Pharyngula

South Duh-kota, hang your head in shame

The South Dakota senate has been wrestling over an important resolution, HCR 1009. Here’s the original text. It will look rather familiar to anyone who has seen creationist bills roll through a legislature.

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, by the House of Representatives of the Eighty-fifth Legislature of the State of South Dakota, the Senate concurring therein, that the South Dakota Legislature urges that instruction in the public schools relating to global warming include the following:

(1) That global warming is a scientific theory rather than a proven fact;

(2) That there are a variety of climatological, meteorological, astrological, thermological, cosmological, and ecological dynamics that can effect [sic] world weather phenomena and that the significance and interrelativity of these factors is largely speculative; and

(3) That the debate on global warming has subsumed political and philosophical viewpoints which have complicated and prejudiced the scientific investigation of global warming phenomena; and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that the Legislature urges that all instruction on the theory of global warming be appropriate to the age and academic development of the student and to the prevailing classroom circumstances.

Notice the “just a theory” clause, and the “alternative theories” clause (which includes “astrological”! and “thermological,” whatever that is), and the “just an opinion” clause. That is one jaw-droppingly stupid resolution.

I wish it had been preserved in all its naked inanity, but somebody must have noticed how bad it was, and the resolution that passed has been amended. It’s still the same story, but the more obviously idiotic key words have been removed.

A CONCURRENT RESOLUTION, Calling for a balanced approach for instruction in the public schools relating to global climatic change.

WHEREAS, evidence relating to global climatic change is complex and subject to varying scientific interpretations; and

WHEREAS, there are a variety of climatological and meteorological dynamics that can affect world weather phenomena, and the significance and interrelativity of these factors remain unresolved; and

WHEREAS, the debate on global warming has subsumed political and philosophical viewpoints, which has complicated and prejudiced the scientific investigation of global climatic change phenomena:

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, by the House of Representatives of the Eighty-fifth Legislature of the State of South Dakota, the Senate concurring therein, that the South Dakota Legislature urges that all instruction in the public schools relating to global climatic change be presented in a balanced and objective manner and be appropriate to the age and academic development of the student and to the prevailing classroom circumstances.”

They missed the irony of passing a political resolution protesting the politicization of a scientific issue, however. It’s still just a gang of conservative politicians trying to force equal consideration for discredited alternative nonsense in the public schools.

I’m still wondering if any South Dakota teachers will be presenting the astrological evidence against climate change in their classrooms, though.

Comments

  1. #1 Jon A
    February 25, 2010

    Here we go again “mounting scientific evidence points to a particular phenomenon being irrefutably true but it’s not convenient for me to accept it right now so…er I don’t believe in it, it’s just a theory!”

  2. #2 KOPD42
    February 25, 2010

    When I see these, I always want to rewrite it to be about the Germ Theory of Disease, or heliocentricity, Relativity, etc.

  3. #3 blf
    February 25, 2010

    I’m still wondering if any South Dakota teachers will be presenting the astrological evidence against climate change in their classrooms, though.

    Leo the Lion hasn’t farted since the Scorpion ate the 13th and now forgotten sign, Jeanie the Penguin, confusing Aquarius, and hence global warming is actually a plot by Big Pharma to cause more earthquakes and distract the Fearless Woo.

  4. #4 AJ Milne
    February 25, 2010

    Gemini–a friend or relative will contact you with news of some sort–good or bad–we’re not going to say which. A Sagittarius native may figure prominently, by which, of course, we might mean anything or nothing, as you could probably already work out…

    Also, global mean temperatures will not rise enough to wash your house out to sea until at least 2032*. We’re pretty sure, seein’ as Jupiter is now in Pisces…

    (/*This forecast may not be valid for Geminis who live on the beach in the Maldives.)

  5. #5 caseyhov
    February 25, 2010

    I wouldn’t even worry about this one as a teacher. I mean they’re targeting global warming, the real problem is climate change. They don’t address it as that. They mention climactic change but never call the issue climate change. I would just teach it as global climate chage an dodge the wording of the law. Make it get called into questin.

  6. #6 Glen Davidson
    February 25, 2010

    I wonder if they’ll have to include Rush Limbaugh’s statement that God wouldn’t let us destroy the environment:

    I simply cannot accept the fact that we would be created to destroy our own life-sustaining environment.

    Cause, you know, he’s a critic, and “balance” would likely include such inanities.

    How wonderful that the extremely political opposition to AGW science will be allowed to counter the slightly politicized science.

    Glen D
    http://tinyurl.com/mxaa3p

  7. #7 MAJeff, OM
    February 25, 2010

    I’m glad we’re not the only Dakota with idiots running our legislature.

  8. #8 ScottW
    February 25, 2010

    Glen: I imagine Rush has no problem with humanity being created by God to destroy each other, as long as it’s purely on a small scale – i.e. individuals or small groups (say, tens of thousands). :/

  9. #9 'Tis Himself, OM
    February 25, 2010

    Germs causing certain diseases is only a theory and should be taught appropriately in South Dakota.

  10. #10 https://www.google.com/accounts/o8/id?id=AItOawnTAiIRbRIpbzIZTtwLDKEdcE21mgEUtpI
    February 25, 2010

    Wouldn’t it be cool if it worked in reality though? I mean if you could actually solve a problem, simply by outlawing it? If sticking your head in the sand was actually an effective survival strategy? I mean no more pedophiles, no more terrorists, no more famine, disease or poverty? To think what a better place the world could be if our lawmakers had even a fraction of the power they think they do.

    #6 Wait what? Rush Limbaugh acknowledges that it’s a *fact* that we are destroying our own life-sustaining world? That doesn’t sound like him at all. In either case this is far from the only fact Mr. Limbaugh is incapable of accepting.

  11. #11 daveau
    February 25, 2010

    MAJeff@7

    I’m glad we’re not the only Dakota with idiots running our legislature.

    No state is immune to that charge, says he from Illinois.

  12. #12 MadScientist
    February 25, 2010

    Whereas some textbooks claim pi is 22/7 while others claim it is 3.14 while still others claim it is 3.14159 (which is obviously very different from 22/7), while others claim pi is an infinitely long number with no pattern to it, we therefore resolve that pi equals 3 and thereby eliminate all inconsistency in mathematics.

