Australia’s mini-Dark Age, greeted with celebration

I noticed an excellent interview this morning on ABC news regarding how the new government’s choice to shut down the Climate Commission is seen globally. I wanted to find it and post it… No luck as yet.

What I did notice in my search was that the subject returns posts from the usual suspects on the first page; Watts, Nova and Delingpole, the intellectually vulnerable. All three are over the moon about the NLP’s decision.

My only thought is, if these “sceptics” really hold the weight on reality, why is this a win? Why do they need this?

I mean, the so-called climate “sceptics” have long lamented in their marginalization (apart from commercial media, but that’s only a small medium, isn’t it?), ignoring of course their relative void of higher education and scientific contribution to climate science. Yet, it’s okay when this is turned on reliable independent science.

(I can hear the obvious rebuttal here; this commission held a ‘Left agenda’, without the need to demonstrate the commission’s position at odds with the science.. the ol’ strawman)

Should the ill-informed and scientifically inept really hold the public discourse on highly complex scientific subjects? The NLP doesn’t say so, however the only avenues of informed evidence on the topic will be reduced to institutes subject to certain political pressures. On the other hand, the “sceptical” communicators are rejoicing in this action which will clear suppress expert potency in the public and political discussion.

Another concern is how quickly this new government has become tight-lipped on asylum seekers arriving by boat, after years of counting and complaining over the previous government’s record.

With evidence reduced to dependent bodies and a new level of hush regarding policy that helped to win this party the 2013 election, Australia is making a concerning shift towards a term-long Dark Age, where ideology is more important than fact.

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6 responses to “Australia’s mini-Dark Age, greeted with celebration

  1. Your question: Should the ill-informed and scientifically inept really hold the public discourse on highly complex scientific subjects?

    The complexity has little to do with it.

    Should we who are bound by physical laws of science (everyone) be forced to suffer painful consequences of thoughtless acts by deliberately misinformed ideologues?

    Or, another question: why do we allow this to happen?

    • My apologies, I thought the US would be able to rise above the shenanigans like yours in Australia. It seems not – just today (the rule for US media is that all the upsetting news is released on Friday afternoon to minimal audience. – but this appears in the Guardian http://www.theguardian.com/world/2013/sep/20/republicans-congress-science-laureate-bill-blocked)

      It seemed entirely harmless: the creation of an honorary and unpaid position of science laureate of the United States to travel around the country and inspire children to be future scientists.

      But Republicans in Congress last week quashed the initiative, which had gained rare bipartisan support, on the grounds that a science laureate might support action on climate change.

      The bill had been scheduled for swift approval last week. It would have allowed Barack Obama to name up to three laureates at a time to the two-year term. The posts would all be unpaid, and appointees credentials would be vetted by the National Academy of Sciences.

      But after urging from the American Conservative Union, which bills itself as the country’s largest and oldest grassroots conservative organisation, Republicans in the House leadership pulled the science laureate bill off the schedule, and sent it for revision.

      In a letter to members of Congress, Larry Hart, a former Republican congressional aide and the legislative director of the ACU, warned a science laureate might give Barack Obama another chance to advance the case for climate action.

      “Although the bill seems innocuous, it will provide the opportunity for President Obama to make an appointment of someone (or more than one person) who will share his view that science should serve political ends, on such issues as climate change and regulation of greenhouse gases,” Hart wrote in the letter…. (snip)

      • Martin Vermeer

        But what stops the NAS from on its own initiative appointing science laureates? If they are unpaid anyway… I’d take the good judgment of the NAS any day over that of a politician, any politician. Even BHO.

    • That’s the thing about democracy, it’s the popular vote, not the best informed. We allow it to happen because avoiding harsh realities are easier to digest.

      • Agreed, but just as gravity trumps all politics, a belief or elected office doesn’t matter to the laws of thermodynamics. No human – of either party can contravene atmospheric science and ocean chemistry . All that politically confused humans can do is try harder to prevent further discovery of climate science. These decisions in the US and Australia will just push the issue closer to the brink.

        I call it carbon confabulation – because it is such a deluded notion that somehow belief will cool the atmosphere. We are engaged in an act of discovery about our world. Choosing not to discover the science because it is painful — well, it means those who are the carbon confabulated will have to push PR denial much harder. How much of government effort should apply to actively suppress perceiving climate change?

        It’s like we are in a slow-crashing car, bouncing down a hillside over rocks and small trees. Now is not the time to accelerate. But because we do, then the crashes to come will have far more momentum and impact. Nothing personal, nothing political – it’s just rule of motion.

        Astounding levels of confabulation,

        Nice posts. Thanks for all that you do

      • Mann once put it along the lines that glaciers don’t play politics. They are neither democrats or republicans when they melt.

        I personally feel that we, as a community, are hard learners and gamble more freely than we individually would.

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