Reason.com

Free Minds & Free Markets

How Would-Be Republican Presidential Candidates Score on Science

Pass, fail, or pander on the issues?

(Page 4 of 4)

Climate Change: Although the governor has been silent recently on this topic, he did say in 20011, “When you have over 90 percent of the world’s scientists who have studied this stating that climate change is occurring and that humans play a contributing role it’s time to defer to the experts." PASS

Yucca Mountain: No statements found. INCOMPLETE

Biotech Crops: In March, 2015 at agricultural meeting in Iowa Christie was asked if genetically modified food should be labelled. "No," he said, adding, "Sometimes you don't need to give a complicated answer." PASS

Vaccination:  In 2009, while running for governor, Christy wrote a letter in which he stated,“I have met with families affected by autism from across the state and have been struck by their incredible grace and courage. Many of these families have expressed their concern over New Jersey’s highest-in-the-nation vaccine mandates. I stand with them now, and will stand with them as their governor in their fight for greater parental involvement in vaccination decisions that affect their children.” On February 2, 2015, he said  that parents should have a “measure of choice" when it comes to vaccinations. He further observed, “Not every vaccine is created equal and not every disease type is as great a public health threat as others." He quickly backed off the latter sentiments, and had a spokesperson say,” The Governor believes vaccines are an important public health protection and with a disease like measles there is no question kids should be vaccinated.”  PROBABLE PANDER

Fetal pain: The New Jersey governor is pro-life. No statements on fetal pain found. INCOMPLETE

Evolution: In 2011, Christie said, “Evolution is required teaching.” He, however, added, “If there’s a certain school district that also wants to teach creationism, that’s not something we should decide in Trenton.” Also in 2011, Christie was asked about whether creationism should be taught in the state's public schools. Christie replied that it was "really a dangerous area for a governor who stands up from the top of the state to say, “You should teach this, you should teach that.” PANDER

Overall, the scores of the six would-be Republican presidential candidates considered here are disappointing. A cynic might ask with respect to the high number of panders recorded, what else did one expect from politicians? Better, actually.

Editor's Note: We invite comments and request that they be civil and on-topic. We do not moderate or assume any responsibility for comments, which are owned by the readers who post them. Comments do not represent the views of Reason.com or Reason Foundation. We reserve the right to delete any comment for any reason at any time. Report abuses.

  • Jackand Ace||

    Thanks, good article...also fairly frightening.

    You should do the same for the Dems (just Hillary?). I hope it would be better, but who knows.

    You also should do Gary Johnson...I bet he would come out pretty well.

  • Viscount Irish, Slayer of Huns||

    Regardless, it doesn't really matter who wins since you should TRUST DEMOCRACY

  • ||

    A consensus, if you will.

  • cryptic||

    Ha! Awesome. ;-)

  • TimothyZ||

    "You should do the same for the Dems (just Hillary?)." Jackland, the thing about that proposition is that Hillary would just poll test it, and probably take the majority scientific view. For instance, she might get the warming of the toposphere wrong.

  • Eggs Benedict Cumberbund||

    Jesus, not another CAGW love fest by moronic reason writers. Argh.

    These guys understand official talking points for one half of the debate.

  • ||

    There are no talking points fr the other half of the debate. Probably because the other half of the debate actually care about proving theories rather than developing a "consensus" that keeps the flow of money coming in.

    CAGW is the most retarded scam ever wrought on mankind. And there are more blind followers of it than there were followers of Stalin or that Austrian dude.

  • Beautiful Bean Footage||

    But but but... DATA!!1!1

  • Real American||

    /ignores manipulation of data

  • mtrueman||

    "actually care about proving theories "

    Proving theories is the stock and trade of mathematics. Science is all about measurement and observation. They call it DATA!!1!1

  • ||

    DATA...which you refuse to provide to substantiate your claims.

  • Wasteland Wanderer||

    Hehehehe. The 9/11 troofer is lecturing us about SCIENCE!

    Oh, the irony...

  • mtrueman||

    WTC 7 free fall. Look it up.

  • Wasteland Wanderer||

    And fire doesn't melt steel, amirite?

  • mtrueman||

    You don't understand what free fall means, do you? Something free falls when there is nothing, not even molten steel, is there to hold it up. Think of the piano falling from a window: res ipsa loquitur.

  • Wasteland Wanderer||

    Oh god, this is hilarious.

    So what, the structure was whisked away by magical unicorns? Even if explosives were used, the building wouldn't have been in free fall (actually, technically, nothing in atmosphere can truly be considered to be in free fall, but I digress).

    Jesus, you don't even know your own argument. Hehehehe.

  • mtrueman||

    "the building wouldn't have been in free fall"

    The building was in free fall though. I wouldn't have to repeat myself if you had bothered to look into the matter for yourself as I advised earlier. Please do look into it. You're not going to get any closer to the truth by parading your ignorance around here.

  • Wasteland Wanderer||

    HAHAHAHAHAHAHA!

    Oh god, you're a moron. This is great.

    Explain to me how the building came to be in free fall, which would require an entire section of the building to up and disappear, or for the entire structure to be lifted off the ground. That should be interesting. Even when a building is demolished using explosives, the building is never truly in free fall, so much as anything in atmosphere can be said to be in free fall. They only take out key load bearing walls and columns, so there's still forces being transmitted upwards and laterally by the non-load bearing structure; it's just not enough to keep the building up.

    With WTC-7, something similar happened, except it was a fire caused by debris from the North Tower that took out the load-bearing structure...so still no free fall.

    I eagerly await your fever-dream explanations.

  • mtrueman||

    "so still no free fall..."

    The authors of the NIST report disagree. As you would know if you took the trouble to investigate, as I advised. When you do get around to do a little fact checking, we can discuss things, until then, you are wasting my time.

  • Wasteland Wanderer||

    So I decided to humor and checked out the NIST report.

    It seems that NIST is in fact using the word wrong, or perhaps they're using it in a very specialized jargon-y sense. It does not mean what you seem to think it does; only that the building was at some point collapsing due to the force of gravity, which, well duh. Free fall requires that absolutely no other forces than gravity are acting on it, which is why something in the atmosphere can't be said to be in free fall; there is still drag from the air on any object falling in atmosphere.

    In any case, you still haven't stated how it in ANY way proves any of your contentions. Just shouting "Free fall!" doesn't suggest that the cause was anything but what was stated.

    It's always fun when idiots with as much understanding of physics as a toddler tries to pontificate on science, though. Do keep it up, I can always use the laugh.

  • mtrueman||

    "It seems that NIST is in fact using the word wrong,"

    So when the authors of the NIST report say "free fall" they mean "not free fall." Glad we got that cleared up finally.

  • Wasteland Wanderer||

    What still hasn't been cleared up is what that has to do with anything. Even if the building was in free fall, you still haven't stated how that proves that the official cause of the collapse isn't true. You seem to think that just stating it like it's self evident is enough, which is laughable.

  • mtrueman||

    "Even if the building was in free fall,"

    But you have already proved to me that when the authors of the NIST report say "free fall" they actually mean "not free fall." That settles the issue for me. Imagine, until you set me straight, I believed they meant what they wrote. Oh God, what a laughable fool, moron, and idiot I've been.

  • wwhorton||

    The Truthers don't have a chain of causal evidence to take you from "free fall" to "the government/Illuminati/aliens/Koch Bros./Universal Studios staged the attack for nefarious purposes" so they find an area of confusion or discrepancy in part of the evidence that exists for the events that can be proven and use that to imply all of their darkest fantasies. This is a pretty standard logical fallacy.

    Actually, the article does this, too: "If Rand Paul won't be straightforward about the age of the Earth, what other terrible things does he believe?? And what horrid things will that mean for the country!?!?"

  • mtrueman||

    There's no fallacy in pointing out inconsistency in a narrative. The building fell at free fall or it collapsed progressively. It's one or the other.

  • ||

    Given the administration at the time, would it not have collapsed 'conservatively'?

  • mtrueman||

    I think the official NIST report or the semi-official Popular Mechanics report call it a progressive or cascading collapse. Does a high-rise office tower offer any resistance as it falls? If it does then free fall is not possible, as the fall would be interrupted as upper levels overwhelm the supports below. If it doesn't then it's not cascading but simultaneous.

  • LeeP||

    That is certainly true.

  • ||

    Jesus, not another CAGW love fest by moronic reason writers. Argh.

    I read, "Ted Cruz... Climate Change:... voted against... FAIL" and went to see who wrote the article.

    Everyone's favorite science correspondent, of course.

  • plusafdotcom||

    He's completely unbiased on the subject, of course... right?
    So is my collection of reports and opinions, too, right?
    http://www.plusaf.com/global-w.....arming.htm

  • ||

    If anybody fails on the climate change question, its Bailey and his pig-headed refusal to admit that the models have not jibed with reality and that there is no proof than man contributes to climate change any more than snail darters do.

    At this point, the AGW truthers are putting all their energies int trying to convince the world that the science is settled instead of continuing research until they actually develop a model that successfully predicts change, and man's effect on it, for any sustainable period of time. Gee, I wonder why that is.

  • prolefeed||

    that there is no proof than man contributes to climate change any more than snail darters do

    It is a fact that humans are pumping CO2 into the air by burning fossil fuels. It is obvious that that slight change in the atmosphere's composition (a few parts per million) will have SOME effect on climate.

    It is not at all clear that this is a major effect -- the has not been proven. That little turdweasel Schatz's amendment is anything but an irrefutable fact.

    So, Rand Paul comes closer on the science than Ronald FN Bailey.

  • WTF||

    It is obvious that that slight change in the atmosphere's composition (a few parts per million) will have SOME effect on climate.

    No, it isn't, it needs to be demonstrated, which it so far has not been. All CO2 is only 4 one hundredths of a percent of the atmosphere. Manmade CO2 is just a tiny fraction of that tiny fraction of a percent. Various mechanisms have been proposed as to how this "could" have some effect, but all the models based on this have failed. Which means the hypothesis has been falsified.

  • mtrueman||

    "Which means the hypothesis has been falsified."

    You are confusing failing models with falsified hypotheses.

  • JakeJ||

    When the hypothesis is based on failed models, it's wrong.

  • mtrueman||

    The hear trapping character of greenhouse gases has not been disproved, regardless of the performance of the models. Models are just that, models. If your model airplane fails to fly, it doesn't mean flight is not possible. They can be useful tools, but you don't base hypotheses on them.

  • Schitzree||

    You're right, if your model airplane fails to fly, it doesn't mean flight is not possible. It does however mean that YOUR theory of flight is wrong. Maybe you over estimated lift and need to make the wings larger. Maybe you under estimated drag and need to make the body sleeker. Maybe you got them both wrong and you need to add a bigger engine to compensate. Whatever the reason, your plane won't fly until you adjust your theory and remake your model accordingly.

    The same is true of the theory of Anthropogenic Global Warming. The warming predicted by the models for the last two decades hasn't happened. The Models are therefore wrong. Maybe they over estimated the effect of more CO2. Maybe they under estimated the effect of a quieter sun. Maybe they just didn't include enough Natural Variability. Whatever the reason, they won't get the future global temperature right until climate scientists adjust their theory and remake their models accordingly.

  • Page Turner||

    CO2 is negligible, 99% of the atmosphere is made up of nitrogen at 78% and oxygen at 21%.
    The remaining 1% is made up of argon at .9% and carbon dioxide and .03%.
    Other small percentages are made up of hydrogen, ozone, methane, carbon monoxide, helium, neon, xenon, and krypton

    If CO2 worries you, have all liberals hold their breath.

  • Harvard||

    Of course he also warbled "Slay Lady, Slay", the unofficial Clinton campaign ditty.

  • pan fried wylie||

    instead of continuing research until they actually develop a model that successfully predicts change, and man's effect on it, for any sustainable period of time. Gee, I wonder why that is.

    That would be, like, work.

  • mtrueman||

    "they actually develop a model that successfully predicts change..."

    I understand your frustration, and it's hard to stay informed, but it's ultimately your responsibility to follow these developments. You are mistaken; scientists are continuing to research and predictions they have made are successfully born out in observations. For years scientists have predicted increased methane venting from the ocean floor due to the rising temperature of the water. Last summer, these vents were observed and reported in the literature. Ask your librarian if you need help verifying this.

  • NotAnotherSkippy||

    No uptick in global Methane emissions. FAIL
    Increasing Antarctic sea ice. FAIL
    No tropical Tropospheric hot spot. FAIL
    No climate refugees. FAIL
    No ice free Arctic in 2013 or 2014. FAIL
    No decline in polar bear populations. FAIL
    No imminent or foreseeable exhaustion of Himalayan glaciers. FAIL
    No capability of simulating PDO, AMO or any ENSO phenomena. FAIL
    No increase in accumulated cyclone energy. FAIL
    Even more drastic overheating of models with latest aerosol estimates (much lower than previously included). MEGAFAIL

  • mtrueman||

    You appear to have missed my point. Methane vents from the ocean floor have been a long predicted consequence of warming. Now they have been observed. You wanted successful predictions, and I point out one for you. Some people just can't take yes for an answer.

