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ToSeek
2010-May-04, 01:20 AM
This was what was agreed upon after considerable discussion amongst the moderators:

1. Global warming is occurring and is mainstream; anti-GW belongs in ATM.
2. Human activities (AGW) are a major contributor to GW; the specific contributors and their level of contribution may be discussed, but anti-AGW belongs in ATM.
3. There are other contributors besides AGW; these may be discussed.

kleindoofy
2010-May-04, 01:41 AM
This is going to be interesting.

Do we get free popcorn? ;)

Ronald Brak
2010-May-04, 04:23 AM
I think this is a very good decision. (Although to be fair, if I didn't agree with it I probably wouldn't think it was a very good decision.)

Canis Lupus
2010-May-04, 06:00 AM
It's still within mainstream then to contend that although mankind contributes to global warming, mankind being part of nature, does not make it unnatural or necessarily anything to be concerned about?

Spoons
2010-May-04, 06:39 AM
Nice acrobatics! You may have just given them a bunch more headaches.

Call the lawyers.

I think they're mainly against excluding the A from AGW. Is that basically the stance BAUT has taken? Whether you call it nature or not (though it clearly is nature) humans are to blame?

ETA: I'm not so sure they care whether you or I care about the issue, so long as we respect their definition of the cause.

Canis Lupus
2010-May-04, 07:12 AM
I hope it doesn't cause them headaches, I would just prefer to avoid a slight one myself, heading off the possibility of taking a bullet later on if I decide to stick my nose into such a debate. I can see some of the angst the issue has created for those managing this board, and many other forums.

HenrikOlsen
2010-May-04, 07:57 AM
Whether the human part of global warming is natural or not isn't really relevant, it's that that is the part we can influence, hence that's the part where the moral onus is on us for the consequences.

Since this really boils down to a moral stance only partially informed by science, evangelists on both sides considered lies and misinformation to be acceptable tools to get everyone else to follow their lead. This spilled over to this place, to the point where there were threads I couldn't read because they made me nauseous and want to hunt someone down to beat him.

I really wish the moderators all the best with trying to keep that behavior in check this time, I think we failed miserably back when I was one.

Canis Lupus
2010-May-04, 08:31 AM
Yes, I understand, Henrik. Of course, I don't wish to initiate a debate within this thread, merely seeking some clarity from the team.

aastrotech
2010-May-04, 11:58 AM
This was what was agreed upon after considerable discussion amongst the moderators:

1. Global warming is occurring and is mainstream; anti-GW belongs in ATM.
2. Human activities (AGW) are a major contributor to GW; the specific contributors and their level of contribution may be discussed, but anti-AGW belongs in ATM.
3. There are other contributors besides AGW; these may be discussed.


I have a question regarding 2 and 3. Would a comparison between naturaly produced GW gasses and human produced gasses be ATM if the intent is to show how little humans contribute in comparison to natural production, or how variable natural production is WRT human contributions? For example would an utterly pedantic comparison of naturaly produced water vapor and its variability compared to human contributed water vapor be required to prove, according to BAUT's undefined standards, that naturaly produced water vapor is greater than human produced or that natural production of water vapor is variable.

Strange
2010-May-04, 12:14 PM
It's still within mainstream then to contend that although mankind contributes to global warming, mankind being part of nature, does not make it unnatural or necessarily anything to be concerned about?

I assume that is two separate points? You are not suggesting that if it can be argued that it is natural then it is nothing to worry about. For example: war, nuclear power, opera and plastic are all equally "natural"; whether they are things we should seek to limit is a separate argument.

This does highlight a gap in the new rules: is it ATM or mainstream to argue that [A]GW is Not a Bad Thing (or even, as some do, that it is a Good Thing)?

NEOWatcher
2010-May-04, 12:19 PM
It's already becoming obvious that this is going to be a hard one to moderate, or at least adjust the rules to avoid the loopholes.
My personal feeling is that if a point is to be shown then fine. But if it is to show another point, or form an opinion, then it must be in context of the big picture.

Swift
2010-May-04, 12:27 PM
This does highlight a gap in the new rules: is it ATM or mainstream to argue that [A]GW is Not a Bad Thing (or even, as some do, that it is a Good Thing)?


It's still within mainstream then to contend that although mankind contributes to global warming, mankind being part of nature, does not make it unnatural or necessarily anything to be concerned about?
Yes, that would be within mainstream. You are free to be concerned, or not.

But (and this is a big but), since the doing (or not doing) anything about it is generally a political decision, not a scientific one, the discussion about doing or not doing something is still going to face our normal restrictions on politcs.

Swift
2010-May-04, 12:34 PM
I have a question regarding 2 and 3. Would a comparison between naturaly produced GW gasses and human produced gasses be ATM if the intent is to show how little humans contribute in comparison to natural production, or how variable natural production is WRT human contributions? For example would an utterly pedantic comparison of naturaly produced water vapor and its variability compared to human contributed water vapor be required to prove, according to BAUT's undefined standards, that naturaly produced water vapor is greater than human produced or that natural production of water vapor is variable.
In my judgment, that would be against the new policy, since it would be arguing that human activities are not a major contributor to GW, and such an argument would be ATM.

Swift
2010-May-04, 12:42 PM
This is my opinion (and a humble one at that) as a person who is a moderator, and not an official BAUT position (no purple).

I am happy that people are trying to understand the new policy. But I am also more than a little concerned that a couple of people seem to be as quickly as possible trying to push the limit of it, so as to try to get around its intent.

I will tell you now that this was an extremely hard policy for us to create; the last push took a couple of months, and this after years literally of talking about it on and off. We tried to take into consideration the opinions of the board's owners, the complexity of the issue, to keep it fair and open to discussion, but to also keep it within mainstream science.

