Data libertarianism

by Judith Curry

“The fuss over climategate showed that the world is increasingly unwilling to accept the message that “we are scientists; trust us”. Other people want to join the scientific conversation. Good scientists, interested in finding truth, should want to encourage them, not put up the shutters. The wider world instinctively knows to distrust those in all walks of life who reject openness.”

Fred Pearce has published  a very interesting article in Index on Censorship, entitled “Secrecy in science – an argument for open access.

The article begins with Steve McIntyre:

He does not believe this conclusion is a big lie. But he does want to see for himself. And in particular to look at how the data had been “manipulated” — a perfectly honourable process in which, for instance, some weather stations are made to count for more than others because they represent large areas with few weather stations, while others are discounted because their rural locations have been invaded by growing cities.

It’s not what everybody wants to do on a Saturday night, but surely he is exactly the kind of citizen investigator the 2000 Freedom of Information Act was intended to help.

On CRU’s refusal to hand over the data:

If CRU had been more open with its data from the start, a great deal of time and angst on the part of its scientists — and a great deal of public uttering of paranoid nonsense from climate deniers — would have been avoided. And if, in the months before the hack, Jones and his colleagues had not spent ever more time bitching about McIntyre and scheming to keep their data and working methods secret, then the emails would have contained little of outside interest.

Graham’s decision unlocks some four million temperature readings taken at 4,000 weather stations over the past 160 years. But as the journalist Jonathan Jones put it, “the most significant features of this decision are the precedents that have been set”. It could open the door to thousands of other British researchers being required to share their data with the public. Good.

On data sharing:

It is also true that there is little consistency among scientists about what the rules on data sharing and confidentiality should be. Some peer-reviewed journals have tough rules requiring access to that data underpinning research papers, but others do not, including some academic institutions. But there is a growing move to more openness that should surely be welcomed. Cameron Neylon, a biophysicist at the Rutherford Appleton Laboratory in Oxfordshire, writing in New Scientist in September, said the aim should be for “anyone, anywhere to contribute to science”. You can hear the shudders in the labs across the land. But to those who fear an avalanche of ill-informed nonsense arising from data sharing, he said: “If you care about the place of science in society or are worried about the quality of information on the web, then openness offers massive potential to engage people more deeply, educate them about how science works and increase the store of quality information on the web.”

On the fine line between the crackpot and the sublime:

In any event, the whole point of research is that it should be open to maximum scrutiny. And the scientific priesthood can no longer claim that scrutiny should only be among their specialist fellows.

And there is sometimes a fine line between the crackpot and the sublime. Earth science guru Jim Lovelock — a doyen for many modern climate researchers — left institutional academia in frustration at his ideas being ostracised. The Independent began its report of the 2011 winner of the Nobel prize for chemistry, Daniel Shechtman, thus: “An Israeli scientist who was once asked to resign his research post because his discovery of a new class of solid material was too unbelievable has won this year’s Nobel Prize in Chemistry – for that same discovery.”

The charge of sloppiness in the way science often portrays its findings to the wider public is also a warning against allowing too much self-policing. In June, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change issued what it said was a summary of the findings of a detailed study of renewable energy. It headlined the claim that 77 per cent of the world’s energy needs could be met from green power by 2050. In fact, the “77 per cent” finding was the most optimistic of hundreds of academic studies reviewed in the report itself. Moreover, that particular study was conducted by one of the report’s own lead authors, who was also a Greenpeace campaigner. Curious. But most damagingly of all, this highly relevant information only emerged a month after the press release and subsequent media coverage, when IPCC got round to publishing the report itself. This was shameful spin.

The fuss over climategate showed that the world is increasingly unwilling to accept the message that “we are scientists; trust us”. Other people want to join the scientific conversation. Good scientists, interested in finding truth, should want to encourage them, not put up the shutters. The wider world instinctively knows to distrust those in all walks of life who reject openness. As McIntyre put it recently, “probably no single issue damages the reputation of the climate science community more than the refusal to show the data that supports their work”. There should, for the good of science as well as public discourse, be a presumption in favour of open access.

JC comment: Fred Pearce, thank you for this essay!

404 responses to “Data libertarianism

  1. I love the way these writers still pretend ‘deniers’ are wrong, even as skeptics are proven right.
    The blame the messenger tactic is a nice walk back technique, but I look forward to getting past that into actually dealing with the failures of the AGW movement.

  2. the world is increasingly unwilling to accept the message that “we are scientists; trust us”

    Something of an understatement. More like “you are scientists, therefore you are probably lying about something”.

