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The Corruption Of Science

March 5, 2016

By Paul Homewood


h/t AC Osborn




Hot on the heels of the RSS pause busting adjustments, themselves repeating NOAA’s own ones, Melanie Phillips has a thoughtful piece in the Times, which picks up on a statement by Richard Horton, editor-in-chief of The Lancet,


The case against science is straightforward: much of the scientific literature, perhaps half, may simply be untrue.”


According to a new study, scientists’ claims that coral reefs are doomed by ocean acidification are overplayed. An “inherent bias” in scientific journals, says the editor of ICES Journal of Marine Science, has excluded research showing marine creatures are not being damaged.

Instead, he says, many studies have used flawed methods by subjecting such creatures to sudden increases in carbon dioxide that would never happen in real life. No surprises there. The claim that CO2 emissions are acidifying the oceans is a favourite of climate-change alarmists.

Man-made global warming theory has been propped up by studies that many scientists have dismissed as methodologically flawed, ideologically bent or even fraudulent. The problem of scientific integrity, however, goes far wider. Psychology, neuroscience, physics and other scientific areas have been convulsed by revelations of dodgy research.

Richard Horton, editor-in-chief of The Lancet, has written bleakly: “The case against science is straightforward: much of the scientific literature, perhaps half, may simply be untrue.”

One reason is that cash-strapped universities, competing for money and talent, exert huge pressure on academics to publish more and more to meet the box-ticking criteria set by grant-funding bodies. Corners are being cut and mistakes being made.

But whatever happened to peer-review, the supposed kitemark of scientific integrity produced by the collective judgment of other researchers? Well, that seems to have gone south too. In 1998 Fiona Godlee, editor of the British Medical Journal, sent an article containing eight deliberate mistakes to more than 200 of the BMJ’s regular reviewers. Not one picked out all the mistakes. On average, they reported fewer than two; some did not spot any.

The problem lies with research itself. The cornerstone of scientific authority rests on the notion that replicating an experiment will produce the same result. If replication fails, the research is deemed flawed. But failure to replicate is widespread. In 2012, the OECD spent $59 billion on biomedical research, nearly double the 2000 figure. Yet an official at America’s National Institutes of Health has said researchers would find it hard to reproduce at least three-quarters of all published biomedical findings.

A 2005 study by John Ioannidis, an epidemiologist at Stanford University, said the majority of published research findings were probably false. At most, no more than about one in four findings from early-phase clinical trials would be true; epidemiological studies might have only a one in five chance of being true. “Empirical evidence on expert opinion”, he wrote, “shows that it is extremely unreliable”. […]

Underlying much of this disarray is surely the pressure to conform to an idea, whether political, commercial or ideological. Ideological fads produce financial and professional incentives to conform and punishment for dissent, whether loss of grant-funding or lack of advancement. As Professor Ioannidis observed: “For many current scientific fields, claimed research findings may often be simply accurate measures of the prevailing bias.” […]

Underlying this loss of scientific bearings is a closed intellectual circle. Scientists pose as secular priests. They alone, they claim, hold the keys to the universe. Those who aren’t scientists merely express uneducated opinion. The resulting absence of openness and transparency is proving the scientists’ undoing. In the words of Richard Horton, “science has taken a turn towards darkness”. But science defines modernity. It is our gold standard of truth and reason. This is the darkness of the West too.






The day before, the Washington Times asked some pertinent questions about NOAA’s shady practices: 


Pure science undertaken for science’s own sake is as rare as a rainbow. It’s certainly scarce in Washington, where the quest for knowledge is vulnerable to the bias of politics. Skeptics of President Obama’s climate change agenda say they see new evidence of fraud. If administration officials are colluding with scientists to cook the evidence, such as it might be, to demonstrate that the planet is warming, the skeptics deserve everyone’s thanks.

Whistleblowers within the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) complained last year that a major study by agency researcher Thomas Karl, refuting evidence of a pause in global warming, had been rushed to publication. The implication was that the study was coordinated with Obama administration officials to add to the urgency of the president’s climate change agenda in advance of the United Nations Climate Change Conference in Paris. Republicans on the House Committee on Science, Space and Technology issued a subpoena of records of NOAA communications dealing with the study.

