A summary by John Abraham of his thorough demolition of Monckton was published last month in the Guardian, along with commentary by George Monbiot.

Now Monckton has responded with 446 questions for Abraham. Just to be clear here, “446 questions” is not hyperbole for “lots of questions”. There are 446 questions in an 86 page pdf. And what questions they are. Eli Rabbett is already enjoying himself here and here. I decided to pick out three questions to answer and question Monckton on, and let you guys have fun with the rest in the comments.


466: Will you, therefore, now be good enough to take down your talk from whatever public places it has reached; to pay $10,000 to the United States Association of the Order of Malta for its charitable work in Haiti; to ensure that your University, which failed upon my request to have your talk taken off its servers at once, pays $100,000 to the same charity for the same purpose; and publicly to disseminate a written apology and retraction substantially in the following terms:

“The Viscount Monckton of Brenchley

“We, St. Thomas University, Minnesota, and John Abraham of that University, retract, apologize to Lord Monckton for, and undertake never again to repeat all or any part of, the 83-minute talk with 115 slides entitled “But Chris Monckton Said …”, that we prepared without notification to him and then widely disseminated via the University’s servers and other media.

“We have agreed that, in token of our good faith, by 30 June 2010 without fail we shall have paid between us US$110,000 to the United States Association of the Sovereign Military Order of Malta for its charitable work in the reconstruction and relief of Haiti.”

No. How’s that lawsuit against Al Gore coming along?

17: Please provide a full academic resume. Though you have described yourself as a “professor” (3, 62) more than once in this presentation, are you in fact an associate professor?

In US usage, “professor” means any of the flavours of professor (assistant, associate or full). Though you have described yourself as a member of the House of Lords, isn’t it true that you are not, in fact, a member of the House of Lords? Is this why you have stopped using the portcullis, the insignia of Paliament on your documents?

394: Are you aware of results such as that of Pinker et al. (2005), and of several other researchers and data gathering organizations? Pinker found that in 18 years and 1 month from 1983-2001 a naturally-occurring global brightening, attributable at least in part to a reduction in cloud cover at low latitudes and altitudes, had increased the flux of solar radiation reaching the surface by 2.9 Watts per square meter, an increase sufficient to account for all of the “global warming” over the period?

Pinker did find global brightening, but this does not account of warming over that period, because a change of solar flux at the surface is not the same as radiative forcing. Why do you persist in this claim when Pinker herself explained that you were wrong?

For those of you thinking that nobody could possibly take Monckton seriously, I give you the discussion thread at WUWT on Monckton’s 446 questions.

And if you can’t get enough Monckton, here’s Bob Ward puncturing Monckton’s fantasies about introducing Thatcher to climate change.

Comments

  1. #1 TrueSceptic
    July 13, 2010

    Tim,

    Somehow I knew you would start a thread on this.

    It will be hilarious to see what Munchkin does next, now that his absurd threats have been publicised and his bluff called.

  2. #2 Monckton Watcher
    July 13, 2010

    To: House Of Lords Information Office

    Is Christopher Monckton, Viscount Monckton of Brenchley a member of the House of Lords?

    Is Lord Monckton permitted to use this symbol, which bears a startling and I believe a not unintentional resemblance to the Crowned Portcullis?

    I look forward to your observations,
    ……………….

    Reply:
    Thank you for your enquiry.

    The current Viscount Monckton of Brenchley, Christopher Monckton, is not a member of the House of Lords so we do not have any contact details for him.

    The last Viscount Monckton of Brenchley to sit in the House of Lords was Gilbert Monckton who left the House of Lords in 1999 following the passing of the House of Lords Act. Gilbert Monckton passed away in 2006 and was success by Christopher Monckton.

    In answer to your second question, the crowned portcullis is the badge has been granted by H.M. The Queen to be used by both Houses of Parliament. A picture of this emblem can be found on page 3 of the following House of Commons factsheet http://www.parliament.uk/documents/upload/g09.pdf. Use of the emblem is regulated by the two Houses, in accordance with the general principles governing parliamentary copyright.

    I hope this helps

    Information Office
    House of Lords
    London SW1A 0PW
    020 7219 3107
    http://www.parliament.uk/lords

  3. #3 chek
    July 13, 2010

    I’ve no doubt that Prof. Abraham will utterly demolish Munchkin’s verbose screed line by self-serving line after seeing the head start made on it across various blogs in one day.

    Even so, once that’s done it would be a shame to see the Loony Lord slink off into the distance only to return with a fresh pile of malodorous hyperbole at some future date.

    So I’d like to propose a climate blogger’s awards finale for the year’s most egregious distorters and/or D-K syndrome practitioners to be nominated annually, say every March. It could be called “The Moncktons”.

    Whist a steaming pile of poop is always difficult to represent in trophy form, a cheap looking, pink portcullis would be a good substitute.

  4. #4 lord_sidcup
    July 13, 2010

    @Monckton Watcher

    I also emailed the HofL. Here is the reply:

    “Thank you for your email.

    The current Viscount Monckton of Brenchley is not a member
    of the House of Lords.

    His father, the 2nd Viscount Monckton of Brenchley, was a
    Member of the Lords until 1999. The House of Lords Act 1999
    ended the automatic link between the holding of a hereditary
    peerage and membership of the House of Lords, and the 2nd
    Lord Monckton ceased to be a member of the House at that
    point.

    The emblem of the two Houses of Parliament is a crowned
    portcullis. A picture of this emblem can be found on page 3
    of the following House of Commons factsheet http://www.parliament.uk/documents/upload/g09.pdf. Use
    of the emblem is regulated by the two Houses, in accordance
    with the general principles governing parliamentary
    copyright.

    We hope this information is of use.”

  5. #5 Derecho64
    July 13, 2010

    In short, Munchkin’s approach is “Dazzle ‘em with bullshit”, since “Baffle ‘em with brilliance” won’t work.

  6. #6 pough
    July 13, 2010

    Monckton stopped using the Pink Portcullis of the House of Lord? That’s no fun… We can still use it though, right?

  7. #7 lord_sidcup
    July 13, 2010

    @pough

    Don’t worry, Monckton is still using the Crown and Portcullis. The HofL seem unwilling or unable to do anything about it and seem to be honing a standard response to enquiries about Monckton’s use of it. Presumably, they get a lot of complaints about Monckton.

