Andrew Bolt has written a post where he pretends that comments made by Andrew Lacis about the first order draft of the summary of chapter 9 of AR4 WG1 are actually aboout the published report.

Andrew Revkin asked Lacis what he thought about the published report:

“The revised chapter was much improved,” he said. “That’s different than saying everything in there is nailed down, but I think it’s a big improvement.”

Overall, he said, “I commend the authors for doing as good a job as they did. That’s the way the science process ought to work. You get inputs from everybody, find any bugs, crank through and the science moves forward.”

And from Gabriele Hegerl, one of the lead authors:

We felt Andrew Lacis’ comment reflected that he couldn’t clearly see where statements came from, which is why we strengthened the pointers from the technical sections to the executive summary.

The heading ‘Human Induced warming ..widespread’ is exactly as strong as we felt the finding summarized under it reflects: ‘Anthropogenic warming of the climate system can be detected in temperature observations taken at the surface, in the troposphere and in the oceans.’ We felt that the term ‘widespread’ well reflected the fact that we have detection and attribution results that show that recent warming is inconsistent with internal climate variability and other external influences alone in surface temperature (see Section 9.4.2), tropospheric temperature (see section 9.4.4.), and in ocean temperature data (see section 9.5.1).


  1. #1 Michael
    February 9, 2010

    …but he does know what daft is.

  2. #2 Derecho64
    February 9, 2010

    I think it’s time for the climate science community to take on the denialists, their blogosphere minions (often one and the same) and the crap “journalists” head on.

    They’ve been trashing the community for years – and ignoring them, or hoping they’ll go away, or that the literature is sufficient, is a big mistake. They aren’t going away, they have far more influence than they should, and they don’t care about the literature.

    What we need is a cadre of scientists, well-versed in the nastier aspects of PR, debate, and so on, to take the denialists head-on. No more pussy-footing around. The denialists have taken their shots, time to return fire – and from now on, start lofting shells that they’ll have to answer. Being on one’s back foot all the time is not the way to win a war – and yes, it’s a war. Time to go on offense, instead of playing a weak defense (if at all).

    Let’s put Plimer, McIntyre, Watts, Monckton, Bolt, Delingpole, and all the other morons, on notice. The science community isn’t going to play it nice anymore. Yes, be honest – but be ruthless and show them for the charlatans, frauds, liars and scum that they are.

    Can you tell I’m pissed? Good!

  3. #3 Stephan
    February 9, 2010

    Derecho64: I couldn’t agree more. We teach our students and children not to lie, we teach critical thinking in our first-year units, and we penalize students who plagiarize. We pretend to care about the truth and about science.

    Yet we have (so far) found it difficult to call lying liars liars. This must change. Monckton lies. Bolt lies. Carter lies. And so on. They lie. They are not (just) wrong. They lie.

  4. #4 DeanL
    February 9, 2010

    If you’d like a clear demonstration that Andrew Bolt has absolutely no grasp of the science, see the claims that he has made in relation to a paper on the intergalacials and its relevance to AGW.

    Bolt’s comments and claims are [here](

    The paper linked to his post is [here](

  5. #5 Brian Schmidt
    February 10, 2010

    Bolt is learning from Roger Pielke Jr., to attack draft version of documents and ignore the correct final version:

  6. #7 John
    February 10, 2010

    Bolt wrong? Get out!

  7. #8 Michael
    February 10, 2010
  8. #9 AssemblyLineHuman
    February 10, 2010

    As Frank Zappa said, the meek shall inherit nothing. Derecho64, I do agree, though I think scientists are the wrong people to do it. Intellectual rationality doesn’t translate well to ‘on the street’ rationality. Secondly, appealing to logic and cold hard analysis doesn’t win people over.

    In my opinion, the BIGGEST mistake the scientific community does, is debate on scientific terms. We all KNOW that denialism exist based on political ideology. We all KNOW that if AGW did not necessitate government regulation, questioning of mass consumption and the activities of big business, there wouldn’t be a debate.

    So debate on these terms. Don’t give them the luxury of pretending to be mainly motivated by science. Call them out.

  9. #10 Mike
    February 10, 2010

    Bolt is an intriguing character, just like his pal Akerman. In the USA they have these types of journalists too of course, such as Glenn Beck.

    I’ve always assumed they weren’t too bright. However by the way they cleverly and knowingly distort and manipulate the truth to serve a deep political conviction, I’m not so sure. Censoring of blog commentary which definitively shows their arguments to be hollow, wrong, or just fabricated, goes without saying of course. I’m banned from the Akerman blog, as are many others. Though one intrepid blogger actually got an email response from Akerman stating that his comments would only be published if they agreed with his views! What possessed Akerman to write that into evidence I’ll never know!

