Disentangle climate damages

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By John Bartlit


The nation’s bitter dispute over climate change drags public discourse to new extremes of futility. Worse yet, the hostile views of man-made climate change expand into a kindred dispute about the tools of science itself. 

The fray sharpens three key observations: 

• Each side says the opposing side is afraid to answer questions about weak points in its case.      

• Each side says its foe distorts how science advances by constant questioning.  

• Each side says its foe’s energy ambitions corrupt its science.

In sum, each party says those other guys have trampled on the methods of science.

These parallel views bring to mind a fair means that is the pride of democracy — the jury system.

Imagine a mock trial — or call it a “test run” — to judge whether man-made climate change is true or false, and to what extent. A test run follows all the same rules as a legal trial, except the jury’s verdict is not legally binding on anyone.

To find answers, a trial has set procedures, each step of which is infixed in all parties by the judge and the force of law. The familiar term “contempt of court” means someone ignored a required procedure.  

Specified steps include:

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