|It is up to Peanuts now|
Today let's look at two reasons that the scientific community, and the warming science commentariat, are clueless on some basic science.
I will exclude all absurd wastes of money and knowledge done while studying yawning - Will Your Brain Get Larger If You Yawn More?.
There is nothing to yawn about, so, more likely than not the perpetuation of ignorance is more likely a function of trance dynamics than it is of boredom (Choose Your Trances Carefully, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6).
II. Just For Starters
So, let's begin with a quote from a spot on scientific paper, which I will quote from again, later during this post:
A common misconception among both the wider scientific community and the general public is that sea-level rise associated with a warming climate would be the same everywhere.(How The Climate Drives Sea-level Changes, Oxford Journal, 2008). In other words, the greater number of scientists in the scientific community believe (a term of faith) in the bathtub model myth (The Bathtub Model Doesn't Hold Water, 2).
For some "reason" the twin myth of that myth is "thermal expansion is the MAJOR cause of sea level rise," a myth which this series documents and debunks (On Thermal Expansion & Thermal Contraction, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7).
III. Just For The Record
I decided to write today's post and add it to this series when I read another scientific paper which contained this statement:
The rate of twentieth-century global sea level rise and its causes are the subjects of intense controversy.(Nature). In other words, varying degrees of cluelessness are in conflict with varying degrees of awareness.
And that even when it comes to the cause of the, or one of the, greatest threats to civilization (Why Sea Level Rise May Be The Greatest Threat To Civilization, 2, 3, 4, 5).
IV. Scientific Cluelessness Within Scientific Paperdom
Here are some clueless quotes from the realm of Paperdom as it were:
"Sea level rise is strongest in the Arctic Ocean" - Fall Equals Rise
"The thermal expansion of the oceans, compounded by melting glaciers, resulted in the highest global sea level on record in 2015." - Who's On First
"there are several instances where global sea level is rising but steric sea level is falling" - The Measuring Equipment Did It
What is above science?
Episcience ("epi" means above: Epigovernment: The New Model, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11).
That is, those who manage scientists through those who manage science projects:
Natural sciences managers supervise the work of scientists, including chemists, physicists, and biologists. They direct activities related to research and development, and coordinate activities such as testing, quality control, and production.(Natural Sciences Managers, cf. Project Management Institute, How to Manage a Lab and Staff, U.S. Congress Aims to Cut Climate Science).
One scientist who was recently arrested at the White House, and who had to retire from NASA, put some scientific observations to work on this scientific reality:
"I suspect the existence of what I call the `John Mercer effect'. Mercer (1978) suggested that global warming from burning of fossil fuels could lead to disastrous disintegration of the West Antarctic ice sheet, with a sea level rise of several meters worldwide. This was during the era when global warming was beginning to get attention from the United States Department of Energy and other science agencies. I noticed that scientists who disputed Mercer, suggesting that his paper was alarmist, were treated as being more authoritative.(Scientific Reticence and Sea Level Rise, James Hansen). BTW, that episcience madness is a very old memetic trance (What Is Pseudo Science?).
It was not obvious who was right on the science, but it seemed to me, and I believe to most scientists, that the scientists preaching caution and downplaying the dangers of climate change fared better in receipt of research funding. Drawing attention to the dangers of global warming may or may not have helped increase funding for relevant scientific areas, but it surely did not help individuals like Mercer who stuck their heads out. I could vouch for that from my own experience. After I published a paper (Hansen et al 1981) that described likely climate effects of fossil fuel use, the Department of Energy reversed a decision to fund our research, specifically highlighting and criticizing aspects of that paper at a workshop in Coolfont, West Virginia and in publication (MacCracken 1983).
I believe there is a pressure on scientists to be conservative. Papers are accepted for publication more readily if they do not push too far and are larded with caveats. Caveats are essential to science, being born in skepticism, which is essential to the process of investigation and verification. But there is a question of degree. A tendency for `gradualism' as new evidence comes to light may be ill-suited for communication, when an issue with a short time fuse is concerned."
VI. Will The Non-yawning Scientists Please Stand Up
The ones who are clued in are still with us:
Sea-level change associated with climate change involves various interactions between different components of the Earth system — primarily oceans, ice sheets and the solid Earth. As a consequence, sea-level science is highly multi- and interdisciplinary, requiring collaboration between scientists who measure and model properties of and processes within these various subsystems.(How The Climate Drives Sea-level Changes, Oxford Journal, 2008, emphasis added). It is a good sign when scientists quote relevant material and work done by their peers (notice the Mitrovica 2001 reference).
A key message of this paper is that, contrary to popular belief, climate-driven sea-level change is not spatially uniform.
A common misconception among both the wider scientific community and the general public is that sea-level rise associated with a warming climate would be the same everywhere. For example, concern about the future response of the large ice sheets to projected warming often leads to statements regarding the potential sea-level rise associated with the demise of the Greenland or West Antarctic ice sheets — approximately 7 m and 5 m, respectively. However, if either of these ice sheets were to lose even a fraction of their mass, the resulting sea-level change would not be spatially uniform. Current models of sea-level change associated with changes in continental ice volume demonstrate that there is, in fact, a sea-level fall in the vicinity of a melting ice sheet or glacier.
This spatial non-uniformity in the sea-level response to climate change is, of course, a serious issue when considering the sea-level hazard from future global warming. In the coming century, some areas will experience a considerable sea-level rise, whereas others will experience little change or even a considerable fall. It is important for governments and policy makers to be aware of this variability so that appropriate action can be made to plan and implement appropriate mitigatory procedures.
Because sea-level change associated with climate variation is not spatially uniform, it is possible to look for patterns in observations of past changes to infer dominant melt sources or constrain the relative importance of steric changes (sea-level changes arising from expansion and contraction of the water as temperature or salinity changes; see box on p2.26) compared to ice melt/growth. A recent application of this type considered a carefully selected subset of tide gauge records to look for a signal related to melting of land ice during the 20th century (Mitrovica 2001). The basis of this study is the pattern of global sea-level change when assuming melt from three distinct sources: Greenland, Antarctica and smaller ice masses such as mountain glaciers and ice caps.
There are scientists within NASA who are in accord with the knowledge of Newton concerning gravity:
As any ice sheet melts, sea levels along coastlines as much as 1,500 miles(The Warming Science Commentariat - 3). For those interested in the full blown discussion of the issue, check out this series (The Ghost-Water Constant, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7).
(2,000 kilometers) away will fall as seawater escapes from the reduced gravitational pull and the crust lifts. The escaping seawater flows clear across the equator: the melting of Antarctica affects the U.S. East and West coasts, and Greenland's disappearance impacts the coastline of Brazil. These regional differences are significant -- such as in the case of the East Coast of the United States.
Fig. 2 The Battle of the Bulge
VII. The Warming Science Commentariat Conclusion
After the managers are finished with the work of the scientists they control, making sure that their work complies with the wishes of their bosses (e.g. Robert Murdoch, Roger Ailes, and of course the sheiks of Oil-Qaeda), the results are communicated to the warming science commentariat for injection of hopium, "we can handle it", and "nothing to see here folks, move along now" types of pabulum.
By the warming science commentariat, I mean those who are misled, as well as those who deliberately deceive (In the Fog of The Presstitutes, 2, 3; Blind Willie McTell News, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6; Mocking America, 2, 3, 4).
You know, yawndom (How the IPCC Underestimated Climate Change, Scientific American, 2012).
The next post in this series is here, the previous post in this series is here.