A Few Things Ill Considered

Well, I see no one takes my advice on anything!

The Associated Press

LONDON — Britain’s University of East Anglia says the director of its prestigious Climatic Research Unit is stepping down pending an investigation into allegations that he overstated the case for man-made climate change.

The university says Phil Jones will relinquish his position until the completion of an independent review into allegations that he worked to alter the way in which global temperature data was presented.

The allegations were made after more than a decade of correspondence between leading British and U.S. scientists were posted to the Web following the security breach last month.

The e-mails were seized upon by some skeptics of man-made climate change as proof that scientists are manipulating the data about its extent.


But that does not mean I am wrong, check these fine words from Marc Morano:

One Down: ClimateGate Scientist Phil Jones to temporarily step down

.

When blood is in the water, the sharks will not go home to rest.

From CRU:

Professor Phil Jones has today announced that he will stand aside as Director of the Climatic Research Unit until the completion of an independent Review resulting from allegations following the hacking and publication of emails from the Unit.

Professor Jones said: “What is most important is that CRU continues its world leading research with as little interruption and diversion as possible. After a good deal of consideration I have decided that the best way to achieve this is by stepping aside from the Director’s role during the course of the independent review and am grateful to the University for agreeing to this. The Review process will have my full support.”

Vice-Chancellor Professor Edward Acton said: “I have accepted Professor Jones’s offer to stand aside during this period. It is an important step to ensure that CRU can continue to operate normally and the independent review can conduct its work into the allegations.

“We will announce details of the Independent Review, including its terms of reference, timescale and the chair, within days. I am delighted that Professor Peter Liss, FRS, CBE, will become acting director.”

The AP story refers to “an investigation into allegations that he overstated the case for man-made climate change” but I see no such specification in the CRU statement and of course there is nothing in the emails that suggests that may be the case.

The “hide the decline” remark will live on in its denialist interpretation until we have a new record high global temperature (and beyond).

Comments

  1. #1 skip
    December 1, 2009

    Those of us concerned about the future of the climate are screwed either way on this, Coby.

    The University’s investigation and report will employ terms like “lack of professionalism”, “indiscretion”, and maybe even “crude”, but will fully debunk any notion of data fixing or cover up. But deniers always turn this kind of thing into a heads-I-win-tails-you-lose Catch-22:

    If the University *does* conclude there was a concerted effort to hide the truth (which I seriously doubt based on what I’ve seen but lets keep as open a mind as possible) of course the deniers will dance in the streets. However, if it does not, they will simply fall back on their dogma and say its all part of the cover up. Any result can be reconciled with their narrative. Arguing with these guys is like arguing with JFK/Moon Landing/911 conspiracy freaks (and believe me I’ve tangoed with all of the above.)

    Skip

  2. #2 Jack Savage
    December 1, 2009

    Our climate guru , George Monbiot ,over here in Great Britain believes that the released emails are prima facie evidence of wrong-doing.
    So do I. Some other prestigious climate research unit like Nasa needs to release its data pronto so that others can check their arithmetic or this is going to be a running disaster. Of course the University , which is effectively carrying out an investigation into its own integrity, will whitewash the affair. What else can it do? The nightmare would be a properly independent inquiry.
    Anyway, the emails are not the real problem. The code files released show the whole shebang to be a blurry mess, and are, I am told by fortran programmers, an embarrassment.
    Then there is the police investigation into the apparent breaches of the Freedom of Information Act. Then there is the suggestions that the peer-review process, the jewel in our crown, was being perverted. Skip, you are right. Arguing with a denier is going to be that little bit more difficult from now on.

  3. #3 dhogaza
    December 1, 2009

    The AP story refers to “an investigation into allegations that he overstated the case for man-made climate change” but I see no such specification in the CRU statement and of course there is nothing in the emails that suggests that may be the case.

    I made the same point over at Stoat … bad reportage by the AP. I imagine the focus will be on the post suggesting people delete e-mails when Jones found out about the FOI request. My guess is he’ll get dinged somewhat for that. Nothing else in the e-mails points to anything likely to be troublesome.

    And the university should have access to the entire set of e-mails, not just those selected for distribution by the thieves.

  4. #4 dhogaza
    December 1, 2009

    Some other prestigious climate research unit like Nasa needs to release its data pronto

    You mean the data and code that’s been freely available from GHCN and NASA GISS for some years now?

    You need to get out more …

    Then there is the police investigation into the apparent breaches of the Freedom of Information Act.

    Reference to that police investigation, please? The only police investigation I’m aware of is in regard to the felonious hacking of the UEA server.

    Then there is the suggestions that the peer-review process, the jewel in our crown, was being perverted.

    Yes. De Freitas perverted it by publishing the Baliunas/Soon paper, leading to the resignation of six editors, including the editor in chief, because the paper is crap.

    Of course that’s the goal of folks like you, right? Force journals to publish crap, as long as it’s denialist crap.

    Skip, you are right. Arguing with a denier is going to be that little bit more difficult from now on.

    Same old, same old. The reality of the physics and the obvious fact that the world is warming vs. people like you, who will lie through their teeth no matter what evidence is placed in front of you.

  5. #5 Link
    December 1, 2009

    Tell me where this is wromg:

    Everything Michael Mann & Co have done is based on their 1,000 year temperature data bank. If this data is bad, their science is bad. It’s that simple. This data is mostly based on tree rings.

    By 1998, many of these guys had invested years and even decades of work based on tree ring data. It’s in 1998 that the “divergence problem” was first recognized: Starting in 1960, tree ring data “diverted” from actual instrument readings. That means thermometers gave one reading, tree rings a different reading.

    This is actual scientific proof that tree ring data is suspect. If tree rings don’t work for the last 40 years, why do we think they work for the last 1,000 years. If tree ring-based data is suspect, everything that Mann & Co have done is suspect. QED There are other issues with their methodologies, but this is fundamental. This is the elephant in the room.

    They say that the “trick” to “hide the decline” was over how they spliced the old tree ring data with the new data from instruments. So they’re not denying the elephant in the room. They just hope we don’t see it.

  6. #6 coby
    December 1, 2009

    Link,

    Here are a couple of places where you are wrong:

    “This data is mostly based on tree rings.”
    - there are many sources of proxy data. The latest Mann et al reconstruction contains a reconstruction that is done entirely without tree ring data and the results are the same.

    “This is actual scientific proof that tree ring data is suspect.”
    - no, this is evidence of a problem in the late 20th century with an unknown cause. Instrumental and tree ring data agree very nicely from before the 60′s to the beginning of intrumental readings. Something changed. Other proxies, tree rings and thermometers are in broad agreement before the 60′s so something changed but we do not have “proof” tree rings are always suspect.

    “They just hope we don’t see it.”
    - the divergence problem is well known and the subject of much research and discussion, hardly something anyone is hoping no one will find out about.

  7. #7 Jack Savage
    December 1, 2009

    Jeebus, Mr dhogaza, steady on the personal remarks! We Brits try to be polite at all times.

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2009/11/24/cei-files-notice-of-intent-to-sue-nasa-giss/

    I saw this the other day. Is it a complete lie? It seems plausible enough and seems to suggest that someone has been having difficulty getting something out of NASA. Of course, if you say it is a fabrication I shall take your word for it. It was on WUWT and all that but surely it cannot be completely made up.
    Regarding the investigation, this is in the hands of the Information Commissioner at present.
    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/earth/copenhagen-climate-change-confe/6678469/Climategate-University-of-East-Anglia-U-turn-in-climate-change-row.html
    Refusal to comply is a criminal offence and the police will be involved if it is found there is a case to answer. Perhaps I should have not used the words police investigation,but there is an investigation, and the police are likely to be involved.
    I am sorry if it upsets you, but I do not really see how you can argue with my statement that there are suggestions in this debacle that the peer-review process was perverted. There clearly are suggestions. I understand you do not think there should be but it does not make my statement any less true.
    I take exception to being called a liar. If you are going to take the time to post in response to mine a little courtesy would be appreciated. Or is the tone of your post “Just shut up and go away?”

  8. #8 mandas
    December 1, 2009

    No, sorry coby, link is correct with his question about the veracity of tree ring data.
    I have discussed the use of statistics elsewhere in regards to this issue, but there is a really simple concept at play here. And it is this:
    Tree rings have been used as a proxy measurement of temperature, based on a known correlation of data. Note it is based on a correlation, not a proven causal relationship. That correlation broke down about 50 years ago for some unknown reason – its called the ‘Divergence Phenomenon’ or DP. There are suspicions as to the cause, and people are conducting further research (as is appropriate), but exactly what causes DP is not known.
    Because of this (and anyone with any mathematical or science education will confirm it), it is impossible to discount that the phenomenon had occured in the past, and that as a result some of the proxy measurements may be inaccurate. Indeed, there are documented instances when the proxy measurements varied from other datasets. Once again, noone knows why.
    Anyone who asserts that tree ring – or any other proxy measurement – is 100% accurate is either an arrogant fool, or has little scientific education.
    However, it is important to remember that tree rings are just ONE proxy measurement of the historical temperature record. There are many others, and inaccuracies in the tree ring data set in no way compromise the established fact that the earth’s climate is changing, and that change is accelerating. It is in this area that your deduction is incorrect – just because one set of data used to determine the historical record may not be 100% accurate, does not mean the whole area of research is flawed. That’s why good scientists do not rely on a single source of information for their analyses, and why no-one else should either.
    From what I have read – and I am sure dhogoza will once again make unsubstantiated assertions about my research methods – there appears to be a prima facie case to examine whether there has been a slight fudging of the data by some researchers. It would be stupid and arrogant to think that everyone is perfect and that their integrity on this or any other issue is above reproach. How about we keep our house in order and do what is necessary in order to keep building a better case.

  9. #9 Marcus
    December 1, 2009

    Jack Savage: If you actually read the wattsup post, you’ll note that the CEI lawsuit is for _emails_ from GISS, not data.

    Are you really saying that every government worker should give the public access to every single email they write?

  10. #10 MarkusR
    December 1, 2009

    If tree rings don’t work for the last 40 years, why do we think they work for the last 1,000 years.

    Why not make the same accusation of carbon dating?

  11. #11 Jack Savage
    December 2, 2009

    Yes, I am saying that every government worker should give the public access to every single email they write on the government dime. (Barring the obvious need for secrecy in security matters) and I believe so does the Freedom of Information Act.I am astounded to think that you don’t.
    I should have course have said “how the data was adjusted” rather than just said “data”. And before you go off on another one, I do appreciate that data does need to be adjusted in order to make sense of it. I believe the controversy is about how the data was adjusted. I appreciate this sounds like I am moving the goalposts but my point is that someone else ought to examine impartially the data in the light of the code used to adjust it. Surely this would be a good thing from your standpoint as,you would say, the adjustments are legitimate and replications of the results would be a tremendous vindication. Given the stakes involved I do not think it would be too much to ask. I am trying to be reasonable here.
    If I could just have my two pennyworth on dendrochronology,(is that the right word?) I think it would be absurd to discard the whole science on the basis of the divergence,just as it would be to discard carbon dating even though it can often be only approximate. Science is rarely as cut and dried as we would wish it to be. We have to use the best tools available until other tools can be fashioned.

  12. #12 wagdog
    December 2, 2009

    Just goes to show that scientists have little defence against Swiftboating. Even environmental journalists like Monbiot can see that. What matters in science communication with lay people is the appearance of credibility — it doesn’t matter how accurate, honest or upstanding the scientist. Stepping down was a damage limitation exercise, not an admission of guilt.

    The Rightwing knows all this, as we can see with their current strategy in the US with Obama. Unfortunately UK academia has no budget for mounting PR offensives.

  13. #13 Steve
    December 2, 2009

    Great post! I really like your blog!!
    Common Cents
    http://www.commoncts.blogspot.com

    ps. Link Exchange??

