Monday, October 26, 2009

Climate Science: What Went Right ?

The US Chamber of Commerce is tying itself into knots trying to deny that it denies the scientific near unanimous consensus on anthropogenic global warming (AGW). In notabe contrast, lunatics who claim that lower tax rates lead to higher revenues control the Repubican party.

What's the difference ? Sure the evidence for AGW is stong but the pattern that tax cuts are followed by huge deficits and that the Clinton tax increase was followed by a surplus is pretty clear too. Economists are about as divided as climatologists on the evidence.

So what's the differerence ? Well clearly climate science is accepted as science while economic science is considered an oxymoron. But is it really likey that J.Q. Public recognizes the solidity of climate Science. I would guess J.Q. is a bit vague on the difference between climatology and meteorology, and between forecasting the climate and forecasting the weather. The reputations of weather forecasters are similar to those of economic forecasters and astrologers.

I think the key factor is that J.Q. Public has noticed that the scientific community as a whole seems to be on to something. Scientists in other fields can recognise science when they see it. They have noticed that climatologists have evidence as solid as evidence in their own field and reason the way they reason and don't assume that they have a can opener. So the scientific establishment as a whole has endorsed climate science.

They also have let an economist or two into the National Academy of Science, but that is mere tokenism. I imagine they say the following

Yes yes we believe that, someday, there will be social science and oh of course the day is already dawning. Surely we will let some social scientists mingle with real natural scientists. Why ever not. Soem of my best friends are social scientists. I even let them use my bathroom.

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