There was another choice we had, which was to add it to the list of forbidden topics on BAUT, and there were some strong arguments to do exactly that. I will tell people now that, IMHO, if in spite of these new rules, if people make it impossible to enforce this in a civil manner, that making it a forbidden topic will be the fall back position.

Canis Lupus
2010-May-04, 01:58 PM
.... I am also more than a little concerned that a couple of people seem to be as quickly as possible trying to push the limit of it, so as to try to get around its intent...

If this is a reference to my question, I am sorry it is being perceived that way. Maybe it's my legal training to immediately look for a ruling such as I have. Upon reading the policy, the question immediately came to mind. Having seen these debates rage on other forums, I must say, I'm a little tired of the issue, although I do have fairly strong views on the subject, and can't rule myself out of being sucked into any vortex which might arise with the re-introduction of the subject. I would however simply like a better understanding of the ruling when there is no passion flowing, and the question I posed does reflect some of my thinking about the matter rather than any desire to circumnavigate any rules ie. it seemed natural to ask, given I am fairly new to the board, were not involved in previous debates on the subject here with this board's existing rules applying, and it represents my thinking to some degree, not out of any desire to stretch the rules. I don't care too much what the rules are here on the subject, but I do care if I don't understand them, and later fall foul of them because of that misunderstanding. I've enjoyed the board without the subject and I'm not chomping at the bit to be involved in any debate on the subject.

I take it also that, those arguing urban heat sink effecting mainstream conclusions, will only be able to do so in ATM, and that the data suggesting global warming, according to the rules here, is beyond normal questioning outside of ATM. For example, views such as Dr. John R. Christy, which attributes some proportion, if not all, of ground temperature increases to urban heat sink, can only be discussed in ATM?

Alternatively, I can just sit back and observe how it ebb and flows, get a feel of that way, rather than ask any questions which may get misinterpreted as ill-intent. Either way, I am not fussed.

Swift
2010-May-04, 02:25 PM
If this is a reference to my question, I am sorry it is being perceived that way.
It was not specifically your question, nor any specific question. It was the gestalt of the questions, as if people were immediately trying to probe for loopholes.


I take it also that, those arguing urban heat sink effecting mainstream conclusions, will only be able to do so in ATM, and that the data suggesting global warming, according to the rules here, is beyond normal questioning outside of ATM. For example, views such as Dr. John R. Christy, which attributes some proportion, if not all, of ground temperature increases to urban heat sink, can only be discussed in ATM?
I think points 2 and 3 of the rules answers these questions, whether the other contributors are heat island effects, water vapor, solar variation, or anything else. If they acknowledge that human contributions are a major effect, fine. If they try to show that human contributions are a minor factor, or are not a factor at all, then they are ATM. And yes, arguments that there is no global warming at all (for example, that it is a measurement error due to the heat-island effect) are ATM.

And no, we are not going to get to the hair-splitting level that if Factor X (non-human) is 49.999% it is OK, but if it is 50.001% it is ATM. Quite frankly, I think it will be fairly obvious if people are trying to circumvent the rules and if they are not.

And yes, like everything else around here, it will be the gray, slippery slope of moderator interpretation. If people are not comfortable with that, find a forum with a set of rules that outline in immense detail all possible scenarios.

jlhredshift
2010-May-04, 03:44 PM
But (and this is a big but), since the doing (or not doing) anything about it is generally a political decision, not a scientific one, the discussion about doing or not doing something is still going to face our normal restrictions on politcs.

I agree with 1, 2, and 3. But, Swift's comment should be #4. I always felt that some of the strident advocacy for AGW was to promote a political agenda and had no business here.

Argos
2010-May-04, 03:51 PM
A very sensible decision. Itīs going to be instructive to hear the AGW denialists arguments on the ATM forum.

aastrotech
2010-May-04, 04:02 PM
In my judgment, that would be against the new policy, since it would be arguing that human activities are not a major contributor to GW, and such an argument would be ATM.

So a person would have to prove that naturaly produced water vapor is far greater than human produced water vapor if such proof was demanded in ATM? That's kind of like demanding proof that the sun shines.

Is the intent of this policy to make disputes of human caused warming unpleasant for the disputer regardless of the scientific reason he has for a dispute? If so I'd say make AGW forbidden. I'd say that if it is the intent of ATM policy to make disputes unpleasant for a disputer of BAUT opinions Then forbid all ATM.

Of course if this is the intent of the policy then loopholes are to be desired as the policy itself is a loophole to avoid reasoned disputes of BAUT moderator opinions on GW and other scientific issues.

It's too bad you all spent so much time on this only to come to this intent.

Moose
2010-May-04, 04:25 PM
Is the intent of this policy to make disputes of human caused warming unpleasant for the disputer regardless of the scientific reason he has for a dispute?

The intent of the policy, like Rule 13, like the recent changes to LiS, is to require people who make substantive claims about climate change to support these claims with substantive evidence. Many have been abusing S&T's status as being outside of Rule 13's explicit jurisdiction as a loophole so they can make unsupported claims. The ATM forum is better able to regulate this situation than S&T.

The exceptions listed in the policy are BAUT's recognition as to the consensus of mainstream science on GW and AGW. BAUT considers these statements sufficiently supported by science as to no longer require explicit support through evidence. As such, these discussions aren't appropriate for ATM. S&T remains the better choice.

I've no doubt that a certain vocal minority will continue to do everything in their power to burrow around the evidence requirement. I've no doubt that we'll eventually be forced to again tighten the rules to address that abuse. Some things never change.

