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The APS Plot Thickens

The heretic Lord Monckton has a request today of the president of the American Physical Society:

The paper was duly published, immediately after a paper by other authors setting out the IPCC's viewpoint. Some days later, however, without my knowledge or consent, the following appeared, in red, above the text of my paper as published on the website of Physics and Society:

"The following article has not undergone any scientific peer review. Its conclusions are in disagreement with the overwhelming opinion of the world scientific community. The Council of the American Physical Society disagrees with this article's conclusions."

This seems discourteous. I had been invited to submit the paper; I had submitted it; an eminent Professor of Physics had then scientifically reviewed it in meticulous detail; I had revised it at all points requested, and in the manner requested; the editors had accepted and published the reviewed and revised draft (some 3000 words longer than the original) and I had expended considerable labor, without having been offered or having requested any honorarium.

Please either remove the offending red-flag text at once or let me have the name and qualifications of the member of the Council or advisor to it who considered my paper before the Council ordered the offending text to be posted above my paper; a copy of this rapporteur's findings and ratio decidendi; the date of the Council meeting at which the findings were presented; a copy of the minutes of the discussion; and a copy of the text of the Council's decision, together with the names of those present at the meeting. If the Council has not scientifically evaluated or formally considered my paper, may I ask with what credible scientific justification, and on whose authority, the offending text asserts primo, that the paper had not been scientifically reviewed when it had; secundo, that its conclusions disagree with what is said (on no evidence) to be the "overwhelming opinion of the world scientific community"; and, tertio, that "The Council of the American Physical Society disagrees with this article's conclusions"? Which of my conclusions does the Council disagree with, and on what scientific grounds (if any)?

It will be interesting to see the response.


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K wrote:

The APS has a long history of politicising science from a leftist prospective. They were neck deep, for example, in SDI denial during the Reagan years and afterwards. Which is why I was very surpised at this sudden turn around for them with respect to AGW. So apparently, it isn't a turn around, but it was sudden.

Paul Milenkovic wrote:

I actually started out "believing" in CO2 driven AGW to the extent that "belief" is the correct word to apply to acceptance of a scientific hypothesis. I remember being on the Caltech campus in the late 1970s and having a sidewalk conversation with a computer modeler who was fervent that this was a global concern, and who expressed the view that use of nuclear power needed to be increased. This is at a time long before AGW hit the media and the media was running stories about a 1970s cooling being related to a coming ice age.

I mention the bit about nuclear power because it is a good litmus test. If someone genuinely believe Global Warming to be a high-risk crisis, accepting the lesser risks associated with nuclear power would be a good trade. If someone is flapping their arms and talking about windmills -- alone -- solving this problem, it suggests a certain shallowness to their regard that Global Warming is that big a problem.

This was in the recent past -- last couple years -- and I was in a seminar room over in the Space Science building with a small group of atmospheric scientists listening to a speaker talk about those sensitiviy functions. His talk presented estimates of projected 21st century warming based on sensitivity assumptions that came up with warming on the low end of IPCC projections, the talk was received in a spirit of collegiality, and I don't remember anyone getting bent out of shape for someone being a skeptic of the "scientific consensus." It reminded me of going to a seminar talk at Northwestern in astronomy, 30 years ago when the estimates of the Hubble Constant had a 4:1 range, and estimates along that range were accepted and discussed in a spirit of collegiality without branding anyone a "Big Bang skeptic" or "Red Shift skeptic" (although with Halton Arp and others, there were and are such, and back in the day, being a "Red Shift skeptic" even got you a respectful hearing).

The combination of certainty about something that has to have large error bands combined with the political bluster is convincing me more an more that bluster is substituting for science. It seems the weeker the science the more bluster, justifying the inference that a high level of bluster suggests really weak science. If the evidence were that overwhelming, people would not have to act that way.

philw1776 wrote:

Details over at Anthony Watts excellent blog..

He's a meteorologist who investigates weather station ground data with real world examples and analysis. Amazing how bogus the "ground truth" data that backs AGW is.