The inquiry began afresh last month when Rep. Lamar Smith, wrote to NOAA expressing disappointment “with the slow pace and limited scope of the agency’s production [of such records],” which had yielded only 301 pages. Mr. Smith directed officials to broaden their search for relevant documents. He said the committee had received a letter signed by 325 scientists, engineers, economists and other scholars questioning whether the agency had properly peer-reviewed the “quality, objectivity, utility and integrity” of the data used in the Karl study.

Data consist of facts, and facts can be cherry-picked to yield a desired effect. In the NOAA study, researchers found that ocean temperatures measured by ships were warmer than those recorded by buoys anchored in place, and scientists “developed a method to correct the difference between ship and buoy measurements.” Ship’s engines, however, can heat nearby water and produce false readings. By including those values, critics contend, the agency may have effectively erased evidence of the global warming pause.

President Obama’s efforts to “re-engineer” the American energy industry is based on the argument that combustion of fossil fuels endangers the planet, and a rapid transition to renewable power sources is essential. The argument was the basis for the Paris climate change agreement, endorsed by nearly 200 nations. If documents were to emerge suggesting temperature data was doctored to reach an expedient conclusion in the NOAA study, and if White House officials were part of such a scheme, that would be proof that science had been recruited to serve politics. Trust in government would be further eroded.

This would not be the first instance of Obama-era back-channel scheming. Republican members of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee issued a report last summer accusing the Environmental Protection Agency of colluding with the Natural Resources Defense Council and other “green” organizations to develop the president’s landmark Clean Power Plan, which will saddle Americans with billions of dollars in higher energy bills for decades to come. EPA officials quietly schemed with environmentalists to write regulations reinforcing their shared climate change agenda. The agency has denied the accusations.

Science must be free from pressure to validate political goals. If findings and measurements are altered to serve a political agenda, the findings are flawed. It’s called fraud, and should be punished.

14 Comments leave one →
  1. Stonyground permalink
    March 5, 2016 1:57 pm

    Could it be that the climate change alarmism bubble is about to burst at last? Over the past few years I have seen so many false dawns that I had started to think that I wouldn’t see it in my lifetime. I began to wonder if our best hope was for the climate to get really cold, cold to such an extent that the warmest year ever stuff would lose what little credibility that it even had.

    If however serious people are starting to ask serious questions there maybe is hope. There seems to have been so much shoddy science involved in promoting the climate scare that the whole this must surely collapse like a house of cards once people other than sceptic bloggers start looking at it. Interestingly, Jerry Coyne’s otherwise excellent WEIT website used to be marred by frequent references to “climate change denial”. This seems to have abruptly ceased several months ago and left me wondering if JC has seen the light. Once enough sciency types speak up, the rush to change sides and claim that I was a sceptic all along is likely to be hugely entertaining.

  2. March 5, 2016 2:19 pm

    As a scientist, it breaks my heart that a discipline which has been trusted for many hundreds of years is now rendered worthless. In the 1970’s, while working on an “endangered species” project for the Smithsonian Institution’s Office of Environmental Science, I cautioned several colleagues who seemed to be playing a bit fast and loose with data. I told them that if they fudged data or lied about circumstances, when the general public caught on–and they would–academia would be forever trying to get their reputation back. We have reached that point. in 1969, I used NOAA’s temperature data from nearby Stony River Dam for my master’s thesis on Dolly Sod’s Alder Run Bog. Today, I would not touch their data with a 10 foot pole. As pointed out in the articles above, and as I have personally observed, the political takeover and neutering of truthful investigation has permeated all of science and medicine.

    “Without a moral framework, there is nothing left but immediate self-indulgence by some and the path of least resistance by others. Neither can sustain a free society.” –Thomas Sowell

    • Dorian permalink
      March 5, 2016 9:42 pm

      I have it on good authority that the Smithsonian Institute has for many decades been cheating with its scientific artefacts and projects. Apparently the Smithsonian keeps locked away many ancient relics that contradict today’s theories, especially on evolution.

      There should be laws against this. But who would create a law that would bring down so many vested interested parties! The Smithsonian is a very dishonest place, they are thoroughly anti-science.

      It is very sad what Science has become. Very sad.

  3. March 5, 2016 2:26 pm

    They’re going to struggle to falsify the existence of sea ice their models say shouldn’t be there, or at least should be disappearing fast – but isn’t.

