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Scientists Offered Cash to Dispute Climate Study

Zonk posted more than 7 years ago | from the you're-wrong-and-i-think-mr.-lincoln-knows-why dept.

The Almighty Buck 668

w1z4rd writes "According to an article in the Guardian, scientists and economists have been offered large bribes by a lobbying group funded by ExxonMobil. The offers were extended by the American Enterprise Institute group, which apparently has numerous ties to the Bush administration. Couched in terms of an offer to write 'dissenting papers' against the findings of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, several scientists contacted for the article refused the offers on conflict of interest grounds."

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The Report (4, Informative)

eldavojohn (898314) | more than 7 years ago | (#17859530)

I'm not sure if this has been posted or linked on Slashdot before but the IPCC Final Report [bbc.co.uk] [PDF Warning] is public as of today. The BBC has a summary [bbc.co.uk] :
  • Probable temperature rise between 1.8C and 4C
  • Possible temperature rise between 1.1C and 6.4C
  • Sea level most likely to rise by 28-43cm
  • Arctic summer sea ice disappears in second half of century
  • Increase in heatwaves very likely
  • Increase in tropical storm intensity likely
It's a 20 page report and I know we're all really busy but I think this is the first document one can read and really catch up on what's been decided recently in the scientific community.

I haven't seen anyone discredit this panel or this document yet. What I have seen is criticism from right wing papers about this report either being "unsurprising" or "offering no hope, grim." On the other hand, leftist papers have been in a sort of "we're doomed" sort of mode. I haven't really seen anyone stepping up to the plate and telling the public that it's on our consciouses now. We are responsible--if you have the money, start paying more for green products or products from carbon neutral companies. Increase incentive for companies to be carbon neutral. Right now, as a consumer, I don't know how I would figure out if the car I bought comes from a more or less environmentally friendly company. Consumers need to start driving this change because it sure the hell isn't going to be our ignorant president.

from the you're-wrong-and-i-think-mr.-lincoln-knows-why dept.
Also, Zonk, I think you mean Mr. Chase knows why [coinsite.com] , Salmon P. Chase [wikipedia.org] is on the $10,000 bill. Offering nominal fees for paper and pen to write reports is one thing but when the incentive is a large percentage of my yearly income, I think Exxon should be ousted as scientifically backwards assholes.

Re:The Report (4, Insightful)

micktaggart (1047954) | more than 7 years ago | (#17859612)

Just because ExxonMobil paid someone, does not mean the arguments the scientist made are not valid, although they might as well be; same goes for the people who worked at the IPCC report. Let's stick to the actual arguments and data, instead of making cheap ad hominem attacks.

Re:The Report (5, Insightful)

eldavojohn (898314) | more than 7 years ago | (#17859722)

Just because ExxonMobil paid someone, does not mean the arguments the scientist made are not valid, although they might as well be; same goes for the people who worked at the IPCC report. Let's stick to the actual arguments and data, instead of making cheap ad hominem attacks.
No, it doesn't mean their scientific findings aren't valid. But it sure the hell does mean they're financially motivated. Here's what should happen: Exxon should hire scientists to research this. If the report comes up against global warming, the scientists get $10,000 grand and stay employed. If the report comes up proving global warming is our fault, the scientists get $10,000 and stay employed. You have to approach a hypothesis willing to disprove or prove it--otherwise you're not engaging in the scientific process. You're basically paying "scientists" money to say something.

Instead, we see Exxon offering money for the predetermined outcome of 'scientific' research. And that, my friend, is why I feel compelled to keep "making cheap ad hominem attacks." Because Exxon is pissing science down their leg and the public is paying attention to it when they shouldn't. Who's offering the $10,000 for the report proving global warming is our fault?

Re:The Report (4, Insightful)

theStorminMormon (883615) | more than 7 years ago | (#17859832)

No, it doesn't mean their scientific findings aren't valid. But it sure the hell does mean they're financially motivated.

And the climate scientists who created this report aren't idealogically motivated? I'm sure some are. Some probably aren't. And scientists who respond to the $10,000 bounty may or may not be motivated. Frankly, I don't care about motivations. If you put out a bounty for an open source project, no one gets upset. Why should this be any different? If the scientist trades his/her credibility to create a fraudalent attack on the climate report that's unethical, but the fault of the scientist - not the bounty. ANd I have no doubt the life of such accusations will be short-lived.

If ExonMobile itself wants to offer bounties for this research I really don't care. Let the scientists try to do the research. They will either come up with a valid criticis, or they won't.

-stormin

Re:The Report (2, Informative)

SnapShot (171582) | more than 7 years ago | (#17860194)

Actually, your comparison to an open source bounty is pretty apt: Exxon wants something built (fake science in regards to climate change) and is willing to pay a bounty to have it built.

The difference is that in one example the experts are building wi-fi drivers or utility softare. In the other example, the "experts" are building SFUD (smiley faces, uncertainty, and doubt).

Re:The Report (1, Troll)

ArcherB (796902) | more than 7 years ago | (#17859942)

No, it doesn't mean their scientific findings aren't valid. But it sure the hell does mean they're financially motivated.

Well, threatening climatologists with decertification doesn't invalidate their findings either, but it sure as hell means they are being forcibly "motivated".

Instead, we see the weather channel threatening climatologists' jobs for the predetermined outcome of 'scientific' research. And that, my friend, is why I feel compelled to keep "making cheap ad hominem attacks." Because the Weather Channel is pissing science down their leg and the public is paying not attention to it when they should. It's as if the Weather Channel is offering the $10,000 for the report proving global warming is our fault?

Re:The Report (3, Interesting)

gravesb (967413) | more than 7 years ago | (#17860050)

Last year, the Sierra club provided more than 90 million dollars to climate scientists. What does this mean? Who knows. Both sides of the discussion are paying scientists to create global warming studies. Whether the money is tied to the result implicitly o explicitly doesn't really matter. It is sad that we are at a point where we can't have a legitimate scientific inquiry into this area because of the shady tactics of both sides. Its also sad that some politicians have decided to make political hay with unrealistic plans and promises. In 1997, the Senate vote against Kyoto was unopposed- no many of those same senators are saying its the president's fault for not implementing climate control. With an issue this charged and controversial, I have doubts we can reach an effective solution, at least in the political arena. Our best hope? Use the market. Toyota is rapidly passing GM in no small part because of the strength of its hybrids. Now, GM and Ford are reacting by offering more environmentally aware options. Look at BP and GE's ad campaigns- they both stress environmental concerns. Whether their actions carry through, we don't know yet. But at least some of the companies are recognizing the importance of the enivornment to the consumer. If we, as consumers, continue to push this issue through our purchases, some real change can be made before the politicians can decide on legislation.

