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How Climate Scientists Parallel Early Atomic Scientists

Soulskill posted 1 year,5 days | from the politicians-see-them-as-tools-to-be-used dept.

Earth 440

Lasrick writes "Kennette Benedict writes in the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists about the existential threat of climate change, and how the scientists who study and write about it are similar to the early atomic scientists who created, and then worried about, the threat that nuclear weapons posed to humanity: 'Just as the Manhattan Project participants could foresee the coming arms race, climate scientists today understand the consequences of deploying the technologies that defined the industrial age. They also know that action now to reduce greenhouse gas emissions will mitigate the worst consequences of climate change, just as the Manhattan Project scientists knew that early action to forestall a deadly arms race could prevent nuclear catastrophe.'"

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440 comments

Honesty? (3, Insightful)

Jane Q. Public (1010737) | 1 year,5 days | (#44337875)

If they were honest, why are they calling it "Climate Change" now, rather than Global Warming?

Seems to me they're trying to have it both ways.

(Note: This is just an observation, nothing more. If you try to argue with me about issues I haven't raised here today, I'm going to ignore you.)

Re:Honesty? (5, Informative)

cervesaebraciator (2352888) | 1 year,5 days | (#44337905)

Because climate change is a more accurate descriptor. The record shows that increased CO2 levels accompany periods of instability (e.g. rapid growth and reduction in glacier size) even if the trend tends toward warming. While the overall trend will be toward warming such warming will not be evenly distributed over time or space.

Re: Honesty? (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,5 days | (#44337935)

Because the weather always changes and that way you'll never be proven wrong.

Re: Honesty? (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,5 days | (#44338163)

Right, I'm going to start an investment advisor business doing the same thing.

I'll say that I expect a strong trend of "price change" which people would do well to take heed of.

When they ask me, "but will prices go up, or down?!" I'll respond, "Yes, they'll definitely change, and I expect a large amount of change from day to day, hour to hour, even minute to minute - remarkable price volatility and intraday swings!"

I won't have told anybody anything useful, but it'll sure sound good... and it's more or less impossible to prove me wrong.

Re:Honesty? (1, Insightful)

Jane Q. Public (1010737) | 1 year,5 days | (#44337959)

"Because climate change is a more accurate descriptor. The record shows that increased CO2 levels accompany periods of instability (e.g. rapid growth and reduction in glacier size) even if the trend tends toward warming."

I don't really think that's an adequate answer. Just being honest. It still seems to me that THEY (scientists, followed by the media) are playing self-serving word games.

Re:Honesty? (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,5 days | (#44338003)

I am amazed at how people love to attribute the worst possible motives to scientists (lying for what? to get a 20K-100K grant?) but refuse to see the motives of those who fund climate CHANGE deniers, which would be oil companies, investment fund managers with big stakes in petroleum, etc. with billions at stake.

For the dim witted I can only assume it is because in the back of their minds they think they can never be a PhD scientist, which feeds resentment, but they think they could possibly be a hedge fund manager or oil boss.

Re:Honesty? (0)

FriendlyPrimate (461389) | 1 year,5 days | (#44338073)

Absolutely correct.

The whole argument that climatologists are pushing climate change for profit makes no sense at all. If that's what they really cared about, they could make WAY more money working for the oil industry producing studies refuting climate change.

Re:Honesty? (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,5 days | (#44338349)

Why are climate scientists constantly lying every time they say something then? Phil Jones said global warming was happening even though his research showed it wasn't and then he deleted the data before risking somone else looking at it. Then they released a bunch of foraged documents from "denier" groups showing how evil they are, and then had to admit those documents had to be made up because they couldn't find actual proof. Then the IPCC this year released data that there has been no warming for 17 years and EVERY chart they released showing predictions since 2001 were well over the actual measured results of temperature.

So we have a list of lies, made up facts about opposition, and completely failed predictions. Now we are getting storeis about how they are being prosecuted for their immoral actions. So are we supposed to just pretend their lies, falsified data, and wrong predictions didn't happen? You seem to think so.

Re:Honesty? (-1, Flamebait)

SETIGuy (33768) | 1 year,5 days | (#44338511)

Repost that without the lies and you'd have an empty post. I see why you post as an AC. Seriously, every statement you made there was an outright lie. Including the "No warming for 17 years" lie. Current temperatures are will withing the 95% confidence limits of the AR4 model assemblage.

Re:Honesty? (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,5 days | (#44338111)

Climate scientists have more in common with priests than the sort of people who try to disprove their own hypothesis with experiments. If you had based your whole career on a particular hypothesis how anxious would you be to disprove it? Climate scientists are anything but unbiased observers. Any climate scientist who maintained the sort of dispassionate skepticism which is the hallmark of a real scientist would never be able to graduate in their chosen major. They would not be able to pass even a single class in climate science if they answered exam questions honestly.

