Monday, April 18, 2011

BEISNER on post-normal science and environmentalism

[These are my notes from Q&A after Cal's Saturday morning (4/16) session in Tacoma, WA]

(Q) Why do the majority or the most vocal of climatologists reject the facts about climate change and the real science that proves that climate change is normal and not man made? Does government skew the 'science' for political ends? 

(Cal) Government funding of science is very dangerous. Such funding distorts the industry thereby funded. Science funded by government will tend to produce findings that government prefers. This is a no-brainer. Government spent $79,000,000,000 in climate research in recent years, hence, lots of research funds and droves of young scientists clamoring into climate research. Go figure. Politicians want to get reelected. "I’m doing good for my constituents; politics will save you from bad stuff, disaster, catastrophe, calamity." Politicians gain big-time from funding research that concludes we are on the verge of a world-wide disaster due to anthropogenic climate change, and that results in more government control of the economy. 

All this public funding distorts how science gets done. Politicization of science is a serious problem. It obscures credible results. The climatologists who tow the politically correct line are younger, while the critics of the alarmists are ‘normal’ scientist, guys who practice the tried-and-true scientific method; they're empiricists. Normal scientists at least in theory believe that they are duty bound to follow the evidence where it leads them, scrap their theory if the evidence flies in the face of theory. 

Younger scientists, however, are post-normal (Jerome Ravitz, Marxists) scientists; post-modernism applied to science. It asserts that language is about the imposition of power, nothing to do with truth. Post-normal science is no longer a quest for truth, but for how to use science procedure to make political agendas palatable to public. Mike Hume, U of East-Anglia, post-normal scientist, expressly stated that climate science presents a great opportunity; he wants to use climate research to bring about a total transformation of the economic and political world away from capitalism to Marxism. 

Not surprisingly, virtually all climatologists who are climate-change alarmists are post-normal scientist, who employ science as a pretense to make their findings palatable to the public. Everything is about computer models, projections that hugely lack real-world nuances, meta-narratives applied to science. but post-normal scientists are deficient in experimentation, observation, repeatability--scientific method--not about empirical observations, as in normal science.  

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