Home » Intelligent Design » Climate Nazi to Fellow Researcher: “No Data for You!”

Climate Nazi to Fellow Researcher: “No Data for You!”

For those still clinging to the risible notion that scientists are above petty self-interest there is this.  Note especially this response from a leading climate researcher to another researcher’s request for his raw data:  “Why should I make the data available to you, when your aim is to try and find something wrong with it?”

 Science is not, as some would have it, an automatically self-correcting enterprise.  As with every other human intellectual endeavor, science has entrenched orthodoxies that seek to perpetuate themselves at all costs.

 Note to non-US readers:  The title does not refer to German National Socialists.  It is an allusion to a famous Seinfeld episode.  See here.

Update:  

Berlinski is scintillating on the silly notion that unlike other mere mortals, scientists are eager to accept criticism. Go  Here.  HT to Joseph.

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16 Responses to Climate Nazi to Fellow Researcher: “No Data for You!”

  1. No primoridal soup for you!

    Science is objective. The problem is that scientists are not, and they often allow their own prejudices and ideologies to color their research.

  2. James Watson and Francis Crick who arguably solved the biggest puzzle in 20th century biology had the opposite attitude. Crick in a BBC interview after receiving the noble prize said:

    “A good scientist values criticism almost higher than friendship: no, in science criticism is the height and measure of friendship.” source

    “There will be no Nobel Prize soup for you!”

  3. absolutist,

    What is said and what is practiced are not always the same thing.

    David Berlinski weighs in on science and criticism. (play the video)

  4. Joseph,

    Thanks. Berlinski’s mathematics and philosophy background makes him very insightful. I so enjoyed his nonchalant posture (slouching in his chair in his Paris apartment) in No Intelligence Allowed.
    He is so right. The science that says you can only gain knowledge via the five senses is not even close to answering life’s most important questions.

  5. “It must be remembered that there is nothing more difficult to plan, more doubtful of success, nor more dangerous to manage than the creation of a new system. For the initiator has the emnity of all who would profit by the preservation of the old institutions and merely lukewarm defenders in those who would gain by the new ones”.

    Machiavelli

  6. For what it is worth, I have met genuinely humble scientists who brought credit to science – but they were usually experimentalists or medical scientists.

    They need to demonstrate their results in real time in the present day, not offer vague theories about what might have been “fit” for a cave dweller 100 000 years ago or a bacterium 4 million years ago – about which we have no true information.

    We cannot interview either subject – for differing reasons.

    Also (added later): The same applies to the future as to the past. Anyone can claim that some enviro-doom awaits us all and accumulate evidence in support of it. It helps to leave out evidence that doesn’t, I suppose.

    It would be cheaper and easier to go back to the legendary hirsute madman dressed in a “The End Is Near” sandwich board, but maybe not quite as much interest, as no one takes him seriously, by definition.

    I lived through the Cold War. I am familiar with an apocalypse that never happened. That does NOT mean that apocalypses can’t happen. It does mean we must be really careful when deciding how and why they might, and “climate Nazis” sure are not much of a help.

  7. If the National Review says it, it is definitely trustworthy and expressed without bias, no doubt about it.

  8. Another difference in scientists is their particular field of study. SETI scientists don’t have to produce anything, and can speculate endlessly without anyone ever asking them to hand in their diplomas. Same with some scientists who make a career out of evolution; we might never know if their right. This also applies to paleoanthropologists who argue endlessly over the interpretations of human fossils.
    In my field, electronics, it either works or it doesn’t, not much room for debate there.

  9. gleaner63,

    You sure got that right.

    Most people understand science as a help to understanding life, especially human life or the lives of animals humans care about or the environment in which we all live.

    That’s why electronics research or medical/veterinary research or attempts to find a dark matter particle must actually work .

    Few will intentionally fund a failure with elaborate excuses.

  10. Mrs. O’Leary,

    Michael Crichton has an interesting take on the famous “Drake Equation” in his essay “Aliens Cause Global Warming”. Also in his book, Sphere, there is an interesting conversation bewteen a biologist, astrophysicist, mathematician and a psychologist, in regard to soft science vs. hard science. They get into a debate on epistemology and the relevance of each of their disciplines.

  11. They need to demonstrate their results in real time in the present day, not offer vague theories about what might have been “fit” for a cave dweller 100 000 years ago or a bacterium 4 million years ago – about which we have no true information.

    I agree that there a lot of theoretical science can be a bit vague on the details, but isn’t this sort of science useful in giving us a general idea of what can happen? It helps us understand the underlying mechanisms and what they can and can’t achieve.

  12. Anthony09,

    Do you think that you might hear something like this on NPR, The New York Times, The Nation, or MSNBC, all claiming to be purveyors of news? Please.

    –all the opinion fit to print or broadcast.

  13. toc, there might be a reason for that.

  14. Heinrich:

    “I agree that there a lot of theoretical science can be a bit vague on the details, but isn’t this sort of science useful in giving us a general idea of what can happen?”

    Theoretical science is very good, but that’s not what is being discussed. Theoretical science approaches science mathematically, and tries to show the structure of what can happen.

    What’s happening here is conjectural science, where there is no modeling of anything known or real, and is just an expression of prejudice.

    We have no usable information whatsoever about what would be fit for any organism tens or hundreds of millions of years in the past. We have vague clues, but any conclusions drawn depend not on theoretical biology, but merely prejudicial inferences.

    Theoretical science scans out the structure of a problem, and presents what we do and don’t know, and how that can affect the structure. When conclusions are drawn without evidence, that means that the gaps identified in the theoretical science were merely filled in with prejudice.

  15. johnnyb – are you a pseudonym for Mrs. O’Leary?

    I don’t think your argument holds, though. How can “vague theories” mot be theoretical science?

    Theoretical science scans out the structure of a problem, and presents what we do and don’t know, and how that can affect the structure.

    Such a structure still needs information about the object under study: one can scan out many structures, but if they don’t fit the real-world structure closely enough, they’re useless. And if, as you claim, we know nothing useful about ancient life, how do we know if a theory is useful in describing it?

    When conclusions are drawn without evidence, that means that the gaps identified in the theoretical science were merely filled in with prejudice.

    But if we have no evidence that theoretical science provides an appropriate model, then we are just using prejudice to assert its appropriateness.

  16. Bishop Hill popularly describes another major case of scientific misconduct in Briffa 2000 over alleged rapid global warming.
    The Yamal Implosion

    There is a great deal of excitement among climate sceptics over Steve McIntyre’s recent posting on Yamal. Several people have asked me to do a layman’s guide to the story in the manner of Caspar and the Jesus paper. Here it is.

    The story of Michael Mann’s Hockey Stick reconstruction, its statistical bias and the influence of the bristlecone pines is well known. McIntyre’s research into the other reconstructions has received less publicity, however. The story of the Yamal chronology may change that. . . . McIntyre therefore prepared a revised dataset, replacing Briffa’s selected 12 cores with the 34 from Khadyta River. The revised chronology was simply staggering. The sharp uptick in the series at the end of the twentieth century had vanished, leaving a twentieth century apparently without a significant trend. The blade of the Yamal hockey stick, used in so many of those temperature reconstructions that the IPCC said validated Michael Mann’s work, was gone.

    See articles on Yamal at WattsUpWithThat
    and the original blog Yamal: A “Divergence” Problem” at Climate Audit where “The second image below is, in my opinion, one of the most disquieting images ever presented at Climate Audit.” See:
    Yamal RCF chronologies

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