The Berkeley Earth Surface Temperature algorithm seems to work quite well, with coverage by the Economist, the BBC, the Wall Street Journal, the New York Times, the London Telegraph, the Daily Mail, the Los Angeles Times, US News and World Report, the Guardian, the Washington Post, the Independent and CNN.

Here is the BEST algorithm:

  1. State that “reported global warming may be biased by poor station quality“.
  2. Collect funding from Charles G. Koch Charitable Foundation.
  3. Make the utterly predictable finding that warming is not a product of poor measurement.
  4. Brief reporters.

If only I had used the BEST algorithm, then my own analysis would be in all the papers.

You may have heard this joke before: Q: What’s the difference between a computer salesman and a used car salesman? A: A used car salesman knows when he’s lying.

Decide for yourself which of the following are more like the computer salesman and which more like computer salesman.

Earlier Anthony Watts said: “I’m prepared to accept whatever result they produce, even if it proves my premise wrong.”

He’s not accepting their results because 1. they haven’t passed peer review (yes, that’s hypocrisy) and 2. they used a 60 year period instead of 30 years. Trouble is, BEST can easily recalculate and show that a 30 year period gives the same results, and when the results are published in a journal, Watts won’t have a leg to stand on.

James Delingpole has taken a different approach:

In the first half of his piece, Professor Muller sets up his straw man. He does so by ascribing to “skeptics” views that they don’t actually hold. Their case, he pretends for the sake of his wafer-thin argument, rests on the idea that the last century’s land-based temperature data sets are so hopelessly corrupt that they have created the illusion of global warming where none actually exists.

No it doesn’t. It has been a truth long acknowledged by climate sceptics, deniers and realists of every conceivable hue that since the mid-19th century, the planet has been on a warming trend – emerging, as it has been, from a widely known phenomenon known as the Little Ice Age.

Compare with one James Delingpole, just last year:

Global Warming: is it even happening?

Check out this magisterial report by our old friends Joseph D’Aleo and Anthony Watts and judge for yourself. In brief: the surface temperature records are such a mess that they simply can’t be trusted.


  1. #1 Chris O'Neill
    October 31, 2011

    Dick Bradford:

    You should be anointing this guy as a Hero Worker, or whatever you call them

    Sorry, the science denialists did that first.

  2. #2 Alan
    October 31, 2011

    What is going on at The Australian?

    Apart from cleverly framing the photo to show a notice about the “The Coming Ice Age”, their November 1 report on Muller seems to be dispassionately factual, without verballing him or distorting his results. I know that is what newspapers should do but on matters of climate science I have learned to look for trickery, deviousness and outright lies from The Australian. Alas, being an actual physicist myself, I am ill-equipped by temperament and training to find them.

    Am I missing something?

  3. #3 Bernard J.
    October 31, 2011

    Alan, Alan – you’re reading the paper upside down…

  4. #4 bill
    October 31, 2011

    I see that Rick Bradford has joined us; a daft puppy always front-and-centre for its masters, pathetically eager to swallow the dog’s breakfast that is Jo Nova’s incoherent ball of spite ‘aimed’ – if such a sodden, tangled mess could ever be considered to be aimed at anything – at Muller:

    I can’t find anyone who has a good thing to say about BEST — even the creepy Deltoids are laying into it, apparently because Muller said a couple of years ago that “hide the decline” shenanigans are not the way to do science, and the Deltoids haven’t forgiven him.

    ‘Creepy’ eh? Oooh, cutting; bet the alpha-dogs love that one! May I just point out to you what you clearly already know only-too-well; just what a blow to your motley pack this really is? Your enraged howls that only amount to ‘not fair – they’re using facts’ really only reinforce the point! What exactly do you imagine you’re achieving?

    Now, run along, whelp, and do your yapping elsewhere…

  5. #5 JohnL
    October 31, 2011

    It appears that Jonas had a very short run over at Tamino’s place,one and done.

