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Started by localhost on Dec 9, 2015 12:04:12 PM
Academics earn cash shilling for big oil

It's long been a puzzle why a small number of academics consistently publish bad science denying climate change or minimising its impact.

Now we know why - they're for hire:

http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2015/dec/08
/greenpeace-exposes-sceptics-cast-doubt-climate-science

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Tenesmus - 09 Dec 2015 12:16:55 (#1 of 181)

Hardly worth the effort for a shilling.

tasselhoff - 09 Dec 2015 12:21:40 (#2 of 181)

Positive peer review at $250/hour. Nice.

AdrianNTierney - 09 Dec 2015 17:28:05 (#3 of 181)

From The Graun article linked:

“My activities to push back against climate extremism are a labor of love, to defend the cherished ideals of science that have been so corrupted by the climate change cult,” Frank Happer wrote in an email.

tasselhoff - 09 Dec 2015 17:32:57 (#4 of 181)

That's a funny quote. I'm not sure how getting caught shilling is defending science. But he's got balls, I'll give him that.

tasselhoff - 09 Dec 2015 17:33:57 (#5 of 181)

Also, in an email exchange with the fake business representative, Happer acknowledges that his report would probably not pass peer-review with a scientific journal

Another funny interpretation of defending science.

WhitsInYerBagBigman - 09 Dec 2015 17:38:09 (#6 of 181)

I'm not sure how getting caught shilling is defending science.

Because he is - justifiably - arguing against the most extreme Climate Change positions, and therefore defending science which does not support extreme CC positions. See?

tasselhoff - 09 Dec 2015 17:43:01 (#7 of 181)

I don't know if you're taking the piss, but scientists defending science tend to do so ethically rather than committing to a pre-determined course of action for money.

AdrianNTierney - 09 Dec 2015 18:52:46 (#8 of 181)

but scientists defending science tend to do so ethically rather than committing to a pre-determined course of action for money.

Oh dear! Do you truly believe that?

Then you're the perfect mark for the next scamster to come down the pike.

sympforthedevil - 09 Dec 2015 19:32:38 (#9 of 181)

TBF, the article said that Happer said that he wanted his fee given to the C02 Coalition and Oreskes says of him (and some other similar physicists) that "it’s not about money, it’s ideologically driven.".

You can say that he's misguided but, for him personally, it does sound like a case of being ideologically driven by conviction rather than being a "gun for hire" for whoever will offer him the most cash.

FluffyKitten - 09 Dec 2015 19:35:53 (#10 of 181)

Yabut, when he offers to mess with the review process to give his shitty paper a gloss of respectability, he shows his true colors.

Zimtkuchen - 09 Dec 2015 19:44:39 (#11 of 181)

Yes, as always with the deniers, the ideology trumps (ahem!) the science.

FluffyKitten - 09 Dec 2015 19:45:25 (#12 of 181)

WHAT ABOUT FREEDOM OF SPEECH, EH? EH?

Sigh.

sympforthedevil - 09 Dec 2015 19:47:55 (#13 of 181)

#10 - Fair point.

I suppose that he would say that the dominant consensus in climate science is wrong but it's making it much harder for dissenting articles to get through the peer review process so trying to cheat the system is de rigeur for dissenters.

AdrianNTierney - 09 Dec 2015 21:25:49 (#14 of 181)

The peer review system's broken. At least that's what the more honest types will tell you. Selecting accommodating and partial reviewers seems to be the norm now.

tasselhoff - 10 Dec 2015 09:22:18 (#15 of 181)

TBF, the article said that Happer said that he wanted his fee given to the C02 Coalition and Oreskes says of him (and some other similar physicists) that "it’s not about money, it’s ideologically driven.".

According to Le Monde he gets paid by the CO2 Coalition.

thedrunktank - 10 Dec 2015 09:27:27 (#16 of 181)

If someone was genuinely out to deny climate change for ideological reasons, why would they accept money for doing it, since this would be likely to damage their cause?

Policywatcher - 10 Dec 2015 09:31:54 (#17 of 181)

> AdrianNTierney - 09 Dec 2015 18:52:46 ( #8 of 15)

> Oh dear! Do you truly believe that?

Yes. Because the ones doing it for money aren't "defending science". They are corrupting it for money.

And the climate change deniers have it down to a full on business.

> Then you're the perfect mark for the next scamster to come down the pike.

No, we've always known the difference between the ones defending science and the ones just out to debunk AGW for the benefit of their owners.

> The peer review system's broken. At least that's what the more honest types will tell you. Selecting accommodating and partial reviewers seems to be the norm now.

Indeed. Now I wonder who drove that process.... Oh yes - the tobacco industry, the fossil fuels industry, certain slices of the pharmaceutical industry,....

thedrunktank - 10 Dec 2015 09:49:09 (#18 of 181)

It makes sense for the work of a corrupt fraudster to be reviewed by another corrupt fraudster. Otherwise it wouldn't be peer review.

thisonehasalittlehat - 10 Dec 2015 09:55:20 (#19 of 181)

The peer review system is many things. Perfect isn't one of them.

Policywatcher - 10 Dec 2015 10:05:34 (#20 of 181)

Perfection isn't possible when various groups are trying to rig the system for profit, and when some of the major scientific publishers are playing silly buggers for profit.

Bad though peer review is, it is also hard to see what the viable alternatives might be.

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