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Incriminating? Stupid? Both?

November 30, 2009

Following up on the CRU email post from yesterday, the Sunday Times has a column called “Flushing Out the High Priests of Climate Change,” in which he argues that the behavior of scientists involved in the controversy “is not necessarily incriminating, but it is stupid.”

…You can hardly blame busy scientists who have spent their lives amassing a pile of data, which they have interpreted in their own way, for not wanting to release it to people who want to rubbish it. Still, release it they should, and it is up to the scientific establishment to set out better ground rules and insist on more openness. The problem is that establishment science has no means of engaging with outsiders in the blogging age. It needs to wake up.

No wonder the public is confused. No wonder journalists have a choice between waiting for the occasional tablet of stone from the keepers of the global warming flame, or joining the newer, hipper fraternity of bloggers who snigger about ManBearPig, the bogus global warming monster in South Park’s skit on Al Gore. This polarisation means that a considered view on global warming is much harder to achieve, so in the end people simply go for the belief that feels right for them.
Working scientists may be grumpy about the unfairness, but far higher standards are expected of them than of the rude blogger-sceptics who are crowing about the embarrassment.
Tough. They should get over it. If the high priests of global warming want to convince us that we could face a man-made rise of 4C in the global temperature this century, then they have to engage with their critics instead of hiding away in their ivory towers.

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