Richard Lindzen: Iron Triangle and Iron Rice Bowl, 2013

Science in the Public Square: Global Climate Alarmism and Historical Precedents, Richard Lindzen.

The central idea of the article is a vicious feedback loop: Scientists make meaningless or ambiguous statements => Advocates and media translate statements into alarmist declarations => Politicians respond to alarm by feeding scientists more money => [a larger number of scientists and pseudo-]Scientists make meaningless or ambiguous [or false] statements …

One precedent was “Lysenkoism”:

In the Soviet Union, Trofim Denisovich Lysenko (1898- 1976) promoted the Lamarckian view of the inheritance of acquired characteristics.

Actually, this view was also a part of Darwin’s theory.  The evolution theory had been formulated by Lamarck before Darwin was born. It became politicized and later associated with Darwin’s name after Darwin discovered natural selection. Scientific genetics of Mendel — Morgan appeared to contradict Darwin. Mendel was also a Catholic monk and an abbot.  It is not surprising that the Communist regime sided with early Darwin and Lysenko. Analogy is stronger than it seems.

More quotes [emphasis and hyperlinks are mine]:

“Though valuable as a process, science is always problematic as an institution.”

“Expanded funding is eagerly sought, but the expansion of funding inevitably invites rent-seeking by scientists, university administration, and government bureaucracies. The public square brings its own dynamic into the process of science: most notably, it involves the coupling of science to specific policy issues. This is a crucial element in the climate issue, but comparable examples have existed in other fields, including eugenics and immigration, and Lysenkoism and agronomy.”

“Although there are many reasons why some scientists might want to bring their field into the public square, the cases described here appear, instead, to be cases in which those with political agendas found it useful to employ science. This immediately involves a distortion of science at a very basic level: namely, science becomes a source of authority rather than a mode of inquiry. The real utility of science stems from the latter; the political utility stems from the former.”

“In normative model development, models are judged according to the degree that they adhere to independent assessments of the behavior of actual systems. However, in the climate “debate” models are given a claim to validity independent of their adherence to nature.”

“Global climate alarmism has been costly to society, and it has the potential to be vastly more costly. It has also been damaging to science, as scientists adjust both data and even theory to accommodate politically correct positions.”

“Global warming differs from the preceding two affairs: Global Warming has become a religion.”