Gillianren
2010-May-04, 06:09 PM
So a person would have to prove that naturaly produced water vapor is far greater than human produced water vapor if such proof was demanded in ATM?

No. The idea that naturally-produced water vapor is a far greater cause of climate change than what humans are doing is ATM. Cherry picking one place where nature outstrips humans without looking at the bigger picture, in other words.

orionjim
2010-May-04, 06:26 PM
You need to rewrite the last line in Section 13 of the Rules:

As with the other sections of the forum, we ask you to keep your topics about space and astronomy. We will close down any thread which doesn't have anything to do with space and astronomy immediately.

Also, Item 2 only cracks down on people that lean to the skeptic side. One of the problems with the Global Warming thread are the people that say it is certain that GW is caused by humans. Reading what you’ve written in item 2, shouldn’t people advocating this view also be routed to ATM? As long as people can take the view of 100% certainty, there can be no civil discussion.

Swift
2010-May-04, 06:31 PM
I agree with 1, 2, and 3. But, Swift's comment should be #4. I always felt that some of the strident advocacy for AGW was to promote a political agenda and had no business here.
Two things. First, I don't see a need for a literal # 4. Our no politics rule lists only a very few exceptions, and none of those are changed by this, and so our current rules still cover this.

Second, let me clarify something about the "doing/not doing something" question. The should we do something question is political, IMO. However, technical/scientific discussions about doing something are allowed.

I'll use space exploration as an example of the distinction. The "how" of space exploration (rockets, technology) is clearly an allowed topic. The "should we spend money on space exploration" gets into politics. Now, this is one of the few exceptions allowed to our no-politics rule.

Similarly, technical discussions about global warming, such as alternative energy sources or climate-engineering proposals are allowed (and we have had such discussion in S&T). But the no-politics rule has not been lifted for GW and so there can be no discussion on whether we should do such things.

Swift
2010-May-04, 06:39 PM
You need to rewrite the last line in Section 13 of the Rules:

As with the other sections of the forum, we ask you to keep your topics about space and astronomy. We will close down any thread which doesn't have anything to do with space and astronomy immediately.
We have generally had a broad definition of "space and astronomy", since we allow a lot of physics threads in ATM, but we should take a formal rewording of that under advisement.


Also, Item 2 only cracks down on people that lean to the skeptic side. One of the problems with the Global Warming thread are the people that say it is certain that GW is caused by humans. Reading what you’ve written in item 2, shouldn’t people advocating this view also be routed to ATM? As long as people can take the view of 100% certainty, there can be no civil discussion.
I would not use the term "the skeptic side". But yes, it does crack down on people who do not believe in Global Warming (GW) or who not believe humans are largely responsible for it (AGW). GW and AGW are the mainstream scientific positions. Just like other areas of science, those who advocate positions opposed to mainstream science must present their ideas in ATM.

And whether something is presented in S&T (Science & Technology) or ATM, it will always be kept civil on BAUT.

Moose
2010-May-04, 06:56 PM
Reading what you’ve written in item 2, shouldn’t people advocating this view also be routed to ATM?

To repeat myself: The exceptions listed in the policy are BAUT's recognition as to the consensus of mainstream science on GW and AGW. BAUT considers these statements sufficiently supported by science as to no longer require explicit support through evidence.

jlhredshift
2010-May-05, 12:15 AM
Toseek said:
Human activities (AGW) are a major contributor to GW

Swift said:
who not believe humans are largely responsible for it (AGW).

My Bold

Which statement is the official position of BAUT? They do not have the same connotation.

Swift
2010-May-05, 01:36 AM
Which statement is the official position of BAUT? They do not have the same connotation.
It is in post 1

1. Global warming is occurring and is mainstream; anti-GW belongs in ATM.
2. Human activities (AGW) are a major contributor to GW; the specific contributors and their level of contribution may be discussed, but anti-AGW belongs in ATM.
3. There are other contributors besides AGW; these may be discussed.
Quite frankly, I do not see a significant difference, and no, please don't explain it to me.

kleindoofy
2010-May-05, 01:44 AM
http://www.paules-pc-forum.de/forum/images/smilies/popcorn.gif

The Backroad Astronomer
2010-May-05, 03:50 AM
Even someone as unintelligent as me can see the difference.

HenrikOlsen
2010-May-05, 05:56 AM
And it's the degeneration of discussions into this type of hairsplitting that quite frankly disgusts me.

This is an area of immense grey areas and trying to derail the thread into a discussion about differences between the words "major contributor" and "largely responsible" is a waste of space, time energy and is the most disgusting habit commonly shown by BAUTians.

pzkpfw
2010-May-05, 06:06 AM
Thread closed to provide some "space". It may well be re-opened, in a few minutes or in a day.

Either way: to provide some "control" of (A)GW threads, a line had to be drawn in the sand on what was "Mainstream" and what was "ATM".

Arguing the toss on that "M" v. "ATM" decision isn't going to get us anywhere. Please just try to follow the rules.

pzkpfw
2010-May-05, 08:50 PM
OK. Open again.

Reminder: this thread is not the place to argue for or against GW or AGW or whatever, even under the guise of being a discussion of the new rules.

The intent of the rulings in post 1 of this thread should be clear enough for anyone to get on with.

korjik
2010-May-06, 01:33 AM
A very sensible decision. Itīs going to be instructive to hear the AGW denialists arguments on the ATM forum.

It is also going to be interesting to see GW's blind supporters make any nonsensical comment they want and be able to get away with it because they are 'mainstream'.

It will also be interesting to see GW supporters make inflammatory and insulting comments without having to back them up also.....