  13. #13 tamakazura
    February 25, 2010

    Why the hell is this even a political issue? I can understand the conservative types getting all hot and bothered about evolution. Yes, knowledge of evolution may cause your kids to question some of the bronze age beliefs and mythologies that western types have held for two-thousand years and more. Children questioning mythology leads to immorality, people not knowing their place in the social hierarchy, anarchy, the end of the world, etc.
    But global warming? Why is that an issue? It basically boils down to “Humans can impact the environment and polluting is bad, mmkay?” and I don’t see how that threatens to undermine society so much in these peoples’ minds that they have to legislate their political agendas.
    Unless, of course, in some perverse way conservatives are admitting that they value 2000 years of tradition equally with the right of companies and individuals to rape the planet.

  14. #14 Brain Hertz
    February 25, 2010

    Germs causing certain diseases is only a theory and should be taught appropriately in South Dakota.

    Well, there are unimpeachable, eyewitness accounts from about two thousand years ago of diseases being caused by demonic possession (for example, Matt 10:1, Mark 6:13). So, you know, that must be true.

    And we know these are eyewitness reports, because Fancis Collins said so. Surely our education in these areas should reflect what the NIH director has to say about diseases, no?

  15. #15 KOPD42
    February 25, 2010

    tamakazura:
    Like evolution, it threatens their literal interpretation of the Bible. We aren’t supposed to be able to wipe ourselves out before sky-daddy does. It ruins the climax at the end of the sequel.

  16. #16 natural cynic
    February 25, 2010

    The next amendments should read:
    WHEREAS, evidence relating to global climatic change is complex and subject to varying scientific interpretations which are often misconstrued by political and economic motivations ; and

    WHEREAS, there are a variety of climatological and meteorological dynamics that can affect world weather phenomena, and the full extent of the significance and interrelativity of these factors remain unresolved; and

    WHEREAS, the debate on global warming has unfortunately subsumed political and philosophical viewpoints which contradict solid scientific findings, which has complicated and prejudiced the perception of scientific investigation of global climatic change phenomena:

    NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, by the House of Representatives of the Eighty-fifth Legislature of the State of South Dakota, the Senate concurring therein, that the South Dakota Legislature urges that all instruction in the public schools relating to global climatic change be presented in a scientifically balanced and objective manner and be appropriate to the age and academic development of the student and to the prevailing classroom circumstances and ignore those with purely politically and economically motivated obstructions.”

    AND FURTHER BE IT RESOLVED THAT we would welcome having Kansas’ winter climate to our current frikkin’ frigid climate.

  17. #17 Brain Hertz
    February 25, 2010

    ^Fancis^Francis

  18. #18 Harry Tuttle
    February 25, 2010

    Thermology is a perfectly cromulant field.

    A medical diagnostic field, but a field nonetheless.

  19. #19 Caine
    February 25, 2010

    I’m not surprised. There’s a hardcore evangelical hard-to-the-right nest in SD. Some very nasty people, intent on keeping medieval time going. (Not that ND is a whole hell of a lot better.)

  20. #20 Douglas Watts
    February 25, 2010

    Actually, human-induced global warming neatly fits into a Young Earth, Noachian worldview. We are After the Fall and full of sin. It’s Sodom and Gomorahh with Hummers … both kinds !!!

  21. #21 MetaEd
    February 25, 2010

    The only balanced and objective way we know of to provide instruction in science is to base what’s taught on evidence which has been tested using the scientific method.

    Other approaches are less objective and tend to lean towards whatever preconceptions you might have.

    So though I recognize that this resolution is a quid pro quo for fringe votes, I also have no problem with a call for balanced and objective science instruction. The good science teachers of South Dakota will be able to quote this when defending evidence based methods.

  22. #22 Screechy_Monkey
    February 25, 2010

    “I wouldn’t even worry about this one as a teacher. I mean they’re targeting global warming, the real problem is climate change. They don’t address it as that. They mention climactic change but never call the issue climate change. I would just teach it as global climate chage an dodge the wording of the law.”

    I’m pretty sure this isn’t technically a law. It’s a concurrent resolution, one of those “sense of the legislature” things that has no binding legal effect. Hence the language that the legislature “urges” rather than mandatory language like “shall,” “requires,” etc.

    Which doesn’t diminish the stupidity, of course.

  23. #23 Wicket
    February 25, 2010

    The “just a theory” clause and “alternative theories” clause also appeared in the statement science teachers were required to read to Dover students before teaching about evolution.

    “The Pennsylvania Academic Standards require students to learn about Darwin’s Theory of Evolution and eventually to take a standardized test of which evolution is a part. Because Darwin’s Theory is a theory, it continues to be tested as new evidence is discovered. The theory is not a fact. Gaps in the Theory exist for which there is no evidence. A theory is defined as a well-tested explanation that unifies a broad range of observations.
    Intelligent Design is an explanation of the origin of life that differs from Darwin’s view. The reference book, Of Pandas and People, is available for students who might be interested in gaining an understanding of what Intelligent Design actually involves. With respect to any theory, students are encouraged to keep an open mind. The school leaves the discussion of the Origins of Life to individual students and their families. As a Standards-driven district, class instruction focuses upon preparing students to achieve proficiency on Standards-based
    assessments.”

    Requiring teachers to read this statement was held unconstitutional by a federal district court. This is the “creationist language” PZ is talking about.

  24. #24 FrankT
    February 25, 2010

    I think you have to be immune to irony to be elected to the state legislature. Of any state.

  25. #25 Volcanon
    February 25, 2010

    As someone who lives in South Dakota and was educated here, I can tell you this is pretty mild.

    Teachers will routinely tell you in class that evolution is false, humans did not evolve, global warming is a farce, etc etc. They don’t need a resolution to teach this way, it’s already being done.

    Additionally, the state legislature here has made many ridiculous resolutions attempting to dictate natural law. I’ve met some of our state legislators and to say that they’re stupid would be kind.

  26. #26 F
    February 25, 2010

    astrological?
    thermological?
    GOATS ON FIRE!

  27. #27 Epinephrine
    February 25, 2010

    It is laughable, but I have to be a grammar pedant and point out that they may well have used the word “effect” correctly. The verb “to effect” means to bring into being; to cause. It is not incorrect to say that certain forces can effect (world) weather phenomena, if they are the forces that bring such phenomena into being.

  28. #28 elliotthauge
    February 25, 2010

    Ugh. I have a Catholic friend who thinks overpopulation is “just a theory.”

  29. #29 jcaps
    February 25, 2010

    No self respecting educator would ever consider a lesson on global warming without first consulting a fortune cookie, and yet it was never mentioned. Hmmm? I smell a year of the rat.

  30. #30 natural cynic
    February 25, 2010

    From the story of Noah [Gen 7-9], God says that there will be no further global flood – and that the rainbow is a sign of that covenant. That has to be right, even if we melt Antarctica. But it doesn’t say that God will not allow the earth to be destroyed by any other means. It’s simply more Christian egotism, Rush. Just because we haven’t produced a nuclear winter [yet] or roasted doesn’t mean that we can’t do it or anything else to make our lives a mess. God will let us screw ourselves, just like it would be if he didn’t exist.