  8. #8 Jeremy C
    July 13, 2010

    I don’t get the continuing torture of Pinker’s paper by the denialists? Is it that they thought it would do what they want and their collective mindset makes it impossible to let go even when wrong?

  9. #9 MapleLeaf
    July 13, 2010

    And not to be outdone, Watts starts making veiled threats against someone challenging Munchkin whilst also trotting out another of his pet peeves, anonymous “warmers”:

    “REPLY:And I find it rich that somebody who’s at a university but doesn’t bring their name to the discussion can criticize a man who has the courage to put his name to his words. What’s your title at your university Phil? Careful, or I’ll put you back in the troll box. ;-) -A”

    Nice work A….not. And Anthony, why don’t anonymous deniers posting from work get threatened or snipped?

    I hope that people who have made the effort to expose more of Monckotn’s lies are also emailing the good Dr. Abraham with the relevant information.

  10. #10 Gavin
    July 13, 2010

    Surely “the Monckton Mash”?

  11. #11 Stu
    July 13, 2010

    I simply can’t believe Watts and his crowd are siding with Monckton.

    Actually that’s just hyperbole, I can entirely believe it. It’s been said before, but where are all the fecking sceptics?

  12. #12 Bernard J.
    July 13, 2010

    [Chek](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2010/07/i_think_that_they_might_have_t.php#comment-2654600).

    Funny that you should muse on a D-K award – I’ve been thinking about the same thing over the last few weeks, as a consequence of Tim Curtin’s stunning efforts since April to invert scientific understanding with no actual justifiable basis for doing so.

    I’ve also been thinking that perhaps we should have awards for the blog-master and the blog contributor who most assiduously works to deconstruct the Dunningly Krugered denialist nonsense – with Tim Curtin’s distaste for Robyn Williams in mind, I reckon that [a couple of bottles of Occam's Razor](http://www.abc.net.au/rn/scienceshow/stories/2010/2949539.htm) would be worthy trinkets. ;-)

    I’d happily chip in a few pennies for such a project.

  13. #13 Bill Butler
    July 13, 2010

    It looks like I pretty well described Monckton on my web page.

    “As is typical of Global Warming Deniers, Christopher Monckton is an expert at making noise, but is scientifically impaired when it comes to portraying reality. (Great qualifications if you want to be a politician or circus side show barker.)”

    “Christopher Monckton – A vociferous Global Warming Denier Liar”
    http://www.durangobill.com/GwdLiars/GwdLiarsChristopherMonckton.html

    Note: If Professor Abraham’s presentation ever disappears from the Internet, I’ve downloaded a copy which I can forward to anyone. (e.g. for reposting?)

  14. #14 Wow
    July 13, 2010

    He did the Mash
    He did the Monckton Mash
    He did the Mash
    It was a graveyard ‘tash
    He did the Mash
    It dropped down with a Splash
    He did the Mash
    He did the Monckton Mash

    As all the zombies began to rise
    And repeat the same old tired lies
    Monckton jumped out and slipped in the trash
    And then he started doing the Monckton Mash

    (cont. ..?)

  15. #15 Wow
    July 13, 2010

    He did the Mash

    He did the Monckton Mash

    He did the Mash

    It was a graveyard ‘tash

    He did the Mash

    It dropped down with a Splash

    He did the Mash

    He did the Monckton Mash

    .

    As all the zombies began to rise

    And repeat the same old tired lies

    Monckton jumped out and slipped in the trash

    And then he started doing the Monckton Mash

    (cont. ..?)

    (reformatted for stanza/verse breaks…)

  16. #16 TrueSceptic
    July 13, 2010

    10 Gavin,

    Yes, it needs alliteration to catch on. :)

  17. #17 Adder
    July 13, 2010

    Hmmm… All of this dimming/forcing stuff seems a bit confused. Certainly, if the ground is dimming, it can be attributed to aerosol effects, either direct (sunlight scattered back to space due to aerosol haze) or indirect (increased aerosol load makes clouds brighter and possibly also longer lived). Both the direct and the indirect aerosol effect is a negative radiative forcing (i.e. cools the planet).

    Of course, changes in cloud cover might be due to other reasons also, feedback effects, which are not radiative forcing.

    However, AFAIK, the dimming has been attributed mostly to the direct aerosol effect. And so, it is a reflection of a negative aerosol radiative forcing. Similarly, the brightening that has occurred after 1990 or so, is a reflection of a reducing negative aerosol forcing.

    But: note that the dimming has decreased mostly in Europe and North America, where sulfur emissions have been reduced greatly after the eighties. In Asia, the aerosol emissions have been increasing. So, Globally, the aerosol forcing is probably more or less similar now as before 1990. And, as a cosequence, the warming that has been taking place since the 70′s (not since 1990) is due to other reasons than those that have lead to the surface brightening.

  18. #18 Dennis
    July 13, 2010

    I’ve made an effort to read as many of Monckton’s questions as I can get through. What I found particularly bizzare about the whole episode is how he goes to such great lengths to avoid replying to what Abraham raises regarding the science. Rather than directly answer Abraham’s questions like “What’s the source data for this chart?” Monckton just throws back at Abraham nonsensical questions like “Why didn’t you bother to call me and ask?” Of course, Monckton has to do this in his theatrical way like Q421: “Have you heard of Mr. Alexander Graham Bell’s wondrous invention, the electric telephone?”

    Over at WUWT, the comments have focused on two things: 1) Abraham is not a “Professor” but rather, an “Associate Professor,” and, 2) Abraham committed an ad hominem attack on Monckton.

    For #1, if that’s important to them, go for it. It’s particularly interesting because they’re defending a man who claims to be in the British House of Lords.

    For #2, it’s been a while since I saw Abraham’s talk and can’t remember the details. But by reading the excerpts in Monckton’s document makes it rather clear that, while Abraham could probably have used different words at times, he’s focused almost exclusively on the scientific facts. Of course, the whole point of the deniers is to talk about anything except the actual science when someone challenges them on it.

  19. #19 Paul UK
    July 13, 2010

    Well a request for money, retraction etc. would be fine if John Abraham had said anything wrong!
    The trouble is, John was correct.

