‘Twas the Chinese did the deed

Now, this is interesting. Mark Lynas writes this: Copenhagen climate conference How do I know China wrecked the Copenhagen deal? I was in the room.

I had a strong hunch that it was going to turn out that the Chinese had trashed any hope of an agreement in Copenhagen, and Mr. Lynas mostly duplicates my reasoning — well, except for the part where I’m inclined to feel grateful to the Chinese for their obstructionism; he isn’t.

Yes, the Chinese are too busy industrializing to want to put up with crap about carbon limits. That’s obvious, and it’s why I was expecting them to torpedo the proceedings. But I think Mr. Lynas is missing the other elephant in the room — the CRU leak. I think we’re seeing the first geopolitical impact of the East Anglia emails.

Put yourself in the Chinese leadership’s shoes for a moment, and imagine Hu Jintao reading an intelligence precis of the leaked documents. I imagine his reaction would be something much like this: “Foreign devils want us to slow down our GDP growth for a fraud? Fuck that and the dragon it rode in on.”

Savor the irony. Reds pretending to be green have been scuppered by mercantilists pretending to be Reds. OK, that’s oversimplifying grossly; the Chinese have managed to retain most of the worst traits of communism on their capitalist road, and not all the heavies in the AGW crowd are scheming socialists. It’s still true enough to be funny.

124 thoughts on “‘Twas the Chinese did the deed

  1. Eh, Hu Jintao couldn’t care less for the AGW e-mails.
    He would’ve torpedoed the deal anyway – the e-mails might just be the cherry on top. Mind you, switching from coal to a more environment-friendly energy source would be highly beneficial to China’s air polution problem.

  2. “Reds pretending to be green have been scuppered by mercantilists pretending to be Reds.”

    Hah! That’s almost as good as Lord Monckton’s line about the greens being to yellow to admit that they are reds!.

  3. I feel sort of dirty being in a position where I have to thank Red China, but really, I’ll take what I can get on this issue.

    ESR says: My feelings exactly…

  4. It’s clear how hopelessly naive Obama is in current politics. First the banksters completely wrapped him up during the bank crisis (they even hold key financial seats in his guvmint) and now on a global scale he’s been taught how real politik really works. I’m afraid he’s going the Carter route for a disastrous POTUS term.

  5. > First the banksters completely wrapped him up during the bank crisis (they even hold key financial seats in his guvmint)

    He appointed them and it was clear from pretty early on in the campaign that he was going to do that. If he got wrapped, I think he was perfectly aware that this was going to happen (the congress already got wrapped once before he was elected). It’s business as usual on Wall Street and his job is to give nice speeches. The same with Afghanistan. I read a critic somewhere saying that he now changes channels when Obama comes on just like he did with Bush. Bush was painful to listen to and was usually presenting some bad ideas, but at least you knew that he was going to do the crap that he was talking about. Obama may sound good, but compromises everything when it comes down to it.

  6. > It’s still true enough to be funny.

    When it comes to these global energy schemes, more and more the case seems to also be that “it’s funny enough to be true.” Ten years ago, who would have thought we’d see a guy like T. Boone Pickens pitching windmills on TV?

  7. I’m amazed that it turned out to be China that scuttled the plan to establish a global communist government. I guess they really have buried Mao.

  8. Obama may sound good, but compromises everything when it comes down to it.

    Obama is Mitt Romney with a tan and a better-sounding script on the teleprompter. The man is an empty suit.

  9. He appointed them and it was clear from pretty early on in the campaign that he was going to do that.

    If Obama hadn’t appointed the banksters to his cabinet, then his owners might have decided that he was worth more as a martyr, and put Talky Joe in office. No chance of Biden not following orders.

  10. jork> Ten years ago, who would have thought we’d see a guy like T. Boone Pickens pitching windmills on TV?

    Ha! And after the election, he ran the numbers on his windmill scheme and realized he was going to lose his ass on buying the land and running the power lines. Anybody interested in buy $2B worth or windmills? They’re for sale.

    I live in San Antonio, and our utility is the biggest user of Wind in the State. They did it right though, bought the land before the “gold rush” and own/operate much of the power grid and windmills themselves. Even at that, it’s still about a 15% hike for wind over coal. Now they’re planning on layout a couple of billion to completely overhaul an upgrade the transmission lines. I can’t see where a for-profit company would ever seriously invest in this technology as the upfront costs just don’t pan out, even long term (something like 15 years to break even on a 20 year lifespan for the windmills).

    As for the Chinese, this is just more proof that they don’t need us the way our politicians pretend they do. They are becoming the sole superpower and the leaders of the (not free) world. The only thing that surprises me is that they bothered to scuttle the deal. If they want to really take over, they could say “Yeah, whatever,” then let the rest of us stew in the broth while they complete their plans for “world domination.”

  11. > Eh, Hu Jintao couldn’t care less for the AGW e-mails.
    > He would’ve torpedoed the deal anyway – the e-mails might just be the cherry on top.

    Yeah, the PRC was never going to go along (neither was India, really, who wants a offset payment for even allowing inspections.) Unlike the more obstreperous opponents of the conference, the Chinese simply percieve the situation on a longer, oh well, let’s call it a longer “timescale” than do their increasingly blind and self-destructive European counterparts. The strategic trajectory for China hasn’t changed much since Kyoto, so their tactics have remained largely the same as well. Jintao sent errand boys to deal with the fools and stooges of Copenhagen. I’m sure he was busier with more pressing matters, like sampling the local feminine cuisine.

    Of course, the sight our little President Hamlet chasing him around Denmark actually *is* game changing in some ways. Right about now, Obama must appear to men like Jintao and Putin just as Kennedy appeared to Khrushchev: a light lunch.

    It is what it is. Obama was never going to be much of an opponent for the authoritarian tigers who are well practiced at realpolitik. At the very least, these men took Bush seriously. Whenever he said the words “military response”, they mostly took the sunuvabitch at his word. Hell even Gaddafi shook in his boots after the fall of Baghdad, packing barges with as much of his (pathetic) Chem and Nuke program as possible and shipped it to the Gulf of Mexico. These days, the Barbary Colonel is back to his old tricks, and only a dimwit couldn’t make the connection as to why.

    I’d feel a little more confident if I thought Obama was a thoughtful sort of person who could learn from his mistakes, but’s more likely he spends most of his time conferring with that homunculus Rahm Emanuel about the next wave of congressional elections.

  12. ESR writes:
    the Chinese have managed to retain most of the worst traits of communism on their capitalist road

    Totalitarian, Socialist, Nationalist. There’s a word for that… it’s not hard to imagine an economic crises in China followed by internal instability, a new leader with a cult of personality, and expansionist xenophobic nationalism to distract the hungry masses. I suppose this is the tragedy pass of history, and farce will be later?

    But hopefully it won’t come to that.

  13. > increasingly blind and self-destructive European counterparts. The strategic trajectory for China hasn’t changed much since Kyoto,

    A lot of people kept repeating in Copenhagen that the Kyoto agreement expires in 2012, which is apparently not technically accurate (the targets and things are supposed to be renegotiated). If the negotiations continue this way, it probably means the expiration of the agreement in practice. The European environmentalists will scream, but there would not be much point in doing another Kyoto without China and the US.

  14. > but there would not be much point in doing another Kyoto without China and the US

    Depends what you mean by “another Kyoto”. A global agreement with binding emissions caps is not the only way forward.