  14. #14 dhogaza
    December 2, 2009

    Tree rings have been used as a proxy measurement of temperature, based on a known correlation of data. Note it is based on a correlation, not a proven causal relationship.

    As I’ve told you elsewhere, and more than once, this is false. It’s based on our knowledge of tree physiology and in particular in the physiology of trees growing near their latitudinal or altitudinal limits. The use of maximum latewood densitity (abbreviated as MXD) rather than simple tree ring width is a result of tree physiology.

    Since you insist on repeating this lie, I will no longer trust a single word you say.

  15. #15 dhogaza
    December 2, 2009

    Yes, I am saying that every government worker should give the public access to every single email they write on the government dime. (Barring the obvious need for secrecy in security matters) and I believe so does the Freedom of Information Act.I am astounded to think that you don’t.

    The Freedom of Information Act most assuredly does not require public access to every single email written on the public dime, as you insist.

    If you think it should, lobby your congresscritters.

    Oh, wait, you’re a Brit, right?

    1. Your FOIA is weaker than the US one in the first place
    2. Go lobby your MP

  16. #16 skip
    December 2, 2009

    and inaccuracies in the tree ring data set in no way compromise the established fact that the earth’s climate is changing, and that change is accelerating. It is in this area that your deduction is incorrect – just because one set of data used to determine the historical record may not be 100% accurate, does not mean the whole area of research is flawed. That’s why good scientists do not rely on a single source of information for their analyses, and why no-one else should either.

    Mandas, I didn’t follow you here. I don’t believe Coby was saying that.

    Re-explain?

    Skip

  17. #17 Link
    December 2, 2009

    Climate science has fundamental problems with its data:

    I can determine by myself the current temperature outside my door with some accuracy — easy to do.

    I can accept the idea that scientists can determine the “current average temperature of Earth” — but it’s not easy to do. I’d expect legitimate questioning of methodologies and assumptions. I wouldn’t be surprised if a substantial minority disagreed with the consensus view of how to do this. But I can see how a legitimate consensus can be reached.

    But I’m skeptical that scientists can — with precision — determine temperatures from hundreds of years ago. Why is this a surprise? Without a time machine, it’s a hard thing to even ballpark this data. The “divergence problem” is actually proof of the difficulty. I’m impressed scientists can ballpark it. Genuine controversy over things like the Medieval Warm Period shouldn’t be surprising, because of this.

    The key point is “precision.” I learned in my first high school science class that you can’t make your conclusion more accurate than the data you work with. It’s one thing to use proxies like tree rings to survey historic climate conditions. It’s another to say that global average temperature was 55.2 degrees in 1605 for purposes of a trend line to run computer forecasts of the future.

    Until now, a small handful of cronies have been the only people with the keys to the locked data vault. Can’t you see the problem with this?

    On top of this, Michael Mann — and perhaps others — are serial abusers of data. Yet you defend.

    Worse still, the politics is crooked. The US energy bill would likely increase emissions.

  18. #18 coby
    December 2, 2009

    Link, there is plenty to agree with in what you say above about the difficulty and precision of historical reconstructions but you also reveal a number of serious misconceptions that I urge you to reconsider.

    Firstly, no one claims to know the global temperature to .1 of a degree centuries ago. Even the modern tmperature record has error bounds of +/-.1oC. For the notorious MBH98, long ago supersceded by more recent research BTW, the error bounds presented in the IPCC TAR were around +/-.4oC. So you are attacking a strawman with concerns about unjustified accuracy IMO.
    http://www.grida.no/publications/other/ipcc_tar/?src=/climate/ipcc_tar/wg1/fig2-20.htm

    Secondly, the results of proxy reconstructions have absolutely nothing, zip, zero, nada, to do with projections of future climate change.

    I think the “handful of cronies” remark shows a serious detatchment from the reality.

  19. #19 MarkusR
    December 2, 2009

    Without a time machine, it’s a hard thing to even ballpark this data.

    Can you name at least one thing you could ballpark without a time machine? Or are you saying that all predictions in anything are just random guesses.

  20. #20 mandas
    December 2, 2009

    Dear dear dhogoza. You have just proved you are totally irrelevant to any discussion of science and I will ignore your diatribes in future.
    You do, of course, realise, that in order for scientists to establish:
    ….knowledge of tree physiology and in particular in the physiology of trees growing near their latitudinal or altitudinal limits….
    they must first collect data, then conduct a statistical analysis of that data and establish the relationship between the proxy information and the standard measurements of temperature?
    You don’t understand that? Well, every scientist does, Guess you aren’t one of those then. Why are you here, apart from to abuse people?

  21. #21 mandas
    December 2, 2009

    Sorry skip. Maybe you misread me, or maybe I wasn’t exactly clear. I wasn’t suggesting coby was saying that, I was discussing the points link raised, in the context of coby’s reply. Maybe my explanation got a bit blurred between who’s points I was discussing.
    The suggestion that tree ring data has been proven scientifically to be flawed (link’s point) is only partially wrong, just as it is also wrong to suggest that it has always been right in the past. We can’t possibly know that, and if there are errors now (as there most certainly are), there is no way of knowing if there weren’t similar (or indeed other) errors in the past. We do know for a fact that there WERE occasions in the past when the data deviated from other datasets; no-one knows why then either.
    I’m not sure why it is difficult for some people to accept that there MAY be differences between the proxy data sets measurements and actual temperatures in the past, especially when there are differeneces between them right now.
    Some of link’s points are valid, and it is important that we answer legitimate queries like that, and not bullshit by claiming a degree of precision that does not exist, or that we know things we don’t.
    Coby addressed some of link’s points well in his last post, but to keep banging on about my favourite subject (it seems), it’s all about multiple datasets and statistics. I wish some more people would actually read and attempt to understand how we do data analysis, so they can understand simple concepts such as margins of error, variance, samples etc; let alone the more complex calculations used to analyse complex data sets such as this.
    Despite some irrelevant people’s claims to the contrary, it IS all about statistics, and a basic understanding of them is essential if you are to be able to read and understand any published, peer reviewed, scientific paper.

  22. #22 Walter M. Clark
    December 2, 2009

    I think the world will thank that so far un-named and (hopefully, to protect his own health) unknown, leaker who selected the emails, code and data to leak only a few weeks before the world was set to commit suicide at and after Copenhagen.

    As the world continues to cool we will all see the truth in the skeptics’ viewpoint. Only a few decades ago scientists were proud to be considered skeptics. It’s a pity that science has become so complicated and fragmented that a relatively few with an agenda, backed by politicians wanting more control over more people, forgot that they should be skeptical. As complex as the world’s climate is it is counter-intuitive to maintain that notwithstanding proxy evidence of both warmer and cooler periods in history, all before mankind started putting much carbon dioxide into the atmosphere, this time is different?

  23. #23 dhogaza
    December 2, 2009

    As the world continues to cool

    UAH – you know, the satellite team run by the skeptics Roy Spencer and John Christy – just announced that November is the warmest in the satellite record.

    Cooling, indeed.

    Any more lies you want to try out on us?

  24. #24 dhogaza
    December 2, 2009

    We can’t possibly know that, and if there are errors now (as there most certainly are), there is no way of knowing if there weren’t similar (or indeed other) errors in the past

    Sure we can, once the cause is figured out for various tree ring chronologies. I know in at least one case SO2 pollution (acid rain) has been pinned down as the cause, and that can be ruled out in the pre-industrial era over the timeframe of the proxy record.

    There are also end-effects that for some analysis techniques inflate the divergence effect, which I think might be why RCS was developed in the first place (not because of divergence, but because of known end-effect artifacts inherent in other treatments). We know end-effect artifacts don’t appear in the middle of a time series.

    Etc etc.

    You continuously overstate your case, despite being repeatedly corrected.

    It’s been suggested by someone else that you go take on a real dendro guy who runs the blog http://delayedoscillator.wordpress.com/.

    Do it.

    You can also go over to real climate and engage with another professional dendro guy, Jim Bouldin.

    Do it.

    You’re essentially arguing from a position of personal incredulity, a classic creationist technique.

  25. #25 mandas
    December 2, 2009

    Walter Clark; you are correct – it is important that scientists be sceptical, and by and large we are.
    But you must understand what being sceptical means. It means examining the evidence presented with a questioning mind. It means querying data, and comparing it with what is already known to determine discrepancies. It means not accepting anything at face value. BUT, once the evidence is clear, it also means accepting it.
    What it DOES NOT mean, is starting from a dogmatic position, and denying anything that does not agree with that position. Unfortunately, that is what most people who like to call themselves sceptics are doing. And that means they aren’t sceptics – they are fundamentalist deniers.
    So I assume from your statement that the world is continuing to cool, that you accept that climate change is occuring, but in your case you think the overall trend is down. Not sure what evidence you have for that. You must have some if you are as sceptical as you claim to be and you have accepted something as true.
    What do you think is causing the cooling? I would love to see and review your evidence. Could you post it here so we can all look at it please? As you might imagine, I am taking a leaf out of your book and being sceptical.

  26. #26 Walter M. Clark
    December 2, 2009

    Mandas; How about the NCDC monthly global mean surface temperature anomalies, January 2001 – December 2008, showing declining trend line at 0.8 C/century? Yes, we’re in an el nino year now so the temperature is higher, but the trend will go back down after el nino just as it did in the 2007 el nino/2008 la nina cycle.

    I agree wholeheartedly with your definition of skeptical. We differ in that the evidence is clear, but NOT in the direction of proving AGW; quite the contrary.

    And yes, climate change is occurring, it’s just too big and too complex to say that mankind is influencing it.

  27. #27 mandas
    December 2, 2009

    Walter, if you are going to offer evidence, please don’t cherry pick small pieces of data and exclude everything that doesn’t support your case. If you going to use the NCDC data, use the WHOLE data set, not just a snapshot of the last few years.
    The whole data set is on this graph:
    http://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/img/climate/research/global-jan-dec-error-bar-pg.gif
    …, which of course, you were well aware of when you attempted to put your case together. And I don’t know about you, but I reckon a 4 year old would look at that information and say that temperature was increasing.
    So come on, you can do better than that.

  28. #28 Gary
    December 2, 2009

    Coby, maybe you should read this:

    Richard Feynman – 1974 Caltec Address
    “…the idea that we all hope you have learned in studying science in school–we never explicitly say what this is, but just hope that you catch on by all the examples of scientific investigation. It is interesting, therefore, to bring it out now and speak of it explicitly. It’s a kind of scientific integrity, a principle of scientific thought that corresponds to a kind of utter honesty–a kind of leaning over backwards. For example, if you’re doing an experiment, you should report everything that you think might make it invalid–not only what you think is right about it: other causes that could possibly explain your results; and things you thought of that you’ve eliminated by some other
    experiment, and how they worked–to make sure the other fellow can
    tell they have been eliminated.

    Details that could throw doubt on your interpretation must be given, if you know them. You must do the best you can–if you know anything at all wrong, or possibly wrong–to explain it. If you make a theory, for example, and advertise it, or put it out, then
    you must also put down all the facts that disagree with it, as well as those that agree with it. There is also a more subtle problem. When you have put a lot of ideas together to make an elaborate theory, you want to make sure, when explaining what it fits, that
    those things it fits are not just the things that gave you the idea for the theory; but that the finished theory makes something else come out right, in addition.

    In summary, the idea is to try to give all of the information to help others to judge the value of your contribution; not just the information that leads to judgment in one particular direction or another.”

  29. #29 pough
    December 2, 2009

    …a few weeks before the world was set to commit suicide at and after Copenhagen.

    You don’t write particularly coherently, but at least you’re not alarmist.

