It is of course, the global warming scam, with the (literally) trillions of dollars driving it, that has corrupted so many scientists, and has carried APS before it like a rogue wave. It is the greatest and most successful pseudoscientific fraud I have seen in my long life as a physicist. Anyone who has the faintest doubt that this is so should force himself to read the ClimateGate documents, which lay it bare. (Montford’s book organizes the facts very well.) I don’t believe that any real physicist, nay scientist, can read that stuff without revulsion. I would almost make that revulsion a definition of the word scientist.[snip]
About a year ago a few of us sent an e-mail on the subject to a fraction of the membership. APS ignored the issues, but the then President immediately launched a hostile investigation of where we got the e-mail addresses. In its better days, APS used to encourage discussion of important issues, and indeed the Constitution cites that as its principal purpose. No more. Everything that has been done in the last year has been designed to silence debate.
The appallingly tendentious APS statement on Climate Change was apparently written in a hurry by a few people over lunch, and is certainly not representative of the talents of APS members as I have long known them. So a few of us petitioned the Council to reconsider it. One of the outstanding marks of (in)distinction in the Statement was the poison word incontrovertible, which describes few items in physics, certainly not this one. In response APS appointed a secret committee that never met, never troubled to speak to any skeptics, yet endorsed the Statement in its entirety. (They did admit that the tone was a bit strong, but amazingly kept the poison word incontrovertible to describe the evidence, a position supported by no one.) In the end, the Council kept the original statement, word for word, but approved a far longer “explanatory” screed, admitting that there were uncertainties, but brushing them aside to give blanket approval to the original. The original Statement, which still stands as the APS position, also contains what I consider pompous and asinine advice to all world governments, as if the APS were master of the universe. It is not, and I am embarrassed that our leaders seem to think it is. This is not fun and games, these are serious matters involving vast fractions of our national substance, and the reputation of the Society as a scientific society is at stake.
Okay, now that your appetite is whetted, go read the rest.
By the way, I recently saw a commentator at another blog literally state that AGW is basic physics, demonstrated in the lab, because the radiative properties of carbon are well-understood and demonstrated in the lab. I replied that I exercise a gravitational pull on the planet Jupiter. This also is basic physics. But it does not mean that I am going to cause the planet Jupiter to crash into the earth and that something must be done to prevent this.
In other news, the EPA is considering shutting down the U.S. beef industry by means of draconian regulations on...dust.
Oh, I'll lift here out of obscurity a comment I made about environmentalists in a thread at W4:
Plenty of environmentalists dislike the developed world's economy, period, because they have a romantic love of what they view as a more "pristine" earth in which man doesn't do all the things that really are good for man. How can you reason with people who think that composting toilets are great because they're natural and need less fresh water to operate? Seriously, I think you're leaving out the substantial proportion of this movement that is plain, unvarnished, anti-development, anti-technology, and anti-human and would be just as happy if human flourishing were seriously damaged so long as the world and the human "environment" were left in the end dirtier, smellier, more dangerous, and more like things were before man ever came along. This, as an end in itself.
(And I wrote that before I heard about the EPA's insanity vis a vis the beef industry.)
HT on both the letter and the beef industry news: Secondhand Smoke