Sections

Services

Information

UK United Kingdom

Is misinformation about the climate criminally negligent?

The importance of clearly communicating science to the public should not be underestimated. Accurately understanding our natural environment and sharing that information can be a matter of life or death…

Better communication may have saved lives in Italy’s L'Aquila earthquake. TheWiz83, CC BY-SA

The importance of clearly communicating science to the public should not be underestimated. Accurately understanding our natural environment and sharing that information can be a matter of life or death. When it comes to global warming, much of the public remains in denial about a set of facts that the majority of scientists clearly agree on. With such high stakes, an organised campaign funding misinformation ought to be considered criminally negligent.

The earthquake that rocked L'Aquila Italy in 2009 provides an interesting case study of botched communication. This natural disaster left more than 300 people dead and nearly 66,000 people homeless. In a strange turn of events six Italian scientists and a local defence minister were subsequently sentenced to six years in prison.

The ruling is popularly thought to have convicted scientists for failing to predict an earthquake. On the contrary, as risk assessment expert David Ropeik pointed out, the trial was actually about the failure of scientists to clearly communicate risks to the public. The convicted parties were accused of providing “inexact, incomplete and contradictory information”. As one citizen stated:

We all know that the earthquake could not be predicted, and that evacuation was not an option. All we wanted was clearer information on risks in order to make our choices.

Crucially, the scientists, when consulted about ongoing tremors in the region, did not conclude that a devastating earthquake was impossible in L’Aquila. But, when the Defence Minister held a press conference saying there was no danger, they made no attempt to correct him. I don’t believe poor scientific communication should be criminalised because doing so will likely discourage scientists from engaging with the public at all.

But the tragedy in L’Aquila reminds us how important clear scientific communication is and how much is at stake regarding the public’s understanding of science. I have argued elsewhere that scientists have an ethical obligation to communicate their findings as clearly as possible to the public when such findings are relevant to public policy. Likewise, I believe that scientists have the corollary obligation to correct public misinformation as visibly and unequivocally as possible.

Many scientists recognize these civic and moral obligations. Climatologist Michael Mann is a good example; Mann has recently made the case for public engagement in a powerful New York Times opinion piece: If You See Something Say Something.

Misinformation and criminal negligence

Still, critics of the case in L’Aquila are mistaken if they conclude that criminal negligence should never be linked to science misinformation. Consider cases in which science communication is intentionally undermined for political and financial gain. Imagine if in L’Aquila, scientists themselves had made every effort to communicate the risks of living in an earthquake zone. Imagine that they even advocated for a scientifically informed but costly earthquake readiness plan.

If those with a financial or political interest in inaction had funded an organised campaign to discredit the consensus findings of seismology, and for that reason no preparations were made, then many of us would agree that the financiers of the denialist campaign were criminally responsible for the consequences of that campaign. I submit that this is just what is happening with the current, well documented funding of global warming denialism.

More deaths can already be attributed to climate change than the L’Aquila earthquake and we can be certain that deaths from climate change will continue to rise with global warming. Nonetheless, climate denial remains a serious deterrent against meaningful political action in the very countries most responsible for the crisis.

Climate denial funding

We have good reason to consider the funding of climate denial to be criminally and morally negligent. The charge of criminal and moral negligence ought to extend to all activities of the climate deniers who receive funding as part of a sustained campaign to undermine the public’s understanding of scientific consensus.

Criminal negligence is normally understood to result from failures to avoid reasonably foreseeable harms, or the threat of harms to public safety, consequent of certain activities. Those funding climate denial campaigns can reasonably predict the public’s diminished ability to respond to climate change as a result of their behaviour. Indeed, public uncertainty regarding climate science, and the resulting failure to respond to climate change, is the intentional aim of politically and financially motivated denialists.

My argument probably raises an understandable, if misguided, concern regarding free speech. We must make the critical distinction between the protected voicing of one’s unpopular beliefs, and the funding of a strategically organised campaign to undermine the public’s ability to develop and voice informed opinions. Protecting the latter as a form of free speech stretches the definition of free speech to a degree that undermines the very concept.

What are we to make of those behind the well documented corporate funding of global warming denial? Those who purposefully strive to make sure “inexact, incomplete and contradictory information” is given to the public? I believe we understand them correctly when we know them to be not only corrupt and deceitful, but criminally negligent in their willful disregard for human life. It is time for modern societies to interpret and update their legal systems accordingly.

Sign in to Favourite

Join the conversation

739 Comments sorted by

Comments on this article are now closed.

  1. David Arthur

    resistance gnome

    Perhaps not criminally negligent; more likely criminally culpable.

    report
    1. In reply to Steven D

      Comment removed by moderator.

    2. In reply to Steven D

      Comment removed by moderator.

    3. In reply to Steven D

      Comment removed by moderator.

    4. Steven D

      Geophysics, student

      In reply to David Arthur

      I never said that global warming wasn't occurring. Geesh. Do you think I am that small minded. Do you think everyone is that small minded? I couldn't research the Mann/CA thing all that much because I didn't have time. I only served to point out that there were accusations. So, since you know so much about this CO2 greenhouse thing. What is this I hear that the warming effect from CO2 is exponentially diminishing in effect as concentrations increase? Is that true? Can you reference an article for me?

      report
    5. Steven D

      Geophysics, student

      In reply to David Arthur

      And David, I am not some freshman Geophysics student. I do have a pretty firm understanding of material science, mathematics, and planetary evolution.

      report
    6. In reply to Steven D

      Comment removed by moderator.

    7. Rob Honeycutt

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Steven D

      Not exponential. Logarithmic. That's accounted for in the concept that for each doubling of CO2 over pre-industrial we expect to see ~3C of warming.

      Basic stuff.

      report
    8. David Arthur

      resistance gnome

      In reply to Steven D

      I have no view on that. As of the date of the NS report (Jan 2014) assessment of Professor Otelbayev's work has not been completed.

      It's worth noting that decision-making in climate science doesn't need to have complete knowledge of all that's ever happened under the sun in order to reach the important conclusions - sort of like how you don't need to put your car over the cliff before deciding to apply the brakes.

      report
    9. In reply to Steven D

      Comment removed by moderator.

    10. In reply to fret Slider

      Comment removed by moderator.

    11. Timothy Sorenson

      Math Professor

      In reply to Rob Honeycutt

      Moberg 2005 Nature disagrees with you, as does,
      Leif Kullman 2013 Boreas as do many other.

      So I guess 'all' is just those someone told you about rather than having read yourself?

      report
    12. In reply to Steven D

      Comment removed by moderator.

    13. In reply to fret Slider

      Comment removed by moderator.

    14. In reply to John Footen

      Comment removed by moderator.

    15. In reply to Neil Gibson

      Comment removed by moderator.

    16. In reply to Neil Gibson

      Comment removed by moderator.

    17. Martin Bryson Brown

      Professor of Philosophy

      In reply to Steven D

      Mann is a professional scientist who has given up some of his research time to push back against malicious accusations and distortions, and to defend science against the kind of dishonest attacks Dr. Torcello is concerned about. He's gone to court after being called a fraud by dishonest and irresponsible ideologues-- despite his and his colleagues' work repeatedly being found sound after in-depth investigations (suggested refinements of their statistical techniques make essentially no difference to the results). The results have been repeatedly confirmed by independent studies. What would you do, in his place?

      report
    18. In reply to fret Slider

      Comment removed by moderator.

    19. helen stream

      teacher

      In reply to David Arthur

      If you think to provide wrong information on this issue is ' criminally culpable', David Arthur, then why don't you offer some examples?

      And to the author of this article, why should you not be considered to be deceitful yourself on this, when you cite the discredited '97% of scientists agree' claim in the link​ as an affirmation of the truth of CAGW and of the criminal culpability of sceptics?

      ​The 97.1% is only 97.1 % of the 4014 accepted for assessment---those who agreed , not specifically…

      Read more
    20. David Arthur

      resistance gnome

      In reply to helen stream

      Thanks for that, Mr Coochey. My expectation is that in his defence, Mr Bolt will claim to have been wilfully deceived by people with science-related credentials, and yet chose to misrepresent what we know.

      It is through this pleading by Mr Bolt that we may presume culpability.

      The world had ~6 billion people at the turn of the last century. The prospects for human-caused climate this century makes it unlikely that there will be that many people alive at the turn of the next century.

      I stand by my statement that you quote, and consider it possible that your own heirs and successors, if any still extant, will be foremost in the lynch mobs.

      report
    21. Brad Keyes

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to helen stream

      Helen... long-time reader, first-time responder to your comments. Once again you've whacked all the necessary moles and done it with the weary patience of a saint. I suspect you're in the right profession. Thank you.

      report
    22. In reply to Brad Keyes

      Comment removed by moderator.

    23. In reply to Brad Keyes

      Comment removed by moderator.

    24. In reply to Brad Keyes

      Comment removed by moderator.

    25. In reply to Brad Keyes

      Comment removed by moderator.

    26. In reply to Brad Keyes

      Comment removed by moderator.

    27. In reply to Brad Keyes

      Comment removed by moderator.

    28. Brad Keyes

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Alastair Leith

      Inkpen is a real surname, idiot. Check your nearest telephone book.

      report
    29. Alastair Leith

      logged in via Twitter

      In reply to Brad Keyes

      I checked my nearest Facebook actually and pretty unusual name and given the provenience (denialist) I suspect I'm right but if I'm wrong (as in genuine name not a existing surname) I apologise to 3 comment denialist Inkpen. Also apologies to you, Brad since you seem to have taken offence on his behalf. Or perhaps you just enjoy calling people idiots to prop up your quite apparent sense of intellectual superiority.

      report
    30. Doc Weasel

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to David Arthur

      Not even possible, but happening. No warming in 15 years. Not possible! Throw the climate itself in jail!

      Leftists have had the media, movies, music and all other means of disseminating their opinions without challenge for so long they've forgotten (if they ever knew) how to debate and convince people of their argument. So now they just try to silence everyone who disagrees with them.

      report
    31. Doc Weasel

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to David Arthur

      leftists have forgotten how to debate, now they just try to silence everyone... as the moderator deletes all comments with which he disagrees

      report
    32. Kurt Johnson

      logged in via Twitter

      In reply to David Arthur

      please account for the greenhouse gases abundance during the middle ages.

      report
    33. Blu Clw

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to David Arthur

      Sweet, now prove this world altering change is primarily being caused by us and not solar temperature changes or the green house gases released by Earth's uncontrollable volcanic activity.

      I mean trying to feel like you matter because you believe you care more than everyone else is great and all, but until you cap and measure the output of every active volcano on the planet you "scientist" are only guessing at who is responsible for what.

      Unfortunately for Mr Torcello and the GW crowd after 5+ years of suffering under the democrats, and their guess work governance no one is looking to alter their lives for "Trust us!", a hockey stick graph or some weak guilt trip.

      report
    34. In reply to Steven D

      Comment removed by moderator.

    35. David Arthur

      resistance gnome

      In reply to Doc Weasel

      "now they just try to silence everyone... as the moderator deletes all comments with which he disagrees" Err, no.

      Here at 'The Conversation', they do have a policy preference for real names, not fake ids.

      report
    36. David Arthur

      resistance gnome

      In reply to Doc Weasel

      Gday Mr FakeID.

      Rather than go with the fatuous pretence that there's been no warming for 15 years, here's a couple of articles at 'The Conversation' you need to read:

      https://theconversation.com/is-global-warming-in-a-hiatus-18367
      https://theconversation.com/global-warming-stalled-by-strong-winds-driving-heat-into-oceans-22954

      You compound this demonstration of cluelessness by assuming that my knowing more about science than you means I'm a "leftist". Well, if being your sort of "Rightist" means being in a state of pig ignorance about the world, then I guess I won't be joining you until I'm well into my geriatric cognitive decline.

      report
    37. David Arthur

      resistance gnome

      In reply to Blu Clw

      Gday Mr FakeID,

      "now prove this world altering change is primarily being caused by us and not solar temperature changes or the green house gases released by Earth's uncontrollable volcanic activity."

      No worries, already done.

      Historic fossil fuel use and cement production data (Oak Ridge National (US) Laboratory Carbon Dioxide Information Analysis Center) shows sufficient industrial CO2 emission from 1800 to 2007 to raise atmospheric CO2 from 280 ppm to 430 ppm. Dissolution of CO2 in oceans limited atmospheric CO2 to about 390 ppm (as at 2007; 400 ppm in 2013), and continues to acidify oceans (decreased ocean pH).

      report
    38. James Inkpen

      Writer, Skeptic

      In reply to Alastair Leith

      Alastair-- real name? I have no reason to believe otherwise.

      How is it that you construe any meaning from the number of comments I've made, or why you bring it up. It seems a fallacious appeal to... something?

      I would suggest that it is the zealots on this thread (leaving no comment unanswered) whose motives ought to be suspect; it rather seems that they protest too much, for if they in fact had the truth on their side, it would be obvious (in a way that Global Warming is not) and thus, not…

      Read more
    39. Arthur Sp

      Attorney at LAw

      In reply to David Arthur

      Another brilliant comment, So tell, me, sir, why is there zero evidence of the temperature increasing in the last 10 to 15 years?

      You know, back when I was in high school, in the 1970's, your compatriots were screaming that we were headed for a new ice age. Then, a bit later, when that did not happen, Al Gore and co. started screaming that the earth had a fever and we were supposed to have had the oceans wash over us by now.

      Of course, that did not happen either. Then your compatriots over in England had their emails regarding this environmental hoax exposed. After the global meltdown did not occur, you folks started screaming "climate change."

      So, what is it, new ice age, earth melts or the weather changes? I think I am going with "the weather changes." I live in Florida. If you don't like the weather, they are wont to say, wait 20 minutes and it will change.

      report
    40. David Arthur

      resistance gnome

      In reply to Arthur Sp

      Gday yet another Mr FakeID, all of whom seem to have joined 'The Conversation' on 19 March 2014, and none of whom seem to have a real name.

      Rather than go with the fatuous pretence that there's been no warming for 15 years, here's a couple of articles at 'The Conversation' you need to read:

      https://theconversation.com/is-global-warming-in-a-hiatus-18367
      https://theconversation.com/global-warming-stalled-by-strong-winds-driving-heat-into-oceans-22954

      You start in the 1970's, after a couple…

      Read more
    41. Arthur Sp

      Attorney at LAw

      In reply to David Arthur

      No fake ID here, your website truncated my name.

      Pig ignorance, the only pig ignorant one in this conversation is you, sir. No, I am not so old as to worry about either being evacuated nor so young that I would not worry, if there were anything to worry about.

      You people rely on what you call a consensus of scientific opinions, but what you're really relying on is bunch of people who have absolutely no way to scientifically confirm what you blather on about.

      I see what you say, I see your…

      Read more
    42. Anthony E. Restaino

      CFO

      In reply to David Arthur

      David,
      Actually you have a faulty assumption: "if earth dissipates less energy to space than it receives from the sun, it warms up."

      You are assuming that the solar constant it "constant". It is not constant. In cases where there is a decrease in the solar constant the earth will cool. The solar constant is not well understood by scientists today, but it does fluctuate and in part is based upon the sunspot cycle along with other physical processes that are occurring in the sun. It is possible for the earth to cool as we have seen periodically over the last centuries (various ice ages occurring that have been well documented in some cases). In fact temperature data have shown in the last decade that global cooling is occurring; hence the change in the terminology that is being used today by climatologists "Climate Change" compared to what we heard just 5 years ago "Global Warming".

      report
    43. David Arthur

      resistance gnome

      In reply to Arthur Sp

      While I acknowledge your account of the display of your name, Mr Sp, I also note that most other people have registered with names somewhat longer than the 9 characters which are displayed on your name. That is, the problem you report would seem to be unique to you.

      You write: "You people rely on what you call a consensus of scientific opinions, but what you're really relying on is bunch of people who have absolutely no way to scientifically confirm what you blather on about."

      Err, no, Mr…

      Read more
    44. David Arthur

      resistance gnome

      In reply to Anthony E. Restaino

      Welcome to 'The Conversation', Mr Restaino. I see you're yet another person who's signed up in the last couple of days, with this article around the criminality of climate change Denialism being of apparent interest to you.

      The proposition "if earth dissipates less energy to space than it receives from the sun, it warms up." contains no faulty assumption; when the solar 'constant' varies, as we know it does, then the amount of energy the earth receives from the sun varies.

      My remark pertains…

      Read more
  2. Warren Pearce

    logged in via Twitter

    What would the author propose to do about members of the public who question the consensus? The implication of this article seems to be that they are being led astray by Big Oil funded campaigns. In my research into UK climate scepticism, I haven't seen any persuasive evidence for this.

    Also, the Koch Foundation part-funded the Berkeley Earth project, now widely cited as a source for surface temperature data. It may well be that climate scepticism was a driver for their funding, but it led to a widely renowned scientific project.

    Most areas of science would be grateful for the amount of attention climate science receives. A more fruitful course than attempting to lock people up in jail might be to use the public interest and disagreement as a means of opening up more menaingful discussion, rather than trying to close it down.

    report
    1. Jeremy Kemp

      logged in via email @yahoo.co.uk

      In reply to Warren Pearce

      Warren, you say that "Most areas of science would be grateful for the amount of attention climate science receives", ignoring the crucially important question of the *nature* of the attention being received. In the case of climate science much of the 'attention' involves disinformation, misinformation, threats (often personal and sometimes of a truly sickening nature, at other times more general and public, and simply McCarthy-ite, as per Inhofe), accusations of fraud, incompetence, conspiracy, moral…

      Read more
    2. David Wright

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Jeremy Kemp

      ,Do you mean tthreats, misinformation and DISinformation of the sort the author of this screed has engaged in? Mr. Torcello seems to be the ultimate in control freaks, a characteristic of most leftists everywhere. And power and control over other folks' lives is the ultimate aphrodesiac to some, such power as would be able to be gained in order to "solve" this non-existant "problem."

      I do not claim to be a scientific type. I'm just a retired U.S. Marine with a World-Class BS detector. And this…

      Read more
    3. David Wright

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to David Wright

      Please pardon the typoes. Chuzpah should be chutzpah and I allowed 2 t's in threats. This is not my best of mornings.

      report
  3. Barry Woods

    logged in via Twitter

    ref your link to: "is the intentional aim of politically and financially motivated denialists."
    http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2012/feb/15/leak-exposes-heartland-institute-climate

    you are aware that the 'strategy memo' funding doc in question was a fake, and that Peter Gleick disgraced himself ethically in obtaining the other totally innocuous documents by deceit.
    Is the author aware of this, or just in ignorance?
    http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2012/feb/27/peter-gleick-heartland-institute-lie

    The hoped for donation 200.000 from the Koch's was for healthcare not climate change - the faker of the strategy document, not noticing the code related to Healthcare..

    This is Prof Richard Betts (Met Office Head of Climate Impacts, IPCC lead author) opinion, on the authors defence of Gleick's actions
    http://discussion.theguardian.com/comment-permalink/14877411

    report
  4. Aaron Michaux

    logged in via Facebook

    There is a crucial problem with this thesis: "skeptics" really believe that they are right. They really believe that they are being scientific. That's why it's called denial and not lying -- because lying assumes an intent to deceive. At the heart of AGW skepticism is a moral belief about the relationship between governments and citizens. AGW must be wrong, because the action on climate change would be -- by their own lights -- immoral. So not only do they believe that AGW is false, they also believe that AGW proponents are immoral. And you should note that we've arrived at a mirror-image projection.

    Making climate change denial criminally negligent would be like making madness a crime. Denial, projection, rationalization, intellectualization, and the other ego defense mechanisms cannot be made illegal, because that would make being a human being illegal.

    report
    1. Alistair McDhui

      Retired

      In reply to Aaron Michaux

      These are the facts: we are presently heading towards a new Little Ice Age; there is virtually zero CO2-AGW, proved by experiment, see the above, also theory (the IPCC physics is seriously flawed).

      So, what are you going to do with scientists like me, whose 'crime' is to see beyond the fraud and develop the real physics? Should we wear a Yellow Star so we can be spat at and beaten up in the street before we are transported to the camps?

      Or will those like you who have swallowed the fraud because you lack the scientific ability to see through it, suddenly wake up and realise the World has not warmed for 17 years despite 9% rise in CO2 concentration because the claimed warming effect does not exist?

      They got the IR physics wrong and were told so 20 years ago.

      report
    2. In reply to Steven D

      Comment removed by moderator.

    3. In reply to Steven D

      Comment removed by moderator.

    4. Brad Keyes

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Aaron Michaux

      " At the heart of AGW skepticism is a moral belief about the relationship between governments and citizens. "

      While your touching and patronising faith that we're Not Evil, Just Wrong is noted and appreciated, Aaron, I'm afraid the politest thing that can be said of the genre of risible just-so story to which you've contributed [above] is that it's almost scientific enough to deserve the insult "sub-Freudian pseudopsychological bullmilk."

      Still, if you're ever feeling generous and would like…

      Read more
  5. Comment removed by moderator.

    1. Rob Honeycutt

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Alistair McDhui

      Alistar... You are engaging in exactly the sort of activity that this article is talking about. You're distributing misinformation about climate change.

      The graph you link to is too short a period to fully determine warming or cooling. And you know that. If you take that same data back and collect a time frame that rises to statistical significance, you get a warming trend of 0.112 ±0.094 °C/decade (2σ). (HadCRU4 1994 to present.)

      To state that there is no greenhouse effect is to put you outside that of the most high profile "skeptic" scientists like Roy Spencer, Richard Lindzen and others. It's a position that is tantamount to claiming a flat earth.

      What is clear from all your posts here is that you have a politically motivated reason for coming to the conclusions you are. Your position is wrong, your position is far out of the mainstream, your position borders on ludicrous, and your position is a clear danger to humanity.

      report
    2. Steve Smith

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Rob Honeycutt

      "The graph you link to is too short a period to fully determine warming or cooling. And you know that. If you take that same data back and collect a time frame that rises to statistical significance, you get a warming trend of 0.112 ±0.094 °C/decade (2σ). (HadCRU4 1994 to present.)"

      1994? Why 1994? What's the trend from 1940?

      In the “Separating signal and noise in atmospheric temperature changes: The importance of timescale” - Benjamin Santer et al. stated that:

      “Our results show that temperature records of at least 17 years in length are required for identifying human effects on global-mean tropospheric temperature.”

