Brent Thread

By popular request. Comments from Brent and folks arguing with him are cluttering up more useful discussions. All comments by Brent and responses to comments by Brent should go in this thread. I can't move comments in MT, so I'll just delete comments that appear in the wrong thread.

More like this

By popular request. Comments from El Gordo and folks arguing with him are cluttering up more useful discussions. All comments by El Gordo and responses to comments by El Gordo should go in this thread. I can't move comments in MT, so I'll just delete comments that appear in the wrong thread.
By popular request Flying Binghi has his/her own thread. This is the only thread that FB can post to, and all replies to any comment to FB should go here. I can't move comments, so I will delete comments that do not follow these rules.
OK, Greig, you have your own thread. Please post all of your comments here. And everyone else, please post any responses to Greig here. The blog software does not allow me to move comments to another thread, so I will delete comments that don't obey these rules and it will be up to you to repost…
By popular request, here is the Jonas thread. All comments by Jonas and replies to his comments belong in this thread.

must be the weather ?

Himalayan Glaciers Seem to Be Growing
In the Western Himalayas, a group of some 230 glaciers are bucking the global warming trend. http://www.tinyurl.com.au/s8w

12 more glaciers that havenât heard the news about global warming

Turns out the IPCCâs chicken little story that all the Himalayan glaciers are melting is just another exaggeration. Or fraud. Take your choice. You know, like the stats coming out of East Anglia CRU. And its claim that Antarctica is melting. And that Greenlandâs ice cap is melting. And that sea levels are rising. And that the polar bears are dying. Fact is, some glaciers are retreating, but many others around the world are growing.

âBut how is that possible? How can glaciers be growing when the world is warming up like a package of Jiffy-Pop in a microwave?â

Here are a dozen glaciers (or groups of glaciers) around the world that are growing almost as quickly as global warming skepticism.

Himalayan glaciers are growing, not shrinking

Things are not as they seemed to be in the IPCC report. Not only are the Himalayan glaciers not shrinking, theyâre growing. Discovery reports:

http://www.tinyurl.com.au/s8x

Here's a (partial) list of the
specific glaciers that are growing

http://www.tinyurl.com.au/s8y

Allow me to kick it off with some of my favourite Brent moments:

ABC Blogs:

What a good article! I have actually found the Great Climate Debate rather distressing, fearing that the "other side" may carry the day, with catastrophic consequences. (I am teasing you here: I'll reveal "my side" later...) The notion that scientific debate is not gentlemanly but instead a pitiless conflict between ambitious combatants has the ring of truth. "Science" has recently stepped into the void left by theologians; the unwashed public have replaced one set of authority figures for another. And we, the public, find it distressing that our experts are in conflict. Like yer parents arguing with each other. But the daft notion that "science" has it all figured out is, well, daft. It's a dynamic process advancing in fits and starts, and (presumably) even through regressions. And is NEVER settled.

Watts Up With That:

I hereby propose a detailed study of the Urban Heat Island Effect. Its null hypothesis would be: âthat there is, to 99% significance, no difference between temperatures at the centre of 100,000-population towns and a temperatures at a 10km perimeter.â And then let the facts speak. The Gore Brigade have failed to demolish the null hypothesis that temperatures in recent decades are insignificantly different to those of past centuries. The general public continue to believe in this null hypothesis. This is not surprising: beneath the byzantine complexity of Statistical Method lies a solid core of common sense, a quality which sadly disappears in some scientists who place their seat on the gravy train before their professional integrity.

Watts Up With That:

Following the advice of Jerome Ravetz here on Wattsupwiththat â âNever forget that you might be wrongâ â I had a stroll around the RealClimate site looking for their best shot at validating the AGW hypothesis. It linked to a âStand Up for Climate Scienceâ petition, http://www.petitiononline.com/mod_perl/signed.cgi?clim4tr&1 and a sad little entry by Phil Jones: â195. Prof Phil Jones. Thanks guys, I need all the help I can get. Your support is much appreciated.â I guess he had it coming, but he looked like a frightened old man yesterday in London. Guys, the momentum is with us now: shouldnât we now concentrate on scientific debate rather than further reviling Jones now that heâs down? Some great victories have been won since Climategate emerged; isnât it time to look for common ground, to capture the parts of climate science that are agreed by both factions? Please, a little magnanimity. Donât destroy his dignity.

Ritchie, James, I share your fury at the obscene fra*d that is AGW. (RichieP (08:54:05) â â⦠these wicked conmenâ, James Sexton (09:08:39) â âThere must be a judgment dayâ¦â) If the Hockey Team didnât believe their own pseudo-science Iâd agree with you that the attack must go on. But listen to the interview Mann gave on 26 Feb â http://www.pointofinquiry.org/michael_mann_unprecedented_attacks_on_cli… and I hope youâll hear what I hear: this guy thinks heâs just an honest scientist being attacked by irrational savages who try to undermine his solid research and the consequentâ¦. aaaah⦠apocalypse. Yes, heâs barking mad. Steven Mosher, here on WUWT argues that itâs a case of âNoble Cause Corruptionâ. Mann is wrong, not evil. Ritchie, your references to Virgil and Nelson make your point very well, but the historical metaphors I would offer are 1918 v 1945. The allies foolishly took Germany to the cleaners at the end of WWI, and wisely helped Germany back to health at the end of WWII. Fight the disease (self-calibrating data-withholding gravy-train futurological pseudo-science) not the patient. I suggest that a true victory would be Michael Mann declaring, âBased on the data I then had, the Hockey Stick was good science. But in the light of the new evidence, I agree that recent decades are well within historical range. Maybe the âdriverâ â if any driver is required â is solar. Whilst we all agree that CO2 is a greenhouse gas, we now know that its variations are a consequence of temperature changes, not a cause.â And they all lived happily ever after ;-)

Never Yet Melted:

I reckon that the hacker (or was it maybe a mole) who blew the whistle on this scandalous abuse of scientific procedure at East Anglia University deserve a Nobel prize! Professor Jones has paid the price and resigned; I hope that in the US a rigorous examination of Michael Mannâs âHockey Stickâ graph will now be conducted. If, upon accessing Mannâs full methodology and data, the Hockey Stick is discredited, then the reputation of its creator must inevitably crumble.

Climate Audit:

Steve, I think you made a small typo above. Sumbissions by the public to the Muir Russell Inquiry need to be in by 28 Feb, not 10 Feb as you wrote above. Iâm going to propose that Boultonâs links to UEA make him an unsuitable member. Keep up the magnificent work. I reckon that your tenacity in demanding scientific rigour is of great importance, and will be celebrated in future accounts of science at the millennium.

Ah, I see Brent is migrating here.

John, interesting collection. It's hard to pick just a few favourite Brent moments, even confining oneself to the [Empirical Evidence thread](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2010/03/the_empirical_evidence_for_man…). But I note:

> And is NEVER settled.

On the Empirical Evidence thread just before the Brent thread started, Brent [proposed](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2010/03/the_empirical_evidence_for_man…) (if I understood rightly) that just maybe it was possible that Earth had a lot of volcanoes cooling down the climate for a long period, but their activity waned about the time anthropogenic CO2 emissions waxed, and thus the volcano wind-down was *really* the cause of warming.

And in [subsequent discussion on that point](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2010/03/the_empirical_evidence_for_man…) he said:

> ... the 1816 famines are fact, and nobody doubts their cause the previous year on the other side of the world: Tambora.

Sounds like *that* particular scientific question is settled in Brent's mind. Does that mean that "never settled" is not actually truthful, just like many of the other claims John quoted?

By Lotharsson (not verified) on 16 May 2010 #permalink

Wow Brent. Wait til the gang hears you've acjieved guest blogger status on Deltoid. You are so busted.

Lulz, Brent is obviously a flog of the highest order. Have at it BRENT!

Brent closes his participation in the Empirical Evidence thread with a [gracious comment](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2010/03/the_empirical_evidence_for_man…), quoted in full here for those who don't want to load a 1600+ comment page:

> Mr. Lambert, thank you for providing a platform for the fiery debate on this thread. Before debating with warmists - the smart and the dumb, the professionally cool and the abusive, the qualified and the layman - I had little idea of how cogent the AGW theory was, and rather frustrated that the partisan nature of the Great Debate prevented the creation of common ground.

> As a layman (on a layman's site, albeit enriched by some qualified people), my intention was always to prod the soggy mass of AGW opinion in order to reveal (purely for my own satisfaction) the core ideas and core facts. People soon pointed out that the IPCC reports are required reading; the AGW theory is indeed spelled out in AR4, but digesting it is greatly assisted by discussion, and I am grateful to my fellow posters on that thread.

> Iâm afraid that I cannot participate in a âBrent Threadâ, which suggests that I personally am the issue, or that my opinions are important.

> I take away from this experience the following conclusion:

> Two key issues will decide the debate: sensitivity and feedback.

> If CO2âs greenhouse effect dwarfs the forcing due to solar and volcanic changes, and if Earthâs climate is subject to unstable equilibrium (both of which are plausible) then the AGW theory stands.

> I thank my fellow posters for their contributions.

By Lotharsson (not verified) on 17 May 2010 #permalink

The statements made by Brent, especially those presented in #1, indicate to me that Brent is a fair-minded person. Yes, I disagree with him on many points. But if the primary charge against him is that he is on the "other side", then I say we should pin a medal on him. Scientific integrity is not measured by loyalty to one side or another; the ideal scientist NEVER thinks in terms of "us versus them", because "them" might possess some seed of truth. Normal human beings always think in terms of "us versus them", because that tendency is deeply embedded in human nature. Because scientists are human beings, they frequently get into the "us versus them" mentality, but the good ones always slap themselves and try to get past such prejudices.

Let me also point out that Brent has, to some extent, taken a contrarian position on the anti-AGW boards. That also bespeaks intellectual integrity.

But the most important point here is that Brent has altered his position in response to the arguments made here. How many times have YOU changed your position in response to arguments on a blog?

Those who treated Brent as "the enemy" and subjected him to verbal abuse were wrong. It was the solid argumentation, unsullied by invective, that had an effect. Brent is not a troll. He honestly disagrees with AGW theory. He's wrong, but he's getting better. How many of us can be sure that we have bettered our own thinking while here?

By Erasmussimo (not verified) on 17 May 2010 #permalink

[Lotharsson](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2010/05/brent_thread.php#comment-2518736).

It's not really surprising that Brent spat his dummy, picked up his bat and ball, kicked over the stumps, and retired to his chambers. John's quick and deftly-posted premable to this thread really makes a mockery of any objective posture that Brent might have pretended to, had he persisted.

Not rocks; not even marbles. Not really anything more than small pebbles, and likely insufficient for the getting of any troll-lings.

Today has been a good day indeed.

By Bernard J. (not verified) on 17 May 2010 #permalink

[Erasmussimo](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2010/05/brent_thread.php#comment-2519053).

For a number of postings after Brent first appeared I myself thought that his intent might be as you describe. However, persistent inconsistencies, slippings, and conspicuous out-right admissions on his behalf, here and elsewhere, long ago convinced me that Brent's motivation on Deltoid was based in sport, and not in a pursuit of scientific clarity.

I have no doubt that he "honestly disagrees with AGW theory", but this is no validation of the integrity of his intent.

I certainly saw nothing that would pursuade me that he was "getting better". I saw plenty of boulders that looked to me like troll bubkes.

Perhaps that's just a symptom of my own incurable cyncism.

By Bernard J. (not verified) on 17 May 2010 #permalink

The statements made by Brent, especially those presented in #1, indicate to me that Brent is a fair-minded person.

This comment by a dishonest idiot who elsewhere claims

I truly believe that discussions such as this one would be better if they were unsigned, so that people couldn't associate an idea with a person. This would force people to assess each statement solely on its own merits. What a concept! The obsession that people have for identifying ideas with people, and then attacking the people rather than the ideas, is so irrational that I have difficulty perceiving the mental processes at work as anything more than simian dominance displays.

I prefer the likes of Brent to slimy accomodationists and concern trolls like Erasmussimo.

By truth machine, OM (not verified) on 17 May 2010 #permalink

> Brent has, to some extent, taken a contrarian position on the anti-AGW boards. That also bespeaks intellectual integrity.

That does not necessarily follow - there is a reason we have the term "troll" - and to the extent that you think it does, I would argue that his complete disregard for intellectual integrity on this board rather undermines that hypothesis.

> But if the primary charge against him is that he is on the "other side", then I say we should pin a medal on him.

No, the primary charge is that he was knowingly a disingenuous and slippery dissembler with a long history of putting on a fair and reasonable cover and blowing it a day or so later - and that he presented the same bogus "arguments" over and over and over, despite clear demonstrations that they were either clearly wrong, or clearly unsupported.

No-one but Brent knows whether the latest somewhat reasonable stance would have lasted any longer, but - just like dealing with a drug addict who is great at putting on a front in order to manipulate people but says they are recovered - I would not make any assumptions about actual persistent change until there was significant evidence over a much longer period than has it previously taken to unmask his facade. And if I were a betting person, given the current evidence...

> How many times have YOU changed your position in response to arguments on a blog?

A few. I've certainly learned that I had held a number of misconceptions and tried to eliminate them.

By Lotharsson (not verified) on 17 May 2010 #permalink

I readily agree that Brent has at times repeated arguments that had already been dealt with quite thoroughly, and that some of his other behaviors have been disreputable. However, he is either an extremely clever propagandist or a person struggling with the truth. You're welcome to subscribe to the more conspiratorial of the two hypotheses. What I read in his posts is a denialist who's willing to listen -- occasionally -- to reason. That in itself is remarkable.

But I'm greatly disturbed by this comment:

there is a reason we have the term "troll"

I have always regarded the term to describe a person who seeks to disrupt a discussion by using ugly behaviors. But I sense that the term is morphing into a new meaning: anybody who disagrees with the prevailing set of beliefs on a given board. I don't like that change at all, because it suggests that it is impossible for two people to have an honest disagreement. If the only purpose of these discussions is for everybody to slap each other on the back and confirm their own beliefs, then I need to find more intellectually robust fora.

By Erasmussimo (not verified) on 17 May 2010 #permalink

Let's not also forget that Brent facetiously "changed" viewpoints halfway through, and attempted trolling in another thread under a different name.

> I sense that the term is morphing into a new meaning: anybody who disagrees with the prevailing set of beliefs on a given board.

Not in this case. I referred to "troll" in response to the behaviour you outlined because I believe the standard definition of "trolling" is at least an equally viable explanation to the one that you provided.

By Lotharsson (not verified) on 18 May 2010 #permalink

he is either an extremely clever propagandist

I can see how he would seem extremely clever to you.

By truth machine, OM (not verified) on 19 May 2010 #permalink

I need to find more intellectually robust fora

It's always amusing to watch pompous jerks completely lacking in self-reflection act out their little games.

I'd advise you not to let the door slam your ass on the way out, but we all know you're not going anywhere.

By truth machine (not verified) on 19 May 2010 #permalink

I sense that the term is morphing into a new meaning: anybody who disagrees with the prevailing set of beliefs on a given board.

That's quite a notion, that the findings of science are a "prevailing set of beliefs" that belong to "a given board", rather than being the best inference from available evidence. Sorry, but AGW is not just one opinion among others on which "intellectually robust" persons can disagree; there are objective reasons why it is the prevailing view in every "intellectually robust" community.

Not to mention Brent's numerous blatant and explicit trolling behaviors that have been repeatedly referenced.

By truth machine, OM (not verified) on 20 May 2010 #permalink

If the only purpose of these discussions is for everybody to slap each other on the back and confirm their own beliefs

What's amusing is how you repeatedly slap yourself on the back and confirm your own beliefs. If one examines the threads here, one finds that they do not at all fit your characterization. There is, rather, a lot of reinforcement of the science, and critical response to the deniers, both the trolls who post here and the dissemblers who have a wider public presence. If the trolls totally disappeared from here, there would still be plenty to write in defense of science.

By truth machine, OM (not verified) on 20 May 2010 #permalink

However, he is either an extremely clever propagandist or a person struggling with the truth. You're welcome to subscribe to the more conspiratorial of the two hypotheses.

As opposed to your subscription to the less evidentially supported one.

By truth machine, OM (not verified) on 20 May 2010 #permalink

And best wishes to you, too, truth machine! ;-)

By Erasmussimo (not verified) on 20 May 2010 #permalink

Brent closes his participation in the Empirical Evidence thread with a gracious comment

And yet even there he reveals himself to be a blatant liar:

Mr. Lambert, thank you for providing a platform for the fiery debate on this thread. Before debating with warmists - the smart and the dumb, the professionally cool and the abusive, the qualified and the layman - I had little idea of how cogent the AGW theory was, and rather frustrated that the partisan nature of the Great Debate prevented the creation of common ground.

From [Brent's first post one this board](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2010/03/the_empirical_evidence_for_man…):

Whilst much of the supporting logic of the AGW hypothesis is watertight, I doubt the overall conclusion. Given that there are bright, educated, informed, sincere people on both sides, I'll welcome energetic counterarguments but, please, no abuse.

Brent has a few stock phrases and concepts that he repeats over and over again, including a few "gracious" ones. It's a handy strategy for reeling in people with an accomodationist ideology and extraordinary selective perception like our friend Erasmussimo.

By truth machine, OM (not verified) on 20 May 2010 #permalink

And best wishes to you, too, truth machine! ;-)

It's so easy for pretentious twits like you and Brent to dismiss substantive criticism.

By truth machine, OM (not verified) on 20 May 2010 #permalink

the creation of common ground

Brent has been quite clear as to what "common ground" he would like to achieve:

I suggest that a true victory would be Michael Mann declaring, âBased on the data I then had, the Hockey Stick was good science. But in the light of the new evidence, I agree that recent decades are well within historical range. Maybe the âdriverâ â if any driver is required â is solar. Whilst we all agree that CO2 is a greenhouse gas, we now know that its variations are a consequence of temperature changes, not a cause.â And they all lived happily ever after ;-)

Brent appears to truly believe this. It's "gracious" in the sense of accepting that people he disgrees with believe things for good reason; that as least some of us are "wrong, not evil". But it's an idée fixe, a conclusion reached far ahead of the evidence, and held despite the evidence. It is not the sort of view held by "a fair-minded person", one who is "intellectually robust".

By truth machine, OM (not verified) on 20 May 2010 #permalink

Truth Machine, you've more than made your point.

I looked up what you were given your OM for (after I looked up what OM meant, I was curious). Quoting:

>There are so many names, of course, but there can be no finer sight in the blogosphere than checking a few day old thread, and scrolling down, only to find about 30 posts by this guy - taking names (of literally everyone) with his barbed rhetoric and kick-you-in-the-nuts grandiloquence.

Well this could easily apply to the Empirical Evidence thread, and indeed this thread. You've kicked nuts with grandiloquence indeed, but I'm a little tired of this particular nut kicking now. *Awaits nut kicking*

I disagree with you on one point though. Brent and Erasmussimo are not both pretentious twits. They're not even similar. Brent loves confrontation, he attempts to draw it out of people by playing the innocent and then being a complete twofaced jackass. Erasmussimo, OTOH, is the opposite; doesn't like confrontation, but is at least consistent. Well, as far as I can tell anyway. So getting them together in the same thread was a bit of a disaster waiting to happen. Erasmussimo was strung along while Brent was jackassing.

Man that thread takes ages to load... so many pointless
comments that shouldn't need to be made.

you've more than made your point

I actually made several points.

Brent and Erasmussimo are not both pretentious twits. They're not even similar.

Brent and Erasmussimo are dissimilar in many ways, but they are both most certainly pretentious twits. Most of Erasmussimo's posts of late have been to complain about others insulting poor Brent (and before him James), all the while saying that he's just interested in science, not personalities. You're half-right that he doesn't like confrontation -- he doesn't like to be confronted, but feels free to lecture others about their tone. He's a pathetic coward and a hypocrite.

By truth machine (not verified) on 21 May 2010 #permalink

That's it. I've cracked. Banged up here in the Troll Dungeon, I shall talk to the walls. Like the prisoner in Life of Brian who thanked the jailer for spitting at him, I shall miss the cheery dialogue with Marcel Truthmachine.

An article on WUWT puzzles over the sparkling media success of the Global Warming story:

http://wattsupwiththat.com/2010/05/23/cause-for-alarm/#comments

My contribution:

Anna V's comment above (May 24, 12:44) is a fine piece of analysis.

Those of us who see Global Warming as a fairy tale are sometimes amused by the warmists' hysteria, their endless stream of dud predictions, their ever-growing list of bad things caused by global warming. And we are sometimes exasperated when we observe the success that the end-is-nigh brigade have enjoyed - UN bodies, government departments, windmills and commodity exchanges to name a few.

If we are so right (which we surely are) how come the preposterous scare story has not yet collapsed? And how much longer will its zombie corpse stagger on? And how come we cannot despatch it with one athletic lunge of the rapier? (Oops, mixed movie metaphor there - Dawn of the Dead meets the Three Musketeers!)

I think that Anna's analysis can point the way. If we understand the psychology behind the AGW myth we can confront it more effectively and then defeat it. She makes the good point that a few cold winters will help reduce AGW advocates to a laughing stock, but these slippery customers can play the "temporary reprieve" card for decades to come.

For what it's worth, I see two possible strategies - one scientific and the other political.

Scientific victory can come from focussing the debate on the two key AGW arguments: positive feedback and greenhouse forcing. Demonstrate (as excellent WUWT articles argue so often) that climate has natural negative feedback mechanisms - rather than positive with its consequent (yeek!) tipping point - and we kick away a leg of their stool. Demolish the IPCC claim (Chapter 2, p.136) that CO2 is far-and-away the biggest temperature driver (dwarfing water vapour, dwarfing volcanic, dwarfing solar) and the theory collapses.

There remains the possibility that feedback IS positive, and carbon IS the only game in town, in which case the IPCC, and the Royal Society, Australia's AAS and the US's NAS have been advising governments wisely. In this case, we doubting Thomases must shut up and get building that ark, muttering "Sun and cloud have no effect on climate... who'dathunkit?!".

Political victory is, I think, much harder. Nobody on the sceptic side can match Al Gore's presentation skills, but boy do we need a hero; with the US's EPA declaring CO2 a pollutant, the reputation of this useful trace gas will be mud for a long time; with a UK government department bearing the title "Energy and Climate Change", their raison d'etre is embedded in the language. (If they create a Ministry of Exorcism and Witch Drowning I bet they'd manage to recruit and to spend the budget with great skill.)

Is the AGW theory a vast conspiracy? I think not. It's more likely a form of mass delusion afflicting especially the intelligentsia. Does it "at least raise green awareness"? Perversely, yes, but I think it diverts precious resource from vitally important areas such as habitat conservation, and is more likely to lead to green-fatigue among the general public.

I can give you one sure-fire way that the AGW hypothesis can collapse, and it has nothing to do with heroes or one (or three) cold winters.

A clear worldwide, longer-lasting cooling trend that can be plotted, and is not attributable to the plot starting in a massive el-nino year like 1998.

Alas, global temperatures [seem to still be](http://data.giss.nasa.gov/gistemp/graphs/Fig.A2.lrg.gif) at record high levels. Even if 1998 was warmer than 1999-2009 (in itself debatable), almost every one of those years is still among the few warmest years in the instrumental record.

A cooling trend like that seen from 1940 to about 1970 in the [GISS graph](http://data.giss.nasa.gov/gistemp/graphs/Fig.A2.lrg.gif) would most certainly see climate scientists scrambling for answers, and many of them (at least myself), breathing a sigh of relief that the climate system is more resilient than we gave it credit for. The thing that not many people contributing to, for example, WUWT don't realise, is that most people researching climate change (in my experience) would rather be shown that we got it wrong, and how we got it wrong, than to have to be, as they are dubbed, 'prophets of doom'.

It's hard to work you out Brent. Your persistence at least tells me you are either incredibly comitted or genuinely interested. However some of your comments in the Empirical evidence thread seem to betray a certain dishonesty, after [you yourself](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2010/03/the_empirical_evidence_for_man…) contended that you came with an open mind accepting that the logic behind AGW was 'rock solid' (a strange statement to make anyway, since the hypothesis relies on science and not so much on logic, which can lead to fallacy).

Ah, Brent reverts to his mean (mis-)understanding of the science, thereby disavowing several of his previous statements...

> If we are so right (which we surely are) how come the preposterous scare story has not yet collapsed?

Ah, a very good question, even if weighed down by an unsupported assumption, but one I fear you are ill equipped to answer. And if "surely you are", why write so much about what might be the case if you are not?

> ...muttering "Sun and cloud have no effect on climate... who'dathunkit?!".

You persist in fallaciously "excluding the middle" (all-or-nothing thinking), which leads you to much error. For example:

> ...I think it diverts precious resource from vitally important areas such as habitat conservation...

... because climate change is completely unrelated to *habitat conservation*?

By Lotharsson (not verified) on 24 May 2010 #permalink

MFS, what you say about any repeat of the 1940-1970 cooling makes good sense. It has been hard to pin people down on 'falsifiability criteria' - either way - and, as you say, a few cold winters are irrelevant to the scientific confirmation/refutation. But the common man's perceptions are partly based on what he can personally observe in his own garden, partly on media reports of the cryosphere (my nifty new-word-of-the week) and on sea levels etc. Until now politicians are not howled down when they allocate billions to fighting climate change. But if Goremageddon fails to materialise that day must come.

Here's my half-baked view of science: I divide the field into three, call them Classical, Modern and Empirical. I am stuck in the classical frame of mind, where Newton and Euclid and - say - Mendeleev make perfect intuitive sense. Modern science - say Einstein and Feynman and Crick - is demonstrably true but exposes the limitations of so-called common sense and intuition. Empirical science would include Bode's Law of planetary distance, earthquake prediction, climate science, stockmarket punditry and Nostradamus's work.

It's maybe perjorative to lump those five together, but I see the following theme running through them:

a. Based on observation and pattern-recognition

b. Has a measure of success in making verifiable forecasts, but expects exceptions to be tolerated.

c. Claims authority due to greater data-gathering than critics can muster.

d. Inelegant.

You wonder why I have such persistence and interest in this subject. The short answer is that I reckon that the IPCC's oeuvre is soft science masquerading as hard, and if Global Warming is a chimera it is starving more deserving causes of precious resource.

You mention the 'dishonesty' I displayed on the Empirical Evidence thread. You're maybe referring to my comical claim to be 'on board', pretending (transparently) not to be a heretic: yeah, it went down badly ('trolling' was my new word in April!). Maybe to being sarcastic to the rude-boys: yeah, should've kept my temper. I came to Deltoid for honourable debate, but quickly learned that the term 'heretic' was pronounced 'troll' in these parts.

Despite the unpleasant sectarianism, I feel that the key areas of sensitivity and feedback are coming into focus, and a resolution a tad closer. May the best clan win!

Let's play a game I call "Brent then, Brent now"

Brent then:

By the way, we STILL have frost in the mornings. It's nearly May, fer Chrissakes! Outrageous! If a new Little Ice Age has started, triggered by a repeat of the Maunder Minimum, maybe we should be planning a major CO2 Production Programme. Brrr!

Brent now:

It has been hard to pin people down on 'falsifiability criteria' - either way - and, as you say, a few cold winters are irrelevant to the scientific confirmation/refutation.

Brent then:

I share your fury at the obscene fraud that is AGW

Brent now:

Is the AGW theory a vast conspiracy? I think not

Please, join.

HI BRENT!!

Brent has an enourmous ego and is unable to leave us knowing he didn't even make a blow against Deltoid or the science of AGW. Surprise, surprise.

"who'dathunkit?!"

Let's play a game I call "Brent then, Brent now"

Brent then:

By the way, we STILL have frost in the mornings. It's nearly May, fer Chrissakes! Outrageous! If a new Little Ice Age has started, triggered by a repeat of the Maunder Minimum, maybe we should be planning a major CO2 Production Programme. Brrr!

Brent now:

It has been hard to pin people down on 'falsifiability criteria' - either way - and, as you say, a few cold winters are irrelevant to the scientific confirmation/refutation.

Brent then:

I share your fury at the obscene fra*d that is AGW

Brent now:

Is the AGW theory a vast conspiracy? I think not

Please, join.

Anyway, I have to say this is the most amusing comment I've read from Brent in a while:

"In this case, we doubting Thomases must shut up and get building that ark, muttering "Sun and cloud have no effect on climate... who'dathunkit?!"."

Where have any of us said that? Prove me wrong or conceed the point.

Oh, you're wrong?

Who'dathunkit?!

Lotharsson: I concede that if Climate Change is happening as forecast by the IPCC, this must be a great threat to species and habitat.

MFS: I once wrote: "Whilst much of the supporting logic of the AGW hypothesis is watertight, I doubt the overall conclusion." I meant: Yes, there's a greenhouse effect; yes, CO2 is a greenhouse gas; yes, fossil fuels produce CO2; yes, more CO2 must result in higher temperatures; yes, ice-ages and interglacials are punctuated by tipping points.

My reservations were twofold: (i)The annual downtick of CO2 every northern summer suggests a very high absorbtion (or is that reaction?) rate rather than an irreversible accumulation, hence my interest in 'residence time' - 10 years by my calculation, 1000 according to the Royal Society. (ii)The claim that we are at this moment right on the brink of a tipping point. If maths be the language of science, who will demonstrate that 392PPM is the tipping point rather than 393 or 394 or 1000PPM?

I concede that the Royal Society is an august institution and that I am Mister Nobody. But I have done a calculation of exponential decay and I suspect that the Royal Society's figure was typed by somebody with good hair and a degree in Public Relations.

John (31): It seems you took literally my tongue-in-cheek complaint about chilly May mornings in England. Our friend Chek came up with an old saying: 'Ne'er cast a clout 'til May be out'. I wish he'd said: 'Yon John be so sharp 'ee be likely cut imsen.'

I no longer believe that AGW is an obscene fr*ud. I concede that folks like you genuinely believe we're on the brink of runaway Global Warming; that you are not knowingly perpetrating some wicked deception. Far-fetched though it seems, there remains the possibility that you're right. I'm grateful that you have given me a flavour of your sincerity.

My crack about 'building an ark' is ironic of course but, irony aside, are you personally making preparations for the wellbeing of your nearest and dearest? Do you worry about, say, food supplies or coastal flooding or hordes of climate refugees? Not trying to embarrass you here: I once cashed in a pension because I was sure to die in a rain of Soviet ICBMs! Been there, done that: taking my fears to their logical conclusion.

May I please ask any warmists listening in for their views on energy security?

The situation varies, of course, from country to country. In Britain we'll be retiring a major chunk of our generating capacity in the next decade or so, and blackouts are unthinkable in an advanced economy; the lights must stay on. Despite the safety and waste concerns, are warmists enthusiastic for nuclear? Do warmists acknowledge how unreliable and expensive wind energy is?

I do wonder if there's an anti-development agenda in warmist circles, a desire to return to some rose-tinted state of grace, to the good old days.

Shorter Brent: _May I please divert attention from the fact that I am a brazen liar?_

> concede that folks like you genuinely believe we're on the brink of runaway Global Warming; that you are not knowingly perpetrating some wicked deception. Far-fetched though it seems, there remains the possibility that you're right. I'm grateful that you have given me a flavour of your sincerity.

Brent you're misrepresenting. The default 'warmist' position is not that we're on the brink of runaway global warming. That's an alarmist position.

The 'warmist' position, if I had to define one that covers the most people, is that we are already in a warming trend that we are able to attribute mostly to anthropogenic factors with a high degree of certainty. Physics being what it is, the cause-and-effect relationship will continue into the future with the anthropogenic signal growing larger and therefore further from what could reasonably be termed within the range of natural variation, or within a natural rate of change.

Since this trend goes outside natural bounds at some point (depending on your definitions this may have already happened, particularly in sensitive areas), it stresses natural systems that humans interact with or rely on, hence the concern that global warming is likely to be bad for humanity.

Besides, what do you define as runaway global warming compared to non-runaway global warming?

Onto answering Brent's deflection question:

>Despite the safety and waste concerns, are warmists enthusiastic for nuclear? Do warmists acknowledge how unreliable and expensive wind energy is?

My answers are yes and yes. I am for nuclear to at least partially fill the energy gap. Also, offshore wind farms do offer higher efficiency than onshore sites, so I'm not anti wind per se, so long as it's done right. I feel the same about biofuels.

TrueSceptic @ 32,

Indeed, but do you not think that a repeat of that cooldown would cause most climate scientists to reevaluate their work? And do you not think that if that event re-occurred and had no clearly identifiable cause, it would test anybody's patience? I would like to think we have long memories but in my experience they are remarkably short.

A common accusation of denialists is that there is nothing that would cause global warming to be discarded by its adherents, they would merely modify the hypothesis to include the observations.

The observed warming trend goes back a little less than 200 years. What length of a cooling trend would start to make us seriously doubt our own results: 30 years? 50? At some point in time, we'd give up, or be overwhelmed by a competing explanation. I see no reason this would occur, but I don't pretend to understand the climate system so completely as to discard the idea out of hand. Not that this has any bearing on the validity of our current research, if you don't base decision-making on the best informed opinion available, what do you base it on?

Of course if for example, Lake Taupo erupted next year with an intensity of VEI8, and blotted out the north island of New Zealand, ejecting many cubic kilometers of aerosols and SO2 into the atmosphere, we'd have a clearly identifiable reason for cooling, which would fail to invalidate anything.

Brent @ 36,

Wind energy is indeed more expensive than burning coal. However, all other things being equal, coal is finite and polluting. Petrol from under the sands of Texas was a lot cheaper than extracted from the North Sea, yet the latter eventually became profitable. Oil shale is still too expensive to exploit, but will this always be the case? If the damage caused by CO2 pollution is high enough, and you can put a price on it, then you have a more realistic basis for comparison.

Nuclear is a logical stop-gap measure but, like coal, finite, and carries a measure of risk that wind and solar do not. There has also historically been a political reluctance to deal with both nuclear waste and decommissioned power plants, and (politicians being what they are) I don't see that changing in a hurry. Hydroelectricity is of course the most efficient, if the price you pay to drown land is low enough (i.e. drowning marginal farmland vs. rare, high biodiversity habitat, or a city).

For your illustration, since you seem interested in how people end up in one camp or another, I will tell you why my views are what they are. I don't have blind belief in everything AGW related. Rather I make my own mind when my expertise are good enough to understand the science, and to an extend defer to people whose expertise are better than mine when I don't have the knowledge to asses the science myself.
I am more in the AGW camp from opposition to the campaign of misinformation and lies coming from the other side. Whenever I see an anti-AGW argument that involves science I know about first hand, it has been invariably misinterpreted or twisted to mean other than what it does. I see Monckton making claims that the globe has been cooling since 1998, when almost every year after that has been among the highest on record, and if you take any other year than 1998 as the starting point, the world has been warming. I see Plimer making claims that it's the volcanoes, even though he has not done any research on undersea volcanoes, yet continues to claim they emit much more CO2 than humans even after being confronted with the truth by people who DO study them. I see people claiming it's the sun, even though the correlation between sun and global temperatures breaks down after the 1970s, and this is the period of the highest warming. I see posts claiming that it was warmer in Iceland in the 1400s, and this invalidates global warming, when Iceland is not the globe and the fact that it was warmer then need not preclude the fact that we are the ones causing the problem now.

