Keith Kloor's thinking on climate change

Keith Kloor says that this "concisely expressed" his thinking on climate change:

I categorise myself as somebody who recognises that additional CO2 in the atmosphere as a result of man's activities (fossil fuel burning and land use change) will have an effect on the balance of radiation coming into and leaving our atmosphere.

I do not have a confirmed view as to exactly what the impact of the CO2 will have (feedbacks etc being uncertain) but I know that it must have an effect - that's physics.

Monckton would not disagree with any of this. This seems to be an example of The View from Nowhere.

Update: Kloor responds by misrepresenting my post, claiming "He's equated me with Monckton." Of course, I did no such thing. I equated his view with The View from Nowhere, because it was so vacuous that there was nothing in it that Monckton would disagree with. I wrote two sentences. They were not long sentences and they did not use any difficult words. Everyone else who commented managed to understand them, including Shub, a self-described denier, who found that Kloor's thinking was "exactly" the same as his.

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Ah, Keith, the man who the jerk in circle jerk. You are a dunce and a fraud.

I categorize myself as somebody who recognizes that smoking will have an effect on the balance of carcinogens coming into and leaving the human body.

I do not have a confirmed view as to exactly what the impact of the cigarette smoke will have (cancer etc being uncertain) but I know that it must have an effect - that's biology.

Couldn't have said it better, Boris!

I categorise myself as somebody who recognises that species change over time (bacteria gain resistance, wolves change slightly to become dogs)

I do not have a confirmed view as to exactly how old the Earth is (measurement across millions of years being uncertain) but I do know it must be at least several thousand years old.

Hey it works for everything!

By sharper00 (not verified) on 23 Dec 2011 #permalink

Well here is an article that may help Kloor form an impression on climate sensitivity with feedbacks considered and the high risk strategy that is doing 'nothing' for a few decades.

Oo, it is a good game...

I categorise myself as somebody who recognises that ignorance and ideology in human societies, occurring as a result of humanity's insufficent activities in the field of intellectual advancement, will have an effect on the balance of reason coming into and leaving our collective conscience.

I do not have a confirmed view as to exactly what the impact of the denialism of the science explaining CO2-caused planetary warming will be (concerted leadership efforts etc to educate societies being uncertain) but I know that it must have an effect - that's [sic] the failing of human nature.

[With some of Kloor's more egregious grammar splats attended to...]

By Bernard J. (not verified) on 23 Dec 2011 #permalink

Let's just put it in Plain English:

I categorize myself as someone who believes that a statement of fact may possibly be true, but then again it may possibly be false, but I know that if it is true, then it is true, and that if it is false, then false it must be, and that what is true is not false, and what is false is not true, and that we should not reject as false statements that are true, and we should not confirm as true statements that are false, and therefore I do not confirm or reject anything except when I do confirm or reject anything.

Also, there are known knowns, known unknowns, and unknown unknowns, and therefore, since we do not known what the unknown unknowns are -- after all, they are unknown to the point where we don't even know that they're known -- therefore we should be open-minded, and therefore let's invade Iraq. Unless we shouldn't invade Iraq. Or something.

-- frank

Not to put too fine a point on it Tim, but,...

That is exactly what I (i.e., a rabid denier) think about CO2 and climate. Cannot get any more concise.

Longer Shub:

I'm uncertain whether man-made global warming will have catastrophic effects.

I'm also completely certain that man-made global warming will not have catastrophic effects.

Therefore, I'm open-minded.

-- frank

At this late date? I feel like my early advice (that Kloor should be avoided) is fully vindicated. He's not Tom Fuller, but he's also not worth anything. Mostly a vehicle for BS hippie-punching and wannabe David Broder blather.

I have never learned anything from Kloor the times I could drag myself to his awful web column other than about the thought mechanisms of delayers and attention whores. In contrast, Joe Romm, against whom Kloor waged a pretentious jihad for a while (Kloor's wannabe pundit remarks on journalism are at best quirky and at worst drivel) is constantly full of new information.

I can't see praising Kloor and attacking Revkin, though I've seen it. As part of dotEarth and the NYT, Revkin was never going anywhere, so paying attention to his forum and fighting issues out there made sense.

Kloor is nothing but a cover-your-ass bagatelle for Audubon with environmentalist-hating cons. There's no inherent draw to his site, and if it were left entirely to denialism it would sink below the notability horizon fairly quickly.

By Marion Delgado (not verified) on 23 Dec 2011 #permalink

Frank,...you are getting ahead of yourself.

You should have said: "I'm uncertain whether man-made global warming will have catastrophic effects.

Therefore, I'm close-minded"

Shub:

> You should have said:

You might want to address what I actually wrote, instead of wishing that I wrote something else that's easier for you to attack.

Seriously Shub, are you uncertain whether man-made global warming will have catastrophic effects, or are you completely certain that man-made global warming won't have catastrophic effects, or both? It's a simple question.

-- frank

I'm just not feeling the love here, guys. Does this mean I'm getting coal is my stocking? Oh well. thanks for keeping it real. Happy holidays and Happy New Year.

I might want to address what you actually wrote? Well, you wrote about me, so I think I am an excellent source to address what could have written.

To answer your question, I don't think that man-made or any other global warming will have any catastrophic effects whatsoever. Quite the simple answer.

That I hold such opinions should concern you less at this point, and I think you agree, than the fact that there are people like Kloor who hold opinions completely compatible with what I say above.

Shub, you are no less contemptible than Lambert, for reasons that I have made clear to you at my blog. (BTW, shouldn't you still be nursing your wounds over your incomprehensible book review of The Climate Fix being pulled by Anthony Watts from WUWT?)

You and Tim don't realize it, but it is you two who have the most in common. Just flip sides of the same coin.

Shorter Keith Kloor:

You criticized me! How dare you! I'll ignore the content of your criticism and just whine about how nasty you are!

Shorter Shub:

You criticized me, therefore it's fine for me to pretend you wrote something you didn't write.

Also, I am completely certain that global warming is harmless, and like Kloor, I'm also uncertain whether global warming is harmless. No, there's no problem here.

-- frank

Shub

I think you are going much too far in equating your stone-denialism with KK's views. In fact I would say that you are misrepresenting him.

You do pop up in the most surprising places. I didn't realise you peddled your nonsense so widely.

Keith, here's a clue for ya: being a self-styled "journalist" doesn't suddenly elevate you into a rightful, impartial judge of everybody and everything.

You're just a human -- like me, like Tim Lambert, like Jay Rosen. And one crucial difference between a true investigative journalist and a regurgitative churnalist (like you) is that an investigative journalist realizes that he is human, like everyone else.

-- frank

> I do not have a confirmed view as to
> exactly what the impact of the CO2 will have

KK, do you want to clarify that in any way?

When we increase CO2 in the atmosphere .... roughly, approximately, from the physics -- what happens?

"Shub, you are no less contemptible than Lambert, for reasons that I have made clear to you at my blog. "

Keith, you have made nothing clear to me at your blog, except for putting on moderation. You have done the same thing with Eli Rabett. You put people whose posts you don't have any immediate comeback to, on moderation.

If you wanted to be 'clear', you would set a post aside and explain yourself - in terms of *your* position on climate science and on skepticism in your own words, instead of borrowing others' ideas for it.

BBD. You are a hypocrite. Let me explain how:
[1]You've asked me the question of "what happens when you add CO2 to the system before? I have the basic required background to address this question, I worked towards it, read the required papers and books. I don't believe the IPCC has done a good job with their attribution to CO2 - especially with how they framed their "most of the second half of past century is very likely...blah, blah..." reasoning. We've discussed this earlier as well. I've thrown questions in this regard at experts and gotten answers supportive of my own reasoning. Nor did the IPCC do a good job with its literature review in WGII - which is where the rubber hits the road. The scientists then tried to cover up their goof-ups - another red flag. There are several other red flags and we all know what they are. Those in the consensus side press on in spite of the flaws. I pause and think: 'why did they make that kind of a mistake'.

My own position is an end-result of the whole above process.