  30. #30 jack savage
    December 3, 2009

    dhogaza. I think you will find I believed, not insisted. I guess Phil Jones must have believed the same or he would not have been asking Michael Mann and others to delete emails in anticipation of an FOI request. Do you really think that people who are paid with public money and are sending emails from their place of work to other professionals, should not be covered by the FOI legislation? Or have I got the thrust of your argument wrong?
    I shall be most surprised if our FOI Act, weaker than your or not, does not extend to the correspondence which forms the subject of our little discussion.
    And yes,I do lobby my MP. I am lucky enough to be retired and have the time.

  31. #31 skip
    December 3, 2009

    Yeah but Jack the crucial question is, What were they trying to hide?

    You can believe they were hiding that AGW is the Big Lie if you wish. There is nothing in the emails that rules that out as a motive. And of course if you’re predisposed to see that you probably will. Its an unfalsifiable assertion: “They were trying to hide their dirty little secret.”

    But its at least as plausible that they wanted to conceal their strategy of compromising the credibility of their opponents.

    What would you do, Jack, if you thought someone was *wrong*–dangerously wrong– and needed to be opposed? You would oppose them. I’m not justifying the means here; but that is a far more plausible interpretation.

    No one has come forward with claims of direct knowledge of conspiracy. No one.

    Isn’t that a little bothersome for those of you wishing to believe from secondhand reports that these emails are supposedly damning?

    Skip

  32. #32 jack savage
    December 3, 2009

    Well, Skip, I guess I will just have to continue to keep an open mind.
    I completely understand what you are saying, although why the internationally acclaimed scientists at the CRU would feel the need to adopt a bunker mentality when,allegedly, the science is “settled” is a trifle puzzling.
    I do not think that they were all part of some huge conspiracy to foist a theory upon us. I believe they are human beings, with jobs and families like the rest of us. To use a common analogy, if I were a scientist putting forward the theory that the world was a globe, and I was asked for my data or asked to deal with other people who held that the earth was flat I suppose I would deal with them in a world weary way rather than the rather paranoid way the CRU reacted. I am not saying these people do not believe in what they are promoting. I am just saying they may be wrong.
    How would I deal with someone whom I thought was dangerously wrong? I would try to bring as much sunlight to the controversy as possible so that all could see my opponents were in error. The answer to your question is that I do not know what they were trying to hide. But they seem to have acted as though they wanted to hide something.

  33. #33 jack savage
    December 3, 2009

    Further, a friend of mine brings this to my attention.
    http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/sci/tech/8392611.stm
    On this page there is a snippet of an interview with Michael Mann where he seems to be throwing his colleague Phil Jones “under the bus” as you transatlantics like to say.
    Then we have Hansen throwing his toys out of the pram and saying EVERYBODY has it all wrong and that Copenhagen is a wrong turning.
    Can I not put in a plea for a year or two of careful reconsideration of both the science and the politics? Is that really going to make the difference, whatever position any of us hold, between triumph and disaster?

  34. #34 skip
    December 3, 2009

    I am just saying they may be wrong.

    Agreed, but there is plenty of reason to think they might be right.

    How would I deal with someone whom I thought was dangerously wrong? I would try to bring as much sunlight to the controversy as possible so that all could see my opponents were in error.

    I have to admit I completely agree with that. Conceit is the downfall of academics. I’m a lowly enough one myself to be (I hope) immune to the risk, but I confess I see it.

    Can I not put in a plea for a year or two of careful reconsideration of both the science and the politics? Is that really going to make the difference, whatever position any of us hold, between triumph and disaster?

    No need to plea, Jack. Nothing immediate will be done anyway. My hope is that, as the globe melts, people start to see it in time to do something.

    Skip

  35. #35 crakar24
    December 3, 2009

    “As the globe melts”

    Hardy ha ha

    Mr Hyde

    What i found most enlightening about the emails is that it would appear that these scientists had the same mentality as people here. I expect to be called a sceptic denier as you would an alarmist warmaholic here because we have no idea what we are talking about but i did not think scientists acted the same way.

    Maybe i am a bit naive but i did not think that they would think that way (does this make sense?) So it would appear that they would not release data simply because they are “denier scientists” and would find something wrong with their studies even if there was nothing wrong because they are deniers.

    Which means the only thing they may have been trying to hide was the data itself, no tricks, no subterfuge, any thoughts?

    Dr Crakar Phd (in everthing)

  36. #36 Walter M. Clark
    December 3, 2009

    Mandas; “a four year old,” eh? Oh well, so much for discussing like civilized people. If Michael Mann can cherry-pick his data, and IPCC select the length of time and how to display it, why can’t I? No need to answer, I’m not a four year old and can see and understand. I thought we could avoid insults, but I guess not.

    Good bye.

  37. #37 pough
    December 3, 2009

    does this make sense?

    Not entirely. Pronoun antecedents got a little fuzzy at times.

    You might want to consider that in both cases (scientists and folks here) it doesn’t start off so vehement. I got the sense from the emails that discussions with people like McIntyre started off pleasant enough, but once a modus operandi was noted, communication soured and private emails got spicier. Here, too, there is a history of “deniers” waltzing in from Matilda and saying the exact same rubbish as a billion others before them as though it were both new and worthwhile. One loses patience.

    BTW, what struck me about the emails was how amusingly snarky Jones and Santer are. I particularly loved when they talked about Christy. I can’t remember it exactly, but I think it went something like, “John Christy has made a career out of being wrong.” Ouch!

  38. #38 skip
    December 4, 2009

    Nice discussion, gents.

    I do enjoy reading/considering everyone’s viewpoint. Belated thanks for the earlier clarification, Mandas.

    Skip

  39. #39 skip
    December 4, 2009

    Mandas/Walter:

    I was reviewing your exchange and wanted to (I think) iterate Mandas’s point thus:

    Yes, it is virtuous for scientists to be “skeptical” about conclusions, but the larger issue here is *policy*.

    The scientific issue at hand–AGW and its possible consequences–is of course unknowable in the absolute sense because we’re talking about a complex system and its future. So yeah we need to be “skeptical” about any alleged *specific* prediction (e.g. a 10-degree rise in 100 years).

    But how does that transfer to, “To be good skeptics we should not act to thwart AGW. Otherwise we’re being religious.”?

    The denier is basically saying, “Dangerous AGW is not “proven” to be right, therefore we should behave as if it has been proven to be wrong.”

    Or,

    “Your position (AGW) is unproven, therefore we should act as if mine is.”

    Acting in a manner that would slow global warming is not acting on religious faith, but prudence–especially since the behavioral changes we’re talking about are beneficial in numerous other ways. I harp on this last point constantly but no one ever seems to give a shit.

    Skip

  40. #40 barry
    December 4, 2009

    Yes, by and large some actual skepticism from numerous players is on display here. Rare as hen’s teeth, that.

  41. #41 barry
    December 4, 2009

    I harp on this last point constantly but no one ever seems to give a shit.

    Skip, that’s a very common trait in the ‘skeptical’ canon – mischaracterise components of the science by claiming it is ‘certain’ and then highlight uncertainty. It’s classic straw man argument.

    The ‘debate is over’ is the common reference, but this is attached to a very general contention. There is no longer reasonable doubt that increasing atmospheric CO2 concentrations are warming the planet over the long term. The uncertainty lies in the degree to which this might happen in the future.

    To paraphrase Pielke Snr, it is not that we know exactly what will happen that should guide our thinking, it’s that we don’t know exactly what will happen, therefore we should act prudently. We’re running an unguided experiment on the only atmosphere that we have – of course we need to assess the potential outcomes, and if there’s a chance of bad consequences, address the risk in a responsible fashion (whatever that may be).

  42. #42 Stillinair
    December 5, 2009

    the overall ‘unresolved/uncertain’ (low to very low rating of knowledge) list of such things as – aerosols, clouds, solar, land use, cosmic rays, etc (all categorized as such in IPCC IR4 with little to no change from the IR3… 6 years prior) confounds me.

    Plus the time span… 150k years looks much different than 1,000 years and 450,000 years looks like repeating 150k years.

    plus, being even more simplistic here…. pundits (either way) that are not scientist *cough Gore and gov’t* confound the situation. But, then again, even the slight slice they have a ‘high certainty of scientific understanding’ about is still complex to everyday people.

  43. #43 guthrie
    December 5, 2009

    Jack Savage – I don’t see Mann throwing anyone under a bus except the people who’ve illegallly hacked the CRU server. Maybe you are reading a different story?

    “There is a consensus among the world’s scientists that climate change is real and there’s a need to confront it,” said Michael Mann from Pennsylvania State University in the US, a leading palaeoclimatologist.

    “Those who are advocating inaction, that don’t want to see progress in Copenhagen, don’t have science on their side.

    “Instead they’ve manufactured this false controversy to distract the public and to distract policymakers, to try to thwart progress in Copenhagen.”"

  44. #44 Jack Savage
    December 5, 2009

    Guthrie – It is in the interview.

    “That was in an email TO me, it in no way reflects MY views on the matter…”

    Oh, well, if you cannot see it you cannot see it. Perhaps it is a little finely nuanced. To me it spoke volumes but then I AM very clever and also remarkably perceptive.

  45. #45 Jack Savage
    December 5, 2009

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/worldtonight/2009/12/climate_change_emails_a_scient.html

    I hope you can find the interview here as well, if it did not appear on my first link.

  46. #46 stillinair
    December 5, 2009

    “Those who are advocating inaction…’

    Who advocates inaction? And what exactly do you mean by that? Who has chosen the status quo towards technical advancement in the production of energy? (41% of America’s CO2 emission is from the production of electricity… an infrastructure of distribution that spreads across a landmass and distributed population that looks like no other country.)

    What constitutes ‘action’?
    1. condensing population to reduce the size currently needed to spread the infrastructure? “It requires more ‘gas’ to travel 100 miles than it does to travel 1.” Curious if you have compared emission by distribution spread of countries.

    2. Create the next best energy technology? Making current tech more efficient? Granted, the last question is historically proven as a bad question.

    3. Use of more efficient, non/less-carbon producing energy that already exist until such time as alternate sources don’t cost an arm and leg for less efficiency (ask Cali). ex: 41% of America’s CO emission is from electricity (again, the spread of distribution really sucks). What alternate source do you/they recommend to reduce this?

    4. cap?

    5. All of the above?

    To Mann’s ‘consensus’ …. granted, I have not done an exhaustive search, but the part that annoyed me was that the main think tanks in the US – CCSP, EPA, GCRP – site the IPCC as their reference. Actually, the funniest one I saw was GCRP stating that they gathered their info, for their publications, from the IPCC and CCSP… but when one looks at the CCSP, they site the IPCC IR4 and Work Groups as their reference. In private sector, some would view this as the reason antitrust laws exist… but maybe thats just me.

  47. #47 dhogaza
    December 5, 2009

    but maybe thats just me.

    Yeah, it’s just you. IPCC’s job is to review all the available, pertinent science when it creates its reports, and includes contrarian papers from the literature (even poor ones), so it’s a logical place to go if you want to dig into the literature.

  48. #48 Link
    December 5, 2009

    If you really believe in AGW, would you accept the US building 300 nuclear reactors in short order?

    If not, why not. It’s worked for the French. Nuclear is greener than coal. Wind and solar don’t scale.

    Or do you really want economic collapse?

  49. #49 Marco
    December 6, 2009

    @Link:
    The US building 300 nuclear reactors is fine with me. As long as they think very, VERY, strongly about alternative designs. There’s about 80 years of easily mined uranium left, and with a substantial increase in nuclear reactors, it would reduce that to about 8-10 years. You know what creating a shortage does to costs, don’t you?
    Regarding “green”: if only we had a good way of storing the waste (or better: use it in new generations of nuclear plants). Remember also that mining uranium isn’t very clean (about as bad as coal mining, actually).
    Of course, it takes about 5 years to build a nuclear reactor, at combined costs of 1 trillion dollars for those 300 plants.
    Just a few issues to keep in mind…

  50. #50 Scott A. Mandia
    December 6, 2009

    http://www.desmogblog.com/another-look-stolen-emails

    A great video that debunks Climate Gate

  51. #51 skip
    December 6, 2009

    Thanks Scott.