Re:Honesty? (1, Insightful)

SETIGuy (33768) | 1 year,5 days | (#44338541)

Another well named coward that doesn't understand science. Do you know what disproving global warming would get a scientist? Fame and fortune! Oil companies would have a bidding war to hire him. You know why it hasn't been done? Because global warming is real and it's happening at pretty much the rate Arrhenius predicted 107 years ago. The reasons why it is happening should be obvious to anyone who has studied the subject. The way to stop it is also obvious.

The big fame in science comes from disproof. The most referenced papers of mine are ones where I disproved theoretical claims. Every scientist wants to be the one who disproves something big.

Maybe both? They warned if a coming ice age (3, Insightful)

raymorris (2726007) | 1 year,5 days | (#44338293)

In the sixties and seventies, the climate hucksters were selling us on a man-made ice age. In the eighties, they told us California would be underwater by 2000. It's still there.

Maybe alot of people twist and exaggerate the evidence for their own reasons when $ billions are on the line. A $100k grant ? Just in the Obama years alone, he's handed hundreds of millions of your money to fake greenies. By fake , I mean ones that took the money and ran, never living up to any of their promises.

Re:Maybe both? They warned if a coming ice age (1)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,5 days | (#44338371)

As I recall, the "Ice Age" people could be counted on one hand. They got press precisely because they were going against what the vast majority of people in the field were saying.

Dog Bites Man, not a story. Scientist Claims Dogs Never Bite Humans Ever Never, cover of Newsweek.

Re: Maybe both? They warned if a coming ice age (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,5 days | (#44338503)

Not so. Read the Newsweek article, Time, etc. the contemporaneous press shows the coming ice age was quite the thing on the 70s.

Re:Honesty? (2)

cervesaebraciator (2352888) | 1 year,5 days | (#44338005)

Excoriate the media establishment all you want. They're an easy mark since they make a living from sensationalism. But I'm curious how you think this is a self-serving word game for the scientists (especially given that it the term is a more accurate descriptor of the data). What, exactly, do you think they're getting out of it? Nota bene: by 'they' I mean the vast majority of scientist who concur about the reality of climate change, not the very few who make a living as pet scientists for the media. How, exactly, do you think the average climate scientist benefits?

Re:Honesty? (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,5 days | (#44338059)

Because most of them would not have a job without "Climate Change". And by most I mean somewhere in the neighborhood of 90%. What was the job market for "Climate Scientist" 35 years ago? Did such a title even exist?

Re:Honesty? (1)

PopeRatzo (965947) | 1 year,5 days | (#44338099)

Did such a title even exist?

Yes.

Re:Honesty? (0)

SETIGuy (33768) | 1 year,5 days | (#44338211)

And how many oil barons would be oil barons if drilling for oil were illegal. Or if they had to pay for the damage their activities does to us?

So climate huckster = oil baron (2)

raymorris (2726007) | 1 year,5 days | (#44338443)

It appears that you've just accidentally spoken the truth. You probably didn't realize you were acknowledging that climate "scientists" and their bosses have a lot in common with oil barons, but you've inadvertently discovered the truth.

Re:Honesty? (1)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,5 days | (#44337981)

No - because these climate scientists have only the vaguest clues what they are talking about, so they are hedging their bets. Enough bullshit, please.

that's totally wrong (5, Interesting)

stenvar (2789879) | 1 year,5 days | (#44338103)

The record shows that increased CO2 levels accompany periods of instability (e.g. rapid growth and reduction in glacier size) even if the trend tends toward warming.

We still have some of the lowest CO2 concentrations in earth's history right now, and our climate has been changing rapidly (in fact, oscillating wildly) for the past 7 million years or so. To stop these oscillations, CO2 concentrations would have to go up substantially.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Paleoclimatology [wikipedia.org]

Re:Honesty? (-1, Flamebait)

Viol8 (599362) | 1 year,5 days | (#44337909)

"If they were honest, why are they calling it "Climate Change" now, rather than Global Warming? "

Actually nubnuts the scientists just do the science - blame the media for all the different phrases.

Now do you actually have anything useful to contribute or is playing silly semantic games your best shot?

Re:Honesty? (-1)

Jane Q. Public (1010737) | 1 year,5 days | (#44337949)

"Actually nubnuts the scientists just do the science - blame the media for all the different phrases."

Bullshit. "The media" did not make this change, the scientists themselves did. They media just picked it up, as they always do.

"Now do you actually have anything useful to contribute or is playing silly semantic games your best shot?"

I asked a legitimate question, you did not answer it. You can take your insults and stuff them where the warming doesn't shine.