    Everything is very calculated and aimed squarely at a particularly type of person who will only listen to what they want to hear, and doesn’t usually stray much outside the safety zone of the blog and a small number of websites such as WUWT and climateaudit. They get quite a following this way.

  10. #11 MikeB
    February 10, 2010

    Derecho64 – I’m as angry as you are. The problem is that the ‘offical’ science bodies have been dreadful at taking these people on, and nobody in the media is interested.

    There was a phone on BBC Radio yesterday about the low level of trust in climate change scientists . Mike Hulme was speaking for the scientists, and that prize prick Philip Stott as some sort of sceptic. That’s a false balance already. Then it went downhill as Hulme basically just stopped breathing. Dreadful. Couldn’t be bothered to correct basic errors, cherrypicking, Stotts own credentials, etc. A waste of time.

    You had the three parts of the problem in that one studio. A shameless media friendly ‘sceptic'(Lomborg style), a media obsessed with ‘balance’, but eager to cover a man bites dog story with no attempt at even basic research; and a scientist who couldn’t even be bothered to defend his life work.

    If we want to get these scumbags, we are going to have to do it ourselves, which means punishing any media which repeats such crap, exposing the deniers they do entertain for the liars they are, and hitting as hard and as many times as we can. This is going to be a grass roots war – almost nobody in ‘authority’ has a clue what they are doing.

    No more nice, that’s what I say.

  11. #12 Paul UK
    February 10, 2010

    Totally agree MikeB.

    Time to go on the attack.

  12. #13 Dibble
    February 10, 2010

    “Mike Hulme was speaking for the scientists, and that prize prick Philip Stott as some sort of sceptic. That’s a false balance already.”

    It’s a shame the real balance of this ‘debate’ isn’t more fairly reflected in the media. A fair representation of the balance of the evidence in a debate about AGW and it’s possible threats, would see around 90 climate scientists engage in a debate with just the one Monktonish political lobbyist. By appearing one to one it lends credence to some sort of dichotomy to this argument.

  13. #14 JamesA
    February 10, 2010

    I agree that we need to take the intellectual fight to the denialists, but one has to be careful; if you argue things their way (i.e. unscientifically), they win. If you try to argue things properly, you risk being ignored. The trouble is that the vast majority of journalists are interested in stories, not facts, and they know that pedantry doesn’t sell.

  14. #15 Shelama
    February 10, 2010

    Dibble, I was going to say about 97 to one, but 90 will do it. Even allow Lindzen at Monckton’s table.

  15. #16 Ian Forrester
    February 10, 2010

    Sir John Houghton, who played a critical role in establishing the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPPC), is considering a law suit because he has been continuously misquoted by the denier media (“Unless we announce disasters, no one will listen,” Sir John was supposed to have said in 1994).

    Sir John, who was the former head of the Met Office but is now living in semi-active retirement in Wales, said he is considering taking legal action because he feels that the continued recycling of the misquotation is doing him and his science a huge disfavour.

    “It doesn’t do me any good because it suggests to everyone that I have hyped things up. I’ve been growing aware of it now for some time. The trouble is, if I just deny it then it cuts no ice with the people who want to believe it. I have to consider legal action,” Sir John said.

    It will be interesting to see how the liars act in court (if it ever comes to trial) since there is a vast difference between lying in a newspaper article or blog and lying under oath. The legal term is perjury.

  16. #17 Jon
    February 10, 2010

    Hmm but what did Andrew Revkin say about it.

    “But after reviewing the chapter myself just now, I have to say that at least one passage — as far as I can tell — did not contain a single caveat and did not reflect the underlying body of evidence and analysis at the time (or even now):

    Human-induced warming of the climate system is widespread. Anthropogenic warming of the climate system can be detected in temperature observations taken at the surface, in the troposphere and in the oceans.

    I have yet to see anyone provide definitive evidence — with no error bars — that the fingerprint of human-generated greenhouse gases (or other emissions or actions) is unequivocal. The only thing described as “unequivocal” in the report was the warming, not the cause, unless I really haven’t been paying attention for the last two decades.

    I’ve sent out an email to the lead authors and overall leaders of the report on the basic science and will update this post when they respond.”

    And of course hist article continues. Remember boys and girls if you are asking for trial there will be no more deleting comments that are contrary to your echo chamber production.


  17. #18 Bud
    February 10, 2010

    DeanL #4 – no one can be that incompetent. He either didn’t read the paper or is lying about it. Having read below the line, it could well be either, because his followers sure as hell don’t read the literature.