Science and Publicity (3, Insightful)

Morosoph (693565) | more than 7 years ago | (#17859886)

Just because ExxonMobil paid someone, does not mean the arguments the scientist made are not valid, although they might as well be; same goes for the people who worked at the IPCC report. Let's stick to the actual arguments and data, instead of making cheap ad hominem attacks.

What you're saying makes perfect sense concerning the debate amoungst scientists, but when it comes to the popular debate, large amounts of funding will result in a proportional amount of material. Since the population at large don't have the wherewithall to analyse the findings, they look instead to the volume of the work produced and the reputation of those producing it.

In the abscence of the capability to analyse the science itself, it help to know where the funding comes from. If the science is then picked up by a scientist who's sources appear not to be compromised, then it is reasonable to assume that it was sound science in the first place. This filter layer is the meaning of peer review. In the abscence of this filter layer, it is reasonable for the population to know that the funding is selecting for particular conclusions, thus possibly prejudicing the data or the analysis of that data.

Knowledge of funding is part of the mechanism by which the non-scientist protects him or herself against junk science.

Re:The Report (2, Interesting)

MightyMartian (840721) | more than 7 years ago | (#17859632)

Also, Zonk, I think you mean Mr. Chase knows why, Salmon P. Chase is on the $10,000 bill. Offering nominal fees for paper and pen to write reports is one thing but when the incentive is a large percentage of my yearly income, I think Exxon should be ousted as scientifically backwards assholes

I don't imagine there's anything to be done about the company, but I'll wager those scientists who rolled over for cash are going to suffer greatly among their fellow researchers.

Re:The Report (2, Insightful)

ArcherB (796902) | more than 7 years ago | (#17860122)

What about the scientist who took money to say that global warming IS problem? It seems to me that cash is flowing both ways, but a whole lot more of it is flowing the "alarmists".

From Here: [senate.gov]

Just how much money do the climate alarmists have at their disposal? There was a $3 billion donation to the global warming cause from Virgin Air's Richard Branson alone. The well-heeled environmental lobbying groups have massive operating budgets compared to groups that express global warming skepticism. The Sierra Club Foundation 2004 budget was $91 million and the Natural Resources Defense Council had a $57 million budget for the same year. Compare that to the often media derided Competitive Enterprise Institute's small $3.6 million annual budget.

In addition, if a climate skeptic receives any money from industry, the media immediately labels them and attempts to discredit their work. The same media completely ignore the money flow from the environmental lobby to climate alarmists like James Hansen and Michael Oppenheimer. (ie. Hansen received $250,000 from the Heinz Foundation and Oppenheimer is a paid partisan of Environmental Defense Fund)

Re:The Report (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17859636)

Just as a question though, how is offering a bribe any better then refusing to fund/publish scientifically valid counterpoints to the consensus [friendsofscience.org] on global warming?

Re:The Report (5, Funny)

SEMW (967629) | more than 7 years ago | (#17859746)

Just as a question though, how is [oil companies] offering a bribe any better than refusing to fund/publish scientifically valid counterpoints to the consensus on global warming?
Ironically, the "scientifically valid counterpoints" you link to are also funded by the Oil companies [dailykos.com] .

Re:The Report (2, Insightful)

HappySqurriel (1010623) | more than 7 years ago | (#17860116)

Although the anonymous coward choose a foolish group to link to there are lots of intelligent environmentalists who disagree with the current view of "Environmentalism"...

Dr. Patrick Moore, a founding member of Greenpeace, left Greenpeace in 1986 after he saw Greenpeace became more concerned with anti-capitalism and anti-globalization rather than environmental issues. He had this to say on Global Warming recently "most difficult issue facing the scientific community today in terms of being able to actually predict with any kind of accuracy what's going to happen". While acknowledging that the increase of carbon dioxide in the Earth's atmosphere is caused by human consumption of fossil fuels, he claims that as of 2006 it cannot be fully proven that this is the reason the Earth has been warming since 1980. He stresses that it is scientific evidence, not consensus opinion, that would prove or disprove this relation."

link [wikipedia.org]

Re:The Report (2, Insightful)

Rei (128717) | more than 7 years ago | (#17860160)

I always hate it how whenever Exxon-Mobil does something ridiculous, "oil companies" (collectively) get blamed -- Exxon-Mobil being one of the few dinosaurs left who still denies global warming (and does so quite actively). Meanwhile, companies like Shell and BP fund research into carbon sequestration and are among the world's largest investors in wind and solar (both in commercial production and research). But they're "oil companies", so they get lumped in with Exxon's BS.

Interestingly enough, I have it on good authority that when Exxon scientists have met with members of NCAR, they privately admit that anthropogenic climate change is quite real.

Re:The Report (1)

ArcherB (796902) | more than 7 years ago | (#17860196)

I'll see you dailykos link and raise you one senate.gov [senate.gov] :

The alarmists also enjoy a huge financial advantage over the skeptics with numerous foundations funding climate research, University research money and the United Nations endless promotion of the cause.

Just how much money do the climate alarmists have at their disposal? There was a $3 billion donation to the global warming cause from Virgin Air's Richard Branson alone. The well-heeled environmental lobbying groups have massive operating budgets compared to groups that express global warming skepticism. The Sierra Club Foundation 2004 budget was $91 million and the Natural Resources Defense Council had a $57 million budget for the same year. Compare that to the often media derided Competitive Enterprise Institute's small $3.6 million annual budget.
 

Re:The Report (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17859670)

...I think Exxon should be ousted as scientifically backwards assholes.

In a few years, there's going to be lawsuits by governments against Exxon and their ilk for compensation from the damage that these companies' caused. Kind of like the tobacco lawsuits.

ExxonMobil changing, or just wishful thinking? (3, Interesting)

benhocking (724439) | more than 7 years ago | (#17859718)

Offering nominal fees for paper and pen to write reports is one thing but when the incentive is a large percentage of my yearly income, I think Exxon should be ousted as scientifically backwards assholes.

I wonder if ExxonMobil is actually still funding the American Enterprise Institute. Late last year they announced their intention [cnn.com] to stop funding the Competitive Enterprise Institute, and I was assuming (I know, dangerous) that they were going to stop funding all similar institutes. Here is their official try-to -please-everyone-without-admitting-any-guilt [exxonmobil.com] statement for those who are interested.