  31. #31 Ströh
    February 25, 2010

    I’m still wondering if any South Dakota teachers will be presenting the astrological evidence against climate change in their classrooms, though.

    Put it in a song!

    When the moooon is in the seventh house…
    And Jupiteeer aligns with Mars…
    Then the Suuun will warm the oceans…
    Global war-ming is but a myth!

    This is the dawning of the age of republicans, age of republicans…

  32. #32 Mikko
    February 25, 2010

    is Comic Sans MS the favourite font for creationists?

  33. #33 David Marjanovi?
    February 25, 2010

    “Astrological” is almost certainly just an embarrassing mistake for “astronomical”.

    From the story of Noah [Gen 7-9], God says that there will be no further global flood

    No. He says he won’t use a flood to destroy the world anymore.

  34. #34 alysonmiers
    February 25, 2010

    and be appropriate to the age and academic development of the student and to the prevailing classroom circumstances.”

    Goats on fire, they make it sound like sex ed.

    What could possibly be the concern about “prevailing classroom circumstances,” anyway?

  35. #35 qandnotq
    February 25, 2010

    They missed the irony of passing a political resolution protesting the politicization of a scientific issue, however.

    #RANT TO FOLLOW#
    Morans. They especially don’t understand science when they call the research “highly speculative” merely because their weatherman is wrong sometimes. IT’S LUDICROUS.

    I’m sure they have young science teachers all riled up because they URGE teaching climate change as highly speculative and liberal propaganda to take your guns from you. I’d bet a few of them would shoot at the f&*cing clouds if they thought global warming was real. Meanwhile Jack and Jane Scientist has to pay more attention to the political climate in their classroom than the horrible grades their students are getting. Way to make a difficult job nearly impossible. Pinheads.

  36. #36 llewelly
    February 25, 2010

    Why the hell is this even a political issue?

    Read The Climate Cover-up, by James Hoggan and Richard Littlemore.

  37. #37 airbagmoments
    February 25, 2010

    This is off topic, but I wanted to get this party started. Krista Tippett, NPR’s most prolific apologist for every single religious opinion EXCEPT atheism, has new book called Einstein’s God!

    From Amazon: “Inspiring and stimulating discussions on the interplay between scientific and religious inquiry, featuring some of today’s greatest thinkers

    Drawn from American Public Media’s Peabody Award-winning program Speaking of Faith, the conversations in this profoundly illuminating book reach for a place too rarely explored in our ongoing exchange of ideas-the nexus of science and spirituality. In fascinating interviews with such luminaries as Freeman Dyson, Paul Davies, V. V. Raman, Sherwin Nuland, and Mehmet Oz, Tippett revels in the connections between the two, showing how even those most wedded to hard truths find spiritual enlightenment. The result is a theologically evocative dialogue on the changing way we think about science, medicine, and the expansive realm of belief.”

    Discuss.

  38. #38 llewelly
    February 25, 2010

    Meanwhile Jack and Jane Scientist has to pay more attention to the political climate in their classroom than the horrible grades their students are getting. Way to make a difficult job nearly impossible. Pinheads.

    They have an agenda which is manifestly easier to promote with a population that is ignorant of science. Thus, anything which makes science more difficult to teach enables their agenda. Probably, most of them don’t think that far ahead. But the function is the same.

  39. #39 feralboy12
    February 25, 2010

    So, is Limbaugh saying that global warming, or other negative impact from human activities, proves that god doesn’t exist? We might be on to something here.

  40. #40 Rey Fox
    February 25, 2010

    I wonder what it feels like to be such an active impediment to the progress of the human race.

  41. #41 ckitching
    February 25, 2010

    I think you’re underestimating them, llewelly. Many of them would like to dismantle the public education system completely. The “free market” and “choice” and all that.

  42. #42 Holytape
    February 25, 2010

    I love South Dakota, but there are some nuts there. I’m not sure if it is still there, but along I90 coming in from Minnesota, there was a billboard that said plainly, “We don’t believe in animal rights.”

    But you have to put this into context. This is South Dakota. Anything they do there is what going to affect ten maybe twelve people? Granted it’s still more than the six people that live in North Dakota, but it’s not much. And they don’t have the nukes that North Dakota has.

    But then again, South Dakota and Delaware are the two states that have screwed over the rest of the country with their credit card laws.

  43. #43 Walton
    February 25, 2010

    But then again, South Dakota and Delaware are the two states that have screwed over the rest of the country with their credit card laws.

    How? No one forces you to apply for a credit card from a company based in SD or Delaware, nor to use the credit card. It’s not the job of state legislatures to protect you from your own decisions as a consumer. (Yes, I realise a credit card is de facto obligatory for certain purposes such as buying stuff on the internet; but again, in most contexts, you don’t have to do that.)

    I’m not saying that it’s a person’s “fault” if he or she gets into debt – there are a variety of reasons why it happens, and blaming the victim is silly. But I don’t see how you can blame it on low-regulation finance havens. That indicates some sort of naive expectation that the government ought to protect you from debt.

  44. #44 James F
    February 25, 2010

    And yet, there haven’t been similar statewide antievolution resolutions or bills in South Dakota, at least not since NCSE started tracking that sort of thing.

  45. #45 Jadehawk, OM
    February 25, 2010

    Yes, I realise a credit card is de facto obligatory for certain purposes such as buying stuff on the internet;

    actually, no. you can buy stuff off the internet with check cards, too,

    however, in order to become a functional member of American society, you are required to “build credit”. this basically means if you ever want to buy a car, a house, or any other large expense for which you will need a loan, you must prove that you have had credit cards for a long time, and that you know how to use them.

  46. #46 Stephen Wells
    February 25, 2010

    Walton, the screwover operated in two stages. At stage 1, credit providers would officially locate to SD or Delaware, and customers wouldn’t know until it was too late that their credit card wasn’t based in their state and wasn’t limited by their own state’s usury laws. Then a bunch of states decided, the hell with that, and relaxed their usury laws, hence stage 2.

  47. #47 Caine
    February 25, 2010

    Holytape @ 42:

    Granted it’s still more than the six people that live in North Dakota

    Hey! My little town in ND has a whole 79 peoples.

    ;D

  48. #48 Caine
    February 25, 2010

    Jadehawk, OM @ 45:

    actually, no. you can buy stuff off the internet with check cards, too,

    however, in order to become a functional member of American society, you are required to “build credit”. this basically means if you ever want to buy a car, a house, or any other large expense for which you will need a loan, you must prove that you have had credit cards for a long time, and that you know how to use them.