    • I am curious that you think the default “you are scientists, therefore you are probably lying about something” is either ignoble or field specific.
      The work of scientists in disease/pharmacology is always attacked as false/misleading; especially from animal ‘rights’ groups and others.
      I do not think, long term, that it actually matters.
      I think it quite reasonable that, say, all follow up drug studies have their data shown.
      When you visit a doctor and the medic states “Take this ‘XenoMax’ 3 times a day”, you have the quite reasonable expectation that your liver isn’t going to quit.
      If it had previously been discovered, but not reported, that people taking Aspirin and ‘XenoMax’ tended to have liver failure, then it should be reported. As it is, many studies do not see the light of day, until a personal injury lawyer gets the files opened up in pre-trial discovery.
      Given the potential societal costs of changing the fundamental energy production infrastructure of the worlds economy, then climate science should at least attempt to operate at the same level of openness as ‘Big Pharma’.
      Indeed, if the selection criteria, data collection and analysis methodologies were to be documented PRIOR to being performed, as in the case of drug trials, we would not be where we are now.
      When Soon et al (EE 2003) state:-
      “Strong evidence has been accumulating that tree growth has been disturbed in many Northern Hemisphere regions in recent decades (Graybill and Idso 1993; Jacoby and D’Arrigo 1995; Briffa et al. 1998; Feng 1999; Barber et al. 2000; Jacoby et al. 2000; Knapp et al. 2001) so that after 1960-1970 or so, the usual, strong positive correlation between the tree ring width or tree ring maximum latewood density indices and summer temperatures have weakened (referred to as “anomalous reduction in growth performance” by Esper et al. 2002a). ”
      I have no idea what they mean by strong.
      I should know exactly what methodologies were used to pick trees that are responsive to temperature are and how they performed statistically.
      I do not, nor does anyone.
      Imagine if drug companies were allowed to ‘cherry-pick’ which patients they included in their studies, based on drug response of individuals, rather than on the whole test population.
      Would be bee happy to take ‘XenoMax’ if you knew that only positive studies were published?

      • It is far safer to be ignorant and say “I did not know” than actually discover the truth and admit a mistake. Politicians do it all the time and so do scientists.
        “Interesting” is not looking into what makes the discovery interesting. Then ignore it.

  3. But to those who fear an avalanche of ill-informed nonsense arising from data sharing

    The real problem is quite the opposite – the avalanche of nonsense made possible by data secrecy, as as evidenced by the IPCC’s output.

    • And there are always spokespersons – even here – who willing to defend the system no matter how far official proclamations differ from reality.

      I have the good fortune to know personally many folks who are now homeless, unemployed and living in shelters as the US economy collapses and the news media reports declining unemployment!

      [PBS morning news today.]

      What Climategate emails exposed as government misinformation in 2009 was the tip of an iceberg that had been growing out of sight since 1971:

      “Deep roots of the global climate scandal (1971-2011)”

      http://dl.dropbox.com/u/10640850/20110722_Climategate_Roots.pdf

      What a sad state of affairs for people in the former “Free West.”

      With kind regards,
      Oliver K. Manuel
      Former NASA Principal
      Investigator for Apollo

      http://www.omatumr.com/

  4. The Independent began its report of the 2011 winner of the Nobel prize for chemistry, Daniel Shechtman, thus: “An Israeli scientist who was once asked to resign his research post because his discovery of a new class of solid material was too unbelievable has won this year’s Nobel Prize in Chemistry – for that same discovery.”

    That statement is not true; no one asked him to resign his post other than perhaps Linus Pauling, who he didn’t even work for. And the fact is he didn’t resign. This is all myth-making playing out in real-time, and will now become an urban legend.

    • Perhaps you could tackle Wikipedia on that one Web :
      “The head of Shechtman’s research group told him to “go back and read the textbook” and then “asked him to leave for ‘bringing disgrace’ on the team.”

      • You’re both right(ish). There is an urban myth just about to have its umbilical cord cut, and Wikipedia says just what you say it says. Perhaps you both agree..

