The Australian's War on Science 68: getting your science from a chain email

Jane Fraser, columnist in The Australian , writes a column based on "facts" she got from a chain email:

Back to Plimer. He says he knows how disheartening it is to realise all your savings on carbon emissions have been eaten up by natural disasters. You've suffered the inconvenience and expense of driving Prius hybrids, buying fabric grocery bags, sitting up 'til midnight to finish your kids' "The Green Revolution" science project, using only two squares of toilet paper, putting a brick in your toilet, selling your speedboat, holidaying at home instead of abroad, replacing all those light globes that cost you 50c with ones that set you back $10 . . .

Well, he says, it took just four days to flush all these good works down the drain. In those four days the recent volcanic eruption in Iceland spewed enough volcanic ash to negate every single effort you have made in the past five years to control CO2 emissions.

This is not true. Fred Jourdan (Prof. of Applied Geology, Curtin University of Technology) states:

The eruption in Iceland emitted a fairly small amount of CO2. In fact most recent estimates show that the flights that were grounded by the eruption would have emitted about twice as much CO2 as the volcano itself.

Fraser continues with:

Plimer adds he doesn't want to rain on our parade too much (not half!), but he should mention that when Mt Pinatubo erupted in The Philippines in 1991, it threw out more greenhouse gases into the atmosphere than the entire human race had emitted in its entire time on earth.

This is wrong by a factor of 30,000. Each year humans emit 700 times as much as Pinatubo did.

Fraser continues.

I agree with most of what Plimer says. It makes sense to me.

Not only is it the case that the stuff about volcanoes that Fraser repeats is untrue, Plimer didn't say it. While Plimer has said things about volcanic emissions that are stupidly wrong, he didn't write the email that Fraser is quoting. As often happens with chain emails, Plimer's name got added to the original version of the email at some stage. Factcheck.org debunked an earlier version back in June 2010 when it looked like this:

I know, I know .... (have a group hug) ... it's very
disheartening to realize that all of the carbon emission
savings you have accomplished while suffering the
inconvenience and expense of driving Prius hybrids,
buying fabric grocery bags, sitting up til midnight to
finish your kid's "The Green Revolution" science
project, throwing out all of your non-green cleaning
supplies, using only two squares of toilet paper,
putting a brick in your toilet tank reservoir, selling
your SUV and speedboat, going on vacation to a city park
instead of Yosemite, nearly getting hit every day on
your bicycle, replacing all of your $1 light bulbs with
$10 light bulbs ... well, all of those things you have
done have all gone down the tubes in just the past week.
The volcanic ash emitted into the Earth's atmosphere in
the past week has totally erased every single effort you
have made to reduce the evil beast, carbon.

You can see a version of the chain email with Plimer's name on it here, where Jerry Pournelle is taken in, and here and here, where bloggers correct the falsehoods.

Fraser does disagree with what she thought Plimer said on one point:

I have one bone to pick with him, however. He adds to his list of moans and groans -- and these have absolutely nothing to do with global warming -- that he is always in danger of being hit by a car or a bus. ...

Me, I worry about being knocked over by cyclists. I know they're doing their bit for the environment (ha!) but are so dangerous, especially when they're whizzing along on the pavement and you can't hear them coming. Blow them all!

I don't have numbers for Sydney, but in London from 2001 to 2005 there were 534 pedestrians killed by motor vehicles and just one by a cyclist. It's likely more people were killed by being struck by lightning than being struck by cyclists.

Fraser also has this argument against global warming:

I am not a fan of the idea of global warming, especially after this Sydney winter. It has been the coldest I can remember

Not only is she confusing weather with climate, she's wrong about the weather. June, July and August have all been warmer than the average for the past 30 years.

Fortunately it should be easy to get Fraser to correct her errors. Since she seems to believe anything that gets sent to her in an email, I'll just send her an email.

Hat tip: Scribe

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Last one to email Fraser wins!

By dexitroboper (not verified) on 12 Aug 2011 #permalink

Talk about Zombie arguments! Truly, the noxiousness of the Murdochracy knows no bounds. And the hysterical and dishonest form of the chain-letter is pitched perfectly for them.

What was that Schiller 'against stupidity' quote frank used on the 'freeping' post? "Had we, like brave men / Been vanquished by the brave, we might, indeed / Console ourselves that 'twas the common lot". Quite. Instead of which we're being inundated in a sea of muck.

It's a shamefully inaccurate article written by a ditsy ranga who looks like a bit of a lush. But why is this airhead talking science? This is not her natural milieu. Who gives Fraser her marching orders? Who gives her sub-editor and editor their marching orders? We known that Murdoch is obsessively hands-on with his editors, and contacts many of his organs on a daily basis. Is this malevolent old plutocrat's face to be seen in this article? I wouldn't be surprised. (PS, thanks for the hat tip, Tim).

A serious question:

What is the chance of a class action against the Australian.

They claim to be a newspaper and to uphold standards of journalistic integrity. As this series shows the later claim is false, and arguably in claiming to be a newspaper they purport to print truths rather than falsehoods. Hence arguably both claims are false advertising.

There is no question that their actions, to the extent that they influence policy will cause long term harm to all of us.

Ergo, if there is any justice, they are liable.

Admittedly I am not a lawyer, and the law has only a passing resemblance to justice so I do not know that a class action could be launched on those grounds.

Any lawyers care to comment?

Well for a start, where is Media Watch when you need them? You can contact Media Watch by email at mediawatch@your.abc.net.au Telephone: 02 8333 4454

@Tom, 5

I have a better idea - one that I've been considering for some time. Tim, I believe you should think about compiling all of your Oz's War on Science entries over the past few years into an eponymous book. This would be a far better way to hold The Australian to account than taking legal action against them (which would feed into their Galileo complex). Consider the following points:

1) The target audience for the blogosphere is relatively limited, unless you're lucky enough to be given blogging space by the Herald Sun or Daily Telegraph. By compiling your entries into a book, you instantly achieve access to a much wider audience - particularly if you get the chance to promote it on TV.

2) In the US, where I'm from, topical political books are dime-a-dozen; in fact, there's an entire store in Washington DC dedicated to stocking them. Here, they're relatively scarce. Therefore, you wouldn't be trying to compete for space in an overcrowded market, and with a provocative title like "The Australian's War on Science", you would instantly stand out from the crowd.

3) Think about the hissy-fit the Oz had in response to a tweet by Julie Posetti last year. What would there reaction be if an entire book dedicated to exposing their intellectual dishonesty was released? Based on their track record, they might even try the Fox News route of threatening to sue you, instantly propelling your book up the bestseller lists (a la Al Franken).

Food for thought. Discuss, please!

I'm looking forward to Fraser's next column, in which she relates how she easily made a million dollars simply by helping out the relatives of a dead Nigerian government minister transfer some funds...

Jane Fraser's column shows such a devastatingly profound lack of scientific knowledge and basic research skills that I'm sure Chris Mitchell has promoted her to chief science reporter by now.

I quite like Ark's idea. I'm sure there's enough other material from the Australian to fill up a decent-size book if the blog entries aren't enough.

*their, not there

Ark @7 is on a winner. Get Bruce 'Man Bites Murdoch' Guthrie to write the foreword.

I once tried to wipe my arse with The Australian, and ended up with more crap than I started.

By Mercurius (not verified) on 12 Aug 2011 #permalink

Future dictionary definitions of "fractally wrong" will reference this opinion piece.

(And Mercurius FTW!)

By Lotharsson (not verified) on 12 Aug 2011 #permalink

Dear Jane.

This email has been sent to you because you have been found by God to have lost your ability to understand reality and truth. The Lord has granted you the chance of a miracle however - all that you have to do is to carefully and meticulously follow the instructions below...

a) Visit, and carefully read, these links:

  1. http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2011/08/the_australians_war_on_science_…
  2. http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/the_war_on_science/
  3. http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/
  4. http://www.realclimate.org/
  5. http://www.skepticalscience.com/
  6. http://tamino.wordpress.com/
  7. http://www.climateshifts.org/
  8. http://climatecrocks.com/
  9. http://climateprogress.org/
  10. http://greenfyre.wordpress.com/

b) Consult a real, qualified, experienced, professional, scientist each and every time you have a mind to write about anything remotely related to science.

c) Forward this email to 10 people you know who deny the reality of the scientific consensus on human-caused climate change.

d) Repeat steps (a) to (d) every time someone forwards this email to you, and every time you happen to chance upon is whilst you are surfing the web.

You must complete these instructions within 2 two days each time that you receive them, or find them. If you do not do so to the letter, you will lose an IQ point on each occasion. In addition you will be cursed to Hell for all Eternity, your glorious titian hair will fall out, your house will be visited with plagues of cockroaches and door-knocking Mormons, and you will be recognised by any moderately intelligent and educated person as being a fool and a buffon.

With loving wishes,

[...]

By Bernard J. (not verified) on 12 Aug 2011 #permalink

...buffoon...

;-)

By Bernard J. (not verified) on 12 Aug 2011 #permalink

'Fractally wrong' - as in if one drills down through the wrongness one only encounters further, self-similar wrongness? Nice; I must remember that one!

I'll also say to Fraser, as a cyclist - bite me! There are already far too many of the consumer occupation's troops patrolling the streets in their suburban command vehicles who clearly view our lives as cheap; they need no further encouragement in viewing us as second-class 'illegals'.

And they've no great respect for pedestrians, either. As Tim points out - and consistent with the Australian's general groupthink - the actual evidence isn't at all likely to back this claim. And as to common-sense, leaving aside questions of statistical likelihood; what would you rather be hit by - a flat-bar roadie or a flat bed truck?

Mercurius @ 13,

Please issue a cats and coffee warning before posting any further. Inhalation of hot beverages etc.

BTW You owe me a new keyboard.
;-)

@Sean, 10

Indeed, there's plenty more examples out there. However I don't think a book should be presented as just a whole bunch of blog posts copied and pasted verbatim. It should be structured and organized in such a way that it tells a coherent story, drawing on different posts as necessary. Preferably divided into chapters, some suggestions of which might be:

The Denial Factory (how the Oz spins, misrepresents, or just plain manufactures a "news" story supporting its anti-AGW stance, and how it is then echoed uncritically in other media and blogs - Stuart Rintoul being a good case study)

The Soap Box (empirically demonstrating that the Oz's opinion section gives a voice to denialists which is disproportionate to their scientific credibility and accuracy)

The Editorial Stance (how the editorial line lurches between grudging acceptance of the facts, casting doubt in the name of promoting "debate", and outright denial)

Chris Mitchellgate (about the Twitter/defamation saga)

Cut and Paste (deserves its own chapter)

10 Dumbest Things You Will Ever Read in the Oz (such as the "guy on the beach" news story, [this](http://www.theaustralian.com.au/news/big-talk-small-stick/story-e6frg6v…) from Greg Sheridan, anyone who quotes Monckton approvingly)

I think it would make a good read.

The Weekend Oz also contains a letter from Garth Paltridge wherein he (a) mispresents uncertainty and how she is done and (b) invents imaginary climate scientist friends who all mutter to him in dark corners that they are all sceptics really but are too politically correct to mention it. Presumably Paltridge is too politically correct to name them or the corridors in which they lurk.

I'd link to it, but the weary contempt in which I hold the Oz has sapped my will to HTML.

Down goes Fraser! Down goes Fraser! Down goes Fraser!

By Robert Murphy (not verified) on 12 Aug 2011 #permalink

Strewth Tim so Jerry Pournelle and Chaos Manor are still going. I lost track of that when the printed edition of BYTE bit the dust.

Whatever, that email under his link Climate and volcanos is almost a carbon copy of that which I have been repeatedly sent by a correspondent in Australia. I am having a tough time convincing him of the fallacies within as no amount of explanation, citing of sources where the science is expounded, on-line or printed matter, seem to have any effect. All evidence to the contrary appears to fall on stony ground.

It would seem that many of our protagonists, or even antagonists for that matter, have the mindset of Wendy Wright

Tim:

I vote for a book on The Australian's War on Science, too. :)

By Marion Delgado (not verified) on 13 Aug 2011 #permalink

I love the idea of an "Australian's War on Science" book.

Might I suggest, given its grassroots origins, that Tim could use Kickstarter or IndiGoGo to raise funds and preorders from the blogosphere if he doesn't get any bites from the university presses - given the number of researchers The Oztrayun has burned over the years, at least one uni should be willing to take the project on - or you could try Pluto Press.

By James Haughton (not verified) on 13 Aug 2011 #permalink

It's old hat to say "this is a new low" but it really is. It's internet trolling in print.

By Marion Delgado (not verified) on 13 Aug 2011 #permalink

My letter to Review, which I doubt they will print, but still...

I should like to submit a letter for your news& views section.
Please forward this to Jane Fraser as well, for her information.

Like Jane Fraser I am "not a fan of the idea of Global Warming" (Review
13-14 August). Few sensible people would be fans of the idea that
industrial civilisation is gradually but inexorably altering the world's
climate for the worse. That does not mean that it is not happening, alas.
The world cares little for our hopes and desires, but it is responding
to our actions. Ian Plimer's reassuring assertions about volcanoes
outweighing human activity make sense to Jane. It is a pity that they
are not true. The biggest volcanic eruption in the last 50 years, Mt
Pinatubo, emitted about 42 million tonnes of CO2. Human activities emit
about 500 times that, every year. I am sorry to rain on Jane and Ian's
parades, but sometimes the truth hurts.

By Robert Day (not verified) on 13 Aug 2011 #permalink

Fraser gets 8/10 for this one. Excellent fabrication of "facts", bonus points for not verifying the source of the e-mail. Deduction, however, for not mentioning climategate or the MWP.

Ark @19

Yeah, I was originally going to expound a little on some ideas for how the book could be organized. Definitely would want to at least edit and clean up the blog posts.

I was figuring organizing by scientific subject: AGW, DDT, whatever other subjects Tim may have covered. But your idea for categorization is a bit more clever than mine : )

Edwin, nuh. No 8/10 from me.

Where oh where is the obligatory cry of 'Al Gore is fat' may I ask. Omitting compulsory elements from a routine should be heavily penalised.

3/10 by my reckoning.

Tim,

You could always sound out a few publishers and get their response. A thing in your favour is that the material is already collected for the book and available for them to have a read and so appreciate what the book would look like.

However, there is one small problem. The Australian is going to jack up one heck of a lot at rights to reproduce its stuff in a book that will lay open how ridiculous an organ it is and even if it doesn't the various contributors who will be exposed will almost certainly jack up. Remember it is *The Glass Jaw of the Nation* we are talking about here.

I'ld certainly lay money down for an Australian's War on Science book by Tim.

Jeremy C, so long as the quotes are short, the Australian can't do anything about the use of their material.

Death by chain mail, it shall be.

Ark:

compiling all of your Oz's War on Science entries over the past few years into an eponymous book [...] would be a far better way to hold The Australian to account than taking legal action against them (which would feed into their Galileo complex).