    More likely, in the short term at least, is a patchwork of smaller regional agreements (some of which won’t have binding caps at all but might deal with technology transfer or simply land-clearing reductions). That approach can still result in emissions reductions.

  15. It’s not likely that the U.S. will ever agree to any treatieswith binding emissions caps, at least not as politics in this country stand today. Specifically, the required two-thirds majority in the Senate is unattainable; As support for Kyoto and similar emissions treaties pretty much falls along party lines, I don’t see this happening anytime in the near future.

  16. > As support for Kyoto and similar emissions treaties pretty much falls along party lines…

    That’s not even a given. Every time Kyoto has come up for a vote, it has failed across the board. I don’t believe a single Dem or Repub Senator ratified it the last time around. I think it failed 95-0. It just make no sense for us to ratify a binding treaty of that sort, and it never will.

  17. “I don’t believe a single Dem or Repub Senator ratified it the last time around.”

    Err, *voted* to ratify it, that is.

  18. >Totalitarian, Socialist, Nationalist. There’s a word for that… it’s not hard to imagine an economic crises in China followed by internal instability, a new leader with a cult of personality, and expansionist xenophobic nationalism to distract the hungry masses.

    And all too easy to imagine Barack Obama waving a scrap of paper and promising “Peace in our time!” after he’s sold the Taiwanese down the river…

  19. And all too easy to imagine Barack Obama waving a scrap of paper and promising “Peace in our time!” after he’s sold the Taiwanese down the river…

    I need to learn how to shoot a rifle better (and teach my children and my friend’s children) and build a UAV.

    Yours,
    Tom DeGisi

  20. jrok – “It just make no sense for us to ratify a binding treaty of that sort, and it never will.”

    You’re right – “Do as I say, not as I do” has been one of the foundations of American policy towards the rest of the world for a long time now. Why should it change?

  21. I need to learn how to shoot a rifle better

    They have training for that, you know. Building a UAV shouldn’t be that hard if you understand the engineering principles involved.

  22. Tom

    More likely, in the short term at least, is a patchwork of smaller regional agreements (some of which won’t have binding caps at all but might deal with technology transfer or simply land-clearing reductions). That approach can still result in emissions reductions.

    I highly doubt that. Fuel-burning production will simply move to where it’s not capped. There’s no indication that Kyoto reduced emissions. The rate of CO2 increase in the atmosphere has been higher since Kyoto.

  23. > Fuel-burning production will simply move to where it’s not capped

    You seem to have missed my central point, which is that cap and trade – or for that matter baseline and credit – schemes are only one policy tool to influence emissions scenarios.

    The argument is usually that other policy tools are less efficient, not necessarily less effective. Leaving that subtelty aside, whether or not it is rational for high-emissions intensity enterprises to move operations offshore is very highly dependent on the particulars of the scheme concerned.

  24. Strand, you have a point. Perhaps our motto should be “Do as I don’t do, not as I say.”

  25. > Perhaps our motto should be “Do as I don’t do, not as I say.”

    Even though you’re joking, at least it would be better than “In God we trust”.

  26. Just the fact that Lynas was “in the room” tells you who he pals around with. So does the fact that he writes for The Guardian.

  27. >Just the fact that Lynas was “in the room” tells you who he pals around with. So does the fact that he writes for The Guardian.

    Yes, of course it’s most likely that he’s a lefty in the enemy-of-civilization category. In this case, however, that actually adds credibility to his report. His political interests would be better served by doing what the Chinese wanted and expected the Western press to do – blaming the U.S. and the G8.

  28. His political interests would be better served by doing what the Chinese wanted and expected the Western press to do – blaming the U.S. and the G8.

    Why? It’s well known that the Chinese only pay lip service to Marxist and other far-left ideas. The Chinese system is far more of totalitarian state — a single-party authoritarian regime coupled with a “socialism with Chinese characteristics” ideology, which claims to be Marxist, but is in fact a strange socialist/market economy mix.

  29. http://arxiv.org/abs/0707.1161

    International Journal of Modern Physics B, volume 23, No3 (Jan 2009), 275-364
    ‘Falsification of the Atmospheric CO2 Greenhouse Effects Within the Frame of Modern Physics’
    Gerlich, Tscheuschner.

    .” . . even if we have to redefine what peer-review is.”

  30. How weird is it that China is now more procapitalism, promarket, and prohuman than we are?

    While we obsess over global warming and carbon credits and cap and trade, the Chinese, in their polite asian way, say “We are not going along with that gay crap.”

    How have we reached this point? I bet it’s easier to build something today in China than it is in, say, California. Why in the world are the craters of the twin towers still sitting there? Are we ever going to build something to take their place, as an F_U to the terrorists?
    The chinese, who at least still pay lip service to communism, seem to be the least afflicted with all this socialist and bureaucratic nonsense.

  31. You’ve got that derisory dismissal down to a finely-honed response, Gary.

    I imagine you qualify for a job in East Anglia…there may be a vacancy soon.

    Ignore him bruce. The G&T paper is very interesting.

  32. Good shooting Russell :)

    Of course, at 50 feet you should be tack-driving Now step up to the 25 yard range ;)

  33. > International Journal of Modern Physics B, volume 23, No3 (Jan 2009), 275-364
    ‘Falsification of the Atmospheric CO2 Greenhouse Effects Within the Frame of Modern Physics’
    Gerlich, Tscheuschner.

    When I actually sat down and looked at this, I was surprised at how simply and utterly wrong this was. I find it hard to believe that it is in fact not some bizarre troll, since the sane part of the AGW skeptic community acknowledges that the greenhouse effect exists.

    I think a commenter at Physics Forums put it pretty succinctly:

    > It is precisely because the atmosphere is being warmed by the surface that the surface has to be hotter than you would have without an atmosphere! Think about it. Because the atmosphere is absorbing energy from the surface, the energy that eventually escapes into space is mostly emitted from the atmosphere. Therefore it is in the ATMOSPHERE (not the surface) where you have the temperatures that correspond to what is needed to radiate away what we receive from the Sun.

    > The effective radiating temperature of the atmosphere is Teff. You can get this by averaging a fourth power. If you average the raw temperature, you’ll get something a bit less, depending on how much variation there is in temperature across the globe. This is noted also by Gerlich and Tscheuschner; though they apparently don’t understand the implications.

    > In any case, the atmosphere, at altitudes where most radiation is escaping into space, must have an average temperature of about -18C or less. This is the Teff for the Earth.

    > Now… because the atmosphere is being heated from the surface, the surface has to be hotter than than the atmosphere. And it is. This is the greenhouse effect.

    > Note the difference. When you add an atmosphere, you get a warmer surface than you would have otherwise. This is NOT because the atmosphere is a source of energy. It is because the atmosphere has to be warmed up by the surface, which results in a surface that is warmer than the atmosphere. The atmosphere is what takes up the temperature required to balance solar input.

    > Pretty much the same thing happens when you cover yourself with a blanket. YOU warm the blanket. So you are warmer than the blanket. But the blanket is what has to match up with external temperatures, which means you end up warmer than you would be without the blanket. NOT because the blanket is a source of energy to warm you, but because it is absorbing energy from you, and then passing it on to the cold outside.