    *Nods* The reason we ended up way rural (55 miles west outside Bismarck) is because we could pay cash for a house. Found a large house which suited us and wrote a check. That’s not something most people can do, and have to get tangled up in credit, mortgages and debt.

  49. #49 Stephen Wells
    February 25, 2010

    @45: oddly, in the UK credit ratings seem to follow properties rather than persons. You basically can’t get a decent credit deal if you live in student housing. On the other hand, if your parents have paid off their mortgage and you can sue their address- rock on.

    When we moved to Arizona I met this weird thing where you can literally hold handfuls of cash in front of mobile phone salesmen, for example, but if you do not have a US credit record, you do not exist for them. And the apartment rental places? Wow.

  50. #50 Jadehawk, OM
    February 25, 2010

    Granted it’s still more than the six people that live in North Dakota

    well, let’s see… Caine, Kamaka, MAJeff and I makes four… who are the other two NDers?

    and more importantly, who are all those people running around my town?!

  51. #51 Stephen Wells
    February 25, 2010

    Use their address. Sorry. Not “sue”. That would be bad.

  52. #52 David Marjanovi?
    February 25, 2010

    That’s not something most people can do

    Indeed. Only the French and the Americans use checks at all anymore. :^)

  53. #53 fordiman
    February 25, 2010

    “all instruction in the public schools relating to global climatic change be presented in a balanced and objective manner and be appropriate to the age and academic development of the student and to the prevailing classroom circumstances”

    That’s not TOO bad. I mean, “balanced and objective” could easily be taken to mean, “climatologists’ view only”, given that that’s the only view that could be considered “appropriate to the age and academic development of the student” (regardless of age, really).

  54. #54 phhht
    February 25, 2010

    I suspect we’ve all considered the metaphor of Religion is a Virus (e.g. virulence, behavior by its[sic] “victims” which favors Religion over the victim, etc). I think it was Dennett who pointed out that religion acts to preserve itself against destructive agents such as science.

    I see the ND legislature’s act in light of that metaphor.

    Maybe it’s[sic] because I’ve been reading about Embodied Construction Grammars.

  55. #55 phhht
    February 25, 2010

    “…the ND legislature’s act…”

    Isn’t SD in ND?

  56. #56 People's Front of Judea
    February 25, 2010

    Now lets just put this in perspective…
    It is only the people of Bangladesh, the Pacific Islands and Sub Saharan Africa that will be effected.
    They have no money, have funny skin colour and won’t vote for Palin. So it is about time they got a swimming lesson, or learned to grow crops without reliable rainfall.
    Just why should good jebus-fearing folk have to go without to save that rabble from something that is not even hinted at in the otherwise fully accurate bible prophesies? Revelation says nothing about anthropogenic climate change, so it is made up!
    Me me me, can you put some more gas in my Suburban please?

  57. #57 WowbaggerOM
    February 25, 2010

    Indeed. Only the French and the Americans use checks at all anymore.

    And I’m fairly sure the French would call them ‘cheques’ – like all civilized people do…

  58. #58 broboxley
    February 25, 2010

    @madscientist #12 everyone nose the pi=rsquared

  59. #59 Caine
    February 25, 2010

    David Marjanovi? @ 52:

    Indeed. Only the French and the Americans use checks at all anymore. :^)

    Well, we don’t have credit cards. ;D

  60. #60 Ellie
    February 25, 2010

    RE: point number 1 and a spot of shameless self promotion, I knocked these up last night. Please feel free to download and use them if you think it might help get the point across. All I ask is you put the URL somewhere.

    http://www.goingonabearhunt.com/?p=209

  61. #61 Kamaka
    February 25, 2010

    well, let’s see… Caine, Kamaka, MAJeff and I makes four… who are the other two NDers?

    The few, the proud, the mentally suspect…

  62. #62 devnull73.myopenid.com
    February 25, 2010

    Harry Tuttle @18: Year after year, thermology acribits more cromulence than any other field……

  63. #63 Free Lunch
    February 25, 2010

    Christopher Buckley nailed this stuff in “Thank You for Smoking”. The anti-science folks are either in it for the money or foolish.

  64. #64 Free Lunch
    February 25, 2010

    It’s nice to see that the SD legislature isn’t totally foolish: The House passed it 36-30, there were four excused (maybe they were too embarrassed to be in the room wish such folks) and the Senate by 18-17. It’s nice to see that this legislature has only a slim majority of total fools.

  65. #65 jerthebarbarian
    February 25, 2010

    So, is Limbaugh saying that global warming, or other negative impact from human activities, proves that god doesn’t exist? We might be on to something here.

    Feh. The existence of Rush Limbaugh is in and of itself pretty damn good evidence that gods don’t exist. No self-respecting god would let that pompous windbag strut around un-smited.

  66. #66 ctenotrish
    February 25, 2010

    Sigh. South Dakotan by choice here, and while I generally am quite happy in SD, I am frequently baffled by the legislature. Maybe not quite so baffled as when I lived in Texas, but baffled nonetheless. Off to gird my loins and tilt at windmills driven by the fetid breathes of the Fans of Fox News. Y?all wish me luck, okay?

  67. #67 Bastion Of Sass
    February 25, 2010

    I wonder if they’ll have to include Rush Limbaugh’s statement that God wouldn’t let us destroy the environment:

    I simply cannot accept the fact that we would be created to destroy our own life-sustaining environment.

    Harumph! God didn’t seem to have too much problem allowing Adam and Eve to destroy their chance to live in the Paradise He created and, in addition, screw up the lives of all then-living and future creatures.

  68. #68 hockeyisgd
    February 25, 2010

    Ouch, it passed the house too. He’s a Republican, so there probably isn’t a good chance for a veto.

  69. #69 ckitching
    February 25, 2010

    No self-respecting god would let that pompous windbag strut around un-smited.

    Unless, of course, maltheism is what we should be believing. In that case, Rush truly is doing God’s work.

  70. #70 mferrari
    February 25, 2010

    Dudes I know this is a little off topic, but remember that garbage app AIG put out for the iphone? PZ’s review, as well as most if not all of our negative reviews of the app were deleted leaving mainly positive reviews from creationists! I’m wondering what the rationale apple used for such a disgrace…

  71. #71 Pareidolius
    February 25, 2010

    and “thermological,” whatever that is)

    Dear Sirs,
    I happen to have a doctorate in Thermology from the University of North Dakota and am a Clinical Licensed Interdisciplinary Thermologist. I’m not sure what I do either but I don’t like your tone.

