The latest IPCC report which reduces expected sea-level rise from feet to inches has got the Greenies rattled. Wretchard has some comments below (excerpts) on the rather amazing retreat from reality by a prominent global warmer -- who says that Greenies must trade "normal" truth for influence. It is a pretty good admission that global warming is not true in any normal sense.
The "precautionary principle" he invokes is in any case a philosophically silly detour. What do we take precautions against? A new ice age? One of those is geologically overdue. So you get straight back to a need to evaluate the evidence. What we do would be the opposite if we thought that a new ice age were more probable -- which it is.
Melanie Phillips is scathing about the anti-scientific Prof. Hulme too and Lubos Motl also weighs in
Mike Hulme, the founding director of the Tyndall Centre for Climate Change Research, argues in the Guardian that while scientific evidence may cast doubt on Global Warming why believe science? When a larger truth must be expressed, then "post-normal" science must be employed.
Hulme argues that Global Warming is so important that everyone must act to stop it, whether or not it is scientifically known to exist.
It is an argument superficially similar in structure to Pascal's Wager, which is an expected value argument for the existence of God.
But any resemblance between Pascal and Hulme ends there. While Pascal's Wager describes an approach to problems which are in principle unknowable to science because they are unobservable, at least with present methods, Hulme on the other hand, exiles phenomena which are entirely observable and which ought to be primarily in the domain of science to the realm of political activism.... In declaring himself free of the traditional scientific burden of proof Hulme finally abandons any pretense to authority. He has no rigorous way to tell us what is going to happen next.
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