Let me be the first to disagree. The lying liars that write for the Australian have been breaking the law with impunity. The only way to stop such impunity is to make them face a lawsuit that they can't simply wish away.

Sure, the inactivists will scream Galileo. So what?

-- frank

Please, what email address do I use to get it to Jane Fraser?

By Möbius Ecko (not verified) on 13 Aug 2011 #permalink

Let me add my name to the chorus of people suggesting that the War on Science series would be a good idea, though I think merely limiting it to The Australian might be too narrow. The tropes they run have been running have acquired wider circulation in other media territory. There's also scope to look at the way in which sections of the political class have bought into the disinformation campaign spearheaded by the Murdochracy.

You can include me in the no doubt large number of folk who'd be happy to proof your draft texts and make suggestions, do indexing etc. I have some experience in academic editing.

If you haven't thought seriously about this, I'd urge you to do so.

By Fran Barlow (not verified) on 13 Aug 2011 #permalink

Robert Day said:

Like Jane Fraser I am "not a fan of the idea of Global Warming" (Review 13-14 August). Few sensible people would be fans of the idea that industrial civilisation is gradually but inexorably altering the world's climate for the worse. That does not mean that it is not happening, alas.

Quite right, of course. I can't imagine any sensible folk liking the idea, and as you point out, our preferences, sensible or not are entirely moot. Physics isn't giving us a vote in the outcome.

Putting aside the fact that the suggestion is radically at odds with available data, if it were the case that volcanic emissions were as large as she repeats, then rather than being a comfort,this would be even worse news. AFAIK, there is currently no feasible means of controlling emission of CO2 from volcanoes, and so, by definition, such emissions would need to be deducted from the general budget within which all of humanity must ultimately live if we are to have a reasonable prospect of stabilising global temperatures at no more than 2degC above pre-industrial temperatures by 2100.

This would in practice be a challenge orders of magnitude greater than the challenge we are now facing, and given that so far, we haven't done anything on a global scale that looks adequate to that challenge, Fraser would in effect, be proclaiming something very much like an end of days scenario. Perhaps this does indeed make sense to her, but she surely can't be "a fan" of it. If indeed one eruption in Iceland can set us back 5 years then rather than facetious remarks about hazards from cyclists, she ought to be proclaiming the need for society to develop the technology to stifle the output of volcanoes, and to batten down the hatches for catastrophic warming and massively more acid seas in the interim. That CO2 must go somewhere, and the current non-atmospheric sinks are nowhere capacious enough to accept it. She also ought to be arguing for even more strenuous measures to stifle anthropogenic emissions, since these at least we can somewhat control.

Of course she doesn't -- either because she hasn't thought beyond the fatuous chain mail letter, or more likely, because she is simply a reckless loudmouth running the line of the Murdochracy, which is plainly seeking to protect the interests of extractive industry and polluters more generally.

By Fran Barlow (not verified) on 13 Aug 2011 #permalink

How about looking for the positives.
At least the cartoon above the column is funnier than the denialist crap that John Spooner draws for The Age.

By Ian Enting (not verified) on 13 Aug 2011 #permalink

And when we are in the business of sending emails we might send one to the ABC, protesting against the disinformation Piers Akerman was allowed unprotested (except for a groan by David Mar) to come up with in this morning's "Insiders". Akerman claimed that NASA-figures showed that the climate had been cooling. He also protested against Mar's characterisation of CO2 as a pollutant saying, inter alia, "that the trees love it".

By Arie Brand (not verified) on 13 Aug 2011 #permalink

Adelady (# 29), she also omitted Tim Flannery, Kate Blanchett and their respective waterfront properties, 2/10 from me.

I agree with Frank #33. We shouldn't be laughing at how stupid the article is, we should be searching for any way possible of getting her and the Oz (and the rest) into court for this blatant and incredibly damaging lying.

Things like this are exactly what's driving public opinion, which in turn is driving political inaction, which of course is why things are going from bad to worse.

It's time some lawyer/activists started standing up.

I wonder if Plimer has contacted The Oz for being blatantly misquoted, or whether he'll overlook it because the lies support his conclusion.

Who am I kidding, of course we know which course he'll pick.

A bit OT but.....

Whats with the sudden re-emergence of the'temps-have-been-cooling-since-1999' meme as mentioned @41 re Insiders.

Its suddenly popping up all over the place again.

Can anybody tell me why this has popped up again and why now?

A bit Ot again, sorry, but.....

@ 41. Thanks for the heads up about Insiders. I streamed the clip and it was very a important clip as both Piers Akerman and David Marr were in complete agreement as to why Abbott the Impotent and deniers can easily win in Australia. It made sense and we have to heed comments liek that. In short, for anyone who didn't watch it the way the denialists will win is by not letting up (fanatics never do). That means we can't give up and so should encourage Tim to keep calling out every denialist no matter where they are.

BTW That insiders clip was a very, very good example of why this government should never, never, never have used the word 'pollutant' to label greenhouse gases as Akerman was able to slap Marr about the face with it verbally and Marr was shot down very, very quickly. Fanatics will always look for ways to trap us, that's the nature of a fanatic.

@ Frank, 33 and Peter, 44

I see your point, and believe me, I would like nothing more than to see Chris Mitchell and his cronies cop a big fat lawsuit. But we have to think strategically. Lawsuits are expensive and time-consuming, and in cases like these, can easily be framed as an "assault on free speech", which I fear will resonate with the public given the current unpopularity of the carbon tax.

What we have to do is turn the tide of opinion against The Oz. To the layperson, it has a cloak of respectability by virtue of being the only national broadsheet. Disseminating Tim's message into the general public will help strip away that cloak, and given their record of hypersensitivity to criticism, may prompt them to score a few more own goals for us.

I'm not ruling out your option entirely; I just believe that at the moment it isn't the optimal use of our time and resources.

There's another issue about The Oz. For my generation, the old-fart baby boomer generation, our first response to this publication was one of joy. We abandoned the stuffy old 'Advertiser' in SA with glee. The Oz was a breath of fresh air in the fossilised state-based broadsheets.

Many of my friends still buy it because they got the habit. I cancelled my subscription way back at the time of the Mabo decision. Most others just grumbled that they disagreed with the editorial line at the time. They still grumble at current editorial policies - but it's a bit like having good old drink-sodden Uncle Bert at Xmas lunch and family weddings. You know he'll embarrass everybody with his outrageous mumblings on various topics as the day progresses, but he's one of the family.

I really, really like the idea of publishing a compendium of the scientific faux pas. And MediaWatch and the rare other critical media commentators really need to be reminded to keep up the pressure.

It's pretty well a given that the rusted on readers won't change. The big issue is reminding people who aren't fully committed that there are good reasons to get your information elsewhere.

Mungo"And as a footnote, let me record that I have been grossly verballed by The Australian's Sneer-and-Smear section, Cut and Paste. Okay, so I'm not Robinson Crusoe, but this was a particularly sleazy exercise by the paper's anonymous crapulator. By selective cutting he/she/it removed all my criticism of The Australian from last week's column and re-edited it as a paean of praise. In response I sent the following missive:

Given The Australian's constant self-obsession I always expected that this week's column in The Drum would earn a mention in the Sneer and Smear column aka Cut and Paste. But even I was impressed by the lavishness of malice and dishonesty in the way it was selectively quoted. At least the treatment confirms two long-held suspicions: the paper's much (recently) paraded Code of Journalistic Ethics, is, like John Howard's Code of Ministerial Conduct, purely optional; and The Australian's paranoid need for self-justification is now completely off the planet. Mungo MacCallum.

This was neither published nor acknowledged. The Australian â the paper that invents the news."

Mungo MacCallum is a political journalist and commentator.

By john byatt (not verified) on 14 Aug 2011 #permalink

Getting Your Science From A Blog
As usual, the lemmings here don't fact check anything.
As long as it confirms your ideology, why bother?

Did any of you actually check the claim about Sydney weather?
Did you find it odd that Lambert selected the Sydney Airport weather station?
I doubt Fraser has an apartment on the tarmac, next to jet engines, acres of concrete and a temperature gauge!

The Observatory Hill weather station data show that for June and July, max temp was exactly average. Minimum temperature was below average in July and above average in June.

Lambert is "wrong about the weather. June, July and August have" not "all been warmer than the average for the past 30 years."

"Fortunately it should be easy to get" Lambert "to correct his errors. Since he seems to believe anything that" he writes in his blog, I'll just post it on his blog.

Factoid's a liar, just like his favourite newspaper is.

According to
*http://www.bom.gov.au/climate/dwo/201107/html/IDCJDW2124.201107.shtml*
The mean max temp for July at Observatory Hill was 17.4.
The mean min was 8.6

According to
*http://www.bom.gov.au/climate/averages/tables/cw_066062.shtml*
The long-term averages for these measurements are 16.3 and 8.0 respectively.

So July mean max was 1.1 degrees higher than the long-term average, while mean min was 0.6 degrees higher than the long-term average.

I can't even be bothered checking June - we can see already that "factoid" just like his heroes Plimer, Carter, Mitchell, Jo Nova, etc..., is both incompetent and wrong.

By Factoid's Nemesis (not verified) on 14 Aug 2011 #permalink

Yep, same story for June:

long-term average min/max is 16.9/9.3.
Jun 2011 averaged 18.0.10.3, 1.1 degrees and 1.0 degrees above the average.

So, I guess these details about the weather prove that the Deniers are complete morons. Espceially "factoid" who is a laughable idiot.

By Factoid's Nemesis (not verified) on 14 Aug 2011 #permalink

>Not only is she confusing weather with climate, she's wrong about the weather. June, July and August have all been warmer than the average for the past 30 years.

Mean max temp for 1981-2010: Jun=17.8, Jul=17.1, Aug=18.7

Mean max temp for 2011: Jun=18.0, Jul=17.2, Aug=20.3

Nemesis "is both incompetent and wrong."

Nemesis can't even read that the average temps nominated by Lambert are for the period 1980-2010.

Nemesis does "prove that the Alarmists are complete morons. Espceially "nemesis" who is a laughable idiot."

Factoid, unless you want to represent denialist as both ignorant and opinionated I suggest you present some counter facts that challenge those presented by Tim.

Your assertions are not convincing when they are contradicted by the facts presented.

factoid has *got* to be a Poe, right?

> Nemesis can't even read that the average temps nominated by Lambert are for the period 1980-2010.

True! And neither can anyone else - except perhaps factoid - because it's just not true.

When one clicks through to the page on historical averages that Tim linked to, it clearly says "Period **1981**-2010". There's no "1980" about it. If you're going to call someone a "laughable idiot" for apparently misreading, it helps when you don't misread yourself.

And factoid hasn't shown that Fraser's idea that it was an abnormally cold winter is anywhere *near* reality, instead quibbling (incompetently) about comparisons with average temperatures.

Why, it's almost like factoid would like to redirect debate away from Fraser's bogus claims - to something, else, anything else!

By Lotharsson (not verified) on 14 Aug 2011 #permalink

factoid,

You are providing links that show exactly the opposite of what you claim. Both June and July were warmer in 2011, according to [your links](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2011/08/the_australians_war_on_science_…), than the June and July averages in the link you presented. How exactly can you claim the opposite?

Can you read?

I think this beats Tim Curtin's "If the oceans acidify we can use them for drinking and irrigation" claim...

So factoid is the troll formerly known as tones9, of Crikey notoriety. Figures - 'cause tones can't. I think we should shoot it and look for Negri bodies.

No, no, no, MFS. That oceans thread stands proudly alone on its mysterious little island of manic illogic, forever.

Factoid is trying to build another - but from more pedestrian incomprehension of simple data. There may be a truly original barmy idea in development, but we've not yet seen it.

> All the facts you need:

...to demonstrate that factoid hasn't got a leg to stand on, even as he insults others for "getting it wrong".

As MFS says, they show that 2011 is quite a lot warmer than the "Use all years of data" average for Observatory Hill - a far cry from Fraser's "coldest in memory". (And this is using factoid's preferred data source!)

Factoid appears to be engaging in clown-trolling - providing self-refuting evidence.

Smarter trolls, please.

By Lotharsson (not verified) on 14 Aug 2011 #permalink

At least factiod, through one of his lenses, sees the fallacies of cherry picking, and getting science from blogs.

Pity his focus of criticism is not at those who abuse these fallacies to the utmost.

> At least factiod, through one of his lenses, sees the fallacies of cherry picking, and getting science from blogs.

True, that.

By Lotharsson (not verified) on 14 Aug 2011 #permalink

You guys don't get it.
A personal anecdote from Fraser is irrelevant.
It's a personal experience, and not scientific.
Nor was it claimed to be a scientific statement.

However Lambert claimed to be presenting Sydney weather data when in fact he was not.
That is scientific and intellectual dishonesty.
Whilst he complains about the scientific integrity of others.
And none of you notice or care.

Imagine how scathing the analysis when Factorrhoid gets around to dealing with Plimer's bullshit.

I guess we'll hear the 'oid say things like @64: "Note that this isn't a simple mistake by Plimer.You have to go out of your way to ignore numerous studies,the views of such bodies as the AAS,the USGS,the CDIAC and the Geological Society of the UK,use fake references and fail to correct the errors at proof stage,then fail to print a corrigendum."

Yeah,don't hold back,Factorrhoid. You da man...

Umm so factoid, Sydney Airport weather data is not representative of Sydney? OK. Whatever.

No matter where you take the data from in the Sydney area factoid, it does not support the contention that this winter has been unusually cold compared to the long term average, and even if it did (which it doesn't as pointed by numerous posts above), it is hardly representative of "the world" as much as I like to think Sydney is the centre of the universe.

This seems to be the problem with folk like yourself. A couple of real chilly weeks in Sydney during the middle of winter and global warming has been proven to be a scam. Large portions of the USA cook in an unusually intense heatwave, or wildfires rage through Siberia, and it's just a trivial piece of irrelevant news. Weird eh? Especially your comment about "as long as it confirms your ideology". How deliciously ironic.

@ factoid, 74

What makes Observatory Hill right and Sydney Airport wrong? And you may have noticed that the all of the 30-year averages for June, July and August are higher for OH than SA, blowing to smithereens your conjecture about airport weather stations overestimating the temperature. Care to elaborate?

Factoid, all you are succeeding in doing is proving that you cannot marshal facts and will not accept them if they contradict your beliefs. As is stands you could scarcely look sillier. The rest of your schtick is what psychologists refer to as 'projection'. Oh, and you're Aaaaangry.

I challenge you; astonish us all and admit that it is actually you that is wrong.

(That sound you are not hearing is me holding my breath...)

Factoid, you have a bizarre choice of pseudonym, given it takes less than a minute to establish the monthly temperatures from BOM.

On another note Tim has provided us with an excellent resource in the war on science and I admire his fortitude and bravery in taking on the Murdoch Empire.