Re:Honesty? (4, Interesting)

FriendlyPrimate (461389) | 1 year,5 days | (#44338023)

The term "Climate Change" has been around since at least the 1950's (see http://www.skepticalscience.com/print.php?r=326 [skepticalscience.com] ).

"Climate Change" is more common now thanks to conservative think tanks who made a concerted effort to use that term in the early 2000s because it was considered "less scary" than global warming. Scientists went along with it because "Climate Change" is technically more accurate anyway and they are not particularly good at playing politics.

You've got to envy the Republicans in their ability to twist language to suit their needs.

Re:Honesty? (-1, Flamebait)

Richy_T (111409) | 1 year,5 days | (#44338363)

That's not how I remember it. Climate change was put forward by the greenies because the results were not agreeing with the predictions. Once you can attribute temperatures going up, going down or staying the same to the same cause, you're golden.

Re:Honesty? (1)

cervesaebraciator (2352888) | 1 year,5 days | (#44338555)

"Climate change" is just a workaday term that's been around for some time to describe, well, exactly what it sounds like it describes. And GP is quite right that it's been in use for some time. A simple search of the NY Times archives and I found articles from the 1930's discussing the relationship between climate change and forest evolution.

It is certainly true that the term "climate change" has seen increasing use of late. As the OED says, "The Oxford English Corpus data from the year 2009 contains twice as many examples of climate change as of global warming." But it would be a mistake to think this is a consequence of activism on the part of "greenies" (whoever they might be), as though they had conjured the term themselves for nefarious purposes. You can readily find scientific articles dating well into the past which employ "climate change" if you only search using an academic database. (Checking the data rather than relying on our faulty memories would be more scientific anyway.) The change in language, therefore, reflects more on an increasing public awareness of the term rather than any politically motivated agenda on the scientists' part.

Re:Honesty? (4, Informative)

FriendlyPrimate (461389) | 1 year,5 days | (#44338557)

That's not how I remember it. Climate change was put forward by the greenies because the results were not agreeing with the predictions.

Then you're remembering it wrong.... https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Frank_Luntz#Global_warming [wikipedia.org]

Re:Honesty? (1)

chipschap (1444407) | 1 year,5 days | (#44337975)

Except ... well, we have politicians in the mix. That was/is as true with the atomic weapons issue as it is with climate change.

One thing we have today that's different is political correctness. That wasn't such a big thing during the peak of the arms race and the cold war.

I can see little possible good coming from the politicization of science. Nor can, frankly, I see much good in making science "politically correct."

Science should just be science, objective and dispassionate. The conclusions are whatever they are without regard to popularity.

Re:Honesty? (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,5 days | (#44337983)

The article is far fetched PC bullshit. Period.

Re:Honesty? (1)

interkin3tic (1469267) | 1 year,5 days | (#44338051)

You are asking here rather than reading a wikipedia article why?

Re:Honesty? (1)

Joce640k (829181) | 1 year,5 days | (#44338153)

If they were honest, why are they calling it "Climate Change" now, rather than Global Warming?

Huh? I thought this story was well known.

The Bush Administration enacted a deliberate policy to change the name in all public discussions. Mr Frank Luntz was responsible for the new one.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Frank_Luntz#Global_warming [wikipedia.org]

Re:Honesty? (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,5 days | (#44338429)

Hmmmm....the IPCC (oh, the last two letters stand for "Climate Change") was founded in 1988. So, unless by "Bush Administration" you really meant "Reagan Administration" you are a few years off. Of course Wikipedia is never wrong.

Re:Honesty? (5, Informative)

SETIGuy (33768) | 1 year,5 days | (#44338201)

The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) was formed in 1988, so where do you get the idea that what it's called has changed?

The indisputable increase in global average temperature [woodfortrees.org] due to human CO2 emissions is called global warming. The response of the global climate system to that increase is called climate change. The climate changes vary by locale. That distinction has been there for quite some time.

Re:Honesty? (1)

Black Parrot (19622) | 1 year,5 days | (#44338317)

Uhm... lots of them do still call it global warming.

Hard to draw a good conclusion from flawed premises...

Tense About Nuclear Weapons (1)

cervesaebraciator (2352888) | 1 year,5 days | (#44337877)

When did we stop talking about the threat of nuclear catastrophe in the past tense? Last I checked, there were still at least a few weapons out there. [wikipedia.org]

Re:Tense About Nuclear Weapons (1)

mellon (7048) | 1 year,5 days | (#44337969)

We stopped talking about it in the present tense when the global mutually assured destruction regime faded in prominence as a result of the collapse of the Soviet Union. Nowadays our big existential threat is terrorism, and in that context the kind of humanity-killing nuclear catastrophe we used to talk about isn't so likely. Of course, we could still have a stupid accidental nuclear catastrophe, or a Indo-pakistan nuclear catastrophe, and we shouldn't imagine that there is no longer any existential threat from nuclear weapons.