Re:The Report (3, Funny)

Basehart (633304) | more than 7 years ago | (#17859754)

Micheal Savage, a radio talk show host here in the USA, was explaining to his millions of listeners yesterday that the so-called global warming trend is nothing but a natural cycle that occurs through the grace of God from time to time, and that it's sheer impudence to imply that mere man can cause such a global condition. He also went on to say that several thousand ducks waiting outside his SF bungalow upon his return from a trip to Florida were a sign from God. So who ya going to believe?

Re:The Report (1)

NorQue (1000887) | more than 7 years ago | (#17859782)

Little bit off-topic: I've watched the press conference this morning on BBC and CNN (switching between both) and was highly annoyed by the presentation of both broadcasters. The scientist who spoke after Dr Rajendra Pachauri (don't remember her name) presented the synopsis of this report on slides - and instead of focussing on these, showing the statistics and charts she referred to while speaking, I was presented a total of her face most of the time. What was the regisseur thinking?

Its From The U.N. (0, Troll)

sycodon (149926) | more than 7 years ago | (#17859888)

I haven't seen anyone discredit this panel or this document yet

It's from the U.N. What more do you need to make you think twice about its objectivity and accuracy?

Re:Its From The U.N. (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17860002)

It's from the U.N. What more do you need to make you think twice about its objectivity and accuracy?

Fuck off you mindless troll.

Re:The Report (3, Informative)

evil agent (918566) | more than 7 years ago | (#17860062)

What I have seen is criticism from right wing papers about this report either being "unsurprising" or "offering no hope, grim." On the other hand, leftist papers have been in a sort of "we're doomed" sort of mode.
I haven't read the report but I've read two summaries:

From cnn [cnn.com] :

And the report said no matter how much civilization slows or reduces its greenhouse gas emissions, global warming and sea level rise will continue on for centuries.

From foxnews [foxnews.com] :

Scientists from 113 countries issued a landmark report Friday saying they have little doubt global warming is caused by man, and predicting that hotter temperatures and rises in sea level will "continue for centuries" no matter how much humans control their pollution.

However, they both do go on to say that it would be irresponsible to just sit back and do nothing. Also, we have to adapt to a warmer earth.

Re:The Report (1)

dkmeans (883158) | more than 7 years ago | (#17860254)

This particular report IS NOT being produced by the scientists - it's being produced by U.N. politicians. The scitentific version isn't due out until summer, and there are actual qualified scientists writing their small individual sections.

At last, morals prevail... (4, Interesting)

Moggyboy (949119) | more than 7 years ago | (#17859548)

Can someone publish the names and phone numbers of these scientists so I can lobby to get them into top positions in government?

mod parent up! (1)

swschrad (312009) | more than 7 years ago | (#17859594)

nfm

Re:At last, morals prevail... (1)

Turn-X Alphonse (789240) | more than 7 years ago | (#17859906)

Why do people always assume A leads to Z? Just because these guys have morals does not mean they would make good politicians. It's like saying "That psycho who killed the most people is clearly the best leader for the squad", except he has no clue how to lead, just maim people.

Re:At last, morals prevail... (1)

Moggyboy (949119) | more than 7 years ago | (#17859944)

I guess I figure that an honest f^&kwit is better than a corrupt one, any day of the week. And any sort of f^&kwit is better than the one in the White House.

what about the rest? (1)

JustNiz (692889) | more than 7 years ago | (#17859550)

>> several scientists contacted for the article refused the offers on conflict of interest grounds." ...now please can we have the email addresses of the ones that accepted the bribe?

Re:what about the rest? (1)

micktaggart (1047954) | more than 7 years ago | (#17859680)

Well, at least those working at the IPCC are easy to get at.

Re:what about the rest? (1)

tritonman (998572) | more than 7 years ago | (#17859836)

Global Warming is a SCAM! I am a scientist and I have studies that show that carbon dioxide is actually GOOD for the earth! The problem is that the liberal media has threatened me not to release these notes!

Ok, ok, so my study was funded by Exxon, but that doesn't mean it's not true.

Re:what about the rest? (1)

shark72 (702619) | more than 7 years ago | (#17859856)

A good place to go hunting is techcentralstation [techcentralstation.com] . It's nothing but paid ads. Check the Energy and Environment [tcsdaily.com] page. Articles like this one [tcsdaily.com] sound like they have some sponsorship behind them. Interestingly enough, the author is also a proponent of intelligent design [wikipedia.org] .

Re:what about the rest? (0)

ArcherB (796902) | more than 7 years ago | (#17860244)

Interestingly enough, the author is also a proponent of intelligent design.

Holy Shit! He believes in God!??!! What a crackpot! Why would anyone take with religion seriously.

In Capitalist America... (1, Troll)

scriptedfate (1058680) | more than 7 years ago | (#17859574)

...report writes you! ((Or, better, the market writes the reports))

Truly, in a capitalist environment, the markets should decide who is write and wrong. Science should be chosen by those with good money sense.

Ugh.

If you can't beat 'em.. (1, Flamebait)

BlackCobra43 (596714) | more than 7 years ago | (#17859598)

attempt to bribe them (oh, sorry, "lobby aggressively"). It's The American Way (tm).

Re:If you can't beat 'em.. (1)

UbuntuDupe (970646) | more than 7 years ago | (#17859638)

Yes, scientists are supposed to work for free, and you should never ask any scientist if he would document what he considers the flaws of a prevailing theory.

At least, that's the message I'm getting from the story.

It's always Bush (1, Funny)

fragmentate (908035) | more than 7 years ago | (#17859616)

We've never gotten so much Bush in all of our lives. Bush is somehow tied to everything. In college, it was Bush motivated me to sacrifice my morals. Bush often made us all do things we wouldn't normally have done.

...

Oh, the Bush administration. What was I thinking?!

(Seriously... This is such flamebait)

Re:It's always Bush (1)

kitsunewarlock (971818) | more than 7 years ago | (#17859876)

See if you support Bush, its flame-bait.

If you bash him, its funny or even insightful.

Not saying I believe the mildy-retarded half-wit.

very good idea (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17859624)

That's a very good idea. If the study is valid, it will stand up. If someone does not want to accept the results of the study, he will never do. More obvious realities have been challenged...

cb

How is this any different? (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17859656)

How is this any different from all the climate scientists who are offered cash by left-wing groups like the USC or Greenpeace? Have any of you actually traced the grant monies of the really public guys?