It would be a fascinating read if someone could catalogue, in one volume, the climatic misdemeanours of the editor-in-chief and his minions. I would be intrigued to see some background on the various journalists, including the hacker who creates cut and paste, and some quantitation of the news bias even just to compare cold to warm weather stories.

Factoid writes:

>*And none of you notice or care.*

Its like the tobacco advocate complaining that we don't care that smoking reduces weight gain.

Factiod is guilty of meta-cherry picking, he's working very hard to cherry pick the cherry picks.

@80

Factiod is guilty of meta-cherry picking

You must begrudgingly admit, the real hardcore denialists have a proven ability to invent stunning new science and data analysis techniques. Many of these techniques have not even been dreamed of by the scientific establishment, and certainly are not lacking in creativity.

Ark:

> I see your point, and believe me, I would like nothing more than to see Chris Mitchell and his cronies cop a big fat lawsuit. But we have to think strategically. Lawsuits are expensive and time-consuming, and in cases like these, can easily be framed as an "assault on free speech", which I fear will resonate with the public given the current unpopularity of the carbon tax.

But does it actually resonate with the general public, or is that itself merely another of the inactivists' bogus framings?

> I'm not ruling out your option entirely; I just believe that at the moment it isn't the optimal use of our time and resources.

Then in your opinion, at what moment will a lawsuit finally be a good use of our time and resources? How will writing another book -- when there are already so many other books -- move the climate movement towards a stronger position, towards a position where it can finally bring forth a lawsuit against the denialists at the Australian to make them answer for their lies?

If not now, when?

-- frank

If the Denialists have moved from the denying the phenomenon (AGW) to defaming non-public personalities (and scientists aren't public personalities) the time for lawsuits has arrived. It's as simple as that. Individuals aren't punching bags.

By Jeffrey Davis (not verified) on 15 Aug 2011 #permalink

Even as someone in the northern hemisphere, a book about the continuous dishonesty of one big australian newspaper would be a very interesting (though depressing) read. First get the info widely spread and then potentially get them into legal trouble - though others might already do it for you because of the attention from the hypothetical book.

I strongly disagree about that it would be better if the potential book would expand to other publications as well.
Use a clear and attention-grabbing target. Editing the articles to fit better together in a single book is also good, of course.

If you want to write about other publications as well in book format, it is far better to have a series with about different publications (or category of publications if you e.g. have a lot of text about different, small local papers), possibly publishing sequel volumes about any specific publication when you get enough new material - if you can be bothered.

I'm another who's been thinking for the last dozen or so Wars on Science that a book or a documentary would be an interesting exercise.

If a book, the words "First Edition" should be conspicuous on the cover...

By Bernard J. (not verified) on 15 Aug 2011 #permalink

With respect, Frank, you've been calling for other people to go to the trouble, expense, and reputation risk of slinging lawsuits in all directions for a long time now.
Unless you're prepared to bankroll such action personally, why not take a breather, eh?

By James Haughton (not verified) on 15 Aug 2011 #permalink

factoid,

It doesn't matter which way you read it: Sydney Airport temperatures for [June](http://www.bom.gov.au/climate/dwo/201106/html/IDCJDW2125.201106.shtml), [July](http://www.bom.gov.au/climate/dwo/201107/html/IDCJDW2125.201107.shtml) and [August](http://www.bom.gov.au/climate/dwo/201108/html/IDCJDW2125.201108.shtml) are STILL warmer than the [30-year average](http://www.bom.gov.au/jsp/ncc/cdio/cvg/av?p_stn_num=066037&p_prim_eleme…).

It might pay to grow a brain cell or two before attempting a takedown like this, unless you are happy for it to backfire as spectacularly as it has.

MFS it doesn't matter which way you read it, you don't have a brain.

Sydney Airport is not Sydney.

Lambert could not find the desired result in the Sydney data, so he inserted Sydney Airport data.

That is very deceptive and misleading.

Fooled you.

Factoid, if we all agreed with you, we'd all be wrong. Everyone else, do not argue with an idiot. He'll drag you down to his level and beat you with experience.
*
One more.
Light travels faster than sound. This is why factoid appears bright until you hear him speak.

By savemejeebus (not verified) on 15 Aug 2011 #permalink

It was said well [here](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2011/08/the_australians_war_on_science_…)

>And factoid hasn't shown that Fraser's idea that it was an abnormally cold winter is anywhere near reality, instead quibbling (incompetently) about comparisons with average temperatures.

>Why, it's almost like factoid would like to redirect debate away from Fraser's bogus claims - to something, else, anything else!

And [here](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2011/08/the_australians_war_on_science_…):

>Imagine how scathing the analysis when Factorrhoid gets around to dealing with Plimer's bullshit.

>I guess we'll hear the 'oid say things like @64: "Note that this isn't a simple mistake by Plimer.You have to go out of your way to ignore numerous studies,the views of such bodies as the AAS,the USGS,the CDIAC and the Geological Society of the UK,use fake references and fail to correct the errors at proof stage,then fail to print a corrigendum."

> Lambert could not find the desired result in the Sydney data...

That particular claim presumes facts not in evidence. Do you read minds, or are you monitoring Tim's computers? Or is it OK for you to make claims that you cannot substantiate as quibble about other people's use of actual facts?

Oh, and as others have pointed out to you on the Crikey thread, **even** the claim that the desired result is not present in the Observatory Hill data averages for the last 30 years is false. (And to pile on, "the last 30 years" is the **most generous** selection for your case. If you use longer periods the comparison is even more stark.)

[30 year average max temperature](http://www.bom.gov.au/jsp/ncc/cdio/cvg/av?p_stn_num=066062&p_prim_eleme…) vs 2011:

[June](http://www.bom.gov.au/climate/dwo/201106/html/IDCJDW2124.201106.shtml): 18.0 vs 18.0
[July](http://www.bom.gov.au/climate/dwo/201107/html/IDCJDW2124.201107.shtml): 17.4 vs 17.4
[August (30 years full month vs 2011 first 16 days)](http://www.bom.gov.au/climate/dwo/201108/html/IDCJDW2124.201108.shtml): 18.9 vs 20.4

You could try to hang your hat on August not being finished yet - but that would be supremely silly given the date the claims were made. So **by your own standards** ("Sydney weather" = Observatory Hill, using last 30 years only), then winter 2011 when the statements were made **is** warmer than the average of the last 30 years.

(And technically you should perform a gridded reconstruction using all the weather stations in the Sydney area if you're going to be that pedantic about what represents "Sydney weather" - which you haven't. But then Sydney Airport's warmer winter 2011 would influence the results, which you probably are keen to avoid...)

> That is very deceptive and misleading.

You have strange standards for "deceptive and misleading".

So how about that Fraser character, eh? I'm expecting your condemnation of the clearly incorrect implication that this winter was the "coldest in memory" (proffered as anecdotal evidence for her denialist memes) any day now. Because even *your own interpretation* of the data shows her perception was wrong. So any time you're ready, let it rip.

(Oh, wait, on Crikey you're falling back to "it was just her perception so you can't legitimately fact check it". If that's true, then that's an admission that your attempts to fact-check Lambert's fact-check are also moot. When you argue with yourself like that, which one of you wins and how does the loser cope?)

And how about that Plimer bloke that Fraser approvingly quoted, eh? Still waiting for your tidal wave of outrage at his massive deception. You got an ETA for that?

No, didn't think so.

By Lotharsson (not verified) on 15 Aug 2011 #permalink

What would be amazing - if it hadn't been seen over and over again in the past - is factoid's intent focus on a nit (that turns out to be illusory anyway), and the complete lack of perception of the giant boulder of actual bullshit.

By Lotharsson (not verified) on 15 Aug 2011 #permalink

The hilarious part of Factoid's bullshit is its
> "it was just her perception so you can't legitimately fact check it"

And I thought these Bolt fans hated uni-wanker post-modernist anti-thinking? Looks like post-modernist anti-thinking is their refuge.

By Vince whirlwind (not verified) on 15 Aug 2011 #permalink

Lambert must have done detailed research on this nit to go out of his way to deceive.

He has investigated Fraser's biography to determine she arrived in Sydney in 1982. Hence the 30 year time frame.
This was established by Lambert not me.

The Sydney weather station is not a matter of pick and choose your preferred station. Observatory Hill is the official Sydney data. There is no wiggle room. No way you can spin it.

So Lotharsson as you prove, June 2011 is not warmer than the 30 year average.

Lambert has misled with the conclusion and the data source.

July 2011 is not warmer than the 30 year average.

Lambert has misled with the conclusion and the data source.

Lambert's statements are not 'perception' but scientifically false and linked to the wrong data.

And you are trying to justify it?

As for Plimer, he didn't write the chain email, nor the comments attributed to him in it.

Would factoid be so cavalier about someone saying "I am a fan of the idea of global warming, especially after this Sydney summer. It has been the hottest I can remember."?

That's exactly the point.
Lambert pretends to be fighting for scientific integrity, yet has none himself.

If the SMH published such an anecdote, would he write a blog post to correct the error?

Would he and you claim the mere publishing of such an anecdote is anti-science?

What we can say from this example, is that in such a situation, Lambert is likely to claim that the statement was true, and use the wrong data to prove it.

Factoid, does the Fraser article meet your standards for editorial?

And if you need assistance with what Plimar wrote, please review [these posts](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/global_warming/plimer/) and tell us who is cherry picking, getting their science from blogs and misleading readers.

Then we can ask you the same about your judgement of the [Australian's war on science](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/the_war_on_science/).

Or would you prefer to pursue your exercise in meta-cherry
picking?

Fuctoid (sic) either gets paid to do this (disrupting blogs that could lead to negative publicity for the Big Polluters), or he's a trollmeister who thrives on any kind of attention, or he's one or more of: shareholder in mining industry who thinks he may lose money if AGW is understood by the lumpenproles, or a right wing apparatchik like Nick "I support Big Tobacco" Minchin. In the end though, he's a big Yawn.

Factoid,

Would you care to give us your opinion on how the Australian treats Climate Science?

> Lambert has misled with the conclusion and the data source.

Not as much as you seem to think. On the data source, the BOM's own web pages explicitly state:

> If you are after **long-term averages relevant to Sydney**, New South Wales, look at the tables for Sydney (Observatory Hill), Centennial Park Round House or **Sydney Airport AMO**.

As to the conclusion, you must be willingly blind to seriously think that "Summer was warmer than average" fails to make the case that "This winter has been the coldest I can remember" is bullshit, even if "June, July and August were each warmer than average" is not available.

Smarter trolls, please.

By Lotharsson (not verified) on 15 Aug 2011 #permalink

[factoid](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2011/08/the_australians_war_on_science_…),
>"Lambert could not find the desired result in the Sydney data, so he inserted Sydney Airport data."

You are projecting. You are also assuming that your mind-reading abilities are up to divining Tim's reasons. You are also desperately and completely unsuccessfully trying to draw attention away from Fraser's claim that this winter has been the coldest she can remember.

Either her memory is seriously malfunctioning ([July 2010](http://www.bom.gov.au/climate/dwo/201007/html/IDCJDW2124.201007.shtml) and [August 2010](http://www.bom.gov.au/climate/dwo/201008/html/IDCJDW2124.201008.shtml) were both colder than their 2011 equivalents ([July here](http://www.bom.gov.au/climate/dwo/201107/html/IDCJDW2124.201107.shtml) and [August here](http://www.bom.gov.au/climate/dwo/201108/html/IDCJDW2124.201108.shtml))), or she's just hoping other people's memories are. I could not get June 2010 temperatures, but your case is looking more and more desperate by the minute.

Scribe@99: I suspect factoid/tones9 is either a Rupert's Shrivelled Organ subeditor, or one of Tiny Rabbott's flacks. Either way, it can't be very good for sleeping at night. Hence the drive by trolling.

Simple questions,Factorrhoid. Is Ian Plimer a suitable source for comment on volcanic contribution to atmospheric CO2? Do you endorse his written and oral statements on the subject? Yes or no?

Really, you AGW druids are like those cut-off platoons of bewildered Japanese soldiers who hid in the Pacific jungles not knowing that WWII had ended and their side had lost.

The world has moved on, but you cling to the old faith; your loyalty does you more credit than your rationality.

By Rick Bradford (not verified) on 16 Aug 2011 #permalink

The world HAS moved on.

And the predictions of the denialists on the weather has proven false.

Again.

And, despite their avowed intent to punish scientists telling lies, Michaels and Wegman are still at large.

James Haughton:

> With respect, Frank, you've been calling for other people to go to the trouble, expense, and reputation risk of slinging lawsuits in all directions for a long time now. Unless you're prepared to bankroll such action personally, why not take a breather, eh?

If you apply your same 'logic' to the question of whether Tim Lambert should write a book about the Australian's shenanigans -- 'How dare you ask someone else to write a book! If you want a book why don't you write one yourself?' -- you'll quickly see what's wrong with that 'reasoning'.

Anyway, if I am Emperor of the World, suing the asses off the denialists is what I'll do. But I'm not. I can't sue a person for slandering someone who's not me, and I'm not the richest person in the world. What I can do is to provide information, effort, and encouragement -- that I can do. But if no one's going to use the information I'm willing to provide, then what's the whole point?

Anyway, to me the bottom line is that there are two kinds of people: (1) those who think that only rich and powerful people should be allowed to contemplate law and justice and everyone else should just shut up, and (2) those who don't think so. Which kind are you?

-- frank

> -- 'How dare you ask someone else to write a book! If you want a book why don't you write one yourself?' --

Or, for that matter, 'How dare you ask someone else to write a book! Are you willing to bankroll the publication of the book and look after all the administrative matters? If not, shut up!'

-- frank

Wow #107

And the predictions of the denialists on the weather has proven false.

Again.

And, despite their avowed intent to punish scientists telling lies, Michaels and Wegman are still at large.

Indeed Wow, and whilst following up on Bastardi's recent bout of diarrhoea (examined at Tamino's starting in Settled Science and at SkepticalScience One Confusedi Bastardi I found a classic piece of Lindzen-bubkes dating back to 2007 here:

Larry King: Bill Nye vs. Richard Lindzen

Where Lindzen from 1:54 offers this:

'The Gulf Stream is mostly driven by wind to shut it down you'd have to stop the rotation of the Earth or shut off the wind. And there's a lot of confusion in this and â a â you know â at the heart of it wer'e talking about a few tenths of a degree change in temperature none of it in the last eight years by the way....'

At this point if Lindzen had not made such stunningly wrong claims and helped to perpetuate confusion I would have fallen asleep over that word 'tem---per--a---ture'.

What about the last eight years now Dick. Nixon once had the handle 'Tricky' perhaps its time to move it. Lindzen should be added to your list Wow.

factoid @97

Why would any of us claim Fraser's anecdote is anti-science (seriously?), when we can simply point out that her memory is quite flawed?