    The presentation is still up and may it continue to be so!

    I think he also put it on Youtube??
    Or am I thinking of something else?

    Monckton is supposed to be a core UKIP political party member now, I wonder where he gets the time and money to do this?

  20. #20 chek
    July 13, 2010

    Paul UK, rather like North and his joke EU referendum hobby, running or administering a crackpot group like UKIP fills in very little time for these superannuated dinosaurs.

    Dreaming up legal actions, which may or more likely will never see the light of day, and composing illustrated 466 point questionnaires in a futile effort to bolster their garbage is how they fill their days.

    If it were anyone else I’d find that harsh reality monumentally sad.

  21. #21 MapleLeaf
    July 13, 2010

    Tim, I prefer renaming it “the Monckton Gish Gallop”.

  22. #22 Eli Rabett
    July 13, 2010

    Chek, too late, it’s already called the S. Fred.

  23. #23 chek
    July 13, 2010

    Thanks Brer Eli – I always knew that you scientists were ahead of me in other ways, so I’m not altogether surprised to see that you’ve been there and done that too.

    Though my proposed trophy would have been stupendously kitsch.

  24. #24 Wow
    July 13, 2010

    “Chek, too late, it’s already called the S. Fred.”

    So, in other words “Right, S Fred”?

    http://www.gladding.com/rsf/

  25. #25 dhogaza
    July 13, 2010

    “Over at WUWT, the comments have focused on two things: 1) Abraham is not a “Professor” but rather, an “Associate Professor,””

    That’s hilarious … but it sort of does underline the point that most of the posters there have never taken a step on a US university campus, doesn’t it? :)

  26. #26 pough
    July 13, 2010

    Monckton just throws back at Abraham nonsensical questions like “Why didn’t you bother to call me and ask?” Of course, Monckton has to do this in his theatrical way like Q421: “Have you heard of Mr. Alexander Graham Bell’s wondrous invention, the electric telephone?”

    *brrrring!* *brrrring!*

    M: Hello?

    A: Hello, is this Chris Monckton?

    M: Yes, it is. Who may I ask is calling?

    A: This is John Abraham. I just wanted to ask you what the source data is for the chart in…

    M: Excuse me, but have you never heard of the postal service?

  27. #27 TrueSceptic
    July 13, 2010

    19 Paul UK,

    Yes, Munchkin is now [UKIP's](http://www.ukip.org/content/latest-news/1363-monckton-joins-ukip) chief spokesman on Climate Change.

    These people don’t actually do much unless an election’s imminent, and perhaps not even then. They write “policy” stuff to be put in manifestos, pamphlets and web pages, and that doesn’t change too often. Unless they are also MPs or local government councillors, there’s little to distract them from their jobs or personal projects.

    How aware were you of TVMOB during our (I’m also a Brit) general election?

  28. #28 WotWot
    July 13, 2010

    @6

    Monckton stopped using the Pink Portcullis of the House of Lord?

    Is that a euphemism?

  29. #29 MarkB
    July 13, 2010

    “4: Do you accept that your talk was calculated to do very great harm to my reputation?”

    Monckton has already done a sufficient job and doing great harm to his own reputation.

  30. #30 ChrisO
    July 13, 2010

    There has been some interesting editing tonight on Wikipedia’s article on Monckton, coming from an IP address that geolocates to somewhere close to Glasgow (or shall we say Rannoch?) – see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Special:Contributions/95.145.99.96 . The article has been subjected to some curious editing from IP addresses for some time, as George Monbiot has pointed out in the past (see Did Lord Monckton fabricate a claim on his Wikipedia page?).

  31. #31 Gator
    July 13, 2010

    WotWot @ 28
    You’d think so, but no. Very literally no.

  32. #32 Agnostic
    July 13, 2010

    Until Lord Monckton puts forward his views in a peer-reviewed scientific journal of repute, I am disinclined to regard anything he has to say on global warming as representing an informed view.

    As for reading his 446 questions? What a stupid waste of time, though I must say Dr Abraham has provided some enjoyable comments and useful information in showing Monckton’s views to be wrong, wrong, wrong.

  33. #33 Ed Darrell
    July 13, 2010

    Demanding payments is a great idea.

    Hey, Monckton! I demand you pay $1 million to the estate of Rachel Carson for your insults to her!

    I demand you pay $1 million to the Audubon Society for your false claims that DDT is harmless, and your bizarre claim that John F. Kennedy rose from the dead to elbow out then-President Richard Nixon and appoint William Ruckelshaus Director of EPA.

    Plus, I demand you apologize to all the real zombies.

    This is fun!

  34. #34 MapleLeaf
    July 13, 2010

    Well, well– ChrisO @30, the IP address in question has now been blocked for “disruptive editing”. From the changes and comments made, the IP address is probably that of Munchkin.

  35. #35 MapleLeaf
    July 13, 2010

    Chris O, I tracked the IP address in question to the Yorkshire Dales N. of Skipton.

  36. #36 Bernard J.
    July 13, 2010

    [Eli](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2010/07/i_think_that_they_might_have_t.php#comment-2655412)…

    Chek, too late, it’s already called the S. Fred.

    …no matter, there is sufficient cluelessness amongst the Denialati that Rabbet Run and Deltoid each could usefully acknowledge efforts to attain Perfect Stupid.

  37. #37 Bernard J.
    July 13, 2010

    It’s odd, isn’t it, that whether it’s Plimer being deconstructed by Monbiot, or Curtin by a host of Deltoid posters, or Monckton by Abraham, they do not actually set to and address the meat of the questions put to them pointing out the flaws in their arguments.

    Rather, they prevaricate and posture with further nonsense of their own…

    There seems to be a pattern…

  38. #38 Lotharsson
    July 13, 2010

    > Funny that you should muse on a D-K award – I’ve been thinking about the same thing over the last few weeks, as a consequence of Tim Curtin’s stunning efforts since April to invert scientific understanding with no actual justifiable basis for doing so.

    I reckon you have to give TC a lifetime achievement award on that front and ban him from the regular competition so that others can get a look-in.

    Perhaps the award could be called the **Monckton Mumbo-Jumbo**, or for truly monumental examples of the genre, the **Jumbo Monckton Mumbo**?