    That was really well done. Because your run-of-the-mill denier typically lacks the ability or inclination for critical thought, breaking it into a simple, user friendly format like video helps immensely.

    Good link,

    Skip

  52. #52 crakar24
    December 6, 2009

    Now that it has been established that

    1, There was a concerted effort by some to hinder/block the FOI requests

    2, A concerted effort to misuse the peer review process and

    3, Evidence which may suggest manipulation of the data (hockey stick data)

    The question now turns to who was the whistleblower?

    After looking at the emails it might be that an Australian was the one to blow the whistle, if not he should have.

    Withholding data

    http://www.eastangliaemails.com/emails.php?eid=1039&filename=1254756944.txt

    And this

    On Oct 14, 2009, at 5:57 PM, Tom Wigley wrote:
    Mike,

    The Figure you sent is very deceptive. As an example, historical
    runs with PCM look as though they match observations — but the
    match is a fluke. PCM has no indirect aerosol forcing and a low
    climate sensitivity — compensating errors. In my (perhaps too
    harsh)
    view, there have been a number of dishonest presentations of model
    results by individual authors and by IPCC. This is why I still use
    results from MAGICC to compare with observed temperatures. At least
    here I can assess how sensitive matches are to sensitivity and
    forcing assumptions/uncertainties.

    Tom.

    Source http://www.eastangliaemails.com/emails.php?eid=1057&filename=1255553034.txt

    He then speaks about the Wang study which invovled Jones in regards to UHI effect.

    http://www.eastangliaemails.com/emails.php?eid=790&filename=1177158252.txt

    http://www.eastangliaemails.com/emails.php?eid=813&filename=1188557698.txt

    http://www.eastangliaemails.com/emails.php?eid=972&filename=1241415427.txt

    All this of course has just been plagerised and cut and paste, the entire story can be read at

    http://blogs.news.com.au/heraldsun/andrewbolt/index.php/heraldsun/comments/climategate_which_one_blew_the_whistle/

    Cheers

    Crakar

  53. #53 crakar24
    December 6, 2009

    While i am waiting for my latest insightful piece of work to make it through moderation (yes i forgot to put the dots in the WWW)i thought i would take this opportunity to update you all on the ever changing face of Australian politics.

    Less than a week after Abott took over the Liberal party and voted down the ETS, an act which lead K.D.Wong to say the liberals have been taken over by extremists and sceptics, two by elections were held on the weekend.

    A by election is held when a politician retires between elections, the two by elections were previously held by liberal MP’s. There were 21 people running for these seats most of them were independents or nobodys, parties like the Aust sex workers party and legalise pot parties. Labour have a policy of not running a candidate in safe liberal seats so it was basically Liberal versus the Green (we want 40% emission cuts) party.

    Therefore all the media and warmaholics were frothing at the mouth in expectation of the liberal party losing both seats or at least having massive swings against them.

    In the end the Liberal party won both seats but not only that they increased their majority, this emphatic win has given Abott confidence, so much so that he has now challenged K.Rudd to a series of public debates on how the ETS will work which will no doubt morph into a truly historic (first one ever) debate on AGW. Now wouldnt that be worth watching, alas so far K.Rudd has merely responded with spin and incoherent ramblings on the issue.

    Stay tuned for more exciting updates.

  54. #54 mandas
    December 6, 2009

    Back on the subject of Australian politics again – but I have to say these two by-elections were always going to be a yawnfest.
    Anyone who believed, even in their wildest dreams, that the Liberal party was not going to prevail would have had to have been smoking crack.
    Rather than see Rudd and Abbott debating an ETS, I would rather see Abbott and Minchin on one side, and Turnbull and Hockey on the other, debating the Liberal party policy on how to deal with climate change. I would pay to see that, and it would expose Abbott and Minchin as the flat-earthers that they are.
    But really, it is all a sideshow. The Libs will get their arses handed to them at the next election, Abbott will join the revolving door of Liberal party leadership, and the ETS will get passed. Anyone want to bet against me?

  55. #55 Paul
    December 7, 2009

    …:::The nightmare would be a properly independent inquiry:::…

    I don’t see why this would be a nightmare? Seems to me that either the hypothesis of anthropogenic global warming (AGW) holds up, or it doesn’t. Transparency and skepticism should be welcome.

    Whether or not AGW is a reality, one thing is crystal clear: the field of climatology has been infected by politics, and that means one of two things, both which are disasterous: either the science is correct, but no longer credible– not unlike a guilty criminal going free because a corrupt cop planted evidence; or the science is incorrect and we weren’t privy to the information– not unlike an innocent man on death row because of a corrupt zealot of a cop so sure he’s guilty that he ignores, tweaks, plants, and otherwise makes sure the case is made– the evidence be damned.

    I’ll admit that I’m on the fence when it comes to the science, but with the skeptics when it comes to the politics. I have my suspicions that there may be a climate crisis on the horizon, but I’m skeptikal of solutions that seem to suggest that the only “proper” response is a global government fleecing.

  56. #56 pough
    December 7, 2009

    Now that it has been established that

    1, There was a concerted effort by some to hinder/block the FOI requests

    2, A concerted effort to misuse the peer review process and

    3, Evidence which may suggest manipulation of the data (hockey stick data)

    The question now turns to who was the whistleblower?

    I’m guessing you won’t be surprised, but I don’t agree with anything you’ve said here.

    1. I have no problem with someone whining about having to comply with stupid FOI requests. If what’s requested is not deserved and if it’s only going to be used for nefarious purposes, why not at least talk about resistance? FOI is not holy. It can be misused.

    2. The misuse of the peer review process was on the other side.

    3. I find it fascinating that you refer to the use of accurate temperature data overlaying inaccurate proxy data as a bad thing. Are you also upset that they “hid” all this in published papers, for all the world to see?

    4. Whistleblower implies someone within an organization. If it was a whistleblower, they did an amazing impersonation of a hacker.

  57. #57 mandas
    December 7, 2009

    Paul – you forgot a third possibility…. the science is correct, and is still credible.
    One thing that flat earthers (I will not call them sceptics, because they aren’t sceptical – that implies a rationality that they don’t possess) fail to understand, is that the information has ALWAYS been available for anyone to read and analyse. Just because they don’t understand it does not mean there has been a cover-up or conspiracy or anything else so nefarious – it just means you don’t want to accept the truth when it is staring you in the face.
    I have had discussions with flat-earthers time and time again, and it is exactly like speaking to a creationist (who many of them are). It doesn’t matter how much evidence you present; it doesn’t matter that they can offer no rational reason for their views; it doesn’t matter that everything they say can be discredited and shown to be incorrect – they start and finish from a position of absolute certainty that the whole world is conspiring against them and that scientists etc are wrong and they are evil or misguided people who just want to team up with politicians to fleece us all.
    I wish the so-called sceptics would try and act a little more sceptical when it came to their own views. If you want to be called a true sceptic, don’t just doubt MY views, doubt your own as well. Examine the evidence for your own position, and apply critical reasoning to what you believe as well.
    How about this for a challenge. Pretend that scientists are saying that it doesn’t matter how much CO2 or CH4 etc we pump into the atmosphere, it won’t make the slightest difference to the climate (is that what you are really ssaying??). And instead of readily accepting that, apply the same scepticism that you say you are applying to anthropogenic climate change. Ask to see the evidence. Criticise it and analyse it. Now weigh the evidence up for both sides of the argument. Establish a hypothesis. Test it. See if you can discredit your own theory. Ask your colleagues to do the same. Try your best to tear down your own argument to see if it will resist a challenge.
    Because you know what, thats EXACTLY what real scientists do with the evidence FOR climate change, and what they have been doing for decades. That’s what scientists do. How about you act the same. Be a real sceptic, not a flat-earther.

  58. #58 crakar24
    December 7, 2009

    Hi Pough,

    1, Whilst i applaud your “thumbing your nose at the law” attitude the law is the law and they broke it, some may even call it criminal, what do you think Skip?

    2, I thought it was the other way round? Will have another look at what was said and by whom.

    3, Dont agree with you on this one.

    4, I was of the understanding that it was a whistleblower due to the type of data leaked, ie the long timeframe of the emails in that they had “collected” them over a period of time etc, but then again i maybe wrong on this point.

    Mandas,

    Re Aust politics, yes i know it is a bore but i was just updating our readers on the latest developments in case someone is interested. I did sense a bit of contradiction in your post in regards to Libs getting their arses handed to them at the next election but the by elections were as predicted a bit of a yawn fest. Why the difference?

    Cheers

  59. #59 pough
    December 7, 2009

    Hi crakar

    1. IF they broke the law, then they broke the law. What evidence do you have that an actual crime was committed? An undeleted email telling others to delete emails that may or may not have been deleted? What if the FOI request for those emails was denied? Is it still a crime to delete emails for which there was no valid FOI request?

    3. Well, you’re right. I’m not really fascinated. Apart from that, though, we can agree that including accurate temperature data to show where inaccurate proxy data can be ignored past a certain point is more good than bad, yes? And hiding works best when unpublished, true?

    4. Nobody has stepped up to the plate, and the way it’s been handled (using untraceable proxies, Russian servers and hacking into RealClimate to upload the data) doesn’t seem very whistleblowery to me. A whistleblower would hand over the data to authorities or the press. It’s possible that the initial data was collected by a whisteblower, handed off to others and then handled poorly from that point, but I think it’s far more likely to be a hack. In fact, apart from some kind of fantasy of a power-mongering conspiracy with an unknown “hero” in their midst, there’s nothing at all that points to whistleblower.

  60. #60 mandas
    December 7, 2009

    Crakar.
    No contradiction re my comments on the by-election, and the remark about the yawnfest was not that Australian politics is boring, its that the results were so predictable and were never in any doubt. There was no chance that the Libs would be defeated that I don’t even know why anyone else bothered to show up – certainly Labor knew that and didn’t waste their time and money.
    However, by-elections in blue ribbon seats are one thing. A double dissolution general election is another thing entirely. The Libs are in complete disunity, as their constant change of leadership and in-fighting have demonstrated. In electing Abbott, they have deserted the middle ground and adopted a more extremist conservative position. With regard to the ETS, the man is a fool – there is no better way to put it. The Government’s ETS may be flawed, but he does not have a rational alternative, which is not surprising from a member of the flat-earth society. And a lot of the party realise it. He was only elected by 1 vote – and Fran Bailey, a strong supporter of Turnbull and the ETS, was absent from the ballot. So the party is split, some senators and even some MPs, are likely to cross the floor. If anyone thinks that isn’t a recipe for electoral suicide, I really don’t know what is.
    Abbott’s maximum life as leader is shortly after the next election – and there is no certainty he will last that long. But they Coalition will be decimated at the next election – you can put your house on it.

  61. #61 crakar24
    December 7, 2009

    Hello Pough,

    This is just like old times except the conversation is much more pleasant.

    Re point 1, What we need right know is someone who is much more fluent in the law to respond maybe someone out there can add their weight to this point.

    I would have thought that if you in an attempt to thwart a FOI request deleted data or said you would delete data and also instructed others to delete any data pertaining to that FOI then you would be comitting an offence of some kind. Of course the punishment might simply be a slap on the wrist but still an offence.

    Mandas,

    Time will tell re Abott, i will vote for “Skippy the Kangaroo” as usual instead of Downer or the current Liberal replacement who ever he is so it matters none to me.

    You spoke of conspiracy theories a few posts back, i bloke i work with has one which i thought i might share.

