Elwood and Thiessen promote Cargo Cult Science

by Dr. Ed Berry, also Daily Inter Lake Feb 18

CargoCultScienceElwood and Thiessen (Daily Inter Lake Feb 14) try to prove true the popular illusion that our CO2 emissions cause dangerous climate change. They fail. Let’s call this failed illusion “AGW.”

Before we proceed, let’s park our partisanship and focus on truth. Climate change is a nonpartisan issue. We must decide nonpartisan issues on truth, not partisan votes.

The only way we can find truth about AGW is to use the scientific method.

Unfortunately, few people ever learn it and Elwood and Thiessen flunk it.

The method says we must use our theory to make a prediction. Then we test our prediction against new data. If our prediction disagrees with new data, our theory is wrong.

Richard Feynman explained: “It doesn’t matter how beautiful your theory is. It doesn’t matter how smart you are. If it doesn’t agree with experiment, it’s wrong.”

We can never prove a theory true.

Yet Elwood and Thiessen claim to prove AGW true. We can only prove a theory false. We approach truth when we discard fiction.

Climate models use AGW to predict future climate. Today, 37 years later, climate models way over-predict future temperature, by 2.5 times on average. Therefore, AGW is wrong. AGW makes many more wrong predictions outside the scope of this letter.

Elwood and Thiessen use what Feynman in 1974 called “cargo cult science.”

Cargo cult science seems to be scientific, but it does not follow the scientific method.

Elwood and Thiessen’s statements, “multiple, independent lines of evidence show conclusively”, “vanishingly small”, “thoroughly examined and tested” are cargo cult science.

Their statement, “the projected rate of global warming … is greater than … past 65 million years,” is cargo cult science.  “Projections” are meaningless when your theory is wrong.

Their list of organizations that agree with them is cargo cult science. Their ad hominem attack on me is cargo cult science. Their letter contains NO science.

Before playing climate physicists, ecologist Elwood and medical doctor Thiessen should at minimum study Murry Salby’s textbook, “Physics of the Atmosphere and Climate.” Otherwise stick to something they know.

Using data, not theory, Salby proves surface temperature, not human CO2 emissions, causes atmospheric CO2 to change. Follow Salby’s lectures here.

Dr. Willie Soon’s 2015 peer-reviewed paper shows CO2 does not even correlate with temperature, but solar irradiance does. No correlation means no cause-effect. CO2 does not drive climate.

Elwood and Thiessen deny science that proves their theory is wrong.

They promote cargo cult science. They promote extremely costly illusions.

If Elwood and Thiessen were Aztecs they would claim cutting out beating hearts causes rain.

(Please see my reply to Matthews Bradley for more details.)

4 thoughts on “Elwood and Thiessen promote Cargo Cult Science”

  1. I have seen several medical doctors make comments similar to this one linked to below that I had to post some comments to. One would think that the amount of knowledge and intelligence required to become a medical practitioner would cause one to have a better understanding of this issue; but, I guess not judging from this letter.

    "Rise of Zika virus shows climate change is expensive"

    Kathleen B. Masis, M.D. Billings


    1. Dear John,

      An MD is trained to practice medicine. An MD is not trained in research. Like a pilot is trained to fly airplanes, not to design airplanes.

      It is a big leap from a practice to research. Research demands understanding of the scientific method. Practice does not.

      Therefore, your local MD is not equipped to make judgments about a research topic like atmospheric physics.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.