  6. #6 frankis
    October 31, 2011

    [As I don’t see an open thread but do see #201 & 202 …]

    The innumerate, illiterate Murdoch Australian is [at it as usual]( and still can’t get itself past primary school level educational failure:

    “… the audit showed that 5587 of 18,531 — fully one-third …”

    The Oz – so much less than just typos and stupidity.

  7. #7 Lotharsson
    October 31, 2011

    Jonas at Tamino:

    > Unless you are very very confident in the origin of each and all of the underlying contributing mechanisms, there is no way anybody can separate what part of the data constitutes a true trend and what supposedly is noise.


    And that attempted point by Jonas entirely misses the point of Tamino’s response to Curry’s “There is no scientific basis for saying that warming hasn’t stopped”.

    > …one and done.

    Tamino doesn’t suffer fools much…

  8. #8 SteveC
    October 31, 2011

    @ Alan | October 31, 2011 5:17 PM

    You may have accidentally inserted the contents of a real newspaer inside the cover of a pretend one.

  9. #9 SteveC
    October 31, 2011

    @ frankis | October 31, 2011 7:39 PM

    Are they still touting that LaRaspberry (pace Craig Thomas) tosh? What next – a 5-page “Special” in the weekend colour supplement by Prof. Dr. J. Curry on what the NIPCC can teach us all about nepotism?

  10. #10 Mikem
    November 1, 2011


    You should be anointing this guy as a Hero Worker, or whatever you call them — that’s the best ink the alarmist movement has had in years.

    Gee Rick, you almost sound really pissed (off).

    Yet another review/reanalysis of temperature data concludes that it does actually say exactly what climate scientists have always maintained it said. This continual smacking down, getting back up and yelling conspiracy, smacking down again, getting back up and yelling conspiracy, and smacking down yet again must be really getting to you by now, eh?

    Just how many more smackdowns can you actually take before you lose your mind even more than it has been lost already?

  11. #11 ianam
    November 1, 2011

    I ask because I wonder if any of you realise how deeply unpleasant you all sound?

    Ad hominem fallacy. Respond to the substance, asshole.

  12. #12 ianam
    November 1, 2011

    as a reasonably intelligent man (just)

    Not even close, as you have repeatedly demonstrated here.

  13. #13 Rick Bradford
    November 1, 2011

    > …dumb journalists are now going to bring it up for years and years.

    Finally we agree on something. Most of the journalists from the MSM, and especially the ‘progressive’ media are so dumb that regurgitating press releases is all they’re capable of. And even that’s a stretch, sometimes.

    If only they had the brains to ‘bring up’ things that Muller actually said, such as:

    > “How much of the warming is due to humans and what will be the likely effects? We made no independent assessment of that.”


    > “The human component of global warming may be somewhat overestimated.”

  14. #14 jakerman
    November 1, 2011

    Rick, why do you believe either of these quotes is relevant and telling?

    The quotes you selected are prosaic and in no way support your claims about the journalists you seek to smear.

  15. #15 Wow
    November 1, 2011

    He doesn’t, jakerman. All he’s trying to do is put a lot of words out whether they support his position or not, because it takes no effort to make shit up completely and lots to show why it is a load of crap.

    So Dick spouts irrelevant nonsense, knowing that The Team (His Team) will accept it as being important because “he wouldn’t have posted it otherwise”.

    Just remember how many denialists point to a paper “proving” AGW false and when you go in and read it, find out it does no such thing.

    A Watts is a journalist blogger. And since he fluffed up BEST and Muller’s qualifications, Dick’s assertion that mere journalists lifted him up erroneously is correct. Dick’s just knows that his matey denialists won’t let themselves notice that he’s dissing Watts as a source of reliable information, since it doesn’t gel with their faith.

  16. #16 David Duff
    November 1, 2011

    Question from me:
    “I wonder if any of you realise how deeply unpleasant you all sound?”

    Answer from Ianam:
    “Ad hominem fallacy. Respond to the substance, asshole.” (My emphasis)

    In one sentence, ‘fallacy’ turns into reality.