    He says that a few years ago(decades actually) the US, most of Europe and say Australia where the manufacturing powerhouses of the world, but over the years most manufacturing has now gone offshore to the Asian countries namely China and India. One only has to look around the shops here to see that most products we buy are made overseas as evidence of this, and it wont be long before these countries will emerge as the dominant trading countries of the world. The US dollar is all but shot so it will loose its reserve currency status etc etc.

    So how do you stop these developing countries developing into world powers? Simple you tell them they cant develope anymore, stop them from giving electrickery to their most impoverished people, slow down their development with CO2 restrictions.

    Anyway thats his theory.

  62. #62 skip
    December 7, 2009

    Crakar:

    Not qualified to speak on FOI law, but if they technically broke a law, which I doubt, then they are guilty of breaking the law. Nod to Pough who made this mundane point before

    What difference does it make on the question of whether AGW is real and worth our efforts to address?

    Skip

  63. #63 crakar24
    December 7, 2009

    Hi Skip,

    If you are talking about the FOI thing then it does not relate directly to whether AGw is real or not, however is does cast a shadow over the scientists integrity which is why the EA uni is investigating.

    In regards to the possible manipulation of data regarding the broken hockey stick, this issue could make a difference.

    Cheers and Xmas beers

    Crakar

  64. #64 pough
    December 7, 2009

    In regards to the possible manipulation of data regarding the broken hockey stick, this issue could make a difference.

    Seriously? Are you another one of those who’s forgotten we have had thermometers for quite a few years and you think the sudden warming lately was only recorded in a handful of Yamalese trees?

    Of course the punishment might simply be a slap on the wrist but still an offence.

    I wonder if incessant, moronic FOI requests are (or might eventually be) an offence. I hope so. Probably also just a slap on the wrist, but one hopes for a hockey stick to the fanny. It would be more appropriate.

  65. #65 mandas
    December 7, 2009

    Skip/Crakar,
    I am not an lawyer, but I am both a commonwealth public servant and an environmental scientist (sort of gives it away a bit where I work, but no more info than that), and I can tell you a little about FOI – but the arrangements here in Australia are certain to be different to the UK, so there isn’t a lot of point.
    But in Australia it would be an offence to destroy documents that were subject to an FOI request – and emails can be subject to such a request. Not much point destroying them though – the systems are always backed up and they can be retrieved.
    With regard to the conspiracy to keep developing nations down etc, I would respond in the same way I respond to all conspiracy theories. Having worked in the public arena for 30 years, I can tell you that anyone who believes Governments etc are capable of arranging, coordinating and ensuring the necessary level of secrecy etc for such complicated concepts as these, has no idea about how Governments work. They are far too disorganised.

  66. #66 skip
    December 8, 2009

    Thanks for the insight, Mandas. And I agree that government institutions have no capacity for vast conspiracy. They are often capable of gross incompetence which is why I have always felt some sympathy for the denier argument that we should resist placing environmental safety in the hands of the state. (My response is you ride the best horse available but that’s another discussion.)

    Rhetorical Question for all:

    What would it take for you to be convinced that your interpretation of these emails is wrong?

    I think they mean little to nothing, but I know what it would take for me to be convinced otherwise: A naked admission of conspiracy–none of which appear in any of these emails–the conclusion of an independent investigation indicating so, or the confession by a participant that basically says, “Yeah, I was in on it. Here’s my proof. I got swept up in the bullshit and I’m sorry to have mislead.” (And I don’t mean some non-published hack who was never involved in the research and now claims to have “seen the light” of skepticism; any fool can claim that.)

    Now Crakar et al:

    What would it take for *you* to be convinced that *your* interpretation of these emails is wrong–that they are no more incriminating than the spiteful vulgarities I shrieked at the TV over the weekend when I was watching college football?

    . . .Or no more an admission of dishonesty then when *I* tell *my* colleagues that inherent weaknesses in my data compromise the robustness of my conclusions (i.e. compel *scientific* skepticism)–but that I still hold to those conclusions for compelling reasons–(i.e. the overwhelming *available* evidence)?

    . . .Or no more un-scholarly then when I say I just used a neat “gimmick” (“trick” in other circles) to make it easier to resolve a particular research question (and I have)?

    What would it take for you to be convinced? Is there a single thing that would convince you? If so, what is it?

    I think the vast, vast majority of deniers who believe these emails prove AGW to be false have (1) never read any of them, and (2) never intend to and (3) will believe that they prove “fraud”, “hoax”, “conspiracy”–or whatever the particular flavor of suspicion–no matter what was said, no matter what comes out of the investigation, no matter how compelling the evidence demonstrating that they mean, in the end, absolutely *nothing.*

    But convince me otherwise, people.

    Again, what hypothetical “proof” would demonstrate to you that these emails are innocuous?

    Skip

  67. #67 dhogaza
    December 8, 2009

    But in Australia it would be an offence to destroy documents that were subject to an FOI request – and emails can be subject to such a request.

    It’s true in the UK, as well, and this is why serious people understand that this is the only “smoking gun” in the entire 13 or so years of correspondence.

    On the other hand, apparently Jones followed up saying the information officer said no, you can’t do that.

    Of course, how many scientists enter scientist thinking they’re going to be bombarded with legal requests and, over the course of a decade, literally hundreds of attacks on the web claiming that your work is fraudulent and you’re engaged in scientific misconduct as part of a science-wide conspiracy against mankind?

    Not many, I imagine. More will, today … or just say “fuck science” and go down another career path in university.

  68. #68 Jack Savage
    December 8, 2009

    dhagaza – Why not just send them the stuff if they ask for it?

    I spent a half a life time in the legal profession and all the time I knew that everything I did might some day be subject to public scrutiny.
    And you know….it made me do good work.

  69. #69 dhogaza
    December 8, 2009

    dhagaza – Why not just send them the stuff if they ask for it?

    I spent a half a life time in the legal profession

    And you ask why they don’t send data covered by non-disclosure agreements?

    Strange.

    The vast majority – about 95% – is public domain and available from GHCN. The 5% that’s covered by NDA-type agreements are, well, not CRU’s to give.

    It’s really quite simple.

  70. #70 crakar24
    December 8, 2009

    Pough,

    A hockey stick to the fanny is a good idea as it would hurt more so yes it would be more appropriate :-))

    Mandas,

    Sounds like we have the same boss (different dept, but same boss), you are preaching to the converted in regards to government and conspiracies. Where i work would have to be the most disorganised place i have ever worked.

    Skip,

    M&M repeatedly asked for the data and methodologies used to produce the stick but were declined, eventually leading to them going down the FOI path. As Jack has asked “why not just give them the stuff they asked for?” Well why indeed.

    The first IPCC report displayed a graph showing recent global temps which included the MWP and LIA inferring that todays temps are nothing unusual and it also showed that the Earths temps can fluctuate wildly over a thousand or so years.

    The second and third reports displayed the hockey stick which is when M&M tried in vain to check MHB work. Once given the data requested M&M showed the MHB hockey stick to be erroneous and the hockey was removed from IPCC 4th report.

    However by this stage the damage was done, the IPCC had several years to convince the pollies and the general public that todays temps were indeed much warmer than the past, Gore used the hockey stick as part of his travelling road show to spread the word and the stick was used extensively in schools to scare the crap out of little children.

    Now the question is why did this happen? Firstly it was due to a break down in the peer review process, peer review is supposed to be unbiased and independent but this was not the case. So we had a situation where people close to the hockey stick and its producers were in fact the reviewers this lead to the stick getting through the process with virtually no questions asked.

    When unbiased and independent people wished to view the data their requests were denied and now we know why. How could a body such as the IPCC allow the hockey stick to be displayed in their reports? What checks are in place to stop such a thing happening? What checks have been or will be put in place to stop such a thing happening again? My guess is obsolutely none.

    We now see NASA (never a straight answer) being sued by someone due to the very same reasons, they have waited 2 years to get some data via a FOI request. The whole point of science is to establish a theory, take measurements, confirm your theory and then make the data available for others to see and check your work to make sure you have not made any mistakes. If as a scientist you cannot accept this then i suggest you get out and get a job somewhere else.

    So to answer your questions Skip there is nothing of need to be convinced about is there?

  71. #71 skip
    December 8, 2009

    Crakar:

    You’re repeating things we’ve been over a million times in the hockey stick thread. We’ll go back there if you wish.

    So, your answer to my questions?

    Skip

  72. #72 mandas
    December 8, 2009

    Crakar
    FOI is a wonderful thing for finding out information from government departments etc, but there are a couple of things that people need to be aware of before they proceed, and which can stand in the way of FOI being useful in a lot of cases.
    Firstly, they can be expensive – here in Australia (and I assume elsewhere) we don’t just give documents and public servant’s time away for free. That fullfils two roles – it pays for all the work that has to be undertaken to extract documents etc, but it also stops people from making frivolous requests for information. You would be amazed the sort of requests we get – people (particularly journalists) write in and ask for everything we have on a particular issue. This can sometimes run into thousands of documents, and invariably we will write back and tell them the implications of what they are asking (including the cost, which may be in the thousands of dollars), and if they would like to focus their requests a little more.
    A more important concern is that every department will have working documents and issues papers which canvass a wide range of matters, many of which may seem to be self-evidently wrong, but we have to canvass them anyway to prove they should not be pursued. Also, all sorts of people within the department will write all sorts of papers, often outside their fields of expertise. These papers usually are dealt with internally and dismissed (after due consideration), but they remain in the system and can be subject to an FOI request. We are very loathe to release such information, because it isn’t adopted policy, and quite often the information in the documents is just plain wrong or hasn’t considered important factors.
    Unfortunately, when we resist requests to see these documents, it is often perceived by conspiracy theorists as attempting to supress information etc etc. You often see this sort of story in the media about how organisations like the CSIRO (I don’t work there by the way) have supressed papers sceptical of climate change, and that simply isn’t the case. The documents aren’t released or are supressed because they are wrong. There is nothing sinister about it.
    However, to release these documents would be worse. Organisations like the CSIRO and departments like mine value our reputations for properly considered advice. Bad papers have greater potential to damage that reputation than any resistance to the FOI process, which is why that option is often pursued. Unfortunately, sometimes bad information gets into the public arena, with consequences like some of the ones which have been discussed.

  73. #73 crakar24
    December 8, 2009

    Skip,

    I have already covered this but for the sake of completeness:

    1, The emails clearly show a concerted effort to hinder/block/delay a FOI request in regards to M&M/hockey stick, i say again the emails clearly show this. Are you asking me to convince you of this?

    2, The emails clearly show the peer review process has been compromised and again are you asking me to convince you of this?

    3, They use the words “hide the decline” and “nature tricks” etc, these words were uttered because the proxy data they had produced diverged from the temp record so with Briffa the decline started around 1960 and for Jones it started around 1980.

    But why hide the decline? Well its quite simple really if it can be shown that the proxy data you are using does not match the instrumental record for the middle to late 20th century then this casts doubt as to whether it can accurately predict pre instrumental temp records at all.

    So the instrumental temp record was added to the proxy record before the divergence took place, thus casting the hockey stick temp reconstruction in doubt but as i said in a previous post the uncovering of the deception came all too late. You will notice that neither the IPCC or WMO graphs tell the reader these are proxy and instrument combined let alone when these are joined.

    No i am not repeating things Skip because climategate was not around then, you and others defended the stick to the last bullit that time but now we have the emails which show us that you were wrong then as you are wrong now. God forbid you or others could admit it though.

    I have answered your questions, the emails clearly show what went on, maybe i should ask you what would it take to convince you Skip?