[2] Mr. Kloor, who given his own blog output and publicly professed background, has no mechanism or time to perform any of the above; i.e., any independent assessment of the science. I am not saying that he is not capable of doing so, only that he doesn't show any evidence of investigating the science aspect.

But yet, he professes to not accept the consensus opinion on the role of anthropogenic CO2 on the climate system. Logically he is in no position to reject any of the proposed impacts human-driven climate change will cause.

But yet I am a 'stone-cold denier' but Kloor is ok?

I'm inferring that KK doesn't buy what the denialists are selling on CO2 and infrared saturation. Why he thinks there's a difference between that physics and the physics of feedbacks, and why he's even qualified to make a judgment on the difference, is beyond me.

So go on, Keith, have the courage to explain to us why your position isn't exactly as absurd and as cowardly as Boris' first take suggests, rather than Solomonic, as so many US journalists seem to imagine they are.

And don't just make some condescending remarks, respond to the actual nub of the issue. Bet you can't!

One set of what you call 'extremists' maintains that 2+2=4, another (much smaller) set holds that the answer is 5; the mighty fair-minded 'objective' journalist is above the fray and reckons it might be, what, 4.5? 4.6? Give me a break!...

Tim Lambert has even less patience for Keith Kloor than I do. I did not think that was possible.

Keith Kloor and Roger Pielke Jr have an impenetrable voracious self-esteem, so if they feel slighted, they are incapable of dealing with the argument at hand. It is tiresome - their ego is so easily sent into shock they have to be lend gingerly into revealing the logical consequences of what the believe their view to be, and any contradictions revealed need a few dozen go-arounds before they can recognize they are harming their own position in the judgement of the competent.

[ Judge for yourself above ]

Notice that Kloor's thinking on climate change purposely leaves out moral responsibility to future generations and policy responses. Like a cancer surgeon who only wanted to contemplate cancer in the abstract, and never consult with a patient and never lift a scalpel. Inert and worthless.

+1 Hank #19:

"KK, do you want to clarify that in any way?
When we increase CO2 in the atmosphere .... roughly, approximately, from the physics -- what happens?"

By Anna Haynes (not verified) on 23 Dec 2011 #permalink

Shub,

Like Lambert, you willfully mischaracterize my words on your own blog (and in this thread). And yes, I've told you exactly why I find you contemptible (don't pretend otherwise). As for you and Eli being on moderation, that's because you both have said ugly, nasty things about individuals. I can't trust either of you to hold your bile in check. I can count on one hand how many people I have on moderation.

As anyone who reads my blog can see, people with varying viewpoints are well represented and encouraged. But the personal flaming will not be tolerated.

As for engaging with Lambert's misrepresentation on this thread, forget it. He's equated me with Monckton. Straight out of the Romm playbook. I won't reward the slimy guilt-by-association tactic. Any of you want to talk to me, feel free to come over to the thread where Lambert has plucked this quote from. Otherwise, continue on with your little echo chamber here.

> As for you and Eli being on moderation, that's because you both have said ugly, nasty things about individuals.

OK, so Keith Kloor admits it: he's a tone troll.

His 'thinking' isn't based on checking the facts, but rather is based on which people say nice flattering words in his ears.

So perhaps I can ask Keith Kloor this question: O Great Keith Kloor Most Wise, by what title should someone call you by, before you'd actually think about what they say? "Your Great Majestic Journalisticness Keith Kloor" perhaps? Please enlighten us unwashed masses, so that we may adjust our politeness levels appropriately to suit thy supreme journalistic integrity. Amen.

-- frank

Dear Keith

You've been pushing that peanut for all your little nose is worth, but we all know Eli is a calm and fuzzy bunny. The humor in the situation is, of course, how you let your tame schauzer Tom Tom rip off on the Rabett any old time.

Basically you have no real complaint against Eli and Tim, except we do not choose to play Calvinball with you and your clown friends.

Go back and hide behind your comment wall.

Shub:

I don't think that man-made or any other global warming will have any catastrophic effects whatsoever

In other news, 652 killed and more than 800 missing in Philippines flooding.

"With this calamitous flood disaster, now the fourth that has struck our country, and the second in Mindanao just this year, climate change is now a clear and present danger and a national security concern for our country," Legarda said, calling the reduction of disaster risk a "moral responsibility.

Regarding Kloor, one is reminded of Hamilton's characterisation of denialism:

  1. There is no evidence of global warming.
  2. If there is evidence of global warming, then it is not due to human activity.
  3. If global warming is occurring and it is due to human activity, then it is not going to be damaging.
  4. If global warming is occurring and it is due to human activity, and it is going to be damaging, then the costs of avoiding it are too high, so we should do nothing.

"And yes, I've told you exactly why I find you contemptible"

No Keith. I know you must have enough reasons to not be well-disposed toward me, but you havent told me about them, let aloen telling me 'exactly' why.

But I suppose that is not exactly the topic of this thread, is it?

When Tim Lambert compares your position to Monckton, he is not trying to imply that that you are guilty-by-association. He is trying to point out that someone who in his understanding, is as radically divergent from the consensus view on climate science as Monckton, can start from the same premises as yours.

If the common ground you share with the consensus is as slender therefore, you can be classified as nothing other than a crypto-denier.

Shub @ 21

You are a denier. A year of 'discussion' with you at Bishop Hill later and you deny this? FFS.

And I'm the hypocrite?

;-)

Is there a full moon out or something? Or are the people on this thread always this cray-zeee?

Dean, the noise effectively buries the substantive Q asked about KK's impression of the science.

By Anna Haynes (not verified) on 23 Dec 2011 #permalink

This "concisely expresses" Keith Kloor's position on climate change:
*******
I categorise myself as someone for whom climate science is All About Me and how I am categorised. That is the most important issue here. What is happening to the planet is less important than how I am categorised.

I do not have a confirmed view about climate science, but that is not the issue here. The issue is MEEEEEEEEEEEE so please establish a thread in my honour, which I will lovingly visit and dispense wisdom thereupon, so we can argue about MEEEEE and how I am categorised, thus further delaying any salient action on climate science, which as we all know is a side-show distraction from the real issue, which in case you missed it, is MEEEEEEEEE. I shall now make some glib remark about Christmas as a distraction, because the last thing I would want on a climate science blog is for anybody to start discussing climate science instead of MEEEEEEE.
*******

OK, sorry, that could have been more conscise:

Climate science -- it's all about me, Happy Christmas.

By Mercurius (not verified) on 23 Dec 2011 #permalink

The funny thing is that I don't actually think Keith's beliefs are as untenable as his comments in the thread suggest (IOW I don't think he doubts WG 2 conclusions). But he can't bring himself to admit to making a mistake (on a blog no less!) and so instead he doubles down with tribal accusations and non-responsive comments.

By Marlowe Johnson (not verified) on 23 Dec 2011 #permalink

Been a while. Good to see that nothing's changed. Y'all keep at it, though.

Happy hols

By Tom Fuller (not verified) on 23 Dec 2011 #permalink

> He's equated me with Monckton. Straight out of the Romm playbook.

To the extent that equating someone with Romm is a negative association (KK clearly thinks its very bad), wouldn't that be guilt-by-association?

>I won't reward the slimy guilt-by-association tactic.

KK won't reward it in others, but he'll happily play it himself.

When I was a kid, that was called "hypocrisy", but times change I guess. Keith would never stoop to hypocrisy would he?

Tone troll fail.

**Update**: Kloor responds by [misrepresenting by post](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2011/12/keith_kloors_thinking_on_clima…), claiming "He's equated me with Monckton." Of course, I did no such thing. I equated his view with [The View from Nowhere](http://pressthink.org/2010/06/clowns-to-the-left-of-me-jokers-to-the-ri…), because it was so vacuous that there was nothing in it that Monckton would disagree with. I wrote two sentences. They were not long sentences and they did not use any difficult words. Everyone else who commented managed to understand them, including Shub, a self-described denier, who found that Kloor's thinking was "exactly" the same as his.

By Tim Lambert (not verified) on 24 Dec 2011 #permalink

"including Shub, a self-described denier..."

Tim, I hope it is not lost on anyone that I use such a term with a sense of irony, though it is quite accurate for the limited purpose at hand.

