Far too many of our so-called climate “experts” are not so much dispassionate scientists or rational thinkers as they are pedestal theorists and instinctual religious crusaders, generally on the Left. It is no surprise that Christiana Figueres, executive secretary of the U.N. Framework Convention on Climate Change, invoked the Mayan moon goddess Ixchel to bless the Cancun Climate Summit in December 2010. President Obama’s former Special Advisor for Green Jobs, the neo-Marxist Van Jones, was one of these aggressive-sentimental votaries. Jones apparently enjoyed a divine revelation, enthusing in his 2008 book The Green Collar Economy, that Green jobs will enable us to “heal the land and repair the soul.” Carbon taxes now resemble the traffic in Indulgences during the medieval era as energy sinners buy absolution from a profiteering clergy. Computer models have become the sacred texts of this new breed of true believers who, despite the contradictions, disparities and corruptions found therein, insist on toeing the orthodox line.
These are “texts” that should be marked with an obelus, as writings of questionable value. They are, quite frankly, a sort of legerdemain. One thinks, too, of the famous dictum attributed to Tertullian: Credo quia absurdum (I believe because it is absurd.) Actually, the Church Father had written: credibile est, quia ineptum est (probability can be derived from improbability). Same difference. Climate warmists are the Tertullians of the modern age, extracting conviction from rank implausibility and offering their legendary computer models as proofs of the ineffable.
For Lord Christopher Monckton, who specializes in exploring scientific frauds, the reasoning of our climate extremists represents an instance of the logical fallacy known as the argumentum ad petitionem principii, where the premise is also the conclusion. “We tell the computer models that there will be strong warming if we add CO2 to the air. The models show there will be strong warming. Therefore the warming is our fault” (Financial Post, April 21, 2012). Monckton’s scathing and authoritative analysis, predicated on Aristotle’s Sophistical Refutations, tears the anthropogenic thesis to wretched little shreds. (Aristotle’s volume is well worth consulting; as the philosopher points out in introducing his subject, “things made of litharge and tin seem to be of silver, while those made of yellow metal seem to be golden.” The application to the current form of “climate science” and its pseudo-scriptural psalters is obvious.)
In an open letter sponsored by the Cato Institute addressed to President Obama, himself a stalwart adherent of the climate change hypothesis, over a hundred scientists from more than a dozen countries stressed that “the case for alarm regarding climate change is grossly overstated” and that the “computer models forecasting rapid temperature change abjectly fail to explain recent climate behavior” (Climate Science, March 31, 2009). Still more piquant, climate modeling even fails to “predict” the past. In an online article entitled “Deep Ecology, Neo-Paganism and the Irrationalism of Global Warming Hysteria” (January 2008), E. Calvin Beisner, founder of the Cornwall Alliance for Environmental Stewardship, has shown how rickety such computer constructs are. He writes: “In their most candid moments, the modelers know the models do not describe and cannot properly be used to predict future temperatures. They know the models fail even to retrodict past climate without multiple and enormous ad hoc adjustments.” That Beisner is an evangelical Christian who has resisted the temptation to turn what passes for science into theology is encouraging.
As often as not, the constructs that emerge in the theoretical sim world do not qualify as proof of what happens in the real world. Rich Trzupek fittingly remarks, “‘climate change’ is a figment of a computer’s imagination” (FrontPage Magazine, February 1, 2012). But this has not prevented the climate models from becoming the Authorized Version. NASA Administrator Michael D. Griffin, who has professed some skepticism about certain aspects of global warming research, especially with regard to these theoretical computer models that tend, as he says, to run before they have learned to walk, was startled to realize that “you can’t express any sort of contrary opinion or a comment without it being treated almost as a religious issue” (Newsmax.com, March 17, 2008). Princeton physicist William Happer, writing in the Wall Street Journal (March 27, 2012) is of the same mind, bemoaning that “what used to be science has turned into a cult” and denouncing the “credulous support of schemes to reduce ‘carbon footprints’…by funding ever more computer centers to predict global warming.”
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