    Vry Trly Yrs,
    Edgeworth J. Piecrust ThD.

  72. #72 jcmartz.myopenid.com
    February 25, 2010

    Damn Republicans!

  73. #73 bart.mitchell
    February 26, 2010

    And in their next leap of brilliance, the South Dakota Legislature declared that Black was White, and was subsequently killed in the next zebra crossing.

  74. #74 onethird-man
    February 26, 2010

    Sick, this. What do we have to do to go back to pre-1950′s mindset where intelligence wasn’t a sign of communism and godlessness and being ignorant was somehow a badge of honor, proving you hadn’t been corrupted by the red-tainted colleges and universities?

    I’m struck by how much it behooves a status-quo to keep a populace ignorant, but how blind those who attempt to keep a status quo by this means are to the precarious nature of such a situation. If you are unaware of any other thoughts other than your own, anarchy and chaos are all that lie outside of your gates. And that’s what your uneducated populace will turn to, as it’s the only alternative they know…

  75. #75 Cheerios623
    February 26, 2010

    The revised version of the Resolution isn’t very threatening to good science education. It merely urges that climate change be taught in a balanced, objective, and age-appropriate manner. I would say that teaching Global Climate Change from the giant body of evidence across many fields of study is very objective and balanced. This resolution isn’t like the infamous ID resolutions, it doesn’t require teachers to teach some imagine controversy.

  76. #76 Kristjan Wager
    February 26, 2010

    Not only is it absolute nonsense, but they are actually copying Utah, who passed a similar resolution earlier this month

  77. #77 Peter Ashby
    February 26, 2010

    The amended one is easy, they go down the typical denier route of conflating climate with weather. So by all means tell your students that weather is chaotic which makes forecasting longer than about a week problematic but climate is a much more linear thing and thus is much more predictable.

  78. #78 The Tim Channel
    February 26, 2010

    Might as well be talking about the fundamentalists:

    They make claims that aren’t true, and after being corrected, repeat those claims again anyway.

    http://www.washingtonmonthly.com/archives/individual/2010_02/022587.php

    Enjoy.

  79. #79 Kel, OM
    February 26, 2010

    I find it really amazing that politicians are trying to define science. Whatever happened to just following the data?

  80. #80 progjohn
    February 26, 2010

    Isn’t it about time they passed a law to make Pi = 3. It would make it so much easier for everyone. (Not my idea, I nicked it from the late great Robert Heinlein).

  81. #81 Aquaria
    February 26, 2010

    I have a Catholic friend who thinks overpopulation is “just a theory.”

    Oh, I can do you one better than that. One of the Catholic rags (wish I could remember which), had an article by one of their BMOC cross-dressers that actually said that all those people in the 70s screaming about overpopulation had turned out to be wrong, ergo, using birth control is as unnecessary as it is wrong–breed away!

    I wish I’d kept that one. It was full of Catholic crazy.

  82. #82 Aquaria
    February 26, 2010

    Discuss.

    Fuck off.

  83. #83 Q.E.D
    February 26, 2010

    Ellie @60

    Nicely done graphic. Part of the “climategate problem” is that the right-wing religiots (and the Republicans that manipulate them)are very very good at using complexity to manufacture false dichotomies and “debate” (the same tactic the tobacco lobby used successfully for decades). The Science camp needs to get better at distilling the science into narratives and pictures that your average 12 year old can understand (with apologies to 12 year olds everywhere who are more educated and smarter than the average right-wing asshat).

  84. #84 Al B. Quirky
    February 26, 2010

    The CO2 and CH4 we expel aint no different from polar bears, and the carbon emissions from our burning fossil fuels aint no different from the campfire we needed to survive because of our bare naked asses which God or Evolution gave us.
    How can Climate Change be attributed to “anthropogenic” gases, unless we see Humankind as being somehow set apart from Nature?

  85. #85 Conan the Librarian
    February 26, 2010

    Mikko @32

    is Comic Sans MS the favourite font for creationists?

    Yep – you got that right – oh and remember Cosmic Sans MS for Astrologers
    :)

  86. #86 Matt Penfold
    February 26, 2010

    The CO2 and CH4 we expel aint no different from polar bears….

    I was unaware that Polar Bears burnt fossil fuels.

    Either I have been badly misinformed, or you talking bollocks. I tend to the latter explantion.

  87. #87 cnocspeireag
    February 26, 2010

    Robert Heinlein got the TRUTH about pi from THE HOLY BIBLE and global warming is against the SECOND LAW OF THERMOLOGY, or whatever it was the preacher said before they let them vote.

  88. #88 broboxley
    February 26, 2010

    Those that claim ignorance lies outside of the Uni quad, I have visited UM Morris and a few others, ignorance abounds inside the walls as well. Having a degree does not confirm cluefulness by any means, Afterall almost every fuckwit in DC has a degree

  89. #89 Free Lunch
    February 26, 2010

    broboxley -

    Law degrees don’t actually require you to have an understanding of math or science and most folks who went to law school did not major in either.

  90. #90 JBlilie
    February 26, 2010

    Now that was some seriously burnin’ STOOPID.

    And this is too:

    The CO2 and CH4 we expel aint no different from polar bears, and the carbon emissions from our burning fossil fuels aint no different from the campfire we needed to survive because of our bare naked asses which God or Evolution gave us.
    How can Climate Change be attributed to “anthropogenic” gases, unless we see Humankind as being somehow set apart from Nature?

    You may want to check out the amount of energy consumed by a modern US citizen (house, workplace, cars, boats, RVs, SUVs, PWVs, ORVs (how many ways do you really need to have your sorry ass hauled around by an internal combustion engine?!) and all the energy to manufacture these objects that burn energy, food production using machinery, etc.) versus how much energy we consumed per person as pleistocene hunter-gatherers. How many orders of magnitude difference do you think it will turn out to be? 2? 4? 8?

    Anthropogenic = man-made/-caused. Nothing in nature except humans is digging fossil fuels up and releasing their carbon. Of course we’re part of nature. The vast majority of living things have gone extinct. We’re working on it.

    CO2 is a greenhouse gas. Burning fossil fuels is releasing huge quantities of CO2 into the atmosphere. The change in concentration has been measured.

    Hey, be an ostrich if you like.