If you pursue our entire cadre of journalists and activists and put them on the spot just as you did with Keith (who let his thinking be known in a Freudian slip of sorts), how many do you think you would find, whose position matches Keith's? I think there would be quite a few.

Lots of people likely seek the safety of the consensus position simply to avoid being lumped with the google-eyed Monckton. In their heart of hearts, they are denying that anything bad is going happen from CO2 (to varying degrees), they have their doubts about the Pachauri-led IPCC, and you know it.

"KK, do you want to clarify that in any way? When we increase CO2 in the atmosphere .... roughly, approximately, from the physics -- what happens?"

Shub:

Hello? Why the friggin' frig do you feel so darn compelled to put words into people's mouths and thoughts into people's heads? Do you own some sort of reality distortion device that you're totally addicted to using?

When someone tells you, 'Shub, you're misrepresenting us' or 'Shub, you're totally wrong', why on earth can't you accept that this is what they said, and this is most probably also what they think? Why must you repeatedly try to pretend that they're actually saying or thinking the exact opposite of what they're heard to be saying?

You need help.

 * * *

Mercurius:

> I categorise myself as someone for whom climate science is All About Me and how I am categorised. That is the most important issue here. What is happening to the planet is less important than how I am categorised.

Word.

-- frank

Climatologists have done to science what abusive priests did to the Cahtolic Church and science gave us pesticides too don't forget.
We the former believer majority challenge anyone still believing that we now cause climate to change, to ACT like it's real and get a sign that says; THE END IS NEAR and join the rest of the âend of the world freaksâ. You bible thumping neocons of fear mongering condemned my kids to the greenhouse gas chambers for 25 years of needless panic and with such childish glee that history will have a special place for you modern day witch burners.

Meanwhile, from the 'Keith Kloor's journalistic integrity: it's all about MEEEEEEEE!!!!' edition:

Over at Keith Kloor's blog one can find plenty of blog posts along these lines: (emphases mine)

> Ryan Avent at the Economist gets my nostalgia award [...]

and

> [...] I met with a scholar whose work I find fascinating. [...]

and

> But there are some commenters, such as Joshua, Martha, and Louise, and a few others on the skeptical side, who I find quite engaging. [...]

and

> To my eyes, it looks like the Keystone pipeline is the new ANWR for U.S. greens.

and

> Someone I have a lot of respect for says [...]

(Cached, just for the kicks.)

-- frank

meme-miner -- an echo, not an idea.

C'mon, KK, basic physics, conclusion, roughly, approximately -- increasing CO2 in the atmosphere does what?

Shub @ 39

"including Shub, a self-described denier..."

Tim, I hope it is not lost on anyone that I use such a term with a sense of irony, though it is quite accurate for the limited purpose at hand.

We've been through this a dozen times elsewhere. There's no irony. You are just disingenuous to a fault.

He's equated me with Monckton.

You're a liar, a contemptible despicable liar. Any honest person can clearly see that he did no such thing -- that he equated your view with the "View from Nowhere", which is so noncommittal that even a whackjob like Monckton has no argument with it. That is a fact, a plain fact, an undeniable fact, a fact that even you can see, but you deny this fact because you have an agenda to make yourself a victim and by so doing so bash Tim and call him contemptible when it is clearly you who are contemptible.

Keith Kloor, you are a plainly contemptible liar, an intellectually dishonest and arrogant fool who is incapable or unwilling to tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.

ianam is playing "let's you and him fight" -- a distraction.

Leave KK alone and he might clarify what he actually thinks.

Stir him up and he may not take time or attention to clarify.

FYI, I have left a missive at KK's (link) inviting him to return here & discuss the science with Hank and other interested parties. (Please, folks, be civil, that we might explore KK's views and leave his Huff in Park.)

"Nitpicking othersâ arguments is not the same thing as âcritical thinking.â That involves nitpicking your own arguments."

By Anna Haynes (not verified) on 24 Dec 2011 #permalink

@51 - why not discuss the issue at Keith's blog since that is where he made the comment?

The general atmosphere over here is rather unpleasant.

To those that scoffed when I said that I know that CO2 added to the atmosphere will have an effect but I don't know the exact nature of that effect please tell me exactly how many billions will die or suffer dreadfully as a result? Please tell me exactly how acidic the oceans will become and exactly how many fishermen will no longer be able to land a catch, how high the sea level will rise so that I know exactly how many people will be displaced, exactly how extreme our weather will become, etc.

I know that sea levels will rise, that the oceans will become more acidic, that our weather patterns will be disprupted and I know that these will be caused by increased CO2 in the atmosphere - now you tell me EXACTLY (the word I used in the original comment) how this will pan out.

Louise:

> The general atmosphere over here is rather unpleasant.

Perhaps, you know, part of this "unpleasant" "atmosphere" is due to your 'skeptic' chums such as Shub, mememine, and Tom Fuller making distracting noises on this very thread? And part of it is due to you wanting to make the conversation about you and your arguments instead of Keith Kloor's arguments?

-- frank

What is it with the 'exactly' this and 'exactly' that move?

When someone tells you that the tree you're planting will shade your windows, block your view and crack the house foundations, what do you do? Refuse to consider moving it unless someone draws a line on the wall showing the 'exact' path of this theoretical crack. With a day/month/year set for its appearance?

No? So why do you expect even more precision with something that involves billions of trees, of people, of houses, rivers, glaciers, beaches? I really don't get it.

ianam is playing "let's you and him fight" -- a distraction.

I'm not playing anything, asswipe, I'm telling the truth.

Leave KK alone and he might clarify what he actually thinks.

Stir him up and he may not take time or attention to clarify.

That's an awful lot of stupidity and moral abdication packed into a few words.

The general atmosphere over here is rather unpleasant.

Troll troll tone troll. The atmosphere over at KK is unscientific.

I really don't get it.

Read the psychological literature under "denial".

please tell me exactly how many billions will die or suffer dreadfully as a result

Exactly too many.

Please tell me exactly how acidic the oceans will become

Exactly too much.

and exactly how many fishermen will no longer be able to land a catch

Exactly too many.

how high the sea level will rise

Exactly too high.

so that I know exactly how many people will be displaced

Exactly too many.

exactly how extreme our weather will become, etc.

Exactly too much.

now you tell me EXACTLY (the word I used in the original comment) how this will pan out

You're demanding that we make the same error you do?

If someone is shot several times in the head, do we have to know exactly how many bullets were fired, how much blood is lost, how many neurons are destroyed, to say something definite about how it will pan out?

There is no such thing as an 'honest denier'. Directly or indirectly, they're in it for the money.

I've yet to happen across a denier who is an honest skeptic.

1.
O that one ten thousand of those who labor at socially engineering smoking out of existence were put to work on lung cancer research this day.

Kloor is rather astonishing. He says Republicans "have moved narrow, minority held views (such as supply side economics) into the Republican mainstream." So, Republicans have turned crackpot economics into ideological orthodoxy.

And then Kloor adds: "But he fails to mention the cultural values underlying these attitudinal shifts of the Republican party, and how these values have been powerfully framed (subsequently catching on as motivating force) and successfully wedded to policy positions."

"Cultural values" here would be "making up self-serving hooey."

And then: "So what are the values the climate movement wants audiences to embrace?"

Uh... not lying?

The problem with climate science is that it lacks a ministry of propaganda?

What a perfectly obnoxious person.

What a perfectly obnoxious person.

That's understating it. Take a look at

http://www.collide-a-scape.com/2011/12/13/the-durban-climate-deal-and-c…

and Kloor's comments in that thread. The man is even less intellectually honest than our own Alex Harvey, if that's possible. Particularly damning is when he directly replies to "thingsbreak"s comment `#`30, and then when thingsbreak responds, Kloor asks "What makes you think Iâm talking to you?", lobs ad hominems about anonymity, blathers about "tribalism", and then tries to tar thingsbreak via guilt by association with Joe Romm, based on a stupid, careless, and dishonest misreading of something thingsbreak wrote about Steven Mosher ... and he never admits to any error or apologizes for any of his atrocious behavior. And then when thingsbreak writes

Keith, as cute as you might think it is continuously har[p] on the fact that I blog and comment under a pseudonym and thus somehow matter less than others who make fools of themselves under their ostensibly real names, youâre taking it a little far, donât you think?

