Nov 15, 2006

More pseudoscience..... debunked!

Like many people I am becoming incredibly frustrated with the way that science is twisted for political and religions means. It is good to see that this latest pseudoscience article wrongly dismissing climate change from the Sunday Telegraph has been debunked.

"[The Sunday Telegraph Article] is a dazzling debunking of climate change science. It is also wildly wrong... In keeping with most of the articles about climate change in [the Sunday Telegraph], it is a mixture of cherry-picking, downright misrepresentation, and pseudo-scientific gibberish. But it has the virtue of being incomprehensible to anyone who is not an atmospheric physicist... As for James Hansen, he did not tell the US Congress that temperatures would rise by 0.3C by the end of the past century. He presented three possible scenarios to the US Senate — high, medium, and low. Both the high and low scenarios, he explained, were unlikely to materialise. The middle one was 'the most plausible.' As it happens, the middle scenario was almost exactly right. He did not claim, under any scenario, that sea levels would rise by several feet by 2000."

It would be hypocritical to place absolute faith in this one debunking (though I am certain it is an order of magnitude more correct than the original rubbish article). However the lesson is; scientific journals are peer reviewed for a reason, it allows people to have faith that what is published has a certain level of accuracy.

The Sunday Telegraph (a newspaper), by publishing rubbish like this, illustrates the gaping divide between what the general public thinks of as science, and what is actually science. Furthurmore, it is not a leap to assume that if the readers of the newspaper are now so content with the false assumptions they will also lack the necessary critical thinking skills to compare the original Sunday Telegraoh article with the new article debunking the claims. After all, critical thought is hard work for people who believe science articles in newspapers on face value alone.