Sunday, December 6, 2009
Galliean Peer Review
I love how the press is blowing off all this Climategate stuff by saying that all the research has passed peer review. Somewhere they dont seem to get it that your peers are quite often the ones that share your own views or share in your paycheck. Look at Gallieo. He proved that the world revolved around the sun yet his peer review was to be imprisoned because it went against the opinion of "the peers". We have a journal club were we all take recent papers in our field and have to present them. This is a great exercise for the residents. The first thing you do is look at the question the research is hoping to answer. You then check to see how they are getting the data and if analysis of the data will lead to an answer. You then check the statistics on the data. Only then can you say if the research is of merit. I stress that the comments and discussion are just that, or better expressed an editorial. It is amazing how many of the papers dont support the conclusions. I cant help but feel this way with the whole "Climategate" thing. It seems that this a classic example of having an opinion and then trying to backtrack to make the research support you and your peers opinion. This is why they destroyed the original data and only have the "corrected data". There original data did not show warming, in fact it showed the opposite which was against their "peers" in the global warming religious and grant funding movement. An essential part of research is to openly publish your research so that someone else can reproduce it an come to the same conclusions. When you cant do that you have to suspect that there is major bias in the research. Then it appears they contacted their "peers" to make sure that they too purged their data and anything that would bring to light the faults of their study. In Gallileo's time you had to publish what the church agreed to. I wonder is Gore the pope of Global warming. Oops, forgot, its snowing in Houston better call it "climae change".