Keith responds, avoiding any of thingsbreak's substance, with

Let me be clear about something: I donât think itâs cute; I think itâs cowardly.

Yes, Keith's ad hominem harping on anonymity is indeed cowardly, not cute!

This man is dense and intensely dishonest, he has nothing positive to contribute to the discussion of global warming; he's an arrogant ignorant "freelance journalist" blogger -- why does anyone take him seriously?

@36 Oh indeed. Someone who has a comprehension fail parsing a multi-clausal sentence thinks he possesses fit and proper faculties to critique the entire edifice of climate science.

The Dunning-Kruger is strong in this one.

By Mercurius (not verified) on 24 Dec 2011 #permalink

> I'm not playing anything, asswipe, I'm telling the truth.

Passionately, bless your heart.

But Tim asked KK a question.

If KK will say clearly what he does think, you might not need to tell people about him because they'd see for themselves.

What does happen, upon adding CO2 to the atmosphere, even approximately?

If KK will say clearly what he does think

If magical fairies will turn KK into a very different person from what he is, then ...

Leave KK alone and he might clarify what he actually thinks.

Or he might not. But really, what does it matter what he thinks about AGW? Far more important is what role he plays ... which is to attack "partisans" and "activists", while pretending to be rational and non-"tribal".

Stir him up and he may not take time or attention to clarify.

Or he may ... an honest person would. In any case, this is pathetically cowardly brownnosing of a very shitty ass.

People need good information about bad actors; denying bad faith is a serious mistake. As WVO Quine observed:

Rhetoric is the literary technology of persuasion, for
good or ill. It is the rallying point for advertisers,
trial lawyers, politicians, and debating teams.

Debating teams are promoted in schools as a spur to
effective language and incisive thought. They serve that
purpose, but only by setting the goal of persuasion
above the goal of truth. The debater's strength lies not
in intellectual curiosity nor in amenability to rational
persuasion by others, but in his skill in defending a
preconception come what may. His is a nefarious knack of
disregarding all the discrepancies while regarding every
crepancy.

The same skill, along with legal lore, is the strength
of the trial lawyer or barrister, and the strength also
of the successful politician, one or the other of which
careers the captain of the the debating team is clearly
destined for. Happily there are lawyers who will only
take on such cases as they deem to be just, and
politicians who will espouse only a case which is
righteous; but these scruples are not adjuncts of the
rhetorical pole, nor are they keys to success in the
legal or political profession.

When an electorate or a jury is the sway of a
demagogue's rhetoric, cold reason and the marshaling of
facts bear little promise in rebuttal. Marshaling more
rhetoric, then, in a contrary vein, we fight fire with
fire. Rhetoric is invaluable homeopathically in
withstanding its own assaults.

In scientific circles there is little demagogy to
combat, but rhetoric is sometimes of service even there;
for in an extremity it may happen that a scientist needs
more than a cold statement of his theory and his
evidence if he is ever to shake the stubborn and
mistaken preconceptions of some of his students, let
alone his dissident colleagues. But rhetoric in the
wrong scientist's hands can do disservice to science. It
can help him put his theory across for his reputation's
sake despite some shakiness in the evidence.

Rhetoric, then, is sometimes nefarious and sometimes
not. In its nefarious use it is the art or practice of
defending a proposition on grounds other than one's own
reasons for defending it. An auxiliary device is
innuendo. A 'referentially translucent' expression, as
Randal Marlin call it, is subtly ambiguous: it can be
taken as objectively stating a result of an action, and
it can be taken as accusing the agent of intending that
result. One of Marlin's examples is the headline 'Pope
Fouls Up Bar Mitzvah'. The Pope's arrival in town caused
a traffic jam that rendered the synagogue inaccessible
for the Bar Mitzvah; but the headline can be taken as
hinting unjustly of hostility on the Pope's part towards
Jews. It is an insidious device, effective in warping
unsuspecting minds while still adhering, in a sense, to
the verifiable.

Nefarious rhetoric is rife not only in tendentious
journalism, television commercials, courts of law,
Congress, political rallies, and the United Nations, but
also in homelier settings. In a New England town meeting
a citizen will describe in glowing terms the public
advantages which accrue from some proposed measure, when
what is at stake deep down has to do with his own
interest as proprietor, abutter, investor or c ontractor.
In such a case we do not cope with abuse by meeting
rhetoric with rhetoric, fire with fire, we just expose
the man's motives. What is important is to be alert to
what is going on, and not accept insincere argument at
face value. This much applies to the august and the
humble ones alike.

What I have been calling nefarious rhetoric recurs in a
rudimentary form also in impromptu discussions. Someone
harbors a prejudice or an article of faith or a vested
interest, and marshals ever more desperate and
threadbare arguments in defence of his position rather
than be swayed by reason or face the facts. Even more
often, perhaps, the deterrent is just stubborn pride:
reluctance to acknowledge error. Unscientific man is
beset by a deplorable desire to have been right. The
scientist is distinguished by a desire to BE right.

Well, ianam, you managed to successfully spook KK with your outbursts of inquisitor passion. Hank was closing in on our prey slowly (but ineffectually). And then you had to burst in with your 'asswipe' etc stuff (don't ask me, ask Keith, he says you've turned this place into a 'sewer')(link)

Apparently, Keith's got a 'large body of work (written articles, blog posts, etc)' that 'should give enough hints about where [his] thinking lies'. Well, that is true of Monckton as well, isn't it? He has an even larger body of
written work and numerous high-profile speeches. I'll point out another inconvenient fact - Monckton may try to occasionally drag the consensus salesman to court, and you may not like his maths, or find what you think are gaping flaws in his reasoning or math - but Monckton, always, provides substantiation for his reasoning. If he calls John Abraham a shrimp (or prawn or whatever), he'll produce a thick fat document to explain why.

Moreover we are told that Keith won't 'indulge in silliness' over 'one quote...'. Well, that one quote 'consisely expressed' your thinking on climate change, did it not Keith?

It is funny to observe the contortions of commenters Lazar, BBD and Marlowe as they try to accommodate the newly-uncovered denialism of Keith into their climatic intellectual worldview. To bad, only folks like KK can escape the ire of your zealotry, eh BBD? BBD and Marlowe have lowered their "denier" brand cattle-prod into the coals, the same prods they'd stick into anyone's side even if they blinked the wrong way about climate. Lazar's produced a large body of work (i.e., a long comment) where he wonders: "Is rejecting expert opinion equivalent to denial? Perhaps⦠". You think?

Hypocrites one and all.

All that psychological mumbo-jumbo about 'denialism' and 'Dunning-Kruger' is only for the little fish who have some questions to ask, but not for writers at ClimateCentral.org and the Yale Climate Forum?

The efforts of Hank Roberts and others to elicit more from KK on the subject are made in good faith but - perhaps because of this - are doomed to fail, or at least be ignored by KK. Why? Because if Mr Kloor was possessed of any good faith himself, it would be unlikely he would (deliberately?) claim Tim's post was an out-of-context fabrication based on a post at his own blog, much less compound his error by misrepresenting the link to The View from Nowhere. And the final nail in that wooden box is Mr Kloor's insistence that all coresspondence on the matter be conducted at his blog, despite his post here and (IMO) rather contradicting Mr Kloor espousing his credentials in "open-mindedness".

While I admire people's willingness to encourage and engage in debate with serial dilettantes like Mr Kloor (he ain't no serious journalist), surely his track record ought to show how pointless such endeavours are...

@ shub:

Well, ianam, you managed to successfully spook KK with your outbursts of inquisitor passion.

Pish and bibble. It seems to me Mr Kloor had exactly zero intention of furthering debate here, as any reasonably attentive reading of his posts ("Any of you want to talk to me, feel free to come over to the thread where Lambert has plucked this quote from. Otherwise, continue on with your little echo chamber here") would demonstrate.

But please, carry on constructing houses of straw, at least you're being kept busy.