    Perhaps, who knows, one day AGW will do the same!

  17. #17 John
    November 1, 2011

    Duff, I wonder if you realise how sensitive you seem? So you were called a name on the internet. Harden up, tone troll.

    As I have already said, you are only here to ridicule, mock and condescend. No reason to chuck a sobbing wobbly when your tactics get turned back on you.

  18. #18 Richard Simons
    November 1, 2011

    In one sentence, ‘fallacy’ turns into reality.

    Another denialist who doesn’t know what ad hominem means.

  19. #19 Wow
    November 1, 2011

    > In one sentence, ‘fallacy’ turns into reality.

    In one post: doesn’t understand ad hom.

    You’re an asshole, but if you can give some evidence that stands up to scrutiny, you will be a correct asshole.

    However, no matter how unpleasant we sound, the evidence doesn’t change.

  20. #20 guthrie
    November 1, 2011

    I can’t recall exactly how long Duff has been trolling around, making snide comments and ignoring science. At least 3 years, on a wide variety of blogs.

  21. #21 David Duff
    November 1, 2011

    A trivial point but just for the record, when you’ve experienced an Aldershot drill sergeant at close quarters, being called names has no effect whatsoever. I was only trying to drop you a hint, although I realise that many of you are a bit slow slow on the uptake, that if anyone trying to find out the rights and wrongs of this AGW lark came here (as I did years ago) to hear both sides of the argument the unpleasant nature of *some* of you would instantly put them off (as it did me years ago) both you and your argument. It’s a bit like listening to a salesman with bad breath and BO, very off-putting!

  22. #22 Wow
    November 1, 2011

    Then why do you whine incessantly about it, Dai? If it meant nothing to you, why even bring it up?

    Here’s a hint: stop being an asshole and people will stop calling you an asshole.

    But nobody has said you’re wrong BECAUSE you’re an asshole. Just that you’re so wrong so often, you’re an asshole.

  23. #23 David Duff
    November 1, 2011

    Difficulty reading, ‘Wow’?

  24. #24 bill
    November 1, 2011

    Blowhard on the Far-Starboard Bow!

    Seriously folks, why waste time arguing with a pathological attention seeker and fabulist like Duff? His own thread is long overdue, methinks.

    Incidentally, this is what the great man considers to be funny, apparently. Note that even the Birthers get a run on his site!

  25. #25 John
    November 1, 2011

    David Duff makes an excellent point, as commenters on skeptical websites are so polite and never abuse anyone.

    Oh wait, he is being a tone troll, and a remarkably sensitive one at that.

  26. #26 Vince Whirlwind
    November 1, 2011

    Wow, it’s spelled “arsehole”, and you can shove your inferior american spellings where you like.

  27. #27 David Duff
    November 2, 2011

    Sense of humour failure, Bill?

  28. #28 Wow
    November 2, 2011

    Yes, you do have difficulty reading your own posts.

    You complain about insults but don’t care about insults. At least one of those is fake, Dai.

  29. #29 Wow
    November 2, 2011

    I was writing for the american audience, vinny.

    You know, Dai.

    You can take your arse and your hole and fuck off.

  30. #30 ianam
    November 2, 2011

    In one sentence

    That one sentence was intended (obviously, I thought) to elicit from you the very stupidity and ignorance that you in fact demonstrated. Avoiding substance by deflection to such personal characteristics as tone is ad hominem fallacious; calling you an asshole is simply a conclusion from evidence. Again, you pathetic coward: respond to the substance.

  31. #31 ianam
    November 2, 2011

    BTW, moron:

    Question from me: “I wonder if any of you realise how deeply unpleasant you all sound?”

    Answer from Ianam: “Ad hominem fallacy. Respond to the substance, asshole.”

    What I wrote was not, and was not intended to be, an answer to your question.

    the unpleasant nature of some of you

    All or some? Make up your mind … not that it matters, because you’re a dishonest imbecile either way and your opinion isn’t worth anything.

