Friday, November 02, 2007


There is a yawning gap between the models and reality

By Cliff Ollier, School of Earth and Geographical Sciences, The University of Western Australia, Crawley, WA 6009, Australia []

My attention was drawn to a Working Paper by Alan Carlin (1) which was basically about how emissions reductions may be a dangerous strategy to avoid climate change. Much of his perceived threat is based on papers by Hansen (2007) and others who propose rapid melting of the Greenland and West Antarctica (henceforth Antarctica) Ice Sheets that causes a sea level rise of 5 m or more.


Hansen is a modeller, and his scenario for the collapse of the ice sheets is based on a false model. Hansen has a model of an ice sheet sliding along an inclined plane, lubricated by meltwater, which is itself increasing because of global warming. The same model is adopted in many copy-cat papers. Christoffersen and Hambrey (2006) and Bamber et al. (2007). are typical papers, a popular article based on the same flawed model appeared in the June 2007 issue of National Geographic, and the idea is present in textbooks such as The Great Ice Age (2000) by R.C.L. Wilson et al.

Hanson's model, unfortunately, includes neither the main form of the Greenland and Antarctic Ice Sheets, nor an understanding of how glaciers flow. The predicted behaviour of the ice sheets is based on melting and accumulation rates at the present day, and on the concept of an ice sheet sliding down an inclined plane on a base lubricated by meltwater, which is itself increasing because of global warming. The idea of a glacier sliding downhill on a base lubricated by meltwater seemed a good idea when first presented by de Saussure in 1779, but a lot has been learned since then.

It is not enough to think that present climate over a few decades can affect the flow of ice sheets. Ice sheets do not simply grow and melt in response to average global temperature. Anyone with this naive view would have difficulty in explaining why glaciation has been present in the southern hemisphere for about 30 million years, and in the northern hemisphere for only 3 million years. To understand what is possible it is necessary to know something about the physics of glacier flow, which explains a few things not accounted for in the Hansen model, including:

* Why are ice crystals at the foot of a glacier a thousand times bigger than those in the snow that feeds them?
* Why does lake ice deform at lower stress than other ice?
* Why do crevasses only reach a limiting depth?

In reality the Greenland and Antarctic ice sheets occupy deep basins, and cannot slide down a plane. Furthermore glacial flow depends on stress (including the important yield stress) as well as temperature, and much of the ice sheets is well below melting point. The accumulation of kilometres of undisturbed ice in cores in Greenland and Antarctica (the same ones that are sometimes used to fuel ideas of global warming) show hundreds of thousands of years of accumulation with no melting or flow. Except around the edges, ice sheets flow at the base, and depend on geothermal heat, not the climate at the surface. It is impossible for the Greenland and Antarctic ice sheets to `collapse'.

A glacier budget

In general glaciers grow, flow and melt continuously, with a budget of gains and losses. Snow falls on high ground. It becomes more and more compact with time, air is extruded, and it turns into solid ice. A few bubbles of air might be trapped, and may be used by scientists later to examine the air composition at the time of deposition. More precipitation of snow forms another layer on the top, which goes through the same process, so the ice grows thicker by the addition of new layers at the surface. The existence of such layers, youngest at the top, enables the glacial ice to be studied through time, as in the Vostok cores of Antarctica, a basic source of data on temperature and carbon dioxide over about 400,000 years.

When the ice is thick enough it starts to flow under the force of gravity. A mountain glacier flows mainly downhill, but can flow uphill in places. In an ice sheet the flow is from the depositional high centre towards the edges of the ice sheet. When the ice reaches a lower altitude or lower latitude where temperature is higher it starts to melt and evaporate. (Evaporation and melting together are called ablation, but for simplicity I shall use `melting' from now on).

If growth and melting balance, the glacier appears to be `stationary'. If precipitation exceeds melting the glacier grows. If melting exceeds precipitation the glacier recedes.

How glaciers move

Flow is mainly by a process called creep, essentially the movement of atoms from one crystal to another. The first clues to this came from the study of lake ice, which can flow at a stress much below the shear strength of `regular' ice if the stress is applied parallel to the lake surface. This results from the crystal properties of ice. Ice is a hexagonal mineral with glide planes parallel to the base. Lake ice is a sheet of crystals with the c-axes vertical and the glide planes all parallel to the lake surface, so a push parallel to the glide planes deforms the ice readily. Much greater stress is needed to deform ice perpendicular to the glide planes.