  • ||

    I don't want successful predictions. I want you to post links substantiating your claim...with footnotes.

    Until you do, I'll take your "claim" as seriously as I take Algor.

  • mtrueman||

    "I want you to post links substantiating your claim..."

    And I want you to look into the matter without my holding your hand. I have confidence that if you are actually curious about this, you should be able to substantiate or debunk the claim I made.

  • ||

    Spoken like a "Consensist" rather than someone that cares about the scientific method and establishing fact.

    You should apply for a job with CRU. Your evasion when asked for some data would go over swimmingly there.

  • mtrueman||

    Still haven't found this elusive data yet? It's not secret, I assure you. Ask your parents yet? They can point you in the right direction.

  • ||

    I have confidence that if you are actually curious about this, you should be able to substantiate or debunk the claim I made.

    I hear mtrueman is still beating his wife. He should come on here and prove that he's not still beating her.

  • Page Turner||

    Anyone named "trueman" is signaling he's a liar.

    Just like the phrase "I'll tell you the truth' is the tell that a lie is following.

    There is not 1 climate model that has predicted the global climate with anything approaching accuracy. Not 1 out of dozens.

    Shouldn't "science" be measurable and repeatable?

  • mtrueman||

    "Shouldn't "science" be measurable and repeatable?"

    Ideally yes, but alas, the world is not a laboratory and the atmosphere is not contained in a test tube. I have suggested many times here that we should create another planet, identical to this planet in every respect, so that truly scientific experiments can be conducted. Until then we are going to have to content ourselves with models, which by definition are inaccurate.

  • JParker||

    Models are not, by definition inaccurate. A model is a mathematical system, which, if it is bound into the real world, becomes a theory. A theory may, in fact, be a perfect representation of the attributes of the real world, that is, for all predictions the model generates, when as a theory mapped into the real world, there is no difference between the predictions and the actual results. Science does not attempt to verify this, however, in large part because the effects of actually measuring the real world affect the real world (the Heisenberg Uncertainty Principle writ large).

  • mtrueman||

    "A model is a mathematical system.."

    And an atmosphere is not. The map is not the territory.

  • Ron||

    the fact that they just found the methane vents does not mean they weren't always there. Just like a few years ago they found a new corral reef off of Brazil that increased the world total reefs by a third.

  • mtrueman||

    "Just like a few years ago they found a new corral reef off of Brazil that increased the world total reefs by a third."

    It's not just like a newly discovered coral reef off Brazil. I don't remember reading any reports of scientists predicting the existence of unknown reefs in the Atlantic. The methane vents were predicted by climate scientists, and were subsequently observed.

  • Ron||

    I can predict fish will die because of the moon is full. When I find those dead fish and I will it, it will not be proof that they died because of the full moon.

  • mtrueman||

    "I can predict...."

    Whether or not you can predict is not the issue. Climate scientists did predict methane venting and it has been observed and measured. That's the work that one would expect of a scientist. You seem to feel this is unsatisfactory.

  • Schitzree||

    If a Gambler goes up to a roulette wheel and places a $5 chip on each number, the fact that one of his bets won doesn't make him a great gambler.

    If my investment broker recommends 25 businesses to invest money in, and 3 increase in value while the other 22 go bankrupt, That doesn't make me rich.

    If climate scientists predict everything under the sun, Then the very few they got right doesn't prove they can predict anything.

  • Schitzree||

  • jay_dubya||

    correlation IS causation! thanks for enlightening us mtrueman

  • CE||

    Methane vents from the ocean floor have been a long predicted consequence of warming. Now they have been observed.

    Confirmation bias. Researchers started looking for them to prove their theory. They may have been there all along.

  • mtrueman||

    "They may have been there all along."

    They may have been benefiting from more sensitive testing equipment. We can speculate till the cows come home, and I don't think we'd get to the bottom of it. Scientists have to stick with the observed data. Their motives are less important.

  • NotAnotherSkippy||

    You are a moron. Methane vents have existed for millions to billions of years on this planet. There is nothing novel about what is happening. If there were atmospheric levels of methane would be increasing. They. Are. Not.

  • mtrueman||

    "If there were atmospheric levels of methane would be increasing."

    You are misunderstanding. The vents are in the oceans. Maybe you and the sloppy texan should team up and share your limited resources.

  • JakeJ||

    Methane is lighter than both water and air. If its presence was increasing, the higher levels would show up in the atmosphere.

  • mtrueman||

    As I understand the methane dissolves in the ocean as it rises. It doesn't make an appearance in the atmosphere.

  • Eggs Benedict Cumberbund||

    One fail is all it takes to take down a theory...dumbass.

  • ||

    So, conflated arguments? Are you proposing that man caused the initial warming and the planet is now releasing methane as a result? We are the bacteria that is causing the global flatulence?! My, how anthropocentric of you. First you deign to declare what the proper temperature of this rock is and then expect to take credit for it? What a pompous ass.

  • JakeJ||

    There have been lots of predictions. Most of them have failed.

  • Sodak||

    Thank you for pointing out facts that the global warming cultists refuse to explain - the models are inadequate.

  • ||

    Instead of asking my librarian (what is this, 1992?), I'll ask you to put up or STFU.

  • mtrueman||

    "I'll ask you to put up or STFU."

    I repeat, methane vents, long predicted, now observed.

  • ||

    [citation required]

    You make the claim, you back it up with the raw data.

  • mtrueman||

    "[citation required]"

    If you need a citation, you look for it yourself. Or get your librarian, teacher or parents to help you. I'm not your nanny.

  • ||

    Spoken like a true douchebag.

    We live in a world where statements passed off as fact are to be supported by the person claiming them. So congratulations, dickface. You just lost.

    Suck my balls.

  • Ivan Pike||

    sloopy,

    http://phys.org/news/2012-09-m.....floor.html

    http://www.autoworldnews.com/a.....-coast.htm

    Seafloor methane has been known for years, it is called methane hydrate, and has been looked at as a source of energy. I didn't know GW predicted it, as petroleum geologists have known about it since at least 2004. He may be talking about something else, but this isn't new.

  • mtrueman||

    "We live in a world where statements passed off as fact are to be supported by the person claiming them."

    I live in a world where I do a little digging when I want to uncover a fact. You prefer to stamp your feet and make demandments of others. Your world will change once you mature and take responsibility for your own education.

  • ||

    When I mature?

    Maybe when you mature, you stupid little fuckwit! As for me, I'll never mature.

  • plusafdotcom||

    Charleton Heston in the Ten Demandments? Great movie!

    Here's part of my collection... http://www.plusaf.com/global-w.....arming.htm

    Have you ever seen the 'cherry-picked data' graph for CO2 concentrations?
    Probably not.

  • ||

    Actually, I will ask my librarian. And I'm sure he'll reply right after he finishes the next chapter in his Warty/Hillary/Space Robots sexploitation epic.

  • Schitzree||

    Ha now! Don't be dissin' the Space Robots sexploitation epics. ^_^

  • Banjos||

    I asked my librarian, he called you a specious cunt.

  • some guy||

    its Bailey and his pig-headed refusal to admit that the models have not jibed with reality

    When has Bailey done this? I thought his opinion was along the lines of "Yes, humans are impacting the climate, but climatologists are doing a crappy job of modeling it and its not worth wrecking our economy to try to fix it."

  • Ron Bailey||

    sg: Correct. Thank you. See this.

  • PM||

    Which makes it puzzling why you would deduct points from a candidate on their scientific literacy test for essentially agreeing with you.

  • Live Free or Die||

    From the section on Ted Cruz: On March 23, Cruz told The Washington Examiner that "the computer models relied upon for this theory showed there would be significant warming, and yet the actual data don't back up those flawed computer models." FAIL

    I assumed you were docking points from Cruz as a result of his (correct) viewpoint that the models don't jive with real data. You could have made it clearer that you are failing Cruz for not believing in climate change rather than his statement on March 23.

  • Schitzree||

    Where's his link to what? Cruz made a factually true statement about the failure of the climate models to predict actual measured temperature. Bailey FAILed him for it. It's all right there in the article above.

    Have you read it yet? Was there some part that was unclear to you?

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    On the issue of climate change, all temperature data sets agree that the last decade has been the warmest one in the instrumental temperature record.

    Mark me down with an F, because I lost interest in this article at this point. I already got my fair share of doctrine as a child at catechism.

  • ||

    Funny how the one way lever of AGW bullshit says that a decade being the warmest one "in the instrumental temperature period" (~80 years?) is PROOF! that man is responsible yet when a "denialist" brings up vineyards in Scotland or row crops on Greenland a mere 600-700 years ago, we're anti-sciencers.

    Fucking Bailey. Jesus tittyfucking Christ on the Cross. Your stories are becoming worse than cop-shoots-dog in readability.

  • ||

    In the pre-satellite era, all we have are temperature lanes, not maps for about 70% of the world. I remain skeptical that we can say anything with certainty about global average temperatures before about 1970. Quick, what was the temperature of Mongolia in the 1930s? Or Chad? How many thermometers were routinely measuring temperatures in places the size of Texas before WWII? This is exactly like the hole in the ozone. We started measuring things and people decided there was a problem.

    Beyond that, the solution is a scam because even if the problem is more serious than the proponents say, it will happen at a pace slow enough for markets and people to adapt.

  • ||

    Or Chad?

    I'd say close to 98.6 degrees.

  • ||

    I get nothing for that gem?

  • ||

    Who can improve on perfection?

  • Illocust||

    Here is your internet cookie.

  • JakeJ||

    The AGW crowd is the denialists. They even deny the Medieval Warm Period.

  • JakeJ||

    Go back to Daily Kos, ya piece of shit.

  • some guy||

    Believing that mankind is impacting the climate is very different from believing that mankind should ruin its economy to stop impacting the climate.

  • JakeJ||

    There is no demonstrated causal link between increased atmospheric CO2 and temperature change. AGW hypothesizes it, but the data show otherwise. The AGW pushers are now in full denial mode.

  • Bill||

    Based on the way a few of the questions were graded, I'm going to give
    Bailey a 4.5 out of 7.

  • Tony||

    From the essay I link to below:

    In practical terms, one of the hardest things about dealing with people such as [hypothetical 9/11 truther] Oliver is that they are more than likely to accuse you of the same intellectual vices that you detect in them. You say that Oliver is gullible for believing his 9/11 conspiracy theory; he retorts that you are gullible for believing the conclusions of the 9/11 Commission. You say that he dismisses the official account of 9/11 because he is closed-minded; he accuses you of closed-mindedness for refusing to take conspiracy theories seriously.

    You must acknowledge that rejecting what science is saying is to simultaneously propose a massive conspiracy theory.

  • ||

    I always have a problem with these supposed "science tests" of Presidential candidates since their views on these issues rarely seem to match what happens once they get elected. GW Bush was supposedly some bible thumping moron but during his administration funding for things like the NIH and NASA increased as opposed to under his predecessor. Not to mention the foremost federal ruling on evolution being taught in schools (Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District) occurred during Bush's tenure and was decided by a Judge (John E. Jones III) that Bush appointed to the bench, so to argue he was "anti-science" flies in the face of the evidence.

    THE TEST IS INCOMPLETE RON.

  • soflarider||

    Don't sweat it. They're grading on a curve and it's pass/fail.

  • bigac||

    Go back and rewrite this one, Ron. Your first draft needs work.


    1. Ebola - Monday morning quarterbacking. Invalid testing criteria.

    2. Climate Change - You continue to beclown yourself by pretending there is not a legitimate debate going on and that nothing is settled. Pointing to polls of scientists does not equal science.

    3. Biotech crops - Legit, and I enjoy your writing on this topic. This should stay in the final draft.

    4. Yucca Mountain - Also a legit science vs. emotion discussion

    5. Vaccination - Legit as well, though it obviously strays into emotion when people start talking about liberty vs. good sound scientific reasons for getting vaccinated (I'm not giving any credence to the anti-vaccine/autism crowd, they deserve ridicule)

    6. Fetal Pain - FFS, everybody knows this is not about science. It's advertising. It's another way to tie emotion to one side's view on abortion. Not legitimate testing criteria.

    7. Evolution - As much as I wish this stupid topic would be removed from political discussion forever, it's legit and is a perfect proxy for seeing who wants to pander to the fundamentalists.


    So, yeah, I'm going to need you to go ahead and have the corrections in by the end of the day. And we want to move some boxes into your office, so if you could go ahead and push your desk back as far into the corner as it will go, that would be great. Okay? Thanks a bunch.

  • cryptic||

    1.) yes good comment. There was huge uncertainty at the time whether this was a new strain with a significantly different transmission rate. It's easy to say it was no big deal now, but IF the rate had indeed been exponential and remained so, then it was indeed a very big deal.

