Way past time for another open thread
“I cannot believe it got published,” said KevinTrenberth,
senior scientist at the National Center for Atmospheric
It’s a tragedy!
BJ given your measurement of the Earth’s surface in kilograms above, which even I would accept was a throwaway error, don’t you think you have sort of disqualified yourself from judgement of a similar error by another?
James: only if uncorrected 😉
Marin, did or did not Monnett use his wife as a peer reviewer for his own paper?
Yes or No.
BTW more has come out about this just recently, got some catch up to do.
Abbott’s war on science : “This is a draconian new police force chasing an invisible odourless, weightless, tasteless substance,”
What is Tony worried about? A tax on the weight of a weightless gas is zero tax.
> …don’t you think you have sort of disqualified yourself from judgement of a similar error by another?
Er, you actually think the errors are *similar*?
What a very strange conclusion.
>BJ given your measurement of the Earth’s surface in kilograms above, which even I would accept was a throwaway error, don’t you think you have sort of disqualified yourself from judgement of a similar error by another?
Oh James, you great big superhero, you are so right!
Tony Abbott is in fact correct, and (woe is me!) I am not – CO2 is completely weightless.
If you think that I am wrong, all you have to do is to replicate my calculation, or ask an independent person to do so. I am happy to release my data if you are unable yourself to do the basic fact-checking required to gather the starting figures.
Or you could just accept that I made a typo which was self-corrected and which did not alter my conclusion in the slightlest, and which doesn’t detract from the fundamental point that Abbott is wrong… except perhaps in your fevered mind which is desperate to believe, following whatever convoluted route a denialist mind can conjure up, that science and mathematics do not apply to climatology or to basic atmospheric chemistry.
“Throwaway errors” are easily – and usually quickly – corrected. The fact that Tony Abbott has been making, for many years, frequent and profoundly egregious errors about the science of climate change is (amongst other evidence) a damning indictment of his very poor grasp of science. It’s good of you to draw attention to the nature of his error though, so thanks for the opportunity to comment on it.
>What is Tony worried about? A tax on the weight of a weightless gas is zero tax.
Chris O’Neill FTW!
This needs to be front page on the Australian today. All is well, the sky is not about to fall, cats and dogs may still sleep together!
Martin, [David](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2011/07/open_thread_62.php#comment-4635569) answers [your question](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2011/07/open_thread_62.php#comment-4630155).
Trenberth has a [commentary on Spencer’s new paper](http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2011/07/misdiagnosis-of-surface-temperature-feedback/) at RealClimate.
> …it is evident that this paper did not get an adequate peer review. It should not have been published.
> The basic material in the paper has very basic shortcomings because no statistical significance of results, error bars or uncertainties are given either in the figures or discussed in the text.
And for reasons he goes into in more detail in the post:
> The bottom line is that there is NO merit whatsoever in this paper. It turns out that Spencer and Braswell have an almost perfect title for their paper: “the misdiagnosis of surface temperature feedbacks from variations in the Earth’s Radiant Energy Balance” (leaving out the “On”).
More food for thought…
@100, Err James, unfortunately the “colourless odourless everything-else-less” argument is trotted out again, and again, and again by the denialati with respect to CO2. I have no doubt that Abbott did not make a mistake, but meant every word of what he said. Ziggy Switkowski said it recently too, and he has a physics degree (proof physics degrees don’t eradicate bizarre logical reasoning).
In a parallel argument on a recent Bolt blog (yes I know, not exactly a haven for intelligent life) another regular denialati member weighed in with another ripper on the apparently totally benign chemical properties of carbon: it is an atom that is essential in all known life forms and is commonly bonded to other atoms in life-giving molecules, and therefore is good.
I never did get a response when I pointed out that when triple bonded to nitrogen, it forms cyanide.
I’ve asked the denialiati time after time how they explain the harmfulness of carbon monoxide and radon gases. The explosiveness/flammability of methane. The volatility of hydrogen. All this stuff is colourless, odourless, and tasteless. Time after time all I get is the web equivalent of a blank stare. It is far beyond their intelligence levels to be able to rationalise that apparently benign properties in relation to our common sensory abilities do not mean something is harmless in all possible ways.
