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THE NEW BOOK BURNERS AND THE DEGRADATION OF THE SCIENTIFIC CULTURE
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Today i want to talk about how a small self-righteous group is trying to control what scientific ideas get shared with the public. I call them the new book burners As Ray Bradbury warned, you dont need to burn books to destroy a culture, ... Just get people to stop reading them
We teach students that science is driven by the scientific method. You make observations that raise questions. Then a plausible explanation or hypothesis is offered to answer those questions. Then experiments are done to test that hypothesis, and results and conclusions are published so others then can evaluate your methods and conclusions. But that is just one turn of many, in the scientific method
Science then requires debate. Others may have had similar observations but different explanations, which lead to different conclusions. We trust science as a truth seeking method because many eyes and many voices can weigh in and debate the final conclusions.
Robust science and our democracy require a culture that holds sacred the freedom of speech and skepticism As Carl Sagan said, science requires an almost complete openess to all ideas, balanced by rigorous and uncompromising skepticism. Similarly, America's founding fathers made sure any form of tyranny over the minds of people should be strongly opposed Walter Gilbert, a 1980 nobel prize winner for his contribution to the methods that enabled the sequencing of DNA and RNA, also praised the virtues of scientific skepticism and independent thought. But he also warned.....good scientists often morph into authoritarians who claim “only their way of doing science is the only valid view”
The first scientific society, the Royal Society, formed in 1660. It published Isaac Newtons' ground breaking research. Newton later became the society's president. America's Benjamin Franklin was in the forefront of promoting science and democracy and his experiments with electricity were published here also. The society's motto was “Nullius en Verba”, meaning take no one’s word for it. They understood that truth seeking science must not be shackled by narratives of so-called authorities.
The roots of our scientific culture began with the publication of Copernicus' book in 1543 that placed the sun ,instead of the earth, at the center of our solar system. It defied what the authorities had been claiming. That publication triggered the scientific revolution and the age of enlightenment But that idea was not new. Many thinkers from around the world had suggested the same thing for many centuries. The problem was - to modify a popular adage - what was expressed in their village stayed in their village It was the earlier invention of the printing press, that enabled Copernicus's views to circulate more extensively to the public.
Our digital media holds even greater promise than the first printing press for freely sharing information and alternative hypotheses from people all over the world. It promises to prevent tyrannical groupthink that always thwarts creativity and truth seeking The New York Times had great influence with over 5.5 million subscribers to its print editions. Their influence has multiplied via its internet outreach. Even greater outreach is seen by Twitter with 500 million tweets per day, Facebook, now called Meta, has 2.4 billion views a year Youtube gets one billion views a month Wikipedia gets 18 billion views a month
But with great promise lies great danger Controllers of social media can morph into authoritarians In the name of preventing misinformation or fake news. A very small group can control what you read. They can promote views they like to millions; Or limit views they dislike to less than a hundred. In other words they become digital book burners Beware of these digital book burners
Michael Mann is a climate scientist who morphed into an authoritarian book burner. He believes his view is the only valid view. If you disagree with his CO2 driven climate doom, he brands you a denier and anti-science, no matter how scientific your arguments. But he constantly presents himself as the poor little victim unfairly attacked by fossil fuel funded propaganda But the Climategate emails, released either by a hacker or a whistle blower, revealed Michael Mann has spent 2 decades stifling independent thought by other scientists in peer reviewed journals as well as the social media His public tweets also reveal his attempts to control what you can think and his book burning ways. Unsurprisingly, he just recently tweeted that it is now time for Youtube to “remove climate denial videos” because, they are a threat to humanity.
Mann rose from obscurity when his 1998 reconstruction of northern hemisphere temperatures over the past 1000 years suggested the activity of wealthy fossil fuel burning industrial countries had completely altered and endangered the earth's climate. The graph of his results resembled a hockey stick and became the perfect icon for any politician to suggest a global government is needed to save the world. So his hockeystick graph sat front and center at the United Nations 2001 IPCC climate conference It didn’t matter that it was scientifically flawed, the united nations saw it as a valuable icon; just as it didn’t matter that the 16 year old Greta Thunberg, who totally lacked any climate or ecological science background, was invited to speak and berate leaders at the United Nations. A young girl claiming we must save the earth from ecosystem collapse was another politically valuable fear-mongering icon .
Those with tyrannical political agendas know full well the most influential obstacle to freedom of thought is fear. And that social control is best managed by fear. So was Michael Mann just a shill for global politics, either knowingly or unknowingly?