The efforts of Hank Roberts and others to elicit more from KK on the subject are made in good faith

The argument that I should refrain from pointing out that KK is a dishonest ass because that might discourage him from sharing with us his innermost beliefs about climate is stupid and toady regardless of whether it is made in good faith ... and it is not in fact an attempt to elicit anything from KK. Rather, it offers KK an excuse for not clarifying his position and rationalizes his not doing so.

Other than that, I agree with you.

> ...Monckton, always, provides substantiation for his reasoning. ...he'll produce a thick fat document to explain why.

In my recollection, a significant portion of the time Monckton *doesn't* explain why critiques of his arguments should be rejected and instead merely deploys innuendo and/or invective - or repeats his original argument without addressing the critique. And of the remaining half, almost all of the time his reasoning with regard to the critique remains as faulty as his original argument.

By Lotharsson (not verified) on 26 Dec 2011 #permalink

> Probably not possible, based on my own experience of arguing with Alex.

Witness email 6 from Alex to Jason. See if you can count the errors of fact and the misunderstandings of climate science - with or without reading the paper in question. Jason called out some of these in earlier e-mails but appears to have left this one as an exercise for the reader ;-)

Then there's the whole Alex schtick of "I know what the scientists *really* think which is different from what they write in their papers". Of course, he doesn't apply that spin to "skeptic" or contrarian papers...

By Lotharsson (not verified) on 27 Dec 2011 #permalink

and it is not in fact an attempt to elicit anything from KK.

Sorry, SteveC, by "elicit" you were of course referring to Hank's posts asking KK his view, not to his comment about me. But those posts were made after KK had already said he was running back home. Hank continuing to solicit a response was foolish and pollyannish, and his trying to put blame on me for KK not responding was idiotic. But more importantly, he completely and utterly missed the point. What matters about KK, if anything, is not what he believes about climate, but that he throws spitballs at us climate hawks from a feigned position of being rational, objective, aloof, non-partisan, non-tribal, uninvolved, etc. ad nauseum. The goal of people like Kloor is to attack as irrational and "partisan" any expression of concern about the consequences of AGW.

"KK,... clarify? When we increase CO2 in the atmosphere .... roughly, approximately, from the physics -- what happens?"
Posted by: Hank Roberts | December 23, 2011 3:15 PM

"... continue on with your little echo chamber here."
Posted by: keith kloor | December 23, 2011 5:00 PM

KK, repeating the unanswered question isn't an echo.

Will you clarify what you think happens when CO2 increases?

Shub @ 70

It is funny to observe the contortions of commenters Lazar, BBD and Marlowe as they try to accommodate the newly-uncovered denialism of Keith into their climatic intellectual worldview. To bad, only folks like KK can escape the ire of your zealotry, eh BBD? BBD and Marlowe have lowered their "denier" brand cattle-prod into the coals, the same prods they'd stick into anyone's side even if they blinked the wrong way about climate. Lazar's produced a large body of work (i.e., a long comment) where he wonders: "Is rejecting expert opinion equivalent to denial? Perhaps⦠". You think?

Hypocrites one and all.

Speaking only for myself, I prefer 'pragmatist'. My enemy's enemy and all that. Compared to what you do, KK's perceived transgressions are as nothing.

It's interesting that even KK has had to put you on moderation.

as the one who started this whole brooha, i can say with all honesty that i'm flabbergasted that it's turned out this way. a real head scratcher. FWIW, I this was the part that got Keith's hackles up, although we'll never know of course...sigh....

âAs Roger Pielke Jr. said recently in a recent post, the battle over climate change is won: the general public in the U.S. (excepting the Tea Party and Fox News viewers) believes AGW is real.â

First of all, just because Roger says so, doesnât make it so . Since Roger never replied when I first objected to this characterization, I will restate it here. Suggesting that the âbattleâ is âwonâ raises a number of important questions. How do you define âwinningâ? Is it simply a matter of 50% +1? More importantly what does âbelief AGW is realâ actually refer to? That humans activities are altering the atmosphere in some way or that it is an existential threat that needs to be addressed? There is a big difference between the former and the latter! Rogerâs framing (and yours) glosses over these crucial questions in a way that seems deliberately designed to minimize the role that climate denialism plays in stifling meaningful mitigation policy. Is denialism the only obstacle to meaningful action? No. But it is a real obstacle that needs to be addressed, particularly in the U.S. where the vagaries of the political process make action very difficult without very significant public support.

By Marlowe Johnson (not verified) on 27 Dec 2011 #permalink

Hank Roberts @ 81 - that video is a travesty. An absolutely marvellous speech by Steve Schneider spoiled by ridiculous fake-skeptic climate myths. What hell was the person who edited that thinking?

I categorise myself as somebody who recognises that additional CO2 in the atmosphere as a result of man's activities (fossil fuel burning and land use change) will have an effect on the balance of radiation coming into and leaving our atmosphere.

I do not have a confirmed view as to exactly what the impact of the CO2 will have (feedbacks etc being uncertain) but I know that it must have an effect - that's physics.

Monckton would not disagree with any of this. This seems to be an example of The View from Nowhere.

Tim, while I agree that Kloor´s statement fits the view from nowhere, I do think that you are a bit unfair. As you (of all people) well know, Monckton has actually written lots and lots of rubbish where he boldly denies anything and everything, including even this simple view-from-nowhere-physics. Previously, you have eloquently demonstrated e.g. how Monckton has pushed Khilyuk & Chilingar´s claim that humans have no effect on CO2, Beck´s BS about the CO2 level not having been rising, that the CO2 rise is mostly natural, that there is no warming at all, that the warming is all due to the sun, that the CO2 has no impact on polar ice melting, that the polar ice melting is beneficial and so onandonandon.

Of course, Monckton has also uttered something resembling Kloor´s statement, but when you are dealing with somebody who obviously does not care about maintaining even an illusion of coherence in his many ridiculously contradictory and nonsensical positions (or whether anything he says is true or not), then most people could, time and again, find a statement or two that just might not be completely ridiculous at face value.

Monckton currently does not have any "position" at all (except, of course, that it´s all a commie conspiracy), and just getting this kind of to stop denying even simple 19th century physics along the lines of Kloor´s statement would, in fact, be a major achievement for you and us climate realists. Yes, I know that this is absurd for most of us, but that´s life when dealing with despicable inbred degenerates from the 19th century.

I don´t know (or care) that much about Keith Kloor, but from the little I have seen, he actually does appear to care about whether anything he writes is true or just minimally coherent - even if most of it is just boring and vague.

By Christoffer Bu… (not verified) on 28 Dec 2011 #permalink

for Rob Painting: the myths are what Schneider's debunking:

http://www.climate-one.org/video/stephen-schneider-science-and-distorti…

-----excerpt-----

Dr. Stephen Schneider spoke at Climate One ... he said:

"How are we going to deal with this [climate change] problem and others like it if it requires public understanding so they can send the right value signals to our representatives when they are completely knocked off their pins by this fraudulent debate when all parties are given equal credibility when they donât deserve it and we have got take back the air waves in a way and make certain that whatâs out there is more credible not just simply following some formulaic balance."

Hank - other authors at Skeptical Science are going to publish that video too. I have argued strongly against it because of the research highlighted by Stephan Lewandowsky & John Cook (the Debunking Handbook) which shows that people don't think, like we think they do. A copy is freely at SkS to download. I suggest you take a look at it, especially "the familiarity backfire effect"

By peppering that video with fake-skeptic myths, the uninformed viewer will likely be confused. Isn't that what the fake-skeptics want?

If you can show me some research which suggests that Schneider's speech is likely to be the key point taken home by the majority of viewers I'm all ears. Let's leave cognitive bias and gut instinct to the fake-skeptics eh?

The video is not a travesty, it isn't spoiled, you're exaggerating the level of representation of myths in the video, and you're treating the cautions of the Debunking Handbook as being far more absolute than they are. The Handbook says

To test for this backfire effect, people were shown a flyer that debunked common myths about flu vaccines. Afterwards, they were asked to separate the myths from the facts. When asked immediately after reading the flyer, people successfully identified the myths. However, when queried 30 minutes after reading the flyer, some people actually scored worse after reading the flyer. The debunking reinforced the myths.

but this video isn't structured like that. The Handbook goes on:

How does one avoid causing the Familiarity Backfire Effect? Ideally, avoid mentioning the myth altogether while correcting it. When seeking to counter misinformation, the best approach is to focus on the facts you wish to communicate.