Tony Abbott believes Co2 is harmless, yet his party still intends to cut emissions by 5%. Right up until they get elected, anyway.
Martin, did or did not Monnett use his wife as a peer reviewer for his own paper?
Yes or No.
Of course he did! (That’s a ‘Yes’ for the record.) I would too if my wife had the necessary professional background and agreed to do so. It’s called “internal review”. You first show your paper to friends and colleagues, to give them a chance to shoot it down or point out weaknesses in it. Only then do you send it off to a journal to be formally peer reviewed. This practice minimises time wastage by busy professionals.
Monnett followed this practice, showing him to be a thoughtful, responsible researcher.
Counterquestion, David: did you or did you not, in your comment, try to fool people into believing that Monnett’s paper was only internally reviewed?
Yes or no. And don’t lie.
Re : Charles Monnett.
“We are limited in what we can say about a pending investigation, but I can assure you that the decision had nothing to do with his scientific work, or anything relating to a five-year old journal article, as advocacy groups and the news media have incorrectly speculated.”
(Email from Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, Regulation and Enforcement Director Michael Bromwich to BOEMRE’s Alaska regional office employees.)
Oh dear. Perhaps the latest ‘final nail in the coffin of AGW’ will turn out to be a dud, just like all the rest ?
So… Monnett has been suspended and is under investigation and it has nothing to do with his science and he has no idea why he’s being investigated, although he was apparently lied to by the investigators:
written material given to Monnett by investigators, who told him the Interior Department had concerns about his ability to act impartially on a contract involving polar bear research.
I can’t help but wonder if anyone has a clue what’s going on. But I guess they may as well destroy the man’s career while they puzzle it out.
“…but I can assure you that the decision had nothing to do with his scientific work, or anything relating to a five-year old journal article…”
That’s odd considering the transcript of his interview with the investigators dealt almost exclusively with his scientific work, in particular the journal article in question on the dead polar bears.:
“CHARLES MONNETT: Well, how does that, um – you say this is basically “scientific misconduct,” and how does that jive then with this being administrative in nature? What‟s that mean, just that it’s not criminal or something?
ERIC MAY: That’s correct.
CHARLES MONNETT: Okay.
ERIC MAY: Right, this is an administrative matter under the conditions of Kalkines, so –
CHARLES MONNETT: I see.
ERIC MAY: Okay? And the only – and we explained before, the only reason it would be – reach the level of criminal is if we find that you‟re lying to us.
CHARLES MONNETT: Right, and you’re going to, you’re going to investigate, uh, the details of our science and you (inaudible/mixed voices)
ERIC MAY: Based on the allegations that we received. That’s correct.
CHARLES MONNETT: Okay, and, and just so I know how to put my answers, do you have scientific credentials of any sort? Uh, what, what, what level of scientist am I speaking with here that’s going to be evaluating my science?
ERIC MAY: No, we’re criminal investigators.
CHARLES MONNETT: Criminal investigators.
ERIC MAY: With the Inspector General’s Office.
LYNN GIBSON: Right.
CHARLES MONNETT: So I assume with no formal training in, in science or biology or –
LYNN GIBSON: That’s correct.
ERIC MAY: That’s right.
CHARLES MONNETT: – marine, marine biology (inaudible/mixed voices).
LYNN GIBSON: That’s correct.
ERIC MAY: That’s correct, right.
CHARLES MONNETT: All right, thanks.”
Re the recent forays into climate science rejectionism by the president of the National Association of Scholars, it _appears_ (though I haven’t had him reply confirming this, so it’s conceivable I’ve somehow misunderstood) that the wellspring of most of NAS’s revenue is dwindling and doomed to disappear.
(See its Sourcewatch page (link) for details)
Yes, Anna: note, down from $132K dues in 2002 to $79K in 2009.
Also, note that 50%+ of salary/benefits goes to Wood+Balch.