The difference is that the existential threat from global warming is not only real, it is unaddressed. So the likelihood of human extinction due to positive feedback loops destroying the current climatic equilibrium is something that people who follow the science are more concerned about than human extinction due to nuclear war, even though that's still a possibility. To put it in perspective, such events have actually occurred in the history of the earth's biosphere, whereas nuclear war, as far as we know, has not.

Read "The Green Plague" by Larry Niven for an illustration... :)

Re:Tense About Nuclear Weapons (2)

coma_bug (830669) | 1 year,5 days | (#44338029)

our big existential threat is terrorism

terrorism is not an existential threat.

Re:Tense About Nuclear Weapons (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,5 days | (#44338055)

The AGW hypothesis may or may not reflect actual reality. That's the problem with an unfalsifiable hypothesis. We simply don't know whether the amount of CO2 that we produce is enough to make a significant difference in our climate. Nor do we know whether we will run out of fossil fuels and have to switch to uranium ore long before the excess CO2 creates any sort of real problem. Basically lots of questions and damn few answers. At least for an unbiased person without a horse in this particular race.

Based on what I've seen most of the pro-AGW people are simply true believers and put their trust 100% in the so called climate "scientists" to do their thinking for them. They also have complete faith in computer models as a substitute for real science that involves experiments capable of falsifying a deeply prized hypothesis.

Re:Tense About Nuclear Weapons (1)

haruchai (17472) | 1 year,5 days | (#44338423)

What bullshit. Computer models are just a tool, not the foundation of climate research.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OJ6Z04VJDco [youtube.com]

Re:Tense About Nuclear Weapons (3, Insightful)

SETIGuy (33768) | 1 year,5 days | (#44338435)

The AGW hypothesis may or may not reflect actual reality. That's the problem with an unfalsifiable hypothesis.

The AGW hypothesis is not unfalsifiable. People with no understanding of science often make that claim. A couple decades of significant cooling (0.05C per decade or so compared to the warming trend of 0.18C/decade warming since 1970. ) while CO2 levels continued to climb would probably be enough to do that.

The problem for people who like to lie about science is that the science of AGW is very basic and well understood. To pretend it's not going to happen you have to imagine something that could stop it. And so far nobody has been able to invent something that can stop it short of a catastrophic breakdown in global atmospheric and oceanic circulation. Be my guest. Find something that can prevent CO2 from increasing temperatures and prove it. In 1906, Arhennius calculated the climate sensitivity to a doubling of CO2 when including water vapor feedback was 2.1C. Current estimates are between 2C and 4.5C. Go ahead, find a way to make the climate sensitivity negative and show that it works.

Re:Tense About Nuclear Weapons (1)

PPH (736903) | 1 year,5 days | (#44338523)

We need you to worry about something else now. Fear of a nuclear holocaust was sufficient to control populations and political agendas for a while. But now its time to move on and believe in the new bogeyman.

Rothchild bullshit (-1)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,5 days | (#44337883)

Real science studies 4 billion years of Earth's history. This horse shit about climate "scientists" is exactly that - horse shit scaremongering. Want to know who wants to bring this wet dream to you?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FdqNds9pNuI

That's right, the richest banking family in the world dreams to tax your carbon. Slashdot editors are a bunch of sheep fucktards as well as slashreaders

Signed,
The Truth.

Re:Rothchild bullshit (5, Insightful)

mwvdlee (775178) | 1 year,5 days | (#44337957)

Why stop at four billion years? Compared to the temperature some ~13.8 billion years ago, it's positively chilly right now!

I find it fascinating how science is often refered here on slashdot, but when it comes to climate scientists, all of a sudden the vast majority of scientists are stupid, lying, elitists scaremongers.

Re:Rothchild bullshit (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,5 days | (#44337999)

The same thing is said in other threads about scientists discussing different issues. You just haven't noticed. Given that some "scientists" have lied in the past about climate change and how politicized it all is (from all sides) it's not surprising in the least that there might be a few more railing against it than (say) asteroid detection programs.

Re:Rothchild bullshit (1)

SETIGuy (33768) | 1 year,5 days | (#44338463)

Signed the Truth? You are a laugh riot. How much do you think it would cost Exxon and the Koch brothers if oil and coal production gets cut? A hell of a lot more than any bankers stand to gain from it.

Follow the money, but use your brain rather than your politics.

