RatS 23: David Karoly – CSIRO and the Suppression of Science

So much crap, so little time. We’re desperately trying to get to the Australian Curriculum. Courtesy of the Evil Mathologre, however, we have about 2000 essays to grade. And, due to “must  be done” renovations, The Boss is demanding that the massive Everything in our garage be moved two meters to the left. (We suggested it’d just be easier to move the garage two meters to the right, but The Boss didn’t buy it.) Before all that, however, there are a couple posts that really need to be done, including this one, on CSIRO.

In 2016, we gave our To Hell With It All swan song at the MAV conference. The lead up to that included MAV’s ham-fisted censorship, but still, the approved abstract was, we think, pretty funny:

The aim of the talk was, indeed, “to apportion due credit”. We displayed a list of “those responsible” and then the audience chose, one after another, who should be hammered. One we didn’t get to was CSIRO. Fair enough, since they were not directly a major culprit in the screwing up of Australia’s maths education. But we were disappointed. We felt that CSIRO were indirectly a major culprit or, at least, a major symbol of our truth-contemptuous times.

One expects the major Federally funded agency for scientific research to be a role model, a pristine example of scientific integrity. A few incidents in the year before our keynote, however, suggested that CSIRO was changing, was now happy to self-censor and to sell their once-good name to whichever clown outfit was wanting to buy:

No one cared, of course. No one ever cares. But we left it. Scientific research is, to say the least, not our strong suit.

Scientific research is, however, David Karoly‘s strong suit. For decades, David has been a loud, passionate, sane, truthful voice on climate science. And a week or so ago, David Karoly gave CSIRO both barrels.

In an excellent report-interview by The Guardian‘s Adam Morton, David lays out the intellectual corruption now at the heart of CSIRO. Karoly describes CSIRO as a “very extravagant consulting company”, and he makes clear the Quisling censoriousness at CSIRO:

Karoly says scientists at CSIRO and the Bureau of Meteorology are routinely blocked from speaking publicly and have their work suppressed if it could be interpreted as at odds with government policy. As one of CSIRO’s top climate scientists, Karoly was allowed to talk about global greenhouse gas emissions and the urgent need to reduce them, but not allowed to talk about Australia’s approach to the issue or performance in cutting emissions.

“We were not allowed to talk about Australian government policy on anything, whether it was Australian government policy on Covid, or Australian government policy on seasonal climate forecasts, or Australian government policy on emissions,” he says.

… “They suppressed my commenting on a paper that said there was suppression of science,” Karoly says. “I think it was absolutely stupid but, yes, what CSIRO was trying to do was to suppress science. It makes no sense that we have some of the country’s best climate scientists in the Bureau of Meteorology and in the CSIRO and they can’t talk openly about the links between science and public policy.”

Read all of Morton’s-Karoly’s report, and then scream.

One Reply to “RatS 23: David Karoly – CSIRO and the Suppression of Science”

  1. This is disappointing, but not surprising. It has long been a policy at CSIRO that all publications be approved by the organisation before being submitted to a journal. I recall one researcher telling me that he had published a paper using his home address as his affiliation to get around this problem.

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