, "The scientists were cooking the books and trying to convince people of something of which the evidence is questionable."

That is what it should say were we not dealing with a lap dog media shilling for the establishment.

"None of the e-mails flagged by the AP and sent to three climate scientists viewed as moderates [sic] in the field changed their view that global warming is man-made and a threat. Nor did it alter their support of the conclusions of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, which some of the scientists helped write."

Funny that these guys after reading their buddies emails didn't change their minds, this again is supposed to show us that there is nothing in the emails that should cause us to question the integrity of the findings given by these scientists after all "moderates" didn't change their minds and if anybody would it would be them.

""In my opinion the meaning is much more innocent than might be perceived by others taken out of context. Much of this is overblown," North said."

I am wondering what context statements like "hide the decline" (referencing temperature) can be seen as innocent in solid scientific research. I love it when appeals to context are made in an attempt to justify the unjustifiable.

To conclude, I see articles like this as great examples of propaganda. The media comes to the aid of a rightfully tottering establishment policy, giving simply absurd reasonings for why we should give the establishment our unwavering support. The issue of man made global warming is rather moot to me, it is ridiculous on its face. The fact that calling Co2 a pollutant, and the remedy is to tax its output, smells like a con-game and a power play is probably because it is.

Christians should be on the front lines of real environmentalism as we know who made the earth and we know to whom the beauty of nature testifies. We are called to be good stewards of the planet and to take care of it. Yet this kind of alarmism and fear mongering based upon dubious science with the solution being global governance should be rightly rejected.

1 comment:

The Old Geezer said...

interesting blog
God bless you