Another method of flow is important in `regular' ice. There is constant gain-and-loss of atoms between different crystals in a mass of ice, and in the absence of any stress an individual grain of ice will lose about the same number of atoms that it gains, and so remain unchanged. But if a crystal is stressed it will lose more atoms than it gains and so shrink, while a nearby unstressed grain will gain more than it loses and so grow. In this way there will be preferential growth of those ice crystals which are oriented in such a way that their glide planes are parallel to the stress, and grains in other orientations will tend to disappear. This is observed in glaciers, where it is found that a preferred crystal orientation appears with distance down-valley, and the ice crystals at a glacier snout have a volume about a thousand times greater than that of the first-formed ice crystals at the source of the glacier. These observations cannot be explained by mechanisms that ignore the crystal structure of ice.

The flow of material in a solid crystalline state is known as creep, and there are three laws of creep relevant to the flow of ice:

1. Creep is proportional to temperature.
2. Creep is proportional to stress (essentially proportional to the weight of overlying ice)
3. There is a minimum stress, called the yield stress, below which creep does not operate.

All these laws have significant effects on glacier movement. Alpine glaciers differ significantly from the ice caps of Greenland and Antarctica, and care is needed to transfer knowledge of one kind of glacier to the other. Incidentally, the physics of ice as described here was worked out over 60 years ago, by people such as Perutz (1940)

Creep is proportional to temperature

The closer the temperature comes to the melting point the greater the creep rate. In experiments at a fixed stress it was found that the creep rate at -1oC is 1000 times greater than at -20oC. In valley glaciers the ice is almost everywhere at the prevailing melting point of ice, because the latent heat of ice is very much greater than its specific heat. Very little heat is required to raise the temperature of an ice block from -1oC to 0oC; it takes about 80 times as much heat to turn the same ice block at 0oC into water at 0oC. Since the temperature does not vary in valley glaciers they are not affected by this first law of creep.

But ice caps are very different. They are cooled to temperatures well below freezing point, which reduces their capacity to flow very greatly. Ice caps can be kilometres thick, and their warmest part is actually the base, where the ice is warmed by the Earth's heat, and where flow is concentrated. The drilling of the Northern Greenland Ice Core Project (NGRIP) was stopped by relatively high temperatures near the base and new equipment had to be designed to drill the core from 3001 m to 3085 m. It is because ice only flows at the base that great thicknesses of stratified ice can accumulate, as revealed in the ice cores.

Some Greenland cores show no flow at all. This is cold-based ice. A large geomorphology literature describes delicate landforms such as tors and patterned ground in areas that were formerly covered by an ice sheet. The general view is that cold-based ice essentially preserves any pre-existing landforms, and the erosion potential of cold-based ice is zero or minimal. Importantly for ideas of `collapse', the ice is not sliding: it is not moving at all.

Greenland differs from Antarctica in that the ice sheet spills out through gaps in the mountain rim, and the glaciers overlie deep narrow valleys. According to van der Veen et al. (2007) such valleys have higher than usual geothermal gradients, so it might be geothermal heat, rather than global warming, that causes some Greenland glaciers to have higher than usual flow rates. The overspills have some of the characteristics of alpine glaciers, where evidence of glacier recession is more obvious.

Creep is proportional to stress (essentially proportional to the weight of overlying ice)

This means that the thicker the ice the faster the flow, but a great stress is required if the ice is very cold. This is shown by the huge thicknesses of undisturbed ice revealed by the ice cores that are used to work out palaeoclimates. In Antarctica, in the Vostok cores the undisturbed ice that provides the desired information continued to a depth of 3310 m or 414,000 years, but below this the ice starts to be deformed.

There is a minimum stress, the yield stress, below which creep does not operate. At the surface there is no stress, so the ice does not flow: at a certain depth the weight of ice is sufficient to cause flow, and all the ice below this limit must flow. The threshold boundary between non-flowing ice and flowing ice marks the yield stress level. The upper, brittle ice is a solid being carried along on plastic ice beneath. Since the flow is uneven the solid, brittle ice is broken up by a series of cracks called crevasses. The base of crevasses marks the position of the yield stress and the transition from brittle to plastic ice.