For those who haven’t seen this, you might visit Wood’s latest Climate Thuggery, as he ups the ante from Bottling Up Global Warming Skepticism.
But if you post at CHE, *please* be polite, hard though it may be.
That’s odd considering the transcript of his interview with the investigators dealt almost exclusively with his scientific work, in particular the journal article in question on the dead polar bears.
We can only assume that was a distraction while the real investigative work is being done by psychics.
Re Peter Wood again at Chron of Higher Ed, & Mashey’s admonition to *please* be polite –
Yes, yes, yes. When someone’s clearly trolling for reactions, don’t rise to the bait.
The announcement (if any) after the election might go something like this:
“We have found that our ‘direct action’ policy will be far more expensive than the costs associated with adaptation to climate change.”
which is probably literally true in an economic sense, given that “direct action” is far more expensive than any form of Carbon pricing. The announcement continues:
“We will therefore choose the most economic course of action, which is to adapt to the effects of climate change if and when they occur.”
Check and mate.
Nils-Axel Mörner gets a mention elsewhere on ScienceBlogs.
This is weird,
Much of the rest of the interrogation centered around whether Dr. Monnett and his colleagues had observed 3 or 4 dead bears. Seriously. This took about an entire hour of a two hour interrogation. Dr. Monnett explained in every way he could possibly think of to the Inspector General that they had observed 4 dead bears, but that only 3 of those bears were in their study area. That’s why there is mention of 4 bears, but when he does the calculations in the paper he uses the number 3. Did you get that? Me too. But it took the IG and his assistant an entire hour to comprehend that information.
Above was from Climate progress.
> Marin, did or did not Monnett use his wife as a peer reviewer for his own paper?
> Yes or No.
Dai bach, do you ever get tired of lying?
Yes or no.
I’ve been a little late in picking up on the latest instalment of [David Rose’s](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/global_warming/rosegate_1/) climate change denial. This is from last week and is a deeply unpleasant and bile filled rant against Prof Steve Jones’s review of BBC science reporting:
[Why we should give the cold shoulder to a BBC Trust Review that argues the broadcaster should ignore global-warming ‘deniers’](http://www.dailymail.co.uk/debate/article-2018143/Steve-Jones-BBC-Trust-Review-global-warming-trusted.html)
Rose clearly considers himself Prof Jones’s scientific equal, but his article does contain this extraordinary gaff:
But the problem for the warming catastrophists, which despite a recent spate of peer-reviewed papers Jones totally ignores, is that the world temperature trend since 1995 has been flat, with no evidence of warming at all.
If Singer can still insist (after repeatedly being told where he’s wrong)that the satellite data shows no warming since 1979, Rose can say temps have been flat with no warming since 1995. Why should facts get in the way?
I see that other cranky English Lord – Lord Lawson – has arrived in Australia and is claiming that Thatcher highlighted “global warming because the biggest threat to the UK energy security at the time was the stranglehold the Marxist National Union of Mine Workers had on the coal industry.” (from the Australian). Ironic that he claims this when, if certain deniers are to be beleived, global warming is allegedly a Marxist plot.
As I recall it the UK mining unions were effectively defeated in 1985, 4-5 years before Thatcher mentioned climate change. It was the stockpiling of coal from the early 1980s that ensured the defeat of the mining unions, not global warming.
The starkly depressing thing is that the overwhelming majority of TV, radio and print reporters these days are simply that – reporters who dp nothing more than give these nutjobs a microphone in which to pour their drivel.
There was a time when a real journalist would have called them on such idiocy as soon as it was uttered, and backed the whacko into a corner, but that sort of professionalism requires investigative powers and training far beyond the abilities of most media hacks these days.
And so ‘news’ is now whatever best catches the hysteria of the audiences. Truth is an afterthought that has little relevance.
July’s UAH figures are up. http://www.drroyspencer.com/latest-global-temperatures . Will there soon be an updated press release from the NZ Climate Science Coalition? http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/SC1103/S00026/recent-cooler-temperatures-were-predictable.htm
More from PEER today on the Charles Monnett suspension.
