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The Climate Audit Paradigm

One of the interesting aspects of Climategate is that the website Climate Audit (www.climateaudit.org) has become a lot more prominent. For instance, here is a excerpt from an op-ed piece in the Wall Street Journal.

“This September, Mr. Mann told a New York Times reporter in one of the leaked emails that: “Those such as [Stephen] McIntyre who operate almost entirely outside of this system are not to be trusted.” Mr. McIntyre is a retired Canadian businessman who checks the findings of climate scientists and often publishes the mistakes he finds on his Web site, Climateaudit.org. He holds the rare distinction of having forced Mr. Mann to publish a correction to one of his more famous papers.” (“Rigging a Climate Consensus” – November 27, 2009).

The Climate Audit website challenges published, “peer-reviewed”, articles in “scientific journals” by global warming proponents. It seems to me that this is a paradigm that the ID community might consider adopting.

You do not have to be a “professional” to critique a paper. You do not have to publish such a critique in a “peer-reviewed journal”. You simply have to be right, get it out on the Internet, and market your content. A second point is that the Climate Audit’s critique revolves around data and how it is massaged. As a data professional myself I can assure you that the level of intended and unintended error in data management is far higher than is usually suspected. I think that going for the data – and auditing it – is an excellent approach.

Instead of complaining about lack of access to “peer-reviewed journals”, which we know will never happen, why not adopt the Climate Audit paradigm in the ID community?

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7 Responses to The Climate Audit Paradigm

  1. Instead of complaining about lack of access to “peer-reviewed journals”, which we know will never happen, why not adopt the Climate Audit paradigm in the ID community?

    Isn’t that what this blog, and the various popular press books written by it’s various contributors, purports to be?

  2. If you just want auditing of evolutionary tales, crev.info does a pretty good job. But ID is not merely a critique of evolution.

    I think a resurrection of the ISCID’s PCID would be helpful, or something along those lines. I think it was originally published prematurely. We are now starting to get a lot more people friendly to ID who would benefit from such a journal.

    I also think a new interdisciplinary journal of origins should be started, which specifically covers the debate of origins theories.

    A few friends and I were going to start such a thing, but personal catastrophe got in the way, though we may start again.

  3. This is by far and away the best idea I’ve read on this blog ever.

    There can never be too many people checking the findings of scientists, so long as the people checking actually have some understanding of the material which they are checking. If you can get together a group of qualified people to begin something like this that would be awesome.

    I would be remiss if I didn’t add that, unfortunately, I don’t think you’re going to be able to bring together sufficiently credentialed people to pull it off. After all, to have any merit this would need to be done in a scientific manner, at the academic level, rather than the majority of posts here at UD which pander to people like me, the unwashed masses (not to say that’s a _bad_ thing).

    But I, and I’m sure any scientists working in the field, would welcome more scrutiny from a qualified group. I’d be interested to see if you find anything.

  4. You do not have to be a “professional” to critique a paper.

    You don’t have to be a professional, but you have to have some understanding of what you’re critiquing. This is as true in Biology as it is in Mathematics or Literature.

  5. Auditing any form of scientific data is a good idea and should, of course, also include auditing the auditors.

    Audit should entail a presumption of fairness by which all the data is considered as a whole. There should be no cherry-picking only the data which can be interpreted as supporting a particular viewpoint. In this case that should apply both to the climatologists and their critics.

    For example, the OP refers to an instance where a scientist published a correction in response to criticism from Stephen McIntyre, which is as it should be. Do we also know if there have been any cases where Mr McIntyre has himself made errors in his ‘audit’?

  6. Excellent thought Alfred. When the CRU emails became public Nov. 19th, traffic to Climate Audit increased 500%, forcing Steve McIntyre to set up another blog: CAmirror. Anthony Watt’s site Watts Up With That similarly increased in traffic 350%. There is strong public interest over exposed breaches of ethics (especially when it happens to tie in with being forced to spend $45 trillion to solve a supposed problem). Watts site has increased about eight fold in the last year and a half by providing a steady stream of interesting items and exposes.

    Watts provides a Tips and notes to WUWT for running comments and suggestions. Recommend setting up a similar Tips and notes to UC to highlight such items and papers to examine.

    Sveresky
    Yes McIntyre makes an occasional mistake, but is quick to apologize and correct it as are others on his site. McIntyre works very hard to openly post all his data and all his programs for others to test and validate. – In contrast to the current CRU email/ClimateGate.

    Note that ClimateGate has surpassed Global Warming

  7. Great idea. Makes science less esoteric by calling a spade a spade. Human knowledge hasn’t advanced to the point where it takes years to get it, but college wants us to believe it has.

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