Koolaid Drinker wrote:

You nut cases are hilarious!

My crank-o-meter is off the scale! Please do outline for me your latest crackpot theories in much more detail, I just love this kind of nutty stuff from the scientifically clueless.

Hint : Jeffrey Marque is a lone renegade APS editor, soon to be an lone, unemployed APS editor. Don't worry, though, George W. Bush will give him a cushy political appointment before he leaves office.

Drooling Moron wrote:

Sure, Rand, and the cores of gas giant planets and exotic stellar remnants and neutron stars are filled with ...

Kookaide! Those goofy scientists are crazy if they think they can model that stuff, better just to say that degenerate states of matter ... are just ... KOOLAIDE!

Karl Hallowell wrote:

I think you better tread carefully Rand. You have earned the wrath of a 13 year old. No idea if it's an actual 13 year old or merely someone who plays one on the internet.

Rand Simberg wrote:

Well, it's at least a thirteen-year-old barely smart enough not to attach a real name or email address to his idiotic posts. Which is why I feel free to rename him, appropriately.

Mike Puckett wrote:

Perhaps it is a 13 year old elishitz sitting in a corn silo and masturbating to his SSTO corn-silo fantasies.

Carl Pham wrote:

Ach, this is how you can get embarassed when you give some kid the job of managing the website. What a screw-up.

Well, if you actually were a good physicist and had plenty of fascinating research problems to work on, you wouldn't be screwing around with a "Science and Society" (retch) website anyway. So I guess it's no surprise that whoever posted the paper -- and we can assume he was ordered to do so by someone in higher authority -- had such a childish tantrum about it. Feh.

Another Drooling Moron wrote:

Now why would I want my good name dragged through the mud on this crank fascist blog? For those of you who are not numbers and research challenged, a very brief description of 'Lord' Monckton's false premises are described here :

memomachine wrote:


Hey man! Don't diss 13 year olds. When I was 13 I was completely space-mad and bugging the heck out of my senator for info on space propulsion systems.

So not every 13 year old is a total clueless dweeb.

This guy is, but not all of them.

Clueless About HTML wrote:

Ok, I'm pretty sure I formatted that correctly, when is Rand going to quit Movable Type and switch to Wordpress :

Rand Simberg wrote:

Now why would I want my good name dragged through the mud on this crank fascist blog?

"Klaatu" is your "good name"? Sounds like an idiot pseudonym to me. I've given you a more appropriate one.

By the way, when you (ignorantly) call this blog "fascist"? I don't think that word means what you think it means...

Blithering Fascist Idiot wrote:

Actually, Rand, I DID format it correctly, your beloved Movable Type decided that my snipped for formatting elegance was the real link, instead of the print link.

Do a 'view source' to see the truth. Even if you see the truth documented for you, you will still deny the truth.

So it goes with you 'fascists' who think that science is 'proven' with 'facts', and that George W. Bush and his cronies are 'doin a heckava job, just a heckava job', pillaging the national treasury, making the United States of Amurka look as fools to the entire civilized and uncivilized world, and killing and maiming innocent civilians by the hundreds of thousands, to keep the oil spigot open for fat and ignorant inbred redneck hillbilly slobs to continue wasting energy and creating noise and pollution like there is no tomorrow, and then when some scientists point out that there indeed may not be a tomorrow, proceed to cook up some crackpot theories in order to further confuse the rubes. You assholes deserve the future you are creating for your grandchildren.

I hope they like eating grass and dogs and cats.

Mike Puckett wrote:

" to keep the oil spigot open for fat and ignorant inbred redneck hillbilly slobs "

There you go Elishitz, talking about your intellectual and moral superiors again you arrogant little tick-turd!

Thomas, the (sub)human diarrhea, Elfshits: Dumber than a shine-drunk hillbilly and makes a redneck wifebeater look like the pope in moral comparison.

M. Simon wrote:


The President can't pillage the National Treasury. That is the job of Congress. Which I understand is currently under Democrat control.