I'm quite confident that if someone ranted on and on about a Sydney summer being the warmest they could remember, and it wasn't actually the warmest, that people like Tim and the folks here would point out the mistake. And on the other hand, I'm pretty sure you would rip into them while doing lots of hand-waving to distract from people like Fraser's errors.

Just to note: There is an utterly incomprehensible rant of an editorial in The Oz today about Tim Wilson's FOI bombardment of the Climate Change Department. He's gone feral; my memory of The Age story is 450 requests including 150 lodged in one day. By any court's standard it would be vexatious (or a symptom of Obsessive Compulsive Disorder). I was going to try and sum up The Oz's editorial but it's just an incomprehensible wail of dribble.

When daylight comes I'll put up a link (haven't worked out how to cut and paste on the iPad and insomnia not bad enough to get me out of bed and to the computer). It's worth looking up if you want to puzzle over human psychology. I THINK they might love WikiLeaks. And all public servants are lazy. And something about transparency being necessary because a consultant said something once? And exercising rights! Righty right rights! Something something!

Needed more exclamation marks really. If read out loud, have a drink first as it is written in a tone that requires spittle to fly.

< HIV Sites
STIMULATING IMMUNE FUNCTION TO DEFEAT THE HUMAN IMMUNODEFICIENCY VIRUS, OTHER PATHOGENS, AND TOXINS
Stimulating defective immune function to perform efficiently is a desirable approach to defeating pathogens and toxins. Such stimulation is represented as unavailable, while in truth the immunostimulating properties of lithium and antidepressants were documented many years ago.1-4 A therapeutic claim is reinforced when the mechanism is known. Prostaglandins, when produced excessively, depress every component of immune function, and induce microbial replication. Wherever the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) comes into contact with arachidonic acid, an envelope glycoprotein powerfully converts this precursor to prostaglandin E2, depressing immune function and promoting viral replication, excessive prostaglandin E2 a leading candidate for the immunosuppression that is the hallmark of AIDS.5-7Antidepressants inhibit the synthesis of prostaglandin E2, antagonize its actions, and stimulate the primary prostaglandin-degrading enzyme.8-10
Cumulative evidence shows that lithium has immunostimulating, antiviral, and antibacterial properties,11 antidepressants immunostimulating, antiviral, antibacterial,1-4 anti-parasite, and fungicidal properties.12-15 Lithium is often effective for bacterial skin infections, aphthous ulcers, cold sores, and genital herpes,11 antidepressants for aphthous ulcers, cold sores, and genital herpes.11Tuberculosis, now the #1 killer of the HIV infected, is developing resistance to standard treatment. In the late nineteen forties, physicians working in tuberculosis sanitaria observed patients with elevations of mood and energy. Their charts revealed that all were taking the monoamine oxidase inhibitors isoniazid or iproniazid, an observation from which antidepressant therapy developed. If antituberculotics double as antidepressants, surely antidepressants must double as antituberculotics? The antimalarial properties of antidepressants in vitro are supported by many studies.12When added to antiretrovirals, antidepressants can reduce HIV viral loads to undetectable.16 The authors of this study attribute this to adherence, seemingly unaware of the antiviral properties of antidepressants. The advantage of immunostimulation is its non-specificity, a stimulated immune system indifferent to antigenicity.
People with intact immune function are relatively invulnerable to pathogens and toxins, compared to those with defective function. Depression is a seldom mentioned cause of defective immunity, although indices of immune function indicate that it does so.17In a study of 405 HIV-positive gay and bisexual men, those who reported being depressed throughout the eight-year study period, were two-thirds more likely to die than those who were never significantly depressed.18
Forty years ago, prostaglandins were shown to regulate immune function, and lithium and antidepressants to inhibit prostaglandins. Gradually, prostaglandins were found to regulate every aspect of HIV replication, and HIV to stimulate prostaglandin E2 production, to a greater degree than other viruses. This prostaglandin, when produced excessively, is thought to be responsible for the immune depression that is the hallmark of AIDS. Twenty five years ago, I believed that lithium and antidepressants could be used as heavy artillery against HIV, but when lithium failed to improve patients with AIDS in two small clinical trials, came to favor antidepressants for this purpose.19,20,21,22
1. Lieb J. Remission of herpes virus infection and immunopotentiation with lithium carbonate: inhibition of prostaglandin E1 synthesis by lithium may explain its antiviral, immunopotentiating, and antimanic properties. Biol Psychiatry 1981; 695-698.
2. Lieb J. Remission of rheumatoid arthritis and other disorders of immunity in patients taking monoamine oxidase inhibitors. Int J Immunopharmacol 1983; 5(4): 353-357.
3. Rosenthal S, Fitch W. The antiherpetic effects of phenelzine. J Clin Psychopharmacol 1987; 7(2):119.
4. Murphy D, Donnelly C, Moskowitz J. Inhibition by lithium of prostaglandin E1 and norepinephrine effects on cyclic adenosine monophosphate production in human platelets. Clin Pharmacol Ther 1973; 14(5):810-814.
5. Lee R. The influence of psychotropic drugs on prostaglandin biosynthesis. Prostaglandins 1974; 5(1):63-68.
6. Manku MS, Horrobin DF. Chloroquine, quinine, procaine, quinidine and clomipramine are prostaglandin agonists and antagonists. Prostaglandins 1976; 12: 789-801.
7. Mak O, Chen S. Effects of two antidepressant drugs imipramine and amitriptyline on the enzyme activity of 15-hydroxyprostaglandin dehydrogenase purified from brain, lung, liver and kidney of mouse. Prog Lipid Res 1986; 25: 153-155.
8. Fernandez-Cruz E, Gelpi E, Longo N, Gonzalez B, de la Morena, MT, Montes, MG, Rosello , J, Ramis I,Suarez A, Fernandez, A. Increased synthesis and production of prostaglandin E2 by monocytes from drug addicts with AIDS. AIDS 1989; 3: 93-96.
9. Wahl L, Corcoran M, Pyle S, Pyle SW, Arthur LO, Harel-Bellan A, Farrar WL. Human immunodeficiency virus glycoprotein (gp120) induction of monocyte arachidonic acid metabolites and interleukin 1. Proc. Natl Acad. Sci. USA 1989; 86:621-625.
10. Dumais N, Barbeau B, Olivier M, Tremblay MJ. Prostaglandin E2 up-regulates HIV-1 long terminal repeat-driven gene activity in T cells via NF-kappa B-dependent and - independent signaling pathways. J Biol Chem 1998; 273(42): 27306-27314
11. Dutta P, Pinto J, Rivlin R. Antimalarial properties of imipramine and amitriptyline. J Protozool 1990; 37(1): 54-58.
12. Lieb,J."The immunostimulating and antimicrobial properties of lithium and antidepressants." J Infection (2004) 49; 88-93
13. Lass-Florl C, Dierich MP, Fuchs D, Semenitz E, Ledochowski M. Antifungal activity against Candida sp. by the selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor sertraline. Clin Infect Dis 2001; 33(12):E135-136.
14. Munoz-Bellido J, Munoz-Criado S, Garcia-Rodriguez J. Antimicrobial activity of psychotropic drugs: selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors. Int J Antimicrob Agents 2000; 14(3): 177-180.
15. Tsai A, Weiser S, Petersen M, Ragland K, Bangsberg D. Effect of antidepressant medication treatment on ARV adherence and HIV-1 RNA viral load in HIV+ homeless and marginally housed individuals. In: Program and abstracts of the 16th Conference on Retroviruses and Opportunistic Infections; February 8-11, 2009; Montreal, Canada. Abstract 584
16. Frank M, Hendricks S, Johnson D, Wiesler J L, Burke WJ. Antidepressants augment natural killer cell activity: in vivo and in vitro. Neuropsychobiology 1999; 39(1):18-24.
17. Mayne TJ, Vittinghoff E, Chesney MA, Barrett DC, Coates TJ. Depressive affect and survival among gay and bisexual men infected with HIV. Arch Intern Med. 1996 Oct 28; 156(19):2233-8.
18. Lieb,J."Stimulating immune function to kill viruses." (And bacteria, parasites, and fungi). 2009, Amazon
19. Evans DL, Ten Have TR, Douglas SD, Gettes DR, Morrison M, Chiappini MS, Brinker-Spence P, Job C, Mercer DE, Wang YL, Cruess D, Dube B, Dalen EA, Brown T, Bauer R, Petitto JMAssociation of depression with viral load, CD8 T lymphocytes, and natural killer cells in women with HIV infection. Am J Psychiatry. 2002 Oct; 159(10):1752-9.
20. Evans DL, Lynch KG, Benton T, Dube B, Gettes Tustin NB, Lai JP, Metsger D, Douglas SD Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor and substance P antagonist enhancement of natural killer cell innate immunity in human immunodeficiency virus/ acquired immunodeficiency syndrome. Biol Psychiatry 2008 May 1:63(9):899-905. Epub 2007 Oct 22.
21. Benton T, Lynch K, Dube,B, Gettes DR, Tustin NB, Lai JP, Metsger DS, Blume J, Douglas SD, Evans DL. Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitor Suppression of HIV Infectivity and Replication Psychosom Med 2010 Oct 14
22. Action mechanisms of lithium chloride on cell infection by transmissible gastroenteritis coronavirus. Ren X, Meng F, Yin J, Li G, Li X, Wang C, Herrler G. PLoS One. 2011 May 6; 6(5):e18669.
Date: Dr. Lieb submitted to HIV-Sites.com on December 3, 2010.
Disclaimer: This article is for educational purposes only. All treatment decisions to be made with a physician.
Pubmed for additional information.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
DECLARATION OF HUMAN RIGHTS, 1946
Whereas recognition of the inherent dignity and of the equal and inalienable rights of all members of the human family is the foundation of freedom, justice and peace in the world,
Whereas disregard and contempt for human rights have resulted in barbarous acts which have outraged the conscience of mankind, and the advent of a world in which human beings shall enjoy freedom of speech and belief and freedom from fear and want has been proclaimed as the highest aspiration of the common people,
Article 19.
Everyone has the right to freedom of opinion and expression; this right includes freedom to hold opinions without interference and to seek, receive and impart information and ideas through any media and regardless of frontiers.
------------------------------------------------------------
Human Rights prohibit evaluation, editorializing, consulting, interference or delay in disseminating the information
------------------------------------------------------------
The Australian suppressed the paradigm shift. Immunostimulation, touted as unavailable, has been available 1981, its suppression inflicting a colossal human and economic wound on society, easily surpassing the First World War. I suggest an ethical human rights lawyer to lodge a complaint for violating article 19 of the declaration of Human Rights in 1946, written with the hope of preventing atrocities such as those that occured during the second world war, and violated pandemically by
lay and medical media.

By Julian Lieb,M.D (not verified) on 16 Aug 2011 #permalink

Amanda what a gobsmackingly stupid editorial.

Contrast the editorial with their support on mainstream science in this article on vaccination. I wonder if the same editorialist would think it appropriate to inundate immunisation researchers with FOI requests?

Bradford:

The world has moved on,

Indeed Dick, the ice is moving on. Easily gone by the predicted date of 2040.

By Chris O'Neill (not verified) on 16 Aug 2011 #permalink

The world has moved on, but you cling to the old faith...

Posted from the Iowa, U.S.A. GOP caucus?

By Doug Bostrom (not verified) on 16 Aug 2011 #permalink

Amanda, Acacia,

> When bureaucrats complain about being held to account the rest of us start wondering what they have got to hide.

Sooo....The Australian now *supports* the idea of a media inquiry by the Federal Government?

By Vince whirlwind (not verified) on 16 Aug 2011 #permalink

[Extract:](http://www.scientificamerican.com/article.cfm?id=galileo-movement-fuels…)

>*Jackson Wells, a Sydney-based public relations firm, is handling the [Galileo] movement's publicity. The firm's eclectic client list ranges from tobacco and mining companies to academics, the Rotary Club International, the Church of Scientology and the sponsors of the Sydney Peace Prize.*

I wonder if the sponsors of the Sydney Peace Prize are aware of who they are giving money to. And, do any readers here have any links to the Rotary Club?

Jackson Wells [current clients](http://jacksonwells.com.au/projects.html) are listed as:

**AMP**

Australian Water

**British American Tobacco**

**Cambridge University Press**

**Church of Scientology**

Dell

Dynasty Metals Australia

Evans and Peck

[The Exclusive Brethren]( http://www.theage.com.au/news/opinion/exclusive-thats-the-problem/2007/…)

The Galileo Movement

The GPT Group

**Imperial Tobacco**

Insurance Council of Australia

Leighton

Luxottica Group

Manly Warringah Sea Eagles

OâBrien Glass

Rotary International

Royal Flying Doctor Service

Talas Electronik (Joint company of ThyssenKrupp and EADS)

**Sydney Peace Foundation**

**University of Western Sydney**

**Warner Bros. Entertainment Australia.**

Do AMP, Warner Bros., and Dell, want to be associated with Big Tobbacc, Religious cults and Climate change deniers?

The Galileo movement are awaiting the advent of a modern day climate change Galileo, be it Spencer, lindzen or even Salby,

He has already been,60 years ago, his name was G.S. Callendar, missed him, by that much

By john byatt (not verified) on 16 Aug 2011 #permalink

I sent this email to AMP:

Complaint - AMP has dodgy public relations firm
Dear AMP

I am a long-term AMP client. I'm writing to you from an anonymous email address so as not to compromise my account.

I wish to complain about AMP's use of the PR firm JACKSON WELLS. AMP is claimed by them as a client here:
http://jacksonwells.com.au/projects.html

Jackson Wells also represents the global warming denier group called The Galileo Movement which is deliberately spreading scientific misinformation to the detriment of all Australians, and especially young Australians.
You can read about them here: http://sourcewatch.org/index.php?title=Galileo_Movement

If AMP continues to use this PR firm, I shall end my relationship with the company.

Sincerely
A long-term client.

Heads up to Tim: Galileo Movement hits Scientific American:

"John Smeed, a retired engineer and a Galileo Movement's co-founder"

Judging from his CV as an air-conditioning engineer, I wouldn't be surprised if Smeed believes Venus is so hot because of the pressure of its atmosphere.

What is it about manager engineers?

By Chris O'Neill (not verified) on 16 Aug 2011 #permalink

Oh gawd. An airconditioning engineer. OK, well the first thing he's going to claim is that global warming violates the 2nd law of thermodynamics, as can be seen by the way heat pumps work. Complete garbage of course. But I bet that's what he claims without even looking at his history.

Jeremy C said:

[BTW That insiders clip was a very, very good example of why this government should never, never, never have used the word 'pollutant' to label greenhouse gases as Akerman was able to slap Marr about the face with it verbally and Marr was shot down very, very quickly. Fanatics will always look for ways to trap us, that's the nature of a fanatic.]

I respectfully disagree. As AWoS has shown, the culture warriors play by the rules of war. That they will lie and misprepresent is a given. Had Akerman shut up for even a second, the term "pollution" could have been amply justified (whioch is why he didn't)-- because that is what one calls industrial effluent leaving a sequestered location (as distinct from "waste" which is what one calls it when it remains isolated).