        My input is that anyone trusting Wikipedia beyond a starting place or a ‘rough and ready’ approximation of anything is heading for a fall. I spend a great deal of my time writing for Wikipedia and believe me, I’m an absolute idiot :)

      • From Shechtman’s own university home page:

        In 1981-l983 he was on Sabbatical at the Johns Hopkins University, where he studied rapidly solidified aluminum transition metal alloys (joint program with NBS). During this study he discovered the Icosahedral Phase which opened the new field of quasiperiodic crystals

        So he was on sabbatical in the USA during 1981 to 1983, working with NBS (now NIST) material scientist John Cahn, as Cahn co-authored the paper with Shechtmann. No way did he get fired from a sabbatical, and you can read what Cahn’s own history says about their discovery here: http://nvl.nist.gov/pub/nistpubs/jres/106/6/j66cah.pdf

        Quasicrystals provided win-win opportunities for crystallographers: If we were mistaken about them, expert crystallographers could debunk us; if we were right, here was an opportunity to be a trail blazer. While many crystallographers worldwide availed themselves of the opportunity, U.S. crystallographers avoided it, to a large extent because of Pauling’s influence.

        It was Linus Pauling who didn’t like the results, and the urban legend grew around this. Pauling had nothing to do with that team, and the USA government’s sponsoring through NBS allowed him academic freedom to pursue his ideas.

        I went to the Wikipedia page and sure enough it leads back to the original Reuter’s news article:

        “People just laughed at me,” Shechtman recalled in an interview this year with Israeli newspaper Haaretz, noting how Linus Pauling, a colossus of science and double Nobel laureate, mounted a frightening “crusade” against him, saying: “There is no such thing as quasicrystals, only quasi-scientists.”
        After telling Shechtman to go back and read the textbook, the head of his research group asked him to leave for “bringing disgrace” on the team. “I felt rejected,” Shachtman remembered.

        The journalist probably thought that Linus Pauling was the head of Shechtman’s research group! Pauling was actually a competitor and had his own theories. He only left the group because his sabbatical ended.

        The analogy with the current conflict was that Pauling was old at the time and was getting ridiculed for his Vitamin C theories. Nonetheless, people believed what he had to say. Pauling was thus like your typical wacko skeptic with past credentials (you can find them a dime a dozen). On the other side was the team of scientists, Shechtman, Cahn, and others who were just following the data where it lead them. Out of this, an urban legend was born, and modern-day skeptics turn the actual events upside-down.

      • Replace “skeptic” with “Nobel Prize Winner”, for a more realistic match.

      • At the time he made his discovery (April 1982) Shechtman had been a Technion professor for six years and was taking his first sabbatical, which he was spending at the US National Bureau of Standards. So it’s not as though he would have been out of a job if they’d made him leave the NBS, which would have been a highly unusual and perhaps unprecedented action for a professor visiting on sabbatical.

        As with the “fog of war,” there seems to be something of a “fog of Nobel.” To cut through the fog, see the Israeli newspaper Haaretz’s April 2011 in-depth interview with Shectman, especially the blow-by-blow account in the second and third sections. The whole thing is fascinating reading, and is unburdened by the Nobel prize, which was still half a year away.

        Incidentally, at the heart of Shechtman’s discovery is the fact that when you tile the plane with n-sided regular polygons, 2n/(n-2) polygons meet at every vertex. For equilateral triangles n=3, hence 6 triangles meet. For squares n=4, so 4 squares meet. For hexagons n=6, so 3 hexagons meet, as in the honeycomb in a beehive.

        For pentagons, 10/3 = 3.333… pentagons must meet. Imagine that.

        For several years crystallographers had great difficulty accepting that the pentagons might be able to distribute themselves aperiodically so as to average 10/3 pentagons. Yet mathematicians had been well aware of aperiodic tilings since Penrose’s 1975 discovery of an aperiodic tiling. A year later Alan Mackay showed Penrose’s tiling would have a Fourier transform with fivefold symmetry, thereby telling crystallographers what to look for. That seems to have had little impact on the crystallographers however.

        Incidentally the Wikipedia page on quasicrystals was begun on Jan 17, 2002, nearly a decade before Shechtman’s Nobel prize.

        Almost forgotten in the flurry is Robert Amman, a Brandeis dropout who in 1975 discovered an aperiodicity with eightfold symmetry after reading Martin Gardner’s account of Penrose’s work. In 1987 Wang et al discovered crystals with Amman’s eightfold symmetry. With this symmetry 2n/(n-2) = 8/3.

        Besides five-fold and eight-fold symmetry, ten-fold symmetry is also found in nature, but not 7, 9, or 11. The latter are described in this 2010 Science Daily article about artificially creating potentially useful materials with these “unnatural” symmetries. One application is to low-friction bearing surfaces requiring little or no lubrication.

      • Sigh.

        Another gem.

        Now I’ll have to dig into all the posts I missed.