Not mentioning the myth is sometimes not a practical option. In this case, the emphasis of the debunking should be on the facts. The often-seen technique of headlining your debunking with the myth in big, bold letters is the last thing you want to do. Instead, communicate your core fact in the headline. Your debunking should begin with emphasis on the facts, not the myth. Your goal is to increase peopleâs familiarity with the facts.

Now, there may well be people who take from this video that CO2 is "green", the science isn't settled, and they should take up smoking like that guy from the Tobacco Institute --- people who did not entertain such ideas before seeing this video -- but they are not the target of Schneider's speech or this video.

Ianam - on the one hand we have peer-reviewed studies (which the Debunking Handbook is based upon) indicating people don't think like we expect them to, on the other we have what exactly? Gut instinct? Self-projection?

I strongly suspect you are mentally filtering out the fake-skeptic myths because you know they are garbage, and instead focus on what Steve Schneider has to say. Why would someone unfamiliar with climate science do the same? The myths are jarring, and some are inserted at random points in Schneider's lecture, they don't even immediately relate to what he is talking about. Did you just gloss over that too?

If you we going to promote mixed messages, don't complain if the average man and woman in the street is confused. Sorry, but that's what the science suggests. And I'm a big fan of science before gut instinct any day.

Rob Painting:

I strongly suspect you are mentally filtering out the fake-skeptic myths because you know they are garbage, and instead focus on what Steve Schneider has to say. Why would someone unfamiliar with climate science do the same?

Perhaps because only a very small fraction of the time is spent on giving examples of those fake-skeptic myths that Schneider talks about.

The myths are jarring, and some are inserted at random points in Schneider's lecture, they don't even immediately relate to what he is talking about.

Your examples of this are?

Did you just gloss over that too?

You doth protest an awful lot.

By Chris O'Neill (not verified) on 29 Dec 2011 #permalink

Having just watched the video I'm leaning towards Rob Painting on this.

It's easy to believe the calm, measured tones from Stephen Schneider, which contrast so strongly with the brash stupidity of the inserted clips, will hold the overwhelming message taken from this video by any sane viewer. However, the 'CO2 is good for you' message, for example, is a cynically effective one and repeating it risks reinforcing it.

If these myths are going to be shown they need to be addressed more directly, more explicitly and more emphatically.

Keith Kloor is a skeptic

Actually Shub, just like you, KK is a nobody.
In the field, no skills, no credentials, nothing to add. Just like you.

Gut instinct?

Lessee ... "strongly suspect ... Did you just ...If you we going to ... don't complain ..."

And I'm a big fan of science before gut instinct any day.

You're a big fan of painting your gut instincts with the gloss of science, while ignoring what I actually wrote and attacking strawmen.

'CO2 is good for you' message, for example, is a cynically effective one and repeating it risks reinforcing it

I'm impressed by the cynical elitism: "We get it, but all those boobs don't think the way we think." But the fact is that I didn't even dispute that. Rather, "they are not the target of Schneider's speech or this video". The Debunking Handbook is about, well, you know, how to debunk myths, and talks about laying out the facts and not, for instance, headlining your debunkings with the myths themselves. But that simply is not the intent of Schneider's speech; it's a meta-discussion. If you're trying to convince your skeptical father-in-law about the reality of AGW, you're a fool if you start with Schneider's speech, with or without the myths included.

Shub:

But his thinking on CO2 and the climate system completely matches theirs.

Now that is an equation, one that Tim never made. Of course KK would never admit that, as it's important for him to maintain his fiction that Tim and Schub are flip sides of the same coin, whereas he is above it all, non-tribal, non-partisan, without a dog in the fight ... why, it sounds just like The View from Nowhere.

Shub - thank you. I pegged Kloor as a denialist more or less on your level of illiteracy and understanding from day one, was rude about it, and got banned (badge of honor and all that).

My guess is that Kloor's not going to welcome your embracement with returned deep hugs and kisses, though.

But, again, thank you. Thank you for seeing that you and Kloor are fellow-travelers on the great ship Science Denial.

By the way, in case you wondered if the Breakthrough Institute were keeping ahead of Kloor as the Terribly Awful Climate Delayers and Miscommunicators - indeed, they are. New book and everything. The award's in the bag.

By Marion Delgado (not verified) on 30 Dec 2011 #permalink

It's worth noting that, according to Rob Painting's thesis, his attempt to counter the communication myth employed by that video will backfire, leaving people just remembering the technique of peppering/scattershotting debunkings with the myths they are intended to debunk. According to the Debunking Handbook, he should have simply described how to make an effective video to communicate reality, without any mention of the errors in this video. If he were to mention those at all, he should have first presented the citations showing why they are errors, before mentioning the errors themselves. The Handbook stresses that "Your debunking
should begin with emphasis on the facts, not the myth" and "The last thing you want to do when debunking
misinformation is blunder in and make matters
worse" and that myths can be reinforced by "providing evidence that threatens oneâs worldview". But instead, Rob blundered in with

Hank Roberts @ 81 - that video is a travesty. An absolutely marvellous speech by Steve Schneider spoiled by ridiculous fake-skeptic climate myths. What hell was the person who edited that thinking?

This rash attack on someone who was trying to do good and be helpful is likely to backfire. Months from now, what many people will remember is not that people don't think the way we imagine they do, but rather that Rob Painting is a jerk. And that's aside from the fact that he misapplied the DH, which is aimed at the erroneous âinformation deficit modelâ, "the notion that removing [a myth's] influence is as simple as
packing more information into peopleâs heads" -- you can see that in action in the Jonas Thread and a lot of other places where naive folk imagine that they can counter trolls by patiently correcting their misstatements. My own approach is different: express a high level of hostility and contempt, mock them, and demonstrate that they are acting in bad faith, that they are liars, that they are the scum of the earth and that they are personally responsible for great harm and suffering. When one treats trolls as if they were peers, involved in a good faith debate, it gives them an undeserved aura of legitimacy.

Leave it to Keith to add substance to a conversation ...

Seriously, what is friggin' wrong with certain 'journalists'? Do they think they're wise Solomonic judges of truth because they can unthinkingly parrot other people with great precision?

Kloor would say, "I'm just the messenger." So Kloor, are you still "just the messenger", or do you suddenly see yourself as a wise judge of truth? You can't be just a messenger and also a Solomonic judge at the same time.

-- frank

Yes, but a substance of what nature?

By Bernard J. (not verified) on 31 Dec 2011 #permalink

Nice circle jerk you all got going here.

Actually Keith, if you applied some of that legendary journalistic insight, you'd perhaps realise that it's inside your petri dish of nano-celebrity shared by that collection of self-important and self-appointed pico-personalities that the circle jerk is perpetuated.

It's the scientists who're rooted in the *real* world, not the shamblimg cast of one-hit-wonder P.R. hucksters.

Stoat seems to focus too darn much on tone at the expense of facts or clarity.

Of course, for someone who cares more about tone than about the facts, Stoat's blog post is a good one to quote.

Me, I care more about facts. Take that, Keith "I proclaim myself to be a Solomonic judge" Kloor.

-- frank

Nice circle jerk you all got going here.

Keith says both that we are attacking each other and that we have a circle jerk going. All Keith has going is intellectual dishonesty of a very high degree.

William Connolley:

Keith Kloor who I know nothing about other than that I read Joe Romm ranting at him at some point.... Why does Romm hate Kloor so much? I don't know.

Nice argumentum ad ignorantiam (implied: WC doesn't know why Romm hates Kloor, therefore there's no good reason).

what does it tell you about Romm that Morano is happy to link to him?

Less than what it tells you about Connolley that Kloor is happy to link to him.

>All Keith has going is intellectual dishonesty...WC doesn't know why Romm hates Kloor, therefore there's no good reason...