  39. #39 marcellus
    July 13, 2010

    I think we should all feel honored that in our lifetime we our seeing the most glorious example of self-parody in the history of the English language. Lord Munchkin, I salute thee

  40. #40 ChrisC
    July 14, 2010

    I there a rule against winning “Upperclass Twit of the Year” twice? If so, I think Monckton needs a lifetime achievement award. Nothing has shown the uselessness of the English aristocracy more than his lordship’s ramblings.

    begin rant

    Does anyone remember Monckton’s first appearance on the climate change stage… back in 2006? He published a lengthy article in the Torygraph (along with supplementary information!!) which was, for the most part, a rehash of all the talking points from the denialists at the time (Hockey stick, hockey stick, hockey stick!).

    Buried in amongst the poorly written plagiarism was a set of “detailed calculations” that his lordship had performed, no doubt whilst chuckling to himself about how clever he was. He’d performed a first-year undergraduate type plug-and-chug type analysis with the Stephan-Boltzman equation, which he would later flash around like a matadors cape as some kind of gotcha! proving once and for all Al Gore was fat and Global Warming was a leftist conspiracy.

    I took all of four-seconds for this to get blown away by the usual suspects (Gavin at RC), yet his Lordship persisted with this line for years. I think this is what we’re going to see with his current Pinker fascination, although his fascination with Pinker never went so far as contact her to determine if his interpretation of her work was correct (something he admonishes Abraham for), learning her first name, or learning her gender. It simply will not matter how often he’s shown to be wrong, he’ll persist until he finds something new. The man is a first class tool, with an ego that could inflate a zeppelin. And I lament we’ll never, ever be rid of him. His idiotic talking points will be doing the rounds for year to come.

    /rant

  41. #41 John
    July 14, 2010

    Pough, Monckton would have asked “Excuse me, but have you never heard that most wonderful invention, the US postal service?”

    Does anyone else remember that Monckton was promising us a video rebuttal? What happened Monckton? Did you lie to us?

  42. #42 WotWot
    July 14, 2010

    Is there a rule against winning “Upperclass Twit of the Year” twice? If so, I think Monckton needs a lifetime achievement award. Nothing has shown the uselessness of the English aristocracy more than his lordship’s ramblings.

    Just give it to him in perpetuity. He will never be out-twitted.

    More seriously…

    @ 37

    There seems to be a pattern…

    [Aye, there does.](http://www.boston.com/bostonglobe/ideas/articles/2010/07/11/how_facts_backfire/?page=full)

  43. #43 John
    July 14, 2010

    Oh boy, an update from Christopher Monckton himself at Watts!

    >I have asked a good firm of MN libel lawyers to give me a hard-headed assessment of whether I have a libel case against Abraham and his university, or whether I’m taking this too seriously.

    You know, I think he’s going to pick the latter…

    >I am charmed that so many of you are fascinated by the question whether I am a member of the House of Lords. Perhaps this is because your own Constitution denies you any orders or titles of nobility.

    Yes, he really thinks this is about petty jealousy. You see, *he is better than us commoners*. We should be privileged just to inhabit the same planet as the British nobility.

    >Here is the answer I recently gave to the US House of Representatives’ Global Warming Committee on that subject:

    >>“The House of Lords Act 1999 debarred all but 92 of the 650 Hereditary Peers, including my father, from sitting or voting, and purported to – but did not – remove membership of the Upper House. Letters Patent granting peerages, and consequently membership, are the personal gift of the Monarch. Only a specific law can annul a grant. The 1999 Act was a general law. The then Government, realizing this defect, took three maladroit steps: it wrote asking expelled Peers to return their Letters Patent (though that does not annul them); in 2009 it withdrew the passes admitting expelled Peers to the House (and implying they were members); and it told the enquiry clerks to deny they were members: but a written Parliamentary Answer by the Lord President of the Council admits that general legislation cannot annul Letters Patent, so I am The Viscount Monckton of Brenchley (as my passport shows), a member of the Upper House but without the right to sit or vote, and I have never pretended otherwise.”

    As usual, Chris is wrong. he House Of Lords Act 1999 actually says *”No-one shall be a member of the House of Lords by virtue of a hereditary peerage.”*

  44. #44 ChrisO
    July 14, 2010

    Don’t forget that person who gave assent to the House of Lords Act 1999 was the same Queen who authorised Monckton’s Letters Patent – what the Queen gives the Queen can take away. La reine le veult!

  45. #45 lord_sidcup
    July 14, 2010

    I’ve read about half of Monckton’s ‘rebuttal’ (before I started to lose the will to live). It isn’t a rebuttal, it is just a series of hectoring questions and an attempt to bully Abraham (and his university) into silence. Despite having a whole section headed ‘Sources’ Monckton fails to shed any light on his sources other than saying:

    please explain why you did not at any time during the months of preparation of your talk contact me even once to ask me to assist you with identifying the sources of my material.

    Monckton then goes on to make dozens of claims for which he, again, cites no source. For example:

    …the previous interglacial warm period, when Arctic temperatures were up to several degrees warmer than the present for some 5000 years…

    …the total population of polar bears throughout their Arctic habitat taken as a whole is several times greater than it was 70 years ago…

    …the Arctic is in some places – and perhaps overall – some 1-2 C° cooler than it was in the 1930s and early 1940s…

    …the Antarctic has been cooling throughout the past 30 years…

    Where he does cite a source he doesn’t do it properly:

    …considerable quantity of paleoclimate data had been published before 1990, such as Yoshino (1978); Hassan (1981), Alexandre (1987); and Lamb (1988), all of whom provided data indicating that the medieval warm period was warmer than the present?…

    Unless I have missed it, there does not appear to be any bibliography attached to his ‘rebuttal’. I might be able to trace his sources, but he doesn’t make it easy (is it perhaps a copy and paste job?).

    Some of his sources are simply comical:

    ..a medieval stained-glass window at Amiens Cathedral in Northern France shows winegrapes being grown in the region, a feat that is impossible today because it is too cold; the growing of grapes at Hadrian’s wall, also impossible today; etc., etc.?…

    Maybe the craftsman originated in regions where winegrapes grew, perhaps they visited regions where winegrapes grew, perhaps they were inspired by anecdote, drawings or other second-hand sources. As for grapes at Hadrian’s wall – source please?

