Other worldly factors in climate change, are Indonesian students right?
A report in the Jakarta Post, which said that a significant proportion of young Indonesians were content to regard the current climate change panic as
caught my attention, even before my agnostic and atheist friends exploded into mirthful indignation. (Why is it that so many non-believers here, who'd not think to blare out their scepticism back home, tend to take on a noisy resemblance to the long-dead League of Militant Godless - is it a reaction to the local fanatics?)
I'm certainly not an especially godly sort, but it seems to me that these young folks have a broader perspective than the panic-merchants. The more we read of the Gore Brigade, the more we find that their hysteria is manufactured. Gore's own film was faulted by a British court of law, which decreed that, not least in view of the various lies/errors/inaccuracies it contained, showing it in schools had to be accompanied by a bias health warning.
If we think there's a God up there, or even just Mother Nature, then it is patently His, or Her, doing that the climate is changing. Many scientists tell us exactly that, and get stridently abused and even persecuted for saying so. Others insist the climate is not significantly changing, or even going the other way from that which the panickers tell us.
A while ago we had a lengthy thread of argument on IM about climate (Saving the Planet?) and it became so self-absorbed that I gave up reading it. Since then I have paid sporadic attention to the issue, mainly due to my interest in free speech, and what I've learned from reading back and forth into the past decade has worried me about the character of the scientific establishment. A lot of these guys want and need government grants and are unlikely to upset their cosy apple-carts by challenging the in-crowd's prejudices. Why should those people quoted in the Jakarta Post article be held up to scorn for preferring explanations that don't depend on vested interests?
An article in the Wall Street Journal by a Mr. Lindzen, Alfred P. Sloan Professor of Atmospheric Science at MIT, in April 2006, reported that
Henk Tennekes was dismissed as research director of the Royal Dutch Meteorological Society after questioning the scientific underpinnings of global warming. Aksel Winn-Nielsen, former director of the U.N.'s World Meteorological Organization, was tarred by Bert Bolin, first head of the IPCC, as a tool of the coal industry for questioning climate alarmism. Respected Italian professors Alfonso Sutera and Antonio Speranza disappeared from the debate in 1991, apparently losing climate-research funding for raising questions.
He also states that censorship is in vogue in the journalistic sphere.. 'At Science and Nature, such papers are commonly refused without review as being without interest.' Not a very open dialogue, is it?
Lindzen's own experience with a paper he worked on is also worrying.
'...Normally, criticism of papers appears in the form of letters to the journal to which the original authors can respond immediately. However, in this case (and others) a flurry of hastily prepared papers appeared, claiming errors in our study, with our responses delayed months and longer. The delay permitted our paper to be commonly referred to as "discredited." Indeed, there is a strange reluctance to actually find out how climate really behaves. In 2003, when the draft of the U.S. National Climate Plan urged a high priority for improving our knowledge of climate sensitivity, the National Research Council instead urged support to look at the impacts of the warming--not whether it would actually happen.'
God, Nature, man-made, inevitable...? We are not being given the whole story, for sure, and cui bono? In these circumstances, it makes more sense for Indonesians and the rest of us to seek answers from a level we trust, rather than bought-and-paid-for apparatchiks. What is really behind the panic? Is there a hidden agenda?