A Serious Data Leak in the AGW Model
By now everyone is well aware of the “ClimateGate” issue that has spread like wildfire though the increasingly dry and over-warmed looking underbrush around the Copenhagen Conference. Just as a refresher, the volatile allegations behind this story first surfaced on November 19 at an inauspiciously excellent little WordPress Blog called The Air Vent. Although it’s administrating Editor/Writer was impeccably self-measured, and even-handed his own dispensation of the files that were offered exclusively to him – the results have since set off a maelstrom of reactions among Climate Skeptics, and the Climate Change Deniers out there. As expected, these Contrarians are claiming the “leaked” files from the University of East Anglia’s Hadley Climatic Research Unit (CRU) represent “evidence” that is being touted as proof positive that Anthropogenic Global Warming (AGW), or Man-Made Climate Change, is indeed at least subject to fabrication, motivating a monumental hoax that’s being pulled off by the profiteers who’ve already invested heavily in the interests that seek to remediate this supposedly trumped up global issue. This represents an enormous event that can sway the many fence-sitters out there, and many other “tippy” factors as well!
Whether the files were illegally “hacked”, as was initially reported in the Press, or “leaked” as the early sources have claimed, (Vote your opinion below) this issue is only now just beginning to truly resonate with it’s aftershocks, as the implications start to become more widely apparent and reported. The long-simmering underlying issue here has been the actual sources of the Anthropogenic Global Warming (AGW) theory. This point of contention has been fueled by ongoing and largely suppressed complaints about the supposedly deficient peer-review process behind AGW, and also stirred up by speculations about the allegedly biased nature of the very well-funded research bodies and fractured scientific communities that have supposedly been coerced (financially or politically) into creating and maintaining a one-sided view of the AGW theory. So much so, that according to Skeptics, this scientific cabala of sorts has systematically shunned or ostracized all those who’ve called for a more pluralistic scrutiny, or wider debate and peer-review process of the central issues, and supporting sciences behind AGW. These allegations point to a version of Science that now seems corruptible, and that can not only be bought at a commercial level (of course), but also influenced at the Public level though the grants, disbursements, and any other political mechanisms that can exert influence upon university-based research(ers) as well. On the other side of this equation we have a Scientific Community and attendant Press Corps that supports AGW with an almost religious devotion, that relies heavily on dogma and ridicule in order to maintain its unquestionable positions.
As such, this disastrously well-timed leak/hack (whichever you prefer) has clearly shaken those of us who wanted to believe that all Scientists were automatically held to the high standards dictated by their profession, and were infallible in their altruistic search for unbiased fact and clear understanding of the world around us. At the least, this event could just simply demonstrate just how polarized we’ve all become on the issues behind Climate Change, that we now can’t see shades of grey because of all the black/white rhetoric that we must buy into, and uphold at all costs. Lest we be labeled accordingly as pariahs!
Although playing the Devil’s Advocate might entertain us while we watch things play out in the short-term, Environauts are in fact much more concerned about the effectors and events of Causality that exist behind such issues, and how they can sum to larger, longer term impacts upon the future of our environment. This one event that has shaken not only the entire Scientific Community by it’s roots, but also upset all the Industrial and Political dependencies that underpinned the AGW movement, and most certainly qualifies this as a very “tippy” event, and that will undoubtedly trigger many more and varied Future impacts as it moves down the timeline.
To consider the possibilities of both the positive and negative repercussions, you can quickly review our Future Impact Report HERE
Or delve further into the circumstances of this event, starting with a quick opinion survey by clicking for MORE below…
As Environauts, we’re compelled to discover and defend against as many of the Future risks that can be set off by such a precariously balanced or “tippy” event, while also discovering and proliferating any of the constructive options and positive attributes that can be derived out of such an event as well. As such, let’s try to carve away at the chaos that surrounds this event by slicing away some of the Media rhetoric,
Of course, the Mainstream Media is a huge factor in how we gauge the Future here at Environauts. In this case the Media are either letting this one blow by as fluff, or taking a long and hard look at their own position on AGW, and perhaps even updating their editorial slant on the subject.
