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Re: Re: The Final Betrayal

The study of climate models is an Acronym Rich Environment (ARE). Not only are numerous organizations identified by cryptic acronyms, but the model or models they produce are also labeled with unusual acronym designations.

Initially, models that possessed the greatest hope for success were the General Circulation Models (GCM). There are numerous modifications of this term. We have AGCM (Atmospheric GCM--originally redundant). Those models are differentiated from the OGCM (Oceanic GCM). Then we have the AOGCM (for Atmospheric-Oceanic GCM) and later reduced to CGCM (Coupled GCM). Sometimes you see CGM. Now is this a form of Acronym Dyslexia (AD); i.e., they mean GCM or is it a shorten version of CGCM? Who knows? The term GCM also means Global Climate Model (a recent addition, but they are just as serious when blurting it out). Confusion reigns supreme.

Your "Global Circulation Model" statement seems like an obvious next step in this acronym soup. However, I’m probably being too picky.


Re: The Final Betrayal

The USA National Academy of Sciences got involved in the late 1990s in the exercise of providing definitions of terms like facts and theories as part of the evolution versus creationism debate in the USA. The creationists argued that the Theory of Evolution was only a theory, not a fact, and so their creationist material should be taught along side it. (Presumably Erich Von Daniken would like his "Chariots of the Gods" theory to be taught as well). In effect the creationists were taking advantage of the much looser definition of the word theory in everday language, where it can even be taken to mean a 'speculative idea'.

The definitions NAS came up with are at the bottom of this webpage:

They came up with a rather sloppy definition of a 'fact':

"Fact: In science, an observation that has been repeatedly confirmed and for all practical purposes is accepted as "true." Truth in science, however, is never final, and what is accepted as a fact today may be modified or even discarded tomorrow."

The problem with the above is that the phrase "for all practical purposes is accepted as true" could allow a fact to be determined by consensus. The last sentence contradicts the basic truth-seeking nature of science, by suggesting that facts may only be provisional. These provisional facts are allowed to be overturned later, but it may be very tricky to do that if they have been determined by consensus.