August 2012 Open Thread

Still here. It seems the carbon tax has not destroyed the Australian economy. Phew!

Comments

  1. #1 David Duff
    This Septic Isle
    August 26, 2012

    I’m beginning to worry about you, Wow, I think perhaps you should go and lie down in a dark room until your fever subsides!

    Now come along, John, you’re usually a bit quicker than poor old Wow. The NRO has no idea what documents Mann is holding and which he has hitherto refused to yield up, but now they have a full legal right to demand everything and that means everything in the slightest way connected to his scientific work. Of course, between me and you, not a word to Wow, he might come over all peculiar – again, but I suspect that an awful lot of people with very detailed knowledge will be pointing them in the right direction.

    It’s a cruel world!

    Oh,almost forgot my manners – thanks, Wow, for your joke of the week – the Huffpo – Oh my giddy aunt, it’s the way you tell ‘em!

  2. #2 Bernard J.
    August 26, 2012

    David Duff.

    How’s that “record cold” northern hemisphere summer of yours progressing?

    http://neven1.typepad.com/blog/2012/08/asi-2012-update-10-at-a-loss.html

  3. #3 Turboblocke
    August 26, 2012

    Duff, I don’t think that you get it… if the NRO defamation of Mann was true, then they must already have had the proof, otherwise they were not acting in good faith and so have no defense. If they demand to see all Mann’s documents so that they can hunt for stuff to prove their case it shows that they were being malicious.

  4. #4 Wow
    August 26, 2012

    Hey, how come you’re not screaming for access to all Anthony Watts’ stuff because of the accusation of being in an international kiddie porn ring?

    He gets financing from HI remember. You know, that charity organisation that hides where they get their money from? It’s from the selling of KP.

  5. #5 Wow
    August 26, 2012

    “but now they have a full legal right to demand everything ”

    No they don’t. Lunatic.

    (PS is this why Whacko Lord Munchkin, despite copious claims of suing people has not once tried? Because he, like you, thinks that this means “full legal right to demand everything”?)

    “the Huffpo”

    So the USA isn’t keeping Bradley Manning in secret trials because the HuffPo carried the story too?

    I guess this is how you believe all the other crap too.

  6. #6 David Duff
    This Septic Isle
    August 26, 2012

    Wow, it is *Mann* who is suing *NRO*, not the other way round. As defendents they have the right to view to view all pertinent documents.

    And Turbocock, it’s only defamation if it turns out their statements were untrue. That is why they will be going through Mann’s papers determined to find evidence that what they apparently suggested is true.

    And Bernard, I don’t give a flying fig for the Northern Hemisphere, in England it has been the coolest, wettest non-summer for ages – and despite the previous three not being much better. I keep telling you guys, send me some of that global warming!

  7. #7 Lionel A
    August 26, 2012

    As reported by John Russell over at SkS Jonathan Leake, Sunday Times (paywall alert), strikes again WRT Arctic Ice loss and quotes John Christy.

  8. #8 Wow
    August 26, 2012

    “Wow, it is *Mann* who is suing *NRO*, not the other way round”

    I know.

    YOU seem to think, though, that Mann is the one facing an accusation. It is YOU who thinks that NRO is suing Mann.

  9. #9 Wow
    August 26, 2012

    ” in England it has been the coolest, wettest non-summer for age”

    And in the USA, the hottest summer for recorded history.

    And for the Arctic, the hottest summer for recorded history.

    What a rube you are, duffski.

  10. #10 lord_sidcup
    August 26, 2012

    ..going through Mann’s papers determined to find evidence that what they apparently suggested is true.

    Duff – you are proof that hanging out at denier sites rots the brain. They didn’t ‘apparently’ ‘suggest’, they explicitly stated. As has already been pointed out, they have to provide the evidence to support those explicit statements. All Mann has to do is respond to the (doubtless flimsy) evidence they provide.

  11. #11 Wow
    August 26, 2012

    “it’s only defamation if it turns out their statements were untrue.”

    Incorrect.

    If you have no evidence for your statement, then you will lose your case.

    NRO have to prove themselves innocent.

    They don’t get to ask Mann to prove them innocent.

  12. #12 David Duff
    This Septic Isle
    August 26, 2012

    Wow, they have evidence which no doubt will be contested by Mann which is precisely why, if Mann is to substantiate his accusation of defamation he must give the defence lawyers access to all relevant docs. So you are wrong, in a sense, they do ask Mann to prove them innocent – delicious irony, isn’t it?

    However, so far, I believe, Mann has only asked for a retraction and *threatened* to sue. Soon we shall see whether or not he does, or instead perhaps, does a ‘Lance Armstrong’.

  13. #13 Lionel A
    August 26, 2012

    Duff-the-Dope let out more rope
    that will surely hang him
    he hast not a hope:

    in England it has been the coolest, wettest non-summer for ages

    Meanwhile you twerp here is what you are avoiding.

  14. #14 Wow
    August 26, 2012

    “they have evidence which no doubt will be contested by Mann”

    1) Well, they don’t need Mann’s stuff, then.

    2) Well, what do you expect to happen? It’s a court case and you presume that the accused is ALWAYS innocent?

    “I believe, Mann has only asked for a retraction and *threatened* to sue”

    You seem to be unable to know what you believe. 9:57 am you believed that there was a genuine lawsuit. A belief you maintained up to 5:10 pm. Yet, at 6:59pm you suddenly believe that there is no lawsuit.

    You’re certainly part of an “MTV generation”….

  15. #15 Jeff Harvey
    August 26, 2012

    Duff sticks his finger to the wind, gets a chill, and then proclaims an entire field of science to be bunk. That’s about the long and short of it. How much of the planet’s land mass does the UK constitute? Yet here we have him arguing that if its cool and wet in the UK, then climate warming is not happening. That’s a bit like saying (for argument’s sake) that tropical deforestation rates aren’t a concern because forest area in in Benin was relatively constant this year. It doesn’t matter that the total area of tropical wet forests in Benin make up <1% of the world's total rainforests by area, if they had a stable year then there is no need to fuss over the remaining 99% and their destruction; after all, if the forests weren't doing so badly in Benin this year, then they can't have been doing badly elsewhere. Yup, this is old Duffer's logic.

    Sheesh. Is it no wonder that the denier ranks are made up largely of nincompoops who spew out this kind of logic? Over the past decade there are hundreds of examples of extreme climate-change related events – large scale heat waves, unprecedented floods and the like – that far exceed the rate of the same events over similar time scales in previous years. By now the evidence for AGW is huge and still growing. And yet the stick-your-finger-to-the-wind brigade persists.

  16. #16 Turboblocke
    August 26, 2012

    http://www.metoffice.gov.uk/news/releases/archive/2012/typical-british-summer

    Too early to say what this year’s Summer was like as it hasn’t yet finished. However the Mat Office describe it as having had some disappointing spells.

