Skywalker Interviewed by AuthorPoppet



Today I’m chatting with published astrophysicist Hilton Ratcliffe. Hilton is just one of those people who makes life infinitely interesting. No matter what question I have, he takes the time to *put things into perspective* for me, and he’s rather lovely. I’m pleased my path crossed his last year, and that we’ve maintained contact… let’s talk books, space, and big bangs (the innuendo in that is endless)…

Poppet • • • looks to Hilton…

The Virtue of Heresy: That’s quite a title – care to explain it?

The full title of my first book is “The Virtue of Heresy – Confessions of a Dissident Astronomer”. It has nothing to do with religion. Science progresses by being challenged. The history of organised knowledge has been characterised by periods – I suppose we might even call them dynasties – during which a prevailing dogma has held sway, and this has always meant the suppression of dissent. For example, the regime that promoted the Earth-centred Universe ruled science and society for about 2,000 years. It has invariably been the efforts of a few resolute individuals, the heretics that brought about regime change described as a paradigm shift by Thomas Kuhn. We owe the ongoing development of true science entirely to the efforts of those few dissidents like Copernicus and Galileo who risked their lives to challenge the orthodoxy, hence “the virtue of heresy”. My book puts that into a contemporary idiom, focusing primarily, but not exclusively, on insidious repression of dissent by a clique promoting Big Bang Theory in cosmology.

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Interview by Kirt Griffin for South African Astrophysicist Dr. Hilton Ratcliffe on the Sun & How it Drives our Climate

Interview by Kirt Griffin for South African astrophysicist Dr. Hilton Ratcliffe on the Sun and how it drives our Climate

A few years ago I was introduced to Hilton Ratcliffe by a mutual friend. He had published a book, “The Virtue of Heresy: Confessions of a Dissident Astronomer”. The book held me fascinated as it debunked many of the dogma that infiltrated the scientific lexicon. He disassembled each so-called theory, actually unproven hypotheses, in a calm scientific manner. He now has a new book and I can’t wait to read it. The video attached was taken in Durban South Africa and the responses by the local dog population to the animals in the African bush were a nuisance. It didn’t stop him from making his point in a very professional manner. The segment was broadcasted on African TV.

I hope you enjoy it. Dr. Ratcliffe has agreed to an interview and I have received the final responses today so without further ado, lets begin.

Kirt G: Were those dogs barking in the background or some wild African beast?

Hilton: That was a dog, but it was barking at a wild creature (vervet monkey). We had to stop and re-take several times because of wild animal sounds coming from the bush.

Kirt G: Could you tell us a little about yourself and maybe comment on your new book?

Hilton: Although I do research on the Sun, my work does not relate directly to terrestrial weather. I’m simply trying to establish a physical description of celestial phenomena and systems as far as physics can reach into space, and that’s not very far. My interest in the AGW debacle stems from a realization that it is the product of the same sociological and psychological factors as Big Bang Theory, with the caveat that AGW is easier to falsify scientifically. My hope therefore was that in helping to bring global dogma like AGW down, I would eventually, by analogy, provide some basis upon which to bring about freedom of astrophysics and astronomy from the grip of standard-model-mania.

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Response to Malcolm Keeping’s letter in Ndaba, February 2010

Dear Malcolm

Thank you most sincerely for your response last month to my April 2009 Breaking News column in Ndaba. I wish more of our readers would express their views and exchange ideas. I fear though that objectivity may be on thin ice here (pun unintended) because we both, by our own admission, engage for ethical reasons in what is clearly an emotionally-charged conflict of ideals. We clearly have some common purpose at the outset: We are both greatly concerned about progressive harm to ecology and species; and we agree that global warming and dynamic climate change are real. Let’s take it from there. What I say is that there is nothing historically unusual about current global temperatures. Global warming and global cooling are periodic. They are perfectly natural peaks and valleys in cycles driven primarily by the Sun. There are no data to support the hypothesis that greenhouse gases, whether human-related or not, drive climate fluctuations. This is a story of how an unsubstantiated theory of climate, a model, became political ideology.

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OK, what should we worry about today?

And a very good morning to you. It’s 4:30am, and I was awakened by a cat and this oppressive, sweltering Durban heat. I do have aircon in my home, but don’t like to use it continuously. I suppose that subliminally, I’m embracing the warmth as we start an irreversible slide into the headwaters of a looming Ice Age. Not that I’m worried about it. It’s out of my hands.

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Why are we Here?

My argument is that terrestrial climate is dynamic, and has been changing cyclically for the Earth’s entire lifetime. Climate change exists and is natural. Climate and energy on Earth are products of the Sun by such an overwhelming margin as to make human influence vanishingly trivial. Al Gore lied about that and has formulated huge self-serving propaganda in order to benefit personally. We should divert the funds earmarked (uselessly) for climate engineering to proper, meaningful environmental hygiene, social responsibility, and protection of those creatures over which we have been granted dominion. Human beings are legitimate citizens of Earth, and have as much right to be here as monkeys. All species use their given abilities as they best see fit. However, due to an absence of natural predators and good wars, human population pressure exceeds the ability of the environment to sustain itself. There are too many people, too many monkeys, too many jellyfish, and too few leopards and way too few objective scientists. We need to get rid of some of the excess, usually taken to mean someone else, not ourselves. I’d start with Al Gore, then Osama bin Laden, then Robert Mugabe, then Julius Malema, then this bitch monkey that keeps busting my gutters and telephone line.

Global Schwarming! Anthropogenic Global Warming Debunked

I consider myself an environmentalist. I would like to see human beings become better citizens and treat their planet with greater respect. However, as a scientist, I am really deeply despondent about the whole paradigm that has arisen around Al Gore’s Inconvenient Truth road show. The reason is simply this: The theory of catastrophic global warming he has publicised so brilliantly is completely unfounded in fact.

The patterns of climate on Earth are directly correlated to Solar activity and the flux of cosmic rays. This has been established in numerous studies. On the other hand, not a single study has produced a correlation between anthropogenic carbon emissions and global temperature. Not one!

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Cosmology? Bah, Humbug!


Hello and welcome to my cosmology and astroscience blog.

Is Cosmology fact or fiction, science or fairy tale? Do we need it? Is it good for us? Does it have any useful purpose? Should we be confined to a Standard Model?

Civil, rational comments are welcome, rudeness and manic euphoria are discouraged. Let me know what you think of my  website and the articles on it.

Hilton Skywalker