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Does the problem of ClimateGate bode ill for science as a discipline?

Does the problem of ClimateGate bode ill for science as a discipline? This commentary from the Wall Street Journal thinks it might.

With science, the public accepts the reliability of the scientific method. We accept that results are checked and double-checked. We accept that there is repeated analysis and inspection on the problems and that if someone disagrees, there is a mature and reasonable discussion of the issues.

Obviously, the East Anglia CRU emails show that the discussion is not very open. It shows that some people are willing to go out of their way to discredit others. It also shows a general unwillingness to publicly display the technique used to arrive at a conclusion. This all goes against the scientific methodology.

As to if this will result in a general disdain for scientists that they are only puppets and tools of politicians – I don’t know. Frankly, I cannot think of a worse insult then to be called a politician!

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2 Responses to “Does the problem of ClimateGate bode ill for science as a discipline?”

  1. I sometimes wonder if “The personal is political” will go down in history as the most damaging slogan since “workers of the world, unite!” It encourages people to consider the political implications of events, ideas and facts that should be above politics.

  2. Sean,

    Just which institution would you think is by far the largest and most voracious user and dissipater of energy of all kinds–including the energy of people–that has ever existed on the planet?

    Just what do you think the odds are that said institution will be willing to do its part toward reducing fossil fuel usage and CO2 emissions?

    Just what do you think the odds are that said institution will insist that we, the people, reduce our energy usage by enough that said institution will be able to increase energy usage and still be able to strut-the-stuff and brag about the successes that were achieved by their efforts and gloat about having saved the planet from destruction and having prevented the human race from being exterminated by Planetary Goreacalitis?