Martin, would it be at all possible that people with a scientific background, or at least those who closely follow the climate debate, would believe that it is possible for a single review by one’s own wife would be sufficient to pass the publication test?
If I’m among such people on this blog then I apologize for the inference (as it was taken) though no such was intended.
> would believe that it is possible for a single review by one’s own wife would be sufficient to pass the publication test?
That wasn’t the only review.
The “wife review” happened BEFORE sending to the journal.
The journal THEN put it up for peer review.
Bill Watterson, for example, used to have his wife check over his ideas. Not because she’s the only one who needs to like it, but that if someone else DOESN’T like it, then it’s probably not a good idea to continue through the time and trouble of publishing it.
But you don’t believe that any other review was done, do you Dai? Because it doesn’t fit in with what you KNOW IN YOUR HEART is going on. That it’s a figment of your fevered ego is not going to change your position.
On Monnett’s suspension:
A interview shortly after the note in Polar Biology was published.
US Interior Dept Inspector Generals Office investigator May questioned Gleason, Monnett’s co-author in January ~ 1 month before doing so with Monnett about much of the same stuff.
There’s a link to the (long) transcript of Gleason’s questioning on The Guardian site in the link above. Also a sidebar link to most of the update “state of the play” pointed to by sean in #120 at The Guardian.
The aroma of burning fagots grows stronger.
I love being reminded of McLean’s prediction. I only hope there are ample opportunities to remind him of it in January 2012…
David, apology accepted.
I’m quite sure that most of the readers of this blog are ‘lurkers’ with little science background — they come here to learn! — and therefore easily fooled in the way I described. Your little prank did them a disservice.
Will deniers never give up telling us carbon dioxide is totally harmless?
Abbott’s jumped on this bandwagon dragged by a dead horse and Bolt even had video showing how it makes things grow really really fast because it’s a “plant food”.
Well Bolt and the rest of you chemistry geniuses – ammonium nitrate a plant food too so where’s your argument now?
I’m surprised that no one here is looking at the “subtle” attacks on climate science at catallaxy ( what is whiggish supposed to mean? ) There are lots of posts showing that the IPCC is all rubbish and most importantly ( the next step)
that most of the research done in the hard sciences in the last 50 years is “fraudulent”. Just trawl the site and you will see what is going on. Much of it supposedly economics but “climate science” takes a bashing whenever it can, and of course all science (but indirectly through the opinions of other “no doubt important” persons. I’m curious to know why this is ignored.
“I’m curious to know why this is ignored”.
So many cranks, so little time…
Since GWPF supremo Lord Lawson is now in Australia (are he and Monckton a tag team?) this might interest people. They say you shouldn’t believe anything you read in the Daily Mail, and [an analysis of their recent global warming coverage](http://www.carbonbrief.org/blog/2011/07/daily-mail-and-the-global-warming-policy-foundation) shows why:
“The Daily Mail has given more than five times as much space to the Global Warming Policy Foundation’s views in its recent coverage of climate change and ‘green taxes’ than to any other source.”
The graphic is striking. The analysis out of date as the Mail has run at least three more articles all with extended quotes from Lawson and assorted GWPF stooges.
Apparently BOEMRE has approved drilling by Shell in the Beaufort Sea.
Between this, and reading that billions of dollars in oil royalties aren’t being collected, it just makes the Charles Monnett situation look even worse.
An Australian academic terminology Q – what’s the diff between an adjunct professor & adjunct Dr.?
e.g. (with respect to Bob Carter, who’s listed as an Adjunct Professorial Research Fellow – what does this mean?)
this means he’s not retired, right?
Anna@140. ‘Adjunct’s’ are not usually paid by the university/institution named. They may, however, receive non-renuminary benefits, such as RA, lab., library and secretarial support – or, as in Carter’s case, a useful fig leaf . They may also be able to supervise some projects, though usually with a co-supervisor. Hence John McLean’s status as a permanent PhD candidate at JCU.
