For some years, I have been something of a climate-change skeptic. Let me note here that that being a “skeptic” is a good thing, especially in the case of science, and especially-especially in the case of complicated science.
To be sure, I am not a scientist myself. But I have spent several years studying certain data associated with real climate change (i.e. world temperatures do seem to have climbed approximately 0.7 degrees Celsius over the last 100 years). I have done many indepent regressions testing out various local temperature trends. And I do have many years of computer programming, and (more important) computer modeling experience (this is important insofar as most of the significant conclusions of the climate change crowd can only be reached by relying on the output of complicated computer models which attempt to predict future climate).
I have slowly come to the conclusion that we know far less about our future climate than most climate alarmists would have you believe. Furthermore, I have also come to the conclusion that there is a fair bit of dirty ball being played by the other side to get the data to work out correctly. It seems that every time a skeptic points out a legitimate inconsistency in the climate change theory, after several years, somebody else comes out with some harebrained (but peer reviewed!) paper about why that particular inconsistency was actually consistent with the theory all along (and, obviously, thereby changing the theory along the way). My gut has told me that Michael Mann and his compatriots at RealClimate were, consciously unscrupulous or not, masters at this particular game.
Until now, aware of my own limitations, I have been reluctant to post about this topic. But upon seeing yesterday’s headlines, I knew something was up, and I lost patience. This is just too much.
PS: Pielke’s last statement is the greatest unanswered question in the climate change world.