    BTW Duff, I think my post above was the first time that I have ever replied to you (unless you’ve posted under another name). I note that your reply insulted me: this does not inspire confidence in your rationality.

  17. #17 Mack
    August 27, 2012

    Yeah, “large scale heat waves” as distinct from small scale heatwaves ; “unprecedented floods” as distinct from your common or garden floods occuring naturally all over the world all the time. It’s all unprecedented and just hotting up , the “evidence for AGW is huge and still growing” It’s either your dick or your head which is hot and huge Jeff . My guess the latter,. but then again you’re just a combination of both.

  18. #18 Jeff Harvey
    August 27, 2012

    Mack,

    You have your simple head stuck up you-know-where. Science has left you politically indoctrinated illiterates behind. The fact that you rely on non-pub;ished crap by Nahle and web sites run by denilaists to soothe your ignorance says it all. Its amazing how many of the deniers who parade their ignorance on the web – you are one of them – have never been near a science lecture in a university in their entire lives. Yet, like you, they think that reading a few blogs or right wing rags somehow is all that is necessary to become an expert. I saw it with GSW and his kindergarten level understanding of ecology, as well as with Jonas and his various acolytes. The less one knows, the more they think they know. There are so many Dunning-Kruger afflicted people out there spewign out there penny’s worth of nonsense on a range of scientific and environmental issues. What’s odd is that they thin, by virtue of their massive intellectual limitations and the fact that most haven’t been anywhere near a university lecture theater that science is on therir side. I speak with more scientists in a week than people like you Mack willdo in a lifetime. And the vast majority of us have moved on. Humans are forcing climate. Get over it.

    And you haven’t answered my question: what is your background in any scientific field? We all know the answer. You just know that telling us all here will pile on further humiliation.

  19. #19 Wow
    August 27, 2012

    “non-published crap by Nahle”

    who, remember, couldn’t even get his equation to work on dimensional analysis terms.

    But idiots are all these denier idiots have left to play with, so they play.

  20. #20 Mack
    August 27, 2012

    There’s a simple solution for you to satisfy your intellectual snobbery Jeff (Bernerd and anybody else ) to determine one of my academic qualifications and that is to READ all the comments at Nasif Nahle. It is there in the comments. So that is tough nuts for you. You are going to have to bugger off and read them. And I’ve got news for you Jeff baby. Humans are not “forcing the climate” . Get over it.

  21. #21 FrankD
    August 27, 2012

    Duff keeps bitching about how cold it is, but the facts say that the average temp for the UK for the year to date (January to July data, since August hasn’t finished) is 0.14 degrees above the already high 1980-2010 average.

    Duff worldview is limited to what he can see out his window.

  22. #22 Wow
    August 27, 2012

    Given his “view out his window” is factually incorrect, I don’t think he’s looking.

  23. #23 Chris O'Neill
    August 27, 2012

    This Septic Isle

    I prefer rhymes like:

    “This Denial Isle”

  24. #24 Bernard J.
    August 27, 2012

    USKMS.

    I’m not sure why you feel it necessary to direct me to the crankery of Nassif Nahle in order to establish any qualifications you might have… do I really get under your skin that much?

    I will simply conclude from your demonstrated low standard of literacy – both regular and scientific – that you have completed nothing that puts letters after your name.

    Not that there’s anything wrong with that, but by the evidence of your commentary you’re certainly not qualified to speak with any authority on anything even vaguely resembling science.

  25. #25 Jeff Harvey
    August 27, 2012

    Sorry Mack, but you are about as dense as a Mack truck. I won’t waste my time as a scientist going through some third rate blog with a bunch of unpublished crapola. I’ll stick to the scientific literature thank you very much. If you are afraid to tell us all here what your qualifications are, then this suggests that they aren’t much. As I told Jonas, I tend to defer to the views of the vast majority of climate scientists, many of whom I know personally or have met at conferences and workshops. Their opinion is that the humans are the main drivers behind the recent warming. It is warming, of that there is no doubt, based on innumerable biotic/ecological proxies. That humans are the primary culprit is pretty well a sealed deal. What we still don’t know with any defined clarity is how the effects are likely to play out on complex adaptive systems, and how this will rebound on humanity, but the prognosis is not good. Like a spolied child you can whine all day that ‘”it ain’t so!!!’, but don’t expect the scientific community by-and-large to join your whinging. I’ve done the mileage as far as science is concerned, and I am not arrogant enough – as you and your sad lot are – to think that my opinions trump the vast majority of experts in the field. If anyone is a snob its you and those who rotuinely deride real experts like Mann, Santer, Trenbert, Schmidt, Jones et al. – people who have bothered to have studied the field for much of their lives. The armchair brigade – you included – don’t reach up to their shoelaces.

    I am sick of having to listen to a bunch of pseudo-intellectual morons who think that by reading a few blogs that they become instant experts in fields well outside of their competence. The vast majority of scientists have moved on, Mack. You may not think so, but that’s because you’re apparently stuck behind your friggin’ keyboard.

    Stick with Nahle and the hoards of keyboard-experts who haven’t been to a university lecture in their lives.

  26. #26 Wow
    August 27, 2012

    Mackthetwat, Massive Nail was here some years ago. We’ve already read his crapola.

    There was an extreme amount of ass-handing-over to Nail and he just insisted that his “unique” view of physics was the only true one, and that any examples proving it wrong were either ignored or rejected.

  27. #27 John
    August 27, 2012

    The NRO has no idea what documents Mann is holding

    Then perhaps they shouldn’t have accused him of scientific fraud and general malfeasance based on documents they do not possess nor know the contents of. Because this is the crux of their claim – that a trawl through these alleged documents will prove everything.

    If Mann had so obviously committed the scientific fraud they claim, why can’t they simply procure one of his many published papers, articles, books or speeches? Surely all the evidence is right there, not in some magical and non-existent documents.

    Even funnier – the response invokes Hustler Magazine vs. Falwell – that is, “the statement [that Mann committed fraud] was so obviously ridiculous that it was clearly not true”.

    What the letter really amounts to is a whinge that they really didn’t mean what they said but they fully intend to waste the court’s time snuffling through Mann’s private documents like the pigs they are in order to smear him further.

    If you want to swallow whatever codswallop the National Review is serving up in a lame attempt to save their own arse, go ahead. Don’t expect this to resolve in your favour, though, if the best argument you have is “They have the evidence! They just need access to it!”

    Because they got nada.

    Nowt.

    Nothing.

  28. #28 GSW
    August 27, 2012

    As it’s another dreary, overcast, wet, Bank Holiday Monday, Mr Duff is correct, where have the BBQ summers of our youth gone? Anyway found this on the Washington Post site, about your lots level I would have thought.