Clarification (1)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,5 days | (#44337891)

"The Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists is a nontechnical online magazine that covers global security and public policy issues..." - Wikipedia
"Her research and teaching focused on organizational decisionmaking, jury decisionmaking, and on women's leadership and American politics" -Wikipedia

Just putting this in perspective

Except the nuclear scientists had it easier (1, Insightful)

Viol8 (599362) | 1 year,5 days | (#44337893)

The knuckle dragging idiots that make up 90% of humanity on this planet can just about grasp that a huge explosion with lots of radioactivity is a very bad thing. However trying to persuade them that climate change that may or may not affect their lives in a few decades time is also a very bad thing is rather an uphill task. Mainly because they don't understand the science but also because a lot of them think its all a conspiracy by The Man (tm) to control what they do. And then of course we have the Ostrich approach to problem solving - just hope it goes away.

Re: Except the nuclear scientists had it easier (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,5 days | (#44337977)

In case you ever doubted what rich liberals think about you, note the above:

"knuckle dragging idiots that make up 90% of humanity on this planet"

Sorry your beachfront property will get flooded in a hundred years. Is 80 years moving notice long enough?

Re: Except the nuclear scientists had it easier (1)

Viol8 (599362) | 1 year,5 days | (#44338019)

"In case you ever doubted what rich liberals think about you, note the above:"

Nice try , except I'm not rich or a liberal. But I do prefer to believe scientific consensus over the opinions of brainless rednecks who's highest intellectual achievement is changing the carb on their 10mpg V8s.

Re: Except the nuclear scientists had it easier (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,5 days | (#44338063)

I read through some of your comments.. you hate pretty much everybody, don't you?

Re: Except the nuclear scientists had it easier (1)

just_a_monkey (1004343) | 1 year,5 days | (#44338159)

You do realize that even if "The climate is changing" is true, the perpetual - sometimes implied, sometimes expressed - follow-up "...and therefore we must have more socialism and more power to the government" is not a scientific conclusion, right? The natural sciences does not have a political agenda.

Re: Except the nuclear scientists had it easier (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,5 days | (#44338167)

Yeah that's nice, except that whole "scientific consensus" points to, there is no consensus. An example: D.T., Doran, Zimmerman: ~10k survey's sent, ~3.1k responses received. Total respondents from actual climate scientists, ~75. Scientists responding to "yes it's man made" ~72. Rest of non-climate scientists responding to yes ~3k. But yep, people not in their field have actual expertise. I'm off to do nuclear physics now, but my field is actually geology. Don't worry, everyone agrees that my ideas on slamming two chunks of plutonium together are great!

Re: Except the nuclear scientists had it easier (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,5 days | (#44338445)

Well at least you admit that you are not basing your beliefs on your own examination of the evidence, but rather on the fact that one group calls themselves "scientists" and the other group does not. For you it's just a choice of which authority to believe.

Science? (2, Insightful)

sylvandb (308927) | 1 year,5 days | (#44337895)

It is not science if your hypothesis is not falsifiable.

Re:Science? (0, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,5 days | (#44337951)

Climate change can be tested, the problem is we only have one shot at it.

Re:Science? (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,5 days | (#44338187)

The hypothesis that would need to be falsified is not that the climate changes. We already know it does based on evidence from the past. Showing that the climate remains forever static is only possible for a given time interval. For instance if it could be shown that every year the global temperature remained at exactly 0.57 degrees for a 10 year period that would certainly be suggestive, but it would not prove that the climate is static. What about 100 years or 1000 years? That would only prove that the climate can remain static for those intervals. The AGW hypothesis has an even worse problem. Not only would you have to show that the average global temperature is not increasing, you'd have to demonstrate that fossil fuel combustion is not responsible for it.

Re:Science? (2)

mellon (7048) | 1 year,5 days | (#44337979)

Fortunately, the global climate change is falsifiable, and we are in the process of demonstrating that it is correct. Yay science. :]

Re:Science? (1)

mellon (7048) | 1 year,5 days | (#44337985)

Global climate change hypothesis. Sigh. Maybe someday Slashdot will add the ability to edit our posts...

Re:Science? (1)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,5 days | (#44338077)

And how exactly are we going to falsify the hypothesis that not only is the climate warming significantly enough to worry us, but that humans are responsible for it? As for falsifying the idea that the climate changes...haha. I'm not even sure what that would mean. The fact that the climate has changed in the past makes it pretty difficult to falsify without a time machine.

Re:Science? (1)

zippthorne (748122) | 1 year,5 days | (#44338345)

And that we can do something to change it, and that we should do something to change it.

The effects of the predicted changes and the effects of the measures necessary to contain or mitigate them need to be evaluated against each other. I haven't heard any real concrete steps for containment other than "shut down pretty much all economic activity, right now, just in case."