  74. #74 mandas
    December 8, 2009

    Crackar
    If I understand you there, you are saying that the instrumental record differs from the tree ring proxy data from about 1960 – which is good because no-one anywhere is in any doubt about that.
    The proxy data clearly suggests a decline, and no-one knows why. Its called the divergence problem/phenomenon. And it is diverging from the instrumental record, which shows an increase. Should I say that again to be clear – the instrumental data shows an increase. In other words, in order to ‘prove’ some sort of fraud on the behalf of the CRU, you are admitting that, over the last 50 years, the instrumental records show an increase in temperature.
    So, apart from the so-called fraud etc (which hasn’t been proven, but lets leave that aside), why is this such a major ‘win’ for the flat-earth society? You all admit the instrumental records are showing an increase in temperature. Ergo, you admit the climate is changing – the earth is warming.
    Now, on this basis, the argument is no longer whether the earth is warming, you agree that it is. The argument is: what is causing it?
    Now I, and every climatologist on the face of the earth, suggest that the evidence shows it is anthropogenic.
    Obviously, the ‘other’ side of the debate must be that the increasing temperature is natural. So, could you please stop worrying about emails etc , and show us your evidence for a natural forcing mechanism sufficient to explain the increase in temperature over the last 50 years.
    In other words, lets stop attempting to discredit people, and actually focus on the main game, which is the science.

  75. #75 crakar24
    December 8, 2009

    Mandas,

    You have confused the point of the post with something else.

    Let me try again OK, if you claim that you can use a proxy to estimate the temp back to 1000AD and that proxy can estimate the temp which agrees with the instrumental temp record then you could say with justification that your proxy measurements going way back to 1000AD are accurate.

    However, if your proxy measurement cannot estimate a temp that agrees with the instrumental temp record (be it higher or lower) then you cannot claim that your proxy measurements going way back to 1000AD are accurate.

    Enter the hockey stick, the proxy measurements from MBH and Jones from another study DO NOT agree with the instrumental temp Briffa from around 1960 and Jones from around 1980. This divergence cannot be explained so therefore the accuracy of the hockey stick et al is unknown because we have no way of knowing how accurate it is.

    How do we get around this problem? well we use “Mike’s nature trick” to “hide the decline” which is why they fought tooth and nail to thwart M&M’s FOI requests but once M&M had the data the hockey stick fell apart which is why it was removed by the time the IPCC produced its 4th report without any explanation. Does this clear things up Mandas?

    Also let it be known that you Mandas was the one to cast the first stone, if you continue to call me names in a vain attempt to make yourself feel bigger and tougher then i will stop debating you, after i give you a mouthful in return first.

    If you can refrain from flat earth sarcasm i might be able to debate what you wish to on one condition that you present evidence and not virtual world computer animations OK.

    Let me ask you a question, do you accept the hockey stick or do you accept that the MWP and the LIA did exist? Depending on your answer will govern whether we can debate the science any further.

    Regards

    Crakar

  76. #76 mandas
    December 8, 2009

    Crakar
    No confusion at all.
    I am not even attempting to suggest that the tree ring proxy data going back 1000 years or more is accurate. It may be, it may be not. If had read any of my posts here and elsewhere, you will realise I have continually cast doubts on their accuracy, because, as I have repeatedly said, if you cannot demonstrate causality, and there are identified discrepancies in correlation, it is impossible to be certain about the accuracy of the proxy information.
    But – that does not change the fact that tree ring information is just one data set. There are numerous others, and when taken together and subject to a statistical analysis the overall information is robust. It cannot provide fine detail – but no-one with any credibility would claim that.
    And I will reiterate my point, seeing as you have made no effort to address it. You have clearly admitted that the instrumental temperature record – which IS accurate – shows that temperatures have increased in the past 50 years. What do you believe has caused it?
    Based on your demands that we produce our evidence for anthropogenic forcing (which, by the way, is available in journals, and on-line and in hundreds of freely available sources – and no, a blog post is not a source), I suggest you do the same for your obvious acceptance of natural causes. Unless there is something other than anthropogenic or natural that I can’t think of. Maybe aliens?
    To be quite frank, I don’t care if you stop debating me. You will never be convinced anyway, because you have adopted a dogmatic position and it doesn’t matter how much evidence is presented, you won’t accept it.
    There are hundreds if not thousands of articles that you can read on the subject of climate change, across dozens of science disciplines. All of them conclude that increasing temperatures – which you accept as fact – are caused by human induced factors.
    If you won’t accept them (have you even read any of them?), there is nothing I can do here to convince you, so I am really just wasting my time. You are a member of the flat-earth society – and you can rant and rave at me all you like, but it won’t change the facts.

  77. #77 skip
    December 8, 2009

    I have already covered this but for the sake of completeness:

    1, The emails clearly show a concerted effort to hinder/block/delay a FOI request in regards to M&M/hockey stick, i say again the emails clearly show this. Are you asking me to convince you of this?

    Answered. By Mandas better than by me. What is wrong with his explanation?

    2, The emails clearly show the peer review process has been compromised and again are you asking me to convince you of this?

    Answered. They showed that the emailers had dismissive views of the “peer reviewed” research that supposedly called into question global warming, and that they wanted the journal of –ok forgot its name– to rethink its publishing protocols. Why? Because they think they were publishing *crap*. They were not afraid of it; they were appalled by it.

    3, They use the words “hide the decline” and “nature tricks” etc, these words were uttered because the proxy data they had produced diverged from the temp record so with Briffa the decline started around 1960 and for Jones it started around 1980.

    Answered. What is deficient about the link posted earlier that explains these for the mundane things they are?

    But why hide the decline? Well its quite simple really if it can be shown that the proxy data you are using does not match the instrumental record for the middle to late 20th century then this casts doubt as to whether it can accurately predict pre instrumental temp records at all.

    So the instrumental temp record was added to the proxy record before the divergence took place, thus casting the hockey stick temp reconstruction in doubt but as i said in a previous post the uncovering of the deception came all too late. You will notice that neither the IPCC or WMO graphs tell the reader these are proxy and instrument combined let alone when these are joined.

    This is for Hockey Stick.

    No i am not repeating things Skip because climategate was not around then, you and others defended the stick to the last bullit that time but now we have the emails which show us that you were wrong then as you are wrong now. God forbid you or others could admit it though.

    You’ve trapped yourself badly. Want to go back and talk about Latif and residence time? We will then see who is forbidden by God (or whomever) to admit when they are wrong. You asked me earlier if you wanted me to recall your previous statements. Let me know when you’re ready and we’ll go back to our old haunt Hockeystick Open Thread any time you wish.

    I have answered your questions,

    As usual, you have not, so I will repeat them:
    What would it take for you to be convinced that terms like “nature trick” and “hide the decline” are *not* indicative of sinister, anti-scientific intent? Explanations have been given as to why the are not. They are reasonable explanations. What is their deficiency?

    the emails clearly show what went on,

    *Exactly* the issue in question. *What*, exactly, went on?

    maybe i should ask you what would it take to convince you Skip?

    If you read my post you would know. You need only scroll up a half dozen posts.

    Skip

  78. #78 crakar24
    December 8, 2009

    To Mandas,

    Ah yes, i have seen this all before, suddenly you confront someone who does not accept the same things you beleive and the ugly head of name calling reappears.

    So we both agree that a proxy for temps that does not agree with the temp record is in fact not a proxy at all, re the hockey stick. There are ample studies that show the MWP and LIA did exist so i will ask you the question again do you accept the hockey stick to be factual or to be false (yes or no answer is all that is required).

    If you wish to continue this then i suggest we change threads, you can answer this question where ever you please,

    The current levels of CO2 are about 385ppm, The IPCC estimate that a doubling of CO2 will add 1.1C to the temps. The latest IPCC guesstimate is that the temps will rise between 4 and 8C by 2100. So lets do the math Co2 levels will have to rise to 6160ppm by 2100 to give us a 4.4C rise, so that cant be where the temp rise comes from cannot.

    So we now have to rely on the positive feedback from water vapour/cloud, can you provide a link to a study that does not involve the prediction of a computer model that shows WV/cloud as acting as a positive feedback to produce said warming. Remember try and answer in the appropriate thread.

    regards

    Crakar24

  79. #79 crakar24
    December 8, 2009

    Skip,

    Its funny how nothing changes isnt it?

    Lets go around again shall we?

    Point #1

    No it was not adequately answered by Mandas, granted he gave a very good explanation of FOI as it relates to him but i dont recall Mandas mentioning any deliberate attempts to hinder/block/delay the process do you?

    #2

    They are scientists if they do not like the peer review process then too bad, it is the job of the reviewers to decide what is crap and is not, it is not there job to do this. In other words if a study was published that did not conform to their views then it was crap? Maybe, just maybe their views are crap did you ever consider this?

    #3 (getting bored) Which post Skip?

    I find it funny that you are constantly asking me the question “what will it take to convince you…..” maybe it is due to your background or maybe not but i could and have asked the same question of you but it seems that i am the only one that needs convincing which of course infers that you are always correct.

    People can have a differing of opinion one could be right and the other wrong or God forbid they are both wrong.

    Got my second wind

    Take the stick for example, this stick defied or maybe overturned scientific thinking in some ways, it was revolutionary in that it changed all that was known in regards to the temps/climate of the past 1000 years.

    This stick changed the shape of peoples thinking re AGW etc, now we had various discussions about this in the past and got nowhere, then M&M got hold of the data and have since shown that the stick is erroneous but yet you still beleive it to be credible or shall i say accurate.

    Congress looked into it (dont know the official name ) but they also found it to be erroneous but yet you still beleive it to be accurate.

    And now we have these emails which in light of what i have just shown seems to add weight to the fact that the stick is erroneous.

    Now i dare say that at no time did any alarm bells ring for you, as the evidence mounted to show the stick to be indeed broken did you ever question your belief?

    Are you as confident now as you were then that the stick is still robust, combine the above facts with the multitude of studies from all over the world which indicate that the world as a whole was warmer during the MWP do you still think the stick is robust now as it was then?

    How can you continue to ask me the same questions as if none of this has transpired? It astounds me that you can continue in this line of questioning.

    Link to the multitude of studies which shows the MWP was in fact real

    http://w.w.w.co2science.org/subject/m/subject_m.php

  80. #80 pough
    December 9, 2009

    …well we use “Mike’s nature trick” to “hide the decline” which is why they fought tooth and nail to thwart M&M’s FOI requests but once M&M had the data the hockey stick fell apart which is why it was removed by the time the IPCC produced its 4th report without any explanation…

    Is any of that true outside the fantasy conspiracies?

    M&M’s FOI requests were fought because M&M are c%nts. Full stop.

    Jones was in no way trying to “hide” the “trick”. He was publishing it. How do you hide something by publishing it? Is that some kind of Aussie trick?

    The hockey stick never fell apart. Its flaws were minor. Remove the flaws and it remains pretty much the same. It was removed because it was superseded. New “tricks.” ;-)

    It is so painfully obvious that you recreate the world inside your head (see: Morton’s Demon) to fit the facts you prefer. Since in your head, the science is manufactured by people in a conspiracy, every statement you read by them gets rewritten before it hits your brain. It’s amazing. Covering bad data with good data is fraud. Publishing is hiding. Harassment is good; resisting it is evil. Scientists disliking junk science is conspiracy. Replacing old reports with newer reports is a sign that the old ones were 100% wrong, even though both old and new are almost the same!

  81. #81 pough
    December 9, 2009

    It astounds me that you can continue in this line of questioning.

    It astounds me that we need to.

    Warmth != warming.
    Warmth != warming.
    Warmth != warming.

    BTW, what does the hockey stick look like once fixed? What does it look like with the tree ring proxy data removed?