    2.) Exactly. To pretend there is no legitimate scientific debate about the effects for warming (so far zilch) and the policy decisions of mitigation versus adaptation is just ridiculous. These are very real and very important areas of debate.

    6.) Abortion is and always have been fundamentally about ideology, not science [I'm including religion as ideology]. Something libertarians might possibly comprehend. In my world view, there is no right or wrong and even murder is a subjective 'society based' value judgment. We can argue whether a social rule benefits society or harms it, but any argument on 'natural rights' or similar is just religion.

  • CE||

    Failing to acknowledge right and wrong doesn't mean they don't exist.

  • cryptic||

    Well it's all about 'context'. 'Right and wrong' exist within a social context, but it's not objective or fundamental or anything like that. It can never be framed in a scientific manner or objectively measured and tested. Even murder (for instance) is not a absolute wrong in any society. There are always all sorts of conditions and caveats and these change from decade to decade and society to society.

  • some guy||

    1.) yes good comment. There was huge uncertainty at the time whether this was a new strain with a significantly different transmission rate. It's easy to say it was no big deal now, but IF the rate had indeed been exponential and remained so, then it was indeed a very big deal.

    I don't buy it. By the time this outbreak was on US politicians' radar it had been going for months. Researchers had been studying it for months. I don't recall there ever being serious doubts about how it was being spread. Succumbing to the precautionary principle is never a good idea.

  • cryptic||

    Yes and at this time it had an R rate slightly about 1 (the exponential growth rate) in Sierra Leone. Even with a rate below 1 that just means that it will die out, it doesn't mean it won't cause damage in the mean-time while it slowly decays away.

    "Succumbing to the precautionary principle is never a good idea." Wow. You aren't very 'scientific' then either are you ...

    While the precautionary principle has been used incorrectly recently by the global warming crowd. It's not 'wrong' when used properly. The precautionary principle is about cost-benefit-analysis. Does damage*risk outweigh mitigation cost? Simple as that. Sometimes it does, sometimes it doesn't. You have to actually do the calculation before you can smugly claim yourself to be "on the side of science" otherwise your position is nothing more than opinion.

  • bacon-magic||

    You are correct sir. The day the model equals or at least is close to reality then I will listen. Right now it's a gimme money scam. Besides, in science there is no such thing as settled theory. They can't even accurately predict next week's weather.

    .

  • Schitzree||

    I agree with most of the complaints listed by Bigac and others here, but possibly my biggest complaint is with Science Issue 4. Yucca Mountain. I noticed at least 2 people were effectively given 0 rating, not for giving the 'wrong' answer, but for never having said anything about it.

    Should we give Ronald Bailey a 0 for Science Issue 8: Believing in the Easter Bunny? He's never made any statements that he doesn't believe in the Easter Bunny. I'd even be willing to bet that at one time he personal went looking for hidden Easter Eggs. INCOMPLETE (which is as good as a FAIL)

  • Schitzree||

    Ok, I read your quote, but it didn't have anything to do with the point I just made. Perhaps you don't actually know what Reading Comprehension means. Try reading this.

    Yucca Mountain: No statements found. INCOMPLETE

    Which as I pointed out above is counted as a 0 score. Now compare that quote to your own.

    Are they swayed more by data, or do they succumb to the allure of the momentarily popular position?

    Now, please tell us how one determines if someone's opinion is based more on data or popular position when they have voiced no opinion?

  • Schitzree||

    But then maybe it's the lack of an actual opinion that is confusing you. so here's one with an actual statement that Bailey judges a FAIL.

    Yucca Mountain: In March, 2015, he declined to take a position on Yucca Mountain. FAIL

    So what actually was this FAILing statement?

    Asked about the issue by The Greenville News, Bush said he'd have to study it before deciding whether he'd favor opening the repository or not.

    "I think we need to find a solution so that South Carolinians don't pay and pay and pay without a long-term solution," said Bush, who will want votes in early-voting Nevada as well as early-voting South Carolina if he decides to seek the GOP nomination. "I'd have to look at what the other options are and the alternatives are, to be honest with you."

    Now heaven forbid one of our politicians admit he isn't an instant expert on everything from gun control to the ban on Kinder Eggs, but I can't see this as a FAIL. Jeb didn't say 'no', he said 'I don't know'.

    This is the real problem with Bailey's reasoning here. He apparently subscribes to the belief "If you're not with me, you're against me", And to be 'with' him you gotta be charging the enemy line with axe held high, just like he thinks he is.

  • Drake||

    "All the records agree that the planet has warmed since 1979 at a rate of somewhere..."

    Yet all the raw data shows that we are in a 50-year cooling trend. I'll believe the raw data not the "records" that have been adjusted to fit the narrative. And I'll score my candidates accordingly.

  • cryptic||

    This article makes a mockery of the moniker 'Reason'.

    1.) Ebola
    When there is a disease outbreak that is deadly (or costly in other ways) and has no cure 'science' says quarantine it. This was done on the micro-level (individuals). When serious enough it is also done at the macro level. If the disease was more serious this WOULD have happened (even in a libertarian fantasy world), so really all we are arguing about is threshold. It's an evaluation of when does the benefit of free travel out-weigh costs of the desease. No 'rational' scientifically minded person would dispute this. To call a subjective evaluation of threshold irrational is itself irrational or please do point me to your 'objective' data-based cost-benefit analysis calculations to prove otherwise.

    2.) CAGW.
    Yes there are some that deny warming completely, but the main issue is not if there is warming but if it will be catastrophic. So far actual empirical data have not met catastrophic predictions (not even close). Even the amount of warming is a small fraction of what was predicted (1C a century versus predicted 3.5C per century). So far predictions of catastrophe have been completely wrong.

  • hamilton||

    DRINK!

  • grrizzly||

    Do we really have to wait until 7 pm? Let alone 7:30.

  • JakeJ||

    Yes there are some that deny warming completely, but the main issue is not if there is warming but if it will be catastrophic. So far actual empirical data have not met catastrophic predictions (not even close). Even the amount of warming is a small fraction of what was predicted (1C a century versus predicted 3.5C per century). So far predictions of catastrophe have been completely wrong.

    The planet's been warming since the little ice age ended in the 1800s. This is a natural phenomenon. Oh, and whenever the planet's not cooling -- in other words, even at stable temps -- glaciers recede and sea levels rise. These are natural phenomena. There is no evidence whatsoever that human activity has affected the climate. Period.

  • Schitzree||

    Actually, it needs to be ALL of them.

    If it isn't Catastrophic, then it isn't worth all the effort to fight it.
    If it isn't Anthropogenic, then it's not our fault. Nothing we stop doing will effect it.
    If it isn't Global, then it's not really an issue. Regional climate change happens constantly.
    If it isn't Warming (and it's not), then it's all over. The warming was the bases for all of it.

    CAGW - You need all the letters, or you've got nothing.

  • Real American||

    Here's how all Democrat Party candidates will respond to "science":

    1. More money and power to big government
    2. Less individual freedom

  • Wayne Duncan||

    This is pathetic. The Seventies were the coldest decade in the 20th century. Funny how he set the baseline at 1979. Totally ignoring relatively recent events like the Medieval Warm Period when Vikings colonized Greenland (why do you think it was called "Green"land, anyway?) and the Little Ice Age. Climate varies, mostly based on solar variations.

    Macroevolution is impossible. 2nd Law of Thermodynamics, things don't generally go from less ordered to more ordered. Look at a teenager's bedroom. It is mathematically impossible (less than 1 in 10 to 100th power) to randomly synthesize a single protein with correct chirality even if provided with the necessary amino acids to start with. Much less to form cell membranes, organelles, or rudimentary DNA.

  • WTF||

    Macroevolution is impossible. 2nd Law of Thermodynamics, things don't generally go from less ordered to more ordered.

    Actually, things don't generally go from less ordered to more ordered in a closed system. Earth is not a closed system, it constantly receives huge amounts of energy from the Sun.

  • NotAnotherSkippy||

    Technically the restriction is on an isolated system. Closed systems allow for energy transport but no mass. Isolated systems are completely flux free. Sorry for being pedantic, but this is a real difference and correct terminology.

    The rest of your post is bang on. Earth is effectively a closed system with energy transport from the Sun and out into space. That allows for local reductions in entropy at the expense of the Universe's total entropy.

  • WTF||

    Technically correct is the best kind of correct.

  • cryptic||

    "things don't generally go from less ordered to more ordered."

    In total, yes. But small local areas can increase in order at the cost of increased disorder elsewhere. This has been experimentally demonstrated in many different fields. The history of mankind is also a direct demonstration i.e. the technology you staring at right now is an example of extreme local order increase at the expense of a decrease in order elsewhere.

  • Cloudbuster||

    The technology you're staring at right now is an example of ... wait for it ... intelligent design. ;)

  • cryptic||

    Sure. But 'intelligent design' doesn't violate the second law of thermodynamics. That was the core of your argument (otherwise why bring up the second law at all?)

    "Macroevolution is impossible. 2nd Law of Thermodynamics, things don't generally go from less ordered to more ordered."

    Either it is physically impossible/improbably i.e. if violates the 2nd law of thermodynamics, or it doesn't. You can't have it both ways. Once you admit that local order does not violate thermodynamics than you can ask what mechanisms might cause this local order. "Intelligent design" would then be just one of the possible mechanism.

    Intelligent design fails as a theory on other grounds, mostly in that it is unfalsifiable. Unfalsifiable theories are not scientific theories, they are religion.

  • cryptic||

    Crap I meant "locally increasing order doesn't violate the second law of thermodynamics"

  • Ron||

    I would argue that evolution is going from more order to less order. A single cell organism functions quite fine in many environments however a many cellular object is created from the breakdown ,entropy, of the first single cell creating a less orderly system that now depends on the entire system to function and if any part breaks the whole system fails hence complexity is less orderly. the alternative would be for a single cell to disappear all together. the Universe itself is working in much the same way from the very orderly Big Bang from a single element to the messy multi element universe we have today

  • Bill||

    Evolution takes place through random mutations which can
    occasionally give an organism an advantage just as it can
    occasionally give it a disadvantage. Most mutations are silent
    and have little effect but some may then confer an advantage or
    disadvantage if the organism is exposed to a different environment.

    So, I agree that evolution is not necessarily to a more ordered system.

  • Eggs Benedict Cumberbund||

    This. Evolution is a bunch of random events, the winners pass on these random adaptations that allow them to out compete the other recipients of these random events.

  • Schitzree||

    ...Really?

    The settlers raised livestock. We know this. It's documented in numerous ways. You can't raise livestock on a mile thick glacier. THEREFORE Greenland was 'greener' back then then it is now.

    Honestly, it's shocking how warmist think they can rewrite history to fit their CAGW narrative and no one is going to notice that it doesn't actually fit with what we already know.

  • Wayne Duncan||

    The vaccination issue is the most laughable, if it were not the most tragic. Measles deaths were down over 90% before introduction of measles vaccine in the early Sixties. There are NO safety studies measuring the safety of infants and toddlers receiving vaccines for 10 or more diseases at the same time. Wakefield's 1998 Lancet case series simply reported on the incidence of gut disease in kids with autism whose PARENTS associated the onset of symptoms with the MMR jab. Wakefield, in the interest of safety, recommended that kids get single doses of measles vaccine, mumps vaccine, and rubella vaccine, spread out over several months to reduce any potential risk of drug interaction. Lastly, there has not been a single measles death in the USA since 2003. In that time, there have been over 100 DEATHS following MMR vaccination. Most of those kids received other vaccines at the same time, so it's impossible to tell whether it was the MMR itself or the synergistic effect of receiving multiple insults to the immune system that overwhelmed very young kids who were susceptible.

  • WTF||

    You're going to cite the completely discredited Wakefield series in Lancet? Really? Nice trolling, you actually got me to respond.

  • Wayne Duncan||

    Unlike you, I actually read the Wakefield study. It did not claim that MMR causes autism. It said that there appeared to be a temporal association between MMR and gut disease in kids diagnosed with autism and it said that more research was needed to confirm or disprove this idea. I notice you simply threw up the Wakefield strawman rather than intelligently responding to my comment. Who's the real troll?

  • PM||

    it said that more research was needed to confirm or disprove this idea.

    Such research was conducted, and the correlation was found lacking. 1998 was 17 years ago.

  • John||

    Jesus Tap Dancing Christ. AGW is your measure of science Ron? That is fucking pathetic.

  • msieng||

    I was interested until the AAAS poll on climate change. I'm tired of the cliche of most scientists believe in man made climate change.

    For the record; AAAS lists 120,000 members and also estimates 5.8 million scientists worldwide.

    The math for a majority would be 51%. The above gives 0.2%. And the scientists who started the debate have all but jumped ship.

    But then, Harvard scientists are not Al Gore. A true visionary.

