Words fail me

Via Gummo Trotsky, the latest argument posted by Jennifer Marohasy:

Radiative equilibrium is one of the foundation stones of radiative forcing theory. But it is not a law of physics, only a rather archaic and untested supposition found in climatology textbooks alone.

“For the Earth to neither warm or cool, the incoming radiation must balance the outgoing.”

Not really.


It’s best to regard radiant energy simply as a finite power source — indeed, that power is expressed as watts per square meter. An object is said to “cool” by radiating, yet this would seem to imply that restricting its radiation will make it get hotter and hotter. That’s the very premise of greenhouse theory, of course, that by disturbing outgoing radiance any magnitude of temperature gain is possible. But this is easy to test.

Confine a lightbulb inside an infrared barrier (like a globular mirror) and electrically feed one watt to it. After a while, will it be generating the heat of a thousand watt bulb? No.

When its temperature is consistent with the input, further heating stops.

It’s like water seeking its own level. Lacking any means to radiate to its surroundings, the lightbulb merely gets as hot as a watt of power can make it, which is not much hotter than what it would be in the open. If not, we’d be able to generate incredible temperatures very cheaply. Just confine, wait, and release.

Conservation of energy: it’s not just a phrase. The theory of radiative equilibrium arose early in the 19th century, before the laws of thermodynamics were understood.

Update: Jennifer Ouellette of Cocktail Party Physics suggests LOLdenialists:

i-96bb20cbcf2a7155c60c56c8da8686a9-loldenialist.jpg

Comments

  1. #1 dhogaza
    August 16, 2008

    The thread at marohasy’s is just sad, sad, sad. The one physicist over there is a brave, patient, soul.

  2. #2 z
    August 16, 2008

    never ever ever let marhosy or the person she is quoting near the space program, where anything as simple as no allowing for effective radiation of a steady low energy input has disastrous consequences.

  3. #3 Jennifer Ouellette
    August 16, 2008

    Maybe we need LOLDenialists: “Thermodynamics: Ur doin it rong…” :)

  4. #4 John Mashey
    August 16, 2008

    And BTW, Jennifer’s blog Cocktail Party Physics is worth a visit, especially for the recent APS klimate kerfuffle.

  5. #5 frankis
    August 16, 2008

    God have mercy on Marohasy and her dreamteam of ineducables. Which of her “sceptical” friends do you think she may have run that by before publishing? Bob Carter’s not this stoopid. Louis Hissink? Sure, he’s silly enough. Bill Kininmonth? Nope, proud to be bad but ain’t this clueless. Even out and proud historian Don Aitkin wouldn’t cop to it!

    “Words fail me” is best, I give up too.

  6. #6 Joseph
    August 16, 2008

    Actually, I think she’s right, but she’s not thinking it through. For example, right now there’s likely imbalance in radiative forcing, but

    When its temperature is consistent with the input, further heating stops.

    Let’s say the concentration of GHGs in the atmosphere no longer increases. There’s probably about 0.4C of further “warming in the pipeline.” Simplifying, once the imbalance is resolved, further heating stops, as she says.

    But I’m not sure (or she isn’t sure) what she’s driving at. If the concentration of GHGs continues to increase, the imbalance grows and it becomes harder to get back to a state of equilibrium. The imbalance might shrink eventually, since the equilibrium temperature is logarithmic on GHGs, but theoretically the temperature will continue to increase, more slowly perhaps.

    In her analogy, the infrared barrier would be changing.

  7. #7 Who Cares
    August 16, 2008

    My words don’t fail me. I want the stuff she expects that a the reflector should be made out of. Think of the uses that this form unobtanium can be put to. You could make invincible armor out of the stuff, perfect mirrors or perfect seals, nothing passes the boundary that is build out of this stuff.

  8. #8 Hank Roberts
    August 16, 2008

    > I want the stuff

    You sure? You realize it’s installed around the brain?
    ________________________________________________
    Denilium. You’ll never hear of anything better.

  9. #9 spangled drongo
    August 16, 2008

    Tim,
    You forgot to mention the main scientific law used on this blog: AGW hysteria is inversly proportional to AGW.

  10. #10 Cthulhu
    August 16, 2008

    haha hilarious.

    But here’s an even worse example. Very similar argument about a bulb in a container, but with additional nonsense on top of it to explain how the energy disappears. (warning – contains sudden Gerlich and Tscheuschner advocacy):
    http://www.topix.com/forum/news/global-warming/TI12E8P0MKIF99TF2/post233

    Either this guy and Alan Siddons had the same physics teacher (or lack of), or they are exchanging notes.