Re:Science? (1)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,5 days | (#44338303)

Except for this fact [canadianawareness.org] .

Whats that? Its falsifiable and it has been proven to be false. How about that, and yet you come here an lie about it.

ITYM provable (1)

Viol8 (599362) | 1 year,5 days | (#44338035)

Since falsifying in this case is effectively proving a negative - ie demonstrate its NOT going to happen.

Obviously the person who modded you up is as clueless as you are.

Re:Science? (2)

interkin3tic (1469267) | 1 year,5 days | (#44338097)

It is more falsifiable than evolution. "Micro" evolution can be demonstrated in a lab, so can the fact that carbon dioxide insulates heat, evolution and climate change are scaled up versions of that. More to the point, climate change itself is falsifiable. We're doing the experiment right now. If we had a few control earths, we could do the experiment proper and not worry about destroying the only one we have, but as we only have the one test tube to test the experiment, it strikes me as utterly fucking stupid to continue emitting carbon while pretending we don't know what is going to happen.

Re:Science? (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,5 days | (#44338101)

Neither is my hypothesis^Wtheory about your vast stupidity. ;)
But that is only a hypothesis, since I have yet to see a non-stupid comment from you. :P

Re:Science? (2)

PopeRatzo (965947) | 1 year,5 days | (#44338123)

It is not science if your hypothesis is not falsifiable.

If there are any scientists in the room, perhaps you can address this misconception for sylvandb.

It appears he learned how science works from reading the pop skeptics and the Discovery Institute.

Re:Science? (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,5 days | (#44338155)

If there are any scientists in the room

That's the problem with the whole AGW debate. There are almost certainly NO scientists in the room. Certainly not climate scientists. There are almost certainly plenty of educated people who don't want to be poked fun of by other educated people. If they had any doubts about AGW to start, they were rapidly subsumed by the need not to be a lone wolf. It's the same reason most people said nothing until Snowden.

The same thing happens in Conservative circles too of course. Pity the businessman living his life in quiet desperation, knowing that taxing the 1% a bit more would probably help address income disparity and lead to greater prosperity.

Yes indeed, most men lead lives of quiet desperation. Few are scientists. Maybe one or two are here; but the odds are stacked against it.

Re:Science? (1)

KeensMustard (655606) | 1 year,5 days | (#44338359)

(A) It is falsifiable. All you need to do is to prove that the Moon's climate is the same as the Earths. If it is, then the notion that an atmosphere leads to a more regulated and somewhat warmer environment of the surface of a planet is bunk.

(B) Plenty of science is "not falsifiable".

my ass emits greenhouse gasses (0, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,5 days | (#44337899)

how do i neutralize this?

How bullshit is like bullshit (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,5 days | (#44337941)

Atomic scientists had verifiable results from the start, they built them up to something that actually worked to end a horrible war and then they fell prey to paranoia and second thoughts and forfeited the peaceful possibilities of their science to a screaming mob of idiots like Hanoi Jane.

Climate "scientists" have bullshit. They have hockey sticks and "hide the decline" and ream upon ream of unverifiable nonsense. Any decent statistician can refute their arguments in a heartbeat, and many have.

The Doomsday Device has worked so far. (4, Insightful)

Snufu (1049644) | 1 year,5 days | (#44337965)

Manhattan Project scientists may have foretold the arms race, but could they have foreseen that the advent of nuclear weapons would produce the longest period of peace between industrialized nations in the past several centuries? Considering the countless lives lost in the wars of the 19th and 20th centuries, how many lives have been saved under the haunting specter of nuclear annihilation?

In this context the analogy to climate science is less clear.

Re:The Doomsday Device has worked so far. (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,5 days | (#44338037)

But we fought all kinds of proxy wars and by doing so screwed up the advancement and politics of vast areas of the world--just because we couldn't directly fight each other.

Re:The Doomsday Device has worked so far. (1)

PopeRatzo (965947) | 1 year,5 days | (#44338133)

the advent of nuclear weapons would produce the longest period of peace between industrialized nations in the past several centuries?

What makes you think it was nuclear weapons that "produced" this era of world peace? One could just as well say it was the invention of television or the integrated circuit.

Why is it that any Slashdot story with the words "climate change" brings out the sillies?

Re:The Doomsday Device has worked so far. (1)

mvdwege (243851) | 1 year,5 days | (#44338301)

[...] how many lives have been saved under the haunting specter of nuclear annihilation?

I don't know, but I have a fair inkling that one must provide some good justification for numbers significantly higher than the victims of the various proxy wars during the Cold War era.

To say nothing of all those that died as victims of the nasty dictatorships that both sides were propping up to wage those dirty wars for them.