More than anything I see people claiming it's a conspiracy of scientists to line their own pockets. Being one myself this seems about as far-fetched as you can get: we earn a pittance compared to private industry, we certainly did not go through a minimum of 8 years training (for those with Ph.Ds) for the money, and research funding is audited as strictly as any other source of public money (Governments and Universities don't like to be rorted or defrauded), precluding the chance of, as some put it, 'lining our own pockets', 'riding the gravy train', or even outright 'perpetrating fraud'.

Do you start to see the picture through my mind?

Oh, cr@p, I used the word 'fr@ud' again... Another long post in moderation :)

So much for

Iâm afraid that I cannot participate in a âBrent Threadâ, which suggests that I personally am the issue, or that my opinions are important.

Of course Brent thinks his opinions are important, despite being the product of mental incompetence at several levels; he's the ultimate demonstration of the Dunning-Kruger effect.

If we are so right (which we surely are)

Why, Brent? Why is that surely so?

By truth machine (not verified) on 24 May 2010 #permalink

It's hard to work you out Brent.

He's an ideologue, and his being ideologically driven enhances his natural mental incompetence.

However some of your comments in the Empirical evidence thread seem to betray a certain dishonesty

Dishonesty characterizes Brent's comments, such as

CO2 is far-and-away the biggest temperature driver (dwarfing water vapour

He knows that's a lie, and if he didn't know before, he's been told, and if he forgot, let's tell him again.

"Sun and cloud have no effect on climate... who'dathunkit?!".

He knows that's a lie; he's been repeatedly been told the obvious, that we don't believe that, but attributing an absurd position to "warmists" is critical to his argumentation.

the US's EPA declaring CO2 a pollutant, the reputation of this useful trace gas will be mud for a long time

He knows that is a lie, or at least misleading, since he just acknowledged that "Yes, there's a greenhouse effect; yes, CO2 is a greenhouse gas; yes, fossil fuels produce CO2; yes, more CO2 must result in higher temperatures", and the EPA's ruling was in that regard:

On December 7, 2009, the Administrator signed two distinct findings regarding greenhouse gases under section 202(a) of the Clean Air Act:

Endangerment Finding: The Administrator finds that the current and projected concentrations of the six key well-mixed greenhouse gases--carbon dioxide (CO2), methane (CH4), nitrous oxide (N2O), hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs), perfluorocarbons (PFCs), and sulfur hexafluoride (SF6)--in the atmosphere threaten the public health and welfare of current and future generations.
Cause or Contribute Finding: The Administrator finds that the combined emissions of these well-mixed greenhouse gases from new motor vehicles and new motor vehicle engines contribute to the greenhouse gas pollution which threatens public health and welfare.
These findings do not themselves impose any requirements on industry or other entities. However, this action is a prerequisite to finalizing the EPA's proposed greenhouse gas emission standards for light-duty vehicles, which EPA proposed in a joint proposal including the Department of Transportation's proposed CAFE standards on September 15, 2009.

Were Brent to acknowledge his dishonest misrepresentations, his position would fall apart, so his defective personality ensures that he will avoid such cognitive dissonance. Or he will momentarily acknowledge a misrepresentation but never withdraw the argument that depended on it, and then later act as if he had never made the acknowledgment, going back around the goldfish bowl.

By truth machine (not verified) on 24 May 2010 #permalink

HI BRENT!!!!!

Nice work Dave R, there is coffee all over my monitor now.

May I please ask any warmists listening in for their views on energy security?

No.

It seems you took literally my tongue-in-cheek complaint about chilly May mornings in England.

That's funny. You admit yourself that you don't see the difference between weather and climate so it doesn't appear very tongue in cheek.

'Ne'er cast a clout 'til May be out'. I wish he'd said: 'Yon John be so sharp 'ee be likely cut imsen.'

Ah yes, the famed wit that's been missing here since your seventeenth (or is it eighteenth?) announced exit.

I no longer believe that AGW is an obscene fr*ud.

A lie.

I concede that folks like you genuinely believe we're on the brink of runaway Global Warming.

Find anywhere I've said words to that effect or conceed you're wrong.

My crack about 'building an ark' is ironic of course.

Of course.

My crack about 'building an ark' is ironic of course but, irony aside, are you personally making preparations for the wellbeing of your nearest and dearest?

Sigh.

Do you worry about, say, food supplies or coastal flooding or hordes of climate refugees?

Is there any answer I could give that won't result in more pushups?

More crap from Brent - who'dathunkit?!

> It has been hard to pin people down on to get people to sign up for my bogus 'falsifiability criteria'...

There - fixed it for you.

Because there were a number of clear falsifiability criteria on the Empirical Evidence thread - some of which you appeared to understand for a day or three before losing that understanding and reverting to goldfish mode.

By Lotharsson (not verified) on 24 May 2010 #permalink

> The annual downtick of CO2 every northern summer suggests a very high absorbtion (or is that reaction?) rate rather than an irreversible accumulation, hence my interest in 'residence time' - 10 years by my calculation, 1000 according to the Royal Society.

[Once](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2010/03/the_empirical_evidence_for_man…) more [around](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2010/03/the_empirical_evidence_for_man…) the goldfish [bowl](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2010/03/the_empirical_evidence_for_man…).

By Lotharsson (not verified) on 24 May 2010 #permalink

> ...if Climate Change is happening as forecast by the IPCC, this must be a great threat to species and habitat...

...but you have not bothered to try and find out what's *already* happening to species and habitat...

> The claim that we are at this moment right on the brink of a tipping point.

Strawman ("...attributing an absurd position to "warmists" is critical to his argumentation.")

And fallacious argument. The science - and the concerns stemming from it - do not depend on whether we can identify any (one of a number of) tipping points *highly precisely or not*.

By Lotharsson (not verified) on 24 May 2010 #permalink

Stu (38): Thank you for distinguishing between a 'warmist' position and an 'alarmist' one. I stand corrected. So the 'tipping point' with disappearing polecaps and consequent lower albedo and positive feedback loop should not be attributed to the entire warmist movement then.

And thank you for your straight answer on energy security.

Several of your comments fall into that third category of science I was trying to sketch out in my #29. I have a problem with 'fuzzy science', science which makes qualitative claims but shies away from quantitative prediction. For instance, your words "what could reasonably be termed within the range of natural variation" and "goes outside natural bounds at some point". The Lotharsseon is another such example.

The emergence of Chaos maths shone a light on those awkward nonlinear areas of nature which had previously defied definition; it helped define the limits of knowability, and not just in meteorology. When the UK Met Office subsequently gave up on its notorious Long Range Weather Forecasts there was an audible sigh of relief. I imagine that the Met men were thinking, "It WASN'T that we were rubbish at it; we were attempting the mathematically impossible. We now know it was a mug's game."

My point is maybe best summed up as "Soft science making hard predictions puts its reputation in peril."

MFS @ 39: "Do you start to see the picture through my mind?"

I do indeed. I see the effort you put into writing it, and I shall reread it several times.

[Brent](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2010/05/brent_thread.php#comment-2540721):
>I have a problem with 'fuzzy science', science which makes qualitative claims but shies away from quantitative prediction.

No you don't, you liar. You have made numerous such claims about volcanoes, cosmic rays etc without making any quantitative predictions and you have consistently refused to address the [real quantitative predictions](http://tamino.wordpress.com/2008/01/31/you-bet/) that others have made.

39 MFS,

Oh, I agree. I was just pointing out that the "1940-70 cooling" wasn't actually cooling for 30 years even though people commonly say it was.

Do we know why that happened? WW2 and its aftermath? It certainly looks odd when you look at the whole century. Are there adjustments due to ocean temperature measurement changes (buckets vs intakes, etc.) still in the pipeline? I've heard nothing about that for a while now.

By TrueSceptic (not verified) on 25 May 2010 #permalink

More irony from Brent. He prefers the "hard science" on offer at WUWT.

>So the 'tipping point' with disappearing polecaps and consequent lower albedo and positive feedback loop should not be attributed to the entire warmist movement then.

No, the positive feedback is real. It must be, otherwise ice ages couldn't happen.

However, the positive feedback is an ongoing process. 'Tipping point' implies something far more unstable, where the warming would undergo a sudden acceleration. I'm not saying there isn't such a point, but I don't think we can know with any certainty where it is to be found, or if such a tipping point even exists in the range of possible outcomes.

Anyway, onwards.

The UKMeto gave up LRF because they weren't getting it right. However, it wasn't that they suddenly became aware of chaos theory and subsequently abandoned them, as you seem to imply (not sure whether you meant to). Forecasters have long learned to use chaos theory by making ensemble forecasts.

Chaos theory is less of an issue in modelling climate. If you have actually looked into chaos theory much, you could consider the climate to be an attractor, defining the limits within which the weather occurs.

Dave (49): "....you liar. You have made numerous such claims about volcanoes, cosmic rays etc without making any quantitative predictions..."

Dave, must you use that language? Are you saying that the burden of proof on me - in wondering out loud whether solar and other forcings are weighted correctly relative to CO2 forcing - is subject to the same QA as these weighty bodies advising governments on billion-dollar projects to combat Global Warming?

I point out a correlation between the Maunder Minimum and the LIA, and speculate that (maybe, one day, and maybe never) the astrophysicists will give us the physics governing causality; the Government Chief Scientist says, "Yeah, let's stick CCS units on our power stations. Efficiency losses will be measured in TWh and billions of pounds, but at least we'll get the face-painted drum-beating neoapocalypticists off our backs". Burden of proof is on your tribe, Dave.

I was reading somewehere recently about a calculation of how many tenths of a degree could be knocked off global temperatures if we shut down the western economies for a year. Of course, this ain't going to happen, but I do wonder whether the philosophical fault-line between us is one of pro-or-anti development.

One small example: I see Kenyans building up a highly professional infrastructure to supply green beans to UK supermarkets, and admire the management skills and service-sector spin-off; you (driving your Hummer to the local farm shop) tut-tut and preach about the carbon footprint of Nairobi-Manchester airfreight.

Tell me, if a new age of carbon-free energy were to arrive, would you celebrate that or would you resentfully accept the consequent development opportunities through gritted teeth? Is carbon dioxide a surrogate for your real bete noire: energy usage?

Dave, must you use that language?

Tone troll. Dave is allowed speak however he pleases to proven liars.

Are you saying that the burden of proof on me - in wondering out loud whether solar and other forcings are weighted correctly relative to CO2 forcing - is subject to the same QA as these weighty bodies advising governments on billion-dollar projects to combat Global Warming?

Yes. Can't have it both ways.

I was reading somewehere recently about a calculation of how many tenths of a degree could be knocked off global temperatures if we shut down the western economies for a year. Of course, this ain't going to happen, but I do wonder whether the philosophical fault-line between us is one of pro-or-anti development.

More uncited out-loud musing and distraction trolling from Brent. How thrilling to bear witness to his tortured thought process yet again.

Brent,

Some of your logic is impeccably simple and stupid, if I may say so.

You ought to learn a little about the economics of exploitation in Africa (Books by Patrick Bond, Pepe Escobar or Amir Amin might be good sources to start with). Export crops that are grown in Africa generally do not support local economies, but are used to pay off IMF and World Bank structual adjustment loans. Have you ever been to Africa? Spoke with the locals? Read some appropriate literature on the matter? In 1983, African exports accounted for 4% of the global economy. By 2003 this had shrunk to 1.3%. Essentially, the west 'loots' Africa's vast resource wealth.

Economic plundering has always been a core of western economic policy. Our government planners are smart enough to know that there are not enough resources to go around, especially at western levels of consumption and waste production. But they cannot say this to the masses; instead, our politicians have to wring their hearts in public and claim to want to do everything they can to create a sustainable world. Only its a big, bald, lie. They know damend well that if everyone on Earth consumed resources like the average American or west European, that we would need three or four Earth-like planets to sustain this. And Earth-like planets, at least the last time I looked, are in short supply. We have but one. At the same time, so long as most people remain dirt poor in the south, this will allow us to reach beyond our borders and take - as cheaply as possible - the raw materials we require to maintain consumption as currently defined. This is how ecological debtor nations - which describes every developed country as a matter of fact - can maintain ecological deficits in their own countries. They can do this by taking the materials from less developed nations with ecological surpluses. This isa done through wholly unfaor trade practices. Essentially, trade does not increase carrying capacity, it just shuffles it around. Once the poor countries, however, begin to experience significant per-capita increases in consumption and affluence, by exploiting the resources in their own countries, this will conflict with the consumptive levels in the north, because we exploit their raw materials as well. Something would have to give.

With respect to 'development', what the hell do you mean by that? Its a word with a million meanings that mean different things to different people. Moreover, the western economies might not shut down because of concern over climate change, but there is little doubt that they will shut down eventually if we continue on the present course. That course is based on the profoundly large (and growing) ecological deficit that essentially supports one fifth of the world's population. Given that the material (= human) economy is utterly dependent on the health and vitality of natural systems (= the natural economy), and that the latter is is terminal decline, it does not take much brain power to realize that the material economy is heading for a wall. The question is in determining when we are going to hit that wall, of if we will finally wake up to the abundant signs before it is too late. No amount of human ingenuity or arrogance will suffice if we past a critical point; by then we will have to brace ourselves for a period of consequences: nasty ones.

Finally, given that the proceeds of development are primarily monopolized by the rich in the north (and elites in the south), how do you reconcile the fact that there has never been any real attempt to reduce the levels of grinding poverty in the south by the quad? There is abundant evidence for this, but many of us who are benficiaries of wholly unjust economic policies do not apparently want to face up to it and to rock the boat. Social injustiece lies at the hear to of many of the world's most pressing environmental problems.

Your 'highly professional infrastructure' comment is therefore a load of b*s. Its comic-book level analysis of the truth. I have been too busy of late to respond to the crap peddled by some on Deltoid (you, Tim Curtin, Sunspot and a few others) but your last post was so shallow that even I had to respond. Finally, climate change will not have a trivial effect on western economies. Given the fact that it is likely to ravage the ecological infrastructure underlying western economies, the costs may very well be profound. Your problem is that you write a lot of anthropocentric gibberish that expunges the utter dependence of our economic well-being on natural systems. It is high time that you learned a little about the inexorable link between the material and natural economies.

By Jeff Harvey (not verified) on 25 May 2010 #permalink

Brent,

>Tell me, if a new age of carbon-free energy were to arrive, would you celebrate that or would you resentfully accept the consequent development opportunities through gritted teeth? Is carbon dioxide a surrogate for your real bete noire: energy usage?

Sure, we're all closet anarcho-primitives. Just like all liberals are communists and/or fascists in drag.

Before you engage in speculative pseudo-psychology directed at your projected Other, perhaps you should practice a little introspection, first.

Though you might initially perceive them to be so, [these](http://watchingthedeniers.wordpress.com/2010/05/16/google-galileo-five-…) are not instruments of torture, and this is not the Inquisition.

Let us know if you possess the self awareness to see any small part of yourself reflected therein.

By luminous beauty (not verified) on 25 May 2010 #permalink

John (56): As you rightly say, I failed to 'cite' my source for the CO2 benefits of shutting down the world economy. It's a lovely chap called Monckton during a debate at the Oxford Union: http://sppiblog.org/news/oxford-union-debate-on-climate#more-1756. And he won!

Stu (54): I just dipped into James Gleick's 1988 book, Chaos. Talking about Lorenz and something called an intransitive system: "It can stay in one equilibrium or another, but not both. Only a kick from outside can force it to change states." This fits nicely with what we know of ice ages and interglacials and, yes, one such kick can be manmade CO2. But Lorenz then went on to describe "almost intransitivity", where a modest or even a tiny kick can do the job. Gleick concludes: "The Ice Ages may simply be a product of chaos." Much of our merry debate here hinges on 'drivers' and 'causality'; maybe we're all being a bit too - er - Newtonian (yeah, I know, I'm the worst culprit!)

I can't find references for Met guys benefiting from the new chaos theory in the 1980s and 90s, and pulling their horns in, so maybe I imagined it!

Jeff (57): You doubtless know Africa better than I do; I only know one corner, Morocco. I've seen camel caravans come in from the desert three decades ago, entranced and appalled at the same time. Last year, passing acres of poly-tunnels and highly organized clothing factories was very encouraging. My wife and I admired how this feisty little country is playing its many trump cards. You warn darkly of impending 'periods of nasty consequences' and 'the wall' and 'something would have to give'. I can't figure out if you see development in Africa as a good or a bad thing.

Imagine for a moment you're wrong about CO2, about climate change. (Go on, close your eyes and imagine it.) What a burden is lifted from your shoulders. The words 'electric power supply' are shorn of all the grinding guilt association. We lucky pampered westerners are hooked on energy; it supports our civilization. Could it be that the recent demonization of carbon is an irrational guilt trip, a mass psychological convulsion?

"Imagine for a moment you're wrong about CO2, about climate change. (Go on, close your eyes and imagine it.) What a burden is lifted from your shoulders."

I can imagine a lot of nice things that aren't so. The national debt is nonexistent. There's an afterlife. I have a chance with Jessica Alba. Wishin' don't make it so, alas. But I do understand how such desires can warp one's senses and make them believe arguments (climate denialism) that in most other areas of life they would find ridiculous. I happen to be a pretty diehard capitalist/libertarian who finds most aspects of socialism repulsive. But the natural world doesn't give a damn about economic systems and the climate will change under both if CO2 continues to rise in the atmosphere.

I know people, scientists, who will rip creationists a new one (and rightly so) over their idiotic claims yet they eat up a lot of the denialist nonsense because they are afraid that if AGW is true that somehow means capitalism is false. It doesn't. It means that fossil fuels increase GHG's and that will lead to a rise in temps. The first thing that anybody who wishes to live in the world and understand it has to do is accept the world as it is, not as one wishes it to be. As long as large segments of the Right refuse to accept the world as it is, they concede the issue to the Left by default. In my opinion, they do so needlessly. But it will be their undoing.

By Robert Murphy (not verified) on 25 May 2010 #permalink

>Imagine for a moment you're wrong about CO2, about climate change. (Go on, close your eyes and imagine it.) What a burden is lifted from your shoulders. The words 'electric power supply' are shorn of all the grinding guilt association. We lucky pampered westerners are hooked on energy; it supports our civilization.

That'd be great, but we'd still have that energy gap to fill. You know, the one you mentioned previously.

Luminous Beauty (58):

Ouch! The "Dear Google Galileo" website you linked to makes uncomfortable reading. Back on the Empirical Thread we discussed this broad subject, how we all of us have fields of expertise (well, I say 'all of us' but there's that Marcel Kincaid slug who's all mouth and trousers) and are innocent babes in other fields.

Your point is a valid one, though. Many of us are accessing instant and shallow knowledge. You are doubtless a polymath with an in depth knowledge of astronomy biology chemistry dendrochronology.... to yoga and zoology. If you're so clever why aren't you rich?

Bremt said: "Luminous Beauty ....If you're so clever why aren't you rich?"

Leaving aside the standard obvious answer I might ask in turn, Brent if your so stupid, why are YOU here?

Here's a little project for you Brent.
Go outside and take a look at the ash and chestnut trees.
Here in the UK, we're about two weeks into a late spring.
Why are great bunches of their leaves looking like early autumn already?

Do your bookbinders, accountants and mining consultants and weathermen's mobs have any answers for that? I've never seen any evidence of any genuine scientific understanding from any of them.

You can learn stuff here, but somehow in your case I doubt you ever will.

Brent,

My opinion. Real wealth is in living a satisfying life, not so much in the pursuit of amassing more and more money and material possessions. a lifetime of simple living has allowed me the opportunity to pursue a wide range of interests, visceral, emotional and intellectual, at some varying depths. I have discovered that sort of enrichment a gem of unsurpassed worth.

Imagine for a moment _you're_ wrong about CO2, about climate change. Imagine the magical negative feedback for which you are hoping against hope fails to appear. It's not so hard to do. What horrific burden must then descend upon your shoulders?

Wishing you unconditional happiness.

By luminous beauty (not verified) on 25 May 2010 #permalink

> I do wonder whether the philosophical fault-line between us is one of pro-or-anti development.

No.

This has been another edition of short answers to silly questions.

By Lotharsson (not verified) on 25 May 2010 #permalink

> Could it be that the recent demonization of carbon is an irrational guilt trip, a mass psychological convulsion?

No.

This has been another edition of short answers to silly questions.

By Lotharsson (not verified) on 25 May 2010 #permalink

> It's a lovely chap called Monckton during a debate at the Oxford Union...

ROFLMAO! Seriously, Monckton?!

I believe we need a corollary to Godwin's Law - anyone who needs to reference Monckton to support their argument in a thread about climate change is automatically and universally deemed to have failed.

By Lotharsson (not verified) on 25 May 2010 #permalink

It's hilarious Lotharsson. No wonder he wasn't keen citing it.

HI BRENT!!!!!

I just wanted to quote this one more time:

Imagine for a moment you're wrong about CO2, about climate change. (Go on, close your eyes and imagine it.) What a burden is lifted from your shoulders.

What a fantastic window into Brent's mind - if you wish it, you can believe it!

If you're so clever why aren't you rich?

Probably because Luminous Beauty hasn't chosen to work with the Heartland Institute or any of the other oil funded thinktanks (although I hear BP have to divert their money elsewhere these days). I keep telling the suckers on this forum that where the real money is. Not in a paltry grants to get yourself an extra research assistant for a couple of months. Nobody listens.

Some questions for Brent to ignore as he pleases beacuse they pertain to his lying, untruthfulness and weasly posting nature:

If you're so clever, Brent, why is the "rotten edifice" (your words) of AGW refusing to crumble?

Please answer directly in 50 words or less. Any answer you give will be compared against previous comments on the topic so try to be consistent.

John, the SPPI article contradicts itself in the first two paragraphs:

> ...an audience of university undergraduates has decisively rejected the notion that âglobal warmingâ is or could become a global crisis.

> Last week, members of the historic Oxford Union Society, the worldâs premier debating society, carried the motion âThat this House would put economic growth before combating climate changeâ by 135 votes to 110.

The motion does not preclude the notion that was stated.

By Lotharsson (not verified) on 25 May 2010 #permalink

Monckton's claim:

> He concluded that shutting down the entire global economy for a whole year, with all the death, destruction, disaster, disease and distress that that would cause, would forestall just 4.7 ln(390/388) = 0.024 Kelvin or Celsius degrees of âglobal warmingâ, so that total economic shutdown for 41 years would prevent just 1 K of warming.

...is interesting. Not sure why he's using a factor of 4.7 - I thought it was 5.35 - but he appears to implictly admit that (a) climate sensitivity is about what the IPCC says it is, and (b) human activities are causing significant warming. Which of course severely contradicts his own claims elsewhere.

And his argument rests on falsely conflating reducing or offsetting anthropogenic emissions with "shutting down the entire global economy", and on focusing on the impacts of his strawmen whilst drawing attention away from the impact of climate change - tactics which apparently sailed right over Brent's head, or met with his explicit approval.

By Lotharsson (not verified) on 25 May 2010 #permalink

Ah, wait, I posted without checking my memory - which I have problems with sometimes.

The 5.35 factor is in the *radiative forcing formula* (W/m^2), not the resulting temperature change. I have to run now, so until further investigation, note that my inferences about climate sensitivity based on Monckton's argument may be entirely wrong.

By Lotharsson (not verified) on 25 May 2010 #permalink

Monckton's "4.7 ln(C1/C0)" formula is probably derived from the IPCC's estimate of climate sensitivity that he quoted (3.26 degrees C per doubling of CO2 concentration). 3.26 lg(C1/C0) = 4.7 ln(C1/C0) (where "lg(x)" is the base 2 logarithm of x, as opposed to "ln(x)", the natural logarithm of x).

So yes, Monckton's argument used the IPCC's climate sensitivity. However I'm sure he would also say he personally believes it will be much lower, which - if true - would strengthen his argument.

Meanwhile, Monckton quoting the "standard deviation" might be considered a bit disingenuous, given that the science indicates that the distribution of likely values is quite asymmetric (they're pretty sure it's not less than 1.5C, but can't rule out it being something like 6C or 8C or maybe even higher).

And focusing on how *hard* it will be to avoid a certain amount of warming apparently proves to the undergrads in question here that the warming *isn't worth worrying about*. I guess it just goes to show that undergrads at a debating society meeting aren't necessarily good at spotting well-presented fallacies during a debate.

By Lotharsson (not verified) on 25 May 2010 #permalink

>He concluded that shutting down the entire global economy for a whole year, with all the death, destruction, disaster, disease and distress that that would cause...

Monckton is thus implying that it is impossible to adapt an economy to one that is not so heavily reliant on current increasing rates of fossil fuel conbustion.

Thus Monckton perscription is to continue the acceleation of fossil fuel combustion and thus reduce our adaptation time when we do run hard into depleation of the fuel which we'd structured our economy around.

Surely if energy productivity is critical to complex, healthy and high poplulous civilisations, then we need to chose a managed transition on our terms; rather than have the shock of a transiton imposed by scarcity and the slippery slope of the downside of a bell curve.

Monckton's apocalyptic vision is a future he'd bring us closer to rather than furthr away from.

> Monckton is thus implying that it is impossible to adapt an economy to one that is not so heavily reliant on current increasing rates of fossil fuel conbustion.

I'd say that technically he's not so much arguing it's "impossible" as "too expensive" - but that merely leads to the points you make about waiting only making the problem worse, and therefore likely to be even more "too expensive".

And he argues that case in a way that many people will hear as "it's impossible" (if it's too expensive now and more expensive later, it will *never* be "economically feasible"). In particular he implicitly excludes the middle and attacks the resulting strawman - he excludes from consideration the possibility you raised of managed transition, instead preferring to attack a false all or nothing choice (in this case literally nothing - no economic activity at all).

By Lotharsson (not verified) on 25 May 2010 #permalink

>Lord Lawson of Blaby [...] opened the case for the proposition by saying that [...] It would be better to wait and see whether the scientists had gotten it right.

Firstly one can only wonder what would convince Lord Lawson of something he's so committed to being unconvinced of. The evidence is already overwhelming that the risks are extreme. Just as the evidence is overwhelming that the EGHE has inertia, meaning that we are committed to more warming (until temperature reaches to new radiative equilibrium) even if and when we curb emissions.

Lawson's appraoch is the oppostie of cautious. It is high risk committing us to a prolonged time of accelerating emissions which extend the committment to warming far further. All while we wait for the fantasy moment when a group of contraians supposedly say 'sorry the scientist were close enought to being correct'. That is never going to happen, there will always be those idelogues committed to "suspicious thinking", and those who will never be convinced.

James Delingpole is a scientifically illiterate moron and a suitable representative of those who believe the empty trash he delivers.

To the proposition: *That this House would put economic growth before combating climate change*.

A misframed (and biased) question that establishes a false dichotomy and thus puts vital questions beyond the scope of debate. The two prefered elements (stable climate, and sound economy) are more interdependant than mutually exclusive. If find it hard to understand why the three arguing againt the propostion agree to it.

Pehaps the unstate assumption in the propostion was that we are going to put the short term ahead of the the long term (and who cares how soon the short term ends).

The invincibility of youth! Fed by the small world view developed by those who've especially prospered during the great ecological consumption.

>He glared at the opposition again and demanded whether, since they had declared themselves to be so worried about âglobal warmingâ, they would care to tell him â to two places of decimals and one standard deviation â the UNâs central estimate of the âglobal warmingâ that might result from a doubling of atmospheric CO2 concentration. The opposition were unable to reply. Lord Monckton told them the answer was 3.26 plus or minus 0.69 Kelvin or Celsius degrees. An Hon. Member interrupted: âAnd your reference is?â Lord Monckton replied: âIPCC, 2007, chapter 10, box 10.2.â [cheers].

Monckton is wrong, of course. [Box 10.2](http://www.ipcc.ch/publications_and_data/ar4/wg1/en/ch10s10-5.html) concludes:

>we conclude that the global mean equilibrium warming for doubling CO2, or âequilibrium climate sensitivityâ, is likely to lie in the range 2°C to 4.5°C, with a most likely value of about 3°C. Equilibrium climate sensitivity is very likely larger than 1.5°C.

Monckton's number is the mean and s.d. of the sensitivity for 18 different climate models.

By Tim Lambert (not verified) on 25 May 2010 #permalink

> Monckton is wrong, of course.

Of course ;-)

He's also wrong that "caring about global warming" necessitates being able to replicate Monckton's party trick of quoting certain figures to too many significant digits complete with detailed references (with the additional implication that he has sourced and applied those figures correctly and they support his conclusions).

But it certainly wows the undergrads...

By Lotharsson (not verified) on 25 May 2010 #permalink

John (68): A challenge well put! In 50 words or fewer, eh?

The rotten edifice of AGW has so far failed to crumble because (whoa! Those twelve don't count! The fifty start... NOW)

Because the programmes built up by profligate statesmen misled by Strangelovian apocalypse merchants advance with great momentum. [That's 17 so far. Hey, can I swap 'great' for 'titanic'? Thanks, John.]

Democracy being what it is, the politicians will react only when the Good Ship Global Warming hits the iceberg of...

[Quick count up. Dammit, only 13 left. Bloody prepositions are so expensive...]

...Stage 4 Public Opinion public opinion in the sequence Credulousness, Indifference, Scorn, Anger.

[Can we agree that AGW counts as one word? Yes? I could've used CAGW instead, then, at no extra cost. Have you noticed the acronym inflation? I wonder if the four letters of CAGW will grow further? Will it one day reach BSASSFOCGW?]

From the article the ever credulous Brent links to:

"Lord Monckton, a former science advisor to Margaret Thatcher.."

Wrong. Monckton was never a science advisor to Thatcher, he was a "special" advisor on economic matters. Why would Thatcher, a trained scientist, employ a classics graduate as a science advisor?

By lord_sidcup (not verified) on 25 May 2010 #permalink

> Because the programmes built up by profligate statesmen misled by Strangelovian apocalypse merchants advance with great momentum.

So, basically, a political non-answer to the science...

By Lotharsson (not verified) on 25 May 2010 #permalink

Tim (81):

You're right about Monckton. He's a git, but he's all we've got on our side. We need to sign a top player. Your man Gore might change sides if the bucks were right, but we couldn't afford him.

The sceptics can only dream of Inconvenient Truth 2. He's sitting, all in denim, chatting to Uncle Bob with a straw in his mouth. And then the voiceover: "Uncle Bob's been in farmin' these fifty years, and he asked me, 'Young Al' - he always calls me that (chuckle) - 'I don't see none o' that Global Warmin' affectin' my eggplants. Are you sure you're right?' And this got me to thinking."

Scene 2: Al Gore on the scissor lift in front of a big video screen. "Those eggheads told me the polecaps would melt; they're still there. Told me Florida would flood; no sign of that. Uncle Bob would have to grow grapes; eggplants are still good. Now this here is what the Romans called the Medieval Warm Period millions of years ago...." scissor lift emits a theatrical buzz.

> The sceptics can only dream of Inconvenient Truth 2.

You forgot "Al Gore is fat". That usually helps when you're trying to distract from your non-argument against the science by pointing to movies and non-scientists...

By Lotharsson (not verified) on 25 May 2010 #permalink

Brent notice you have need to cast such an unplausible conspricray theory to make you claims:

*Strangelovian apocalypse merchants* = 97% of climate scientists.

And that is the essence, the root of Brent's case.

97% of climate scientists, Jakerman?

The famous Doran and Zimmermann survey got 75 out of 77 actively publishing climate scientists to answer 'yes' to the question "Do you think human activity is a significant
contributing factor in changing mean global temperatures?"

Help me out here: were Spencer, Ball and Lindzen among the two who said no?

I'm not banging the 'global conspiracy' drum any more, and I accept that the vast monies being thrown at this great myth are not making individual scientists rich, but a survey aimed at people's job security and professional raison d'etre is hardly likely to produce a resounding "no".

Even so, did you hear that Michael Mann has scored $1.8m to study mosquitos and global warming? My A-to-Z of the modern polymath (#62) should've gone "... dendrochronology, entomology, funding..."

>Help me out here: were Spencer, Ball and Lindzen among the two who said no?

Ball? Your kidding right? Lindzen, don't know, names were not idenfied.

>I'm not banging the 'global conspiracy' drum any more,

Huh? What is this then?

>programmes built up by profligate statesmen misled by Strangelovian apocalypse merchants...

You don't seem to have got that argument sorted out in your own mind.

You'd better give John a another 50 words that fit with your new position.

Brent,

Given the vacuity of your last posting, I would suggest that you would question public funds being allocated to any kind of research on anthropogenic global change. Am I correct? According to the Brent fund-o-meter, biodiversity loss is a myth, the fragmentation and destruction of temperate and tropical ecosystems is a myth, the importance of soil and above-ground biodiversity in driving the stability opf natural systems is a myth, wetland loss and eutrophication is a myth, the threat posed by invasive species is a myth, and so on an do forth, including the causes and consequences of climate change. Therefore we should not fund scientific research into any of these areas. Is that not what you are saying?

You have admitted that you know bugger all about environmental science, then you claim that vast monies are being thrown at this great myth (climate change). How would you, of all people, be able to separate fact from fiction in science? Or are you, like the vast majority of those in denial, wearing your right wing/libertarian heart very much on your sleeve? So, what are you saying? It beats me, but your logic is invisible.

Moreover, since when is Ball an expert on climate? Given the guy has about five peer-reviewed papers in his career, does it not seem logical that any serious scientific enquiry on climate would not touch the guy with a barge pole? And aren't Lindzen and Spencer also way past their sell-by dates? Where is the fresh denialist blood? And by that I mean scientists with some sort of stature in the field, not a few outliers who are pretenders to the throne.

I am also waiting for you to label the bloated military expenditures as a 'gravy train', or as 'vast monies being spent to kill people' in our military-industrial states. This budget dwarfs all of the money being spent on all aspects of environmental research, yet I rarely hear the denialiti harping on about this. Perhaps this is because many of those attacking funding spent on climate science as well as on other forms of Earth science support the fact that our bombs are blowing people to smithereens half way around the world.

By Jeff Harvey (not verified) on 26 May 2010 #permalink

80 P Lewis,

Great stuff. Does it work over the intertubes?

By TrueSceptic (not verified) on 26 May 2010 #permalink

> ...a survey aimed at people's job security and professional raison d'etre is hardly likely to produce a resounding "no".

An anonymous survey is not going to undermine one's own job security.

If a higher proportion of climate scientists said "maybe AGW isn't much to worry about", that would likely **increase** job security for a bunch of researchers - because the core science would be seen to be less settled, and hence more research on *those* questions would be necessary.