  • Schitzree||

    I realize it's hard for you to image, but Botanists DO usually know a few thing about the climate that their plants grow in. And Chemists and Physicists DO have a small smattering of knowledge that might impact on that whole Radiative Physics thing.

    Not as important as the Cartoonists, Psychologists, Railroad Engineers, Historians, and what ever the hell Al Gore is these days, but every little bit helps I'm sure.

  • grrizzly||

    Climate change. A complete fail by Bailey, who apparently knows nothing about the scientific method and relies on the concept of the “scientific consensus” to support his point. There are no climate models that could distinguish between catastrophic anthropogenic global warming and warming caused by any other factors that made falsifiable predictions and had those predictions later confirmed by observations.

    Labeling GMO products. From a libertarian point of view it is another regulation imposed by the government, so I see why one would oppose it. But it is barely different from the existing regulations requiring producers to display how much fat and carbs their products have. The job of those who popularize science, like Bailey, should include explaining to people that genetically modified crops are safe, not depriving the public from the information about the food they eat. The public understanding of science is abysmal – people like Bailey with their advocacy of CAGW are partially responsible for it – so I understand why the Baileys don’t believe they can convince the public that GMOs are safe. I think that GMOs are safe, but I don’t have any science-related concern if politicians favor product labeling.

    Evolution. Utterly irrelevant as an issue to evaluate politicians. I’ll vote for a believer that the Earth is 6,000 years old well before I vote for a CAGW alarmist. Envirofundies are much more dangerous. BTW, I’m a born and raised atheist.

  • mtrueman||

    "Evolution. Utterly irrelevant as an issue to evaluate politicians."

    Shouldn't politicians support the rights of public school teachers to teach evolution in class?

  • ||

    In a perfect world, there wouldn't be public schools. In a better world than we live in, there wouldn't be politics injected into public schools. And in a shitty world, evolution as a litmus test for political officeholders exists and isn't roundly mocked by libertarian voices like Bailey.

  • grrizzly||

    The vast majority of students in the US are taught evolution in class. Despite that few know much about it other than that humans descended from apes. If someone knows that humans and apes had a common ancestor, then he's already an advanced level white person. Fortunately whether people know much about the evolution theory is not very important. On the other hand, knowing what is and what is not science is important, however teaching evolution doesn't seem to help with understanding science.

  • mtrueman||

    "Fortunately whether people know much about the evolution theory is not very important."

    My question was about academic freedom, the right of a public school teacher to teach science in the classroom.

    Are there any other branches of science you think are unimportant and don't help us to understand science?

  • Mickey Rat||

    The more pertinent issue today is does a public school teacher have a right to teach something that questions current evolutionary theory?

  • mtrueman||

    Why is that more pertinent than the science teacher teaching science? Is it too much to expect politicians to support academic freedom?

  • Mickey Rat||

    Because a teacher does not want to teach a dogmatic approach to evolution is the one who will be suppressed under the current regime. Evolution is pretty much a required topic in all government schools.

  • mtrueman||

    I'm not familiar with these undogmatic suppressed teachers.

  • Mickey Rat||

    I'm not familar with government schools that do not teach evolution as part of their curriculum.

  • blcartwright||

    I am a member of the religious right. I say teach the Theory of Evolution, but only after the teachers explains that a theory is the best conclusions that science has at this moment, based on the available evidence, but that could change in the future as we continue to collect and study data. Teach critical thinking - where the theory is strong, and where it has weaknesses.

  • mtrueman||

    "Teach critical thinking..."

    Sounds like secular humanist talk to me.

  • Mickey Rat||

    That is not quite the issue now, is it?

  • Eggs Benedict Cumberbund||

    IMO, the issue is not whether evolution is even correct. The issue is that religion is not falsifiable by definition while science depends on being falsifiable, therefore even though religion has alternative explanations for observable phenomena it has not business being taught in science class because its very foundational assumptions/premises are not compatible and do not belong in science class.

  • Schitzree||

    Ah yes, Science Issue 7: Evolution, It's the Big One that everyone get's a 0 in without actually FAILing. WORRISOME, PANDER, UNSATISFACTORY, CONFUSED PANDER, However a Republican approaches the issue of Evolution, it isn't good enough for Bailey, and Marco Rubio's is probably the most telling.

    Evolution: “I just think in America we should have the freedom to teach our children whatever it is we believe,” Rubio said in 2012. “And that means teaching them science, they have to know the science, but also parents have the right to teach them the theology and to reconcile the two things.” Biology in biology class and theology in bible studies. UNSATISFACTORY

    I have to assume that if Bailey finds this response UNSATISFACTORY then he believes parents SHOULDN'T have the right to teach their children the theology of their choice. The only PASS in Bailey's apparent worldview would seem to be State mandated atheism. Communism much?

  • NotAnotherSkippy||

    Science is not decided by appeals to authority, but it bears noting recent comments of Judith Curry, Professor and former Chair of the School of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences at the Georgia Institute of Technology:

    I find nothing at all wrong with Ted Cruz’s statements about climate change that I have cited above. In fact, I think they reflect some actual nuance of understanding of the climate change issue... It remains to be seen how the Republican candidates will position themselves regarding the climate change debate. So far, the declared Republican candidates (Cruz) are NOT winning the ‘stupid party’ contest on the issue of climate science.

    There, see how Reasonable that was?

  • hroark314||

    So, voting against an amendment intended to help fuel left-wing climate hysteria is pandering and not scientific? Sure, humans almost certainly have affected the climate through our CO2 emissions, but just because the amendment is technically true in a denotative sense doesn't mean we should ignore the clear connotation of the language - namely that the federal government needs to pass a massive CO2 tax or a cap and trade program.

    Also, being pro-life is now anti-science? Really? Fine, maybe fetuses don't feel pain at 20 weeks, but I refuse to accept the notion that one can't simultaneously support incremental pro-life measures and be scientific. It's at least possible that fetuses are "persons" and that abortion results in a dead person. Being opposed to killing people isn't an unscientific position. It may just be a moral position, but - it so happens - that the moral stance that people shouldn't be allowed to kill each other and that prohibition should be codified into law has some rather easily observable objective benefits.

  • Harvard||

    [maybe fetuses don't feel pain at 20 weeks, but I refuse to accept the notion that one can't simultaneously support incremental pro-life measures and be scientific. ]

    Evidently it's intellectually chic to disregard the fact that anyone under a local anesthetic doesn't feel any pain either.

    "Ah, the Propofol is taking effect now ma'am, go ahead, kill the little fucker".

  • ProLifeLibertarian||

    Had Bailey bothered to do any research, he would know that, scientifically speaking, life begins at conception. Pain is not the meter-stick by which humanity is measured. Once fertilization occurs, you have a new person, and that person should be legally protected.

  • cryptic||

    Makes sense to me. This 'beginning of life' hair-splitting is ridiculous. Either life is sacred and killing a fetus is wrong or life is not sacred and laws that protect life are subject to the social context of the moment. I actually believe the latter and that's why I'm fine with abortion, the death penalty and assisted suicide, but it's ridiculous for some pro-abortion critics to try to have their cake and eat it to i.e. life is sacred but somehow a fetus life is not. I actually don't understand why they even try.

  • Mickey Rat||

    Failing to vote for an absurd Sense of Congress resolution pandering to the AGW crowd is a science fail? That is the hill Bailey wants to die on?

    Evolution should not be a political issue save for government's oversized control.of education. While it is a matter of science it touches on theology. The dogmatic approach to teaching evolution by the social left can be seen as government favoring one religious belief above all others, making this close to establishment clause violation.

    Could Bailey pleases explain how supporting the abortion restricting bill is a science fail because that is not obvious and seems to.be assuming a conclusion.

  • Mike M.||

    It's absurd that this sort of crap appears in a libertarian journal, isn't it?

  • cryptic||

    "how supporting the abortion restricting bill is a science fail" WHAT. Wow, I didn't even see that part of this ridiculous article. One's abortion stance has NOTHING to do with science what-so-ever.

  • Marshall Gill||

    Ultimately, the controversy over fetal pain isn't about the scientific debate as much as it's about how people feel about the morality of abortion.

    Ron, perhaps you should think a little harder about this statement. Instead of feeling pain, why not simply ask the very scientific "when does new life begin"? Of course the pro convenience people don't want a scientific debate about abortion because not a single scientific fact is on their side and they well know it. The actual science about sexual reproduction is absolutely settled and has been for decades if not centuries. So much so that we do it in labs and have been since the '70's. Strangely, no one has yet to scientifically demonstrate the mechanism for "personhood" or "being". No scientist has even attempted, or will attempt, to show how a non-person individual becomes a person after conception because the question is ludicrous.

    Why did you include the question as being about science when you admit that it isn't? It is called rationalizing evil.

  • ||

    Strangely, no one has yet to scientifically demonstrate the mechanism for "personhood" or "being". No scientist has even attempted, or will attempt, to show how a non-person individual becomes a person after conception because the question is ludicrous.

    I agree. Bicentennial Man was absolute shit.

  • Cloudbuster||

    Ronald Bailey cherry-picks data to smear Republican candidates. FAIL

  • Jackand Ace||

    Nearly every comment here with only a few exceptions deals mostly with climate change, and their rejection of your statement on it, Ronald. You'd almost think the other topics weren't important. They certainly don't like what you have to say about it.

    Seems like you might give a grade to Reason commenters on the topic of climate change...FAIL.

  • CE||

    Wait, Congress is voting on amendments providing their opinions on the existence and possible causes of climate change? Why?

  • CE||

    All the records agree that the planet has warmed since 1979 at a rate of somewhere between +0.16 and +0.13 degrees Celsius per decade.

    Wow, a whole 4 decades. Didn't we burn more coal a century ago though?

  • Homple||

    And we know the planet's temperature in Celsius to two decimal places, eh?

  • Ron||

    and for those who remember their math you can only use the decimal places of your least accurate scale. in other words since its been shown that most all temperature gauges mechanical and/or digital or otherwise are all off by +/-2 degrees, no decimals there, then no decimals can be used to make any predictions or outcome.

  • cryptic||

    It's 'pathological science'
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pathological_science

    One of the criteria of which is:
    - There are (unwarranted) claims of great accuracy.

    I inserted 'unwarranted' but I think it's implied by the other criteria.

  • CE||

    Science is not decided by polls, but it bears noting that a Pew Survey earlier this year reported that 89 percent of the earth science researchers in the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) agreed that climate change was occurring primarily as a result of human activity.

    I wonder what polls of scientists would have said when Galileo observed 4 moons orbiting Jupiter about whether the Earth was the center of the universe or not.

  • Tony||

    People used to be wrong about stuff, therefore every bullshit conspiracy theory you believe is true!

  • Bill||

    No conspiracy necessary, except a conspiracy of dunces.

  • Bill||

    No conspiracy necessary, except a conspiracy of dunces.

  • Bill||

    Shit, I meant a confederacy of dunces. Both times. ha-ha

  • cryptic||

    "Never attribute to malice that which is adequately explained by stupidity."

  • Homple||

    "People used to be wrong about stuff, therefore every bullshit conspiracy theory you believe is true!"

    People used to be wrong about stuff and they still can be wrong about stuff.

  • Tony||

    Including you?

  • Homple||

    Of course even me.

  • Tony||

    Especially you perhaps, since I assume you're not an expert in this field?

  • Homple||

    I'm not a theologian either but I'm comfortable not getting right with Jesus since I mistrust their idea of logical proof.. You see, PhD theologians tell me that if I don't live my life the way they dictate dreadful things will happen to me. Argument by threats of horrible consequences haven't convinced me of anything since I figured out that the nuns in catechism class were full of shite.

    And that's what I get from the global warming evangelists: fiddled data and scary stories with the Heartland Institute tossed in as Satan's helpers.

    Sorry, appeals to authority don't cut it.

  • PM||

    Tony supposes that everyone is as stupid as he is, and therefore incapable of evaluating scientific evidence without appealing to authority. It's projection all the way down.

  • Tony||

    All of you appear incapable of evaluating evidence without a massive confirmation bias.

  • Schitzree||

    In other words, 'Your opinion differs from mine, therefore you are not only wrong but crazy too.'

    Ironically I still hear this same kind of pronouncements from the Peek Oilers, the Ozone Holers, the Population Bombers, and every other kind of pseudoscientist who's work I just roll my eyes at nowadays. They'll all assure you that just because every other one of their prediction failed, That doesn't mean a non __________-scientist like yourself could possibly judge the truth of their perfect Science.

  • creech||

    My granddaughter's 4th grade class was told that a butterfly flapping its wings could change the weather. So they all went out at recess and flapped their arms. Two days later, Hurricane Sandy hit New Jersey, so I guess they should all be eligible for the witness protection program for causing this disaster.

  • Homple||

    Well, now we know what science is. I used to think it was a repeating cycle of observation, hypothesis and experiment, but it seems to be a list of this year's political haggling points.

  • Emmerson Biggins||

    We can do better. Let's come up with some other questions that should be on the next science litmus test:

    Are men, generally speaking, better at math than women?