      So, a 17-year period of no discernible global warming would indicate no anthropogenic global warming.

      report
    3. Steven D

      Geophysics, student

      In reply to Rob Honeycutt

      Well, Rob. I hate to say it but there are people like that in the world. Politics is an ugly game and it does have a hand in this pot. It doesn't matter, when there is money to be made, there politics will be. How many of these scientists are willing to put their own net worth on the line? That is my question. I don't say that from either side of the coin. I would just like to know. I don't think these organizations and scientists are out to deceive people. I do however firmly believe that there are political and financial motivations that are praying on this information and using it for the benefit of a few. I am just going to keep on keeping on, knowing that what my grandfather taught me about recycling everything, minimizing waste, properly managing resources on a personal level leads to hopefully societal interest in doing the same. Are you a practicing scientist Rob?

      report
    4. Rob Honeycutt

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Steve Smith

      Steve said... "1994? Why 1994? What's the trend from 1940?"

      Because that is the point where the trend rises to statistical significance at the 95% confidence level.

      When you choose shorter periods you still get a positive trend but at a lower confidence level.

      report
    5. Rob Honeycutt

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Steven D

      Steven said... "How many of these scientists are willing to put their own net worth on the line?"

      They are all putting their careers on the line when they make statements as definitive as they're making. Scientists are loathe to say anything with absolute certainty.

      I always say, scientists are like a herd of cats. They're all very independently minded and prone to go where they want regardless of the others. But when you see ALL the cats going the same direction, then you know something really big is happening.

      report
    6. Rob Honeycutt

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Shaun Shelton

      Shaun... You're absolutely misinterpreting my comments.

      1) I'm saying that we need to listen to the experts. I'm NOT saying you can't weigh in. We all have to weigh in. But to reject what the entire scientific community is telling us about climate change is beyond foolhardy.

      2) Alistar is absolutely politically motivated. That's just a fact. In truth, a large portion of those who reject the science are politically motivated. Read a book called "Merchants of Doubt" by Naomi Oreskes.

      Scientific…

      Read more
    7. Steve Smith

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Rob Honeycutt

      "Because that is the point where the trend rises to statistical significance at the 95% confidence level."

      So, warming from 1994 to 1997 (THREE YEARS), and no warming from 1997 to 2014 (SEVENTEEN YEARS) is a "statistically" 'significant WARMING trend?!

      How does that work?!!!!

      I repeat - what is the trend from 1940?

      Since there has been no warming for over 17 years, how can there be a 95% confidence level that the trend is significant?! There has been no warming for the vast majority of the trend!

      I also note you avoided the latter part of my post. I repeat it:

      In the “Separating signal and noise in atmospheric temperature changes: The importance of timescale” - Benjamin Santer et al. stated that:

      “Our results show that temperature records of at least 17 years in length are required for identifying human effects on global-mean tropospheric temperature.”

      So, a 17-year period of no discernible global warming would indicate no anthropogenic global warming.

      report
    8. Rob Honeycutt

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Steve Smith

      Steve Smith said... "How does that work?!!!!"

      First, you're misinterpreting what's been said. You'd never get statistical significance in 3 years of surface temperature data because the data is too noisy.

      You have to understand, statistical significance is a function of how much data you need to be certain, at a 95% confidence level, that the trend is indeed not zero.

      Next you have to understand than 95% as "statistically significant" is an arbitrary, but accepted, hurdle in order to say…

      Read more
    9. Grant Burfield

      Dr

      In reply to Rob Honeycutt

      "a warming trend of 0.112 ±0.094 °C/decade (2σ). (HadCRU4 1994 to present.)" Why not add a year and see what we get for 1995 -

      0.093 ±0.101 °C/decade (2σ) - 19 years or 1.12 Santers. I use Santers as the standard 17 year time metric for statistical significance (h/t fret Slider). So the CI contains the null hypothesis of no (trend=0) warming or cooling and so whatever the trend is, it is not statistically significant. What about some other data sets ?

      NOAA 1995 0.088±0.097 °C/decade (2σ) - 19 years (1.12 Santers)
      GISS 1996 0.106±0.111 °C/decade (2σ) - 18 years (1.06 Santers)
      BEST 1995 0.206±0.220 °C/decade (2σ) - 19 years (1.12 Santers)
      UAH 1994 0.140±0.157 °C/decade (2σ) - 20 years (1.18 Santers)
      RSS 1990 0.114±0.125 °C/decade (2σ) - 24 years (1.41 Santers)

      Relax, Mr Honeycutt, relax. Thermageddon appears distant.

      report
    10. Martin Bryson Brown

      Professor of Philosophy

      In reply to Steve Smith

      Not when it's cherry picked to start with an exceptionally hot year due to a huge El Nino event. 1998 remains the only year in the hottest 14 that didn't happen after the turn of the century. Moreover, climate scientists continue to investigate the processes involved, which include a series of La Ninja events, volcanic eruptions, a measured increase in transfer of heat to the deeper ocean, and neglect/ under-representation of arctic warming. Surface temperatures are important, but the atmosphere is only about 2% of the heat capacity of the climate system...

      report
    11. Martin Bryson Brown

      Professor of Philosophy

      In reply to Grant Burfield

      Cherry-picking an interval and taking trends from it is not a reliable way to predict the future (otherwise stock market predictions would be a lot more reliable). And if you don't find current trends of ~.2/ decade worrisome with increasing emissions and a 'threshold' of dangerous change at 2 degrees, you really do like whistling in the dark.

      report
    12. Kevin MacDonald

      Civil Servant

      In reply to Steve Smith

      ""Our results show that temperature records of at least 17 years in length are required for identifying human effects on global-mean tropospheric temperature.”

      So, a 17-year period of no discernible global warming would indicate no anthropogenic global warming"

      You appear to be unaware of what the phrase "at least" means.

      report
    13. Steve Smith

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Rob Honeycutt

      You have cherry-picked a dataset, and a time period to suit your argument. Of more interest than a simple warming or a cooling trend, is whether it is statistically-significant or not.

      To find out exactly how long the period of not statistically-significant warming has been, we simply track the chosen dataset backwards from the present, until the trend shows a significant change. This period varies with each dataset, and is from 16 years to 23 years; http://wattsupwiththat.com/2013/11/03/statistical-significances-how-long-is-the-pause-now-includes-september-data

      Read more
    14. Steve Smith

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Kevin MacDonald

      At least: DEFINITION:

      not less than; at the minimum.

      Have we NOT had a "minimum" of 17 years of temperature records then?!

      Maybe you should get yourself a good dictionary...

      report
    15. Brad Keyes

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Rob Honeycutt

      Rob, no offense, but you need to start reasoning more lucidly.

      For example, you always say scientists are like a herd of cats. OK, fair enough. They're all very independently minded and prone to go where they want regardless of the others. So when you see ALL the cats going the same direction, then you know they're not scientists. Or rather, you *should* know. But for some bizarre reason, that which is bleedingly obvious to the rest of us is still yet to even occur to you. So it seems your wheels grind exceedingly slow, but do they grind fine? I guess we'll find out in another couple of decades.

      report
    16. Brad Keyes

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Rob Honeycutt

      Oh god. Another ratiocinative train-wreck courtesy of Rob's mind.

      "Scientific consensus is there to give you a sense of the likelihood of the science being correct."

      Uh, no.

      Not quite, Rob. Think about it. For once in your life, have the patience to follow one of these fuses all the way to the stick of dynamite it's attached to.

      If what you allege were the case, then scientific consensus would be a form of EVIDENCE. Wouldn't it, Rob? Do you see where this is going?

      According to the very axioms of science itself, opinion is NOT a form of evidence and cannot EVER be a form of evidence. No ifs. No buts.

      If you don't like the rules, that's fine: you don't like science.

      Well done, dude: your comment is only a point-blank repudiation of 300 years of scientific reasoning. All in a day's work, eh Rob?

      report
    17. Steve Smith

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Kevin MacDonald

      Then it wouldn't be the "minimum", would it?!

      "Our results show that temperature records of AT LEAST 17 years in length are required for identifying human effects on global-mean tropospheric temperature.”

      NOAA and Santer themselves have set the criteria around which any supposed anthropogenic effect can be shown to be insignificant.

      No use trying to move the goalposts when the criteria has been met, just because it doesn't suit your argument.

      report
    18. Kevin MacDonald

      Civil Servant

      In reply to Steve Smith

      "No use trying to move the goalposts"

      I'm not, you're the one trying to pretend that the minimum is the norm.

      report
    19. Rob Honeycutt

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Grant Burfield

      Grant Burfield...

      1) Cherry picking the point at which each data set fails at the 95% confidence level is not a compelling argument.

      2) Do you understand that >90% statistical confidence is still a very high level of confidence and that each one of the trends you posted is >90%?

      report
    20. Rob Honeycutt

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Steve Smith

      Actually, the reason I'm choosing HadCRU4+CW is because that is currently the data series most likely to be correct.

      The satellite data sets are problematic because they are not measuring temperature, but rather modeling temperature based on inferred radiances.

      The HadCRU4 data doesn't measure the poles at all, which happens to be where most warming is occurring.

      GISS fills in the poles based on global averaged temperature.

      HadCRU4 plus Cowtan and Way tries to split the difference and capture polar data with satellites.

      The BEST data is currently land only but is data set that uses the greatest coverage of data. The BEST data is looking like it is confirming Cowtan and Way, and it will probably supplant C&W when they have their ocean data available.

      report
    21. Rob Honeycutt

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Brad Keyes

      Brad Keyes said... "If what you allege were the case, then scientific consensus would be a form of EVIDENCE."

      No. Not at all.

      If your doctor prescribes a treatment for you saying it is what the consensus of doctors agree is the best treatment, that is not evidence. That is merely a test by which to evaluate whether to proceed with that particular treatment.

      If a doctor prescribes a treatment and says to you, "This is a new treatment and most doctors do not agree on its efficacy." Then you also have the information available to make a decision on whether to proceed.

      And Brad, accusing me of not understanding science when it's you who can't even grasp what I'm saying doesn't cast doubt on me. It suggests that it is you, being completely out of step the vast body of published research on climate change, who is flying in the face of scientific reason.

      report
    22. Steve Smith

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Kevin MacDonald

      "I'm not."

      Of course you are!

      NOAA and Santer themselves have set the criteria around which any supposed anthropogenic effect can be shown to be insignificant. In Santer's case, "at least 17 years."

      Then you try and argue that "sometimes you need more than the minimum", which is clearly moving the goalposts.

      Santer was clear - "At least 17 years". Not '17 years and a bit more'!

      Please put the goalposts back where they were.

      report
    23. Kevin MacDonald

      Civil Servant

      In reply to Steve Smith

      "Then you try and argue that "sometimes you need more than the minimum", which is clearly moving the goalposts"

      I'm not moving the goal posts, I'm understanding what Santer et al meant. At least means it can't be done with less than 17, it does not follow that it can be done with every 17 year period.

      report
    24. Steve Smith

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Rob Honeycutt

      As I've pointed out before, and which you ignored, what's of more interest than a simple warming or a cooling trend, is whether it is statistically-significant or not.

      Even alarmist Phil Jones admitted in 2010 that there had been no statistically-significant global warming since 1995:

      BBC: "Do you agree that from 1995 to the present there has been no statistically-significant global warming."

      Phil Jones: "Yes, but only just. I also calculated the trend for the period 1995 to 2009. This…

      Read more
    25. Brad Keyes

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Rob Honeycutt

      Rob, I appear to have confused you with this step:

      "If what you allege were the case, then scientific consensus would be a form of EVIDENCE."

      It's perfectly simple, really. You have nakedly and shamelessly sought to use consensus (a form of opinion) rhetorically (as a form of evidence), in violation of every vow held sacred by real scientists. To repeat what you should have picked up on your first day on the job as a scientist:

      In science, OPINION IS NOT EVIDENCE. Ever. In any field of science…

      Read more
    26. Brad Keyes

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Rob Honeycutt

      "that is not evidence. That is merely a test by which to evaluate whether to proceed with that particular treatment."

      Oh for god's sake. You're getting more and more incoherent.

      Listen: either it's evidence OR IT'S NOT.

      If it's not, then it's not a "test by which to evaluate whether to proceed."

      This ought to be elementary stuff, Rob. You're supposed to be a scientist. I shouldn't have to explain this to you: THE ONLY THING that can tell us whether or not "to proceed with a given treatment" is EVIDENCE.

      report
    27. Rob Honeycutt

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Brad Keyes

      Brad... Let me use upper case letters and maybe you'll understand my statements more clearly.

      I'M NOT CLAIMING CONSENSUS IS EVIDENCE.

      Is that better?

      Consensus is a method by which people evaluate risk. If I know that 150 years of scientific research has brought 97% of climate scientists to the conclusion that they are 95% certain that most of the warming of the past 40 years is man-made... That has importance in terms of being able to evaluate my position as a voter on this issue.

      Is it possible that 97% of climate researchers are wrong? Absolutely.

      But that probability is very very low, and that low probability is how each person must base their estimate of how to respond.

      report
    28. Rob Honeycutt

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Brad Keyes

      Brad said... "Do try to stop embarrassing yourself."

      When people begin attacking me with such derision is when I feel more confident in the position that I'm presenting. You clearly don't understand the risk management issue at hand so you go ad hom.

      Brad, evidence is what scientific understanding is built on. They are the facts, the building blocks of knowledge.

      Scientific consensus is what we get from experts in that field of research when they are in broad agreement on the facts. It's doesn't add to scientific knowledge. The consensus allows us to evaluate what we know.

      report
    29. Brad Keyes

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Rob Honeycutt

      "I'M NOT CLAIMING CONSENSUS IS EVIDENCE."

      And I appreciate the heroic manoeuvres you're undertaking to avoid making such a claim explicitly, in so many words. Unfortunately for you, however, you're denying that consensus is a form of evidence from one corner of your mouth while using consensus as evidence from the other corner. And those of us who are competent in reasoning see exactly what you're doing.

      "Consensus is a method by which people evaluate risk."

      Sigh.

      Listen carefully, mate…

      Read more
    30. Brad Keyes

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Brad Keyes

      You people crack me up. As we say in Australian, you couldn't lie straight in bed.

      Kevin says: "As stated earlier, consensus IS evidence."

      Rob shouts: "I'M NOT CLAIMING CONSENSUS IS EVIDENCE."

      Make up your minds. I have.

      report
    31. Rob Honeycutt

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Brad Keyes

      Brad... I'm sorry but you are entirely wrong on this point.

      An EXPERT can assess risk based on evidence. If you are a non-expert then you have to rely on, either an expert, or preferably, more that one expert opinions. When you are a non-expert you cannot assess risk based on evidence because you don't have a full comprehension of what the evidence means.

      When you are a NON-EXPERT you must assess risk based on the opinions of those who are experts.

      In the case of climate change, the overwhelming positions of climate experts and published climate research shows that this is real and will be potentially very serious if we can't mitigate our emissions of greenhouse gases.

      report
    32. Steve Smith

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Kevin MacDonald

      I really don't know why you are still trying to argue about a clearly defined MINIMUM period.

      I repeat Santer's quote:

      "A single decade of observational TLT data is therefore inadequate for identifying a slowly evolving anthropogenic warming signal. Our results show that temperature records of AT LEAST 17 years in length are required for identifying human effects on global-mean tropospheric temperature."

      Where does it say it can't "be done with every 17 year period."????!

      Santer clearly…

      Read more
    33. Kevin MacDonald

      Civil Servant

      In reply to Steve Smith

      "Santer clearly claims we need "at least 17 years.""

      Yes, AT LEAST! It does not follow that every 17 year period is adequate, just that AT LEAST 1 is.

      report
    34. Rob Honeycutt

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Steve Smith

      That's a curious quote from Pat Michaels. “October 1st marks the 17th year of no global warming significantly different than zero.”

      Here is how I believe someone who is a true scientific skeptic would view it.

      1) What is Michaels' data set?
      2) What is the p-value of the time series he's presenting?
      3) What makes Ben Santer the absolute arbiter of what time frame determines human signal?
      4) What do the other temperature data sets say?
      5) What were the other forcings involved during the…

      Read more
    35. Alastair Leith

      logged in via Twitter

      In reply to Brad Keyes

      Yes it's very clear you have something "made-up" going on in your rants Brad. What do you think of Stefan Molyneux BTW? Your style reminds me very much of his. You seem to have a great infatuation with your own colourful AND VERY FORCEFUL turn of phrase yet continually try to advance your pre-determined agenda by way of semantic slight of hands and sophistry.

      It's clear you are not actually interested in coming to a better understanding of climate science through these conversations. None of…

      Read more
    36. Brad Keyes

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Alastair Leith

      "What do you think of Stefan Molyneux BTW?"

      Who?

      "Your style reminds me very much of his."

      He sounds like a legend. Thanks for the rec, I'll check out his work.

      "It's clear you are not actually interested in coming to a better understanding of climate science through these conversations."

      Actually I get my understanding of climate science from the published peer-reviewed literature, not online chat fora—which are stimulating in their own way, but it's important to have realistic expectations of what each medium can deliver.

      "My suggestion to you if your are genuinely interested in learning about Climate Science is to take one of the several free MOOC CC courses like those on Coursera and so on."

      That's good advice, which I myself have had occasion to give other truth-seekers from time to time, but thanks for mentioning it.

      report
    37. Alastair Leith

      logged in via Twitter

      In reply to Brad Keyes

      I find it really hard to accept that you are well read in climate science either as primary source literature or more general audience literature like for example books by Tim Flannery here in Australia or Skeptical Science website (which is one I like) because many of your comments where you actually mention science as opposed to semantics/logic/philosophy seem to throw huge misnomers out theere which betray a fundamental ignorance around basic climate science facts and that's even apparent to a…

      Read more
    38. Brad Keyes

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Alastair Leith

      Alastair, thanks for giving your side of the story. I mean that seriously—it's always food for thought when someone has the guts to drop the mask and speak their own truth, even if you don't happen to agree that it's "the" truth.

      The problem (if you'd like to know my analysis) is that the game degenerated into fisticuffs so long ago, nobody even remembers where the ball is. I don't mean to pick on you, but since you're quite capable of coming across as a reasonable person when you put your mind…

      Read more
    39. Brad Keyes

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Brad Keyes

      By the way Alastair, I agree completely about Rob's politeness. That crafty b@$tard has pulled the oldest trick in the book: turning the other cheek so as to make me look like the bad guy!

      LOL. No, just joking. I've exchanged views with Rob before, and he's never been boorish. Exasperatingly obtuse, arguably—but not impolite. Not to me, anyway.

      The debate could use more people like that. Unfortunately, however, I'm so used to dealing with "scientists" of the calibre of Jim Balter that my default approach to these encounters could be described as uncompromisingly polemical. "Force of habit" isn't an excuse that would stand up in a court of law, but it's mine and I'm sticking to it. ;-)

      report
    40. Brad Keyes

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Rob Honeycutt

      "When you are a NON-EXPERT you must assess risk based on the opinions of those who are experts."

      Nope. Sorry. Wrong.

      You speak for yourself there, Rob.

      This may alarm and appall you, but I don't recall EVER being so epistemologically desperate that I resorted to assessing risk (in a sciency, natural-world-type question) by deference to expert *opinion.*

      Never happened. Unless I'm forgetting something.

      If you find my boast hard to believe, you're more than welcome to suggest actual instances, actual examples, wherein you suspect me of having consulted expert consensus instead of physical evidence.

      (Frankly the idea is a bit insulting.)

      report
    41. Rob Honeycutt

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Brad Keyes

      Brad... You are certainly welcome to take a position that is opposed to all the research and all the scientists and all the scientific organizations on the planet. But it strikes me a pompous position.

      report
    42. Brad Keyes

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Rob Honeycutt

      "You are certainly welcome to take a position that is opposed to all the research and all the scientists and all the scientific organizations on the planet."

      Well thank you. Thank you so very much, Rob. It's handy to know that, just in case the magical day should ever arrive when:

      1. all the research and all the scientists and all the scientific organizations on the planet come to a particular conclusion

      2. and I come to an incompatible conclusion.

      But if you'll forgive me for saying…

      Read more
  6. Jeremy Kemp

    logged in via email @yahoo.co.uk

    Funnily enough this idea, as a potential angle of attack on organised climate change denialism and obstruction of meaningful mitigation, seems to be an idea whose time is coming. There has been some recent discussion along these lines, although so far as I've been able to find out (and I have been putting some effort into trying to find out) it's not yet progressed beyond rather informal discussions.

    There are some reasons to think (or, to my mind, hope) that something will come of it. As just…

    Read more
    1. Jeremy Kemp

      logged in via email @yahoo.co.uk

      In reply to Jeremy Kemp

      Oops. Correction: somehow a superfluous 'arguably' strayed into that post. In the last-but-one paragraph the second sentence should begin "But, given the remarkable success of climate change denialist misinformation campaign(s) in undermining public understanding of anthropogenic climate change ...".

      report
    1. Victor Jones

      Freelance

      In reply to Paul Matthews

      More arm waving and lack of argument and logic and understanding of what is peer review. Yet another mathematician who doesn't statistical probability.

      report
    2. Martin Bryson Brown

      Professor of Philosophy

      In reply to Anthony Ratliffe

      There is none so blind... There is a ton of evidence, going back to the early recognition that something more than the sun's input at the surface is needed to explain how warm the earth is (1820's). CO2 is a major player in earth's surface temp (Tyndall and Arrhenius and Calendar); we've increased it a lot already and are fast heading for levels (600 ppm and more) that will both disrupt ocean ecology (acidification of sea water) and climate world wide. The evidence is there-- you're just playing 'see no evil'.

      report
    3. Martin Bryson Brown

      Professor of Philosophy

      In reply to Anthony Ratliffe

      Oh-- and another thing: when the big oil companies asked their scientists what the evidence showed, the scientists told them the basics were undeniable: CO2 is a greenhouse gas, warmer air picks up more water vapour, amplifying the impact of CO2, etc. But the industry decided to hire the hacks who'd already worked to muddy the water about tobacco and acid rain and ignore the problem.

      report
    4. Steve Smith

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Martin Bryson Brown

      "CO2 is a major player in earth's surface temp".