A multitude of various agents, knowing they could gain politically by championing solutions to save the earth from a climate crisis, eagerly supported the hockey stick hypothesis of impending climate doom Relishing in his new fame and fortune, Micahel Mann morphed into the authoritarian that Nobel prize scientist Walter Gilbert warned us about. Then Mann viciously attacked any & all who disagreed with his personal science as deniers
So who decides what scientific opinions are valid and which are fake news? Who decides when the science is settled? Most fact checkers are journalists with miniscule scientific backgrounds in climate or ecology, But they stubbornly believe they know enough to judge. Those who accept the climate doom narratives are filled with fear. And readily attack good skeptical scientists ,steeped in the scientific culture, for simply presenting missing facts and offering alternative explanations
Due to the battle to control the narratives that enable political power, social media has been under relentless pressure from various actors, including Michale Mann, to prevent any opinions that differ from the climate crisis narrative. Facebook asks, How do we stop false news? But they avoid the critical question .....Who determines what is false news? Facebook, Twitter and Youtube have given control to so-called fact checkers as clearly stated in their policies. If a fact checker has the opinion that your text or video is false or misleading, it is moved lower in the newsfeeds which greatly reduces who will see it,... Precisely the book burning method Ray Bradbury warned us about
If a fact checker deems you are a repeat offender, they can advocate to have you blocked After posting several of my educational videos promoting natural climate change which are always based on scientific evidence published in peer reviewed science, I suddenly found myself blocked from facebook with this message I went to my twitter account and got the same message that i was blocked. I asked friends if fb or twitter was down but they still had access. Several hours later i was then allowed access to both facebook and twitter at the same time. Apparently the same fact checkers are controlling both these major media outlets My blocking and re-instating also suggests that they dont know how to deal with valid science when it challenges the hockeystick climate crisis
John Cook is a psychologist at the Center for Climate Change Communication, a center that supplies fact checkers. Cook is not a climate scientist, but in 2007 Cook started the misleadingly named website SkepticalScience with a mission to disparage all skeptical challenges to the climate crisis hypotheses, A website often recommended by Michael Mann
Cook's value to Mann's Climate wars was he had published tactics for neutralizing so-called mis-information via inoculation. Coincidentally all skeptic texts and videos now get inoculated Social media calls it providing more information to counter false information
For example, on my Facebook page, I posted a link to my friends for my Youtube video in which I analyzed some bad wildfire science in the Sierra Nevada , where I had done ecosystem research for over 25 years Facebook added this inoculating message that linked to their so-called Climate Science Center Although my video's analysis had shown why, fire experts do not use average temperatures to issue Red flag warnings, and the fact that official data shows in the localities where northern California's wildfires have started, the critical maximum temperatures have been lower than in the 1930s, Facebook's Climate Science Center linked to this graph showing rising average temperature to suggest climate change is the cause of worse fires
Likewise Youtube is inoculating every skeptic’s video posts. My video on wildfires in the Sierra Nevada was, unsurprisingly, linked to the United Nations' alarmist narratives, despite its narrative being completely devoid of any knowledge of conditions in the Sierra Nevada In an earlier video on natural cycles of warming and drying, it was inoculated with a link to Wikipedia, a site infamous for biased climate views .
I also suspected Youtube was manipulating the number of likes (and views) my videos were given, so i began archiving screenshots shared here. At 7 pm i had 34 likes The next morning the same video had 80 more views but...... But Youtube reduced the likes to just 14! Other screen shots of other videos had also revealed reduced views and likes as well I can only assume Youtube is trying to influence future viewers that my video is not worth watching
As documented here, Michael Mann has spent 2 decades trying to suppress any skeptical science from being published in scientific journals. In 2002, the high impact journal Science, published results from two paleo-climatologists analyzing tree rings and concluding temperatures today were similar to 1000 years ago, as seen in their graph
This challenged Michael Mann's 1998 Hockeystick hypothesis. We know from Climategate emails Mann berated 2 colleagues for not being more critical of that paper and the ranted that they now must do damage control. Then Mann denigrated the esteemed journal's peer review process for allowing a research paper that simply disagreed with the almighty Michael Mann
The next year, 2 Harvard Astrophysicists published in the journal Climate Research synthesizing several hundred peer reviewed papers and also suggesting 20th century temperatures were not uniquely warm or extreme over the past 1000 years. Mann descended deeper into conspiratorial despair emailing colleagues that the editorial board of climate research had been hijacked by a few skeptics. Skeptics "had staged a coup!"
