There are very few items in the news these days that generates much satisfaction. Like previous generations before, the current view of our problems is that they are insurmountable, unsolvable and will have catastrophic results. Of course unlike previous generations this time that may be true.
So it is with great satisfaction that we learn that the billionaire Koch Brothers funded research into global warming by supporting a known critic of the subject. The recipient of the funding was Richard Muller, who has some pretty serious credentials and was highly skeptical of global warming and that it was caused by human activity.
Richard A. Muller, professor of physics atUC Berkeley, MacArthur Fellow and co-founder of the
Earth Surface Temperature project. . . . Berkeley
Muller is a long-standing, colorful critic of prevailing climate science, and the Berkeley project was heavily funded by the Charles Koch Charitable Foundation, which, along with its libertarian petrochemical billionaire founder Charles G. Koch, has a considerable history of backing groups that deny climate change.
Dr. Muller - Smiling After Learning He will
Get No More Funding from the Koch Brothers
But apparently Mr. Muller is a serious scientist, one who looks at the data, analyzes the results of various models and draws a conclusion independent of his own personal prejudices or beliefs, in other words, the exact opposite of a Conservative. So after conducting the research here is what Mr. Muller concluced.
In an opinion piece in Saturday’s New York Times titled “The Conversion of a Climate-Change Skeptic,” Muller writes: “Three years ago I identified problems in previous climate studies that, in my mind, threw doubt on the very existence of global warming. Last year, following an intensive research effort involving a dozen scientists, I concluded that global warming was real and that the prior estimates of the rate of warming were correct. I’m now going a step further: Humans are almost entirely the cause.”
Of course not everyone is convinced. For example here is a person who appears to have no credentials in the area whatsoever.
Muller’s conclusions, however, failed to sway the most ardent climate contrarians, like Marc Morano, a former top producer for Rush Limbaugh and communications director for the Republicans on the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee who now runs the website climatedepot.com. “Muller will be remembered as a befuddled professor who has yet to figure out how to separate climate science from his media antics. His latest claims provide no new insight into the climate science debate,” Morano said in an email.
Hm, let’s see. A respected physics professor who has won the coveted MacArthur ‘genius’ fellowship vs a political hack who has a B. A. degree in political science from George Mason. Yes, it is a close call but we have to go with the genius on this one.
As for the Koch Brothers, who are spending tens, maybe hundreds of millions to buy their way into the national debate and impose their own peculiar philosophy on the public, it looks like they just ran into someone who cannot be bought. Wow, that will set them back in their thinking. And next time they will probably make the findings of any research determined before the research is done. Yes, they can do that, they are billionaires.