    > PS. Think about your lunar example again. It’s a really good one. The Moon is (on average) COLDER than the Earth. This despite having a lower albedo and absorbing more of the light from the Sun! Why? The conventional physical explanation is that the Moon has no atmosphere, and so radiation from the surface has to balance with the solar input. On the Earth, however, it is radiation from the atmosphere which has to balance the solar input. The Earth’s surface has to heat up its atmosphere, and so has to be warmer than the atmosphere… which means it has to be that much hotter again than what is required to balance the solar input.

  34. Dallas & Gary have evidently not understood the G&T paper.

    It does not claim to refute the well-known physics of atmospheric warming as a result of absorption of solar radiation…it refutes the nonsense hocus-pocus of the fraudulently labeled “greenhouse effect”.

    As is typical with such debates, the AGW faction immediately engage in a fallacious ‘shifting of the goalposts’ by dishonestly misrepresenting “greenhouse effect” critics as being profoundly ignorant of the principles of planetary solar warming….they apparently forget that these same critics are usually the ones pointing out that ‘global warming’ trends are likely to be related to solar patterns.

  35. Dan, I’ve read the G&T paper.

    It’s RIFE with stupid errors (doing Boltzmann equations with Celsius rather than Kelvin is just the tip of the ice berg.)

    I’m a skeptic. That paper is, to reasonable explorations of the math and science underlying atmospheric modeling, right up there with Time Cube physics.

    Calling it bullshit is insult to bovine excrement, which can at least be dried and burned to do something useful.

  36. Ken, kindly point me to the page where you see this error – I went over the 70+ page paper with great interest (as I used to concede the validity of the “greenhouse effect”) and do not recall such an error.

    Additionally, since you claim the paper is RIFE with errors, could you point out a couple more?

  37. For additional errors, see the link in my post on December 24th, 2009 at 8:54 pm.

  38. I would not feel too grateful to the Chinese. They were more than willing to place the shackles on the US, but they did not want to wear them as well.

  39. I read that already, Gary. It is a superficial 9 page reiteration of a couple of the very points G&T went to much more considerable effort to mathematically invalidate. It effectively refutes nothing.It certaintly does not catalog an array of errors in G&T’s work.

  40. Tom DeGisi:

    The folks at the Project Appleseed can help get you where you want to be with a rifle:
    http://appleseedinfo.org/as_faq.htm

    Do some homework on your own and invest a weekend into the actual event. It is the basic rifle marksmanship training with the most bang/buck on Earth.

    If you are serious about training others, they can also train you up to be an instructor in a week (5 days of instruction + 2 day Appleseed to employ your new rifle/instructor skills).

    I wrote up an AAR a couple of years back on the Appleseed I attended:
    http://thehighroad.org/showthread.php?t=315994&highlight=appleseed

    I am not affiliated with the group in question.

    Good luck.

    Regards,

    jfruser

  41. It is a superficial 9 page reiteration of a couple of the very points G&T went to much more considerable effort to mathematically invalidate.

    It is remarkable how often debunkings don’t. Most internet discussions consist of partisans shouting past each other.

    I stopped shouting on most subjects, although I will sometimes try to get people to be more polite.

    Yours,
    Tom DeGisi

  42. P.S. That seldom works either. But it scratches one of my itches.

  43. I have read several attempts to attack G&T from the 2nd Law of Therm. They have adopted the patina of serious physics discourse, but betray their religious zealotry with their lockstep derisory tone. G&T correctly apply this law, and no amount of echo-chamber waffling can change that.

    Again, much like Smith, these guys are simply reiterating their points in an attempt to batter them home to fraudulently claim a ‘refutation’

  44. No, Gary. That is not what G&T are claiming at all.

    Now that G&T has been credibly peer-reviewed, it is hardly surprising to see various AGW devotees scrambling to throw as much hubbub around as they can.

    Put simply, the same standard of credibility that they champion for pro-AGW papers, has now been applied to G&T…now the ball is back in the AGW court to correctly refute the G&T application of various physical laws. Simply bleating their orignal stance is not adequate – they must take the G&T formulations and demonstrate their physical flaws in a fully peer-reviewed publication, not sulk and blather on various blogs.

  45. Various physicists and others have already shown G&T(2009) to be fatally flawed. What about the refutations do you find lacking?

  46. ‘Various’ physicists eh? And ‘others’ you say? Sounds formidable. Perhaps they all ought to put their names together for all to see, and explain exactly what they consider the G&T errors to be.

    As Tom stated, oftentimes a proffered ‘refutation’ is nothing of the sort….it’s basically a childish shouting match (“No! I’m right! Listen to me!”) It doesn’t correctly ‘refute’ anything, but rather bluntly denies and derides it, insisting “our view is best!”

    I have yet to read anything that clearly pours acid on G&T to reveal ‘fatal flaws’ – it’s a good read, makes very interesting challenges to AGW ‘convention’ and does a powerful job undermining the foundation of AGW doctrine. That’s a tough challenge to meet, and I look forward to seeing a serious response, rather than superficial bickering.

    Some G&T critic really nuked the shark when they proposed that G&T couldn’t be right or they wouldn’t have needed 90 pages to debunk the “greenhouse effect” – like they were clearly trying too hard to bamboozle people, or something. I nearly shat a lung, I was laughing so hard at the imbecile.

    Our own Ken claimed to have discovered it to be “rife” with errors…yet has yet to give the page number(s) of a specific error he noted, or provide a mere couple extra examples.

    I’m no dummy, I read G&T thoroughly and had my prior assumptions exploded – I was once quite comfortable with “greenhouse effect” theory, and argued over the extent to which humans could be seriously contributing – now I feel foolish for not paying closer attention as this ‘enviro-science’ gained traction…I just didn’t take it seriously until it was too late.

  47. Dan, explain the difference in surface temperature between the Earth and Moon, knowing two things – the Moon has no atmosphere, and the Earth does, and that the bulk of the Earth’s atmosphere (diatomic N and O) is transparent in the infrared.

    G&T tried to handwave away the “greenhouse effect”, and didn’t.

  48. What I’m worried about most is the fallout from the fraud, which is evident in Copenhagen and in esr’s recent posts.

    It looks like a real conspiracy whose members included UN and NASA scientists and some heavyweight politicians and affected government policy and education world-over for at least a generation.

    The real problem is that global warming (or lack thereof) is not the only ecological issue at hand, but the fact the conspiracy/fraud was so extensive will damage every attempt at ecological conservation and environment health. There are lots of problems that need attention, from species near extinction to water pollution to energy resources to smog, and the list goes on.

    esr talks half-jokingly about how China won’t want to stop its industrial growth because of a fraud. It’s not just China. Every single country in the world will reassess its attitude toward anything having to do with the environment that might hamper industrial and/or economic growth.

    This fraud will probably have far-reaching consequences over the next two decades to compensate for the lies of the last two decades, and will leave the rest of us conservationists in worse a state in twenty years as we thought we were in twenty years ago.

  49. very single country in the world will reassess its attitude toward anything having to do with the environment that might hamper industrial and/or economic growth.

    Any environmentalist should be cheering that development, because history is very clear on the fact that the wealthier a country gets, the better job it does of taking care of its natural resources. Want China and India to stop polluting? Get a majority of their people into the middle class.

