Counterpoint fails to make correction

Last year on Counterpoint Anthony Watts appeared:

Michael Duffy: In which direction does the bias lie? Are you suggesting that the temperature has not got as hot as the American official historical record suggests?

Anthony Watts: That's correct. It's an interesting situation. The early arguments against this project said that all of these different biases are going to cancel themselves out and there would be cool biases as well as warm biases, but we discovered that that wasn't the case. The vast majority of them are warm biases, and even such things as people thinking a tree might in fact keep the temperature cooler doesn't really end up that way.

Watts went to to rubbish the paper by Menne et al that analysed Watt's data and found no warming bias.

But when Watt's paper came out it contradicted Watt's claims on Counterpoint, finding no warming bias, just like Menne.

The ABC Code of Practice says:

5.3 Demonstrable errors of fact will be corrected in a timely manner and in a form most suited to the circumstances.

So naturally Counterpoint corrected the record.

Ha ha, just kidding. Look at how they restate Watt's hypothesis in their follow-up show:

His hypothesis was that the data recorded by these monitoring stations was, for a variety of reasons, inaccurate. The paper has now been published and co-author John Nielson-Gammon discusses their results.

So rather than correct it, they just pretended that this was never his hypothesis. As Steve puts it at Opinion Dominion:

Don't, however, expect either the interviewer or interviewee to express any interest at all in co-relating what Watts used to say about his project, and what it actually found.

As one might expect from the soft-sceptic Counterpoint, they are interested in emphasising the finding relating to diurnal temperature range, the importance of which still seems fairly unclear, even according to Neilsen-Gammon.

The finding about mean temperature trends not being artificially inflated by siting issues gets the briefest of mentions. Surrounding it is a sea of words from Paul Comrie-Thomson emphasising that the paper did find something interesting, that it was a worthy project, that it would be good if more science of this type could be done, etc.

After being rightfully castigated in comments for their deceptive conduct, Counterpoint replied in comments:

Claims of misrepresentation and professional misconduct by Counterpoint are untrue and highly offensive. In response the program sought comment from John Nielsen-Gammon ...
"I was expecting to be asked about why Watts said one thing about the results while the paper said another, and apparently your listeners did too. But I have no objection with focusing on what our best analysis shows, rather than considering why the previous analysis was incorrect."

This isn't much of a defence. First, Counterpoint does not dispute that Watts' claims, given so much emphasis by Counterpoint were incorrect. Second, Nielsen-Gammon confirms that, like the listeners, he expected to be asked about the contradiction to Watts' claims. Why wasn't he? It certainly appears to be a deliberate cover up and Counterpoint has not been able to come with an explanation.

More from the ABC Code of Practice:

9.2 ABC Audience and Consumer Affairs. Complaints that the ABC has acted contrary to this Code of Practice should be directed to the ABC in the first instance. Phone complainants seeking a written response from the ABC will be asked to put their complaint in writing. All such written complaints are to be directed to ABC Audience and Consumer Affairs, GPO Box 9994, in the capital city of your State or Territory. The complainant will receive a response from the ABC within 60 days of receipt of their complaint.

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The ABC has lost the plot,
Dear Claire,
Thank you for your reply and that as you state you do not believe that this following quote from Lapkin
is a distortion of Schneider's intent

Lapkin Quote

" In a moment of unguarded candour, a major climate change guru once
explained why he and his ideological fellow travellers didn't hesitate to
play fast and loose with the truth.
This revelation came during a 1989 interview with Discover Magazine, when
Stanford Professor of Global Change Stephen Scheider said: "We are not just
scientists, but human beings as well. Like most people we'd like to see the
world a better place, which in this context translates into our working to
reduce the risk of potentially disastrous climatic change. To do that we
need to get some broad-based support, to capture the public's imagination.
That, of course, entails getting loads of media coverage. So we have to
offer up scary scenarios, make simplified, dramatic statements, and make
little mention of any doubts we might have."

rgds

John Byatt

Dear Mr Byatt

Thank you for your email of 2 May regarding the opinion piece by Ted Lapkin
published on 28 April under the ABC's Drum Opinion banner.

Your complaint has been referred to Audience and Consumer Affairs, a unit
which is separate to and independent of program making areas within the ABC.
We have the role of examining the compliance of material, about which a
complaint has been made, against the relevant editorial standards
(http://abc.net.au/corp/pubs/documents/20110408/EditorialPOL2011.pdf).

We understand your complaint to be that Ted Lapkin misrepresented the views
of the late Professor Stephen Schneider by cutting his quote down in the
article "Environmental shock and awe". The Code of Practice which we
believe you are referring to in your email and which you quote in one of
your posts in response to the article was replaced by a revised and updated
version on 11 April 2011.

The relevant editorial standards which apply to the Ted Lapkin piece can be
viewed in the Editorial Policies linked to above. The policies commit to
accuracy in ABC content but we note that the standards relate to "material
facts". A material fact is defined in the glossary of the policies as
follows: "A 'fact' describes things or events and is capable of being
verified. A 'material' fact is one which is relevant or essential to
understanding the subject matter or issue being discussed, as distinguished
from irrelevant or incidental."

Of relevance to your concerns however the principles state "The accuracy
standard requires that opinions be conveyed accurately, in the sense that
quotes should be accurate and any editing should not distort the meaning of
the opinion expressed."

On review we note that in editing the quote, Ted Lapkin is highlighting one
of the points made by Schneider about the manner in which scientists might
act in the face of an issue. We are of the view that he does not
misrepresent Schneider on this point. He merely omits the second key point
made by Schneider that: "This 'double ethical bind' we frequently find
ourselves in cannot be solved by any formula. Each of us has to decide what
the right balance is between being effective and being honest. I hope that
means being both."

Accordingly, we are of the view that there has been no breach of editorial
standards in the use of this quotation.

Furthermore, we note that robust debate has occurred on the threaded message
board under the article about the use of this quote by Ted Lapkin, in this
manner, and that this clearly elucidates on ongoing debate between those who
would agree with Ted Lapkin and those who oppose this kind of argument and
the use of this quote in this way. Many of the users, including you, state
on the board that Lapkin has misquoted Schneider. The full quote is spelt
out in the message board and we note that you also have a direct exchange
with the Ted Lapkin himself about this.

Nevertheless, please do be assured that your views have been noted by
Audience and Consumer Affairs and the Drum Opinion team.

Thank you again for taking the time to write and express your views.

Yours sincerely

Claire M Gorman
Audience and Consumer Affairs

By john byatt (not verified) on 26 Jun 2011 #permalink

Having posted a comment over there I was surprised by the outraged denial from 'Counterpoint'. It seems most unusual behaviour for a Radio National program.

I wonder how many sceptics actually listen to Counterpoint though? The comments are mostly negative to Counterpoint's line of drivel. I imagine the beige-cardigan set are all bunkered down at Blot's Blog with their fingers in their ears. Surely it's time for the ABC to reject false 'bias' and cancel Counterpoint in favour of something more worthwhile. I couldn't find much about the actual purpose of Radio National, but apparently

All programs are thoroughly researched and lovingly presented by some of Australia's leading broadcasters.

I think that claim might be hyperbole.

Thanks for link, Tim.

I'm not sure that it can technically be called "deceptive", given that the key result was (ever so briefly) given in the middle of the interview. There is no doubt at all, however, in my mind, that the interview was 100% conducted with sceptic spin, in exactly the way that would have pleased Watts.

As I noted at my post about it, though, I am a bit puzzled as to the low interest or attention paid by Neilsen-Gammon to the question of how climate science is painted and politicised by sceptics like Watts, and the care with which he needs to comment on the topic.

At certain points of the interview, I thought that listeners could be forgiven to thinking that he was an uncertainty inflating lukewarmenist like Curry. (Well, if that is what she is; I find it hard to tell exactly beneath the impenetrable fog of words that comprise most of her blog posts.)

Now, from reading his blog, I don't think that Neilsen-Gammon intends this, but with respect, if he thinks reducing CO2 is an obvious worthwhile scientific and political goal, I wish he would sound more emphatic about this than what he did in this interview.

Correction? Retraction? The sound you're not hearing is me holding my breath!

'Untrue and highly offensive'? Methinks thou dost protest too much

bill +1. it's highly offensive because it's true.

By Majorajam (not verified) on 26 Jun 2011 #permalink

Counterpoint sounds lazy and driven by things other than an interest in truth. I don't watch it but we should perhaps be grateful that more of the ABC is not so bad, when you consider that the Chair of the ABC board remains delusional climate inactivist and serial scientist slanderer Maurice Newman.

Newman last year in a speech to ABC journalists and managers:

[skipping some not so bad stuff]
...
Climate change is a further example of group-think where contrary views have not been tolerated, and where those who express them have been labelled and mocked. In his ABC Online blog last October Chris Uhlmann wrote a piece called In praise of the sceptics. ââClimate science we are endlessly told is âsettledââ he wrote. âBut to make the, perfectly reasonable, point that science is never settled risks being branded a âscepticâ or worse a âdenierââ¦one of those words, like âracistâ, which is deliberately designed to gag debateâ¦You can be branded a denier if you accept the problem and question the solutions.â

This collective censorious approach succeeded in suppressing contrary views in the mainstream media, despite the fact that a growing number of distinguished scientists were challenging the conventional wisdom with alternative theories and peer reviewed research.