      • There is also this:

        The discovery, which launched an entirely new and, since, highly productive branch of materials science was so surprising that even his collaborators were a bit wary. NIST’s John Cahn, a National Medal of Science winner in 1998, thought the peculiar arrangement in the material—a rapidly cooled combination of aluminum and manganese, suggested that it was due to “twinning,” a flaw occasionally encountered in samples of crystalline materials.

        “My initial reaction was, ‘Go away, Danny. These are twins and that’s not terribly interesting,” recalled Cahn, a co-author on the 1984 journal article that reported the discovery.

        However, Shechtman’s scrutiny of the ribbon-like sample under a transmission electron microscope and by means of X-ray diffraction eliminated twinning as a cause of the extraordinary atomic structure and pointed in the direction of a material with five-fold symmetry. The breakthrough was, in Cahn’s words “pure serendipity,” a paradigm-breaking result spawned by Shechtman’s research and persistence.

        So “Go away, Danny” gets translated to “asked him to leave for ‘bringing disgrace’ on the team”? That is so funny, because “go away” wasn’t meant to be taken literally! That was just a figure of speech.

        Good thing that Cahn didn’t send that out in an email, otherwise we would have had QuasiGate on our hands.

      • Actually, Shechtman was dismissed by the head of his research group. (It wasn’t John Cahn, who was his host and later co-author.)

        Shechtman speaks of the dismssal:

        6:42
        “He said you are a disgrace to our group and I cannot bear this disgrace and he asked me to leave the group. So I left the group. And he was a good friend of mine. I mean, but he could not, he could not stand that people would say that this nonsense come from your group. This was the atmosphere… People were hostile.”

        And yes, Linus Pauling also publicly ridiculed Spechtman.

        bi2hs

      • It looks like that was from his boss back in Israel. It sounds like he had smoother sailing with his colleagues from the National Bureau of Standards. Perhaps the moral of the story is that you get US government funding for interesting research.

    • As usual, your statement is self contradictory.

  5. Of course, if there was nothing to hide, no data padding, manipulations, distortions or rapes, the Team would be happy to share.

    But they have lots to hide because we now know from their own words in the Climategate emails, they were torquing their ‘science” to suit their preferred “results” . . . results which kept them famous, funded and fetted by a compliant media that just loves Mega Sky is Falling We Are All Going to Die stories.

    Sells a lot of advertising, very easily.

    In the end, fraud is fraud, whether done for personal gain or to save the world from a perceived threat.

    This year’s Bernie Madoff award goes to . . . taaa daaa:

    The TEAM!

  6. Judith,

    My real curiosity is why they left out 90% of climate for strictly following temperatures?

    • Not sure what this means, Joe.

      • Bill, it means we have a computer generated planet for scientists and a real world planet that does not conform to our current science theories.

      • @ Joshua,

        I am not Bill :)

      • Yeah – I make a special note to distinguish your posts, because IMO you are one of the relatively few here that is interested in exploring the questions as opposed to pontificating about their answers.

        Well, most of the time.

  7. Not sure why there’s any fuss at all. Astronomy has long been showing the way, full raw data sharing a short time after publication, involvement of amateur astronomers in research and observation, distribution of images as-they-arrive from space probes to undermine the crackpots. Even supersecretive Kepler mission has a data sharing policy.

    Why reinvent the wheel, just take the Astronomy example as “best practice” and get on with it.

    • All data that has been obtained through publically funded research is public property, IMO, and it should be made available to the public after publication of the research results and conclusions.

      • “All data that has been obtained through publically funded research is public property, IMO, and it should be made available to the public after publication of the research results and conclusions”

        That is not quite true. In terms of Intellectual Property there is typically an agreement between the grant body, institute and research team. During the Patent disclosure period, the data is confidential, and during the Patent process, some parts may be withheld, normally due to incompleteness. Some data sets take a while to produce, say a 5 year period in some cases. You can get limited IP protection during this time period, without full disclosure.
        The exact rules are very complex, which is what lawyers are for.

      • Peter Davies

        Why after?

        Why not as gathered?

        What possible benefit is there to hoarding data, sometimes for decades, prior to publication?

        What benefit is there that can balance full disclosure and full access to view instrumental metrics and methods and intermediate calculations from cradle to grave?

      • Bart R: What possible benefit is there to hoarding data, sometimes for decades, prior to publication?

