‘Scientific neutrality’ scandal: Australian censorship of Dr. Spash

Perhaps everyone has heard about the ‘ClimateGate’ (I so hate that term) scandal.  It has brought home ‘loud and clear’ just how science suffers when ‘scientific neutrality’ is lost.

The newest chapter in this scandal is happening down under:  Australian Commonwealth Scientific and Research Organization (CSIRO) scientist, Dr. Clive Spash, has resigned over his boss’s attempts to censor his work!

But – there is a twist to this tale…. a twist which just might shed new light on this whole Climate scandal mess!

Dr. Spash resigned because he claims his boss wanted him to change his findings, which compromises ‘scientific neutrality’.

On the other hand…

Dr. Spash’s boss claims she wanted him to change his findings, in order to preserve ‘scientific neutrality’.

WHAT!?!?!

One wants to publish as is, while the other wants to change it, but both claim the same motive?

How can this be?

Well, that depends entirely on whether one is a scientist first and a bureaucrat later, or vice versa!

Dr. Spash’s study was about the effectiveness of ‘cap-and-trade’ legislation to reduce carbon dioxide emissions:  the very same thing Obama is proposing, the very same thing the Denmark financial fraud is about – and the very same thing that the Copenhagen Treaty (before it was partially derailed) was going to institute a ‘World Government’, taxing every financial transaction in ‘The West’ a 2% (or so) sales tax to fund ‘enforcement’….  This cap-and-trade scheme was (at the time the study was done, this policy was not yet defeated) the policy of the Australian government….

In other words, the paper was about a politically charged subject – and very, very current.

The original conclusions of the study?  I paraphrase:

‘Cap-and-trade’ is not only ineffective in reducing carbon emissions, the scheme can easily be used for financial fraud. (Aside:  remember, he did the study before the Danish scandal, where the ‘cap-and-trade’ scheme is central in a huge financial fraud – 8 arrests already, more are likely to come.)

Dr Megan Clark, Chief Executive and CSIRO Board member (and Dr. Spash’s boss), wanted ‘minor’ changes to be made to the conclusions of the study, prior to publication.  Why?  In her words:

“‘CSIRO staff are actively encouraged to debate publicly the latest science and its implications and to analyse policy options. However under our charter we do not advocate for or against specific government or opposition policies.”

In other words, Dr. Clark’s understanding of  ‘scientific neutrality’ is that any scientific findings which her government agency publishes, must be ‘politically neutral’.   Here is another quote of hers, which I think illustrates what I am getting at:

“However, under our charter, we do not advocate for or against specific government or opposition policies,” she said in a statement. “The CSIRO Charter protects the independence of our science. It also protects CSIRO scientists from being exploited in the political process.”

“My role as chief executive of the CSIRO is to ensure the integrity and independence of our science is maintained. That’s not something I am prepared to compromise on.”

In other words, in Dr. Clark’s understanding, ‘scientific neutrality’ means that scientists can play in their labs all they want – as long as they do not publish any results which might influence the current political debate!

Of course, most actual scientists think that ‘scientific neutrality’ means that they do the science, find whatever answer is most objective, and then publish their results, without caring what any politicians think or plan or whatever!

Yet, Dr. Clark suggests ‘science neutrality’ means that ‘science’ (or scientists) must only publish findings which are ‘politically neutral’!!!

And, this is not the first time Dr. Clark has ‘protected’ ‘her scientists’ from ‘compromising’ their ‘scientific neutrality’ and presenting actual facts they learned through their scientific expertise – regardless of what the politicians thought!  There are allegations that “four CSIRO scientists were not allowed to give evidence to a Senate inquiry into climate change in a CSIRO capacity”.

Of course, the fact that Dr. Clark is Australia’s Prime Minister’s ‘science advisor’ has nothing to do with her ‘protecting’ her employees from publishing or testifying to any scientific findings which might negatively impact her political master’s policy – and her ‘gravy train’!

Please – think about it.  REALLY think about it.

Most of our science today is done in government-funded labs.

The people who head these government institutions may have scientific credentials, but they would not have clawed their way to the top if they were not politically astute and ‘bureaucrat first, scientist second’….

Yet these are the very same people who are in control of our scientists – who control what they may or may not publish, regardless of how true!  Who are not afraid to bully and silence – and feel ‘righteous’ about it afterwards, because in their own warped brains, that is ‘the best thing for everyone’….

The sad thing is:  most of them actually believe it.

And you wonder how we get things like ‘ClimateGate’!

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