In truth, much of the global warming hysteria is intended to make you feel guilty and ashamed for existing, so that you'll be more willing to pay higher taxes to a government fix the problem. Never mind that we had most of our warming before the 1930s, never mind the heat rise of the Middle Ages or the temperature drop of the 40s through the 70s, and so on.

No, we are supposed to rely on consensus science, the same people who told us we were entering a second ice age 40 years ago, the same people who said we'd run out of landfills in the late 1980s, etc. There is always something to frighten people and make them feel guilty for existing so that they pay money to these people.

astropoint sucks Zeus's cock on twofo (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17859658)

Twofo [twofo.co.uk] Is Dying

DC++ [dcpp.net] hub.twofo.co.uk:4144

It is official; Netcraft confirms: Twofo is dying

One more crippling bombshell hit the already beleagured University of Warwick [warwick.ac.uk] filesharing community when ITS confirmed that Twofo total share has dropped yet again, now down to less than a fraction of 1 percent of all file sharing. Coming hot on the heels of a recent Netcraft survey which plainly states that Twofo has lost more share, this news serves to reinforce what we've known all along. Twofo is collapsing in complete disarray, as fittingly exemplified by failing dead last in the recent Student comprehensive leeching test.

You don't need to be one of the Hub Operators to predict Twofo's future. The hand writing is on the toilet wall: Twofo faces a bleak future. In fact there won't be any future at all for Twofo because Twofo is dying. Things are looking very bad for Twofo. As many of us are already aware, Twofo continues to lose users. Fines and disconnections flow like a river of feces [tubgirl.com] .

N00b Campus users are the most endangered of them all, having lost 93% of their total share. The sudden and unpleasant departures of long time Twofo sharers fool_on_the_hill and Twinklefeet only serves to underscore the point more clearly. There can no longer be any doubt: Twofo is dying.

Let's keep to the facts and look at the numbers.

Sources indicate that there are at most 150 users in the hub. How many filelists have been downloaded? Let's see. 719. But 1621 IP addresses have been logged, and 1727 nicks have been sighted connecting to one user over the last term. How many searches are there? 600 searches in 3 hours. The highest sharer on campus, known as "firstchoice", or Andrew.Maddison@warwick.ac.uk in real life, was sharing over 1 TiB, despite working in ITS [warwick.ac.uk] and not being on the resnet. He's only there so people off campus who think they're too good for bittorrent can continue to abuse the University's internet connection.

Due to troubles at the University of Warwick, lack of internet bandwidth, enforcements of Acceptable Usage Policies, abysmal sharing, retarded leechers, clueless n00bs, and ITS fining and disconnecting users, Twofo has no future. All major student surveys show that Twofo has steadily declined in file share. Twofo is very sick and its long term survival prospects are very dim. If Twofo is to survive at all it will be among hardcore peer to peer fuckwits, desperate to grab stuff for free off the internet. Nothing short of a miracle could save Twofo from its fate at this point in time. For all practical purposes, Twofo is dead.

Fact: Twofo is dying

Please keep the knee-jerk to a minimum... (2, Insightful)

PFI_Optix (936301) | more than 7 years ago | (#17859664)

If a report were issued that global warming was not manmade and a thinktank offered a similar reward, would you also call it a bribe?

If (and this is a very strong IF) they do this right, what they are doing is using money to accelerate the scientific debate. If there are errors in the report that other scientists can find, there is now incentive to find them and weed them out. It's the scientific process pushed forward by money.

The downside of it will, of course, be that a lot of "scientists" will make wild claims in an attempt to collect on this cash and muddy the waters. But I think in the long run this might actually speed up the process by which we arrive at a definite conclusion to the debate and finally start seriously working on solutions.

Re:Please keep the knee-jerk to a minimum... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17859762)

Heh, that was the worst spin ever. You should give a refund to Exxon-Mobil.

Re:Please keep the knee-jerk to a minimum... (1)

xilmaril (573709) | more than 7 years ago | (#17859806)

gimme a sec, I need to pick my jaw up...

kay.

YES! Fucking right we would! When a scientist takes money to report a specific result, that's a bribe. There are NO situations under which that is not a bribe. Seriously, what are you smoking?

On a sidenote, this bribe thing is a nice way of discrediting anti-global warming reports. funny, that.

Re:Please keep the knee-jerk to a minimum... (3, Insightful)

ScentCone (795499) | more than 7 years ago | (#17859952)

When a scientist takes money to report a specific result, that's a bribe.

How about when a scientist is funded to point out the ways in which another (paid!) scientist's conclusions may be either wrong or taken in a politically-driven context that's all about fear? When a scientist is paid to challenge widely-held beliefs that happen to be peculiarly embraced by one end of the political spectrum, and used as leverage to push legislative agendas that are more about redistribution of income or other unrelated non-science-ish stuff, we usually call that... science. You should be delighted that scientists are being offered money to publicly challenge the conclusions of other scientists. If the challenge is weak, the other scientists' findings are strengthened. If the challenge prevails, then it was essential that it was done. What's not to like?

Re:Please keep the knee-jerk to a minimum... (1)

spun (1352) | more than 7 years ago | (#17860180)

This isn't about the science, this is about the public's perception of the science and the policy changes driven by that perception. What ExxonMobile is doing is despicable and in no way related to real scientific discovery. It's a publicity move to cover their ass and protect their profits, and the fact that people are defending them disgusts me.

When is that done? (1)

benhocking (724439) | more than 7 years ago | (#17860224)

How about when a scientist is funded to point out the ways in which another (paid!) scientist's conclusions may be either wrong or taken in a politically-driven context that's all about fear?

Other than the media-circuit, when is this ever done? Sure, you might have a scientist who is funded by the government who writes an article pointing out how another scientist's conclusions were wrong, but he wasn't paid to write that specific article. He was paid to do research, and to report the results of that research, regardless of what those results are. That's the difference between government funded research and privately funded research. Privately funded research often has the proviso that the results cannot be published without first being authorized by the funding agency. Do you understand how that causes bias?

You should be delighted that scientists are being offered money to publicly challenge the conclusions of other scientists. If the challenge is weak, the other scientists' findings are strengthened. If the challenge prevails, then it was essential that it was done. What's not to like?

