Political science used to mean the study of politics, but it’s taking on a whole different meaning now, with so much money and power at stake, on a global scale. What else to make of this story by David Rose, from the Daily Mail: “Scientist who said climate change sceptics had been proved wrong accused of hiding truth by colleague” (30th October 2011):
Published last week ahead of a major United Nations climate summit in Durban, South Africa, next month, their work [the BEST study] was cited around the world as irrefutable evidence that only the most stringent measures to reduce carbon dioxide emissions can save civilisation as we know it.
It was cited uncritically by, among others, reporters and commentators from the BBC, The Independent, The Guardian, The Economist and numerous media outlets in America.
The Washington Post said the BEST study had ‘settled the climate change debate’ and showed that anyone who remained a sceptic was committing a ‘cynical fraud’.
In a world where even Einstein could be wrong? Well,
But today The Mail on Sunday can reveal that a leading member of Prof Muller’s team has accused him of trying to mislead the public by hiding the fact that BEST’s research shows global warming has stopped.
His second-named co-author, no less, a scientist of thirty years’ experience …
We don’t know either. Here’s what we know: That Nobel-winning physicist (who abandoned a physics organization) had it right: All the trouble starts with one single word, “incontrovertible.” No good comes of that level of demand for certainty from a messy business like science.