[Iain Stewart’s video demonstrating the absorption of infrared radiation by CO2](http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SeYfl45X1wo&feature=player_embedded) is easily found, but I am looking for a similar video where the narrator, rather than a candle, is being recorded by the camera. I’m not sure if the narrator was Iain Stewart himself – it doesn’t come up when search terms are used that refer to him.
Does anyone know where I might find this second clip demonstrating the absorption of infrared radiation by CO2? I need the clip in the next day or so, for a colleague’s forum about CO2 impacts on the environment…
BJ, I know the scene you refere to, but cann’t recall whcih program. I do recall that it was not Iain Stewart in the clip you are refering to. It was a seemingly older tall slim man.
It was a Frontline peice with [Pieter Trans](http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/nova/transcripts/27gwwarming.html).
I think I first saw it when Peter Sinclair used it in one of his Crock of the Weeks.
Meanwhile, [Abbot argues for a higher carbon price](http://www.smh.com.au/environment/climate-change/abbott-stars-at-anticarbon-tax-rally-20110816-1ivwu.html). To be fair, he didn’t twig to the conclusion, but that’s basically what his own logic leads to:
> Mr Abbott said the government had admitted carbon emissions would continue to rise during the next decade despite the imposition of a $23 a tonne carbon price from July 1, 2012, followed by an emissions trading scheme.
> “What kind of craziness is this: to tax every single Australian and still see emissions going up and up and up?” he said.
And he lies when he says every single Australian will be taxed. He knows full well that only certain companies will be taxed, never mind that most Australians will receive rebates higher than the price rises passed on to them due to the tax.
One wonders whether he has purchased a frequent liar’s indulgence from the Vatican to make his confession sessions more efficient…
Standard lines from Art Raiche, ex CSIRO geophysicist, at the Carbon Tax Rally. His observations on the decline of the CSIRO were interesting. A comment from the crowd was “where was the media?”. If they had widended their media intake, they would know that there has been a lot of coverage on the decline of CSIRO’s independence. Here is a 4 Corners episode from 2006 on that very topic.
[Shark Attacks Shock Russian East](http://www.nytimes.com/2011/08/19/world/europe/19jaws.html)
Another draw for a great white might be water temperature. The waters in the region have been several degrees higher than normal, making a more attractive environment for great whites, according to Mr. Zgurovsky.
A long, long time ago, on a thread far, far away…
OK, so it was actually just over a year ago, on the documentation of Curtin’s bizarre pseudosciece, and it was titled “[Tim Curtin thread now a live show](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2010/04/tim_curtin_thread_now_a_live_s.php)”. And it was only one of many gobsmackingly stupid manglings of science for which Curtin is notorious…
But it was one of those spectacularly, gobsmackingly stupid manglings of science for which Curtin is deservedly notorious, and it is one that I think deserves a slightly late anniversary remembrance.
And to which of Curtin’s clangers am I referring? Why, the ‘acidified sewater is potable’ canard, of course!
In celebration of the first anniversary of the shutting-down of the thread, I decided to revisit Curtin’s suggestion that he would be happy to drink acidified seawater, and especially so if he could [spike it with his favourite whisky](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2010/04/tim_curtin_thread_now_a_live_s.php#comment-2602902). Well, here’s how he can do it…
Take 200 millilitres of seawater. Take a straw. Take a deep breath, and blow into the seawater at a rate of around 6 litres of breath per minute. Take a moment to breathe whenever and as required.
After about 100 seconds [the seawater will have a pH below neutral](http://i55.tinypic.com/2uetqbl.jpg).
Add whiskey, and enjoy…
Michael Mann [cleared by the National Science Foundation](http://www.smh.com.au/environment/climate-change/climatechange-scientist-cleared-in-us-over-emails-20110823-1j7ph.html).
Inhofe’s spokesman continues to impute wrongdoing, or at least insists that ClimateGate remains “deeply troubling” – at least in his worldview.