Because these scientists are not actually finding real problems. They just speak in a language that mere mortals don't understand in such a way to suggest that there is doubt. Even when, couched in their own language, they say there is no doubt. Take a look at this article [opinionjournal.com] written by Richard Lindzen, provided to me by someone who was arguing against anthropogenic global warming. Ostensibly, he's saying that the global warming alarmists are all wrong. However, read closely and you'll find this gem:

He [Gregg Easterbrook] concludes that the scientific community now agrees that significant warming is occurring, and that there is clear evidence of human influences on the climate system. This is still a most peculiar claim. At some level, it has never been widely contested.

"Never been widely contested"? Then, what exactly are you saying? Oh, just that certain claims by certain climatologists might not be accurate. Not that the overall picture is wrong, just that some/many of the details are. Next time you read an article by Lindzen, keep this in mind. See if he ever actually disputes the main point. Case in point [cnn.com] . If you notice, Lindzen is very careful to stick to the Gulf Stream argument. That way, it looks like he's in disagreement with the basic science, without actually having to say anything unscientific. Clever.

Re:Please keep the knee-jerk to a minimum... (2, Insightful)

timmarhy (659436) | more than 7 years ago | (#17859960)

do you honestly think the people who wrote this report were unpaid and had no bias of their own? take the blinders off.

Re:Please keep the knee-jerk to a minimum... (5, Insightful)

pubjames (468013) | more than 7 years ago | (#17859956)

If a report were issued that global warming was not manmade and a thinktank offered a similar reward, would you also call it a bribe?

Yes, of course. Scientists should never be paid to come to specific conclusions.

It's the scientific process pushed forward by money.

No, it's the scientific process being corrupted by money.

Re:Please keep the knee-jerk to a minimum... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17860240)

The downside of it will, of course, be that a lot of "scientists" will make wild claims in an attempt to collect on this cash and muddy the waters. But I think in the long run this might actually speed up the process by which we arrive at a definite conclusion to the debate and finally start seriously working on solutions.(Emphasis added)
I can't believe such a post was modded "5, insightful"...
Time to wake up... You sound as if you're stuck in the 90's.

AC

As opposed to... (0, Troll)

Xiver (13712) | more than 7 years ago | (#17859672)

As opposed to scientiests who depend on grant money that only comes in if they say the exact opposite.

Clearly, you don't understand grants (2, Insightful)

benhocking (724439) | more than 7 years ago | (#17859914)

If you could scientifically (key word) demonstrate that humans made no significant contribution to global warming (within a certain margin of error, of course), you'd have no problem getting grants - especially from the current administration. (OK, maybe not "no problem". You also have to be able to write halfway well. Let's just say it'd be easier than if you were just a conformist scientist who didn't produce any novel research.) They do ultimately control the purse strings, and if there was some grand conspiracy going on, do you really think that Bush and friends wouldn't be using their influence to end/replace it?

Re:As opposed to... (1)

SEMW (967629) | more than 7 years ago | (#17859934)

I've seen this claim quite a few times; could you quote a source for it? Because if you're talking about government grants (specifically, federal grants), are you seriously making the claim I think you are?

Re:As opposed to... (5, Interesting)

CaymanIslandCarpedie (868408) | more than 7 years ago | (#17860096)

As opposed to scientiests who depend on grant money that only comes in if they say the exact opposite.

This should be added to the list of well known trolls!

It seems there are those (cannot imagine who they could POSSIBLY be) who want to convince the public that agreeing with or studying global warming is some new get rich quick scheme for scientists ;-) The scientific community has been quietly (and largely un-funded) been studying the problem of "global warming" and man's effects on it for over 100 years! The first well know scientist I'm aware of to really bring this forward was Svante Arrhenius [wikipedia.org] . Here [ac-paris.fr] is an article he published on the topic in 1896. Far from raking in the money because of his research as you suggest, this Nobel prize winner was widely critisized and had a lot of trouble getting any presigious posts because of his views.

Since him, thousands of other scientists have toiled in obscurity studying this field. Over the MANY years, these largely annonymous scientists have managed to compile and report on their data which points in some troubling directions for our future. Because of this, one would hope more and more money will go toward thier research (sadly today more money still goes toward trying to debunk them by organizations with VERY conflicting agendas).

Yes, there are some bad "scientists" out there which will sell themselves to any religious cult or multi-billon dollar company out there, but these are the VAST minority. You think scientists (especially climate scientists) have choosen that field for the celebrity and wealth that awaits??? Seriously???.

Please! Just please, let this stupid troll arguement die!

names and details (0, Troll)

timmarhy (659436) | more than 7 years ago | (#17859684)

i've seen many reports on this but i'm yet to see one of these letters published. the globalwarming crowd are certainly not above blatant lies. i see in the article that greenpeace are involved, so you can count out a large chunk of credability right there with those nuts. it's worth taking note that 30 years ago these same people were claiming an ice age was heading our way.

Re:names and details (1)

CRCulver (715279) | more than 7 years ago | (#17859918)

It's worth taking note that 30 years ago these same people were claiming an ice age was heading our way.

This is an urban myth that has been debunked numerous times already. Only a small amount of scientists in the '70s were thinking about ice ages, and most of them were afraid of nuclear winter scenarios (which remain a possibility if a Cold War-style massive exchange were to take place), not gradual climate change per se.

Re:names and details (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17860000)

Learn your history. There was never going to be an ice age, just misinformation in the media based on the discovery that ice ages are periodic. There was no mass of scientists claiming we must do something to head it off, just air heads on TV and tabloids looking for a scary story. Keep up the FUD though.

Re:names and details (2, Interesting)

SEMW (967629) | more than 7 years ago | (#17860026)

it's worth taking note that 30 years ago these same people were claiming an ice age was heading our way.
I don't think the consensus on that has changed; there's still an ice age due. The issue is timescales: we're expecting an ice age at some point in the next 100,000 years; the global warming report is about the next 100. And, of course, the latter will certainly affect the effect of the former. You can't really complain that something was predicted at some time in the next millennia and it hasn't happened after 30 years...

Newsflash: Scientists Offered Even More Cash (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17859694)

. . . to contribute to the Global Climate Change(tm) hysteria.

They're called "grants" and it's looking like the Klondike these days.

The Difference (1)

Garse Janacek (554329) | more than 7 years ago | (#17860242)

They're called "grants"

The difference, of course, is that grants are given based on your planned experiments / studies, and not on the results of those experiments -- there may be some early/partial results known, but the whole point of the grant is to do a more in-depth study that will, ideally, give more accurate and useful results -- and a full analysis may even (in fact, hopefully will) give a different and much more complete picture than what was known at the beginning. If grants were awarded primarily on the conclusion of a study rather than the methodology, that would also be an enormous and unethical conflict of interest -- just like the "funding" described in this article.

