The only thing we can be sure of about the future is that it will be absolutely fantastic. So if what I say now seems to you to be very reasonable, then I have failed completely. Only if what I tell you appears absolutely unbelievable, have we any chance of visualizing the future as it really will happen.

- Arthur C. Clarke (h/t Brin)

Saturday, July 10, 2010

NYTimes Hopes for Better from NYTimes

There's an encouraging editorial in today's New York Times:
Perhaps now we can put the manufactured controversy known as Climategate behind us and turn to the task of actually doing something about global warming. On Wednesday, a panel in Britain concluded that scientists whose e-mail had been hacked late last year had not, as critics alleged, distorted scientific evidence to prove that global warming was occurring and that human beings were primarily responsible.
...

Climate skeptics pounced on [the stolen emails] as evidence of a conspiracy to manipulate research to support predetermined ideas about global warming.

The panel found no such conspiracy. It complained mildly about one poorly explained temperature chart discussed in the e-mail, but otherwise found no reason to dispute the scientists’ “rigor and honesty.” Two earlier panels convened by Britain’s Royal Society and the House of Commons reached essentially the same verdict. And this month, a second panel at Penn State University exonerated Michael Mann, a prominent climatologist and faculty member, of scientific wrongdoing.

This is more like what we need, now. Encouraging.

But somewhat peculiar, too. Alas, the fine print (original font settings) says:

A version of this editorial appeared in print on July 11, 2010, on page WK7 of the New York edition.

Does this mean it was only in the local edition? I guess it hardly matters. Who looks at print anymore? But then there's the concluding sentence:
Given the trajectory the scientists say we are on, one must hope that the academy’s report, and Wednesday’s debunking of Climategate, will receive as much circulation as the original, diversionary controversies.
The Times hopes, inter alia, that the Times does much better on this story. Well, I agree. Hopefully the Times is in a better position to do something about it than I am...

1 comment:

gravityloss said...

Oh, the irony. Or is that the right word? Lack of introspective capability?
Well noted.