    The shady practices can only get worse unless/until someone accepts that the ‘endless man-made warming’ theories don’t work as claimed.

  4. Joe Public permalink
    March 5, 2016 3:00 pm

    Yesterday, GreenPeace boasted of “5 species bouncing back from the brink of extinction”:

    Some have been brainwashed into believing climate has changed for the worse for many years.

    Yet google “Climate change” plus each of the creatures they mention, and at some time or other, climate change has been blamed for their ‘imminent’ demise.

  5. Keith Gugan permalink
    March 5, 2016 3:09 pm

    Call this elitist if you like but a significant factor in this false research is that too many are not now up to the job. In times past research was done because it was there to do – a niche had been detected and anyone interested and qualified could take up the challenge. There was no predilection, no partiality or preference for or in the outcome. The work might go nowhere or it might generate unexpected results; if it were noteworthy it could draw other researchers into challenging, or validating, it. If the work was trashed then so be it – move on.

    This sort of ethos is missing nowadays and it results from the dumbing down of all education in the schools, the universities, and in research – supervision that is just not rigorous enough. In large part the plethora of new universities is to blame. The fault lies with government, in attempting to keep youth in education and out of the unemployment statistics they have encouraged a massive increase in the student population attracted there by minimal entrance qualifications and courses which quite frankly are not testing enough. We are now faced with pontificating professors and ‘experts’ grown through the system who simply haven’t got what it takes.

    Fortunately for us all, there are a few institutions who do produce the goods; first rate pupils and under- and post-graduates who are linearly descended from our great forebears and who we can trust. These saviours keep to the science and abhor the politics and the limelight. These are the heavyweights however, and they are moving to undermine the fraudsters. They truly need and deserve our support and encouragement.

    • Dorian permalink
      March 5, 2016 9:31 pm

      What a load of rubbish!!

      Some of the biggest scams come out of the so called elite schools; MIT, CALTECH, CAMBRIDGE and so on.

      Read my comment. Students today are brain-washed and indoctrinated into supporting the false theories of their professors. If they don’t follow, they are ostracised and can never enter the hallow ivory towers of their High Priests.

      Questioning the dogma of today is forbidden. For example Cold Fusion, every body mocked Pons and Fleischmann, but NOT ONE of those mocking could explain what was in their experiments and STILL to this day there is still much work going on in this area. But it can’t get published because the High Priest’s of science do not let it. Why? Imagine if all of our understanding of Physics today is shown to be FALSE? That means every one with a Ph.D, say in Physics, is on a junk pile over night.

      Cold Fusion is only one example. Remember to disprove a theory you have to also prove its nullity! That is the Null Hypothesis should also be tested and explained, and as far something like Cold Fusion, this has not been done. People have failed to replicate the experiment but that is not disproving it! For there are those who have also replicated it but they are ignored!

      Mr. Gugan your writing nonsense. You are writing from a position of ignorance, open your eyes, stop looking just what is going on in the Name Brand Science Departments. We should not be following science by just listening to the Prada’s, Gucci’s and Armani’s of the the Science world.

      • THX1138 permalink
        March 6, 2016 6:16 pm

        Not only has cold fusion been shown to occur, but another ignored fact, demonstrated by Corentin Louis Kervran, is biological transmutation of elements, which he showed to occur in oats and other plants, and chickens and crabs, as well as other living organisms. His experiments were successfully and thoroughly reproduced by separate, independent scientists.

        But because these transmutations are not supposed to happen according to consensus physics, he was variously ignored and vilified.

        To anyone actually taking the time to read his books, one in particular, Biological Transmutations C. Louis Kervran, translation and adaptation by Michel Abehsera, 1989, 1998 (first published in 1972) ISBN 0-916508-47-1 OCLC 301517796 (extract of three of Kervran’s books), can plainly see that this process is occurring in Nature.

        Another demonstrable failure of consensus science.

  6. Dorian permalink
    March 5, 2016 9:13 pm

    I have been stating that Science is heading in a New Dark Ages for years. As once as a reviewer of scientific papers I would generally fail 90% of the papers that would be passed to me, until I got the “indirect” message (for editors don’t have the nerve to say it to my face), that I will not get papers any more to review. Why? Because most papers are just RUBBISH.

