It must really suck to be one of Ian Plimer's students

Just as I thought, Ian Plimer's questions for Monbiot were a pretext to avoid answering Monbiot's questions. Monbiot writes:

Creationists and climate change deniers have this in common: they don't answer their critics. They make what they say are definitive refutations of the science. When these refutations are shown to be nonsense, they do not seek to defend them. They simply switch to another line of attack. They never retract, never apologise, never explain, just raise the volume, keep moving and hope that people won't notice the trail of broken claims in their wake. ...

Having put up with this nonsense for almost a month, I gave him a 10-day deadline, after which I would assume that he had chickened out of our exchange and forfeited the debate. The deadline expired on Friday. Answers came there none.

Monbiot posted his correspondence with Plimer. Here's Plimer's rationale for refusing to answer some straightforward questions:

My questions derive from some 40 years of examining students to ascertain whether they have actually undertaken the minimum amount of reading, whether they understand the subject, whether they have critically analysed the validated available information, whether they have plagiarised and whether they have the basic skills to communicate knowledge. ...

Funny. Plimer's book fails on all these points.

My thirteen questions were also to check whether you have really read Heaven and Earth because this is where the answers to my questions lie. This was a double blind test to see if I could validate your claim that you had actually read my book or whether you had plagiarised questions from the handful of Australian critics with undeclared interests in the matter of human-induced climate change. In any University examination, plagiarisation means instant failure and dismissal from a degree course. I impose this test on my students and I have also imposed it on you.

It must really suck to be one of Plimer's students. If you ask him a question about something in one of his lectures he won't answer it unless you first prove that you understand the material. Plimer also doesn't know what plagiarism is. Plagiarism is the presenting of others' work as your own. Plimer does this in his book when he copies graphs from others (for example, his figure 3). Unlike Plimer, Monbiot does not present others' work as his own -- he properly cites the sources for his questions. Indeed, the point is that Plimer has been ducking these questions for a long time.

Plimer also doesn't understand what a "double blind test" is. He seems to just throw scientific terms around in an attempt to sound more knowledgable than he really is.

And this claim from Plimer seems to be entirely fictional:

There are now nine print versions of Heaven and Earth, your description of the cover of a UK edition (August 20 email) does not mean that you have actually read the book and, because all nine print runs are different, your questions show that they derived from a print version that you did not describe.

More like this

George Monbiot has the details on Plimer's latest attempts to evade answering Monbiot's questions. Plimer wrote to him: There are seven versions of Heaven and Earth and only my Australian publisher and I know the differences in diagrams, references and text between the seven. It has taken some…
I had an open thread a couple of weeks ago about Ian Plimer's recent novel supposedly exposing the lie that is Anthropogenic Global Warming. I have not read it. A few commenter's defending the book asked how anyone can judge it if they have not read it. Well, no one can read every book that is out…
The Australian has continued its war on science by printing an extract from Ian Plimer's new book, How to Get Expelled from School. The extract is largely plagiarised from this press release on a recent paper in Science by Funder et al finding large fluctuations in Arctic sea ice over the last 10,…
Ian Plimer's performance in his debate with Monbiot has to be seen to be believed. Rather than admit to making any error at all, Plimer ducks, weaves, obfuscates, recites his favourite catch phrase, tries to change the subject and fabricates some more. When confronted with the fact that the USGS…

The part I like is Plimer's offer to host Monbiot at his 'outback station', "I have an outback station (31 deg 51 min 30.29 S, 141 deg 11 min 31.19 sec E) some 30 km west of Broken Hill (NSW) and would be delighted to have you as a guest to allow what may well be a necessary reflective monastic period of time." But when I looked on Google Maps, there was nothing there! Must be me, I suppose.

Tim,

"Unlike Plimer, Monbiot does not present others' work as his own -- he properly cites the sources for his questions."

You are always down on Plimer but when has Monbiot ever published anything in the scientific literature?

He very frequently writes articles in the Guardian saying 'according to a recent report in Science' etc but never gives any links to those reports nor even mentions the names of the authors.

And his piece in the Guardian today was just an attempt to smear all who may be sceptical by attacking Plimer. Quite honestly it was tawdry journalism and not as important as your biases make you think it was.

By Dave Andrews (not verified) on 15 Sep 2009 #permalink

Post hoc, ergo propter hoc?

Dave, stop being a stupid troll.

You know that Monbiot is a journo, so why would he have "published anything in the scientific literature"?

Dave Andrews,

Show me where Monbiot has used fabricated data, [lied about its source](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2009/05/ian_plimer_lies_about_source_o…), then refused after continual request to supply the genuine source?

Instead I continue to read from you, baseless attacks on Monbiot. I've asked you for examples to back your claims, of poor journalism or improper behaviour, you've yet to deliver.

By Mark Byrne (not verified) on 15 Sep 2009 #permalink

The closest thing I can find on GE to Plimer's coordinates is a road upon which part of "Mad Max" was filmed. Whatever, Ian...

Just as his abilities in mining geology and teaching did not equip him well as a skeptic, or as an accurate reckoner on cliate science, conversely, his pompous and red herring problem-questions don't mean he's a bad teacher. At least, we don't know that yet. Only a little preliminary evidence has trickled in. :)

We can't conduct ourselves like whoever the sloppy, illogical person who wrote Heaven and Earth does. His name escapes me at the moment.

By Marion Delgado (not verified) on 15 Sep 2009 #permalink

Tim Lambert@8

...Plimer's invisible station.

Perhaps this explains why Plimer is so isolated. Monastic indeed!

Then again, perhaps you and I are jumping to the conclusion that Plimer is describing the same planet as the rest of us live on.

By Fran Barlow (not verified) on 15 Sep 2009 #permalink

A couple of years ago I met and asked a student of Plimer's what he is (was) like as a lecturer. The student's response was that He's OK in class, doesn't really push his political views during lectures. But I also remeber this otherwise very polite young man say, but "he's crazy!"

Back then Plimer was already Adelaide's media talent of chioce for climate denialism and anti mitigation policy.

By Mark Byrne (not verified) on 15 Sep 2009 #permalink

Did I read correctly in the Plimer/Monbiot Letters?

your supporters demonstrate that they can not spell, do not write in English and hence demonstrate a lack of clarity of thought

So, Plimer also claims that those who do not speak English do not possess 'clarity of thought'?

I gave you these questions as a test! A test to see if you were worthy of answers! Answers to questions that I suspected all along came from others when you made the critical error of mentioning them by name! Questions that need no answer, because you did not write them first, and even if you had you would have written them with your plagiarized alphabet! Now stop wasting my time by forcing me to challenge you to a debate, because you have clearly not read the contents of my book! If you had you would have, using first principles, predicted the precise number of petals on every orchid in the court of Camelot! Onward, to the future!

"But when I looked on Google Maps, there was nothing there! Must be me, I suppose."

No, that's pretty much exactly what 30k west of Broken Hill is like. Stations in that part of the world are measured in hectares per head of cattle, not the other way around. It's semi-arid.

I hate to rain on your parades, Joe @ 1 and Tim @ 8, but if you look closely (with the photo-interpretive eye of a photogrammetrist, I must confess), there's a large dam about 1 km north-west of the indicated point, and something that might be a homestead about 1 km north of that. It has a loop of road around it.

He might actually be telling the truth about this (if nothing else).

By David Irving (… (not verified) on 15 Sep 2009 #permalink

Not just you Joe: Plimer's invisible station. It's like he has some compulsive need to make things up.

Is Plimer's 'station' the homestead about two thirds of a screen with east of the arrow in Tim's view?

Even given the hiccups that Google's mapping can come up with, I am surprised that as a geologist his coordinates could be so far out.

By Bernard J. (not verified) on 15 Sep 2009 #permalink

Further to the station thing, I guess that Plimer might be referring to the centroid of his property, and hence the lack of buildings.

Mark Byrne, I had Plimer as a lecturer when I was an undergrad. He was certainly knowledgable in sedimentology, and could be an entertaining speaker, but he was also bombastic and often unpredicatable in his responses to students.

I could say more, but it would be simple personal opinion/impression, and thus has no bearing on the science of the matter. I am glad that I am not one of his students today, though.

By Bernard J. (not verified) on 15 Sep 2009 #permalink

Shorter Plimer:

How dare you suggest that some of the claims in my book are unsourced! No, I won't tell you the sources! If you read my book really really carefully, you'll find out what the sources are! But I won't tell them you to you! This is critical thinking!

* * *

Shorter Dave Andrews:

Monbiot frequently writes reports without citing his sources. Of course, since Monbiot does that, it's OK for me to claim this without citing the exact articles in which Monbiot does it. Clinton Did It Too™!

* * *

Shorter el gordo:

Latine dico.

wilful @ 18, I reckon you are right, Plimer is offering to put Monbiot up in the pumphouse of the Umberumberka Reservoir!

Ref 2

Dave, Monbiot *always* cites his sources at his own website (www.monbiot.com) rather than at the foot of his Grauniad column (a 'space' issue d'ya think!?). Accordingly, he does usually direct Grauniad readers to his site to check the references if they so wish (although, he clearly didn't in this case, otherwise you would have noticed and you'd never have posted that comment would you!!)

Hugh, I have to ask: what's with the "Grauniad" ? Just curious!

They were rightly infamous for typos in the days before computer typesetting and spellcheckers, and there was an apocryphal story of the masthead once reading "Grauniad" rather than "Guardian".

In I.P's defence, I knew quite a few of his students a decade or so back, and they had no complaints about his lecturing or geological knowledge. I won't make any claim about his personality, beyond some hear-say as to his witty humour.

When it comes to H&E, I.P's interviews about it, and my reading of it so far (yes, I own a copy of it) is that I.P. has committed - in spades! - the cardinal sin that he has claimed the accepters of the theory of anthropogenic global warming have committed. I.P. knows what a scientific argument is. He knows what qualifies as scientific evidence in geology. He knows that new ideas often precede the discovery of the confirmational evidence. He should know that scientists in other fields are likely to be as diligent as he is in his own field.

The problem with H&E is that he resorts to verbal trickery for much of his argument. Now it is quite reasonable to expect a passionate human being to strongly push their case; for a scientist though it is stooping low to mix fact with opinion as though both are equal as scientific (or logical) evidence. It certainly is unacceptable to misuse other scientific work, or to make claims of fact, that are unsupported by the very work being cited. As a reader of H&E it is exasperating to be forced to check every cited reference to see if it does actually demonstrate what I.P. claims it does.

In most scientific articles and texts that I have read, chasing down the original text cited is in order to learn more, not to make sure that the writer is being straight with the reader.

Much of science works on some level of trust: without trust every single scientist would need to resort to first principles rather than use the work of others, an obviously ridiculous proposition. As soon as a scientist trusts the professional work of another - even if they think the work is from mistaken premises - that scientist is in some small way forming a view that may become "consensus" among scientists in his or her field.

I.P. used to play a straight bat when lecturing, as far as I am know. I just wonder what internal motivation has driven him to baptise with the fringe dwellers? There is no going back for him now. For anyone who has accepted AGW on the scientific merits and arguments from the existing evidence, if new evidence demonstrates convincingly that AGW is not correct those people are able to change their position because it was based on science. Unlike I.P. in this case.

If the current AGW theory is correct and GHGs are triggering a major realignment of climatic conditions on Earth, then in 30 years time or so when the kids ask me "Why didn't they stop the GHG emissions that they knew would cause this?", I'll just hand them my copy of H&E and say "That's why."

By Donald Oats (not verified) on 15 Sep 2009 #permalink

> You are always down on Plimer but when has Monbiot ever published anything in the scientific literature?

Ducks' Arse, Plimer is spouting crap as a physicist who is knowledgeable on these things.

Monbiot is talking as a journalist.

There's ONE reason why Monbiot's lack of publishing history is asinine.

Plimer is being asked not about the science of AGW but ABOUT HIS BOOK.

That's a SECOND reason why *Monbiot's* lack of publishing history is asinine.

You also haven't answered a query I made from you when you pooh-pooh'd someone taking Plimer's work to task *as a geologist* when I asked you what Plimer's qualifications were.

There's the THIRD reason why *Monbiot's* lack of publishing *in a climate science* is asinine.

So why are you such an arse, ducky?

What is more: If you ask [Plimer] a question about something in one of his lectures, he won't answer it unless you first prove that...

nobody has asked that same question before! (no matter that the question wasn't answered before, either). Because... repeating a non-answered question is plagiarism!! XD LOL

Jeez, has he no shame?

re the missing homestead, maybe he meant Eldee Station at -31.669409° 141.259805° where I know Plimer sometimes takes groups of students. It has accommodation and, from my own experience, I can recommend it for a great outback hospitality. In a shot of reality, look 570m to the NE and you'll see a group of sheep being drafted into a yard north of the sheering shed. The property owner in on the gate. See if you can spot him.

If any of the readers are in Adelaide, can you do us all a favour and nip down to the University of Adelaide's Bar-Smith library to photocopy one of the exams that Plimer has recently given his students. All past exams of the science faculty are lodged there. (I'm a former student at the science dept there, but thankfully did not study geology under Plimer.) It would be fascinating to see what he is doing to his poor students.

By Craig Allen (not verified) on 16 Sep 2009 #permalink

You are always down on Plimer but when has Monbiot ever published anything in the scientific literature?

Translation: Plimer's always right, especially when he's wrong. Also, scientific credentials are very important if a journalist criticizes Plimer, and utterly meaningless if a scientist criticizes Plimer. Having published scientific papers confers unquestionable authority in all disciplines, if you're Plimer. But if you're a scientist who accepts AGW, it's evidence of groupthink and no more rigorous than a tarot reading.

If you don't understand any of this, it's because you're a hopelessly biased member of the Warming Cult.

>In a shot of reality, look 570m to the NE and you'll see a group of sheep being drafted into a yard north of the sheering shed. The property owner in on the gate. See if you can spot him.

Where is Wally?

Mark,

Monbiot is indeed a journalist. But to read the comments here, and elsewhere, he is also an 'authority'. Yet there is no evidence that he is actually 'an authority' rather than just a journalist.

Would you base your beliefs on those of a journalist?

By Dave Andrews (not verified) on 16 Sep 2009 #permalink

Would you base your beliefs on those of a journalist?

what believes are you talking about?

Monbiot asks Plimer to name the source of a graph. i think a journalist is able to spot that a graph is lacking a proper source!

Hugh,

As I'm 'an interested person' I can generally work out the papers Monbiot is referring to without having to visit his website.

But that doesn't necessarily apply to other readers of the Guardian.

PS, quoting the 'Grauniad', as I have myself in the past, reveals your age :-)

By Dave Andrews (not verified) on 16 Sep 2009 #permalink

sod,

Monbiot doesn't approach these things in a dispassionate way. You, as well as I, know he has an agenda, ever since his days as a 'Swampy' supporter.

His journalism is thus backed up by a belief system. Nothing wrong with that, as long as it is clear and up front and understood that no one else has to accept it.

By Dave Andrews (not verified) on 16 Sep 2009 #permalink

I have to say, if Plimer invited me to some obscure place in the Outback, I'd be thinking 'Wolf Creek', not some "reflective monastic period of time".

By TrueSceptic (not verified) on 16 Sep 2009 #permalink

2 Dave Andrews,

You are a dishonest moron.

Plimer's book is packed with claims known to be false. Monbiot asked only for sources for some of those. There was no scientific expertise required, just normal intelligence.

Plimer knew he was lying. That's why he has run off. It's that simple, even you should get it.

By TrueSceptic (not verified) on 16 Sep 2009 #permalink

Shorter Dave Andrews:
Monbiot is doing journalism by asking questions, but I'll keep making vague accusations and waving my hands.

Dave Anrews:

Monbiot doesn't approach these things in a dispassionate way. You, as well as I, know he has an agenda, ever since his days as a 'Swampy' supporter.

Can you please stop the ad hominem arguments.

By Chris O'Neill (not verified) on 16 Sep 2009 #permalink

Dave Andrews writes that George Monbiot`s "journalism is thus backed up by a belief system".

Do not get me started on the myth of the liberal media.

Gee, pal, have YOU got a lot to learn about the corporate media and how it works. The MSM has a belief system that selects for certain ideas and values at the expense of others. Because it is dependent on corporate advertising, parent ownership pressures and the like, the MSM acts as a filter for views that in turn defend the political and economic views of the privileged views that dominate domestic society and the state - elite interests in other words - to partially quote the "propaganda model" in Herman and Chomsky`s classic "Manufacturing Consent". Monbiot is an outlier, much like Milne, Pilger, Fisk and a few others, whose views are offset many times over by the views of "pro-establishment" scribes. The reason a few actual left wing voices are "allowed" through the filter is that this gives the impression of media "balance", which would otherwise be illusory. But, as I said above, the media, including the BBC, channel elite propaganda right down the line, with few exceptions.

As far as Plimer is concerned, his response to Monbiot was an example of pure intellectual snobbery. As a scientist, what you do if you are cornered is throw a bunch of intellectual gibberish at your opponent, much of it incomprehensible, knowing that they (perhaps even you yourself as Gavin Schmidt pointed out) have no clue what it means. If I asked a lay many about microfilarial tissue in Leontopithecus rosalia, and they could not answer, I would be thus saying that one should leave science to scientists. As a senior scientist myself, I could see through Plimer`s childish ruse right away.

I think Monbiot nailed it when he said that the contrarian ranks are sometimes dominated by older scientists nearing the end of their careers, or who are recently retired. Many of them were mediocre scientists with modest (at best) publication records, and by now jumping on the contrarian bandwagon they are receiving the media attention that they crave but never received in their own fields.

By Jeff Harvey (not verified) on 16 Sep 2009 #permalink

bruced @ 27, the station you refer to is NNE of Broken Hill, whereas Plimer's is West. If they are one and the same, this is thus incontrovertible proof that the Earth has shifted on its axes since the Google photos were taken (or Plimer is mistaken.)

Jeff

Fascinated by your efforts to get Bjorn Lomborg to front the DCSD. It shows courage and principle to take on one of the world's most influential people.

Remember, they threw it out 'because of Lomborg's lack of scientific expertise, he had not shown intentional or gross negligence, and acquitted him of the accusations of scientific dishonesty.'

Joe,
Eldo Station is actually NNW of Broken Hill and north of Plimer's site. It does show what a outback station looks like on Google Earth with 2m resolution. Unfortunately Paul, a human standing vertical is not resolvable when surrounded by sheep.

Jeff Harvey,

"As far as Plimer is concerned, his response to Monbiot was an example of pure intellectual snobbery."

Excellent point.

Compare this to Plimer in The Austrlian a while back:
"They have used arrogant pompous scientists who talk down to the public..."

Of course, it's OK for Plimer to be arrogant and pompous.

Actually, Plimer reminds me of a guy I used to work with who didn't really know much, so when challenged he would respond with a bunch of incomprehensible technobabble to sound intelligent.

Donald Oats,

Great post. Plimer likes to portray the fact checking of his book as nit-picking, but he has abandoned one of the basic principles of science, which is basing your arguments on facts, and instead is basing his 'facts' on his argument. He's really no more scientific than Andrew Bolt.

The irony is that in his long rant to Monbiot he compares Monbiot to creationists, not realising (presumably) that he is the one using their debating tactics.

BTW everyone, reading through the correspondence, noticed this in one of Plimer's emails to Monbiot:

"Blog and WWW sites are quite correctly the places for anonymous unbalanced unsubstantiated opinion which is why my one and only blog entry was to challenge you to a debate. Until blog and WWW sites are edited, peer reviewed and transparent, they remain an outlet for ignorance, anger and misinformation and do not constitute the process of science."

Remember, that's Plimer talking.

Are we sure he's not Poe?

Jeff Harvey

The gist of the claim is unexceptionable but here I think your text is not consistent/confused:

The reason a few actual left wing voices are "allowed" through the filter is that this gives the impression of media "balance", which would otherwise be illusory.

1. The notion of balance is problematic and thus always illusory, including of course when people from differening perspectives are given a voice

2. You probably meant to say that allowing apparently dissenting voices into the mix discouraged the inference that media output lacked what people think to be 'balance' and diversity and thus speciously buttress claims that the media is indeed 'value-free'.

Perhaps the key problem here is the pervasive but mistaken belief amongst consumers of media content that they are the commercial media's customers, when they are in fact its product. Access to these audiences is what is sold to those who make commercial media possible -- advertisers/sponsors. So the commercial media must shape, exclude and include those who are of sufficient value to enough people willing to pay enough money to get to them. That process is not an unstructured or 'value-free' one.

By Fran Barlow (not verified) on 16 Sep 2009 #permalink

Fran,

Many thanks for your post. You more or less have said it correctly. The gist of what I am saying is that the mainstream media is not beholden to big business - it IS big business. As such, I believe that most journalists working for mainstream outlets are not censored *per se* in what they write. I think most are sincerely honest. What I think is that if they said something different, they would not be sitting where they are. In other words, the dominant ideology of our political and economic system determines who makes it through the filter and who doesn`t.

As for El Gordo`s post, one would not believe Lomborg is one of the world`s most "influential thinkers" if they debated him like I did in 2002. The guy was scared stiff of me and was afraid that he`d say something I would be able to demolish him with. Given his lack of expertise in any of the areas he superficially covers in his lousy book, that is no small wonder. And the reason he is influential at all, given his lack of pedigree, is because his words resonate with powerful elite interests, who promote him endlessly. Again, if he said something different, you would never have heard of him.

By Jeff Harvey (not verified) on 16 Sep 2009 #permalink

one of the world's most influential people.

Remember, they threw it out 'because of Lomborg's lack of scientific expertise

Shows you how easily some people are influenced.

By Chris O'Neill (not verified) on 16 Sep 2009 #permalink

No worries Jeff ...

And for the record the games theorist Lomborg was found guilty of scientific dishonesty by the DCSD, so El Gordo was wrong on that too ...what a surprise ...

Ruling: Objectively speaking, the publication of the work under consideration is deemed to fall within the concept of scientific dishonesty

on the basis that for a putative scientific work the underlying work was sloppy and indifferent to the other pertinent work.

By Fran Barlow (not verified) on 16 Sep 2009 #permalink

Janet, el Gordo,

This was a tiring saga. I hate to dredge up it again, but my take on it was that the DCSD found Lomborg guilty of subjective dishonesty but then said he probably didn`t know much of what he was writing about (in other words it was beyond his competence, which is a pretty painful conclusion) and thus concluded that his dishonesty probably was not intentional. A year later and after much wrangling Lomborg was pardoned. Lomborg headed the Danish Environmental Assessment Institute (set up under right wing premier Rasmussen) and in my humble opinion Lomborg`s standing as head of this organization was jaded as long as he had the DCSD verdict hanging over him and this therefore had something to do with the pardon. Its was about maintaining street cred, especially amongst those anxious to promote the gobbledegook Lomborg was presenting as in depth analysis.

This all, of course, has little to do with what Lomborg knows or does not know about environmental issues. In my opinion he knows diddly squat, hardly surprising since he has no formal training in the fields he superficially covers in his book. He claims to have written the first edition of his book in a mere 15 months, which, given the diverse fields covered, is a remarkably short time. Chapters that come close to my field of expertise, such as forest cover and especially biodiversity loss are abominable. It was hardly surprising that experts in other fields came to many of the same conclusions that I did about other chapters. But, as I said, nothing sells like the story of an allegedly left wing guy who changes horse mid-stream and "sees the light".

By Jeff Harvey (not verified) on 16 Sep 2009 #permalink

Oops... I meant Fran. Sorry Fran! I am getting this confused with the Girma thread!!!!

By Jeff Harvey (not verified) on 16 Sep 2009 #permalink

> Monbiot doesn't approach these things in a dispassionate way. You, as well as I, know he has an agenda, ever since his days as a 'Swampy' supporter.

Duck's Arse, ignore the lack of dispassion you see.

What are the arguments? How do they stand up? Did you even read them?

When you attack the person (or, rather your perception of the person) and NOT the argument, that's ad-hom.

> But to read the comments here, and elsewhere, he is also an 'authority'. Yet there is no evidence that he is actually 'an authority' rather than just a journalist.

Duck's Arse, YOU are reading him as an authority.

How much of an "authority" do you have to be to ask someone about their frigging book???

As the title of this thread says: how does he deal with students asking questions? "I'm sorry, you're not an authority on geology since you don't have a degree, so you can't ask questions on my lecture"?

How much of an authority DOES Monbiot have to be?

And where did you pluck the idea that he's considered an authority?? From your arse???

So YOU are the one thinking he's an authority (well, Plimer too) and nobody else. So all you have to do to prove your claim that there's no evidence is not to supply evidence.

Very Plimerian of you.

Has any one figured out what the hell Plimer meant by his '7 editions' of H&E??

> Has any one figured out what the hell Plimer meant by his '7 editions' of H&E??

> Posted by: Michael

There's a fairly famous mag full of naked people called "health and efficiency": H&E.

Maybe Plimer's too embarrased to get "Men Only" and so subscribes to the nudist mag instead. And only has 7 issues...

El Gordo

I've no interest in visiting her blog and lending it credibility.

What would be much better is if those whose opposition to mainstream science were based on something other than the desire to protect the interests of the polluters and whose attachment to proetecting the environment was mopre than simply a throw away line would simply accept that mitigating Anhtropgenic CO2 emissions was an indispensible part of protecting the environment, and that if nuclear power really was the best way to do this, to avoid muddying the waters by slandering scientists.

You want to hang onto the title "AGW-skeptic". Who am I to deny you your title? But move on because the advocacy is harming the challenge of protecting the biosphere by underpinning all manner of harm.

By Fran Barlow (not verified) on 17 Sep 2009 #permalink

el gordo thinks this is a good thing: "Remember, they threw it out 'because of Lomborg's lack of scientific expertise, he had not shown intentional or gross negligence, and acquitted him of the accusations of scientific dishonesty."

by reason of incompetence. By the way, scoring on one's own goal is also incompetent.

By t_p_hamilton (not verified) on 17 Sep 2009 #permalink

Dave Andrews @33

As I'm 'an interested person' I can generally work out the papers Monbiot is referring to without having to visit his website.

But that doesn't necessarily apply to other readers of the Guardian.

Which is why Monbiot mentions in most of his articles that he doesn't have the space to include references, but full cites are available to the interested reader if they go to his website.

Now, Monbiot didn't specifically include that disclaimer in this latest article, but since it is an update to an ongoing issue and has been preceded by at least two earlier articles on the subject which did include that disclaimer, he probably thought that it was OK to assume that his readers were aware of that fact.

Of course as an 'interested person' you would know all this right? So why did you slam him in your #2 for never including references in his newspaper articles?

Regards

By Luke Silburn (not verified) on 17 Sep 2009 #permalink

Monbiot is indeed a journalist. But to read the comments here, and elsewhere, he is also an 'authority'. Yet there is no evidence that he is actually 'an authority' rather than just a journalist.
Would you base your beliefs on those of a journalist?

Complete and utter rot. Montbiot is in no way considered to be an authority. How can anybody post that sort of statement at scienceblogs with a straight face? He is considered a journalist, nothing more. In true journalist fashion he is comparing the statements of actual authorities with Plimer's because Plimer is working outside his field and challenging the experts. Montbiot has noted discrepancies and it trying to get to the root of them.

Why would anybody even consider basing their beliefs on the non-authority of a journalist, when the journalist in question merely references the actual authority of the many experts in the field? It's not as if the real climate scientists are sequestered on the far side of the moon, or their work is encrypted and hidden. Even simply considering that people might work based solely on Monbiot's authority in climate science is laughable; asserting it is pure lunacy.

You are weird.

@pough:

Dave A. is just trying to get a rise out of everyone here. He loves the straw man and the ad hom fallacies as much as Plimer. Best to ignore him ;-)

By Former Skeptic (not verified) on 17 Sep 2009 #permalink

Please yourself, Fran. By the way, CO2 is not pollution.

el gordo:

By the way, CO2 is not pollution.

Proof by bare-faced assertion.

By Chris O'Neill (not verified) on 17 Sep 2009 #permalink

By the way, CO2 is not pollution

Everything above about 280ppmv certainly meets the standard for pollution, as in this concentration is threatens loss of ecosystem services to humans. See for example:

(p-lshn)
n.
1. The act or process of polluting or the state of being polluted, especially the contamination of soil, water, or the atmosphere by the discharge of harmful substances.

See also:

the direct or indirect introduction, as a result of human activity, of substances or heat into the water or land which may be harmful to human health or the quality of aquatic ecosystems or terrestrial ecosystems directly depending on aquatic ecosystems, which result in damage to material property, or which impair or interfere with amenities and other legitimate uses of the environmenthttp://www.duhaime.org/LegalDictionary/P/Pollution.aspx and from the Environmental management Act of BC, Canada "... the presence in the environment of substances or contaminants that substantially alter or impair the usefulness of the environment."

The US EPA has defined CO2 to be a controllable pollutant and of course the UN Law of the Sea refers to it in theze terms.

I'm glad to have been able to set you straight on this.

By Fran Barlow (not verified) on 17 Sep 2009 #permalink

Plimer claimed in his correspondence with Monbiot that he had been teaching for forty years. According to Wikipedia he started his academic career in 1991. That would make it 18 years. However that cannot be right because I remember Plimer being at the University of Newcastle around 1985 - 86. And he had already worked for some time at the University of New England then, after starting his career as a research geologist at Broken Hill.

Yet I suspect that that forty years is an exaggeration.

Though I never personally met him at the University of Newcastle we exchanged some barbs in the columns of the educational supplement of The Australian. Not about climate change though.

Plimer had in fact launched, out of the blue, an attack there on the Department of Sociology and Anthropology in which I was then employed. He called it a 'cesspool' and took particular exception to the fact that some people there had, via the Staff Association, tried to get a modicum of democracy in university proceedings. He compared these attempts unfavourably with what was going on in the "real world" where he came from.

We were very much surprised because to our knowledge Plimer had, with the exception of one figure who was at odds with most of the department and a malicious gossiper, not met any one of us, not attended any of our lectures or read our publications. I had some fun in composing an answer that was published a week later. We heard no more about it.

By Arie Brand (not verified) on 17 Sep 2009 #permalink

Arie, a very insightful observation. It appears that Plimer is an opportunist and populist.

Jeff, your comment earlier about the BBC elite propaganda, I just googled up British Brainwashing Corporation and got 782,000 spots. Simply amazing!

Shorter el gordo:

Arie says that Plimer attacks people for no reason. That's true; he's a populist!

Jeff Harvey says that the BBC is too right-wing. I absolutely agree; the BBC is too left-wing!

el gordo says he got 782,000 hits by googling for British Brainwashing Corporation.

I decided to replicate his "experiment" (09:40 GMT).

British Brainwashing Corporation (no quotes) returns 109,000 hits.

"British Brainwashing Corporation" returns 690 hits.

Both return such delights as

The BBC had prior knowledge of the events of 9/11, this video proves this to be true. How else could they posabibly [sic]...

Bi,

I did not say that the BBC was right wing; I said that it generally supports the position of the political establishment and rarely challenges elite explanations. Its performance leading up to and including the Iraq war was abominable, and its recent coverage of the occupation of Afghanistan is not any better.

David Edwards and David Cromwell at Media Lens have done a magnificent job deconstructing the myth of BBC "impartiality" in their two books, "Guardians of Power: The Myth of the Liberal Media" and "Newspeak in the 21st Century". You ought to check them out. Some of their examples are jaw-dropping. Mark Curtis and the Glasgow University Media Group and Greg Philo have similarly shown that the so-called "left leaning" media in the UK is hardly that. It is pre-establishment to the core, with a few dissenting voices scattered about here and there.

By Jeff Harvey (not verified) on 17 Sep 2009 #permalink

P.Lewis,

I stand corrected, honest mistake down to brain fade.

bi--IJI disingenuous behavior well caught. Time to clear out!

> By the way, CO2 is not pollution

So why were the Apollo 13 team so worried about the CO2 levels in the module???

72 Mark,

I have a simple test for CO2 deniers: we put them in a sealed building for a few hours with an atmosphere of, say, 5% CO2.

By TrueSceptic (not verified) on 18 Sep 2009 #permalink

Credit where due, el gordo. We all have senior moments.

72 Mark; 73 TrueSceptic,

I think this is a bit unfair. We all know that ANY compound can be considered a pollutant, as long as the dose/concentration/amount is too high. Let's not fall into the same trap as the deniers and become unscientific.

Marco, 75, but that's EXACTLY what is wrong with that "it's life-giving!" meme.

And saying "try breathing in a sealed room" is 100% scientific.

1) it isn't saying "no, any concentration is poison"
2) it isn't even calling CO2 poison
3) if you are in a room with 5% CO2 even if O2 is at the normal air concentration, you will have trouble surviving

So what about my and TS's posts was unscientific?

Marco,

Hardly. I am calling those idiot-liars on their claims.

Just as I demand that DDT deniers eat several spoonfuls of the wonder compound every day. This will need to be properly observed, of course. I wouldn't want to make false claims, would I?

By TrueSceptic (not verified) on 18 Sep 2009 #permalink

76 Mark,

What I found unscientific is to point to 'say 5%', which is far from the amount we are currently at, or are on our way to, and use that as evidence that CO2 is a pollutant. A pollutant is a matter of place, situation and amount/concentration, and the "life-giving" meme of the deniers is not counteracted by introducing a "pollutant"-meme. But that's just my opinion.

> 76 Mark,

> What I found unscientific is to point to 'say 5%', which is far from the amount we are currently at

And what in TS's post #73 says that 5% is what we are heading for, never mind being near our current %CO2?

All it's saying is put them in a room with 5% CO2. Are you saying that it isn't possible to do that? Can no mixture reach 5%?

Mark & pough,

Right, I'm glad we've got it sorted that Monbiot is just a journalist and not a real authority. Perhaps now people won't quote him on a regular basis just because he writes an article that accords with their biases.

However, George is also 'influential' in the green movement and amongst the followers. Hence his regular appearances on various mediums of the BBC where he is effectively being used as an 'authority', even though he isn't.

By Dave Andrews (not verified) on 18 Sep 2009 #permalink

Right, I'm glad we've got it sorted that Monbiot is just a journalist and not a real authority. Perhaps now people won't quote him on a regular basis just because he writes an article that accords with their biases.

Oh, now I get it. I'm sorry. I assumed your previous comment was a strange low point. Now I see that it's the rational comments that are the outliers. (Not that I've seen a rational one.)

So you can only quote those who are authorities and never the ones who have asked questions of the authorities and rewritten it for laypeople. Did I get that right?

I don't much care for your bizarro, binary world and I'm terribly happy the real one is nothing like it.

thank you very good.So you can only quote those who are authorities and never the ones who have asked questions of the authorities and rewritten it for laypeople. Did I get that right?

I don't much care for your bizarro, binary world and I'm terribly happy the real one is nothing like it.

Shorter Dave Andrews:

Look over here, look over hear!, I've thrown some faeces on this wall. Look at my point.

Stop looking at Plimer who has misrepresented the science, used fabricated data, lied about the source of the data, and is running away from owning up to his errors/deceit.

By Janet Akerman (not verified) on 18 Sep 2009 #permalink

Oh yeah, and Monbiot can't have caught out Plimer 'cos he's not an authority. Hence we are immune from facts if they are presented or repeated by Monbiot.

Please stop quoting Monbiot he makes too many good points and hurts my side. Can you all not just accept that Monbiot's points are wrong?

Further more Monbiot doesn't cite his sources, OK he does cite them on this web page, but that doesn't help, because I don't need to look them up cos' I am aware of his sources.

By Janet Akerman (not verified) on 18 Sep 2009 #permalink

Dave Andrews (80): "Right, I'm glad we've got it sorted that Monbiot is just a journalist and not a real authority. Perhaps now people won't quote him on a regular basis just because he writes an article that accords with their biases."

Dave, presumably it's a slow week chez Andrews and you posted this as a wind-up.

OTOH if you're rooly rooly like, you know, serious, in what sense are you not being a total hypocrite? I mean, if Tim or anyone else here had suggested to you (or el gordo, cohenite, Billy Village Hall &c &c) that you should refrain on this site from quoting the likes of Wattsisname or Andrew BoltTheDoor or any of the other representatives of denialist neo-con snout-in-the-trough free marketeers, the squealing and wailing of "Censorship!!" and "Wahhh not fair" and "Help help, I'm being suppressed!" would be heard throughout the interweb.

Of course, if in exchange for me not quoting Monbiot you agree to stop posting links to or quotes from sites that specialise in fwittery and bovine ordure (like WTFWT, the Centre for Independent Sophistry or the Institute of Pubic Affairs) in a vain attempt to demonstrate AGW isn't happening or that Al Gore is looking a bit avoirdupois, I'll gladly get my people to talk to your people.

In the meantime, feel free to quote Andrew Bolt, Miranda Devine and Michael Stutchbury, god knows they need all the help they can get.

By Steve Chamberlain (not verified) on 18 Sep 2009 #permalink

Errata (post #85):
1) Delete, remove, strike out or expunge "Independent" in 'Centre for Independent Sophistry' and insert (as appropriate) Incessant/ Interminable/ Indecipherable/ Inconsequential/ Implausible/ Impervious/ Improbable/ Inappropriate/ Incapable/ Incoherent.

2) In the last sentence, before 'help' insert in parentheses "professional psychiatric".

By Steve Chamberlain (not verified) on 19 Sep 2009 #permalink

Steve Chamberlain,

If you look back over my many posts on various threads here , I think you will find I have never quoted anything at all from the sites/people you mention.

pough,

It is quite ironic that you are getting upset by my criticising Monbiot whilst supporting questioning of of authorities.

By Dave Andrews (not verified) on 19 Sep 2009 #permalink

I have read Ian Plimer's books...'A Short History of Planet Earth' and 'Heaven and Earth' and it seems to me a lot of 'punters' are still confused by the rabble of commentators (extremely common with heads like 'tators) who mouth off willy-nilly about scientific subject-matter they know little about. Plimer is NOT a 'global warming denier'...he simply points out that our human CO2 contribution is and always has been... a miniscule fraction in the overall scheme of things. Poor old King Cnut( A Gore) conceded defeat when he tried to command and control the tides about 1000 years ago. He realized there was a force greater than himself which was without ego or vainglory. My bet is that in 1000 years from now the tides will still ebb and flow and the climate will be similar to what it is now...or 1000 years ago!

By phillip soffermann (not verified) on 19 Sep 2009 #permalink

Plimer is NOT a 'global warming denier'...he simply points out that our human CO2 contribution is and always has been... a miniscule fraction in the overall scheme of things.

Nothing like a nice, self-contradictory statement to expose someone as being totally clueless.

Philip Soffermann (#88), given that we now know that Plimer won't answer Monbiot's questions, and given that you are so willing to support him, I challenge you to provide answers to them. Let's start with question 1:
"1. The first graph in your book (Figure 1, page 11) shows global temperatures, as measured by the Hadley Centre (HadCRUT), falling by 0.3C between 2007 and 2008. In reality the fall recorded by the HadCRUT3 data series is 0.089C. How do you explain the discrepancy between the HadCRUT3 figure and your claim?"

Because you see Plimer might well be arguing that "our human CO2 contribution is and always has been...(sic) a miniscule fraction in the overall scheme of things", but it appears that he isn't willing to represent the overall scheme of things honestly. Those of us on the science side of the debate see that as being a bit of an issue, though we recognise that on the denialist such tricks are rather more de rigeur.

Incidentally, do you not see the irony in starting your post with "...the rabble of commentators (extremely common with heads like 'tators) who mouth off willy-nilly about scientific subject-matter they know little about" and ending it with nonsense like "My bet is that in 1000 years from now...the climate will be similar to what it is now...(sic)or 1000 years ago!".

Looking forward to your answer to Monbiot's question 1, and we'll work through from there.

By GWB's nemesis (not verified) on 19 Sep 2009 #permalink

Dave Andrews (87):
"Steve Chamberlain, If you look back over my many posts on various threads here , I think you will find I have never quoted anything at all from the sites/people you mention."

Taking you at your word Dave, I apologise for stating that you quoted from those sites.

My view on your point (if I can call it that) about quoting George Monbiot remains, however, that I think it peculiar. So far as I know Monbiot is not an "authority", nor does Monbiot claim to be so. Similarly, I am not aware of him being stated to be so by anyone on this website (if I'm wrong about that by all means show me). All of which leaves me wondering why you persist in telling everybody to stop proclaiming him as an "authority" when nobody was...

By Steve Chamberlain (not verified) on 20 Sep 2009 #permalink

88 Soffermann,

You mentioned Gore. That's a FAIL.

By TrueSceptic (not verified) on 20 Sep 2009 #permalink

Dear GWB... There may well be a variation of 0.3 degrees for that matter...but the message from the graph on page 11 (Heaven&Earth) is that the Computer Predictions sponsored by the IPCC are way-off- track from reality. Don't get me wrong GWB, I'm more concerned about you than you should be about me because I live in the cleanest-air environment in the world, ie. near Strahan, on the west coast of Tasmania ( a scientifically tested and proven fact, for a land-based community...excluding Antarctica). I live here by choice and for that reason. I have lived and worked in and visited most of your pox-ridden airs from Djakarta, Hong Kong, Calcutta to London, Los Angeles and Mexico City. One day I hope the whole world will have air nearly as clean as Strahan's.
In 1952, a dense 'pea-soup' smog killed at least 12,000 Londoners... mainly caused by the huge quantities of coal burnt to counteract the severely cold weather at the time. The resulting respiratory/asphyxiation problems were caused by particulates, soot, tar, SO2 and associated H2SO4, carbon monoxide and other crap... but no mention of poor old CO2!

By phillip soffermann (not verified) on 20 Sep 2009 #permalink

Dear Dhogaza...please read my message to GWB. You will think more clearly when you have a breath of fresh air!

By phillip soffermann (not verified) on 20 Sep 2009 #permalink

Dear TrueSceptic... GORE BLIMEY! ...oops...

By phillip soffermann (not verified) on 20 Sep 2009 #permalink

dhogaza,

You in favour of solar power?

I read somewhere that some greens are also in favour as long as it is not in their backyard desert. What do you say to that?

By Dave Andrews (not verified) on 20 Sep 2009 #permalink

GWB... My 1000 year bet still stands...like I'm sure some punter who saw King Cnut fail in his bid would have said 1000 years ago..."Nobody in a million years is going to stop the tides!"
My bet is that the smarter science and technology of the human race will steadily imptove...in due course...and without panic...towards a cleaner, greener and sustainable future. The greatest ingredient missing in the world today is... commonsense.

By phillip soffermann (not verified) on 20 Sep 2009 #permalink

72Mark 73TrueSceptic

Any schoolteacher will tell you that a classroom full of kids soon becomes stuffy and warm unless some windows are opened. Stuffy from increased CO2 and depletion of O2. The warming however, is not caused by the CO2 increase...it's the body heat of course!

By phillip soffermann (not verified) on 20 Sep 2009 #permalink

Phillip Sofferman:

My 1000 year bet still stands..

You are making a bet about what the climate will be like in 1000 years' time?

OK, I'll bet you a million billion trillion dollars.

No, on second thoughts, make that a quintillion zillion squillion.

98 Sofferman,

What do you imagine my point was re 5% CO2 (1% is enough to cause drowsiness BTW)?

Do you know the Cnut story? From the way you described it, it appears not.

As for bets, I've just made one that will be decided within the next 10 years. Would you? Do ya feel lucky, punk?

By TrueSceptic (not verified) on 20 Sep 2009 #permalink

phillip soffermann:

There may well be a variation of 0.3 degrees for that matter

So you accept that Plimer's graphs may have misleading errors of 0.2 degrees

...but the message from the graph on page 11 (Heaven&Earth)

but then in the same sentence you get sucked in by that very same error!

My 1000 year bet still stands.

You like giving your betting partners every chance to collect, don't you? How about something a bit more in touch with reality? I'll bet you $10 every month from now on that each new month in HadCrut3 is warmer than the same month 11 years earlier. Plimer says global warming stopped 11 years ago so you shouldn't have anything to worry about.

By Chris O'Neill (not verified) on 20 Sep 2009 #permalink

soffermann,

>At 9:30 p.m. on August 21, 1986, a cloudy mixture of [carbon dioxide (CO2)](http://www.geology.sdsu.edu/how_volcanoes_work/Nyos.html) and water droplets rose violently from Lake Nyos, Cameroon. As the lethal mist swept down adjacent valleys, it killed over 1700 people, thousands of cattle, and many more birds and animals.

I don't think it was the water that killed them.

By luminous beauty (not verified) on 20 Sep 2009 #permalink

Phillip Sofferman, you mean [this chart](http://bravenewclimate.files.wordpress.com/2009/04/plimer2a0.pdf):

>*p. 11, figure 1: This graphic has several misrepresentations. The bold line purports to be temperature data from the HadCRUT data set. This is not true. The HadCRUT data are closer to the lighter solid line which is labelled, UAH LT (adj to Sfc). More seriously, at least for the HADCRU data, the 2008 data that are shown are fabrications. The HadCRUT data set shows 2008 as being only 0.081_C lower than 2007*.

Phillip, can I ask if [John Levett](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2009/09/temper_tantrums_at_the_spectat…) speaks for you also?

>John Levett: *"Whether Plimer is a charlatan or not, he speaks for many of us who are frustrated by this lack of debate."*

Pretty poor show that Plimer is running away from supplying references for his (fabricated) data. Don't you think he should own up to the use of the fabricated GGS data rather than continue running away from answering?

How bad would Plimers misrepresentation need to be for you to question his claims?

By Mark Byrne (not verified) on 20 Sep 2009 #permalink

101 Chris,

I like it. Similar to one of the bets I offered Girma, but bolder.

By TrueSceptic (not verified) on 21 Sep 2009 #permalink

How bad would Plimers misrepresentation need to be for you to question his claims?

I'd hazard that Plimer would have to do a 180-degree turn on his AGW stance for Phillip Sofferman to start questioning Plimer's claims (not that Plimer would then be misrepre....).