    Are Fetus's viable after 7.5 months? What is your scientific basis for allowing post-viability abortions?

    Do you believe evolution applies to social systems as well as biological ones, or are you a social creationist?

    Given that you believe in CAGW, what is the global optimal temperature, and how is is measured? What is the cost function associated with deviation from that temperature? What are the costs associated with the various methods of addressing our deviation from optimal global temperature? (And please, second 2 answers need to be in the same units).

    Do you believe that Price Caps always lead to shortages and Price Floors always lead to gluts? Does this apply to the minimum wage?

  • LIBERATEDXZOMBIE||

    Well said.

  • Page Turner||

    I had to stop reading at the climate change nonsense. It is not "science" is it and industry full of fake and manufactured data.

    Not 1 of the IPCC's computer climate models has been anything close to predicting the weather.

    There has been NO increase in temperature as measured by sattelites.

    Surface temperature record is deeply problematic, with heat-island effects difficult to expunge from the data, and poor placement of and shifts in the measurement stations, etc. An example: For many years, “China” was one monitoring station in Shanghai, and as that city grew, “China” warmed. Surprise!

    The UN admitted "climate change" is not about the climate, it's about destroying free markets
    "This is the first time in the history of mankind that we are setting ourselves the task of intentionally, within a defined period of time, to change the economic development model that has been reigning for at least 150 years, since the Industrial Revolution," Christiana Figueres, executive secretary of U.N.'s Framework Convention on Climate Change

  • Page Turner||

    Newsweek reported in its 1975 article “The Cooling World” arguing that temperatures has been plunging for decades due to human activities: “Climatologists are pessimistic that political leaders will take any positive action to compensate for the climate change, or even to allay its effects.” Some of the “more spectacular solutions” proposed by the cooling theorists at the time included “melting the arctic ice cap by covering it with black soot,” Newsweek reported in the same article.

  • TimothyLane||

    Somehow you neglected to mention that there has been no significant warming since the mid-to-late 1990s, which all of those models you place so much faith in failed to predict. You do realize that a failed prediction disproves a theory, don't you? This is why the alarmists went from talking about global warming to talking about climate change (trying to prevent that is akin to King Canute trying to stop the waves), and now many have switched to "climate disruption" or other such buzzwords. And if the alarmists have such a strong case, why do they resort to smearing skeptics as "climate deniers' (even though I doubt anyone denies there is such a thing as climate) or "climate change deniers' (even though, again, I doubt any of the skeptics deny that climate changes). And why do they seek to punish those who disagree? Science is never closed because one busted prediction disproves the theory.

    As for evolution, which theory are they supposed to believe? Darwin's gradualism, Huxley's saltation, or Gould's punctuated equilibrium? Should they confine themselves to pure naturalism, or can they accept Alfred Russell Wallace's view that the human brain couldn't be explained by purely natural means? And where does the Margulies theory based on symbiosis fit in here?

    As is so often the case, the checkers need checking themselves. Juvenal is proven right again.

  • Tony||

    Somehow you neglected to mention that there has been no significant warming since the mid-to-late 1990s, which all of those models you place so much faith in failed to predict.

    False. Not true. Not even a little. You could know this--you choose not to.

  • TimothyLane||

    Michael Mann and his Hadley communicants actively sought to exclude skeptics from peer-reviewed journals (which is in fact the basic scandal of that incident). And of course those scientists draw billions in research funds from activist governments who love the excuse climate alarmism gives them to increase their control over the environment -- a notion many "environmentalists" support (hence the term "watermelons"). And many businesses are equally willing to push the alarmism because they benefit from it. (For example, a natural-gas magnate tried to get Christopher De Freitas removed in Oklahoma over his skepticism about certain aspects of alarmis. It was De Freitas who was informed by a climate alarmist that they needed to get rid of the Medieval Warm Period, a need that led to Michael Mann's fraudulent hockey-stick.)

  • Schitzree||

    I'll just leave this here.

    http://woodfortrees.org/plot/r.....96.8/trend

    You know, just in case anyone thought Tony might have been honest when he says it's not even a little true.

  • Schitzree||

    {twitch} Ummm, yes? The trend line from mid 1996 is flat. That's the whole point of the graph. Timothy said there has been no significant warming since the mid-to-late 1990s and Tony replied with False. Not true. Not even a little. Then I posted a graph that shows that it IS TRUE that there has been no significant warming since mid 1996. Which is certainly in the mid-to-late 1990s.

    I can't help but notice this is the second time you've accused me of problems with 'Reading Comprehension' because I wrote something you couldn't understand. I'd offer to draw you a picture to make it easier to understand what I mean, but, well, that's kinda what that last post was.

  • Tony||

    Rejecting the fact of climate change requires you to substitute a conspiracy theory so absurd in scope that it makes 9/11 truthers look like rational people. I ran across this essay that argues that believing in conspiracy theories and otherwise rejecting rational modes of thinking is not the result of a lack of information (you all have all the information you need at your fingertips). It is rather a flaw in intellectual character. I would take a more materialist approach, but it is food for thought. You are bad thinkers. You don't employ your intellects in the correct way. You prefer dogma to uncomfortable truths, to the extent that you make yourselves experts on bullshit conspiracy theories and talking points instead of just reading what the science says. I can't quite wrap my head about this sort of selective irrationality, but it is pervasive, especially in places like this. Do better. Read something that's not comforting bullshit for a change.

  • mtrueman||

    The science threatens a way of life that most here would rather not change. That's the long and short of it.

  • deepspeed||

    It's not the science that is the threat, it's the people attempting to use the science to push their political agenda.

  • Tony||

    That is no excuse to reject facts. If you can't come up with a political agenda to address the issue and that suits you, that's your problem, not science's.

  • NotAnotherSkippy||

    Why do you reject science, Tony?

    http://www.nature.com/nclimate.....ATE-201309

    Recent observed global warming is significantly less than that simulated by climate models. This difference might be explained by some combination of errors in external forcing, model response and internal climate variability.

    http://www.cato.org/blog/colle.....inues-grow

  • Schitzree||

    Can't help but notice you didn't offer a single fact that would counter what was in ether of those links.

  • NotAnotherSkippy||

  • NotAnotherSkippy||

    cont.

    Lameass Reason link limit

    And updated ECS and TCR based on the latest, lower aerosol forcings:


    Holy shit, we're right back to basically no feedback! Bummer!

  • Tony||

    *Sigh.* You don't even see that you're proving me correct. You are wasting brain energy confirming your bias that could be put to much better use learning about what reality is doing. This is not difficult for you, presumably, with respect to any other field of science. There's a reason the Christians are fine with the science that keeps their airplanes in the air but have an issue with evolution. It's not because they have special insight into biology that the biologist community doesn't. The only mildly interesting question here is what fundamental dogma of yours does this science challenge.

  • PM||

    Libertarianism is perfectly capable of handling environmental issues writ large by way of property rights and tort liability, but then you'd have to do away with collective ownership and actually prove damages. The only glaringly obvious question here is what fundamental dogma of yours necessitates violence against others when you can't meet that standard of proof.

  • deepspeed||

    I will except anything that is sufficiently supported by empirical evidence. I believe the planet has grown slightly warmer over the last 100 years, and that humans are at least partially responsible. The evidence satisfactorily supports these claims. What I do not believe is that this represents some sort of imminent catastrophe, or that it necessitates sacrificing more of our personal and economic liberty to combat. There is not nearly enough evidence to convince me of these ideas, and certainly not enough to elevate them to the status of "fact".

  • Tony||

    It's a potentially catastrophic situation, and if you don't appreciate that, again it's not a problem of evidence, but of a bias of yours. Nothing is certain of course, but even a modicum of precaution requires reaction to this crisis, and more than that, doing nothing is the most radical action to take. You are not advocating caution. You are advocating extreme risk-taking by embracing the (ever-warming) status quo.

  • deepspeed||

    It absolutely is a problem of evidence if you cannot provide enough to support your hyperbolic claims (e.g. "potentially catastrophic", "crisis", "radical action", "extreme risk-taking"). You make the accusation that I "reject facts", yet when I demand them you can do nothing but pivot to baseless accusations of bias. I don't know why I bothered to engage you, as you've proven time and again that you will not argue in good faith.

  • Tony||

    Just google "climate change evidence." Why is that impossible for you guys?

  • blcartwright||

    it's interpretation of data, often "cleaned up" adjusted data.

    I work in sport analytics, and at this moment I'm waiting for an email from a colleague as I seek to confirm his claim of size of effects. Totally different subject, but very similar procedures.

    We don't have an unbroken temperature record, using the same methods. Raw observations, with different methods over time, are stitched together, with assumptions and adjustments. (the warehousing phase) Then analysis is made on the warehoused data.

    There are many steps when the assumptions, adjustments and biases can largely determine the outcome of the analysis. We need to thoroughly examine and challenge each other's work.

  • deepspeed||

    Just google "climate change evidence." Why is that impossible for you guys?

    At no point did I deny climate change. Is reading comprehension impossible for you?

  • Homple||

    "It's a potentially catastrophic situation, and if you don't appreciate that, again it's not a problem of evidence, but of a bias of yours."

    The catechism nuns used to tell me that even though Church doctrine might not be true I should go to mass every Sunday and holy day of obligation, make my Easter Duty every year and not eat meat on Friday on account of the potentially horrible consequences of not doing so. They said a famous French philosopher named Tony figured this out.

  • PM||

    At least Pascal's wager only requires constraint on oneself. Tony's brand of asceticism requires your participation as well.

  • blcartwright||

    Paul Ehrlich, quoted in a 1975 Newsweek cover story
    The evidence in support of these predictions has now begun to accumulate so massively that meteorologists are hard-pressed to keep up with it. The central fact is that after three quarters of a century of extraordinarily mild conditions, the earth’s climate seems to be cooling down. Meteorologists… are almost unanimous in the view that the trend will reduce agricultural productivity for the rest of the century. If the climatic change is as profound as some of the pessimists fear, the resulting famines could be catastrophic.
    http://sppiblog.org/news/rearv.....al-cooling

    Paul Ehrlich, interviewed in Forbes in 2013
    we expected climate change to be a problem for the end of this century, and now we’re in the middle of it.
    http://www.forbes.com/sites/mi.....r-ehrlich/

    So in the 1970's Ehrlich was saying we were all going to starve because of the global freezing, and yet 40 years later when Al Gore tells us "The planet has a fever!" Ehrlich claims it as a vindication.

  • cryptic||

    Like the conspiracy theory that skeptics are in the pay of big oil? ;-)

  • Ballz||

    re 9/11, I assume you believe 2 camel jockeys took over airliners, disabled auto pilot, flew across country and found a building in NYC, crashed and ignited tanks of kerosene that collapsed a tall building. Maybe they used Google maps.
    "You prefer dogma to uncomfortable truths, to the extent that you make yourselves experts on bullshit conspiracy theories and talking points instead of just reading what the science says. I can't quite wrap my head about this sort of selective irrationality, but it is pervasive, especially in places like this. Do better. Read something that's not comforting bullshit for a change."

  • Win Bear||

    Rejecting the fact of climate change requires you to substitute a conspiracy theory so absurd in scope that it makes 9/11 truthers look like rational people.

    "Reject the fact of the existence of the ether requires you to substitute a conspiracy theory so absurd in scope that it makes 9/11 truthers look like rational people" Yes, the scientific community gets it massively wrong, often for decades at a time. Science is self-correcting only in the long run. The belief that "scientific consensus" is a sufficient basis for policy can only be held by people who are scientifically illiterate.

    In any case, you are engaging in the usual misdirection. The issue isn't whether climate change is happening (personally, I believe it is). The first question is whether it is a bad thing if it's happening, and there is no scientific consensus on that. More importantly, even if it were, the question of whether to do anything about it, and what, is not a scientific question at all; scientists aren't qualified to answer it.

    The "conspiracy theorists", dear Tony, are people like you, who falsely believe that people who have legitimate objections to action on climate change are part of some vast right wing anti-science conspiracy headed by "the oil companies" and the Koch brothers. You conspiracy nuts really need to snap out of it.

  • Azathoth!!||

    1.Ebola

    As noted, Ron's stance is correct in hindsight. This is not scientific. I'm sure everyone who was worried can make the same after-the-fact 'prediction'. The question is-- was it correct then? Based on standard policies wrt infectious deadly diseases, no. We routinely quarantine for much less.

    2.CAGW

    Ron is not objective on this topic and should therefore not have included it. Since it is factually not concluded all answers given are equally correct.

    3. GMOs

    GMO hysteria is just that. Ron should take a good look at this and note how many of his CAGW buddies shriek madness on this issue.

    4. Yucca Mountain

    See above.

    5. 20 week abortion limit

    This is what that 'pain-capable' blather actually means. It's an alteration of the previous arbitrary limit. There is no 'right' 'science' answer here. Including it was a waste of time.