  91. #91 broboxley
    February 26, 2010

    @JBlilie #90 how many SUV’s did lief erikson own?
    yes, shoving carbon into the air is not a good thing re climate, lets solve that problem but not try to lump every change on a single cause, there is more going on that I am afraid we are missing because of the myopic concentration on a single data point
    Besides my 1985 f150 is a lot more climate friendly than your prius

  92. #92 Holytape
    February 26, 2010

    Walton,

    Basic consumer protection is the job of states. There is a bare minimum that the states must do. Because while I can and do protect myself from my own personal bad choices, I can not protect myself from yours and society’s as a whole bad choices. I have no credit card debt to speak of, but every time a credit card company preys on a person who hasn’t been as diligent as I have been, and causes them to go bankrupt, you and I do pay a price. The billions that credit card companies get in extremely high interest, and dubious fees, don’t appear out of nowhere. It’s resources that could have been spent on more productive parts of the society. To deny that there is a group risk and a group cost, and that society as a whole shouldn’t do something to regulate it is folly.

    Secondly, it is pretty difficult to find a credit card that isn’t from one of those two states. I’ve had credit cards from what I thought were two local banks and credit unions, but in the end the credit cards companies where based in Delaware. If you have a credit card, I am willing to bet that it has its base of operation in one of those two states. The few that aren’t are in states that have relaxed their laws to the level of Delaware or South Dakota.

    When South Dakota and Delaware basically allowed credit card companies and banks to circumnavigate consumer protection and usury laws, they did screw over us all.

  93. #93 broboxley
    February 26, 2010

    @Free Lunch #89 my kid is doing a soc degree of some sort at UM Morris and doesnt appreciate the difference between an electron and a cows udder but is graduating with high marks. Also had no idea who PZ was when I asked her where his office was. Uni’s!=clue about science
    she is also full of environmental woo, some of it gained there

    Environmental Woo
    those that insist on recycling objects that after you factor in all of the costs to recycle is much safer for the environment and cheaper to install into a landfill

  94. #94 Free Lunch
    February 26, 2010

    The biggest change in credit card corruption came when it was decided that the state that the bank issued the credit card from set the rules, not the state that the consumer lived it. Gutting consumer protection caused a huge race to the bottom.

  95. #95 broboxley
    February 26, 2010

    @free Luch #94 it appears that they want to do the same favor for health care plans.

  96. #96 MAJeff, OM
    February 26, 2010

    I’m not surprised. There’s a hardcore evangelical hard-to-the-right nest in SD. Some very nasty people, intent on keeping medieval time going. (Not that ND is a whole hell of a lot better.)

    Amen to that parenthetical. Living here is being stuck with a bucketload of the wrong kind of teabagger. There are a whole lot of bitter, hateful white people living around here, masking it all with their “we’re so nice” bullshit.

    The only reason our lege isn’t passing this kind of idiocy is because they’re in recess until next year.

  97. #97 Ellie
    February 26, 2010

    QED @ 83

    Ta :) There doesn’t seem to be much point just repeating the facts over and over again, they aren’t listening; so I thought I’d try a different tack.

    It would have been nice if I could have made each scientist look slightly different but it took way too much processor to do it as it was.

  98. #98 Q.E.D
    February 26, 2010

    I briefly worked as a consultant to the banking industry, including credit card issuers. I attended industry conferences where top people at Visa said things like: “cash is the enemy”. They were pretty satisfied with their lock on the US consumer but were apoplectic about the regulations and low take up of revolving credit in Europe. If you want to piss off the credit card industry (and stay solvent): 1) use cash whenever possible 2) use a debit card 3) for a big purchase get a bank loan or use your overdraft facility 4) if you must use a credit card, pay it off in full every month. At a meeting of senior card executives, I heard them unanimously agreed that for their personal use, American Express was their card of choice and it had the only incentive programme that was worth anything.

    I’m still washing my hands but they still feel dirty.

  99. #99 Rev. BigDumbChimp
    February 26, 2010

    Environmental Woo
    those that insist on recycling objects that after you factor in all of the costs to recycle is much safer for the environment and cheaper to install into a landfill

    Costs arguably, but the toxicity of the land fill and the landfill’s exponential growth are a factor as well.

  100. #100 David Marjanovi?
    February 26, 2010

    @JBlilie #90 how many SUV’s did lief erikson own?
    yes, shoving carbon into the air is not a good thing re climate, lets solve that problem but not try to lump every change on a single cause, there is more going on that I am afraid we are missing because of the myopic concentration on a single data point

    Leif Eriksson arrived during a regional small warming that we’ve already surpassed, IIRC.

    The “myopic concentration” is yours. You need to get out less and read more.

    Environmental Woo
    those that insist on recycling objects that after you factor in all of the costs to recycle is much safer for the environment and cheaper to install into a landfill

    It’s of course much safer for the environment.

    It might ? I’m guessing ? also be cheaper once you factor in the costs of making and maintaining a landfill, such as those for preventing really noxious solutions from seeping out of it.

  101. #101 Free Lunch
    February 26, 2010

    broboxley -

    Yes, gutting health insurance regulations is the Republican goal. If you don’t pay close attention to their phrasing, you don’t notice that.

    Every insurance company is allowed to sell in any state that they want, if they register with the state’s insurance regulator.

  102. #102 David Marjanovi?
    February 26, 2010

    Oops. That <b&bt; tag should have been a <br> tag (a line break).

  103. #103 broboxley
    February 26, 2010

    @David Marjanovi? #100 read my comment again
    costs was also safer for the environment to bury
    sometimes the energy consumed to recycle along with carbon expended and heavy minerals released into the atmosphere makes sense near large population centers with pollution control devices on the recycling process is good. Rural areas with uncontrolled burn/melt cycles, bleaching of recycled paper and carbon/energy costs of transporting recyclables to proper facilities exceeds the environmental disturbance that a burial in a landfill would cause.
    Use science not woo to make those kinds of decisions

  104. #104 Holytape
    February 26, 2010

    broboxley -

    Not only do you have to factor in long term costs of a landfill and the cost of recycling, but you also need to factor in the cost of obtaining new materials, to replace the recyclable materials lost in the landfill. If you are going to consider the cost of bleaching of recycled paper and transporting, then you must also consider the cost of cutting the pulp wood, transporting the wood, processing the pulp wood, and bleaching that pulp as well.

    Also there is an issue of space. Large cities just don’t have the room to landfill everything, so then there is an addition charge to transport the waste. Think of New York and the garbage barge issue.

  105. #105 broboxley
    February 26, 2010

    @Holytape 104 apparently you missed my point. Large population centers and small ones that are equipped to do so SHOULD recycle as it makes economic and safety sense. Its not always the case.

  106. #106 raven
    February 26, 2010

    <

    @Holytape 104 apparently you missed my point. Large population centers and small ones that are equipped to do so SHOULD recycle as it makes economic and safety sense. Its not always the case.

