The Climate Wars’ Damage to Science

By Matt Ridley – Re-Blogged From http://www.WattsUpWithThat.com
(Note: due to the length of this essay, I am only including paragraph excerpts here. See the link at the end for the full essay. – Anthony)

Thanks largely to climate science, bad ideas can persist for decades, and surrounded by myrmidons of furious defenders they become intolerant dogmas. For much of my life I have been a science writer. That means I eavesdrop on what’s going on in laboratories so I can tell interesting stories. It’s analogous to the way art critics write about art, but with a difference: we “science critics” rarely criticise. If we think a scientific paper is dumb, we just ignore it. There’s too much good stuff coming out of science to waste time knocking the bad stuff.

Sure, we occasionally take a swipe at pseudoscience—homeopathy, astrology, claims that genetically modified food causes cancer, and so on. But the great thing about science is that it’s self-correcting. The good drives out the bad, because experiments get replicated and hypotheses put to the test. So a really bad idea cannot survive long in science. Or so I used to think. Now, thanks largely to climate science, I have changed my mind. It turns out bad ideas can persist in science for decades, and surrounded by myrmidons of furious defenders they can turn into intolerant dogmas.

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Tenth International Conference on Climate Change

cropped-bob-shapiro.jpg   By Bob Shapiro

The Heartland Institute is sponsoring its 10th Annual International Conference on Climate Change, in Washington DC, next month. I’ve followed some links and found that videos of previous sessions are available at no charge for online viewing. Below is a 1 minute one from Dr Tim Ball from last year, to give you a sense of what they’re about. You may view others at: http://climateconferences.heartland.org/