We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
Science, policy, and politics necessarily makes for a messy combination. Theories and factual claims are generally tentative.
However, scientists are human, live in a given culture of knowledge and assumptions, and become attached to their ideas. Nobody wants to see his pet theory, worked on for 15 years, blown away by fresh data.
It isn't about Climate Science, it's about Political Science. If they can sell a reason or rationale to control carbon then they have control of energy and industry.
It's politics and exactly for the same reason that Hitler needed his people to accept that the Jews were running a conspiracy against Germany so today's power seeking politicians must make the people accept that carbon is a problem.
My degree in Physics says that real science is ALWAYS skeptical. Everything has to be tested, and tested again under different conditions. Science is never "settled".
And no scientist "believes in" a scientific theory. Belief is for religion; science requires proof and evidence before you accept a scientific theory. And the theory is only accepted pending the discovery of new contrary evidence, at which time the theory gets revised or discarded and replaced by a better theory that more closely agrees with the evidence.
Finally, real science is never discovered in a computer model. If the model pans out and produces valid predictions, then you might argue that the model adequately explains the mechanism. But actual experimental evidence ALWAYS trumps the results of any computer simulation.
I don't have a degree in Physics, though it was my major the first two years of college.
But I tend to point out to young people today that skepticism is the first sign of a good scientific mind. Accepting a theory as fact without any support isn't scientific at all, and accepting a theory as fact based on a computer model is worse.
That said, common sense will usually give you a good answer to solve the skeptical response. If I throw a pebble in pond, did the water level rise?
Most people observing the pond's edges would say no. But that, of course, cannot be true. The pebble's entry definitely displaced water, causing it to rise whether we can see it or measure it meaningfully. It does not pay to be skeptical when you apply common sense. The water did rise, but we just don't know how much. We could model it, if we had the data, and then we'd probably have a good idea.
But generally speaking, I'll opt for the skeptic every day.
All science is politicized today. Not just climate but health, medicine, diet, environment, etc. I don't trust science and scientists as I once did. There is a fascist-like revolution going on in science today and if you don't bow to it you are eliminated.