Real Science; Real Data; Real Climate Change?

in #science10 months ago (edited)


"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."

Richard P. Feynman

It is ill for Science, we say, when men desire to talk rather than to know; ill for Art, when they desire to talk rather than to do. Ill for Literature when they desire to talk, — is it?

John Ruskin, "The Eagle's Nest," pp 3-4, 1872

We are in a time when the "experts" treat these arenas of thought "illy." It is as if we have evolved a new definition of Science, Art, and Literature.

It is ill for Science, we say, when men desire to suppress who want to know; ill for Art, when they desire to suppress those who want to do. Ill for Literature when they desire to suppress those who want to write!

David E. Warrilow, 2022

If a regular, "non-expert" is to make sense of SCIENCE, it is crucial to understand the basics.

What is the Scientific Method?

The Scientific Method is not a casual thing. There are clearly defined steps that a scientist must follow.

Step 1: Identify an Issue

There is a story about a student sitting under a tree one day. He observed an apple fall from that tree. At that stage, that student identified an issue. He formed a question in his mind. Depending upon the student, that question might have had to do with the nature of Gravity or whether they were going to serve Applesauce at lunch. My identification on an issue is that I fear most students today focus on the second issue and are oblivious to the first.

Step 2: Researching History

The student might ask others whether Applesauce has ever been served for lunch before. Maybe Applesauce is a dish that is frequently served on Wednesdays. Maybe Applesauce is served during some parts of the year and not others. Before proffering his questions on the subject, a scientist should find out what everyone else knows.

Step 3: Develop the hypothesis

After reviewing all the previously available information and current knowledge, a scientist then creates a hypothesis based on the question posed in Step 1. " Are they going to serve Applesauce at lunch today?" Often a scientist wants to establish a hypothesis in a predictive manner. "Do they serve Applesauce for lunch every Wednesday?" Finally, a hypothesis is changed from a question to a statement that can only be described as True or False.

They serve Applesauce for lunch every Wednesday! True or False?

Step 4: Experimentation and Observation

This illustration would be simple to set up as an experiment. Determine a particular number of Wednesdays that would be statistically significant. To answer "True," you need to prove they serve Applesauce for lunch every Wednesday. To answer "False," you would need to prove they NEVER serve Applesauce for lunch every Wednesday.
In science, they have the concept of a Null Hypothesis. This is the condition where the likelihood of both possibilities being true. In this case, on a random basis, they will serve Applesauce or not serve it. What if the kitchen is closed one Wednesday? Does this tell us one way or the other? When we introduce the element of a Null Hypothesis, we also open up the possibility of using the Student's t-test to analyze the data and set the minimum number of observations (generally 20 or more) to arrive at a valid statistic.

Step 5: Drawing the Conclusion

Let's say that out of twenty observations, three-quarters of them were true. That allows us to say that the hypothesis was true with a certain percentage of confidence. We can tentatively conclude, but this doesn't mean the hypothesis has been absolutely confirmed. If someone repeated the test, it is possible that three-quarters could be false.

When I was in university, groups of scientists argued about how people see things and respond to what they see. If you ever watch a left-handed person (like me) write on a piece of paper, it often looks like they need to stand on their head. When you are writing, does the point of your pen point upward or downward? In my case, I write downward and in the literature, being referred to as a Sinistral Inverter (Left-handed and write with the point down). One group ran an experiment and decided that people like me have an anomalous visuomotor organization.


Shortly afterwards, another group ran the experiment with similar equipment but had the subjects click on the device's buttons with their arms crossing the midline of their body.


For my undergraduate thesis in Psychology, I designed a computer program (instead of using the previous device) to display prompts at the four corners of the screen. The subjects would press keys on the center row of the keyboard. My conditions contradicted the second paper, so I titled my paper to be: "Sinistral inverters do possess an anomalous visuomotor organization." My findings are irrelevant, except they show how real science is conducted. You cannot and should not stifle discussion or debate. The "Science" is never settled.

Consider the issue that proposition that recent temperatures are both the highest in recorded history and that it is due to rising CO2 levels. Apply the logic of the scientific method against the data reported in this next video. Let us use the following hypothesis:

Rising CO2 levels are causing temperatures to historic highs!

As demonstrated in this video, the alternative hypothesis - Rising Solar Irradiance levels are affecting temperatures! is problematic under the current political environment.

The "Experts" agreed the Sun circled the Earth at one point. The current generation of "Experts" believe the Sun is insignificant compared to CO2 at heating the Earth.

What do you think?