    6. Evolution

    I saw no candidate or potential candidate advocating for the teaching of creationism in schools. One suggested that parents should be allowed to teach it to their children. All passed this one.

  • cryptic||

    Totally agree.

    1.) Monday morning quarterbacking. If the reproduction rate had remained about 1 (as it was briefly in Sierra Leone), then travel bans would have been inevitable no matter what one's 'political ideology'.

    2.) How can Ron see the hysteria around Ebola, GMOs and vaccines and not see the exact same hysteria in CAGW? It's his Achilles heel. He just refused to see the doom-saying for what it is.

    3.) While the position of non-mandatory labeling is consistent with libertarianism, as someone else commented, I don't see how this is that different from other forms of mandatory labeling. The 'fear' of labeling seems to be an over-reaction. It seems pretty likely that Ron (and others) fear that the public would act irrationally toward GMO labeled food to which I would say "so what?". If people want to act irrationally and pay more for non-GMO food than that is their business. They already do this with organic food so I fail to see the big deal of labeling.

    4.) There is a lot of irrationality around this area for sure. They should just dump it in deep ocean trench, seriously. Digging a big hole in a mountain is a unnecessary waste of resources and actually more risky. But, yes, imagine the hysteria from the 'rational' CAGW crowd.

    5.) What does pain have to do with life? Is someone with CIPA (can't feel pain) not alive? This area is totally metaphysical and has nothing to do with science. What defines life? This is a philosophical question, not a scientific one.

  • blcartwright||

    5) if the death is painless then it's OK to kill them, but not OK if they feel pain during the death (just paraphrasing others)

  • Greg Gutfelt's Nutpunch||

    I think roofie date rapists in general would agree with your(their) line of reasoning.

  • MJBinAL||

    I can read an article and then go back to confirm it is Bailey. Every single time he talks about global warming he drags out the same biased crap.

    It is the warmest EVER (but it hasn't warmed in two decades), all the climate models say it's going to be HORRIBLE (but they don't agree and are wildly at variance with what has actually be happening), all the climate scientists agree (except the ones that don't and we don't poll them because they all vote wrong).

    Just. Shut. Up.

    I find it difficult to take anything Bailey says seriously because he is so one sided on this issue.

  • shortlink||

    If the objective is to determine how candidates "evaluate data" for science related policies, (not their compliance with your assumptions on scientific issues), then your effort has failed. The assumption that someone must "believe" in man-made global warming to be counted as being scientific shows a bias in your evaluation methodology. I am skeptical of the man-made global warming models and their predictions and would have recommended voting against the same bill you use to identify someone that is not evaluating data correctly. I have extensive technical experience in Big Data analysis with a master's degree in a related field, but would have failed your test for "evaluating data".
    Given the nature of Reason magazine, I am surprised that you have used a populist model to determine what is scientific. You leave no room for skepticism which is core scientific premise. If you had performed this test in the 1920's a candidate would have passed your test for voting for eugenics and segregation. You need to change your method of determining successful evaluation of data and its relationship to scientific-based policies.

  • Robert||

    I'll tell you what I want from politicians, then: more pandering.

  • anglinaparker903||

    Start working from home! Great job for students, stay-at-home moms or anyone needing an extra income... You only need a computer and a reliable internet connection... Make $90 hourly and up to $12000 a month by following link at the bottom and signing up... You can have your first check by the end of this week........

    http://www.Jobsyelp.com

  • rferris||

    WOW It was hard to believe I was reading Reason....Bailey needs to better his game on climate or get a new gig! EMBARRASSING !!!

    I read Reason to avoid drivel like this piece. Why is Bailey at Reason when he cannot even read the posts at climate depot or other science sites????

    I would call his piece worse than useless. It can not correctly speak to climate change as science, instead he PANDERS to those he wishes to impress with the current populist propaganda.

    I DEMAND better QUALITY from REASON if I am to continue my support of the magazine. Bailey's pimping for ANTI-SCIENCE makes him the wrong person at Reason to be the "science guy" He is way to much like that other "science guy" who constantly makes a fool of himself among those with an education in science. Does Bailey only have a liberal arts degree??? He espouses like that is all he has................

    How can I support REASON foundation when they continually let Bailey mis-represent the scientific facts on such an important issue to LIBERTY , FREEDOM and the TRUTH.

  • Ron Bailey||

    All:

    Very interesting comments. Sorry that I couldn't join the conversation earlier. So here's the question: Is Bailey merely a mendacious idiot or is he slavishly seeking elite approval so that he can attend the better DC cocktail parties? Discuss among yourselves.

    Some data for consideration: As best as I can tell from reading pretty widely in the research, the global temperature trend since 1998 has been a minuscule +0.04 degrees C per decade. That amount of warming could be just noise, but it is the data that is on offer.

    And of course, that is well below what the models predict - a point that I made many many times. This point was completely missed by the many H&R commenters who think I am some kind of statist stooge. Please note in my write up I made the point again when I quoted RSS in the article: However, RSS also notes that "the troposphere [the bottom layer of the atmosphere] has not [emphasis theirs] warmed as fast as almost all climate models predict."

    I chose the Hoeven vote as a benchmark because it embodies the lukewarmer position that humanity has contributed somewhat to increases in average global temperature over the past half century. That is my best reading of the data. Is Rand Paul too a stooge?

    See next post

  • Ron Bailey||

    Continued:

    Cruz is right about the models (a point that I have reported numerous times - see above link) but given that Cruz refuses to accept any suggestion that humanity has contributed to warming in the past half century, e.g., his vote, and that warming has slowed but not stopped over the past 17 years, I concluded that he merited a FAIL. After all, Paul managed to vote for the very mild Hoeven amendment.

    There is no conspiracy about why I picked a dataset starting in 1979 - it's because that's when satellites began measuring the temperature of troposphere. Had they done so in 1919, I would have cited that, but alas, there were no such satellites then.

    The fact that I am a libertarian does not change scientific facts. I may misread the data, but I try very hard to remain objective in reporting on this area of absurdly politicized science, and it quite evidently annoys a lot of people.

  • cryptic||

    "That amount of warming could be just noise"

    "but given that Cruz refuses to accept any suggestion that humanity has contributed to warming in the past half century ... I concluded that he merited a FAIL."

    Hmmmm. ;-)

  • Tony||

    This is a crisis for the libertarian movement and I wish you'd be even more outspoken in defending science against the giant denier contingent, of course. But the "negligible warming" since 1998 thing is so, so wrong, and I know it's not a lot, but it's more than enough for the deniers to hang everything on. The heat is going to the oceans, almost all of it. Just talking about the troposphere is to mislead, plain and simple. You're not talking about 90% of where the warming is happening.

  • cryptic||

    My skepticism is over catastrophe. Can you tell me in what areas catastrophe will occur and show me data illustrating how it has started?

    So far it seems the effect is small and can only be 'seen' using statistical methods. I would imagine that catastrophic effects would be large and self-evident. If (for example) crops were failing to an unprecedented degree, that would be great evidence and worrying. However, crops are doing fine and seem to show no deviation from it's upward climb at all (see http://faostat3.fao.org/home/E ). Or if, for example, hurricanes were occurring in significantly greater numbers with with significantly more strength that might be of some concern. But they are not (see http://www.rsmas.miami.edu/use.....hanges.ppt for example). Or if ocean level was rising at a very fast rate that we could not adapt to but it is not - (30cm a century matches rebound in many places, is not a catastrophe and can easily be adapted to e.g. Amsterdam). Or if there was some sort of non-linear feedback in the pipeline that would suddenly push us over a tipping point then that might be of concern, but even the IPCC itself says this is very unlikely and the stuff of science fiction.

  • cryptic||

    Honestly climate science seems to be suffering from pathological science - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pathological_science

    - The maximum effect that is observed is produced by a causative agent of barely detectable intensity, and the magnitude of the effect is substantially independent of the intensity of the cause. [CHECK]

    - The effect is of a magnitude that remains close to the limit of detectability, or many measurements are necessary because of the very low statistical significance of the results. [CHECK - without statistics and 'corrections' the effect is imperceptible]

    - There are claims of great accuracy. [CHECK - 2 or 3 decimal points often used, which is a ridiculous misrepresentation of the real underlying measurement uncertainty]

    - Fantastic theories contrary to experience are suggested. [CHECK - ice free Arctic by 2015, snow free summers, 25ft sea level rise, 200 million climate refugees and so on]

    - Criticisms are met by ad hoc excuses. [CHECK - Ad hoc excuses for lack of signature troposphere hotspot. Ad hoc excuses for Antarctica ice-extent continuing to grow. Ad hoc excuses for models predicting warming 3 to 5 times higher than measurements]

    - The ratio of supporters to critics rises and then falls gradually to oblivion. [CHECK - the issue has never been lower in public opinion polls anyways with global warming now starting to consistently rank last in list of concerns]

  • cryptic||

    Was suppose to be 'ice free summer' and 'snow free winter' above, not 'snow free summer'. I certainly hope to see we continue to have snow free summers or then I might actually start to worry, but for the opposite reason of 'global warming'.

  • blcartwright||

    at this point I'm hoping for a snow free summer. the lawn is covered again by tonight's snowfall.

  • Tony||

    Why does "adaptation" always exclude burning less oil?

    Even if we had absolutely no idea what happens when the planet is hotter than at any point in the last million years, doing nothing is not some kind of cautious choice. You do get that right?

  • cryptic||

    Sure whatever, throw it in the mix. Do a truly objective cost-benefit analysis that includes unsubsidized costs of solar, wind, storage and so on and a realistic assessment of actual damage from climate change that might occur using trends from actual empirical data.

    The main reason that burning less oil is unlikely to be a real solution is because of "the tragedy of the commons" dynamics. CO2 production will simply move to areas that don't restrict CO2 output. The US and Europe have already reduced CO2 production by a lot, but this is because they moved manufacturing to Asia. That's why world wide CO2 output continues to grow unabated - http://cdiac.ornl.gov/trends/emis/glo_2010.html

    It's too bad you decided to not answer my question about what areas catastrophe will occur and back it up with data.

  • Pope Tyrannicus XVI||

    You marxists talk an awesome game when it comes to oil alternatives. But when it comes to actual implementation...

    1) Nuclear reactors scare the shit out of you.
    2) Coal mines exacerbate capitalist oppression in rural communities.
    3) Hydroelectric dams kill the poor little fishes.
    4) Solar panels disrupt fragile desert ecosystems.
    5) Even fucking wind turbines mar the landscape.

    Just admit you hate humanity and want to set poor folks back a hundred years.

  • Schitzree||

    Why does "mitigation" never Include something that might actually work, like increased Nuclear Power?

    Even if I believed that the planet is hotter than at any point in the last million years (and I certainly don't) That still wouldn't mean we have a world ending disaster that we need to throw $$$ billions at.

    I've listened to various Alarmist for decades now, roll out one 'Coming Disaster' after another. But the predictions keep failing. Why should I believe THIS one will be any different? When most of the predictions for it have failed too? When the 'Scientist" and other promoters keep getting caught lying, cheating, altering data, destroying data and incriminating evidence, Forging opponent documents, and a dozen other dirty tricks? When people demanding that the world use less energy keep flying all over it and building homes with the electrical budget of a small town? When they tell us about the meters of sea level rise we will get while buying beachfront homes?

    If I catch a used car salesman telling me lies about the first 4 cars he shows me, I'm not going to assume he's being honest about the 5th just because I don't catch him at this one. If he tells me I have to buy this car right now I'll be even more suspicious. If he tells me I'm not a car expert and should question him, I'm walking right then and there.

  • TimothyLane||

    The term "denier" is simply a smear term for alarmists to ignore skeptics. Scientific theory always has room for doubters of some sort because all it takes is a single failed prediction to force at least a modification to a theory (as the Michelson-Morley experiment and later discoveries forced on Newtonian mechanics) or even its abandonment. My own judgments are based on studying the arguments of the proponents of both sides. When one side seeks to suppress the opposing viewpoint, as alarmists such as you routinely do to skeptics, this is generally not an indication that they have a good case.

    As for the Hoeven vote, I actually agree with Bailey as far as science goes, but I also understand that there's a relevant difference between denotation and connotation. Does "global warming" refer to the observation of warming since the mid-19th century, the speculative and dubious theory of catastrophic global warming due to greenhouse gases (which ignores the law of diminishing returns, which in fact applies in this case), or something else? Alarmists find it convenient to tar any skeptic of CAGW as a "denier" of the observations.

  • Mickey Rat||

    "I chose the Hoeven vote as a benchmark because ..."

    Which does not change it being a frivolous resolution meant to pander to the warmist's sensibilities. Voting against it could be simply be a refusal to play that game.

    Your criteria for being good on "science" is being in full agreement with your personal opinion on certain issues. Some of which are authoritarian or have potentially authoritarian implications while others seek to strip classes of human of basic rights.