  11. #11 z
    August 16, 2008

    i got my early physics teachings in calgary also, and it didn’t come out that way…. that was before the oil boom, though.

  12. #12 ChrisC
    August 16, 2008

    Well… that’s it. She has officially left the planet.

    Her argument is weak as American beer. A better analogy would be:confine a light bulb within an infrared barrier that absorbs some fraction (f) of the outgoing LWR…wait for it to achieve equilibrium with the local envirnoment and measure the temperature. Now, increase the absorbtion fraction by delta f. As more energy is absobed, more must be re-radiated, and by the stephan-boltzman law (F = eps*sigma*T^4) the temperature of the system shall increase. Energy is conserved, the second law of thermodynamics is staisfied and the laws of basic quantum mechanics are invoked.

    It’s funny. When I was doing my undergrad degree, I covered this theory (at a much more detailed level mind you) in not less than 3 different courses (third year quantum mechanics, third year thermo/statistical mechanics and third year solar astrophysics). When I underwent my postgraduate training in meteorology, this basic theory was _applied_ to the atmosphere. Geophysics has used a basic theory to describe the Earth system.

    Radiative balance is fundamental to our understanding of the atmosphere, and explains all manner of phenomena, from the formation of fog overnight to the location of the monsoon trough. Jen has no idea what she’s going on about. But I guess you guys already knew that…

  13. #13 bi -- IJI
    August 17, 2008

    Both Marohasy and spangled drongo need to revise on the difference between watts and joules.

    The difference between watts and joules. This is high school-level stuff, dang it.

    (But I’m sure that just means that I’m being a pedantic latte-sipping elitist, no? wii dun n33d n0 edumacash3n…)

  14. #14 Chris O'Neill
    August 17, 2008

    drongo:

    You forgot to mention the main scientific law used on this blog: AGW hysteria is inversly proportional to AGW.

    Nearly right. The lower the monthly temperature, the greater the denialist troll hysteria on this blog.

  15. #15 Dano
    August 17, 2008

    I need to put on a sweater. The latent heat of evaporation from the steam generated by Marohasy’s brain as it goes into reaction mode has cooled the air such that I’m cold. Or something.

    Best,

    D

  16. #16 David
    August 17, 2008

    That lackwit Siddons must have somehow bribed god to repeal the Law of Conservation of Energy. I wonder when he’s going to unveil his design for a perpetual motion machine.

    Our Jennifer has surpassed herself with this one.

  17. #18 David
    August 17, 2008

    From the wiki: “The Spangled Drongo is an amazing mimic … ” Sweet!

  18. #19 MarkG
    August 17, 2008

    All I learned over at Marohasy’s blog is that arguing about thermodynamics and radiative transfer is kind of a waste of energy when proponents of an argument (ie: Siddons, Marohasy, the usual crowd etc) are apparently unaware that a Watt is not a unit of temperature. High school physics indeed. ‘Not even wrong’ is how I would describe it.

  19. #20 Ian Gould
    August 17, 2008

    Jennifer Morahasy was a senior policy advisor to the Howard Liberal gvoernment.

    She is also a mainstay of the main Australian right-wing think-tank, the Centre for Independent Studies.

    This goes a long way towards explaining the current status of the Liberal Party (out of power federally and in every state and territory).

  20. #21 Magpie
    August 17, 2008

    What the holy hell was that? Where do they think the energy is going when the “bulb gets as hot as it can get”? Does it get siphoned off to generate dragon flame?

  21. #22 Who Cares
    August 17, 2008

    I want the stuff

    You sure? You realize it’s installed around the brain?

    Denilium. You’ll never hear of anything better.

    In that case they can keep it.

  22. #23 anthony
    August 17, 2008

    How many lightbulbs does it take to change the laws of thermodynamics?

    One apparently.

  23. #24 Barton Paul Levenson
    August 17, 2008

    Is Lance advising her?

    The assumption that a planet is in radiative equilibrium with the sun IS conservation of energy! And she denies that hot objects radiate away energy? I don’t know what she studied in high school, but she sure hasn’t taken physics I in college if she denies the Stefan-Boltzmann law. I had the vague idea that Marohasy was some kind of scientist. But she can’t be. No scientist in his or her right mind would make these kind of grossly ignorant statements.

  24. #25 TrueSceptiv
    August 17, 2008

    24 BPL: That is what I can’t understand. Marohasy does have science degrees. From Wiki,
    “She started at the University of Queensland studying a Bachelor of Agricultural Science but after one semester changed to a Bachelor of Science majoring in entomology and botany in 1984.”
    “During the 1990s, she published in Australian and international scientific journals and completed a PhD.”

    How can anyone get any sort of science degree without knowing at least basic Physics? Is that possible, even in Biology?