      An Ice Age occurred 450 million years ago when CO2 was TEN times higher than today.

      There is no proof that CO2 is a measurable driver of global warming, let alone the tiny amount released by humankind.

      As measured in ice cores dated over many thousands of years, CO2 levels move up and down AFTER the temperature has done so, and thus are the result of, not the cause of warming.

      report
    5. Steve Smith

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Martin Bryson Brown

      "CO2 is a greenhouse gas, warmer air picks up more water vapour, amplifying the impact of CO2"

      It's not that simple.

      The Carboniferous Period and the Ordovician Period were the only geological periods during the Paleozoic Era when global temperatures were as low as they are today.

      And yet the Late Ordovician Period was also an Ice Age while at the same time CO2 concentrations then were nearly 12 times higher than today-- 4400 ppm.

      According to your theory, Earth should have been exceedingly…

      Read more
    6. Rob Honeycutt

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Steve Smith

      First of all, Steve, you've made conclusions about CO2's role in climate based on a very thin understanding of the deep past.

      Let's take the Ordovician first. If you look the Ordovician the first thing you'd note is that the planet was all be devoid of any terrestrial life at that time. You'd also find that the sun's irradiance was about 4% less than that of today.

      During the Ordovician there were several low latitude glaciation events called, Snowball Earth events, where glaciers reach to…

      Read more
    7. Rob Honeycutt

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Steve Smith

      The long and short here is, it's those Ordovician and Carboniferous events you're mentioning that actually help to corroborate that CO2 plays such an important role in global temperature.

      If you're interested in some deeper reading, here is a great paper that came out in 2004.

      http://droyer.web.wesleyan.edu/PhanCO2(GCA).pdf

      report
  7. Account Removed

    logged in via email @gmail.com

    What a terrible article. Here am I, retired and finally with time on my hands to investigate and read, and I find people like Tom Segalstad and Zbigniew Jawarowski being rubbished by a "scientific community" that doesn't even understand the controversial mathematical tools of which it makes use, nor does it distinguish between discovery and invention. I personally cannot see how modern science can even be compared to the work of Isaac Newton or Gallileo, and am rapidly becoming disenchanted. Is there a modern scientist that does not end up using intuition or interpretation? Whatever became of Logical Positivism or Popper's falsification principles? Isn't Kuhn correct, and "science" goes from one revolution to the next?

    As though truth is a matter of having a majority decision; well, perhaps it is when it comes to the so-called scientists in the American Psychological Association, who actuall VOTE new conditions into existence.

    Pah!

    report
  8. Malcolm Whitmore

    Project Manager

    The elephant in the room is trust. Humans have developed their social systems as a consequence of communication by speech which allows complex technologies to be handed down generation to generation giving a compound interest to the volume and accuracy of data handed down. The quality of this data has always been important and attempts to mislead or distort have been treated in any cases as criminal.
    We now have a totally new scene where global communications allow ignorant and ill intentioned…

    Read more
    1. Alistair McDhui

      Retired

      In reply to Malcolm Whitmore

      "The proposal to punish intentionally false statements made in the arena of Science and Technology is a vital step desperately needed to allow the principle of honesty and truth that is at the base of science to operate."

      Professor Finkelstein in Australia proposed something like this; fines and possibly jail for people who allowed even blog posts which disagreed with Official State Science: http://www.theaustralian.com.au/media/finkelstein-report-medias-great-divide/story-e6frg996-1226295437607

      Read more
  9. Mel Kreitzer

    logged in via LinkedIn

    Torcello's article reminds me of the response attributed to the famous physicist Wolfgang Pauli. When asked about his opinion of a paper delivered by a less than stellar colleague, Pauli sighed and said "he's not even wrong."

    Sigh.

    report
    1. Rob Honeycutt

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Alistair McDhui

      Steyn is unlikely to win that one. The case at hand is over Steyn's accusations of "fraud" whereas it's been clearly and repeatedly shown that Mann's work is not fraudulent. That means that Steyn has engaged in a gross disregard for established fact. Thus libel.

      report
    2. Alistair McDhui

      Retired

      In reply to Rob Honeycutt

      Has it been repeatedly shown that Mann did not create a mathematical construct which wold convert even random noise into a 'hockey stick'. Not on your nelly mate!

      And the legal case Mann started but did not finish was very different to your claim. Why don't you learn the facts before sending the text?

      report
    3. Rob Honeycutt

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Alistair McDhui

      Alistar... This is what you folks always do. You read something that you want to agree with and then spend the rest of your time repeating it regardless of whether it's correct or not. You never bother to push any further to check to see if, in fact, there is any basis to what you're repeating.

      In this case, you're referring to McIntyre's assertion that random "red noise" put into Mann's algorithms would produce a hockey stick shape.

      What you're NOT aware of is, that McIntyre's assertions were tested and shown to be wrong. McI actually made an error in producing his red noise data that retained a residual hockey stick shape.

      http://deepclimate.org/2010/10/25/the-wegman-report-sees-red-noise/

      So, you're engaging in an act of propagating disinformation. You've picked up on one point that supports your position and completely ignore all the investigation and research that has followed that position showing it to be wrong.

      That is an act of bad faith.

      report
    4. Martin Bryson Brown

      Professor of Philosophy

      In reply to Alistair McDhui

      It has been shown that McIntyre's method did create hockey sticks out of nothing because it started with a stick built in (worse, McIntyre & McItrick didn't notice that their approach also ignored what direction the stick was pointed).

      report
    5. Brad Keyes

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Martin Bryson Brown

      Unfortunately for the True Believers, Mann himself has already conceded the ground you seem bent on defending to the death.

      To quote a brilliant work of investigative journalism by Antonio Regalado—who's no "climate skeptic" by any stretch of the imagination:

      "The problem, says Mr. McIntyre, is that Dr. Mann's mathematical technique in drawing the graph is prone to generating hockey-stick shapes even when applied to random data. Therefore, he argues, it proves nothing.

      "Statistician Francis…

      Read more
  10. Ben Barton

    logged in via Facebook

    So do we put away scientists that point out that current climate models lack data regarding the sun and earth's magnetic field impact on ocean currents or how naturally changing magnetic field activity might affect weather?

    I don't always glean my climate change opinion from academics pontificating on subjects that they unqualified for, but when I do, I make sure to get it from a philosophy professor.

    report
    1. Steven D

      Geophysics, student

      In reply to Ben Barton

      Ben, the problem I see with that, is that the Fourier transforms that are used to model things like that are very short lived (on the order of a few minutes the last time I checked). They are far too complex to utilize in climate models. I personally do believe that these anomalies do in fact have a distinct global climate responses. When I previously talked about the inadequacies of current modelling systems these are the types of things that I am referring to. About once a year, sometimes much…

      Read more
    2. Ben Barton

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Steven D

      Steve, Thank you for such a thoughtful response. It provides insight into the challenges faced by the scientific community in accurately modelling such a complex system. I recently reviewed a publication titled 'Terrestrial ground temperature variation in relation to solar magnetic variability, including the present Schwabe cycle' by Cornelis de Jager and Hans Nieuwenhuijzen which suggests that over the long term, the sun and earth's magnetic fields have more of an effect on climate than does anthropogenic activity. I also read that the scientific community agrees that earth's geomagnetic poles are currently undergoing a slow shift. Have you had a chance to view this publication? If so, do you consider the writer's conclusions as plausible? Also, do you think that a slow shift in Earth's poles account for recent severe weather occurrences? Thanks in advance for any insight you could provide. Link below. http://www.scirp.org/journal/PaperInformation.aspx?PaperID=37738#.UyJ1Dfm1ZcQ

      report
    3. Steven D

      Geophysics, student

      In reply to Ben Barton

      I will read the paper tomorrow and try and respond. I wouldn't be surprised in the least to find that forcing for climatic anomalies is due in large part to dynamo fluctuations and the beginnings of a pole reversal. We are about due and many wonder what it might look like. The declination wander has been anomalous recently from what I am to understand.

      report
    4. Steven D

      Geophysics, student

      In reply to Ben Barton

      Ben, I did read the beginning parts of the paper and skipped over some of the mathematical parts to get back to you. I saw some weaknesses in the paper, but mainly that is due to the lack of data and is of no fault of the investigators themselves. This morning however I pondered anew the whole magnetic reversal thing here on the planet and did a simple search of geomagnetism and climate change. Seems I may be on the money along those lines of thinking and space agencies have launched a SWARM of…

      Read more
    5. Steven D

      Geophysics, student

      In reply to Ben Barton

      And to address you original questions. The paper seems sound, but I had a problem with the lack of data, again, no fault of the researchers. But what jumped out at me was the use of anomalies in solar output versus the entire solar output as noted in the fourth paragraph of the outline. "The weak aspect of that approach is that the sunspot number is only related to the magnetic flux contained in the equatorial (toroidal) sunspot belt. That activity shows itself in different ways: sunspots, faculae…

      Read more
  11. Jon Jermey

    logged in via Facebook

    The use of the terms 'denial' and 'deniers' in an article like this indicates one of two things: either the author knows so little about the AGW debate that he doesn't even realise the terms are deeply offensive, or he knows, but regards sceptics with such contempt and hatred that he doesn't care. Neither possibility inspires much faith in the objectivity of the article and the reliability of its claims. Along with the persistent '97%' meme there is no clearer indicator of ignorance or intolerance at work.

    And as for 'deaths due to climate change'; name one.

    report
    1. Rob Honeycutt

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Jon Jermey

      The term "denier" has been used for hundreds of years to merely mean "one who denies."

      When deniers take offense at the term what they're doing is throwing up a defense mechanism in order to reject the obvious fact that they are denying very well established science.

      As for deaths related to climate change, pick any extreme weather event over the past decade. There is a high likelihood that event was made worse or more likely to have occurred due to our warming planet. With each of those events the death tolls are greater than they otherwise would have been if we were not increasing concentrations of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere through the burning of fossil fuels.

      In other words, there have been many many deaths due to climate change.

      report
    2. Ben Barton

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Jon Jermey

      Additionally, he associates the term 'Global Warming' with the consensus that 'majority of scientists clearly agree on'. The term 'Global Warming' is no longer being used in the scientific community or amongst climate change religiousos because it was discovered to be inaccurate.The scientists that he is referencing now use the term 'Climate Change' in lieu of 'Global Warming'.

      So this begs the question, since the majority of the scientific community that he references, who's incorrect models…

      Read more
    3. John Carter

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Rob Honeycutt

      The term denier as used in the climate "debate" was deliberately chosen to marginalise those who do not agree with the CAGW hypothesis and to invoke echoes of The Holocaust. To try and suggest anything different is wrong and a deliberate misrepresentation.
      Deaths resulting from extreme weather events cannot be connected to climate change. Those who claim that they are ignore the science and instead rely on guesswork and misdirection.
      I'm surprised that you haven't suggested that earthquakes or…

      Read more
    4. Rob Honeycutt

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to John Carter

      No, the term has been used in a wide range of issues. If someone denies evolution I would have no qualms about calling them an evolution denier.

      Actually, deaths related to extreme events can and ARE connected to climate change. Even the insurance industry states this. Munich RE produced this data showing that weather related disasters are rising much faster than geologic related disasters.

      http://i.huffpost.com/gen/433167/CLIMATE-CHANGE-HEALTH-EFFECTS.jpg

      I have a deep suspicion that you're…

      Read more
    5. Steven D

      Geophysics, student

      In reply to Rob Honeycutt

      People are never going to buy the whole 95% global warming is man made thing. That isn't even realistic entropically speaking. If it could simply be phrased in a reasonable statement like humans are responsible for approximately 25-50% of current warming trends it might be more palpable. As far as I can tell we are nowhere near even a local maxima for temps when speaking on scales of 10k years. What we really need is devise a way to calculate local extreme (on the scale of hundreds of years) for the last 100,000 years to get a better picture and be able to model this correctly. If a model blows up, there is something wrong with it. That was taught in first semester physics where I went to school.

      report
    6. Steven D

      Geophysics, student

      In reply to Rob Honeycutt

      Again I say, some of you folks need to enter the bicker chamber. And not pointing to any one of you, but several.

      report
    7. Steven D

      Geophysics, student

      In reply to Rob Honeycutt

      And Rob, if you can drop the name calling I bet I can get a lot of information from you, especially if you are in the field. I happen to be a pretty damn good scientist and my academic records shows that clearly. But, I don't tolerate name calling in a professional setting.

      report
    8. Steven D

      Geophysics, student

      In reply to Rob Honeycutt

      Climate change deaths? Yeah, you can't pick weather events to prove climate change. Most CAGW folks scream at people who claim weather events disprove climate change. It is not possible to use the same event to simultaneously prove and disprove the validity of a scientific principle.

      report
    9. Kevin MacDonald

      Civil Servant

      In reply to Ben Barton

      "The term 'Global Warming' is no longer being used in the scientific community or amongst climate change religiousos because it was discovered to be inaccurate.The scientists that he is referencing now use the term 'Climate Change' in lieu of 'Global Warming'."

      A quick check on Google Scholar turns up 9170 paper form 2014 alone using the term "global warming" and 5130 from 1987 (the year before the formation of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change was formed) employing "climate change". Both terms have always been and will continue to be used in the scientific literature because they have distinct, though sometimes overlapping, definitions.

      It is because you and your ilk don't even bother with the most basic fact checking that you are not worthy of the epithet of skeptic.

      report
    10. Kevin MacDonald

      Civil Servant

      In reply to Steven D

      <blockquote> Yeah, you can't pick weather events to prove climate change. Most CAGW folks scream at people who claim weather events disprove climate change. It is not possible to use the same event to simultaneously prove and disprove the validity of a scientific principle</blockquote>Suprisingly for "a pretty damn good scientist" you're forgetting about the fact prediction is one of the ways theories are validated.

      Proponents of Anthropogenic Global Warming predicted changes in things like…

      Read more
    11. Steven D

      Geophysics, student

      In reply to Kevin MacDonald

      Kevin, you must have missed to point I was trying to make in that you can't use one weather event to prove correct and assertion and another, happening at the same to disprove it. To say that he prolonged cold spell in the recent two winters is proof of global warming is disingenuous, just as it is disingenuous to use that as evidence that global warming isn't happening. In case you haven't checked the record data for some of the Midwestern United states, these last two winters aren't really out of line with some of the local maxima which occur approximately every decade. Why do people have to be such buttholes?

      report
    12. Kevin MacDonald

      Civil Servant

      In reply to Steven D

      " To say that he prolonged cold spell in the recent two winters is proof of global warming is disingenuous"

      I'm not sure anyone is. As I understand it there is some conjecture that these cold spells could be caused by global warming, but nothing close to definitive attribution.

      report
    13. Barry Woods

      logged in via Twitter

      In reply to Rob Honeycutt

      John Cook - Skeptical Science founder, recognised that some people used the phrase 'climate denier' (not the word - denier) to denigrate sceptics back in 2007..

      JC's Law

      "There's a famous rule Godwin's Law which predicts the inevitable eventuality when fierce online debate rages:

      "As an online discussion grows longer, the probability of a comparison involving Nazis or Hitler approaches one."

      Apparently in a flame war, there's no greater insult than comparing your opponent to Nazis. I've…

      Read more
    14. Barry Woods

      logged in via Twitter

      In reply to Rob Honeycutt

      the graph has nothing to do with deaths.. it is a measure of costs..

      and as you should know, when equated to inflation, etc, there is no trend..

      report
    15. Rob Honeycutt

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Steven D

      You're not even interpreting the 95% figure correctly, Steven. They're not saying 95% of warming is man-made. They're saying there is a 95% "likelihood" that more than 50% of the warming of the past 40 years is man-made.

      There is some potential that more than 100% of the warming of the past 40 years is man-made. Given falling solar irradiance, industrial aerosols and other cooling factors, the climate likely would have cooled. Thus the warming we've seen may actually exceed 100% man-made contribution.

      I have to ask. Is there some reason that you would think that the 30,000 actively publishing climate change researchers out there don't understand their subject matter beyond first semester physics?

      report
    16. Rob Honeycutt

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Steven D

      Steven... I'm not name calling.

      If you're new to this issue, stick around. The personal attacks I've endured from global warming deniers pales relative to anything that's been said here on this thread.

      report
    17. Rob Honeycutt

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Barry Woods

      Yes, Barry. It's from a re-insurance company. They're measuring cost trends of weather related disasters to non-weather related disasters.

      There are TWO trends there, Barry. Weather and non-weather related disaster costs are diverging. Weather related trend is escalating far faster than non-weather.

      report
    18. Steven D

      Geophysics, student

      In reply to Rob Honeycutt

      I believe you on that Rob. I am honestly only looking or understanding. I have always been more of a long term earth evolution kind of a thinker. And no, I hardly think that these people do not understand first semester physics, but there are a lot of alarmists and deniers out there who do not, and the claims being made are pretty wild. Like I have been saying all along here is that there is a whole world between the scientists and the general population, and everything is getting manipulated and distorted. I personally think if someone attacks me, their argument is nil because their emotions are getting in the way of the truth. I will happily listen to people if they speak without name calling. Except for Rush Limbaugh. Not really going to listen to him on the topic of climate change, or Bill Maher.

      report
    19. Rob Honeycutt

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Steven D

      Steven... I'll tell you. I've spent a lot of time on this subject over the past 7 or 8 years. I've read thousands of research papers. I've even peripherally participated in some published research. I also have come to personally know a fair number of climate scientists.

      These people are not saying what they're saying for political purposes. I know that because I know some of them to be politically liberal and others to be politically conservative. They're saying what they're saying because the…

      Read more
    20. Steven D

      Geophysics, student

      In reply to Rob Honeycutt

      I have good news for you though. A friend of mine posted that a Texas Solar Co is selling their solar power for 5 cent s a kwh to the utility co. gas = 7 cents up to nuclear at 13. Solar is making serious ground. He mentioned, and I wholeheartedly agree with him, that if we can get the trendlines in battery tech to be commensurate, then we are doing pretty well. All is not lost. I don't doubt your investigations. You are one of the first people that has actually started to answer questions…

      Read more
    21. Steven D

      Geophysics, student

      In reply to Steven D

      And I think this matter goes a lot deeper than the oil and gas industries. Who really loses if the world get's rid of oil and gas as the main driver for the economic motor. Who geopolitically loses? What countries are the major exporters? I haven't really researched that for about a decade but I think we all know who still carries the cards there. This is much bigger than big oil. Their revenues aren't that great. Big yes, but not so big to be considered bigger that the trillions that is begin poured into this science. Exxon Mobil revenue was 430 Bln in 2013. Revenue. Globally. Their operating income was 40 billion. That is chump change when talking about a 15+ trillion dollar gdp in the US alone.

      Let's say in the next 20 years we find a way to completely get rid of oil and gas. Who is going to take care of those poor people in the middle east?

      report
    22. Steven D

      Geophysics, student

      In reply to Rob Honeycutt

      I don't think I was interpreting anything really. I was speaking about what I have been told. By supposedly reputable scientists, that I happened to grow up with an go to school with, that have called me a god (*(&^ pig fu((ing repube limbaugh loving jacka$$. I was speaking about what the generally alarmists in society that say that humans are responsible for everything that is bad in the climate. The polar vortex, el nino (there are even people who are saying el nino is a global warming caused event.). I do have a lot of questions because what I have seen is that we are experiencing a falling solar IR like you say, and we are at a weak point from what I can tell in sunspot activity. I guess I would like to know how long that is going to last. Those were my visceral feeling, just like yours, when I started investigation sun cycles. That was the first thing that jumped out at me, how realistically we should be experiencing a decent cooling period.

      report
    23. Rob Honeycutt

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Steven D

      I definitely agree with you on the overall tone of the conversation regarding climate change. I'm not always the best at this, but I try to stick to the science and NOT attack people. It's a challenge sometimes because I get attacked back a lot regardless of how polite I try to be.

      I do use the word denier, which I know does offend people who firmly reject the science. But I use it very purposefully in order to point out when people are denying very elemental physics that has been accepted for…

      Read more
    24. Rob Honeycutt

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Steven D

      It's a little meaningless to compare one oil company's revenue to GDP. Heck, the IMF just reported that the subsidies received by the fossil fuel industry globally is 8% of global GDP.

      report
    25. Rob Honeycutt

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Steven D

      Changes in solar irradiance are very unlikely to be having much effect. It does have some effect but the change in solar irradiance of the past 100 years has been ~0.25watts/m^2, whereas the forcing related to man-made greenhouse gases is ~1.6W/m^2.

      The past 15 years has shown less warming than the modeled trend likely for a combination of several reasons. 1) we've been dominated by La Nina and ENSO neutral conditions, 2) there've been a large number of small volcanoes over the that time, 3) we…

      Read more
    26. Rob Honeycutt

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Rob Honeycutt

      Sorry. I mixed up my RF figures. The 1.6W/m^2 is for CO2 alone. Total man-made greenhouse gases is more like 2.4W/m^2.

      report
    27. Martin Bryson Brown

      Professor of Philosophy

      In reply to Steven D

      The 95% is a confidence level, not the amount of change attributed to anthropogenic causes. What has the last 10K years to do with it? We understand the basics of glacial rhythms, but we also understand the basics of CO2 and longwave radiation. Past changes can have different causes than current changes, and the evidence for that is very clear in this case.

      report
    28. Rob Honeycutt

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Ben Barton

      Ben Barton said... "The scientists that he is referencing now use the term 'Climate Change' in lieu of 'Global Warming'."

      Really? Do you know what IPCC stands for, right? Intergovernmental Panel on Climate change. The IPCC was established in 1988.

      Climate change and global warming are terms that are both currently in use in the published literature. They have distinct and different meanings. "Global warming" refers to the rising of global average temperature. "Climate change" is what happens as a result of global warming, such as greater flooding, more extreme droughts, etc.

      report
    29. Michael Craney

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Jon Jermey

      Perhaps so, but more disheartening is the number of individuals who wish to completely skip the core issue of the article (regarding speech) and get right to the technocratic point, which is the data on which CC is based.

      The former is an issue of human rights; the second is simply technology.

      report
  12. Jaime Jessop

    Writer

    I suppose we have to take this seriously, even though, quite frankly, it is a ludicrous suggestion and the author is himself either lamentably ill informed or purposefully engaging in reckless misinformation bordering on the criminal.

