Cherry picking data for dollars

Cherry picking: that’s what it’s called when a scientist/advocate (a dangerous beast!) picks and chooses data to include in their work — whiling ignoring all the rest — in order to move their agenda forward.

Unless you’re a scientist, it’s pretty hard for you to figure out where the holes are.

So, you need this great book, Climate Change Reconsidered, by the Nongovernmental International Panel on Climate Change.

The book begins:
“Before facing major surgery, wouldn’t you want a second opinion? When a nation faces an important decision that risks its economic future, or perhaps the fate of the ecology, it should do the same.”

The book notes:
“On the most important issue, the [United Nation’s International Panel on Climate Change (IPCC)’s] claim that ‘most of the observed increase in global average temperatures since the mid-twentieth century is very likely due to the observed increase in anthropogenic greenhouse gas concentrations…’”

But the scientists who wrote Climate Change Reconsidered:
“…reached the opposite conclusion— namely, that natural causes are very likely to be the dominant cause. Note: We do not say anthropogenic greenhouse gases (GHG) cannot produce some warming or has not in the past. Our conclusion is that the evidence shows they are not playing a substantial role.”

Fred Singer, an atmospheric physicist whom I admire, is one of the lead authors. And it’s edited by Joe and Carol Bast of the Heartland Institute, so it’s easy to read and follow.

I bought a used copy but you can also download the full book online for free!

This book is great start if you are trying to understand how the climate change campaign morphed from cherry picked data into political theater and from there into big business and even bigger government!

Bret Stephens suggests in the Wall Street Journal that we hold a contest to invent the next panic, now that most people recognize the fraud that was — the global campaign to turn natural climate changes into man made catastrophe!

Says Stephens:
“Something is going to have to take its place. The world is now several decades into the era of environmental panic. The subject of the panic changes every few years, but the basic ingredients tend to remain fairly constant. A trend, a hypothesis, an invention or a discovery disturbs the sense of global equilibrium. Often the agent of distress is undetectable to the senses, like a malign spirit. A villain—invariably corporate and right-wing—is identified.

“Then money begins to flow toward grant-seeking institutions and bureaucracies, which have an interest in raising the level of alarm. Environmentalists counsel their version of virtue, typically some quasi-totalitarian demands on the pattern of human behavior. Politicians assemble expert panels and propose sweeping and expensive legislation. Eventually, the problem vanishes. Few people stop to consider that perhaps it wasn’t such a crisis in the first place.

“This is what’s called eschatology—a belief, or psychology, that we are approaching the End Time. Religions have always found a way to take account of those beliefs, but today’s secular panics are unmoored by spiritual consolations or valid moral injunctions. Instead, we have the modern-day equivalent of the old Catholic indulgence in the form of carbon credits. It’s how Al Gore justifies his utility bills.”

Mea culpa! Mea culpa! Mea maxima culpa!

So, just as spring follows winter, you can bet your bottom dollar, those scientists/advocates, and the eco-campaigners who love them, will be cherry picking this spring! 

NOTE:  And just for fun, a UK group is compiling data on what’s caused by global warming, as reported by the media. As of March 2010, the tally is 756!

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