Then came the sensational revelations of unprofessional conduct by some of the worldâs most influential climatologists exposed by the hacked or leaked emails from the University of East Angliaâs Climatic Research Institute. This was followed by more evidence of dubious research and politicised advocacy contained in scientifically unsupported claims and errors in the IPCC 4th Assessment, including in the carefully vetted Synthesis Report. Questionable methods of analysis resulting in spurious temperature data have added further doubts on the underlying credibility of the science.

The lack of moral and scientific integrity shown by the IPCC serves only to reduce clarity and increase confusion, disappoint believers and give fuel to doubters. It has frustrated policy makers, and as polling now shows, it has clearly weakened public belief in climate change and devalued respect for science in general.

In defending the indefensible, Mr Gore, university vice-chancellors and those in the media, do a disservice to the scientific method and miss the point that no matter how noble your work, your first responsibility must always be to the truth.

As you would expect, as Chairman of a public broadcaster, I followed with interest the announcement by the BBC Trust that it would carry out a review of the accuracy and impartiality of the BBCâs coverage of science. It came after a year in which online science bloggers continued to raise concerns about mainstream media coverage.
A contributing factor for the review was the revelation that the CRU emails were known to Paul Hudson, the BBC climate correspondent one month before the story broke â but not reported at the time. While disturbing, it is heartening to know that the BBC takes quality control seriously.
...
At the ABC, I believe we must reenergise the spirit of enquiry. Be dynamic and challenging â to look for contrary points of view, to ensure that the maverick voice will not be silenced.
...

The group-think is clearly strong between Newman, Uhlmann and Duffy. For how many foolish and false things said above by Newman would the ABC, were it adhering to the smarter points of his unwise speech, have long ago apologised and corrected the record?

That Counterpoint episode was an especially painful one, and [rhwombat said it well](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2011/05/anthony_watts_contradicted_by.p…):

>I can't listen to Counterpoint. It always ends with chewed door frames and me spitting splinters.

There's been a definite trashy trend in both radio and television reporting, and that the ABC is leaning ever more toward tabloid journalism is concerning indeed.

By Bernard J. (not verified) on 26 Jun 2011 #permalink

Another one I heard years ago. Carter was being interviewed about the accuracy of the temperature record, and went into raptures about the 'pristine satellite' record, which did not show the rises that the ground temperature stations showed. Of course about six months later, UAH realised they had screwed up. No retraction then, either, nor has it made Carter pause for an instant. I tried to find the transcript so I could complain about that too. If anyone could find it, i would be interested.

Tim

You need to re-write this.

It's incomprehensible and badly written nonsense.

Andreww must be used to comprehensible and well written nonsense.

By Chris O'Neill (not verified) on 27 Jun 2011 #permalink

Andreww (? w for wanker) @9:

You need to re-troll this.

It's incomprehensible and badly written right-wing propaganda

Guys, I think Andreww is only talking about a bit of format hiccupping.

I don't think that he's actually trolling.

By Bernard J. (not verified) on 27 Jun 2011 #permalink

@amoeba. Not the one I heard. There was more extolling the virtues of Satellites. But that interview too could do with some corrections, if anyone feels like following them up. Bob Carter has a long history getting it wrong.

On second thoughts, I think that andreww is a little troll.

He might have legitimately found it incomprehensible with the formatting glitch, but "badly written nonsense" is just plain silly.

Another one to bin.

By Bernard J. (not verified) on 27 Jun 2011 #permalink

@9 Andreww

I think your post may be guilty of being overly wordy.

written nonsense, would have sufficed.

**************************************

Guys, don't you think a sense of perspective would have helped in the above article and comments.

You've gone off a bit half cocked again, Bernard I'm looking at you ;)

GSW: Bugger off, botfly. Frank has already written a perfectly accurate predictive script for you, and you were comprehensively pwned by John - does it still hurt to sit down? Oh and a new emoticon for you - )â(

Ahhh, I see GSW is slumming it again.

Tim, can you please take Bob Carter to task on his latest article. He makes outlandish claims like "CO2 will green the Sahara Desert" without citing any evidence whatsoever (thankfully for him it was in print, so he didn't have to worry about keeping a straight face).

Chaps,

Cooks piece would have been better as a point by point rebuttal.

Some waffle about Greenland (that Carter never mentions), accusing him of using the wrong dataset, I assume he means GISS rather than HADCRUT and referring to "greening the planet" inc. Sahara as being a "halftruth" albeit with the qualifier "too much credance".

Weak and unspecific if you ask me. What's Cook's background, is he a full time activist or something?

He should get out more.

Counterpoint really is an embarrassment. You may recall that when it was first mooted, what they wanted for the show was a Right Wing Phillip Adams.

Sadly all they could get was Michael Duffy and Paul Comre-Thomson. They got the gig, not because they've actually achieved anything in the way Phillip Adams has, but because of their political views - an interesting example of positive discrimination. What has either of them done? Who had ever heard of Comre-Thomson before his nasal tones graced RN? And Michael Duffy? Whenever he's not dishing out some lukewarm Rightwing pap in the SMH, he's complaining about all the trees blocking his view of the harbour.

I haven't listened to them in years. No one listens to them. They are a relic from the Howard years. The sooner they are are scraped off the sole of the ABC's shoe the better.

GSW,

What tint are your glasses? Cook pretty much eviscerated the obtuse Bolt. Easy as pi.

Toby

When a troll, of all people, says:

He should get out more.

you know the troll is running on empty.

By lord_sidcup (not verified) on 27 Jun 2011 #permalink

Counterpoint is crap, unadulterated BS. Its problem is its Standard Operating Procedure (SOP), namely that it seeks the opposite of "conventional opinion" which doesn't work for situations where the conventional opinion is actually a set of factual statements. Since the "conventional opinion" of climate scientists is in actual fact a set of statements that are evidence-based, Counterpoint is barking up the wrong tree when they seek to "counter the point" of the climate scientists, where AGW (Anthropogenic Global Warming) is concerned.

The bizarroid view that every statement needs a counter-statement for broadcast, is the haemarhoid on the butt of good journalism. For this reason, Counterpoint fails every single time it addresses the climate science.

That is about the most polite I can be where Counterpoint is concerned.

PS: I would complain, but I long ago learnt my lesson where the ABC Complaints procedure is concerned.

By Donald Oats (not verified) on 27 Jun 2011 #permalink

GSW suggests John Cook should get out more.

He does.

Skeptical science is hugely successful, he's attracted an impressive stable of authors to it, he just published a book, he pops up regularly on the Climate Show. And here he is - a go-to guy for The Age countering Carter's claptrap!

He's living it large, little troll.

Whereas you're hanging around here like the proverbial bad smell trying to fulfil that craving for the attention mum and dad never gave you, reduced to paddling about making a fool of yourself (you still don't understand what happened here, do you? never mind, you're still smarter than us, for sure!) or acting as a post-facto enabler for monsters.

Who would you say was winning?

Duffy tried to corner John Nielson-Gammon several times to say something that would support the denier POV, but nielson-gammon sounded reluctant to do so. Nielson-Gammon even said at one point that the thing that people thought scientists were arguing about the most (GHG) is actual the best understood, where as climate sensitivity was not. Duffy took that as an opportunity for more delay by saying "there's more work to do".

At least the Nielson=Gammon interview wasn't like the typical Monckton/Plimer/Carter interviews where you hear them say there is no warming, there is only cooling, CO2 is plant food only & it's all a hoax & a scam.

Counterpoint = What's the Point?

Duffy as the 'Right-wing Adams'? It is to laugh!...

GSW,

You have got me interested. Can you list what parts of Carter's piece in the SMH were accurate (spelling doesn't count as 'accuracy' wrt to data)?

@Jeremy,

Sorry Jeremy, I'm not the one trying to "debunk" it. But if someone is going to - stick to what he says and don't be vague about "halftruths". Sounds a bit like "well it's sort of true".

GSW,

Hmmm, your reply doesn't make sense, shurley (ed) you could hammer home the accuracy of Carter's piece by comparing it with Cook's piece.

You are confident that Carter's piece is accurate...... aren't you? After all we both can agree that the truth is important here rather than ideology.

GSWbot:

> > Can you list what parts of Carter's piece in the SMH were accurate (spelling doesn't count as 'accuracy' wrt to data)?

> Sorry Jeremy, I'm not the one trying to "debunk" it.

GSWbot doesn't know anything about climate science except that it's a Hoax™. Oh, and that death and rape threats are horrible, except when they aren't.

Get lost, obnoxious troll.

-- frank

GSW:

Sorry Jeremy, I'm not the one trying to "debunk" it.

That's not what he asked for.

By Chris O'Neill (not verified) on 28 Jun 2011 #permalink

@Jeremy,

Going to have to disagree I am afraid. The reply makes perfect sense. Not the one you wanted. But it does make sense.

Troll.

>What's Cook's background, is he a full time activist or something?

He's a physicist.

What's your background - professional imbecile or something?

You should get a clue.

By Bernard J. (not verified) on 28 Jun 2011 #permalink

> The reply makes perfect sense. Not the one you wanted. But it does make sense.