  50. I’m not Dan, but I’ll take a glib pass at that.

    From here, it can be seen that the lunar “average” dayside temp is ~120C and the night side low is ~ -110C, providing a differential of ~10C as the moon’s “average” temp. Without getting into questions regarding the nature of the provided data, I do notice a lack of any mention of eclipse periods, so I suspect a fractionally smaller number might be closer to the case.

    The site makes mention of the fact luna is no longer tectonicly active so doesn’t generate any thermal energy internally (but does mention the fractional degree contribution to lunar temp from terrestrial thermal radience from that source). It also (and I can “see” Gary inhaling to interject as I type) notes the absence of any atmosphere to either block or reflect thermal energy as well.

    All of which leads me to observe that this whole objection is one well-striated load of BS.

    The presence of at least two major differential features makes any attempt to compare the contrasting conditions on the two different celestial bodies nonsense on stilts. And that’s only my initial impression.

    Since any discussion of greenhouse effect must include the surface and airborne presence of water, I note this:

    “… what was actually detected was the chemical group hydroxyl ( · OH), which is suspected to be from water,[3] but could also be hydrates, which are inorganic salts containing chemically-bound water molecules. The nature, concentration and distribution of this material requires further analysis.[1] The amount of water discovered is put in perspective by this comment from Robert Zubrin: “The 30 m crater ejected by the probe contained 10 million kilograms of regolith. Within this ejecta, an estimated 100 kg of water was detected. That represents a proportion of 10 parts per million, which is a lower water concentration than that found in the soil of the driest deserts of the Earth.”

    [emphasis mine]

    So, no presence of any combination of gases to provide an “atmosphere” and no water not chemically bound to comparatively deep (1 meter depth at least) regolith. Puzzle me this; why would any honest person suggest that there might be any insight to be gained into terrestrial atmospheric greenhouse effect from a planetary body having none of the required components for such a condition (other than equivalent input from an effectively equidistant thermal/IR source)?

    Man! This handwaving is tiring stuff.

  51. Gary, I keep telling you (and others) this – you are not understanding the G&T paper.

    It did not ‘handwave’ anything away. The physics of atmospheric warming are not under attack….the ‘greenhouse effect’ feedback mechanism is.

    If you speak to any of the astronauts that have stood on the moon in sunlight, they will attest to it getting very warm indeed, and that they were very thankful for the cooling systems in their suits.

    A great deal of (albeit simplified) atmospheric heating/cooling – under gravity – can be modeled with fluid dynamics. Sun warms surface, surface warms contacting atmosphere, convection yada yada…we have a nic warm atmosphere that keeps us snug, unlike the moon. The idea that more massive gases (like CO2) can prevent energy escaping, thereby causing an ‘accumulation’ of energy in the atmosphere (raising the temperature) is physical nonsense. If anything, there might be an argument to support CO2 actually making heat transfer more efficient…..

    Arguably the biggest crime here is in the naming of this theoretical effect. Everybody knows how hot a glass greenhouse (or car) can get in the sun. To fraudulently imply that the same mechanism – and effect – is provided by CO2 is unforgivable religious apocalyptic voodoo. THIS is what the G&T paper attacks.

  52. Ah yes……nice job, Will. Well stated.

    Give your wavey hands a rest ;)

  53. (So call it something other than “greenhouse effect”. Otherwise, you’re just whining about semantics.)

    “The idea that more massive gases (like CO2) can prevent energy escaping, thereby causing an ‘accumulation’ of energy in the atmosphere (raising the temperature) is physical nonsense.”

    How so? What are the absorption/emission characteristics of CO2? They have a bearing on the issue.

    What makes you so much cleverer than Fourier, Arrhenius, Tyndall and many others? Show your work – and don’t rely on G&T. They’ve been refuted.

  54. What makes you so much cleverer than Fourier, Arrhenius, Tyndall and many others?
    You could have waited a wee bit longer before resorting to ad verecundiam – where’s your dignity?

    They’ve been refuted.
    *sigh*

    You know, the beauty of some science is found in its essential simplicity. In G&T’s case, their use of the “housewife vs IPCC” illustration is quite wonderful.

  55. >’don’t rely on G&T. They’ve been refuted.’

    Gosh Gary, a peer-reviewed article refuted? Perish forbid! These White Gods in white Lab Coats speak only to peer-reviewed journals, and peer-reviewed journals speak only to God.

    >’there are lots of problems that need attention, from species near extinction to water pollution to energy resources, and the list goes on.’

    You said it Noam. Best case, ten years from now Al Gore will be crusading against prison rape from personal experience, Stephen Mcintyre will be head of the World Meteorological Association, hockey sticks will be a footnote in the next edition of ‘How to Lie With Statistics’. And we’ll still have huge ecological problems..
    For example, if we only burned gas and diesel in cars, the USA would be self-supporting in fuel. It’s the trucks: trucking is a heavily regulated industry with lots of skilled technicians; we could push the big 5 truck stop chains to support alternate fuels: we don’t. Too busy pissing away our sustenance on this fraud.

  56. G&T is fatally flawed – as has been shown by a number of rebuttals.

    See

    http://arthur.shumwaysmith.com/life/content/the_arrogance_of_physicists

    for a very easy-to-read refutation. Particularly:

    “Let ‘G’ stand for the assertion that Earth’s average temperature without an atmosphere would be less than or equal to 255 K. If some model could be found that showed ‘G’ to be false, showing a temperature distribution on the surface that gave a higher average than the effective radiating temperature, then we might have an explanation of Earth’s observed average temperature of 288 K that didn’t involve the greenhouse effect. That would be a stunning achievement, deserving of their paper’s title. But in fact every one of their examples shows ‘G’ to be true, and they even essentially prove it to be true. They assert it in their eq. 89. There is no logical disproof of ‘G’ anywhere in Gerlich and Tscheuschner’s paper. And therefore no logical counter to the simple truth that the presence of Earth’s infrared-absorbing atmosphere does indeed raise our planet’s surface temperature by at least 33 degrees C from what it would be otherwise.”

    The scientific method says that observations dictate theory; since we observe earth to be warmer than G&T’s theory allows, the theory is incorrect.

  57. You’re clamoring for attention in the wrong place, Gary. You can copy’n’paste what you will, but we’re not on trial here. There is no battle for you to win.

  58. The scientific method says that observations dictate theory; since we observe earth to be warmer than G&T’s theory allows, the theory is incorrect.

    I’ll bet my bottom dollar you have never applied this reasoning to your AGW cohorts.

    You’re making this very easy.

  59. Do you have anything to offer other than snark, Dan?

    Apparently not.

  60. >This [AGW] fraud will probably have far-reaching consequences over the next two decades to compensate for the lies of the last two decades, and will leave the rest of us conservationists in worse a state in twenty years as we thought we were in twenty years ago.

    I foresaw this consequence a decade ago. It made me angry at the fraudsters then, and it still makes me angry today.

  61. Some Guy quoted me:

    >> Every single country in the world will reassess its attitude toward anything having to do with the environment that might hamper
    >> industrial and/or economic growth.

    and then replied:

    > Any environmentalist should be cheering that development, because history is very clear on the fact that the wealthier a
    > country gets, the better job it does of taking care of its natural resources. Want China and India to stop polluting? Get a
    > majority of their people into the middle class.

    I would say that we have less than half a century of concerted efforts at conservation and only a couple centuries of heavy industry in a very few countries, so it’s difficult to say what history demonstrates.