    Not necessarily. Many of us don’t reduce all values down to dollars and cents.

    It might be cheaper for me to go out at night and toss my garbage down a ravine. Like free.

    I’d rather spend the time and money, both negligible, recycling. Which in fact I do.

    Besides which, the vast majority of people in the USA live in cities, suburbs, and smaller areas that are set up to recycle. It isn’t hard for the huge majority of the people. Even very rural areas are usually set up for recycling.

  107. #107 Nerd of Redhead, OM
    February 26, 2010

    Even very rural areas are usually set up for recycling.

    Definitely. The Redhead’s parents live in a rural area. The county has several spots for garbage collection, and all of them have recycle dumpsters for glass, plastic, cardboard, etc.

  108. #108 Matt Penfold
    February 26, 2010

    Even very rural areas are usually set up for recycling.

    It is hard to think of why recycling would not be viable where there is any form of waste collection.

  109. #109 broboxley
    February 26, 2010

    #106 #107 #107
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hooper_Bay,_Alaska
    example one

    How successful has food service polystyrene recycling been from an economic viewpoint? Not very. This was due to several reasons, many of which the industry discussed in the late 1980s. Mainly, the properties of polystyrene that make it an excellent packaging material, e.g., its light weight, energy efficiency, strength and product performance, worked against the mechanics of recycling this material. Just like in the distribution system for polystyrene food service products, transportation distances play a key role. The economics of hauling polystyrene long distances (to the nearest available recycling plant) were not always favorable. The industry learned that polystyrene has to be densified or baled to get a sufficiently concentrated volume to make transportation over long distances cost-effective. Also, food service products of all materials — paper, metal, plastic, and polystyrene — are generally highly contaminated, and require cleaning before they can be processed for recycling, which can add significant costs.

    http://www.americanchemistry.com/s_plastics/sec_pfpg.asp?CID=1436&DID=5228

  110. #110 Jadehawk, OM
    February 26, 2010

    How successful has food service polystyrene recycling been from an economic viewpoint?

    what part of “money isn’t everything” did you not get?

    besides, the best solution to the polystyrene problem is reduction.

  111. #111 a_ray_in_dilbert_space
    February 26, 2010

    And in other news, the persecutions have begun–part of the Republican effort to outlaw science:

    http://rabett.blogspot.com/2010/02/sister-soljah-moment.html

  112. #112 Didymous
    February 26, 2010

    This submission from the UK Institute of Physics to the House of Commons Science and Technology Committee should be read by everyone with an interest in the present state of Climate Change Science and its conduct:

    http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm200910/cmselect/cmsctech/memo/climatedata/uc3902.htm

  113. #113 Joe Jance
    February 26, 2010

    I would wonder if this won’t get challenged. A few years back some radical right wing orgs started pouring campaign money into SD to make it a battle ground for abortion. A few anti-choice legislators got elected, and a law banning abortion was passed. Thankfully, any law in SD can be recalled to a general election if enough signatures are collected, and the state is small enough that this isn’t extraordinarily expense to accomplish. The citizens of SD voted down the ban. Two years later another ban was put on the ballot, and was again voted down by basically the same, comfortable margin.

    South Dakota is a small, rural state. It doesn’t take very many smart people to tilt the population to the smart side, and SD has one of the better engineering schools in the nation in Rapid City, and a couple of other Universities to support a population under a million. Walking around a town like Rapid City its interesting the very bright people one can run into. At the same time the poorest reservation in the country is a couple of hours drive outside of town, so there are homeless people in a rural area, which is unusual. I guess what I am trying to get at is that I have always found South Dakota to be a state of contradictions. We have had a number of Democrats serve the state in the US Congress, while the state is what one would term “red”.

    My hope is that the people of South Dakota will bring this to ballot, and the law will be struck down.

  114. #114 Jadehawk, OM
    February 26, 2010

    And in other news, the persecutions have begun–part of the Republican effort to outlaw science:

    ugh… men who have knowingly, publicly broken international laws are praised as heroes; men who are honest scientists are being threatened with legal action.

    what a fucked up country this is.

  115. #115 a_ray_in_dilbert_space
    February 26, 2010

    Didymous,
    Your characterization of the IOP position is incorrect. What you posted was from a subcommittee and not even one with any climate expertise.

  116. #116 Al B. Quirky
    February 26, 2010

    @#90&91

    Atmospheric CO2 has increased by 7.75% since 1995. There is a consensus among Climate Scientists that there has been no statistically significant Global Warming during the last 15 years. So what harm is there in pumping CO2 into the air? Nuffin’!

  117. #117 Gore
    February 26, 2010

    Astrological causes?
    I knew it was those damn Tauruses! They’re the one’s who ruin everything from horoscopes to decent weather patterns… brrr rabble rabble rabble.

  118. #118 Nerd of Redhead, OM
    February 26, 2010

    There is a consensus among Climate Scientists that there has been no statistically significant Global Warming during the last 15 years.

    Journal citation please.

  119. #119 lweinstein
    February 26, 2010

    I am a semi-retired NASA scientist (with a ScD and 48 years experience on aerospace topics). I think you are not aware of the facts on the AGW issue at all. I am including a couple of my personal writeups, and would be glad to discuss the issue. Please read more facts before coming to a conclusion. I also am also including a web site of a green blog that disputes you. Things are not as they seem.
    http://docs.google.com/Doc?id=dnc49xz_0fb228shr&hl=en (Limitations on AGW)
    http://docs.google.com/Doc?id=dnc49xz_15hmvdn3c9&hl=en (Disproving AGW Problem)
    http://www.ecowho.com/articles/42/Climategate,_what_is_going_on?.html?p=2

  120. #120 Al B. Quirky
    February 26, 2010

    @#118

    BBC interview with Dr Phil Jones (question B):
    http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/8511670.stm
    NOAA Administrator Dr Jane Lubcenko doesn’t disagree:
    http://www.eyeblast.tv/public/video.aspx?v=Xdnzuz4z8z

  121. #121 Nerd of Redhead, OM
    February 26, 2010

    Hmm. Don’t expect much. You sound like a denialist, rather than a true researcher. So, anything you say will be taken with a grain of salt the size of South Duh-kota. Your authority in the matter is zero until verified through the peer reviewed scientific literature, and confirmed by ARIDS, our resident expert in climate.

  122. #122 lweinstein
    February 26, 2010

    I put in the wrong page address on the green source. It is at:
    http://www.ecowho.com/articles/42/Climategate,_what_is_going_on?.html

  123. #123 Nerd of Redhead, OM
    February 26, 2010

    Al B. Quirky, you are off to a denialist start by not citing the peer reviewed scientific literature, and trying to sidetrack the issue.

