Interview 1177 - Judith Curry on The Republic of Science

06/10/201612 Comments

Dr. Judith Curry is a climatologist and former chair of the School of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences at the Georgia Institute of Technology who went from the "high priestess of global warming" to a "climate heretic" after realizing she had been duped by the IPCC. Today she joins us to talk about her recent breakdown of Michael Polanyi's 1962 article "The Republic of Science." Topics discussed include the science/policy nexus, the breakdown of the old norms of scientific research, and how the internet is helping to revolutionize science.


Dr. Curry Testimony to the US Senate December 2015

The Republic of Science (Polanyi article)

The Republic of Science (analysis at

Science on the Verge

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  1. nosoapradio says:

    Often I’ve found myself trying to grasp the technical arguments of Climate Etc. articles but even more fascinating for me are the discussions in the comments sections. Great place to go study human behavior, that of more or less interested and disinterested parties… Or shall we say parties with varying motivations for being there…

    Thanks for this interview. She does indeed have a great website.

    Hopefully the particles of physics that escape the invisible hand will soon include the cosmic particles of supernovae that create clouds in the earth’s atmosphere. All hail Svensmark and Shaviv and Co.

    Will listen again more closely to this interview tonight at my leisure. TGIF!

    Thanks again to both of you!

  2. n4x5 says:

    Having spent time in a professional science environment (graduate school at a respected physics program at a major American university), I can’t say that I find anything surprising here. Those who’ve been on the inside seeing the sausage being made frequently have a justifiably diminished sense of respect for the scientific discipline as it’s often practiced now.

    The pushback by an increasing number of scientific professionals against this kind of lysenkoism is encouraging, though.

  3. VoltaicDude says:

    “I’ve stopped worrying about what my peers in academia think of me…” – another disturbing example of the effects of shunning in a corrupt institution.

    It illustrates the fascist standards of our society at large to a T, and defines her academic peers; “just doing their jobs” – faithful to the system.

    My own surprise at all this is also telling. I already know “the institution” is corrupt, but somehow I don’t let it sink in. Maybe that’s a type of learned helplessness?

    Perhaps it’s best described as evasive or avoidant behavior. We’re in a pretty bad place societally. I don’t see many people in general behaving more responsibly, or even just being open to growing in that direction. It’s scary.

    But she then goes on to say, “I’ve redefined my peer group to this much broader group of people, and I’m having the time of my life.” – That’s pure genius.

    “It would be wonderful if more people took to really engaging publically. Too much of the whole issue of communication is too much of a one way street.”

    Her entire attitude is constructively forward looking. I’m looking forward to visiting her site regularly.

    The use of the word “heretic” to describe Curry by Nature is appalling, but their general audience is unquestioning! Everything is debased to sensationalistic entertainment value to the service of the powers-that-shouldn’t-be and their spineless minions that acquiesce to slave for them.

    But again, this behavior actually speaks volumes about the nature of Nature more than anything else!

    This is an important pod. It is a very effective reminder of how bad things are, and simultaneously a great example of how to react constructively to such a negative predicament.

    • VoltaicDude says:

      I was going to apologize for citing Nature when I should have cited Scientific American, but it appears the screen capture in the video is indeed a reprint of the SA article in Nature, so shame on both of them.

      Mulling over the problem of the climate change debate I also had a few more reflections.

      I do think that there is a Russian Roulette game being played regarding industrial pollution (an “externalizations” game), but that’s a far cry from the neat little problem of “too much CO2” in the atmosphere, and the correspondingly simplistic financialization-games being offered up as solutions – this is a con regardless of whether the earth’s climate is going to hell in a hand basket, and as you’ve said in the past James, it’s a con about political control of the entire globe.

      The term industrial pollution should be considered in all its breadth, including industrial fallout of all sorts: not just atmospheric pollution from combustion exhaust (and certainly not just CO2 at that); but also the fallout of nuclear radiation from accidents and commerce-related warfare; oceanic pollution from industrial fertilizer runoff (not a CO2 issue); the contamination/depletion of underground aquifers; the release of GMO organisms into the environment at large; etc. (“etc.” encompasses a mind-boggling list – the mess they created with Flint’s water supply is child’s play compared to what they’ll try to get away with if they feel their political monopoly is in real danger of being toppled – and they’ll blame it on climate change if they can).

      It’s an overwhelmingly complex issue, and that’s how they’re playing it.

      Unfortunately, the political impact of developing maximally-distributed, localized renewable-energy systems globally is so underestimated that the major imperative on moving forward a.s.a.p. on renewable energy is buried in all the climate change noise.