And Nobel Prize awaits the first solid disproof of AGW. Historically that has brought to the recipients **enormous** reputation and associated massive job security.

Your argument is (once more) a barely-disguised evidence-free conspiracy theory.

By Lotharsson (not verified) on 26 May 2010 #permalink

It's sad watching Brent use what he deems "irony" to deflect the tough questions. Shows the depth (or lack of) behind his arguments. His facetious attitude also betrays his true feelings towards me.

Pathetic.

I think Brent is confused about the difference between a statistical survey of opinion and a vote. He might be one of those opinion poll deniers who always pipe up âthey only asked 2000 people, and I wasnât one of themâ.

By lord_sidcup (not verified) on 26 May 2010 #permalink

Is this comment more irony Brent?

Of course, your comments are so facetious, full of lies, trolling, attempted irony and completed fail it's hard to tell what you truly believe.

Here's a list of things I gathered from your comment. Please advise me on which points you actually believe:

1. You think Monckton is a "git" but still continue to cite him.

2. Mysterious unnamed pro-AGW forces are paying off Al Gore and he is only in it for personal gain. Because documentaries are so lucrative.

3. You believe local weather is climate.

4. You believe the polar ice caps aren't melting.

5. You believe scientists say Florida is supposed to have flooded by 2010.

6. Grapes annecdotally grown in the past in areas they are grown today is proof of a warmer climate.

Using "irony" and "humour" are well known trolling tactics that enable you to lie your head off, or make the same incorrect points and then accuse everyone of being humourless so I apologise* for nipping this behaviour in the bud.

*not really.

And if you don't believe any of it, don't make the comment. Otherwise you are trolling and we don't like that round these parts.

80 P Lewis,

Great stuff. Does it work over the intertubes?

I wish! :-(

But kill file is the next best thing. :-)

so...... this is Brents new room,
nice decor, oh, there's a hockey stick on the wall, nice BIG fireplace over there, four snow shovels... whats that under the couch ? LOOK AT THAT ! it's an aGw alarmist troll !!!
John, what are your doing under there ??
go on, piss off back out into the snow and stop stinkin the place up !

take this with you, http://www.tinyurl.com.au/8x4

nice room brent, it might need a bit of pest control though, hahaha

So a troll walks into a bar, and takes a dump.

The room turn back to their work thinking that taking a dump is aspirational achievement for trolls. Thought they all make a mental note not to step where the troll makes his treats.

You sure set me straight Sunspot. It's nice to know that you pay attention during your time here.

I know it kills you both that I strike right at the heart of your trolling, but so be it.

Given that this year is heading to be the warmest on record, I cannot wait for sunspot to claim in 2011 that global cooling began in 2010. The Heartland Conference, as everyone here knows or should know, is a corporate-funded side show; a denialist shindig where is just fine to mangle science so long as the proper directed conclusions are produced.

By Jeff Harvey (not verified) on 26 May 2010 #permalink

Hi, Sunspot. Pull up a chair. Sorry about the stink.

I was eavesdropping on the warmists earlier. They were whispering too loud. They're worried about your nickname, scared that you know something they don't. If sunspots explain their pet theory away they'll have to go back to their old haunts.

John was big on crop circles until he found global warming. Lotharsson's bag was flying saucers - had a collection of fuzzy photos. Chek has a graph of plague deaths on his bedroom wall, with SARS, CJD, H5N1 in different colours. Jeff Harvey - yeah, him with the dicky bow - was influenced by an Isaac Asimov article in Playboy; still believes the oil will run out by 1973. Is Jakerman familiar? Yeah, you've seen him at the shopping mall with his "The End Is Nigh" sandwich boards. Dave R and P Lewis look a bit shifty. They caught each other parking their Hummers in a quiet sidestreet before the Greenpeace meeting and agreed to keep it quiet.

Marcel Truthmachine? No, he's grounded. His Mum caught him looking at rude pictures on her laptop.

Nice bunch of lads, although a bit wierd.

Shh! Erasmussimo's coming. Try and look normal.

HI BRENT!!!

You really are thin skinned, you know that? Your sooky, snivelling ad homenim attacks aren't bolstering your case at all. They're making you look like a petulant child who won't play nice because he's been called out on his bullshit.

Plus, I am still awaiting an answer to my questions as I am simply dying to know what your actual views are.

Surely an honest, reasonable person who just wanted to dig to the scientific truth would lay his cards on the table.

I'm afraid Brent has crossed the line from being merely delusional to suffering a full psychotic break.

Poor dear.

By luminous beauty (not verified) on 26 May 2010 #permalink

[Ironic mode off]
Jeff (92): An article on today's UK Independent says that the Aloatra grebe is now extinct. Terrible news. Nowhere in the article is AGW mentioned, I'm glad to say. If, in the fullness of time, the AGW theory is resolved as an expensive unfounded panic, I hope that people such as yourself who work in the area will insist that funding is targeted at real issues rather than fantasies like AGW.

I share your view on the military gravy train. I am deeply ashamed of the UK's role in Iraq and Afghanistan; I pestered my MP, the PM and the Queen in 2003 in a puny attempt to prevent war. Tony Blair's attitude, I think, was 'what's the point in having armed forces if we never deploy them?'

[Ironic mode back to normal]

The latter was a wild goose chase for weapons of mass destruction; the former is a weapon of mass taxation.

Robert Murphy (60): You shoot down my suggestion that Jeff imagines how the world would look if the CO2 thing were exposed as wrong. "Wishin' don't make it so, alas." You got me! It looked like I was proposing to delete a serious problem by pretending. Mea culpa. My half-arsed idea was to look forward to a post-Gore world, when we can buy fresh produce from developing countries without that pang of carbon-footprint guilt. We look back on late-50s USA crapping itself when Sputnik flew overhead with a superior chuckle at their faulty risk assessment. I was hamfistedly proposing to look back from 2040 with a similar chuckle.

You mention the fallacy that "if AGW is true that somehow means capitalism is false". We've pretty much avoided talking left/right here - by accident or by tacit agreement I don't know. There are people here in Britain - scary fundamentalists - arguing that AGW is so important that democracy should be suspended whilst those-who-know-better than the dumb electorate impose the remedies. I view them as Watermelons: green on the outside and red on the inside.

>still believes the oil will run out by 1973. Is Jakerman familiar?

Yeah it sounds like the usual reductio ad absurdum that you employ to avoid dealing with issues ('the Sun has no effect on the climate who have thunk?'). Peak oil isn't about running out, its about production rate that at first can't be exceeded, and then gets lower, then gets quickly lower.

BTW US oil [did peak around 1973](http://tonto.eia.doe.gov/dnav/pet/hist/LeafHandler.ashx?n=PET&s=MCRFPUS…) as was the prediction.

HI BRRRENT!!!!

"There are people here in Britain - scary fundamentalists - arguing that AGW is so important that democracy should be suspended"

But Brent, the only political parties in the UK who have an official policy of denying AGW (the fascist BNP and the comical UKIP whose science spokesman is your hero Lord Monckton) don't have a single elected MP between them. Tory, Liberal and Labour all accept AGW exists and they account for almost all the democratically elected MPs in parliament. Seems you want to override democracy in the name of your Moncktonesque delusions.

By lord_sidcup (not verified) on 26 May 2010 #permalink

Hi, Lord Sidcup,

You're right about the political parties. This week's Analysis on Radio 4 had some spokeswoman from Greenpeace or Friends of the Earth saying these things. Interviewer: "Some people might say that this is eco-fascism". Interviewee: (paraphrased): "Yes, maybe, but these things are too vital to be left to the electorate who don't understand. In 1939 the populace would have voted against war with Hitler, so there's a precedent for suspending democracy." Catch it on BBC Listen Again.

Jakerman,

You're right about peak oil. But the confident predictions were about literally running out. As in: The motorways strewn with abandoned vehicles, and people walking home. You're maybe too young to know this; I am not. I went to buy stacks of A4 paper (panic buyer) so that I'd be able to complete my studies properly.

Naive? Sure! I bet you could write a list of absurd fallacies that whole societies have bought into.

Just suppose we meet up in 20 years. Which of these scenarios is most likely: (a)You paddle past me on your boat, and I scream out, 'Jakerman, you were right, come over and rescue me.' or (b)I buy you a pint at a 16th century beachfront pub and you say, 'This was supposed to be underwater by now! OK, you were right, Brent, but you had a head's start. You'd already made a fool of yourself buying a previous scare story.'

>You're right about peak oil. But the confident predictions were about literally running out. As in: The motorways strewn with abandoned vehicles, and people walking home. You're maybe too young to know this; I am not.

If Jakerman is maybe too young, I'm definitely too young. So, important question: who was making these 'confident predictions'? I presume they have to do with the 1970s oil crisis? Was that not something to do with an embargo rather than pressure on supplies themselves? If so it has no relevance for whether there's enough oil to go around, and everything to do with international politics.

And don't for a second think you can get away with misrepresenting what Jakerman believes. In 20 years, very little land that is currently above sea level will be below sea level, especially in developed countries. The pressure of a gradual rise in sea level in the short term is not that the sea will one day go over the top of the beach and never retreat; it's that sea defenses, both natural (dunes, beaches) and man made (dykes, barriers), may fail when storms and surges come along because there's just that little bit extra water piling in.

So you will not need boats to exchange pleasantries, and the pub will still be there, although it will probably have been bought by Wetherspoons.

Brent, are you really this stupid, or are you just pretending?

re peak oil. Cite for us soem scientific or technical artielcs predicting, confidently or otherwise, that in 1973 we're just going to flat run out of oil and cars will be abandoned on the roadways.

I suspect you might find some popular articles, or even some economics or engineering articles stalking abut the effects of the oil embargo and that act of economic warfare, but that was NOT about running out of oil, Brent. That was about withholding production of what was still abundant oil.

I don't care how old you are, Brent, nothing in the scientific literature was predicting that in 1972 there would be plenty of oil, and in 1973 we'd be out and abandoning cars on the roadway.

Similarly, no one serious is predicting that in "20 years" seaside pubs will be under water.

When you manufacture this kind of idiocy and attribute it to 'the other side' is just makes you look like an idiot, Brent. By now, I've become pretty sure you aren't having to work at all hard to give that impression.

I'm 56, and Brent's full of it ...

Brent,
Now there is a 1970s Oil-scare : "predictions were about literally running out. As in: The motorways strewn with abandoned vehicles, and people walking home".

Forgive me my scepticism, but thanks to the supposed "Global Cooling" scare of the 1970s, which turned out to be a 2000's invention of the Denialists, I won't accept these stories of previous scares at face-value. Please provide evidence for these "confident predictions" you refer to.

By Vince Whirlwind (not verified) on 26 May 2010 #permalink

> ...it's hard to tell what you truly believe.

I think that's a key aspect of Brent's modus operandi. One could speculate that thereby Brent avoids needing to admit any incompatibilities between his beliefs and the real world - or that he's just trolling for an argument, and any side of any argument will do just fine.

By Lotharsson (not verified) on 26 May 2010 #permalink

> ...Lotharsson's bag was flying saucers - had a collection of fuzzy photos. ...

Wow, you *really* can't handle people who disagree with your arguments and back them up with evidence, can you? You project mindless conspiracy theorism onto them in order to dismiss any argument they might make. That will do wonders for your own credibility - in your own mind, if nowhere else.

Ah, wait, Lee's already covered that point:

> When you manufacture this kind of idiocy and attribute it to 'the other side' is just makes you look like an idiot, Brent.

Shorter and sweeter.

By Lotharsson (not verified) on 26 May 2010 #permalink

> But Brent, the only political parties in the UK who have an official policy of denying AGW (the fascist BNP and the comical UKIP whose science spokesman is your hero Lord Monckton) don't have a single elected MP between them.

And IIRC neither one is remotely communistic in spirit, which is the implication of Brent's "watermelons" label. Seems his political theorising is about as realistic as his scientific theorising...either that or he's a fan of the Jonah Goldberg school of convenient political classification where fascism is now confidently asserted to be a "leftie" phenomenon.

By Lotharsson (not verified) on 26 May 2010 #permalink

Brent, while your multiple personalities move in and out of psychotic episodes I'm still waiting.

>You're right about peak oil. But the confident predictions were about literally running out.

By who? News Week?

As [I said](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2010/05/brent_thread.php#comment-2545323) imediatedly prior to giving you the data:

>Yeah it sounds like the usual reductio ad absurdum that you employ to avoid dealing with issues ('the Sun has no effect on the climate who have thunk?').

Don't throw fringe arguments (that we are not making) in so you can slay strawmen. Deal with the issues we are discussing.

Here's something interesting - Brent publicly admitting that AGW has yet to have been disproven:

The assumption that climate is governed by unstable equilibrium needs to be debunked. The other major assumption â that greenhouse gases drive temperature vastly more than solar or volcanic activity â also needs debunking.

There are names for people who believe things they admit aren't supported by science.

Here's another interesting post. Wondered why those boneheads showed up at the Empirical Evidence thread as Brent threw another hissy fit and abandonded us for the umpteenth time?

For the opposite to witty banter, come and join in the fun at:

http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2010/03/the_empirical_evidence_for_man…

where more typical language is: âWe defer to the scientists, you denialist moron trollâ. Iâm seriously outnumbered there, and could do with backup.

Brent on why he left Deltoid:

Wally (11:24): After ten weeks of trading ideas and insults with that nest of Warmist vipers on Deltoid, they have exiled me as denialist persona-non-grata.

Liar. You left of your own accord.

Here is an example Brent's hilarious dad humour.

What deplorable laziness to call the volcano E+15!

Look, itâs easy, itâs Eyaâ¦. correctionâ¦. Eyjafallyajokâ¦. oh all right itâs EyetawdItawapuddytat.

Uncle Vince, is that you?

> Wondered why those boneheads showed up at the Empirical Evidence thread as Brent threw another hissy fit and abandonded us for the umpteenth time?

Brent was apparently less worried about having no solid argument than he was about being *outnumbered*.

And wow - didn't they really bolster Brent's case!

``

By Lotharsson (not verified) on 26 May 2010 #permalink

Brent has a very fragile ego.

Interesting summation of how [you see the science](http://wattsupwiththat.com/2010/05/16/volcano-update/#comment-391624), Brent:

After much deliberation I conclude that the AGW theory is plausible, and hinges on two premises: (a) That the forcing effect of CO2 dwarfs all others such as solar and volcanic activity (b) That Earthâs climate is governed by unstable equilibrium.

However, the effect of CO2 as a greenhouse gas need not dwarf all others. As long as other variables don't change significantly (such as the amount of water vapour in the atmosphere, which is pretty constant, or a major upheaval in the earth's tectonic system leading to massive volcanism, which we have no control over and can't predict), it will be CO2 (and other GHGs like methane) that will be the main drivers of climate because they are the main changing variables.

Do you understand this concept?

I am disappointed at your [disparaging comments](http://wattsupwiththat.com/2010/05/16/volcano-update/#comment-391624):

Wally (11:24): After ten weeks of trading ideas and insults with that nest of Warmist vipers on Deltoid, they have exiled me as denialist persona-non-grata.

At least here you have people attempting to explain to you, in spite of your reluctance to check things for yourself, why the science says what it does. Can you really say the same of WUWT? All I find there are Google Galileos and a lot of Al Gore Bashing... (Can you explain what Al Gore has to do with all this? I don't get it, he has no scientific expertise, and in case nobody told you, you can never take what a politician says seriously without checking the sources first)

BTW, if your street is underwater in 20 years time, then things will certainly be a lot worse than any scientific prediction I've ever come across. Regardless of your strawman, and whatever else you may think, most scientists working in the field deplore exaggeration, which mostly comes from the media. We deplore it even more when it causes people like you to think that, because the MSM go on a frenzy with stories of impending doom, that the problem being touted must be a non-issue, as usual.

Have you ever read or seen a story about a scientific or technical issue (you are an engineer, if I recall correctly) that you knew about first hand, reported accurately (with no errors, gross oversimplification to absurdity or exaggeration) by the MSM? I work on Antarctic science, a fashionable field with the media, which gets a lot of exposure. I have seen many stories about research I know of or am involved in first hand. NEVER have I seen the issues reported clearly and accurately.

Expand this concept and ask a question to yourself: How much of what I know about this topic have I learned through the glasses of MSM/blog distortion? Is it more likely that the assembled world experts in the topic could be correct, or that my oversimplified view of a field I know little about first hand was distorted enough even when I started trying to educate myself that I have seen it from the beginning through a prism of bias?

@Brent #110

Quote mining - science denialist handbook, paragraph.....

By lord_sidcup (not verified) on 26 May 2010 #permalink

Hi fellers!

Look, isn't it fair to say that we operate here in two distinct 'registers'? There's firstly the fun aspect, slagging each other off and cheerfully insulting each other. And then there's a more serious aspect, where we debate one of the major issues of the day: the threat to Nature by our species.

For the fun aspect, it's just an extension of arguments down the pub about whose football team is best, and even spotty wankers like TruthMachine are allowed to say silly things.

For the environmental aspect, we're collectively struggling with a horrendously complex issue and - for me at least - inviting contrary viewpoints (and weighing them) whilst we float our own (at the risk of being dismissed as foolish). Such a forum is as old as humanity. And we're probably thinking the same as every arab sitting round the campfire, or every Greek citizen standing in the Agora: This discussion is probably a waste of time, and won't change the world one iota, but we'll hopefully get a better idea of where we're heading.

Some of us believe that we're right on the brink of something terrible, and are appalled by the laissez-faire attitude of others. Some of us that li-li-li-li-life goes on, and the dangers are overhyped. Some of us adopt the 'precautionary principle' that the consequences of underestimating a threat are so dangerous that better-safe-than-sorry is wise. Some of us will only deal in provable truths, and violently oppose wishy-washy speculation. Some adopt a more intuitive approach (e.g. self-regulating planet), holding positions which crumble when challenged, but which may nonetheless be true.

For my part, I seek to distinguish between real risks and illusory ones (I guess we all of us think weâre doing this). In raising historical scare-stories I seek to dismiss Global Warming as the latest incarnation of apocalypticism (although I canât deny the possibility that â in the words of Michael Jackson â This Is It). Unsceptics like John reckon that the science is settled; all I see is a few lousy tenths of a degree on some dodgy thermometers. While we piss away billions on cap & trade, on carbon capture, on useless windmills, the urgent effort to act on habitat and species-loss is being short-changed.

For humanity, li-li-li-li-life goes on; for the poor old extinct Aloatra grebe it doesnât. Weâre fiddling while Rome burns. Kill off the global warming hysteria and we can get down to the real business at hand.

>Some of us [believe] the dangers are overhyped...

Yeah [we see how](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2010/05/brent_thread.php#comment-2545992) you come to that conclusion, by knocking over strawmen, then thinking your can transfer that success the issues you have just dodge by instead attacking a strawman.

Here is some assistance for development of self awareness: your joke register is a trick to dodge issues. Transparent to others, perhaps harder to see if you tricking yourself.

Most of those who believe that the danger of climate warming is overhyped cannot understand the importance of temporal scale, nor of the impacts of what we perceive as minimal on natural systems at different levels of organization.

This, Brent, is your problem and only one that you can reconcile by either listening to most of us in the scientific community who have raised the warning for more than 20 years or by a small group of sceptics who cannot grasp the ecological and evolutionary consequences of warming swet against a background of many other anthropogenic strsses across the biosphere.

I listened to a colleague give a lecture today at our Institute on invasive plants in which she highlighted the results of a recent study using meta-analysis which suggested that as many as 40% of plants in central and western Europe are seriously threatened by the current warming trend (meaning measured rate). The reason for this is not simply physiological stress (but that is included of course) but due to the effects of warming on ecological interactions, including those with other plants (both heat tolerant and sensitive) and on mutualist-antagonist networks.

There is little doubt that rates of regional changes in temperature are exceeding by many factors those with which plants and animals can adaptively respond. There are a number of studies showing this in plants as well as with both vertebrates and in vertebrates and across different trophic levels. As I have said before, the effects of warming are synergized with other anthropogenic assaults across the biosphere. However, if we are to pull ourselves back from the abyss in which we are heading, it will be necessary to deal with multiple threats to the environment including human-driven climate change. Triage will not work here; all aspects of global change must be addressed simultaneously.

Brent, I find to hard to sympathize with people who cannot (or do not want to) see the wood from the trees, and IMHO you fall into this category. Our species has not evolved to respond to what we perceive as gradual, incipient change; it is easy to see films showing rainforests being cut down with chain saws or else burning and massive oil spills such as the disaster unfolding in the Gulf of Mexico. It is a lot harder to fathom why what seems to be a relatively small echange to us can exert such profound effects on nature. But again, that is because our species has evolved to respond to immediate threats. We have not evolved to be able to detect changes which we do not register but which are nonetheless as potentially damaging to nature in the slightly longer term.

Consequently, you and many people stick their finger to the wind and perceive climate change as a minimal threat. You also probably perceive a human lifetime as quite a long event in terms of time but which is, in reality, the blink of a geological and evolutioanry eye. What inherent gift do you posses that is able to conclude that a few tenths of a degree is nothing to be concerned about? Have you factored in normal rates of change in deterministic systems? That a few tenths of a degree is normal at small scales over short periods but over large scales would necessitate long time scales? How would you be able to know what effect much more significant local rises in temperature have on local ecosystems? Embedded in the few tenths of a degree are local changes of 10 C or more over the past one hundred years. This is hardly trivial. And I can assure you within the best of my knowledge as a scientist that the current warming not only will challenge nature to respond adaptively, but that there is evidence showing that many ecological communities will not persist because their working parts (e.g. their biodiversity in terms of species and genetically distinct populations) cannot adapt to the current rates of warming that are occurring over many parts of the world, and especially in mid- and higher latitudes. This disruption will ripple over larger scales and there will be planet-wide ramifications. And this is due to climate change alone; factor in the other human assaults across the biosphere and we are looking at a calamity.

I have no sympathy for those who cannot understand complexity (and that includes most of us) but who, in tapping their limited knowledge base, draw conclusions which are at odds with prevailing wisdom. Given my field of expertise (population ecology, including research on global change), I can assure you that the current human experiment is unlikely to have a happy outcome. You can choose to ignore the vast majority of scientists, but in doping so you and others like you are willing to gamble away the future on the basis of what amounts to little personal knowledge. We either act now or we continue with a single non-replicated climate experiment on systems of immense complexity that sustain us. N = 1.

By Jeff Harvey (not verified) on 27 May 2010 #permalink

Look, isn't it fair to say that we operate here in two distinct 'registers'? There's firstly the fun aspect, slagging each other off and cheerfully insulting each other.

If my insults seem cheerful I apologise, they aren't meant to be taken that way.

all I see is a few lousy tenths of a degree on some dodgy thermometers.

So you keep repeating. Doesn't make it true.

Kill off the global warming hysteria and we can get down to the real business at hand.

The only hysteria here is coming from you.

Isn't it funny that after maybe 100+ comments from you we're still no closer to knowing what you actually believe and your scientific reasons for believing it. Everything you've wrtten has been based on your ideological views, and you still wonder why the pesky "rotten edifice" won't tumble down no matter how hard you kick.

Delusional.

Now be a dear answer my simple, simple questions.

Hi John. To answer your 6 questions:

1. Yes, Mockton is a git, but if he can help sway public opinion to discount the AGW myth then the lad's doing good.

2. Gore has financial interests in the CCX, trading in (and profiting from) hot air.

3. Local weather isn't climate, true. But both of them are business-as-usual, or variation within historical bounds.

4. Pole caps ditto. Look at the data. If they were melting you'd be the first to shout about it.

5. Authoritative Nobel Prizewinner Al Gore presented simulations showing Florida going under. Ask me again in 2110 if I'm worried.

6. Grapes! The Romans grew them in England. Business as usual, no?

Lee, Uncle Vince: When the MSM were scaring the pants off us in the 1960s/1970s about the imminent shortage of oil, copper, paper etc I wasn't making notes. I remember it, but I'm afraid that I didn't write down the names of Hansen's predecessors. Did anybody record the name of the Boy Who Cried Wolf? If Jeff gets pecked to death by a plague of pied flycatchers we'll be sure to remember that one!

Sunspot, that TV you just admired... I'm gonna raise it by 1.8mm per year just to make sure it stays dry.

MFS: Your piece deserves a response, but I have stuff to do. No disrespect. Reading the IPCC document yeaterday I was wondering why they divided the variations in solar output by four. (If you're familiar with WG1 Ch.2, the recent 2 W/m^2 variation shows up as about a half a Watt in their nice little bar chart.) I was about to shout 'foul' when the explanation came to me. Quiz question for the assembled brethren: Where do they get the number four from?

Stu (112): Thanks for reassuring me about the fate of seaside pubs.

Lee (113): No, I really am that stupid. Stu's a student I think. Ask him to calculate how much water we all have to drink to cancel out 1.8mm per annum of sea level rise.

> Quiz question for the assembled brethren: Where do they get the number four from?

Ratio of surface area of earth to cross sectional area of earth - in order to average the incoming solar flux across the entire surface of the earth.

By Lotharsson (not verified) on 27 May 2010 #permalink

HI BRENT!!!!

Thanks for answering my questions. Hopefully next time it won't take 40 comments.

Yes, Mockton is a git, but if he can help sway public opinion to discount the AGW myth then the lad's doing good.

So what you're saying is it's okay to fraudulently lie to the public as long as you get the outcome you'd like. That's to be expected, it's been your modus operandi all along.

Gore has financial interests in the CCX, trading in (and profiting from) hot air.

No, your comment hinted that Gore was being paid off and could be swayed by money - that he had been "signed" by "our side". It might interest you that Gore funnels the money from his investments into the Alliance for Climate Protection. Hardly a financially savvy move if he was only in it for the money.

Local weather isn't climate, true. But both of them are business-as-usual, or variation within historical bounds.

So you now admit to changing your mind on the subject? Climate scientists might be astonished to discover that climate is merely "business is usual". You should contact Phil Jones and report this to him immeadiately.

Oh wait, you've already admitted that the AGW theory is yet to have been disproven, meaning your case is (surprise!) based on faith and not evidence.

Pole caps ditto. Look at the data. If they were melting you'd be the first to shout about it.

Care to point me to the data? That is, a primary source showing no polar icecap melting. I'd be delighted to see it. Or will it just be another trip around the goldfish bowl?

Grapes! The Romans grew them in England. Business as usual, no?

Goldfish bowl. As I pointed out grapes are grown in England today. Your point?

Lies, misrepresentation, distortion, no citations...."business as usual" from Brent.

No irony this time! Disappointing. I guess I've, dog gone it, blown that little trick.

4: the ratio of the surface area of a sphere to the area of a disk.

Brent,

In response to your posting above:

1. Who says AGW is a myth. You? What special scientific wisdom gives you the ability to draw this conclusion?

2. There is a lot more profit in denial; at least that is why polluting industries invest millions to debunk the science that they hate.

3. See my point # 1. What do you know about 'historical boundaries?' One might just as well say that there is no concern about the felling or burning of tropical forests since during the period leading up to and including the last ice age the area covered by tropical forests worldwide decreased profoundly; that had nothing of course to do with human actions. But the process lasted several thousand years. Similarly, the rate of climate warming currently occurring falls well outside of 'natural boundaries', whether one is looking globally or locally. How can you reconcile a 7-10 C increase in temperatures in parts of the Arctic over the past centruy as 'within natural boundaries'? What do YOU of all people know about it? You are not a scientist and have openly admitted that you are a layman. Basically, your position is one of faith: hoping that a few primarily right wing sceptics like Monckton are correct because it fits in with your pre-determined view. Correct?

5. Like many of the laymen in the denial camp, you do not tackle the science which is beyond you; instead you go for soft targets like Gore, creating numerous strawmen along the way.

6. A non-starter. I won't even discuss the lack of science wrapped up in the silly argument as to whether Romans grew grapes in the UK or not.

The major points are (1) that the climate is changing very rapidly (fact), (2), that there is significant scientific evidence to show that humans are the primary culprit (fact), and (3) that the consequences of doing nothing about it are already manifesting themsleves on natural systems very negatively (fact). Further inaction is very likely to have serious consequences.

You can take the rest of your grade-school pontificating elsewhere. If truth be told you do not know what the hell you are talking about. You do not read any of the empirical literature showing effects of regional warming on food webs and species interactions (and there is lots of it). You rely on those, like Monckton, distorting science to promote their own libertarian political agendas. If you want to believe in the tooth fairy, so be it. But do not claim for a second that AGW is a myth based on your puny knowledge base.

By Jeff Harvey (not verified) on 27 May 2010 #permalink

> Goldfish bowl.

His comments on Gore were goldfish trolling too. It's previously been pointed out to him that (a) Gore is giving the profits away and (b) he's putting his money where his mouth is rather than into more profitable investments - but Brent persists in fantasising that Gore's somehow making a personal mint out it.

By Lotharsson (not verified) on 27 May 2010 #permalink

>Reading the IPCC document yeaterday I was wondering why they divided the variations in solar output by four...

Elementary geometry. The plane of intersecting solar insolation projects on the spherical surface of the Earth, ÏR^2/4ÏR^2 = 1/4.

Some engineer you are.

By luminous beauty (not verified) on 27 May 2010 #permalink

>*When the MSM were scaring the pants off us in the 1960s/1970s about the imminent shortage of oil*

Brent have you altered your story? Previously, in response to data showing that:

>US oil did peak around 1973 as was the prediction.

you asserted:

>*You're right about peak oil. But the confident predictions were about literally running out*.

So is it that you are remembering wrong? There was an oil shock, people cuing, transport disrupted. This is not the the same as production "literally running out" in the sense of zero production.

I doubt you'd want to be found crying wolf about other people supposedly crying wolf.

By the way you are still relying on [argument by ridiculously weak assertion](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2010/05/brent_thread.php#comment-2546707). And you look really silly comparing James Hansen to a fantasy that you misremembered. It undermines you on several levels.

I propose Gore's Law -

The more a denialist is losing an internet debate on global warming, the more the likelihood of said denialst mentioning Al Gore conspiracy theories approaches one.

Authoritative Nobel Prizewinner Al Gore presented simulations showing Florida going under. Ask me again in 2110 if I'm worried.

Forgot this one. Please point me to where any of us cite Gore as an authority, or where Al Gore said Florida would be underwater by 2010, as per your comment.

Lotharsson: 10 points.

Lee and Luminous Beauty: Both minus five for copying Lotharsson.

Jeff: Zero for not knowing the answer and minus five for saying the word 'trophic'.

Being a jerk, minus a million points.

Brent, minus everything, for being so god damn adamant that he is correct and everyone else is wrong, while up until now not even knowing this utterly basic thing.

John (141): Gore's Law states: "The rate of return on Generation Investment Management's stake in the Chicago Carbon Exchange is directly proportional to the investment in Inconvenient Truth's CGI."

Your proposal will have to be Gore's 2nd Law.

There's a meeting you should all attend:

http://wattsupwiththat.files.wordpress.com/2010/05/dealing_with_deniali…

If the flights are free I'll see you there and buy a round of drinks. Air miles as well (but not in Jeff's league!)

Guys.

The troll's been quarantined. As it's not even fun to play with (unlike, say, Tim Curtin, who at least sportingly attempts to support his preposterous claims with material, however dodgy it is), I say starve it to death. This approach seems to have worked with Fatso, as I haven't seen his thread listed as having any recent postings for a while now.

I simply do not see any opportunity for education of onlookers in this particular cave. Let its inhabitant wither to oblivion.

By Bernard J. (not verified) on 27 May 2010 #permalink

Washington Post 26 May:

"With public faith in the global-warming myth on the wane, leftist zealots are desperate to spin a new tale - and theyâre spending your tax money to do it. Three years ago, Congress appropriated $5,856,600 for the National Academy of Sciences to complete a climate-change study. This bureaucratic attempt to cook the books, which was completed last week, may be too late to save this dying religion."

and

"A recent Rasmussen survey found that a majority (59 percent) think itâs more likely that scientists are falsifying research data to support their own personal theories about global warming."

If my division of science into Classical, Modern and Empirical science 'has legs', the damage being done to the reputation of the wider profession by the third branch calls for urgent action.

If the science fraternity were the platoon in Full Metal Jacket, it's maybe time for the fat guy to get whacked by bars of soap in GI socks. Peer group pressure urgently needed. Hide-the-decline is a lousy motto.

Brent the damage is being done by dishonest immoral f*** like you, with your repeated unsupported and repeatedly-disproved claims of fraudulent and incompetent science.

Brent - your 1st quote comes from the Washington *Times*, not the Washington *Post*. The Washington Times was founded in 1982 by Unification Church leader Sun Myung Moon. It's the newspaper of the Moonies.

Can you possibly get more fucking idiotic?

By lord_sidcup (not verified) on 27 May 2010 #permalink

Sorry, Brent's second quote also comes from the Moonie rag.

By lord_sidcup (not verified) on 27 May 2010 #permalink

>If my division of science into Classical, Modern and Empirical science 'has legs'...

It doesn't.

By luminous beauty (not verified) on 27 May 2010 #permalink

Oops. The Washington Times it was indeed. Greatest apologies. Post is more influential, of course.

I just found this on a site called 'Climate Progress': "In a move that calls into question the journalistic integrity of the entire Washington Post editorial staff â especially editorial page editor, Fred Hiatt, who should be fired â the newspaper has published a third disinformation-pushing op-ed by George Will âClimate Changeâs Dim Bulbs.â "

Fired, eh? For allowing an op-ed piece? Why not tar and feather him, the heretic-encouraging freedom-of-speech troll.

And in the Post, freelance Matt Rogers wrote a sceptical piece "with considerable trepidation given the politically-charged atmosphere surrounding human-induced global warming":

http://voices.washingtonpost.com/capitalweathergang/2009/09/a_skeptical…

I find it an interesting echo of the themes we are developing here.

Maybe this thread might be more accurately renamed "The Thread For Dumb Trolls Wot Know Nuffing About Nuffing Presuming to Instruct Actual Scientists Who Do".

Why stop at climate science?

Why isn't Brent telling everyone from neurosurgeons to aerodynamicists about how they've got it all wronge, because some ex-TV has-been and/or accountant said so?

I do wonder whether the philosophical fault-line between us is one of pro-or-anti development.

The philosophical fault-line between us is you being an idiot.

By truth machine (not verified) on 27 May 2010 #permalink

Please point me to where any of us cite Gore as an authority, or where Al Gore said Florida would be underwater by 2010, as per your comment.

Brent is lying of course, for the umpteenth time -- or, rather, he is just too stupid to understand the truth. First, Gore is not a scientist (that's what John asked about). Second, Gore did not show simulations of Florida going under water in 2010 or any other year; what he showed was a simulation of what would happen if the Greenland ice sheet were to melt.

By truth machine (not verified) on 27 May 2010 #permalink

Fired, eh? For allowing an op-ed piece? Why not tar and feather him, the heretic-encouraging freedom-of-speech troll.

Really? So Fred Hiatt encourages me to submit my opinions to be published in the Washington Post?