Marr was not "slapped down" so much as shouted down. Akerman just appeared to be the loudmouthed ranter that he is. Points to Marr, IMO.

By Fran Barlow (not verified) on 16 Aug 2011 #permalink

How about the demolishing of 'The Weather Fakers'.. :-)
And, anytime you want to apologize to lil ole Billy Bob Hall for krectly predictin the braykin of the drowt, apology of course gratefully accepted. :-)

By Billy Bob Hall (not verified) on 16 Aug 2011 #permalink

Fran,

I respectfully disagree.
Culture warriors and their fanatic/denier sidekicks twist words that have the slighest ambiguity about them and that is what is why using the word 'pollutant' causes confusion in the minds of listeners.

I believe we have to be very careful about using a form of words that the culture warriors and their fanatic/denier sidekicks can't wriggle through e.g. instead of 'pollutant' use 'emissions' because I think using the word 'emissions' enables you to go straight to the science. In Marr's situation he had less than five seconds to make his point, Akerman got him on the word pollutant, Marr had no 2 second comeback and bang he lost.

Don't forget to the culture warriors and their fanatic/denier sidekicks winning the argument is not the focal point of the encounter, the audience is the focal point. Why else would Bob Carter continue to trudge around Australia and NZ speaking constantly to small community groups in church halls and progress association halls while we have bright eyed shiny types attending Al Gore's training sessions so they can go and have meetings with middle ranking execs in corporates who agree with every thing the bright shiny types say to them and the the bright shiny types come away excitedly believing they have made an impact. The problem is that middle ranking execs will not do anything or make a decision unless they are told to and are well schooled in appearing agreeable and on side.(Please everybody I mean no slight to Al Gore and his sacrificial work its more a comment on how things happen in Australia)

I very much agree with your desciption of the culture warriors playing by the rules of war. Our disadvantage is that its a war not of our own making and the media in general don't see it as a relentless conflict waged by the culture warriors and their fanatic/denier sidekicks.

In this war, not of our making, we are playing by the Geneva Convention while the instigators are gleefully burning the Red Cross parcels.

Sorry to go all over the place but I believe the culture warriors and their fanatic/denier sidekicks have been continually making the running in this whole thing and we are only playing catch up. It also comes from being assured a few years ago by a sustainability campaigner deeply plugged intot eh Australian scene that the deniers were "finished" and "irrelevant" and then a few weeks later climategate broke.

BTW. If I ever find myself in a public debate with a fanatic/denier I am going to equip myself with a CO2 canister and a facemask and ask them to breath deeply when they make the inevitable comment about it being non toxic/etc.

I wouldn't be surprised if Smeed believes Venus is so hot because of the pressure of its atmosphere.

Yes, he does indeed have that at his "Galileo" website along with all the usual nutcase crap and also some gems I haven't heard before such as that Fourier himself disproved the greenhouse effect.

By Chris O'Neill (not verified) on 17 Aug 2011 #permalink

Well put, Jeremy.

Though I don't disagree with Fran on the strict definition of a pollutant, the anti-science barbarians are fighting a vicious propaganda war with no semblance of rules or decency (vide Rupert's UK operations). These people are fundamentally driven by greed and fear - it defines them as right-wingers, whose greatest insult (and projected anxiety) is to be considered to be a loser. They are playing politics for pennies and power, not engaging in civil or reasoned debate: Koch-suckers all.

The examples of factoid/tones9 and Rick Bradford, not to mention the Monckton minions and Gloria Jones' Grey Hoards demonstrate the futility of arguing from fact or good faith. Sure, they can't fight the physics and will not prevail, but they can't admit to themselves that they've lost either. So we have to go around them and keep the bright light on the evident idiots for long enough for them to die or forget. Unfortunately the planet doesn't have another decade before even the Greedy's get worried that maybe the DFHs and those bloody smart-arse scientists were right after all.

BTW, never mind the CO2 canister and mask - just ask the deniers to put their head into a plastic bag for 10 minutes. As soon as the FiCO2 gets above ~ 20% they will certainly agree with whatever you say.

I see the latest salvo in the unremitting war campaign of the fanatics/deniers is the call by the WA Libs for a royal commission into the science of AGW.

Because it is unlikely to happen they can achieve a why-won't-they-allow-a-royal-commission,-what-have-they-got-to-hide meme that can bounce back and forth effectively at public level for a number of times and after it dies away be brought back as 'evidence' that the government and scientists are conspiring. If such a commission actually went ahead and demonstrated that the science is sound etc, etc then it will only become a useful "whitewash" meme for the fanatics/deniers.

You gotta hand it to these guys, they are always one step ahead. The only thing that I can see that could out reach them is the Carbon Tax getting passed in Parliament. I understand this could happen within two months.......... however, it could be derailed by Craig Thomson's difficulties resulting in a byelection (unless in this case the Libs are being passed information by Godwin Gretch's protege).

If I may take a digression and run with it for a moment... re the toxicity of CO2. It's not actually 'toxic' in the dictionary sense, is it? CHN is toxic because it interferes immediately with cell function and buggers up organs and brain, and carbon monoxide is toxic because it oxidises in the bloodstream. But if I walk into a room with a cylinder of CO2 emptying I actually asphyxiate, do I not, because the heavier than air CO2 fills the volume and forces the breathable air out? Or does breathed CO2 in large quantities truly have a toxic effect? I ask because this is relevant to a bit of fiction I'm writing at the moment.

> CHN is toxic because it interferes immediately with cell function and buggers up organs and brain

CO2 levels over 0.5% will damage your brain and other organs.

Thanks Wow. So toxic it is then. It's not just an asphyxiation death. Hmm.

Carbon Tax getting passed in Parliament ...

You can expect at ratcheting up of the tone and frequency of denialist marketing to a fever pitch over this. People like Gina Rinehart have the money to make that happen.

Crispy, increasing levels of CO2 cause hypercapnia (something I wish all deniers would experience).

She's an uneducated idiot. If saying so brands me as an elitist, it's only so among other uneducated idiots.

That makes her no better than an internet troll.

If I bought a paper tomorrow and put Louis Hissink and Joe Cambria all over it, would that entitle them to MORE respect? Simply because I spent money? Admittedly, and sadly, there are a lot of segments of society in the English-speaking world for whom the answer is "yes, it would."

By Marion Delgado (not verified) on 17 Aug 2011 #permalink

Following Scribe's lead, it's just possible Jackson Wells might be forced to be more choosy about their clients, if they find themselves shedding too many accounts as a result of expedient contracts with questionable customers. Judging from their list of present accounts, Jackson Wells has successfully been able to remain ethically vacuous because nobody has bothered to identify the mutually exclusive nature of certain of their PR campaigns.

To analogize, a single law firm won't represent mutual antagonists in a lawsuit.

The fundamental missions of Cambridge University Press as well as UWS seem in particular directly at odds and indeed vulnerable to successful promotion of the Galileo Movement's interests.

NWS has numerous press and other external communications staff listed here:

http://pubapps.uws.edu.au/teldir/schlprocess.php?FOMK#MARKSERV

AU and NZ Cambridge University Press contacts may be found here:
http://www.cambridge.org/contacts/

By Doug Bostrom (not verified) on 17 Aug 2011 #permalink

Factoid was very educational. A wonderful example of how to keep battling on when obviously wrong. A spectacular display of nitpicking, rather than focussing on the important bits. Well done! An object lesson in how to defend the indefensible.

By John Brookes (not verified) on 17 Aug 2011 #permalink

Nathan Myhrvold? Wasn't he instrumental in creating the monopathic, hegemonistic outbreak that attempted to transform all of our money into copies of Microsoft Windows? The "grey goo" as slightly incorrectly described by Bill Joy?

By Doug Bostrom (not verified) on 17 Aug 2011 #permalink

98 Misdirection

99 Paranoia and conspiracy

102 A website guide to where you can look for information, does not change the fact.

All BoM data titled Sydney is directed to Observatory Hill data. It is the Sydney weather.

103 Lambert could not accidently or ignorantly select Sydney Airport data. It was a deliberate act. If he published it in a paper it would be scientific fraud.

"Desperation" is having to resort to switching data to prove a point.

104 conspiracy.

105 Irrelevant

112 As I wrote, The Australian is being accused of being anti-science for publishing her anecdotes.
If you and Tim were so committed to the truth and scientific integrity, he would apologise for this error, and you would be demanding he do so.

122 "Galileo lies dissected":
"Many of the facts are perfectly true."
Assessment 1: "True"
2: "True"
3: "True". But apparently the laws of physics changed 300 years ago!
4: True figures.

Factoid,
obviously, you are just a trouble maker.

Choosing Sydney Airport is a valid choice. The records at Sydney airport are comprehensive and at a consistent location. If you go the the BOM site and look for Sydney, you are not directed to Observatory Hill, you are given a choice of areas in Sydney. And when you do choose Observatory Hill the table provided has the following proviso: "Most observations from Observatory Hill, but some from Fort Denison and Sydney Airport." Ref:http://www.bom.gov.au/climate/dwo/IDCJDW2124.latest.shtml.latest.shtml Sydney Airport is a better dataset. In any case the data for Observatory hill backs up what Tim Lambert is saying anyway.

Accusing him of Fraud is rubbish!

Here is a conspiracy for you, I strongly suspect that your purpose of coming onto this site is to attempt to discredit valid science in the view of casual observers, in the hope that they will not check what you are saying. In my opinion your behavior is disgusting.

By Lawrence McLean (not verified) on 20 Aug 2011 #permalink

Fraser is endorsing Plimer's erroneous claims re volcanic CO2,Factorrhoid. Her anecdote about Sydney's winter is a tack-on. You can: defend Plimer,reject Plimer and therefore Fraser,or discuss the relative importance of Plimer vs the local weather in Fraser's piece. You can keep sulking while you consider,of course.

Nick, you present a very convincing case that none of you actually read the content of the blog post. Let alone understand it. Of course we have already established that none of you actually fact check.

To repeat what Lambert wrote, Plimer did not write, nor has he ever written or spoken the claims made in the chain email.

Is that clear to you and everyone else?

Dreary ineducable troll. Ignore or dispatch. Next.

Factoids only goal is to divert attention away from the topic ie. Whenever the Oz runs a piece on climate it inevitably commits egregrious crimes against fact.

Oh, and any response from Fraser or the Oz on the woeful standard of journalism displayed withthis?

Factorrhoid,yes,Plimer did not author the email. However the email's author claimed to summarise Plimer's position as put in his book.
Plimer did not make the claim which references the CO2 output of a recent Icelandic eruption. I did not claim he did.But he has referred to that eruption on radio in a way that clearly supports the emails falsely attributed statement.
Several of Plimer's written claims about volcanic contributions and their size relative to human contributions,made in 'Heaven & Earth',underpin the email. For instance,this is one,on p.472: "massive volcanic eruptions[e.g.Pinatubo] emit the equivalent of a years human CO2 emissions in a few days." An extrapolation of this claim was clearly a basis of the email.

Plimer is on record in many radio interviews as claiming volcanic CO2 emission dwarf human ones,as well as furthering the CO2 mass balance furphy latched on to by Murry Salby. This is common knowledge. Plimer DID refer [2GB,19.04.10] to the Eyjafjallajokull eruption as producing "a huge amount of greenhouse gas...". When asked what this meant for AGW arguments,he replied ;"It completely stuffs them,we know that."

So,while the email may not be Plimer cited verbatim,Plimer's actual public utterances clearly inform it. Plimer's ill-information has helped enable it and is central to its content,whether or not he is literally cited within it. Are you going to attempt to argue Plimer's views are utterly misrepresented? Gee,how does unlucky old Plimer get associated with this sort of thing?

Tim said simply that "[Plimer]didn't write the email Fraser is quoting." How did you get to your second para @ 152 from that?

Factorrhoid is upset that the views of the fake Plimer are the same as those of the real one. And 'rhoid has misrepresented 'what Lambert wrote' in objecting to the 'misrepresentation' of Plimer.

Is that clear to you and everyone else?

Clearly a factoid.

By Chris O'Neill (not verified) on 20 Aug 2011 #permalink

> 102 A website guide to where you can look for information, does not change the fact.

...that (as I pointed out in 102 and you utterly ignored) even the dataset and baseline that **you** insist are the only valid ones demonstrate that **this winter is warmer than average**, which is strongly inconsistent with Fraser's claim that this winter was **unusually cold**.

And thus that your claim that "Lambert has misled with the conclusion..." is a blatant misrepresentation of the conclusion.

But hey, that's pretty much what I expected from someone who won't acknowledge the forest because they desperately want people to focus on the splinter.

By Lotharsson (not verified) on 21 Aug 2011 #permalink

Yes, apparently I'm supposed to demand a correction from Tim...even though this winter *is* warmer than average.

And apparently pointing out that Fraser's anecdotal evidence is wrong is calling her anti-science. Well, I suppose it is anti-science to make a claim that isn't supported by any of the actual data.

"[...]and carbon monoxide is toxic because it oxidises in the bloodstream[...]"

No, it is toxic because it locks out oxygen from hemoglobin, ans in consequence blood cannot transport oxygen in the body. It is accumulative over short times.

From the wikipedia:Carbon monoxide poisoning is the most common type of fatal air poisoning in many countries.[21] Carbon monoxide is colorless, odorless, and tasteless, but highly toxic. It combines with hemoglobin to produce carboxyhemoglobin, which is ineffective for delivering oxygen to bodily tissues. Concentrations as low as 667 ppm may cause up to 50% of the body's hemoglobin to convert to carboxyhemoglobin.[22] A level of 50% carboxyhemoglobin may result in seizure, coma, and fatality. In the United States, the OSHA limits long-term workplace exposure levels above 50 ppm.[23] Within short time scales, carbon monoxide absorption is cumulative, since the half-life is about 5 h in fresh air (see main article).

By Antoni Jaume (not verified) on 21 Aug 2011 #permalink

The interloper called ``Factoid'' is nothing but an intellectual haemorrhoid; and, you can take that to the bank!

By Donald Oats (not verified) on 22 Aug 2011 #permalink

Lotharsson, the official Sydney weather station, as labelled by the BoM, shows June and July 2011 mean max temp was exactly the same as the 30 year average.

Lambert wrote "June, July and August have all been warmer than the average for the past 30 years."

It doesn't get much simpler than that.

It's called deception. And its easy to deceive simple minds.

Factoid needs to be corrected again. Lambert was referring to measurements at Sydney Airport, and his assertion about thos temperatures is correct.

You've chosen to use Observatory Hill, and your assertions are incorrect.

At Observatory Hill, the 30-year record shows
*http://www.bom.gov.au/jsp/ncc/cdio/cvg/av?p_stn_num=066062&p_prim_eleme…*

June averages 18.0/9.8

June 2011
*http://www.bom.gov.au/climate/dwo/201106/html/IDCJDW2124.201106.shtml*

18/10.3.