Swift
2010-May-06, 01:39 AM
It is also going to be interesting to see GW's blind supporters make any nonsensical comment they want and be able to get away with it because they are 'mainstream'.

It will also be interesting to see GW supporters make inflammatory and insulting comments without having to back them up also.....
Nonsensical is in the eye of the beholder.

And I assume by "GW's blind supporters", you mean as opposed to GW supporters who, for example, have carefully studied the issue and have come to a reasoned conclusion about it. Because if you were referring to all GW supporters that way, one might take that comment as inflammatory and insulting, and we all know that insulting is not tolerated on BAUT, for any topic, and on any side of that topic.

korjik
2010-May-06, 01:40 AM
We have generally had a broad definition of "space and astronomy", since we allow a lot of physics threads in ATM, but we should take a formal rewording of that under advisement.


I would not use the term "the skeptic side". But yes, it does crack down on people who do not believe in Global Warming (GW) or who not believe humans are largely responsible for it (AGW). GW and AGW are the mainstream scientific positions. Just like other areas of science, those who advocate positions opposed to mainstream science must present their ideas in ATM.

And whether something is presented in S&T (Science & Technology) or ATM, it will always be kept civil on BAUT.

So if I see Ronald Brak yet again say that all skeptics dont believe that CO2 is a greenhouse gas, and then correct him again, I am ATM and have to prove it, and he dosent?

About the only consensus on GW here has been that no one here is expert enough to make an informed opinion. Making it so that the skeptics have to face the banhammer when the supporters dont isnt a very good choice IMHO. We had peace while the subject was off limits, and this thread hasnt even gone 2 pages without being locked.

korjik
2010-May-06, 01:45 AM
Are GW threads that go ATM going to get thrown into ATM?

Swift
2010-May-06, 01:50 AM
Are GW threads that go ATM going to get thrown into ATM?
It will depend on the exact circumstances, but that is an option. Same as a General Relativity thread that goes ATM, for example.

Spoons
2010-May-06, 02:56 AM
And I assume by "GW's blind supporters", you mean as opposed to GW supporters who, for example, have carefully studied the issue and have come to a reasoned conclusion about it. Because if you were referring to all GW supporters that way, one might take that comment as inflammatory and insulting, and we all know that insulting is not tolerated on BAUT, for any topic, and on any side of that topic.

Just wanted to point out that in referencing groups in two different terms it appears to me that korjik has made a clear distinction between two different groups. Not intending to be smart or anything - I'd only fall flat on my face anyway.

Van Rijn
2010-May-06, 03:41 AM
Nonsensical is in the eye of the beholder.

And I assume by "GW's blind supporters", you mean as opposed to GW supporters who, for example, have carefully studied the issue and have come to a reasoned conclusion about it. Because if you were referring to all GW supporters that way, one might take that comment as inflammatory and insulting, and we all know that insulting is not tolerated on BAUT, for any topic, and on any side of that topic.

It seems to me that there are people with different positions on the subject that do an absolutely wonderful job of pushing each others' buttons. They might not always intend insult, but they manage it pretty often. And depending on the position of the moderators, the insults may not be obvious to them either.

Frankly, I think this subject would have been better off left off limits for BAUT. The tension level on this thread seems to support that.

Canis Lupus
2010-May-06, 05:04 AM
About the only consensus on GW here has been that no one here is expert enough to make an informed opinion.

Delete the word "here" and what you have is really the mainstream position, which can be backed up solidly with peer reviewed papers. I won't quote them here, it not being a thread to argue the toss. Whatever format BAUT devises for discussion, the main thing is that whatever is proposed one way or another can be challenged with reason and evidence, even if that is to point to the lack of reason and evidence. Now that the rules are in place, I suppose it is up to some brave soul to either start a thread or re-open an existing closed one and in doing so take away any temptation to argue the toss in this thread, however indirectly that may be done?

Regards.

nauthiz
2010-May-06, 12:43 PM
. . .if people make it impossible to enforce this in a civil manner, that making it a forbidden topic will be the fall back position.

We might as well start the betting pool now. I'll open it by placing my money on 30 days.

tusenfem
2010-May-06, 01:13 PM
Apparently, it is not even possible to discuss about the possibility of opening BAUT again for discussion on global warming or climat change or whatever you want to call it. Sort of similar like the hubbus that started up when we decided to close all (A)GW/CC discussions here on BAUT. I am very disappointed here and would have expected a little more conciliatory stance from most of the involved persons, based on the "anger" that was there when the topic was temporarily blocked.

For myself, I hope that nobody is brave enough to open a thread either in S&T or in ATM, so I don't have to bother to look through them and look at all the reports that will come rolling in.

jlhredshift
2010-May-06, 01:33 PM
Apparently, it is not even possible to discuss about the possibility of opening BAUT again for discussion on global warming or climat change or whatever you want to call it. Sort of similar like the hubbus that started up when we decided to close all (A)GW/CC discussions here on BAUT. I am very disappointed here and would have expected a little more conciliatory stance from most of the involved persons, based on the "anger" that was there when the topic was temporarily blocked.

For myself, I hope that nobody is brave enough to open a thread either in S&T or in ATM, so I don't have to bother to look through them and look at all the reports that will come rolling in.

Joshua (the computer) said; "The only winning move, is not to play."

nauthiz
2010-May-06, 01:42 PM
Sorry, I suppose I should be more open and less sarcastic. Let me try that again:

Even without the difficulties in this thread thus far, I'm very pessimistic about this plan. The last attempt at getting the AGW threads under control before they were closed was to try to enforce a very straightforward, clear-cut rule: posters could only cite scientific sources in support of their statements; blogs, newspapers, and the like were not allowed. As I see it, the threads were closed because this didn't work; a lot of it just turned into arguing over minutia about what does and does not count as a scientific source, including much hassling of the mods.