    What I think we have here is a Stasi-like response to well-informed criticism of a prevailing narrative, criticism which has become highly inconvenient and embarrassing to the main proponents of that (deeply flawed) narrative. Indeed, so inconvenient, it threatens…

    Read more
    1. Martin Bryson Brown

      Professor of Philosophy

      In reply to Jaime Jessop

      How do you feel about the tobacco executives who testified to Congress (under oath) saying that they did not believe nicotine was addictive? Their own company documents (when discovery took place over state suits against the industry) showed both that they knew it was and were deliberately using it to make sure light cigarettes delivered just as addictive a dose...

      report
    2. Paul Matthews

      Mathematics lecturer

      In reply to Martin Bryson Brown

      How do you feel about professors of philosophy who base their arguments on irrelevant false analogies?

      report
    3. Dan C Derby III

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Paul Matthews

      Touché! I find it interesting the majority of AGW sceptics are mathmeticians, engineers and geophysicists. The AGW defenders seem to have Dr. Of Philosophy (e.g. Non-scientist) behind theirs or in the case of Mr. Honeycutt won't give their credentials (but will criticize others for being non-scientific engineers and geophysists).

      report
    4. Rob Honeycutt

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Dan C Derby III

      Dan... The issue here that Torcello is writing about doesn't have to do with the specifics of climate science. The fact is that the science is so well accepted at this point is more than enough reason to explore the issues he's discussing.

      As for my credentials. I've just spent a lot of time reading research papers about climate change over the past 7 or 8 years. All I try to do is defend what the published research is saying as accurately as I can.

      report
    5. Brad Keyes

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Dan C Derby III

      "I find it interesting the majority of AGW sceptics are mathmeticians, engineers and geophysicists."

      That's not strictly true. While it may be the case that most public AGW skeptics, or most AGW skeptics *active in the debate*, are mathematicians, engineers and geophysicists, it doesn't follow (and it can't be true) that most AGW skeptics have any such qualifications. Bear in mind that skeptics comprise roughly half the population and you can immediately see why most of them, necessarily, are…

      Read more
    6. Jaime Jessop

      logged in via Twitter

      In reply to Martin Bryson Brown

      What an odd question. Is this supposed to be relevant in any way whatsoever to the points I made above? I'm struggling to see how. Perhaps one has to be a professor of philosophy to appreciate the subtle but extremely relevant interconnectedness. Being rather simple minded, I'll just stick to the subject at hand if you don't mind.

      report
    7. Jaime Jessop

      logged in via Twitter

      In reply to Brad Keyes

      Here here. I would hazard a guess that the reason the majority of outspoken AGW sceptics tend to be mathematicians, engineers, physicists, geophysicists, meteorologists, even atrophysicists, is that those people are used to thinking in a certain way about the world, based upon scientific rigour, logic and internal consistency. When confronted with the irrationality of 'consensus climate science', when professional opinion is lauded above scientific evidence and real world validation, they naturally tend to baulk first and most vociferously. But really, it's not who you are that matters in the climate change debate, whichever side you happen to be on, it's how consistent your argument is and what 'evidence' you use to bolster it.

      report
    8. Brad Keyes

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Jaime Jessop

      If Jaime doesn't accept the relevance of the tobacco analogy it's obviously because she hasn't read The Merchants of Venice by Naomi Oreskes and Erik Conway. It was that stunning tome which first revealed, to a generation starved of grand myths, the interconnectedness of all things. My own meagre pre-doctoral mind can't possibly do justice to the novel's intricate and world-spanning plot, but it goes something like this: the reason Jaime doesn't believe in lung cancer or the upcoming climate catastrophe…

      Read more
    9. Jaime Jessop

      logged in via Twitter

      In reply to Brad Keyes

      Ah, yes, I am obviously ill-tutored in the finer arts of the comparative science denial doctrine as expounded by Oreskes and Conway. Naively, I thought that people who challenged my scepticism of man made global warming by questioning me about whether I believed AIDS was caused by a virus were just being deliberately obtuse, but now I see they were armed and dangerous with the intellectual foresight and acumen afforded them by passing familiarity with Oreskes' and Conway's Science Denial Bible.

      Alas, I must concede, I don't have the intellectual curiosity to dice with a dumbed down death by gazing even for a moment at the Merchants of Doubt's loaded Magnum 44! So, I'll just stick to being a plain old climate change sceptic, reading papers about solar forcings, PDO/AMO etc. Really boring I know!

      report
    10. Brad Keyes

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Jaime Jessop

      Classic Modern Family line:

      Clare: "Do we lack intellectual curiosity?"

      Phil [shrugging]: "Mu-oh."

      report
  13. Steven D

    Geophysics, student

    I think you guys all need a special padded bicker room.

    I don't count as a skeptic, but I don't count as an alarmist either. The fact remains, not all of the variables have been tracked and applied to models accurately. This is still a growing science. We can barely model a mantle plume accurately for a few million years let alone model even a fraction of the earth's climate. If we had it nailed perfectly the farmer's Almanac wouldn't have had NOAA and NASA with their pants down over the…

    Read more
    1. David Arthur

      resistance gnome

      In reply to Steven D

      " not all of the variables have been tracked and applied to models accurately". Err, wake up to yourself: atmosphere is reasonably well-characterised, and work is well underway in the major heat-distributing medium on the earth's surface, the hydrosphere.

      "We can barely model a mantle plume accurately for a few million years ..." Relevance?

      "... let alone model even a fraction of the earth's climate." Err, here's a small part of what we know:

      Earth is warmed by absorption of short wave…

      Read more
    2. Steven D

      Geophysics, student

      In reply to David Arthur

      That isn't even a reasonable argument. Those are not even close to the variables that I am talking about. That is sophomore geochemistry you are talking about. Sophomore geochemistry does not define the atmosphere.

      The relevance for the mantle plume is that an accurate model is not possible due to computational limitations. the feedback loops are not fully understood as has been uncovered on an almost weekly basis. I cited two studies that show that, studies that appear in journals within the last few weeks. Would you like references?

      report
    3. Steven D

      Geophysics, student

      In reply to David Arthur

      And I will bet you 100 bucks that we see a study of albedo of artic seas and their albedo is actually much higher due surficial fluctuations.

      report
    4. Steven D

      Geophysics, student

      In reply to David Arthur

      I will agree with you on one thing though. Deforestation is a huge problem. So is monoculture farming. I see those as the big threats. Sadly, we were warned about deforestation decades ago and they were right. I agreed with them then and I still agree with them. So. What am I going to do about it? I am going to, as soon as I can, put MY money where my mouth is and purchase as much forest as I can to preserve it for exactly that, a forest with naturally congruent ecosystem to the larger biome.

      report
    5. David Arthur

      resistance gnome

      In reply to Steven D

      Thanks for that, Mr FakeID. When signing up for 'The Conversation', you seem to have missed the part about using our real names, so I'll just address you as 'FakeID' for the moment.

      "That isn't even a reasonable argument." Err, if it isn't reasonable, demonstrate how and why that's the case. [Hint: I prepared my summary of what I understand several years ago, and saved it to a little text file on my computer. I paste it into my contributions here and there, and rebut any and all attempts to…

      Read more
    6. Steven D

      Geophysics, student

      In reply to David Arthur

      You David are the exact reason why people think "climate scientists" are full of hot air. Your arrogance does indeed proceed you. If you toned back your arrogance and actually talked to people instead of at them, you might have better luck in life. You are the exact reason I will peck at scientists until they provide me real answers, not some prepackaged mac-n-cheese science. I presented you with real science that is just being done, and you lambaste me. How childish is that? That is why there are deniers and skeptics, because of attitudes like yours. Maybe if you actually owned that people could communicate with you. I have no intention of reading anything you have written because you are filled with hate and contempt. Enjoy being eaten from the inside there dude.

      report
    7. David Arthur

      resistance gnome

      In reply to Steven D

      Thanks for the character appraisal, Mr FakeID. However, you're utterly wrong about why there are Denialists - it's not because of attitudes like mine, but becuase you are the dupes of campaigns of disinformation we;;-funded by those who are making a great deal of money out of flogging oil and coal to you.

      At some stage, you could learn by reading Oreskes & Conway's "Merchants of Doubt".

      I am intrigued by "I presented you with real science that is just being done". If you review what you've…

      Read more
    8. Steven D

      Geophysics, student

      In reply to David Arthur

      I will look into your links. I seriously doubt we will come to blows. I am not as ignorant as you have painted me to be. I actually have some pretty good critical thinking skills, and a pretty good education and am looking for ways I can best be of service to society as a whole as I continue on my career and educational paths. I have a tendency to stick to hard science though. I hate and despise politics. I thought article I referenced earlier are more in line with my interest. I would really…

      Read more
    9. Shaun Shelton

      Global Investor

      In reply to Steven D

      Agree wholeheartedly, Steven.

      Global warming "alarmists" are their own worst enemies. They take such an extreme stance on the issue that when their "death and mayhem" predictions don't pan out, the result is increased skepticism. In large part, these alarmists are the very reason for the existence of many dissenters.

      I don't dispute that man contributes to the health (or demise) of their surroundings. In fact, I embrace being socially and environmentally responsible. But why the scare tactics…

      Read more
    10. David Arthur

      resistance gnome

      In reply to Shaun Shelton

      Thanks for the derision, Mr Shelton. You speak like a man with his head wedged somewhere warm and dark, perhaps your investment bank vault?

      We can trade insults as much as we like, but there's no substitute for actually getting a clue about the subject matter - which in this case is misinformation about climate science. Mr FakeID (the self-styled Steven D) seemed pretty keen to simply cast aspersions on the name of a prominent climate scientist - so I directed him towards a little background reading. I propose that you pursue the same references.

      report
    11. Ray Hughes

      IT Worker

      In reply to Shaun Shelton

      Oh, no. Not the old "Y2K was a scam" argument. There is this thing called risk assessment. Code was patched, machines were updated, based on the risk involved in case of malfunction. The ones that would cause the most damage if they malfunctioned first, then others in descending order of risk. I was working in a hospital at the time, updating applications and flashing BIOSes. Banks and airlines were doing the same. Gosh, surprisingly the world didn't end (not that this was predicted by anyone but…

      Read more
    12. Steven D

      Geophysics, student

      In reply to David Arthur

      I rather like my FakeID persona. Too funny. I don't think I will be entering the padded bicker room today. My references to Mann were set forth for the only reason that I don't understand why he doesn't release his meta data. Maybe he has and nobody cares to talk about it. I don't know, but to me it is very disingenuous to assert scientific realities and not release the data. All of my data on my research and procedures and notes are for anyone to look at. I don't care. I don't own it. The planet does.

      report
    13. Shaun Shelton

      Global Investor

      In reply to Ray Hughes

      Way to make your millions on the Y2K scam. I was out there telling everyone it was a scam, just like it turned out to be. And for my "denial" of the Y2K falling sky, I was given major recognition by the likes of IBM, SunTrust, Sanwa and other clients I saved MILLIONS by not falling into this trap. Thanks for flashing BIOS's and saving the planet. You're a hero. Exactly HOW many unFLASHED computers failed planetwide?? Ummmm zero.

      Invest in $65 lightbulbs much? There's your next multi gazillion…

      Read more
    14. Shaun Shelton

      Global Investor

      In reply to Ray Hughes

      Here's the real joke of this blog.

      Everyone on here who is a global warming alarmist is a liberal who wants the governments to force the public to buy the $65 lightbulb (or go to jail, or be tried for heresy).

      Everyone on here who is a global warming denialist is a conservative who realizes that the $65 lightbulb is going to bankrupt everyone for no plausible reason.

      Don't get too caught up with the $65 lightbulb. It's not the real argument. It's just a shiny object to make you alarmists really really mad and call everyone else really snotty names :)

      report
    15. David Arthur

      resistance gnome

      In reply to Steven D

      My understanding is that Dr Mann's work is in the peer-reviewed literature. If you are puzzled about Dr Mann's metadata, I suggest you read "The Hockey Stick and the Climate Wars: Dispatches from the Front Lines."

      On the other hand, your data on your research, procedures and notes are concealed behind a FakeID.

      report
    16. Martin Bryson Brown

      Professor of Philosophy

      In reply to Steven D

      Maybe you should read this recent study:

      So the entire Earth is absorbing more heat than expected, according to a study published Monday in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

      That extra absorbed energy is so big that it measures about one-quarter of the entire heat-trapping effect of carbon dioxide, said the study’s lead author, Ian Eisenman, a climate scientist at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography in California.

      report
    17. Martin Bryson Brown

      Professor of Philosophy

      In reply to Steven D

      Sometimes data is proprietary, but Mann and others have made massive amounts of data publicly available-- not that many deniers have a clue what to do with it. I'd be more interested to know how much Exxon and the Koch brothers have contributed to the Heritage Institute & other such endeavours: their financial interests are a much bigger issue than these trumped-up 'suspicions' about Mann and other scientists.

      report
    18. Martin Bryson Brown

      Professor of Philosophy

      In reply to Shaun Shelton

      You haven't priced LED bulbs lately have you? Have you every calculated how much money you save over the bulb's lifetime? CFLs are also more efficient, and even cheaper.

      report
  14. Comment removed by moderator.

    1. Ray Hughes

      IT Worker

      In reply to IA_Adam

      Yeah, just like we worship that holy text, the absorption spectrum of CO2. The one that shows it to be transparent to visible wavelengths while absorbing strongly in the infra-red. And yeah, we agitate for renewable energy because it's so beautifully destructive (cue organ music), kills huge numbers of humans but leaves our pet snakes and sharks (the ones with frickin' laser beams) alone. Because we hate people and we want them all to die from... aah... not polluting so much? Energy efficiency? Recycling?

      Sorry, I'm having a bit of trouble visualising your mechanism for this global mass murder.

      report
    2. Martin Bryson Brown

      Professor of Philosophy

      In reply to IA_Adam

      This is pure projection-- climate denial is driven by the same psychological phenomenon as evolution denial: the need to shoot the messenger.

      report
  15. William Legge

    logged in via Facebook

    What can I say Lawrence. except you are deceived, and your arrogance has deceived you and the rest of those like you who have bowed down to worship at the altar of environmentalism. Because of your absolute refusal to even glance at the truth your ilk will become an embarrassment and example of blind ideology that has deceived millions and flushed billions of dollars of financial resources, that are so desperately needed to to find real answers to real problems, like cures for the millions that suffer with so many illnesses, or food and water to feed the many poor and dying around the world. Yes your crowd will be disdained and mocked on the pages of history. Maybe your the ones who deserve jail.

    report
  16. Danderson

    logged in via Twitter

    "More deaths can already be attributed to climate change"

    Well your link takes us to a WHO page which links to one of their own 108 page reports.

    A quote from that:

    "The most recent report (2001) from the United Nations’ Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC)"

    The deaths:

    "Table 20.16 Estimated mortality (000s) attributable to climate change in
    the year 2000, by cause and subregion"

    It looks at Malnutrition, Diarrhoea, Malaria, Floods, CVD (cardio-vascular deaths), caused by climate change (?).

    Is it not misinformation to grab your facts from dubious 14 year old sources?

    report
  17. Grant Burfield

    Dr

    Is misinformation about the climate criminally negligent?

    Clearly not, otherwise some of the Climategate crew would have found themselves in front of a beak years ago. Not to mention the infamous forger Dr Peter Gleick.

    report
    1. Rob Honeycutt

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Grant Burfield

      Grant said... "otherwise some of the Climategate crew would have found themselves in front of a beak years ago."

      Perhaps you're not aware of the fact that the hacked CRU emails have been investigated about a dozen times. With each and every investigation – by different countries, different organizations – they turned up NO wrongdoing. Zero.

      Okay, they found out that scientists can sometimes be rude in private emails. Outside of that, no improprieties were found.

      As for Dr Gleick, he made a full mea culpa saying he allowed his frustration with disinformation organizations like the Heartland Institute to influence his better judgement.

      report
    2. Grant Burfield

      Dr

      In reply to Rob Honeycutt

      Really, A dozen times, care to list them all. How many found no wrongdoing by Professor Mann?
      OK, scientific xenophobia is not a crime but nevertheless the Climategate emails are full of it. That, more than anything else turned me into a sceptic. Or denier. I quite like being called a denier. It's a robust proxy indicating that anyone that uses it is a complete idiot.

      report
    3. Brad Keyes

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Martin Bryson Brown

      "Worth adding that the documents Gleick received are not forgeries."

      Err... no shit, Sherlock. At the risk of saying something that's rather obvious to ordinary, non-academic types:

      When someone points out to you that Gleick is a forger they don't mean to suggest the documents he *RECEIVED* were forged.

      It's getting hard to tell if your contributions to this discussion are meant to be taken seriously, Professor Brown. Where do you teach, just out of curiosity?

      report
    4. Brad Keyes

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Rob Honeycutt

      Notice how Rob seems to believe, or at least would have us believe, that the CRU investigations investigated Michael Mann. The dirty dozens have merged into a single apocryphal composite in his private mythology.

      Sigh.

      report
    5. Brad Keyes

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Rob Honeycutt

      "enough with the personal attacks. It just doesn't add to the conversation at all."

      Yes, what on earth was I thinking—bringing personal attacks into the climate change debate? Everybody knows you can't do that. Tsk tsk.

      report
    6. Rob Honeycutt

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Brad Keyes

      Brad... I'm here arguing a position that is consistent with the vast body of scientific evidence regarding the reality of climate change.

      When you attack me personally for that, it 1) suggests that you're actually not very confident in your own position, and 2) degrades the potential for advancing the conversation.

      Although, perhaps it's your intent to degrade the conversation so that you don't have to actually address substantive points.

      report
    7. Brad Keyes

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Rob Honeycutt

      "Brad... I'm here arguing a position that is consistent with the vast body of scientific evidence..."

      Good. For a moment there I thought you were arguing on the basis of consensus.

      "...you attack me personally for that..."

      Um, no. I wouldn't attack anybody for doing that. I approve wholeheartedly of arguing a position that is consistent with the vast body of scientific evidence regarding the reality of climate change.

      report
  18. CJ

    logged in via Twitter

    The problem with people who who believe Climate Change Mitigation as a moral goal is that it is they who are the ones who are inherently immoral and should be prosecuted. Prosecuted for denying people access to cheap and reliable energy from fossil fuel when so called "renewables" does more harm to "Gaia" than fossil fuel does, not to mention kill millions of poor people due to fuel poverty. http://wp.me/p7y4l-lnm
    The real harm to the environment is not Fossil Fuel it is Wind and Solar which should…

    Read more
  19. Paul Foster

    logged in via LinkedIn

    Where does this global warming coward live? Anyone know?

    report
  20. Levi Starks

    logged in via Facebook

    And after we jail the scientist's on the wrong side, Lets be sure and have a good old fashion book burning......

    report
    1. Martin Bryson Brown

      Professor of Philosophy

      In reply to Levi Starks

      Read the article-- the suggestion would apply to people in the same position as the tobacco executives who lied to Congress about whether they believed nicotine was addictive, and funded a campaign of denial to defend their profits. There is very good documentation (cf. Conway and Oreskes' Merchants of Doubt) that leaders of the fossil fuel industry are in the same position.

      report
  21. Kevin Wagner

    logged in via Twitter

    You've really lowered the bar for my already low esteem for philosophy grads, and I say this as a philosophy degree holder. Beyond your clueless reference to a false, long publicly noted forgery, you repeatedly assert the argument from popularity as valid. It really shouldn't require too much familiarity with logic, certainly not as much as I'd expect from anyone deeming himself a professor of philosophy, to see the problem there.

    As to the ethics of your article, you lack any shred of self-awareness…

    Read more
  22. Eric Worrall

    logged in via Facebook

    Science advances when the consensus is proven wrong.

    Einstein advanced the science of Physics when he proved that the Newtonian consensus of immutable time was wrong.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Theory_of_relativity

    Fred Hoyle's steady state theory of the universe was overturned by evidence that Lemaître's Big Bang theory provided a better explanation for observations.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/History_of_the_Big_Bang_theory

    The consensus that peptic ulcers were caused by excessive…

    Read more
    1. Martin Bryson Brown

      Professor of Philosophy

      In reply to Eric Worrall

      Newton's physics is still good physics-- it's just not perfect. The same goes for climate science today: that CO2 is a greenhouse gas, that the increase is anthropogenic, that H20 in the atmosphere increases as the air and water warm and amplifies the warming, the basic radiative physics of global warming-- all these will be part of whatever new physics emerges in the coming centuries.

      report
  23. Chloe Sumner

    logged in via Twitter

    Professor Torcello is absolutely correct. Our lamentable industrial "civilisation" is heading off a cliff - small loss if it is destroyed but it threatens to do great damage to the biosphere.

    We need new government and international legislation and new powers to curb and monitor the deniers and ecocides. In that way, something like Natalie Bennett's 10-point plan in the UK, which will remove proven deniers from public office, will be a good start. But only a start.

    report
    1. Eric Worrall

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Chloe Sumner

      The biosphere survived gigantic meteors, such as killed the dinosaurs, vast volcanic eruptions which wiped out most life, ice ages which froze the equator almost solid, boiling heat, poisonous gasses, even an unshielded natural nuclear reactor which once appeared in Africa.

      Nothing we do to the biosphere can compare to natural catastrophes which have occurred in the past, and which will occur in the future. So climate change really only matters in the context of how it affects us - and whether measures we take to avert it are more harmful to us than adaption to whatever climate change occurs.

      report
    2. Account Removed

      logged in via email @gmail.com

      In reply to Eric Worrall

      How pleasing you should raise the issue of the measures we might take to avert climate change, for in my view that is certainly more pressing than what might happen if we do nothing.

      It ought to be clear that the majority of people almost everywhere are unwilling to accept the changes in their lives and the economy that voluntary and significant reductions in CO2 emmissions would bring about. It is not going to happen, and we are walking backwards into the future. However, given time, the effects…

      Read more
    3. Eric Worrall

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Account Removed

      Interestingly there are points of agreement between skeptics like Anthony Watts and alarmists like James Hansen. Both are strong advocates of next generation nuclear power, though for different reasons.