    I’m also not quite sure how you expect to get a majority of the Chinese and Indians into the middle class. As I understand it, the greatest consumers of the products of industry in any country are the middle class. There are good reasons to raise the quality of life of the Chinese and Indians, a greater chance at liberty among them, but preventing pollution is not one of them.

    But in any case, you completely missed the point. I don’t have a problem with countries, groups and individuals reassessing their attitudes on any subject. Maybe I should have been more explicit, but what I meant was that the result of that reassessment will most likely be negatively skewed by this fraud and will discourage governments from promoting conservation efforts.

    I’ll even surmise that since so much funding has been put into dealing with global warming, now that the theory has been discovered to be fraudulent, this funding will most likely *not* be redirected to, say, fighting pollution or ensuring our grandchildren will have a fresh water supply, but to other completely unrelated issues.

  62. Tom said:
    >> It looks like a real conspiracy
    > Only to those desperate to find one.

    On the contrary. Whether there was a conspiracy is a question of fact.

    Did they knowingly alter the data?
    Did they intentionally delete raw data?
    Did they intentionally delete specific email messages?
    Did they lie about the results?
    Did they bully, harass and threaten anyone who disagreed with them or was there honest discourse?
    Did they strategize together knowing they were publishing lies, or were they simply working as a team to publish what they thought were truths?

    I would much rather discover the whole thing were discovered to be honest and innocent mistakes, all part of the scientific process.

    But things are looking grim right now, even to those of us, like me, who grew up strongly believing in global warming. It *looks* like the scientists lied, bullied, deleted data, strategized with each other, and perhaps even turned an illicit profit.

    Those believing there was a *real* conspiracy are putting up a pretty good argument. Please, refute it.

  63. Those believing there was a *real* conspiracy are putting up a pretty good argument. Please, refute it.

    Climategate only looks like a conspiracy if you don’t know the context.

    Consider the Gerlich and Tscheuschner paper. If you only look at the radiative transfer from the cooler atmosphere to the warmer ground, it looks like a violation of the 2nd Law of Thermodynamics. But if you include the larger radiative transfer from the ground to the atmosphere you can see that G&T’s argument is nonsense.

    Same thing with Climategate. If you just look at what the scientists did, it looks like a conspiracy. But you’re ignoring the massive, well documented, disinformation campaign in the other direction.

    Is it really surprising that some scientists didn’t just sit back and let it happen?

  64. Wait a minute.

    Pete said in part : “If you only look at the radiative transfer from the cooler atmosphere to the warmer ground …”. Does anyone know if/how G&T included planetary water surface area in their radiative transfer calulations? If they did, then the 2nd Law likely was preserved and the “refutation” fails.

    I don’t know; I’m asking here.

  65. >Same thing with Climategate. If you just look at what the scientists did, it looks like a conspiracy. But you’re ignoring the massive, well documented, disinformation campaign in the other direction.

    Care to share some of this hypothetical documentation?

    By whom would this massive disinformation campaign be funded? As has been pointed out here, so-called ‘Big Oil’ would actually realize huge profits from proposed regulations, because monopolies always flourish in highly-regulated environments. Why would ‘Big Oil’ be pushing the other way? I think the AGW believers’ claims about Big Oil disinformation are largely propaganda.

    And anyway, who was it who said ‘if you imitate their tactics, you descend to their level’?

  66. >In what ‘context’ is fraud excusable?

    When building the New Socialist Environmentalist Man, of course.

  67. Indeed :)

    I guess it’s yet another manifestation of the “fake but accurate” meme…..

  68. >In what ‘context’ is fraud excusable?

    No one’s provided any evidence of fraud yet. The worst you’ve found is an effort to avoid harassment-by-spurious-FOIA and a ‘conspiracy’ to keep substandard papers out of the literature.

    >Care to share some of this hypothetical documentation?

    Google is your friend.

    >By whom would this massive disinformation campaign be funded? As has been pointed out here, so-called ‘Big Oil’ would actually realize huge profits from proposed regulations, because monopolies always flourish in highly-regulated environment.

    Your theory doesn’t match the facts. ExxonMobil, amongst others, funded the disinformation campaign. I’d suggest that they know better than us what’s in their best interest.

  69. >I think the AGW believers’ claims about Big Oil disinformation are largely propaganda.

    So do I. I’m certainly not getting any paycheck from Big Oil.

  70. Pete, I admire your spirit in the face of adversity.

    If there really is an enviro-god, I’m sure it will reward your unshakeable faith ;)

  71. >So do I. I’m certainly not getting any paycheck from Big Oil.

    “Sadly for us all, their puppets learned the dance so well that they kept boogieing after the strings were cut.”

  72. >“Sadly for us all, their puppets learned the dance so well that they kept boogieing after the strings were cut.”

    Um…nice try. I mostly believed that predominant AGW theory was correct, until some comment on this blog about the quality of climate models, and especially until Climategate. At the moment, I am not certain in my views, but I believe that Climategate needs real investigation, and I am certainly extremely opposed to any action such as was proposed at Copenhagen until the science is much more ‘settled’ then it now appears to be. Heaven knows I would prefer AGW to be false, but I am doing my level best to avoid prejudicing myself. However, my impression of the debate, so far, has been that ESR and various other skeptical sources tend to make sensible arguments, while RealClimate et al. tend to appeal to authority and apparently illusory consensus. I know who I trust. I have never been a ‘puppet’ of the oil industry; I don’t think anyone else here has; and my current opinion on AGW has not been shaped, at all, by anything that could be construed as Big Oil propaganda. You’ll need something better than insisting that I or my hypothetical puppetmasters have something to gain from the status quo to argue your point.

    And you still haven’t addressed my third point above. Even if we accept that Big Oil funds a ‘massive disinformation campaign’, the best way to fight such a campaign has always been to be as open as possible, be above even the appearance of wrongdoing, and let people decide for themselves. Why should we excuse CRU’s actions? Even in response to a disinformation campaign, they are not valid–especially for the side that is trying to convince us to take drastic action.

  73. >I have never been a ‘puppet’ of the oil industry; I don’t think anyone else here has; and my current opinion on AGW has not been shaped, at all, by anything that could be construed as Big Oil propaganda.

    If you’re getting information from “ESR and various other skeptical sources” then you’re swallowing recycled Big Oil propaganda. The puppet-masters create disinformation memes, and the puppets seed them into the noosphere. Then useful idiots like ESR spread the memes, because they fit well with their particular world-view.

    If anyone tells you “it’s been cooling since 1998″, then you know they’ve been infected.

    >Why should we excuse CRU’s actions?

    Which actions in particular do you find troubling?

  74. >I’m also not quite sure how you expect to get a majority of the Chinese and Indians into the middle class.

    The same way it happened in the USA and in Europe during the industrial revolution: through the creation of wealth with a minimum of government interference.

  75. >No one’s provided any evidence of fraud yet.

    Thanks, that made me laugh out loud.

  76. >If you’re getting information from “ESR and various other skeptical sources” then you’re swallowing recycled Big Oil propaganda. The puppet-masters create disinformation memes, and the puppets seed them into the noosphere. Then useful idiots like ESR spread the memes, because they fit well with their particular world-view.

    I might as well say that everything you’re arguing is recycled statist/former-Soviet-agent propaganda. You can’t just make that claim. Again, I’ve seen actual argument from skeptics; from believers I’ve seen very little except variations on the theme of the consensus view.