Shorter GSWbot: My reply makes perfect sense to myself.

GSWbot, just do us a favour and admit that you're just trying to carpet-bomb this blog with content-free bullshit.

Or better yet, just go away, troll.

-- frank

[Donald oats](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2011/06/counterpoint_fails_to_make_cor…).

>Counterpoint is crap, unadulterated BS. Its problem is its Standard Operating Procedure (SOP), namely that it seeks the opposite of "conventional opinion" which doesn't work for situations where the conventional opinion is actually a set of factual statements. Since the "conventional opinion" of climate scientists is in actual fact a set of statements that are evidence-based, Counterpoint is barking up the wrong tree when they seek to "counter the point" of the climate scientists, where AGW (Anthropogenic Global Warming) is concerned.

>The bizarroid view that every statement needs a counter-statement for broadcast, is the haemarhoid on the butt of good journalism. For this reason, Counterpoint fails every single time it addresses the climate science.

A similar thing was said on [last night's Q and A](http://www.abc.net.au/tv/qanda/txt/s3248763.htm), when several of the panel claimed that it was the role of the Opposition leader to "oppose". I think that they completely miss the point of an effective Opposition, if they think that the point is to simply oppose every government policy - by that logic a particularly good government needs to be opposed by a bunch of imbeciles.

Oh... I guess that in a few ways that's exactly what's happening.

The trouble is, the lowest common denominator in Australia these days also tends to be in the majority, so it's a strategy that will probably work for the Abbott Coalition.

By Bernard J. (not verified) on 28 Jun 2011 #permalink

> Think you mean Ï/2.

However eiÏ/2 just doesn't have the same ring to it...

By Lotharsson (not verified) on 28 Jun 2011 #permalink

GSW,

As has been pointed out I'm not asking you to debunk Carter's piece I'm merely asking you to defend how accurate it is

Seeing lots of people believe Carter to be wrong, nay worse, that he is driven by ideology, wouldn't it be a good idea to set out why we are wrong wrt to the guy and that would really shut us up.......... or are you pleading the 5th in a round-about-way?

Oh God. John Cook - brave man - has ventured into the Bishop bashers place (Bishop Hill) to stand up for his article. I hope he knows what he is up against there. I predict the comments section will descend into abuse and the abuse will continue via email.

By lord_sidcup (not verified) on 28 Jun 2011 #permalink

I missed this week's Q&A, but I can guess at the sort of comments made, Bernard J.

In the media framing of climate science and AGW, there seems to be a reduction to the most simplistic notion of argument possible, ie to one of "oppose"; the same has occurred in Australian politics. Of course, the opposition actually votes with the government on the vast majority of government bills, but that bit seems to escape the journalists and hence the public at large. Kind of deflates the rhetoric behind "opposing" being the role of opposition though.

While there are some cases of arguments in science that have been of the "I'm right and you're wrong" variety, that hardly justifies this approach as a defensible strategy for the long haul, no matter what the Moncktons, Carters, and Duffers of the world might think.

By Donald Oats (not verified) on 28 Jun 2011 #permalink

I complained about Plimer on [Volcano climate change](http://www.abc.net.au/rural/content/2010/s2878843.htm?site=southeastnsw), you need to listen to the mp3.
My complaints were mainly about why was there no opposing view - just Plimers BUT also about the contradictions, distortions and lies (or is that misstatements of fact?) that Plimer makes in the broadcast.

After several paragraphs of bureaucracy-ese they conclude that the content "was in keeping with the ABC's editorial standards for topical and factual content".
A second complaint got no further.

@ P Lewis, ta for the link.

Despite pi vs. tau being largely "a notational obsession" (Du Sautoy), the last paras in the article caught my eye:

Dr Hartl is passionate about the effort, but even he is surprised by the fervent nature of some tau adherents.

"What's amazing is the 'conversion experience': people find themselves almost violently angry at pi. They feel like they've been lied to their whole lives, so it's amazing how many people express their displeasure with pi in the strongest possible terms - often involving profanity.

"I don't condone any actual violence - that would be really bizarre, wouldn't it?"

Why can't I shake the feeling I've come across similarly irrational behaviour in another field of science?

I think Counterpoint has had Carter, Watts and Plimer on the show now. Do they ever have real experts on their show, or is it a contrarians-only zone?

By Jim Foley (not verified) on 28 Jun 2011 #permalink

I have to say that, while I usually end up shouting at the radio when listening to Counterpoint, they actually do occasionally have some interesting "left field" guests. While my confirmation bias is rarely troubled I have come away learning the odd thing or two.

I'm also finding the comments here for GSW to go away to be more tedious than any trolling. Ignore him; killfile him; engage him. This blog isn't a sheltered workshop.

@lord_sidcup

John Cook wasn't there for very long though. Given short shrift by the look of it when the papers he quoted were taken apart, piece by piece, and others quoted back at him.

Knowledgeable bunch over at Bishop-Hill.

GSW,

Yuo must have been reading a different 'Bishop Hill'.

The one I read saw Andrew Montford making a complete arse of himself by claiming there's no empirical temp record form the arctic. Cook corrected him, with the sheep baaing in unison to try divert attention from Montfords howler.

Yes, a very 'knowledgeable bunch'....about things that aren't true - their speciality.

I noticed that a couple of the Bishop Hill mob miss the boat on the relationship between CO2 and plant growth. It most definitely isn't a positive linear relationship!

@KiwiInOz

I missed that, which posts were those? Errors are usually corrected by others.

I'd have to go back and look for specifics, but some of the comments repeated the meme that CO2 is just plant fertiliser, a la double the quantity and double the growth.

I would have commented, but I had to get back to doing what I'm paid for. :-)

I am learning to control my SIWOTI impulse!

@53 Micheal

I think you have misread the article. Some context :Cook appears to be complaining that Carter used HadCru rather GISS as above.

Article:
"there are almost no temperature stations in the Arctic and the gaps are therefore infilled by extrapolation."

Cook:
"The NASA GISS temperature record uses extrapolation to fill in the areas not covered by weather stations"

Both statements on GISS are the same. He then mentions other data from the "European Centre for Medium Range Weather Forecast" but that is not part of the GISS dataset. I think Cook is a little confused here.

Wouldn't call it a howler. Sorry forgot where I was, you guys make the facts up to suit as you go along.

@KiwiInOz

Not a problem. My ignorance, but what is "SIWOTI".

Someone Is Wrong On The Internet (SIWOTI). I first saw it in an xkcd cartoon. It refers to the all consuming obsession to try and correct the never-ending supply of statements that are wrong in cyberspace.

@KiwiInOz

Oh yes! I've seen it - little stick man. Sorry didn't make the connection ;)

GSW,

There's no confusion. Bishop Dill was trying to convey the idea that the Arctic temp record is little more than 'extrapolations'.

Simply wrong.

But of course, all the 'skeptics' lap it up with a stunning lack of scepticism.

However eiÏ/2 just doesn't have the same ring to it...

Try eiÏ

By Chris O'Neill (not verified) on 28 Jun 2011 #permalink

@GSW #52

Silly troll. John Cook lives in Australia and has to go to bed some time - at which point fellow skep sci contributor Dana shows up.

By lord_sidcup (not verified) on 28 Jun 2011 #permalink

@GSW June 29, 2011 12:14 AM

Both statements on GISS are the same. He then mentions other data from the "European Centre for Medium Range Weather Forecast" but that is not part of the GISS dataset.

Cook isn't confused. You OTOH are either incapable of reading two sentences or are being deliberately obtuse. Again. Read Cook's reply at Bishop Shill (ALL of it):

The NASA GISS temperature record uses extrapolation to fill in the areas not covered by weather stations. However, the European Centre for Medium Range Weather Forecast combine satellite data, weather stations, ship measurements, buoys and weather balloons to create a reanalysis record that covers the Arctic region using empirical data

What are the odds that GSW is Bishop Shill/Montford?

GSW,

I don't think you understood what Bishop Hill and John Cook wrote. Bishop Hill is making a bit of a generalisation about dealing with dealing with physical gaps in temp recording while Cook seeks to point out that different temp sets use different techniques and input.

What was that bit about making up facts....?

As I expect you "all" know, I mentioned Ï as a bit of a jest because it just happened to be "tau day" (in some part of the world) when pi got mentioned. A little light relief (I thought) from reading the tedious, inane ramblings of the acronymised firm of Gaffes, Stuporous & Witless.

What seems perverse to me about the choice of the symbol Ï by Hartl for 2Ï is that you are taking exactly half of Ï's supporting limbs away. This seems intuitively to be the wrong direction. Better to add two limbs by removing the normal letter space between two Ïs. ;-)

Ï has also been used for generations in some physics/mechanics formulas when Ï can also be in the formula.

Better to do as maths manipulators have always done: simplify formulas when appropriate. There is nothing preventing one defining Ï = Ï/2 or Ï = 2Ï.

Both exp(iÏ) = â1 (Ï = Ï/2) and exp(iÏ) = 1 (Ï = 2Ï) have an elegant simplicity about them.

If it has utility, mathematicians will use it.