      James Hansen on nuclear power.
      http://edition.cnn.com/2013/11/03/world/nuclear-energy-climate-change-scientists-letter/index.html

      Watts on nuclear power.
      http://wattsupwiththat.com/2011/01/30/china-announces-thorium-reactor-energy-program-obama-still-dwelling-on-sputnik-moments/

      report
    4. Account Removed

      logged in via email @gmail.com

      In reply to Eric Worrall

      Well we are moving off topic now, but my view is that thorium reactors are fraught with difficulty - not least metallurgical - and as far as I can see there is no White Knight technology lurking just over the horizon, waiting to come to our rescue.

      report
    5. Grant Burfield

      Dr

      In reply to Chloe Sumner

      "Natalie Bennett's 10-point plan in the UK, which will remove proven deniers from public office, will be a good start." Agreed, but failing that, tattooing deniers and ecocides has been suggested and should be seriously considered.

      http://www.smh.com.au/federal-politics/society-and-culture/the-dangers-of-boneheaded-beliefs-20110602-1fijg.html

      Yes, it's not a new concept and has been tried before many years ago but I personally would see it as A Great Leap Forward. Too much is at stake.

      report
    6. Eric Worrall

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Grant Burfield

      Maybe you should round them up and put them in a camp somewhere, so they can't disseminate their dangerous ideas to anyone else. Call in child services to make sure their kids aren't contaminated with their wrong think. I know, a tattoo for them, so everyone knows what they are - they could all wear a green star, with the letter "D" inside it, so everyone would know they are "deniers".

      report
    7. Eric Worrall

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Account Removed

      James Hansen, former director of NASA GISS, thinks otherwise - he suggests in his recent open letter that next generation nuclear technology is the only hope for a low carbon future. This does not necessarily mean Thorium, but there are plenty of options for preventing another Fukishima, such as pebble bed reactor technology, which cannot overheat.

      report
    8. Account Removed

      logged in via email @gmail.com

      In reply to Eric Worrall

      Perhaps I should just make clear my view that ALL energy technology as we know it is dependent upon oil, coal and gas, because they are needed in the manufacture of steel, concrete, glass, electrical insulation etc. There are some who entertain the idea that - for example - steel can be re-cycled using electric arc furnaces, and those furnaces could be wind powered; but such furnaces use huge coke electrodes, and in any case, re-cycled steel is such a mix of elements that the product varies considerably…

      Read more
    9. Rob Honeycutt

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Eric Worrall

      Eric Worrall said... "Maybe you should round them up..."

      Hardly need to read any more than that to know how extreme your level of rhetoric is.

      report
    10. Martin Bryson Brown

      Professor of Philosophy

      In reply to Eric Worrall

      Well, the rate of climate change is now much faster than at the paleocene-eocene thermal maximum, which caused a mass extinction. So in fact we're doing a very good job of creating a real natural catastrophe.

      report
    1. Kevin MacDonald

      Civil Servant

      In reply to Richard Bradford

      "we must punish all those who disagree with us"

      Didn't make all the way to the end of the article I presume: "My argument probably raises an understandable, if misguided, concern regarding free speech. We must make the critical distinction between the protected voicing of one’s unpopular beliefs, and the funding of a strategically organised campaign to undermine the public’s ability to develop and voice informed opinions".

      report
  24. Comment removed by moderator.

    1. In reply to fret Slider

      Comment removed by moderator.

    2. Kevin MacDonald

      Civil Servant

      In reply to fret Slider

      "a professor suggesting that different views on science should be met with jail"

      Ah, The straw man fallacy. The first, last and every bastion inbetween of the "Skeptic".

      There is no suggestion "different views" be prohibited, rather that organisations that fund and propogate willfully wrong and false information be subject to criminal law where criminal negligence can be shown.

      report
    3. fret Slider

      Developer

      In reply to Kevin MacDonald

      "There is no suggestion "different views" be prohibited"

      I see you are quite an accomplished mental gymnast.

      No warming for 1.1 Santers

      That's a fact.

      report
    4. In reply to fret Slider

      Comment removed by moderator.

    5. Kevin MacDonald

      Civil Servant

      In reply to fret Slider

      "I see you are quite an accomplished mental gymnast"

      Understanding things you read might appear accomplished to you, but where I'm from it's considered fairly unremarkable.

      "No warming for 1.1 Santers

      That's a fact."

      I'm far from convinced that this is either a fact or relevant to my point.

      report
    6. In reply to CJ

      Comment removed by moderator.

    7. Kevin MacDonald

      Civil Servant

      In reply to fret Slider

      "How long must the pause go on before you stop denying it?"

      Is that the pause that caused an acceleration in the rate of increase of coean heat content?

      http://blogs.shell.com/climatechange/wp-content/uploads/2013/06/btk13fig1.jpg

      Or the pause that saw an acceleration in ther rate of ice loss at the poles?

      http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-EoUAECpjixw/UOFXp1icoyI/AAAAAAAAC5c/V4HinwBquj0/s1600/20121230_Icesheet_mass_balance_2009_fig2.gif

      report
    8. In reply to Steven D

      Comment removed by moderator.

    9. Rob Honeycutt

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to fret Slider

      Fret... The fact is, there has been warming. Why are you stuck propagating a lie? The trend for the past 17 years is 0.114 ±0.136 °C/decade (2σ) (HadCRU4+CW).

      report
    10. fret Slider

      Developer

      In reply to Kevin MacDonald

      Is misinformation about the climate criminally negligent?

      Define misinformation

      Could it be...

      The IPCC were forced to apologise for claiming that the Himalayan glaciers would melt by 2035. They lifted that from a New Scientist article (not peer reviewed) from the 90s. When the glaring error was pointed out Pachauri accused those who pointed it out of doing voodoo science.

      The IPCC is supposed to rely on peer reviewed literature, yet AR$ was peppered with opinion pieces from WWF

      There are many more examples.

      Professor Parncutt is keeping his head down

      report
    11. Kevin MacDonald

      Civil Servant

      In reply to fret Slider

      <blockquote>Is misinformation about the climate criminally negligent?</blockquote>If it leads to harm it can be.

      report
    12. Kevin MacDonald

      Civil Servant

      In reply to fret Slider

      "Do you have any idea what statistically significant means? It appears not"

      Standard "Skeptic" hypocrisy; happy to claim a non-significant trend as pause, but squeals when an opponent claims otherwise.

      report
    13. Rob Honeycutt

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to fret Slider

      fret said, "Do you have any idea what statistically significant means? It appears not."

      Try not to get patronizing when you don't know who you're talking to.

      The 17 year trend falls just short of statistical significance, but clearly still has a positive trend with a high confidence level. Pull that back and couple of years to achieve a p-value less than 0.5 and you have a trend that is fully consistent with projections.

      report
    14. Eric Worrall

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Rob Honeycutt

      0.114 ±0.136 means there is a significant probability that temperatures cooled over this period.

      report
    15. Rob Honeycutt

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Eric Worrall

      No. 0.114 ±0.136 means there is a very LOW probability that temperatures cooled over this period.

      Remember, the plus side suggests that there is a possibility that temperature rose more than double that amount.

      report
    16. Martin Bryson Brown

      Professor of Philosophy

      In reply to fret Slider

      Not really a fact, though, as multiple studies show. If you're playing the quibble about statistically significant while cherry picking the 1998 starting point, you're not just wrong but a deliberate deceiver.

      report
    17. Martin Bryson Brown

      Professor of Philosophy

      In reply to fret Slider

      One typo that was missed in a massive report (which, by the way, is on the conservative side given that countries all around the world, including Saudi Arabia, have to agree on process and much of the contents. Pretty trivial compared to some other errors out there:

      How about the years-long debacle of Christie and Spencer's programming error, during which they insisted everyone else was wrong, and which others corrected for them...? Or McIntyre and McItrick's error of leaving hockey stick signals in the 'random' sequences they claimed to show that Mann's results (confirmed over and again in other studies) were an artifact.

      report
    18. Brad Keyes

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Martin Bryson Brown

      Professor Bryson,

      Not to be indelicate, but you're in rather florid denial if you still think the 2035 myth was a "typo that was missed in a massive report."

      Are you ingenuous? There was nothing accidental about it. The lead author responsible, a Dr Murari Lal if I remember correctly, has tried to explain this to you. But apparently you weren't listening when he admitted in no uncertain terms that the glaciologically absurd figure was a premeditated attempt to sex up the geopolitics of the…

      Read more
    1. Kevin MacDonald

      Civil Servant

      In reply to Joe Archer

      "I advocate that everyone spread this link around and every time someone says climate change, ask them to explain the graph."

      Explain what? I'm not aware of anyone challenging the fundamentals of photosynthesis.

      report
  25. James McCown

    logged in via Facebook

    I say its not warming. No increase in global average temperatures since 1998. Should I be thrown in prison?

    report
    1. Kevin MacDonald

      Civil Servant

      In reply to James McCown

      "I say its not warming. No increase in global average temperatures since 1998. Should I be thrown in prison?"

      Nah, you should be sent to school.

      Ocean heat content is still increasing, sea level is still rising, sea ice is still decreasing, the ice caps are losing mass at an accelerating rate, etc, ect. I presume you're talking about surface temperatures, but even there you're wrong:

      http://www.woodfortrees.org/plot/wti/from:1999/trend/plot/gistemp/from:1999/trend/plot/hadcrut4gl/from:1999/trend/plot/rss/from:1999/trend/plot/uah/from:1999/trend

      report
    2. James McCown

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Kevin MacDonald

      But Kevin, look what happens when I replot those graphs beginning with 1998:

      http://www.woodfortrees.org/plot/wti/from:1998/trend/plot/gistemp/from:1998/trend/plot/hadcrut4gl/from:1998/trend/plot/rss/from:1998/trend/plot/uah/from:1998/trend

      RSS is now trending downwards. The other four series are only going up slightly. None of the increases are statistically significant.

      Sea ice is not decreasing. Arctic sea ice dropped for a while but is now rebounding. Antarctic sea ice never dropped in the first place.

      Only the South Atlantic and Indian oceans have shown any increase in temperature, and those only a couple of hundredths of a degree celsius, likely within the margin of error of the instruments. The North Atlantic and Pacific oceans have shown no increase in temperature.

      It's not warming. Deal with it.

      report
    3. Kevin MacDonald

      Civil Servant

      In reply to James McCown

      "But Kevin, look what happens when I replot those graphs beginning with 1998"

      You mean change your terms of reference. If you meand since 1997 you should have said so.

      "RSS is now trending downwards. The other four series are only going up slightly. None of the increases are statistically significant."

      No statistically significant warming is a different beast from no warming, again you're moving the goal posts.

      "Sea ice is not decreasing"

      Annual trend is still downwards, you've moved from logical fallacies to outright denial now.

      report
    4. Rob Honeycutt

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to James McCown

      James... You say it's not warming but you would be saying something that is demonstrably incorrect.

      report
    5. Scott Mullins

      logged in via email @att.net

      In reply to Rob Honeycutt

      Rob - you assert that James says something that is "demonstrably incorrect" but you fail to actually demonstrate that it is incorrect.

      report
    6. Rob Honeycutt

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Scott Mullins

      Scott Mullins... Well then allow me to do so. I did so in a previous comment put will repost the data here: The trend is 0.114 ±0.136 °C/decade (2σ) (HadCRU4+CW).

      Or if you prefer, here is a graph: http://woodfortrees.org/plot/hadcrut4gl/from:1998/plot/hadcrut4gl/from:1998/trend

      Now, there are some differences between these two bits of data. The graph is just HadCRU4 data which excludes the poles, where most of the warming is currently taking place. The HadCRU4+CW data adds satellite data for…

      Read more
    7. Eric Worrall

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Kevin MacDonald

      Anyone who thinks 3000 Argo buoys can accurately measure the entire ocean needs some basic education in physics.

      You need at least 3 thermometers to accurately measure the heat content of a swimming pool - one buoy per 456,000 cubic kilometres of ocean doesn't cut it.

      http://hypertextbook.com/facts/2001/SyedQadri.shtml

      That is 1.37 billion cubic kilometres / 3000 buoys, if you are a little math challenged.

      report
    8. Neil Gibson

      Retired Electronics Design Engineer

      In reply to Eric Worrall

      Spot on Eric. Quoting ocean temperatures to one hundredth of a degree accuracy shows a complete lack of knowledge of measurement fundamentals or willful misinformation which is the topic of this article.

      report
    9. Kevin MacDonald

      Civil Servant

      In reply to Neil Gibson

      "Spot on Eric"

      Yeah, I'm sure you and Eric can come up with a reason that sea levels are rising that doesn't require thermal expansion...

      report
    10. Eric Worrall

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Kevin MacDonald

      A few mm / year is noise. There is no indication that future SLR changes will be significantly different to past SLR, other than a set of dodgy models which failed to predict any climate event of consequence.

      report
    11. Rob Honeycutt

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Eric Worrall

      Eric said... "Anyone who thinks 3000 Argo buoys can accurately measure the entire ocean needs some basic education in physics."

      I'm sure the scientists involved in the Argo project would be more than happy to receive funding for another 100,000 buoys.

      In the meantime, the buoys that we have are adequate to get an fundamental idea of what ocean heat content is.

      report
    12. Kevin MacDonald

      Civil Servant

      In reply to Eric Worrall

      " few mm / year is noise"

      Your engaged in some pretty heavy hypocrisy here Eric. Seventeen years of surface temperature data is extremely noisy (far noisier than SLR and OHC data over the same period), but you're happy to accept that as somehow meaningful. It's confirmation bias writ large.

      report
    13. Rob Honeycutt

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Scott Mullins

      Scott... Yes, when you choose a shorter time frame within a noisy data set, you can find a cooling trend.

      Your chosen trend for HadCRU4 is -0.009 ±0.141 °C/decade (2σ).

      Take note of the confident range, please. That trend has a VERY low confidence level of less than 10%.

      Again, the problem with choosing HadCRU4 is that it doesn't count the poles where most of the warming is taking place right now.

      report
  26. CJ

    logged in via Twitter

    James Lovelock in the Guardian

    "The great climate science centres around the world are more than well aware how weak their science is. If you talk to them privately they're scared stiff of the fact that they don't really know what the clouds and the aerosols are doing. They could be absolutely running the show. We haven't got the physics worked out yet. One of the chiefs once said to me that he agreed that they should include the biology in their models, but he said they hadn't got the physics right yet and it would be five years before they do. So why on earth are the politicians spending a fortune of our money when we can least afford it on doing things to prevent events 50 years from now? They've employed scientists to tell them what they want to hear."

    http://www.theguardian.com/environment/blog/2010/mar/29/james-lovelock?guni=Article:in%20body%20link

    report
  27. Eric D

    logged in via email @outlook.com

    Let's take a look at climate science, predictions and problems

    #1. Models don't model reality.

    The climate is a complex, non-linear system with inputs and outputs. Some of the inputs and outputs are poorly understood. The complexity of the climate cannot be, at this time, modeled. The computers aren't fast enough, all the drivers are not well known enough and other environmental aspects (clouds, dust,humidity, etc) are not modeled well.

    #2. Warming response to a doubling of CO2. There…

    Read more
  28. Scott Mullins

    logged in via email @att.net

    "We have good reason to consider the funding of climate denial to be criminally and morally negligent. The charge of criminal and moral negligence ought to extend to all activities of the climate deniers who receive funding as part of a sustained campaign to undermine the public’s understanding of scientific consensus." Statements like this are a big reason many people don't take warmers seriously any more. Not only are warmers convinced they are right beyond a shadow of a doubt, they want everyone to believe that the issue is too important to even question their conclusions.

    report
    1. Rob Honeycutt

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Scott Mullins

      Scott... You're more than welcome to deny evolution and relativity as well. You'd be equally chastised on a scientific basis for those positions.

      report
    2. Brad Keyes

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Rob Honeycutt

      RobH:

      "You're more than welcome to deny evolution and relativity as well."

      It saddens me that a supposedly educated scientist would equate (the denial of) a consensus with (the denial of) evidence. Suffice it to say that if I ever hear an evolutionary biologist, an astrophysicist or, god forbid, a respiratory oncologist debase herself by arguing FROM CONSENSUS, that'll be the day I start home-schooling my kids. And smoking. Because that's the day science declares bankruptcy.

      report
    3. Scott Mullins

      logged in via email @att.net

      In reply to Rob Honeycutt

      I'm not talking about being chastised. I'm talking about being criminally charged, if you read what I quoted. Maybe I'm taking the author too seriously. It's just scary when people start talking about making dissent a crime.

      report
    4. Rob Honeycutt

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Scott Mullins

      Scott...

      As a test of the argument, take the opposite position for a moment.

      What are the implications of denying something that the entire scientific community is saying they have a high confidence of being real? This is not just a few scientists. We're talking about every National Academy of Science on the planet. We're talking about every scientific organization on the planet. We're talking about the expert opinion of nearly everyone scientist who is an expert in the field.

      Literally…

      Read more
  29. Jensen Bound

    logged in via Facebook

    I tried to deny climate earlier today. It didn't work. It's was still 4 DEGREES HERE THIS MORNING IN FRIGGIN MARCH!!!!!!!

    report
    1. John Sayers

      Designer

      In reply to John Sayers

      Ha ha - none of you warmist/alarmists are prepared to touch this eh?

      Here it is in full:

      Sir,

      Breaches of Principles of Academic Freedom (Policy E2.0) and of the mission statement of the Institute by Assistant Professor Lawrence Torcello

      Principle of public law relied upon

      The First Amendment to the Constitution of the United States applies to all. It says:

      “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging…

      Read more
  30. Neil Gibson

    Retired Electronics Design Engineer

    If we are to be locking people up for "inexact,incomplete adn contradictory information" NASA's Hansen would be top of the list.
    Hansen accurately in 1999 " Empirical evidence does not lend much support to the notion that climate is headed precipitately toward more extreme heat and drought. The drought of 1999 covered a smaller area than the 1988 drought, when the Mississippi almost dried up. And 1988 was a temporary inconvenience as compared with repeated droughts during the 1930s “Dust Bowl” that caused an exodus from the prairies, as chronicled in Steinbeck’s Grapes of Wrath…..
    in the U.S. there has been little temperature change in the past 50 years, the time of rapidly increasing greenhouse gases — in fact, there was a slight cooling throughout much of the country."
    As he was in charge of NASA GISS temperature data he has been able to subsequently alter the past to agree with alarmist "science".
    http://stevengoddard.wordpress.com/hansen-the-climate-chiropractor/

    report
  31. Comment removed by moderator.

  32. Coco Nutdog

    logged in via Facebook

    What is it with the left? You don't agree with someone's opposing opinion so you try to shut them down or jail them. I suppose that is a lot easier than having to argue your point. I can't agree with the "science is settled" argument, science is never settled and consensus doesn't prove or disprove a theory. There is still much to be discovered about climate and the earth's systems. There are many opposing views to the warmist theories getting around and they are as valid if not more so than what is passed off as "consensus".

    report
    1. Kevin MacDonald

      Civil Servant

      In reply to Coco Nutdog

      "You don't agree with someone's opposing opinion so you try to shut them down or jail them"

      What is it with "Skeptics", you don't understand an argument so you attack a straw man. Nobody is advocating prison for divergent opinions.

      report
    2. Eric Worrall

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Kevin MacDonald

      WTF? That is *exactly* what is being advocated. Lawrence Torcello thinks any scientist who expresses a view about climate change which diverges significantly from the consensus should be held criminally liable - that the automatic assumption should be that such an opinion is because the scientist has sold out to big oil.

      report
    3. Coco Nutdog

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Kevin MacDonald

      The section under the heading, Climate denial funding, clearly indicates the author's intentions. That is that people who don't agree with the consensus or have a differing view should be treated like criminals and jailed. You can't see that?

      And what is it about the left? You don't agree with a skeptic's arguments so you attack them personally?

      And what is it with funding? It seems to me that the trillions thrown at the warming religion by world governments (and therefore by their citizens) is okay but as soon as a skeptic is funded by an organisation for whatever reason it is blood money.

      You lot really need to wake up and realise that you aren't the only people of intelligence in the world and that there are a lot of divergent views on this subject. And they are all valid. Even yours.

      report
    4. Kevin MacDonald

      Civil Servant

      In reply to Eric Worrall

      " Lawrence Torcello thinks any scientist who expresses a view about climate change which diverges significantly from the consensus should be held criminally liable"

      No, that's just a "Skeptic" straw man fallacy, he thinks any "organised campaign funding misinformation ought to be considered criminally negligent".

      Misinformation is not the same thing as disagreement.

      report
    1. Kevin MacDonald

      Civil Servant

      In reply to Mike Lorrey

      "Phil Jones, admits that warming has been at a standstill since 1995, with no "statistically significant warming"."

      That was back in 2007, it's 2014 now, the warming since 1995 is statistically significant.

      report
    2. Rob Honeycutt

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Eric Worrall

      How many times do I have to repeat this here?

      The trend for the past 17 years is 0.114 ±0.136 °C/decade (2σ) (HadCRU4+CW).

      That is a warming trend that is around the 90% confidence level.

      report
    3. Peter moon

      logged in via email @ownmail.net

      In reply to Rob Honeycutt

      So - 0.022, at a confidence level of 90%, is to be ignored while 0.250 at the same confidence level is to be accepted ... WTF.
      It's not happening baby, tantrum for lollies from some other source. Or get a job ...

      report
    4. Kevin MacDonald

      Civil Servant

      In reply to Peter moon

      "It's not happening"

      Sure, just like it didn't happen in the 17 years prior to the last 17 years (January 1981 through December 1996 warmed at a rate of 0.107 ±0.145 °C/decade (2σ), that "pause" was even, uh, pausier than the current one. Yet, despite two consecutive 17 year "pauses" the trend over the full 34 years is very significant at 0.172 ±0.051 °C/decade (2σ).

      report
    5. Coco Nutdog

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Rob Honeycutt

      The 0.136 variation is greater than the 0.114 assesed. Wouldn't that give a range of between -0.220 to +0.250? A fair difference for a miniscule figure. At 90% confidence? I'm no mathematician but these figures seem a bit far fetched.