      For some reason it seems base or frivolous to talk about the fact that this is a political impasse and a political problem in light of environmental arguments, especially when fear-mongering and hyperbole reign! Who needs hyperbole when the truth is bad enough? I say beware of hyperbole. Likewise beware of naysayers – “no problem, no problem at all.”

      The sham of technocracy is not about how technology can revolutionize a society (it can, has regularly in history, and will continue to do so), but about the hierarchy of society, who is in control? Technocrats, just like elected officials would be just nominally in control of our bankster-industrial-military (B.I.M.) lead society.

      Actually B.I.M. is pretty close to B.I.S. (Bank of International Settlements) in more ways than one, so maybe I’ll establish my own convention of referring to B.I.S. as the supreme ruling body of globalist empire – understanding that there is some division of labor delegated out for all the messy work (it’s all dirty-work).

      But aside from all these reflections, I actually did have a specific question to throw out. Is there the equivalent of a “Building 7” for the climate change debate?

  4. gm says:

    As a scientist, I can certainly relate to Dr. Curry’s comments. The best I have ever read on science and its real role in culture was written or spoken by Adi Da Samraj.

    Here is an example:
    • In truth, the only thing that can be affirmed absolutely is Reality Itself—Which Is Truth Itself. No mere “point of information” can be absolutely affirmed. Therefore, any mere “point of information” is simply a subject of further “consideration” or discussion, and should only be tentatively affirmed as something that may be the case, as something that seems to be the case based on some level of evidence.
    • Making absolute affirmations is not a proper disposition for any exercise engaged from a scientific perspective. However, scientists frequently make absolute affirmations, as if they have some sort of absolute “knowledge”, whereby they are entitled to absolutely affirm that such and such is, or is not, the case. To indulge in absolute affirmations—including the affirmation of scientific materialist philosophy—is a gross misuse of the “authority” of science.
    • Science is not in a position to make absolute affirmations. True science is the “method” of enquiry-without-prejudice—and that “method” of enquiry enables science only to make propositions that are tentatively affirmable, and that must, necessarily, be tested by all yet future evidence. In the realm of science, further investigation is always required. The basis of all right and true science is this: Nothing absolute can be “known” (or, otherwise, said) about conditionally arising phenomena. (From The Aletheon, by Adi Da)
    • Cock-a-mamie science is about appearances, about the investigation of broken light. It is a philosophy being propagandized. It really should be a mode of free enquiry. Free enquiry doesn’t have a point of view in that sense.
    • Brain chemistry is also a species of light. Human beings are material, yes, but are also energy, light—changeable, but indestructible, a play of light, in a state of indivisible Unity—and this is the basis for true science.

  5. nosoapradio says:

    ktrammel says:
    06/14/2016 at 4:42 am
    If I may, I’d just like to add to this conversation that Physics, in my experience as a student of physics at Purdue and at Lawrence Universities, and through years of independent study, is as political as medicine or climatology. Perhaps it’s just not as apparent because it is so esoteric.

    There are numerous theories outside the established orthodoxy which would greatly impact the economics that are based on a standard model of physical reality, but which are more authentic than existing theories. Jagadish Chandra Bose, Tom Bearden, Myron Evans, and many others, have all offered new insights on physics that have been disregarded because they clash with the standard accepted model of physical reality. However, they have produced results and especially in Bose’s and Evans’s (and in the case of many individuals Tom Bearden speaks of), the math is more sound than what is now accepted. Though we owe to him the idea of Alternating Current as a source of power, Tesla’s other ideas have been abandoned because they don’t lend themselves to a hierarchy of knowledge management. He’s never been credited with the invention of radio, as it appears he should have been. This may have been part of the effort to expunge him from public awareness because of the danger his ideas posed to the economic order.

    Ben Davidson, of suspicious0bservers, often encounters the scathing contempt of the orthodoxy of physics with regard to the sun-earth electromagnetic system, Star Water, and the Electric Universe Hypothesis. Of course, his ideas bridge the islands of Climatology, Geology, and Physics, so he gets the best of political discord from all those areas.

    Maxwell’s original equations of electromagnetism were discarded (by Heaviside) in favor of the current system because they were too complex to use for engineering purposes. This resulted in a loss of insight as to the actual nature of electricity. Attempts to restore those insights (Tom Bearden is the alpha advocate on that) are disregarded by the main stream because they would require the revision of all text books, re-education of tenured professors, as well as a complete redesign of the means by which electrical power is provided, removing the need for the immensely profitable centralized distribution system altogether.

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