Why I Don’t Post This Stuff

I get emails asking why I haven’t reported on this or than nose count survey of climate scientists, or such and such declaring himself a skeptic, or whatever.  Someone in Senator Inofe’s office constantly spams me with that stuff.

The answer is that I don’t think headcounts are a particularly relevent or interesting way to conduct science.  Interestingly, Russel Roberts answered a similar but different question in much the same way I would have:

A number of people have asked why my name was missing from the petition against the spending package [which appeared as an ad in the NY Times].  The simple answer is that I didn’t know about it. But I probably wouldn’t have signed it anyway. I decided a while back not to sign these kind of petitions. First, there’s usually something I don’t agree with in the text, and second, the whole thing is a little weird about the whole thing–the idea that people should care that there are a bunch of economists who feel this way, especially given that there are a bunch of economists on the other side of the political spectrum who feel the exact opposite. So is the idea that we have more Nobel Laureates than they do? But what if it’s fewer?

  • Pedro S

    You’re probably right in not adding your name to the list, but the existence of the list has some purpose.

    That there are economists who dispute any bit of economics is not
    surprising, but for AGW it is of a little importance.

    Many people who just read the news assume that there are no credible experts who dispute the consensus. Pointing out that lead authors of sections of the full IPCC scientific report are skeptics like Richard Lindzen and John Christie is important.

    The Thermopocalypse crowd has done great PR in shifting ‘skeptic’ to ‘denier’ and in going around saying ‘the science is settled’. Whenever another skeptic pops up it punctures these statements.

  • Pedro S

    There is one other reason for having these lists. It enables journalists to look up skeptics easily.

  • diz

    I disagree with Roberts in this case, because both Obama and Biden have been proclaiming there is “unanimous” support among economists for their stimulus boondoggle.

    Hence, a list of economists that disagree with this is direct refutation, and exposes the absurdity of the claim.

    People who have studied economics already knew the claim was absurd, but I’m not sure one can presume the general public does.

    This was another classic ploy to stifle the debate by asserting there is no debate.

  • Eric K.

    The difficulty in not naming Climate Scientists of good reputation who do not accept the theories of the pro global warming of the conventational group is that the vacuum of published opinions/commentaries gives the lemmings no choice but the cliffs. (excuse spelling pls it’s late here.

    Pointing out the fallacies/outright fudging of the global warming crowd only goes so far.

    Its good to name names sometimes even if doesn’t necessarily advance the scientific exploration.

  • When charlatans and demagogues claim, “Everybody knows…” it’s good to be able to point out that it ain’t necessarily so. No, the lists and petitions don’t advance the science. They DO advance the politics. Shame it has to be that way, but there it is.


  • Mesa Econoguy

    My consensus agrees that any consensus, consensually speaking, is of the opinion that what we said originally was right, so to speak.

    Please refer dissenting questions to the Consensus Office, 523 Walker Building, University Park, PA, 16802

  • braddles

    It is perfectly valid to carry out surveys/petitions in the context of the debate, and sceptics should support them. One side of this debate has claimed, as one of its major planks, that there is overwhelming consensus supporting their arguments.

    The surveys/petitions present evidence that this consensus does not exist. They do not, in themselves, establish the truth of any scientific arguments, but they do show that one of the central claims of the warmists is false.

  • Aron

    The numbers game is quite retarded, but as the Alarmists used it in the context of their religious movement (it certainly isn’t science) then I think it is fair to show solidarity against such extremist behaviour. We live in a world now that has become too lenient, politically correct and cowardly in the face of extremism because it profits our political elite and the media to embrace extremist ideas, or seen to be tackling them. A severe threat to liberty looms if we refuse to be vocal or make a stand.

  • Black Flag

    I think the point of such petitions – especially in Climate Science – is to demonstrate that there is another side to the story.

  • The cause of climate change according to the so called climate experts is what i want to dedunk and not the reality of the climate change itself. Believe it or not, there is climate change and it has been going on since the black hole man came into being more than 2 decades ago. He has enough power to slightly change wind direction and has been creating extreme weather patterns with predictions before these unprecedented metreologic events even happened. Black hole man has just invited investigative journalists to film him as well as the part of his body which is invisible to the naked eye except his eyes. This invisible body which extend up to the sky down to the depths of the earth is, biblically,the spirit body of the church of Christ. Scientifically this invisible body are the chromosomes of the Black hole man. His suggestion to the journalists is they bring infrared cameras which would be very instrumental to their concerns. To those who are interested to meet the Black hole man personally and film him wholly: e-mail me at riverofthedead@yahoo.com or call +639083797670/(0446410297 (Philippines)

  • jack mosevich

    RE: consensus:

    Science is the belief in the ignorance of the experts.
    —— Richard Feynman