There are many aspects to the style of science underpinning the theory of global warming that remind me of something the American scientist Irving Langmuir christened pathological science. Wiki for once is accurate and defines it as -
“Pathological science is a psychological process in which a scientist, originally conforming to the scientific method, unconsciously veers from that method, and begins a pathological process of wishful data interpretation.”
It goes on to say it has the following characteristics –
■The maximum effect that is observed is produced by a causative agent of barely detectable intensity, and the magnitude of the effect is substantially independent of the intensity of the cause.
■The effect is of a magnitude that remains close to the limit of detectability, or many measurements are necessary because of the very low statistical significance of the results.
■There are claims of great accuracy.
■Fantastic theories contrary to experience are suggested.
■Criticisms are met by ad hoc excuses.
■The ratio of supporters to critics rises and then falls gradually to oblivion.
If ever there was a thumbnail sketch of the “science” behind global warming and what looks to be the life-cycle of its popularity, it would be the above.
Basically, they’ve a theory which they are single mindedly determined to prove and therein is the essential problem. Good science works on the basis of not only trying to prove theories but also trying to disprove them as well. If you can prove or disprove a theory, you’ve learnt something either way. The characteristic of a pathological scientist is they can never entertain any suggestion that their pet theory is incorrect. If there’s real world data flatly contradicting their beloved theory, then it’s a data problem.
The wishful interpretation of data in climate science is fairly obvious and indeed goes a bit further in that it is blatantly selective on so many occasions. A good example of this occurs in the treatment of land based temperature stations. In the 1990s there was a worldwide network of approximately six thousand stations but of these, only about a subset of sixteen hundred are used today to measure the global temperature. Even allowing for malfunctions, it’s difficult to see a plausible explanation for why the data from four thousand three hundred of the originals is now being ignored even though they still work.
Of the remaining stations being used, the raw data from a significant number of them would appear to show the Earth is warming but when a corps of volunteers actually went and looked at as many of these stations as they could get to, there was a simple explanation of why they were showing the increase. Roughly eighty percent of those examined now failed the original sighting criteria because encroaching urbanisation meant they had become surrounded by heat sources such as housing, air conditioning ducts, car parks, barbeques and even aircraft runways.
This pollution of the raw data has now supposedly been offset by applying an arbitrary correction which “normalises” it but to us folk of a skeptical persuasion, they’re just torturing the data to make it conform to the warming they’re absolutely convinced is happening. If you have a large enough sample of decent raw data, a small number of anomalous spikes, or noise as it’s called in statistics, will be drowned out; normalisation is simply not required. If the data has too many spikes, then it’s rubbish data and should be discarded. You’d have to be out of your mind to attempt to use it as the input data to make any valid statistical inferences.
Within that sixteen hundred being used, there are blatant instances of cherry picking; my personal favourite being the use of only 25% of the available stations to measure the ground temperature of Russia. When you consider that most of this 25% are situated in urban areas of that vast country (you could fit the whole of the USA into it nearly twice, by the way), you can see why the data is easily interpreted as evidence of global warming occurring, even in Russia. The Moscow-based Institute of Economic Analysis (IEA) concluded two years ago that the average temperatures calculated for Russia were quite simply wrong.
Click source to read FULL article by Pointman