    I think I might contact Monckton and ask him for his missing sources. Will he be helpful, of will he accuse me of trying to harm his reputation?

  46. #46 Bernard J.
    July 14, 2010

    Nobility?

    Nob, more like…

  47. #47 P. Lewis
    July 14, 2010

    Nobility?

    Nob, more like…

    Knob (you mean), more like…

    But perhaps you see no point in having the silent “K” ;-)

  48. #48 Bernard J.
    July 14, 2010

    I was about to extend my comment to ‘knob’, but you pre-empted me!

    I had thought to compare ‘benighted’ to ‘be knighted’, but now the joke has been spoiled.

    Darn you, P. Lewis!
    ;-)

  49. #49 Bart Verheggen
    July 14, 2010

    Monckton: Not just wrong, also evil.

  50. #50 Toby
    July 14, 2010

    The “Why didn’t you call me” line is a joke.

    Abraham contacted the authors whom Monckton was freely quoting. None of them were aware he was using their work, and some had never even heard of him. How come Monckton never called THEM to check out the “facts” before he jetted around the world selling his line of snake-oil.

  51. #51 toby
    July 14, 2010

    It may be of interest to Monckton that historian David Irvine a few years ago sued US historian Deborah Lipstadt for calling him a “Holocaust denier” in a book published internationally.

    Irving clearly thought the UK libel laws were on his side. In fact, he lost the case disastrously and every shred of his reputation as well.

    Will Monckton have the “bottle” to take that chance? I doubt it – the good lord is strictly a flatulent blusterer.

    Monckton faces (like Irving) the loss of his meal ticket – the fact that thousands around the world will pay big money to listen to his bulls*it. But no one lsitens to a loser, and he faces the option of upping the ante and risk losing everything, or continuing with a more reduced audience.

  52. #52 Marco
    July 14, 2010

    @lord_sidcup:

    While your comments on the Amiens cathedral and winegrapes is relevant, may I also point out that Monckton clearly never went to Amiens and its surroundings. Picardy has several vineyards (which…errr….require growing of winegrapes and such, surely?). In fact, the Aisne department is famous for its 2000 ha of Pinot Meunier vineyards. Ah, pesky facts, can’t bother the Viscount with that, can’t we?!

  53. #53 Chris W
    July 14, 2010

    Show some compassion Wow. Please. I only just manage to suppress “Monster Mash” from playing in my head … then you go and dredge up another earworm like “Right Said Fred” !! Damn you man.

  54. #54 Neven
    July 14, 2010

    I’m too witty for the nerds
    Too witty for the nerds, so witty it hurts

    I’m too witty for this scam
    Too witty for this scam, New York and Japan

    And I’m too witty for your science
    Too witty for your science
    The way I’m Gish Galloping

    I’m a noble, you know what I mean
    And I do my little turn for Rush Limbaugh
    For Rush Limbaugh
    For Rush Limbaugh, yeah
    I tell my little lies for Rush Limbaugh

    I’m too witty for the truth, truth’s going to leave me

  55. #55 lord_sidcup
    July 14, 2010

    In fact, the Aisne department is famous for its 2000 ha of Pinot Meunier vineyards.

    As a member of the aristocracy you would think Monckton would know his wines. Me, on the other hand…

  56. #56 Wow
    July 14, 2010

    Hey, ChrisW, I didn’t use the one Neven has now placed in your head.

    Cut me some slack, here!

    (though the spectre of the thought of Monckton shaking his little tush on the catwalk haunts me and has me looking for 200 proof brain-bleach)…

    I was thinking more of Monckton and Plimer heaving at their denial machine, trying to “shift the so-and-so” and “they were getting nowhere. So then he had a cup of tea.”

  57. #57 sod
    July 14, 2010

    Monckton says:

    “The House of Lords Act 1999 debarred all but 92 of the 650 Hereditary Peers, including my father, from sitting or voting, and purported to – but did not – remove membership of the Upper House. Letters Patent granting peerages, and consequently membership, are the personal gift of the Monarch. Only a specific law can annul a grant. The 1999 Act was a general law. The then Government, realizing this defect, took three maladroit steps: it wrote asking expelled Peers to return their Letters Patent (though that does not annul them); in 2009 it withdrew the passes admitting expelled Peers to the House (and implying they were members); and it told the enquiry clerks to deny they were members: but a written Parliamentary Answer by the Lord President of the Council admits that general legislation cannot annul Letters Patent, so I am The Viscount Monckton of Brenchley (as my passport shows), a member of the Upper House but without the right to sit or vote, and I have never pretended otherwise.”
    .
    while the House of Lords says:
    .
    Christopher Monckton is not and has never been a Member of the House of Lords. There is no such thing as a “non-voting” or “honorary” member.

    we would assume that settles the case. but not on WuWt:

    Bill Tuttle says: July 13, 2010 at 10:53 pm Lord Monckton’s update settles the question of whether he is or is not a member of the House of Lords.

    Monckton is right, the house of lords is wrong. sure.

  58. #58 Louuis Hissink
    July 14, 2010

    Really,

    Is this the total argument the brain dead mount his lordship?

  59. #59 frank
    July 14, 2010

    Shorter Louis Hissink:

    I don’t know how to reply, so I’ll proclaim victory.

  60. #60 chek
    July 14, 2010

    No Louuis(sic), this thread illustrates the correctly guaged degree of respectfulness in response to the brain dead argument mounted by your lordship hero and his laughable attempt at extorting $110,000 from real Professor Abraham and St Thomas University.

  61. #61 James Haughton
    July 14, 2010

    The image of a brain-dead zombie “mounting” his lordship is one I find oddly satisfying. Thanks, Louuis!

  62. #62 Phil Clarke
    July 14, 2010

    Sod,

    The 1999 Act could not be clearer ‘No-one shall be a member of the House of Lords by virtue of a hereditary peerage’.

    So the argument tack has changed, the Law is Unlawful! The UK Legislature had no right to pass, er, UK Legislation that amended the UK Constitution. One wonders if the Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II was aware of this when she granted the Act Royal Assent ….

    It is on this delusion that Monckton’s claim seems to rest ….

  63. #63 TrueSceptic
    July 14, 2010

    58 Louuuis,

    I take it you are referring to the hilariously deluded and sycophantic denizens of WUWT?

