The Younger Dryas Impact hypothesis - update on the situation regarding Allen West

9 Jun 2011

George Howard, at June 8th has been investigating the smeer against Allen West, the geologist at the centre of a controversy over his ability, credentials and an alleged criminal record. He was accused of being a criminal and imposter, or as George Howard puts it, a charlatan, by an ex-Nature journalist, Rex Dalton, on a blog posting. It seems that his so called criminal record does not actually exist. Not only that. West's work as a geophysicist in California is still being used by the department of water rsources and the energy commission (of California) hardly the sort of thing that would happen if it was worthless. He is not a mickey mouse geologist at all it would seem, in spite of the innuendo and claims made by Dalton. West only became involved in the Younger Dryas impact investigation after he had retired and all his material was examined independently by laboratories - and other researchers have verified his work by discovery of the same sort of anomaly (magnetic spherules, nano-diamonds, and various other impact markers). Dalton appears to have adopted the sort of tactic common in the AGW doomsaying plague - attack the scientist as a person rather than address the discoveries. This suggests that a) they don't like the idea of comets or cometary material impacting with the atmosphere, b) can't really contradict the evidence that has been found in the ground, and c) are blindly devoted to the consensus idea that the YD event was 'climatic' rather than 'catastrophic' in nature. The trouble is that once mud has been thrown some of the mud will stick - and West is forever compromised. Luckily, he is retired and does not have a career, as such, but unfortunately this affair will be a stick to beat everybody involved in the YD impact hypothesis. I thought it was interesting that the nefarious journalist that blew the issue open - eagerly seized upon by other detractors - was formerly employed by Nature, one of the leading doomsayers in the AGW affront to common sense. How much of the work he produced for Nature was equally ad hominem in content and how much credence can be given for anything he might have said at any time in the past? It is well known that prominent scientists opposed to AGW have been targeted by email and have experienced verbal abuse, such as Judith Curry, Bob Carter, Ian Plimer, Richard Lindzen and others. Tim Ball, a retired Australian scientist has even been taken to court (pending) for having the affrontery of running a sceptic blog by a prominent AGW orientated organisation with big bucks and a well known multi-millionaire to fund the case. If you think this kind of thing just happens as a result of AGW having a strong PR megaphone think again because it happens in other branches of science too. For instance, in the medical world, ideas contrary to the consensus are somethimes resolved by attacking the maverick personally - rather than disproving the science. It happens quite commonly where politics converge with science - in any subject or discipline you can imagine. In the past pompous organisations such as The Royal Society could damn a new idea on the spot - nothing changes.