  • blcartwright||

    most African countries instituted travel bans to west Africa, and it proved successful. That the US didn't and still avoided an outbreak is not proof the strategy was correct. For whichever decision, a good result does not validate the strategy.

    It is generally agreed there has been at least a 'pause' in warming since 1998. Even Politico's evaluation of Cruz's AGW statements acknowledged this. The warmists try to explain it, but assure us that their predictions will come roaring back at some time in the future http://qz.com/351797/scientist.....ws-for-us/

    Those would convert both of Cruz's 'FAIL' into 'PASS'.

  • LIBERATEDXZOMBIE||

    Rating for Reason? PANDER to autocratic scientists on all counts. Score -0

  • John Galt||

    Anytime any "scientist" functions as an autocrat it's certain the only "science" involved is going to be pseudoscience.

  • Jimmy Seinfeld||

    A junk scientist writing for a Libertarian website???

  • John Galt||

    Pretty much.

  • JakeJ||

    Fact is that we are in the 19th consecutive year of no global temperature increases. This one fact invalidates ALL of the climate models upon which the AGW hypothesis rests. Ron is an idiot, and those who still push AGW are denialists.

  • JakeJ||

    Who appointed you the spouter of fact-free bullshit? That works much better at Climate Progress. Go back there with your alarmist propaganda.

  • Russell||

    Who says the debate is over?

    Unlike those dangerous radicals at the Spanish Inquisition, < a href=" http://vvattsupwiththat.blogsp.....an-to.html"ed Cruz has an open mind on the flat earth question..

  • BambiB||

    The author of this article: -1,000,000 points.

    Give us some issues that are relevant... to anything.

  • vivek||

  • BulletGibson||

    Who the hell is Ronald Bailey and what is he talking about? Or better yet, WHY is he talking? Someone shove a kolache in this idiot's mouth and give him something to do.....quick!

    I'd vote for my damned dog if I thought he would lead this country to Liberty and out of the despotism it's fallen into. For the love of god man, I don't care if they think the moon's made of green cheese and toilet paper grows on paper trees! This shit just doesn't matter. Ya just giving people something to bitch about and take their mind off of what's important. What a putz.

    Besides, you shouldn't present stuff that hasn't been proven by Empirical Methodology as fact. It's dishonest and not very "scientific" Mr. Bailey. (ie. dumbass)

  • BulletGibson||

    Enraged? No, just a case of the red-ass.

    Science itself does not engage in consensus but in proven facts. His question should have been 'does he believe in proven facts.' Instead he asked 'dose the candidate believe in a consensus of theories, which are hotly debated among the current community.' What is the result? Nothing but one big argument about theories of science....not politics or who would be a good president.

    "We are a nation of laws and not men, so which candidate would follow the law?" I think this question, among others, would be pertinent in an article about presidential candidates. Not, "does he believe what I believe?" Call me crazy!

    Ok, so I should have typed lead us "toward liberty" instead of "to liberty." It's a comment thread dude, ease up on the editing Naziism! I know the president can't do it alone, didn't mean that, never said it. But the president IS a good start.

    Empirical Methodology? For a proven fact? You do know that this requires you to recreate your results in a controlled environment right? Oh hell, do climate change for me!! Oh no, better yet....EVOLUTION!!! C,mon! Whip it up in your lab there dude! Can't wait to see it!!!!

    coughdumbasscough!

  • Win Bear||

    To be a good president, you have to be able to evaluate data to make good decisions.

    The president is the chief bureaucrat and the chief of the armed forces. As such, he should keep the bureaucracy running efficiently, implement what Congress tells him to implement, and keep the armed forces running.

    A good president should not take scientific data and translate it into grand policy on important or controversial issues; he isn't qualified to do that and it isn't his job. Any important science-based policy making is the job of Congress.

  • Win Bear||

    Which part of "Any important science-based policy making is the job of Congress." did you not understand?

    I think it's telling how much of a totalitarian you are that you don't even view Congress as a part of government anymore.

  • Incredulous||

    One of the worst Reason articles ever!

    Reasonable people can be skeptics on global warming and it's significance. Reasonable people can agree with temporarily limiting travel from areas with infectious disease epidemics. And the fetal pain issue is ridiculous. Even the "experts" have no idea whether fetuses experience pain at 20-24 weeks. As for the other issues, the politicians are only guilty of being wishy-washy so they don't turn off voters, not scientific illiteracy.

  • JakeJ||

    Ron, whoever he is, has pushed the AGW hypothesis, which has been invalidated by data.

  • JakeJ||

    Go back to Daily Kos, ya piece of shit.

  • cryptic||

    Is a "woman's unalienable right to Liberty" similar to a "person's unalienable right to not be murdered"? I'm pro-abortion, but believe you can not claim to believe in 'unalienable rights' and also believe that abortion is okay. It's fundamentally incompatible. The concept of 'unalienable rights' is essentially religious in nature, or least an unscientific belief.

  • cryptic||

    "You don't know what "equal" means?"
    What? Sorry I didn't get your point.

    "Then you intentionally reject a woman's unalienable right to Liberty. On what authority?"
    I intentionally reject the idea of 'unalienable rights' in general. All 'rights' are arbitrary decisions of a given society at a given time. To believe rights are something more than that is religion. I'm not sure why you are so protective of women's rights over her body but so cavalier about another person's right to life ... That's what seems 'fundamentally' inconsistent to me. I believe both rights arbitrary.

    "Learn what unalienable means."
    Unable to be taken away? i.e. innate. Bestowed by 'god' or something equivalent if you will (otherwise how else can it possibly be 'unable to be taken away'?).

    "So human rights are a topic in SCIENCE?"
    No. That's my point. They are arbitrary and subjective. Bestowed by society and different for different societies and moments in time. Sorry I thought that was clear.

    "Umm, how much of the founding documents are grounded in science"
    Again - none. Arbitrary rules that change arbitrarily and thus are not 'inalienable', even if a piece of paper temporarily declares them to be so.

  • cryptic||

    "since the rights to Life and Liberty are, by definition, precisely equal?"

    First off why do you say they are the precisely equal? In practice this is obvious not true. Society puts people in prison all the time (i.e. violates their life to liberty). We consider this less severe than killing them. Where are you getting this 'by definition' from? Whose definition, yours?

    Also parents 'liberty' is violated after having a baby as well. They had to feed it and care for it and if they don't we put them in jail. A child's life is rated as more important than an individuals liberty.

    Do you believe in abortion is okay? Yes? Okay then you are putting woman's liberty in front of child's right to life. No? Okay than you are putting a child's right to life ahead of a woman's liberty. You can jump up and down and say they are equal all you want, but depending on which option you choose you are putting one ahead of the other.

  • cryptic||

    The constitution is a piece of paper written by men, not an immutable creation of 'god' In it's short life it's had 27 amendments and over 11,000 proposal to amend. I'm not sure why your treating it like some sort of bible or something. It is not the final word on morality or philosophy. It does not answer these question you seem to think it does. It is also obvious that the intention of the men who actually wrote it would want abortion to be illegal (given the moral of the era).

    Your anger and insults are entertaining, but seriously why don't you at least attempt to explain what you feel is obvious. What are natural rights then? Do they exist outside of the constitution? If so, where do they come from? How do we know what they are? I have my own answers, but I'm curious from an entertainment perspective what yours are. ;-)

  • cryptic||

    I came up with some questions and posted them as brand new unthreaded comment below. Curious to what your answers would be. Mentioned here because you might not notice it otherwise.

  • cryptic||

    Not sure what more to add since I'm not clear what you are arguing from. Are you arguing from the constitution as the legal basis for abortion? I'm pretty sure the constitution does not go into enough detail to decide the issue one way of the other. It must then boil down to semantic games of 'what is life' and 'what is a person' and so on. These are purely metaphysical 'judgment' calls. There is no science involved. Since abortion was illegal during the creation of the constitution I imagine the founding fathers did not intent for abortion to be legal either. So ya, not going to buy "the constitution intended for abortion to be legal argument" ;-) The only way to argue from the basis of 'unalienable rights' mentioned in the constitution is to change the definition of word 'life' and well, history itself.

  • cryptic||

    Actually it wasn't obvious to me at all you were using the constitution as immutable standard of morality at the start. Read your first comment again that started all this. There is no mention of the constitution, only a reference to "right to liberty" which I merely considered as an appeal to a 'natural right' argument, not specific to the constitution.

    I don't understand how the ninth amendment is makes your case. Something to do with your insistence that the right to life is exactly equal to the right to liberty and thus if a woman's liberty is pitted against a child's right to life then the baby dies, because ... exactly equal ... something or other.

    "For any readers, this is why it's impossible to have an intelligent conversation with this person"

    Sure maybe. But are you really even trying? You're the one that jumped pretty quickly to insults and screeching. You say "you obviously don't know blah blah blah" but then you don't bother to try to explain it. Ya ya I know. I'm too 'stupid' to understand or ... something. ;-)

  • cryptic||

    It was obvious in my first response. I only assumed it later (for later responses). There is no inconsistency or lying .... sheesh. Lying really? I'm trying to honestly have a serious debate here.

  • cryptic||

    Should be it wasn't obvious in my first response.

  • Schitzree||

    Blowhards are always liars

    Good to know, You've been one of the biggest blowhards throughout this entire thread. And most of your arguments have seemed particularly dishonest. I'm glad I was reading you right.

  • Win Bear||

    I'm pro-abortion, but believe you can not claim to believe in 'unalienable rights' and also believe that abortion is okay.

    Nobody has an inalienable right to use another person's body for their survival. That means in particular that a fetus doesn't have an inalienable right to use the mother's body for survival.

    You might postulate a lesser obligation on the part of mothers to fetuses, but not based on inalienable rights or libertarian positions.

  • cryptic||

    Wow seriously, or are you being sarcastic, I'm honestly not sure? I'll assume your serious and then ask a the question.

    What about after a child is born. The child doesn't have the right to being fed and clothed and looked after than either right because that would infringe on the liberty of the parents, right? I mean "nobody has an inalienable right to the labor of another". Right? So if the parents just want to leave the baby to die of starvation, hey that's fine. The baby is a separate individual and can go get it's own damn job and provide for itself.

  • janvones||

    A ban after 20 weeks except to physically save the mother's life is perfectly reasonable. She's had 140 days to abort, and by her inaction has become responsible for the baby by default.

  • cryptic||

    "How do you justify rejecting a woman's unalienable right to Liberty -- which is precisely equal to the fetal child's unalienable right to Life"

    If both are equal than how can you reject a child's unalienable right to life? See how that works? ;-)

    Unstoppable force meet immovable wall ....

    Your 'absolutes' result in a paradox for which you arbitrarily take the side of the woman for some reason.

  • cryptic||

    Okay so you think abortion is okay or not? Seriously I'm not even sure anymore. Or are you saying that somehow killing a child does not violate the child's right to life? Yes I know I'm REALLY stupid so you need to spell it out for me.

    Fill in the blank "A woman can end a child's life any time she wants as long as it's inside her and this doesn't violate the child's right to life because ______"

    I know somehow you feel you are honoring BOTH rights, but this obviously isn't true. Either the child dies, or the woman is forced to birth a child she doesn't want. It's like Schroedinger's cat after you open the box. It's either alive or dead, you can't have it both ways. I know you really want to keep it in this indeterminate state forever where both rights win, but I just don't see how that's possible.

  • Win Bear||

    How do you justify rejecting a woman's unalienable right to Liberty

    Simple: society is forcing me to pay for the consequences of her sexual and child bearing choices, so I believe I have a right to limit her choices; if you aggress against me, I have a right to defend myself, in this case through the political process. Stop forcing me to pay for her and she can do whatever she damned well pleases.

    Furthermore, it's not like this is an important issue to begin with. A ban after 20 weeks is largely symbolic anyway and would still leave us more liberal than much of Europe.

  • RogC||

    Compare these red tribe politician biases against those of blue tribe politicians. How many Democrat pols would admit that intelligence is strongly heritable or that males and females have very different distributions at the far ends of the IQ curve? Many people are not even capable of believing something that they know goes against their tribal affiliation. Politicians are rarely drawn from the ranks of the most rational to begin with but combined with those beliefs they must at least profess to hold and neither party could muster candidates if we held them to a standard of even just mental consistency.

  • Issue Ninja||

    "How many Democrat pols would admit that intelligence is strongly heritable..."

    None. To do so would be political suicide.

    Leftists 'believe in evolution' only to the extent that they can use it as a sciency weapon in the struggle to replace Christianity with the secular religion of Leftism.

    You cannot really believe in evolution if you deny that it produced the human mind (where else could it have come from? God?), and you cannot believe that evolution produced the human mind unless you believe that intelligence is inherited. Inheritance is how evolution works. No Leftist will admit to believing that intelligence is inherited. Because racism.

    Leftists do not really believe, and few even understand, evolutionary theory.

  • Win Bear||

    confusing level of intelligence with the human mind

    Nevertheless, the level of intelligence has a strong genetic component.

