How things change. This article has a straightforward tenor, asks questions of both sides of the climate debate and discusses whether skeptics might finally be given a seat at the government funded table (so to speak). It’s so blandly normal in tone it is a bit wildly rare! (Almost like real journalism?) How often do we see Judith Curry and Michael Mann in the same article as Bjorn Lomborg and Will Happer?
Most skeptics are optimistic that the Global Freeze on skeptical scientists may be finally coming to an end. But not Richard Lindzen, the carefully spoken man, with decades of experience, who lets loose…
Richard Lindzen, the Alfred P. Sloan Professor of Meteorology at MIT and a member of the National Academy of Sciences who has long questioned climate change orthodoxy, is skeptical that a sunnier outlook is upon us.
“I actually doubt that,” he said. Even if some of the roughly $2.5 billion in taxpayer dollars currently spent on climate research across 13 different federal agencies now shifts to scientists less invested in the calamitous narrative, Lindzen believes groupthink has so corrupted the field that funding should be sharply curtailed rather than redirected.
“They should probably cut the funding by 80 to 90 percent until the field cleans up,” he said. “Climate science has been set back two generations, and they have destroyed its intellectual foundations.”
Spot the unskeptical scientist:
The field is cluttered with entrenched figures who must toe the established line, he said, pointing to a recent congressional report that found the Obama administration got a top Department of Energy scientist fired and generally intimidated the staff to conform with its politicized position on climate change.
“Remember this was a tiny field, a backwater, and then suddenly you increased the funding to billions and everyone got into it,” Lindzen said. “Even in 1990 no one at MIT called themselves a ‘climate scientist,’ and then all of a sudden everyone was. They only entered it because of the bucks; they realized it was a gravy train. You have to get it back to the people who only care about the science.”
Who cares? Spot the ones who earn their dues without cash or the glory. Guys like David Evans, Nils Axel Morner, Roger Tallbloke, Jennifer Marohasy, John Abbott, Stephen McIntyre, Anthony Watts, Ian Wilson, and Bill Kininmonth. (Forgive me for omitting many others…).
For the last ten years climate science would have progressed faster if there was no government funding at all. The more the unskeptical scientists get funding, the more they get in the way of real research.
Science will only be healthy if there is competition from non-government funded research though private philanthropy (thank you to all you philanthropists out there who keep us going!).
To earn tax dollars, scientists must propose falsifiable ideas and be willing to debate in public against their most ardent critics. Their datasets and work emails need to be publicly available.
Those who break tenets of science by waffling on about “consensus” science should be disqualified henceforth and immediately, and not be allowed in the classroom either.
I wrote about the dilemma of how to tell which scientists are the real ones, versus which ones are not in The Skeptics Handbook II. Help: How Do I know?