  18. #19 dhogaza
    February 10, 2010

    Good piece by the Independent, thanks for that link.

    Of course, the comments section seems to be populated by people who think the problem isn’t the fact that he’s misquoted and therefore misrepresented, but rather that the Independent has exposed it.

  19. #20 Phila
    February 10, 2010

    The science community isn’t going to play it nice anymore. Yes, be honest – but be ruthless and show them for the charlatans, frauds, liars and scum that they are.

    While I’d love to see this happen, I think it’s a bit too rationalistic in its assumption that people are open to believing in AGW, but are simply being misled by charlatans and frauds. The deniers’ message is effective in part because it’s exactly what people want to hear.

    The idea that the public is essentially a blank slate is part of the problem, IMO. It’s not simply a matter of presenting them with data that would convince someone who’s scientifically literate, nor is it a matter of proving that denialists have lied. These things may help, but ultimately you have to tell a better story, and give people a reason to believe it that outweighs their preference for stasis.

  20. #21 el gordo
    February 10, 2010

    Andy Pitman will become the biggest loser if he fails to relax his zeal. I sincerely hope Tim doesn’t retain the same notions, otherwise Monckton will have him for lunch.

  21. #22 DeanL
    February 10, 2010

    The truth is, journalists like Andrew Bolt have it made. They have a ready audience and band of supporters that will forgive them any transgression and accept whatever they say. One could make the claim that climate scientists have the same in that respect; but, the difference is, Andrew Bolt has an “out” and can just say “Well, I’m not a scientist, I just report on it.”, whilst scientists are held rigidly to account.

    As Tim has also seen, Bolt makes erroneous claim after erroneous claim which are immediately conveyed to tens of thousands via newspapers and news limited internet coverage and for which he is never held to account.

    Small wonder this battle is being lost. And, believe me, that’s all these political ideologues like Bolt see it as. Right or wrong, truth or untruth, fact or fiction are of secondary importance to the likes of Bolt who cares only that his “side” wins the battle.

    And, make no mistake, they are winning. That will please sceptics and deniers but in 20 or 50 years time, the “I told you so”s will not be worth a brass razoo.

    Not only that but, if and when action is taken, the likes of Bolt will just claim the action was unnecessary – see Y2K, the ozone hole, etc for proof of this.

    It doesn’t look good, does it?

  22. #23 DeanL
    February 10, 2010

    By the way, I wrote to Professor Rohling.

    This is his response to Bolt’s misreprentation:

    Dear Dean

    This is always bound to happen, I guess. The piece [Bolt’s] seems to be selective representation of parts of the press release, and I doubt that the paper (which is openly available in preprint) has been looked at. The complete release is copied below, and explicitly states that our work is relevant not for climate change in the next decade to century, but longer-term trends only

    See the difference: Had a climate scientist done what Bolt did, he’d possibly currently be contemplating suicide due to the harrassment from sceptics.

    Level playing field? Not even close.

  23. #24 MikeH
    February 10, 2010

    Re #17 [Here]( is the link to Monckton’s slide with the made-up quote attributed to Sir John Houghton.

  24. #25 MikeH
    February 10, 2010

    Try again – I meant #16

    Re #16 [Here]( is the link to Monckton’s slide with the made-up quote attributed to Sir John Houghton

  25. #26 jonesy
    February 10, 2010

    “Time to go on the attack.”
    And you could start with this arsehat

    CM’s doing a sterling job but a few heavy hitters would sure liven things up.

  26. #27 dhogaza
    February 10, 2010

    And you could start with this arsehat

    He appears to get very little traffic … go for the head or heart, not the pinky toe of the beast 🙂

  27. #28 bruced
    February 10, 2010

    As a retired scientist, I too am disgusted with the way the non-science = nonsense of the likes of Monckton, Plimer etc are continually pushed in the press, radio and TV. But the reality is that it is very difficult to counter this nonsense when the press want to push it. Unfortunately the only forum where these types can be pursued is through the courts where everything can be closely examined. A good example of this is how the Holocaust-denier David Irving met his comeuppance when {copied from Wikipaedia} “” Irving’s reputation as an historian was widely discredited after he brought an unsuccessful libel case against the American historian Deborah Lipstadt and Penguin Books in 1996. The court found that Irving was an active Holocaust denier, antisemite and racist, who “associates with right-wing extremists who promote neo-Nazism,”[4] and that he had “for his own ideological reasons persistently and deliberately misrepresented and manipulated historical evidence.””
    Maybe we need to pass to Sir John Houghton our encouragement to take Monckton to court. Good time to do it as he has a lazy $100k from his Aus tour. Or who wants to stand up and say “Monckton’s a LIAR” and get him to sue.