You really are stunningly stupid, Brent. The Wastington Post is a private enterprise and publishes what it wants to publish -- freedom of speech is irrelevant unless the government is interfering. But the Washington Post, wishing to maintain credibility as a newspaper of note, claims to fact check its material, [including George Will's op-ed pieces](http://wonkroom.thinkprogress.org/2009/02/19/george-will-editing-proces…).

By truth machine (not verified) on 27 May 2010 #permalink

Truthmachine,

Rather than seizing negatively on fragments of other people's postings, how about something more positive? Let's assume that there's an undecided lurker reading these exchanges; please write - to a maximum of 200 words - your most compelling argument for AGW.

In fact, other unsceptics may wish to have a shot at The Two Hundred Word Challenge. As a mark of goodwill, I'll promise not to trash your 200 unless you expressly say, 'Do your worst'.

Brent, let me see if I get this correctly. You're asking us to reduce 30 years worth of research and several thousand publications to 200 words.

What exactly do you intend to accomplish with this? Speaking for myself, I waste my time here to try and illuminate others, mostly. How would I be served by doing as you ask? Reducing the body of evidence to 200 words will create an oversimplified absurdity.

>In fact, other unsceptics may wish to have a shot at The Two Hundred Word Challenge.

In deed, lets hear an 'unskeptics' descrition of what they belive science's best case for AGW is. It could be quite instructive. I know that unskeptics like Dr O sign anti AGW petitions [without even reading what AGW science is](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2009/08/matthew_england_challenges_the…).

Since Brent has nominated unspectics to have a go, I'll nominate that the true skeptics follow. ( Where true skeptics are those committed to a process of assessing and synthesising evidence, whist avoiding [Google Galileo traits](http://watchingthedeniers.wordpress.com/2010/05/16/google-galileo-five-…), strawmen dodges, implausible conspiracy, and Heagreave's folly).

Brent please lead off the case.

>The troll's been quarantined. As it's not even fun to play with (unlike, say, Tim Curtin, who at least sportingly attempts to support his preposterous claims with material, however dodgy it is), I say starve it to death. This approach seems to have worked with Fatso, as I haven't seen his thread listed as having any recent postings for a while now.

This may sound odd, but I rather miss old Fatso's naive, credulous blunderings. They provided a bit of light relief.

> Let's assume that there's an undecided lurker reading these exchanges; please write - to a maximum of 200 words - your most compelling argument for AGW.

Nah, let's not do that.

Instead, assuming the tiny possibility of an undecided lurker who surprisingly thinks *this thread* is the best place to figure it out, please write your best *remaining* anti-AGW-science argument, i.e. one that you haven't already tried once or more in your dozens of comments on the [Empirical Evidence thread](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2010/03/the_empirical_evidence_for_man…).

And remember that to do this correctly you have to understand and critique the *actual scientific argument*, not a strawman or a political stance.

Have at it.

By Lotharsson (not verified) on 27 May 2010 #permalink

I can do it in 5:

Read the IPCC WG1 report.

Hi fellers!

Hey, lady!

***

I'm going for the moment to write on the asumption that there is any truth to what Brent claims about herself. It's a ridiculous assumption given how obviously mendacious she is, but it allows me to make a point (which has likely been made here before, but anyway...).

But the confident predictions were about literally running out. As in: The motorways strewn with abandoned vehicles, and people walking home. You're maybe too young to know this; I am not. I went to buy stacks of A4 paper (panic buyer) so that I'd be able to complete my studies properly.

Naive? Sure! I bet you could write a list of absurd fallacies that whole societies have bought into.

I've always found people who make statements like this - attesting to radical shifts in beliefs - fascinating. It's like a public acknowledgement that they've never learned to critically evaluate evidence or its sources. They have no evidentiary basis or evidentiary requirement for their beliefs, and are thus at the mercy of, well, anyone (especially the powerful). I find this condition weak and shameful.

Waiting on the inevitable concessions Brent.

Do you now accept that:

1. Monckton is a liar and shouldn't be cited as an authority on anything.
2. Al Gore doesn't personally profit off his green energy investments.
3. The polar icecaps are melting (you've been unable to provide me with a primary source stating they are.)
4. That Al Gore never said Florida would be flooded by 2010.
5. Grapes annecdotally grown in places they are grown today isn't an idicator that the climate was warmer than today in the past, and nor does that mean that man isn't currently affecting the climate.

If you don't wish to conceed these points please provide me with primary evidence stating otherwise.

You have 24 hours.

I'll promise not to trash your 200 unless you expressly say, 'Do your worst'.

I'd be ever-so-grateful if someone could point me to a post where Brent has managed to "trash" anyone. Such a post doesn't exist here.

To complete the "200 word challenge" we'd need to simplify the science. Simplifying the science would leave us open to simplified attacks copied and pasted from WUWT.

So I think I'll pass.

Anyway, Brent has already attempted and failed the 1600 page IPCC report challenge so I don't see what simplifiying the science to 200 words would do.

You know, I went to a pretty rough school as a child. There were a fair few "special" children at the school - mostly deaf kids, but there were some drooling simpletons as well. The cruel children used to have fun with the "retards" - as they were known - putting them in garbage bins, throwing food at them, dropping lit fireworks in their pockets, that sort of thing.

I see that adults are no different - you've spotted a Grade "A" retard in Brent, and you're falling all over yourselves to give him wedgies and feed him shit sandwiches.

I think you should all be a lot kinder to Brent - he needs love, not cruelty, to get through life with the hand he's been dealt.

By Vince Whirlwind (not verified) on 27 May 2010 #permalink

>I think you should all be a lot kinder to Brent - he needs love, not cruelty, to get through life with the hand he's been dealt.

Sadly for Brent, deuces aren't wild. And that's a shame for him, because he's produced an awful lot of the proverbial number two on Deltoid.

Not that it bears any relation to the strength of the science underpinning the theory of AGW, but a UK Judge has ruled âAl Goreâs presentation of the causes and likely effects of climate change in the film was broadly accurateâ. Thatâs âAl Goreâs presentation of the causes and likely effects of climate change in the film was broadly accurateâ. Yep, he agreed that âAl Goreâs presentation of the causes and likely effects of climate change in the film was broadly accurateâ. What was that again? Oh yes, âAl Goreâs presentation of the causes and likely effects of climate change in the film was broadly accurateâ. Or to put it another way âAl Goreâs presentation of the causes and likely effects of climate change in the film was broadly accurateâ. Or, âAl Goreâs presentation of the causes and likely effects of climate change in the film was broadly accurateâ.. Did he say âAl Goreâs presentation of the causes and likely effects of climate change in the film was broadly accurateâ. Yes, he said

âAl Goreâs presentation of the causes and likely effects of climate change in the film was broadly accurateâ.

There now, that makes 200 words by my reckoning.

But...Al Gore's fat!

By Shorter Brent (not verified) on 28 May 2010 #permalink

MFS, I bet you could summarise one of the laws of thermodynamics or one of Newton's laws in fewer than 200 words. Why? Because they reveal the elegant simplicity of the laws of physics.

A body of work which requires 30 years and thousands of reports to explain is either very complicated (e.g.,Nostradamus's, or sociology or acupuncture) or lacks that elegant simplicity.

The torrent of abuse unleashed by my straightforward proposal speaks volumes.

This reaction reminded me of reactions seen in another area of debate but, as if on the tip of my tonge, I couldn't quite dredge up the memory, and then it came to me. It's when somebody pats a bible and says with a mad twinkle, "It's all in here, sonny."

Shorter Brent: If it isn't simple, I don't believe it, so I win.

CO2 is transparent to visible light (from the sun) but not to infrared.
Therefore more CO2 = higher temp. since the energy gets in (from the sun) but
has a hard time leaving (like adding a blanket on your bed).
We (see isotopes of Carbon) have doubled the amount of CO2 in the air. It is much warmer than it has been for 2000 years, and there are no credible alternate explanations for this.
QED
Cue lying troll in 4 3 2 1.

MFS, I bet you could summarise one of the laws of thermodynamics or one of Newton's laws in fewer than 200 words. Why? Because they reveal the elegant simplicity of the laws of physics.

A body of work which requires 30 years and thousands of reports to explain is either very complicated (e.g.,Nostradamus's, or sociology or acupuncture) or lacks that elegant simplicity.

Or it could be that you simply don't realize that elegantly stated physics, like Newton's laws, can lead to extremely complex results that result in centuries, not thirty years, of work.

Sunspot, remember telling us about Prince Charles's statement that we only had 96 months to save the world?

"brent, your a goner ! we are all doomed. http://www.tinyurl.com.au/3aa nobody in here will or has got off their arse's to do anything about it". We're now down to 87, and they're still sat on their arses.

Fantastic news from the Royal Society, eh? A group of Fellows, remembering the old motto "Nullius in verba" (take nobody's word for it) are insisting that the RS's website be quality-checked for warmist mumbo jumbo. The BBC's Environment Correspondant says that "there is debate on the 'feedback' effects on climate". Great! This is one of AGS's Achilles' heels. If the RS and your NAS declare positive feedback to be unfounded conjecture then it's game over.

Guy on WUWT says "their support for the rigid political line of AGW is making them look like Soviet Lysenko Lackies". Ouch! Another guy wonders how the Hockey Team 'got their own "ology"!' Is there a place for climatology? Yeah, between ufology and phrenology.

If the RS and your NAS declare positive feedback to be unfounded conjecture then it's game over.

NASA satellite telemetry over the last several years match model predictions of positive water vapor feedbacks very closely, at a wide range of altitudes.

So much for "unfounded conjecture".

Elspi (173): Thanks for your lucid summary of the theory. No need for the footnote about lying trolls, though.

Dhogaza: A well-made point about elegantly simple physics leading to great complexity. In biology, Darwin's work gives the same joy. That his books became bestsellers are a good illustration of the public's pleasure when bewildering complexity is explained by straightforward concepts we can all understand - in principle if not in detail. Have you ever met somebody who leaves you thinking: 'he/she must be very clever; I didn't understand a damn word he/she said'? And the opposite: 'Wow, that person just explained in simple words how [...] works. It takes real mastery to reveal the essence of [...] to nonspecialists.'

I think that, among climatologists, Prof Alley is the closest thing to the latter. I think I'm going to watch his superb presentation to the AGU again: http://www.agu.org/meetings/fm09/lectures/lecture_videos/A23A.shtml If you haven't seen it, I'd recommend it.

Brent said:"In biology, Darwin's work gives the same joy. That his books became bestsellers are a good illustration of the public's pleasure when bewildering complexity is explained by straightforward concepts we can all understand - in principle if not in detail".

Right - like you've ever read The Origin of Species.
But you're making up fantasies again Brent.
Hawking's A Brief History of Time must be the most unread, never mind uncomprehended bestseller in history.

Brent also said:" (Have)...you ever met somebody who leaves you thinking: 'he/she must be very clever; Wow, that person just explained in simple words how [...] works. It takes real mastery to reveal the essence of [...] to nonspecialists!.

Ah, why didn't you say so?
You want An Inconvenient Truth by A. Gore.
It's pitched right at your level.

> A well-made point about elegantly simple physics leading to great complexity.

Ironically in this case, simple physics applied even to **very simple scenarios** such as the 3-body problem leads to **chaotic system behaviour** - and (lack of understanding of) said behaviour in the earth's climate system has led Brent to all sorts of wild and unjustified conclusions in the past.

> Fantastic news from the Royal Society, eh?

Excellent.

But [still no scientific argument from you against the current science](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2010/05/brent_thread.php#comment-2548605).

> The BBC's Environment Correspondant says that "there is debate on the 'feedback' effects on climate".

Yes, there is. There'd *better be* when the best range estimate for climate sensitivity based on a range of empirical data is as wide as "2-4.5 degrees C", and sensitivities up to about 10 degrees still cannot be ruled out. This is one of the active and important research areas...

...oh, wait, you didn't mean that. You were merely speculating on something for which there is little supporting evidence:

> If the RS and your NAS declare positive feedback to be unfounded conjecture then it's game over.

And if I win Lotto I'll be rich. But don't bother calling me about it until my numbers come up.

So still no scientific argument from you.

> Guy on WUWT says "their support for the rigid political line of AGW is making them look like Soviet Lysenko Lackies". Ouch!

ROFL! This is what passes between your ears for science?

Or, like most of what you write, is it an attempt to distract from **having no scientific support for your argument about the science**?

By Lotharsson (not verified) on 28 May 2010 #permalink

> We (see isotopes of Carbon) have doubled the amount of CO2 in the air.

Actually, we've increased it by about 40% since (say) somewhere around the mid-1700s, not doubled it.

By Lotharsson (not verified) on 28 May 2010 #permalink

Brent said:

Have you ever met somebody who leaves you thinking: 'he/she must be very clever; I didn't understand a damn word he/she said'?

No but I have read posts by deniers like Brent which have left me thinking "he/she must be really stupid, I didn't understand a damn word he/she said."

By Ian Forrester (not verified) on 28 May 2010 #permalink

Brent said: " Another (WTF) guy wonders how the Hockey Team 'got their own "ology"!' Is there a place for climatology? Yeah, between ufology and phrenology".

Actually, in parts of the world where reading is prevalent it'd be placed somewhere between 'biology' and 'geology'.

Although ironically your own preferred scatalogical information sources would by definition be placed so, as you say.

Oh I get it now, Brent's threatened by people who are smarter than he is.

I'm delighted to see he brought up the Royal Society debacle, a piece of nonesnse brought on by 43 out-of-field retirees. They'll be dead soon and the natural order of science will be restored.

Waiting on the concession.

More from Brent

:

>I am puzzled by the Klingons. How is it that we have not >swept them away? The sceptics have the clarity, the >integrity, the wit and the wisdom to see through the AGW >myth. And yet they continue to monopolise multinational >organizations and government agencies.

>I think their success is founded on their political and >advocacy skills, about which the laws of physics care not >one jot. Climategate hasnât derailed the AGW gravy train. >Will it roll for decades more?

>I see only two solutions: mimick the warmistsâ political >activism (this ainât going to happen: normal folks donât >have the required monomaniacal fury) or demolish the >codswallop science.

>If clever blokes like you can prove that there is no >Tipping Point, and that CO2 is a useful trace gas not a >diabolic pollutant, we stand a chance of dynamiting the >scientific underpinning that keeps this hoax standing. The >battlegrounds are twofold: Feedback and Sensitivity. Go >get âem, tiger!

Yes Brent. How is it that you have not swept us away?

Excuse my formatting there, I was playing with the markup code.

Brent displaying his profound need to fear some impending danger.

Iâm hoping to be one of the last survivors on Snowball Earth, shivering in a cave, wrapped in a blanket, muttering, âGore, Hansen, Mann and Jones⦠huhâ¦.. not so smart now, are yer? Re â SULT!â

Brent takes his stupid questions to Watts because he doesn't like the answers he gets here:

>May I please ask a stoopid question?

>Whatâs the difference between climate and weather?

>Best answer I can get so far is that the former happens over 30-year timescales, and the latter over shorter timescales.

>In his new book âWhy does E=mc2?â, Prof. Brian Cox discusses Bertrand Russellâs teapot, which he claimed was orbiting between Earth and Mars, and could not be observed. âRussellâs point is not his right to be left alone to his personal delusions, but that devising a theory that cannot be proved or disproved by observation is pointless in the sense that it teaches you nothing, irrespective of how passionately you may believe in it. You can invent any object or idea you like, but if there is no way of observing it or its consequences, you havenât made a contribution to the scientific understanding of the universe.â

>In the light of this, if the the 30-year criterion has any meaning, can anybody tell me its origin, and might some other number (e.g., 29.467 +/- 0.2 years) be derived?

Brent praises Roy Spencer for coming up with an answer that fits his personal beliefs:

>You mention the Warmistsâ assumption of unstable equilibrium. Well said, that man! The vile expression âtipping pointâ has gone unchallenged for too long. When used in marine engineering the expression makes perfect sense, but in this context itâs misleading.

>Iâve been wondering whether the whole AGW house of cards may come tumbling down if two misconceptions are exposed: (i) positive feedback and (ii) high sensitivity. Lo and benold, the brilliant Roy Spencer homes in on these two very areas. Are we at last seeing through the infernal complexity of this Great Climate Controversy? Can the AGW hypothesis be refuted by demonstrating that the climate is governed by negative feedback, and that the extra W/m2 of extra CO2 is trivial compared to, say, solar-driven albedo changes?

>The end ainât nigh. Itâs outrageous that the good guys have to prove why and how li-li-li-li-life goes on.

"Actually, we've increased it by about 40% since (say) somewhere around the mid-1700s, not doubled it."

I blame it on the oceans (they keep hidin the increase).

>A group of Fellows, remembering the old motto "Nullius in verba" (take nobody's word for it) are insisting ...

For someone who thinks Monckton is "git", it seems like Brent channels him quite well.

>If clever blokes like you can prove that there is no >Tipping Point...

Ahh, good luck with that, try explaining [this without tipping points](http://cdiac.ornl.gov/trends/temp/vostok/graphics/tempplot5.gif).

Then consider we've already liberated approximately 150 million years of sequestered carbon. And the last time CO2 was that high, 15 million years ago the sun was slightly cooler yet the earth was 3 degrees warmers.

During that period (the Middle Miocene) that liberated carbon was locked up in fossil form underground. So not only are tipping points visible in the temperature record, but we've got a lot more carbon available to make the tipping go further.

Rather than seizing negatively on fragments of other people's postings

How about you not being an intellectual coward and actually acknowledge the hundreds of errors you have made in your various posts here.

By truth machine (not verified) on 28 May 2010 #permalink

A body of work which requires 30 years and thousands of reports to explain is either very complicated (e.g.,Nostradamus's, or sociology or acupuncture) or lacks that elegant simplicity.

It's the depth of Brent's stupidity that is so remarkable.

How long will it take for mathematicians to explain all the consequences of the Peano Axioms?

By truth machine (not verified) on 28 May 2010 #permalink

Einstein's theory of general relativity is remarkably elegant. Perhaps Brent can honor us with a 200 word essay that both lays out the theory and provides convincing evidence that it is valid.

If he can't do that, there's another Einsteinian example of elegance that he could emulate: "It is tasteless to prolong lifetrolling artificially. I have done my share, it is time to go. I will do it elegantly."

By truth machine (not verified) on 28 May 2010 #permalink

Best answer I can get so far is that the former happens over 30-year timescales, and the latter over shorter timescales.

No, moron, you've been given better answers:

[by Dave R](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2010/03/the_empirical_evidence_for_man…):

The bobbing up and down is weather. The long term average is climate. The change in the long term average is climate change.
....
Canada had warm weather this winter. England had cold weather this winter. The Earth is experiencing global warming.

[by Stu](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2010/03/the_empirical_evidence_for_man…):

Weather is the fluctuations of atmospheric variables over short time period, which form coherent structures ("weather systems"). It is chaotic as it has high sensitivity to initial conditions.
Climate is what you get if you average these variables over a long period of time, typically 30 years although definitions vary. It is not really chaotic because you'll wind up with near identical climates regardless of whether you happen to start your period of obervation (or simulation) in a period with warm weather or cold weather, for example.

[by Lee](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2010/03/the_empirical_evidence_for_man…):

Weather is the trajectory that local conditions take, and is chaotic and an initial values problem. Climate is the boundary within which that trajectory occurs.

Even in [your own post](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2010/03/the_empirical_evidence_for_man…) you wrote

Next definition comes from SkepticalScience,com (warmist camp): "Weather is chaotic, making prediction difficult. However, climate takes a long term view, averaging weather out over time. This removes the chaotic element, enabling climate models to successfully predict future climate change."

but dismissed it with a remarkably stupid comment:

The statement âremoving the chaotic elementâ, reveals a misunderstanding of how chaos works. Chaotic variables vary at a variety of timescales and a variety of amplitudes. When their timescale is removed, the eye cannot tell whether a chaotic graph is at hour, day, month or century scale. Just when you think you have their measure, they surprise you.

The point was not about removing the timescale, moron, but about removing the chaotic element by averaging. By your cretinous reasoning, a cup containing coffee with cream swirled into it (a paradigmatic example of chaos) cannot have its average temperature raised.

By truth machine (not verified) on 28 May 2010 #permalink

Truthmachine, since you and other unsceptics have huffily refused the Two Hundred Word Challenge (with the honourable exception of Elspi), I will play your little game.

(You have to imagine Sylvester's voice when he agreed to Tweety Pie's order to sing along.... 'oh, all right, then!')

General Relativity is a geometric theory of gravitation, which is considered a property of spacetime, which can be considered curved. The Einstein Field Equations which underpin it predict that light paths are bent by a massive body, that photons' frequency varies with gravitational potential, that escape velocity from sufficiently massive bodies exceeds the speed of light in a phenomenon dubbed 'black holes', and that major gravitational events such as stellar collapses or fast-rotating binary stars will emit gravity waves. In the first two of these, observations conform precisely to prediction; there is strong evidence for the third (including a yet-to-be-confirmed black hole at the centre of our galaxy) ; the fourth has been indirectlt detected.

Chek (182): You propose that (a rather petty alphabetical point) climatology should fit between biology and geology.

Sorry, mate, there's already a hard science beginning with C - chemistry.

Among the fuzzy sciences there's astrology, graphology, criminology, theology, sociology with quite a range of mathematical foundation. (Who was it said "all science is maths?")

Are we, in our playful way, sneaking up on an important point here: that the very titles of sciences have 'just happened', or at least highly inconsistent? Geography, for instance, has the humility to badge itself as a mere graphy. (Their big tough cousins, the Geologists, snarl menacingly "We drill for oil. Just as long as you stay in your fucking place we'll get on fine."

Astronomers should take their weakbrained horoscope-producing cousins into a dark alley, give 'em a good kicking, and then come out saying, "Right, that's sorted! From this day on, the name 'Astrology' belongs to us! The name 'Astro-nomy' is quarantined, and the horoscope boys will need a new job title."

The possibly important etymological point: If your seers had called themselves Climatographers rather than Climatologists we'd have been spared all this unpleasantness. The Climatography industry would've stayed as tiny as the Geography industry (career path: school - uni - teaching - retirement). Shall we propose a rebranding?

OK looks like Brent has run up the white flag. Thanks for the case study Brent.

"The possibly important etymological point: If your seers had called themselves Climatographers rather than Climatologists we'd have been spared all this unpleasantness."

Yes I must admit I get jealous when Phil Jones flies by in his private jet.

No response to my list of conessions, I happily see, which I suspect means they're too uncomfortable for you to make. Don't worry, I wasn't expecting honesty from you, just the usual array of comments containing ficticous characters who "mutter" and "chuckle" to themselves.

John, sorry about not replying to your questions in #166. I somehow figured that you wouldn't be happy whatever I say.

No, no, no, yes, no.

I have to step in here and go to bat for Brent. I feel that the climate outside you reflects the climate inside you, and the solution will involve "The Secret."

By marion.delgado (not verified) on 29 May 2010 #permalink

Brent said: "You propose that (a rather petty alphabetical point) climatology should fit between biology and geology".

Brent, me poor ol' misguided missile, if you're attempting to indulge in observational comedy, your observations need to be at the very least correct. Only in a dyslexic's nightmare universe does a 'C' subject appear between 'P' and 'U'.

Brent also said: "Shall we propose a rebranding"?

No, I think climate denial moron still fits the bill very well. Thanks for supplying abundant proof that any reconsideration is required.

Chek, your reluctance to attempt a concise 200 word description of the AGW position speaks volumes.

"Denial troll moron" is your best shot, then. Tut tut.

[Brent](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2010/05/brent_thread.php#comment-2552042)
>No, no, no, yes, no.

John said: __"If you don't wish to conceed these points please provide me with primary evidence stating otherwise."__

Do so or concede the remaining points.

[Brent](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2010/05/brent_thread.php#comment-2552604):
>200 word description

[Likewise](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2009/07/piers_akerman_takes_denial_to.p…).

> Chek, your reluctance to attempt a concise 200 word description of the AGW position speaks volumes.

Shorter Brent: *maybe this "challenge" will distract them from my proven inability to critique the science to which I have been pointed at several different levels of detail many times in the past.*

Hmmmm, that's actually longer.

Actually Shorter Brent: *I'm a denialist, but look over here instead!*

By Lotharsson (not verified) on 29 May 2010 #permalink

Brent.

If you are so desperate to have a 200-word précis describing the underlying thrust of climate change, why don't you just chop and stitch the IPCC summary, as you did with the [Wikipedia entry for Relativity](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2010/05/brent_thread.php#comment-2551875)?

Or, heavens forfend [gasp!, swoon!], are you playing an evil game of some sort?

Surely not...

By Bernard J. (not verified) on 29 May 2010 #permalink

TM:
>*Rather than seizing negatively on fragments of other people's postings*... How about you not being an intellectual coward and actually acknowledge the hundreds of errors you have made in your various posts here.

To which Brent demonstrates that very practice of dodging the issues [addressed by TM](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2010/05/brent_thread.php#comment-2551593) with [typical hand waving](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2010/05/brent_thread.php#comment-2551626).

Well demonstrated Brent.

[Repeat whatever "hard science" was in the WUWT comment section today. Ignore substantative criticism. Make loaded demands of other commenters in vain attempt to trap them.]

In 30 years I'll be in tenured in Sir Lindzen University looking back to the dark ages of 2010 with a superior chuckle as Mann, Gore, and Hansen are forced to toil in underground sugarcaves (for their crimes against humanity) muttering to themselves "who knew that solar was the only force on the climate?".

Of course, it is the hottest year on record but I'll just ignore that and....ICE AGE!! OVER THERE!!! LOOK!!!

Seriously, like, get a sense of humour doofuses.

By Shorter Brent (not verified) on 31 May 2010 #permalink

Jakerman (208): I might have guessed that you guys would use my 200-word summary of general relativity against me.

Bernard's statement that I was plagiarising Wikipedia is wrong; having just been reading about Special Relativity I liked the expression "geometric theory" appearing in Wiki, and used it. As you well know, Wiki is a useful if patchy resource. If you ever write anything of note, Bernie, I wonder if the odd pronoun will correspond to what others have previously written.

But you carping, negative, doommongering Jeremiahs are missing the point here. I challenged you to phrase (in your own words) the AGW theory, and only Elspi (183) dared attempt it. I award him/her 2 points.

Zero for everybody else, except for Lee (164) who gets minus ten for patting the bible and twinkling, "It's all in here, son."

This morning the President of the Royal Society began a series of lectures by invitation of the BBC. It's early days yet, but he of course referred to the AGW controversy. He mentioned the relationship of science to a no-longer deferential public in this age of the Google Galileo; he mentioned smoking/cancer and HIV/AIDS in the same passage as CO2/global temperatures; he said much scientific work is done is small steps rather than in major thrusts ("nobody says: 'I'm trying to find a cure for cancer' ").

Thinking out loud here, I wonder if this is how we got tied in such knots:

a. Specialization: There are no more polymaths, not because today's greatest scientists are less smart than their forebears but because much of the low-hanging fruit has all been picked, and Great Discoveries are rare.

b. Peer Review: With ever more fine-grained specialization, the peer-review process consequently depends on smaller pools of qualified reviewers, increasingly known to each other personally, not only due to the smaller pool but also to improved communications. This corrupts it, with a small âcâ.

c. Pride: Having pronounced so publicly and so alarmingly that weâre all gonna fry, the Climatographers now find it hard to say that itâs, er, business as usual. Unlike the Grand old Duke of York, they canât march their forces back down the hill.

d. Media: The Climatographers, having supped with the Devil (âScientists say:â¦â¦.â) donât now have the guts to admit that they colluded in media hysteria, and feel unable to moderate their Armageddon tales.

I do wonder at youse guys: the low-level militant fringe. I wonder what you have to gain from staying with this absurd myth as the pesky planet refuses to do what your experts portended. My best guess is that youâre like the door-to-door Jehovahs Witnesses, so full of blind faith that no amount of delay will convince you that âitâ ainât happening.

Your churlish refusal to join in the 200-word challenge shows that you are not quite unembarrassable; that your faith doesnât quite stretch to a declaration. Poor dears. Were it not for the damage being caused by your âmovementâ, normal people could dismiss you as we did your ufologist and religious predecessors.

>Thinking out loud here...

I like where this is going.

"Thinking out loud" is just setting up the inevitable exit clause for when you get trashed by all the much smarter people here.

Here's what I think Brent -

I think you're a surly child who should grow up, or leave this blog.

Again and again you've been proven wrong. You've weaseled. You've lied. You've actively posted things you know are wrong.

You've admitted that Climategate has fizzled out.
You've admitted that the science of AGW (despite being such a "rotten edifice") is yet to have been disproven.
You've admitted to supporting Christopher Monckton even though you know he's a liar because he's all you have.

If there is anyone here basing their beliefs entirely on faith and not science, it's you.

If there's anyone suffering a fatal case of pride here, it's the person who has announced his exit, loudly and obnoxiously, on multiple occasions before returning because that pride was wounded.

Here we have another one of your sooky attack posts because the science has stood rock solid no matter how hard you've shouted it at.

And. The. Temperature. Continues. To. Go. Up. Like. The. Models. Predict.

And your 200 word challenge can go and screw itself in the bottom. How stupid do you think we are? Nobody here is going to fall into your little simplification trap. Simplified science is the only level you understand.

You've lost Brent.

Face it.

John, it was hotter in May 1833 than this last month.

This is based on a continuous series of measurements in Central England since 1659, not on a patch of concrete in the middle of an airport.

Try looking out of the window. If your cataclysm had any substance it would be affecting the Real World.

Brent,

How many times do you have to be told, Central England is not the globe, and comparing one month to another is not a [trend.](http://hadobs.metoffice.com/hadcet/)

All you are demonstrating is that you are both stupid and delusional.

By luminous beauty (not verified) on 01 Jun 2010 #permalink

General Relativity is a geometric theory of gravitation

Snort. I did not ask for a characterization of the theory, moron, I asked for the theory. And I asked for convincing evidence; simply asserting that the evidence supports the predictions of the theory won't do -- as you would be the first to assert when the shoe is on the other foot. By your every action you demonstrate your intellectual dishonesty and

Try looking out of the window. If your cataclysm had any substance it would be affecting the Real World.

your immense stupidity.

By truth machine (not verified) on 01 Jun 2010 #permalink

I award him/her 2 points.

Bully fuck for you. Who the fuck do you think you are? Who the fuck do you think we think you are? Just some stupid narcissistic piece of shit.

By truth machine (not verified) on 01 Jun 2010 #permalink

Zero for everybody else

You forgot Hasis, who wrote (several times, so as to read 200 words) âAl Goreâs presentation of the causes and likely effects of climate change in the film was broadly accurateâ. That's considerably more informative than your handwaving about the GToR. But now that we know from #193 just what sort of gloss you're willing to accept, perhaps someone willing to play your game will offer an equivalent for AGW -- someone so gullible (Erasmussimo?) that they think that you would change your tune if your were given a summary of AGW just like yours for the GToR.

your reluctance to attempt a concise 200 word description of the AGW position speaks volumes

Yes, it speaks volumes about our understanding of the nature of science, of the dishonest intent behind such challenges, and of our regard for you, just as your challenge speaks volumes about your dishonesty and stupidity.

By truth machine (not verified) on 01 Jun 2010 #permalink

P.S.

But now that we know from #193 just what sort of gloss you're willing to accept, perhaps someone willing to play your game will offer an equivalent for AGW

Actually, Elspi already did that, but for some odd reason was only awarded 2 points by the Grand Arbiter of climate science.

By truth machine (not verified) on 01 Jun 2010 #permalink

>Try looking out of the window. If your cataclysm had any substance it would be affecting the Real World.

This, folks, is the comeplete detachment from reality denialists need in order to believe their little fantasies.

See what Brent's saying?

The warming (which is or isn't happening, depending on what day you ask him) isn't affecting the real world!

Not a jot!

Without watching the empirical evidence vid again, aren't there 23,000 or so biological indicators showing warming?

So unless Brent has detailed data going back at least five decades of all the records he's obviously keeping, I'm going to go with them scientists and not the disingenuous, lying little rodent.

Central England is not the globe, that's true, but since we don't have temperature measurements for the whole globe - even today - an unbroken 350-year measurement series is very valuable.

In engineering we have a practice called Gauge R&R - repeatability and reproducability. The questions it asks are, in essence:

(i) To what extent would the size of this product appear to vary if the same person repeatedly measured it?

(ii) And to what extent if different people conducted the measurement?

This approach tells us how much confidence to have in a measurement process.

The apparent benefits of worldwide measurement - in spreading the net wider and hopefully gaining a truer picture - are outweighed by R&R errors. The datasets include thermometers on the concrete at major airports, thermometers in a bucket of hauled-up water, thermometers in the engine-cooling intakes of ships, thermometers at Station Eureka highly dependent on wind direction.

Warmists love dodgy data when it suits your purposes and demonstrates the trend you so want to believe in. A more truthful approach is to seek out reliable data amongst the corrupt and contaminated confusion of crap.

Generations of plodding, patient people in Central England have bequeathed us the CET treasure. It helps us keep our heads 'when all about are losing theirs'.

I have a question for you Brent:

Why do you think it matters that May 1833 was hotter than May 2010 in Central England?

Brent said: "Warmists love dodgy data "

Which, despite the temperature record being the focus of all the denialist horses and all the denialist men for months now, they've been singularly unsuccessful in showing how the data is "dodgy".

What is amazing is how quickly it has become an article of faith to be fervently believed in. To be clear, being misunderstood by the moronocracy that Watts cultivates and you parrot isn't the same thing at all.

Incidentally Brent, you refer to yourself as an "engineer" which for various reasons scattered throughout your posts here, I find hard to believe. A clerk whose main interests are morris dancing and watching TV - fine.
But an engineer? Really??
Not like any I know.

Brent based on your understanding of science would you suggest that 1833 was globally warmer than any year in the last decade?

If you did, that would say quite a lot. (But nothing that more than you haven't shown us already.)

G/day brent,

accurate temp data... after snowmaggedon I don't believe the global temperature record's, any of them, in january & february almost the entire northern hemisphere was covered in snow and ice,
yet the global land temps were above average, bullshit ! there was a couple of warm places but not enough to cook up the temps, there's to much of this goin on..........

'THE Bureau of Metereology has backed down from a claim that temperatures at Australia's three bases in Antarctica have been warming over the past three decades.'

'The trend of temperatures and ice conditions in Antarctica is central to the debate on global warming because substantial melting of the Antarctic ice cap, which contains 90 per cent of the world's ice, would be required for sea levels to rise.'

'Contrary to widespread public perceptions, the area of sea ice around the continent is expanding.'

'The Weekend Australian reported last month a claim by Bureau of Metereology senior climatologist Andrew Watkins that monitoring at Australia's Antarctic bases since the 1950s indicated temperatures were rising. A study was then published by the British Antarctic Survey that concluded the ozone hole was responsible for the cooling and expansion of sea ice around much of the continent.'

http://www.tinyurl.com.au/9m7

on and on it goes, temp data ????????