I think Stoat is engaging in a pretty decent line of intellectual dishonesty himself. Why would someone report that they don't know something (as though it was a bit of a mystery) when they could just look it up an report what they find out. I mean, is it really difficult for someone to find out why Romm hates Kloor?

Google: Romm Kloor

It's that hard.

The first link returned is [this article on Think Progress](http://thinkprogress.org/romm/2009/11/01/204856/keith-kloor-trash-journ…) in which Romm explains exactly why he hates Kloor so much. It's strongly worded, but it bears no resemblence to ranting - its a clearly articulated attack on KK's style and lack of substance, only marred by the fact that updates are confusingly placed above the original article.

I found that in 15 seconds. What's wrong with Stoat that he couldn't do the same?

I have a similar take to FrankD on this.

I was bemused to read William Connolly's statements about Romm, for the same reasons Frank put forward, but I assumed that Connolly was just being circumspect after the flak he copped from the Wikipedia editing 'scandal'.

Whatever motivated Connolly, I don't see that Romm is further from reality than Kloor: quite the opposite, in fact. All I see from Kloor is a limp jounalistic version of the denialist dodging merry-go-round that has been so well epitopimsed here on Deltoid recently by Alex Harvey, and by Jonas N and the Scandinavian trolls.

Sorry if that hurts your delicate feelings Keith Kloor, but I really think that the reason you have any readership at all is because you tell a large number of ideologues exactly what the want to hear, rather than telling them the truth in a well-written manner.

By Bernard J. (not verified) on 31 Dec 2011 #permalink

So let me see if I've got this right. The same Keith Kloor who refused above to enter any further debate here has nonetheless apparently been watching this thread very closely. Closely enough to respond to ianam's comment where he links to Romm's comment about Mr Kloor within a couple of hours.

And when he does come back (thus contradicting his earlier "not playing with youse mob never again" huffy fit) he deploys that tactic most beloved of only the most wise and ethical of journalists, the drive-by verbal.

Way to burn your self-awarded reputation for being an honest broker, Mr Kloor.

ianam - Stoat appears not to like snarking, but is happy to do it himself, labelling, at his place, my response (which just picked up the same link as you had earlier posted) as "disappointing" without fronting me over here.

Earlier on this thread I suggested KK was a hypocrite. Seems like you can tell someone by the company they keep.

WC's inline response at post 50 over there is hilarious. In effect: I sometimes disagree with Romm. I don't know anything about Kloor, so I'll trust him because I've never disagreed with him.

Abject fail...

See cites in the preceding posts there, though the links have mostly succumbed to bit rot since they were posted. Scholar will find them if currently available.

Also worth reading, also by Nyhan, from his blog page:
Opening the Political Mind? The effects of self-affirmation and graphical information on factual misperceptions (with Jason Reifler)

It may explain why the "anything but the IPCC" folks never argue with one another over their contradictory notions, and why denier sites are chock full of graphics that, fudged or mislabeled as they often are, do have a powerful effect in successfully misleading people.

The denier crowd generally are nice to each other, likely because they all imagine they're fighting a common enemy -- whatever they may call it, they all know what they're against (world government, the IPCC, socialism, the Second Law of Thermodynamics, taxes, whatever ...).

Ironically the group that reads the science usually end up criticizing each other over matters of style.

Louise:

I could not resist replying to your comment @53. Unfortunately, this kind of comment reflects how badly scientific findings are communicated to the public through the corporate MSM, and also what a bad job the media do in linking different disciplines in Earth and environmental science.

Louise writes, *I know that sea levels will rise, that the oceans will become more acidic, that our weather patterns will be disprupted and I know that these will be caused by increased CO2 in the atmosphere - now you tell me EXACTLY (the word I used in the original comment) how this will pan out*

Sorry Louise, speaking as a scientist, I do not I wish to disappoint you, but your question assumes that contemporary scientific understanding of the link between incredibly complex biotic and abiotic processes is highly advanced, whereas it is not. You certainly spelled out the potentially dire consequences of AGW on various abiotic parameters, but these are inextricably linked with the effects of warming on the health, stability and vitality of both natural and managed ecosystems across the biosphere and, in turn, how this will affect the delivery of critical ecological services that effectively sustain human civilization (I have made this pitch numerous times before on Deltoid threads, but it always seems that it has to be repeated to newcomers).

The real crux of the problem is that our current understanding of the factors that regulate the functioning of ecosystems is still quite poor, for the simple reason that these systems function as a result of the interplay between trillions of individual organisms, billions of populations and many millions of species over different scales and in different hierarchies. We certainly know that many of the conditions that we take for grated but which enable the biosphere to function adaptively (hence the biosphere is a 'complex adaptive system') are generated through a combination of biotic and abiotic interactions; these interactions regulate the flows of water, the cycling of nutrients, and the regeneration of the atmosphere. A book you ought to read that captures this well is Yvonne Baskin's "The Work of Nature" (1999) or else Gretchen Daily's | Nature's Services" (1999).

In order to be able to predict the extent of climate change-inflicted damage on the human material economy, it is imperative to better appreciate the effects of climate change on the natural economy and how this will rebound on human civilization. Whereas we possess some the necessary technologies to adapt to some of the symptoms of rapid warming, we certainly do not possess the technologies to deal with the effects on fraying food webs, collapsing ecosystems and ultimately on a huge reduction in supporting ecosystem services. These include: the purification of water, the breakdown of organic wastes, the cycling of nutrients, seed dispersal, pollination, the maintenance of soil fertility, and the retention of a large genetic library (which is linked with species and population richness). These services do not carry prices in economics: if they did, we would clearly see that humanity is driving systems towards a point beyond which they will be unable to sustain human life in ways that we habitually take for granted.

So in the end, the scientific community, who are in general agreement over the causes of the current warming, are still debating the potent outcomes, which range from bad to catastrophic. I emphasize this point, because as a population ecologist I study and interact with peers involved on all kinds of research on human-mediated global change scenarios. Some of my research is now based on examining the effects of alien invasive plants on recipient native ecosystems; other research in our institute examines climate change and its effects on complex trophic interactions involving trees, insect caterpillars that feed on them and birds that feed on the caterpillars. Rapid seasonal shifts in temperatures are negatively affecting many of these tightly co-evolved interactions because many of the species are exhibiting different physiological responses to warming. The net effect is local extinctions of some species, or else other forms of demographic shifts. When scaled up across larger scale communities and ecosystems, the possible consequences for systems already simplified by a range of human activities is likely to be severe.

In the end, humans are conducting an experiment on the atmosphere and its interplay with the biosphere. This is a biosphere that, as I have said, we depend upon for our survival, and yet it appears that a large segment of society appears to be quite unconcerned about the abyss that we are driving towards in effective darkness. One thing that we can expect as we continue our global assault on the biosphere is surprises, and quite nasty ones: that is the nature of the beast. More extreme weather events such as droughts, floods, heat waves etc; and the planet's biological diversity, which, as I have said, underpins systemic stability, will also dwindle.

You are asking some good questions, but in the end you need to ask yourself if driving blindly in the dark praying from some technological miracle that will enable us to continue hammering away at natural systems is such a prudent course of action. My answer is no. For their part, I also think that there are some good scientific journalists out there, but they are overwhelmed IMHO by those who have no formal training in any relevant fields and instead are driven by the own idealogical filters. Heck, we should no by now that most corporate and establishment journalists hold views that firmly are aligned with the ruling elites and those with power and privilege. The MSM media has a filtering system that selects for certain ideas over others; thus, I don't think that journalists are deliberately deceptive in what they write, but truly believe much of the crap they routinely spew out (this covers all fields). I am saying that they wouldn't be sitting where they are sitting if they believed something else. This is exactly what Herman and Chomsky refer to in 'Manufacturing Consent'.

This, in my view, explains why corporate journalists have trouble connecting the dots. I have yet to see any meaningful media discussion on the effects of climate change on ecosystems and on the critical services that emerge from them. As I said, I think that part of the problem lies in poor training and understanding of different fields, but also a large part of the problem is the filtering system I alluded to above. If one benefits from the current political and economic system, or works in a media outlet that depends on revenue from polluting industries, or works for a media outlet that is part of a large media conglomerate, then it should be fairly obvious why there is hostility to those who speak loudly about the potential dangers of climate change. Note the how corporate media rarely if ever speaks about this touchy little issue. They may tell us of the latest findings in a Nature or Science article, but you'll find it impossible to see them writing about the role we play through overconsumption in driving a changing climate, and certainly won't tell us to cut back on our long haul holiday flights or to buy smaller cars or to reduce consumption. These relevant little tidbits are off the agenda.

A good discussion of this is found at the quite outstanding media watch dog site in the U.K., ' Media Lens'.

By Jeff Harvey (not verified) on 01 Jan 2012 #permalink

Thanks for the cheapskate underhanded compliments dhogaza. You heart must have skipped a whole lot of beats when those words came out.

SteveC's right. After pretending to walk away in a huff from the 'sewer', Kloor doesn't feel any inhibition dipping back in? He might as well have engaged in a more straightforward manner the first time around. Again, this shows how enormous an ego some journalists tend to have.

And by the way folks, has it occurred that the support you enjoy in the mass media might be precisely the sort you get from Kloor? From people who climbed on the bandwagon who did not understand much of the science, internally distrusted almost all its claims, but yet never openly admitted to it because of the inconveniences it would bring?

What about your own position? It is one of cynically ganging up with consensus journalists like Kloor and Lemonick even as you know they have minimal understanding of climate science, or even reject parts of it outright.

*And by the way folks, has it occurred that the support you enjoy in the mass media might be precisely the sort you get from Kloor?*

You've missed the boat, Shub. Read the last bits of my last post. The corporate/establishment media never supported the broad scientific consensus of AGW. Certainly they never spent any time on the underlying social and economic causes; this would have undermined the whole ethos of the political and economic system in which they are beneficiaries.

I recall after the 2007 IPCC report was published a major 'liberal' newspaper over here had articles the next day by (1) a water management expert, saying how well the country would be able to deal with rising sea levels, and (2) a climate change denier, saying that the whole thing was a myth, anyway.

That's the kind of balanced reporting we see in much of the corporate media. I agree that many science writers think they know a heck of a lot about many different scientific fields than they really do, as most have basic degrees at most in one scientific area. But, as I said above, this means nix when the media system 'selects' for certain ideas at the expense of others. Call it a kind of filter, but journalists get to where they are precisely because there views positively resonate with media owners and advertisers. Buck the system and you have to go it alone. Its a simple as that.

By Jeff Harvey (not verified) on 01 Jan 2012 #permalink

I think Stoat is engaging in a pretty decent line of intellectual dishonesty himself.

Yes, that was my point. Note that Keith offered up that stoat piece as some sort of rebuttal because it "shredded it (and Romm)" -- did Keith even read it? This "shredd"ing seems to consist entirely of stoat's guilt-by-association smear of quoting some commenter asking what Morano linking to Romm says of Romm. OTOH, in the comments, stoat writes

Romm, who is smart and knowledgeable, is also often preachy and hyperbolic. If youâre a climate skeptic and you read Romm via Climate Depot, your worst biases about climate advocates are probably going to be reinforced. or even But if, on the other hand, you read Michael Tobis, who Morano has linked to prominently numerous times in recent weeks, then you might be pleasantly surprised to find a civil, logical, and eloquent voice. Thatâs certainly not the impression Morano wants you to walk away with. He always prefaces his links to Tobis by labeling him a âclimate fear promoter,â in an effort to bias your reading of his post. But those Morano-directed readers have also engaged Tobis in comment threads and have found an equally civil and reasonable forum.

So Romm is smart and knowledgeable, and being linked to by Morano doesn't say anything bad about someone. I'm glad we have that cleared up.

What about your own position?

Our own position is based on the science.

consensus journalists like Kloor

How quickly you forget your own claim that Kloor is a skeptic, just as he forgot his claim that we're attacking each other. The two of you have something fundamental in common -- you're unprincipled.

ianam - Stoat appears not to like snarking, but is happy to do it himself, labelling, at his place, my response (which just picked up the same link as you had earlier posted) as "disappointing" without fronting me over here.

Earlier on this thread I suggested KK was a hypocrite. Seems like you can tell someone by the company they keep.

Yes, WC's position that, when Keith Kloor posts a link to WC's two year old thread here, you should respond about it there, else you are talking about him behind his back, is quite astounding. In addition to being hypocritical, he is arrogant, self-serving, dishonest, and with his intercepting every comment so he can insert his snarky responses, cowardly. These comments are not "behind his back" -- he can read them here, and he can respond to them here.

ianam,
You are living in a fairytale world where there are clear categories of people. Kloor is a skeptic and so am I. Kloor doesn't have the courage to admit it, not the ability to explain why he is skeptical. I know that I am a skeptic, why I am of that orientation, and precisely to which claims I direct my inquiries at.

You probably mistake your sputtering rage as a manifestation of an inner principled core. I wonder what you mean by "Our own position". Do you fancy yourself as part of a group that stands 'for the science' etc etc? Well, 'science' doesn't give a damn. That is how it is.

We can check our premises, I would guarantee that as far as 'the science' (whatever the crap that it means for you) is concerned, there are hardly bound to be any major differences. I get called a denier because people like Kloor get a free pass and the alarmist cadre of ecologically-conscious, scientifically-minded Harold Campings need to stroke their egos all the time.

It's not a fairytale world where someone claims in one breath that Kloor is a skeptic and in another that he's a "consensus journalist", it's the real world that dishonest assholes like you occupy.

I wonder what you mean by "Our own position".

Another dishonest dick move on your part, since you're the one who referred to it. But "cynically ganging up with consensus journalists" is not a "position", and is certainly not what this thread is about.

Sorry, Shub, but you have no friends or allies here, nor a chance in hell of swaying anyone about anything, even if you were 100% right about it -- the only thing you have going for you is that Kloor doesn't like you either. You're a loser and a jackass, and you would do a better job of defending your position by remaining silent.

Finally,

I get called a denier because people like Kloor get a free pass

You would not look like such a whiny twit and a complete and utter moron if you had posted that in some thread that is not devoted to criticizing Kloor.

the alarmist cadre of ecologically-conscious, scientifically-minded Harold Campings

Analogy fail.

If I am clubbing a whole bunch of you guys together, it is to attack. If you seek the company of your guys, it is to draw support. There is a difference.

I know who my friends are. I am not here, to make 'friends'. All the adjectives you are throwing at me, are properly applied to you. As an alarmist, you have lost a lot, and I wouldn't expect anything other than desperation from you. And perhaps calls for even greater purity.

"It's not a fairytale world where someone claims in one breath that Kloor is a skeptic and in another that he's a "consensus journalist"..."

You heard that right. Sit tight, read more of my posts above, and think - you might figure what out I said. Don't waste all your breath just spraying your spittle.

Shub = FAIL.

What's so demoralising about Shub is that he genuinely believes himself to be an intellectual. This is amusing for a very brief while, then it slowly begins to leach away the soul.

Shub, you are no less contemptible than Lambert, for reasons that I have made clear to you at my blog. (BTW, shouldn't you still be nursing your wounds over your incomprehensible book review of The Climate Fix being pulled by Anthony Watts from WUWT?)

You and Tim don't realize it, but it is you two who have the most in common. Just flip sides of the same coin.

Shub,

Like Lambert, you willfully mischaracterize my words on your own blog (and in this thread). And yes, I've told you exactly why I find you contemptible (don't pretend otherwise). As for you and Eli being on moderation, that's because you both have said ugly, nasty things about individuals. I can't trust either of you to hold your bile in check. I can count on one hand how many people I have on moderation.

As anyone who reads my blog can see, people with varying viewpoints are well represented and encouraged. But the personal flaming will not be tolerated.

As for engaging with Lambert's misrepresentation on this thread, forget it. He's equated me with Monckton. Straight out of the Romm playbook. I won't reward the slimy guilt-by-association tactic. Any of you want to talk to me, feel free to come over to the thread where Lambert has plucked this quote from. Otherwise, continue on with your little echo chamber here.