      Are the models that precise?

      report
    6. Peter moon

      logged in via email @ownmail.net

      In reply to Kevin MacDonald

      Kevin, it's not happening ...
      Despite every event being claimed as AGW-related, like Cyclone Katrina, it's just crap.
      AGW = Climate Change = Climate Variability = Climate Chicanery.
      Long term droughts oops floods, dramatic sea-level rise oops not happening, bleached coral reefs, oops not happening, ...
      Sad fools ...
      Try imposing Socialism if you want honestly, if you can

      report
    7. Kevin MacDonald

      Civil Servant

      In reply to Peter moon

      "Kevin, it's not happening"

      I just showed you that it is. Now, what do they call it when someone rejects an observed fact?

      report
    8. Grant Burfield

      Dr

      In reply to Rob Honeycutt

      Good grief Mr Honeycutt. So the trend you quote is within the confidence interval of 0.250 to -0.022. Note the negative lower confidence limit. This interval contains the zero trend of 0.00 which to most rational people would be defined as the null hypothesis for a statistical significance test. Null=zero=nothing has happened - geddit? The null hypothesis cannot therefore be refuted.

      What is your null hypothesis Mr Honeycutt?

      report
    9. Grant Burfield

      Dr

      In reply to Kevin MacDonald

      Mr MacDonald - "Sure, just like it didn't happen in the 17 years prior to the last 17 years (January 1981 through December 1996 warmed at a rate of 0.107 ±0.145 °C/decade (2σ), that "pause" was even, uh, pausier than the current one.

      So Mr MacDonald are you saying that a trend within a confidence interval of 0.252 to -0.038 which contains the null of a zero trend is statistically significant? Stick to Civil Servanting or ...
      http://www.amazon.com/Statistics-For-Dummies-Deborah-Rumsey/dp/0470911085 ?

      report
    10. Kevin MacDonald

      Civil Servant

      In reply to Grant Burfield

      "Null=zero=nothing has happened - geddit? "

      You didn't read my addendum, did you? "Nothing happened" in the 17 years immediately prior to the most recent 17 years - = +0.107 ±0.145 °C/decade (2σ) - yet over the entire 34 year period something very definitely happened - +0.172 ±0.051 °C/decade (2σ).

      You can't both reject the trend as not statistically robust and assert that it is a null trend; it can only be one or the other.

      report
    11. Kevin MacDonald

      Civil Servant

      In reply to Grant Burfield

      "So Mr MacDonald are you saying that a trend within a confidence interval of 0.252 to -0.038 which contains the null of a zero trend is statistically significant?"

      No, and if you'd read all the way to the end of the one sentence in that comment you would know that.

      report
    12. Grant Burfield

      Dr

      In reply to Kevin MacDonald

      I'm not asserting any trend is a null or zero trend. It's merely what you test against in a hypothesis test. Yes, your 34 year trend shows a statistically significant increase as does any trend from the little ice age until present. Long before the evil CO2 saturated the atmosphere. Thankfully at least you do concede that "nothing happened" in a verifiable statistical sense over the last 17 years although in my post above to Mr Honeycutt that is the bare minimum. Satellite records show 20+ years.

      And at least you're not a "hiatus denier". Sadly there are many who haven't come to grips with this consensus.

      report
    13. Kevin MacDonald

      Civil Servant

      In reply to Grant Burfield

      "Thankfully at least you do concede that "nothing happened" in a verifiable statistical sense over the last 17 years"

      That's not quite true, the chances that there was no temperature increase or that it cooled are considerably smaller than the likelihood it warmed. And surface temperature is only one metric, others - ocean heat content, sea level rise, ice mass balance - are statistically robust over the same period.

      report
    14. Grant Burfield

      Dr

      In reply to Kevin MacDonald

      Ocean heat content never got a guernsey in the past until.kicking and screaming climate scientists realised that nothing much was happening with terrestrial surface temperatures. Hitherto the great cause for concern in previous IPCC reports. Now OHC is all the rage with ~ 10^22 joules hiding in the ocean depths. ad hocery is fine but ...

      report
    15. Kevin MacDonald

      Civil Servant

      In reply to Grant Burfield

      "Ocean heat content never got a guernsey in the past"

      Utter nonsense, and a prime example of the kind of ignorance organised disinformation breeds Ocean heat content was discussed in the first IPCC report in 1990:"Of particular importance is the temperature increase of approximately 0 1°C over, on average, a thousand metre thick layer in the deep North Atlantic because it represents a relatively large heat storage Even the upper few metres of the ocean can store as much heat as the entire overlying atmosphric column ol an Scientists have long recognised (Rossby, 1959) that the ocean could act to store large amounts of heat through small temperature changes in its sub-surface layers for hundreds or thousands of years When this heat returns to the atmospheie/cryosphere system it could also sigmticantly affect climate", and every subsequent report.

      report
    16. Rob Honeycutt

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Peter moon

      Peter moon... Please show me where you find a trend of -0.022C/decade with a 90% confidence level.

      Hint: It doesn't exist.

      report
    17. Rob Honeycutt

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Coco Nutdog

      Coco Nutdog said... " I'm no mathematician but these figures seem a bit far fetched."

      You're not understanding the issue. I'd suggest taking a little time to read up on what statistical significance means.

      report
    18. Rob Honeycutt

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Grant Burfield

      Grant Burfield said... "Null=zero=nothing has happened - geddit? The null hypothesis cannot therefore be refuted."

      Sorry, but you don't go from >95% confidence = certainty to <95% confidence = zero.

      report
  33. Bruce Harding

    Self employed

    Seems like crossing the river to get water. If you could criminalise behaviour at your leisure, why not fossil fuel use.

    For what it's worth, I am a denier of the kind that does that accept scientists are able to evaluate either the extent of anthropogenic warming or whether such warming will be harmful or beneficial to humans.

    report
    1. Bruce Harding

      Self employed

      In reply to Bruce Harding

      does not accept that scientists are able to evaluate either the extent of anthropogenic warming or whether such warming will be harmful or beneficial to humans, I should say.

      report
  34. Ted O'Brien.

    Farmer.

    No. But other factors could qualify that no.

    If this misinformation is for the purpose of commercial gain through corruption, then it probably is a criminal offence. We already have laws for that.

    If this misinformation is for the purpose of driving a political decision, then, unless there is clear evidence of corruption, we must rely on freedom of speech and public wisdom to arrive at the right policy.

    Looking from here, the conviction and incarceration of those Italian scientists is a travesty of the highest order. Predicting earthquakes is a mostly uncertain and imprecise science.

    As for CO2. The last 25 years' incoming data tell us that the CO2 component of the causes of visible "climate change" is so far outweighed by some other as yet unascertained factors that it is scarcely relevant.

    Its trace is invisible amongst the noise.

    report
    1. David Menere

      part-time contractor

      In reply to Ted O'Brien.

      And which data would that be? It's very convenient to wave a hand in the direction of 'other as yet unascertained factors', but if you're saying it's not CO2, I'd suggest you are obliged to give an indication of what you think it is, and why.

      And which peer-reviewed scientific literature proves that 'Its trace is invisible amongst the noise'?

      report
    2. Ted O'Brien.

      Farmer.

      In reply to David Menere

      Not so. Over the last 25 years the CO2 is swamped by other factors, so much so that it certainly doesn't merit the alarm that has been raised. The whole truth being too long a story, I haven't itemised any of the factors we do know.

      If you want the answer, go looking. It hasn't been found yet.

      report
    3. David Menere

      part-time contractor

      In reply to Ted O'Brien.

      Ted- That's not very scientific. If you say there are other factors, then surely you can identify them. But then you say the answer hasn't been found yet. You must be able to see the contradiction there- I'm confident other readers can.
      Please itemise 'the factors we do know'.

      report
    4. Brad Keyes

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to David Menere

      "Ted- That's not very scientific. If you say there are other factors, then surely you can identify them."

      What the what?

      Ted is perfectly in the right to point out that the predictions of the carbon-dioxide hypothesis have failed, whether or not he's able to explain WHY they've failed.

      Maybe it's Chinese particulate pollution, as some of The Scientists™ themselves have desperately conjectured. Maybe it's solar magnetic fluctuations. Maybe it's a wobble in the Earth's orbit. Or maybe it's just that CO2 was a piss-weak insulator to begin with.

      Your demand—that if anyone wants to doubt the supreme power of carbon dioxide, they must first provide you with an alternative unifying theory of terrestrial climate—is an old fallacy. It has a name. Argumentum ad ignorantiam.

      report
    5. Rob Honeycutt

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Brad Keyes

      Brad said... " the predictions of the carbon-dioxide hypothesis have failed"

      This is not accurate at all. You would be correct if we had had a cooling trend over the past 15 years that was equal to the warming of the 15 years prior to that.

      You continue to go on the false notion that temperatures have not risen over the past 15, 17 (or whatever) years. That is not a position you can take with any level of confidence. All the data sets show a warming trend over that period. All the data sets also have their own quirks and flaws.

      This was the point of Foster and Rahmstorf 2011. They endeavored to remove exogenous influences from the data (ENSO, volcanoes, etc) to arrive at what the actual forced trend was doing.

      The results were very very clear that warming has continued, unabated, and forced by an enhanced greenhouse effect.

      report
    6. Brad Keyes

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Rob Honeycutt

      "You continue to go on the false notion that temperatures have not risen over the past 15, 17 (or whatever) years. That is not a position you can take with any level of confidence."

      Since I have no appetite for such an argument, I'll agree with you. That wasn't the point I was making. I'm far less opinionated, and far less confident, about the Earth's temperature than you seem to think I am. My point was (to express it more clearly): Ted does not have to provide an *alternative* theory in order to say that a given theory has failed. That's not how science works. Or logic, for that matter.

      report
    7. Rob Honeycutt

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Brad Keyes

      Actually, he would need to. That's how it works.

      Right now, atmospheric CO2 concentrations explains a long list of phenomena.

      1) Amplification of glacial-interglacial cycles.
      2) Exit from snowball Earth events.
      3) Faint sun paradox.
      4) PETM
      5) and warming since pre-industrial times.

      There is also a very clear model that explains a slow feedback CO2 thermostat process that keeps the Earth with liquid water through the deep past to the present. That's the work of Dr Andrew Lacis. http://www.giss.nasa.gov/research/briefs/lacis_01/

      If you say CO2 doesn't have an effect (or has a small effect) on the climate system, the you have to explain what accounts for all these systems. You not only have to explain why CO2 doesn't operate the way we think it does, you have to fill in all the spaces left open.

      You can't just pull pillars out of the building without replacing them with something better.

      report
    8. Brad Keyes

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Rob Honeycutt

      No, Rob, Ted DOES NOT have to provide an alternative theory in order to say that a given theory has failed. That's NOT how science works. Or logic, for that matter.

      I'm not sure why you refuse to grasp this, Rob.

      "My theory is right because you can't name a better one" is the argumentum ad ignorantiam. Why on earth would you make it? In public, no less?

      If you'd like a reductio ad absurdum of what you're doing, I'll be happy to oblige.

      You're telling us that we have no right to criticise…

      Read more
    9. Brad Keyes

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Brad Keyes

      Rob, with all due respect, you pulled this "rule" ex posteriori, didn't you:

      "You can't just pull pillars out of the building without replacing them with something better."

      ?

      Bullshit.

      Back to science kindergarten, dude.

      report
    10. Rob Honeycutt

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Brad Keyes

      Brad... The fact remains that I've listed 6 fundamental scientific issues which are explained by atmospheric CO2. The theories are consistent with each other and are accepted by the broad scientific community.

      The fact remains, you canNOT just pull out one and say it doesn't work without also removing all the others.

      We have an accepted model of CO2 that works and is accepted.

      If you want to challenge one, you have to challenge all.

      I will grant you one thing. You "can" challenge one…

      Read more
    11. Rob Honeycutt

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Ted O'Brien.

      Ted said... "As for CO2. The last 25 years' incoming data tell us that the CO2 component of the causes of visible "climate change" is so far outweighed by some other as yet unascertained factors that it is scarcely relevant."

      Ted, have you looked at a radiative forcing chart before?

      http://www.realclimate.org/images/ipcc_rad_forc_ar5.jpg

      Pause for a moment and consider the possibility that the 30,000 active researchers that publish on climate change issue might actually know what they're talking about.

      report
    12. Brad Keyes

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Rob Honeycutt

      "The fact remains that I've listed 6 fundamental scientific issues which are explained by atmospheric CO2."

      Wonderful.

      If it makes false predictions it's still a failed hypothesis, Rob.

      You may think that's unfair, and in a way I suppose it is. But that's science. Nobody ever said it was easy.

      (Please note that I said "*IF* it makes false predictions." Whether it does or not is a separate, specific and much less interesting debate, so please feel free to have it with someone else…

      Read more
    13. Rob Honeycutt

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Brad Keyes

      "If it makes false predictions it's still a failed hypothesis, Rob."

      So far we're good then. No false predictions have been made.

      report
    14. Rob Honeycutt

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Brad Keyes

      "Yes I can. If it doesn't work, it doesn't work."

      No, actually, you really can't since if it doesn't work for one, then it's shouldn't work for the others because they'll all the same theory.

      If you find something that you **think** isn't working, then the first thing you look at is whether your assumption that something isn't working is correct.

      Maybe it is working but you're looking at the question wrong.

      report
    15. Rob Honeycutt

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Brad Keyes

      "Wait—it's accepted... AND it's accepted?"

      Come on. Now you're going to go after grammar?

      Yes. I typed the word twice. I was probably distracted by an email or something mid-sentence.

      report
    16. Rob Honeycutt

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Brad Keyes

      "Er, yes, but you've debunked a false hypothesis."

      Here you've completely missed the central point we're discussing, Brad.

      If you only challenge one aspect of the CO2 model of GW you have not debunked anything.

      If you want anyone to take your "debunking" seriously you need to explain how the CO2 model fails in ALL of these situations and you need to have an alternative model that explains everything that the CO2 model currently explains very well.

      report
    17. Rob Honeycutt

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Brad Keyes

      "Er, but you've debunked a false hypothesis."

      Brad, this is a really big one.

      If you were to actually "debunk" the CO2 theory of climate change, you would win the Nobel Prize and be forever lionized in history books.

      report
    18. Rob Honeycutt

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Brad Keyes

      "But wait—you've debunked a false hypothesis."

      No. You haven't.

      Really! I promise you, you have not debunked anything.

      Not even close.

      report
    19. Rob Honeycutt

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Brad Keyes

      "This description of how climate science works, while departing quite radically from how SCIENCE works..."

      Brad, your self congratulations are not your most charming personality trait.

      I'm not saying anything here that is out of line with how science works. Yet, it is you who is rejecting an entire field of scientific research that spans 150 years, 100,000+ published research papers, the work of 30,000+ active research scientist, every National Academy of Science on the planet, and every scientific organization who has a statement on this issue.

      All that and you're just still dead on sure that YOU understand how science works.

      report
    20. Rob Honeycutt

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Brad Keyes

      "1. to increase human knowledge (justified true belief) about nature

      2. to decrease human delusion (unjustified false belief, a.k.a. "pseudo-knowledge") about nature"

      FYI, Brad.

      These two are the exact same thing. You are the one now pulling stuff out of thin air.

      report
    21. Brad Keyes

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Rob Honeycutt

      "If you were to actually "debunk" the CO2 theory of climate change, you would win the Nobel Prize and be forever lionized in history books."

      Really, Rob? Is that true? Hmmm... let me see if I fully understand the sequence of events that would await me in that (HYPOTHETICAL!) scenario:

      1. I debunk the CO2 hypothesis

      2. nobody takes my "debunking" seriously as I haven't yet ironed out all the kinks in my own Unified Theory of Climate And All Other Chaotic Systems

      3. all serious journals…

      Read more
    22. Rob Honeycutt

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Brad Keyes

      Brad...

      Let's go back to the puzzle analogy.

      You have 6 key puzzle piece that all fit together nicely. All these puzzle pieces also fit neatly into place amongst a lot of other elements of the puzzle so that we get a strong indication of what the image is we're working on.

      You can't randomly say, "No this one key piece doesn't fit" and claim that changes ALL the other pieces and the picture that we understood.

      IF you want anyone to listen to you, you need to be able to rearrange the entire…

      Read more
    23. Rob Honeycutt

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Rob Honeycutt

      "and the picture that we understood"

      Should read: "...and claim the picture that we understood is wrong."

      report
    24. Brad Keyes

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Rob Honeycutt

      "Claiming that you've falsified an entire field of research by "debunking" one thing... It's just a silly claim"

      Well, yes. No arguments here.

      It's also an *imaginary* claim.

      It is—how can I put this gently?—a straw man of your own assembly, Rob. If you actually spent time listening to the denialist community you'd be struck by how vanishingly rare it is to hear anyone say something as unreflectively adolescent as, "I've just debunked 150 years of science and overturned whole branches…

      Read more
    25. Rob Honeycutt

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Brad Keyes

      "1. I debunk the CO2 hypothesis"

      Brad... You never even got past #1.

      In order to even start the process you have to come up with something substantive that actually "debunks" the current model.

      report
    26. Brad Keyes

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Rob Honeycutt

      "This is why it would be an extraordinary feat to completely rearrange the puzzle to create a different conclusion."

      Yeah. It would. And I suppose that's *one* way to run a scientific community, if you're so inclined: place absurdly insuperable entry barriers to anyone wishing to take issue with something the incumbent occupants have declared to be true. Why, if they have the temerity to disagree with 10,000 scientists, let them personally be required to do 10,000 scientist-weeks of paperwork…

      Read more
    27. Brad Keyes

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Rob Honeycutt

      "Yet, it is you who is rejecting an entire field of scientific research that spans 150 years, 100,000+ published research papers, the work of 30,000+ active research scientist, every National Academy of Science on the planet, and every scientific organization who has a statement on this issue."

      Again I ask: what are you going on about, Rob? Is it the bit where I explicitly acknowledged the reality of AGW? Was that my mistake? Is it, in fact, a giant scam, and are all the National Academies of Science having a good laugh at my expense for being such an unscientific rube? I take it back, I take it back! There is no AGW! I'm sorry I said anything! Won't you forgive me, o entire fields of science?

      report
    28. Brad Keyes

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Rob Honeycutt

      "Yes. I typed the word twice. I was probably distracted by an email or something mid-sentence."

      Normally I'm no pedant (God knows I wouldn't make it through the average casual conversation if I had to correct every single solecism my interlocutor committed), but in this case I find it amusingly revealing that the word you typed twice was a word most scientists wouldn't even bother typing once!

      Accepted. Accepted. Accepted. Accepted. This word is noise, Rob. But it's also the giveaway vocabulary—the…

      Read more
    29. Rob Honeycutt

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Brad Keyes

      Brad... Your flips back and forth between sarcasm and attacks are increasingly hard to follow.

      report
    30. Rob Honeycutt

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Brad Keyes

      "Tell you what, Rob: why don't you go to a desert island and..."

      Brad... You know, it might be useful if you were to somewhere, sometime present something that is based in fact.

      You're ranting with what you seem to think are interesting fantasies but you're not giving us any information.

      No numbers. No trends. No research. No hypothesis.

      All I'm getting out of this is that you don't like science.

      It really would be helpful if you could present something of substance rather than just rambling.

      report
    31. Brad Keyes

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Rob Honeycutt

      ""1. I debunk the CO2 hypothesis"

      Brad... You never even got past #1. "

      Rob, what part of the idiom "hypothetical scenario" do you not understand? I don't *pretend* to have debunked it. I don't *want* to debunk it. I'm perfectly content to let it sleep the sleep of the innocent in its cute little bunk. To use credalist language, I "BELIEVE IN" the CO2 hypothesis. Do I have to get a witness? I believe! Testify! [NON-SARCASM alert: I am NOT being sarcastic when I assure you I find the CO2 hypothesis…

      Read more
    32. Rob Honeycutt

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Brad Keyes

      Brad... Again, I hate to keep repeating this, but you're just flat out wrong about this.

      There is accepted science. There are vast areas of acceptance on lots and lots of issues that were once contentious.

      It is accepted that humans evolved from ape-like ancestors. It is accepted that the universe is expanding. It's even accepted now that the rate of expansion is increasing! It's accepted that HIV causes AIDS.

      It is also equally accepted that the greenhouse effect causes our planet to be warmer than it would otherwise be. It is equally accepted that CO2 has radiative properties that help to modulate the earth's surface temperature over geologic time. It is equally accepted that an unmitigated increase in CO2 concentrations will significantly warm the earth to the point where it begins to seriously disrupt our complex modern social structures.

      report
    33. Brad Keyes

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Rob Honeycutt

      Oh for fox ache.

      Rob, is this a character you're playing? In the great masqued Climate Ball of life? Are you—dare I ask—sponsored, funded or remunerated for acting slower-witted than anybody with a keyboard has any right to be?

      "Again, I hate to keep repeating this, but you're just flat out wrong about this.
      There is accepted science."

      So.... Fucking.... What.... Robert?

      I have not impugned FOR ONE NANOSECOND the validity of your earth-shattering epiphany that "there is accepted science…

      Read more
    34. Brad Keyes

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Rob Honeycutt

      "1. to increase human knowledge (justified true belief) about nature
      2. to decrease human delusion (unjustified false belief, a.k.a. "pseudo-knowledge") about nature"

      FYI, Brad.
      These two are the exact same thing. "

      The exact… same… thing, you say?

      Wow.

      Just....

      Holy wow.

      I’ve begun to hypothesise that you’re not just ACTING obtuse, Rob.

      Have I made a right fool of myself? Have I wasted the better half of a day grossly overestimating your cognitive range?

      I’m beginning…

      Read more
    35. Brad Keyes

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Rob Honeycutt

      "Your flips back and forth between sarcasm and attacks are increasingly hard to follow."

      That's an interesting take on the mystery that is me. Let me put it to you that a normal person would be more inclined to say that my attacks WERE sarcastic. But that's not to say your interpretation is any less valid, Rob. After all, there is as yet no known science of Brad. Perhaps if less research funding were being merrily aburinated on climate navel-gazing...

      report
    36. Rob Honeycutt

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Brad Keyes

      "Rob, what part of the idiom "hypothetical scenario" do you not understand?"

      Brad... A "hypothetical scenario" has to have some basis in fact. Yours has none.

      Even mediocre science fiction is based in real facts. You're not even rising to that level.

      report
    37. Rob Honeycutt

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Brad Keyes

      "opinion ≠ evidence."

      But, Brad, these are opinions from leading experts who base those opinions on a deep understanding of the full body of evidence.

      Listening to expert opinion is how we make informed decisions.