In Antarctic and Greenland ice sheets crevasses occur towards the edges, where the ice is flowing, but not in the areas of accumulation. In the middle of the ice sheets there are no crevasses to transmit meltwater to the base of the ice sheet, even if it were present (which is impossible).

Some results of the laws of glacier flow

These simple rules of creep allow us to understand some observations on glaciers

Glacial surges

The speed of valley glaciers has been measured for a long time, and is rather variable. Sometimes a valley will flow several times faster than it did earlier. Suppose we had a period of a thousand years of heavy precipitation. This would cause a thickening of the ice, and more rapid glacial flow. The pulse of more rapid flow would eventually pass down the valley. It is important to understand that the increase in flow rate is not related to present day air temperature, but to increased precipitation long ago.

Melting and climate

On July 21, 1983, the lowest reliably measured temperature ever recorded on Earth was at Vostok with ?89.2 øC. The highest recorded temperature at Vostok is -19o C, which occurred in January 1992, and during the month of July 1987 the temperature never rose above -72.2o C. At these temperatures ice cannot flow under the pressures that prevail near the surface. Warming has no effect at such low temperatures: ice will not flow faster at -60oC than at -70o C.

Ice sheets may take many thousands of years to flow from the accumulation area to the melting area. The balance between movement and melting therefore does not relate simply to today's climate, but to the climate thousands of years ago.

Glaciers and precipitation

Glaciers and ice sheets are in a state of quasi-equilibrium, governed by rates of melting and rates of accumulation. For a glacier to maintain its present size it must have precipitation as snowfall at its source. This leads to a slightly complex relationship with temperature. If the regional climate becomes too dry, there will be no precipitation, so the glacier will diminish. This could happen if the region became cold enough to reduce evaporation from the ocean. If temperatures rise, evaporation is enhanced and so therefore is snowfall. Paradoxically a regional rise of temperature may lead to increased growth of glaciers and ice sheets. Today, for example, the ice sheets of both Antarctica and Greenland are growing by accumulation of snow.

The age of ice sheets

In the Greenland ice sheet several cores have over 3 km of undisturbed ice which go back in time for over 105,000 years, much less than the Antarctic equivalent. The Vostok cores in Antarctica provide data for the past 414,000 years before the ice starts to be deformed. Dome F core reached 3035 m and Dome C core 3309 m, and both date back to 720,000 years. The Epica core in Antarctica goes back to 760,000 years, as does the Guliya core in Tibet. But what is more important than the age is that vast thicknesses of ice are preserved, and they retain complete records of deposition, in spite of the fact that temperatures at times during that period have been warmer than now. They do not fit the model of surface melting, even infrequently. After three quarters of a million years of documented continuous accumulation, how can we believe that right now the world's ice sheets are collapsing!

The collapse of ice sheets

Some of the present-day claims that ice sheets `collapse' are based on false concepts. Ice sheets do not melt from the surface down - only at the edges. Once the edges are lost, further loss depends on the rate of flow of the ice. The rate of flow of an ice sheet does not depend on the present climate, but on the amount of ice already accumulated, and that will keep it flowing for a very long time. It is possible that any increase in temperature will cause increased snowfall thereby nourishing the growth of the ice sheet, not diminishing it.

The very ice cores that are used to determine climates over the past 400,000 years also show that the ice sheet has grown over that period by accumulation of stratigraphic layers of snow, and has not been deformed or remelted. The mechanism portrayed by Christoffersen and Hambrey (2006), of meltwater lakes on the surface finding their way down through cracks in the ice and lubricating the bottom of the glacier is not compatible with accumulation of undisturbed snow layers. It might conceivably work on valley glaciers, but it tells us nothing of the `collapse' of ice sheets.


The global warming doomsday writers claim the Greenland and Antarctic ice sheets are melting catastrophically, and will cause a sudden rise in sea level of 5 or more metres. This ignores the mechanism of glacier flow which is by creep. Glaciers are not melting from the surface down, nor are they sliding down an inclined plane lubricated by meltwater. The existence of ice over 3 km thick preserving details of past snowfall and atmospheres, used to decipher past temperature and CO2 levels, shows that the ice sheets have accumulated for hundreds of thousands of years without melting. Variations in melting around the edges of ice sheets are no indication that they are collapsing. Indeed `collapse' is impossible.