        The figure that I have most often read in editorials supporting eventual full disclosure is for full disclosure 2 years after the raw data have been collected and the file “closed”. That provides enough time for the research team to write papers, dissertations and so forth in the knowledge that they will gain scientific credit. The “possible benefit” you seek is that the scientists, though paid for their work, also work for prestige, eminence, promotions and so forth, and they work harder than they would otherwise work if those rewards were denied them. Imagine a PhD candidate who helped to collect and manage the data, writing a PhD thesis to the required standards of a diverse and quarreling thesis committee, to discover that someone else working without the requirement, having made no effort to collect and manage the data in the first place, had gotten a similar paper submitted first. Everyone I know, including myself, views that as an unfair outcome.

      • MattStat

        The “possible benefit” you seek is that the scientists, though paid for their work, also work for prestige, eminence, promotions and so forth, and they work harder than they would otherwise work if those rewards were denied them.

        Prestige. But not _actual_ prestige. Speculation of future prestige.

        Also, prestige of a particular secrecy-dependent type, foregoing manifold other types of prestige that could have been gained by admirable data management, admirable open data habits, admirable metadata, and perhaps even admirably open communications with other interested parties.

        Prestige that must overcome the suspicions as to why all the hush-hush and delay, why the hiding, and what else may remain hidden still?

        I’m familiar with this trade-off. I belief the prestige you refer to is more impediment than it is worth, and pales in comparison to the prestige that flows naturally and soonest from being most open.

        Imagine a PhD candidate who helped to collect and manage the data, writing a PhD thesis to the required standards of a diverse and quarreling thesis committee, to discover that someone else working without the requirement, having made no effort to collect and manage the data in the first place, had gotten a similar paper submitted first.

        Oh, MattStat.

        I don’t need to imagine this case.

        I’ve read more than a few PhD theses. I’ve had many academic institutions as clients, and worked closely with and socialized with exactly the population where all this means anything.

        And the petty jealousies for the sake merely of novelty are a tired vanity about an obsolete meme.

        With current data management, timestamps, video documentation of methods, logs of communications, the dynamic nature of living electronic records of progress in research efforts, there is zero hope of a claim-jumper beating out a sincere student by such plagiarism, and all the more and better basis for comparison of the authentic mind of the actual investigator with the interloper.

        You’re describing the way things were when we were kids.

        The way we are now, who can afford to be so backwards?

        Everyone I know, including myself, views that as an unfair outcome.

        And proper data management, properly open data from cradle to grave, reflects that value and makes your example impossible.

        All that would happen is the readers, the reviewers, would ask, “Where’s that data from? It looks just like this PhD proposal I found on Google,” of the plagiarist.

        On the other hand, there’s no cure for the worst excesses of data hoarding, except full free access to data from the day it’s born.

      • BartR: On the other hand, there’s no cure for the worst excesses of data hoarding, except full free access to data from the day it’s born.

        We disagree. I think that the worst excesses are preventable if everyone knows that the data will be released 2 years (or some other short interval) after the data have been collected.

        In the post I responded to, you wrote: What possible benefit is there to hoarding data, sometimes for decades, prior to publication?

        We agree that “hoarding data, sometimes for decades” is bad. Full release after 2 years or so solves the problem of hoarding for long periods.

      • MattStat

        “Full release after 2 years or so solves the problem of hoarding for long periods.”

        The problem with this approach is that it leaves so many ‘outs’ for the putative researcher.

        What if they _don’t_ release the data?

        Or if they don’t release all of it?

        How do we know what did and didn’t exist?

        Where is the benefit of that dynamic availability of the data from the start to the researcher’s own work?

        Crowdsourced feedback and commentary, teleconnections provided when multiple data sources can be shown to have consilience, questions raised when multiple coincident data sources appear to be in conflict, lively discussions of methodology, inspiration of others to involvement, reduction of inadvertent duplications, invitations arising from the public domain for the researchers to speak or contribute to interested groups..

        Two years, or even two months, moreover, isn’t the issue. It’s the attitude that mechanisms of secrecy, have any role in research at all.

        If you need to delay something, delay the rewards, the gratification of the impulse of prestige, to rivals who have not put out their own comparable data and methods. By the same argument as works in patent law, if a rival attempts to publish in the territory of another without due credit and due compensation to the originator, then the prestige ought go not to the claim-jumper, but to the initial researcher.

        I’ve seen PhD’s whose whole careers were built on parcelling out mouldy old data a bit at a time, akin to those antiquities dealers who cut ancient scrolls into pieces to increase the rarity and price of their commodity, making the original collected data last from thesis to retirement. They too often had ways to ‘refresh’ their hoard by rolling over the data through some transformative analysis or new addition so it would always have a patina of novelty for their publisher. But that’s just a sham pursued because of the perverse rewards of the system of academic prestige as it grew to be before we had our current technology. It’s an abomination of what Science ought be.

      • Well one does still need to pick a period – two months, perhaps. But after that is should become a criminal offence carrying a mandatory prison sentence and lifetime ban on public employment for witholding any publicly-funded information – military secrets and the like being exceptions.

      • Bart R on December 2, 2011 at 11:29 AM had written about how:

        I’ve seen PhD’s whose whole careers were built on parcelling out mouldy old data a bit at a time, akin to those antiquities dealers who cut ancient scrolls into pieces to increase the rarity and price of their commodity, making the original collected data last from thesis to retirement. They too often had ways to ‘refresh’ their hoard by rolling over the data through some transformative analysis or new addition so it would always have a patina of novelty for their publisher. But that’s just a sham pursued because of the perverse rewards of the system of academic prestige as it grew to be before we had our current technology. It’s an abomination of what Science ought be.

        It’s also what I’ve heard called “baloney slicing” in the pharmaceuticals industry.

        Because publication in “high-impact” peer-reviewed periodicals is a big part of the promotional machine for the pharmaceuticals manufacturers marketing their patented products, it is common for them to parcel out information gained in the course of both Phase III and Phase IV clinical trials beyond the fulfillment of the regulatory obligations imposed by FDA/EMEA requirements.

        “Here, Dr. Matarese,” says the be brief, be bright, be gone pharma rep. “Take a look at this reprint from The Journal of Phlogistokakotherapy, discussing the efficacy of Bopamagilvine against other treatments commonly used for the management of subacute incurable axilloptosis.”

        And of course it’s all based on data obtained in a late Phase III trial conducted six years ago.

        This kind of crap can be gotten away with when the “baloney slicing” is done on data gained as the result of what is unarguably private-sector and therefore proprietary research conducted entirely at the expense of the evil-mean-bad-nasty pharmaceuticals’ company.

        They paid for it, and so they’re entitled to make whatever use of it they choose. The process of setting out multi-year schemes for that corporate “baloney slicing” actually has a serious name. It’s called “publications planning.”

        But when the research is done on the taxpayer’s dime, by way of funding gotten on the basis of written grant applications submitted by the investigator(s), then that data is anything but proprietary.

        The public paid for it, and it’s very much public property.

        When a clinical investigator sells his skills to a pharmaceuticals company, the company does most emphatically own the results, and can dictate the publication thereof. Nobody seems to take this as controversial, even in those cases where decisions have been made by the “suits” to publish nothing in spite of the fact that any physician or pharmacologist aware of those results knows goddam well that it’s work of real value.

        Unless the funding comes in the form of an unrestricted grant-in-aid (as the pharma companies have long had to do in their commercial support of continuing medical education [CME] activities), who pays the piper calls the tune.

        Public money comes with public strings attached. Don’t like that, Prof. Jones? Find yourself a multibillionaire dedicated to “the Cause” and suck from his teat.

        I understand that George Soros has a desire to destroy Western industrialized civilization and government limited by rule of law. Cozy up with him.

      • Bart R, You started with this question, as though it had no answer: What possible benefit is there to hoarding data, sometimes for decades, prior to publication?

        I provided an answer.

        So now we have a long discussion about the costs and benefits of different approaches, including an asymmetric worry about non-disclosure of some data and other dishonesty. Well and good. It remains the case that non-disclosure of data for a short, legally prescribed, period of time has a public benefit, a benefit that will be sacrificed if there is a requirement for immediate disclosure as the data are collected. And, no matter which policy is enacted into law, there will be a few research groups that lie, cheat and steal.

        So, what is the balance? As far as my reading tells me, the majority opinion now supports non-disclosure for a short period of time, followed by complete disclosure. Your words “hoarding” and “sometimes for decades” are irrelevant, since already there is no support for them.

      • I am inclined to the view that raw data released without due screening and verification would not be in the public interest and that the resources needed to deal with various public inquiries and clarifications about the data collection methodology and other issues could adversely affect the researcher, possibly causing undue delays in finalising the research project.

        Mattstat’s suggestion downthread would, IMO, assist in ensuring that data is released on a more timely basis but I’m not sure who and how will this requirement be enforced.

      • I am inclined to the view that raw data released without due screening and verification would not be in the public interest

        Let the public decide what is in their own interest, not the conceited scientists living off their taxes who think otherwise.

      • Punksta

        How does the “public” decide what is in their best interest? A good throwaway line but I would really like to read your ideas on the benefits to be had when someone tries to use dodgy data to support whatever it is that they are on about.