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/when-is-it-too-hot-to-kill-above-90-degrees/2012/08/24/a003a4a0-edfa-11e1-afd6-f55f84bc0c41_story.html

    Even more reason for you to be hiding under the stairs, enjoy!

  29. #29 Wow
    August 27, 2012

    So what number of decades and when was EVERY YEAR in the UK a barbecue summer?

  30. #30 Bernard J.
    August 27, 2012

    GSW.

    So if it’s cloudy when you stick your head out the window there’s no global climate change? What’s happening in the Arctic right now? In Europe? In the USA?

    Hmmm?

  31. #31 Vince Whirlwind
    August 28, 2012

    Just been over to Jo Nova’s merry band of retards.

    Apparently they are very sensitive about Julia Gillard’s “nutjobs on the internet”, for some reason…..

  32. #32 Nick
    August 28, 2012

    The desperately stupid Nova attacks Dr Peter Doherty for deferring to identified expertise and ‘arguing from authority’,then proceeds to argue from authority in the very next paragraph…helpless and hopeless.

  33. #33 Lionel A
    August 28, 2012

    Nova looks like Australia’s answer to Ann Coulter except Coulter, arguably, has more nous, still scary though.

  34. #34 Mack
    August 28, 2012

    Jeff Harvey Aug 27th 9.54am.
    “And the vast majority of us have moved on”
    Jeff Harvey Aug 27th 1.02pm.
    “The vast majority of scientists have moved on”
    Stuck in a groove of verbal dross are we Harvewit? You and your scientists have ,yes, moved on but just left the science.behind. You can keep up with them ..licking their “shoelaces”

  35. #35 Jeff Harvey
    August 28, 2012

    Mack,

    For the umpteeth time you clown, go away. Most scientists – myself included – take AGW for granted. In virtually every conference and workshop I attend, the potential consequences of warming are discussed and debated. That humans are the primary driver is not discussed any more. This is taken for granted. I have yet to see a lecture presented when discussing warming-related effects debate this issue, or for any of those attending to dispute the causes. We are. End of story.

    Furthermore, how the hell would a know-nothing like you who clearly has no scientific qualifications and who never ever goes to a conference or even a university lecture know good science from bad science? If anyone is a pompous know-it-all on the basis of possessing no formal qualifications in any relavtns fields, it speople like you Mack. Dunning-Kruger through and through. Textbook cases of the affliction.

    When you refer to ‘science’ you obviously mean the think-tank or right wing web log variety. Certainly not that in peer-reviewed journals, because pretty well all of it bolsters the anthropogenic angle. I think that it takes remarkable hubris for laym,en like yourself to claim that science is on your ‘side’. What science? Certainly not that doen by the trained experts in said universities.

    To retierate: go away. Every posting on Deltoid makes you look more idiotic than you already are. To claim that a bunch of right wing idealogues with no formal training know climate science better than climate scientists is the final straw as far as I am concerned.

  36. #36 John
    August 28, 2012

    Let’s compare arguments – verified record Arctic ice melt vs anecdotes about alleged BBQ summers of yore (evidence provided – none) and alleged current cool weather (when the temperature has been above average).

    Try harder. Watts has expounded the latest scandal – Antarctic warming caused by the body heat of two men in an unheated station a long way from the nearest thermometer used for climate measurements. Throw us that one!

  37. #37 Lotharsson
    August 28, 2012

    Throw us that one!

    Our resident trolls are becoming slow…

    …er.

  38. #38 ben
    August 28, 2012

    So Jeff, conferences and university lectures are the only way to do science, eh? That’s a remarkably self-serving and narrow minded view.

    I’ve been involved in the peer review process on both sides, as a reviewer and as a submitter, and it sure isn’t the panacea of science you want it to be. I’m not even involved in a controversial field of science and I’ve seen all sorts of nasty politics play out in the peer review process.

    At this point the word ‘science’ in your posts is beginning to grate. Science this and science that, blah blah blah science science science. Argh.

  39. #39 Robert Murphy
    August 28, 2012

    “At this point the word ‘science’ in your posts is beginning to grate. Science this and science that, blah blah blah science science science. Argh.”

    Translation: Science is Hard!!!

  40. #40 Lionel A
    August 28, 2012

    Ben(der of logic)

    So Jeff, conferences and university lectures are the only way to do science, eh?

    What a presumptuous, narrow minded driven statement that is. Where do you think the data that supports said lectures and conferences comes from?

    Working in the field of course.

    Where did you see Jeff implying that he doesn’t do, or has not done, field work?

    You didn’t.

    End of!

  41. #41 Wow
    August 28, 2012

    1) “I’ve been involved in the peer review process on both sides, as a reviewer and as a submitter”

    2) “and it sure isn’t the panacea of science you want it to be.”

    These two things are not unconnected, Ben.

  42. #42 ianam
    August 28, 2012

    ben, everything you have ever posted here is immensely stupid and dishonest — like that total misrepresentation of what Jeff wrote — and you complain about grating? Yeah, too much mention of science in connection with AGW — better to just pull it out of you ass, like you deniers do. How stupid can you possibly be? Always more stupid than anyone imagined.

  43. #43 Jeff Harvey
    August 28, 2012

    Ben,

    Trust you to wade in here with your five cent’s worth. You, who once claimed that Obama was a left wing socialist. You are in over your head, pal. Way over.

    Nowhere did I say that the peer-review process is perfect – but its all we have to keep science safe. Otherwise we’d see flat Earth theories and the like taken seriously by pundits, the media and the general public. The fact is that the vast majority of scientists think that the empirical evidence supports the hypothesis of an indelible human fingerprint on the recent climate warming. If Mack’s view is to be taken seriously, then we might as well ditch degree and graduate programs and education in the climate, Earth and environmental sciences and let the corporate-funded think tanks and politically motivated hacks with blogs run the show.

    I am sure that you wouldn’t go to a garage mechanic to explain some medical problem you are having, and similarly I think it takes extreme arrogance for people with no relevant scientific pedigree whatsoever to be able to claim, as Mack does, that anthropogenic climate change is bunk. I see warning signs flashing whenever people with no expertise start mouthing about about areas of science in which they are neophytes (or less). These people write as if no training is required to master complex fields, and do not hesitate to ridicule scientists with whom they disagree. I’ve seen it here on Deltoid innumerable times.

    I seriously couldn’t give a rat’s ass if you’ve been a peer reviewer. I have been a reviewer for over 70 journals in my scientific career, and I would not be the first to admit that the system is leaky. But its not THAT leaky: the overwhelming support for AGW across the spectrum of science journals is, or should be, taken seriously. Its not like there is some huge controversy with scientific opinion split down the middle. The number of so-called sceptics with professional qualifications in a related field is small, and shrinking. As I said above, at conferences and workshops I attend, AGW is taken for granted. The discussions now focus on mitigation versus adaptation and effects on natural and managed ecosystems.