      Failing to heed expert opinion is how we set ourselves up for disasters.

      This is simple logic.

      report
    38. Rob Honeycutt

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Brad Keyes

      Brad... I'm really sorry this disturbs you. But maximizing knowledge is the same thing as minimizing ignorance. You're doing both at the same time.

      Case in point:

      Einstein's "cosmological constant." Remember that? At the time Einstein wrote his general relativity papers we assumed the universe around us was a stable and unchanging universe. We had no information to believe otherwise.

      Yet, Einstein's calculations for general relativity required something to keep that universe stable, which…

      Read more
    39. Rob Honeycutt

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Brad Keyes

      Let me be more specific. I mean "sarcasm and personal attacks."

      My larger point here is that you're not saying anything. You seem to be more interested in entertaining yourself with your own words that adding anything substantive to the conversation.

      You've yet to put forth anything of true value. You don't seem to have any knowledge of any data or evidence. Your notions of "how science works" are completely anecdotal and self-manifested, lacking any outside references at all.

      report
    40. Rob Honeycutt

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Rob Honeycutt

      " which because his addition of..."

      Should read: "...which became his addition of..."

      (I need to proofread better before posting.)

      report
    41. Brad Keyes

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Rob Honeycutt

      "I'm really sorry this disturbs you."

      Yeah. It does. I appreciate the apology but it's not like I'm alone in my annoyance here, Rob.

      Most people I've spoken to are (frankly) a little appalled to hear that there are actual, honest-to-god "scientists" out there operating at less than 0.5 Rumsfelds of mental sophistication. There seems to be an assumption that our universities and research institutes must check these things; surely they wouldn't allow a PhD candidate anywhere near a Bunsen burner…

      Read more
    42. Brad Keyes

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Rob Honeycutt

      "Brad... A "hypothetical scenario" has to have some basis in fact."

      Hmm. That *would* be an interesting new twist on a beloved discursive convention.

      But how 'bout we leave New Rules to the qualified professionals (Bill Maher, people like that)... mmkay?

      You and I both know perfectly well (because we weren't raised by wolves) that a hypothetical needs verisimilitude only in so far as it's supposed to contemplate a situation that *could* arise.

      And surely—dear god, surely!—you agree that your favorite climate theorist's predictions *could* fail to pan out.

      If that possibility is too much for you—if it's metaphysically inconceivable to you that, say, the carbon-dioxide control-knob model of planetary climate MIGHT be falsified empirically—then we've got a problem, Rob. Namely: you're in a religious cult.

      "Even mediocre science fiction is based in real facts. You're not even rising to that level."

      Lucky I'm not trying to write science fiction then.

      report
    43. Brad Keyes

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Rob Honeycutt

      ""opinion ≠ evidence."

      But, Brad,"

      But nothing. Hush now. I don't want to hear it. Nup. Not interested. Save your qualifications, equivocations, amendments, escape clauses, Post-Normalizations, Oreskeisms, innovations, abrogations, sequels, prequels and attempted improvements to and/or of the rules of science—rules which (in case you hadn't noticed by now) I'm rather fond of and can be rabidly protective towards.

      Opinion ≠ evidence, evidence ≠ opinion and never the twain shall meet. No ifs…

      Read more
    44. Brad Keyes

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Rob Honeycutt

      "Let me be more specific. I mean "sarcasm and personal attacks.""

      Ah. Now I get you.

      "My larger point here is that you're not saying anything."

      Can I be honest, Rob? That's a little hurtful. I'm hurt.

      Because my distinct impression was that before you met me, you had no idea, for example, that in science:

      —opinion ≠ evidence. Ever.

      —the debunking of bad hypotheses and the bunking of good hypotheses are separate, equally important functions

      So (unless you actually understood such…

      Read more
    1. Kevin MacDonald

      Civil Servant

      In reply to Coco Nutdog

      It's pretty standard Monckton bleating; "Wah! I don't agree with this guy so sack him."

      report
    2. Coco Nutdog

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Kevin MacDonald

      You haven't actually disproven any thing he says here, just attacked the person. Pretty standard response from the left. Talk about straw men.

      report
    3. Kevin MacDonald

      Civil Servant

      In reply to Coco Nutdog

      "You haven't actually disproven any thing he says here, just attacked the person"

      What's to disprove, it's the same straw man fallacy that runs throughout this thread, at no point does he actually engage with the substance of this article - organised campaign[s] funding misinformation ought to be considered criminally negligent - instead wittering pathetically about some imagined witch hunt against scientists who voice honest disagreements.

      After the straw man he lumps in a healthy dose of hypocrisy; Monckton is such a stout defender of free speech he wants Torcello fired for voicing his opinions.

      Like I said, standard bleating from Monckton.

      report
    4. Brad Keyes

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Kevin MacDonald

      Kevin MacDonald rebleats:

      "Wah! I don't agree with this guy so sack him."

      Yep; a devastatingly uncanny impression of that aristocratic fascist Christopher Monckton.

      Why oh why doesn't the good lord simply take a "Wah! I don't agree with this guy so charge him with criminal misinformation" stance, like a real climate intellectual?

      report
    5. Account Removed

      logged in via email @gmail.com

      In reply to Coco Nutdog

      It seems to me Coco Nutdog that you judge yourself in the same comment. Moreover, you confound the issue. In modern popular terms and politically speaking, "left" refers to proponents of the welfare state (which has little or nothing to do with socialism), while previously it meant having socialist inclinations. There are however in this world plenty of petite bourgeois people who through insecurity nonetheless support the welfare state, but very few genuine socialists, and those that are truly socialist will oppose high energy consumption not on environmental grounds, but because it is bourgeois.

      report
    6. Kevin MacDonald

      Civil Servant

      In reply to Brad Keyes

      "Yep; a devastatingly uncanny impression of that aristocratic fascist Christopher Monckton"

      Thank you, I thought so. I wouldn't go so far as to call Monckton an Idiot, although I don't think he would look much out of place here:

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k5ba1OKY7Xc

      "Why oh why doesn't the good lord simply take a "Wah! I don't agree with this guy so charge him with criminal misinformation" stance, like a real climate intellectual?"

      I'm not aware of any intellectual of any colour asking that people they disagree with be charged with criminal misinformation (there is an essay that asks if organised campaign[s] funding misinformation ought to be considered criminally negligent, but that is a very different thing), so I'm not sure your comparison stands.

      report
    7. Brad Keyes

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Kevin MacDonald

      "there is an essay that asks if organised campaign[s] funding misinformation ought to be considered criminally negligent, but that is a very different thing"

      That's one of those questions that are so stupid and ill-formed, only an intellectual (of a specific color, no less) would ever waste pixels asking them.

      Sigh. Just in case it's not self-explanatory to you, the following are the most egregious problems with "asking" such nonsense:

      1. all campaigns are organised

      2. all campaigns to inform, whether mis- or otherwise, involve funding

      3. "your" "side" is the one with 99% of the funding in this laughable-cum-pitiable debate

      4. intentional misinformation is called "disinformation"

      5. non-intentional misinformation is called "being wrong," a.k.a. "being human," and it is repugnant to all sane and decent people to even suggest criminalising said condition

      Enough with the bullshit and mustelisms, thank you very much.

      report
    8. Kevin MacDonald

      Civil Servant

      In reply to Brad Keyes

      "5. non-intentional misinformation is called "being wrong," a.k.a. "being human," and it is repugnant to all sane and decent people to even suggest criminalising said condition"

      Then it is fortunate that no-one is suggesting it.

      report
    9. Brad Keyes

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Kevin MacDonald

      "Then it is fortunate that no-one is suggesting it."

      Then I can only conclude these suggestors you allude to are suggesting that *intentional* misinformation be criminalised. In which case, they should stop speaking weaselese and start using the English expression, which is "disinformation" (or, if you prefer, "lying").

      report
    10. Kevin MacDonald

      Civil Servant

      In reply to Brad Keyes

      Of course you do, your form elsewhere already tells me you love nothing more than semantic cul-de-sac.

      report
    11. Brad Keyes

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Kevin MacDonald

      I'm afraid you—an internet nobody and confessed civil servant—have me at something of a disadvantage, sir! For if you have "form elsewhere," I have no idea what it is.

      Nevertheless, what does "Of course you do" mean? Of course I do what, Kevin? Did you press Post Comment before you'd had a chance to complete your thought? Tut tut.

      report
    12. Kevin MacDonald

      Civil Servant

      In reply to Brad Keyes

      "I'm afraid you—an internet nobody and confessed civil servant—have me at something of a disadvantage"

      You being at a disadvantage is hardly a rarity

      "Nevertheless, what does "Of course you do" mean? Of course I do what, Kevin? Did you press Post Comment before you'd had a chance to complete your thought?"

      You could answer that yourself by dint of reading the second part of my post (I didn't actually finish with a comma), did you press Post Comment before you'd had a chance to complete your reading?

      report
    13. Brad Keyes

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Kevin MacDonald

      Please don't get the wrong idea, Kevin—I wouldn't normally truncate a quote just before a comma! I was raised better than that. It's just that you're clearly one of those people who thinks nothing of using a comma as a kind of semicolon or em dash. (For instance, the second half of your "sentence" is not only irrelevant to, and semantically unilluminant of, the first half—it's also syntactically independent.) Of course English doesn't work the way you think... but you're close enough for the public sector, apparently.

      report
    14. Kevin MacDonald

      Civil Servant

      In reply to Brad Keyes

      "Please don't get the wrong idea, Kevin—I wouldn't normally truncate a quote just before a comma!"

      Aww! You made an exception for me. That's sweet, but adds nothing to the discourse.

      report
    15. Brad Keyes

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Kevin MacDonald

      For the millionth and last time: of course I do WHAT? What did you mean by "of course you do"?

      report
    16. Kevin MacDonald

      Civil Servant

      In reply to Brad Keyes

      "For the millionth and last time"

      I see your numeracy is every bit as weak as your logic.

      report
  35. Kevin Marshall

    IT Consultant at Engineering

    There are other factors to consider.
    First, is that before you try to censor people for denying the truth, you must first establish what the truth is. Relying on the alleged opinions of others is hearsay. It is easy to defend the evidence for the Holocaust, or that HIV causes AIDS, against those who deny what the consensus of experts in their field agree upon. Why not with climate.
    Second, you assume that political policies can avert climate catastrophe. It is a global problem. There is no way…

    Read more
  36. Comment removed by moderator.

  37. Brad Keyes

    logged in via Facebook

    Hilarious.

    AProf Torcello helpfully provides us with a link to that rarest of pieces—a Guardian article whose author, in a tour de force of gullibility, is still able to quote the Gleick forgery with a straight face:

    ""The scheme includes spending $100,000 for spreading the message in K-12 schools that "the topic of climate change is controversial and uncertain - two key points that are effective at dissuading teachers from teaching science", the documents said."

    Yep, nothing cartoonish there. Holy intern, Batman!

    Are misinformers about the climate debate criminally negligent? Those who purposefully strive to make sure “inexact, incomplete and contradictory information” is given to the public?

    You tell us, Lawrence.

    report
  38. Brad Keyes

    logged in via Facebook

    You know what we need? When we've finally gotten serious about the consequences of confusionism?

    Some sort of climate Nuremberg.

    www.climatenuremberg.com

    report
  39. Comment removed by moderator.

  40. Maxx Scott

    logged in via email @gmail.com

    Can you believe something to be true and still be a skeptic?

    I get it and agree that man is impacting the environment and that CO2 is a problem, but how do we respond to the climate models and predictions that don't come to fruition? The have been a lot of discussion about Mann and that he won't release his data but what of his predictions. He has been more wrong than right. Is he culpable for those bad predictions?

    On one issue, sea level rise I have seen every prediction from no rise or…

    Read more
    1. Brad Keyes

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Maxx Scott

      "Can you believe something to be true and still be a skeptic?"

      Unquestionably. Real skepticism doesn't imply disbelief any more than it implies belief. It is orthogonal to the Affirmative/Negative axis—skepticism is a process, not a position.

      "He has been more wrong than right. Is he culpable for those bad predictions?"

      No. He's culpable for not releasing his data and his algorithms; there are very few rules of scientific behavior Mann hasn't insulted with a big smile on his face. But when…

      Read more
    2. Brad Keyes

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Brad Keyes

      By the way Maxx, we don't seem to concur about The Science but I did find your comment very thoughtful, with an admirable question-to-statement ratio. I only wish more players in this absurd game we call climateball possessed such circumspection.

      report
  41. Larry McMasters

    logged in via Facebook

    Where in the scientific method does it say that a "consensus" makes and unproven theory a scientific fact?

    Where in the scientific method does it say that asking questions is wrong?

    report
    1. Brad Keyes

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Larry McMasters

      Larry,

      I'm gonna go out on a limb here and guess you're a relative newcomer to the climate debate. To the untrained eye, this question of yours might seem not only reasonable and to-the-point but long overdue...

      "Where in the scientific method does it say that a "consensus" makes and unproven theory a scientific fact?"

      ...but it does, in fact, contain a classic beginner's mistake. There's a particular sequence of three words in your comment to which climate alarmists can only ever respond by undergoing a kind of convulsive seizure of denial and obliviousness. There is no telling how long this dangerous state may persist; I've seen climate alarmists bite their own tongues off rather than acknowledge the concept in question. You'll find out what the magic trigger words are soon enough.

      report
    2. Kevin MacDonald

      Civil Servant

      In reply to Larry McMasters

      Larry, like Brad, I'm going to go out on a limb and assume this is your first time asking a question or putting anything in writing.

      No-one, absolutely no-one, is arguing that consensus equals fact or that asking questions is wrong. Where did you pick up such idiotic ideas?

      report
    3. Account Removed

      logged in via email @gmail.com

      In reply to Kevin MacDonald

      Torcello writes "The charge of criminal and moral negligence ought to extend to all activities of the climate deniers who receive funding as part of a sustained campaign to undermine the public’s understanding of scientific consensus."

      The implication is quite clear; namely that a majority of scientists agree on the issue (which itself is a dubious claim), that the supposed majority are correct (which also is contentious), and that the matter in which they are said to be correct is so important that anyone contesting their standpoint ought to be punished AND made to compensate for the (undocumented) damage they have done.

      So to answer your question Mr MacDonald, Brad obviously read the article above.

      report
    4. Brad Keyes

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Kevin MacDonald

      "Larry, like Brad, I'm going to go out on a limb and assume this is your first time asking a question or putting anything in writing."

      What?!

      Larry has clearly written before, and has clearly given this issue a lot of thought. Certainly more (and better) than you, Kevin. When I suggested he was naïve about the climate debate it was only because he appears unaware of the appalled incomprehension that his phrase "the scientific method" is guaranteed to provoke in provoke among those on your "side" of the "debate."

      report
    5. Kevin MacDonald

      Civil Servant

      In reply to Account Removed

      "The implication is quite clear; namely that a majority of scientists agree on the issue (which itself is a dubious claim), that the supposed majority are correct (which also is contentious), and that the matter in which they are said to be correct is so important that anyone contesting their standpoint ought to be punished AND made to compensate for the (undocumented) damage they have done"

      Sorry, but that interpretation, though popular with "Skeptics" who love to play the victim, is explicitly excluded by the following passage:

      "My argument probably raises an understandable, if misguided, concern regarding free speech. We must make the critical distinction between the protected voicing of one’s unpopular beliefs, and the funding of a strategically organised campaign to undermine the public’s ability to develop and voice informed opinions"

      report
    6. Kevin MacDonald

      Civil Servant

      In reply to Brad Keyes

      "Larry has clearly written before, and has clearly given this issue a lot of thought"

      Then why is he so wrong about everything? I wouldn't be surprised to find he was first let loose with crayons yesterday.

      report
    7. Brad Keyes

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Kevin MacDonald

      "No-one, absolutely no-one, is arguing that consensus equals fact or that asking questions is wrong."

      No, but someone, absolutely someone, IS arguing that consensus equals evidence.

      Where did they pick up such idiotic ideas? I don't know. I've made several attempts at asking Rob, but I never get a straight answer out of him.

      report
    8. Kevin MacDonald

      Civil Servant

      In reply to Brad Keyes

      "No, but someone, absolutely someone, IS arguing that consensus equals evidence"

      It is, it's evidence of the level of agreement amongst experts.

      report
    9. Brad Keyes

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Kevin MacDonald

      "[Consensus] is [evidence], it's evidence of the level of agreement amongst experts."

      Well yes, obviously. By definition. Consensus MEANS widespread, majority opinion.

      But that's NOT evidence *about NATURE.*

      This is where skeptics and believers part company in the climate debate. We understand, as a matter of principle, that opinion is never evidence *about the natural world.* You fail to understand this. Which is why we end up talking past each other.

      report
    10. Kevin MacDonald

      Civil Servant

      In reply to Brad Keyes

      "But that's NOT evidence *about NATURE.* "

      And nobody argues it is, it's just another "Skeptic" straw man.

      report
    11. Brad Keyes

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Kevin MacDonald

      ""But that's NOT evidence *about NATURE.* "

      And nobody argues it is"

      Oh for fox ache.

      Have you even read the exchange between me and Rob Honeycutt, who's supposedly a scientist? You know, the exchange in which he explicitly argues until he's blue in the face that expert consensus is a useful clue as to the truth about the Earth's climate? In other words, that expert consensus is EVIDENCE ABOUT NATURE?

      report
    12. Brad Keyes

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Kevin MacDonald

      "The exchange where Rob explicitly says that's not the case?"

      Yes, the one in which Rob says that, and then proceeds to argue the exact opposite. Do yourself a favor and read it. You'll see Rob Honeycutt—a supposed scientist—caught in the act of using consensus as evidence while denying point-blank that he would ever dream of doing any such thing.

      report
    13. Kevin MacDonald

      Civil Servant

      In reply to Brad Keyes

      "Do yourself a favor and read it. You'll see Rob Honeycutt—a supposed scientist—caught in the act of using consensus as evidence while denying point-blank that he would ever dream of doing any such thing"

      As stated earlier, consensus IS evidence. It is evidence of the level of agreement amongst the experts and for the layperson that can be a useful metric. That is Rob's point, it does not follow that consensus is evidence about nature.

      report
    14. Brad Keyes

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Kevin MacDonald

      " That is Rob's point, it does not follow that consensus is evidence about nature. "

      Oh my goddamned God.

      I would have thought that, among literate adults, "about nature" was obvious enough to be understood implicitly. Clearly I overestimated you, so I'll go through this even more slowly.

      If it's not evidence ABOUT NATURE, then it's completely goddamned useless as evidence, isn't it? It doesn't help us one bit—it cannot possibly help us one bit, by f___ing definition!—in deciding what to…

      Read more
    15. Rob Honeycutt

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Kevin MacDonald

      Exactly, Kevin.

      Brad keeps trotting out this abundantly silly straw man argument about the consensus as evidence.

      Fact: There is evidence that there is a consensus.
      Fact: Each researcher's position is going to be built on their area of expertise, based on the facts they know best.

      This tells us that there is strong agreement within the scientific community on what the problem is, being: man-made greenhouse gases causing the planet to warm.

      A scientific consensus does not add to our fundamental understanding of facts related to global warming. But a scientific does give us an understanding of how to respond to the scientific understanding.

      report
    16. Kevin MacDonald

      Civil Servant

      In reply to Brad Keyes

      "If it's not evidence ABOUT NATURE, then it's completely goddamned useless as evidence, isn't it?"

      No, people defer to expert consensus all the time - when undergoing a medical procedure, boarding an aeroplane, crossing a bridge, etc, etc - It's called strong inductive reasoning and it's a useful tool for making decisions in areas where we lack expertise.

      report
    17. Brad Keyes

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Kevin MacDonald

      "No, people defer to expert consensus all the time - when undergoing a medical procedure, boarding an aeroplane, crossing a bridge, etc, etc -"

      Yawn. Not a single one of these examples is a science. Medicine is a technology. Aeroplanes are a technology. Pontification is a technology.

      I'm not arguing against the invocation of consensus in reasoning about ENGINEERING. Not for one second. Pay attention.

      The invocation of consensus in an argument ABOUT NATURE is what's inexcusably fraudulent and should, I believe, attract stiff criminal sanctions. We will only get ahead in the climate "debate" once custodial sentences are handed down to those who abuse scientific reasoning as Rob does.

      And yes, I'm joking. If we cherish our own freedom then we must, regrettably, agree that people like Rob are free to lie with impunity.

      report
    18. Kevin MacDonald

      Civil Servant

      In reply to Brad Keyes

      "Yawn. Not a single one of these examples is a science"

      Okay, aerodynamics, gravity, biology then, when we do any of the things listed we defer to the consensus of experts in these fields.

      report
    19. Brad Keyes

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Kevin MacDonald

      "Okay, aerodynamics, gravity, biology then, when we do any of the things listed we defer to the consensus of experts in these fields."

      No we most certainly do NOT.

      We cannot possibly defer to the expert consensus in any of those fields, for the simple reason that nobody knows what the consensus IS. Until climate science came along, nobody even measured such a fatuous factoid. They didn't need to. You see, fields that study phenomena like aerodynamics, gravity and biology are EVIDENCE-based. They have no equivalent of Oreskes or Cook because they don't need them. Physicists and biologists do not count votes, count papers or obsess over bullshit like your beloved "97% of respectable climate scientists prefer an Oral-B toothbrush." Physicists and biologists, being scientists, have a healthy, violent contempt for opinion polling. Climate scientists, being pseudoscientists, on the other hand, embrace such nonsense with open arms.

      report
    20. Kevin MacDonald

      Civil Servant

      In reply to Brad Keyes

      "We cannot possibly defer to the expert consensus in any of those fields, for the simple reason that nobody knows what the consensus IS"

      Sure, that's why every aeroplane is built on aerodynamic principles...

      report
    21. Rob Honeycutt

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Brad Keyes

      Brad said... "If we cherish our own freedom then we must, regrettably, agree that people like Rob are free to lie with impunity."

      Only one problem for you there, Brad. I'm not lying.

      Everything I've said here is consistent with the overwhelming body of scientific research.

      report
    22. Rob Honeycutt

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Brad Keyes

      Brad... All of climate science is based solidly on physics.

      We measure, with a high degree of accuracy, the radiative absorption spectra of greenhouse gases.

      We measure the fact that warmer air has a higher capacity to hold moisture.