    Is she really that incompetent, or is it politically motivated dishonesty?

  25. #26 David
    August 17, 2008

    TrueSceptic @ 25, Our Jennifer is not incompetent.

  26. #27 David
    August 17, 2008

    Our Jennifer has also just demonstrated that she doesn’t know anything about geodesy (hardly surprising) or geology (inexcusable): http://www.jennifermarohasy.com/blog/archives/003337.html

    I need to take a long hot shower to try to wash the stupidity off.

  27. #28 MarkG
    August 17, 2008

    >How can anyone get any sort of science degree without knowing at least basic Physics? Is that possible, even in Biology?

    Well, I don’t think there much in the way of basic physics exams in Biology PhD programs. In all fairness there’s not much basic biology in most physics programs either (undergrad or grad). It’s generally not a problem though, since most physicists don’t try to teach blatantly wrong introductory biology to biologists.

  28. #29 Bernard J.
    August 17, 2008

    Whilst Marohasy’s lack of familiarity with fundamental physics might be understandable, if not excusable on a blog attacking climate science, as a biologist her current indulgence of the HIV-does-not-cause-AIDS cannard on her climaet threads is a different matter.

    She should have enough biological understanding to know the potential danger of tolerating this meme on her site, even if she is doing so because it provides a further denialist point of view to reinforce the hunger of her conservative audience.

    If an uninformed wanderer to S&E takes the HIV denialism on board and an adverse medical outcome is the consequence, I can’t help but wonder if she could be skating close to legal culpability, if not certain moral culpability. She has not to date provided any cautionary or disclaiming notices that I have seen.

    Science and Environment is rapidly becoming one of the more toxic cesspits in the blogosphere, and unfortunately all other blogs, no matter how well moderated, are diminished by this unfolding train-wreck exercise in partisan propaganda.

  29. #30 Chris O'Neill
    August 17, 2008

    Lacking any means to radiate to its surroundings, the lightbulb merely gets as hot as a watt of power can make it

    Our Jen has discovered that electricity is a form of heat with its own temperature. Watch out for her publication on how to calculate temperature from wattage.

    OTOH, maybe Jen is actually a one watt herself.

  30. #31 dhogaza
    August 17, 2008

    I thought no place in the intertubes could be as stupid as Watts’ blog, but I was wrong.

    Hissink is on record now at Marohasy’s blog as agreeing that the evidence against AGW is of similar strength to that against HIV/AIDS and evolution, apparently both of which he also opposes.

    Marohasy seems sympathetic to the HIV/AIDS stuff so … perhaps she’s a non-evolution believing biologist? Hmmm … interesting if true.

  31. #32 Lee
    August 17, 2008

    Let me get this straight.

    First, he sets up a thought experiment assuming a material that can’t exist in the real world ( a perfect insulator containing a constant and indestructible energy source).

    Second, he points out that the result of this physically-impossible thought experiment – constant heat input, with constant temperature increase without limit – does not match anything we recognize in the real world and isn’t physically possible in the real world. (Duh!)

    Third, therefore, insulation doesn’t exist.

    Is that about right? Because that is how I read it, and I don’t believe I actually read that posted from someone who considers herself to be worth paying any attention to whatsoever. Or anyone else, for that matter.

  32. #33 mark
    August 17, 2008

    Jenny is sort of right–the Earth will not get hotter than the sun. When it gets close, the Incredible Designer will “poof” temperature back to normal.

  33. #34 sod
    August 17, 2008

    over the last 5 days, Jennifer has allowed posts that claim (or hint at):

    that the molten core of the earth is the real reason for global warming

    that the greenhouse effect is actually cooling the planet

    that arctic sea ice is not melting

    that earth is not in Radiative Equilibrium

    and that it can t be shown that CO2 is connected to global warming.

    pretty strong stuff. she is in for a nobel price soon..

  34. #35 TrueSceptic
    August 17, 2008

    26 David: So…that means…she must be…

    You’ll have to help me. It’s too hard to figure out. ;)

  35. #36 Ed Darrell
    August 17, 2008

    Oh. My. Zeus!

    Now she’s wondering if the Earth has any internal heat, and claiming it’s not considered in meteorological models.

    Come join the pile-on!
    http://timpanogos.wordpress.com/2008/08/17/crankin-the-geology-stupid-past-11/

  36. #37 Michael
    August 17, 2008

    You’re all being very harsh on poor Jennifer.

    Afterall, her area of science expertise was biological control. And apparently the attention given to thermodynamics in the biologcial sciences at UQ is quite poor. I studied the same area at the same time at UQ and I can tell you that thermodynamics never got a look in during my Invertebrate Biology, Parasitology and Ecology classes.