  28. #30 Bernard J.
    February 11, 2010


    I’ve tried before on Deltoid to entice Monckton to sue me, but he has thus far avoided any threat of litigation.

    So I’ll happily stand up and say:

    “Monckton’s a LIAR”.

  29. #31 Lars Karlsson
    February 11, 2010

    Here is a link to Monckton’s slide with the doctored out-of-context quote of Trenberth.

  30. #32 JasonW
    February 11, 2010

    Why is it so hard to call the Laird out on his BS? I’m pretty sure that attributing false quotes to people (on a crappy ppt slide that would be an embarassment in high school) is not only unethical, but also illegal.

  31. #33 Dibble
    February 11, 2010

    Lars Karlsson 31.
    It’s sadly ironic that the likes of Monkton gleefully use stolen private emails, misquoted and out of any context whatsoever, to illustrate a percieved inaccuracy of climate modelling in general, yet chose to ignore powerful, unambiguous, public statements from the same respected climate scientist, when he says….

    “It is absolutely certain that carbon dioxide is a greenhouse gas and produces warming, despite Danaher’s wishes. Without carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases, Earth’s surface would be some 32 degrees Fahrenheit colder than it is now. Increased carbon dioxide will increase this warming effect, and both theory and observations are consistent with this fact. The evidence of this happening is widespread and abundant, so that the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) in 2007 was able to state with unanimous agreement from all of over 100 countries that global warming is unequivocal. But global warming does not stop weather from happening, and cold outbreaks continue and are fully expected. It does not stop winter. And it does not stop La Niña from happening and setting up unusually cold regional patterns of weather across the United States and other parts of the world that last a year or two.”

    If it wasn’t all so sad for the individuals being presecuted for their work, and ultimately, for the well being of the worlds ecosystems and inhabitants it’s almost farcically comical to see how easily a small cabal of mendacious political lobbyists have highjacked, what was, a serious scientific debate.

  32. #34 MarkB
    February 12, 2010

    Another response by Dr. Lacis:

    “There is a great deal of irony in this basically nonsensical stuff, some of which I find rather amusing. The global warming denier blogs, where this issue first came up, seem to think that I was being critical of the I.P.C.C. report in the same way as seen from their perspective, and, as a result, I have received e-mails from the denier crowd hailing my remarks and commending me for “speaking up” on this important topic.

    Little do they realize that the basic thrust of my criticism of the I.P.C.C. draft was really to register a clear complaint that I.P.C.C. was being too wishy-washy and was not presenting its case for anthropogenic impact being the principal driver of global warming as clearly and forcefully as they could, and should.”

    “Had I been asked to write this chapter (which I wasn’t), I would describe “understanding and attributing of climate change” as simply a problem in physics, which it actually is. I would have started the Executive Summary with:
    Human-induced warming of the climate system is established fact.”

    So which scientist will deniers lie about next?

  33. #35 Bernard J.
    February 12, 2010


    [That is delicious](

    I wonder if Bolt will have the intestinal fortitude to address this comment of Lacis’?

  34. #36 Offenbark
    February 15, 2010

    What a wonderful little group of onanists I’ve stumbled upon in this blog.

    “Deniers”? “denialists”? what is this – the bloody IPCC Inquistion?

    The science does not prove that any climate change is anthropogenic. It does prove however, how many gullible wannabees are willing to support anything that suits their wet ideology or religious beliefs.

    Much as I abhor most of what Andrew Bolt stands for, he stands out as beacon of truth and light when compared to the rubbish I’ve read here.

    Bless you all. And stop when you start wearing glasses. All too late I fear.

  35. #37 FJM
    February 15, 2010

    @36 Offenbark

    Perhaps you can enlighten us by showing us what has caused the warming in the past 30-40 years then?

  36. #38 Chris O'Neill
    February 15, 2010


    Andrew Bolt stands for, he stands out as beacon of truth and light

    Anyone who says in any context that Bolt stands out as a beacon of truth and light doesn’t have too much concern for their own credibility.

  37. #39 ge0050
    January 1, 2011

    I find the use of terms like “denier” hurts the credibility of climate science. There is nothing scientific about the use of such terms.

    Skepticism is the at the heart of the scientific method. Assuming we know the “truth” is not science, it is faith. History shows that virtually all scientific theories are eventually shown to be incomplete or otherwise wrong.

  38. #40 Dave R
    January 1, 2011

    >I find the use of terms like “denier” hurts the credibility of climate science.

    No you don’t, you liar. You _wish_ to hurt the credibility of climate science and having no scientific argument you resort instead to this straw man.