No Good (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,5 days | (#44337973)

Republicans are slow witted and can't be told anything. They have to be shown, and after conclusive evidence is given, they will then create their own incorrect conclusions. You can warn about their conclusions, but only after collosal clusterfucks in the name of saving a penny will they finally agree (usually people have to die). You can show them and show them and they won't listen till there is blood on the ground (possibly their own). After seeing their own blood, they will then try and sue scientists for not sufficiently warning them (you have to basically shoot them in order to get them to listen). Global warming? Its a lie! (until the flooding, then), why didn't you warn us? I'll sue!, and finally "there has to be a way I can make some money off this."

Re:No Good (2)

Richy_T (111409) | 1 year,5 days | (#44338395)

If you believe that about Republicans (or Democrats if you're from the other side), you will be creating your own incorrect conclusions.

Selective Memory (4, Interesting)

MellowBob (2933537) | 1 year,5 days | (#44338027)

The arms race happened. It wasn't deadly. There was no nuclear catastrophe.

Carbon's increasing. We're still here. The polar ice caps are still here.

Good comparison.

Re:Selective Memory (1)

Black Parrot (19622) | 1 year,5 days | (#44338369)

Carbon's increasing. We're still here. The polar ice caps are still here.

But getting smaller. The one to the north looks like it is going to be winter-only before too long.

Additionally (0, Troll)

ChrisMaple (607946) | 1 year,5 days | (#44338031)

Not only are the claims of the climate scientologists (that's deliberate) deceitful, as noted it the preceding posts, the claims that they're like atomic scientists are pure hubris. Have they created anything, much less climate? Of course not.

Re:Additionally (1, Troll)

mvdwege (243851) | 1 year,5 days | (#44338311)

What claims are deceitful? Provide some references, please, instead of the usual derpy right-wing smears.

Alarmists don't change (3, Interesting)

Hentes (2461350) | 1 year,5 days | (#44338043)

The biggest similarity between the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists and climate alarmists is that they both have predicted the end of the world like a dozen times by now.

Nonsense (2, Insightful)

Maimun (631984) | 1 year,5 days | (#44338053)

The Earth's climate has always been changing and will be changing while the planet is alive. It is uncertain whether humans have measurable influence on those changes at all; the fact that people with clear financial interests claim so does not make it certainty. Even if we suppose there is a measurable influence it is still uncertain whether the human influence is setting the current trends -- there have been warm ages in the past, too. For instance, the Medieval Warm Period.

When I was growing up, i.e. the 70ies and the 80ies, the climate scare was The Big Bad Global Cooling. At the end of the 90ies and until recently, the climate scare was The Big Bad Global Warming. Then the scare mongers got smarter and now the scare is The Big Bad Climate Change Whatever It Is. Since the climate is always changing it is a perfectly safe bet it is going to change, somehow. To prevent the climate from changing is about as possible as to prevent the Earth from rotating :)

BTW, we have an unusually cold summer here in the Balkans.

Re:Nonsense (1)

jkflying (2190798) | 1 year,5 days | (#44338149)

Earth didn't always have life on it either. Sounds like a great plan!

Re:Nonsense (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,5 days | (#44338253)

It's amazing how whenever this comes up some absolute moron like you runs along and denounces all the statistically significant, well established science as "nonsense" and proceeds to give their own total bullshit version of events.

Do yourself, and the rest of us a favor, and go and READ THE FUCKING ARTICLE.

Re:Nonsense (0)

mvdwege (243851) | 1 year,5 days | (#44338331)

You are an idiot. The only thing that makes you smarter than Alex the parrot is that you use full sentences; but since otherwise you do nothing but mindlessly regurgitate denialist talking points (debunked talking points even!), I'm going to say that you are at best marginally smarter than Alex.

So here's a cracker for you, Polly. Now shut the fuck up.

Change happens - and it's bad (1)

Livius (318358) | 1 year,5 days | (#44338519)

In fact, it is true that regional climate change has been happening here and there all through human history.

Unfortunately, it has tended to bring down entire civilizations.

So if there's a change in climate that we're causing, may we should stop.

Not Even Close (1)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,5 days | (#44338057)

Today's crop of computer climate model extrapolaters aren't even close to Manhattan era scientists. I do not believe that we can tease the anthropogenic signal from the natural noisy data sets in order to predict the future. Extrapolating any data set that lacks a closed form solution is tricky at best. Producing a confirmation of that extrapolation is proving tricky also.

Whereas theorizing fission and then producing an experiment that confirms the theory is an incontrovertible act of science.