ATM rules also impose an evidentiary standard, but to my thinking it's a somewhat more nebulous one and is therefore open to more toying around. On top of that, it actively invites testing the boundaries: The rules break the people taking part into the conversation into two groups, and imposes very different standards on the two of them. The one with the tighter standards is naturally going to try to push the rules in an effort to try and level the playing field, and the one with the looser standards is naturally going to push back in an effort to secure their advantage. This is inevitable; even if politics is banned from the forum it's still a politically charged issue and I can say from experience that for many of us it can become virtually impossible to keep a level head and remember to play fair in these discussions.

So it seems to me that what is happening is that we've got a situation where people were playing games with the rules, and it's being replaced with a situation where the rules are more gameable and there's more incentive to try and play with them.

That might be fine if BAUT's leadership has a desire to keep the discussion open for other reasons and accepts the likelihood of continued acrimony as the price of pursuing those goals. But I'm very pessimistic about the likelihood that there's any way to keep a lid on the AGW arguments other than simply banning the topic.

korjik
2010-May-06, 02:50 PM
Nonsensical is in the eye of the beholder.

And I assume by "GW's blind supporters", you mean as opposed to GW supporters who, for example, have carefully studied the issue and have come to a reasoned conclusion about it. Because if you were referring to all GW supporters that way, one might take that comment as inflammatory and insulting, and we all know that insulting is not tolerated on BAUT, for any topic, and on any side of that topic.

Technically, I mean those who havent got the scientific background to understand the science fully. Probably wide enough a group to be an infraction since I pretty much include everyone here in that group. In my defence, I also include most of the skeptics here as 'blind skeptics' up to and including myself. It is why I have been a supporter of banning the topic. It is too inflammatory without having some experts who can address the science from first principles.

Paracelsus
2010-May-06, 03:24 PM
There's not going to be a civil discussion anyway, as the GW-skeptics have been given too much free rein for far too long to promulgate their views without being cracked down on.

Don't get me wrong, I truly admire the Mods and the Admins for doing the right thing here, but I fear that the resultant firestorm, as evidenced on this thread, will quickly derail their good intentions and lead to an outright ban. There are just too many members of the anti-AGW crowd on this site (in fact, they constitute the majority of posters, at least from the US), this is a very emotional topic, and I've never been impressed with the debating skills of the majority of the posters here, particularly when discussing an emotionally-charged topic. That actual data always seem to be tossed out the window in favor of the carge 'nobody knows, and neither do you', unsupported by any data to back it up, or banal nitpicking of the infamous hockey stick curve or flaws in the 2007 IPCC report while ignoring what the rest of the data say. The scientific consensus on AGW was the result of a consideration of all of the data, not just the 'hockey stick'. A discussion of AGW should similarly consider ALL OF THE DATA. Nitpicking on trivial points is something creationists do all the time to try and prove Evolution to be false, BTW. It's a bad way to analyze data and also an ineffective debating tactic. I would advise the AGW-skeptic crowd to try another tack.

But they won't, of course, or most won't. At least the AGW flame wars will be confined to the ATM forum, though, which will be a relief.


Good luck with it, though. i'll be watching to see how it turns out.

Gillianren
2010-May-06, 04:39 PM
Paracelsus, may I suggest that many of us do accept the science but do not feel confident in arguing in favour of it?

Paracelsus
2010-May-06, 05:02 PM
Paracelsus, may I suggest that many of us do accept the science but do not feel confident in arguing in favour of it?

I was referring to members who specifically argue against AGW, not those who choose not to argue either way. There is nothing invalid about the statement 'I don't know enough to say for certain', as one is only stating the extent of one's own expertise on the subject. However, it is different thing to say 'Nobody knows for certain'; that statement refers to the scientific consensus on a topic, not just to one's own knowledge base. I was referring to the latter type of statement, not the former, in my post.

Swift
2010-May-06, 05:31 PM
Might I suggest that we all just drop hypothetical speculations about what the "other side" is going to do in response to these new rules? As far as I can tell, all it is doing is inflaming passions.

Maybe the best thing is just to see how it goes. At least we'll then have some actual data to argue over. And if these rules don't work out, for whatever reason, we'll just revisit them in the future.

On the remote chance that someone has something else that they need to post in this thread, I'll leave it open, at least for the moment.

kleindoofy
2010-May-06, 07:51 PM
... GW-skeptics ...
Please help me on the definition of who is a skeptic.

Is that someone who is skeptical towards the maintream scientific data? I.e. an anti-(A)GW believer? Or is it the other way around, i.e. someone who is skeptical towards, errr, whatever?


...members of the anti-AGW crowd on this site (in fact, they constitute the majority of posters ...
As Gillian posted and I believe you confirmed, they constitute the majority of posters in (A)GW orientated threads. Whether or not they constitute the majority of posters on BAUT as a whole remains to be seen.


... at least from the US ...
I think that's the main point. Unless I'm terribly mistaken, active, widespread, and almost missionary style anti-(A)GW is more or less restricted to the US and seems to be instrinsically intertwined with US partisan politics. For many outside looking in, it's a pretty bizarre situation.

neilzero
2010-May-06, 11:28 PM
I may be strange, but I don't like to read closed threads. Can the management provide a list of open threads (all topics) in ATM? Nearly all ATM threads seem to be closed. I was planning to discuss greenhouse warming in ATM, to reduce the probability of BAUT rule violation. The moderator response to my thread in ATM infers that we are not free to discus greenhouse warming in ATM or anywhere on BAUT I thought I was quite specific, but perhaps too humble, about my objections to mainstream greenhouse warming and tactfully inferred several examples of why. Am I being unreasonable? Neil

slang
2010-May-06, 11:52 PM
I may be strange

If that is true, you're a sockpuppet (http://www.bautforum.com/member.php/86476-Strange)! Ban!!!!!!111


Can the management provide a list of open threads (all topics) in ATM?