Appenzeller, T. 2006. The Big Thaw. National Geographic, June 2007. 56-71.

Bamber, J.L., Alley, R.B. and Joughin, I. 2007. Rapid response of modern day ice sheets to external forcing. Earth and Planetary Science Letters, 257, 1-13.

Carlin, A. 2007. NCEE Working Paper #07-07.

Christoffersen, P. & Hambrey, M.J. 2006. Is the Greenland Ice Sheet in a state of collapse? Geology Today, v.22, pp. 98-103.

De Saussure, H-B. 1779-1796. Voyages dans les Alpes.(4 volumes) Manget, Geneva.

Hansen, J. 2007. Scientific reticence and sea level rise. Environmental Research Letters, May 24.

M.F. Perutz. Mechanism of glacier flow. Proc.Phys.Soc., 52, 132-135, 1940.

van der Veen, C.J., Leftwich, T., von Frese, R., Csatho, B.M. & Li, J. 2007. Subglacial topography and geothermal heat flux: Potential interactions with drainage of the Greenland ice sheet, Geophysical Research Letters, v.34, LI2501, doi:10.1029/2007 GL030046.


Vincent Gray has begun a second career as a climate-change activist. His motivation springs from the United Nations' Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, a body that combats global warming by advocating the reduction of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases. Dr. Gray has worked relentlessly for the IPCC as an expert reviewer since the early 1990s.

But Dr. Gray isn't an activist in the cause of enforcing the Kyoto Protocol and realizing the other goals of the worldwide IPCC process. To the contrary, Dr. Gray's mission, in his new role as cofounder of The New Zealand Climate Science Coalition, is to stop the IPCC from spreading climate-change propaganda that undermines the integrity of science.

"The whole process is a swindle," he states, in large part because the IPCC has a blinkered mandate that excludes natural causes of global warming. "The Framework Convention on Climate Change (FCCC) 1992 defined 'climate change' as changes in climate caused by human interference with atmospheric composition," he explains. "The task of the IPCC, therefore, has been to accumulate evidence to support this belief that all changes in the climate are caused by human interference with the atmosphere. Studies of natural climate change have largely been used to claim that these are negligible compared with 'climate change.' "

Dr. Gray is one of the 2,000 to 2,500 top scientists from around the world whom the IPCC often cites as forming the basis of its findings. No one has been a more faithful reviewer than Dr. Gray over the years -- he has been an IPCC expert almost from the start, and perhaps its most prolific contributor, logging almost 1,900 comments on the IPCC's final draft of its most recent report alone.

But Dr. Gray, who knows as much about the IPCC's review processes as anyone, has been troubled by what he sees as an appalling absence of scientific rigour in the IPCC's review process. "Right from the beginning, I have had difficulty with this procedure. Penetrating questions often ended without any answer. Comments on the IPCC drafts were rejected without explanation, and attempts to pursue the matter were frustrated indefinitely.

"Over the years, as I have learned more about the data and procedures of the IPCC, I have found increasing opposition by them to providing explanations, until I have been forced to the conclusion that for significant parts of the work of the IPCC, the data collection and scientific methods employed are unsound. Resistance to all efforts to try and discuss or rectify these problems has convinced me that normal scientific procedures are not only rejected by the IPCC, but that this practice is endemic, and was part of the organization from the very beginning."

Dr. Gray has detailed extensively the areas in which global warming science falls down. One example that this New Zealander provides comes from his region of the globe: "We are told that the sea level is rising and will soon swamp all of our cities. Everybody knows that the Pacific island of Tuvalu is sinking. Al Gore told us that the inhabitants are invading New Zealand because of it.

"Around 1990 it became obvious that the local tide-gauge did not agree -- there was no evidence of 'sinking.' So scientists at Flinders University, Adelaide, were asked to check whether this was true. They set up new, modern, tide-gauges in 12 Pacific islands, including Tuvalu, confident that they would show that all of them are sinking. "Recently, the whole project was abandoned as there was no sign of a change in sea level at any of the 12 islands for the past 16 years. In 2006, Tuvalu even rose."