"Conflict of interest?" (1)

erroneus (253617) | more than 7 years ago | (#17859696)

How could that be defined? Conflict between the desire for money and power versus life on earth?

And this is news? (1)

david.c99 (1028202) | more than 7 years ago | (#17859704)

And this is news? How do you people think scientists make their money anyways? They find somebody that wants something proven, for a price, then they prove it. There just happens to be more money floating around to prove "man-made" global warming at this time, that is why "more" scientists are trying to prove this. Reality is that if there was "more" money floating around to dis-prove man-made global warming, then that would be that would be the "science-dejour".

Re:And this is news? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17859948)

And this is news? How do you people think scientists make their money anyways? They find somebody that wants something proven, for a price, then they prove it. There just happens to be more money floating around to prove "man-made" global warming at this time, that is why "more" scientists are trying to prove this. Reality is that if there was "more" money floating around to dis-prove man-made global warming, then that would be that would be the "science-dejour".
The fact that you believe scientists prove things betrays your total ignorance of the subject. Science doesn't and can't prove anything. Science can only disprove things. So for instance there is this hypothesis that the majority of the global warming we observe is man made. Scientists all over the world try to disprove it. So far they have all failed.

Re:And this is news? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17859984)

How did this get modded up? This is one of the most uninformed opinions of science that I've ever seen. Science is the pursuit of truth. When a scientist forms a theory, he then devotes the rest of his time trying to prove that theory wrong. It's not based on trying to come to a pre-assumed conclusion, at most you have some basis of what you're trying to prove, but you don't cherry-pick facts/data to come to the conclusion you already had initially. That's called confirmation bias, and it's also called bad science.

Meanwhile-- (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17859708)

The fact that NASA scientist James Hansen (one of those "muzzled") received a $250,000 "bribe" (the poster's characterization, not mine) from the Heinz Foundation to exaggerate and hype mankind's contribution to global warming goes unremarked.

Damn liberals! (2, Insightful)

spun (1352) | more than 7 years ago | (#17859712)

This is just propaganda from the liberal controlled greeny environmental industry, making shit up to slander the good name of an honest, productive and responsible corporation. Everyone knows global warming scientists are rich as Midas from all the money funneled to them by their commie-pinko-socialist masters, of course they don't need to take money from an honest corporation! Just think, this poor industry, barely making ends meet, scrapes up a little money to try to help fund some REAL SCIENCE, and these vicious intelelctuals turn on them like a pack of wild dogs. /right-wing-parody

Anyone want to place a bet on how many of these 'ideas' are going to become official talking points on Faux News?

Tide have turned, bribes no longer work (1)

Knutsi (959723) | more than 7 years ago | (#17859714)

Once, warning og climate change might have been damaging for you career. Now, disputing climate change, something everyone now believes to be a reality, will do the same. This is why bribes like this is no longer effective.

Only thing that works for a big companies now is to think "if you can't beat'em, join'em" and go green, or at least seemingly green.

Let's hope it brings a change for the better. Anyone else who actually feels a bit optimistic that we're learning to take a bit more responsibility for our own future now? (:

This is not a bad thing! (1)

phayes (202222) | more than 7 years ago | (#17859716)

If Exxon wants to fund climate research, good. Once their research comes out then if it disagrees with your pet theory then argue based on the facts, but don't denigrate the funding of those who may interpret things differently than you do. Doing otherwise is following in the footsteps of the church who forced Copernicus to recant because it disagreed with their theory.

$10K? Don't make me laugh... (4, Interesting)

nweaver (113078) | more than 7 years ago | (#17859726)

$10K is a pretty damn paltry bribe. $100K research grants are pretty common for those in the sciences, with $1M+ programs not unheard of. As for personal salary, a PhD college professor in the sciences is easily at $100k+/year when you include summer salary.

If you are going to bribe someone, make sure you at least get in the right ballpark of "interesting". Trash my carreer for $10K? Don't make me laugh.

Re:$10K? Don't make me laugh... (1)

micktaggart (1047954) | more than 7 years ago | (#17859964)

With Exxon posting profits of US$ 39.5 billion over 2006, I doubt they don't know about the right ballparks. It seems to me the Guardian article is crap, because Exxon could have easily put in a higher bribe. Just because Exxon is/was a donor of the American Enterprise Institute (AEI), does not mean everything the AEI does, needs to be linked back to Exxon.

Re:$10K? Don't make me laugh... (1)

mangu (126918) | more than 7 years ago | (#17860108)

a PhD college professor in the sciences is easily at $100k+/year when you include summer salary


PhD college professors who are experts in climatology all agree that global warming is an effect of burning fossil fuels. People who are accepting those $10k aren't scientists, they are just mediocre writers, almost certainly unemployed, for whom that money makes all the difference in the world.

Ultimate PR/Damge Control Guru (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17859728)

What's Mohammed Saeed al-Sahaf, Iraqi Minister of Information is up to these days?

I'm sure he's looking for work.

Conflict of Interests, But needs to be done.... (1)

ic3scrap3r (641359) | more than 7 years ago | (#17859732)

While I don't agree with "offering cash for dissenting papers" I do think that the scientists with opposing viewpoints AND the evidence to support these viewpoints do need to get more coverage. The Global Warming subject is currently a media darling as evidenced by Al Gore's recent Nobel Prize nomination for his "work" in this area. I guess the invention of the Internet wasn't good enough for a nomination! http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/nationworld/chi -0702020118feb02,1,4285055.story?coll=chi-newsnati onworld-hed/ [chicagotribune.com]

Re:Conflict of Interests, But needs to be done.... (1)

Speed Pour (1051122) | more than 7 years ago | (#17859976)

I won't argue with your thoughts (in fact I agree that different opinions need to be expressed and taken seriously), but I think there might be a very big message here when considering how things played out.

Just think about you would feel if you had a dissenting opinion and then offered cash to write about how you disagree. I don't know about you, but as long as writing the paper wasn't going to destroy my career, I'd be 100% on board to make the easy money for doing what I believed in.

I don't deny that pop-science has become far too common, but most scientists are chomping at the bit to disprove other scientists and theories. However, when these guys won't take the easy money, it gives me the sense that they must REALLY believe in what they stand behind.