>accurate temp data... after snowmaggedon I don't believe the global temperature record's, any of them, in january & february almost the entire northern hemisphere was covered in snow and ice, yet the global land temps were above average, bullshit

LOL!

Take note, my denialist chum, of where the cold and warm anomalies are in the NH in this plot for January. The much colder than normal conditions stretch across the midlatitudes, where winter temps are fairly close to freezing. A few degrees in the cool direction = snow.

The warm anomalies, on the other hand, are north of this zone where it's so cold that even at 8C above normal it's below freezing all the time (like central Canada), and south of this zone where it's pretty much never cold enough to snow anyway (like the Sahara).

So the pattern of more extensive snow cover than normal is consistent with the anomaly pattern above. In fact, the above pattern is about as perfect as you can get for greater than normal NH snow cover in a warming world, as evidenced by the extreme negative AO:

(it's the little datapoint in the bottom right you should look at).

"I don't believe the global temperature record's, any of them..."

So they got Roy Spencer in on the Conspiracy too? Because satellite records indicate that Dec. to March was very warm globally, despite a small strip of cold in the NH. Maybe he's been taken over by the Reptile People like the Royal Family has. I'm sure you conspiracy nuts will think of something, you always do.

You denialists are getting more and more desperate every year. :)

By Robert Murphy (not verified) on 02 Jun 2010 #permalink

Brent @ 220:

Central England is not the globe, that's true, but since we don't have temperature measurements for the whole globe - even today - an unbroken 350-year measurement series is very valuable.

You are absolutely correct. A continous 350-year temperature record is a very valuable thing. For one, it allows you to point out it was hotter in central England in this that or the other year than it was this year or last year or whatever arbitrary point you choose. But as you well know, this sort of cheap two-bob watch trickery only distracts a shallow mind. The other significant value records like this possess is that you can reasonably reliably plot a trend. A bloody long trend. And a trend that is plotted that clearly shows a rising tendency that has statistical significance is clearly of more weight than an arbitrary year-to-year comparison. That's what the whole game is about, and you know it. Whichever way you chop it up, a rising trend is a rising trend. Period.

This is the whole "1998 was hotter than 200x" meme rehashed. With a dataset like this you can do two things: play "my dick's bigger than your dick", or step back a bit and look for patterns. Which is more meaningful depends, I guess, on what you value most.

Stu (221): You ask why I think it matters that May 1833 was warmer in Central England.

Because (a) The CET data is of high quality, not least due to its consistency of method and length and (b) if the world were warming then it'd be getting warmer here.

It matters because Climatography's claimed profound changes would be visible in Central England if they were true. In Central England, at least, it's business as usual.

Brent - have you looked at [the data for Central England](http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Central_england_temperature)? All the data that is, not 1 month's data?

Do you see the graph, the one with the line that slopes upwards?

Do you see that the hottest year was 2006?

Do you feel foolish?

By lord_sidcup (not verified) on 02 Jun 2010 #permalink

"Because (a) The CET data is of high quality, not least due to its consistency of method and length and (b) if the world were warming then it'd be getting warmer here."

The data from CE *does* show it's getting warmer. One month in a year is meaningless; the entire year itself wasn't close to being the record. And one year of course is not climate, nor is one tiny section of the globe representative of the whole. But even so, the CE temp data clearly shows it has been warmer in CE now than in the 1833, or the 1830's.

By Robert Murphy (not verified) on 02 Jun 2010 #permalink

>Stu (221): You ask why I think it matters that May 1833 was warmer in Central England.

>Because (a) The CET data is of high quality, not least due to its consistency of method and length and (b) if the world were warming then it'd be getting warmer here.

Not sure why I should explain that you're confusing weather with climate (again), and cherry picking (again), as it's been explained to you, what, 100 times? 200? Never mind.

I will ask you some more questions though. Do you think that it matters that the warmest month in the CET record was July 2006? Or that 2006 as a whole was the warmest year in the CET record? Clearly if May 1833 and 1833 as a whole have been outstripped in terms of anomaly by quite some margin, maybe it is warming?

On the other hand, perhaps it's instructive to look at the series as a whole! Silly Brent.

Here's a graph of the CET: , there is a trendline under all that noisy data and, yes, the trend it up. In fact, the rate of warming has increased, so a linear trend isn't the best representation!

You can also see a shortened graph here:

It's shortened because prior to 1772 only monthly data is available; the above series makes use of higher resolution daily data.

So, based on the above, what convinces you that an accelerating warming trend constitutes 'business as usual'?

Jakerman (224):

"Brent based on your understanding of science would you suggest that 1833 was globally warmer than any year in the last decade?"

You'll doubtelss say that I'm sidestepping your point, but I would say the following:

Empiricism supports a null hypothsis better than it does a wild-arsed theory. Let me rephrase that: A person with zero understanding of science, but armed with reliable experience can legitimately say, "I see no change"; If some clever dick comes along claiming, "Ah, yes, poor innocent yokel, you are blind to the great threat facing you", the onus is on the clever dick to demonstrate it.

In the case of a tuberculosis infected cow, or a drumful of radioactive waste, the expert will promptly show the yokel how right he is. But let's imagine a family of Central England farmers, growing cauliflowers over eight generations. JACS arrives, insisting on date palms and lavander in the next few years. The farmer says, "Now look 'ere young feller, you no doubt spent years at yon Agricultural College, and Jakerman Agricultural Consultancy Services no doubt pays well, but I'll only stop planting collies when they stops being so profitable."

It's business as usual. The onus is on YOU to prove that something exceptional is afoot. Come the day we have a thriving lavander industry here I'll invite you all over for a boozy weekend. You can all throw cauliflowers at me as punishment for being so slow to believe in AGW.

>(b) if the world were warming then it'd be getting warmer here.

Not necessarily (the collapse of the ocean heat conveyer could cool Britain and west Europe while the globl warms. But as it so happens Central England is getting warmer.

So Brent ignores the evidence that [it is getting hotter in central England](http://hadobs.metoffice.com/hadcet/) and instead cherry picks one month in the century year because meaningful time averages would destroy his argument.

>CET Data; Mean annual temperature for 2001 to 2007 is 10.49°C compared to warmest decade of 20th century, -the 1990s- 10.06°C, and the warmest decade of the period 1659 to 1900 -the 1730s- 9.54°

>You'll doubtelss say that I'm sidestepping your point, but I would say the following:

Yes, you knew you were dodging and you did.

So how about answering my straight and direct question?

>Brent based on your understanding of science would you suggest that 1833 was globally warmer than any year in the last decade?

> The apparent benefits of worldwide measurement - in spreading the net wider and hopefully gaining a truer picture - are outweighed by R&R errors.

Ouch! Seems like Brent's the kind of engineer who - if he doesn't have the right tool for the job - grabs the nearest tool for a *different* job and bashes away at the offending object. When Brent doesn't have a scale that can weigh a truck, he removes a wheel and weighs that and infers the truck's weight from that...

> The datasets include thermometers on the concrete at major airports, thermometers in a bucket of hauled-up water, thermometers in the engine-cooling intakes of ships...

You're committing the classic fallacy so tenaciously clung to by D'Aleo and Watts. You either cannot or will not understand the analysis that looks for the magnitude of any bias due to these effects **in global temperature trend analysis, which is not the same as bias in the site's readings** - and finds that it is not significant.

> ...thermometers at Station Eureka highly dependent on wind direction.

That's idiotic. Given that the **air temperature** at Station Eureka is highly dependent on wind direction, the thermometer there had bloody well better be as well.

> It matters because Climatography's claimed profound changes would be visible in Central England if they were true.

As others have pointed out, this is also a fallacy. Climate change might trigger climate pattern shifts that make Central England cooler.

Oh, and speaking of:

> It's business as usual. [in Central England]

[A 250-year index of first flowering dates and its response to temperature changes](http://www.citeulike.org/user/dgovoni/article/7129657)

> We derived a 250-year index of first flowering dates for 405 plant species in the UK for assessing the impact of climate change on plant communities. The estimated community-level index in the most recent 25 years was 2.2â12.7 days earlier than any other consecutive 25-year period since 1760. The index was closely correlated with FebruaryâApril mean Central England Temperature, with flowering 5.0 days earlier for every 1°C increase in temperature.

Did you catch that? First flowering dates in the UK are now **strikingly earlier** than **any** time in the last 250 years - and they are **closely correlated** with the CET records that you are enamoured of. It's NOT even business as usual in the UK.

By Lotharsson (not verified) on 02 Jun 2010 #permalink

Brent,

You would not understand the thrust of a testable hypothesis if it hit you in the 'nads.

What is most tiresome is that you are basically scientifically illiterate yet you pontificate here as if you have some innate wisdom that thousands of qualified scientists lack.

Of course there is empirical evidnence that it is warming - thousands of biotic indicators are proof of that. From latitudinal and elevational range shifts, to earlier breeding and flowering cycles, to changing phenologies - all provide more than enough proof that there is warming and that it is indeed a global phenomenon. And many of the patterns being observed suggest that many species are failing to adapt to current regional changes in temperature with consequences for the food webs and ecosystems in which they are embedded. Just because you've probably never read a scientific journal in your life does not mean that studies aren't there. They are - hundreds of them.

At the same time, there is ample proof that humans are the primary culprit for the current warming pattern.

Science has moved on from your inflatile level of discourse. The pressing question challenging the scientific community is to what the outcomes of the warming are likely to be. For morons like you and sunspot who stick their finger to the wind or head out the window every so often and claim that they don't notice anything, well, ther eis little hope of getting through to you. I will repaet because it has not sunk in to your head: humans have not evolved to respond to what we perceive as gradual threats but which in the context of complex adaptive systems constitute very significant rates of change. Large scale systems function deterministically and take a major forcing to knock them out of equilibrium. And that is what is happening now - in slow motion.

As for sunspot, what can I say - his scientific illiteracy matches yours. Most of Canada - the world's second largest country - experienced its warmest winter ever and most places had very little snow at all. By early March in Ontario one had to travel north of Cochrane to find any snow on the ground, an event unprecedented in recorded history. Sunspot's inability to provide much in the way of scientific evidence (except from contrarian sites and the right wing media) has led him to coming up with the mother of all conspriacy theories.

By Jeff Harvey (not verified) on 02 Jun 2010 #permalink

Brent says:
"A person with zero understanding of science, but armed with reliable experience can legitimately say, "I see no change" "

Not according to the CET record; it clearly and unambiguously shows that it has been getting warmer. One month in one year is not a trend. Anybody with even a hint of intellectual honesty looking at the CE temp record will admit that 1833 as a year was not the record for that location, and that it's considerably warmer now than it was in the 1830's. That of course excludes you.

By Robert Murphy (not verified) on 02 Jun 2010 #permalink

Lord Sidcup (230): Thanks for the link to Wikipedia. Did you ask Bernard J's permission first?

You point out that 2006 is hottest, and ask if I feel foolish. Well, I see a series of peaks and a series of troughs. There's a peak around 1730 which is about 0.3C cooler than the 2006 peak.

Do I "feel foolish"? Let's agree that two degrees would be bad news for the planet. As you may know, I consider trend-extrapolation to be dumb nomerology unless the underlying physics is understood. But if I try to join in with your mindset, well yes, as Cole Porter wrote "There may be troubles ahead."

Ask me again in 3006.

Jakerman *237): You ask "would you suggest that 1833 was globally warmer than any year in the last decade?"

No, sir, I wouldn't.

Stu, Brent's finally admitted there is a difference between weather and climate.

As for his mentioning of the CET data from the 1600's, we're just going around the goldfish bowl.

Let's summarise what's Brent's conceeded:

He's admitted that the "supporting hypothesis" is "watertight"

He's admitted that Mann is "sincere".

He's admitted that "Hadley CET and UAH MSU" are "trustworthy".

He's admitted that biosphere *has* adapted to warming.

He's admitted that he knows nothing about climate sensitivity, which he's now claiming can disprove global warming for ever and ever. If only the science will show what he knows in his heart to be true.

He's admitted that global warming is "relgious not scientific", despite the fact that he's also admitted it's yet to have been disproven.

He's supported the urban heat island effect, even though he'd previously stated the ">data was trustworthy.

Speaking of faith, Brent's admitted not being able to name an time when he would accept AGW.

Then when he did...he admitted that his definition of when he finally would accept warming was "absurd".

He's admitted that he really should just defer to people who know what they are talking about.

He's admitted that the earth has cooled since 1998 meme is wrong.

He's admitted the "AGW hypothesis is logical".

He's admitted being crap at maths.

He's admitted that he lied.

He's admitted wanting to have Steve McIntyre's babies (this must be the humour Brent is so renowned for).

He's offered to "'surrender' if the black dots go into the red zone twice."

He's said that if we are right he will encourage other sceptics to change their views. Since then he's admitted that global warming has yet to have been disproven but hasn't change his views.

He's admitted that he "doesn't doubt" it starting getting warmer around 1975, which clashes instantly with his other claims that the data is "dodgy".

In fact, he doesn't "even doubt that it's been getting warmer since 1860. The Aletsch Glacier has been getting shorter since then."

He's admitted the IPCC has been right about warming so far and he will concede if it gets warmer in the next decade.

He's admitted the urban heat island effect is wrong.

That's only up to comment 378 and already full of contradictions!

"Jakerman *237): You ask "would you suggest that 1833 was globally warmer than any year in the last decade?"
No, sir, I wouldn't." (Brent, #241)

So Brent, considering the above, and when you said,
"Because (a) The CET data is of high quality, not least due to its consistency of method and length and (b) if the world were warming then it'd be getting warmer here."

you will of course concede that the CET data does clearly show it is warmer now than it was in the 1830's. That it does in fact show that it has been getting warmer in CE, especially in the last 30-40 years according to the data you yourself concede is "of high quality, not least due to its consistency of method and length". Right?

By Robert Murphy (not verified) on 02 Jun 2010 #permalink

Right.

Okay, right, oh man I can't stop laughing!! You guys have got to see this.

So, @234 John linked to a comment thread which Brent posted in over at not-so-super Nova's. Everyone's favourite lunatic geologist Louis Hissink is there!

Quoting:

>I have to stress one crucial fact â the downwelling IR that is measured and interpreted to be due to gaseseous radiation (back radiation which violates known laws of physics)is a patently wrong interpretation. So what is producing the downwelling IR at night?

>Invisible electric currents permeating the atmosphere.

Oh good gravy. Brent, you just ain't in the same class mate.

Oh man I can't stop laughing! You guys have got to see this.

So, @234 John linked to a comment thread which Brent posted in over at not-so-super Nova's. Everyone's favourite lunatic geologist Louis Hissink is there! What with his previous geothermal heat argument, he's now contending for most desperate ABCDer (Anything But Carbon Dioxide) ever.

Quoting:

>I have to stress one crucial fact â the downwelling IR that is measured and interpreted to be due to gaseseous radiation (back radiation which violates known laws of physics)is a patently wrong interpretation. So what is producing the downwelling IR at night?

>Invisible electric currents permeating the atmosphere.

Oh good gravy. Brent, you just ain't in the same class mate.

Bah. Yay for double posting...

[Brent](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2010/05/brent_thread.php#comment-2559673):

Lord Sidcup (230): Thanks for the link to Wikipedia. Did you ask Bernard J's permission first?

LS doesn't need to ask permission - he conspicuously linked to his source.

You, on the other hand, plagiarised the content and then denied doing it, except to [insinuate that it was only "the odd pronoun"](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2010/05/brent_thread.php#comment-2557649) that slipped through.

You're delusional buster.

By Bernard J. (not verified) on 02 Jun 2010 #permalink

"Do I "feel foolish"? Let's agree that two degrees would be bad news for the planet. As you may know, I consider trend-extrapolation to be dumb nomerology unless the underlying physics is understood."

Having made a fool of yourself citing "high quality" data to bolster your case but end up underminding it, you now switch tack to the "underlying physics" and try to create a "AGW is based on trend-extrapolation" strawman. Pathetic. I'm done here.

By lord_sidcup (not verified) on 02 Jun 2010 #permalink

>LOL! STEW !!! that chart is dodgy,

>I'm not going to bother checking all the counties, have a look at China for a start, http://www.tinyurl.com.au/9me http://www.tinyurl.com.au/9mg http://www.tinyurl.com.au/9mh http://www.tinyurl.com.au/9mj

>STEW...you can't believe the global temp data !

Hi SONSPOOT!

Well aside from one of your links being from 2008, your argument does somewhat rely on you being able to locate Beijing on a map of the world. The RSS anomaly map does show much of China warmer than average in January, but Beijing itself is located just northwest the Yellow Sea that separates China from Korea. This area had a brightness temperature anomaly of around zero.

Besides, the city has an average maximum temperature of just 1.8C in January, and what's more, averages just 0.11 inches of precipitation. Seems to me the crucial ingredient for heavy snow there is anomalous moisture, not anomalous cold.

So, basically, it seems you need a better example of where the RSS map falls down. Can you find one?

Lotharsson, thanks for the reference to the Amano & Smithers study. Is their paper available free online?

It's good news that nature adapts to variations in temperature. So, a full degree of change results in just a 5-day shift in blossoming. This'll upset Jeff "Linear" Harvey. We sit at the knee of the great man as he tells us patiently that current conditions are not unprecedented; no, it's the speed of change that's the key point. And then he hits us with his punchline: "And that is what is happening now - in slow motion."

We were having a laugh about the late-flowering English daffodils a few weeks ago, as I teased people with dire warnings that this presaged a new ice age. But what the hell are we to make of Jeff's intelligence about lack of snow at Cochrane, Canada? Is this humour? Or does he need a refresher course in statistics?

C'mon, guys... I know he's one of yours, but can you stand by and watch the Cochrane Declaration enter the record unchallenged? Time for a bit of peer-group pressure, I'd say.... Full Metal Jacket... blanket.... GI socks.... bars of soap... John whacks him, Jakeraman joins in, Bernard J sheds a little tear but puts his back into it...

Desperate, desperate stuff Brent.

Looks like the only crumbling edifice we're seeing round here is that of your own pretensions, as only lightly sketched out by John at #243.

You're really just Sunspit with a slightly bigger vocabulary but the same burning desire to suck on any trumped up anecdote or denial talking point, never mind whether it be about as wholesome as some piss-soaked cigarette end fished out of an untended urinal somewhere.

Maybe you really should be off patting other denier chums on the back for having the courage of your collective vision in 'exposing' the 'scam', just like in kid's stories. Golly!

[Brent](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2010/05/brent_thread.php#comment-2560788):

It's good news that nature adapts to variations in temperature. So, a full degree of change results in just a 5-day shift in blossoming.

Put your head out of your arse, mate.

It differs for different species: some more some less. Further, what seems to you like a small shift represents a profound alteration of phenological relationships, and where such phenologies include the asynchronisation of food sources for reproducing species, such subtle effects are catastrophic.

Oh, and the flowering-delay response of plant species is not linearly related to temperature over more than a few degrees - and I doubt that, with sufficient resolution, it would be linear even at the tempeature changes that are currently being experienced. Of course, if you subscribe to the Tim Curtin School of Extraordinary Regression TechniquesTM such physical constraints are entirely beside the point...

We were having a laugh about the late-flowering English daffodils a few weeks ago...

Oo, a coincidence! We've had late-flowering quinces and medlars... the problem is that where I live is almost half way to the South Pole from the Equator. Having quinces and medlars flower in late April is bizarre for this area, and indeed the medlar leaves in my district are still robustly green and the plants are still growing, where in the past they've always been aflame with autumn (and now winter) senescence.

I rather suspect that my 'late' observed flowering behaviours trump yours. The variation that you speak of is expected within the noise inherent in the system: the behaviours that I have noted are completely out of character for fruit trees here.

Of course, you'll simply move the goal posts to a new pitch now.

By Bernard J. (not verified) on 02 Jun 2010 #permalink

>*It's good news that nature adapts to variations in temperature. So, a full degree of change results in just a 5-day shift in blossoming.*

Wow, how did you determine the impact of warming is "just" a shift in in blossoming time? Or were you being a little casual is your language. did you mean to say that is is just one of the many impacts?

But if your error was casual wording, why then does the substance of the rest of your post make it appear like you think this is the only impact of warming?

What is your assessmet of the way the Mountain Pine Beetle has adapted? It seem to be doing [quite swimmingly](http://www.treehugger.com/files/2007/09/the_pine_beetle.php) wouldn't you say Brent?

Brent, remember my challenge [you keep avoiding](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2010/05/brent_thread.php#comment-2558588)?

Now I gain a sense of the Dunning-Kruger flase-memes that underpin your poor grasp of what you are critiqing:

>*I have to stress one crucial fact â the downwelling IR that is measured and interpreted to be due to gaseseous radiation (back radiation which violates known laws of physics)is a patently wrong interpretation. So what is producing the downwelling IR at night? Invisible electric currents permeating the atmosphere.*

Hat tip to John and Stu.

BTW Brent, please comeback with a defense of your views cited here (popcorn).

Jakerman, we know what Brent thinks the case for AGW is. It is "logical" and "watertight". There are two descrpitons I'd agree with.

Warmists love dodgy data when it suits your purposes and demonstrates the trend you so want to believe in.

Fuck you.

By truth machine (not verified) on 02 Jun 2010 #permalink

Jakerman @258,

That quote is from Louis Hissink, not Brent (re-read my post). We all know that he is at the extreme end of the D-K spectrum. It does show what passes for reasoned discussion at Nova's though.

Oh, Truthmachine,

Here I am still chuckling at Bernard's addition of "TM" to his mention of Tim Curtin - how these little dashes of meaning enliven otherwise-dull words like a sprinkling of herbs - and then you bring the tone down with a great coarse dollop of tomato ketchup.

Does Mrs. Kincaid know what her little boy gets up to locked away in his bedroom all those hours?

Jakerman (256): Well spotted. I hesitated for quite some time before using the word 'just', asking myself this: "If five days seems modest for a whole goddam degree shift in medium-term temperatures, well, compared to what expectation - not that I had any such expectation in the first place?" Answer: compared to observed year-to-year variation which can be several weeks.

So, cosidering the five days per degree to be a signal, and in such a large study a pretty clear one, compared to the annual 'noise' the signal-to-noise ratio would seem modest.

This reasoning may well be faulty, and I look forward to it being challenged, but bravo for seizing on those innocent-looking four letters.

Fuck you.

By truth machine (not verified) on 02 Jun 2010 #permalink

Thanks for the correction Stu, And applogies to Brent.

It was an undesereved slight to mis-attribute Hissink's DK to you.

I'm sure Brent will head [straight back there](http://joannenova.com.au/2010/05/throwing-the-hate-crime-grenade/) to set them straight at Nova's. Won't you Brent? Surely it would be unkind to let them continue to discredit themselves. Surely you want your crack-team of "skeptics" to be inforom on the basics of what y'all skeptical about?

To be fair to Brent (God Forbid!), after being explicitly asked to do so, he made a nice summary of the Wikipedia entry on general relativity

No, that's not what I asked him to do. And do try to remember why I asked him, and note that he does not accept a comparable response to his "challenge".

Don't talk about being "fair" to Brent -- he will never receive what he truly deserves.

By truth machine (not verified) on 02 Jun 2010 #permalink

Brent,

You really are pathetic. I have been saying for a long time now that natural systems respond in non-linear (get that? NON-LINEAR!!!) ways to various anthropogenic stresses. This is the major problem in predicting the effects of climate change on ecosystem functioning: that there will be nasty surprises in store. Some fo the great work done by the likes of Donald Strong and Gary Polis alerted us to the fact that cause-and-effect realtionships in ecological systems are decidely non-linear; climate change threatens to exacerbate the non-linearity of these processes even more so, making the consequences of inaction to curb C02 emeissions that much greater.

Then, for some stupid reason, you accuse me of arguing that natural responses are linear.

I used the term slow motion strictly on the basis of YOUR perception to global change; in fact, I use this as a metaphor for the inability of humans to respond to what we perceive as slow motion but which is in fact the blink of an evolutionary eye for complex adaptive systems. The boiled frog syndrome. Its just too bad that you are as dense as cement and do not understand even basic arguments.

As I have said before, and let it sink in this time, climate change, in combination with other anthropogenic assaults, threatens to decimate food webs and ecological interaction networks, leading to the collapse of some systems and a profound decrease in their ability to generate a range of ecosystem services that sustain human civilization. This is harldy controversial; most of my peers are in full agreement as to the consequences of current human activities if business-as-usual remains the course of action.

By Jeff Harvey (not verified) on 02 Jun 2010 #permalink

One last point for Brent:

What you stupidly refer to as the "Cochrane declaration" was meant to counter sunpsot's ridiculous assertion that (1) the northern hemisphere in general was snow-packed this past winter, and that the record temperatures shown by NASA must be false, and (2) that MOST of Canada had its warmest winter on record and that the snowline in March was hundreds of kilometers north of where it usually is on average. The whole of southern Canada was snow-free throughout most of February and March and areas of northern Ontario and the prairies experienced temperatures 10-20 C above normal in much of March.

In 2008 a right wing hack in Canada wrote an article discounting global warming because eastern Canada had experienced heavy snowfalls and cold temperatures in January of that year; in March I wrote to him and asked, using his inane logic of mistaking weather and climate, if would write a new article arguing that warming was confirmed by Canada's record warm winter in 2010. In true hypocritical fashion, he responded to me by saying that I was mistaking weather and climate. But of course I was, but he was too in his wretched 2008 article. The difference is that it is apparently wrong when the 'warmists' do it, but perfectly acceptable when the denialists do it. Pure and utter hypocrisy. When I pointed this out to him in a subsequent email he did not reply.

Most importantly, when the likes ofou and sunspot can produce so much gibberish then do not complain when it is countered.

By Jeff Harvey (not verified) on 02 Jun 2010 #permalink

STEW @ 252

'This area had a brightness temperature anomaly of around zero.

'The RSS anomaly map does show much of China warmer than average in January, but Beijing itself is located just northwest the Yellow Sea that separates China from Korea. This area had a brightness temperature anomaly of around zero.'

So, basically, it seems you need a better example of where the RSS map falls down. Can you find one?'

STEW this tells me your global temperature anomalies map is fudging the reality.

About half of the Bohai Sea, a semi-enclosed inland sea the size of South Carolina, was covered by ice on January 23 as it experienced its worst freeze since 1969. Ice floes stranded ships, disrupted oil drilling and caused economic losses to marine farms, where ice blocked oxygen from reaching captive fish.' 'Zhang Qiwen, another SOA expert, said sea ice growth is cyclical and its seriousness is related to sunspot activities, though some sea ice may be triggered by human activities that affect the oceanic climate, such as the construction of wave dams, marine transport and offshore oil drilling.' "We have never seen sea ice at such a scale. We would have encouraged aquaculture farmers to breed their fish farther away from the coast, which is less prone to freezing," http://www.tinyurl.com.au/9qa

Central China was now under a snow storm warning until Wednesday, stretching from Henan to Hunan provinces, the national weather bureau said on its website. http://www.tinyurl.com.au/9ql

STEW your silly little map should be telling us that it was colder than average, not hotter ! not average !

the map lies

Jeff Pinocchio Harvey, your nose just grew another foot ! You know Canada's temperature anomaly was caused by El Nino & ENSO, it was just weather stoopid

Did anyone ask Brent to summaries the theory of relativity?

and

Shorter Spotty: *anything that shows global warming is evidence of fudge*

I.e. complete denial, requiring extraordinary conspiracy.

You've created a neat circular belief system spotty! Have you got your ammo stockpile yet?

I'm not one for profanity usage ordinarily, but truth machine's recent postings seem to have that apposite touch about them.

It really is about time that these extremely good examples of bottom-of-the-class fuckwits were just ignored. There really are better things to waste one's time on (like navel clean-ups, counting sand grains in the Sahara, ...) than corresponding with fuckwit goldfish-trolls.

Bandwidth still costs. Use it wisely.

Sunspot clearly does not understand basic English.

Read my last posting again you twerp; I explained fully that the Canadian record warmth was a weather and not a climate event; I was just showing up hypocritical nincompoops like you and the right wing pundits who use weather as examples when it suits their denialist narrative (anyone reading your post at #270 will see the utter hypocrisy of your posting at #271).

No wonder you have you remain anonymous; your posts are an absolute embarrassment and reveal clearly that you have no scientific acument whatsoever.

By Jeff Harvey (not verified) on 03 Jun 2010 #permalink

Jeff Pinocchio Harvey, yep, I read it again, still no mention about the fact that Canada's high temp's were caused by
El Nino & ENSO, you never tell that little secret in your little spiels about Canada.

'explained fully' - ha

JH

>In 2008 a right wing hack in Canada wrote an article discounting global warming **because eastern Canada had experienced heavy snowfalls and cold temperatures in January of that year**; in March I wrote to him and asked, **using his inane logic of mistaking weather and climate**, if would write a new article **arguing that warming was confirmed by Canada's record warm winter in 2010**. In true **hypocritical fashion, he responded to me by saying that I was mistaking weather and climate**.

Spotty gets it wrong again. That would be Epic Fail.

Chek (254): You speak of "exposing the scam". Well, I no longer believe in a conspiracy theory. I previously figured that the Global Warming theory was so obviously codswallop that there had to be a scheming Doctor Evil orchestrating the scare story on behalf of a wicked enclave of billionaires. I no longer believe that scientists cynically concoct a global warming 'angle' to improve their funding prospects.

My best shot at an explanation is that this great myth meets a basic human need which has been satisfied by a variety of demons down the ages, AGW being the latest incarnation. It even occurs to me that the journalistic ethos of "If it bleeds it leads" is not cynical but satisfies the urges of newspapers and readers alike.

There's more mileage in predicting disaster. In England we once had nightwatchmen who would patrol the streets incanting "It's three o'clock and all is well!" These days they'd be yelling "It's three o'clock and the church hasn't yet burned down. Without a bigger budget our luck may not hold..."

What pisses me off is that precious resource is being squandered on this myth.

To cite a small example, Michael Mann's faculty has bagged $1.8m to study global warming's effect on malaria. Great for his career, admittedly, but I daydream that he might call a news conference and declare: "We've spent the whole lot on a vaccination programme in Africa. Oh, by the way, we spent five minutes agreeing that global warming has stopped. Misappropriation of public funds??? Gitouttahere!!"

Bigger examples include fortunes spent on zero-yield windmills and major efficiency losses to power stations when saddled with pointless carbon capture devices.

Scam? No, it's an unfortunate mass hysteria which I fear will persist for between 10 and 30 years.

> There really are better things to waste one's time on (like navel clean-ups, counting sand grains in the Sahara, ...) than corresponding with fuckwit goldfish-trolls.

I think it would be a very interesting experiment to limit responses to goldfish arguments (those made by the poster previously and debunked at the time) to merely noting the goldfish behaviour (with references if one could be bothered looking them up).

I think this thread - and the Empirical Evidence thread, where by now it's basically sunspot reposting WUWT links and responses to the same - would have very little else but goldfish trolling and comments noting the fact.

By Lotharsson (not verified) on 03 Jun 2010 #permalink

> My best shot at an explanation is that *this great myth meets a basic human need*...

Brent posts, Brent projects.

Film at 11.

By Lotharsson (not verified) on 03 Jun 2010 #permalink

Jeff Harvey (269):

I owe you an apology. I thought that you were seriously advancing Cochrane's snowless condition as a symptom of global warming. Instead you were parodying those who unfairly quote 'outliers', as in "My uncle Henry smoked sixty a day and lived to be 99". Missed the little wink you gave.

You wrote: "Then, for some stupid reason, you accuse me of arguing that natural responses are linear." Not quite, Jeff. In many of your postings you make a case for a tragic 'undoing of Nature's balance' happening before our eyes, that half of humanity is fiddling while Rome burns and the other half is torching the place. In awarding you a 'Linear' middle name I meant that your view of nature seems to one of ideal optimums, where departures from a narrow path lead to further disruption in a complex and fragile web. The fragility you ascribe to nature, you also ascribe to climate, I think.

Is this a fair summary of your view? If so, it helps focus this idea of mine that the two camps stand either side of a chasm marked "unstable v stable equilibrium" or "fragile v robust".

When I see drivers of 4-wheel drive wankmobiles taking a speed-bump with great delicacy I want to jump out and ask them why. The answer I expect is, "Any faster, and the wheels'll go up and down," to which I would yell "They're SUPPOSED to! They're designed to!" (More likely, just as I open my big gob I'll see an ancient lady in the back seat holding a wedding cake.)

If this idea (fragile v robust) has legs, we'll doubtless start bickering over which view is 100% correct and which 100% rubbish. But if this philosophical divide truly exists, we'd probably do better to seek a synthesis. (sings) 'Oh, the farmer and the cowman should be friends...'

Uh, Brent, have you been drinking? It's 1pm on a Thursday man, show some restraint!

>Well, I no longer believe in a conspiracy theory. I previously figured that the Global Warming theory was so obviously codswallop that there had to be a scheming Doctor Evil orchestrating the scare story on behalf of a wicked enclave of billionaires. I no longer believe that scientists cynically concoct a global warming 'angle' to improve their funding prospects.

I'll add this to my list of things you will go back on in 2 days.

>My best shot at an explanation is that this great myth meets a basic human need which has been satisfied by a variety of demons down the ages, AGW being the latest incarnation. It even occurs to me that the journalistic ethos of "If it bleeds it leads" is not cynical but satisfies the urges of newspapers and readers alike.

That's not science, and you yourself admit AGW is yet to be disproven. You've got to throw out these faith based arguments, kid.

>What pisses me off is that precious resource is being squandered on this myth.

It's not a "fraud" or "hoax" now, it's a "myth". Your evidence? That it hasn't been disproven. But you know it will. One of these days....

>To cite a small example, Michael Mann's faculty has bagged $1.8m to study global warming's effect on malaria. Great for his career, admittedly, but I daydream that he might call a news conference and declare: "We've spent the whole lot on a vaccination programme in Africa. Oh, by the way, we spent five minutes agreeing that global warming has stopped. Misappropriation of public funds??? Gitouttahere!!"

Maybe it's because a) global warming is happening (you admit it hasn't been disproven!) and b) it will devestate the poor of Africa. Do you think he's spending this money on sportscars? You've previously conceeded that scientists do not apply for grants for personal gain so what's your point?

>Bigger examples include fortunes spent on zero-yield windmills and major efficiency losses to power stations when saddled with pointless carbon capture devices.

Yes it's such a shame that technology can't advance and we'll be tied to fossil fuels forever. Luckily, they're abundant and not mostly in hostile territories.

>Scam? No, it's an unfortunate mass hysteria which I fear will persist for between 10 and 30 years.

So if the scientists aren't scamming anyone, and you can't disprove the science....it looks like it's real in that case!

Hic!

Please see this space tomorrow for a typically cutting comment which will be posted (presumably) as soon as Tim allows.

>Jeff. In many of your postings you make a case for a tragic 'undoing of Nature's balance' happening before our eyes, that half of humanity is fiddling while Rome burns and the other half is torching the place.

