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Steve Lunetta: Climate change Nazis

Right About Now

Posted: August 16, 2009 8:26 p.m.
Updated: August 17, 2009 4:55 a.m.
As I have admitted before, I am a nerd. Unabashed, unapologetic and unwashed nerd-dom at its finest.

I follow the latest exploits of NASA with rapt attention. Unmanned space flight is stupid - I want real people flying through space on a ship named - what else? The Enterprise.

I watch "Star Wars," "Spider-Man," "Harry Potter" and any movie with a comic book theme. I know what the "Dark Phoenix" story line is in the X-Men series.

I also wait until the end of the credits to see the "nugget" inserted for the true hard-case comic movie fans (Nick Fury at the end of Iron-Man was classic celluloid foreshadowing at its best).

So, it should be no surprise that I regularly read Chemical and Engineering News, the trade magazine of the American Chemical Society of which I am a proud member.

Most of the time, C&EN is boring chemical industry stuff which is fascinating to nerds like me but totally mind-numbing to the rest of humanity.

"Novel Boronic Esters for Suzuki Coupling Reactions" is not a story title that will find its way onto the pages of the Mighty Signal.

Except recently.

Rudy M. Baum, editor-in-chief of C&EN, has become increasing strident in his support for global warming, or "climate change," as is now the politically correct term.

In fact, an editorial written in the June 22 issue of C&EN went so far as to personally attack anyone who disagrees with the dogma of global climate change.

This is very disturbing in light of the fact that scientists are trained to be skeptical. If someone makes an assertion, we expect it to be backed with facts and data that can be independently verified.

A dissenting voice is not to be silenced but listened to and fairly evaluated.

Baum even went so far as to tag anyone who is not firmly in the climate change camp as a "CCD" (climate change denier).


Isn't this a common tactic of the Left to label someone they disagree with then summarily dismiss their views as fringe?

Baum calls the CCDs "purveyors of nonsense" and claims that the opposite side "sows doubt, makes up statistics" as well as other charges that are anathema to the scientific community.

This is sort of like claiming a newspaper reporter made up facts or that a doctor is a quack. Trying to stop differences in opinion in the scientific community is equally as bad.

Ever wonder why the United States always leads in innovation? Our scientific community is allowed to think freely and express differing opinions without fear of humiliation or retribution.

It's only when people like Baum get involved that the process suffers.

Not surprisingly, the reaction to Baum has been huge. Imagine hundreds of nerds with horn-rimmed glasses with Band-Aids on the nose-bridges protesting and complaining! They carry signs reading "Baum has stifled my Diels-Alder Reaction" and "Entropy has a new name: Baum."

In the July 27 issue, the backlash became visible and vocal. I can only assume that Baum, under immense pressure from the Society's governing board, was forced to print some of the numerous letters written to C&EN over his comments.

Howard Hayden wrote: "Rudy Baum's remarks are particularly disquieting because of his hostility toward skepticism, which is part of every scientist's soul."

Thomas D'Ambra wrote: "I thought my membership in ACS meant that I belonged to an organization of scientific professionals focused on the betterment of our science and the collective lot of its membership.

Instead, what should be a noble organization is turning into another left-wing mouthpiece."

Edward Gleason observed: "There is too much evidence that the climate has always been subject to change as far back as investigations go, and we have very little knowledge as to why."

He further states that "Baum's attempt to close out debate goes against all my scientific training."

Baum appears to have started a firestorm by voicing his leftist views then trying to suppress opposition. Welcome to the Obama-ization of science.

I always find it fascinating that liberals have the arrogance to believe that man is responsible for everything that goes on.

In their view, it is "clear" that man is responsible for climate change even though there is little to no correlative evidence to support this theory.
However, if you disagree, you are labeled and dismissed.

We must always remain free to voice our opinions, regardless of whether we are scientists or citizens.

Steve Lunetta is a Santa Clarita resident. His column reflects his own views and not necessarily those of The Signal. "Right About Now" runs Mondays in The Signal.


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