    This is clearly an institutional failure and not a sad example of a person saying stupid things about subjects outside their area of knowledge (which I’ve established is not Jennifers fault anyway).

  37. #38 dhogaza
    August 17, 2008

    Lack of scientific training in physics is no excuse for willful ignorance. She doesn’t *have* to allow physics cranks to dominate her blog. If nothing else, her PhD in Biology should’ve taught her that simple facts in a field of science aren’t going to be tossed out the window by a bunch of cranks who just happen to share her loathing of the possible political implications of certain consequences of said facts.

  38. #39 MarkG
    August 17, 2008

    Wow, what on earth is happening over there? I don’t generally read Marohasy’s blog, it is always like this?

    It actually seems more like some kind of psychology experiment. I mean, Marohasy presents fairly deranged rant from Bill Kininmonth to the effect that greenhouse theory is wrong because greenhouse gases actually cool the planet and noone has considered the effect of convection [Link].

    Then there’s this gaggle of commentators who take over with cries of “oh of course! Convection! Take that IPCC!”. One guy there actually decided to coin a new phrase for convective mixing (“Tunneling Under”) as part of his personal discovery of this new effect.

    I can only assume that Marohasy will soon admit that the whole thing is a test to see how far she can lead her regular readers/commentators into scientific lala land. Either that or the entire blog is an elaborate troll.

  39. #40 Bernard J.
    August 17, 2008

    Apologies. I meant ‘Politics and Environment’, not ‘Science and Environment’.

    The lack of science there has been preoccupying me…B

  40. #41 z
    August 17, 2008

    “I don’t generally read Marohasy’s blog, it is always like this?”

    Same here. Is this typical of the “I’m a scientist and I disagree with AGW theory” community? My God.

  41. #42 Ender
    August 17, 2008

    MarkG – “Wow, what on earth is happening over there? I don’t generally read Marohasy’s blog, it is always like this?”

    As a regular contributor there yes this is pretty much what it is like. Sometime I don’t quite know why I read it however for my level of physics (high school) the research required to rebutt some of the crap is quite instructive.

    Hats off to Chris Crawford, whoever he is, for bringing some real understanding to the conversation.

  42. #43 szqc
    August 17, 2008

    dhogaza @ 38 puts it well – ignorance is not bliss and it is not an excuse.

    Like JM, I am a biologist, also have a Ph.D. and (unlike her) still do biocontrol as a research focus.

    Equally true, my u/grad physics was not strong on thermodynamics. I later had to re-learn the basics from colleagues (physicists) who were strong in it to be able to apply some aspects like regional climate [change] models and how they might affect biocontrol or pest shifts. While it was not difficult (in the sense that the fundamentals can be learned and applied for my narrow purposes quickly), some of the ideas and implications are counter intuitive and certainly the proofs and mechanisms require far more understanding (or at least learning) than I have mastered yet.

    The lesson for this biologist was the same as for any work outside my own field: STFU until you learn the basics and, even after that, remember you still know much less than those who have studied the field for their careers.

    This does not mean accept argument from authority. It means research and it means learning. It means that the deluge of papers that are written by qualified people and more/less agree on the principles are a good indicator that a non expert might have much more to learn. Clearly, JM does not accept that. Not in climate change. Not in DDT responses (even though she should know better). Not in thermodynamics. She thus appears as – and frankly is – a superficial know-nothing. A picowatt lightbulb indeed.

  43. #44 WotWot
    August 17, 2008

    Ender #42.

    I admire your persistence and resilience in trying to bring light to the darkest corners of the loony ward.

    Or maybe you’re just a glutton for punishment? ;)

  44. #45 David
    August 17, 2008

    Michael @ 37 – most of the errors Our Jennifer has made can be seen through by anyone who’s done Physics at high school (the position I’m in), although deeper knowledge would be necessary to thoroughly debunk them.

  45. #46 John Quiggin
    August 17, 2008

    According to Jen’s latest, it’s all a hoax, “pretending ignorance in order to elicit reactions”
    .
    http://www.jennifermarohasy.com/blog/archives/003338.html

    She had me going, I must admit. She’s kept it up for five years at least, and only in the last week or so did I suspect anything. But I suppose the IPA must be even more surprised than I am.

  46. #47 Bernard J.
    August 17, 2008

    Re #40, the very fact of the accumulation of anti-science at P&E leads me to wonder if anyone is compiling a list of what these wingnuts believe, and who it is that believes it?

    For example Graeme Bird, Louis Hissink, James Mayeau, Ian Mott, Gordon Robertson, Squeeky Jen head a cast of even more who all seem to think that global warming (which, by the way, isn’t happening) is happening because…

    “There are estimates that the Earth’s core may be in the vicinity of 5,000 to 6,000°C. That heat has to go somewhere.”

