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Location: St. Louis, Missouri, United States

Saturday, May 26, 2012

National Academy of Science Lies by Omission

Timothy Birdnow

In yet more evidence for the encroachment of leftist politics into the scientific community, former Reagan science adviser George "Jay" Keyworth was not invited to a symposium held by the National Academy of Science (NAS) on communicating science to the government and the public.

What is interesting is that NAS invited every living science adviser EXCEPT the conservative Keyworth, including Jimmy Carter's advisor Frank Press. When pressed for a reason for failing to invite Keyworth, NAS President Ralph Cicerone claimed they "didn't want to go back that far" despite having invited the 87 year old Press.

What set Keyworth apart from the other attendees? Doubtless his conservative views.

I direct your attention to Dr. Cicerone's testimony before Congress on Climate Change:

"The Earth is warming. Weather station records and ship-based observations indicate that global mean surface air temperature increased about 0.7oF (0.4oC) since the early 1970’s (See Figure). Although the magnitude of warming varies locally, the warming trend is spatially widespread and is consistent with an array of other evidence (e.g., melting glaciers and ice caps, sea level rise, extended growing seasons, and changes in the geographical distributions of plant and animal species). The ocean, which represents the largest reservoir of heat in the climate system, has warmed by about 0.12oF (0.06oC) averaged over the layer extending from the surface down to 750 feet, since 1993.

Laboratory measurements of gases trapped in dated ice cores have shown that for hundreds of thousands of years, changes in temperature have closely tracked atmospheric carbon dioxide concentrations. Burning fossil fuel for energy, industrial processes, and transportation releases carbon dioxide to the atmosphere. Carbon dioxide in the atmosphere is now at its highest level in 400,000 years and continues to rise. Nearly all climate scientists today believe that much of Earth’s current warming has been caused by increases in the amount of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere, mostly from the burning of fossil fuels. In fact, recent analyses of measurements of the Sun’s total brightness argue against any detectable long-term trend in the energy Earth receives from the Sun, making it difficult to conclude that the Sun has been responsible for the warming observed over the past 25 years."


"The task of mitigating and preparing for the impacts of climate change will require worldwide collaborative inputs from a wide range of experts, including natural scientists, engineers, social scientists, medical scientists, those in government at all levels, business leaders, and economists. Although the scientific understanding of climate change has advanced significantly in the last several decades, there are still many unanswered questions. Society faces increasing pressure to decide how best to respond to climate change and associated global changes, and applied research in direct support of decision making is needed."

End excerpts.

Now, Dr. Cicerone's statements to Congress are at best misleading. He knows that the baseline chosen for his claim of warming (the 1970's) was an ebb in temperature, a cold period where scientists were warning of a coming Ice Age. Naturally the planet has warmed since. He also surely knows that the antarctic ice sheet is growing rather than melting, and some glaciers are growing while others melting, so his claims about melting ice are untruthful. Sea levels have been rising, and the rate has not materially accelerated - something else he knows. Perhaps, since this testimony was given in 2005, he was unaware that overall warming of the oceans hasn't been occuring.

He surely must know, too, that CO2 levels in the atmosphere follow warming periods and do not proceed them, yet he misleads Congress by claiming they "closely track". That is true, but in the reverse of how he suggests. This is an onerous lie. His claim that CO2 levels are at their highest in the last 400,000 years is, shall we say, disingenuous; he surely knows that carbon dioxide levels rise after an ice age, and we have been coming out of an ice age for the last 400,000 years, so naturally that level is higher. One must ask, too, why it is that the Medieval Warming Period was warmer than the present with so much increased CO2 in the atmosphere? He also argues that solar irradiance does not account for the warming of the Earth, something he cannot prove. He ignores solar-related phonomena such as cosmic rays or magnetic reconnection events.

At the conclusion he argues for government, government, government.

IF he is really this ignorant he has no business being President of NAS, and if he is that dishonest he has no business in science. Science is about the facts, and ALL of the facts.

So why was Keyworth not invited to the symposium?

NAS put out a comprehensive argument for human influence on the climate in the the Climate Change Science Program, or CCCP, er, CCSP report back in 2009. I debunked this in a lengthy and overwhelmingly redundant (arguing against Anthropogenic Global Warming is always redundant) post here.

This bloviating bit of blather on the part of NAS was purest propoganda - from a once shining example of scientific integrity. This document was produced under the tenure of Dr. Cicerone, who has been at the reins of NAS since 2005.

In short, we have liars running the National Academy of Science, and there is little in the way of pretense by those in charge of key institutions to present both sides of politically charged scientific disputes.

We are witnessing the corruption of science in a spectacular fashion. It's little wonder that the public no longer trusts the word of scientists, because they simply aren't straight with us any longer. And today with the internet scientists whose voices would have been silenced can speak out. Cicerone tried doing things the old fashioned way, simply ignoring a dissenter. Won't work any longer.

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