Ergo, June 2011 was warmer than the 30-year average, which means Fraser's factoid was factually incorrect, along with your vapid assertions.

As for August, the Observatory Hill 30-year average shows 18.9/9.7

August 2011
*http://www.bom.gov.au/climate/dwo/201108/html/IDCJDW2124.201108.shtml*

19.7/10.3.

Ergo, August 2011 has been so far much warmer than the 30-year average, making Fraser's factoid grotesquely divergent from reality.

By Vince whirlwind (not verified) on 22 Aug 2011 #permalink

Meanwhile, where is your outrage at Fraser's deceptive assertions about CO2 emissions?

Or do you in fact possess one of these "simple minds"?

By Vince whirlwind (not verified) on 22 Aug 2011 #permalink

mean max temp

Looks like factoid only ever comes out at the instant the max temps occur.

Another day, another factoid.

By Chris O'Neill (not verified) on 22 Aug 2011 #permalink

I've just spent 30 minutes reading Jane Fraser's previous output for The Australian.

Let's just say the phrase "inane gibberish" is inadequate to describe her garbage. It's all self-centred anecdote with no relevance to any issues of even slight importance. To think people get paid for writing such drivel.

By Vince whirlwind (not verified) on 22 Aug 2011 #permalink

Wrong Vince.
Lambert was referring to Sydney temps but deceptively linked Sydney Airport.

As I wrote, June and July mean max were identical to 30 year average in 2011.

Funny how you don't even mention July.

As for the mean min. one is above and one below average.

Comparing 15 days of August to the monthly average is ridiculous and un-scientific.

> Lambert wrote "June, July and August have all been warmer than the average for the past 30 years."

Look, if it will make you happier I will state the obvious. He's right on the Sydney Airport data which he cited. But if he had made the claim against the Observatory Hill data, which he didn't, he would be wrong on the detail for two out of three months - but still right about Fraser's claim.

And now that I have agreed to your splinter, you could (but won't) address Fraser's forest: **Was Fraser wrong to say this winter was unusually cold** (never mind her claims about volcanoes)?

Before you decide not to answer, may I provide an quote that is apt with respect to Fraser's claim and your non-engagement with it?

> It's called deception. And its easy to deceive simple minds.

I'll take no answer as an indication that you possess such a simple mind.

And I'll elaborate some more in case you decide *this* time you want to assess Fraser's claims:

> Lotharsson, the official Sydney weather station, as labelled by the BoM, shows June and July 2011 mean max temp was exactly the same as the 30 year average.

Indeed. *Relevant* factoid: I haven't claimed otherwise, so you would find it far more useful to address my *actual* points.

For example, as I pointed out to you earlier, it also shows that August to date is significantly **warmer** than the 30 year average. Hence (and I reiterate, because you are apparently too simple to understand this point), Fraser's claim that this winter is unusually cold, **by your own approved dataset**, is incorrect. Worse still - **by your own approved dataset** this winter - to the date the claim was made - was **warmer than the 30 year average**.

Bet you don't disagree with that point - instead you'll try to nitpick something else.

> Comparing 15 days of August to the monthly average is ridiculous and un-scientific.

ROFLMAO! You really are grasping at straws!

Fraser wrote a claim **about the current winter** earlier in August. What is truly "ridiculous and un-scientific" is to claim that one cannot assess whether the claim was correct using the winter data up to the date the claim was made.

Your methods of attempted distraction are transparent.

By Lotharsson (not verified) on 22 Aug 2011 #permalink

I also note that factoid, a.k.a. tones9, hasn't responded to the Crikey thread where the [last comment](http://blogs.crikey.com.au/purepoison/2011/08/15/elsewhere-the-australi…) challenges him:

> Tone,you chump,how are you going addressing Ian Plimerâs deliberate errors? That,after all, is the supposedly authoritative heart of Fraserâs column. Your absolute silence confirms that you are well aware that the case against Plimerâs âHeaven and Earthâ is comprehensive ,and,sadly for the popularisation of science in Australia,damning in the extreme.

By Lotharsson (not verified) on 22 Aug 2011 #permalink

> Let's just say the phrase "inane gibberish" is inadequate to describe her garbage.

I have wondered whether factoid was Fraser, but that may rule it out ;-) Factoid is inane but he's not producing pure gibberish - merely desperately trying to distract from Fraser's false claims.

By Lotharsson (not verified) on 22 Aug 2011 #permalink

If Factoid were Fraser, there would be a lot of rambling nonsense about nuns, personal holidays, offspring making fun of her, more nuns, lunches with similarly inconsequential friends, and school reunions.

Factoid is perhaps one of her stablemates. The stretched logic and over-use of dishonest rhetorical devices points to somebody who, perhaps, didn't exactly graduate with 1st class Honours from a 1st class Uni in a subject of importance despite having been provided with an expensive educational grounding. Perhaps a bare pass in an Arts degree? Or maybe a failed journalism course?

I likewise am interested in when factoid will stop gnawing at Tim Lambert's unobjectionable statements and commence dealing with the horribly inaccurate statements made by Fraser about CO2.

By Vince whirlwind (not verified) on 22 Aug 2011 #permalink

> I likewise am interested in when factoid will stop gnawing at Tim Lambert's unobjectionable statements and commence dealing with the horribly inaccurate statements made by Fraser about CO2.

I suspect factoid cannot afford to do that. Based on simple extrapolations from the existing data points - which admittedly may suffer from significant inaccuracies, but may capture the flavour of the problem - the level of apoplexy required in a suitably proportionate response to *actual* massively deceptive allegations would likely prove biologically infeasible, or at least strongly detrimental ;-)

By Lotharsson (not verified) on 22 Aug 2011 #permalink

>Comparing 15 days of August to the monthly average is ridiculous and un-scientific

Fuctoid, stop and think about it for a minute...

If this August's mean for the first 15 days is already greater than the 30-year August mean, waiting for the second half of the month's data is not likely to improve things, because the southern winter is ending. Of course, we can always revisit this in a week and a day hence, and see if the last half of the month has brought the mean down to "below average"...

And speaking of "ridiculous and un-scientific", what evidence are you using to claim that Observatory Hill is more representative of Sydney's climate than is the airport? After all, Ob Hill is plonked between high-rise and the harbour, and probably not in a way that would neatly average out all sorts of local microclimatic hiccups. The Hill was long ago abandoned for serious astronomical purposes, and the BoM itself has not much more regard for its utility as an indicative station.

If you were actually serious in trying to defend the odious Fraser's inane and pseudoscientific crap, you'd have tried to source the data from each and every recording station in the Greater Sydney area, and then performed an appropriately-weighted polygon analysis.

So, how's that progressing?

By Bernard J. (not verified) on 22 Aug 2011 #permalink

As for the mean min. one is above

by 0.5 deg C

and one below average

by 0.1 deg C.

Factoid by name, factoid by claim.

By Chris O'Neill (not verified) on 22 Aug 2011 #permalink

Bernard J I'll give you and Lotharsson a little lesson about how science works. When you don't have complete data, you aren't allowed to make it up. So no matter how sure you are that the second half of August is going to be warmer than the 30 year average, you just can't make that assumption. It's a very simple scientific principle which you and Lambert do not obey. And you both claim to be upholding scientific integrity.

If I must repeat myself ad nauseum, Observatory Hill is where the Sydney weather is recorded. The BoM says so. All media you see and hear use this. They can't pick which location they want to use for Sydney weather like Lambert has. Other locations are clearly identified as such. Sydney Airport is referred to as Mascot on weather maps of the Sydney area. Lambert should have clearly indicated his data was that of Mascot, instead of implying it was Sydney.

Lotharsson as I stated in one of my first posts, Fraser made a personal anecdote about how the weather felt. Written in a color piece of personal writing. It has no scientific merit, nor does it claim to have any scientific merit. Fraser hasn't cited any temperatures or sources to justify the claim. It's just how she feels, rightly or wrongly.

The serious error here has been committed by a scientist misrepresenting scientific data.

And the dodos here trying to spin the justification for it.

> When you don't have complete data, you aren't allowed to make it up.

They didn't. They used real data.

Lambert used real incomplete data for the month of August, and compared it to the average for the complete month of August.

Moreover he did not declare he had done this.

That is deceptive, and the analysis is invalid and unscientific.

When you don't have complete data, you aren't allowed to make it up.

Unless you write for The Australian.

By Chris O'Neill (not verified) on 23 Aug 2011 #permalink

incomplete data for the month of August

Let's all thank the factoid for informing us that August hasn't finished yet. I would have been deceived into thinking it was if he hadn't told us otherwise.

By Chris O'Neill (not verified) on 23 Aug 2011 #permalink

When Fraser gave us her thoughts,Sydney had just experienced a record-equalling ten consecutive winter days with maxima exceeding 20C. This period was the earlier [the closer to mid-winter] of the two recorded.

This was reported in the Fairfax press at the time,but not by News Ltd.

Fraser's take on the 'cold' winter was entirely informed by her anecdote about her carpetless,curtainless house renovation. She used this 'fascinating' aside to introduce the Plimeresque email which dominates her column in direct proportion to Factorrhoid's refusal to acknowledge such.

*Fraser made a personal anecdote about how the weather felt. *

And she was completely wrong.

This is why we should trust scientists rather than random unqualified people off the street.

But not The Australian...

Reportage about sea level rise? Interview random old guy in speedos at the beach whose misinformed views happen to coincide with The Australian's anti-factual agenda about sea level rise.

And so on....

Meanwhile, Fraser's "personal anecdotes" about CO2, volcanoes and Pinatubo quoted figures about CO2 which were completely and utterly wrong.

But you don't care about Fraser's deceptive writing.
Why is that?

By Vince whirlwind (not verified) on 23 Aug 2011 #permalink

Fuctoid's regular posts here are, of course, a transparent tissue of tosh, but that's not the point. His posts give the appearance of a debate, the appearance of a controversy, the semblance of weighty arguments wrestling together, as if the outcome were unclear. Triple digit IQs know this is a false impression, that the arguments are crystal clear and decided, that Fuctoid has no limb on which to stand, but that does not detract from Fuctoid's purpose, which he achieves, and that is to fool some of the people all of the time. To quote from the Denialist Credo:

Doubt is our product since it is the best means of competing with the âbody of factâ that exists in the mind of the general public. It is also the means of establishing a controversy.

I'm interested in the mentality behind factoid's:

> Lambert used real incomplete data for the month of August, and compared it to the average for the complete month of August.
...
That is deceptive, and the analysis is invalid and unscientific.

Apparently he doesn't know what an average is.

Factoid is Tim Curtin.

By Vince whirlwind (not verified) on 23 Aug 2011 #permalink

While I don't live in Australia, I feel that this Sydney winter has been one of the warmest I can remember. But please don't bother me with any facts or figures. It's only an anecdote. I can make any claim I want because of that. It's just how I feel. Wheeeee!

> Bernard J I'll give you and Lotharsson a little lesson about how science works.

EPIC FAIL. (And ROFL.)

For reasons previously given, and still valid.

> It has no scientific merit, nor does it claim to have any scientific merit.

In that case, YOUR heavy investment in debating *scientific assessment* of Fraser's claim as if the assessments might have merit is utterly redundant. I guess you can stop now, as **you** have demonstrated that your own nitpicking is entirely moot.

So you will, right? Right?

> The serious error here has been committed by a scientist misrepresenting scientific data.

Firstly, Tim isn't a scientist in that sense. (Is that a "serious error" you just committed?)

Secondly, you're completely clueless or mendacious if you think **the** (singular) serious error here was Tim's comparisons of Jun/Jul/Aug, and not Fraser's numerous serious falsehoods and misrepresentations, or even Plimer's serious errors that "informed" some of Fraser's claims.

> Moreover he did not declare he had done this.

Perhaps he credited readers such as yourself with more intelligence than you have put on display? Especially since (most) readers are quite capable of following links and reading the specifications of the data they are being pointed to?

And especially since he was comparing a claim of "coldest I can remember" with data showing it to be such a *long way* from "coldest..." in a period reasonably representative of a generic "[period] ...I can remember".

And MOST especially since anyone with half a brain can work out that over 30 years the last part of August is likely to be the **warmest** part of winter. And that implies that comparing 30 year averages over a full three months to 2.5 months of 2011 would be highly likely to favour Fraser's claim by comparing against artificially warm averages?

Are you sure you really want to try and fallback on the "compared periods aren't equal" nitpick? Did you bother to think this out before you typed it? I suspect I credited you with too much intelligence when I called for smarter trolls, please.

And have you made any progress on doing a proper gridded reconstruction over the entire Sydney region using all of the official weather stations yet? I mean, since you're nitpicking about proper use of scientific data and all, you really should do a proper scientific assessment of winter temperature across Sydney, right?

And how **are** you going with the numerous earth-shattering errors of Plimer and Fraser (which must be *utterly cataclysmic* by comparison with what you call Tim's "serious error" in assessing "coldest I can remember"?)

By Lotharsson (not verified) on 23 Aug 2011 #permalink

Lotharsson your arrogance is only matched by your ignorance.

I have not debated Fraser's claim, so you're wrong there.

Fraser's comments are about as relevant to the scientific debate as someone saying "It's a hot day" or "This is the heaviest rain I've ever seen."

I'm glad you admit Lambert is not a scientist. He certainly does not behave like one. But he tries to appear like a scientist, with a scienceblog and a computer scientist title in his profile. And all this war on science campaign, as if he had a clue.

With regards to readers following links and understanding them, the comments above are proof that most do not bother to read them. When they do they don't comprehend the significance of a different location, the failure to identify the different location, what a 30 year average is, and the missing data for half a month.

You are guilty of all these failures.

Fortunately, what you call nitpicking, is the fundamental basis of all scientific integrity.

Creating data from all Sydney weather stations was your crazy idea and not worthy of response.

I think factorrhoid is channelling Alan Jones, who is on the Sky TV channel right now, parrotting on about CO2 and his view on AGW. Someone with better constitution than me could trawl through the entrails of this, but be warned, it is nonsense.

By Donald Oats (not verified) on 24 Aug 2011 #permalink

factoid @178,Sydney Airport MO is referred to as Sydney AP on BoMs map. Not Mascot. While Weatherzone identify it as Mascot on one online map,that map links to another that identifies it as Sydney AP,as does the table below. Really,are you going anywhere with this? No.

It is YOU who 'doesn't comprehend the significance of a different location' by insisting that only one is valid by decree,little else. The thirty year average chosen is the fairest possible to Fraser's memory of Sydney winters,you do understand that,no? And you don't seem to understand that the first half of August is also on average the coolest,again favoring Fraser's chances in an anecdotal observation. Yet the average max at Obs Hill for the first twelve days of August [Fraser was in print on the 12th] is a touch over 21C,more than 2C up on the 1981-2010 mean for the month,a mean of course derived from including the typically warmest back half of the month.