And yes, SteveC. I did detect a sort of resonance with "other things" in that last para. People are stupid. Other people that is :-)

KiwiInOz:

> I'm also finding the comments here for GSW to go away to be more tedious than any trolling. Ignore him; killfile him; engage him. This blog isn't a sheltered workshop.

This sounds like another incredibly naïve attempt to apply one's imagination of a Civilized Internet™ to the real world. You can't reasonably "engage" someone who's bent on ignoring everything you say while carpet-bombing the place with bullshit.

-- frank

@All

Gentleman if you take the time to actually read and understand what has been said, I think you will find that the previous statement I made was correct!

By "understand" you mean "take it as correct", yes?

Because it looks like people DID understand your statement and found it false.

EVERY global picture uses extrapolation over places where there is no coverage. Your stephenson screen is only measuring the temperature in a few square meters area and less than a meter vertically.

@45

> John Cook - brave man - has ventured into the Bishop bashers place (Bishop Hill) to stand up for his article. I hope he knows what he is up against there. I predict the comments section will descend into abuse and the abuse will continue via email.

Your prediction has been proved wrong.

He has been treated respectfully -- nobody has called him a 'complete arse', 'Bishop Dill', foul troll', botfly', 'obnoxious troll' or 'silly troll', told him to 'bugger off', 'get lost' or accused him of 'manure spreading', 'carpet-bombing the place with bullshit'.

All of which schoolyard abuse we can observe on ... this single thread.

By Rick Bradford (not verified) on 29 Jun 2011 #permalink

@Rick

Thanks ;)

Rick,

That's probably becbause the don't have visiting obnoxious trolls carpet bombing the place with bullshit....it's all their own bullshit.

Related to the topic of the post - interesting that there's still been no apology/retraction from Watts for all the nonsense he went on about over the surface stations project.....before it blew up in his face.

@Rick Barford

I wouldn't agree with you that all there have been respectful, and there is a difference between a very robust discussion on a forum and abusive or harrassing emails sent to a workplace address.

GSW is an obvious and low grade troll and deserves all the abuse and more.

By lord_sidcup (not verified) on 29 Jun 2011 #permalink

Rick,

IMHO the Bishop's Hill site is populated by the "usual gang of idiots" who are being less than genuine in their criticisms of Cook. Several have repeated the completely discredited canard that "C02 benefits plants" (this is kindergarten level science) and its clear that very few if any of the contributors there have even the most basic scientific pedigree. Its a bunch of Dunning-Kruger acolytes and pretenders who somehow seem to possess qualifications without having done the university mileage. They seem to feel that they are eminently capable of dismissing the work of Hansen, Mann and other leading climate researchers, whilst providing little in the way of empirical evidence to support their own 'perspectives'. Denialists one and all.

By Jeff Harvey (not verified) on 29 Jun 2011 #permalink

GSW,

When challenged on something you say e.g. @ 25 just repeating that you are right and we are wrong is not an argument. Nor are diversionary tactics. Its either dishonset or participating in an argument is beyond you.

> He [Cook] has been treated respectfully -- nobody has called him a 'complete arse', 'Bishop Dill', foul troll', botfly', 'obnoxious troll' or 'silly troll', told him to 'bugger off', 'get lost' or accused him of 'manure spreading', 'carpet-bombing the place with bullshit'.

Notice that Rick Bradford is only saying that it's "disrespectful" to "accuse" GSWbot of "carpet-bombing this blog with content-free bullshit".

He's not saying that GSWbot isn't "carpet-bombing this blog with content-free bullshit".

Therefore, what we need is a more respectful way to express the idea that GSWbot is carpet-bombing this blog with content-free bullshit.

-- frank

Frank @ 70 - I enjoy troll bashing as much as the next person. It can be atavistic fun or it can be a matter of personal or intellectual honour. I tend to agree with PZ (for example) that direct confrontation of bullshit is better than accommodationism, but I will pick and choose my battles. I will also quite happily be friendly with, or enjoy the company/comments of, people that I disagree with (but that is just me)

I have found that some comments of late, including yours, have become tedious in their repetitiveness. You might think that it is a good strategy, but I beg to differ. It is bordering on obsession and attacking a symptom not a cause.

I accept the evidence for progressive climate change due to our impact on the carbon cycle. I also work in adaptation and mitigation.

Now fuck off. ;-)

Frank,

GSW is not telling the truth.

Is that respectful enough?

Would it also be OK to say: GSW appears to not like telling the truth as he continually avoids answering questions? You don't think that is taking it too far do you?

If that is OK then would it be respectful to say: GSW, in adopting a superior attitude and by not answering question is exhibiting aspects central to the the Dunning-Kruger effect*?

If then that is OK then would it be respectful to say GSW seems to to be coming from the position that says accepting the science describing Anthropogenic Warming is nothing but an ideological viewpoint? You don't think that might be tending to be a bit impolite in mentioning that do you because it is something expressed by many AGW deniers?

May I call him a AGW denier, denier for short, and still be respectful? I would say it is being respectful as the science is now so overwhelming with climate scientists giving it a +90% proability stamp i.e. gold plated, that to oppose it you have to deny it i.e. a denier (for what ever reasons might drive somebody to do such a thing).

(*Kruger, Justin and Dunning, David, Unskilled and unaware of it: How difficulties in recognizing one's own incompetence lead to inflated self-assessments, 1999, Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 77(6):1121-1134)

Rick [denialist troll]: "Schoolyard abuse!"

GSW [ )â( ]: ; )

Wombat: "Bingo!"

Interesting how easily the comments get derailed. This post was about the reluctance of the ABC's Counterpoint programme to correct claims expressed on the programme by Antony Watts and now found to be completely wrong. You would never guess that from where the comments have gone.

Nevertheless, I think Counterpoint is an interesting topic for discussion. Paul Comre-Thompson and Michael Duffy are not idiots, nor are they particularly malevolent which makes them much more interesting than Bolt, Blair, Ackermann and all the other ghastly News Ltd commentators who are not going to let rationality get in the way of supporting their favourite political party.

But what about Duffy and Thomson? How do they rationalise what they do? When I used to listen to their programme (not for a few years now) there were often digs about the ABC 'collectives' and the like. Is climate change denialism just an opportunity to get back at the comrades who gave them a hard time when they were at Uni? Or maybe they just went in too hard too soon claiming climate change was rubbish and found themselves painted in, and are too proud, too cowardly, too frightened to backtrack and so desperately, desperately hope that they will be proven right. Or perhaps it's that denialism is a shibboleth of the Right and, since the sole reason for the existence of Counterpoint is to be a 'Right Wing Phillip Adams' then if they were to accept what rationality must be telling them, the rationale for their programme would be gone. Or do they simply see the programme as being one where alternative viewpoints get expressed? But then why the relentless denialism?

Lots of interesting question and much more interesting than the tired repetition and millionth refutation of denialist talking points.

Heartily agree PB. There is too much obsessive behaviour and too little engagement in conversations that make a difference.

I have a comment awaiting moderation, due to a single F-word (that was used ironically, but probably unnecessarily) in a response to Frank @70, that reflects on this issue.

By akiwiinoz (not verified) on 29 Jun 2011 #permalink

@ no. 82

Pleeze 'scuze mein Aenglisch bitte.

herr rhwombat ist ein booger-schnitzel mit spezial sauce und ein wiener-kopf dum-dum und ein flammenblau gaz-tasche gruen-bluse!

Danke sehr

By graf mike von … (not verified) on 29 Jun 2011 #permalink

@ PB I dunno what it is with counterpoint either. Could be any one or more of the reasons you posit, or something personal on their parts or the producers (for all I know). My opinion (worth exactly what you paid for it) is they set out to make the show THE go-to place for "informed" questioning and debate (in contrast to the less salubrious ferret holes that Blot, the Parrot and Ackerman inhabit) and have realised they were losing ground to shoutback radio and the OO. As a result they've got more "controversial" (as if that were the only criterion for establishing themselves as an alternative voice) and found climate change a convenient vehicle from which to ply their trade.

It also needs to be borne in mind that they are not the only prominent "sceptical" voices within Their ABC these days - think Uhlman, Fran Kelly, Barry wotisface on Insiders, and even the Chair Maurice Newman, not to mention a swag of sundry deniers and big industry mouthpieces like Tom Switzer and our dear friend cohenite (aka Anthony Cox) infesting the Drum. Then there's Their ABC's dubious dedication to "balance" (whatever the **ck that's meant to signify), rather than taking a leaf out of the BBC's approach of "impartiality" (and no, I'm not saying the Beeb always gets it right either).

IOW counterpoint isn't so much the problem IMO as Their ABC, its Chairman and its point blank refusal to take its charter seriously. On that note, via Cuppa at Pure Poison, there's a petition up and running for the ABC to return to its charter and stop its slide into being a taxpayer-funded arm of the Murdochracy:

http://bit.ly/gN4RHI

Another +1 PB, though I'd like to see more attention to Watts and his long history of conspiratorial ranting against the temp record, measured up against his study.
Even better to ask one of the visiting trolls to explain the yawning chasm between Watts' hyperbolic rhetoric and the peer-reviewed results.

A play based on this farce would be aptly titled 'Anthony Watts: The Lion that Squeaked'.