Bernard J. @ 149,
It was a doozy and well worth remembering. However, my personal favourite remains his attack and accusations of fraud and misconduct on the paper by De’ath et al (2009), which [I dissected here](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2010/04/tim_curtin_thread_now_a_live_s.php#comment-2702090) (and which is subsequently discussed at length).
In summary he called the paper ‘a tissue of lies from beginning to end’, and made accusations of fraud and deception, even though he had failed to read the paper properly, failed to understand it, and hadn’t bothered to look up the supplementary online material.
Phew! Pass the XXXX, cobber.
Apparently one of the impacts of human-induced global warming is more intense hurricanes…
A couple of things I’ve been meaning to flag…
The first is [Mike Papantonio interviewing Bill McKibben, the founder of 350.org](http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nX-OCsYFWg0&feature=player_embedded).
and the second is an extraordinary display of partisanship by the IPA in selecting panelists for [a debate about a carbon tax](http://www.abc.net.au/tv/bigideas/stories/2011/08/23/3299165.htm). Lawson and Plimer, especially, get away with outrageous murder of truth, and I am struggling to understand why the ABC thought that their notions represent “Big Ideas”…
Hurricane? *What* hurricane??!! So says “scientist” (Drudge calls him one) “Steven Goddard”! He claims that Irene came ashore in NC with winds of only 33 mph. Irene was just a warmist conspiracy!! Thank the Gods, all that damage on the coast was an illusion!
PS: I live a little outside Raleigh, NC, and I can say without hesitation *we* had more than 33 mph winds.
Jeez Robert! I skipped through the first coupla hundred comments and …. it’s a journey from amusement to despair in a few short minutes. It’s like ‘Goddard’ departed from WTFUWT taking the most rabid with him, then they in turn invited their most unstable friends along.
No mention from ‘Goddard’ about the most dangerous quadrant of the storm to be in the path of, no mention of flood surges, no thought given to the concept that while casualties can be prevented beforehand, there’s no bringing back the dead.
Maybe in a litigious society like the U.S., someone who was stupidly influenced by him during this event will find reason sue the odious creep.
Still, the advert for the imminence of 2012 adds some context as to what a classy place he’s running.
Th sad thing is, reading one of the threads at WUWT about the hurricane seemed like such a step up from the Goddard website. Watts specifically called out Goddard for clearly being wrong about the status of the storm. Now, there was still enough stupidity to go around over there, but when you can make WUWT almost look reasonable, you know you’ve truly sunk into a deep vat of STUPID.
The Australian federal Green Party is obviously starting to worry the trans-national corporate vested interests, because [the Institute for Public Affairs arranged a propaganda gab-fest on Counterpoint](http://www.abc.net.au/rn/counterpoint/stories/2011/3302274.htm) to shovel shit faster than a paddock-full of dung beetles…
Michael Duffy interviewed stroked the agendas this afternoon of the odious (and liquid-lunched, by the sound of it) Alan Moran, and of the revisionist David F. Smith, in a vacuous strawman parade of pseudo-points, misrepresentations, re-writings of history, and outright lies.
There were so many clangers that I really don’t even know where to begin, short of writing a formal essay to rebut the profligate nonsense. So take your pick and pull the wings from one fly at a time…
And speaking of essays, there followed immediately after another Duffy ego-stroke, this time in [a fat-chewing session with Hugh Raffles](http://www.abc.net.au/rn/counterpoint/stories/2011/3302303.htm), an anthropologist who thinks that he knows better than ecologists and who who recently published an op-ed that completely misunderstands and misrepresents the issue of exotic species.
As as ecologist myself I could not help but yell at the radio in complete incredulity, but in this instance I think that it will be assuagedby a formal complaint to the ABC, for allowing non-scrutinised garbage to be aired with no thought to seeking a professional opinion or two by way of testing for veracity.
It seems that Auntie might be suffering from senility in her advancing years…
Alan “The Parrot” Jones has top billing on the [Mediawatch](http://www.abc.net.au/mediawatch/) episode airing in 45 minutes…
I hope you, too, can have as much fun with this survey as I did. Especially the final question….
New comments have been temporarily disabled. Please check back soon.
Happy new year!