You claim now that Fraser's anecdote is irrelevant,but it's clearly worth your infantile doggedness. Anything but address her credulous promotion of CO2 fallacies in a national newspaper.

If you think that Tim's 'war on science campaign' is really without a clue,please fisk it all and post your results. Your handwaving time is over.

Perhaps it is time for a factturd bin where all the 'ad nauseum' from factoid can be deposited.

I hand it to you people, you have some stamina and patience in the face of this mind-numbing, head-vice wrecking display of dogged incomprehension.

One factoid of many:

Comparing 15 days of August to the monthly average is ridiculous and un-scientific.

The first 15 days of August will almost certainly have a lower 30 year average temperature than the whole of August. Therefore if the first 15 days of August 2011 are warmer than the average for the whole of August then the first 15 days of August 2011 are almost certainly warmer than the average for the first 15 days of August.

Q.E.D.

By Chris O'Neill (not verified) on 24 Aug 2011 #permalink

Well done Nick.
You are wrong on every point.
1. I did not say the BoM identified it as Mascot. I was referring to how most media identify sydney airport as Mascot. Yes Weatherzone do too. You will see how those Weatherzone maps clearly identify Sydney. 2.There is only one Sydney location. It is not a multiple choice option.
3. It was I who identified a) the 30 year average in Lambert's links, b) the reason for this time period, and 3) point out to commenters that they had not not used 30 year data.
4. You still don't understand the validity of comparative statistics.
No amount of spin or appeal for justification can change that.
5. I never defended Fraser's anecdote on its scientific merit.

So you are wrong, wrong, wrong, wrong and wrong.

>Bernard J I'll give you and Lotharsson a little lesson about how science works. When you don't have complete data, you aren't allowed to make it up. So no matter how sure you are that the second half of August is going to be warmer than the 30 year average, you just can't make that assumption. It's a very simple scientific principle which you and Lambert do not obey. And you both claim to be upholding scientific integrity.

1) I know how science works; I work in science.

2) I didn't make up data.

3) I didn't "assume" that the second half of August would be warmer than the first, I simply pointed out the fact that in the southern hemisphere the end of August is the end of winter, and thus that:

>[i]f this August's mean for the first 15 days is already greater than the 30-year August mean, waiting for the second half of the month's data is not likely to improve things.

>[My latter emphasis]

This point sailed completely over your head, as did [Chris O'Neill's reiteration of the fact, which he very explicitly spelled out for you](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2011/08/the_australians_war_on_science_…).

4) I "obey[ed] simple scientific principle[s]" by indicating that Sydney's temperature is best represented with a weighted mean of all stations in the Greater Sydney basin.

A point that you have studiously avoided. It's one that you should address, and by doing so you could determine whether Ob Hill or the airport more closely reflect the overall Sydney means.

5) And petal, you wouldn't know scientific integrity if it ripped your arms off and slapped you around the head with the wet bits.

And it turns out that [you can't even attribute correctly](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2011/08/the_australians_war_on_science_…):

>Creating data from all Sydney weather stations was your crazy idea and not worthy of response.

It was not Lotharsson but me who suggested that you do a weighted, composite reconstruction of Sydney's temperature record. I'm curious to know why you think that it is a crazy idea - surely that would give you the best indication of Sydney's mean climatic character over time...?

[Vince thinks that](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2011/08/the_australians_war_on_science_…):

>Factoid is Tim Curtin.

Good call. Could well be. They both have the same inability to see scientific truth sitting in front of their faces, and many other similarities of scientific obtuseness.

Curtin old man, if you are "Factoid" [there's a little experimental result awaiting your consideration](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2011/07/open_thread_62.php#comment-4893…)...

By Bernard J. (not verified) on 24 Aug 2011 #permalink

> I have not debated Fraser's claim, so you're wrong there.

Try reading **what I wrote** and responding to that, rather than what you *imagine* I wrote.

> You are guilty of all these failures.

Lies such as that are so discrediting, don't you think?

> Creating data from all Sydney weather stations was your crazy idea and not worthy of response.

No, it was firstly Bernard J's idea - and it's **how climate science is done**. You calling it "crazy" indicates that you don't know what you're talking about when you attempt to lecture others on climate science.

By Lotharsson (not verified) on 24 Aug 2011 #permalink

Bernard J
1 You may work in science, but you are no scientist, and you don't understand scientific principles, such as comparing equivalent statistics and identifying data @176
2 I did not accuse you of making up data. I said it as a general statement about using half the data of one month as if it represented the whole month.
3 You should know that when you have half the data, you can't assume what the other half of the data is going to be. It is irrelevant how likely or unlikely an event is. That's science. You still don't get it.
4 The BoM has determined that Observatory Hill best represents Sydney weather. And it has the longest record of observations for this purpose. I'm not sure how many times it needs to be repeated. There is nothing wrong with picking another station. The issue is that it must be clearly identified, and not substituted for Sydney weather.
5 Your right it was your crazy idea which Lotharsson demanded that I respond to. It's hard to keep up with the number of irrelevant issues I am expected to answer.

Lotharsson
Unfortunately I do read what you wrote.
I didn't imagine it.
@188 you wrote "YOUR heavy investment in debating scientific assessment of Fraser's claim as if the assessments might have merit is utterly redundant."
I replied "I have not debated Fraser's claim."

As for your errors, it's best to own up to them rather than accuse me of lying.

@70 you fail to identify that a 30 year average had been specified by Lambert.
@102 you don't comprehend the significance of switching data.
@170 you don't comprehend the failure to identify switched data.
@188 you don't understand that half a month's data can't be used in a statistical comparison.

Factorrhoid Follies @194:

1) I didn't claim YOU had claimed BoM identified Sydney APMO as 'Mascot'.By noting that BoM and Weatherzone carried maps that identified Sydney AP as 'Sydney AP' I showed your claim @178 was a self-serving generalisation. As is your claim @194 that "most media" identify Sydney AP as 'Mascot'...have your self-trumpeted reading skills deserted you? You still haven't gone anywhere.

2) Establishing the state of the climate in Sydney IS a multiple observation prospect.How do BoM prepare their monthly and seasonal weather statements for Australian cities? You will not establish the invalidity of using the last 30 years data of an accredited long-term observation station by bullshitting. It's a mere ten kilometers from Obs Hill. You've also made an assumption that Fraser doesn't live in Randwick or any of a dozen suburbs that are closer to the airport than Observatory Hill.For a person who claims that Fraser's anecdote is worthless and not to be defended,you spend an awful lot of time simply asserting that there is only one valid observation point to address it.

3) Tim was the person who explicitly identified the use of a 30 year average. Not you. You insulted others who skimmed his post as ideologue 'lemmings' for not noting that,not that their skimming had any real cost. After all,last year's winter,at the observation station of YOUR choice,was colder than this years,rendering Fraser's anecdote a failed starter without the need to refer to longer time scales.

4) You insist that only Observatory Hill is exclusively 'Sydney' [for the purpose of your vigorous non-defence of Fraser!] Wrong and unintentionally funny. No amount of pretentious reference to the 'validity of comparative statistics' will support you. In fact Sydney's climate is assessed by comparing statistics from a dozen or more observing points. None of that helps you on your terms,or Fraser on hers.

5)'I never defended Fraser's anecdote on its scientific merit' No,you baselessly attacked Lambert's choice of observation point,mocked his readers and studiously ignored the repetition of Plimerian falsehoods at a News Ltd media outlet.Repeatedly.

6) You dismiss Tim's 'war against science' series with "..as if he had a clue." I'm sure Tim would be the first to acknowledge that he has probably missed a few examples of the 'perception management' that masquerades as science and science-derived reportage at The Australian. Feel free to add to the record.

It's all getting very wordy.

Can I summarise:

- Fraser says a whole bunch of nonsense about CO2.

- The facts show Fraser is grossly wrong.

- Fraser said it's the coldest winter she can remember.

- Lambert said BoM shows Fraser doesn't know what she's talking about.

- Factoid said Lambert is wrong

- BoM says Factoid is wrong.

- Factoid brings in every diversion and tangent it can dream up in order to avoid admitting that Fraser was wrong.

By Vince whirlwind (not verified) on 24 Aug 2011 #permalink

Yet another factoid:

It's called deception.

Tim Lambert made a claim about (easily checked) cited data. That claim was correct. He also made a claim about Fraser's claim. Fraser used the term "Sydney", not "Observatory Hill" in her claim. So if anywhere in Sydney falsifies Fraser's claim then Fraser's claim is false. Sydney Airport is in Sydney. Therefore Fraser's claim was false and there was no deception in claiming Fraser's claim was false.

By Chris O'Neill (not verified) on 24 Aug 2011 #permalink

Always a favorite denialist factoid:

the tarmac, next to jet engines, acres of concrete and a temperature gauge

No doubt, all those jet engines and acres of concrete suddenly appeared since winter 2010.

By Chris O'Neill (not verified) on 24 Aug 2011 #permalink

So.....now we can say "there is some debate as to whether Jane Fraser's opinions on the weather are correct".

(ie, the facts say one thing, Fraser says the opposite, and Factoid is arguing her case). Yet another manufactured "debate".

And factoid has the gall to call others deceptive....

By Vince whirlwind (not verified) on 24 Aug 2011 #permalink

> Lotharsson Unfortunately I do read what you wrote. I didn't imagine it. @188 you wrote "YOUR heavy investment in debating scientific assessment of Fraser's claim as if the assessments might have merit is utterly redundant." I replied "I have not debated Fraser's claim."

Yep, that's the one. And you *still don't get it*. So you'd better read it **again**...and let's try this once more, slowly...

1) **You** debated *a scientific assessment of* Fraser's claim, precisely as I said. You are not disputing that point, I take it?

2) If you **actually** believe Fraser's claim was irrelevant, you would likely only consider claims Tim actually made shorn of any reference to Fraser's claim - which, *on that basis*, are entirely accurate.

3) If you argue the scientific assessment of Fraser's claim, arguing that you "did not debate Fraser's claim [itself]" is irrelevant (and revealing) sophistry. Fraser's claim is fundamentally embedded in Tim's assessment of it! You wouldn't be arguing about which weather station(s) represent "Sydney weather", because **Tim didn't even reference the term** when making 30 year comparisons, and it only arises because Tim was **referencing Fraser's claim**, said claim being about "Sydney".

Go, check. I'll wait.

The bit you're looking for is:

> Not only is she confusing weather with climate, she's wrong about the weather. June, July and August have all been warmer than the average for the past 30 years.

Feel free to quote the bit where **Tim** specifies that **he** chose "Sydney" as the scope of his weather comparison.

What's that, you say? You can't, because it's a **Fraser** quote that sets the context that specifies that it's about "Sydney"?

Yep. That was my point.

Take the merit or otherwise of Fraser's claim out of the picture, and (a) Tim's comparison is moot, and (b) Tim's comparison is not even specified to be about someone's conception of a generic "Sydney".

If you *really* thought Fraser's claim was irrelevant, the sum total of your argument would be "Scientific assessment of irrelevant claims is irrelevant; those assessments should be ignored or retracted". By arguing on the basis of Fraser's own definition you elevate Fraser's claim to relevance.

And so...will you acknowledge that by your own admission that Fraser's claim is irrelevant, your points of contention about which weather station(s) represent Sydney weather are also irrelevant?

Man up, you can do it!

By Lotharsson (not verified) on 24 Aug 2011 #permalink

> @70 you fail to identify that a 30 year average had been specified by Lambert.

When accusing someone of not owning up to errors, it rather undermines your case when your accusation is in error. Especially if it is in error **twice**, and one of them is the **very error you falsely accuse the other of making**. I'll admit you may not be a liar here - merely deeply mistaken.

Try reading @70 again *very carefully this time*, and note that it is not referring to Tim's comparisons. It is referring to a comment made by MFS, which refers to a data page that **you** provided in @64, which - irony of ironies - links to a BOM page that provides averages for "Use all years of data" rather than the most recent 30 year baseline.

Did you perhaps fail to identify that a 30 year average was being used, and then accuse others of that failure *when they discussed the very data you erroneously cited*? Will you perhaps admit that your claim I was in error on this point was erroneous?

> @102 you don't comprehend the significance of switching data.

Sure - and black is white, and up is down! [/irony]

In 102 I point out that *even the BOM* notes that Sydney Airport is considered **long-term data relevant to Sydney**. That (a) calls into question your assertion that ONLY Observatory Hill is representative when someone talks about "Sydney weather" and (b) provides a data point addressing *precisely* the issue of data **selection** ("switching" is an inaccurate frame here) and the significance thereof.

> @170 you don't comprehend the failure to identify switched data.

That's a bizarrely incoherent claim, and it appears to have no relation to @170. Feel free to try again.

> @188 you don't understand that half a month's data can't be used in a statistical comparison.

No, that is **your** fundamental and repeated error, despite having been schooled several times on this point.

Half a month can indeed be used, with caveats about the uncertainty introduced by using different periods - and especially when it can be demonstrated, as it has been here, that the use of half a month is **almost certainly favourable to the claim being disputed**. And most especially when the claim being tested was made *before the half month in question had been completed*, in which case half a month is highly appropriate because using any other period *would not address the claim*.

[Which you aren't addressing - no really, we all get that. Nod, nod, wink, wink ;-) Yep, when you address the assessment of the claim, you really really really aren't addressing the claim itself. We'll all nod and pretend we agree with that "logic" if it will make you feel better.]

By Lotharsson (not verified) on 24 Aug 2011 #permalink

"(a) alls" -> "(a) calls"

By Lotharsson (not verified) on 24 Aug 2011 #permalink

This is getting rather Brent- or Curtin-esque, isn't it?

Well, how interesting, I just discovered that the mere mention of the names of some famous Deltoid trolls is automatic grounds for moderation!

I guess I'll have to wait for my post to come out of moderation.

Erm MFS, I think that's how moderation software works, and Tim (Lambert) is a computer scientist, despite what idiots like factoid/tones9 excrete.

> This is getting rather Brent- or Curtin-esque, isn't it?

Indeed, although the schtick here seems a little different.

By Lotharsson (not verified) on 24 Aug 2011 #permalink

>[I did not accuse you of making up data](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2011/08/the_australians_war_on_science_…).

Eh?

[You said](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2011/08/the_australians_war_on_science_…):

>When you don't have complete data, you aren't allowed to make it up.

>[My emboldened emphasis]

If you're not implying that I engaged in "making [data] up", why then did you make that statement?

>So no matter how sure you are that the second half of August is going to be warmer than the 30 year average, you just can't make that assumption.

I'll type this slowly so that you can read it without being confused...

I made no "assumption" about the second half of August's temperature record. What [I said](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2011/08/the_australians_war_on_science_…) was:

>waiting for the second half of the month's data is not likely to improve things, because the southern winter is ending.