PB@84: I agree wholeheartedly with the comments of your opening paragraph. I think a stronger "stay-on-topic" bias from the admin would not go astray, and might help prevent the threads degenerating into the kind of abuse we often see here. The editorial approach taken by Deep Climate seems to me a model in this respect.

The Counterpoint programme is not one I listen to, having long been aware that Duffy is the front man for it. I first encountered Duffy in his role as editor of the short-lived âIndependent Monthlyâ (not as independent as one might have wished), when I responded to a letter in the IM published in response to previous articles. I got a âthis letter cannot be placedâ missive from Duffy. A little later, I began to realize that the IM had an anti-environmentalist bias when I ran across an article in it, I think by Duffy himself, in the form of a review of the book Eco-Scam by Ronald Bailey, then the editor (or science editor?) of Reason magazine. It happens that at the time I was quite interested in the âozone warsâ, and recognized that what Bailey wrote about ozone depletion contained a significant proportion of hogwash. The fact that Duffy was now basically singing the praises of Baileyâs book was sufficient to discredit him and the IM in my eyes. I stopped buying it, and the IM did not survive for long after that. (Ergo, I played my role in its downfall: post hoc, ergo propter hoc.)

Why the anti-environmental bias? I suspect that Duffy is at heart a âlibertarianâ, and signs on uncritically for the kind of propaganda perpetrated by the likes of Reason magazine. As for deeper motivations, who knows? Perhaps a clue can be found in the ABCâs bio at http://www.abc.net.au/rn/talks/counterpoint/presenter.htm
There, we learn that Duffy once played in punk rock bands. Now, if I am not mistaken, punks hated environmentalists because they associated them with hippies and tree-huggers and so on. Of course, this is all idle speculationâ¦â¦â¦

@86: just keep taking the tablets, mike. Eventually they may have some effect.

Maybe the wombat can have a go at explaining the vast chasm between Watts' blog-based hysterical pronuncements of deliberate falsification of the surface temp records and the eventual study results which show that they are accurate.

Sould be entertaining.

27 Toby - "GSW, What tint are your glasses? Cook pretty much eviscerated the obtuse Bolt."

Don't waste your breath, you're confronting a supernatural phenomenon. Somebody call Max von Sydow, GSW's been posessed by Morton's Demon.

Err, Michael@92...Que? I was referring to the faux-Deutsch troll, formerly known as mike, a Septic denialist of some notoriety on this blog. The explanation for Watts is simple - he's another hypocritical right-wing ideologue with a web megaphone - just like Duffy and Comry-Thompson.

I suspect that GSW's account has been taken by another person. Note the palin-isms now.

Ok, one more "Reality check".

Cook's "debunking" of the Carter piece is "Weak".
In a large part "Alarmisms" unrelated to the Carter article (Greenland for example).

The two relevant criticisms are;

__Carter did not use the "right" dataset.__ It would appear that Carter used HadCru, Cook claims that is the wrong one. HadCru is widely used elsewhere and by both sides of the argument. It is one of the 3 "main" datasets (GISS,HadCru,UAH), although there are others.

Muller is on record as saying that, up until climategate at least, it was the only one he actualy trusted.

Cook insists that Carter should have used one of the "Polar" datasets. Of the 3, GISS is the only one that claims to include "Polar" (UAH, I think is only 85N to 85S?).
Bishop Hill's article points out that GISS's global coverage is achieved thru extrapolation of a small number of stations - there are other criticisms of this around on the blogosphere (some light reading for you all).
Cook's comment on BH re states this, and also adds that the ECMWF dataset has more inputs - fair enough.

Moving on the Michaels comment:
"Andrew Montford making a complete arse of himself by claiming there's no empirical temp record form the arctic. Cook corrected him, with the sheep baaing in unison to try divert attention from Montfords howler."

It is quite obvious that Montford's statement is in relation to GISS. At No point does he state that there are not "other" sets of data available, he's talking about GISS.
The "Howler" is not obvious, and on reading the blog comments I can't see anything to suggest that the "sheep" were trying divert attention away from anything ....
if you still have doubts, go and look for yourself.

__Carters statement that CO2 is plant food.__ Cook refers to this as being a "Halftruth". All other things being equal, I am not aware that this is disputed. Cook points out that precipitation is important as well, which it is. There is tremendious uncertainty in regional forecasts and it is likely that there will be winners and losers (Tim Palmer is on record as stating at least) . So this is a big unknown. Saying CO2 is plant food, doesn't seem that controversial if you confine your criticism to the statement made.

So all in all the Cook "rebuttal" is ,well, kind of weak. Johns original comment (@23)

"here is John Cook slaughtering Carter's opinion piece" is more hope (puffing up) than accurate review.

Keep trying GSW.

Even allowing for your assumptions about what Montford meant (rather than what he actually wrote), why is that with a blog full of self-proclaimed super-skeptics, did not one of them say 'er, Andrew, Cook is right about arctic temp measurments, did you just mean GISS?'.

Baaaa.

GSW says:
>Carters statement that CO2 is plant food. Cook refers to this as being a "Halftruth". All other things being equal, I am not aware that this is disputed. Cook points out that precipitation is important as well, which it is.

Let's look at what Cook actually wrote, instead of letting GSW be the interpreter of interpretations:
>Labelling Carter's final 'scientific fact' as a half-truth is giving it too much credence. According to Carter, it's a fact that "extra carbon dioxide helps to shrink the Sahara Desert, green the planet and feed the world. Ergo, carbon dioxide is neither a pollutant nor dangerous, but an environmental benefit."

Carter implies that CO2, by itself will promote plant growth in the Sahara, even though it is not even in the top three limiting factors.

>doesn't seem that controversial if you confine your criticism to the statement made.

GSW can believe six impossible things before breakfast. This has been one of them.

; )

wombat,

My bad.

> Muller is on record as saying that, up until climategate at least, it was the only one he actualy trusted.

Would that be the Richard A. Muller who worked on the [BEST project](http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Berkeley_Earth_Surface_Temperature) that so disappointed Watts when it found, contrary to Watts' strongly asserted and loudly proclaimed pre-existing belief, that the temperature records were essentially accurate and that the globe bloody well *is* warming? And did you conveniently forget to mention that bit for the readers when you implied he didn't trust any of those records? Or were you entirely unaware of it - and if so, why?

> Bishop Hill's article points out that GISS's global coverage is achieved thru extrapolation of a small number of stations...

That's not a valid criticism unless he can quantify how uncertain it is and demonstrate that it's *too* uncertain for the purpose.

Which he almost certainly can't, because various papers have looked at how strongly correlated temperatures are across various regions in order to assess whether this kind of extrapolation - which takes place elsewhere as necessary - is valid. I'm not aware that Bishop Hill has written or cited one that refutes those papers.

In other words it's a Clayton's criticism - the criticism you make when your audience will swallow a faux criticism and thank you for offering such a high class beverage.

As you did.

By Lotharsson (not verified) on 30 Jun 2011 #permalink

@Lotharsson

Yes it is the same Muller. The bishop links to a previous post which discusses the limited data availability for the Polar region in regards to the GISS dataset.

I have just finished corresponding with Purdue University about Mr Watts. They confirm that he has no qualification from them, despite attending from 1975 to 1982. I have sent the evidence by email to the owner of Deltoid.

> All other things being equal, I am not aware that this is disputed. ... Saying CO2 is plant food, doesn't seem that controversial if you confine your criticism to the statement made.

You aren't very good at interpretation then. The saying "CO2 is plant food" is almost ALWAYS used to imply that adding more to the atmosphere will *increase agricultural productivity for human benefit* and by extension be an unmitigated good for humanity and the ecosystem because how could something that makes more food "for free" be any kind of "pollutant" or cause any kind of problem, so why all the fuss about a little bit more? And that's without addressing the contentious argument that it will shrink the Sahara (which conveniently ignores that desertification is likely due to climate change in many areas). Or noting that more shit may fertilise my garden, but that doesn't mean it won't cause medical problems if it gets into my water supply.

And given that it's more likely than not that higher CO2 will lead to *reduced* agricultural productivity, this fails on the overt point, let alone on the covert implication.

> Cook points out that precipitation is important as well, which it is.

And nitrogen and phosphorous. And *temperature* ranges. And pests that may massively thrive and fertilising fauna that may suffer under climate change conditions. And micro-nutrient and protein production that may significantly degrade under climate change. And so on...

Which is why "CO2 is plant food" is a slogan designed to bamboozle the uninformed - and quite often effective at it.

By Lotharsson (not verified) on 30 Jun 2011 #permalink

> Saying CO2 is plant food, doesn't seem that controversial

Sorry, it IS controversial.

What do you think they put in the fertilisers? Dry Ice?

"CO2 is plant food" is as accurate as saying "O2 is human food".

There. There is your dealing with that statement.

KiwiInOz:

> It is bordering on obsession and attacking a symptom not a cause.

So what do you think are the root causes of, say, someone threatening to rape climate activists' children? What do you think are the root causes of attempts to spread lies in news stories to downplay these threats? How do we attack these root causes?

-- frank

> It is one of the 3 "main" datasets (GISS,HadCru,UAH)

Most people would say that RSS is one of the main data sets.

