Sunday, May 29, 2016

Hysterical Emotionalism won't help Climate Science either

There are two denial groups operating in the climate science domain. One is the right wing pro-capitalism climate denying agency that seeks to make science a delayed cost to their investments. That is the one everyone knows and the left gets to demonize it.

The other groups that aren't helpful are the "defenders of the earth" emotional hysterics.

By hysterics I mean:

Behavior exhibiting excessive or uncontrollable emotion, such as fear or panic.

Well meaning without knowledge is still paving the path to hell.  While awareness of potential climate doom and awakening the people to real danger is noble, to make a distracting scene of the facts with nonsense is a jeopardy to the movement goal. In this clip, Will Cain makes a rational exposition of what climate change means and what is really known and what to do about it. In response, Bill Maher gets hysterical with the fake outrage over questioning the nuance of the problem. Oh come on is not a real reaction. This is the kind of thing you're supposed to be against Bill Maher, irrational posturing. Don't you skewer Conservatives for it ?

Just because there is a climate change consensus, the facts are not as undisputable as hysterical people think.

Here is a paper that proposes a model that predicts an ice age in 20+ years. It has a realistic interpretation of facts, not emotion, and it casts real doubt on whether or not the consensus understands what the true model is.

Habibullo Abdussamatov argues that the Maunder minimum, a lull in solar activity he shows that as demonstrated occurs periodically and goes back centuries, is approaching and that this lack of energy from the sun means we may have a mini ice age circa 2040. His main model state variable (solar activity) is the energy source from the sun to the Earth.  I am not claiming that I understand all his mathematics, nor his total subject as well as him, but his model is plausible.  That makes it a real justified climate prediction like any other.

I won't claim any subject expertise, but I would argue after working on complex systems of  many variables and with a reasonable understanding of partial differential equations, I argue that any system of a million variables can't be predicted reliably with an approximation. Chaos theory shows one can be wrong on a system of a few variables.  And our historical record is faulty, so any model that doesn't predict all behaviour is an approximation.

That is the point; emotional responses only cloud the issue. We are linearizing about a point of 1000 years on a 4 billion year earth history. That makes any rough approximation little more than a guess unless the model predicts all activity. That means science must still understand where the climate is going BEFORE one can counter its motion.

So when climate scientists say there is consensus, it doesn't mean lock step acceptance of everything in the main theory. They are all theories. Some are better than others.

I am all for terraforming the earth to make it more habitable to humans. But I don't want us spending money on non-solutions.  In fact, if Abdussamatov is correct, we might need to burn fossil fuels to save the colder areas from ice age conditions. Some have argued that greenhouse effect has saved us from a true ice age.

There is no hysterical argument to contradicting scientific models.  Read Thomas Kuhn. Scientists can become quite tribal in their belief systems. That doesn't make the majority position right.

And for those on the sidelines, don't distract from the message with histrionics.