|Links:||Global Warming - Disaster or Boon?|
Experiments are not enough. The scientific method also requires that the hypothesis be capable of making predictions that are consistent with the emerging theory. Any prediction (or experiment) that is inconsistent with the current hypotheses undermines the hypothesis, which must then be either modified or abandoned.
Another requirement is that the new or modified hypothesis has also to explain all the observations that led to any existing theory that it will replace. History cannot be rewritten. Audit trails are as important to scientific developments as to financial accounting.
No scientific hypothesis can be regarded as conclusively proved, because any experiment or observation that is inconsistent with it can at any time undermine it. The longer that it survives, and the more reliably it supports predictions, the better it fares, until it is secure enough to be called a Theory.
Politics works quite differently. Most politicians either invent their own theories or believe in one (or more) invented by other politicians. The political method is to work up a political theory, then argue in order to convince others that it is "right". It is very diificult indeed to persuade a politician to change his mind about his political views.
Even when it is quite clear that a political idea has entirely failed to achieve what it set out to do, there will still be politicians who will argue a case for it. If all else fails, a politician will argue that, even though the declared aims were not achieved, something else good came of it.
That could be why there are very few scientists in politics. It is largely peopled by advocates - lawyers, journalists and the like - who have particular axes to grind and who are more committed to persuading others to their viewpoint than to understanding how things really work.
Another clue is the word "model". If you hear "models predict", be very suspicious that the prediction may not be much better than a guess.
If you hear "consensus" or "majority" and "model" in the same conversation, you can be almost certain that the speaker, though he may have impeccable scientific credentials, is speaking not as a scientist, but as a politician.