The story has now spread through some very reputable major dailies such as The Guardian, The Wall Street Journal, and other mainstream news sources. For example CNN offers us this video that clearly points to the opposite positions that both sides will likely continue to take on this subject, as it plays out in the mainstream.
Unlike the fickle, fast moving, and rather staid nature of daily Mainstream News, the extremely varied forms of Pop Culture Media exist in an arena where Cultural Memes can be borne and survive their initial splash, and actually have a more lasting effect as they morph, spread, and adapt into Viral Memes if the underlying idea that spawned them is big enough. In this case, the Viral Meme that could evolve from this event might convey the destructive idea that Pure Science is quite susceptible to political influence, and is in fact quite corruptible under the right conditions.
On his Daily Show, Jon Stewart seemed more visibly distraut than normal at the prospect that an issue so near and dear to his heart, and as critical to all of us as Climate Change could now be effectively hammered at by the Right Wing Zealots, using a destructive tool that was provided by the apparent ineptitude of a handful of self-assured Scientists. The faith shattering message we got from Stewart was that as a result of this debacle, both the supposed scientific methods and peer-review processes of Modern Science can now been called into question (if not outright disrepute) by armchair pundits and skeptics everywhere, and certainly as far as the general public may now be concerned. As we watch Jon Stewart tilting on his axis, we can palpably sense his dawning decision that Al Gore was indeed just looking out for his own best personal interests all along. The long term future effects of such a pivotal tilt on Humanitarian motivations by this very popular and trusted Media figure are inestimably huge. Hopefully Jon can bounce back from this blow…As we hope he should.
This stolen/leaked information will surely be simultaneously discredited, and also held up as tangible evidence, depending on what side of the question you happen to be sitting on. What is certain however, is now that the mainstream media has had a taste of an alternate and opposing view on the Climate Change story, and it will certainly be more willing to pump up any controversial aspects (at least in the short term) in order to drive ratings. One of the sad results is that some very large and influential segments of the world’s population will now have an ear open to the Skeptics and Contrarians among us, in order to see what else could come of this development.
Down the timeline, this event may have triggered other events that could result in turning the man-made global warming into enough of a fabricated hoax (which may be a fabrication in itself, of course), that by the time clearer heads (and better data) prevail, we may lose critical reaction time now, before their future options become eliminated.
Hopefully we won’t look back at this someday, and realize that this may have been the point in time where the entire concept of AGW became so critically damaged in the Public Eye, that it changed the repairative course of all its dependents in such a radical new direction, that Future options were never the same again.
The idea that AGW is a financially motivated stunt that also calls political motivations in as favours, is far too destructive of a Social Meme to be allowed to proceed without more rationale and corrective discourse around the question. Please contribute to the Future of this event in any way you can, by taking an open and honest approach, that places the issue above the suspicion that now grows like a cancer upon the Future.
Remember: Someday it might turn out that Carbon-Dioxide may not have been the biggest bogeyman that the AGW Scientists and Profiteers all wished us to believe it was, but the daunting process of reigning in over-consumption and ALL dangerous emissions is the underlying, and actual objective of meeting the greatest challenge Humanity has ever faced. This objective retains a far greater future impact than any the passing political issues, scientific squabbles, and media controversies of today could ever represent in the Present.
– Where do you stand in the Future? –
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SOURCE and SUPPORT FILES
This infamous zip file was first posted on a Russian server at http://ftp.tomcity.ru/incoming/free/FOI2009.zip and linked to from The Air Vent, and has now become more widely available. If you’d like to sift it’s suspicious contents, you and can do so at your own risk by obtaining it HERE as well.
The original Blog post that broke this story on November 19, 2009:
Examples of mainstream coverage in the U.K.:
Examples of mainstream coverage in the U.S. :
Video: Jon Stewart’s Daily Show
IPCC: The U.N.’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change