Ya gotta laugh!

There is in Physics Today an article by Steven Sherwood, a professor of climate change, no less, an article under the title "Science controversies past and present" which endeavours to deal with the sad fact (for him) that public belief in global warming is steadily receding.

His explanation is that the theories of Galileo, Copernicus and Einstein were not immediately accepted but eventually proved right (or more or less right). So he says that explains the present poor acceptance of global warming. We are just ignoramuses until a better understanding and vindication of science comes along.

But then, half way through the article we come across this amusing admission:
"The current theory of global climate change is hardly elegant or scientifically revolutionary, and in that respect it seems like no bedfellow to the others. Its prominence comes from its implications for the sustainability of current Western consumption patterns, not from reshaping physics; its many contributors would not claim to be Einsteins. What it shares with the others, however, is its origin in the worked-out consequences of evident physical principles rather than direct observation. That sort of bottom-up deduction is valued by physics perhaps more than by any other science."

In other words, gloibal warming is NOT like the theories of Galileo, Einsten et al. Its importance is only political and it's just a theory anyway!

I could say a lot more to disparage his article (e.g. Unlike Galileo and Einstein, global warming was first believed and then later disbelieved) but I think he himself has done a pretty good job of it so I will leave it at that.

I will however make one further observation: His article supporting global warming mentions not one scientific fact that supports global warming. If that is Physics Today, then physics is in a bad way.


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