In 1632, Aristotle’s model of the universe that maintained the earth as the center was the ‘consensus’ view of the time. Galileo was labeled as a heretic for his heliocentric theory. Although his ideas came to be accepted in later centuries, Aristotles views remained the ‘enforced’ consensus for a long period of time. Consensus is supposed to be the result of free and liberal thinkers arriving at the same conclusions, deriving those conclusions from repeatable methods of inquiry, or in other words the scientific method. Today, more emphasis seems to be placed on consensus building vs. scientific inquiry. Those that challenge the status quo view of anthropogenic global warming are labeled ‘holocaust deniers’ and some are even threatened by the loss of their job. Jerome Scmitt, president of NanoEngineering Corporation gives a great take on this issue commenting on the American Thinker blog.
“The dawn of the 21st century sees relentless strident attempts to enforce consensus about global warming theory. These modern inquisitors, replete with Supreme Court rulings, brand "deniers" of impending apocalyptic global warming as heretics who lack blind faith in the theology of infallible computer models. Today's Galileos are being threatened with loss of their positions, credentials and titles. Foisting theories upon scientists and the public by means of verbal persuasion, elections, court orders, or intimidation is the opposite of the scientific method of determining the truth.”