  82. #82 mandas
    December 9, 2009

    Crakar.
    It seems you are continually demanding that I (and others) answer your questions, but you continually fail to answer mine. That notwithstanding, I am also completely confused by your position on proxy information and the MWP/LIA.
    You do know of course, that any evidence for the MWP/LIA must necessarily be based on proxy data. In the case of the MWP, much of the initial research was based on tree ring data. Since you have consistently questioned the veracity of proxy information, its hard to see how you can have a position on the MWP/LIA at all, since any view would have to – necessarily – be based on evidence you don’t trust yourself. Do you now trust proxy information? Or do you simply accept the MWP/LIA because that support your wider viewpoint. Certainly, the link you provided above has a long list of papers which suggest that the MWP/LIA were real phenomenon, but in each and every case they use proxy data to support their analysis. Are you now confident that proxy information (especially treee ring data) is valid?
    Notwithstanding any of that, as I have said repeatedly, I am of the view that proxy information is a useful tool but it does not provide finegrain detail, and must be supported by multiple sources. However, there appears to be sufficient evidence to accept that the MWP/LIA were real phenomenon – and I think only someone with a dogmatic view would deny that.
    However, whether they were global or regional phenomena is not clear, and is something on which I do not have an opinion, because there is insufficient evidence. There certainly is evidence of similar phenomena occuring at multiple locations across the globe, but there is no strong evidence either way for their temporal syncronicity. Until and unless that evidence is forthcoming, I will remain open with regard to my views on the subject.
    Nonetheless, whether they were regional or global is actually immaterial to the debate. In either case, there would have had to have been some causal forcing factor which resulted in the observed changes. Climate does not change for no reason – and unfortunately we do not yet have a clear picture for what caused the observed phenomenon, and we do not yet have a clear picture of whether they were regional or global. And I will suggest that neither do you, and any opinion on the matter must necessarily be just that – an uninformed (but potentially rational) view based on insufficient evidence.
    But, back to the real issue. The climate IS changing now – we have observed it with accurate instrumental measurements, and everyone, yourself included, admits to that fact. So what is causing it? I have asked you this question before, but now you have to either put up or shut up.
    The evidence is (in my opinion) incontrovertible. The causes of the current observed climate change are anthropogenic factors (greenhouse gases and the like if you want – but there is much more obviously). There are hundreds of papers putting forward the evidence of this, and it is pointless me attempting to provide a list etc here. You can do a search just as readily as anyone else (and no, not a blog opinion – actual peer reviewed papers). If you believe this evidence is wrong, and you have an alternative hypotheses (which can only really be that the forcing mechanism is natural), then you must discredit the existing hypotheses and build a strong case with evidence for your own case – that’s how science works (and not a model in sight!!).
    So come on. What is your hypothesis for the cause of the current observed climate change? What is your evidence? Let’s see you take a leaf out of your own book and demand incontrovertible proof of something before you accept that it is real. Prove me wrong when I suggest you are a member of the flat-earth society, because unless and until you do as I ask, you will remain as such

  83. #83 skip
    December 9, 2009

    The Oreskes study and the recent Donbar survey are the real ugly realities for deniers.

    Its not what is out there as much as what is not–rigorous peer reviewed research that challenges the consensus.

    This is where Crakar will most likely sneer at peer review–until he tries to claim peer reviewed research proves the IPCC wrong on the residence time of CO2.

    Skip

  84. #84 crakar24
    December 10, 2009

    One day away and so many responses, might not get to them all but i will try.

    Mandas,

    Dont lie to me about proxies OK, most of the studies which show a global MWP and LIA from the link do not use tree proxies and when they do it is in conjunction with many other types of proxies. Tree ring proxies are not a good proxy to use for temp/climate as there are many factors which influence a trees growth. You know this so why do you persist with this idea.

    Global event: Insufficient evidence? so the studies i showed you that were done all over the globe including oceans is insufficient? And you have the gall to call me a flat earther?

    There are studies done from all over the world which suggest that the MWP and LIA existed, if true you have no explanation of what caused these events (your words) so it is easier to simply dismiss it and indulge in fantasy hockey sticks.

    Let me elaborate here, if you accept the MWP/LIA were real global events then you must be able to explain what caused these events to occur in order to explain the modern WP and only then could you ascertain how much man has influenced (if any) on the climate, but since you cant explain these events then you have no idea.

    On the otherhand if you accept the hockey stick then you can quite simply say look at the graph, constant temps until we started to pump out a pollution called CO2, case closed.

    Which brings us right back to the stick and those emails. Now lets look at the stick in more detail, Mann simply sticthed the instrumental temp record onto the tree ring data before the divergence began (hide the decline) and then gave the latter years a weighting of over 300. It has been shown beyond all arguement that you can pump random noise into the stick and guess what you get a stick.

    Pough, bless is heart believes the stick had some minor flaws and followed that up with some typical alarmist rant but these are not minor flaws at all these are fatal.

    To disprove the Hockey Stick, it is sufficient to merely demonstrate conclusively the existence of the Medieval Warm Period and/or the Little Ice Age in proxy and/or historical evidence from around the world. According to the falsifiability principle of science, substantial physical evidence that contradicts a theory is sufficient to falsify that theory. That has been done time and time again and yet you still cling to the stick (flat earther indeed).

    Peer review: In every other science when such a drastic revision of previously accepted knowledge is promulgated, there is considerable debate and initial scepticism, the new theory facing a gauntlet of criticism and intense review. Only if a new idea survives that process does it become broadly accepted by the scientific peer group and the public at large.

    This never happened with Mann’s Hockey Stick the coup was total, bloodless, and swift as Mann’s paper was greeted with a chorus of uncritical approval from the greenhouse industry. Within the space of only 12 months, the theory had become entrenched as a new orthodoxy.

    I could go on but what would be the point.

  85. #85 crakar24
    December 10, 2009

    Ha ha (big belly laugh) to you Skip, The words peer review and consensus roll off your tongue as if you understand thier meaning. You have now resorted to quoting surveys to try and….what convince me?

    You have asked me on numerous occasions “what would it take to convince me…..) in regards to emails and sticks and i have replied nothing and then presented my reasons why. While i have been doing this what have you done?

    Read my latest posts and if you are not convinced then please tell me what would it take to convince you. Respond to my posts with succint detail not obscure statements, tell me where my logic has failed me.

    By the way i did forget to mention in my previous post that manns stick was only for the Nth Hem although it is sold as a global study and oh yeah thats right the error bars are so large that a MWP and a LIA could fit inside them but the error bars and the explanation never made it to print either. So Skip please tell me where i have gone wrong.

    TIA

  86. #86 skip
    December 10, 2009

    Do you think you do?

    I have an idea about peer review. I have published in peer reviewed journals, and been asked to act as a blind reviewer frequently.

    Keep laughing, I guess; don’t hurt your belly.

    You have now resorted to quoting surveys

    What a desperate tactic–quoting a survey of the professionals on a subject. Yeah, you’ve got me on the ropes now, Crakar.

    to try and….what convince me?

    I know there is no hope of that; I long ago contrived other purposes for responding to you.

    By the way i did forget to mention in my previous post that manns stick was only for the Nth Hem although it is sold as a global study and oh yeah thats right the error bars are so large that a MWP and a LIA could fit inside them but the error bars and the explanation never made it to print either. So Skip please tell me where i have gone wrong.

    To be perfectly honest I don’t remember, Crakar. I suspect you’ve been shown many times before on this forum by people who understand the hockey stick issue better than I. All I know is the National Academy of Sciences has affirmed the fundamental science of Mann’s work. I have a choice of believing them or believing you.

    You have a fifty-fifty shot; which way to you think I’ll go?

    Skip

  87. #87 coby
    December 10, 2009

    crakar:

    Let me elaborate here, if you accept the MWP/LIA were real global events then you must be able to explain what caused these events to occur in order to explain the modern WP

    Hmm. So we should free all those convicted murderers until we know the cause of every death in the past? Seriously, we have all the data possible right now, and nothing directly measured during the LIA and MWP, but you claim until we can go back in time and figure it out, we will never understand what is happening today?

    Do even you believe you?

    By the way i did forget to mention in my previous post that manns stick was only for the Nth Hem although it is sold as a global study and oh yeah thats right the error bars are so large that a MWP and a LIA could fit inside them but the error bars and the explanation never made it to print either.

    It is hard to be charitable enough not to accuse you of a bald faced lie here, crakar, or at best of knowingly making claims you have no idea about. Regardless, here is the image used in the IPCC report, clearly shown error range and all:
    http://www2.grist.org/gristmill/images/user/6932/hockey_stick.gif

    The numbers behind the coloring are all explicitly discussed in both the actual paper and the IPCC TAR.

  88. #88 crakar24
    December 10, 2009

    So once again Skip you ignore questions posed and simply write obscure posts, i will ask you once more and once more only 1, did my latest posts convince you? (yes/no)I expect not so then please tell me what would it take to convince you?

    I am not interested in your assumptions or beliefs, what will it take for me to convince you?

    If you do not wish to answer these questions then find another topic that you feel you can bedazzle me with your literary bullshit.

  89. #89 mandas
    December 10, 2009

    Crakar.
    I see you didn’t read a single thing I wrote, and you made no attempt to answer the questions I asked. I at least gave you the courtesy off giving my position on MWP/LIA etc, even though you completely misrepresented my answer. Did you not read a single comment I made criticising tree rings? Or did you simply ignore them because it doesn’t fit your dogmatic view of the world? Did you not read my comments about temporal syncronicity?
    And you know what? I don’t have to know what caused events in the past to know what is causing events in the present. They can be unrelated you know (which I would have thought was a pretty easy concept to grasp – apparently not).
    I won’t bother requesting again that you answer my question, which is what do you think is causing the current increase in global temperature, and what is your evidence for that view?
    It is a really simple question, but you apparently do not want to answer it because you can’t. It seems on my request to put up or shut up you have done neither. You don’t have an answer but you keep on talking anyway.
    But I am no longer listening. I apologise – you are not a member of the flat-earth society. You are obviously a fundamentalist creationist.

  90. #90 crakar24
    December 10, 2009

    Free murderers Coby? That is a sign of desperation my friend.

    It is important to understand the past so as we can predict the future and this does not just relate to climate.

    1, So we have a multitude of studies from locations all over the globe which show that the MWP and LIA did in fact happen. Now if we accept this as true then this will shape our thinking when trying to predict the future climate as best we can.

    2, However if we accept ONE study of Nth Hemi using questionable techniques and then pretend it to be a global study. Then use this study to try and predict the future climate, what then?

    You can see that we will have a completely different outcome from the first example, hence it is important to have a good understanding of the past, correct? Can anyone here honestly say that the stick gives us that?

    So here (and i repeat myself because none of you seem to grasp the concept)we have a situation where conventional wisdom backed up by a multitude of studies from all over the world shows us that the MWP and LIA did in fact exist and neither of these events can be explained.

    This wisdom has now been completely overturned by one study which only relates to the Nth Hemi, a study that somehow inexplicably made it through a so called peer review system unhindered and unquestioned and the data and methodologies used to produce that data were kept secret via hindering of FOI requests. And then we have the question of “hide the decline”, pretty obvious really, isnt it.

    But you Coby all you can talk about is murderers, that speaks volumes, it really does.

    In regards to naming of graphs and error bars, i was referencing the “US national assesment” i should have been a bit clearer on that, my apologies.

  91. #91 crakar24
    December 10, 2009

    Mandas,

    Thats what happens when you write really long posts covering a large number of topics (myself and Skip are probably just as guilty) so lets start again, in order for me to answer your put up or shut up question i need to know what
    I have asked on numerous occasions do you accept that there was a MWP and LIA or not? (Yes No) or do you think Manns hockey stick (Nth Hem only) is a more truer account of past temps. Once you answer this question then we can move to the put up or shut question OK.

  92. #92 skip
    December 10, 2009

    No, because you’ve tried to bullshit me too many times, Crakar. I fully confess being inexpert on the mathematics of this issue; but I will believe the NAS before I’ll believe you–for now.