  44. #44 jerryg
    August 28, 2012
  45. #45 Mack
    August 28, 2012

    “At conferences and workshops I attend, AGW is taken for granted” Yes, a bunch of ostriches standing around with their heads stuck firmly in the sand. You are no scientist Jeff Harvey, You are not even worthy of being called a scientist.

  46. #46 Wow
    August 28, 2012

    So I take it your clique is all busy discussing whether water is wet as stated or whether it’s in fact strawberry.

    Right?

    I mean, there’s no way you could be taking things for granted, that would mean you’d consider yourself an ostrich with its head in the sand.

    Right?

    Or should I say rightwingnut?

  47. #47 bill
    August 29, 2012

    ‘Mack'; what is the point of you?

  48. #48 Lotharsson
    August 29, 2012

    I’ve been involved in the peer review process on both sides, as a reviewer and as a submitter, and it sure isn’t the panacea of science you want it to be.

    Ben appears to be (a) presuming pre-publication peer review must be perfect for science to be effective, and (b) ignoring the effect of post-publication peer review in weeding out unsupportable claims.

    It almost seems like Ben has a very limited understanding of how science comes to draw strong explanatory inferences from the data.

  49. #49 bill
    August 29, 2012

    It’s notable that the front 2 pages over at both Jo Nova’s League for the Preservation of Vital Bodily Fluids and the Bishop’s Stick-y Mess feature no mention of the Arctic sea-ice collapse, or Greenland, for that matter.

    (Well, except for the Bishop doing some bashing of Monbiot via one of those hilarious ‘Josh’ cartoons that those who miss Pravda should rush over and read. There’s no content involved.)

    These clowns really don’t know what to do about this, so they’re just going to ignore the thawing mammoth in the room!

  50. #50 bill
    August 29, 2012

    On the other hand, dear old Anthony has cleverly decided to divert attention to the other pole – and didn’t that work well? – as well as working up some other diversionary comedy material.

    Frankly, I think the stress of realising he’s going to be remembered as one of the greatest berks in history is getting to him…

  51. #51 Jeff Harvey
    August 29, 2012

    Mack claims that i am not a scientist. Many hundreds or even thousands of my peers disagree. The journals where I publish my research, ask me to be a peer-reviewer, or where I am an Associate Editor disagree. The conferences where I present lectures and the universities that invite me as a speaker disagree. My employer disagrees. Need I go on?

    Mack, who apparently hasn’t been near a university science lecture hall in his life, and who does none of the above, feels he possesses the innate ability to be able to separate a bonafide scientist (one who agrees with him with respect to denying AGW) from an imposter. What I said in my earlier posting stands: most scientists take AGW as a given. I can say this with the authority of being an ‘insider’. Mack gleans his opinion from perusing right wing blogs – WUWT, BH, Nova’s et al. set up and run by non-scientists for the deniers to chew their bit of fat.

    My question to Mack is this: given that you aren’t a scientist and don’t do what scientists do, what special gift do you possess that enables you to be able to measure the opinion of scientists working on climate change or its effects? Or is that, like Jonas, a bonafide scientist in your non-expert opinion is a climate change denier whereas the rest of us – meaning the majority – aren’t?

  52. #52 ben
    August 29, 2012

    ben, everything you have ever posted here is immensely stupid and dishonest…

    If you can get Tim to agree with you then we’ll discuss further, otherwise not.

    Where did you see Jeff implying that he doesn’t do, or has not done, field work?

    WTF? How does that have anything to do with what I wrote?

    Translation: Science is Hard!!!

    Thppppt! My point is that the WORD science is being used like it’s on a broken record. Very irritating. Like the guy my sister sat across from on a flight who couldn’t stop saying “wireless.” Wireless, wireless wireless, blah blah wireless. Same thing. Argh.

  53. #53 ben
    August 29, 2012

    While Jeff certainly is a scientist, I think the tax money that is collected could definitely be better spent on something more useful to humanity, like engineers. Or baristas. You know, people who produce something that is actually valuable to other people.

  54. #54 ben
    August 29, 2012

    Collected to pay for his university position, flights to various conferences and gatherings, computer bandwidth, grad students, etc. that is.

  55. #55 Lotharsson
    August 29, 2012

    Ben is also ignorant of the astounding cost-benefit ratio for science – and communicates this via a computer that would not exist but for investment into numerous areas of science, over a network that would not exist without similar scientific investments.

    Heck, Ben doesn’t seem to know much about science at all, other than he doesn’t want to hear about it too much.

  56. #56 bill
    August 29, 2012

    Shorter Ben – Jeff Harvey is much more successful than I am. Waaah.

  57. #57 Wow
    August 29, 2012

    “If you can get Tim to agree with you then we’ll discuss further, otherwise not. ”

    Why is that a requirement? Is Tim the only and sole arbiter of stupidity?

    Or was that yet another stupid post?

  58. #58 chek
    August 29, 2012

    Ben also seems stunningly aware that science is the study of phenomena that may or may not yield a benefit or even mature into a technology several decades (or even centuries) later. Ben’s misunderstanding leads him to believe that applying blinkers is the sensible, hard-headed way forward.

  59. #59 Bernard J.
    August 29, 2012

    Those who don’t have more than a few years’ history here probably don’t know that Ben is an engineer – hence his fawning enthusiasm for the profession.

    The comparison of engineering with science, with respect to which is ‘better’, is a spurious one. They ‘do’ different things, and each has its own inherent worth. Although without science, there’d likely be very little engineering indeed…

  60. #60 Jeff Harvey
    August 29, 2012

    I shouldn’t always respond to the stupid baiting tactics of clowns like Ben and Mack. Still, their comments reek of both ignorance and envy.

    I don’t know how many times I have had to defend the science of ecology from self-righteous types like Ben who have not an inkling of the importance of applied versus funademantal science and where they intersect. Chek sums it up well. Whereas the molecular sciences are evolving so quickly that new discoveries often become obsolete a few years later, our understanding of the factors that regulate the assembly and functioning of ecosystems across the biosphere has been gleaned from research conducted over very many years. Without ecology, we would not understand the importance of complex adaptive systems in maintaining a wide array of supporting services upon which human civilization depends. Studies conducted over decades are also putting many of the pieces into a massive picture in explaining the importance of individuals, communities, ecosystems and food webs. By combining thousands of data sets via met- analysis and that have been collected by different researchers over many years, we are beginning to unraval ecological complexity and to better understand how these systems function. These studies cover vastly different scales of space and time. Most importantly, we are beginning to elucidate the effects of anthropogenic stresses on the stability and resilience of these systems, how much they can be simplified before they break down, and what the potential consequences are for the material economy.

