Wednesday, May 23, 2007

But Science Is So Much Easier When You Get To Make It Up

See, the thing we never liked about science back when we were denizens of and educorporate training facility was that there was no wiggle room. We mean, you mix two chemicals together and you clear out the lab and have to have a talk with the Fire Marshall and the school psychologist.

Now today, mix those same chemicals together and the explosion may not actually have been an explosion. In fact, it is only secular relativists who believe that the combination of certain chemicals produces violent changes in the state of those chemicals. True believes know it is really just god's way of saying the room is too hot and needs to be cooled off by having all its windows blown out.

Smithsonian Institution toned down an exhibit on climate change in the Arctic for fear of angering the U.S. Congress and the Bush administration, says Robert Sullivan, a former administrator at the museum. "I told them the chances of Bush ever visiting a museum were about the same as it raining monkeys in Anchorage, but they said sometimes Inhofe wandered in when he was drunk and might see the exhibit."

Among other things, the script, or official text, of last year's exhibit was rewritten to minimize and inject more uncertainty into the relationship between global warming and humans. "We're just trying to teach the controversy," said White House spokeswoman Kristen Hellmer. "But since we really couldn't find much of a controversy, we decided to go with obfuscation."

Officials omitted scientists' interpretation of some research and let visitors draw their own conclusions from the data. "Well, most of the people who come through there are trained scientists and statisticians," Hellmer said. "We just didn't want the exhibits to be redundant."

"It just became tooth-pulling to get solid science out without toning it down," said Sullivan, who resigned last fall after 16 years at the museum. He said he left after higher-ups tried to reassign him. "I was up for promotion, but I failed my bible quiz. They said it had more to do with that than the climate thing."

Smithsonian officials denied that political concerns influenced the exhibit, saying the changes were made for reasons of objectivity. And some scientists who consulted on the project said nothing major was omitted. "Do we put good science ahead of politics? Soitenly," Said Dr. Curly.

In recent months, the White House has been accused of trying to muzzle scientists researching global warming at NASA and other agencies. "'Muzzle' is such a harsh word," said Hellmer. "It's more like...well, OK muzzle is about right."

Sullivan said the changes in the climate-change exhibit were requested by executives who included then-museum Director Cristian Samper and his boss, former Undersecretary for Science David Evans. Samper, now acting Smithsonian secretary, said he was not aware of scientists' objections. "No one ever said anything to me. Of course, come to think of it, that was right after we had all the locks changed and our phone number unlisted."

Evans refused to comment. At least it appeared that he refused to comment, but it was hard to tell as he was speaking in tongues.

Randall Kremer, a spokesman for the natural history museum, said atmospheric science was outside the Smithsonian's expertise, so the museum avoided the issue of what is causing the Arctic changes. When asked why the museum couldn't have brought in people who did have the required expertise to evaluate the exhibit Kremer responded, "You mean there are guys that know about this stuff?"


MrShoosh said...

Dude, you are my hero lately. If I get myself all worked up about what a mess the world is, I take a look at your page and somehow it all seems so much more entertaining. Thank you.

Ironicus Maximus said...

Most kind of you sir. Almost makes us want to blog sober.