Drooling Imbecile wrote:

I think the term 'Amurkan' is broad enough to cover everybody here, the chimp and all of his enablers.

That would be you. Enjoy your economic meltdown!

Haahahahahahaha hahahahahaha ... focking rubes.

Joe Triscari wrote:

Mildly OT. The high concentration of dimwits (for this blog) on this thread who think that being scientific is the activity of agreeing with credentialed scientists reminded me of this.

I have noticed that the press is more willing to talk about UFOs and astrology more recently. I had been grateful for what I perceived to be a hiatus for a few years.

I didn't know why it was happening but I believed that it was because you can't really pillory the president about science while at the same time whining that scientists aren't open minded enough about New Age power crystals.

I don't have any counts it's just been a perception. Has anyone else noticed this dip and then recent increase in pseudo-science reporting (AGW excluded)?

Karl Hallowell wrote:

I think I've stated my opinion before on this matter. The world didn't end with Y2K. So once that fountain of hysteria dried up, it hurt associated interests like UFOs, conspiracy theories, etc. Maybe people felt collectively silly for a few years. Maybe they had more pressing things to worry about.

Anonymous wrote:

Karl, the world didn't end with Y2K because something was done about it ahead of time. We still have an ozone layer because something was done about that ahead of time. The jury is still out on AGW, but does anyone else see a pattern here?

The bit about killing brown people on the other side of the world to keep the oil spigot open for Americans to waste, I agree with. The trouble is that you made a mess of that, too. You had the perfect excuse to wade in and take the oil - and then wasted the opportunity, because attacking the right target (the perpetrators of 9/11) would have hurt the profits of Bush's oil company buddies too much.

The idea of America is a great idea, and America has done some great things; but the shower currently in charge makes me, as an outsider, feel sick. And scared.

Fletcher Christian wrote:

Oops, sorry. The previous commenter was me.

Bob Hawkins wrote:

"Fletcher Christian:"

Companies and organizations which took Y2K seriously and spent significant money on mitigation saw few problems. Companies and organizations which did not take Y2K seriously and did not spend significant money on mitigation, saw equally few problems.

This data is consistent with two hypotheses: (1) the problem was small and the mitigation efforts had negligible effect; or (2) the problems were large but the mitigation efforts were so effective they totally saved even people who were just in the area being clueless.

This is all we can say with certainty.

Steve wrote:

I'm not a GWB apologist, I did vote for him twice, but I am let down by many of the things he's done and saddened that he didn't do some of the things he said he would.

But I'll be so glad when ANY new President is sworn in next January. That way, or I hope so anyway, GWB can quit being blamed for all the ills of the world. As far as his detractors are concerned he's to blame for everything from acne to zoo closures.

BTW, when you start spouting off about GWB's "oil buddies" making a killing with their profits. Check out how much more money the OPEC countries have made also. And some of them DO want to do some killing in the country, and not in our wallets. How much of these gross oil profits get funneled to Wahabist radicals in Saudi Arabia? Do you suppose the recent excess profits Citgo makes, will go to feed starving children in Venezuela? Or will Hugo Chavez use it to rabble rouse against us?

If Bush really wanted to keep the cash registers ringing for his "oil buddies", he wouldn't have announced removing the ban on offshore drilling. Even though the Dems said doing so, or drilling ANWR, would take years to see any effect at the pump, gas prices have dropped in the last few days.

Is GWB the BEST President we ever had? NO. But you better look around and take stock of what he's got to work with. America isn't the country we used to be either. We are almost 300 million separate political parties vying for control. Guess what, there is no ME, ME, ME, MY, MY a thriving country.

We're sad. Our grandparents and great-grandparents would cry at how selfish we are.

mz wrote:

Christopher Monckton. Oh my. What a trail of idiocy... (Yes, I'm attacking the person.)
Get back when you get someone serious.

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This page contains a single entry by Rand Simberg published on July 19, 2008 11:40 AM.

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