    Of course the likes of Ben, Mack, Karen et al. are profoundly ignornat of all of this. They do not understand how nature sustains human civilization, except in the context of providing resources for them to live relatively affluent lives. They take for granted the ridiculous notion that humans are largely exempt from natural laws, and that the continued assault on nature will have few or no consequences for future generations. They blindly assume that, through technology, there are no limits to material growth, and that ecologists are a waste of time because they think, as Ben hinted above, that the study of nature has no benefits for society. This mindset is made, as I said, on the basis of complete and utter ignorance as to the dependence on Homo sapiens on a wide range of servcies that emerge from natural systems. In their ignorance, a la Dunning-Kruger, they are able to blandly dismiss and/or to ridicule what they do not understand.

    Ignoranced sure is bliss. Ben and his ilk prove it.

  61. #61 lord_sidcup
    August 29, 2012

    I see the Australian’s war on science is continuing down under with the newspaper making its one and only dedicated science writer – Leigh Dayton – redundant:

    http://blogs.unimelb.edu.au/sciencecommunication/2012/08/28/a-bad-day-for-science-reporting-in-australia/

  62. #62 Wow
    August 29, 2012

    “The comparison of engineering with science, with respect to which is ‘better’”

    Only because it doesn’t challenge his faith.

  63. #63 Mack
    August 29, 2012

    If you are a scientist Jeff Harvey what exactly are you trying to achieve here? You;re some sort of blog scientist but of course not interested in any science presented on a blog. A scientist is one who is openminded, ; receptive to science presented by others especially if it pertains to the field they study, which is the anthropogenic effects on the climate isn;t it Jeff? Are you interested in knowledge? Nah you’re just a closed-minded clod following Al Gore.

  64. #64 bratisla
    August 29, 2012

    Looks like I went just in time for the apotheose. My, oh my. What Mack said is so magnificent on so many levels.
    Tears actually come from my eyes.

  65. #65 Wow
    August 29, 2012

    “If you are a scientist Jeff Harvey what exactly are you trying to achieve here?”

    What, precisely, demands that there be no scientists with a personal life?

    If you’re not a scientist, MackSpotKaren, what exactly are you trying to achieve here?

  66. #66 Lionel A
    August 29, 2012

    Ben(der), shape-shifter.

    I asked:

    Where did you see Jeff implying that he doesn’t do, or has not done, field work?

    to which you replied:

    WTF? How does that have anything to do with what I wrote?

    Now here is the statement of yours that prompted my question to you:

    So Jeff, conferences and university lectures are the only way to do science, eh?

    Did you, or did you not, write that?

    Wriggle worm, wriggle.

  67. #67 Lotharsson
    August 29, 2012

    …probably don’t know that Ben is an engineer…

    That’s no excuse for horribly misunderstanding science and its demonstrated value. I’m an engineer too ;-)

    And I seem to recall the first 1.5 years of my Bachelors degree was spent mostly studying science (and maths) – without which we couldn’t even start most of the engineering subjects.

  68. #68 Robert Murphy
    August 29, 2012

    “Thppppt! My point is that the WORD science is being used like it’s on a broken record. Very irritating. Like the guy my sister sat across from on a flight who couldn’t stop saying “wireless.” Wireless, wireless wireless, blah blah wireless. Same thing. Argh.”

    Sounds like a science allergy. This obviously isn’t the forum for you; there’s an easy way to fix that, too. :)

  69. #69 Lotharsson
    August 29, 2012

    Eli reports that Anthony Watts Is Sad.

    Must-read comic relief if you haven’t yet come across the saga of Watt’s Antarctic urban heat island effect. And there’s a nice Aussie connection.

  70. #70 Lionel A
    August 29, 2012

    Lotharsson snap,

    although I was an engineer, aviation, before embarking on, and completing, my Maths and Science based bachelors degree which latter involved rerunning some, but not all, of the subjects I had grounded on during a long aircraft apprenticeship.

    That latter included, Applied Mechanics Aircraft, Aeronautical Engineering Science, Mathematics and Engineering Drawing besides practical aspects of looking after aircraft and proficiency in metal fitting, welding, brazing, sheet metal work in and GRP systems and aircraft finishes. Flying control, fuel (airframe and engine), haydraulic and pneumatic systems were also paer for the course as was a ground in electricity and applications of. All of which I had to study or practice and pass before being let lose on real aircraft that could crash and kill people.

    Thermodynamics and the behaviour of gases in the atmosphere were all par for the course being directly applicable to the safe performance of aero-engines and the ability of aircraft to fly and navigate safely.

    Unlike some engineers I didn’t stop at engineering but explored wider aspects of science and thus endorse what Jeff wrote in his 9:34 am above and others having maintained my interest in biological, chemical, geographical and geological aspects over the years.

    It is as plane as a pikestaff that we have just about FUBARed this planet beyond hope of reclamation but that does not mean that we should blindly continue BAU as your shoulder devils wish you to believe.

  71. #71 Lionel A
    August 29, 2012

    To use an aeronautical analogy about the latest at WUWT on Antarctic UHI effect it is clear that Anthony is now in a flat spin and furthermore I can see no evidence of a tail shute that could deploy to stop his crash and burn.

  72. #72 Jeff Harvey
    August 29, 2012

    Mack, I am interested in peer-reviewed science published in scientific journals that is discussed on a few good web sites. Deltoid is one. Real Climate is another. Sites by Tamino, Crooked Timber, John Quiggen Eli Rabett are also good venues. Each of these discusses the significance of published research findings in the most rigid journals.

    By contrast,I am not interested in the non-published whingings of a coterie of right wing ideologues – few of whom have any pedigree in any scientific field – who attack reputable scientists and their findings distorting science as a tool to promote a pre-determined world view. Some of my research involves the effects of short-term climate changes on the phenology of species interactions, as well as on range-expansions in plants and insects. In the latter I am also interested in studying genetic variation in the invading population as it relates to various traits. There are numerous biotic proxies across temperate regions with proof positive that it has warmed significantly since the 1980s. The effects of these short-term changes and their effects on biodiversity and ecosystem functioning are of profound interest and importance. I leave it up to the experts in climate science to evaluate the extent of the human fingerprint, and these people by-and-large have spoken. They affirm the significant human influence. The views of Watts, Nova, McItyre, McKitrick, Morano, Milloy et al. ad nauseum are irrelevant. If this sordid lot has half a dozen scientific papers to their name I would be quite surprised. The fact is that the deniers are made up largely of mediocrity in terms of the qualifications of the few bonafide scientists in their ranks. I am doing reasonably well in my field: 122 publications on the WoS since 1993 with 2625 citations of my work and an h-factor on 30. Still, many peers are way ahead of this. I do my best. However, if I was a climate change denier I’d be in the upper echelons with my ‘stats’. This should be evidence of the lack of real pedigreed researchers amongst them.