    >If anyone tells you “it’s been cooling since 1998″, then you know they’ve been infected.

    Hey, look, I can do it too: If anyone tells you ‘the science is settled’, they’ve been infected.

    >Which actions in particular do you find troubling?

    For starters, the corruption of peer review. I’ve not made any study into this myself, but from what I’ve read of others’ analyses it seems that the CRU e-mails point towards at least some incidence of peer reviewers summarily dismissing papers based solely on their conclusions, for- or anti-AGW. This seems to be the sort of thing that merits real investigation, since one of the arguments in favor of the predominant view has always been “all the peer-reviewed papers agree”. I think that my phrasing above was faulty in its assumption that there has actually been fraud or conspiracy or whatever; I’m scrupulously trying not to assume that. However, inquiry into the subject, rather than the sort of brushing-aside that RealClimate et al. tend to do, is required, if only to clear CRU’s name. No doubt there are other things I’ve missed; this is what’s jumped out at me.

  77. >For starters, the corruption of peer review.

    Half of the editors resigned after de Freitas snuck the Soon and Baliunas paper into Climate Research. That includes von Storch, who is often a coauthor of Zorita (mentioned a few blog posts back).

    The denialist side was actively subverting the peer review process. Is it any surprise that climate scientists tried to prevent this from continuing?

    Note that corruption by climate scientists would be easy to prove: provide a single example of a high quality anti-AGW paper that was kept out of the peer-reviewed literature.

  78. Pete, congratulations on proving yourself to be a quintessentially cynical fraud.

  79. “provide a single example of a high quality anti-AGW paper”

    I now predict that any anti-AGW paper so cited will be deemed low quality. More inconclusive shouting past each other will ensue.

    pete your claims that these AGW supporters were only defending themselves and therefore they were not corrupting the process are ludicrous. One key maxim is ‘be aware of your target and what is beyond it’. Clearly these AGW supporters don’t understand this. By acting as they did, rather than defending their claims they were subverting them, the AGW hypothesis, the scientific method and enviromentalism itself. Their random shots are hitting everything they hold dear and missing their targets entirely. I hope these guys are sufficently anti-gun that they never handle one. They don’t sound like they could be trusted to behave safely.

    The proper defense in the scientific method is always more transparency. If these folks had utilized this, the proper weapon, in the proper manner, they may not have hit their targets, but at least they would not have struck everything they hold dear.

    Yours,
    Tom DeGisi

  80. Half of the editors resigned after de Freitas snuck the Soon and Baliunas paper into Climate Research. That includes von Storch, who is often a coauthor of Zorita (mentioned a few blog posts back).

    As described here, it appears that the resignation of the editors was not due to the publication of a flawed paper, but to Otto Kinne (who is, apparently, important in the publishing apparatus of Climate Research) deciding that an editorial that would presumably have denounced Soon and Baliunas could not be published without the consent of all editors, which would have included de Freitas. I’m not sure of the significance of the distinction, but it didn’t appear that those who resigned did so simply because of S & B’s publication.

    The denialist side was actively subverting the peer review process. Is it any surprise that climate scientists tried to prevent this from continuing?

    I’m not sure much ‘active subversion’ was going on. It appears that de Freitas (who, I assume, is in charge of selecting peer reviewers?) was more sympathetic to the views of S&B then the rest of the editorial staff; it is true that a paper that presumably much of the rest of the staff (and, observedly, much of the community of climate scientists) would have found unworthy of publication as it stood was published under de Freitas’ authority. Apparently, the objection would be that a paper that would ordinarily be unpublishable was published, despite its defects, presumably for ideological reasons. I cannot judge whether this is in fact true without much greater insight into the process and the people involved; if it is true, then certainly it was objectionable. However, whether in reaction to this controversy or not, it appears that some of the so-called ‘hockey team’ were, in fact, manipulating the peer review process, apparently to prevent the publication of anti-AGW papers. They may have sincerely believed that they were simply defending the process against manipulation from the ‘other side’; however, consciously or not, they were setting themselves up as gatekeepers of the entirety of climate science, and it is obvious that they themselves support the predominant theory on AGW. Especially given the attitudes towards AGW skepticism in general expressed in the CRU e-mails, it is quite likely that this introduced a bias into the process. Its effect was to corrupt peer review, even if its intentions were good.

  81. P.S. OTOH, Eric (and I, come to think of it) may believe that handling a gun would teach these guys how to be safe. Maybe that would also teach them how to react to opposition. Perhaps they should take courses in the legal use of force. Wise concealed carriers behave much better than most folks because they know that any time they cause a fight they could end up in jail, rather than the person they are reacting to.

  82. Also, relevant page quote:

    What are the facts? Again and again and again – what are the facts? Shun wishful thinking, ignore divine revelation, forget what ‘the stars foretell,’ avoid opinion, care not what the neighbors think, never mind the unguessable ‘verdict of history’ – what are the facts, and to how many decimal places? You pilot always into an unknown future; facts are your single clue. Get the facts!

  83. >Especially given the attitudes towards AGW skepticism in general expressed in the CRU e-mails, it is quite likely that this introduced a bias into the process. Its effect was to corrupt peer review, even if its intentions were good.

    Go back and compare your reactions to the specific problems with de Freitas, Soon, and Baliunas and to the vague accusations against the hockey team. Why do you put more weight on one than the other?

  84. pete Says:
    The denialist side was actively subverting the peer review process. Is it any surprise that climate scientists tried to prevent this from continuing?

    So you believe the appropriate response to a review process under attack is to act in a way that can damage your own credibility? I hope you’ve heard “two wrongs don’t make a right” before. If CRU act like ‘big oil’ should you not expect people to treat CRU like you want us to treat ‘big oil’?

    From what I’ve seen of research the appropriate way to deal with a paper with bogus science is obvious. I’ve seen it several times in IT research where you have a paper with 1 citation, a rebuttal paper that can be summed up with the words “X is completely full of shit”. And yes the crappier skeptics will point to those papers repeatedly and you can just as happily point to the unanswered rebuttal and you’d probably be in EXACTLY the same situation as now except it was done honestly without damaging CRU’s credibility (also it pads the rebutting author’s published paper statistics but thats a happy side effect).

    Oh and yes, pointing out that an author is referring to a paper with a rebuttal without addressing the rebuttal probably WOULD be grounds for legitimately turning back the paper in peer review.

  85. >So you believe the appropriate response to a review process under attack is to act in a way that can damage your own credibility?

    What, specifically, did CRU scientists do that was inappropriate? Discuss their rebuttals via email?

  86. Go back and compare your reactions to the specific problems with de Freitas, Soon, and Baliunas and to the vague accusations against the hockey team. Why do you put more weight on one than the other?

    Because on the one hand, I have seen no evidence of ‘specific problems’ with de Freitas et al., except the circumstantial, and on the other, I have seen e-mail among the hockey team that specifically discuss manipulating the peer review process. They are not ‘vague accusations’. For instance:

    I can’t see either of these papers being in the next IPCC report. Kevin and I will keep them out somehow – even if we have to redefine what the peer-review literature is !