  32. #32 Matthew
    November 11, 2011

    I’m quite surprised that the Berkeley Earth Surface Temperature groups findings aren’t being embraced by climate change believers. As far as I’m aware this is only the beginning of their investigations and they will be looking at further evidences of global warming.

    My take is (as I’ve written elsewhere):
    The Berkeley Earth Surface Temperature (BEST) – led by Richard Muller – has given us the independent review and analysis of global climate data that was so desperately needed to get this “debate” back on track. This is one the climate change sceptics can’t touch. First it confirms that the so-called ‘Climategate’ emails were a deceptive trick by climate change sceptics to stall action on climate change. The Berkeley Earth Surface Temperature Group have cleared The University of East Anglia’s Climatic Research Unit (CRU), and by imputation the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), much better than a thousand investigations could have.

    BEST’s independent analysis of the data gave the same result: global warming is real. Thus the CRU could not have doctored anything – or Richard Muller’s investigation would have shown no warming.

    The climate change sceptics arguments are now shown to be false. They should have no real input into the climate change debate from now on. But this time the debate should begin at a grass root’s level with town hall style meetings telling the truth ie that the latest survey showed that 97%-98% of climatologists agree that man-made climate change is real and presents one of the greatest threats to mankind ever experienced. The emphasis is (and always has been) on the climate change sceptics to show they are right. Climatologists have never been shown the respect for their profession, and the presumption of innocence, that they deserve as professional scientists. Richard Muller and the Berkeley Earth Surface Temperature group have changed all that.

    IMHO the climatologists made a rod for their own back by refusing to sue climate change deniers for libel, slander, defamation, and scientific fraud. I recently posted this thought at another forum – only to get a reply that suing would be “vindictive”. Which prompted me to consider these comments (as a reminder that I’m not the only one who thinks like this):

    “Can’t these scientists club together and take people like Monckton to court for libel/slander/defamation or something?

    If he is using the names of respected scientists, and the organisations they represent, to support falsification, distortion and outright lies, then surely this is a legal matter for the courts?

    As mentioned previously, few people are fighting for the scientists, so they’re going to have to adapt and fight for themselves, tooth and nail.

    For now there is little other choice it seems.”

    Mezzum 3 June 2010 3:55PM

    “…Certainly if scientists were to approach their respective nation’s courts with this issue then they would have to consider deeply how it may be perceived in the wider public sphere with respect to freedom of speech.

    However from what I understand, Monckton has misrepresented the facts, he has distorted the work of professional scientists; scientists who are attached to academic institutions and private companies.

    Further, Monckton has sought to not just discredit the work of these men and women, but ridicule them and sully their professional reputation, and that of their sponsors in the process.

    That any individual or organisation should not have recourse to the law in these circumstances is madness.”

    Mezzum 3 June 2010 8:59PM

  33. #33 Lotharsson
    November 15, 2011

    > I’m quite surprised that the Berkeley Earth Surface Temperature groups findings aren’t being embraced by climate change believers.

    Your implication appears to be counter-factual.

    > This is one the climate change sceptics can’t touch.

    Except that they are applying their usual maneuvers – goalpost shifting, inflating uncertainty, indulging in creatively “interpreting” the results for their legion of fans whilst dissing more fair-minded reportage as “biased”, tribalism – including casting the offending researchers out of the tribe, rewriting (their own) history, and blatant application of double standards.

    For example, you write that this investigation has definitively cleared the CRU.

    The trouble is, this investigation is *itself* now being cited by “skeptics” as untrustworthy and methodologically suspect – even by one who was involved early on and announced that their methods were really good and he’d trust the results – and the media releases are being dubbed propaganda.

    You also write a number of things that *should* happen to explain the evidence to the public – except that most of those have already happened, and have been rejected by those who don’t share your assumptions that we all want a rational assessment of the best evidence we have – even if they *say* they do or *think* they do.

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