    I trust the scientists with the expertise who have concluded that humans are forcing climate, and not a bunch on the veritable academic fringe who dispute it and more often than who not cannot hide their political affiliations. As I said, you and your type want to drag the debate into the mud and to keep it stuck there so that nothing is ever concluded and thus mitigation is driven from the agenda. By the time enough evidence is in (and from what I see nothing will satisfy many on the hard right in this respect) it will be far too late: we are almost at the tipping point now, if not having passed certain critical thresholds.

    Ultimately, you impugn my qualifications yet you wouldn’t last 5 minutes in a room with me or most of my peers. How many conferences or workshops have you attended where climate change and its causes and effects have been discussed and debated? My guess is nil. Prove me wrong. Until then, you, of all people, have no claims to the intellectual high ground.

  73. #73 ben
    August 29, 2012

    Ben is also ignorant of the astounding cost-benefit ratio for science – and communicates this via a computer that would not exist but for investment into numerous areas of science, over a network that would not exist without similar scientific investments.

    This statement is certainly not true. I was only referring to Jeff’s science. Humanity could get along just fine even if Jeff never published another paper or flew to another conference.

  74. #74 ben
    August 29, 2012

    By contrast,I am not interested in the non-published whinings of a coterie of right wing ideologues – few of whom have any pedigree in any scientific field

    Right, so you waste your time arguing with them anyway. Why not spend your time arguing with the folks who disagree with you who do possess the requisit scientific pedigree? Like Lindzen, Baliunas, Spencer, Christy, etc?

  75. #75 Lionel A
    August 29, 2012

    Like Lindzen, Baliunas, Spencer, Christy, etc?

    Guffaw! Guffaw! Guffaw!

    Stop it! You’re killing me!

    None of those above would wan’t to debate with climate scientists capable of stringing arguments together in a debate which ruled out Gish Gallops.

    They saw how Pat MIchaels came off against Ben Santer.

    Case in point.

    If John Christy had been stopped to explain his every twisting of the facts during his recent Congressional Testimony he would have been too embarrassed to get to the end of his silliness.

    And the silliest silliness was his citing of the recent non-paper from a certain Anthony Watts and you only have to look at how much of the scientific world is now laughing at Watts and his increasing crack-pottery. See posts above for hints.

  76. #76 ben
    August 29, 2012

    They saw how Pat MIchaels came off against Ben Santer.

    You might notice that Michaels was not on my list. Anyway, scientific pedigree they possess, whether you like it or not.

    If John Christy had been stopped to explain his every twisting of the facts during his recent Congressional Testimony he would have been too embarrassed to get to the end of his silliness.

    Says you. Who are you? What’s your scientific pedigree? Lindzen is a professor at MIT. You are nobody.

  77. #77 Wow
    August 29, 2012

    I know a man, his name is ben.
    He’s got an arse that smells like ten.

    Bennie, do you have any reason for posting the crap you’re peddling?

  78. #78 ben
    August 29, 2012

    Wow, that is the best rhyme ever, even better than your climate science. Way to go!

  79. #79 Wow
    August 29, 2012

    Well, ben, what’s the difference between your response to my insult and Jeff’s response to yours?

    And what’s the difference between my insult and yours?

    It seems like you’re very thin skinned but jut *love* to deal it out.

    There’s a term for blokes like that: cowards.

  80. #80 ben
    August 29, 2012

    Shorter Ben – Jeff Harvey is much more successful than I am. Waaah

    I wouldn’t care if I was a second rate garbage man and Jeff or anyone else was the king of Spain. Status has nothing to do with anything.

  81. #81 ben
    August 29, 2012

    Testing bold… blah blah blah

  82. #82 Wow
    August 29, 2012

    That’s some of your best work there. Way to go to promote engineering!

  83. #83 ben
    August 29, 2012

    Whereas the molecular sciences are evolving so quickly that new discoveries often become obsolete a few years later, our understanding of the factors that regulate the assembly and functioning of ecosystems across the biosphere has been gleaned from research conducted over very many years.

    This sentence makes no sense. I know what you are trying to get at.

    Without ecology, we would not understand the importance of complex adaptive systems in maintaining a wide array of supporting services upon which human civilization depends.

    Tell that to the average passer-by on the street. Count the number of eye-rolls that you get.

    Studies conducted over decades are also putting many of the pieces into a massive picture in explaining the importance of individuals, communities, ecosystems and food webs. By combining thousands of data sets via met- analysis and that have been collected by different researchers over many years, we are beginning to unraval ecological complexity and to better understand how these systems function. These studies cover vastly different scales of space and time. Most importantly, we are beginning to elucidate the effects of anthropogenic stresses on the stability and resilience of these systems, how much they can be simplified before they break down, and what the potential consequences are for the material economy.

    I understand you. Tell this to a random person anywhere on the planet and 999 times out of 1000 they’ll tell you they don’t know what you are blathering about and don’t give a fuck. Tell some jerk-weed in a mud hut somewhere how much you get paid to study ecology and they’ll tell you to fuck off. You might think you are doing God’s work but nobody cares.

    Of course the likes of Ben, Mack, Karen et al. are profoundly ignornat of all of this.

    The vast majority of humanity is ignorant of your bunk.

    They do not understand how nature sustains human civilization, except in the context of providing resources for them to live relatively affluent lives.

    No shit. They aren’t motivated by whatever it is that motivates you, they are motivated primarily by pleasure and comfort. What did you expect?

    They take for granted the ridiculous notion that humans are largely exempt from natural laws, and that the continued assault on nature will have few or no consequences for future generations.

    As long as they can have an iPhone. You weren’t typing you screed on a Mac were you?

    They blindly assume that, through technology, there are no limits to material growth, and that ecologists are a waste of time because they think, as Ben hinted above, that the study of nature has no benefits for society.

    I wouldn’t say it has no benefits, but I’d argue that from a cost/benefit analysis point of view the money could probably be better spent. Your claimed understanding of the ecosystem has translated into what material benefit exactly? We don’t need you and your jargon to tell us that poluting is bad and trees are good, and that less of the one and more of the other will be beneficial to us and our progeny.

    This mindset is made, as I said, on the basis of complete and utter ignorance as to the dependence on Homo sapiens on a wide range of servcies that emerge from natural systems.

    More like complete and utter lack of caring about the papers you write.

    In their ignorance, a la Dunning-Kruger, they are able to blandly dismiss and/or to ridicule what they do not understand.

    Ridicule is fun. Your writing is not.

  84. #84 Wow
    August 29, 2012

    “This sentence makes no sense *to me*. I *don’t* know what you are trying to get at. ”

    FTFY.

    PS given how few people know or care how even common household goods work, I think you’ll find fewer people give a monkeys about what engineers do.

    PS what does all that shite have to do with climate science?

  85. #85 Jeff Harvey
    August 29, 2012

    Ben, you are arguing from a point of rank stupidity. Just because you haven’t got a f****** clue how your liver functions or exactly why your pancreas is there doesn’t mean that you could live without them. I am sure that most people don’t know a bloody thing about open heart or brain surgery, or any other area of medicine until it affects them. But this does not mean that these fields are expendable.