    This from Phil Jones to Michael Mann, discussing papers by ‘MM’, which I assume is McIntyre and McKitrick, and ‘Pielke’, I assume referring to Roger Pielke. I have not seen any such evidence regarding de Freitas et al.; if any comes to light, then I will revise my position. (Which is a concept that could use broader acceptance in this debate.)

  87. Pete says:

    “Sadly for us all, their puppets learned the dance so well that they kept boogieing after the strings were cut.”

    Case in point.

  88. Pete, the hockey team *were* conspiring. One cannot question that and still be considered rational. You can try to defend their conspiracy by pointing to a conspiracy of anti-AGW scientists and suggesting that one conspiracy cancels out another. But you can’t *seriously* believe that there was no conspiracy to engage in fraud to protect the facade of consensus, can you?

  89. I can’t see either of these papers being in the next IPCC report. Kevin and I will keep them out somehow – even if we have to redefine what the peer-review literature is !

    They’re talking about keeping a paper out if the IPCC review that wasn’t properly reviewed. ‘Redefining’ peer review would mean discounting Climate Research. Note that this paper was is fact included in the review.

    >papers by ‘MM’, which I assume is McIntyre and McKitrick

    McKitrick and Michaels. It’s the paper where they made the radians/degrees mistake.

  90. The denialist side was actively subverting the peer review process. Is it any surprise that climate scientists tried to prevent this from continuing?

    Sorry, Pete, but you lost me there. Your continued insistence on using a pejorative term to refer to those who disagree with you is clear evidence that this is not about science, but about something else.

    Too bad, as it looked for a while as if you were discussing things honestly. But I just can’t get past the unending ad hominem. If you had convincing scientific arguments it would not be necessary.

  91. They’re talking about keeping a paper out if the IPCC review that wasn’t properly reviewed. ‘Redefining’ peer review would mean discounting Climate Research. Note that this paper was is fact included in the review.

    If I was trying to combat corruption in peer review, I wouldn’t throw around phrases like ‘redefine what the peer-review[ed] literature is’, even in private E-mail. It bears looking into; certainly Jones was at least being reckless in his language here.

    Even more here. Mann talks about ‘losing’ Climate Research, and says they can’t afford to ‘lose’ GRL (Geophysical Research Letters). This after GRL has refused to halt the publication of something by McIntyre, presumably of 2005, at Mann’s request. Tom Wigley, in a reply, talks about having the editor who reviewed McIntyre ‘ousted’ if he turns out to be in ‘the greenhouse skeptics camp’. (This subsequently happened.) In a later email (here), Mann refers to ‘the leak at GRL’ being ‘plugged’; in the same conversation, discussing a poster placed by McIntyre at a meeting, presumably the November 2005 CCSP workshop, that cast doubt on some tree ring data used in hockey stick graphs, Tim Osborn says “Not sure what should be done – unless he submits something for peer-review.” All this seems rather strongly to point to, first, an unhealthy “us vs. them” mentality among the hockey team (which I will readily admit occurs among skeptics as well) which would tend to lead to reactions based first on a report’s conclusions rather than its quality, and second, actual and commonplace manipulation of the peer review process by the hockey team.

  92. @Noam
    > Those believing there was a *real* conspiracy are putting up a pretty good argument.

    No, they aren’t. They are engaged in the spreading of disinformation and doubt. They are, in Ben Santer’s words, the “voices of unreason”.

    (As an aside – here’s a hint for those still struggling with the basics: If the creationists are on your “side”, you’re probably wrong.)

  93. >and second, actual and commonplace manipulation of the peer review process by the hockey team.

    I’m not sure how you get that from the emails you’ve linked to. How would you suggest scientists should react to editors allowing substandard papers to be published for political reasons?

  94. I’m not sure how you get that from the emails you’ve linked to. How would you suggest scientists should react to editors allowing substandard papers to be published for political reasons?

    The problem is, it’s only Mann et al.’s opinion that the papers are, indeed, substandard. Similarly, it’s only your (and presumably Mann et al.’s as well) opinion that the process that published them is political. These cannot be determined except in open debate. Trying to stop them being published is not the way to do it–to paraphrase someone whose name I don’t recall, the way you deal with wrong opinion is you refute it. You don’t try to suppress it. As I said above, trying to prevent the publishing of a paper, even one that you find substandard, is not a way to get people to like you. Let it be published, and refute it. Secondly, my conclusion in my last post comes from the implications of the hockey team, who obviously want to silence McIntyre, saying, to paraphrase, “we can’t do anything unless he submits something for peer review”. What does that suggest to you?

  95. >(As an aside – here’s a hint for those still struggling with the basics: If the creationists are on your “side”, you’re probably wrong.)

    A stopped clock is right twice a day.

  96. >“we can’t do anything unless he submits something for peer review”. What does that suggest to you?

    It means they can’t publish a rebuttal until he’s submitted a paper.

  97. It means they can’t publish a rebuttal until he’s submitted a paper.

    It’s perfectly possible to publish a rebuttal to a poster at a conference–just put up another poster at a conference. :P And it’s not publishing rebuttals that the hockey team have been so eager to do–their goal has consistently been to prevent publication of skeptical papers.

    I may be being too cynical here, but the entire tone of the E-mails suggests to me that peer review is being manipulated. Admittedly, I have not read many of the E-mails. Maybe all the ones I have read are part of some elaborate prank. However, so far my interpretation of the available evidence suggests, at very least, that the hockey team have tried to prevent the publication of opposing viewpoints (and note I say ‘opposing viewpoints’ and not ‘shoddy papers’), and apparently have done so via manipulation of peer review.

    We can sit here and throw accusations of politicization of science at each other until heat death (what an appropriate term, in discussion of AGW). I think that the available evidence (in the form of CRU emails) points towards suspicious conduct by the hockey team. Apparently you think that the emails are–what?–not a story? What’s your interpretation of them?

  98. >It’s perfectly possible to publish a rebuttal to a poster at a conference–just put up another poster at a conference

    Read the email again, it’s about what they should do, not what they can do, i.e. they see no need to respond unless he publishes something.

    >I think that the available evidence (in the form of CRU emails) points towards suspicious conduct by the hockey team. Apparently you think that the emails are–what?–not a story? What’s your interpretation of them?

    I’m assuming that the internet will read all of them, and the denialosphere will highlight the most suspicious, so I’ve only read the one’s that people have pointed me to.

    So far the pattern is for the emails to look a lot less suspicious once they’re put into context, and for the denialists to oversell what they’ve found. The overselling suggests that there nothing really bad in there.

  99. In an epigraph in “David’s Sling”, Marc Stiegler wrote “How emotionally entangled are you with your point of view? Test yourself – defend an opposing view, believing your life depends upon it.” Many AGW believers fail this test dramatically. They not only cannot argue the opposing side, they cannot even imagine that anyone holding the opposing view is intelligent and moral. And cannot face contrary evidence even to refute it, they simply deny it. They literally are not sane.

  100. > If you’re getting information from “ESR and various other skeptical sources” then you’re swallowing recycled Big Oil propaganda. The puppet-masters create disinformation memes, and the puppets seed them into the noosphere. Then useful idiots like ESR spread the memes, because they fit well with their particular world-view.

    > If anyone tells you “it’s been cooling since 1998″, then you know they’ve been infected.

    There’s our problem then. Eric’s been hitting the memes again. Guess we’ll just have to lock them up more securely next time.

