Sunday, December 16, 2007

Pope: Global warming assessment must be based on ‘science not dogma’

It is something of a topsy-turvy world when a pope tells us to base our thinking on ‘science, not dogma’, and doubtless an aggrieved Galileo may feel somewhat vindicated, but here is a man on the world stage who is prepared express doubts about the ‘Green’ movement which is just as dogmatic in its assumptions as any religion. This declaration from the Pope is consistent with the man’s propensity to favour the virtues of rationalism, which he has already applied to interfaith dialogue between Christians and Muslims.

The Roman Catholic Church is not anti-scientific. While its treatment of Galileo may have been acknowledged to have been ‘an error’, Copernicus dedicated his famous heliocentric work, ‘On the Revolution of the Celestial Orbs’, to Pope Paul III. Copernicus then bequeathed this work to Andreas Osiander, a Lutheran clergyman who knew that Protestant reaction to it would be negative, since Luther himself was not favourable to the new theory. And Kepler also found opposition among his fellow Protestants for his heliocentric views, yet found a welcome reception among a group of Jesuits who were noted for their astronomical interests.

And it is the Pope of Rome who is now challenging the orthodoxy of the political aspects of the global warming movement around the world. That, of course, is true acknowledgement of the scientific method: a world apart from the hysteria surrounding the half-baked theories of pseudo-scientists and ignoramuses like Al Gore. Here we have a pope who is defending the protestants of postmodernity, confronting head-on the climate change ‘prophets of doom’ with the warning that any solutions to global warming ‘must be based on firm evidence and not on dubious ideology’.

He dismisses talk of man-made emissions melting the ice caps as ‘scare-mongering’, and demands that assessment ‘be carried out prudently, in dialogue with experts and people of wisdom, uninhibited by ideological pressure to draw hasty conclusions, and above all with the aim of reaching agreement on a model of sustainable development capable of ensuring the well-being of all while respecting environmental balances’.

And now there has been a 'breakthrough' in Bali, with the administration of President Bush apparently conceding on the matter and now joined by Australia’s new Prime Minister Kevin Rudd, there is an inexorable spiritual drive to inculcate the population of the world with the worship of Mother Earth, to indoctrinate with the dogma of Gaia, against which the Pope alone declares: 'Here I stand. I can do no other. God help me.'


Anonymous KGS said...

According to Robert Spencer's book: "Religion of Peace? Why Christianity is and Islam Isn't", a portion dealing with the Catholic Church's supposed anti-scientific reactionism, Spencer looks to historian Jerome Langford.

According to Langford, Pope Urban VIII, who became pope in 1624, assured Galileo that Copernican theory of heliocentrism would never be declared heretical by the Church.

The Pope while still a Cardinal (Maffeo Barberini) sent Galileo letter of congratulations when he published his supporting evidence. What was in question then, was Galileo's "premature pronouncement" of the Capernican theory as fact, not that it was in great breach with Church theology or dogma.

It appears that the original position of the Church was that he should have waited until further proof was gathered, not that the proof he had was faulty or in violation of Church teaching. Galileo was asked then in 1616 to teach the work as theory, only in 1632 did he begin to teach it as fact again, putting himself in breach of his original agreement.

The teaching of helicentrism never amounted to being an act of heresy, but that of an unproven theory being taught as fact.

16 December 2007 at 19:29  
Blogger Dr.D said...

Pope Benedict is showing far more wisdom than most of our politicians and public officials today. He is one of the few who still dare to speak the truth without regard for political correctness. In the current time, the truth is what we need most of all; it is in exceedingly short supply in this world.

Charlatans like Algore seek to pass of fraudulent "science" that is totally driven by a political agenda to deprive many people of their liberty, property, and livelihoods. These people have no conscience and are quite willing to do untold amounts of damage to the world and all the people in it as long as it their own political purposes are served.

When you are sick, you go to a physician, not to a politician for a solution to your ailment. In the same manner, if there is a problem with the climate (and that is a big if), it will not be the politicians that we should look to for solutions.

The herd of "experts" that the Goracle lined up to support his views included almost no one with real knowledge relevant to the subject. This august group was unanimous in support of the scripted opinions give to them, all of which proves nothing. Science is not based on consensus at all. It is based on one person with the necessary insight who can then explain that insight to others. This concept is lost on Leftists like the Goracle who think that the truth can be whatever they want it to be, especially when they have a majority!

Thank God for Pope Benedict!

16 December 2007 at 21:28  
Anonymous Atlas shrugged said...

The entire purpose of brainwashing MMGCC propaganda is the virtual destruction of ordinary human life on this already very very UNDER populated planet.

Quite simply it is complete rubbish from start to finish. On this FACT I would bet the souls of myself and by entire family without a moments hesitation.

It is evil without a shadow of any doubt whatsoever. The potential implications of which could justify a holocaust that would make anything Hitler and the then Pope was responsible for, look like a small scratch on a small boys back side.

If one of the reasons for all this deeply fascist collectivist elitist nonsense was to drive the un brainwashed populations of the planet insane and remove their confidence in government the will to reproduce or even live at all?

Then it is certainly working in my case.

But what is far more scary then even that. Is that it could well be a deliberately created prelude to a future never ending world war.

When it is time for this planet to depopulate yet again, which hopefully will not be for a few more hundreds of thousands of years or so.

There will be absolutely nothing we can or should even try to do about it. The effort would be more then futile to say the very least. If past very ancient civilizations did not manage it, which were infinitely more numerous and intelligent then us glorified monkeys. We certainly don't stand a politicians change in hell.

My anger is absolute as is my disillusionment, with those that claim to be our betters.

Totally evil inhuman cruelty beyond rational comprehension. Its enough to make you want to strap a bomb to your body and walk straight though the doors of Broadcasting House.

Something someday I am increasingly sure someone, but not me, will gladly do.

16 December 2007 at 21:37  
Blogger Gerv said...

He dismisses talk of man-made emissions melting the ice caps as ‘scare-mongering’

Then why are they melting? There are not many ways you can measure areas of ice; it's not like the data is in doubt. The minimum size of the North Pole ice cap is getting smaller at about 8% per decade, which seems like a heck of a lot to me. I guess you could argue that this is just natural variability, but I haven't heard anyone actually trying to do so.

It seems interesting to me that all of the blogs I've read which take issue with the idea of global warming do so by pointing at the people promoting it. Isn't that just an enormous ad hominem? "They are all statists/pseudo-scientists/ignoramuses/prophets of doom/earth worshippers." They may be some or all of those things, but they are referencing actual data and drawing conclusions. Where's the engagement with the science?

Here's Wikipedia's summary of the current situation, including details of the "scientific consensus". Which part of this summary is wrong? Or, if it's all correct, why are politicians foolish to act on it?

The global average air temperature near the Earth's surface rose 0.74 ± 0.18 °C (1.33 ± 0.32 °F) during the last 100 years. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) concludes, "most of the observed increase in globally averaged temperatures since the mid-20th century is very likely due to the observed increase in anthropogenic greenhouse gas concentrations" via the greenhouse effect. Natural phenomena such as solar variation combined with volcanoes probably had a small warming effect from pre-industrial times to 1950 and a small cooling effect from 1950 onward. These basic conclusions have been endorsed by at least 30 scientific societies and academies of science, including all of the national academies of science of the major industrialized countries. While individual scientists have voiced disagreement with some of the main conclusions of the IPCC, the overwhelming majority of scientists working on climate change are in agreement with them.

16 December 2007 at 22:35  
Blogger Dr.D said...

Gerv, one of the problems with the date is reported at this URL:

This is just for one location, but we can expect similar problems with the data at many (most?) of the other locations, so there is a real question about the input data on which the conclusions are based.

17 December 2007 at 03:50  
Blogger Gerv said...

Dr. D: That URL just gives errors for me. Do you have a working one?

Regardless, why is it you say we can "expect" similar problems with the data at most of the other locations? And what do you mean by "the data" anyway? The IPCC report, for example, took in many different sources of data of many different types (things as diverse as ice cores, tree rings, satellite temperature measurements, thermometers, tidal records, etc. etc.) all taken by different people at different locations at different times. It seems somewhat far-fetched to argue that all of these scientists across the world are equally incompetent and, moreover, that their errors are all in the same direction.

17 December 2007 at 09:46  
Blogger Dr.D said...

Gerv, I copied the URL straight off of this comment block and pasted it in and it worked just fine. I don't think that there is any problem with it.

You need to see that URL to understand the answer to the rest of your comment. The over all answer is that the data is mostly noise and no information, and from that you can "extract" almost anything you want to find.

17 December 2007 at 14:51  
Blogger Gerv said...

When I access that URL, I get a page full of text like:

"Warning: main() [function.main]: Unable to access /home/virtual/site73/fst/var/www/html/wp-content/advanced-cache.php in /home/virtual/site73/fst/var/www/html/wp-settings.php on line 69

Warning: main(/home/virtual/site73/fst/var/www/html/wp-content/advanced-cache.php) [function.main]: failed to open stream: Permission denied in /home/virtual/site73/fst/var/www/html/wp-settings.php on line 69"

What do you see?

When you say "the data" is mostly noise and no information, which data do you mean? Every piece of data which has ever been used to build up the broad picture of how the climate is or isn't changing?

17 December 2007 at 15:35  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

My Lord,

To say that "Luther himself was not favourable to the new theory" is to overstate the case. The only references we have to Luther's opinion on the subject are a couple of overheard statements recorded in the Tabletalk. At the time of the statements Luther was already an old man. And we cannot be sure of the familiarity of the details of the theory. In short, to deduce from the very few off-hand recorded statments left to us that he was opposed to the theory is not warranted.

17 December 2007 at 16:28  
Blogger Dr.D said...


When I copy that URL into my browser, it takes me to a site that begins with a blue band header (actually a photo of sky, I think) with the words Climate Audit by Steve McIntyre and below that is a photo of the San Francisco skyline and an article with a number of other photos and text. I don't know why you cannot get it. It is worth the effort.

17 December 2007 at 18:18  
Anonymous the last toryboy said...

The Sun is supposed to be entering another dim period, lasting perhaps as long as twenty years, during which global cooling will probably be a bigger issue.

Shame, I was hoping for some hot weather and grape cultivation going on in the UK.

20 December 2007 at 06:24  
Blogger Chuck Unsworth said...

Your Grace

How does one differentiate between science and dogma? Science, as we presently understand it, is subject to constant change. Equally it is subject to many influences - often political. Indeed, I would suggest that science may often be a matter of opinion.

Can this not be said of dogma?

20 December 2007 at 09:54  
Anonymous workaday joe said...

There is simply no rationale for thinking that the Earth is not warming and that humans are not responsible. There is- in my mind at least- an open question of whether we could actually stop it or whether we're better off preparing for the inevitable. But I see no compelling evidence, unless you count Al Gore bashing as evidence, against the basic science behind global warming and the human causes of it.

I'm glad the Pope wants us to believe in science. It's all there.

22 December 2007 at 06:09  
Anonymous workaday joe said...

Sorry, I can't help myself. Let's look at what the Pope actually said:

"It is important for assessments in this regard to be carried out prudently, in dialogue with experts and people of wisdom, uninhibited by ideological pressure to draw hasty conclusions, and above all with the aim of reaching agreement on a model of sustainable development capable of ensuring the well-being of all while respecting environmental balances."

what is prudence?

"Prudence does not mean failing to accept responsibilities and postponing decisions; it means being committed to making joint decisions after pondering responsibly the road to be taken."

Indeed, this is what is needed. I don't think Al Gore could have said it better.

Merry Christmas everyone.

22 December 2007 at 06:34  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dogma has to consist of divine revelation in order for it to be dogma. As far as I know there is nothing in either Scripture or tradition that states that sunshine is caused by cars backfiring or cows burping. But what do I know?

27 December 2007 at 13:58  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

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14 January 2009 at 07:28  

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