Monday, July 26, 2010

Climate quotes - on appeal to authority, on false balance with nonscientists (by Schneider&Emanuel)

Quotes from climatologists:

"Appeal to authority" (and 'elitism') is legitimate, when the authority is relevant:
"About the ‘elitist’ part: Scientists are really stuck. It’s exactly the same thing in medicine, it’s the same thing with pilot’s licenses and driver’s licenses: We don’t let just anyone go out there and make any claim that they’re an expert, do anything they want, without checking their credibility. Is it elitist to license pilots and doctors? Is it elitist to have pilots tested every year by the FAA to make sure that their skills are maintained? Is it elitist to have board certification on specialities in various health professions? I don’t think so. I think it’s the way we have safety. We have an FDA, which analyzes food and drugs.
We’re talking about planetary life support. ..."
- Stephen Schneider (link)

"False balance" in the media on climate science, and the immense disservice it's done to society:
"It turns out that there are not enough mavericks in climate science to meet the media’s and blogosphere’s insatiable appetite for conflict. Thus into the arena steps a whole host of charlatans posing as climate scientists. These are a toxic brew of retired physicists, TV weather forecasters, political junkies, media hacks, and anyone else willing to tell an interviewer that he/she is a climate scientist. Typically, they have examined some of the more easily digestible evidence and, like good trial lawyers, cherry-pick that which suits their agendas while attacking or ignoring the rest. Often, they are a good deal more articulate than actual scientists, who usually prefer doing research to honing rhetorical technique."
"...those interested in treating the issue as an objective problem in risk assessment and management are labeled “alarmists”, a particularly infantile smear considering what is at stake."
- Kerry Emanuel (link)

No comments: