Letters to the Editor

We don't get to vote on truth

Consensus "acquainteth ... with strange bedfellows" (Shakespeare).

"Consensus" empowers politicians and started the Iraq war. Now "consensus" produces man-caused climate change "science." And with Al Gore advocating that opposing views be suppressed for expediency, true knowledge is doomed.

In reality, the consensus argument (i.e., argumentum ad populum) is an age-old trick used to mask weaknesses in facts or logic. By contrast, modern science is rigid, not negotiable or up for vote. It applies fixed methodologies to develop sophisticated computer models as the hypothesis. Physical observations determine accuracy. Results are then aired internationally among scholarly peers. And the most complete predictive explanation becomes science, often with caveats.

Even the proponents' National Academy of Sciences reports that predictive climate modeling is immature. For instance, computer models predicted five severely damaging hurricanes for 2007; only two occurred. Until recently, scholars considered scientific models with such large errors trash.

Knowledge is doomed when voting determines science.

It is a true proverb: "If you do the right thing for the wrong reason, you will eventually do the wrong thing." Minimizing your environmental footprint is always prudent; we did by going solar. Our motivation was financial and environmental stewardship, not belief in man-caused climate change.

STEPHEN SAMPAYAN

Manteca

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