101 Chris...Quite right...We are living in an Interglacial Period which includes warming and cooling events...but could you prove your monthly stats are caused by CO2?
102 LuminousBeauty...Quite right!
103 Mark...Never heard of Levett... Statistics,statistics and damned lies? I don't know...errors maybe,fabrications? I don't think so...however, I am sure the truth will soon be revealed... hopefully over the next few weeks leading up to Copenhagen in December. Maybe Monbiot has some answers by then...ie, can he answer his own questions? :))
105 P.L. Hypothetical...like the current Great Australian Volcano Scare...a definite maybe!

By phillip soffermann (not verified) on 21 Sep 2009 #permalink

phillip soffermann:

could you prove your monthly stats are caused by CO2?

So NOW you think Plimer etc are wrong to say global warming stopped 11 years ago. Pray tell, how do YOU know when Plimer is right and when he's wrong?

I am sure the truth will soon be revealed... hopefully over the next few weeks leading up to Copenhagen in December.

Yeah sure, after 150 years of the greatest conspiracy of all time.

Maybe Monbiot has some answers by then...ie, can he answer his own questions? :))

Yes, that's pretty easy. Plimer's a fraud. I agree, Plimer's a joke.

By Chris O'Neill (not verified) on 21 Sep 2009 #permalink

At the risk of thread hijack:

larvatus prodeo is featuring video reaction the Yes Men's latest hoax -- a spoof on the New York Post acknowledging Anthropogenic Climate Change with the banner headline: We're Screwed. The twist in the hoax was that all the information was factual.

Well worth a look. My personal moment was the News Corp exec getting his knickers in a twist at being pranked for scaring the public, only for someone to juxtapose the absolute shite on an actual frontpage of his yellow rag, and then watching him run, nearly knocking over a cyclist and cursing him as an environmentalist.

Classic!

By Fran Barlow (not verified) on 21 Sep 2009 #permalink

107Chris...We are getting into semantics now...I'm fairly sure Plimer et al mean that the last 11 years have been climatically stable and that they would not be at all surprised if the next 11 years warmed up a bit...or continued to be stable... or even cooled down a little! They are not dogmatic about their climate forecasts... as you are. You and Monboit can't wait for the chance to sell bags of ice to the Eskimos...can you Chris?

By phillip soffermann (not verified) on 21 Sep 2009 #permalink

Phillip,

We have (Chris included) been through all of this on the so-called "Girma" thread. For a highly deterministic system such as climate maintenance across the biosphere, 11 years is not a long enough time to extrapolate general patterns. I am amazed how the denialists will clutch at any straws to bolster their business-as-usual agenda. 1998 was an extreme year by any measure. It coincided with the most potent El Nino event in a century, which probably boosted the temperature by at least 0.2 C.

The problem with you and other denialists is that you extrapolate scale on the basis of the human perception of scale, meaning that to a person 11 years seems a fairly long time. As a species we have not evolved to respond to what we perceive as gradual change but to instantaneous threats to our well-being and survival. A bear at the mouth of a cave, a huge storm, an earthquake all fit into this category. Gradual incipient change is not evolutionarily programmed into our genomes; consequently, we have no perception of scale with respect to spatial or temporal aspects of environmental change, or of the consequences of these changes for complex adaptive systems. We expect the temperature to rise 2 C a decade for many of us to even perceive that as significant, whereas in nature that would be a catastrophe. We stick our fingers to the wind, and shrug it off. This will be our undoing.

As for Plimer and Monbiot, let us get this straight. Monbiot may be *only* a journalist, as you deride him, but he is one who at least goes with the prevailing wisdom and the views of the vast majority of the scientific community (me included) who strongly think that the empirical evidence supporting AGW is very strong already and growing. Plimer is an outlier; in my opinion he is also not the highly qualified expert that many of the contrarians make him out to be. Since 1971 he has a modest 58 publications of the Web of Science and less than 1,000 citations for his work. I consider myself to be doing OK as a senior researcher, and since 1993 I have 88 publications of the Web of Science and 1,440 citations. I am not wishing to blow my own trumpet here, as there are colleagues in various scientific fields that have several hundred publications and get 1000 plus citations *every year*. But the point is that Plimer is no authority on climate science. He is hardly more qualified to venture into the field in my view than someone like Monbiot is. But at least Monbiot is not challenging the broad consensus that does exist on the subject. Plimer is.

By Jeff Harvey (not verified) on 21 Sep 2009 #permalink

phillip soffermann:

I'm fairly sure Plimer et al mean that the last 11 years have been climatically stable and that they would not be at all surprised if the next 11 years warmed up a bit

So now you tell us that Plimer is just running a big strawman. Can you tell us again why you care what Plimer says if his arguments have no real substance.

or continued to be stable... or even cooled down a little

Oh so you'll be taking the bet then, assuming you're intellectually honest. But just in case your intellectual honesty leaves something to be desired, I'll make you an offer that should be a nice little long term earner for you as long as the climate is actually not warming. I'll pay you $10 for every new month in HadCrut3 that is less than 0.05 deg C/decade WARMER than the average of January 1998 to August 2009 inclusive, measured from the time half-way between January 1998 and August 2009, i.e. 0.05 deg C warmer per decade after October 2003. Otherwise you pay me $10 for the month.

So for example August 2009 had an anomaly of 0.532 deg C while the average from January 1998 to August 2009 was 0.414 deg C.

Adding 0.05 deg C per decade since October 2003 adds 0.029 deg C so the cut-off point for you winning in August would have been 0.443 deg C. You would have lost that month since it was actually 0.532 deg C, however since you believe there is no warming in the climate you would eventually get to the point where you win nearly every month.

Let me know when you want to set up your virtually free pension.

They are not dogmatic about their climate forecasts

They're dogmatic there won't be human-CO2-caused warming actually.

You and Monboit can't wait for the chance to sell bags of ice to the Eskimos

Actually, we can't wait for people to stop causing the problem.

By the way, thanks for not disputing that Plimer's graphs contain misleading errors. Read this list of Plimer's errors, many of them serious. You may learn something if you have an open mind.

By Chris O'Neill (not verified) on 21 Sep 2009 #permalink

> Stuffy from increased CO2 and depletion of O2. The warming however, is not caused by the CO2 increase...it's the body heat of course!

> Posted by: phillip soffermann

Who said the warming in that classroom was from the CO2???

Now seal yourself in to a room that is airtight and breathe in all that life-giving CO2!!!

> I read somewhere that some greens are also in favour as long as it is not in their backyard desert. What do you say to that?

> Posted by: Dave Andrews

Do you think that there is only one Hive Mind, Duck's Arse?

I'm sure that dog thinks "I think those people are wrong", but I don't think he thinks he has to hunt them down and kill them off or anything, and without that, what's there to stop these people (do you have any names or is it just "some people", like "they say that..." people you hear about in pub conversations..?) thinking that they don't want solar power in their backyard?