Other expert reviewers at the IPCC, and scientists elsewhere around the globe, share Dr. Gray's alarm at the conduct of the IPCC. An effort by academics is now underway to reform this UN organization, and have it follow established scientific norms. Dr. Gray was asked to endorse this reform effort, but he refused, saying: "The IPCC is fundamentally corrupt. The only 'reform' I could envisage would be its abolition."

CV OF A DENIER: Vincent Gray is a graduate of the University of Cambridge, with a PhD in physical chemistry. He has published more than 100 scientific papers and authored the book, The Greenhouse Delusion: A Critique of 'Climate Change 2001.' Dr. Gray has participated in all of the science reviews of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change and in 2006 was a visiting scholar at the Beijing Climate Center.



We have repeatedly been assured that global warming causes hurricanes so surely the falloff in hurricanes proves cooling!

As tropical storm Noel heads for the U.S., we recall how we were warned that global warming would increase the number and power of hurricanes. Yet the 2007 season is the mildest in 30 years.

In his propaganda film "An Inconvenient Truth," Al Gore popularized the notion that, due to man's use of carbon-based fuels, we are asking for a "planetary emergency" that includes stronger and more frequent hurricanes. Gore's no scientist, but some who carry the title agree with him.

"The global warming influence provides a new background level that increases the risk of future enhancements in hurricane activity," Kevin Trenberth of the National Center for Atmospheric Research said in June 2006.

The alarmists' drumbeat has resulted in widespread acceptance of the doomsday scenario. Much of the public now believes humans are causing global warming that will give us storms so frequent and severe that we'll be having one Katrina a month.

So far, though, the opposite has happened. Does this mean the Earth is cooling?

Noel, which already has killed 20 people in the Dominican Republic, might yet turn into a hurricane. And it's hard to know what the last month of the hurricane season, beginning Thursday, will bring.

But Ryan Maue of Florida State University's Center for Ocean-Atmospheric Prediction Studies says it looks like 2007 will go down as a lamb. "Unless a dramatic and historical flurry of activity occurs in the next nine weeks," Maue writes, "2007 will rank as a historically inactive tropical cyclone year for the Northern Hemisphere as a whole."

In the past 30 years, Maue adds, only 1977 had less hurricane activity when comparing periods beginning Jan. 1 and lasting through Oct. 30. What's more, this past September had the lowest activity since 1977 while the Octobers of 2006 and 2007 had the lowest activity since 1976 and 1977.

In case the data so far are unconvincing, we add this: The North Atlantic hurricane season is 29% below normal, the Northern Hemisphere 33% below normal. The Western Pacific is off 27% while the Eastern Pacific is 60% behind its typical rate of activity.

We concede that next year might be the worst hurricane season on record. But it's just as likely to be a repeat of this year. No one can reasonably predict what the storm count and intensity will be in 2008.

What we can expect is the alarmists' storm of nonsense to keep coming. They won't give up on global warming until they've found a new calamity they can use to scare everyone.


Frog salvation: And NOT by the Kyoto treaty!

I've lost track of the number of times the frog dieback has been blamed on global warming. Weird twist: The cure is banned!

New Zealand scientists have found what appears to be a cure for the disease that is responsible for wiping out many of the world's frog populations. Chloramphenicol, currently used as an eye ointment for humans, may be a lifesaver for the amphibians, they say. The researchers found frogs bathed in the solution became resistant to the killer disease, chytridiomycosis. The fungal disease has been blamed for the extinction of one-third of the 120 species lost since 1980.

Fearful that chytridiomycosis might wipe out New Zealand's critically endangered Archey's frog (Leiopelma archeyi), the researchers have been hunting for a compound that would kill off the disease's trigger, the fungus Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis. They tested the chloramphenicol candidate on two species introduced to New Zealand from Australia: the brown tree frog (Litoria ewingii) and the southern bell frog (L. raniformis). "We found that we could cure them completely of chytrids," said Phil Bishop from the University of Otago. "And even when they were really sick in the control group, we managed to bring them back almost from the dead." "You could put them on their back and they just wouldn't right themselves, they would just lie there. You could then treat them with chloramphenicol and they would come right," Dr Bishop explained.

But the Zoological Society of London (ZSL) expressed caution at the news. Wildlife epidemiologist Dr Trent Garner said there would be reluctance to take up chloramphenicol as a solution, certainly in Europe and North America, because of the chemical's link to harmful side-effects in humans.