All threads in the ATM forum are closed automatically after 30 days. So, the closest you can get is to go to advanced search, pick a date 30 days ago, and search for newer. Or browse the forum by page, you won't have to go far until you hit the 30 day limit.


I was planning to discuss greenhouse warming in ATM

The way the ATM forum rules are set up, IMHO it's probably best to start your own thread, defending your own position, rather than tacking on to some already existing ATM thread.

pzkpfw
2010-May-07, 12:16 AM
I may be strange, but I don't like to read closed threads. Can the management provide a list of open threads (all topics) in ATM? Nearly all ATM threads seem to be closed. I was planning to discuss greenhouse warming in ATM, to reduce the probability of BAUT rule violation. The moderator response to my thread in ATM infers that we are not free to discus greenhouse warming in ATM or anywhere on BAUT I thought I was quite specific, but perhaps too humble, about my objections to mainstream greenhouse warming and tactfully inferred several examples of why. Am I being unreasonable? Neil

(The closing of ATM threads used to be automatic, now we do it manually. Thus the "30 days" can now be 30 + a day or two.)

The whole point* of this thread is that we learned that (A)GW threads needed some "control" so we put a stake in the ground on what we'd consider "mainstream" at BAUT (see post #1) and asked that threads counter to that mainsream go in the ATM sub-forum.

(* actually it's also demonstrated quite well by the posts in this thread, too.)

That means those threads must abide by the ATM sub-forum rules. If you start a thread in ATM, you are proposing a non-mainstream view, and you will be expected to defend that view.

Edit: Mainstream discussion can occur as for any topic. But as with any topic, non-mainstream comments will be moderated (e.g. moved to ATM, earn infractions, ...).

Canis Lupus
2010-May-07, 04:00 AM
I think that's the main point. Unless I'm terribly mistaken, active, widespread, and almost missionary style anti-(A)GW is more or less restricted to the US and seems to be instrinsically intertwined with US partisan politics. For many outside looking in, it's a pretty bizarre situation.

You will find Australia similar although it is not political at first instance, but the division in thinking has inevitably lead to drastic political repercussions. It might have something to do with Pilmer being such an outspoken critic and also being Australian. The Murdoch press (News Ltd) certainly see it as a live issue and does not exclude the other viewpoint on the basis of any alleged consensus, unlike the ABC and Fairfax media tend to. So, it isn't just the US.

korjik
2010-May-07, 03:37 PM
I was referring to members who specifically argue against AGW, not those who choose not to argue either way. There is nothing invalid about the statement 'I don't know enough to say for certain', as one is only stating the extent of one's own expertise on the subject. However, it is different thing to say 'Nobody knows for certain'; that statement refers to the scientific consensus on a topic, not just to one's own knowledge base. I was referring to the latter type of statement, not the former, in my post.

And this is an example of the corruption of science so prevalent to GW debates. I dont know the specific data involved, but I do know what data is required to make large scale climate predictions. I can also figure out if that data exists. If in my professional opinion that data does not exist, then I can make a professional judgement that nobody can know for certain simply because without the data, nobody can know for certain. My concern is that climate change is a case of garbage in, and asking for proof that the basis for a theory is sound is good science.

This same situation also applies to string/brane/m- theory. There is no experimental data to backup the theory, so all the theories are in the nobody knows for certain category.

The difference is that with GW, pointing out my concerns gets either completely ignored or I get attacked personally. Both have happened to me, and both have happened to me here. It is why I became a big supporter of banning the topic here, and why I rarely participate in GW discussions anymore.

You also bring up consensus. In science, consensus is a poison. It may be helpful sometimes, by allowing a group of scientists to move past a point that cannot be proven to fully develop a theory so that it can be later proven, but to rely on consensus to call a science proven is a perversion of what science is. Consensus does not prove, experiment does. Anytime someone brings up consensus, they are wrong. They are brining up a straw-man, not doing science.

korjik
2010-May-07, 03:39 PM
Please help me on the definition of who is a skeptic.

Is that someone who is skeptical towards the maintream scientific data? I.e. an anti-(A)GW believer? Or is it the other way around, i.e. someone who is skeptical towards, errr, whatever?


As Gillian posted and I believe you confirmed, they constitute the majority of posters in (A)GW orientated threads. Whether or not they constitute the majority of posters on BAUT as a whole remains to be seen.


I think that's the main point. Unless I'm terribly mistaken, active, widespread, and almost missionary style anti-(A)GW is more or less restricted to the US and seems to be instrinsically intertwined with US partisan politics. For many outside looking in, it's a pretty bizarre situation.

There are those who find the missionary style pro-GW to be just as linked to partisan politics and find it just as bizarre.

Which is really just another reason to ban the topic

Gillianren
2010-May-07, 04:30 PM
You also bring up consensus. In science, consensus is a poison. It may be helpful sometimes, by allowing a group of scientists to move past a point that cannot be proven to fully develop a theory so that it can be later proven, but to rely on consensus to call a science proven is a perversion of what science is. Consensus does not prove, experiment does. Anytime someone brings up consensus, they are wrong. They are brining up a straw-man, not doing science.