>In awarding you a 'Linear' middle name I meant that your view of nature seems to one of ideal optimums, where departures from a narrow path lead to further disruption in a complex and fragile web.

Here [we go all or nothing reductio absurdism again](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2010/05/brent_thread.php#comment-2545992)!

>the usual reductio ad absurdum that you employ [just like] ('the Sun has no effect on the climate who have thunk?').

Instead of trying to imply that people calling for action are calling for "ideal optimums" why not argue the physics, the ecology, the economics, the facts?

You continue getting side tracked (and [tricking yourself](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2010/05/brent_thread.php#comment-2546499)) with ideology.

So lets draws this back with some quick clarifying questions to assess the genuine landscape at issue:

1) I assume you are not arguing the ecosystems are robust to everything? Is my assumption on this correct?

2) I assume you do not believe Jeff thinks that every remaining ecosystem is fragile (sensitive) to every forcing (stressor), Is my assumption on this correct?

3) I assume you believe ecologists like Jeff and Bernard are informed in scientifically meaningful ways, about how to find the difference in different situations on the spectrum between 1) and 2) above? Is my assumption on this correct?

Now how about you ask Jeff something sensible (that is not an excuse to diverge into fantasy), if you agree with 1, 2, and 3?

Another way of improving getting away from reductio absurdism is to ask how much are certain ecosystems robust and fragile to stressors?

Like, how are different wild fish stocks robust and fragile to various fishing regimes operating in different places? (And the you might ask how might we chose to adjust our approach considering this information).

Or you might ask, how robust in the general extinction rate of species to various behaviors we are responsible for? (And the you might ask how might we chose to adjust our approach considering this information).

Or you might ask how robust are various ecosystems to ozone depletion? Or indeed you might ask how robust in the ozone layer to various manufactured chemicals?

On the question of robustness and fragility we [dodged a bullet on the ozone hole](http://www.peopleandplace.net/media_library/audio/2009/4/27/tim_flanner…) by pure chance:

>*⦠if chemists in 1928 had decided to make bromofluorocarbons instead of chlorofluorocarbons, I donât think we would be here today. The reason they didnât use bromine instead of chlorine was that bromine was a little more expensive than chlorine and it had a couple of characteristics that made it a little bit less favorable for the particular applications that they had imagined for these chemicals.*

>*But the big thing about bromine is that it is 46 times more effective at destroying ozone than chlorine. So we would have had no ozone layer and wouldnât have known what had gone wrong. It would have happened before we had really come to grips with the problem.*

Brent,

jakerman sums it up nicely. But let me expand upon this a little bit.

I have never said that natural systems are fragile; fragility is a purely anthropocentric concept that is based on the misplaced notion that natural systems cannot respond to perterbations. But of course they can: natural sytems have been exposed to changes for millions of years since the explosion of life began during the Cambrian explosion as evidence by the fossil record in the Burgess Shale. Many of these perterbations led to mass extinction events that, had they occurred today, would have doomed humanity to the same fate. But when they did occur, our primitive ancestors - from Picaia gracilens to Purgatorius - were minor players on the global stage and had little impact on the functioning of thir local ecosystems. Moreover, they had good luck as well as good genes on their side: the major forcings that precipitated the mass extinctions may have occurred on the other side of the Earth, allowing them to slip through the bottleneck.

The problem is that humans have already changed and are increasingly changing natural systems at rates exceeding those experienced across the biosphere in at least 65 million years. These changes cover a range of processes and scales. These include the destruction (read: simplification) of terrestrial and marine ecosystems through direct elimination of habitats, various forms of pollution, overharvesting, changes in biogeochemcial cycles, competition and exclusion from invasive (non-native) species, and, last but not necessarily least, rapid climate change. Given these facts, it is clear that nature has been very resilient, otherwise the cost on humans in terms of lost or decreased ecosystem services would have been far greater than has already occurred.

But there is no guarantee that the gradual loss of these vital services will continue at the same slow rate, as in all liklihood we are approaching critical thresholds. Beyond these ecological ssytems will switch to alternate states (see work by Martin Scheffer and colleagues in this field) that are much less able to sustain humanity and which are much more prone to collapse. This is why I have been saying for some time now that cause-and-effect relationships in natural systems over variable spatial and temporal gradients are non-linear. Most worrying of all is that systemic resilience is much stronger than the resilience of provisioning services: in other words, further simplification of nature may not result in the total breakdown of food webs and ecological netoworks but important services - such as nutrient cycling, water purification, pest control and pollination - may be much more deleteriously affected. And without these services freely emerging from nature in copious quantities there will be profound consequences for human civilization. There are few technological substitutes for most of them.

I suggest that you read Simon Levin's quite outstanding book, "Fragile Dominion: Complexity and the Commons" (1999) which I reviewed for the journal Nature. The come back to me and try telling me that climate change is a minimal threat to nature.

By Jeff Harvey (not verified) on 03 Jun 2010 #permalink

Jakerman (286): 1)yes, 2)yes, 3)yes.

Good idea.

Jeff (or Bernard if you want to chip in): Has there been a scientific assessment of how the biosphere coped with the aftermath of the 1815 Tambora eruption which led to famine in sveral continents? How would you compare the scale of that event to recent global warming? Would Tambora - or some other historical event - be a useful benchmark, potentially leading to a logarithmic 'Extinction Index' similar to the Richter or Beaufort Scales?

Brent's 'philosophical' delusion about the robustness of natural ecosystems in the face of human depredation doesn't seem to have much support in the [historical](http://archive.greenpeace.org/comms/cbio/cancod.html) [record](http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Oldgrowth3.jpg).

It is clearly fallacious to argue that because natural systems can recover from short term perturbations of a few years (Tamboura) that they can respond as well to orders of magnitude larger disruptions that will persist for millenia.

It is the psychology of denial that drives Brent to engage in his persistent irrationality. The only hope for Brent to recover his sanity is to admit his problem is in his own mind, rather than projecting his neurotic fear onto others. As long as he can retreat into the online community of fellow deniers who share his disease, this is not likely to happen. It is much like drug addiction, only here the substance of abuse is a socially reinforced tendency for over-weaning narcissism.

By luminous beauty (not verified) on 03 Jun 2010 #permalink

Luminous Beauty (291): You write: "It is clearly fallacious to argue that because natural systems can recover from short term perturbations of a few years (Tamboura) that they can respond as well to orders of magnitude larger disruptions that will persist for millenia."

Correct; hence my wish to clarify scales.

Your link to the terrible story of the Grand Banks makes distressing reading. Ditto for rainforest destruction, and whale hunting and the oil catastrophe in the Gulf of Mexico.

Does Global Warming deserve to be included in that list? If it's a frothy frilly futurological fantasy, then no: save your tears (and your energies) for what's real, man.

But I must concede that, before the Grand Banks' collapse some were saying 'there's plenty more fish in the sea'; that drastic action was overreaction. And then it was too late, and the sceptics sabotaged prompt action.

Hence the subject under discussion: relative scale of known stressors; fragile and robust populations; recovery rates.

Maybe the easy way is to just sit back and say "let the experts decide". But this is a layman's site, and even laymen are entitled to question whether the experts have it right.

In the early 1950s the BBC correspondant in the US was given a quiet tip-off. His scientist friend patted the bonnet of a car and said, "In a few years there'll be a little nuclear reactor powering this baby and thousands like it." The experts are sometimes wrong.

>Does Global Warming deserve to be included in that list? If it's a frothy frilly futurological[sic] fantasy, then no: save your tears (and your energies) for what's real, man.

Big if. Especially considering that Global Warming is a present reality and the disruptions of ecosystems is already discernible with less than a degree of increase. Except to those in denial.

By luminous beauty (not verified) on 03 Jun 2010 #permalink

Did anyone ask Brent to summaries the theory of relativity?

See #191. As I noted in #214, Brent did not do what I asked. But I understand that -- one cannot lay out (rather than just characterize) the GToR in 200 words, and certainly not do that and present convincing evidence (rather than just assert that the evidence conforms to the theory). The point, of course, is that one could easily create from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Global_warming a 200 word summary much like Brent's summary of the GToR -- or one can do better, as Elspi did in #173. Brent acknowledged it as "a lucid summary" (#177) but only "awarded" 2 points (#210). In that post Brent says we are "missing the point" of his "little game" (#193; somehow that's only what it is when turned about on him) but he neglects to spell out that point. It's like, if he says "suck my dick" and we don't comply, this proves that we don't have mouths.

I think it would be a very interesting experiment to limit responses to goldfish arguments (those made by the poster previously and debunked at the time) to merely noting the goldfish behaviour (with references if one could be bothered looking them up).

I think a better experiment would be to only to reply to the author of "Warmists love dodgy data when it suits your purposes and demonstrates the trend you so want to believe in" with what he deserves: a hearty

Fuck you.

By truth machine (not verified) on 03 Jun 2010 #permalink

the Global Warming theory was so obviously codswallop

This is the beginning and the end for Brent, it is his religious faith, he has numerous ways to defend his belief from challenge, and as has been demonstrated) nothing will move him from it.

By truth machine (not verified) on 03 Jun 2010 #permalink

Jeff, I have ordered the Levin book you recommended in #209, and look forward to understanding better the dangers you have been describing.

Marcel, in that vein, here's one you might find useful: http://www.amazon.co.uk/Etiquette-Dummies-Sue-Fox/dp/0470106727/ref=sr_…

There's a book called The Truth Machine, which I assume has taught you all you know. Not my cup of tea.

Fuck you.

By truth machine (not verified) on 03 Jun 2010 #permalink

> ...even laymen are entitled to question whether the experts have it right.

Er...wasn't it precisely the laymen "skeptics" saying "there's plenty more fish in the sea" until it was too late, thereby becoming unwitting saboteurs of remedial action? Perhaps there's a lesson there...

It's not about whether anyone is *entitled* to question; it's about whether that questioning has any basis in the real world.

> The experts are sometimes wrong.

In most fields they're wrong far less often than the laymen who question them. And in those fields, deciding public policy on the basis of uninformed lay opinion isn't the wisest course of action. But that's what you appear to be arguing for.

By Lotharsson (not verified) on 03 Jun 2010 #permalink

>Does Global Warming deserve to be included in that list? If it's a frothy frilly futurological fantasy, then no: save your tears (and your energies) for what's real, man.

I think you've been forced to answer many of the elements of that question in the affirmative [if reluctantly](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2010/05/brent_thread.php#comment-2562078).

But more specifially can you lay out your risk assessment grid of hazard and probability?

My understanding puts AGW at high probability and high hazard. Do you dispute this finding? If so describe your own risk matrix?

I love the use of "obviously" in "obviously codswallop".

Brent's admitted the data is reliable, the scientists are honest, it has been warming since 1860/1975, the hypothesis is watertight and logical, yet it is "obviously codswallop"!

Work that one out!

Oh, and Jakerman, what I love about that post is he didn't go back on statement that scientists aren't in it for the money in two days, he went back on it in two paragraphs.

The mind! It boggles!

> ...he went back on it in two paragraphs.

I think we need a standard metric for orbital velocity of goldfish in a bowl...

By Lotharsson (not verified) on 03 Jun 2010 #permalink

>I think we need a standard metric for orbital velocity of goldfish in a bowl

Heagreave cycle per metre? or Contradictins per minute?

To succinctly rephrase it for future linking:

Brent wrote:

>Well, I no longer believe in a conspiracy theory. I previously figured that the Global Warming theory was so obviously codswallop that there had to be a scheming Doctor Evil orchestrating the scare story on behalf of a wicked enclave of billionaires. I no longer believe that scientists cynically concoct a global warming 'angle' to improve their funding prospects.

Followed two paragraphs later by:

>To cite a small example, Michael Mann's faculty has bagged $1.8m to study global warming's effect on malaria. Great for his career, admittedly, but I daydream that he might call a news conference and declare: "We've spent the whole lot on a vaccination programme in Africa. Oh, by the way, we spent five minutes agreeing that global warming has stopped. Misappropriation of public funds??? Gitouttahere!!"

I report, you decide.

Brent daydreams that global warming has stopped, whereas our dreams of that end when we wake up in the morning and face reality.

By truth machine, OM (not verified) on 03 Jun 2010 #permalink

Just found this interesting animated graph, showing how prosperity and life expectancy have changed since 1800:

http://www.gapminder.org/world/

Before exchanging ideas with folks on Deltoid, I would have held up this graph as a great success story, albeit with some environmental challenges in need of attention. Now I'm more dubious pending some reading on the subject of nature's fragility.

John (304):

You miss the point about Mann's $1.8m. Sure, he won't be spending it on the high life. But that's real money, serious money, better spent elsewhere. So he'll spend it on extra staffing and office furniture. It's still a monstrous waste.

Brent says: *It's still a monstrous waste*

According to who? You? Again, what do you know about the factors that separate 'good science' from 'bad science'? Once we start letting know-nothings into the peer-review process for grant proposals on the basis of their own biases and 'gut' feelings (combinedc with their lack of any pedigree in the respective fields) then science will go to hell in an handbasket.

By Jeff Harvey (not verified) on 03 Jun 2010 #permalink

You ought to contact him and tell him why he's wrong Brent, and why malaria in a warmer climate on a poor continent won't be a problem.

'The researchers from the University of Oxford-led Malaria Atlas Project (MAP) found that since 1900, the incidence of malaria has been on the decline, despite a warming of the planet during that time.'

http://www.tinyurl.com.au/9um

> 'The researchers from the University of Oxford-led Malaria Atlas Project (MAP) found that since 1900, the incidence of malaria has been on the decline, despite a warming of the planet during that time.'

Funny, sunspot doesn't seem to have thought some of the other parts of that article were worth quoting. One guess why...

> "We know that **warming can boost malaria transmission**, but the major declines we've measured have happened during a century of rising temperatures, so clearly a changing climate doesn't tell the whole story." ...

> Dr Simon Hay, who leads the MAP group in Oxford, says the decrease in malaria is due to **better prevention strategies**. ...

> "It would be naïve if anyone concluded from this paper we are on a **long-term and inexorable** downturn in malaria..." ...

> He says the study also shows the length of the malaria season will double by 2030, and treble by 2050. ...

> McMichael says the efficacy of malarial drugs is another variable the researchers overlooked. ... "[We are] now seeing ominous signs that malaria is developing resistance to the latest of drugs, Artemisinin, which has been the flag-bearer of new anti-malarial drugs for the past decade."

By Lotharsson (not verified) on 04 Jun 2010 #permalink

slothful research slothy, you jumped on that like it was the last tim tam, hahaha

'DISEASE CONTROL, NOT CLIMATE CHANGE, KEY TO FUTURE OF MALARIA
A study published today in the journal Nature casts doubt on the widely held notion that warming global temperatures will lead to a future intensification of malaria and an expansion of its global range.
The research, conducted by the Malaria Atlas Project (MAP), a multinational team of researchers funded mainly by the Wellcome Trust, suggests that current interventions could have a far more dramatic â and positive â effect on reducing the spread of malaria than any negative effects caused by climate change.'

http://www.tinyurl.com.au/9v4

Jeff Harvey (308): "... science will go to hell in an handbasket."

No, no, no. Science good; Climatography bad. Scientists good; tea-leaf-reading shamanistic pseudoscientific charlatans bad.

Here's an idea: Propose to Penn State that they build a "Pariah Wing" with the $1.8m. The graphologists and the anthropologists would keep each other company. At the water cooler a homeopath seeks professional advice from an astrologer: "Hey, how come you score an 'ology' and I'm just a lousy 'path'? My Mum thinks I'm barely higher than a psychopath!" "You don't seem to understand how much work is involved in getting an 'ology', man. You have to be very clued-up to cast a horoscope." "Yeah, I guess so, and you have to, like, perform. Look what happened to the poor old Climatologists. Demoted to a lousy 'graphy'." "Jeez, yes, that was quite a comedown. See Mann and Jones over there? Jones looked like a bulldog chewing a wasp when that calligrapher called him 'brother'." "Is it true what I heard about Mann? Guy from stenography asked if they could be buddies, and he threw a tree-ring sample at him! Great big lump of mahogany, it was."

Brent said: "Science good; Climatography bad".

Explain please, as I'm sure you realise by now your unsubstantiated declarations carry less weight than
a multiple amputee flea.

Oh, and your continued tiresome riffing on the name of a branch of scientific research, based on nothing but your own uncomprehending ignorance, is about as funny as necrotizing fasciitis.

Brent,

Check out the source for the graphic you linked:

You might be surprised to discover that the prosperity in the past two centuries is predicated more on the expansion of universal access to health care, rather than the 'triumph of the Free Market', which I suspect is what you believe.

As for 'Micheal Mann's' $1.9M malaria grant, I'm greatly surprised to hear of his transfer to Penn State's [College of Agriculture](http://live.psu.edu/story/43337)

Idiot.

By luminous beauty (not verified) on 04 Jun 2010 #permalink

Chek, I'll pass the mike to Karl Popper to deal with this one:

"Hi, Chek. Karl here! The criterion of the scientific status of a theory is its falsifiability, or refutability, or testability. I may perhaps exemplify this with the help of [ ] various theories [ ]. Einstein's theory of gravitation clearly satisfied the criterion of falsifiability. Even if our measuring instruments at the time did not allow us to pronounce on the results of the tests with complete assurance, there was clearly a possibility of refuting the theory.

Astrology did not pass the test. Astrologers were greatly impressed, and misled, by what they believed to be confirming evidence â so much so that they were quite unimpressed by any unfavorable evidence. Moreover, by making their interpretations and prophesies sufficiently vague they were able to explain away anything that might have been a refutation of the theory had the theory and the prophesies been more precise. In order to escape falsification they destroyed the testability of their theory. It is a typical soothsayer's trick to predict things so vaguely that the predictions can hardly fail: that they become irrefutable."

Thanks, Karl. Good guest appearance! So, Chek, if you substitute "Climatography" for his mention of astrology, if you think of our newly-developed unit of time - the Lotharsseon - when Popper writes "sufficiently vague", and if you think of IPCC Scenarios A1, B2 etc (which can be revised up or down depending on.... well, depending on whether or not they get lucky and if their luck doesn't hold then by the time of the 5th or 7th or 19th IPCC report the neccessary "refinements" can be conjured up, not that you'll care because you'll be in the next world by then.)

See: http://www.stephenjaygould.org/ctrl/popper_falsification.html

This is what I meant when contrasting science with what you believe in.

[scorchmark,](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2010/05/brent_thread.php#comment-2564645)

It is heartening that you have recognized the value of risk mitigation. Now, if you could just extend that awareness to include the fact that the risk of expanding tropical disease and other manifold risks of climate change can be mitigated by an accelerated transition to sustainable energy. Also.

I'm not holding my breath, though.

By luminous beauty (not verified) on 04 Jun 2010 #permalink

Brent said: "This is what I meant when contrasting science with what you believe in".

Yes, by now we're all very familiar with your constantly repeated but unsubstantiated assertions, Brent.
What you continually and conspicuously fail to demonstrate though is specifically how climate science has got it all wrong.

I'd hazard a guess that because the case is so watertight you wouldn't know where to begin, but you don't allow that small matter to interfere with your misplaced faith that it can't be right.

Brent's naive invocation of Sir Karl neglects the conclusion that scientific theory is of necessity inductive, and therefore not easily reducible to certain proof. Indeed, the Theory of Relativity is neither perfect or complete. There are outstanding questions about the unexplained action at a distance character of gravity and reconciliation with QD that are the subject ongoing theoretical speculation, research and refinement.

Similarly, climate science has passed every test of [empirical evidence](http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w9SGw75pVas&feature=player_embedded) to which it has been subjected, a fact Brent dismisses with spurious dog whistling political propaganda and pseudo-scientific empty hand waving.

If we are to take Gödel at face value, a perfect and complete theoretical scientific understanding of any subject may be forever beyond our reach, yet this is the unattainable standard to which Brent and his fellow useful idiots would have us submit as they naively embrace the phony populism spread by elite political and economic agents of denial.

Stupid at it's most sophisticated.

By luminous beauty (not verified) on 04 Jun 2010 #permalink

Luminous Beauty (316): So health care is a bigger factor in life expectancy than wealth? OK, you win.

In posting that link (http://www.gapminder.org/world/) I was just sharing the startling new insight that the brilliantly vivid animation gives us. I have only just begun reflecting on the implications of continued growth; in posting that link I certainly was not implying that a repeat of the 1800-2000 success story would be a good idea.

If, as I expect and hope, the CO2 scare story is debunked in the next decade it will "clear the radar" and help us focus on genuine risks. Instead of concentrating on a Gypsy Moth farting about doing acrobatics over Dover, if there are incoming Luftwaffe squadrons over the Channel, we need to know about it ASAP. Of course, being able to actually deal with real and major threats is another matter.

Brent,

You are abusing the word 'If'. Reality is not amenable to your fantasies.

By luminous beauty (not verified) on 04 Jun 2010 #permalink

tea-leaf-reading shamanistic pseudoscientific charlatans bad

Fuck you.

This is what I meant when contrasting science with what you believe in.

Fuck you.

By truth machine (not verified) on 04 Jun 2010 #permalink

If we are to take Gödel at face value, a perfect and complete theoretical scientific understanding of any subject may be forever beyond our reach

Please don't abuse Gödel; his theorems pertain to proof in formal axiomatic systems and have no bearing on "understanding" or science.

By truth machine (not verified) on 04 Jun 2010 #permalink

TM,

I beg to differ. It is only through the rigorous application of formal axiomatic _numeric_ systems in conjunction with documented and _mensurable_ observations that we can understand the world objectively, i.e., scientifically.

Brent,

See if you can [absorb](http://www.achangeinthewind.com/2010/05/once-they-denied-relativity-now…) the [irony](http://www.ecologyandsociety.org/vol14/iss1/art34/).

Please don't just let it roll off like water from a duck's back.

By luminous beauty (not verified) on 04 Jun 2010 #permalink

I beg to differ. It is only through the rigorous application of formal axiomatic numeric systems in conjunction with documented and mensurable observations that we can understand the world objectively, i.e., scientifically.

Woo.

By truth machine (not verified) on 04 Jun 2010 #permalink

LB, you should read this and stop BSing about Gödel. His theorems pertain to proof, not "understanding", which is not a formalizable property. The Incompleteness Theorem shows that there are incredibly esoteric and meaningless formal true propositions in certain formal axiomatic systems that cannot be proven within that specific formal axiomatic system. This says nothing about our understanding -- notably, we understand that the true statements are true, even if we can't prove them -- except that we can prove them, in a stronger FAS.

There is clearly a limit to our knowledge of the universe because the number of states of the medium in which we record our knowledge of the universe is far smaller than the number of states of the universe itself, but that has nothing to do with Gödel. Attempting to apply Gödel as you have is ignorant handwaving much like what we see from Brent.

By truth machine (not verified) on 04 Jun 2010 #permalink

P.S. There is a [link](http://www.nybooks.com/articles/17249) from the page I cited to a letter by [Solomon Feferman](http://math.stanford.edu/~feferman/) in which he addresses the same mistaken use of Gödel, by [Freeman Dyson](http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2008/05/freeman-dysons-se…), and points out that the physical world is a subset untouched by the theorem:

All this is highly theoretical and speculative. In practice, a much different picture emerges. Beyond basic arithmetic calculations, the mathematics that is applied in physics rarely calls on higher arithmetic but depends instead mainly on substantial parts of mathematical analysis and higher algebra and geometry. All of the mathematics that underlies these applications can be formalized in the currently widely accepted system for the foundation of mathematics known as Zermelo-Fraenkel set theory, and there is not the least shred of evidence that anything stronger than that system would be needed. In fact, it has long been recognized that much weaker systems than that suffice for scientific applications, as discussed in the last chapter of my book In the Light of Logic (Oxford University Press, 1998).

By truth machine (not verified) on 04 Jun 2010 #permalink

Corblimey, the noxious Truthmachine doing a stand-up routine with the impenetrable Luminous Beauty.

Okay, I get one of the links in #325: "Einstein's ideas were resisted by a bunch of benighted boneheads, but he was right." Ergo, those who doubt the Gore Hypothesis are wrong. By this logic, every half-arsed scare story is in the fine tradition of Einstein. Yawn.

The other link - written by some anally-retentive sociologist, yeah? - or is it a spoof? - is utterly incomprehensible. The abstract is full of long words.

Hey... you two used the words 'pertain' and 'axiomatic'..... oh, I get it.... this is humour! Respect!

P.S. None of this is to say that we will ever have a complete theoretical understanding of the physical world, only that Gödel is irrelevant to that question. As Dyson says in his response:

I am grateful to Solomon Feferman for explaining why we do not need Gödelâs theorem to convince us that science is inexhaustible.

By truth machine (not verified) on 04 Jun 2010 #permalink

Corblimey, the noxious Truthmachine doing a stand-up routine with the impenetrable Luminous Beauty.

Fuck you.

By truth machine (not verified) on 04 Jun 2010 #permalink

TM,

You misunderstand me. I am saying that our theoretical mathematical explanations of phenomena can never be __complete__ and __perfect__ because we can never know that they may well depend on an infinitely recursive and precision modifying set of unknown axioms external to the methods employed. That is not to say that eventually Achilles doesn't get close enough to the tortoise to just reach out and grab it.

By luminous beauty (not verified) on 04 Jun 2010 #permalink

>The other link - written by some anally-retentive sociologist, yeah? - or is it a spoof? - is utterly incomprehensible. The abstract is full of long words.

Pardon me for underestimating your level of stupid.

By luminous beauty (not verified) on 04 Jun 2010 #permalink

You misunderstand me.

No, I understand you too well.

By truth machine (not verified) on 04 Jun 2010 #permalink

TM,

No, you don't.

By luminous beauty (not verified) on 04 Jun 2010 #permalink

No, you don't.

I understand that you're being a jerk.

By truth machine (not verified) on 04 Jun 2010 #permalink

Brent has previously described the AGW theory as "watertight", "logical" and "yet to be disproven".

As it happens astrology isn't any of those things.

Thanks for playing.

Speaking astrology, .

Celestial climate oscillations! Sounds like a concept album by Jon Anderson.

Countdown until Brent starts "thinking out loud" using this post (but not citing, as usual...)

Syntax error. Try again.

> ...if you think of our newly-developed unit of time - the Lotharsseon...

Shorter Brent: I'm a [lying goldfish(http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2010/05/brent_thread.php#comment-2540838)...

> ...when Popper writes "sufficiently vague", and if you think of IPCC Scenarios A1, B2 etc...

Shorter Brent continued: ...who will never stop lying.

(Finding the numerous previous rebuttals of his unsubstantiated assertion that climate science is unfalsifiable is left as a trivial exercise for the reader.)

By Lotharsson (not verified) on 04 Jun 2010 #permalink

John: Are you stalking me?

Lotharsson: Your protestations that however many decades are needed to falsify the AGW theory it may require more time reminds me of this classic from Phil Jones of UEA: "Why should I make my data available to you when your aim is to try and find something wrong with it?"

Just possibly Jones was being ironic there. If however he was playing a straight bat, in a few short words he reveals why his discipline is not fit to be considered science.

Guy called Tagei over on the Guardian says: "Imagine that REAL scientists had written as climate "scientists" write:

Boyle: the pressure, volume and temperature of a gas "may be" related. Newton: Every action "suggests" an equal and opposite reaction may occur. Archimedes: Eureka! I "may have" found something! This article strongly suggests to me that when the carnivals and side-shows were closed down, all of their fortune-tellers and snake-oil salesmen found new careers as "climate-scientists".

They're coming to take you away, ha-ha.

Truthmachine: Please stop swearing. Pithy's good; sarcy's good; bar-room insults are good. But effing and blinding brings the tone down: the verbal equivalent of knocking the chessboard over.

> Your protestations that however many decades are needed to falsify the AGW theory it may require more time...

Brent, your claim that *those* are *my* protestations are both idiotic and false - as has been explained to you many times before, in quite some detail.

You [first proposed a scientifically naive "N year" test](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2010/03/the_empirical_evidence_for_man…) waaaaaaaay back in early March at #122 on the Empirical Evidence thread:

> If, despite this great research work, the forecasts of temperature rise don't materialise (say, the UAH MSU satellite temp stays below the 1998 peak anomaly of 0.75C), would it be fair to consider the hypothesis refuted?

And clarified it 11 minutes later with:

> Sorry... typo... meant to write: "would it be fair to consider the hypothesis refuted - say, 10 years or 20 years hence?"

...to [which I responded 14 minutes later](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2010/03/the_empirical_evidence_for_man…) with:

> Imagine we start the (say) 20 year clock today. Further imagine that we monitor all of the forcings over the 20 year period, and note that whilst CO2 forcing is going up, the sum of other forcings are going down even more. What would we expect to see? The global average temperature would not exceed the global average temperature this year because the net change in forcing was negative over the 20 years. ...

> So...if you're **looking for falsification criteria** based on observed temperature trends, you need to factor in (or at a minimum sufficiently constrain the uncertainty ranges of) all the forcings and feedbacks. And that means **you can't pick N and do a simple max temperature comparison after N years**.

> Strictly speaking **if you really want to falsify the current hypotheses, you should aim to create a model that explains observations better than current models do without relying on the current understanding of anthropogenic influences**. (And you likely want to show reasons why your model is not only better at explaining observations, but is at least equally plausible in terms of physical considerations.)

There's no evidence there of your claim that I propose we keep saying "wait a few more years" until we get the result we "want". If anything it's the opposite - I describe **how to robustly falsify AGW**, which is hardly the avoidant behaviour you ascribe to me.

Furthermore, the distinction between your flawed "test" and a realistic one was explained several times by several different people - including someone pointing you to [a couple of posts by Tamino](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2010/03/the_empirical_evidence_for_man…) quantifying how you distinguish signal from noise and what that implies for the time periods you need to consider - which you seemed to get at the time.

And yet, you seem to forget that you "got it" way back then, and repeatedly pretend that my position is something that it is not. Hence my "Shorter Brent" - **you can't stop lying** about my position (and by implication those of the scientists), even though you've been called on it several times now. I take that to mean **you understand you have no argument against it** - but that you're hoping some in the audience are too stupid to understand this fact and will be distracted by the strawman you conjure.

If, however, your repeated misrepresentation is because you **genuinely** still don't understand the difference between my position and your strawman, then you're not simply not intellectually equipped to speculate about the validity of the science (which is a hypothesis for which many would say there is *abundant* evidence).

By Lotharsson (not verified) on 04 Jun 2010 #permalink

Brent, I think Lotharsson deserves a retraction from you.

Lotharsson clearly made a reasoned [scientific explanation](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2010/05/brent_thread.php#comment-2566819). Your counter was not to address his logic but to misrepresent it. Anyone can read how you misrepresent it, so why persist with it?

AGW is confirmed with multiple lines on evidence. If it didn't have so many lines of confirmation it wouldn't be so sound. But it does, so it is.

Lotharsson, I'm sorry if I misrepresent you. You wrote that to falsify AGW I should "aim to create a model"; that frankly makes no sense to me. Any prosecutor who told the judge to make a case would be told, "Now look here, you! You're the one who says he's a murderer, not me. The onus is on YOU to prove it."

Am I simplifying things too much? The claim is that the globe is warming; if a widely-agreed hot-limit is passed in future decades then sceptics must run up the white flag and agree that it actually got warmer. We have floated some numbers for this. Annual GISS>0.75C twice by 2030 and I'll be your bitch.

I appreciate that other stuff may happen to dash the cup of victory away from the warmists' lips, but we can hardly allow that get-out-clause. Why? Because it would be an acceptance that "other stuff" is at least as significant as CO2.

Garrison Keillor wrote about a childhood game he'd invented: Championship Golf. His rules were: "wherever the ball finished up was where I declared the hole to be". But that's humour.

Come come, the flexi-science you seem to be advocating is like a lottery where they give you back your stake every month until your numbers come up.

Loomy @ 318

'and other manifold risks of climate change can be mitigated by an accelerated transition to sustainable energy. Also.
I'm not holding my breath, though.'

I'm way ahead of you Loomy, what are you doin ?
http://www.tinyurl.com.au/39z

> Am I simplifying things too much?

Irrelevant question, because you're applying fallacious assessments. In particular when you say:

> if a widely-agreed hot-limit is passed in future decades then sceptics must run up the white flag and agree that it actually got warmer.

As has been explained to you several times and in several ways starting in response to your original comment #122 in March, **this is the wrong type of test** for anyone - "skeptic" or otherwise - to use. (Brief reason - which is better than my original one dealing with your fixed N year period - *you don't assess a trend (or lack of one) by looking at the period between successive new records*.)

You're likely hung up on using this type of test because *doing it right on existing data* **already** gives answers you don't want to accept.

> The claim is that the globe is warming;

This particular claim is not disputed by anyone who *seriously* and correctly tests it using the current evidence.

It's a question of distinguishing signal from noise; trend from natural variability. Those posts by Tamino addressed that question - as one example of the numerous times **that** issue has been explained to you.

> ...the flexi-science you seem to be advocating...

...once more is a figment of your febrile imagination.

By Lotharsson (not verified) on 04 Jun 2010 #permalink

scorchmark,

Why would anyone believe you? You are claiming actions the motivations for which you deny any provenance. You've been caught promulgating falsehoods repetitively.

Even if true, your or anybody's individual actions are not going to make spit difference on a global scale. Especially when you are publicly advocating they are unnecessary.

All anyone can truthfully say about you is you are irrational.

By luminous beauty (not verified) on 05 Jun 2010 #permalink

Loomy, is it really that hard for you to accept the fact that I do and have cared for the environment for many years ? Because I pass on news and info here that in all likelihood that you would never see, that makes me a world destroying barbarian does it ?
Sorry Loomy the only crime I have committed here is that I believe nature is more powerful than man, and CO2 may have a minor role in GW, but the science is still far from complete in regards to solar radiation (and cycles) and the thermal mass of the ocean, both of which are the main known climate drivers. In the empirical thread I asked others about their thoughts on a an action plan, no takers. I openly stated that CO2 was a great reason to tackle many environmental problems on the whole, no takers, a couple did write of their own personal efforts but it seems that the majority of the warmers only want to piss and moan about CO2, not actually do anything.
Kyoto ? not working, Carbon Taxes, wont reduce CO2, and it's to easy for some to suggest nuclear power without realizing that it is far more dangerous than C02, Thorium reactor's, maybe ? The problem with them is you can't make bombs, big brother won't want them.
Clean alternative energy has been proven by many researchers over the years, also many or all have been debunked, hidden, shelved ect. The problem as I see it is that many of these technologies can be utilized as stand alone energy sources, although having no meter presents a revenue problem and we cant have that, can we ? Most likely the solution to your hypothetical CO2 problem lies at your fingertips.

ps Loomy, I don't care what anyone thinks. I thought that was obvious.

>*Loomy, is it really that hard for you to accept the fact that I do and have cared for the environment for many years ?*

????

What the???

Spotty, I see you are from the school of strawman slaying, as well has propaganda.