The NZ researchers tried using chloramphenicol as both an ointment, applied to the frogs' backs, and as a solution. They found that placing the animals in the solution delivered the best results. The team has admitted it was surprised by the outcome. "You don't usually expect antibiotics to do anything to fungi at all. And it does. We don't understand why it does, but it does," said Russell Poulter. Professor Poulter, the molecular biologist who hunted down chloramphenicol, added: "It's also got the great advantage that it's incredibly cheap."

The scientists are now making their research widely known ahead of formal publication in a science journal because of the pressing need for a safe and effective treatment for the chytrid disease. The blow that chytrid has dealt to the frog population is already immense. The disease has probably accounted for one-third of all the losses in amphibian species to date, says Professor Rick Speare, an expert in amphibian diseases who works with the University of Otago's frog research group. These losses are huge - and this is in addition to other threats such as habitat destruction, climate change, pollution and hunting.

Since 1980, more than 120 amphibian species have disappeared; and according to the World Association of Zoos and Aquariums, in the near future many more species are in danger of vanishing. "We are losing an awful lot of these creatures now and if we don't do something intelligent, then we're going to lose an awful lot more," said Professor Poulter.

But a hopeful finding is that the introduced frogs that have been infected with chytrids are now more resistant to further infections. "We haven't quite understood how that could happen," said Dr Bishop. "It might be a natural thing; if a frog survives a chytrid infection then it is resistant when it gets attacked again." The researchers believe that zoos now will have more options, either to be able to control an outbreak or to rescue infected frogs from the wild, knowing that they can be cured.

The next challenge the research team has set itself is to find a treatment that will work in the wild. "I would really feel quite satisfied if we could say, 10 years from now, that you have to be careful walking around [Australia's] Kosiuszko National Park or you might tread on a corroboree frog because they're all over the place," said Professor Poulter. "I would take real satisfaction from that."

However, just how widely chloramphenicol might be adopted is open to debate. EU and US authorities are concerned the drug may cause aplastic anaemia in humans. "It is a banned substance; in particular, it is controlled where it comes into contact with food sources," commented Dr Garner from ZSL. "There are other antifungals that are being piloted and some are looking promising. Treating infection in amphibians is possible, but determining if there are any side-effects takes time. Also, how you apply an antifungal at the individual, the population and the species level is a whole set of questions which needs to be addressed."


Comment on David Whitehouse's assessment of CO2 and the Greenhouse effect (see article immediately below)

Comment by John A [] of Climate Audit

David writes:

"For the Earth's atmosphere to be in a steady state there must be a balance with infra-red radiation radiating back into space. Thus increasing the atmospheric carbon dioxide content will upset that balance by trapping more energy and causing the atmosphere to increase its temperature."

And here lies the basic problem. Whoever gave the idea that the Earth's atmosphere had a steady state? Only with the assumption of such a steady state does notions of "climate stabilization", "positive feedback" or the dread apocalyptic phrases of "tipping points", and "inflections" arise.

Also implicit in Whitehouse's reasoning is the unexamined notion that the Earth's climate had some sort of natural unstable equilibrium, where a slight perturbation in the atmosphere's chemistry can lead to large (runaway) effects? This notion of unstable equilibrium comes from the solidly debunked Hockey Stick and similar false reconstructions of climate that apocalyptics like Andrew Glikson clearly regard as Holy Writ.

In reality, it is creationism in modern secular garb, a benign stable climate for a long time suddenly being perturbed by the sin of eating from the Tree of Knowledge (the Industrial Revolution), and the chaos of sin inevitably leading to our own destruction unless we repent from our evil ways and embrace the new graces of energy poverty and sustainability (those things meaning whatever politicians want them to mean, but inevitably higher taxation is part of the sacrifice).

From bad assumptions comes bad analysis, bad science and bad policy - and we are all paying for those bad assumptions.

Now the UK Government is planning to enact a law which will make the people of Britain a lot poorer, cause what remains of our manufacturing base to leave for China or shutdown, and all of this to control the uncontrollable and stabilize the constantly changing. Even in Australia, the Labour leader Kevin Rudd has suddenly adopted John Howard's Kyoto policy because of the human and economic cost - but in the UK we have no such analysis, only cant.

It should come from people like David Whitehouse, but alas, poor assumptions do not make for a solid foundation of scientific argumentation.


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