, I expected your skepticism regarding global warming to make an appearance, but I had at least hoped that you could look past it and try to answer the general question I was posing. I don't see that you've done that however.
The question is: did he change the science or did he change the emphasis?
A scientific study is more than just statistics and variables. The conclusion is just as scientific
as the observations, so long as it is arrived at using the scientific method. I challenge you to find a single scientist who would agree that changing the "emphasis" of a study does not also change it's meaning. If a study concludes that there is a link between global warming and carbon dioxide emissions, it's meaning is simple: There is a link between global warming and carbon dioxide emissions.
Of course, for some people this is politically unpalatable, so lets say that we make a change or two; one that emphasis the antithetical element of the study. All of a sudden the "meaning" becomes: There is a potential link between global warming and carbox dioxide emissions.
I trust even you can see the FUNDAMENTAL difference this creates, especially if we are to understand meaning in the politicized context in which it is understood. One suggests action, or at the very least comprehensive and strong investigation from a strong hypothesis. The other simply suggests that further research is necessary.
You must admit that some people downplay the uncertainties involved with global warming predictions and gloss over the uncertainties involved.
I'm not sure what you're implying here... Two wrongs make a right? That seems like a strange thing for someone who claims to be level-headed asserting.
Without seeing the actual removed paragraph, it is pretty much impossible to determine if it was "off topic".
Who cares? You completely missed the point of my objection to this action. The man in question did not remove hte paragraph because it's off topic (even though anyone who knows what the terms "glacier" and "snowpack" mean appreciate that it isn't), but because it was apparently a "speculative" finding. Is it speculative? Perhaps; without reading it we can't be certain. However, the ONLY appropriate way to refute "speculative" findings in a scientific study is further research. The deletion would be wholly inappropriate if another scientist had made the alteration; the fact that a politician did so is a further outrage. If you can't understand that the integrity of the scientific process demands that individual research should remain independent, then I'm not sure you're qualified to speak to any question regarding science itself.
Do you mean by emphasizing the things that we don't know such as the mechanisms and interactions? Maybe. The article clearly is slanted to give us that impression although the evidence is fairly scant. Why would Bush fund a multi-billion dollar agency to study this if it didn't have some importance?
You know, very few things enrage me like the standard "that article is slanted" defense. You know what Amlord... go prove it. Seriously, go out and find something that indicates that the article leans away from the truth even one iota. Go ahead, I don't mind. Simply saying it is slanted because it presents a truth that differs from your own does nothing but damage your own integrity as a contributor to this discussion. The evidence of global warming is scant? The evidence is in fact plentiful. There is a tremendous difference between disputed and non-existent. The New York Times, myself, and the majority of scientists/climatologists/environmentalists choose to interpret the evidence, gaps and all, in one way. This choice is for the most part made by an unbiased reading of the facts. Agree with me or not, the fact remains that I have made my choice not because I want
to believe that global warming is being influenced by humans, but because the evidence tells me that. If the evidence speaks to you in a different way, so be it. I don't think your opinion is SLANTED because I disagree with you (even though I do think it's wrong.
) Your attempt to discredit the argument in such a fashion though is beneath you.
Now, howabout you actually ANSWER the questions I asked. So far all you have done is try to turn them on their head by engaging the science global warming in your roundabout, "well shucks they just don't know" strategy. The fact is that Mr. Cooney is not a scientist, nor is he qualified to make qualitative changes to scientific research; yet he appears to have done so. Instead of discussing whether or not this is appropriate, you've actually gone and tried to do the same thing that Cooney himself did.