Climategate: a Word of Advice to the Scientists

Michael Egnor

Australian journalist Andrew Bolt has a succinct bit of advice to scientists about the ClimateGate scandal:

Climategate: a word of advice to the scientists

The tide is turning. and fast. There will soon be an accounting – and the mood and the money for it. The reputation of science – and of many scientists – will be damaged severely.

Until now those scientists who knew the science behind global warming theory was weak or flawed largely kept their doubts to themselves, out of fear or other forms of self-interest. I’ve had the emails from some confessing to just that.

But self-interest should dictate they now make a stand. They need to show, for their own sake and for the sake of science, that they were on the right side of this debate, even if belatedly. Already I see some speaking–one even writing a book–who did not speak two years ago. There must be more now, to halt this madness before even more harm is done.

A decade from now, when scientists and the public look back at this extraordinary scandal, this great fit of collective madness, the question will be asked: on which side were you?

Now is the time to make sure you can answer with pride. Speak up. Reveal. Undo the damage.

Bolt is right about this: there will be an accounting for this fraud. People are very very angry, and while the skeptics whose darkest doubts have been vindicated don’t pull the levers of organized science (the frauds do that), there are some financial and political resources available to the skeptics who have been demanding integrity in science, and they understand now that this is war.

A cabal of leading scientists, politicians, and media concubines have conspired to lie about global warming. The reasons are obvious: power and money. The illusion of planetary crisis serves as vehicle for ’emergency measures to save the planet’, which are merely measures to empower and enrich an elite few. Al Gore, carbon-credit entrepreneur who puts his ‘mouth where his money is’, had it figured out a decade ago. The fraudulent scientists who suckle off the 7 billion dollars spent this year alone on the global warming scam (more than the U.S. spends annually on cancer research and AIDS research) are merely using science, rather than hedge funds, to enrich themselves. Dr. Philip Jones, the chief of the Climate Research Unit in England who figures so prominently in the fraud revealed in the emails, has personally obtained 25 million dollars in research grants, mostly public money. As those who are reasonably acquainted with peer review and the “inside” perspective of a particular discipline of science will (privately) attest, even scientists who abjure from outright fraud often produce work that is at best insipid, and is more often than not aimed at securing funding irrespective of genuine scientific merit. A lot of published science, when not actually fraudulent, is more a peer-reviewed grant application than cutting edge research.
I’m not sure that the scientific community can or will respond to this debacle in a courageous or ethical way. The ID-Darwinism debate clearly demonstrates that venality and shameless self-interest, as well as a toxic leftist-atheist ideology, runs very deep in the scientific community.
Science surely provides much benefit to mankind, but we may need to pursue scientific truth with a different set of scientists than the ones we have now. Surely many many scientists knew of the frauds so clearly documented in the ClimateGate scandal; where were the august scientific organizations–the Royal Academy, the UN’s IPCC, the National Academy of Sciences, the American Association for the Advancement of Science–while this fraud was growing and gaining power. The obvious truth is that these citadels of organized science were part of the fraud, or at least acquiescent in it. Several of the admitted ClimateGate fraudsters were in senior positions in these organizations.
We are on the verge of reorganizing our lives, our governments, and our economies on the basis of massive transparent scientific fraud. We may be able to avert more damage; I’m not sure. The bad guys here have all the influence and most of the money, and they are not hindered by ethics.
What can we do? Criminal prosecution of scientists who manipulate data would be a good start. Scientists who fake data and manipulate peer review to advance their agenda are no different than corporate executives who manipulate stock prices or lawyers who tamper with juries. Ultimately, perhaps massive defunding of organized science, and a new system of support for research that demands utter transparency and maximal accommodation of debate, may be the only way to defend ourselves from an utterly corrupt scientific elite.
It may well be that the public will be forced to protect itself from organized science, as we now protect ourselves from organized crime.

Michael Egnor

Senior Fellow, Center for Natural & Artificial Intelligence
Michael R. Egnor, MD, is a Professor of Neurosurgery and Pediatrics at State University of New York, Stony Brook, has served as the Director of Pediatric Neurosurgery, and award-winning brain surgeon. He was named one of New York’s best doctors by the New York Magazine in 2005. He received his medical education at Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons and completed his residency at Jackson Memorial Hospital. His research on hydrocephalus has been published in journals including Journal of Neurosurgery, Pediatrics, and Cerebrospinal Fluid Research. He is on the Scientific Advisory Board of the Hydrocephalus Association in the United States and has lectured extensively throughout the United States and Europe.