Did you read the lengthy discussion on the subject? Consensus is usually formed by experimentation. It's not as though everyone wakes up one morning and says, "Of course! Evolution!"

Argos
2010-May-07, 05:36 PM
You will find Australia similar although it is not political at first instance, but the division in thinking has inevitably lead to drastic political repercussions. It might have something to do with Pilmer being such an outspoken critic and also being Australian. The Murdoch press (News Ltd) certainly see it as a live issue and does not exclude the other viewpoint on the basis of any alleged consensus, unlike the ABC and Fairfax media tend to. So, it isn't just the US.

Itīs interesting that, in Brazil, few people dispute AGW. You could say it is unanimously accepted.

Paracelsus
2010-May-07, 06:01 PM
And this is an example of the corruption of science so prevalent to GW debates. I dont know the specific data involved, but I do know what data is required to make large scale climate predictions. I can also figure out if that data exists. If in my professional opinion that data does not exist, then I can make a professional judgement that nobody can know for certain simply because without the data, nobody can know for certain. My concern is that climate change is a case of garbage in, and asking for proof that the basis for a theory is sound is good science.

This same situation also applies to string/brane/m- theory. There is no experimental data to backup the theory, so all the theories are in the nobody knows for certain category.

The difference is that with GW, pointing out my concerns gets either completely ignored or I get attacked personally. Both have happened to me, and both have happened to me here. It is why I became a big supporter of banning the topic here, and why I rarely participate in GW discussions anymore.

You also bring up consensus. In science, consensus is a poison. It may be helpful sometimes, by allowing a group of scientists to move past a point that cannot be proven to fully develop a theory so that it can be later proven, but to rely on consensus to call a science proven is a perversion of what science is. Consensus does not prove, experiment does. Anytime someone brings up consensus, they are wrong. They are brining up a straw-man, not doing science.

I have no idea how to reply to this bizarre idea that consensus is somehow poisonous. If so then the widespread consensus that exists regarding the Big Bang, Evolution, Relativity, and quantum mechanics are all some variety of thought control. General scientific consensus is arrived at by careful, balanced examination of the available data and a weight-of-the-evidence comparison of how well a given theory explains the available data. AGW is the best theory we have to explain the available data on the rapid warming of the climate, which is why it is the consensus theory in the field of climatology.

As to my reliance upon your claims of expertise versus the collective judgement of the worldwide community of climate science experts, you may rely on your own opinion, but I have no idea who you are or why I should simply take your word over the collective opinion of literally thousands of climate experts, whose work is publicly-available and has been peer-reviewed, analyzed, and re-analyzed. You, in contrast, have never provided any data to back up your assertions or provided a detailed, balanced critique of the literature on this issue. In the absence of these, when given a choice of whose scientific opinion to trust, I choose the global consensus. If you wish people to take your anti-AGW views seriously, it would be helpful to provide some data to balance your dicta.

No offense.

Kaptain K
2010-May-07, 06:01 PM
It's amazing! What should have been a simple easy to understand statement of board policy with respect to discussion of global warming has turned into a major "nitpick fest" in its own right! :eek: Come on folks, get a grip. :naughty: :hand:

Moose
2010-May-07, 06:32 PM
I will remind people that this thread is not an acceptable place for side discussions about GW, AGW, the merits (or lack) thereof, nor the politics of consensus. Remember folks, only meta-discussion in About BAUT.

Factual (and speculative) discussions (within the established rules) about GW and AGW belong in S&T. Anti-AGW proposals (and evidence for these proposals) belong in ATM. Discussion about what constitutes valid consensus in general probably belongs in OTB (and may be an interesting discussion in its own right if folks can keep it free from heat and specifics).

Either way, knock off the acrimony.

Argos
2010-May-07, 06:36 PM
Sorry about that, chief. ;)

aastrotech
2010-May-07, 11:04 PM
It's kind of funny, and it may seem a little pedantic but; the GW rule doesn't define what GW AGW is except that it is happening.

From a "scientific method" definition point of view. i.e. what collection of data gathered through what observation and experimentation results in the formulation and testing of what hypotheses as explanations of what phenomena and what of these are repeatable in order to dependably, accurately, precicely or absolutely predict what future results?

In terms of this rule what is the canon of science covering GW AGW?

I mean the differences between, for instance, geocentrism and heliocentrism with heliocentrism as mainstream are well and widely understood but they have been around for a while. GW AGW is new and it might be good to define the mainstream science somewhere.

Robert Tulip
2010-May-08, 12:55 PM
Congratulations to the moderators for a sensible policy. Anthropogenic Global Warming from CO2 is mainstream science. Undue skepticism and denial are outside the mainstream. Denialists have enough platforms elsewhere to attack the scientific consensus without being able to do so on mainstream science threads. The terms of debate should shift from if to how we should address climate change.

aastrotech
2010-May-09, 12:21 AM
I realize I didn't define some terms in my previous post.

"dependably, accurately, precicely or absolutely."

Dependably: Better than 50% reliability= better than chance.

Accurately: Better than 90% reliability=whithin 1/10.

Precicely: Better than 99% reliability = <+/_ .010.

I'll add one you are probably not familiar with.*

Precision grind: Better than 99.9% reliability= <+/_ .001.

I could add another.*

Polished: Better than 99.99% reliability=<+/- .0001.

Absolutely: 100% reliability= Self explanitory.

*Presumably "calling the toss (of a coin?)" means that BAUT (mods) are of the opinion that "the mainstream" on this issue is accurate to better than chance.

pzkpfw
2010-May-09, 12:36 AM
Stop playing games aastrotech.