>[My latter emboldened emphasis]

This is not an "assumption". It is a statement of likelihood. Of probability. It is a statistical inference, supported by physical fact.

And one does not need [a complete dataset](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2011/08/the_australians_war_on_science_…) before engaging in statistical inference. It's essentially the point of statistics in the first place, and any basically competent person knows how to account for any caveats given in this case.

You aren't, and you couldn't.

>It's a very simple scientific principle which you and Lambert do not obey. And you both claim to be upholding scientific integrity.

I still claim it, and I claim that you do not. If you did, you'd answer my question about determining the best estimate of Sydney's climatic trend in annual temperature.

>You should know that when you have half the data, you can't assume what the other half of the data is going to be. It is irrelevant how likely or unlikely an event is. That's science. You still don't get it.

Repeating your nonsense doesn't make it right. Exactly what "assumption" did I make? And why is likelihood irrelevant in statistical description?

>The BoM has determined that Observatory Hill best represents Sydney weather.

Reference?

By Bernard J. (not verified) on 25 Aug 2011 #permalink

Nick @198
1. Wrong. Weatherzone maps identify Sydney AP as Mascot. As do most media such as SMH, Telegraph, 7 and 9. Pity Lambert doesn't.

2. Where Fraser lives is irrelevant. There is one weather station identified as Sydney. Any other station cited should have been identified in Lambert's statement.

3. So it's OK to skim over a false scientific statement, as long as the statement it is discrediting isn't true.

4. Wrong. Sydney's climate is recorded at Observatory Hill.

5. My criticism of Lambert is warranted.

6.Lambert's abuse of scientific principles speaks for itself.

Vince @199
Correct except the BoM supports my statements, and it doesn't matter how you spin it.

Chris @200
Now this is funny. We can select anywhere in the city to falsify the statement. We don't even have to identify it. I can't wait for the evening news to present the weather report from different weather stations every day. As long as they are in Sydney, it's OK. And they don't even have to inform us.

Vince @202
Wrong. To repeat. I never argued Fraser's case, only the scientific irrelevance of what she wrote.

Lotharsson @203
A truly remarkable piece of convoluted logic.
Enough rope.

Lotharsson @204
My data using 30 year average was correct in my first post @53.
The link I posted @64 was incorrect. I attempted to correct it @67, and did so @69.
Your argument @70 was not against the 30 year average.

Sydney Airport still aint Sydney.

"Half a month can indeed be used, with caveats about the uncertainty introduced by using different periods - and especially when it can be demonstrated, as it has been here, that the use of half a month is almost certainly favourable to the claim being disputed."
Another gem. I must have missed those caveats in Lambert's notes. So you don't need complete data, especially if half the data is favourable to your claim!! You really don't have a clue.

Bernard @209
answered @197

You are ignorant about fundamental principles of science. Firstly, incomplete data must be clearly identified as such. Lambert did not. Second, it doesn't matter what the month is. Or how favourable the data is. Or what the probabilities are for the second half of the month. It is invalid to compare a monthly average with half a month's data. The assumption you made was that "the second half of the month's data is not likely to improve things." It is always necessary to measure all data, and have complete data for analysis. It is what defines science. Otherwise it's clairvoyancy.

Are you seriously still saying Observatory Hill isn't the Sydney station??
What is then?? The BoM labels it as Sydney. Pretty simple isn't it?
http://www.bom.gov.au/jsp/ncc/cdio/cvg/av?p_stn_num=066062&p_prim_eleme…

You should go to the climate data page
http://www.bom.gov.au/climate/data/index.shtml?bookmark=201
Enter Sydney. The Sydney station is 66062. That is Sydney - Observatory Hill.

Factorrhoid,you have not advanced your 'argument' with any more evidence than you have already 'presented'. Weatherzone,a client of BOM, is the syndicated provider to those media organs.They all use the same layer format. The second,information rich layer of that format uses a map identifying Sydney AP as Sydney AP,as does the written table of stations below...ALL of which are sourced from BOM,and all of which are used in assessing the state of Sydney--the connurbation--weather and climate. You have attempted to say most maps ID the airport site as 'Mascot'. This is not true.

Sydney's 'climate' is recorded at multiple stations,viewable in monthly or seasonal reports. Fact,not factoid.

Fraser's phone-it-in column remains the complacent,predictable,and wrong nonsense that senior columnists regularly get away with,and no amount of facetious squirming from you changes reality.

Facwitoid.

I note with curiosity that you carefully avoid any response about the suggestion that you are Tim Curtin. Given that this is classic Curtin behaviour whenever any of his sockpuppets are called out, I am really starting to think that Vince has the right of it.

The fact that you have now repeatedly said:

>You are ignorant about fundamental principles of science.

only adds to my suspicions as Curtin was desperate, as a non-scientifically trained person, to impute that professional scientists were less aware of the processes of science than was he. And Curtin would similarly hold on to a bogus factoid like a dog with a bone, just as you do...

>Firstly, incomplete data must be clearly identified as such.

Erm, Facwitoid, anyone who followed [Tim Lambert's link to the data for the current August temperatures](http://www.bom.gov.au/climate/dwo/201108/html/IDCJDW2125.201108.shtml) would clearly see that the month's data is "incomplete" whilst the month itself is. If you need advice in order to understand this you'd also need instructions on how to point your old feller at the porcelain.

>It is invalid to compare a monthly average with half a month's data.

Seriously, your 'point' is a fatuous and completely unscientific one. Anyone who used that link from the 15th through to the end of the month next week would know straight away that Lamber's reference is occurring in real time, and would interpret it accordingly.

Interestingly, from the 15th through to today, all recalculations of the August 2011 means for 9:00 am and for 3:00 pm temperatures are greater than the historical August means, reinforcing the point made on this thread by a number of people, that your horror at not having a complete month's worth of data was - to put it mildly - misplaced... Do the exercise yourself and graph it, and try to understand why we are all laughing so much at your foolishness.

>Are you seriously still saying Observatory Hill isn't the Sydney station?? What is then?? The BoM labels it as Sydney. Pretty simple isn't it?

Ob Hill is a Sydney station. Just one of many. It is the one closest to the business centre, but that neither means that it represents Sydney's overall climate, or that is represents the climate at Fraser's apparently very cold corner of the city.

And once more to demonstrate a point - how are you progressing with calculating the weighted means of all Sydney stations, in order to determine a 'mean' climatic profile for the city?

It's pretty simple isn't it?

By Bernard J. (not verified) on 25 Aug 2011 #permalink

> Lotharsson @203 A truly remarkable piece of convoluted logic. Enough rope.

Run away, run away!

> Lotharsson @204 My data using 30 year average was correct in my first post @53.

You're not very good at this comprehension thing, or this "facts" thing, are you?

You posted and cited **no data** in @53. Instead you made **claims about** data (which are indeed accurate, but that's irrelevant to your charge that I made an error about the averages period).

> The link I posted @64 was incorrect. I attempted to correct it @67, and did so @69. Your argument @70 was not against the 30 year average.

Let me try and explain again s..l..o..w..l..y.

1) My @70 was responding to your @64.

2) My @70 also referenced MFS's @65.

3) MFS's @65 was also a response to your @64.

4) So my comment was only responding to @64.

5) As you agree, your @64 provided a link to an "All years of data" average.

6) My @70 was responding to **that link**. I should know - I **checked what it pointed to** and that it had the values claimed.

7) Therefore it was not an error or a "failure to identify a 30 year period" on my part. It was a response to **your argument as presented**. (And you might consider that my response was written before I had seen your attempted and actual corrections - that's just how this new-fangled "web" thing works.)

(And sheesh - a primary school kid could understand that!)

By Lotharsson (not verified) on 25 Aug 2011 #permalink

factoid:

> Where Fraser lives is irrelevant.

which disagrees with factoid:

> I doubt Fraser has an apartment on the tarmac, next to jet engines, acres of concrete and a temperature gauge!

Which is it? Does where Fraser lives matter, or not?

By Lotharsson (not verified) on 25 Aug 2011 #permalink

> I must have missed those caveats in Lambert's notes.

Clearly Lambert overestimated your intelligence by:

a) Writing a statement in the middle of August about the current August

b) **Linking** to historical averages

c) **Linking** (at the time of writing) to the current half month available at the time

d) Assuming you were smart enough to understand that because the month wasn't yet complete, the current month's data **must be** for half a month, and that the historical averages were for a whole month.

What can I say? The rest of us seem to have grokked that. Perhaps you could ask him to dumb it down a bit for the slower readers?

> So you don't need complete data, especially if half the data is favourable to your claim!!

ROFL! You really shouldn't try the "I'm condescending to educate you lot" gambit if you are *that* poor at comprehension and/or logic.

I and others demonstrated that using the first half of August 2011 for comparison was **unfavourable** to Tim's claim, and yet his claim (sans discussions of the appropriate data for "Sydney") still held up.

If the half month had been favourable to his claim, then I agree - a caveat or disclaimer would have been appropriate.

By Lotharsson (not verified) on 25 Aug 2011 #permalink

> It is always necessary to measure all data, and have complete data for analysis. It is what defines science.

Utter bollocks!

It is always **desirable**, but in many many situations, scientists have to work with the sum total of data they can get - not the pony data they *wish* they had.

By Lotharsson (not verified) on 25 Aug 2011 #permalink

> I am really starting to think that Vince has the right of it.

I would have raised this possibility earlier - but I was waiting for some fitted fifth order polynomials to make an appearance ;-)

By Lotharsson (not verified) on 25 Aug 2011 #permalink

âââââââââââââââââI want to thank Factoid for participating in this thread. â²
He is a perfect and instructive example of Denialism.

  1. He strains at gnats;
  2. misses the wood for the trees;
  3. does epic battle over irrelevant trivia;
  4. misses the point entirely;
  5. fails to acknowledge the arguments of others;
  6. and defends the indefensible (Fraser, although he insists he is not defending her).

PERFECT EXAMPLE OF A DENIER.
Thanks, boyo. ââââââââââââââââââ

Yet more factoids:

Where Fraser lives is irrelevant. There is one weather station identified as Sydney.

What matters is what Fraser expects people to think the term "Sydney" means. Since it's based on her experience it either means exactly where she lives which would be silly or Sydney in general.

Any other station cited should have been identified in Lambert's statement.

Indeed it was.

By Chris O'Neill (not verified) on 25 Aug 2011 #permalink

Nick and others,
All media use observatory hill as Sydney weather. Are you disputing this?
I've cited several maps which label Sydney AP as Mascot.
Show me one which labels Sydney AP as Sydney.

Weatherzone table lists the airport as Mascot.
The Sydney weather listing is Observatory Hill.
Mascot gets its own separate forecast to Sydney.

Just in case Watts or his mods are a little too temperatmental, a copy of [a post I left at WTFUWT](http://wattsupwiththat.com/2011/09/02/breaking-editor-in-chief-of-remot…)...

--------------------

Mooloo said (2 September 2011, at 6:42 pm):

Some people are speculating rather too wildly about Wagnerâs motivations. For example suggesting that he fell on his sword for accepting the article. Please donât speculate like that, without some evidence.

Oh, there is evidence. Try reading the first two paragraphs of Wagner's resignation letter:

Peer-reviewed journals are a pillar of modern science. Their aim is to achieve highest scientific standards by carrying out a rigorous peer review that is, as a minimum requirement, supposed to be able to identify fundamental methodological errors or false claims. Unfortunately, as many climate researchers and engaged observers of the climate change debate pointed out in various internet discussion fora, the paper by Spencer and Braswell [1] that was recently published in Remote Sensing is most likely problematic in both aspects and should therefore not have been published.

After having become aware of the situation, and studying the various pro and contra arguments, I agree with the critics of the paper. Therefore, I would like to take the responsibility for this editorial decision and, as a result, step down as Editor-in-Chief of the journal Remote Sensing.

[My emboldened emphasis]

Mooloo also said:

Perhaps Wagner fought long and hard to get the journal to retract the article, but the editorial board would not permit that. So he had to go.

Erm, to use your own words, "[p]lease donât speculate like that, without some evidence".

Anthony Watts (edited reply at 2 September 2011, 10:08 am):

Heh, your argument reminds me of the many that pronounced âplate tectonicsâ to be âcrapâ. Oh and it is Occams [sic] razor- Anthony

Actually, "Ockham" is the precedent version of the spelling, and is almost exclusively used in the area of England where the village is located. The village was known as Bocheham at the time of Domesday, and in some quarters for a time afterward as Hockham, but neither version is associated with the Razor. The spelling Occam is the most recent variant and the least relevant to the context, and for this reason I do not use it.

Yes, I mixed up the 'h' and the 'a', but given that is was about 3:00 am in my time zone when I typed that post it's only puerile churlishness on the parts of those commenters who think that that typo has any bearing on anything.

But getting back to plate tectonics for a moment. My understanding was always that this theory was developed in the middle of the 20th century, when science had already tested and accepted elements of Wegener's separate continental drift theory. Part of Wegener's problem was that some of the mechanisms that he proposed - astronomical precession and "Polflucht" (quod vide) - were demonstrably wrong.

Interestingly it was the American Association of Petroleum Geologists and a number of individual prominent geological types who most vociferously opposed Wegener. It seems that the more things change, the more they stay the same... Personally, I'm surprised that the geology discipline was so slow to investigate Wegener's ideas, as there is nothing particularly amazing about the observation of the pattern of continental tessellation. Heck, even at the age of six and never having heard of continental drift, I used to look at my parents' globe and wonder if all of the land masses used to fit together...

However, the comparison of the Wegener case with Spencer's take on global warming is instructive. Spencer's notions are akin to Wegener's Polflucht speculations, which were quickly demonstrated as nonsense, and the final understanding of plate tectonics is similar to the current understanding of 'greenhouse' gas action, both of which were arrived at using decades of basic physics understanding and careful observation and experimentation.

As with the Galileo metaphor, the denialist camp is somewhat muddled in its revisionist interpretations of scientific history and progress.

By Bernard J. (not verified) on 02 Sep 2011 #permalink

A couple of weeks ago [I tried to explain to factoid](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2011/08/the_australians_war_on_science_…) that the temperature data for Sydney were not showing what he claimed that they did, and that Tim Lambert was absolutely correct in saying that Jane Fraser was completely wrong that it had been a cold winter.

Now that the data are complete, it's time to look at the August temperatures that so bothered factoid. [Here's the August data for Sydney Airport](http://i53.tinypic.com/34dfy1k.jpg), and lest factoid try his Observatory Hill nonsense again, [here is said station](http://i54.tinypic.com/289ao9h.jpg).

Tim Lambert 1, factoid 0.

By Bernard J. (not verified) on 06 Sep 2011 #permalink

The sharp eyed amongst you might have noticed that I contructed the graphs in Excel. The bastard spawn of M$ automatically adds even when dragging legend titles...

By Bernard J. (not verified) on 08 Sep 2011 #permalink

Factoid?

By Bernard J. (not verified) on 01 Oct 2011 #permalink