Friday, January 05, 2007

Take Data - Twist to Fit

I wanted to be a scientist when I was a lad. I did actually do a couple of real-life experiments back in the day. When you are sifting through the results of your experiment, and assuming that you are human, you have this awful inclination to dismiss things that don't help your hypothesis, and tweak those that do to be even more in line with your "life" filter.

Of course, these tendencies can be much more insidious. Lets say your book deal, or your grant, or your job, or your new pill is on the line.

Well, what's on the line right now is whether and how much man is contributing to global warming. Today, a new study is released which shows that:

carbon dioxide in the ancient atmosphere increased from about 280 parts per million to 2,000 ppm, the same increase that experts expect by the end of this century...
So the obvious conclusion of this new study and any rigorous thinker who might expose it to public view would be that nature is perfectly capable of big swings in atmospheric carbon dioxide.

But noooo. Go read it for yourself. But for those who want a capsule:

No one knows the reason for so much variation in carbon dioxide levels 300 million years ago, but as modern industrial activity continues to pump greenhouse gases into the air at rapid rates, the unpredictable climate changes that took millions of years to unfold naturally could be compressed into a few centuries or less today, several experts said.
Well, we can be pretty sure the "reason" wasn't MAN!

Now this article was written for and published in the Miami Sun Sentinal, so no surprise that they wouldn't know the truth if it bit them in the gluteous maximus. But really now.


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