    (Whatever “mount his lordship” is supposed to mean. I find the idea most unpleasant.)

  64. #64 Donald Oats
    July 14, 2010

    I am away from the Internet for one day…and arrive at the scene of 446 questions by Monckton the Magnificent!
    Why waste time answering this rubbish? Life is too short. Abraham hit the target every time by sticking to the facts on climate science, and he was disciplined enough not to do the add hom attack that Mr Magnificent claims has happened.

  65. #65 TrueSceptic
    July 14, 2010

    62 Phil,

    (Once more I admire you for trying to educate the Wattards.)

    That thread is a wonderful example of just how deluded they are. Rather than admit (heck, it’s not even admitting; it’s understanding the basics of language and logic) that Munchkin might in any way be just a bit misleading when describing his title, they go to the next level of absurdity and claim that an Act of Parliament “broke the law”.

    Monckton is now claiming [Abraham climbs down](http://wattsupwiththat.com/2010/07/14/abraham-climbs-down/). I wonder what the truth is, because we certainly cannot trust his version of anything.

  66. #66 TrueSceptic
    July 14, 2010

    defalcations! WTF? (From the above.)

    Isn’t it about time Abraham threatened the intolerable twit with a counter-suit for libel, with particular reference to Munchkin’s manifest multiple monstrous mendacities?

  67. #67 CapitalClimate
    July 14, 2010

    New name should be “Monckton Muddle.”

  68. #68 Phil Clarke
    July 14, 2010

    Monckton is now claiming Abraham climbs down. I wonder what the truth is, because we certainly cannot trust his version of anything.

    Rather confusingly there are, and have been for some time, two versions of the presentation up at Abraham’s university site. One, I think the ‘revised’ is ten minutes shorter than the other and this seems to be the basis for the cries of Victory.

    Translation: Monckton’s lawyers have advised he would likely lose any legal action, his bullying and attempt to extract money with menaces having failed to get the talk taken down, he now needs some means of saving face. The fact that both versions are still available rather undermines even that tortuous logic.

    The downside is that he has printed the email address of the president of the University, and already the attack dogs are circling ‘Chase him till he falls’ etc. [Science Site of the Year :-0 ]

    An inbox full of hate-mail may strain even Christian forebearance and I would not be surprised if Abraham is asked to remove his talk from the academic server, for the sake of a quiet life. In that case, it would be great if another site, more used to repelling WattSpam, could host it ….

  69. #69 lord_sidcup
    July 14, 2010

    So, John Abraham’s 83 minute evisceration of Monckton is now a 73 minute evisceration but, according to Monckton, is still libellous and malicious and therefore still rather good, and in all likelihood neither libellous nor malicious.

    The most significant thing about Monckton’s post at WUWT is his inciting the denizens of WUWT to bombard the Father Dennis J. Dease, President of St. Thomas University, with complaints – proof that he wants to bully his critics into silence ([as he did with Tom Chivers](http://liberalconspiracy.org/2010/06/16/is-the-telegraph-censoring-criticism-of-climate-change-deniers/)). I’m sure St. Thomas University would want to stand by Abraham, but I worry that their attitude might be that they can do without all the hassle.

    I hope Abraham is planning an evisceration of Monckton’s ‘rebuttal’. It shouldn’t be difficult.

  70. #70 ice9
    July 14, 2010

    Prof. Abraham, if you’re listening: great work and thank you for the time and effort and, let’s not forget–the risk.

    I live nearby, and so count me as a volunteer for any duty that might support your work to expose Monckton. I’m no scientist but I know the libel laws; you are at no risk of a judgement, as I’m sure you know. But in the unlikely event that Monckton’s quibbling and hooting inconveniences you, cuts into your valuable teaching time, or costs you money or prestige, please let me know how I can help–ice99eci ATTA gmail dooot com

    It may be relevant to mention to y’all Deltoids that Bethel University, which hosted the Monckton lecture, is an example of the aggressively evangelical Christian schools that are popular in the United States. These schools often fail to separate religion and politics from education. (ironic understatement). Academic freedom, natch. But Bethel’s comfort with Monckton is evidence of failings far wider than a single scientific category can explain (though to their credit there were objections and a pro forma declaration that Monckton’s lecture wasn’t, you know, sanctioned.) Partisans of that religious/political worldview usually feel compelled to perceive a contemptuous rebuttal, even a well-supported one, as an attack on their whole system. Bethel’s US Rep is Michele Bachmann, after all, who thinks that we don’t have to be concerned about climate change because Jesus, citation: Jesus et al, for math see: Jesus. [http://politicalblogs.startribune.com/bigquestionblog/?p=1119] . It isn’t unlikely that Prof. Abraham will suffer some local whinging and snark–yay tenure. I’ll be alert for that, and standing by to do what I can.

    ice9

  71. #71 sod
    July 14, 2010

    An inbox full of hate-mail may strain even Christian forebearance and I would not be surprised if Abraham is asked to remove his talk from the academic server, for the sake of a quiet life. In that case, it would be great if another site, more used to repelling WattSpam, could host it ….

    Phil is right, of course.

    i also think that it would be a good idea, if the mail would include posts supporting Abraham.

    please keep it very short and very friendly.

  72. #72 TrueSceptic
    July 14, 2010

    68 Phil,

    That’s roughly how I read it, but I wonder just what the university president’s response would be? Surely not to simply cave in, and it’s easy enough to filter out the sewage.

    As for hosting elsewhere, that would not stop the filth merchants continuing to harass the university, would it?

  73. #73 Wow
    July 14, 2010

    Note: BOTH versions of powerpoint presentations are on the website.

    http://courseweb.stthomas.edu/jpabraham/

    Which is a rather odd way of retracting the presentation…

  74. #74 TrueSceptic
    July 14, 2010

    71 sod,

    I did wonder about that. I suspect it would not help. If you get thousands of unpleasant messages attacking you, do you really want even more, even if they support you, as you have to read every one to be sure of the content?

    How about if the university (and Abraham) could be directed to a single web page where we could show our support? Perhaps here, Tim?

  75. #75 chek
    July 14, 2010

    [sod said:](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2010/07/i_think_that_they_might_have_t.php#comment-2657400) “i also think that it would be a good idea, if the mail would include posts supporting Abraham”.