    Frank, if you can’t whack-a-strawman, can you sacrifice enough sleep for a table with ‘crazy/ignorant/lying/paranoid/generally wingnut theory/idea/urban legend in one column, and the trolls and appropriate linking references to their lairs, in two others? ;-)

    Consider it a public service – the world needs to know at a glance just where, and how deeply, the roots of Stupid grow. It might help serious bloggers like Barry Brooks sort out the wheat from the chaff even more quickly than they currently do.

    Just imagine – we could have an annotated bibliography of Denialists…

    Actually, maybe that’s not such a good idea after all!

  47. #48 Gummo Trotsky
    August 17, 2008

    … most of the errors Our Jennifer has made can be seen through by anyone who’s done Physics at high school (the position I’m in), although deeper knowledge would be necessary to thoroughly debunk them.

    (#45)

    Not necessarily. There are two basic principles to remember:

    (1) The only way you can arrive at a true logical deduction from a false premise is by an error of logic.

    (2) Refute the basic error you know (if it’s a high school physics error, and you have high school physics, you do indeed know it), and you’ve refuted the whole argument.

    Unless of course, the author has arrived at a true conclusion through a brilliancy of bad logic.

  48. #49 Michael
    August 17, 2008

    re: my post at #37

    I was kidding.

    Though I am a little worried that JMs efforts are casting us UQ BSc grads in a poor light.

  49. #50 bi -- IJI
    August 17, 2008

    Bernard J.:

    > can you sacrifice enough sleep for a table with ‘crazy/ignorant/lying/paranoid/generally wingnut theory/idea/urban legend in one column, and the trolls and appropriate linking references to their lairs, in two others? ;-)

    Haha. :) It’s a nice idea, except I strongly suspect that pretty much nobody’s going to use the resulting table. Actually I’m not even sure Barry Brooks will use such a table — Lambert already has a list of banned trolls, but Brooks shows no intention of using that either. (And other bloggers like Rabett, Renowden, Haynes, etc. just prefer to make it mostly a free-for-all.)

  50. #51 bernard J.
    August 18, 2008

    John Quiggin at #46.

    Forsooth, the Institute will be writhing in paroxysms of consternation!

    If this dodge were actually true, I would expect her to forthwith cease and desist from maintaining her Politics and Science blog, as just about every thread on it that she has ever initiated follows the same pattern of ignorance of scientific fact, and thus the complete content of the blog has been revealed as an exercise in entrapment.

    Who’d have thought it – all along, Jennifer is not actually a conservative lobbyist, and was in fact a closet AGW proponent…

    Either that, or she realises that she has FUBARed big-time and hopes that by appealing to the dodge of Socratic irony she can escape with her reputation ‘intact’.

    Whichever way one cuts it though, she has shot herself in the foot. Either she is as scientifically incompetent and as politically polemical as she appears, or she has now provided a link, on her own blog no less, to demonstrate that any and all of her posts are merely an exercise in feigned ignorance; in which case the hoards of her supporters have been hugely duped.

    The molten core and the HIV rubbish that have sprouted under her watch last week are just two recent examples of extraordinarily ill-informed ‘discussion’ that Marohasy allows to ferment for too long without her own dissociation from the content, and it makes her proprosal of irony disingenuous at the least.

    Nevertheless, I shall look forward to the linking (if not by Marohasy, then by the true scientific stalwarts who dare to venture there) of this “Socratic Irony” claim of Marohasy’s to all past and future threads on Politics and Environment, so that all who read this festering material understand that, according to Marohasy’s own confession, it is really just an exercise in aggravation.

    R.I.P. Politics and Environment.
    R.I.P. Jennifer Marohasy’s credibility.
    We told them they were sick…

  51. #52 Bernard J.
    August 18, 2008

    For ‘molten core’ in #51, read ‘molten core/imputed global-warming association’.

  52. #53 Bernard J.
    August 18, 2008

    Oh Gawd, just when you think that it can’t get worse:

    One source of the heat might be explicable if the earth’s rotation is powered by a homopolar, or Farday, motor. The electrical driving currents have been measured at the earth’s poles at millions of amperes.

    These currents are derived not only from the sun but also the solar system and the galaxy.

    Posted by: Louis Hissink at August 18, 2008 02:03pm

    (My emphasis)

    So, the world turns because it’s plugged into the cosmic powerpoint. Dang, and here I’d done gone and learned myself about angular momentum…

    Frank, that list of nutty theories, their subscribers and where said subscribers come from would be entertaining to read, if nothing else! From an academic viewpoint I’d be curious to know what, if any, social network pattern there is underlying this bizarre aggregation of non-science.