WTF is a "Former Scientist?" (2, Insightful)

good soldier svejk (571730) | more than 7 years ago | (#17859738)

Among its authors are Tad Murty, a former scientist who believes human activity makes no contribution to global warming.
Has he abandoned empiricism and scientific method in favor of rationalism? Disavowed science? Become an Objectivist? Had his degrees revoked for fraud? Who is this guy? [wikipedia.org] And if his training is in oceanography, how did he get into civil engineering?

Can we just assume... (5, Interesting)

Speed Pour (1051122) | more than 7 years ago | (#17859784)

...that every single move taken by the tobacco industry in the last 15 years is going to be repeated in exact fashion by the oil industry?

- This particular case is exactly the same as the tobacco industry paying to have scientists say there was no connection between smoking and cancer (or any of the other ailments).
- The paying off of lobbyists is normal, but was made infamous by "big tobacco". Now it's "Big Oil" making sure senators get to make frequent holidays in the Grand Caymans.
- Some might even point out that all of the gas guzzling autos are the cool toys for the younger crowd...just as people might say Joe Camel was targeted at America's youth. I, of course, would not make such a brash statement; but only to say some might.

There are plenty of other examples of the pattern being repeated, but I'm too tired to write them all out. Short version, the only thing that's changed is the product

A bribe? (4, Insightful)

joNDoty (774185) | more than 7 years ago | (#17859800)

Now before we all cry bloody murder, why are we calling this a bribe? There was a report released on global climate change. One company is hoping that there were shortcomings and inaccuracies in that report. That company doesn't have the scientific capability to refute the findings, so they are hiring scientists to document any and all shortcomings for them.

As far as I can tell, there is no proof that they asked the scientists to lie. Unless, of course, you have already made up your mind that global warming is a fact and any attempt to refute it is corrupt and evil.

The company involved is obviously biased, but I don't see an attempt to refute a study as evil in and of itself.

Re:A bribe? (2, Funny)

Urban Garlic (447282) | more than 7 years ago | (#17860100)

There are several shortcomings in your post.

The problem is, the FUD-nitpick attack really has no defense.

To wit, regarding your post:

You should have used a comma after the first "Now".

The article summary did not propose criminal sanctions against the actors it describes. Nobody is planning to cry "bloody murder", so your estimate of the number wanting to do this ("we all") is evidently inaccurate.

You describe "one company" as hoping for shortcomings and inaccuracies in the report, but the probable truth is that, while only one company was mentioned in the summary, several companies are hoping this. Your transparent attempt to minimize the scale of those who hope for inaccuracies and shortcomings has failed, and casts doubt on your credibility.

It is unfortunate that your central point, which certainly sounds reasonable and plausible, is marred by this lack of attention to detail. Plausibility and reasonableness are not enough to sustain your argument. In the absence of irrefutable data, and in light of your somewhat slipshot presentation, we cannot cry "bloody murder", but must admit that these scientists may, in fact, have been asked to lie, as you have failed to prove otherwise. Your conclusion is much too hasty, and more research is required before any adjustment can be made to the assertion that Exxon is evil.

Re:A bribe? (1)

CyberSnyder (8122) | more than 7 years ago | (#17860162)

Hiring someone to study the results independently and hiring someone to refute the results are two *very* different things.

Funding or Bribery? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17859810)

Isn't it funny how, if we agree with the position - that is funding!
If we disagree with the position - it is bribery ;-)

$10k a large bribe? (1)

alaned (1055344) | more than 7 years ago | (#17859824)

Wow. Way to get rich. To do the research, write the paper, get it through the no doubt rigorous review process: how long will that take for something this controversial? A couple of months, maybe? How many Nobel prize winners will work for $60k a year? And who will read an article by somebody with no reputation?

"Conflict of Interest"? (1)

SuperBanana (662181) | more than 7 years ago | (#17859842)

Couched in terms of an offer to write 'dissenting papers' against the findings of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, several scientists contacted for the article refused the offers on conflict of interest grounds

How about refusing on the grounds that research and scientific opinion should not be for sale or political motive? It's pretty sad only one person did so: Professor Schroeder.

Scientists often talk big, but nothing shuts them up faster than a threat to their funding, and there's no better way to threaten your research group's funding than to say "no" if an organization linked to Bush (a large number of AEI people have worked as administration "consultants") comes around asking for a favor. "Conflict of Interest" was a polite and evasive way to say "no" without saying "no"...

Bribe? Riiiight (1)

N8F8 (4562) | more than 7 years ago | (#17859870)

Just like the other researchers were "bribed" into doing the "global warming" research in the first place. It's called funding folks. It's what you do when you don't have a bunch of religious zealots to spread your viewpoint for free or you need to entice credible resources to risk their life, limb and career disagreeing against said zealots.

closed system (2, Insightful)

wmeyer (17620) | more than 7 years ago | (#17859884)

There is no impartial scientist to be found. As earth is a closed system -- we're all here for the duration -- we all have a vested interest in the future. It makes little difference whether a study is financed by a corporation like ExxonMobil or by a green group with deep pockets; both have agendas, and in the final analysis, either the scientific methods are sound, or they're not, regardless of who is funding.

The problem up to now has been the tendency of many to assume that a) because a study is endorsed by scientists, it must therefore be valid, and b) that if it is financed by a green organization or a government, it is therefore more trustworthy than if it were funded by a multinational corporation. Both assumptions are false. Of all the scientists on the planet, only a very small percentage are competent in the the analysis of climatological data, and of those, even fewer are knowledgeable with respect to the long term studies involved. As to funding and impartiality, every group I can think of has an agenda here, be they environmental groups, governments, or corporations.

What is clearly needed is a rational study by qualified scientists, and discussion and even attacks on the conclusions drawn by other groups of equally qualified scientists. This is essentially the kind of thing that is done to keep scholarly journals on track. Articles are refereed by people with knowledge and experience in the field.

Finally, one of the chief problems in trying to analyze the existing data is that we possess reasonably accurate data for only a very brief period of time, and from those data, we hope to extrapolate global long term trends. In undertaking that task, trends are extrapolated forward and backward, and assumptions are stacked upon assumptions. The further we get from today, in either direction, the less reliable are those assumptions. And let us not forget that we are still unable to reliably predict the weather more than a few days in advance, yet we have sufficient hubris to believe we can predict 100 years forward.