    > I now predict that any anti-AGW paper so cited will be deemed low quality. More inconclusive shouting past each other will ensue.

    > Sorry, Pete, but you lost me there. Your continued insistence on using a pejorative term to refer to those who disagree with you is clear evidence that this is not about science, but about something else.

    > Too bad, as it looked for a while as if you were discussing things honestly. But I just can’t get past the unending ad hominem. If you had convincing scientific arguments it would not be necessary.

    Tom de Gisi, MagicDave, your points above are, I think, closer to the truth than many realise.

    Much of the coment in this and previous posts is from a scientific/engineering viewpoint that takes the scientific method as a given, and much does not.
    I think it is important to understand that times have moved on, and that crucially important subjects like Climate Change and AGW that have sparse supporting information, are far better handled using Post-Normal Science.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Post-normal_science

    http://www.eoearth.org/article/Post-Normal_Science

    It is even favoured at the University of East Anglia

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/society/2007/mar/14/scienceofclimatechange.climatechange

    although others differ

    http://buythetruth.wordpress.com/2009/10/31/climate-change-and-the-death-of-science/

    Clearly it is simply that the noble efforts of these pioneering climate scientists have been misunderstood by physicists, chemists, engineers and others not trained in this rigorous and exciting new discipline.

    Chuck

  101. >For those that are inclined to wade through the fraud…I find this to be a useful resource.

    The whole tale that the leaked emails and documents tell is ten years long. It’s an epic, and it is well worth the read – even for the disciples of the AGW church, who will at the very least discover how uncertain the core team was about it’s own findings as presented to for Assessment Reports. The Yamal series in particular emerges as a chain of mishandled and contaminated evidence. There is plenty of fraud to be found in this leak for people who won’t voluntarily shut their eyes to it, but it’s not something that can hammered down to one or two specific emails or documents. It’s a broad pattern of fraud that can only be understood in context with the U.N’s appetite for sweeping claims and the financial and political pressure to sound unequivocal about many very questionable methods and data. The narrative seems to have been assembled on purpose by someone on the inside, and I personally believe that person to be Dr. Briffa.

    A second leak (perhaps at Penn State) would be very informative, but there is already evidence of staggering fraud in the CRU leak. Pavlov’s various dogs have already been heard barking about “context.” I think the appropriate “context” could be had if Dr. Briffa (or whoever the leaker was) stood up and simply supplied it to the various media organs. He doesn’t need to – anyone with a sound and fair mind can easily recognize the narrative of deceit, suppression, manipulation and corruption – but at least it would put an end to the choir of harpies singing these appeals to authority. The leaker was clearly in a position of authority, and was also operating on the AGW side of the fence. I wonder under what conditions he or she could come forward? Does Great Britain have an extradition treaty with Brazil?

  102. I think it is important to understand that times have moved on, and that crucially important subjects like Climate Change and AGW that have sparse supporting information, are far better handled using Post-Normal Science.

    Bleah. I read the eoearth article, and it made me intellectually nauseated. Please say this is some sort of joke. (I do not necessarily refer to Chuckles’ viewpoint, but to that of, for instance, the people who wrote the eoearth article.)

  103. > Bleah. I read the eoearth article, and it made me intellectually nauseated. Please say this is some sort of joke.

    This would also fall into the category of “it’s funny enough to be true.” Forget “redefining what the peer literature is.” It’s clear that rascals abound who are trying to redefine what Science itself is. I’m uncertain if labels like “Post-Normal Science” are enough to fully describe this phenomenon, even if its practitioners all eventually take up the mantle themselves. Of course, the notion that real science can and should be bound to the pursuit of “decision-making nodes” (and vice versa) is about as dangerous a intellectual doctrine as one could imagine. It’s no joke. On the contrary, technocrats belching forth pseudoscientific decrees has been the order of the day for nearly a generation now.

    It’s not all gloom and doom, though. Luckily for us, we live in an age of Information, and the pendulum always swings the other way. The other day, I was discussing the seemingly hopeless situation in research science with my brother, an M.D who did his internship at NIH. A former head-nodder for the anthro carbon warming camp, he was surprised but not “shocked” by what he’s read in the leaked materials. I thought his summary was great. “Look”, he said. “I hate to be the one to break this to you, but ‘Bad Science’ has been the rule more than the exception for about thirty years now. The way research is funded is completely broken. But the scientific method eventually forces all bad science into the daylight. If this research is as bad as its starting to smell, than it will be debunked and thrown away. These guys may have traveled pretty far in the shadows out at the edge of the forest, and our flashlight may still be pretty small, but the bulb is still pretty goddamned bright.” Well put, I think. I don’t think we have to start arming ourselves to the teeth, necessarily. There is still enough light in the world to expose these charlatans.

  104. Tom,

    >> Those believing there was a *real* conspiracy are putting up a pretty good argument.
    > No, they aren’t. They are engaged in the spreading of disinformation and doubt. They are, in Ben Santer’s words, the “voices of unreason”.

    Missing data, adjusted algorithms, obfuscated reports and conspiratorial communications all indicate intentional disinformation and fraud.

    At the very least, even the most ardent supporters of global warming can’t refute that something is just a little bit fishy. And if there is no conspiracy, what harm can there possibly be in publishing all the data?

    We (the non-scientific public) can’t quite make sense of all the pro and con arguments out there. We’re simply not equipped. It looks like a massive “he said, she said” argument. Except that unlike most other scientific arguments that reach the public ear, it’s clear that *somebody* is lying. What other option is there but to suspend judgement and wait for the dust to settle?

    Again, the main problem as I see it isn’t the (alleged) fraud. It’s the reverse swing of the pendulum following this scandal, which is sure to leave its black mark on the next half-century, even on ecological issues completely unrelated to the global warming.

    On this I fully agree with esr, and I think this is the fundamental issue at hand: transparency in science, especially the kind used as a basis for policy.

  105. The ‘post-normal science’ thing seemed to me to be an evolution of the precautionary principle: don’t wait for scientific proof before you implement your restrictive global regulations, just do it, on the theory that it solves such a big (hypothetical) problem that we might as well do it anyway. Most people don’t like this idea. It remains to be seen what will fall out of this.

  106. Tom Dickson-Hunt,

    It’s a bit more insidious than that. It’s refactoring the scientific method into a postmodern framework, wherein science has not as its goal the discovery of natural truth, but the achievement of political and social ends.

    For all its ills Western civilization has given us these wonderful things called reason and the scientific method which are the closest we have to a reliable means of ascertaining truth, if truth be out there.

    And no, contrary to the straw men that others have put up to represent my views, my multiculturalism does not extend to accepting that, say, homeopathy works better than placebo. Part of the postnormal agenda, according to the eoearth article, is recognizing and validating “traditional knowledge”, with a strong implication that such knowledge is valuable whether or not it passes any sort of empirical test. That’s disturbing.

  107. I just noticed that Read referenced Richard Feynman’s “Cargo Cult” speech.

    Which means he can’t be all that bad.

  108. Since people are starting to question global warming, they are coming up with new claims for why CO2 is evil, evil. This http://www.australasianscience.com.au/bi2010/311Gleadow.pdf is a paper claiming that increasing CO2 causes some plants to produce higher levels of toxins and lower levels of proteins or smaller size. Interestingly, the writer claims to be a scientist who has actually done research, but gives no references or checkable evidence, just a general science piece.

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