    I used the subject line “Support for St Thomas”, which will hopefully distinguish it from the anticipated hate mail barrage.

  76. #76 Bernard J.
    July 14, 2010

    I’ll add my voice to the support for Abraham and for his institution, and I encourage them to hold fast, and perhaps even to consider a countersuit should it come to that.

    For Monckton to prove his case he would have to test his claims of the ‘fraudulent’ nature of the mainstream climatological understanding of AGW, against those made by Abraham. I for one would actually be pleased to see Monckton’s pronouncements scrutinised, dissected and deconstructed in a court of law, and it would be even better if [Sir John Houghton](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2010/02/media_watch_on_monckton.php#comment-2262323) decided to enter the scrum.

    If the Nobel Committee joined in on the basis that Monckton falsely attributes a Nobel Prize to himself, there’d be a hefty war chest for a class action…

    Monckton could not but walk away with no credibility at all remaining, except amongst the most delirious of denialists and conspiracy nuts.

    Bring on the law suits, I say.

  77. #77 Phil Clarke
    July 14, 2010

    If the Nobel Committee joined in on the basis that Monckton falsely attributes a Nobel Prize to himself, there’d be a hefty war chest for a class action…

    This could be big. Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, no less, granted her Royal Assent to an Act of Parliament that unequivocally removed membership of the House of Lords from hereditary peers. So I reckon anyone falsely claiming such membership is committing Treason. Anyone know Her Majesty’s email address? ;-)

    Seriously, I think it ‘very likely’ (in IPCC probability-speak) that, despite the bluster in the latest post about ‘libels’ no lawsuit will be forthcoming, Monckton will end up looking like even more of a clown and next week we’ll all be talking about something else.

  78. #78 Dibble
    July 14, 2010

    I don’t think anyone has posted this yet. Monbiot has written a piece about Monktons “magnificently bonkers” retort to Prof Abraham…

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/georgemonbiot/2010/jul/14/monckton-john-abraham

  79. #79 Ian Forrester
    July 14, 2010

    While it would be great to see the deniers in court they will not instigate a court case. the reason is very simple. They can lie all they want on blogs, opinion pieces and “peer reviewed” papers since they can do this under the protection of “freedom of speech”. However, the minute they are in court the legal system will take a dim view of lies and deception. They have their own name for it, perjury. That is a criminal offense and carries a hefty punishment.

    [Most scientists do not have the time or inclination to take the deniers to court](http://www.nature.com/news/2010/100630/full/466024a.html) (how is Andrew Weaver’s case coming along?) so they spout their lies and deceit knowing that the chances of them being called to court is extremely remote.

  80. #80 Wow
    July 14, 2010

    The current MO of denialists are defending the indefensible by saying effectively “don’t say how completely bats*t crazy he is because that’s like publicity, man! Own goal, dude, stop it!”.

    Funny how all the venom spat at the IPCC and Mann and CRU et al (especially in climategate) are not, like, publicity, man! Own goal!

    Isn’t it.

    Yet despite all this publicity, Monkfish STILL gets called as THE expert witness to the state of Utah senator committee.

    The reason is that they only want Monckton mentioned when he ISN’T obviously crazy, so that they can point to “LORD Monkton” as how there’s still “unanswered questions” in climate and they HATE it when their group lunacy in looking up at this swivel-eyed maniac and his reflection on THEIR adoration of his every word is shown up.

    So the only way to shut it down is to *claim* that this is (somehow) backfiring.

    They CAN’T disown him.

    So lets hide the truth.

  81. #81 TrueSceptic
    July 14, 2010

    79 Ian,

    Meanwhile, the deniers will lie about why they didn’t carry out their threats. Their deluded disciples will just accept this as TRUTH, as they can continue to foam and froth in their own little denioverse.

  82. #82 Marion Delgado
    July 14, 2010

    Alternately, call it the Plimer Climber. It reminds me of Plimer’s nutty (please … one demanded Monbiot show him “million year time flitches”) questions for Monbiot.

  83. #83 Jeremy C
    July 14, 2010

    Marion,

    I just loved it during the Monbiot/Plimer face off on Lateline when Plimer accused Monbiot of “ill breeding”. It had the neighbours knocking anxiously at the back door convinced my helpless-lying-on-my-back laughter in front of the TV was a dangerous fit.

  84. #84 JasonW
    July 14, 2010

    [Jeremy C](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2010/07/i_think_that_they_might_have_t.php#comment-2657934)

    It had the neighbours knocking anxiously at the back door convinced my helpless-lying-on-my-back laughter in front of the TV was a dangerous fit.

    Well, it must have been either your laughter or that of your cat. ;)

  85. #85 RobH
    July 14, 2010

    I’m not too familiar with the workings of academia, so can someone who is please tell me whether Monckton even starts out in Question 1 by getting things wrong?

    [1] Are you familiar with the convention in the academic world that if one wishes to rebut the work of
    another he should notify that other in good time, so as to avoid errors in the rebuttal and to afford the other a
    fair and contemporaneous opportunity to refute the rebuttal?

    I suspect that’s bullshit, right? In the academic world (which Monckton isn’t a part of anyway) people’s work and claims are criticised all the time without the critic first consulting with the target of their criticism. Otherwise hardly anything would ever get done.

  86. #86 GWB's nemesis
    July 14, 2010

    Monckton is the denialist comedy act that just keeps on giving. Are we sure that he isn’t actually a character from the [Fast Show](http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B6s6gQkqFUo)?

  87. #87 Wow
    July 14, 2010

    RobH, yes. In fact most of J Abraham’s slides were about how, IF YOU CONTACTED THE AUTHORS CITED, they said

    a) that isn’t what we said
    b) he never even contacted us

    So for CM to complain about someone not contacting him means either

    a) he is admitting he knows nothing about academia
    b) he is two faced and knows it

  88. #88 sod
    July 14, 2010

    this is dangerous stuff. with his false success story and a direct call to WuWt readers, Monckton is putting massive pressure on Abraham.