      We measure temperature change around the planet.

      We measure changes in atmospheric CO2.

      We measure the changing pH of the oceans.

      Etc, etc.

      There is virtually no doubt about what is happening. The only doubt that remains is whether humanity has the political will to take action and solve the problem.

      report
    23. Ian Wanker

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Brad Keyes

      Yep. The "97%" claim is indeed bullshit, declared so by the very experts that are claimed to be part of that 97%.

      http://www.populartechnology.net/2013/05/97-study-falsely-classifies-scientists.html

      Between "studies" like those lying about the "overwhelming consensus" and Climategate it makes one wonder: if there is such a consensus, why do the climate alarmists have to lie? It's like holding 4 aces in poker and then proceeding to cheat.

      report
    24. Brad Keyes

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Kevin MacDonald

      "Sure, that's why every aeroplane is built on aerodynamic principles..."

      Er, no. Aeroplanes are built on aerodynamic principles because the engineers who build them know they'd fall out of the sky otherwise.

      Not because they took a vote.

      report
    25. Brad Keyes

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Rob Honeycutt

      "Everything I've said here is consistent with the overwhelming body of scientific research."

      The overwhelming body of scientific research says you can use consensus to form a view on physical reality, does it?

      Nope. That's bullshit and you know it. Which means you're not just wrong, you're lying.

      report
    26. Brad Keyes

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Rob Honeycutt

      "There is virtually no doubt about what is happening. The only doubt that remains is whether humanity has the political will to take action and solve the problem."

      The PROBLEM? What problem? How are the radiative absorption spectra of greenhouse gases a problem? How is the fact that warmer air has a higher capacity to hold moisture a problem? How is temperature change around the planet a problem? How are changes in atmospheric CO2 a problem? How is the changing pH of the oceans a problem, Rob?

      Why do you feel the urge to solve, address or do something about nature, and what makes you think anybody else shares this bizarre compulsion?

      report
    27. Kevin MacDonald

      Civil Servant

      In reply to Brad Keyes

      "Aeroplanes are built on aerodynamic principles because the engineers who build them know they'd fall out of the sky otherwise"

      But how have the all settled on the same set of aerodynamic principles, what with there being no consensus in the field?

      report
    28. Brad Keyes

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Kevin MacDonald

      "But how have the all settled on the same set of aerodynamic principles, what with there being no consensus in the field?"

      Presumably because they're the only "set of aerodynamic principles" that have ever prevented planes falling out of the sky, so they're the only ones taught at a tertiary level to would-be aeronautical engineers. Who said anything about there not being a consensus? I certainly didn't. For all we know there probably is. But that's the point: we don't know. What I said is that no consensus is ever quantified, analysed, measured, referred to, cited, argued from or relied upon in real sciences. And by "real" I mean "non-climate."

      report
    29. Brad Keyes

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Rob Honeycutt

      "Only one problem for you there, Brad. I'm not lying."

      I'm sorry about that accusation, Rob. I got carried away and forgot that you actually believe the mistaken ideas you profess. I take it back unreservedly, and thank you for being one of the more sincere participants in the climate debate.

      report
    30. Rob Honeycutt

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Brad Keyes

      "The overwhelming body of scientific research says you can use consensus to form a view on physical reality, does it?"

      Brad... When nearly all the research points to one conclusion, that's a pretty good indication that conclusion is likely to be the correct one.

      Scientific research is much like a jigsaw puzzle. Each research papers provides just a single piece of a much larger picture of some aspect of the natural world around us. Rarely does a single piece ever tell us what the full picture…

      Read more
    31. Rob Honeycutt

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Brad Keyes

      "The PROBLEM? What problem?"

      Yes, Brad. All these aspects of measured physical processes actually mean something.

      The measured absorption spectra of CO2 mean that we can see how atmospheric CO2 is blocking heat and causing our planet to build that heat up in our climate system.

      The fact that warm air can hold more moisture means that water vapor (also a potent greenhouse gas) will increase as we warm the planet, amplifying the warming caused by increased concentrations of man-made greenhouse…

      Read more
    32. Rob Honeycutt

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Brad Keyes

      "Rob. I got carried away and forgot that you actually believe the mistaken ideas you profess."

      While I appreciate your apology, you're also promoting a notion that somehow 100+ years of scientific research is somehow wrong. You offer no alternative theory. You offer no reason how or why nearly every researcher over 100,000+ research papers have come to wrong conclusions.

      All you seem to have, as best I can tell, is just a fervent desire to believe that it's wrong... based on nothing more than that.

      I honestly don't get how you come to your conclusion.

      report
    33. Brad Keyes

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Rob Honeycutt

      Ugh.

      "Brad... When nearly all the research points to one conclusion, that's a pretty good indication that conclusion is likely to be the correct one."

      Wow... NOW you've decided it might be a good idea to argue from *consilience of evidence?*

      While I certainly applaud the dramatic uptick in the quality of your reasoning, I must say... it's quite a bait-and-switch you've done there, isn't it Rob? Considering the subject of our dispute was THE CONSENSUS OF OPINION, it's a little hard to believe…

      Read more
    34. Brad Keyes

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Rob Honeycutt

      "While I appreciate your apology, you're also promoting a notion that somehow 100+ years of scientific research is somehow wrong. "

      Huh?

      In what sense? I've made no secret of my position that most climate science is an irredeemable waste of time and money, but I don't believe I've ever said anything that would lead a reasonable reader to understand I was accusing it of being *WRONG.*

      But perhaps you're aware of some climatological finding I've managed to miss, yet simultaneously deny…

      Read more
    35. Brad Keyes

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Brad Keyes

      And just to be doubly clear, Rob, the "mistaken ideas" I referred to earlier are your misunderstandings regarding the role of consensus in scientific reasoning, the rules and definition of evidence in science, etc.

      I was *NOT* claiming (and I apologise for any unintended suggestion) that your understanding of *climatology* per se was wrong. It might be; it might not be; but I certainly wouldn't be boorish enough to dismiss it without first knowing a lot more about what your climatological ideas actually are, and the evidence that underwrites them.

      report
    36. Rob Honeycutt

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Brad Keyes

      Brad... You have an electrician come to your home to check out the wiring. He tells you the wiring is getting old and is likely a fire hazard. It's going to cost some money to rewire the house.

      Now, you're not sure you trust this guy. He might be just out to get some extra work. You have another electrician come in. He says the same thing. You still don't like it. They might both be just looking for extra money.

      You eventually are so stubborn that you've had 50 electricians come through before finding one who says, "Nah, don't worry about it."

      Now, you have a decision to make. 50 say it's dangerous. 1 says don't worry. How do you evaluate the risk?

      report
    37. Rob Honeycutt

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Brad Keyes

      "I referred to earlier are your misunderstandings regarding the role of consensus in scientific reasoning"

      It strikes me as presumptuous to assume that it's me who is suffering a misunderstanding.

      I'm saying consensus is a way to evaluate **risk**. It is not a way to evaluate evidence. The evidence leading to the overwhelming acceptance of AGW is within the published literature.

      Again, when you have nearly all the researchers in a particular field agreeing, based on mountains of evidence, on the broad aspects of the theory, you have a measure of the likelihood of it being real.

      report
    38. Brad Keyes

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Rob Honeycutt

      Rob, that's very simple. On NON-scientific questions—whether to rewire my house, picking a restaurant, downloading an iPhone app—I go with the consensus. The popular choice. The majority vote. I'm rather boring that way.

      None of this has the slightest bearing on our dispute, of course, because non-scientific epistemology is not, well, scientific. Is it?

      Science is special. The First Rule of Science Club is: opinion IS NOT evidence. It is not information. It does not tell you anything (unless…

      Read more
    39. Brad Keyes

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Brad Keyes

      "It strikes me as presumptuous to assume that it's me who is suffering a misunderstanding."

      But I don't assume, or presume, any such thing. I *deduce* it. I cannot help deducing it. I deduce it from your obvious difficulty in coming to terms with, and acknowledging the legitimacy of, certain quite specific, universally-obeyed, universally-accepted rules of reasoning which are common to the entire 3% of the population that formally practices science.

      "I'm saying consensus is a way to evaluate…

      Read more
    40. Brad Keyes

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Brad Keyes

      And to save further amateur psychoanalysis, I'm NOT lecturing you about scientific epistemology in order to avoid acknowledging the reality of AGW, and I'll prove I'm not: I *acknowledge* the reality of AGW.

      My fight has never been with warmists, Rob. I have nothing against warmists. By most definitions I am one!

      My fight is against bad, and pseudo-, science. Of which science by consensus is by far the most infamous exemplar.

      report
    41. Brad Keyes

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Brad Keyes

      Sorry, this was a cheap shot:

      "Say it as much and as loudly as you want, you're categorically and completely wrong."

      It was a reference to your earlier use of all-caps, which had a specific context and was not representative of your normal conversational approach. No, I do not think you're being "loud." Stubborn, perhaps; repetitive, perhaps; but you're not shouting, and I appreciate that you're not.

      report
    42. David Allison

      Clarity Doctor

      In reply to Brad Keyes

      Brad,

      Please forgive me if I've missed your tongue-in-cheek jabs. Jumping into the middle of things can lead to misunderstanding...

      Didn't mean to sound ignorant; you just cut it awfully close to the bone at times.

      report
    43. Brad Keyes

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to David Allison

      No worries David, I enjoyed your retorts—well worth the momentary confusion!

      report
    1. Ian Wanker

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Kevin MacDonald

      You're boring me. Whether .17 +/- the mean temp or .47 actual rise in temp isn't significant in any real sense. Changes more than that waiting at the stoplight -- and you want to reshape the world economy and energy use in the effort to planetary physics?

      And if humans are only responsible for 50% of the warming? The hysterics are even more embarrassing.

      Regardless: virtually no climate model predicted this paltry rise.

      http://www.drroyspencer.com/wp-content/uploads/CMIP5-90-models-global-Tsfc-vs-obs-thru-2013.png

      So what we have is the same group of people (certain hysterical climatologists) who were wrong in their predictions about global warming are just as hysterical in their demands for policy changes.

      Sorry. They need to go back to the drawing board.

      report
    2. Kevin Wagner

      logged in via Twitter

      In reply to Kevin MacDonald

      Might you be persuaded to present jack or squat as meaningful evidence that .47 degree warming is 1) solely or even largely due to human activity and 2) is net detrimental? This idea that the status quo will always be sanguine sans human intervention seems contradicted by any number of mass extinctions long before humans were a twinkle in God's eye, but I'd love to see you cough up anything even vaguely resembling rational evidence.

      report
    3. Kevin MacDonald

      Civil Servant

      In reply to Kevin Wagner

      " This idea that the status quo will always be sanguine sans human intervention"

      Like all "Skeptics", I see you've mastered the straw man fallacy. The idea that the status quo will always be sanguine sans human intervention does not exists.

      report
    4. Brad Keyes

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Kevin MacDonald

      "Like all "Skeptics", I see you've mastered the straw man fallacy."

      What the? I'm a "Skeptic" but I don't see that he's mastered the straw man fallacy.

      In future you should speak for yourself and not make declarations on behalf of the rest of us.

      report
    5. Kevin MacDonald

      Civil Servant

      In reply to Brad Keyes

      "What the? I'm a "Skeptic" but I don't see that he's mastered the straw man fallacy"

      Nothing I said suggested you would (in fact you've engaged in your own straw man fallacy), cognative bias tells us that you will tend to be blind to the flaws of arguments/people you agree with.

      report
    6. Brad Keyes

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Kevin MacDonald

      "Nothing I said suggested you would"

      Do you even read your own comments? (Not that I'd really blame you for scrolling past them, but still....)

      You clearly stated that LIKE ALL "SKEPTICS," you believed Kevin Wagner's argument was fallacious.

      You're of course welcome to state your beliefs, but please refrain from speaking for an entire community (to which you don't even appear to belong).

      report
    7. Brad Keyes

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Kevin MacDonald

      "cognative bias tells us that you will tend to be blind to the flaws of arguments/people you agree with."

      Then maybe you should stop listening to what cognative bias tells you. It's bound to bias you.

      By the way, I'm not familiar with that particular bias. Is it a bit like cognitive bias?

      report
    8. Kevin MacDonald

      Civil Servant

      In reply to Brad Keyes

      Ah, I see what's happening, you're back on your semantic hobby horse, deliberately misrepresenting (ironic considering the content of the article) my comments for what I presume you think to be comic effect.

      report
    9. Brad Keyes

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Kevin MacDonald

      "Ah, I see what's happening"

      Finally. Thank Christ. It had started out riotously funny, but the joke got old several comments ago.

      "you're back on your semantic hobby horse"

      Yep. You got me there. I was doing what I always do: playing word games. My favorite one is probably Let's Use The Right Word!

      (I'm also really into Let's Use English! and the slightly harder variant, Let's Use English Properly!)

      report
    10. Kevin MacDonald

      Civil Servant

      In reply to Brad Keyes

      "It had started out riotously funny"

      No, no it didn't. I've seen you employing the same shtick in various forums for the last few months now and it was always thunderously dull.

      report
  42. Asok Smith

    logged in via Facebook

    If Dr. Larry is going to opine on the philosophy of science, he should at least read the seminal work on that matter, namely "The Structure of Scientific Revolutions" by Thomas Kuhn.

    BTW, Dr. Larry, they locked up Galileo for denying what the 99% "consensus" of existing "scientists" had to say about the fundamental "settled science" of astronomy, but the earth continued to rotate around the sun anyway.

    BTW, a few of the other scientists who correctly bucked the 99% consensus were, Louis Pasteur, Antonie van Leeuwenhoek, Alfred Wegener, Antoine Lavoisier, and Robin Warren and Barry J. Marshall. Fortunately, Dr. Larry wasn't in charge of jailing scientific heratics during those times, or otherwise we would be living in a far different and a far worse world than today.

    report
    1. Mike Hansen

      Mr.

      In reply to Asok Smith

      Asok Smith manages to score a own goal.

      Thomas Kuhn's book is about the role of consensus in moving science forward.

      "Kuhn describes an immature science, in what he sometimes calls its ‘pre-paradigm’ period, as lacking consensus. Competing schools of thought possess differing procedures, theories, even metaphysical presuppositions. Consequently there is little opportunity for collective progress. Even localized progress by a particular school is made difficult, since much intellectual energy…

      Read more
    2. Account Removed

      logged in via email @gmail.com

      In reply to Mike Hansen

      Asok will answer for him or her self. But my understanding of Asok's comment was that without dissenters science would not progress; and is therefore not at odds with Kuhn's opinions.

      For what it is worth, I applaud Kuhn, and I can clearly see that science has moved on in leaps. On the other hand, where it has leaped to is worthy of debate, for I certainly cannot put much of the metaphysics called "modern science" in the same category of activity as Newton's investigations into the nature of light…

      Read more
    3. Rob Honeycutt

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Asok Smith

      Asok Smith... You have a grave misunderstanding of each of these people's works.

      Go look up Galileo. At the time, the scientific community was actually in agreement with heliocentrism. In fact, base on observation, heliocentrism had first been proposed by the Greeks centuries earlier than Galileo. The problem was that it contradicted church doctrine, and Galileo was the one who chose to go up against the church on the issue.

      With the other scientists you list, they're not bucking any established scientific consensus. These were the pioneers of science as science was being applied to issues.

      None of these people had 150 years of intensive research and measurements they were going against. Each of the people you list were bucking the assumptions that had previously been made based on the LACK of research.

      report
    4. Steve Smith

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Rob Honeycutt

      @Rob Honeycutt.

      Repeated, due to being ignored:

      As I've pointed out before, and which you ignored, what's of more interest than a simple warming or a cooling trend, is whether it is statistically-significant or not.

      Even alarmist Phil Jones admitted in 2010 that there had been no statistically-significant global warming since 1995:

      BBC: "Do you agree that from 1995 to the present there has been no statistically-significant global warming."

      Phil Jones: "Yes, but only just. I also calculated…

      Read more
    5. Eli Rabett

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Steve Smith

      But, of course, Jones also pointed out that if you started in 1994 or 1996 that was not the case. Statistically speaking is short hand for 20:1 in your favor. 10:1 is a hell of a good bet.

      report
    6. Eli Rabett

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Asok Smith

      So Ashok the Intern, having read the title of a book on Amazon, and maybe a couple of reviews, knows more than the experts.

      report
    7. Rob Honeycutt

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Steve Smith

      "Repeated, due to being ignored..."

      Steve... I believe I have been answering your posts but you do not seem to be comprehending what I'm telling you.

      First let's take the Phil Jones quote where he responds. "Yes, but only just. I also calculated the trend for the period 1995 to 2009. This trend (0.12C per decade) is positive, but not significant at the 95% significance level."

      The 95% confidence level is an arbitrary threshold that scientists use that essentially means the trend in the data…

      Read more
  43. Robert Wesley

    logged in via email @hotmail.com

    On the logic of Professor Torcello's argument: It is an extended ad hominen stew with an ad populum and multiple equivocations thrown in for spice. When I took logic, I was taught to avoid fallacies, not to employ them.

    On the legal definition of criminal negligence: I would like to know what specific action the "public" failed to take as a result of the "organized campaign of misinformation." One would never gain standing in a US court of law with such a vague accusation.

    report
    1. Account Removed

      logged in via email @gmail.com

      In reply to Kevin MacDonald

      Those who contest the argument that CO2 emissions from human activities are causing palpable and injurious changes to the world climate.

      Next question.

      report
    2. Kevin MacDonald

      Civil Servant

      In reply to Account Removed

      "Those who contest the argument that CO2 emissions from human activities are causing palpable and injurious changes to the world climate"

      Have you read the article? It's not about people contesting anything, it's about people who lie, deceive and mislead.

      report
    3. Brad Keyes

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Kevin MacDonald

      "It's not about people contesting anything, it's about people who lie, deceive and mislead."

      Strange—I thought it was about climate deniers for some reason.

      I guess it's a bit like that classic Onion op-ed, "I Hate It When Jews Talk During Movies." It was funny because you could take it in one of two ways—either as an anti-semitic piece or as a simple call for civic courtesy.

      report
    4. Kevin MacDonald

      Civil Servant

      In reply to Brad Keyes

      "Strange—I thought it was about climate deniers for some reason"

      It's not like the two are mutually exclusive.

      report
    5. Brad Keyes

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Kevin MacDonald

      No, but "it was about climate deniers" and "It's not about people contesting anything" are distinct, irreconcilable interpretations.

      One of us is lying about the theme of the article.

      report
    6. Kevin MacDonald

      Civil Servant

      In reply to Brad Keyes

      "No, but "it was about climate deniers" and "It's not about people contesting anything" are distinct, irreconcilable interpretations"

      Not at all, the article discusses specific behviours of certain groups, it does not follow that everyone who accepts the conclusions propounded by those groups is engaged in those behaviours.

      That is to say, if there is any legitimacy to any of the various "Skeptic" positions then an organisation could without recourse to cherry picking, distortions and deceit. In that instance the article does not apply to that organisation.

      "One of us is lying about the theme of the article"

      Yes, you.

      report
    7. Kevin MacDonald

      Civil Servant

      In reply to Kevin MacDonald

      Sorry, part of my second paragraph went missing:

      That is to say, if there is any legitimacy to any of the various "Skeptic" positions then an organisation could voice that without recourse to cherry picking, distortions and deceit. In that instance the article does not apply to that organisation.

      report
    8. Brad Keyes

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Kevin MacDonald

      Yes, it's a bit like the way "certain groups" like the Jews could, if they put their mind to it, choose NOT to talk so loudly at the cinema. If they did that, then the Onion wouldn't need to criticise them so much.

      report
  44. Debra JM Smith

    logged in via Facebook

    Dr. Lawrence Torcello, you have chosen to believe what you believe on the topic of "Global Warming." You are believing what others have said. You have not personally seen any proof of what you believe. --I know this because there is no proof of Global Warming, and I challenge you to show any.

    Many of the people who say the planet is warming, and say it is caused by man, are the same people who in the 1970s said man was causing the planet to get colder. Google "Global Cooling." They are just as…

    Read more
    1. Brad Keyes

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Debra JM Smith

      Debra, without disagreeing with your overall point—especially your point about debate, and the terror such a prospect elicits in the climate alarmists—I'd just like to pull you up on the word "proof." Strictly speaking science is about evidence, not proof (which is more of a mathematical concern). Torcello wouldn't know the difference, but it's handy to have the proper lingo in case you get into an argument with an actual scientist. Take care

      report
    2. Debra JM Smith

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Brad Keyes

      Thank you, Brad. I know that many people feel as you do about that. But any scientist that gets published cannot deny that he/she obtained results (evidence) that proved something. :o)

      report
    3. Kevin MacDonald

      Civil Servant

      In reply to Debra JM Smith

      "I know this because there is no proof of Global Warming, and I challenge you to show any"

      Are you rejecting global warming outright - the observed and measured rise in surface temperatures, the observed and measured increase in ocean heat content, the observed and measured retreat of glaciers world wide, the observed and measured loss of ice at the poles, the observed and measured rise in sea levels, the observed and measured increase in extremely hot outliers - or just the anthropogenic element…

      Read more
    4. Debra JM Smith

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Kevin MacDonald

      Hi Kevin... I believe that the planet has always gone through cooling and warming periods and that man has nothing to do with these changes.

      report
    5. Kevin MacDonald

      Civil Servant

      In reply to Debra JM Smith

      "I believe that the planet has always gone through cooling and warming periods and that man has nothing to do with these changes"

      That there are natural drivers that can cause climate change is not in dispute, that these were responsible for most, if not all, prior shifts is also uncontroversial, but it does not follow from either that man has nothing to to with the changes currently being observed.

      Further, you're moving the goal posts. Your initial contention was that there was no evidence. I pointed you to some of the evidence, but you simply dismiss it in favour of what you believe. What you believe also includes the palpable nonsense that scientists predicted Anthropogenic Global Cooling in the seventies and that there was no evidence for Global warming. In so far as Anthropogenic Climate Change goes, your beliefs are demonstrably ignorant and carry no weight whatsoever.

      report
    6. Debra JM Smith

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Kevin MacDonald

      The term "Global Warming," is understood by most people to mean "man-made global warming." I do not believe in "man-made global warming." And no, you have not shown proof of such. You have only shown what you believe to be proof.