Lipstick on a bear: A comment on internet blogs, polar bears, and climate-change denial by proxy

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  1. Anand Rajan

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Description: Harvey et al. (2017) is an attempt on a colleague's reputation. They collected data by an unclear process, validated by data of unknown provenance. They artificially inflate the dimensionality of their data before reducing that dimensionality with a questionably applied PCA. They pretend their results are two dimensional where there is only one dimension. They suggest that there are many nuanced positions where there are only a few stark ones (in their data), using a jitter to conceal poor data quality, and obscure the underlying perspectival homogeneity due to self-selection. They show that there is disagreement on the vulnerability of polar bears to climate change, but offer no new evidence who is right or wrong, apart from a fallacious argument from authority, with a "majority view" taken from an unrepresentative sample.

License: Academic Free License (AFL) 3.0

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