  53. #54 David
    August 18, 2008

    Bernard, maybe they all congregate at the Time Cube …

  54. #55 Steve
    August 18, 2008

    Time cube! hehehe totally forgotten about that, thanks for reminding me and putting a smile on my face at the end of the day.

  55. #56 terence
    August 18, 2008

    Didn’t we have a denier light bulb thread a while back? I submit the following:

    How many ‘sceptics’ does is take to change a light bulb?

    Thre…OUCH!!…man is that thing hot!

  56. #57 TrueSceptic
    August 18, 2008

    28 MarkG: I’m not suggesting that anyone has to get a formal Physics qualification as a prerequisite to a Biology degree, just that I can’t believe that anyone with a degree in any science would be ignorant of such absolutely basic stuff. The basic laws of Physics underly all else, do they not?

  57. #58 P. Lewis
    August 18, 2008

    One can’t help but think that FDB’s contribution at JM’s Socratic Irony thread sums it all up rather succinctly:

    Post-facto face-saving bollocks.

    And Bernard J’s suggestion (over there) of

    The real irony here is that all anyone has to do is to link any future (or past, for that matter) threads to this one and the internal inconsistency, that now defines Politics and Science, will scream out to any reader who does not see into the ‘invisible’ region of the EM spectrum.

    possibly falls slightly short of the mark, but only because all loony tunes bloggers and their commenters can now be referred to the Socratic Irony thread at JM’s blog (but perhaps that was what he actually meant anyway). Perhaps we should start with icecap and Watts, amongst others.

    Of course, what JM might do now is start a new thread and title it “The Socratic Irony of ‘Socratic Irony’”.

  58. #59 P. Lewis
    August 18, 2008

    BTW, perhaps this pseudoscience of thermodynamics, but not as we know it should have its own term.

    Cryostatics perhaps (since “Utter bollocks” is perhaps too profane)?

  59. #60 TrueSceptic
    August 18, 2008

    53 Bernard: Yes, Louis is a Believer in the Plasma/Electric Universe “theory”. Truly, there is no belief too insane for that fantasist.

  60. #61 Bernard J.
    August 18, 2008

    Time Cube…

    My first though was no-one could be that

    Hissink’s and Curtin’s ‘science’, Bird’s vitriol, Robertson’s homophobia – David, I think you have pinned down the nexus of the network!

  61. #62 Ian Gould
    August 18, 2008

    “Though I am a little worried that JMs efforts are casting us UQ BSc grads in a poor light.”

    Yes, but think of the joy she bringing to QUT and Griffith graduates.

  62. #63 ChrisC
    August 18, 2008

    Maybe we’re assuming too much when we make the assumption that the laws of thermodynamics are valid. Maybe the earth can absorb as much energy as it wants. Did you ever think about that!?!

  63. #64 Bernard J.
    August 18, 2008

    Um, the middle chunk of my last post seems to have been sucked into the TimeCube. It went something like:

    “…nutty. But then I considered…”

    although this is the shrunken version.

    The weird thing is, when I clicked the ‘back’ button to rescue the post, it wasn’t there, but the post before it was…

    Ooo…

  64. #65 Bernard J.
    August 18, 2008

    Later, that same day…

    This, in the context of the core spinning faster than the crust:

    Things start to become explicable if you ignore the standard geological timescale, but doing that makes you a target as a quasi-creationist, so I prefer not to comment.

    Posted by: Louis Hissink at August 18, 2008 02:35pm

    Yeah – don’t like the inconvenient fact of the age of the Earth, so just erase it from the equation…

    Louis, if you’re going to shake up a paradigm, it’s usually done on the basis of evidence, including all known, relevant parameters.

    You expend a great deal of effort accusing climate scientists of ignoring your imagined science (to dignify the term), and yet you cavalierly ignore inconvenient – dare I say it – truths of real science when you formulate your own version of the universe.

    If you don’t want to be targeted as a creationist, quasi or otherwise, then don’t behave like a creationist.

    Or a denialist.

  65. #66 NT
    August 18, 2008

    Sorry I have to brag. I now it’s wrong to laugh at ignorance but sometimes I can’t help it…

    Graeme Bird: ”
    [quoting me] “This post was about the contribution of the Earth’s interior heat to global temps, yes? The only way interior heat gets out is via volcanoes and mid ocean ridges yes?”

    No thats not right. It can conduct its way up and like trying to get your kettle to simmer evenly (which is a hard gig) it ought not be assumed that its going to come up evenly. Rather it will come up in waves and oscillations. Like the suns energy making its way to the surface of the sun. No reason to think that it would be uniform and stable all the time. In fact it would be quite bizzare if it were uniform.

