‘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’.


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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4 Responses to “‘Scientific neutrality’ scandal: Australian censorship of Dr. Spash”

  1. The Phantom Says:

    Xan, I enjoy reading your blog. Your perceptions are razor sharp, laser accurate.

    “…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!”

    Well, yes. That’s the point of government funded research after all. To find more and more of whatever they tell you to find this week, and to make work for more and more little minions so as to bulk up the department budget. Paying the piper and calling the tune, but with MY money.

    My introduction to this form of scam was gun control in the medical literature. I read -all- of it, from 1968 to about 1997 and looked at the study design, the statistical methods, claims made vs. evidence provided. Out of the 100+ major studies I looked at, six (6) met the minimum criteria one would expect from a high school science fair. Not kidding, only six. None of which found -any- effect for gun control laws, not plus or minus. Failure of peer review? Oh baby!

    So really the whole thing was lies. All of it. The 1968 Gun Control Act, the Assault Weapon Ban, the Brady Bill, the lot.

    The CDC alone spent -tens of millions- of dollars on this farce. They bankrolled dozens of studies which had not a lick of real investigation in them. Medical journals whored their scientific credibility for this cause for TWENTY YEARS, Xan. This is medicine we’re talking about here too, not frickin’ social studies. Lives in the balance and all that.

    To date none of these people has been called to account for their sins, that I know of. In fact, they are still doing it. Just that now their lying is not getting any traction in political circles, since Algore lost in 2000 because of this issue. Even Barry “The One” O’Butt-ox won’t touch gun control, its freaking radioactive.

    Global warming will likewise become radioactive over the next couple of years, maybe even by November 2010. Canada will of course lag behind, because that’s what we do here. Cling on to old fads long after they are dead.


    Xanthippa says: Thank you!

    You do NOT want to get me started on the scientific rigor – or, rather, the lack thereof – of medical science. The Chair of Immunology at one Canadian University (some 20 years ago!) told me that by the time the medical students got to him, their heads had been so swollen by self-importance that they truly and honestly believed that following the ‘scientific method’ while doing studies was below them…. He bemoaned that in the medical field, the lab procedures that were taught were so sloppy, it drove him nuts.

    But, the biggest problem he saw (even back then) was ideological: the students were not taught to look for what is the truth, reality, the science of the whole thing. Instead, they were taught to ‘look for a specific answer’. And, if that were not ‘corrupting enough’, they were never taught HOW to control for ‘other factors’ that could explain their results – even if there were exceedingly valid ones, the students were simply told that if asked, they are to say that the scope of their study did not permit them to consider those factors. BUTTTTTTTT – even if these were the DRIVING factors, they were not actually listed anywhere in the study itself, because they were simply not considered…..

    Do you realize how scary the implications of what he told me truly are?

  2. GCBC Says:

    I have never been convinced that the science being touted as real regarding climate change is accurate at all. While I am sure that we have some influence on our planet, I have noted that most of the records we have broken are from the time when we started keeping data and not recent and year after year. That is what I would expect if it were l as climate scientists were and are trying to tell us. Therefore the recent events including this one only strengthen my belief that we are merely following the normal cycles of the planet. This means that while it will be morally and ethically right to treat our home with care to the environment, there is no need to be panicked and fanatical about it.

  3. CodeSlinger Says:

    But… but… but… if we don’t panic the sheeple, how will we get them to hold still while we tax them into slavery?

    Any excuse will do… saving the planet, preventing crime, promoting democracy, defeating communism, destroying capitalism, debunking religion, undermining the patriarchy, neutralizing terrorism, conserving energy, avoiding the flu, enforcing niceness… any excuse at all.

    As long as it keeps the sheeple distracted until we finish locking down the planet.

    Better yet, let’s use all of those excuses, and every other one we can think of besides. Then the people who don’t buy any of them will be too few and too far between to matter.

  4. Steyniac 401th « Free Canuckistan! Says:

    […] XANTHIPPA– ‘Medieval Warm Period’: why do warm-mongers ‘have to get rid of it’?; ‘Scientific neutrality’ scandal: Australian censorship of Dr. Spash; A letter to Mr. Prentice, Minister of the Environment; ‘The […]

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