    The quality of scientific papers has plummeted. It is not just the quality, but also the capability and honesty of the writers are just down-right appalling these days. Scientists now use any measure to grow their paper count: lying, fabricating data, creating ridiculous theories, you name it, they will now do it.

    I have said this time and time again. How can you take anything in science seriously any more. Any kitsch sounding theory is more important that the science about it. Here are some scientific theories that are now accepted but have NO SCIENTIFIC basis other than a kitschy name: Global Warming, Black Holes, Evolution, Super Symmetry, Dark Matter/Energy, The Big Bang Theory, Every Single Economic Theory, Psycho-drugs, Genetic Modified anything.

    We spend BILLIONS on these theories and NOT A SINGLE ONE OF THEM have either been proven or like economics, has ever worked! Yet the academic communities and companies working in these fields make out like bandits. Science and Academia in general has become corrupt.

    Now take Engineering for example. You can’t fault Engineering. Why? Because Engineering disciplines have codes of behaviour and laws that they must abide by. Why is that? Because if we educated or let engineers become as corrupt as those in science have become, people would die! We need our cars, planes, pace-makers and so on to work. What needs to be done is that Science needs to have the same REGULATORY and LEGAL obligations that Engineering has. That means also, if a scientist lies they are legally punished and can also lose their credentials.

    As for things like Economics, that’s another problem entirely, and better left for another place to discuss. Like wise, with History and Historians, Medicine and Doctors, Psychology and Psychologists.

    We have serious problems in Science, it has become corrupt. And its time to police it!!!

    • emsnews permalink
      March 6, 2016 12:45 am

      Evolution is ‘false’??? HAHAHA. Talk about ignorance.

      • THX1138 permalink
        March 6, 2016 6:03 pm

        The Darwinian and neo-Darwinian theories of Evolution have been thoroughly falsified. The idea that change in species can only occur via small random changes to genes through thousands and millions of years, and in only a one-way process, has also been falsified. Lamarckian theory has been shown to be a robust explanation of speciation, via epigenetics, which has proven information from the environment is carried into the germ cell, and can provide heritable characteristics.

        This is another example of “settled science”, wherein “scientific consensus” is being proven wrong daily. The false dichotomy of “creationism vs. science” has been one method used to convince, distract, and bully an incorrect theory into the minds of the public.

        Anyone who is not studied in new discoveries in true science, calling someone else ignorant, is displaying his ignorance quite blatantly.

  7. THX1138 permalink
    March 6, 2016 12:22 am

    The first thing a medical student is told upon starting in medical school is: “Half of what we will teach you is wrong, but we don’t know which half, so you have to learn all of it.” Think about that the next time you go to visit a doctor or hospital.

    Long after his death, Pasteur’s lab notes and personal papers were released to the public. Upon examination, it turns out he had falsified experimental data, and in some cases did not do the experiments to begin with. This in order to push his agenda, namely the “Germ Theory” of disease. Pasteur was a political appointee by Napoleon, and very much had his favor and the media’s as well.

    Einstein plagiarized his famous E=mc² formula, and twisted its meaning to fit his agenda. He also plagiarized his wife’s papers in mathematics in order to get through school. Everything Einstein purported to be the truth is now being falsified. Einstein became famous because papers like the New York Times pushed his “genius” as if they were selling Ivory Soap to the public. Einstein set physics and cosmology back a hundred years.

    There are diligent scientists, including engineers, taking over the job that institutional scientists have been shirking for decades, but you won’t see them published in the Elsevier-dominated “scientific” journals. Three names come to mind, Wal Thornhill of Electric Universe fame, Halton Arp who showed that redshift does not signify distance (or speed for that matter) and Ionel Dinu, who has falsified Maxwell’s theory of light being electromagnetic in nature and shows that light is a longitudinal magnetic (with no electric field component) wave in the æther. (And yes, Dayton Miller did indeed prove that the æther exists.)

    Science is a religion. Count how many times “scientists” in their press releases use the word “believe”. Scientists adhere to dogma, and call dissidents “heretics” and “crackpots” (their words, not mine.) There have been serious flaws in “science” since at least the 1800’s. It’s just more visible and perhaps more rampant than it once was.

  8. April 8, 2016 12:57 am

    Reblogged this on Climate Collections.

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