Especially since (IIRC) discrepancies between certain aspects of RSS and UAH led scientists to conclude that the UAH algorithms had a significant error - a fact that (IIRC) Spencer and Christy denied for some time (years?)

By Lotharsson (not verified) on 30 Jun 2011 #permalink

GSW, how can Co2 be a plant food when it is a harmless trace gas incapable of affecting anything?

John,

I wish I had said that.

Rick Bradford:

All of which schoolyard abuse we can observe on ... this single thread.

I wonder how many threads ago the schoolyard abuse started from:

Have you ever considered taking you brain in for a service?
maybe they could fix the bits that don't work and put the rest of it back in the right order.

Bradford only sees what he wants to see. How completely normal for a denialist.

By Chris O'Neill (not verified) on 30 Jun 2011 #permalink

@Chris

Booked it in yet? ;)

Frank @ 107.

Mental illness the first.

Ars3holes the second (no arguement from me).

Assuming that lack of overt condemnation by some means that they support the ars3holes is a long bow. It's like the letters to the paper complaining that the Muslims aren't opposing violent actions - when the majority do.

I seriously doubt that GSW or others support the activities that you mentioned.

KinOz: frank has been fighting the good fight with the GSW, Bradford and mike trolls for several threads. Frank's taunt started as a reductio ab adsurdam of the denialist trolls when the slimy bastards started calling the threats of death and rape against climate scientists and their families leftist/warmist false flag operations, even before Bolt's public agitprop. The trolls fell for it, as GSW did for John's brilliant wedging on paleoclimate reconstructions.

The trolls are not, strictly speaking mentally ill (with the possible exception of mike), but are unable think particularly quickly (in GSWs case using an emoticon "tell" [; )]) while they wait for inspirations/instructions. I suspect that GSW is a bot identity, tasked with playing hare and hounds with Deltoid, hence the need to both persist with a single meme and to wait for a shift change to respond to new angles. I doubt that Bolt is sufficiently bright to run such a system (though maybe his string-pullers are), but I do think that GSW's defence of Bishop sHill makes that part of its likely control cabal. The ironic thing is that the regular posters here hand the trolls their own arses with predictability and wit, proving (yet again) that the inherent weakness of the denialist propaganda war.

KiwiInOz:

> > So what do you think are the root causes of, say, someone threatening to rape climate activists' children? What do you think are the root causes of attempts to spread lies in news stories to downplay these threats? How do we attack these root causes?

> Mental illness the first.

> Ars3holes the second (no arguement from me).

And what of the third? How do we attack these root causes? I notice you have no answer to that question, despite your sanctimonious admonition to refrain from "attacking a symptom not a cause".

If there's a way to attack these root causes leading to rape threats and lies to downplay rape threats, I'm sure people will be willing to use it!

> Assuming that lack of overt condemnation by some means that they support the ars3holes is a long bow.

Or is this your way of "attacking these root causes"? 'Ooh, these people are arses or mentally ill, and then there are their enablers, therefore we should be exceedingly charitable to the enablers to the point of groveling before them'?

Nope, I'm not buying that. It's simply ... obsessive accommodationism.

* * *

rhwombat:

Thanks. I see you also noticed GSW's two-day delay. :)

-- frank

Actually, Frank, I had to cut my comment short in order to go and catch the train to work, so wasn't able to address the vastly more important and complex issue, i.e. what to do. It takes more thought than I was able to give it at the time to do it justice.

I will try and come up with something suitably pithy for you during the day.

Meanwhile, you just keep cutting the heads off that hydra.

GSW:

@Chris
Booked it in yet? ;)

Yes, ad hominem is the sum total of denialist's arguments. Rick Bradford won't see these of course.

By Chris O'Neill (not verified) on 30 Jun 2011 #permalink

@ no. 114

"The trolls are not, strictly speaking mentally ill (with the possible exception of mike)..."

and

"...While they wait for the inspiration/instructions..."

and

"...the regular posters here hand the trolls their own arses with predictability and wit..."

Well, first, off let me apologize for that little fratricidal, friendly-fire incident I caused (no. 91, 92, 94, and 99, above (heh heh)). And then let me clarify one other matter, right here and now. I am not "mentally ill!" (both hands in the air making "V" signs). Just ask my shrink (curiously, she reminds me a good deal of luminous beauty). Rather, her diagnosis is that I'm "crazy as a loon." Not at all the same thing, I think you'll have to agree, rhwombat.

So I'm not waiting for any "inspiration/instructions", rhwomat, in order to form up my comments. No siree. I'm spacing my comments so that they fit between counseling sessions. So there, little smartypants wannabe, rhwombat.

I also showed my shrink some of the latest Deltoid threads and when I opined "Don't you think these guys are a bunch of nothing-burgers?"--you know what she said?--"Don't you mean "nothing-boogers?" (we both laughed).

She also thinks you guys are a bunch of humorless double-dip cone-heads lacking in self-awareness.

Li'l mikes retreat into fantasy, as seen above, obviously doesn't stop at just climate change denial.

> I am not "mentally ill!" (both hands in the air making "V" signs).

Such being a sign of mental retardation.

> Just ask my shrink (curiously, she reminds me a good deal of luminous beauty)

What? You only see your shrink over the internet?

"Rather, her diagnosis is that I'm "crazy as a loon.""

So you're not mentally ill, you're a lunatic.

Potatoe, potato.

> -you know what she said?

Don't you mean "typed"?

> --"Don't you mean "nothing-boogers?" (we both laughed).

Ah, yes. Your shrink is your internet pal.

And ending on a note of projection.

1/10 for effort.

Am I the only person who thinks mike's falsch-Deutsch comment reads better in the original Idiot?

mike:

> So I'm not waiting for any "inspiration/instructions", rhwomat, in order to form up my comments.

Actually we were talking about GSWbot, but perhaps you have a problem distinguishing between GSWbot and yourself. About that, rest assured that we perfectly understand.

(OK now. Where's GSWbot's smiley when we need it?)

-- frank

@ no. 121

frank, you're making yourself look silly, guy. Re-read rhwombat's no. 114 and see for yourself.

I hate to say it, frank, but you seem to be wrapped a little tight there. Take it from a pal, you need to chill out a bit, ol' man.

Actually we [including rhwombat] were talking about GSWbot, but perhaps you have a problem distinguishing between GSWbot and yourself. About that, rest assured that we perfectly understand.

frank, you're making yourself look silly, guy. Re-read rhwombat's no. 114 and see for yourself. [...] you need to chill out a bit, ol' man.

Um, projection much?

Can you even utter a sentence that actually describes something outside of your heat-oppressed imaginations? (OK... actually, do you even understand my preceding question? Ugh, never mind.)

-- frank

@ no. 123

Look, frank, I can see you're getting worked up and all. So I'd like to put things into a perspective--you know, a perspective that will save you some stress both now and in the future.

It's like this frank: As long as your comments are strictly of the Dr. Lab-Rat science-geek variety, I could care less (in fact, I always just skip over the weener-dork technical stuff in a comment). But if you instead decide to slip a snark-booger into a comment or if the spirit enters in to you and you start "speaking in tongues" about your "big" plans for the "little" people, then I feel empowered to playfully engage your goof-ball snark and watermelon-sprach.

Almost as simple as that, frank. Just one more little thing, though. Keep your greenshirt mitts off my monster-truck. I mean, there's no way I going to part with all that babe-magnet vroom-vroom. You know what I mean, frank?

I asked mike:

> Can you even utter a sentence that actually describes something outside of your heat-oppressed imaginations? (OK... actually, do you even understand my preceding question? Ugh, never mind.)

Judging from mike's bullshit torrent of a response, it's clear that the answer to both questions is "no".

mike apparently can't (or won't) understand the concept of "reality".

-- frank

you guys are a bunch of humorless double-dip cone-heads lacking in self-awareness.

I'd say both of these accusations are a sign of not being able to get irony. Poor mike.

By Chris O'Neill (not verified) on 01 Jul 2011 #permalink

Sorry Frank et al - haven't had time to get on with the third answer, and just quickly checking in now. Complex issues are complex!

To clarify - my comment about mental illness refers to those people who make the threats, e.g. that guy who admitted to belting out the threat to Anna-Maria Arabia.

Actually mike, I am qualified to make a clinical diagnosis (MB BS PhD FRACP...you can ask your shrink what that means - if she's not a symptom of your illness). You seem to have a narcissistic personality disorder. As you will have gathered from looking up the DSM, that doesn't have a good prognosis, but I suspect that you are on medications for some of the symptoms (that is, if you can afford them in the pathetic excuse you have for a health system in the US). Do yourself, us and your therapist (if she exists) a favour, and stop trying to use trolling Deltoid as an outlet for your mental illness. It's hardly going to be constructive to your health to take on people with real expertise and passion. Getting your arse handed to you regularly and publicly will make the symptoms worse, not better. If you have to troll blogs, there are a number of US 'Domestic" political blogs that would suit your needs admirably (try Free Republic, or WTFUWT). Denialists know neither shame nor reason, so your disability wouldn't hamper a full and frank exchange of bullshit. Here's a hint: GSW is not one person with one voice. It's a bot. I know you have trouble telling us humans apart, but actually talking to real ones helps, as do the pills. Good Luck.

Great Gaia, rhwombat!

I mean I knew you were in the medical field in some capacity. But I just assumed you were a proctologist and that's what drew you to the company of your fellow Deltoid regulars. But a booger-brain like you is actually employed to deal with Australians suffering from the tragedy of mental-illness? I guess that's socialized medicine for you. What a joke.

I wouldn't have believed it, but you actually do get more hilarious with every post, li'll mike.

Can I look forward to you and your children maintaining the strength of your convictions, so that in your country's nerverending Cheneywar you could wear a patch or tattoo proclaiming 'No socialised medicine, thanks' so that medics from civilised countries can by-pass you or them while you await your corporately sponsored healthcare medics to arrive?

Because socialised medicine doctors and nurses aren't even qualified to be in the same income bracket and would have to pile on more than a few copies of Das Kapital to apply enough pressure to staunch the bleeding from your severed arteries. It's how they've been trained, and quite obviously they would need to carry far fewer volumes onto the battlefield if they knew in advance their help wasn't required by you and your ilk.

"Socialized medicine".
Rofl.
Is there anything you can't bastardize in service to your crank ideology?

check, I understand that you suffer from "narcissistic watermelon disorder." I understand that and I forgive you.

OK mike. We get that you're a pathetically sick puppy. All the prepubescent scatology and aggressive hostility towards anyone who you think looks askance at your carefully crafted blog image of the All-American-Hero-in-Jughead-disguise are a bit of a giveaway. That you become hysterical at the concept of paedophilia (a subject that you introduced in earlier threads) suggests that it is at the core of your personal problems.

"It's like this frank: As long as your comments are strictly of the Dr. Lab-Rat science-geek variety, I could care less (in fact, I always just skip over the weener-dork technical stuff in a comment). But if you instead decide to slip a snark-booger into a comment or if the spirit enters in to you and you start "speaking in tongues" about your "big" plans for the "little" people, then I feel empowered to playfully engage your goof-ball snark and watermelon-sprach"

Please stop projecting all over us, and bugger off.

rhwombat,

Just to clarify a matter. I did not introduce the subject of pedophilia--rather I was the target of an off-the-wall charge that I approved of child-rape and then was repeatedly tasked by other Deltoids to condemn child-rape. In response, I then repeatedly made rather clear my view of the pervert-shits that rape children. Of course, I offered you, rhwombat, a chance to also condemn pedophilia--child-rape--and especially pedophilia in the form of child sex-slavery for profit. But you have yet to respond, rhwomat. Perhaps the Herr Doktor Mental Health Expert can explain his reticience?

Incidentally, I did look up that "narcissistic personality disorder" business you previously brought up, rhwomat. The diagnostic features don't fit me--sorry to disappoint you, guy. But they most surely do fit the majority of the regulars on the Deltoid blog.

And that got me thinking as to why my trollery has been successful to such a spectacular degree on this blog. Then it struck me, I've been pushing exactly those buttons that someone with a narcissistic personality disorder just has to respond to. Compelled to respond. Even as they knowingly make a fool of themselves.

Thank you for that insight, rhwombat (and you're one of the narcissist guys too, right? Be honest, rhwombat).

mike has me genuinely curious about one thing - is he 16 or 17?

Still no troll/denier can even attempt to defend Anthony Watts' incompetence.

>Incidentally, I did look up that "narcissistic personality disorder" business you previously brought up, rhwomat. The diagnostic features don't fit me--sorry to disappoint you, guy.

Self diagnosis? That works so well for narcissists in denial.

You've got to hit bottom, friend. Then seek help.

By luminous beauty (not verified) on 02 Jul 2011 #permalink

>I also showed my shrink some of the latest Deltoid threads and when I opined "Don't you think these guys are a bunch of nothing-burgers?"--you know what she said?--"Don't you mean "nothing-boogers?" (we both laughed).

>She also thinks you guys are a bunch of humorless double-dip cone-heads lacking in self-awareness.

Transference and counter-transference with an imaginary therapist? I don't think that is covered in the DSM. Except, perhaps, under the general definition of psychosis.

By luminous beauty (not verified) on 02 Jul 2011 #permalink

@ no. 135 & 136

Well, it kinda seems to me, LB, that what we have here is a sort of Dr. Spock meets Nurse Ratched deal. A little too weird for me. More the sort of thing that would appeal to rhwombat. So you might want to aim your hippie-chick charm in that direction.

>As long as your comments are strictly of the Dr. Lab-Rat science-geek variety, I could care less (in fact, I always just skip over the weener-dork technical stuff in a comment).

So why are you here? To abuse people who are smarter than you and make yourself feel better about your intellectual inferiority complex? Oh, you admit you are *trolling*! Yes, that will show daddy those science geeks once and for all!

From your laughable comments about "socialised medicine" I'll take it that you are another right-wing nutjob who knows deep in his heart that global warming is a marxist scam (but can't explain why) and thus resorts to juvenile name calling. He then hides this under the term "trolling" to cover over the fact he really is an unhappy old man dying alone.

@ no. 138

O.K. Deltoids. Last call. My real life only allows me so much time to spend answering idiot comments on this thread.

It is amazing to me that with so many atomic-brains loose on this blog engaged in such an intense amateur psychology effort to put me in a box, that you guys can't even get close. I think the problem is that I'm a normal human being and you weirdos have little or no experience with such an item.

And as far as my favorite "doofus", John, goes, if there is anything to this psych business, at all, then he is truly one of rhwombat's famous "narcissistic personality disorder" freaks. And, of course, John is "the kind of guy who gives you greenshirts your reputation as diaper-pail creep-outs".

Enjoyed the walk down memory lane, John.

Nighty-night Deltoids

mike:

> I think the problem is that I'm a normal human being and you weirdos have little or no experience with such an item.

Normal human beings don't conjure up therapists in their brains to talk to them and then proudly write about that episode as a blog comment.

You're just like the obviously wasted drunkard who loudly proclaims in a drunk voice, "uh -- ahm nat drank -- *sploosh*" while everyone else watches.

You have issues.

-- frank

mike @133:

No. You raised the issue of paedophilia, accusing "warministas" of having a conference in Cancun to facilitate "their"child molesting habits. You got quite agitated about it.

From other posts, I recall you harassing Vince Whirlwind about US military prowess at Milne Bay in WW2, and describing Bernard J as otiose. You generally use a curious mixture of very literate terminology mixed with pre-pubescent scatology, adolescent sexual identity confusion (lb may well be one of the hippy-chicks you yearn after, but has a female partner) and palpable insecurity regarding anyone with perceived expertise in science. You use a lot of arch, archaic, aggressively American Archie and Jughead schtick, and recognise terms like COINTELPRO when dropped into a post. So lets dance, mike.

I don't think you are a blog construct, like GSW, because you are too consistent with your peccadilloes. you are most probably a middle-aged, male, Humanities graduate, who is quite bright but a spectacular under-achiever. You are definitely single, and have major problems relating to other humans. You never made it in the US military, so you weave hints of USMC macho persona into your fantasy identity. You probably grew up in Utah, or at least under the influence of the LDS or similar US far-right religious institution. You do have a personality disorder, which, combined with your OCD, restricts whatever employment you can get to blogging for wingnut welfare: in short, you are a Koch-sucker. Your wrinkle is a violent reaction to paedophilia, which suggests personal experience. and the likely genesis of your personal pathology. You think blogs like Deltoid are filled with the high-achieving (male) scientifically-literate technocrats that haunt your insecurities, so you troll here to simultaneously earn Koch credit and scratch that painful itch in your personality.

So bugger off and scratch somewhere else, you pathetic loser.

rhwombat,

This is your "professional" best effort to figure me out? You're a guy with a PhD in this sort of stuff? Do you realize, rhwombat, that virtually nothing of your speculative profile of me is accurate, except one thing and that of the least consequence. You're a freaking incompetent, rhwombat.

On the other hand, rhwombat, if you're fishing for my personal information and that's the stratagem behind your little post, then register another fail and chalk up yet another example of your incompetence.

And let's not dance, thank you very much.

@ no. 142

rhwombat, in my last comment, I gave you credit for getting one thing right with your otherwise inept profile of me. Well, since then I've done a little digging and it turns out I was wrong. You didn't even get that one thing right, it turns out. So instead of a "freaking incompetent" it turns out that you're actually a complete freaking incompetent.

I guess that's why you can't make it in private practice.

Mike, you are spectacularly fragile and defensive which is weird considering this is the internet and nobody knows or cares who you are. rhwombat's profile must be right on the money if you feel the need to protest to us that it's wrong. You are depressingly easy to get a rise out of, which makes you a terrible troll.

By "normal person" you must mean you are some schmuck who works in a factory for minimum wage and is angry that a bunch of science geeks he used to bully in school have better jobs and more money than he ever will.

If all these inferiority complexes make you feel like you need to childishly abuse people online to make yourself feel better, I feel sorry for you. You are a very sad and pitiable little man.

@ 144

Well, john, I see we've got in you another failed Deltoid psychologist. But at least you're not sucking on the taxpayer tit like rhwombat and your incompetence is not wed to a PhD in the field of your incompetence (I guess). So that does distinguish you from rhwombat (again, I guess).