    The fact is that you are a vacuous hole – a moron who, because he doesn’t know a thing about the natural economy, blithely dismisses it. You’ll be surprised how many average Joe’s aren’t as ignorant as you. You make a claim about cost/benefit analysis without having the slightest clue about systems ecology, ecosystem services and the link with economics and human welfare. So, predictably, you make a complete ass of yourself on the basis of using your profound stupidity to what you think is an intellectual advantage.

    You aren’t ridiculing me, Ben – in your witless posts you are actually ridiculing yourself. You are just too dumb to realize it. As for your list of ‘luminaries’, as Lionel said, ‘guffaw, guffaw, guffaw’. These are the same people that the denial lobby has relied on for years and years. In 1998 a leaked memo from the American Petroleum Institute expressed concerned that the climate change denial lobby might lose credibility by relying on the same bunch of scientists (i.e. all of those you listed) and stated that they need to recruit new scientists. Here we are 14 years alter and you dredge up the same bunch of old farts. Predictable. Lindzen and Baliunas both have had or continue to maintain links with right wing think tanks where a primary focus is climate change denial. What this demonstrates is that the number of climate scientists questioning the human fingerprint on the current warming is extremely small. You just proved it, dumb-ass.

    Ben, you couldn’t debate your way out of a dripping wet paper bag. You are clueless when it comes to placing the value of nature into the material economy, hence you take the D-K route to oblivion. The field of economics is increasingly beginning to understand that the value of the material economy is <2% of the natural economy. The seminal Costanza et al. paper in Nature, which has been cited more than 1,000 times, made this point clear. Ecological economics has become a major discipline in the field of economics as a whole and many of the world's leading economists have singed up to it. Even neoclassical economist Willaiiam Nordhaus has come to realize how much the natural economy sustains humanity. You are just pig-ignorant. That's your problem.

  86. #86 ben
    August 29, 2012

    PS given how few people know or care how even common household goods work, I think you’ll find fewer people give a monkeys about what engineers do.

    Yes, but people pay money willingly for the products that come from engineers. Not so much with the products of ‘climate science.’ That’s the difference.

  87. #87 Lionel A
    August 29, 2012

    Ben(der)

    They saw how Pat MIchaels came off against Ben Santer.

    You might notice that Michaels was not on my list. Anyway, scientific pedigree they possess, whether you like it or not.

    Of course I noticed that Michaels was not on your list but I was using his exchange with Santer as an example of your how your ‘pedigrees’ (FF lap dogs mostly) would come off.

    Context not your strong point is it. That is why you don’t get the purpose of those involved in the many, many fields that impinge on climate science.

    As for Lindzen see how tricksie he can be:

    If Richard Lindzen shows up at your door, slam it.

    and that is just for starters and I will be only to happy to line up those other ducks if needs be.

    What’s up? WUWT getting to silly even for you or maybe you are one of Anthony’s foot-twerps.

  88. #88 ben
    August 29, 2012

    Jeff, you were the one who mentioned scientific pedigree, so I simply hauled out tenured faculty from MIT, the University of Alabama, and the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics. You’re the one who griped about the importance of pedigree, so that’s your problem.

    For the record, I don’t care if they belong to right wing think tanks, what’s that got to do with science? And sure the number of skeptical climate scientists is small, they’d all have their funding yanked if they didn’t toe the line.
    In 2001 a leaked memo from the lefty institute of left leaning insufferable a-holes expressed concern that the heads of left-leaning climate scientists were getting to big to be supported by the local ecology. I have the memo right here, you can trust it!

    Note that I don’t give a rats ass what any economist thinks. A larger group of self deluded fools does not exist this side of climate science. Cited a thousand times, a thousand times! Slow down Nelly, I’m really geeking out on that one!

    However, I’m bookmarking this thread. You are obviously skilled in the way of insults and I’ll be sure to make use of your posts should I need to offend a person or persons in possession of sensitive temperament.

  89. #89 ben
    August 29, 2012

    Alright Jeff, that’s it, I’m bringing it…

    You mustard spreading ecological paper weight. You couldn’t argue your way out of a nano-tube. Your mind is like a bowl of kibble and your arguments fall apart like cat chow in a digestive tract.

    I laugh at your PhD from Liverpool University. You obviously didn’t have the chops to get accepted to a real school. Your list of publications is almost as long as my last excrement. I clubbed a baby seal in your name last week as well, you simpering chimp-minded intellectual pansy.

    Your dog probably does all your work, and it shows, but luckily for you it could be worse. Saying the name “Jefferey Harvey” in the presence of infants makes them cry. My milk man has better scientific pedigree than you do, you oafish Canadian yak milker. You’ve probably been neglecting your yaks in order to conduct your research.

    Your research is second rate when rated relative to third rate work. If you were any less intelligent you’d make my dead cat look like a genius. Real scientists take affront to your small brain. You obviously suffer from sub Kelpern-Flitzbin syndrome. Bwa ha ha, I’ve never seen such a bad case, to be sure!

    Forsooth! Bugs Bunny would slander you and get away with it. A warm bubble bath is more interesting than your dissertation. And my dog’s bark has more insight and better breath.

  90. #90 BPW
    August 29, 2012

    Well, I posted under the wrong name again and it awaits moderation whatever the hell that is worth here. But, not surprisingly, what I said came true! Jeff went with Big Oil and “right wing think tanks”. Double whammy. I really feel that left wing think tanks don’t get nearly enough credit frankly, nor the scientists working for them. Too righteous I suppose.

    The same ten people who regularly inhabit this space need to get out more. Wow–and a few others–can’t seem to grasp the concept of US law to save their lives, and Jeff, well he seems to have a lot more time on his hands than he leads on, what with the 1000+ word responses to the same 3-4 people he has already decided are well beneath his level intellectually and professionally. I can see why you bother.

    Jeff, hate to tell you, but you are the exact type of scientist who helps to actually get people to listen LESS to your message. So full of condescending arrogance and vitriol are your words that all I can think is thank god I don’t have to actually work or spend time with you. I know you aren’t American, but we have a term for people like you–tool. Bet you’re a ton of fun at parties.

    Same could be said for many others, but at least they don’t tell the blogosphere how fucking great and smart they are–over and over. And over.

    I have said it a hundred times–for the most part, I agree with the message, but you and others like you are really, really shitty messengers. Frustrating because you fail to see it and don’t realize the consequences. You might be educated, but you don’t seem that smart.

  91. #91 Chris O'Neill
    August 29, 2012

    that’s it, I’m bringing it

    Those science denialists must really be feeling the heat.

  92. #92 ben
    August 29, 2012

    Science denialist, eh? Thpppppt! Look Mom! I’m denying science!