You've participated in AGW and GW threads. You've made posts in this thread. You've made posts in the current ATM thread on this overall topic. You know very well what the topic is.

What you are attempting to do is argue the point by stealth.

The rulings have been made (see post #1 of this thread). Live with them.

mugaliens
2010-May-11, 10:00 AM
Itīs interesting that, in Brazil, few people dispute AGW. You could say it is unanimously accepted.

Lol! I guess we're just a nation of skeptics. :) We're certainly a nation of independant thinkers. Rarely in my travels around the world have I encountered such widespread dissent on various topics germane to a nations populace as I have here in the good 'ole, USA. Then again, as a global melting pot we're hardly a homogeneous nation. Disagreement and dissent, even well-informed, rational, reasonable, and scientific dissent, is to be expected.

ToSeek wrote, "To discuss this policy, go here." Thank you for the invitation, and my take on the policy is that it's perfectly rational and reasonable.

Thus, I am in full consent with the policy. Some, however, are not, and have expressed their dissent. The very concept of "discussion" involves consent, dissent, and indifference, along with the option of substantiating reasons as to why. Why is it then that consent and indifference have been allowed in this thread with impunity while dissent, even reasonable, rational dissent, have been strongly discouraged?

People were invited to discuss the policy, by an admin, no less. Dissent is, by defination, part of that discussion, as one-sided discussions are worthless - they negate any rational purpose of a discussion. Sure, gathering in a circle and patting one another on the back might feel good, but that's not a discussion, and science isn't about feeling - it's about fact.

Furthermore, as ToSeek included the consensus upon which the policy is based into the policy itself, I think Aastrotech's post is dead-on.

Aastrotech mentions "consensus" falls somewhere between Dependably (>50%) and Polished (Better than 99.99% reliability=<+/- .0001), inclusive. Let's chill out for a minute and examine the consensus surrounding ice (there's a point to this - please bear with me): The scientific consensus is that water has 15 known crystalline phases. Few would dispute this. But does that mean than there are only 15 crystalline phases? By no means! There are simply 15 known crystaline phases of water. Thus, the scientific consensus on the numbrer of crystalline phases of water doesn't even meet Aastrotech's Dependability criteria of >50% chance. Indeed, the most recent form, ice XV (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ice_XV), was first created less than a year ago, and it's properties were significantly different than predicted, as it was antiferroelectric instead of the predicted ferroelectric.

There is no scientific consensus that there are only 15 crystalline phases of water - just that there are 15 known crystalline phases of water. The point is that any discussion of policy based on, i.e. founded on a consensus inherently invites a discussion of the consensus upon which it is founded. If you don't want the consensus discussed, your best bet would be to either withdraw the invitation altogether (i.e. close the thread), or remove any mention of consensus from the policy and say it's "just because."

It's perfectly reasonable for BAUT to establish a policy on the discussion of both GW and AGW. Whatever that policy is, it matters not what the reason is, even if that reason is as simple as "because we want to" or even "just because." Even no reason is acceptable. A simple policy statement without any reason given other than "This is BAUT's policy" is acceptable.

After all, this is a message forum, not a scientific board of inquiry!

What is not reasonable, and is indeed quite irrational, is to open the message thread to discussion then prohibit the dissent leg of the discussion triad.

Back to the policy:


1. Global warming is occurring and is Mainstream

This isn't policy. It's a statement of belief that reflects current scientific consensus.


anti-GW belongs in ATM.

This is policy, and is perfectly rational and reasonable.


2. Human activities (AGW) are a major contributor to GW

This isn't policy. It's a statement of belief that reflects current scientific consensus.


; the specific contributors and their level of contribution may be discussed, but anti-AGW belongs in ATM.

This is policy, and is perfectly rational and reasonable.


3. There are other contributors besides AGW

This isn't policy. It's a statement of belief that reflects current scientific consensus.


...these may be discussed.

This is policy, and is perfectly rational and reasonable.

Of the three non-policy points contained in ToSeek's invitation to discuss, I cannot comment as the mods have made it abundantly clear they're not acceptable for discussion in this thread. Thus, as ToSeek invited us to discuss policy, and those points are verboten in this thread, they're cannot be policy.

As for the policy of limiting the discussion of anti-GW and anti-AGW to ATM while allowing the discussion of specific contributors to AGW and their level of contribution as well as other contributions besides AGW, I say again: This policy is perfectly rational and reasonable.

To remove the consensus quagmire and simply restate the policy in policy-pure terms, I would restate the policy ToSeek directed this way:

1. All discussions of anti-GW and anti-AGW will be confined to the ATM section.

2. You may discuss both the specific contributors to AGW and their level of contribution, as well as other GW contributors, in the appropriate section(s).

Note: It might help to limit all GW and AGW discussions to a single section, such as Science and Technology, rather than mentioning OTB, as both anti-GW and anti-AGW are clearly ATM while both GW and AGW contributors are clearly science. Since all approaches clearly fall into either the ATM or Science and Technology section classifications, let's keep them there rather than muddying the waters with other sections.

HenrikOlsen
2010-May-11, 04:07 PM
Lol! I guess we're just a nation of skeptics. :) We're certainly a nation of independant thinkers.
Or, to pose an alternative hypothesis. You're a nation of people willing to ignore evidence in favor of blindly following the propaganda put forth by unscrupulous people with various agendas and large advertisement budgets.

pzkpfw
2010-May-11, 07:12 PM
...and people wonder why we have trouble with (A)GW threads and needed to put some rules in place? We can't even discuss the rules without it turning into a discussion of the topic. (And getting heated on both sides).

I'm closing the thread again.

Make a report if you have something you need to add.