    May I ask your kind readers once more for their help? Would as many of you as possible do what some of you have already been good enough to do? Please contact Father Dennis J. Dease, President of St. Thomas University, djdease@stthomas.edu, and invite him – even at this eleventh hour – to take down Abraham’s talk altogether from the University’s servers, and to instigate a disciplinary inquiry into the Professor’s unprofessional conduct, particularly in the matter of his lies to third parties about what I had said in my talk at Bethel University eight months ago? That would be a real help.

  89. #89 Nick Barnes
    July 14, 2010

    I dashed off a quick message of support to Abraham. He replied with gratitude – pretty much instantly – and suggested that I write to his administrator, which I then did, praising the support that St Thomas has shown to Abraham, urging them to continue that in the name of free speech, academic freedom, public information, etc etc, and giving a bit of background on Monckton’s bluster habit.

  90. #90 bluegrue
    July 14, 2010

    Thank you, [ChrisO](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2010/07/i_think_that_they_might_have_t.php#comment-2655863), for the link to that wikipedia kerfuffle. One of the proposed changes was related to M’s “filed patents” and I dug a bit. Bear with me or skip to the last paragraph.

    Starting from the UK IP Office’s _Searchable Patents Journal_ at
    < http://www.ipo.gov.uk/types/patent/p-os/p-journal/p-pj/p-pj>
    I found [_four_ filed applications by Monckton](
    http://www.ipo.gov.uk/types/patent/p-os/p-journal/p-pj?startYear=2006&startMonth=October&startDay=25th+-+6127&endYear=2010&endMonth=July&endDay=14th+-+6321&filter=Monckton&perPage=10&sort=Publication+Date) rather than the two claimed by the anonymous would-be-wikipedia-editor. All of them are just titled _”Therapeutic treatments”_ or _”Therapeutic treatment”_. Two of them were lodged 5 September 2008, the other two were lodged 9 September 2009. The [downloadable journals](http://www.ipo.gov.uk/types/patent/p-os/p-journal/p-pj-download.htm) don’t reveal more info.

    Now, there are different stages of _filing_, as can be seen in the [_Patents application guide_](http://www.ipo.gov.uk/p-apply.pdf). The first step is to file Form 1 at a cost of 30 GBP. If you don’t pay the fee or fail to follow up the process, the application will be considered to be withdrawn. If you want to go further, you need to file Form 9A and pay additional fees, which is where it starts to get costly. The interesting bit is, about 18 months after filing Form 1 the patent will be _published_ so others can view it and maybe object to it. The application is only published, if Form 9A was filed, all fees are paid and the results of searches by the IP Office for previous art/patents did not void the application.

    Now for the two applications lodged in 2008 these 18 months have long since passed, but they were never published. So either M stopped pursuing them at some stage after filing Form 1, or they were denied somewhere along the process. So I am wondering: Could it be, that M just keeps handing in a Form 1 from time to time at minimal cost in order to be able to truthfully claim “I have filed patents”?

  91. #91 joni
    July 14, 2010

    I am not a scientist, and so a lot of the science on here baffles me, but I know that real scientists are convinced that AGW is real (have met Matthew England on a few occasions).

    To see that Monkton is winning is very depressing. Very very depressing.

    And so I too have just written to Father Dennis J. Dease to add my support for Prof Abraham. We all need to support him.

  92. #92 sod
    July 14, 2010

    well done, Nick!

    Joni, Monckton is not winning. he is spreading false positive news, to encourage the lunatics on WuWt.it is a dirty tactic, that he has used multiple times in the past.

    lucia has exchanged mail with Abraham yesterday:

    lucia (Comment#48895) July 14th, 2010 at 4:38 pm hunter–
    Why do you think Abraham is backing down? He hadn’t as of yesterday. I know because I exchanged email with Abraham.

  93. #93 Gneiss
    July 14, 2010

    RobH writes,
    “I’m not too familiar with the workings of academia, so can someone who is please tell me whether Monckton even starts out in Question 1 by getting things wrong?

    [1] Are you familiar with the convention in the academic world that if one wishes to rebut the work of another he should notify that other in good time, so as to avoid errors in the rebuttal and to afford the other a fair and contemporaneous opportunity to refute the rebuttal?”

    You’re right, Rob, there is no such convention. Monckton’s claims about academics are as made-up as everything else.

    But he’s pitching all of this at people who want to believe him and know even less than he does. It’s theatre for their benefit, not for scientists or academics or lawyers — or anyone else who knows bluster when they hear it.

  94. #94 joni
    July 14, 2010

    sod

    By winning I mean he is part of the crowd that is preventing action being taken now. That is what is so depressing.

  95. #95 TrueSceptic
    July 14, 2010

    For any who don’t already know, [Eli Rabett](http://rabett.blogspot.com/2010/07/this-is-where-eli-came-in.html) has a thread on answering The Munchkin’s list of “questions”. Many of them require only a knowledge of the English lagnuage and simple logic.

    Joni, why do you think Lord Munchkin is winning?

  96. #96 Another Kiwi
    July 14, 2010

    Ah any dissent from the people that Abraham says he talked to? Any reversals from those who said that Monkton has misinterpreted their work? I didn’t think so.
    Thanks for the address for where to send support for Abraham.

  97. #97 MapleLeaf
    July 14, 2010

    Brief message to Watts and Munchkin.

    PFO!

  98. #98 TrueSceptic
    July 14, 2010

    88 sod,

    Indeed. The Wattards have pretty much nailed their colours to Munchkin’s mast. What happens when he falls?

    Actually, they will just carry on in their own little denioverse, oblivious to reality … but still.

  99. #99 TrueSceptic
    July 14, 2010

    96 ML,

    I know what you meant (I think), but how about

    Paranoid Freak Out. An episode of mental hysteria, brought on by ingesting a cocktail of psycoactive drugs.

  100. #100 Vince Whirlwind
    July 14, 2010

    Abraham should not spend hours plowing through Monckton’s rubbish, he should respond like this:

    “Dear Chris,
    You have sent me a list of questions.
    Question #1 asks a question based on a false premise concerning academic conventions.

    Could you please re-send me your list of questions with this error corrected so I can resume addressing them.”

    Abraham wins no matter how Monckton reacts:
    – Abraham has not wasted his time
    – Abraham cannot be accused of not engaging with Monckton’s criticism
    – If Monckton reponds, it becomes “465 questions”, and the process can be repeated.
    – If Monckton doesn’t respond, then Abraham has no further work to do.