    Here’s what would vault your credibility to me: Admit you totally blew it on CO2 residence time and your absurd references to Latif from the old Hockeystick Open Thread. In desperation and unable to answer the question you never responded to (what would it take to convince *you* that AGW is true) you defaulted to these crimson herrings (and the “hotspot” issue), and then fled in terror when you realized you shot yourself in the foot, only to be reborn as Crakar24, the phoenix of global warming denial, hoping that no one remembered your bungling.

    But I remember, Crakar, and I will never forget–nor will I let you.

    Throw me a bone and show the ability to confess error and suddenly I will take your Mann/hockey stick shlick seriously. (Although you’re up against some heavyweights n that issue.)

    This “hide the decline” meditation that you repeat again and again shows that your mind is impenetrable to the simplest explanations. This has been answered repeatedly but you don’t read posts so you don’t know how absurd you look.

    I already told you what it would take to convince me, but you don’t read posts and I won’t repeat it.

    Skip

  93. #93 crakar24
    December 10, 2009

    Skip,

    Trying to pick rational points from your posts is like trying to walk through an unmapped mine field ie impossible.

    So you know nothing about this issue but yet you know when you are bullshitted to hey, i think that speaks for itself.

    Ok why dont we take it slowly if you are presented with a multitude of studies that shows the MWP and LIA did exist which strongly suggests it was global and then you where shown one study of the Nth Hem labelled as a global study which one would you accept? Simple question, simple answer yes? Answer this and we can go to the next stage ok.

    Just to allow you to sleep at night (which is obviously troubling you right now) In regards to Latif he was quoted as saying the earth has stopped warming or words to that effect, similar words to Trenberth. I and i am sure many others searched the net for his entire speech but alas none could be found. Without that speech could you possibly debate this issue any further?

    CO2 residence time: Well according to the IPCC the Earth produces most of the CO2 per year with man adding a little bit, the earth also absorbs all the natural CO2 plus some of mans which is why the CO2 levels are rising about 2ppm a year (approx). So how long does an individual CO2 molecule last in the atmosphere? I dont know. However if we do not put anything up there then CO2 levels would not change (maybe slight variation from year to year) so therefore how long does CO2 stay in the atmosphere? at best one year it all depends on how fast it is absorbed.

    If you want a link go find it yourself suffice to say it is in an early ARX.

    Cue Coby, Mandas in 3…2….1…

  94. #94 coby
    December 10, 2009

    crakar, you can hear Latif, his own words and his own voice here: http://scienceblogs.com/illconsidered/2009/11/ccw_-_birth_of_a_climate_crock.php

    He is crystal clear in saying the long term warming is not stopping, but that the current apparent cooling which is only the result of natural variability can be misinterpreted by ignorant people. In the video, you also here ignorant people doing just that.

    Now, you have been shown the entire relevant part of Latif’s speech. Do you still think he is saying what your lying denialist websites have told you he said? I really would like an answer to that, please.

    You can try the same exercise for Trenbeth, here:
    http://scienceblogs.com/illconsidered/2009/12/ccw_-_smacking_the_hack_attack.php

    I would also like to inform you that MBH98 (infamous first hockey stick) is absolutely NOT the one single study that calls into question the existence of a *global and synchronized* MWP. Many regions seem to have had relatively warm periods around 12 – 8 hundred years ago, but not all at the same time.

    See the list of studies here:
    http://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/paleo/globalwarming/references.html#medieval

    Okay? More than one, right? Can you please acknowledge that and perhaps even assess how that affects your arguments?

  95. #95 skip
    December 11, 2009

    Good morning, all.

    Goddamit Coby.

    You stole my thunder. I was going to do that myself.

    But Crakar, I am going to spend a brief spell reviewing your old posts on HSOT (about Latif and residence time) and contrasting them with what you’re claiming now. This will take a bit.

    Skip

  96. #96 crakar24
    December 13, 2009

    Coby,

    Yes wasnt that what the debate was all about? He claimed we are seeing a short term cooling trend (backed up now by Trenberth) but we should see (read predictaguess) global warming coming back with a vengence in the future.

    So the point was/is that he and others could not predict this non warming (ie lacks full understanding of the climatic processes at play) but yet confidently states that GW will be back some time in the future.

    NCDC

    1, Briffa and jones: Using tree ring data, this study is of Nth Hemi only and only goes back 400 to 600 years which excludes the MWP however includes the LIA which for some reasons does not appaer to exist anymore.

    2, Much the same as above, some of the graphs stop before the LIA and some go back further, of these two indicate the LIA may have been present.

    3, 125KYA temps were 1 to 2 C warmer than today.

    4, This is an extension of manns hockey stick work, Nth Hemi and data comes from same tree rings so flawed as per manns work.

    5, Irrelavent to this debate (millions of years ago)

    6, Study from Nth Hemi only and supports the notion that MWP did in fact exist quote “In addition, we show that the average of these
    chronologies supports the large-scale occurrence of the MWP over the
    NH extratropics.”

    7, Another version of the hockey stick, this one even goes so far as to offer a prediction of future temps!!!

    It seems to me that anything that has Jones, Briffa, Mann or HUang attached to it has one thing in common, a hockey stick. All other studies dont seem to follow this trend. Anyway moving on.

    8, Another hockey stick, this one apparently global, these studies “do not permit annual or decadal resolution, but only the century-scale trends in temperatures over the last several centuries. Nonetheless, this record, totally independent of data and methods used in other studies, shows the same thing” Yep you are right it shows the same thing, a hockey stick.

    9, This is not a study but a back slapping exercise for the IPCC nothing scientific here, simply a short summary of IPCC wisdom.

    10, Another Jones study this time apparently global but not accurate enough to include the MWP, once again the LIA is missing and we see a divergence in the Nth H. all he needed to do was stitch on the instrumental temp record and we would have another hockey stick.

    11, Jones, Mann Briffa equals Nth Hemi hockey stick

    12, Warmer 6KYA not relavent

    13, A man and his hockey stick

    14, repeated link from above (9)

    15, Nth Hemi only (once again) this one gives a indication of the MWP and LIA unlike the stick.

    16, Another Briffa study using a very small amount of records (is it enough to be relavent?) shows an indication of MWP and LIA.

    17, Another Nth Hemi study (arctic) study shows a LIA does not go back far enough in time to show the MWP.

    18, Same link as 8

    So Coby now it is your turn please make comment on the links that i have provided in the past, here it is again.

    http://w.w.w.co2science.org/subject/m/subject_m.php

    http://w.w.w.co2science.org/subject/l/subject_l.php

    Have fun

    Crakar24

  97. #97 crakar24
    December 13, 2009

    Gee Skip i am a tremblin in ma boots, i was going to do the same to you to see if i can catch you out but then i realised that you dont give an opinion about anything, all you do is write posts which attach the author. If pressed all you can come up with is an appeal to authority.

    Your posts consist of he said she said crap, they have no substance in them but i am prepared to let you redeem yourself OK.

    h.t.t.p://scienceandpublicpolicy.org/images/stories/papers/commentaries/The%20Climate%20Science%20Isnt%20Settled.pdf

    Have a read of this article and comment on why you agree or disagree with it. That should not be too hard.

    good luck

    Crakar

  98. #98 Dappledwater
    December 14, 2009

    CO2pseudoscience, sure are peddlers of denialist of claptrap alright. Must be all those fossil fuel dollars.

    As far as the Medieval Warm Period goes, I’ve read over a few of the studies cited, and it’s clear that various proxies show the warming was not simultaneous. The Idso’s have a habit of citing studies which do not support what they say they do. For example they quote a few lines from Bensonsen et al (2008) referring to the warmth of a thousand years ago in the Sargasso sea but neglect the rest of the paragraph:

    “The Sargasso Sea record also indicates that SSTs were 1 C warmer 1000 years ago, which would have favored the intensification of hurricanes entering that region. Furthermore, there is evidence that the eastern Pacific was relatively cool in High Medieval time (1100–1200) with persistent La Nina like SSTs (Graham et al., 2007)”

    Doh!!!!!.

  99. #99 coby
    December 14, 2009

    Yes wasnt that what the debate was all about? He claimed we are seeing a short term cooling trend (backed up now by Trenberth) but we should see (read predictaguess) global warming coming back with a vengence in the future.

    So the point was/is that he and others could not predict this non warming (ie lacks full understanding of the climatic processes at play) but yet confidently states that GW will be back some time in the future.

    crakar, you are acting like a disengenous denier purposely twisting the plain meaning of what others say. Or you are very unintelligent. He says GW has not stopped, nor is there a reason to think it has stopped even if we have as much as a decade without increasing temperatures. GW is a slow, long term trend and the large natural variability that characterizes annual global mean temperatures will at time mask it.

    Even if *you* can’t understand that, you and others are claiming Latif says something he plainly does not. You have seen and heard the man’s own words, to repeat your claim that he says global warming has stopped is to be a liar.

  100. #100 mandas
    December 14, 2009

    Coby
    My tip is to ignore anything crakar says – I have. I won’t even bother to reply to any of his posts any more.
    I think you are correct on both counts – he is both a disengenous denier and unintelligent (probably a creationist as well)

  101. #101 crakar24
    December 14, 2009

    DW,

    So 772 individual scientists from 458 separate research institutions in 42 different countries have shown the MWP and LIA existed in some shape or form and the best you can come up with is the website i gave is a crock of shit and Idso is an idiot?

    Still, credit where credit is due, you did respond in some way Coby merely ignores this and simply repeats what i said about Latif.

    So yes Coby we all agree that Latif was saying that we are not warming now but fear not GW is still here and we will continue to warm in the future, i simply made a point (many times now) that he and others failed to predict this non warming phase and i dont share your confidence in his ability to predict the future with any more accuracy than what he has shown so far.

    Mandas,

    I understand why you detest me so much, you are not Robinson Caruso on this point. As i stated in my opening paragraph the MWP and LIA where the excepted wisdom for many years and then along comes a NTH Hemi study using a handful of tree ring proxies which could not emulate the instrumental record, even with these short comings it still went through the IPCC review process as fast as a bad case of the runs and became the new wisdom on the last 1000 year temp record.

    It is easy to see why Jones et al faught so hard to keep the sticks secrets hidden as once they were exposed the stick fell apart so much so it would produce a stick shape from random noise.

    I can understand why you and others defend the stick even when faced with such a situation, as without the stick the modern WP as no more spectacular than the last. You would be required to explain the difference between the two and also what was behind the LIA, as the causes of these are still unknown your theory would fall on its face. So you need to defend the stick with all your might so you can continue to believe in your theory.

    Good luck with that Mandas.

  102. #102 Dappledwater
    December 15, 2009

    “So 772 individual scientists from 458 separate research institutions in 42 different countries have shown the MWP and LIA existed in some shape or form and the best you can come up with is the website i gave is a crock of shit and Idso is an idiot?” – Crakar

    The best I can come up with, is that I actually read a few of the studies, the warming is not synchronous and some of the studies cited show greater warming outside of the vaguely defined Medieval Warm Period.

    The facts are that the Medieval Warm Period and Little Ice Age did indeed occur (not sure who actually disputed that) but that they were not global phenomenons. Discussed in this study:

    http://www.sciencemag.org/cgi/content/short/326/5957/1256

    “Global temperatures are known to have varied over the past 1500 years, but the spatial patterns have remained poorly defined. We used a global climate proxy network to reconstruct surface temperature patterns over this interval. The Medieval period is found to display warmth that matches or exceeds that of the past decade in some regions, but which falls well below recent levels globally. This period is marked by a tendency for La Niña–like conditions in the tropical Pacific. The coldest temperatures of the Little Ice Age are observed over the interval 1400 to 1700 C.E., with greatest cooling over the extratropical Northern Hemisphere continents. The patterns of temperature change imply dynamical responses of climate to natural radiative forcing changes involving El Niño and the North Atlantic Oscillation–Arctic Oscillation.”

    Yes, the deniers favorite Paleoclimatologist was an author.

    Don’t know if the Idso’s are idiots, but they certainly are liars.