Re:Not Even Close (1)

PopeRatzo (965947) | 1 year,5 days | (#44338145)

Actually, climate is just a much harder problem than fission. I'm pretty sure you could use to same argument to say the "today's crop" of climate scientists are much better because they're working on a much harder problem.

let me unpack this for you (4, Insightful)

stenvar (2789879) | 1 year,5 days | (#44338085)

early atomic scientists:

- developed sound physical theories that any theoretical theorist could verify from first principles and a few key experiments

- proved that their theories worked in a series of repeatable experiments

- implemented their technologies as practical devices

- worried that the technology they themselves developed might be used for bad

climate scientists:

- make extrapolations involving tons of assumptions and unknowns

- their experiments and data collections cannot be reproduced

- haven't created any new technologies

- try to stop people from using other people's technologies

Re: Couldn't have said it better! (1)

fygment (444210) | 1 year,5 days | (#44338125)

My mind was stuck in a 'Is she a total idiot to not see the difference?", followed by, "How arrogant to even make the comparison!", indignation loop.

Re:let me unpack this for you (4, Insightful)

PopeRatzo (965947) | 1 year,5 days | (#44338193)

It's the difference between a relatively simple and straightforward problem and a very difficult one.

Once the basic experiments were done for nuclear fission, all you needed to do was give it to the engineer. The problem with climate change is that the experiments would be global and require a long time to give meaningful results.

However, the mechanisms are perfectly clear. Greenhouse gases make it warmer. People are increasing greenhouse gases at an alarming rate. Both of those statements are supported by experiment and data. Now, it just becomes a math problem.

Re:let me unpack this for you (1, Insightful)

stenvar (2789879) | 1 year,5 days | (#44338397)

However, the mechanisms are perfectly clear. Greenhouse gases make it warmer. People are increasing greenhouse gases at an alarming rate. Both of those statements are supported by experiment and data. Now, it just becomes a math problem.

You clearly don't understand the first thing about climate change. Positive feedback loops and economic models are an essential part of climate change predictions, and they are mostly guesswork. Furthermore, the potential consequences are also mostly guesswork.

Re:let me unpack this for you (3, Informative)

Raenex (947668) | 1 year,5 days | (#44338417)

Now, it just becomes a math problem.

The Earth is a complicated, dynamic system with many factors. It's not a "math problem". The models failed in their predictions for recent warming, which has remained flat. There's also the question of "forcings" vs "feedbacks".

Re:let me unpack this for you (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,5 days | (#44338259)

Another difference is that physicists are not required to have certain political beliefs. To be a climate scientist, to even consider becoming one, you pretty much have to be a true believer already. No one who didn't believe in AGW would seek a degree in order to study it. An atheist or agnostic does not become a priest for similar reasons. At least religious people do not try to claim that the fact that 99.9% of priests believe in a god is somehow evidence for its existence.

The bulletin.org as a source (1)

bjdevil66 (583941) | 1 year,5 days | (#44338147)

Right or wrong, it's hard to take this article seriously when thebulletin.org doesn't exactly look like an objective and balanced source of information on climate change.

Existential threat (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,5 days | (#44338171)

Climate change is not an existential threat.

not quite the same (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,5 days | (#44338197)

Today's climate scientists are not builders, experimentalists or engineers. Often people assume that the guys working on solar power or alternative fuels work hand in hand with the climate guys. This isn't even close to true.

The "debate" which has raged around climate science has through political calculation or naivete used climate scientists to discourage government investment in the technologies which would make the largest impact on reversing climate change.

Endorsements are made for a patchwork of technologies which have no thermodynamic hope of solving our problems. Technologies which could be more impactful in the long run are dropped because of their links to the existing power industry.

It's complicated to explain to the public why we really need to work on things like chemical reduction of coal plant exhaust or efficient transformation of methane into oil. We really could have been using some help from the climate guys with that for the last 20 years.

Yuo Fail It (-1)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,5 days | (#44338233)

or chair, return lleson and as the premiere

Wolf! Wolf!! Wolf!!!! (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,5 days | (#44338379)

Riddle me this Batman: How can you tell when a liberal knows they are losing the battle?

Answer: When they start renaming things (as in Global Warming to Climate Change).

Guess you can't blame them though, as the more time that passes without warming the more stupid they look.

If AGW were true... (1)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,5 days | (#44338545)

Although I am an AGW skeptic, it is possible to switch over all power generation plants to nuclear ones over time and to embed high voltage rails into the roadways of all major highways and manufacture vehicles that can make use of them. The government could even pay for the rail electricity so that nearly everyone would want to use such vehicles. However getting more than a handful of the 196 countries on the planet to also switch to nuclear power generation and drive electric cars is much more difficult. And trying to enforce an all out combustion ban on the entire planet would require a world police state and a very well funded one. No matter what it's the poor people of the world who will suffer in any serious CO2 reduction program. Rich people will harldy notice the changes.

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