Incidentally, that little allusion to your unhappy childhood was quite poignant and revealing. Why am I not surprised?

Mike @142:

Again, no. This is not my "professional" best effort to figure you out, and competence is irrelevant when calling out a pathetic, self-obsessed nuisance like you. Like many others in this blog, I'm sick of the pathology you keep exhibiting as an anonymous troll.

My PhD was on lipid mediators of host defence in bacterial infections - neither climatology nor psychiatry. It's science Jim, but not as you know it. Understanding psychopathology is part of my job as a Staff Specialist in Medicine in a Teaching Hospital, part of the soul-destroying serfdom of the Glorious Socialist Health Workers & Yoghurt Weavers Collective of New South Wales. Understanding psychopathology is useful in predicting whether the knife-wielding junkie with encephalitis is going to slash at my eyes or his own. It is also useful to work out why unpleasant vermin like you shit in the playground.

Most of us engage in blogs like Deltoid because it's interesting, expansive and interactive on a larger scale than the conversations we have with family, friends and colleagues. For me Deltoid is also the most well known sci-blog based in Oz, and thus combines the wit and interest of PZ Myers, Eli Rabbitt and John Mashey with the local relevance of Crickey, Grog's Gamut and other (non-Rupertarian) media. Some of us are professionals in various scientific disciplines, others are not, but maintain a level of intelligent interest regarding the subjects of discussion.

You are the exception: for you, it's all about you. In whatever reality you inhabit, you cannot get anyone interested in you, your whining or your evident psychopathology unless you pay for it, and you just can't work out why. I'm neither taking a professional approach to diagnosing what ails you, nor am I the least but interested in finding out about the details of your personal pathology. I'm just just asking you to bugger off and stop annoying the unimpaired.

@ no. 143

This is killing me, rhwombat, but scrupulosity compels me to acknowledge that you were right about two things in my profile. I am indeed a male and I definately don't like pervert pieces of shit who rape children.

And by the way, rhwombat, when are you going to get around to condemning child-rape and especially child-rape in the form of commercialized child sex-slavery? What's the deal, rhombat? Just why are you hanging-fire on this subject? I don't get it.

wombat: "You're a loony"
mike: "Running away eh?! You yellow bastards! Come back here and take what's coming to you! I'll bite your legs off!"

@ no. 146

You know, rhwombat, you're finally beginning to talk like a real human being. And you've offered a more-or-less snark-free and earnest comment. What a refreshing change.

rhwombat, when I first commented on this blog you hold so dear, it was to point out an error in another comment in a matter in which I happened to be informed. And my comment was of the Mr. Nice-Guy sort completely free of any point-scoring, booger-flicking, or snark-baiting. Just a good-faith effort to courteously correct a mistake in another comment. Well, much to my bewilderment, my very first comment was received with a torrent of abusive replies by some of my still-favorite Deltoids which did not abate even when it was grudgingly recognized that I was right in my initial comment--indeed that only seem to further inflame the situation. And, of course, this being Deltoid-land, anti-Americanism was a prominent theme.

After that initial experience (abetted by a moderation policy that was not, at that time, evenhanded), I toyed with just blowing the whole Deltoid blog off and going about my business. But then I thought, hey these little geek-ball momma's boys just don't pack the baggage to justify their bold talk. And since I always kinda enjoyed a scrap, I decided to devote myself, part-time, to taking you guys on. And given the tenor of your last comment, rhwombat, it looks like I've done a pretty good job of it.

And you know, rhwombat, had I been shown simple common courtesy when I first commented on this blog, you would never have had my "pathology" to deal with. But you know my weakness, rhwombat? I don't mind telling you. If you and your pals begin to conduct yourselves like gentlemen and gentlewomen and show courtesy and moderation in your comments, then you'll put me out of business--and no one will be happier than me to see the "Going Out of Business" sign go up.

In the meantime, if you want to talk the talk, then let's see you walk the walk. I'm up for it.

So you are going to bleed on us, then?

@150

rhwombat,

I like it better this way, too.

And, just in case you forgot, rhwombat, you still haven't answered those pesky little questions I posed at no. 147. Remember, those sort of questions were thought appropriate when posed to me and a few others on this blog. Certainly, you didn't object to those sort of questions earlier on when directed at others. So I think it not out of line to ask you for the same sort of condemnation of child-rape that was demanded of me (and which I was more than happy to deliver).

But since it appears that you are having a real hard time offering up an unqualified condemnation of child-rape, and especially child-rape in the form of child sex-slavery--the commercialized rape of children by the hundreds of thousands worldwide for the repellent pleasures of sex-tourist pervert-shits and the profit of their betters-- I'd just be happy with a simple explanation as to why an obsessive blabber-mouth like yourself suddently finds himself tongue-tied when it comes to the subject of child-rape.

Surely, wombat, you have enough material for that conference paper by now? ;-)

Mike is threatened by intelligence and feels he needs to insult people into submission. At least now he's finally admitting his childish behaviour-seeking is the result of his intellectually weak arguments being spurned.

In response Mike will now shriek that I am wrong, because he is a big tough internet warrior who doesn't care what people think, and call me a variety of childish names thus proving, in his own mind, that he is right.

@no. 133 and 152.

"No. You raised the issue of pedophilia accusing "warmistas" of having a conference in Cancun to facilitate "their" child molesting habits." (rhwombat's no. 133).

Not really sure about what conference bill has in mind in his comment no. 152, but since you seem to be "planning" a little something rhwombat, I can see that I have to challenge the quoted extract, above, from your no. 133. The quoted portion of your comment no. 133 is factually wrong.

PART 1

"No, you raised the issue of pedophilia..."

You are factually in error, rhwombat. It was not I that raised the the issue of pedophilia. The thread in which I first raised the issue of child-rape (a.k.a. pedophilia) was that attached to the "Australian Climate Scientists get death threats" post. My first comment dealing with child-rape was no. 199 on that thread. Prior to my comment the following comments had already raised the issue of child-rape, directly or by implication, and all in a form to discredit "deniers":

No. 39 made reference to raping a baby

No. 74 and 79 made reference to raping climate scientists' families and by implication any children in those families.

No. 154 made reference to "raping kids".

No. 173 "El Gordo [a "denier], are you also a supporter of child rapists like James..."

no. 191 "Inactivists "el Gordo", "mike" and "Rick Bradford" apparently have no problem with people threatening to rape climate families." That last prompted my reply at no. 199, 200, and 203, a series of comments in which I first raised the issue of child-rape.

CONCLUSION: Clearly, I did not introduce the issue of child-rape (a.k.a. pedophilia)as can be seen above, rhwombat.

PART 2

"...accusing "warmistas" of having a conference in Cancun to facilitate "their" child molesting habits."

This portion of your statement is flat-out factually in error (please quote my comments in the future rather than making up words to put into my mouth). My comment on Cancun was no. 203.

I did not "accuse" warmistas (a word I did not and do not use) of anything. Rather, I questioned the IPCC's choice of venues for their annual meetings and condemned their choice of locales (Cancun and Durban) that are notorious for their child sex-slave industries. In that regard, I urged a boycott of the IPCC conferences until the IPCC selects venues that are not also hosts to a commercialized child-rape industry.

CONCLUSION: A simple reading of comment no. 203 will verify that the second part of your statement is also factually in error. So read my comment, rhwombat.

PART III

In the thread attached to the post "Another day, another dollar" a commentator also falsely claimed that I had accused "IPCC scientists of being child-rapists without proof" (no. 48). However, that false accusation was withdrawn (no. 80) based on my comment no. 53. So you're not the first to go down that wrong path, rhwombat.

PART IV

Also in the thread attached to the post "Another day, another dollar" I was asked to specifically condemn child-rape at no. 34 (I thought I had done so already) and provided a further condemnation at comment at no. 38. So I didn't start this "condemnation" business, rhwombat. Rather, I merely thought it a good idea to get ringing denunciations of child-rape from all the Deltoids--though my effort there was no more successful than my attempt to build a mass boycott of the next IPCC annual conference.

In conclusion, do try to get the facts right, rhwombat, in any presentation that includes my views. Quotes within context is the best way, you know.

And I know it's unlikely, rhwomat, that you will acknowledge your errors and provide retractions--but you're on notice now, guy.

Jeebus, if you-all ain't been actin' the great grand-daddy of a loon, and no mistake. You best be takin' those meds when you s'posed to in future, Punkin.

Enough. This post is not about you, mike. From now on all comments from mike and any comments about mike should go into the Open Thread. I can't move comments, so I'll just delte the off topic ones.

By Tim Lambert (not verified) on 02 Jul 2011 #permalink

Thanks Tim. It was getting a bit Lovecraftian.

I have just finished corresponding with Purdue University about Mr Watts. They confirm that he has no qualification from them, despite attending from 1975 to 1982. I have sent the evidence by email to the owner of Deltoid.

Posted by: Scribe | June 30, 2011 10:31 AM

Christ! Seven years of college down the drain..."

By caerbannog (not verified) on 03 Jul 2011 #permalink

I trust people have noticed John N-G's recent post on the matter of the Counterpoint interview.

blog.chron.com/climateabyss/2011/07/what-i-did-on-my-summer-vacation/

(His response to my comment is interesting too.)