  • Schitzree||

    Dang Win Bear, you broke Michael!
    He's reduced to answering in total non sequiturs.

  • janvones||

    Republicans "flunk" science? Some religious republicans may be biblical literalists, but I suspect most actually passed HS Biology with a little cognitive dissonance as a result.

    Democrats, however, flunk History, Civics, Science (GMO/Nuclear Power/Vaccines), and Economics, just to get started.

  • cryptic||

    "Libertarians flunk civics, in some cases even worse. Also history."

    Do you have specific examples or is this just a general stereotype?

    "You're not aware of Rand Paul's dumbass statement on vaccines?"

    This may 'shock' you, but

    1.) Rand Paul thinks vaccines are a good idea. I think he was merely acknowledging that there can occasionally be negative side-affects and just got some of his facts wrong - http://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/pa.....ects.html. Also he wanted to make clear that vaccinations should be voluntary (you know that 'inalienable right to liberty' you love so much).

    2.) Rand Paul does not represent libertarian thought. Most on here (myself included) dislike a ton of his ideas. Like many politicians he is merely the 'least bad choice', at least for now.

  • Sevo||

    (laughing)
    Dear ol' uncle Mike fucks up again! Keep it up, Mike, you're good for the (laughs)!

  • cryptic||

    "I've just shown your TOTAL ignorance of civics"

    You did? When? Plus I'm one guy and I'm not even American (but still a libertarian). You seem to think the US constitution is the end-word on everything though. ;-)

    "Thus a dumbass statement."

    Sure whatever, it happens. Who said this?

    - "We're the country that built the Intercontinental Railroad."
    - "On this Memorial Day, as our nation honors its unbroken line of fallen heroes -- and I see many of them in the audience here today -- our sense of patriotism is particularly strong."
    - "I've now been in 57 states -- I think one left to go."

    plus a bunch of other ones. No one's perfect (well except you of course, that's a given).

  • cryptic||

    I still don't get where you are getting exact equality from. I'll check my comments about later to see if you eventually answer them.

    In practice they are not equal. That is pretty obvious. Life is above liberty. Parents are expected to look after and raise their child. This is an infringement on their liberty. If they just leave the child to starve they will go to jail. The child's life is held as more important that the parent liberty.

  • cryptic||

    I came up with some questions and posted them as brand new unthreaded comment below. Curious to what your answers would be. Mentioned here because you might not notice it otherwise.

  • janvones||

    I am NOT a supporter of Rand Paul and don't frankly care what his position on the Higgs Boson is either, but if we had a Congress where he was considered left-wing, I think we'd be in a lot better shape than we are now.

  • JakeJ||

    Ebola. In September 2014, an article in PLoS Current Outbreaks predicted that there was a significant chance case Ebola would arrive in the United States by the end of that month. The researchers also calculated that any subsequent outbreak would be small, involving only about 4 to 6 patients. Sure enough, Liberian Thomas Eric Duncan arrived in the United States on September 20 and died of Ebola in Dallas, Texas on October 8. Two nurses who were taking care of Duncan became infected, but both recovered. That was the extent of the Ebola outbreak in the United States.
    .
    Nevertheless, panicked politicians began ordering quarantines of U.S. health care workers who returned from treating Ebola cases in West Africa. Some pols demanded a ban on commercial air travel from the region. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention opposed such a travel ban, cogently arguing that it would be counterproductive to efforts to stamp out the epidemic.
    .
    Four points. (Note: The links are to real sources. I used a link shortener to avoid crowding the post with html code.)
    .
    1. The CDC kept changing their guidelines last fall. For that reason alone, people had every good reason to worry. If the Obama White House wanted to build confidence that they knew what the hell they were doing, it was a miserable failure.

  • JakeJ||

    2. There were plenty of warnings from other sources that ebola would be a very big deal worldwide, and that a quarantine on returnees from Africa would be a good idea.
    .
    http://tinyurl.com/kdmbpno
    .
    http://tinyurl.com/njmnato
    .

  • JakeJ||

    (sorry for the jumbling, but this website has fucked up software that limits comment length and won't take more than 2 links.)

    3. The transmission mechanism of ebola is not as well known as most people think. We know it's not "airborne" like the flu or measles, but "airborne" has a specific meaning in this context that's different from common usage. For a germ to be "airbone," it has to be able to float through the air on the dust particle at the core of a liquid droplet.
    .
    There is a second "through the air" transmission mechanism: "aerosolization." Remember when Obama and his minions said that ebola can't be spread through coughing and sneezing? Oops, that was a lie.
    .
    http://tinyurl.com/lxzv7ub
    .
    http://tinyurl.com/pvxpc2r
    .
    4. The fact that we didn't have a big ebola breakout in the U.S. or Europe was probably due to the quarantines and border closings that went into effect last summer and early autumn.
    .
    5. The writer of this posting doesn't know what the fuck he's talking about. Worse, he was obviously too goddamned lazy to do any research. Come on, Reason, what the hell kind of "science reporter" have you hired? You're even worse than the fucking New York Times, fer chrissakes.

  • JakeJ||

    (the link below belongs under my point #2, but the site's software limits postings to two links per post -- frustrating)

    http://tinyurl.com/mwr6n66

  • Sevo||

    "1. The CDC kept changing their guidelines last fall. For that reason alone, people had every good reason to worry. If the Obama White House wanted to build confidence that they knew what the hell they were doing, it was a miserable failure."
    OK, Obo is a fuck-up.

    "2. There were plenty of warnings from other sources that ebola would be a very big deal worldwide, and that a quarantine on returnees from Africa would be a good idea."
    Which turned out to be untrue.

    "3. The transmission mechanism of ebola is not as well known as most people think."
    Which is irrelevant as the epidemic is pretty much stalled by now.

    "4. The fact that we didn't have a big ebola breakout in the U.S. or Europe was probably due to the quarantines and border closings that went into effect last summer and early autumn."
    Claims about facts not in evidence.

    "5. The writer of this posting doesn't know what the fuck he's talking about. Worse, he was obviously too goddamned lazy to do any research"
    Pretty funny coming from someone trying to fan panic over an issue that went south months ago.
    BTW, if you're going to post on a site, it's worth learning the limits of that site. But if you want to spread panic, you need ALL CAPS AND MANY MANY LINKS!. Right?

  • JakeJ||

    Pretty funny coming from someone trying to fan panic over an issue that went south months ago

    Supercilious little twit, it's not aboyt "fanning panic." It's about showing thst last year's concern was scientifically valid, and that Reason "science writer" is a lazy fuckup, like you.

  • Eye8apie||

    So voting against the Hoeven Amendment that stated that climate change is real and that humans contribute to it, is a bad thing?

  • RoninX||

    As a libertarian with a scientific background, I'd love for Reason to devote a special issue to explaining:

    1) Why libertarians need to accept the scientific evidence that global warming is real and caused by humans.

    2) Why libertarians do NOT need to accept the left-wing policy agenda that environmentalists often propose as the "only solution" to climate change, which would both harm the economy and reduce personal freedom.

  • Win Bear||

    1) Why libertarians need to accept the scientific evidence that global warming is real and caused by humans.

    Because it's pretty well supported by facts and observations (what is in dispute is the degree of warming and the mechanisms).

    2) Why libertarians do NOT need to accept the left-wing policy agenda that environmentalists often propose as the "only solution" to climate change, which would both harm the economy and reduce personal freedom.

    Because there is little rational basis for it? Because basic economics suggests that many of those policies make things worse? Because most of the proponents of those policies are not qualified to analyze their effects?

  • RoninX||

    Exactly right.

  • Sevo||

    +1 degree (it's beginning to look like every ten years)

  • cryptic||

    I think you mean every 100 years? No one is claiming 1 degree every 10 years. Maybe you meant 0.1 degree every ten years, because that seems to be about right.

    The levels of skepticism are many layered (and presumable so are the levels of belief). It goes all the way from denying warming is occurring at all, denying it's man-made, denying it is catastrophic (that's me).

  • cryptic||

    Michael Hihn,

    Okay here are some questions for you. I'm trying to have a fun debate here.

    1.) Did the founding fathers intent for abortion to be legal?
    A) If no, then what amendment made abortion legal? If you said "the 14 amendment", please explain how the right to privacy over-rides the 'right to life' (or is actually in anyway related at all except as sophistry of the court of the day)? I notice you have not mentioned the right to privacy at all (only life and liberty) so I assume and hope you won't go down this silly road.
    B) If yes, then why was the constitution immediately violated at the time by having abortion illegal?

    2.) Should child abandonment be legal? Children consume a lot of time and infringe on the liberty of parents. Since the right to life and liberty are EXACTLY equal (according to you), then if parents decide to leave their 1 year old baby to starve to death (not killing, him, just ignoring him and taking back there 'rightful' liberty), should that be legal (again since both rights are exactly equal)? If you believe it should be legal, then fine you are consistent but just have strange morals. If you believe child abandonment should be illegal, then please explain how abortion should be legal but child abandonment should not.

  • cryptic||

    3.) Is the best way to encourage young libertarians (such as myself) to promote libertarianism to:
    A) insult them and call them names at every opportunity?
    B) try to be patient and understanding with them and fill in the gaps of their knowledge?

    If B then how would you reconcile with your current behavior so far?

    I look forward to your responses. Really I do, even though you've been quite insulting and belligerent and (to my naive eyes) somewhat illogical (claiming that abortion doesn't violate a child's right to life somehow ...).

  • cryptic||

    Posted in two parts because or darn commenting system limits.

  • Richard Poore||

    Unfortunately this article fails to evaluate data at least as much as any of the candidates it appears.

    To pick out a few points:

    Ted Cruz gets a fail for correctly pointing out that current weather models are flawed and fail to accurately predict real temperature changes. Even the scientists who have created these models agree that they are diverging from real world data.

    Marco Rubio also fails on climate because he disagrees with how climate change is being portrayed. Again this may simply be common sense pointing out that the CO2 models are wrong.

    Abortion... supporting the legislation is being taken as believing in the "science" arguements of fetal pain perception at 20 weeks. Actually its far more likely that any politician in opposition to abortion would simply think that putting further limits on abortions would be a good thing. While one can certainly argue the pros and cons of abortion in general, support for this particular bill would have little to do with belief in the science.

    So while this is an interesting article, failure to evaluate data is a problem here as well.

  • Biowonk||

    And yet, the majority of congress is made up of people who not only passed the LSAT, but earned JDs, so they are not stupid. This means that so much of the ignorance and deliberate anti-science Republicans spout is being done to placate a constituency that really is that stupid and anti-science.

    Look at what happened when Job Huntsman, who was the most qualified of the Republican candidates, acknowledged human evolution: he was dismissed and even reviled.

    Being scientifically literate has become political suicide for members of a party who have equated education with elitism and have manufactured the illusion that belief alone is a "family value."

  • Biowonk||

    And yet, the majority of congress is made up of people who not only passed the LSAT, but earned JDs, so they are not stupid. This means that so much of the ignorance and deliberate anti-science Republicans spout is being done to placate a constituency that really is that stupid and anti-science.

    Look at what happened when Job Huntsman, who was the most qualified of the Republican candidates, acknowledged human evolution: he was dismissed and even reviled.

    Being scientifically literate has become political suicide for members of a party who have equated education with elitism and have manufactured the illusion that belief alone is a "family value."

  • Jess||

    It seems to me that the GOP has a "science problem". It seems to me that this "science problem" consists of ignoring science altogether or characterizing science that is at odds with policy goals as "bad science", regardless of what the scientific consensus may be. The problem with this is that, in an information driven society, this is just not credible.

    Many times, dismissing the science it isn't even necessary.

    In my opinion, the GOP needs to become more scientifically literate (or hire folks that are) and take a more nuanced approach based on a more sophisticated understanding. Take global warming for example: yep-the scientific consensus is that we humans are impacting the climate. No need to deny this. A more nuanced view is that the degree of how much we are impacting climate and when events might occur is based primarily on computer models, all of which have large uncertainties. Also, some scientists have voiced an opinion that it is already "too late" and that we should focus on adaptation. Putting these together, it could be credibly argued that makes more sense to focus our efforts and scarce resources on on adapting when certain agreed upon benchmarks are observed, rather than reducing greenhouse gas emissions (which other countries won't likely do anyway). Adaptation is an activity consistent with a free market.

    If the GOP wants to attract the young'ins, they are going to have to "evolve" on both science and the environment.

  • Sodak||

    Ronald Bailey should learn to analyze statistics. The computer models have greatly overestimated the temperature of the earth over the last 20 years - the United Nations IPCC even admitted last year (2014) that there has be NO increase in global temperature for 17 years (now 18).

  • jay_dubya||

    100% of jay_dubyas agree that global warming debates are boring as shit

  • Exam Result||

    Is it possible to genetically modify an organisms.

GET REASON MAGAZINE

Get Reason's print or digital edition before it’s posted online