Tuesday, 29 May 2007

Global warming debate heats up

Now this is just a little scary.

According to the Guardian a number of so-called ‘climate scientists’ are attempting to block the DVD release of the documentary, “The Great Global Warming Swindle”, that casts doubts of the idea of anthropocentric, or man made, global warming.

In a letter, coordinated by Bob Ward, a former press officer with the Royal Society, 37 experts have called for the DVD to be either heavily edited, or actually banned from sale.

Mr Ward was quoted, on the subject of his attempt to suppress the documentary, as saying: “This isn't about censorship, it's a question of quality control.”.

Surely the best way to refute any alleged errors, or points of disagreement, in the documentary would be to - well - actually refute them. Not try to suppress the airing of those views. Hardly what one would naturally think of as in the spirit of scientific enquiry.

Martin Durkin who made the documentary responded: "This contemptible attempt at gagging won't work. The reason they want to suppress The Great Global Warming Swindle is because the science has stung them. By comparison look at the mountains of absurd nonsense pedalled in the name of 'manmade climate change'. Too many scientists have staked their reputations and built their careers on global warming. There's a lot riding on this ridiculous theory..

It does make one wonder why those who wish to promote the theory of anthropocentric global warming are so sensitive. Their response seems to have more in common with a zealot, who’s religion has been questioned, or called into doubt. As Mr Durcan pointed out there are an awful lot of scientists and perhaps more significantly, though he didn't mention them, politicians, who have staked their reputations, careers and future income on the man made global warming gravy train.

Bob Ward and his fellow travellers would probably not want the general public to pay too much attention to say, recent, equivalent, global warming on Mars. They would have a hard time blaming that on a couple of solar powered Martian Rovers after all.

It seems that, sometimes, 'They' do listen

China is not exactly known for it’s willingness to allow the open and free exchange of information. For a start it blocks news websites and regularly blocks websites that do not agree with government views.

However this is hopefully some good news. The Chinese government had been planning to force millions of Chinese bloggers to register their real names. It is estimated there are some 20 million bloggers in China and the idea mooted last year provoked enormous objections from Chinese internet users, rejecting the idea as a move by the government to control information.

The government had attempted to justify the compulsory scheme by suggesting that it would make bloggers more ‘responsible for their behaviour’ and that real-name registration would ‘protect’ users from libel, pornography and other ‘harmful’ information.

Now the Chinese government has backed away from actually forcing bloggers to register and are bringing in a voluntary code instead. It will encourage bloggers to register with their real names and personal details, offering improved services as an incentive to those who register.

Blogs in China have developed into an informal way of spreading news that can not be got through mainstream media - popular blogs get millions of hits every day.

Keeping in mind that they were facing a compulsory system, it seems as if bloggers are cautiously welcoming the new voluntary code.