Plenty of other people are talking about seaice, so I don’t need to. Monthly means are more interesting the dailies, and since August is unlikely to beat September, we’re unlikely to see a record monthly mean for a month yet. The bets are summarised here and in this, to which the former refers.
I was a bit sad that the blog formerly known, rather gawkily, as “Anti-Climate Change Extremism in Utah” is now “Climate Asylum”.
mt is sad that The Way Scientists Try to Convince People Is Hopeless: “they present evidence, figures, tables, arguments, and so on. But that’s not how to convince people. People aren’t convinced by arguments. They don’t believe conclusions because they believe in the arguments that they read in favour of them. They’re convinced because they read or hear the conclusions coming from people they trust.” This is certainly true for Joe Public, and how could it be otherwise? [Actually its only partly true, because it omits the obvious, that JP type people will only believe arguments that fit in with their preconceptions.] JP is never going to check the science of GW for himself. He’s going to pick it up from… friends, the paper, the TV, his mate’s dog down the pub, whatever. But that in itself is OK, because the dog down the pub is a bit cleverer, and knows enough to trust his national academy of science, which knows enough to read and verify the science itself.
Related, Nurture has an article about “Why we are poles apart on climate change”. Apparently “The problem isn’t the public’s reasoning capacity; it’s the polluted science-communication environment that drives people apart”. And yet reading the examples seems to show many examples of irrationality: “Present them with a PhD scientist who is a member of the US National Academy of Sciences, for example, and they will disagree on whether he really is an ‘expert’, depending on whether his view matches the dominant view of their cultural group… The positions on climate change of both groups track their impressions of recent weather…”. But it then turns out that all Nurture is doing is redefining rationality: “social science suggests that citizens are culturally polarized because they are, in fact, too rational — at filtering out information that would drive a wedge between themselves and their peers.” Sigh.
A while back, I found at least one reason Why Watts’s new paper is doomed to fail review. Since then, I’ve been pretending to myself that eventually I’ll read the thing and find the other fatal flaws for myself. But I think its time to admit that life is too short and the paper is too boring. Elsewhere, mt points out that Watts has given up even trying to make sense. If you want to see it ripped up, Blog review of the Watts et al. (2012) manuscript on surface temperature trends and refs therein will do. And you might find A short introduction to the time of observation bias and its correction interesting. Fairly soon I expect to decide not to bother read BEST either. Update: Eli taking the piss out of Watts over the notorious “Antarctic UHI” is fun.