This forum is about wrong numbers in science, politics and the media. It respects good science and good English.
In reply to JMW, I'd agree that one of the main messages of the original Star Trek series was promotion of the issue of gut feel versus logic, with gut feel tending to come out on top. However I think that message got played down in the later series with captains that were a bit less gung-ho than Kirk.
The Kirk versus Spock issue came up in a recent Daily Mail news story about a forthcoming biography of David Cameron:
One of the various things revealed in this biography is that the UK Foreign Office's nickname for US President Obama is 'Spock' and Cameron regards Obama as being ‘too rational and considered’, which presumably ties up with the Spock nickname. It suggests, if we didn't know already, that Cameron and the Foreign Office don't do as much thinking or use as much logic as might be desirable.
On the subject of Schellnhuber, I've thought for quite a number of years that he was the inventor (in the mid-1990s) of the well-known 2 degree C limit for how much the world is allowed to warm up as a global climate policy target, as explained in this Der Speigel magazine article:
Extract from the article:
"Rarely has a scientific idea had such a strong impact on world politics. Most countries have now recognized the two-degree target. If the two-degree limit were exceeded, German Environment Minister Norbert Röttgen announced ahead of the failed Copenhagen summit, "life on our planet, as we know it today, would no longer be possible."
But this is scientific nonsense. "Two degrees is not a magical limit -- it's clearly a political goal," says Hans Joachim Schellnhuber, director of the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK). "The world will not come to an end right away in the event of stronger warming, nor are we definitely saved if warming is not as significant. The reality, of course, is much more complicated."
Schellnhuber ought to know. He is the father of the two-degree target.
"Yes, I plead guilty," he says, smiling. The idea didn't hurt his career. In fact, it made him Germany's most influential climatologist. Schellnhuber, a theoretical physicist, became Chancellor Angela Merkel's chief scientific adviser -- a position any researcher would envy."
But a few weeks ago I happened to noticed an article by "The Carbon Brief" blog which gives a purported history of the 2 deg C limit and writes Schellnhuber out of the story altogether, attributing it originally to an American economist, William Nordhaus, in the 1970s, followed up by its adoption by the Stockholm Environment Institute in 1990:
The Carbon Brief blog was set up in 2011, and looks to me like it is intended to be something similar in style to the Realclimate blog, but staffed with journalists rather than climate scientists, and so is quicker responding and a bit more under the control of Big Green than Realclimate. It is currently headed by the ex-Guardian environmental journalist Leo Hickman, and enjoys typically generous Big Green funding, £330K for the most recent year.
So it raises an interesting question, was Schellnhuber not being truthful about his invention of the 2 deg C limit? On the other hand, Carbon Brief may prefer the Nordhaus attribution as it fits in with Green propaganda that the global cooling scare of the 1970s was merely an invention of the media at the time and assert that most climate scientists actually believed in AGW back in that decade. Carbon Brief may also not be keen on Schellnhuber's association with the 2 deg C limit as it is clear from the Spiegel article that he doesn't take the limit all that seriously.