  124. #124 Didymous
    February 26, 2010

    a_ray_in_dilbert_space

    You may wish to check again – this is indeed the submission from the Institute of Physics.

    “Memorandum submitted by the Institute of Physics (CRU 39)”

    “The Institute is pleased to submit its views to inform the House of Commons Science and Technology Committee’s inquiry, ‘The disclosure of climate data from the Climatic Research Unit at the University of East Anglia’.”

    They are highly qualified to comment on how science should be conducted, the importance of using valid statistical techniques, and the importance of “minimum disclosure in relation to computer modelling”. They are rightly concerned at the damage being done to science itself.

  125. #125 Jadehawk, OM
    February 26, 2010

    “climategate”?

    really?

    how tedious. all the crap about “smoking guns” has been sufficiently and thoroughly refuted, and only cranks insist on beating that dead horse.

    posting links to “climategate” crap does certainly make it easier to tell the spin-cranks from people with an actual, honest point, so there’s that…

  126. #126 Nerd of Redhead, OM
    February 26, 2010

    Yawn, looks like some climate denialists arrived. Maybe I’ll look at things this weekend. Or, more likely, just wait for ARIDS to weigh in.

  127. #127 Al B. Quirky
    February 26, 2010

    Nerd: My authority in the matter is irrelevant, but if I’m a Denialist for believing Phil Jones & Jane Lubcenko when they agree (or fail to disagree)that there has been no statistically significant Global Warming since 1995, then they are Denialists too.

  128. #128 Nerd of Redhead, OM
    February 26, 2010

    Al B. Quirky, your names for authority are irrelevant. Your failure to cite the peer reviewed scientific literature speaks volumes though, and none of it in your favor. That is the acid test for real scientists, like myself. And you just failed the test. Killfile

  129. #129 Kel, OM
    February 26, 2010

    There is a consensus among Climate Scientists that there has been no statistically significant Global Warming during the last 15 years.

    But this decade has been the warmest on record, even with the lack of sunspot activity and the el nino cycle. Given that 1998 was a significant peak in activity and there’s been no statistical trend down from there, this statement is very odd.

  130. #130 Al B. Quirky
    February 26, 2010

    Sticking your head in the sand, Nerd? Denialist!
    BTW, the IPCC used non-peer reviewed material in the 4th Assessment report. Guess the IPCC fail your acid test for ‘real scientists’ also, huh?

  131. #131 llewelly
    February 26, 2010

    BTW, the IPCC used non-peer reviewed material in the 4th Assessment report.

    The IPCC referenced thousands of peer reviewed papers. You have referenced none whatsoever. Furthermore, you have have deliberately misrepresented the remarks of scientists.

    The IPCC has a very careful process for considering which non peer reviewed papers to rely on. Of the all the many non peer-reviewed papers, one turned out to be unreliable. You choose to ignore the fact that the IPCC’s judgment as to which non peer-reviewed papers were reliable, was correct overwhelmingly more often than it was wrong.

  132. #132 sbartram
    February 26, 2010

    Nerd: My authority in the matter is irrelevant, but if I’m a Denialist for believing Phil Jones & Jane Lubcenko when they agree (or fail to disagree)that there has been no statistically significant Global Warming since 1995, then they are Denialists too.

    Read this for comments on the quality of the BBC interview.

  133. #133 Rev. BigDumbChimp
    February 26, 2010

    that there has been no statistically significant Global Warming since 1995, then they are Denialists too.

    Those damn glaciers and their fake melting.

  134. #134 SC OM
    February 26, 2010

    Those damn glaciers and their fake melting.

    They’re so melodramarctic.

    (Sorry.)

  135. #135 Rev. BigDumbChimp
    February 26, 2010

    ouch

  136. #136 llewelly
    February 26, 2010

    Those damn glaciers and their fake melting.

    If they weren’t faking it, it wouldn’t be climatep0rn.

  137. #137 Al B. Quirky
    February 26, 2010

    If glaciers refused to melt at all, millions would be without a water-supply.

  138. #138 Rev. BigDumbChimp
    February 26, 2010

    Oh good grief you’re an idiot

  139. #139 Scott Pigeon
    February 26, 2010

    I don’t think the second version is that bad. At least it acknowledges the influence of politics on something that should be based on science. It finishes by emphasizing objectivity. I’m pretty sure that’s a good thing.

    Keep in mind that the majority of us, myself included, are not climate scientists. With that in mind, consider that both sides are spouting out scientific jargon, both sides are citing studies, both sides criticize the other side’s funding, and so on. Being an atheist site (the reason I visit :), you and commentators place a lot of weight on religious dogma in the denial of global warming. I don’t know, that may be a factor for some, but for most, I think it’s political. For others, including myself, it’s that objectivity thing. At the end of the day, you’ve got scientists saying the other guys aren’t real scientists, and vice versa. I’m certainly not qualified to peer review everyone’s claims. What is a layman to do?

    Less pollution, weening ourselves off of foreign/hostile oil, and being more efficient in the creation of our energy are all good things, regardless if global warming is real or not. If more emphasis were placed on common sense ideas like that, instead of coming up with new taxes and using phrases that have politically weighted connotations, perhaps things would move along a bit smoother.

  140. #140 SC OM
    February 26, 2010

    What is a layman to do?

    Go here:

    http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/

    Challenge the arguments. Argue using the peer-reviewed literature. Honestly accept the evidence.

  141. #141 strange gods before me ?
    February 26, 2010

    At the end of the day, you’ve got scientists saying the other guys aren’t real scientists, and vice versa. I’m certainly not qualified to peer review everyone’s claims. What is a layman to do?

    Note that we have the exact same situation in the case of evolution. There are hundreds of scientists who have signed A Scientific Dissent From Darwinism. How do you judge their reliability?

  142. #142 lweinstein
    February 28, 2010

    #141,
    The dissent from Darwinism and also the dissent about plate tectonics and other dissents eventually were refuted by facts as more evidence came in and no falsifying evidence could be found on the theories. The final results had nothing to do with group acceptance or dissent at the early stage. In fact, the dissent was from the majority of scientists at the time. AGW has been supported by the majority in recent times, and has had several claims falsified, so either group using group acceptance is not a valid basis for the final outcome. The falsified claims were not critical to AGW, but neither were they support for the hypothesis. There have been some claims that are critical to AGW, and they have not been supported, but they have not been totally falsified either, as many require longer sets of modern data than is presently available. At the present, the theory of CAGW has no valid supporting claims, but a weak effect of AGW does seem reasonable, but not a problem.

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