    Its far more likely that there will be heat buildups and releases…. waves of thermal energy coming up via the ocean floor.”

    Me (being hilariously funny): “Yes, Graeme I find your analysis on Mid-Ocean Ridges very compelling… Waves of thermal energy, probably driven by coriolis forces acting on a plastic mantle. These waves are probably the source of oceanic and Kelvin waves. IN fact if you look at the AMO you will probably see a psuedo-semi-periodic oscillation not uncommon to the thermal energy waves you describe. Coincidence? I think not.”

    Graeme (being dimwitted): “Right. Thank you very much. Much better. The Kelvin waves that you speak of than ought to have been predictable inductively and searched for. Perhaps they were stumbled upon.

    Now another point would be that these sort of bursts of energy ought to come in different wavelengths just like with the sun. For example a period of two solar cycles can be thought of as a wave-length as it were. So while we may detect these Kelvin waves that you are talking about, other types of energy buildups and releases from the deep earth may be harder to get a handle on.”

    If you’re bored you can read it all:http://www.jennifermarohasy.com/blog/archives/003337.html#comments

    This is the funniest time I have ever had at Jen’s Blog. Should I feel guilty? Hmmmmm Am I bad for not feeling guilty?

  66. #67 TrueSceptic
    August 18, 2008

    63 ChrisC: And I *know* that I can fly by flapping my arms hard enough and I really, *really*, believe that I can do it. ;)

  67. #68 Barton Paul Levenson
    August 18, 2008

    sod quotes Jennifer as saying:

    that the molten core of the earth is the real reason for global warming

    This has got to be one of the stupidest denialist arguments out there, though her denial of the Stefan-Boltzmann law is probably at or near the top.

    Mean geothermal flux on Earth: 0.087 watts per square meter

    Mean solar input to the climate system: 237 W/m2

    Divide A by B. Discuss.

  68. #69 Barton Paul Levenson
    August 18, 2008

    MarkG posts:

    Marohasy presents fairly deranged rant from Bill Kininmonth to the effect that greenhouse theory is wrong because greenhouse gases actually cool the planet and noone has considered the effect of convection

    I believe the first attempt at a radiative-convective atmosphere model was made by E.O. Hulbert in 1931. The first practical radiative-convective model was by Manabe and Strickler in 1964. Parameterizing convection is a major concern of modern climate modelers.

    Of course, to know that, you would have to have made a deep study of the subject, like reading Spencer Weart’s on-line book for a few minutes.

  69. #70 ChrisC
    August 18, 2008

    No convection in ye old climate model eh? That’s funny. I’ve been including convection in the planetary boundary layer models I help develop at work. Pretty much every practicle, global NWP model since the mid-70′s has included convection in its boundary layer parameterisation, and convection has been included in the the omeaga predictions since at least the mid 80′s (see Holton: Introduction to Dynamic Meteorology…any edition you choose).

    Convection is tricky, don’t get me wrong. But for heavens sake, why would modern models include ice micro-physics and surface moisture fluxes before they included PBL parameterisations in unstable cases.

    Also, I’d just like to point out that CAOGCMs are able to resolve tropical cyclones. Could they do THAT without convective processes?

  70. #71 trueSceptic
    August 18, 2008

    68 BPL: But surely she’s not saying that? It’s her guest bloggers who say these things, so she can pretend that she’s only putting them out there for discussion.

  71. #72 TrueSceptic
    August 18, 2008

    69:BPL: A whole few minutes? Who’s got time for that when they’ve got a blog to run? ;)

  72. #73 sod
    August 18, 2008

    sod quotes Jennifer as saying:

    well, i wouldn t call it a quote. (i said “or hint at”..)

    the topic is here:

    http://www.jennifermarohasy.com/blog/archives/003337.html#comments

    what i see as happening is this: denialist use their usual tactic. don t make a clear point. keep it vague.

    uninformed “sceptics” visiting the blog will read the post and replies and leave with the feeling that this is a subject that has not been studied in detail and is wide open for discussion.

    a number similar to yours was posted by Mark Duffett.

    http://www.jennifermarohasy.com/blog/archives/003339.html#comments

    it didn t get much applause from denialist commenters…

  73. #74 Ian Gould
    August 18, 2008

    “Mean geothermal flux on Earth: 0.087 watts per square meter

    Mean solar input to the climate system: 237 W/m2″

    Well yes but the geothermal figure is only based on a limited set of observations and on known physical processes.