Mission accomplished on both counts!

>*I don't care what anyone thinks.*

Mmmm.

> I openly stated that CO2 was a great reason to tackle many environmental problems on the whole, no takers, a couple did write of their own personal efforts but it seems that the majority of the warmers only want to piss and moan about CO2, not actually do anything.

*Absence of evidence* - especially in response to someone who comments as a hardcore "skeptic" and [regularly denigrates and insults other commenters](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2010/03/the_empirical_evidence_for_man…), e.g.:

> None of the shit head shinny arse's in here would have any idea how to survive in the environment as I have, most of them wouldn't know what the sun felt like on their vitamin D deficient, lilly white, blubbery carcasses or by planning their lives around the weather in order to survive.

...is not *evidence of absence*. (Never mind that action plans were off-topic for the thread you referred to.)

By Lotharsson (not verified) on 05 Jun 2010 #permalink

*Sorry Loomy the only crime I have committed here is that I believe nature is more powerful than man*

What a dumb, vacuous remark. Of course in combination natural systems involving biotic and abiotic processes are overwherlmingly a more dominant terrestrial force than Homo sapiens. But that does not mean that our species cannot have a profound influence on the biopshere. Humans co-opt 40% of net primary production and 50% of net freshwater flows. We are driving the biggest mass extinction event in 65 million years. We are degrading soil fertility, draining groundwaters, felling forests, and altering the planet's biogeochemistry. And of course there are consequences.

The main point is that no other species utilizes more from nature, and thus depends more on nature than our species does. Given the fact that a range of vital services emerge from ecosystems over variable scales of space and time, the concern is that human-induced changes will continue to reduce the capacity of nature to support man. This is already the case, and yet we are still headed in the wrong direction.

Of course nature will recover from injuries humans inflict upon it. There is fossil-age evidence that previous mass-extinction events were followed by 5-10 million year gaps during which time different terrestrial groups competed for domination of the land (and sea). Humans may not only be the biggest current driver of global change, but the most notable victim. But the planet will rebound from human assaults once we are gone from the scene.

So, spotty, your point is not 'criminal' but just plain stupid.

By Jeff Harvey (not verified) on 06 Jun 2010 #permalink

Pinocchio, your little soliloquy has no bearing on my last post, I didn't refer to the consequences of warming at all !
Your mistake must be a consequence of your own delusional alarmist view, your comprehension skills are still far from adequate, looks like your the stoopid prick, again.

Spotty,

Given that most people here think you are a complete idiot, your snarky ripostes do not at all bother me. I at least write as a scientist whereas you write as some babbling, bungling fool. You apparently have little in the way of expertise in climate science or any other fields of science yet you write as you have some kind of a monopoly of wisdom and understand aspects of climate science that have somehow eluded people who have spent many years of their lives in studying this field of endeavor. I never claimed to be a climte scientist but I do understand how science works, speaking from the inside, and I can assure you spotty that views like yours lie miles outside of the mainstream.

Besides, as it turns out, I was expliticly referring to your last post, one in a long line of semi-literate ramblings. How the hell do you know what most people are willing to do to combat climate change? The problem is that those in power and those who have wealth and its attendant power at theiur disposal are not prone to want to deal with environmental problems. The scientific community has raised the alrm for years, during which time those with powerful vested intersts have done everything in their power to ensuree that nothing is done about climate change - or many other pressing environmental problems for that matter.

The thrust of this is that nobody here gives much of a damn what you think, spotty, except maybe a few outliers like Brent. The only credit I give you is that you persist in making an idiot of yourself here by wading into the hornet's nest. My advice: stick with the ant-science non-peer-reviwed crowd at Nova, WUWT, CA and C02 (anti)science et al. They apparently love schmucks like you.

By Jeff Harvey (not verified) on 06 Jun 2010 #permalink

Hi Brent,

It looks like you have attracted a swarm of over-schooled, under-educated bully-wannabes.

I doubt that any one of them understands that the EVOLUTION of photosynthesis proves that current concentrations of CO2 are too low.

Since I suspect that few of them understand evolution (or any other scientic theory), I do NOT expect a reply that actually references "science".

>Since I suspect that few of them understand evolution (or any other scientic theory), I do NOT expect a reply that actually references "science".

Goodness.

scorchmark,

>ps Loomy, I don't care what anyone thinks. I thought that was obvious.

It's obvious that you do, or you wouldn't be posting here. You wouldn't be so aggressively insulting when you fail to elicit a satisfactory response to your crackpot ideas. Your lack of self awareness is pitiable.

By luminous beauty (not verified) on 06 Jun 2010 #permalink

>I doubt that any one of them understands that the EVOLUTION of photosynthesis proves that current concentrations of CO2 are too low.

Another Internet Galileo steps up to the plate.

By luminous beauty (not verified) on 06 Jun 2010 #permalink

Perhaps it's some kind of brand renewal thing, and one day every village will have its own internet galileo.

John,

You performed as I expected. LOL!

Luminous Beauty & chek,

Ditto...

Brent,

I wonder if your little AGW lemming friends can even SPELL "photosynthesis"?...

Au contraire, Tagei.

As Brent's "friend", you are the one who fails to explain how evolutionary timescales measured in hundreds of millions of years have any bearing on current CO2 levels to which every currently living organism has been perfectly adapted to.

Tagei, I'm afraid I don't get your point about the evolution of photys... foto.... Is there reason to believe that pre-industrial CO2 was not at the 280PPM level so often stated? How can we find out more on this subject?

My little AGW lemming friends are an interesting bunch. Their postings reveal what makes them tick; they're harder to make out than fundamentalists in other domains. Despite all the bickering, I think that the two camps are gradually educating each other. If we can at least agree on the key questions it'll be a step forward.

I proposed the two key battlegrounds in #186. It's unclear whether the warmists agree, but they haven't so far squealed "irrelevant".

Lotharsson: In #344 you wrote "If anything it's the opposite - I describe how to robustly falsify AGW, which is hardly the avoidant behaviour you ascribe to me." No disrespect, but would you have another shot at it: state under what conditions you think that warmists would have to declare AGW a dead duck? We had a shot at it back on the Empirical thread (#345).

chek,

As I thought, you don't know about the evolutionary change from P3 photosynthesis to P4 photosynthesis.

Although that change is a scientific fact, I doubt you will bestir yourself to learn something new.

Lemmings never learn.

Brent,

Geology teaches the open-minded that CO2 concentrations were much higher in the past, while O2 concentrations were much lower. This is scientific fact. The carbon in coal and the carbon in petroleum came from the Earth's atmosphere via photosynthesis.

@Tagei: People here know where the carbon in fossil fuels comes from. People here also know about changing levels of CO2 and O2 throughout the Earth's history. Here's a question for you: What was the human population in Carboniferous era?

Tagei,

As I thought, you haven't explained the relevance of conditions for organisms in previous geological eras to conditions for life today.

And you probably never will, because you're pulling the usual half-baked, illogical contrarian distractions out of your butt.

Tagei, when you start to accuse scientists of not understanding scientific theories, mockery is a most appropriate response.

> It looks like you have attracted a swarm of over-schooled, under-educated bully-wannabes. ...

Leading with insults combined with fallacies - and with spelling mistakes whilst speculating that others may not be able to spell certain words correctly - is not generally considered a good approach to demonstrating credibility, but kudos for ploughing ahead with it anyway and hoping it works ;-)

By Lotharsson (not verified) on 06 Jun 2010 #permalink

Truthmachine: Please stop swearing. Pithy's good; sarcy's good; bar-room insults are good. But effing and blinding brings the tone down: the verbal equivalent of knocking the chessboard over.

Fuck you.

By truth machine (not verified) on 07 Jun 2010 #permalink

Guy called Tagei over on the Guardian says: "Imagine that REAL scientists had written as climate "scientists" write

Fuck both of you.

By truth machine (not verified) on 07 Jun 2010 #permalink

My little AGW lemming friends

Fuck you.

By truth machine (not verified) on 07 Jun 2010 #permalink

I doubt that any one of them understands that the EVOLUTION of photosynthesis proves that current concentrations of CO2 are too low.

Ah yes, evolution wants them to be higher and isn't done raising them.

Scientifically illiterate cretin.

By truth machine (not verified) on 07 Jun 2010 #permalink

@367:
"BTW Tagei, are you sure you didn't mean C3 and C4 photosynthesis?

Posted by: tresmal Author Profile Page | June 6, 2010 6:14 PM"

No, tresmal, he very clearly typed P3 and P4 photosynthesis, as he chastised us for not knowing our evolutionary science or anything about photosynthesis, and for being too closeminded to learn. Clearly, Tagei knows his science, and since it is clear that anyone who knows WHY C3 and C4 photosynthesis are so labeled, could never forget and mistake the C for a P, he must clearly be referring to something of which we are shamefully ignorant, something that will shake the foundations of climate theory to its roots. Or if not its roots, at least its bundle sheath cells.

I for one am open minded enough to be waiting breathlessly for Tagei to return and illuminate us all regarding the details of "the evolutionary change from P3 photosynthesis to P4 photosynthesis," and how it proves that current CO2 levels are too low.

While we're waiting for Tagei's return and explanation (a period probably to be measured in Oatesian timescales) I find myself wondering about Brent and his coterie of self-assured morons.

Every now and then I slip over to the contrarian blogs and am amazed to find there's a definite anticipation as they await what is surely, this time, the final nail in the AGW coffin.

And they wait, and they wait and they wait, grandly imagining themselves the smartest, science-renaming guys in the room as they wait, and wait and wait.

And they're still waiting, aren't you Brent?

> And they wait, and they wait and they wait, grandly imagining themselves the smartest, science-renaming guys in the room as they wait, and wait and wait.

I've often wondered about this - but I think I just *got* it. They're radical intentionalist-experientialist Beckett fans! They're not content to merely *read* or *attend* a performance of his famous work - they feel they can only truly experience the greatness by *living out* the experience of Vladimir or Estragon (debate is *fierce* about which one provides a purer insight into Beckett's intentions) as they wait for Godot - who is to be experienced either as the AGW coffin or as the final nail in it (as I said, debate is *fierce* in this crowd).

Once this key realisation is made, the numerous parallels in [the plot](http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Waiting_for_Godot#Plot_synopsis) are obvious, including...

Inability to agree on what the nail is/will be, despite their certainty that it is coming:

'The pair cannot agree, however, on whether or not they are in the right place or that this is the arranged day for their meeting with Godot...'

A predilection for distractions:

'To occupy themselves, they eat, sleep, converse, argue, sing, play games, exercise, swap hats, and contemplate suicide â anything "to hold the terrible silence at bay".'

Lack of necessary skills:

'They claim him as an acquaintance but in fact hardly know him, admitting that they would not recognise him were they to see him.'

Promoting business as usual:

'Estragon eventually gives up [trying to remove his boot], muttering, "Nothing to be done."'

'They decide to do nothing: "It's safer," explains Estragon, before asking what Godot is going to do for them when he arrives. For once it is Vladimir who struggles to remember: "Oh ... nothing very definite," is the best that he can manage.'

Forgetting what they once knew/were told:

'He discovers the pair of boots, which Estragon insists are not his. Nevertheless, when he tries them on they fit.'

Difficulties properly identifying and dealing with cyclical and linear change:

'Vladimir tries to talk to him about what appears to be a seasonal change in the tree and the proceedings of the day before, but he has only a vague recollection.'

Viewing the situation through a religious lense:

'The pair discuss repentance... This is the first of numerous Biblical references in the play...

Repeated disappointments after identifying or sensing a saviour figure:

'"We're saved!" they cry on more than one occasion when they feel that Godot may be near.'

Goldfish experiences:

'He begins to see that although there is notional evidence of linear progression, basically he is living the same day over and over.'

Gullibility based in part on failure to identify patterns they have already lived:

'The same boy returns to inform them not to expect Godot today, but he would arrive the next day.'

The Brent Maneuver:

'...they agree to leave but neither of them makes any move to go.'

This is a really rich vein of insight which will no doubt provide fodder for many PhD theses in several different fields!

;-)

By Lotharsson (not verified) on 07 Jun 2010 #permalink

Lotharsson #376 FTW.

By truth machine (not verified) on 07 Jun 2010 #permalink

tresmal,

CONGRATULATIONS!

YOU, unlike the other AGW lemmings here, (chek, John, Lotharsson, "truth machine", lee) actually had enough curiousity to look up my reference.

Did you read enough to learn the difference between C3 and C4 photosynthesis?

Can you guess what atmosphreric condition would encourage the success of plants whose genes allow them to sequester the CO2 they create each night?

John,

You claim to be a "scientist". A scientist without curiosity? Very funny!

truth machine,

When will you outgrow your pre-pubescent potty-mouth?

Can you guess what atmosphreric condition would encourage the success of plants whose genes allow them to sequester the CO2 they create each night?

A dry one.

And for his next trick, tagei is going to visit a maths blog and ask if anyone has figured out how to find the sign [sic] of a 60 degree angle without using a calculator!

By Richard Simons (not verified) on 07 Jun 2010 #permalink

I didn't say I was a scientist. I said there were other scientists here, and you are lecturing them on the scientific method.

Your ego knows no bounds.

YOU, unlike the other AGW lemmings here, (chek, John, Lotharsson, "truth machine", lee) actually had enough curiousity to look up my reference.

So you meant to do that. OK.

Did you read enough to learn the difference between C3 and C4 photosynthesis?

Can you guess what atmosphreric condition would encourage the success of plants whose genes allow them to sequester the CO2 they create each night?

C3 is the older of the 2 and is better under conditions of lower temps and higher CO2. C4 evolved to adapt to lower CO2. But still only outperforms C3 under warmer temps. As CO2 levels rise the advantage shifts to C3 even under warmer temps. Good news for some plants, bad news for others. Question: What exactly is your point? That is, what does this have to do with
A) whether AGW is occurring and
B) whether it is a bad thing?

>What exactly is your point? That is, what does this have to do with A) whether AGW is occurring and B) whether it is a bad thing?

(Crickets) chirp chirp...........chirp chirp....

> I for one am open minded enough to be waiting breathlessly for Tagei to return and illuminate us all regarding the details of "the evolutionary change from P3 photosynthesis to P4 photosynthesis," and how it proves that current CO2 levels are too low.

He has returned, and disappoints.

Ironically, that was to be expected.

By Lotharsson (not verified) on 07 Jun 2010 #permalink

Tagei, @ 38o.
What reference? I didn't see you cite anything recognizable as a scientific source.

And no, I didn't go look at some general source re photosynthesis - because, Tagei, I have taught the photosynthetic pathway, at college level. Including, of course, the differences between C3, C4, and CAM photosynthesis, and the environmental conditions under which each has a selective advantage.

C4 plants have a selective advantage in dry conditions - because they can keep their stomata closed much of the time and reduce transpiration, thereby conserving water.

Oh, and Tagei - would you please tell us what the hell 'P3 and P4' photosynthesis are?

BTW tagei, you really undermined your bluster when you can't even remeber you are [supposed to be parroting](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2010/05/brent_thread.php#comment-2569273) C3 and C4 instead of P3 and P4.

>*As I thought, you don't know about the evolutionary change from P3 photosynthesis to P4 photosynthesis.*

With P and C being more than half the keyboard appart?

It really sat quite ironically with your comment:

>*Lemmings never learn.*

> YOU, unlike the other AGW lemmings here, (chek, John, Lotharsson, "truth machine", lee) actually had enough curiousity to look up my reference.

Tagei, YOU, unlike tresmal, did not provide **a reference** (hint: tresmal's reference is in [this comment](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2010/05/brent_thread.php#comment-2569415)).

Furthermore you tried to use (as you put it) "scientic" [[sic](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2010/05/brent_thread.php#comment-2568760)] terminology that you clearly didn't understand well enough to *spell* correctly, whilst you [berate others](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2010/05/brent_thread.php#comment-2569014) for their imagined-but-not-evident lack of spelling ability.

Furthermore you presumed without evidence that you were educating the readers here in using said fake biological terminology - and have apparently failed to learn anything from various "lemmings" pointing out the failings of your "argument".

Your hubris is only exceeded by your lack of self-awareness. One can only hope for your own sake that you are a POE.

By Lotharsson (not verified) on 07 Jun 2010 #permalink

Maybe P3 and P4 stand for phosphate instead of carbon, and are new, secret GENETIC mutations, created in a major pan-scientific conspiracy to undermine life on earth (Al Gore!!!) and they refer to the new secret DNA code composed of 4-base, instead of 3-base codons!!!

Tagei, please, please illuminate us in this regard. Rise above the average [Google Galileo](http://watchingthedeniers.wordpress.com/2010/05/16/google-galileo-five-…)!

tagei (380):

Did you read enough to learn the difference between C3 and C4 photosynthesis?

No, because you asked us lemmings to look up P3 and P4 photosynthetic pathways, whose nature you have yet to enlighten us on, O Grate One.

P3 and P4? Don't tell me, the last one's called Pam, right?
Snigger 8^)

That was a good piece by Lotharsson! The Becket play âWaiting for Godotâ does indeed shed light on the mentality of people who wait endlessly for an expected outcome â and that includes myself as I wait for an antidote to Gore.

And Chekâs crack about âOatesian timescalesâ was good as well!

If I may, Iâll summarise the position as I see it. Some of the practitioners of climatology â but by no means all â claim that manmade CO2 has been warming the Earth non-trivially beyond some undefinable would-otherwise-have-been level, and will continue to do so at a faster rate. The claim is that CO2 is a bigger âdriverâ than other drivers, such as solar and volcanic variation. The possibilty that this chaotic megavariable system is subject to the observed scale of variation even without such drivers is a rarely discussed but feasible.

The evidence for significant AGW actually happening is based on historical data: temperature, icecap, sea-level and biological indicators. As in so many areas of human endeavour, a single dataset is subject to multiple interpretations, hence our difficulty in collectively resolving this great issue. Hard sciences are built by their useful predictions coming true, and their duff conjectures being falsified.

As a sceptic, I challenge any AGW proponent to state clearly what evidence (if any) you would need in order to abandon your current position.

[Brent](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2010/05/brent_thread.php#comment-2572715):
>The possibilty that this chaotic megavariable system

[Back around the goldfish bowl](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2010/03/the_empirical_evidence_for_man…)

>is subject to the observed scale of variation even without such drivers is a rarely discussed but feasible.

[It is discussed in the peer-reviewed literature](http://tamino.wordpress.com/2009/01/10/taint-likely/).

>As a sceptic

[Back around the goldfish bowl](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2010/03/the_empirical_evidence_for_man…).

>what evidence (if any) you would need in order to abandon your current position.

[Back around the goldfish bowl](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2010/03/the_empirical_evidence_for_man…).

Thanks, Dave, but I don't think you quite get the idea.

If you'd said, "I, Dave R, will cease believing in the Global Warming theory if (a) (b) and/or (c) happens" we might get somewhere. Now, I don't want to put words in your mouth, but (a) might be: "The capacity of Greenland's sheep slaghterhouse at Narsaq fails to double to 40,000 pa within the next 3 decades" and (b) might be "You still cannot walk around Mount Erebus without treading on snow by 2030" and (c) might be "The Maldives government stops holding meetings in scuba gear".

At the moment, Dave, it seems that your belief in global warming is unshakeable. Which is your right, and I shouldn't denigrate your faith. But I'm asking for volunteers prepared to cite falsifiability criteria.

Any takers?

Brent:
>I'm asking for volunteers prepared to cite falsifiability criteria.

They've been cited dozens of times you moron. [Here they are yet again](http://tamino.wordpress.com/2008/01/31/you-bet/). If you have any data that falls outside them, provide it.

The only one demonstrating "unshakeable" faith her is you Brent. You have admitted that the AGW theory is yet to have been disproven.

The onus is on you to disprove it (score so far, Brent: 0, Deltiod: 11,034), not to come up with facetious little tests designed to trap people.

> The claim is that CO2 is a bigger âdriverâ than other drivers, such as solar and volcanic variation.

Back around the goldfish bowl - *no, it's not*.

Instead the claim is that it's the *anthropogenic* driver with the biggest **positive trend** since industrial times. And there are pretty solid reasons for this claim, as you should know since you have read the IPCC AR4, or at least parts of it.

It's not surprising you have difficulties understanding this as you steadfastly refuse to use - and show no sign of understanding - well-defined methods to distinguish trend from noise in the first place - because if you did, you'd have to acknowledge the warming that has been going on rather than pretend that "maybe it's too early to tell yet".

By Lotharsson (not verified) on 08 Jun 2010 #permalink

Here's an interesting question for Brent:

If you are so sure that the AGW theory is incorrect, why don't you put your money where your mouth is and lay a sizeable wager on the global temperature averages going down over the next 15 years?

They don't even have to be statistically significant. Just below where they are now (using only "trustworthy" Hadley CET and UAH MSU data of course!)

It's all one thing to come here citing the comment section of WUWT like it's a peer-reviewed journal, but it's another to put down some serious money.

> I challenge any AGW proponent to state clearly what evidence (if any) you would need in order to abandon your current position.

[Back around the goldfish bowl](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2010/05/brent_thread.php#comment-2566819). (And that was far from the first time.)

I suspect what you actually mean is "what **future new** evidence would convince you" (although you are fond of waiting around to see how the climate responds over several decades, and climate scientists are rather keener to get results and insight sooner), because there are dozens of different ways that AGW *could* be falsified - most of which have been tried and comprehensively failed already.

For example, you could start with (say) something like "The Discovery of Global Warming" and falsify any single step or result that is necessary to AGW. Or you could read [this article](http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2006/02/happy-birthday-ch…)'s section entitled "Does "Global Warming Theory" pass Judge Jonesâ science test?" for still more ideas:

> There are indeed a great many aspects of the Theory of Global Warming that are falsifiable without waiting for the next centuryâs climate to come upon us. There are, to start, all the laboratory tests of basic physics, such as the infrared absorption properties of CO2 and water vapor. There are also field tests of the predictions of these basic physical theories, as is done when one measure water vapor and temperature in the atmosphere, and compares the predictions of radiative transfer theory with observed infrared radiation measured at the top of the atmosphere by satellite, or at the surface by radiation sensors. One can check the evaporation formulae used in climate models against the measured evaporation at buoys in the ocean, or the predictions of cloud models against observed cloud reflectivity. Going up the scale in complexity, one can compare the predictions of the theory against observations of recent climates, and of climates of the more distant past. General circulation models encapsulate the assumptions of the theory, and provide the tool necessary for testing hypotheses in such a complex system.

But fundamentally it comes down to what I said right back at the beginning that you really did not [want to? or could not?] understand.

To falsify AGW, you:

1) Come up with a *better explanation* for known observations (that is consistent with known science - such as physics). Given climate system complexity this might be encapsulated in "a model" - or it might be a whole bunch of smaller explanations and a whole lot of work showing that together and in many and various ways they form a better explanation for what we see.

2) In that explanation you demonstrate that anthropogenic influences provide a relatively insignificant contribution to warming.

As I said...back around the goldfish bowl...and around...and around...and around...and around...

By Lotharsson (not verified) on 08 Jun 2010 #permalink

As a sceptic, I challenge any AGW proponent to state clearly what evidence (if any) you would need in order to abandon your current position.

Convincing evidence that the currently accepted absorption spectrum for CO2 is seriously wrong.

A demonstration that there has in fact been no increase in atmospheric CO2 in the last 50 years.

Good evidence that the increased CO2 is not anthropogenic.

A period of 20 years or more that is cooler than the previous 20 years, in the absence of major eruptions or similar causes of cooling.

But you have been told this kind of thing repeatedly. You will soon be back again with a similar question.

By Richard Simons (not verified) on 08 Jun 2010 #permalink

Dave (394): Message received. Too shy to phrase your own falsifiability criteria, you refer to the Tamino site. Cat got your tongue?

John (395): "The onus is on you to disprove it," you say. Oh yeah? I presume you give the same answer when you're claiming to have seen the Loch Ness Monster. As for "facetious little tests", scientific falsifiability is not facetious. Like an elite club, they won't allow any-old-body in. Your slippery attitude speaks volumes: if AGW is hogwash, you'd rather be the last to find out. Keep the faith, John.

Lotharsson (396): Have a look at the bar chart on IPCC WG1 Ch2 p136. It shows seven man-made sources of warming and under "natural processes" a single one. It's tiny. This bar chart says that the sun has a trifling effect on Earth's temperature changes compared to (grrr) big bad carbon and its (hisss!) wicked cousins. I take it you'd rather skirt round the falsifiabilty issue. Your faith says the science is settled, so who needs doubts, eh? I envy you your certainty. If we sign you up for this statement, is this fair: "Lotharsson's view is that under no circumstances can the AGW theory be refuted"?

Luminous Beauty (397): You link to a piece on radiative physics and present that, wrapped in a big pink bow, as your offer. Waal, shucks, pardner. Can I pick the second law of thermodynamics? If you can disprove that, then my team wins, yay! Message received: no set of observations would shake your faith. (If this is unfair, stete you falsifiability criteria clearly and unambiguously.)

Brent:
>no set of observations would shake your faith.

If you have any observations that you think falsify AGW, provide them. Otherwise state explicitly that you have none.

>Message received: no set of observations would shake your faith. (If this is unfair, stete you falsifiability criteria clearly and unambiguously.)

Your assignation of faith is unjustified. The facts are simply that AGW has passed all tests of falsification that have been devised, and all alternative explanations, including solar, have failed such tests.

It may be just a failure of imagination, but it isn't for a lack of trying. Perhaps with your greater imaginative powers (read: pathological fantasia), you can come up with some knowable unknown that everyone has missed, but don't expect anyone here to do your thinking (read: irrational conjecture) for you.

By luminous beauty (not verified) on 08 Jun 2010 #permalink

Brent:

"Have a look at the bar chart on IPCC WG1 Ch2 p136... This bar chart says that the sun has a trifling effect on Earth's temperature changes compared to (grrr) big bad carbon and its (hisss!) wicked cousins."

No Brent. That chart says that the sun has had, over that particular time period, a small influence compared to the realtively large - over tah time period - anthropogenic forcings.

Nothing in that says the sun doesn't matter. Solar irradiance, and change in the distribution of solar irradiance, is almost certainly the primary forcing that drives transitions into and out of glaciations. No one is arguing in general that the influence of the sun is miniscule.

What that chart shows is that for a particular defined time period, changes in the influence of the sun are heavily outweighed by changes in the influence of anthropogenic factors.

Do you think there is some flaw in this analysis? What is it? Or are you just convinced that "its the sun," so this chart must be wrong somehow?

John (398): Great idea about the bet. If I can get good odds I'll place a few hundred against your cherished temperature rise. Chances of a 0.75C annual mean GISS anomaly in the next decade are pretty small. Have to factor in the immobilisation of my stake for a decade, but at 2:1 I'm in. Do the bookies quote odds on this fairy tale?

Richard Simons (400): Thank you!

Especially for the "A period of 20 years or more that is cooler than the previous 20 years, in the absence of major eruptions or similar causes of cooling." This is fair and reasonable.

Richard, that's all I was after. I won't pester you for ever-finer detail on your forthright statement (I mean, let's not bicker about details; as a broad statement, "If it gets colder for 20 years I'll stop believing in global warming" is fine.

At last we have an "O-minus-E" set in the future. Hooray!

Brent,

It is so precious that you have lured someone into moving the goalposts.

We already have 30 years of warming above what can be explained by natural variation which you are unable to explain.

You owe us all a couple of hundred brentbucks. All you can hope for now is doubling down on your losses.

By luminous beauty (not verified) on 08 Jun 2010 #permalink

Lee (404): You ask: "Do you think there is some flaw in this analysis? What is it? Or are you just convinced that "its the sun," so this chart must be wrong somehow?"

(a)Yes (b)The flaw is that 'natural processes' (mainly the sun) are underrepresented and 'human activities' over (c)Yes

Brent @ 408.
So, its an evidence-free belief? Sounds like faith to me, Brent.

Luminous Beauty (407): Is it warmer where you are? There's no sign of global warming where I live. Are you maybe basing your "We already have 30 years of warming" on a few lousy tenths of a degree on a thermometer standing in the exhaust gases of a Jumbo Jet?

Warming? What warming?

Do you spend too much time in front of screens? Sunspot unkindly (but maybe accurately?) said that most of the four-eyed bookworms here "wouldn't know what the sun felt like on their vitamin D deficient, lilly white, blubbery carcasses or by planning their lives around the weather in order to survive."

Maybe you should get out more. And before you ask... yes I do. At half past midnight I was out on the front lawn in pyjamas, stabbing it with a metal spike yelling "I'll git that bastard mole if it's the last thing I do." Anybody know if they're good eating?

Brent,

Local blossom times of fruit trees (assessment of which is part of my job) are 1 - 4 weeks earlier than they were twenty years ago. None are warmed by jumbo-jet exhaust. In fact, it has been largely unnecessary to crank up the wind machines that replaced the old-fashioned smudge-pots that were protection against spring frost, even in this spring much cooler than recent years.

I also spend as much time in the mountains as I can. I can see for myself the snow pack receding more quickly than when I was a young climber and back-packer.

So, yes, I do get out and about.

By luminous beauty (not verified) on 08 Jun 2010 #permalink

Brent, you do realise that we're already ~0.75ºC above the 1850 baseline, and that ~0.4ºC of that is since [1980](http://i45.tinypic.com/2w2ih5y.png), don't you?
You know like, accellerating trend, like?

I suspect you naively imagine that those "few lousy tenths of a degree" are somehow shared out evenly across the globe.

Still, the fact you're still braying misinformation about WTF's failed surface station expose project here of all places demonstrates your susceptibility to nonsense beliefs well.

>Do the bookies quote odds on this fairy tale global warming I can't disprove but still continue to believe is fake because of my ideological beliefs?

Oh my yes.

>John (395): "The onus is on you to disprove it," you say. Oh yeah? I presume you give the same answer when you're claiming to have seen the Loch Ness Monster. As for "facetious little tests", scientific falsifiability is not facetious. Like an elite club, they won't allow any-old-body in. Your slippery attitude speaks volumes: if AGW is hogwash, you'd rather be the last to find out. Keep the faith, John.

Sigh.

The dictionary says:

Faith
(1) : firm belief in something for which there is no proof

Brent says:

>Or are you just convinced that "its the sun," so this chart must be wrong somehow?"


>(a)Yes

> I take it you'd rather skirt round the falsifiabilty issue.

Shorter Brent in 3 parts:

*Brent*: never mind the existing massive failure to falsify, specify your falsifiability criteria or I win

*Me*: Here's one from someone else that's fairly decent with some caveats - and that you can already apply using existing data; here's another dozen or so from others that are good and a method you can use to generalise to many more, and here's a meta-criteria into which you can fit any number of criteria if you so desire.

*Brent*: So you're still pretending it's not falsifiable then?

And yes, it really is *shorter* Brent because there have been pages and pages of text on this topic already.

By Lotharsson (not verified) on 08 Jun 2010 #permalink

> Chances of a 0.75C annual mean GISS anomaly in the next decade are pretty small.

Goldfish Brent completes a triple orbit:

a) weather vs climate

b) trends over (say) the last several decades - or since industrialisation - are already evident

c) omitting the key caveat (e.g. "in the absence of major eruptions or similar causes of cooling") - which was **precisely** the root of my initial objection to Brent's **fallacious** proposed "falsifiability test" way back when Brent first started posting. (Yes, Brent has completed a large goldfish orbit and returned to the very beginning of his commenting career at Deltoid.)

Plus a bonus revolution or two:

> Is it warmer where you are?

d) Local vs global

e) (Arguably) weather vs climate

Brent, you've clearly been working hard on this effort, but all you've done is go around and around the goldfish bowl at ever-increasing speeds. There is no evidence on display that you are capable of correcting errors in your thinking and perception even when it's all laid out for you - nor that you have solid reasons behind your key beliefs that contrast with the science. You appear unwilling or unable to correctly understand the scientific case - or the position of many commenters here - so you spend much of your time dispatching scary strawmen and dreaming up political, sociological and psychological explanations. You haven't had a solid argument about the actual science for like...well, I'm not sure you've had one at all since you started posting in March. The odds of you coming up with one are slim to none - and if someone else comes up with one there will be lots of coverage in the press and the literature so I'm certain not to miss out.

I will leave you to your perpetual mystification why people won't agree with you that it's all an evidence-free religious belief - or whatever the latest story is that you tell yourself. If I feel like wasting time I might occasionally skim-read the thread for entertainment value, but since you only post recycled versions of the same tired old fallacies over and over again there's little point in responding to them because you *can't or won't get it*.

Best of luck with your quest to understand the universe.

By Lotharsson (not verified) on 08 Jun 2010 #permalink

At last we have an "O-minus-E" set in the future. Hooray!

You asked for falsification criteria and then treat them as confirmation criteria.

Fuck you. You and Tagei are dumber than dirt and have zero intellectual integrity. You are fine examples of Hannah Arendt's "the banality of evil".

This is the way the world ends
Not with a bang but a whimper.

By truth machine (not verified) on 08 Jun 2010 #permalink

yeah yeah twoofy, "zero intellectual integrity", how's yours ?

The mechanics of the way it was worked were quite simple.

"The Tribunal," stated Article 19 of the Charter, "shall not be bound by technical rules of evidence..."

And Article 21, "The Tribunal shall not require proof of facts of common knowledge, but shall take judicial notice thereof."

http://www.tinyurl.com.au/al0

So scorchmark is a Holocaust denier as well. what a piece of work.

By truth machine (not verified) on 09 Jun 2010 #permalink

*There's no sign of global warming where I live*

What a silly remark. Brent, how would you know what changes there have been in biological indicators? Have you carried out studies over the past 30 years?

Undoubtedly you'd day the same here in Holland. You'd look outside, stick your finger to the wind and say, "Yup, sure seems that same to me as it did in 1980" and leave it at that. Am I correct?

What I find most disconcerting about your posts is that you claim to argue about the importance of the scientific method in testing hypotheses, and then you shoot yourself in the foot by making the ridiculous and brazenly *unscientific* remark above.

If you studied the demographics of migratory songbird populations over the past 30 years, and then looked at more intimate phenological interactions with (e.g.) their caterpillar prey and growth patterns in the foodplants, you might think differently (this is but one line of evidence of rapid climate change, but unquestionably there would be many others if many more studies were to be conducted). We are lucky enough in Holland to have a very extensive record of songbird populations from various locations over the past 50 years. Many of these studies are based on species that use man-made nest boxes. By recording breeding cycles and reproductive success over these years it is possible to (1) observe changes in reproductive patterns in ways that may affect fitness, and (2) explore underlying mechanisms for the observed changes. Without long-term data sets it is impossible to understand the importance of changes in abiotic factors on the population dynamics of species in tightly knitted food webs.