    Skepticism is about judging things by the evidence. [The evidence]( for human caused global warming is overwhelming. That is why there is a [massive consensus]( among the relevant experts and the world’s scientific organizations. Those who are in denial of this reality are correctly labeled deniers.

  39. #41 chek
    January 1, 2011

    “I find the use of terms like “denier” hurts the credibility of climate science.”

    Your point is a good one, and also one I’ve devoted a great deal of thought to. I’d add that it’s also highly inaccurate, given what is usually meant is “dumbfuckinarsewipedeniercuntwankerhurtingthecredibilityofhumanintelligence”.

    “There is nothing scientific about the use of such terms”.

    Indeed, but understandably in everyday situations it does tend to get shortened to ‘denier’ for brevity’s sake and ease of use.

    “Skepticism is the at the heart of the scientific method.”

    But sadly, is quite obviously a completely absent stranger in the field of climate change denial, where any old conspiracy theory de jour can be adapted or invented to ignore existing evidence and will be left scrupulously unchallenged by AGW-denial fellow travellers brandishing apparently completely contradictory whacko theories.

    “History shows that virtually all scientific theories are eventually shown to be incomplete or otherwise wrong”.

    Ah, one could also say that most generalisations are poorly informed, snide comments cut more mustard, and epigrams are no substitute for making a coherent case.

  40. #42 luminous beauty
    January 1, 2011

    “Skepticism is the at the heart of the scientific method. History shows that virtually all scientific theories are eventually shown to be incomplete or otherwise wrong”.

    [Wronger than wrong](

  41. #43 Fran Barlow
    January 1, 2011

    Some troll regurgitated the polluter catechism for the umpteenth time:

    Skepticism is the at the heart of the scientific method.

    Implies more than it claims. Science is not the project of any one scientist but the result of a sustained scientific endeavour connecting past present and future humanity. Accordingly, scientific rigour in methodological design and reporting is the sine qua non {“at the heart of”} of science. This allows scope both to corroborate findings and interrogate inferences. Scepticism is possible precisely because what has been revealed is done so through usages established by consensus. Because these practices are explicit, they too can be interrogated and where a case is made out for better practice, supplant an older set of consensus with a new and more illuminating set of conventions — a new consensus.

    What you are proposing (though I doubt you even understand the episteme you blurt out here) as at the heart of science is not skepticism (a rational and coherent critique seeking intellectually parsimony) but a form of intellectual nihilism based on nothing more than the general claim that absolute truth is unattainable.

    If it is really your assertion that we make nothing at all of what we take to be observable reality then your objection too would be moot. You can have nothing worth listening to. Those of us who continue to accept that the universe is in principle, knowable will continue to use this knowledge to inform public policy and you can please yourself, or not.

    Assuming we know the “truth” is not science, it is faith.

    Scientists never claim to have the truth in an absolute sense. What they have are theories of the relationships between observable phenomena which, when relied upon, are revealing and can be used to guide public policy in ways likely to support rather than subvert human wellbeing.

    We humans trade in risk, uncertainty and reward all the time. Doing what seems the most rational thing, based on all the knowable data and best models available at the time a decision must be made is no guarantee of success. Yet when we ignore pertinent evidence and reason in framing our decisions, and things fail seriously, the judgements others make of us a far harsher. People call bad management rather than bad luck.

    This is especially pertinent when this poor risk trading applies not to individuals but to whole societies. Most people expect governments to take the best advice available, even though we accept that the best advice may be imperfect in ways that we can scarcely imagine. Yet what would one make of a state that, waving about the slogan of “skepticism” declared that as absolute truth was unattainable and nothing truly knowable, every action was equally plausible and proceeded to act with complete caprice, utterly ignoring harmful consequences, insisting that causality could not be shown?

    I suggest that such a regime would barely get the words out before it was struck down and placed in suitable care by wiser heads with a stake in preserving the hard won gains authored by those standing upon the cultural and intellectual shoulders of our antecedents.

  42. #44 John
    January 2, 2011

    A thread lies doormant for a year until someone Googles “Andrew Bolt” and discovers that Andrew Bolt doesn’t know anything about climate science. To deflect from this savaging of his hero, ge0050 tries to defend skeptics.

    Here’s the thing though ge0050 – I agree that being skeptical is an important part of science, which is why I am skeptical of those who deny science for political purposes.

  43. #45 Bernard J.
    January 2, 2011

    ge0050 obviously thought that he had a killer ap with which to defend Andrew Dolt.

    I suspect that he would not have expected to be so thoroughly smacked down by the five posts after his.

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