    As the psosters at E&P will tell you, you need to take into account as yet unknown physical processes (like pixies) and the psosibility that massive amounts of heat are pouring forth from the Earth but we just haven’t noticed.

    That appareently is how real science does it.

    Personlly I think I’ll hit up RJ Reynolds for $1 million to study the possibility that lung cancer is actually caused by the Zarbulons of the Gavulox galaxy attacking us with their invisible undetectable theta rays.

    After all, no-one’s ever definitively proven that that isn’t the case.

    And idf that that doesn;t work I’ll simply change my theory to attribute lung cancer to the Tralfamagorians of Omicron Persei 8 attacking us with their invisible undetectable Mu rays.

  74. #75 z
    August 19, 2008

    ‘it’s all a hoax, “pretending ignorance in order to elicit reactions” ‘

    oh man what an opportunity. now is the time when we should en masse all say that in fact she was right in the first place, and we were ridiculing her in order to make her change her mind. then she will claim that she knew that and was merely feigning a hoax. then we post….. we could keep it spinning forever, thereby providing an infinite source of clean energy.

  75. #76 TrueSceptic
    August 20, 2008

    75 z: It’s not possible to stay clean there. That’s quite a cesspit.

  76. #77 coby
    August 20, 2008

    I have offered a few observations on Marohasy and that thread in particular here: http://scienceblogs.com/illconsidered/2008/08/making_lemonade.php

  77. #78 SJT
    August 23, 2008

    Now Lubos Motl is referring to the author of that piece of drek as an authority.

    http://motls.blogspot.com/2008/05/average-temperature-vs-average.html

    “Vincent Gray and Alan Siddons have been emphasizing an important point that the (arithmetic) average temperature is not the relevant quantity that should be substituted into various calculations of the heat and energy budget of Earth.”

  78. #79 Barton Paul Levenson
    August 23, 2008

    I think RealClimate dealt with that one a year or two ago. McIntyre or some crackpot of that sort was saying that the mean temperature of the Earth’s surface “didn’t mean anything.” I think my contribution was to ask him whether Venus had a higher surface temperature than the Earth, on average, and if so did the difference mean anything.

  79. #80 Bernard J.
    August 24, 2008

    This, from one of Marohasy’s scientific illiterates on the More Skepticism in the Mainstream Media: Case of the Warm and Fuzzy thread.

    Arctic ice is re-freezing
    http://arctic.atmos.uiuc.edu/cryosphere/IMAGES/current.365.jpg
    Probably AGW now definitely on the way to RIP

    Posted by: REX at August 24, 2008 11:05 PM

    Parody, “Socratic irony”, or just plain muddle-headed cluelessness?

  80. #81 Bernard J.
    August 25, 2008

    Later, the following week…

    LOOK WHAT IS YOUR PROBLEM PATRICK B YOU MORON!!!!!

    My position is in fact unassailable so long as you think that human-added CO2 is a net warmer and not a net cooler.

    Thats just a fact. There is no way you can get around that you idiot. Thats why I call this position unassailable.

    So what is the matter with you Patrick B?

    What is your problem?

    Could it be solved by a Schaums outline course in logic? Or is it in fact a MORAL failing?

    You are an idiot.
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

    Lets go over it again and one day some understanding is going to penetrate your feeble minds. We are in an ice age. We have been in an ice age for 39 million years. Since North and South America fused we have been in a particularly brutal and pulverising ice age.

    Human-CO2-warming is inferred. There is no evidence for it. So it must be wrong or it must be SMALL!!!!!!

    Got it. Patrick B you moron? Or am I going to fast for you you dim bulb?

    The position that any CO2-warming IS A GOOD THING is unassailable. Since if CO2-warming were strong enough to be harmful we would see it in the evidential record.

    Now do you understand Patrick B? Have you clicked yet you !@#$%^&*…………..dummy?

    We are just going to have to go over it again and again and again until you thick, blockhead, dumbasses get it.

    And I suppose on one level it doesn’t matter if you get it or not because you are malacious, nihilistic liars. But on another level it does matter. Because if you know that this is well understood then you will also know that the game is up.

    Posted by: GraemeBird. at 25 August, 2008 08:55pm

    I can only repeat the contribution of one wit, on P&E, to another of Bird’s rants:

    “Nurse!”

  81. #82 Dano
    August 25, 2008

    Because if you know that this is well understood then you will also know that the game is up.

    Posted by: GraemeBird. at 25 August, 2008 08:55pm

    I can only repeat the contribution of one wit, on P&E, to another of Bird’s rants:

    “Nurse!”

    I miss the moronity with [killfile]. Shucky darns.

    And I went to Marohasy’s blog recently. Never again – I’m not into irritainment.

    Best,

    D

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