      • Let’s back up here a second. What we have now – as Climategate shows – is the climate establishment manipulating and hiding data data to support whatever it is that they are on about (and it certainly isn’t science). It is precisely to prevent this systemic abuse by the professionals that we need openness, so that the wider public can provide a review what is being done by the ivory-tower pal-review system.

      • A classic example of people using dodgy data to support what they are on about? :)

      • Put another way, is not that the naive public requires adult supervision by experts, but rather that corrupt experts require adult supervision by the public.

      • Punksta, I agree entirely with you on this issue, its just that I cant see the practicalities of some of your viewpoints. Yes, some form of supervision of research work should be in place but I rather doubt that “adult supervision by the public” can ever be achieved. These types of comments just don’t make sense to me.

      • OK Peter.
        The practicalities are pretty simple really – letting an open marketplace of ideas operate to compare and contract rival approaches, with entry not closed to anyone. And with publicly funded information available to the public.

      • Punksta: Let the public decide what is in their own interest, not the conceited scientists living off their taxes who think otherwise.

        That’s a little bit like allowing the public to decide which medicines to buy, which canned goods to buy, and how much filth to tolerate in restaurant kitchens, all of which have advocates in some right-wing circles, but which fortunately are not majority viewpoints. Instead, the majority viewpoints support legally enforced standards of efficacy, safety, purity, labeling, cleanliness, and so forth.

        Likewise, I think that legally enforced standards of data collection and management, before public disclosure, would would better in the public interest. There are legally enforced standards for the pharmaceutical industry.

        to get to the case at hand, I think we would all be better off now if CRU/EAU staff had known in advance that their data would eventually all become public, and had been making them readily available at regular intervals. I think that the disorder everyone now acknowledges exists would have been addressed much earlier. Of course, it is impossible to know.

    • The question is – what to do about scientists and journals who refuse to be open with publicly funded science ?
      Prison? Fines? …?

      • Caning or stoning or beheading???
        :-)

      • Death by John Stewart.

      • Punksta | December 1, 2011 at 9:04 am |

        Do you propose that privately funded science ought live by a different standard?

        I see neither the need, nor the purpose, of private data enjoying special treatment.

        There are plenty of ways of holding onto the market value of data without secrecy. If it works for patents, it ought work for research.

      • Do you propose that privately funded science ought live by a different standard?
        Of course, exactly as any other public property and private property is treated differently.

        I see neither the need, nor the purpose, of private data enjoying special treatment.
        What do you imagine is ‘special’ here? In all cases the owner/funder of the data should have control over it.

        There are plenty of ways of holding onto the market value of data without secrecy. If it works for patents, it ought work for research.
        Then all you need do is convince those who fund that research.

        I would add though that if public policy is being made using privately funded rersearch, such research should be then made publicly available – by means of being purchased from the private funders.

      • Punksta | December 2, 2011 at 11:43 am |

        The same arguments as apply to patents apply here too.

        There is an obligation to file a patent if one wishes to profit from an invention, for good reasons, and that ultimately provides better protection for and profit to the inventor.

        Where the public good is served by public use of a patent, the state has always exercised emminent domain, sometimes with expropriation.

        I’m all for good compensation for good research, and I detest state interference in private lives and livelihoods; I’m not saying the state ought regulate private information.

        I’m saying Science by its definition has no private information at all. There is either data that participates in the scientific process, or there is data that does not participate, thereby corrupting and perverting the scientific process.

        If you don’t want to do Science, by all means collect and hoard in private alone or among your little coterie. Simply don’t bother the rest of the world by then talking about it to us, or pretending you’re a scientist.

  8. I have only one problem with Mr Pearce’s paper. The public do not have a distrust of scientists just climate change scientists. So the call for more openess is fine however science is not under attack, duplicity and under hand dealings by a clique of activist climate change scientists is under attack.

    • Wanna bet?

      Experimentations in laboratories greatly misses many factors that create our planet in understanding it. So, with these incomplete parameters, the conclusion must be false.
      But too late, they are now in journals as absolute facts…hmmm.
      I can show the parameter mistakes in many, many other science areas.
      Bought and paid for by taxpayers.

    • I don’t agree, I think the standing of science is declining generally, and is probably perceived to be declining. The climate science fiasco actually demonstrates this, because scientists in other disciplines seem willing to help to conceal the mess. Thus Sir Paul Nurse fronted a BBC television Horizon program “Science Under Attack” devoted almost entirely to defending climate science – using some fairly underhand means.

