Our cultural revolution

Via email from Chet.

The University of Washington Should Not Censor Faculty Social Media:

Several faculty who had attended the gathering told me they were afraid to speak in my defense. One, a full professor and past chair, told me that what had happened was very wrong but he was scared to talk.

Another faculty member, who was originally from China and lived through the Cultural Revolution told me it was exactly like the shaming sessions of Maoist China, with young Red Guards criticizing and shaming elders they wanted to embarrass and remove.

Scary stuff. He documents numerous violations of University of Washington faculty code and constitutionally protected First Amendment rights.

One of my degrees is from the University of Washington but I haven’t donated any money to these communists in many years and won’t be either. They really need to get their act together. This sort of behavior is intolerable.

4 thoughts on “Our cultural revolution

  1. Sadly, the people of Seattle (and WA in general) seem to not only tolerate it quite well, they appear to support much of it.

    And yet when you want people of the historical parallels, they say you are paranoid, a dangerous nationalist, a hate-monger, and worse.

    None are so blind as those who will not see.

  2. From what I can tell the root cause of this behavior is that these so-called academics are ‘true’ believers and as such, they constantly need reaffirmation. Cliff is frequently pointing out there are problems with this belief system (even though he publically says that AGW is real) and this irritates them.

    I disagree with Cliff’s view on AGW, but I generally agree with him when he presents a careful analysis of weather/climate phenomenon. In most cases, he says that the phenomenon is just weather and cannot be attributed to climate change.

    I still remember my first course in linear regression and how error bars exploded once you left the data. And that was with the normal thin tailed distributions. We also did discuss fat-tailed distributions but viewed them as an anomaly because they typically did not have moments (mean, variance, …). In practical terms, fat-tailed distributions mean that you cannot do statistics. They do not apply (at the time we were told that you can transform to normality – but this is not correct).

    This is the core problem with climate modeling. Climate forecasting is simply not possible because many of the underlying probabilities are fat-tailed. I suspect that if Cliff was not employed as a full professor he would agree – if not now then in the future.

    PS. If you are interested, Nassim Nicholas Taleb has written multiple books on the analysis of fat-tailed distributions including Antifragile. Taleb is noted for the book: The Back Swan.

  3. I see a historical parallel.
    In the past we’ve seen members of the Cult of Warmism fight unbelievers, trying to get various bad things to happen to these kafirs. Things like loss of employment or even jail, depending on which particular cultist was speaking.
    Here we seem to have a dispute between two sects of the cult, where one has the power to victimize a member of another sect.
    The parallel: After the Dutch Republic had successfully thrown off the yoke of the Spanish Inquisition (in the first part of the 80 year war), it nearly self-destructed due to some esoteric dispute between the followers of Gomarus and Arminius, the leaders of two slightly different sects of Calvinism. For a true fanatic, no deviation from dogma is small enough to be ignored. It wasn’t a trivial disagreement: one of the leading statesmen of the time lost his head over this issue (literally).

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