He then suggested they all blacklist the journal and stop citing any papers published in that journal. Conspiring to stop citing any scientific paper with alternative views has the same effect as social media's factcheckers pushing articles further down the newsfeed, ...it greatly reduces how many people will ever read those papers.
Mann's buddy, Dr Tom Wigley, another key government climate scientist, further illustrated the book burning strategies of this cabal of scientists. When he replied... We must get rid of the editor von Storch and block other skeptical scientists like Legates, Balling, Lindzen, Michaels, Singers and others Mann and his group pushed to get rid of editors that support skeptics.
Like a small group of factcheckers, just a few editors control what gets published To remove such editors., Mann's group conspired to contact the publisher telling them their journal was perceeved as a medium for disseminating misinformation. Wigley emphasized that “it didnt matter if that allegation was true or not”, because the publishers only cared about the economic damage that such a perception might cause. Mann concurred but argued other approaches might also be needed. Mann hated that the paper appeared to be legitimately peer reviewed science and that the authors' Harvard affiliation might give them more authority than Mann's Penn State affiliation. So Mann then successfully lobbied Harvard's scientifically ill-informed administrators to distance themselves from Soon and Baliunas
In 2005, Mann lobbied editors of the highly respected Geophysical Research Letters journal to stop publishing a skeptical research paper. that strongly challenged the appropriateness of Mann's statistical methods that created Mann's hockeystick results Fortunately, the editor had more integrity and replied all 3 reviewers recommended publishing the paper and he found no reason to interfere with its publication. Still such an incident reveals how politics, and Mann, degrade science. With his attempted censorship thwarted Mann's conspiracy ideation deepened, ranting to colleagues that contrarians now have an “in” at Geophysical Research Letters. So, the journal can “no longer be seen as honest brokers in the climate debates. We best to do an end run around the journal”
Unable to completely suppress peer- reviewed skepticism, Mann entered the theater of social media by creating the website, self-righteously named "RealClimate" and announced his team of 9 scientists Some of RealClimate’s early posts took aim at France's highly esteemed scientists Vincent Courtillot and Claude Allegre, trying to cancel them for questioning man-made climate change and daring to suggest natural causes
Meanwhile one of Mann's team, William Connolley, was busily editing out thousands of Wikipedia entries that were skeptical of any CO2 driven climate crisis... Finally caught in 2010, Wikipedia's directors unanimously banned Connolley from editing climate topics but worrisomely allowed him to return later.
It’s well understood that the public typically lacks the skill or time to determine which scientific conclusions are the most truthful. The public really just wants reassurance their adopted blind beliefs are the truth Accordingly in a 2009 email, Mann admitted “we all know it isn’t about truth" its about plausible deniability Then further advised his team to be careful about what information his group sent to Andy Revkin of the NY Times because, in regards to the narrative Mann wants to push, “Revkin is not as predictable as we like”
Illustrating the height of Orwellian double-speak and hypocrisy, Mann teams up with John Cook's fellow psychologist, Stephan Lewandowsky, to blame the public's faulty beliefs for not accepting Mann's climate crisis narratives,... An allegation Mann dishonestly frames as "denial of scientific facts"
After 2 decades of trying to control peer review by removing editors and threatening journals who allow skeptical articles, Mann now accused skeptics of avoiding peer review
And after 2 decades of promoting his own website and John Cook's skeptic bashing website, and after decades with he and his ilk claiming the debate is over, Mann now denigrates skeptics, whose only remaining platform for free speech is the internet, and accuses them of using the internet to stifle debate
No wonder Michael Mann has been called a Disgrace to his Profession As Orwell warned in his book 1984, the whole purpose of Newspeak is to "narrow the range of thought" Because it makes people more easily controlled
Coincidentally, just as I finished drafting this presentation, a verdict on the John sStossel vs Facebook's factchecking slander, was posted to the Watts Up With That website. Court documents revealed that Facebook could not be held liable for the damage done by slandering Stossel's factual videos as fake news and misleading because their ignorant fact checkers are not arguing facts, just opinions; and opinions can’t be prosecuted.
But didnt we skeptics always know that about these factcheckers?
But the power of biased so-called factcheckers' opinions is exactly what Bradbury warned against. Books don’t need to be burnt, just get people to stop reading them
So beware people , The thought police are legally immune and very active
Michael Mann's call for
Youtube to remove skeptical climate videos
is just one more step that he and his team's have executed for decades to control what you think!
Up next, I’m planning several short educational videos discussing how naturally varying locations and intensities of atmospheric pressure systems control climate in order to help people gain an understanding of what determines climate and severe weather events