127 thoughts on “Sandpit

  1. Frankly all this sophistry on this thread about the philosophy of science as well as haggling on levels of confidence, degrees of certainty and bone headed truth is not just tiring, more importantly wasting valuable time and resources. As Prof Q, as well as several others including me have pointed out above, that in the language science uses, the probability of AGW is above 90%. Now these are exceedingly high odds, many people gamble a fortune on much less than that. However, what it means in real term is, a risk with these odds would in any other field, say OHS, immediately engage professional risk management. We do have international codified risk standards ISO 31000 with clear definitions and processes. Why are we so stuck with this science thingy, with most of us not having the capacity to even understand our limitations in that field, yet we all practise risk management in our professional capacity as well as in every day life like applying sunscreen. In reality even if the odds would be far far less than those disputed or dismissed, given the magnitude and pervasiveness of the risk posed by AGW, we would be absolute fools not to act and follow the established professional procedures.

    Btw Iko re “Where is the uncertainty?”, as I mentioned above, you are too stuck on your empiricism/positivism stance of science, as indicated, amongst others, by your labeling of FB as a ‘Pomo’. Perhaps you want to look up some solid critiques of these powerful albeit limited thinking tools of modernity. However, in risk management terms-
    “Uncertainty (or lack of certainty) is a state of being that involves a deficiency of information and leads to inadequate or incomplete knowledge or understanding. In the context of risk management, uncertainty exists whenever your knowledge or understanding of an event, consequence, or likelihood is inadequate or incomplete.
    So, you can reduce your uncertainty by getting better information and improving your knowledge and understanding. You can reduce your uncertainty and manage your risk, by using a systematic
    approach to risk management.”
    Source http://www.praxiom.com/iso-31000-terms.htm

  2. On reflections/
    There is a beauty in the last sentence of above ISO 31000 definition of ‘Uncertainty’. I see almost a self referential equation in there, with the (you) on one side. According to above link, the ISO 31000 definition of (you) is:

    “A risk owner is a person or entity that has been given the authority
    to manage a particular risk and is accountable for doing so.”

    So according to ISO 31000, as a stakeholder in context of AGW, I am entitled to ask who is (you) the risk owner.
    btw iko, you have your propensities and I have mine. I really appreciate yours, they are a major source of motivation for me to follow the JQ blog. They indeed dare me to participate and hopefully contribute in my way 🙂 Hope you’ll have a wonderful Australia day and to many more to come.

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