Meteorologists offerered cash, too. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17859894)

Conversely, meteorlogists have been offered cash, in a way, to back the global warming agenda. I.e., they have had their careers threatened for not squelching all scientific skepticism and cowtowing unquestioningly to the political orthodoxy which, by the way, is a real gravy train of grant money. http://www.jamesspann.com/wordpress/?p=650 [jamesspann.com]

Global Warming? (1)

measured_flo (799013) | more than 7 years ago | (#17859928)

It was -14F this morning, and with the wind chill right now it feels like -20F. Seems to be more like regional warming to me.

what about government grants? (1)

Dr Kool, PhD (173800) | more than 7 years ago | (#17859974)

My tax dollars are being given over to pro-glowball warming scientists in the form of grants. Do these research grants which are often worth hundreds of thousands of dollars also constitute bribes?

Re:what about government grants? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17860120)

The government research grants aren't being offered to find specific results. In this case, Exxon is offereing money to researchers if the will come up with specific results ( results that are contrary to the report).

If Exxon was really interested in accuracy, they would offer the money to researchers regardless of what results they came up with.

Marketplace of Ideas? (3, Funny)

internic (453511) | more than 7 years ago | (#17859992)

I guess they took the expression, "the marketplace of ideas" a bit too literally.

Obstruction of science (2, Interesting)

Merkwurdigeliebe (1046824) | more than 7 years ago | (#17860014)

This kind of attempt to brible people to peddle an agenda should carry consequences similar to that of obstruction of justice like tampering with a witness. This situation is tampering with science -as best understood. And the "scientists" who support or "cherry-pick" their data should be held to the same standards as front-people are held accountable if they (mis)-represent a product they know to be short of what is claimed --as it is in some states.

If these people get paid to mis-represent data (differing from soomeone who is simply on the misguided path in their scientific quest), the scientists in question if paid to support only a particular (biased) outcome, should be held to some account. With fines and depending on severity disqualification from their profession.

Not a surprise (2, Insightful)

Bullfish (858648) | more than 7 years ago | (#17860052)

Really, what do you expect exxon et al to say, do... look at the tobacco lobbies and their efforts to discredit studies and such that say cigarettes are not addictive using their own lobby-funded studies. In the rest of the world, and I would say most of the US, global warming is not controversial. Do wing nuts prop up their people to go on camera and say "it ain't happening". Sure, but so did the tobacco people. Most thinking people can see past this type of stuff and not get swept up in the propaganda wars. Unfortunately many do get suckered in by it. They have a lot of cash to throw at ads and lobbying these days due to the price of oil, and they want to keep that cash flowing. Like the addictive tobacco controversy... this one is dying. Expect to see more thrashing from the lobbies as it goes down for the count.

Take the money. (2, Funny)

neo (4625) | more than 7 years ago | (#17860078)

Won't change anything, and at least you can buy a nice winter coat.

How the post should have finished.... (1)

Biff98 (633281) | more than 7 years ago | (#17860094)

"...several scientists contacted for the article refused the offers on conflict of interest grounds, while others happily signed their life away and are hustling to finish their dissenting papers. And who have planned a luxurious European jaunt. And who just bought a Mercedes. And a new house."

What is wrong in ExxonMobile? (3, Insightful)

Iloinen Lohikrme (880747) | more than 7 years ago | (#17860098)

I just have wonder what is wrong in Exxon-Mobile. Every other major oil company in the world has admitted that global warming is for real and it's probably caused by man. In example Jorma Ollila [wikipedia.org] who is the chairman of Shell has said it an interview that global warming is real and the only way to tackel it is to reduce carbon emissions. He continued and said that when he came to work in Shell, he was amazed by the concern that Shell employees had about global warming. So the question is what is wrong in Exxon-Mobile? Are their executives so locked into an equation (oil = money) that they have forgotten that it's really (oil = energy = money) and that a company can have other forms of energy sources than just oil?

Global Warming (1)

Ikyaat (764422) | more than 7 years ago | (#17860134)

Now I'm not a climascientist or a Meteortologist or any 'Ist in fact and I find it strange that there is any debate about this at all. I mean when dinosaurs were around it was HOT, then there was an ice age where it was COLD, and now its getting HOT again. Did they not claim since like, the 1900's, that these climate phases go in cycles? so should we not be expecting it to get warmer? Why are we surprised or arguing over it in the first place? Do people get paid to argue over it? If so how much? and where do I sign up?

bribery schmibery (1)

largejunglecat (947016) | more than 7 years ago | (#17860142)

I like that when an environmental organization funds climate change research it is called "funding", but when an oil company funds research the media refers to it as "bribery". Say what you like about how non-partisan you think the media is, I think that the agenda is pretty apparent.

Backwards (1)

Socguy (933973) | more than 7 years ago | (#17860156)

The letters, sent to scientists in Britain, the US and elsewhere, attack the UN's panel as "resistant to reasonable criticism and dissent and prone to summary conclusions that are poorly supported by the analytical work" and ask for essays that "thoughtfully explore the limitations of climate model outputs".


So lets see: Exxon Mobile doesn't like it when their scientifically baseless critisim falls on deaf ears so they offer a bounty to try and find someone with a shread of credibility who can generate something they can run with. Anybody else find this a little backassward?

I dub them (1)

Moby Cock (771358) | more than 7 years ago | (#17860164)

the whores of academia.

Moderate Article Summary FLAMEBAIT -1 (1)

Nom du Keyboard (633989) | more than 7 years ago | (#17860166)

The word "bribe" does not appear at all in TFA. Or if it does, Firefox's Find box can't find it. As such, the summary writer's and/or Slashdot Editor's extreme bias is showing badly. That forces me to rate the whole thing as Flamebait -1.

A bribe? (1)

wynler (678277) | more than 7 years ago | (#17860206)

Well.  $10,000 plus travel expenses doesn't sound like a bribe to me.  Seems more like small compensation.  Writing a dissenting paper takes time.  Lots of it.  These professors make more than 10K a month.  And, it would take quite some time to write a paper.

Course we could say that the scientists who wrote the IPCC were bribed for their time as well.  I think that I will start bribing my employees to work for me as well.

I think that this is much more a case of...  The AEI is looking for papers critical of the IPCC's findings.  As compensation they are offering $10,000 plus expenses.  While AEI hopes that this is incentive, they realize that it's not very much.  But, they don't have great funding.  1.6 million barely covered their budget last year.

These numbers aren't that big.  !!!!$10K!!! (a months salary)  $1.6 million!!!  (6 months - year operating cost)  Does noone understand accounting and expenses anymore?

Real bribes could easily be done by ExxonMobile, real bribes in the 100k for people and 100M for companies.  This isn't a bribe, it's a pittance.  Looks to me that AEI is actually wanting real papers, not names signed on for their agenda.

Sorry for the rambling...
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