  93. #93 bill
    August 29, 2012

    ‘I’m bringing it’? Must have been in mid-stroke there.

    Another pointless one-handed-typist. Who cares? Next.

  94. #94 Lotharsson
    August 29, 2012

    Tell that to the average passer-by on the street. Count the number of eye-rolls that you get.

    Ah, we have a new winner in the ongoing quest for stupidest definition of “value to humanity”!

    Of course it helps to be able to say:

    …your bunk.

    …based on having no idea of your own (in-)competence to judge whether work in another field is “bunk” or not.

    You aren’t ridiculing me, Ben – in your witless posts you are actually ridiculing yourself. You are just too dumb to realize it.

    Indeed. And what an impressive job of it he does too.

  95. #95 ben
    August 29, 2012

    Son of Lothar, thank you for your contribution to humanity.

  96. #96 chek
    August 30, 2012

    Ben said:”Thpppppt! ”

    And that’s about as much cogency and rationality as can be expected. Anything but the banana-Republican meltdown of Tony “Antarctic UHI” Watts, U.S. fuckwit-in-excelsis of the week.

  97. #97 chek
    August 30, 2012

    Deep Climate reports: “Interest in 2012′s record Arctic sea ice melt has reached the mainstream press both here in Canada (CBC, PostMedia) and abroad (New York Times, Associated Press and the Guardian (http://deepclimate.org/2012/08/29/2012-arctic-sea-ice-minimum-part-2-september-2012-projected-at-3-6-million-sq-km-700k-below-previous-low-in-2007/#comments)

    Blimey – that should keep the bots even busier than in ‘trash Assange’ week.

  98. #98 Richard Simons
    August 30, 2012

    “You’ve played professional hockey for 20 years? Wow, you must be good!”
    “You’ve been a professional scientist for 20 years? You must be arrogant to think you know more than I learned in Grade 8.”

  99. #99 Chris O'Neill
    August 30, 2012

    Those science denialists must really be feeling the heat.

    Confirmed.

  100. #100 Jeff Harvey
    August 30, 2012

    Ben,

    You are bringing ‘it’? What is ‘it’? ‘It’ must refer to your willful ignorance. Again, your starting point for debates is rank stupidity. That’s not good. Not good at all from your perspective. I might as well be discussing the relevant science with a kindergarten student. Using ignorance as an intellectual starting ground is something climate change deniers and anti-environmenalists in general have a habit of doing. The thrust of it is that if one knows nothing about a field, then its not important; alternatively, without 100% proof of a process, then there is no proof at all. As one scientists once told me, debating people like you is like trying to win a pissing match with a skunk.

    There’s tons of evidence – let’s start at the Millennium Ecosystem Assessment and go from there – that natural systems generate conditions that permit our species to exist and persist. This goes back well before Robert Costanza’s seminal1997 Nature paper, in which he estimated the value of indirect ecosystem services at between 18 and 33 trillion dollars – more than twice the aggregate total of GDPs of all nations on Earth. His argument, and once that has become increasingly acknowledged, is that nature is worth more than the sum of its parts. The problem for nincompoops like you is that you don’t understand anything about functional aspects of biodiversity, so you ignore it, or even worse, you ridicule it and the messenger. Without a vast diversity of organisms involved in pollination, nutrient cycling, the breakdown of wastes, seed dispersal, water purification and climate control he planet would be uninhabitable for much of extant biodiversity, most notably Homo sapiens. The crux of the matter is that supporting ecosystem services are externalized in price/cost economic scenarios. Because of this, we are unable to value their decline until they are lost altogether, or unable to function effectively. In lectures on the subject, I present four examples of ecosystem services that have been valued: the Catskill Mountain Watershed and drinking water in New York City; Pest control in the Caribbean; Pollination of oil palms in SE Asia; and forest products in a Peruvian rainforest. Rest assured that Ben doesn’t know any of these examples (or many more that are in the empirical literature). And also rest assured that he, and probably the other small bunch of clowns that post on Deltoid, will attempt to deride these examples. Par for the course. Economists like Geoffrey Heal, Tom Bultman, John Gowdy, Stefan Viedermann and many others are beginning to appreciate the value of nature is sustaining our material economy and are arguing that it is necessary to internalize ecosystem services into our economic systems.

    Its also ironic that BPW wades in here with bis five cents worth. Where are you when the deniers are slandering the reputations of Ben Santer, Michael Mann and James Hansen? The internet is full of frothy vitriol in which these reputable and experienced researchers become veritable punching bags for the political right. I don’t have to defend myself against the likes of you, who keep their mouths shut at the massive assault on science currently underway but then come on all preachy and philosophical when scientists like those above and myself fight back. Frankly, you and your like are the tools, people who claim to agree with those arguing that humanity’s impact on nature is likely to have serious consequences down the road, but only wading into debates to attack those making these arguments, whilst keeping a firm zip on your mouth when it comes to the vicious attacks coming from the other side. Moreover, you have not got a clue who I am or what my fiends and colleagues think of me. I post in here to defend science from the likes of the idiot brigade who appear to think they hold some kind of intellectual authority in areas they have never studied. Most contributors here know a lot ore about climate science than I do, and I appreciate reading what they all say because I learn from them: Wow, Chek, Lotharsson, Bill, Bernard, Chris, Richard, Lionel A. and others. I really appreciate what they say and how much they know., I find my niche here is to expand upon the ecological effects of global change and climate warming. I won’t back down on the basis of vile remarks from the likes of you, or Ben, Karen/Mack/Sunspot/Duff etc. As for left wing think tanks, the problem is that there are very few if any of them. That is because they rely upon external funding, and for think tanks a significant amount of that comes from corporate ‘donations’. These same corporations loathe regulations that limit their profit making potential, so its hardly surprising that they would invest in think tanks that aim to eviscerate public constraints in the pursuit of private profit. For this reason 99% of them are either far to the right or essentially libertarian. As for Ben’s remark that the political affiliations of scientists are irrelevant, well thats pure and utter b*. If I am a lawyer, and a client pays me a million dollars, then I am working for that client. It does not matter if I am aware or not of the client’s guilt, I am working for them. End of story. The fact that many of the so-called prominent AGW deniers are ‘scholars’ or ‘fellows’ with right wing think tanks funded by industries suggests strongly that they are hardly ‘objective’ scientists. Otherwise, they’d be dumped pronto.

    Back to Ben. Where do I begin? Well for starters, how low do you have to stoop to attack the universities where I studied did my research? Liverpool ranks at about 125 in the world as far as universities are concerned; Wageningen, to which I have close links now, is ranked at 77. Certainly both are far ahead of most US universities. For the record, Mann went to Yale and many of the most esteemed climate and environmental scientists are from the Ivy League universities. I’ve also been invited to give lectures at universities around the world, including Princeton, so your feeble attempt at ‘bringing it on’ is already starting to wither.

Current ye@r *