As it turns out, several species use nest boxes that were set up by our Institute in the early 1960s. These boxes are monitored annually, providing extensive data sets. Two of the species which rely on these boxes at least locally are great tits and pied flycatchers. Great tits are residents and have two broods a year whereas the flycatchers are single-brooded and overwinter in Africa. The long term data sets - and by long term I mean 40 years - are shedding considerable light and concern on the effects of latitudinal shifts in climate patterns on breeding demographics of these two species. Both are dependent on food provided by winter moth caterpillars that are abundant in spring in oak forests, where the birds nest. What we have found is that both bird species are being adversely affected by the onset of rapidly warmer spring and night-time temperatures, which are leading to asynchronous interactions between their breeding cycles and the larval development of the moth on the one hand and leaf growth ('bud-burst') in the oaks on the other. In the case of the insects, the caterpillars are tending to emerge faster than the trees are budding, perhaps because development in the the former is more temperature dependent and growth of the latter is more light (photoperiod) dependent. This means that the caterpillars emerge before the trees have palatable leaves, and thus many starve. Without the caterpillars to feed their offspring, the birds suffer as well.

The there is an additional complication for the flycatchers. These birds use astronomical cues to initiate northward spring migration from their wintering grounds in Africa. Given that these are fixed, there has been no change in the average dates when the birds begin moving northward in spring. At the same time, climates in higher latitudes are warming much more rapidly than climates in lower latitudes. This means that the birds cross a number of rapidly shifting thermoclines during the process of migration. The flycatchers used to arrive in northern Europe in mid-April, with the males arriving several weeks ahead of the females in order to establish breeding territories through aggressive intra-sexual selection. The females would then arrive and the breeding cycle was nicely timed to coincide with the optimal prey density (caterpillars) in which to feed their young. However, as the spring warmth has rapidly advanced, the females have been forced to adjust their egg maturation dates earlier and earlier in response to the shifting abundance of their peak food supply. In the 1990s, they reached their physiological limit and then populations have since started to free-fall, as per capita brood fitness declined due to suboptimal prey availability. We now know that declines in the populations of many migratory passerines in the northern hemipshere are almost certainly attributable to changes in climate and its effects on different levels of the food chain with which they interact.

The scenario I have described is certainly not likely to be an isolated example. Given the limited numebr of scientists working in the field, it is likely that were more efforts to be expended, then we would see that such patterns are like an epidemic. Of course, Brent, you would not notice them, but why should you? Ultimately, the consequences for biodiversity and ecosystem functioning could be severe. This is why it is absurd for someone to claim that they do not notice climate change effects. This is because our genomes are not evolutionarily programmed to notice gradual, incipient changes which in the context of larger systems are significant.

By Jeff Harvey (not verified) on 09 Jun 2010 #permalink

Brent: I should clarify things. Although I said that "A period of 20 years or more that is cooler than the previous 20 years, in the absence of major eruptions or similar causes of cooling" would make me reassess my attitude to global climate change, I think the chances of that happening are vanishingly small unless one of the other conditions I mentioned (the absorption spectrum for CO2 is wrong, the measurements of atmospheric CO2 are wrong or that the increased CO2 is not anthropogenic) is met. I would rate these about as likely as finding that bees fly by antigravity rather than using their wings.

By Richard Simons (not verified) on 09 Jun 2010 #permalink

Here is some illuminating reading about Vidal-Naquet

I doubt that even you think so, you anti-semitic sack of shit.

By truth machine (not verified) on 09 Jun 2010 #permalink

Richard (427): Point taken. I said that I wouldn't bicker, and I won't. I have made a diary date for June 2030. Whoever is proved wrong must carry out an embarrassing forfeit, preferably on a theme of beer.

Jeff (424): No time to read your long posting. I've started that ecology book you recommended. Dawkins and Attenborough and the geneticist Steve Jones manage to write for the public without dumbing down too much; I hope that this Professor Levin has that ability.

My wife just gave me a funny look when I approached a beech tree saying, "Hey, gorgeous! I know what you need... a big old hug."

Whoever is proved wrong must carry out an embarrassing forfeit, preferably on a theme of beer.

Right now, none of the falsification criteria have been met; that means that, right now, by not accepting AGW as the best theory to explain the evidence, you have forfeited rationality, jackass.

By truth machine (not verified) on 09 Jun 2010 #permalink

Truth Machine,

On p.188 of his book 'Fragile Dominion' Prof. Levin writes: "...cellular slime molds introduce a different sort of problem."

He doesn't mention you by name, but you may have grounds for a libel suit there...

>My wife just gave me a funny look when I approached a beech tree saying, "Hey, gorgeous! I know what you need... a big old hug."

*crickets*

Once again you've got nothing. You asked for falsification criteria -- after having been repeatedly given them, about which you lied -- and then you were given them, and lied about how many people gave them. And those criteria put the lie to your claim that AGW isn't falsifiable. You pose challenges, they are met, but you do not concede your errors. That makes you slime.

By truth machine (not verified) on 09 Jun 2010 #permalink

I've noticed the warmers are detuning the alarmist rhetoric, spoze the apocalyptic fairytales are all heading into the dustbin with all the other broken crock-ery.

http://www.tinyurl.com.au/arv

> I've noticed the warmers are detuning the alarmist rhetoric, ...

Yes, Flannery seems at times to go outside his expertise and make pronouncements that are either questionable, or easy for people to misinterpret. But he's hardly speaking as the voice of climate science consensus - that's what the IPCC is for. And if you disregard everything he ever said, there's plenty of well-grounded cause for concern from the body of scientists.

I've also noticed that Andrew Bolt:

a) sets up numerous strawmen by removing the qualifiers from the quotes he cites, and

b) fallaciously ridicules concerns about plausible future outcomes that don't eventuate

Sunspot seems not to notice these little tricks - or sees them as validation of his worldview.

And if I'm not mistaken, Bolt makes at least one solid factual error in that transcript which undermines his (ahem) credibility in going after others for probabilistic predictions that turned out differently. See if you're "skeptical" enough to find it.

By Lotharsson (not verified) on 10 Jun 2010 #permalink

.

'[The calculations show] that there is little significant difference between the spatial distributions of heat captured by the Greenhouse gases along a vertical column within the troposphere, for a range of concentrations equal to that defined at present, nominally 380 ppm of CO2 and possible future concentrations of 760 ppm and 1140 ppm. While it is not possible to calculate the actual proportion of energy returning to the earth via these very low frequency photons passing through a transparent atmosphere, the proportion relative to that held by excited CO2 molecules will always be exactly the same, irrespective of the total amount or density of carbon dioxide present.

The findings clearly show that any gas with an absorption line or band lying within the spectral range of the radiation field from the warmed earth, will be capable of contributing towards raising the temperature of the earth. However, it is equally clear that after reaching a fixed threshold of so-called Greenhouse gas density, which is much lower than that currently found in the atmosphere, THERE WILL BE NO FURTHER INCREASE IN TEMPERATURE FROM THIS SOURCE, NO MATTER HOW LARGE THE INCREASE IN THE ATMOSPHERIC DENSITY OF SUCH GASSES.'

http://www.tinyurl.com.au/asm

SO it's back to the temp data, the temp data stinks !

'The following figure compares the above two graphs, showing how an increase in temperature trend was achieved simply by changing the method of adjusting the data. Some of the major changes are highlighted in this figure â the decreases in the 1930s and the increases in the 1980s and 1990s.'

http://www.tinyurl.com.au/aso

eh ! you warmers stop leaving brents heater on when you leave

slothy said - 'But he's hardly speaking as the voice of climate science consensus'

slothy , go to the $2 shop and get a new pair of speck's.

1/ Australian of the Year in 2007 - this was due to his lying about aGw.

2/ Flannery, now head of the Rudd Government's Coast and Climate Change Council - this is his new climate propaganda pozzie.

> However, it is equally clear that after reaching a fixed threshold of so-called Greenhouse gas density, which is much lower than that currently found in the atmosphere,...

...ah, the return of [false "physics"](http://skepticalscience.com/saturated-co2-effect.htm) from sunspot (complete with a reference to Miskolczi). Who would have predicted that?

By Lotharsson (not verified) on 11 Jun 2010 #permalink

Spotty, when did your soul die? Did you know your ugly dead heart is open to see in your posts?

So sunspot, how are you going applying "skepticism" to Bolt's statements? It's really a very simple test - no special scientific skills needed, so you're not disqualified on that front.

Or is "skepticism" something that you only apply to scientists?

By Lotharsson (not verified) on 11 Jun 2010 #permalink

slothy you would be thinking of this reference -

'Or to ask him to explain his concession last year that, despite his great scares of rising heat, "there hasn't been a continuation of that warming trend" and "the computer modelling and the real world data disagrees".'

that might have been taken from here ?

http://www.tinyurl.com.au/avn

if thats not it, spit it out coz i'm not a friggen mindreader !

ESP, thats a warmers thingo, eg. your little "shorter" posts and Nostradamic apocalyptic visions of the future, all wrong I might add.

An Inconvenient truth, the snow season is on time in Austrailia.

http://www.tinyurl.com.au/avv

No sign of warming here, when does global warming start ?

Sunspot (443): In the interview you linked to, the journalist asks: "What do you say to people like Senator Nick Minchin, who believes that what's going on here is something going on here is fraudulent; that environmentalists have braced a new religion, with the collapse of communism, now they've taken on environmentalism with a religious fervour that goes beyond science."

Ay, there's the rub.

Ay, there's the rub.

There's not a skeptical bone in your cretinous body.

By truth machine (not verified) on 12 Jun 2010 #permalink

sunspot:

An Inconvenient truth, the snow season is on time in Austrailia.

No sign of warming here, when does global warming start ?

Stupid moron. No one said it would stop snowing. It snows in Queensland for Chrissake.

By Chris O'Neill (not verified) on 12 Jun 2010 #permalink

> ...you would be thinking of this reference...

No.

> ...spit it out coz i'm not a friggen mindreader...

I didn't ask you to mindread, and I tend to feel less charitable to requests from those who parody my name.

Try again. It's good practice.

By Lotharsson (not verified) on 12 Jun 2010 #permalink

Remember when Sunspot was posting satirical articles he didn't realise were fake?

I do.

chris @ 447 has alzheimer's,
'Stupid moron. No one said it would stop snowing.'

'20 March 2000 we got the headline: âSnowfalls are now just a thing of the pastâ. According to Dr David Viner, a senior research scientist at the climatic research unit (CRU) of the University of East Anglia, within a few years winter snowfall will become âa very rare and exciting eventâ. "Children just aren't going to know what snow is," he said.'

http://www.tinyurl.com.au/7on

brent @ 445 said, 'Ay, there's the rub.'

there's alota warmers doing alota rubbing,

rub rub rub rub rub rub rub rub rub

A reminder - Data Whitewash ????

'SCIENTISTS at the University of East Anglia (UEA) have admitted throwing away much of the raw temperature data on which their predictions of global warming are based.'

'It means that other academics are not able to check basic calculations said to show a long-term rise in temperature over the past 150 years.' http://www.tinyurl.com.au/axw

Steel yourself for the new reality, because the data needed to verify the gloom-and-doom warming forecasts have disappeared.

and............

'Or so it seems. Apparently, they (the temp data) were either lost or purged from some discarded computer. Only a very few people know what really happened, and they arenât talking much. And what little they are saying makes no sense.'
http://www.tinyurl.com.au/axx

remind me, who are the denier's and what really are the average temperatures ?

> SCIENTISTS at the University of East Anglia (UEA) have admitted throwing away much of the raw temperature data on which their predictions of global warming are based

Sunspot desperately continues to orbit the goldfish bowl with debunked claims that were given a thorough airing on the Empirical Evidence thread. Seems like he's trying to get the attention here that he's not getting much of over there.

By Lotharsson (not verified) on 12 Jun 2010 #permalink

only a bit about spencer's data slothy, I did see that you wrote somewhere recently that you were having troubles with your memory, if that was a 'a thorough airing' then the science must not be settled. http://www.tinyurl.com.au/6pm

"within a few years winter snowfall will become âa very rare and exciting event"

["As fresh snow caused more schools to be closed and led to more transport chaos"](http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk/8456162.stm)

["A £250 bonus has been paid to Crown Prosecution Service staff in London who turned up for work during heavy snow."](http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk/7994475.stm)

["The Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, has been blamed by a committee of MPs for a "lack of leadership" during February's snow chaos in the capital."](http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/london/8072999.stm)

["February snow 'hit retail sales'"](http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/business/7934126.stm)

etc. etc.

Hey, given that the Viner Declaration (children not knowing what snow is) hasn't yet happened, would any warmist venture a guess on:

(a) In which decade will the last snow fall on London and

(b) In which decade will the London Underground be flooded by rising sea levels?

Another thing: in my lad's chemistry homework he has learned that the solubility of CO2 in water decreases with rising temperature. Well, warmists like to shriek: "Arrhenius proved the greenhouse effect, so to deny Thermageddon is to deny the laws of physics". Can sceptics say, "To deny that the rise of CO2 PPM is caused by temperature rises is to deny the laws of chemistry"?

> I did see that you wrote somewhere recently that you were having troubles with your memory...

Yes, I continue to have a disease that causes cognitive issues, including memory problems.

So what's your excuse for being a rampant goldfish?

By Lotharsson (not verified) on 13 Jun 2010 #permalink

> ...venture a guess on [...] In which decade...

No, because:

a) it ought to be obvious that that's a piss-poor way to assess a trend - on a par with looking at the number of years between successive peaks. In a noisy system it's the metric that probably has the **most** variability as a result of, and is least indicative of, a trend.

b) it's a **regional** prediction, not global. (Goldfish, goldfish, goldfish...)

By Lotharsson (not verified) on 13 Jun 2010 #permalink

Little jonny @ 459,

Stew @ 226 supplied me this link http://www.tinyurl.com.au/a43 , I had made the statement that I don't believe the temperature data, the map shows the supposed warming anomaly's during snowmaggedon, being skeptical I googled more of the Northern Hemisphere counties that are indicated as hotter than they should be, particularly those south of the extreme cold, I FOUND THAT NEARLY EVERY COUNTRY WAS HAVING COLDER THAN NORMAL TEMPERATURES ! Stew backed away from this.

eg
http://www.tinyurl.com.au/b1m http://www.tinyurl.com.au/b1n http://www.tinyurl.com.au/a45

Little jonny I'm sure that your link is a facade, or a window dressing to keep you morons believing.
The temperature data is bullshit !

All of you warmers are sucked in by it and are madly rub rub rub rubbing.........

I have to love sunspots 'non-science'- pasting up articles gleaned from a few newspapers in January, versus GISTemp and NASAs data in his desperate effort to prove that the monthly mean temperature was not well above average *over the entire globe* [emphasis mine].

Talk about desperate. All spotty has left to cry is that 'it is all avast conspiracy'! He 'proves' this with a few newspaper clippings. Who is listening to you, sad little spot? See spot run!

As it turns out, January comes in at #2 in terms of warmth, with February at #2 and March, April and May all at #1. 2010 is shaping up to be the warmest in recorded history. Expect spottie to keep up with his barrage of anti-scientific pleading.Spottie: please go away. You are an island here. The only reason we read your links is because they provide comic relief.

By Jeff Harvey (not verified) on 14 Jun 2010 #permalink

I don't even bother with his links any more Jeff.
Rubbish information without even any 'argument'.

>Stew backed away from this

I tried to find the surface data for the whole month of January for China, but could only find data readily available for the last couple of months.

I was hoping to find more than just anecdotal evidence, which is all Sunspot has of course. There were cold weather events, sure, but would the media then cover two weeks of mild, unexceptional weather that pushes the average temp back above average? This is why you shouldn't rely on media reports of certain weather events to give you an idea of what the whole month was like...

>I had made the statement that I don't believe the temperature data, the map shows the supposed warming anomaly's during snowmaggedon, being skeptical I googled more of the Northern Hemisphere counties that are indicated as hotter than they should be, particularly those south of the extreme cold, I FOUND THAT NEARLY EVERY COUNTRY WAS HAVING COLDER THAN NORMAL TEMPERATURES ! Stew backed away from this.

Here's what one of the links says:

>Despite the cold and wet start to the year, however, one of Syriaâs most pressing problems remains a severe water shortage that will, according to government and United Nations reports, only get worse as the effects of climate change strike home.

Not one for in-depth reading I see.

Sunspot are you aware that land only covers 30% of the globe and Europe and North America only a part of that? And that 3 media reports of cold weather during winter in a fraction of the world doesn't disprove global warming?

How thick are you?

If you look at Stew's link you'll see it was cold right through part of the US and most of Europe.

Everywhere else was hot.

Again, how thick are you?

> ...pasting up articles gleaned from a few newspapers in January, versus GISTemp and NASAs data in his desperate effort to prove that the monthly mean temperature was not well above average over the entire globe...

Seems exactly like Monckton's methodology for proving that the MWP was globally warmer than today - point out a few papers that say that certain regions were at certain times, without bothering to reconstruct global temperatures over the centuries in question (never mind properly accounting for the uncertainty ranges).

> Not one for in-depth reading I see.

I find that's quite common with sunspot. His links refute the very reason he quoted them more often than one might expect.

But hey, at least he gets the attention he craves this way ;-)

By Lotharsson (not verified) on 14 Jun 2010 #permalink

The anomaly map shows there were average temperatures in spain, the evidence is that it was unusually cold, not average ! It is well documented ! The temperature data is bullshit !

http://www.tinyurl.com.au/b2x
http://www.tinyurl.com.au/b2w

Morocco http://www.tinyurl.com.au/a47

About 30 people, including 28 children, have died of cold-related diseases in the last 11 days in northern Bangladesh as cold wave is sweeping over northern and CENTRAL part of the south Asian country http://english.peopledaily.com.cn/90001/90777/90851/6859182.html

Alger's, China, ect ect........

the list is long, many counties in the data were recorded as warmer, the news reports from the time were saying that they were colder than average. You swallow piles of bullshit and try to regurgitate it as truth.
The funniest joke is actually watching Pinocchio slapping himself on the back all the time, telling everybody how smart he is, spoze he must know all about the ocean though because he dabbled a bit in seamen.

Spotty says, "slapping himself on the back all the time, telling everybody how smart he is".

We spotty, turns out the it appears that all of us here are a helluva lot smarter than you are. But its not flattery; given the gumbified level of your posts its pretty easy, I'd say.

You are just one big, but intellectually simple, hypocrite. You get all huffy when you claim that posters on Deltoid are mistaking weather related events for climate, then what do you do? Yup. Mistake weather-related events for climate. At least when it suits your purpose. You clearly hardly read any original peer-reviewed studies, but appear to spend an unhealthy amount of your time pasting crap on Deltoid from contrarian sites or news clips from online media sources. Spotty picks a few clippings from individual dates and draws a pattern. However, I see few from Canada, Australia the vast ocean expanses or other parts of the southern hemisphere. Nope, spotty thinks he can prove his point by pasting a few studies from a few places to support his alleged NASA conspiracy gag.

Chek nailed it in his last post when he described the acumen (or lack thereof) of spotties posts. They actually deserve the [killfile] treatment. I think its time to eliminate my detection of them.

By Jeff Harvey (not verified) on 14 Jun 2010 #permalink

Sigh.

Canadian winter 2010: "Canada Has Warmest and Driest Winter on Record; Some Areas in Arctic and Northern Quebec 6 °C Above Normal".

http://www.greencarcongress.com/2010/03/canwinter-20100320.html

Canada is the second largest country on Earth.

Spotty will now correctly argue that this is an El-Nino weather related event, and that it has nix to do with climate warming. While doing this he will conveniently ignore all of his innane posts claiming how cold the weather - over a few days - had been at a few specific locations in Europe and Asia. Pure and utter hypocrisy.

Spotty: have you no shame? Or are you just completely addled?

By Jeff Harvey (not verified) on 14 Jun 2010 #permalink

Sunspot, you've convinced me. It all adds up.

Why are NASA faking data?

Not knowing that much about Israel, I just checked where in Israel Sunspot's link was talking about and lo and behold, it's Safed, which is the highest city in the country (2790 feet) and the coldest. Talk about cherry picking!

Denialists really have no shame.

By Robert Murphy (not verified) on 14 Jun 2010 #permalink

Robert,

Excellent. Well said. Denialists really are a deluded bunch, and have to come up with all kinds of excuses (and throw tantrums) when they don't get their way. Sunspot is no exception. He seems to spend a lot of time sitting around surfing the internet looking for articles here and there saying that some city or other was having a cold snap this past winter. Then, even more insidiously, he uses these articles to prove his point that the NASA GISTEMP data just cannot be true and must be fudged. Of course we all snicker at his absurd behavior, which makes him lash out even more.

In my experience, I have rarely seen someone abuse science so much in support of their own dogmatic views as sunspot does with his online media snippets. Given that virtually nobody here takes him or his views seriously, I wonder what point he is trying to make. But he persists.

By Jeff Harvey (not verified) on 14 Jun 2010 #permalink

In our previous episode, Brent tried to paint AGW as an unfalsifiable pseudo-science, repeatedly lied about whether people had provided falsification criteria, but eventually accepted that some had been offered -- while ignoring the fact that this undid his thesis, instead treating it as yet another reason to wait for 20 years.

In the latest episode, Brent suggests that, if the solubility of CO2 decreases with temperature, that implies that CO2 does not cause warming and that, if one thinks that CO2 causes warming, one must deny that the solubility of CO2 decreases with temperature, and that this sort of reasoning, and attribution of a belief without any evidence that anyone holds it, is the mark of a "sceptic".

In a future episode, Brent will justify this argument on the basis that positive feedback systems are undesirable and therefore do not occur.

By truth machine (not verified) on 14 Jun 2010 #permalink

I'm a little bit cold here right now. Going by Sunspot and Brent's logic, warming disproven! Phew! Not a moment too soon.

"NOAA now claims that the accuracy of the measured temperature no longer matters!

Letâs take a closer look at this amazing statement to see what it actually says:

For detecting climate change, the concern is not the absolute temperature â¦

Are they truly saying the accuracy of the temperature readings donât matter? Yes, they are! But why?"

http://www.tinyurl.com.au/b7r

Pinocchio @ 476, looks like you used a spell checker there, it's not your usual garbled mess, did someone help you write that ? or is someone else using your monicker ?

Sunspot said:"Letâs take a closer look at this amazing statement to see what it actually says: For detecting climate change, the concern is not the absolute temperature Are they truly saying the accuracy of the temperature readings donât matter? Yes, they are! But why?"

No spotty that's not what they're saying.
Maybe if you looked at the [source](http://www.noaa.gov/features/02_monitoring/weather_stations.html) you'd see what they say, but of course that doesn't mean you'd actually understand it, or want to understand it.

Spotty,

Just out of interest, how many peer-reviewed scientific publications do you have in your real name?

Let me guess... um... er... let's see...

NIL?

Just wondering. You see, unlike you, who apparently sits on their backside doing nothing all day except surfing the internet for a few articles showing week long cold spells here and there, I actually work, as a scientist. And as a scientist I have a lot to do. A simpleton like you should be flattered that I actually respond to the gibberish they post. Hence why I do not check the spelling of my responses to your brainless drivel. I type em' out as quickly as I can.

One thing is for sure: you are a stupid clod. Comprenez vous?

By Jeff Harvey (not verified) on 15 Jun 2010 #permalink

oy, holzern head,

you should know by now that the peeing on process is often skewed, your the one looking for fame and funding, not me.

By the way, I'm so impressed by your ecobabble that I've printed out some and put it on the nail in the dunny.

http://www.tinyurl.com.au/b8e

But for detecting climate change, the concern is not the absolute temperature â whether a station is reading warmer or cooler than a nearby station placed on grass â but how that temperature changes over time.

The full quote that sunspot @480 fails to comprehend.

From our Whale Excrement correspondant in the UK's Independant:

"Australian researchers have found that the iron-rich faeces of sperm whales.... remove 400,000 tonnes of carbon each year.[ ] Trish Lavery, the lead researcher, based at [Adelaide University's] School of Biological Sciences estimates that each ... sperm whale releases about 50 tonnes of iron into the sea annually. Previously the enormous mammals were regarded as climate criminals because they breathe out carbon dioxide."

Whew! That was a close one. Before establishing their green credentials these critters were targets for a cull. Bernie boy would've been in the prow of the boats, firing harpoons from a steam cannon, the wind in his hair, the madness of the hunt in his eyes, yelling, "It's for your own good, whales! You have to learn: climate criminality will not be tolerated!"

>*Previously the enormous mammals were regarded as climate criminals because they breathe out carbon dioxide.*

That's quite good Brent, for humor.

I trust you don't believe that anyone actually thinks whales are climate criminals? I trust you recognize this as a flashy turn of phrase?

You wouldn't be resorting to attacking a mis-caricature again would you?

Brent,

Steve Nicholls of the Australian Antarctic Division has been saying it for years. It's just that the papers have caught on yesterday.

Besides, the whales are recycling existing iron, they don't manufacture it out of thin air.

Brent returns, still talking shit.

Hi, fellers! When I read those stupid words in the newspaper ('climate criminal') of course I marked it down as nutter-fringe-speak. It reminded me of an old friend, a guy with 'issues', telling me that he felt a twinge of guilt every time he inhaled. I was tempted to burst into an old 1970s song: "Martin, you are a child of the universe/no less than the trees and the stars/you have a right to be here".

This episode is one more brush stroke in the giant tableau I am painting: the guilt complex of prosperous modern man driving this latest end-of-days panic, supported by poorly thought out fuzzy science. Poor old Martin was not alone.

And, MFS, the alchemy aspect amused me too. It's bleedin' obvious that the digestive processes of these whales cannot have a profound affect on the oceans' iron content. Fuzzy science needs to be slapped down by real science. Fuzzy science (with climatography the most delinquent) is damaging the reputation of science. You're a professional scientist, I think you said. Come on over to our side. AGW sceptics demand scientific rigour; far from our caricature of mindless denial, we seek to draw a clear line between repeatable predictable falsifible science (normally referred to more economically as 'science') and numerological mumbo jumbo.

Were it as innocuous as phrenology or acupuncture I wouldn't care. But the climatographers have gained such influence with the politicians that we're pissing away billions on useless windmills.

MFS, it's Lysenkoism. It's time to abandon it.

Great news, posted just 20 minutes ago:

LONDON, June 18 (Reuters) - Britain's SeaEnergy is to sell off part of its wind farm development division and focus on setting up a services unit after concluding it would be too difficult to raise cash to fund wind farms.

"This is a business that needs deep pockets and we had hoped we could stay with it at least through financial close, but we've tested the marketplace and institutional investors are just not ready for it," Chairman Steve Remp told Reuters on Friday.

SeaEnergy's shares were down 20.4 percent at a more than 18 month low of 28.25 pence at 0831 GMT, making them the biggest faller on London's junior AIM market.

-----

Hooray! A significant step on the road back to energy sanity.

"One insufficiently addressed question is why scientists would allow themselves to be recruited to essentially political objectives. Another is why they seem so resolutely committed to increasingly shaky theories, and lash out at critics. Surveys have shown that natural scientists tend to be left-liberal in their leanings. Many perhaps believe that a world with more top-down economic control and greater transfers to poor nations is desirable whatever the realities of climate science, and that given the possibility (however remote) of man-made climate catastrophe, that it is appropriate to adopt the "precautionary principle."

Such a mindset can be buttressed by the way science is done. In his classic book The Structure of Scientific Revolutions, Thomas Kuhn noted that scientific groups adopted, and committed to, "paradigms," which then became fundamentally unquestionable. That stance was hardened further when moral values, such as being "socially useful," were involved.

The IPCC came with its moralistic paradigms pre-installed.

Kuhn noted that "professionalization" of any paradigm leads to "an immense restriction of the scientist's vision and to a considerable resistance to paradigm change." He even suggested that a scientist, as a captive to a paradigm, is " like the typical character of Orwell's 1984, the victim of a history rewritten by the powers that be."

Kuhn also suggested why catastrophic man-made climate change theory--even if it is found to have been greatly exaggerated, or even falsified -- will take a good deal of killing. "The transfer of allegiance from paradigm to paradigm," he wrote, "is a conversion experience that cannot be forced." The problem is that there is no other clear and simple climate theory to which to be "converted" at the moment."

http://www.tinyurl.com.au/bk3

'He said the ice is in some ways in better shape going into the melt season than it has been for a couple of years. "We have more thick ice going into the summer than we did in 2009 and 2008," he said.

Much will depend on the intensity of the winds, and how the ice fractures and is blown around, he said. "But any talk about tipping points, a sudden drop and no recovery ... I don't think it is going to happen."

The more likely scenario is that the ice will continue a decline that has been under way for at least 30 years, he said. There is likely to be plenty of variability in that decline, he added, with "extreme" melts in some years, followed by "significant recoveries like we saw last year."

Part of the problem with ice forecasting is that it is based largely on DATA FROM SATELLITES. They are good at measuring the size of an area that is covered by ice, but tell little about the thickness of the ice -- which can measure in mere centimetres in the case of new ice, or metres in the case of ice that is several years old.'

http://www.tinyurl.com.au/bk4

Arctic ice appears SLIGHTLY below average, but look at that bumper crop down south !

View NSIDC Data on Virtual Globes: Google Earth

The National Snow and Ice Data Center offers some of our data in the form of images. We have created Google Earth⢠files that enable you to overlay the following data-based images on a virtual globe. Our goal is to help people better understand the cryosphereâwhere the world is frozenâby making our data more visible and interactive.

http://www.tinyurl.com.au/bk6

Sunspot is gleaning more right wing garbage from sources like the Financial Post. Does this clown have no shame? Seems like he spends most of his days surfing the internet for free market absolutist bilge.

The field of climate science only became heavily politicized when the corporate lobbyists and think tanks saw an imminent threat to investors returns and profit margins. That is why there is so much money sloshing around in the anti-environmental arena: note that the denialati cover various fields where policy-related implications are concerned, from climate change to other forms of pollution to habitat destrcution to the loss of biodiversity. This is why the corporate elites so strongly promote people like Bjorn Lomborg: because he speaks their language. Anyone who argues that environmental problems are overblown is going to be given a veritable loudspeaker by those with power and privilidge (including the mainstream corporate media). Climate change is on the immediate agenda and this explains why the corporate funded backlash against it is so powerful in influencing public opinion (e.g. dopes like sunspot and Brent).

Given the nature and power of those with a generally right wing political agenda, they recognize the need for mendacious propaganda campaigns that involve (1) the effort to convince the lay public that they are actually interested in the scientific 'facts', and (2) they also need to impugn the reputations of the scientists doing the research or to give the impression that the scientific community is pursuing an alternate agenda. Given the fact that the anti-environmental funds are virtually unlimited, they have bought-and-paid for some 'experts' in climate science (although, very few if one actually adds up those who are really qualified); set up web sites and the like aimed at the general public; and used think tanks and PR firms to disseminate volumes if disinformation on the subject. In essence, in contrast with Brent's pithy views, the denial community are distorting science to promote a pre-determined worldview, and this will not change in my opinion even as more data come in refuting them.

Lastly, the extent of sea ice is not slightly below average, but SIGNIFICANTLY below average. Trust spotty to get that wrong as well, even though the latest graphic figure looks dramatic.

PS for spotty: In this and other Deltoid threads I discuss what you describe as "ecobabble" in fairly simple terms. Trust you not to be able to understand it. Like other denialists with little scientific knowledge, for example Tim Curtin, this is the way you explain away complexity. It's another strategy used by anti-environmentalists: if they don't understand something they ridicule it, as if by doing that it makes ithe subject irrelevant. What a pathetic lot you are.

By Jeff Harvey (not verified) on 18 Jun 2010 #permalink

Did you read this part Pinocchio ?

The three issues were (1) the surface temperature record is flawed in many ways, but is flawed in particular as a metric to detect greenhouse-imposed warming, (2) direct tests of the so called fingerprint of climate model temperature changes versus observations indicated significant differences, failing simple hypothesis tests, and (3) the critical value of climate sensitivity to greenhouse gases was overstated because it had not been properly calculated. All of these were supported by peer-reviewed publications which even now continue to appear.

THIS PART SUM'S YOU UP PINOCCHIO

Brokers vs gatekeepers
In my view, the IPCC process had drifted away from allowing authors to serve as Brokers of climate science, in which various views are given attention, to becoming Gatekeepers of climate science in which one view is elevated and promoted. The IPCC Assessment had become a âconsensus of those who agreed with the consensus.â Since âconsensusâ is a political notion, not a scientific notion, a goal of âconsensusâ in any forum is at its heart a political goal. http://www.tinyurl.com.au/bk8

THIS ALSO SUM'S YOU UP PINOCCHIO

Kuhn noted that "professionalization" of any paradigm leads to "an immense restriction of the scientist's vision and to a considerable resistance to paradigm change." He even suggested that a scientist, as a captive to a paradigm, is " like the typical character of Orwell's 1984, the victim of a history rewritten by the powers that be."

Brent,

Not on a global scale. However, large whales such as humpbacks regularly migrate between their winter grounds in tropical waters, and the Southern Ocean during summer. Most of the Southern Ocean is a high-nutrient, low-chlorophyll area, meaning that while there is excess nitrate and phosphate, something keeps productivity down. This something is iron in the polar front zone (PFZ) and south of it, and a combination of iron and silicic acid in the subantarctic zone (SAZ).

Large whales are excellent at redistributing iron where it is needed for phytoplankton to bloom (in this case from tropical coastal waters to the southern ocean). What Dr Nicol and other researchers are finding in the last couple of years is that the actual amounts involved are significant. Among other factors, the SAZ and the PFZ are major carbon sinks, and dissolve a large proportion of the CO2 we emit (because subtropical water circulating from north to south, and getting colder in the process, increases its capacity to dissolve CO2. In addition, the southern ocean has an extremely deep mixed layer, cold water, and is a very turbulent and windy environment).

The research seems to be showing that when you combine the high concentration of CO2 in the water and its high nutrient status, and you bring in the missing nutrient, iron, in the form of whale poo (which can partly have travelled from well outside this zone during the migration), it stimulates vigorous production, which results in vertical export of particulate organic carbon to the deep ocean.

In addition to this it seems that much of the available iron in the southern ocean is semi-permanently sequestered as biomass. At the time before the ecosystem was severely disturbed by whaling and sealing (in the 19th century) and overfishing (in the 20th to the present), the biomass of large vertebrates in the southern ocean was orders of magnitude above what it is now. This resulted in far more iron cycling through the system, and far higher productivity. So more whales and fish ultimately seems to mean more iron and so on in a form of positive feedback.

At least that's what I gathered from watching Steve Nicol's seminars. There is more on the whale poo - iron story [here](http://www.aad.gov.au/default.asp?casid=37724).

Now the difference between science and alchemy is not really something I think anyone here but you needs explaining to them, so I'll stay out of it. As to your suggestion that I join your camp, no thanks. I have seen nothing but lies and misrepresentations being used to drive a self-interest agenda coming from your side. Since I am involved with many of the researchers actually doing this stuff on a day to day basis and actually understand it, and see how many of the conclusions of climate science are arrived at, I think I'll stay with what I know, rather than start parroting memes I know nothing about as most of you lot seem to do.