      • David –

        I don’t agree, I think the standing of science is declining generally, and is probably perceived to be declining.

        Do you have some data to support your thinking?

      • Well as I said, there have been a number of prominent scientists in other fields, who seem to have played along with the climate science cover-up.

        There was also a scandal about the contamination of cell lines used to test cancer treatments:

        http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/programmes/file_on_4/7098882.stm

        That program was pretty damning, yet I saw a reference to the same ongoing problem years later. Papers had been published about treatments that had been tested on the wrong type of cells! In the program, the reasons for the contamination were stated as time constraints, cost, and reluctance to risk invalidating previously published work!

        You might also want to look at the books by Lee Smolin and Peter Woit, in which they bemoan the fact that string theory has all but pushed other theoretical ideas out of the universities, but has delivered no testable results!

        Do you really think the climate change problems arose in a vacuum?

      • Clarification: I should have written:

        In the program, the reasons for the contamination were stated as a lack of testing of the cell cultures, caused by time constraints, cost, and reluctance to risk invalidating previously published work!

      • Hela cells once took over the world, many people were unknowingly working on Hela cells believing they were something else. Someone was actually working on HeLa cells during their Ph.D. and found, halfway through year 3, ‘Y’-Chromosomes.
        The lesson is to work on primaries.

        The BBC report is just a tiny bit unfair. The quick, cheap and robust methods to quantify cell types only occurred in the last 5 years or so.

      • David –

        Do you really think the climate change problems arose in a vacuum?

        Not at all! My basic point is that the climate debate should be viewed in full context.

        I am not saying that tribalism, or partisanship, don’t affect academic science (any more than that they don’t affect private sector science). While individual examples are interesting to read about, I don’t need to read them to know that the phenomenon exists.

        The question I was posing to you was whether you have data that support some overriding trend WRT a decline in scientific “standing,” or WRT public perception about scientific “standing.”

        I am not familiar with what you characterized as the BBC’s use of “underhanded means” to “defend climate science,” but while I don’t doubt the possibility that your description is accurate, I can with certainty point you to the use of “underhanded means” to discredit climate science. A timely example (although relatively less dramatic than other examples I’ve seen) is the deceptive spinning of the Rasmussen poll about climate scientists and data falsification.

        That is the full context that I think worthy of consideration.

      • Doc Martyn,

        Clearly one problem with attempting to supply data about problems in science in general, is that each example opens up whole fresh cans of worms. It would seem there remained a problem in 2010:

        http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/health/8460049.stm

        I also know a retired statistician who used to help a number of research teams, and he can certainly tell some tales!

        I think

      • steven mosher

        Hey Joshua,

        Lets talk about power. Remember when I explained the difference between the tribe with poweer and the tribe without power?

        Remember when I explained how Ross’ words did no harm, but Mann’s words did?

        Remember how I said that the only way this gets corrected is the powerless have to use the law and the courts?

        Want another example?

        read this

        http://rogerpielkejr.blogspot.com/

      • Thanks for the link! Ouch. I am glad Irene Meischner got her day in court and was vindicated. Rahmstorf is one sick puppy.

      • Not sure how the blog clocks compare between here and RPJ’s blog, but it *looks like* the only affect of the link was for Joshua to go over and try to derail that thread with an unrelated topic. Shocking.

    • Stacey –

      The public do not have a distrust of scientists just climate change scientists.

      Do you have some verified data to back up this assertion?

      The data that I’ve seen show that trust in climate scientists is overwhelmingly contingent on one’s cultural and ideological identity. There is nothing new about people having cultural and ideological identities..

      That data that I’ve seen do show that in general, the public trusts scientists as the best source for information about climate change. Polls also show that trust in scientists in general is fairly high. Polls show that people think that climate scientists are likely or somewhat likely to shape data to support their beliefs and opinions – but do you have data to show that the public is more or less likely to feel that way about climate scientists than they are to feel that way about other scientists, or “skeptics,” or plumbers, or used-car salesmen?

      Please, show me the data.

      • The data that I’ve seen show that trust in climate scientists is overwhelmingly contingent on one’s cultural and ideological identity.

        ie those whose culture is more at ease with dishonesty in pursuit of some ‘greater’ good have more trust in climate scientists, while those whose culture does include moral scruples have less trust.

      • The recent polls of the public that have some of the folks in the e-mails alarmed. Like 63% of (American?) public doesn’t believe climate alarmism. Sorry, no link, but I have read and heard a lot of alarm that the skeptics are winning the “battle” or have too much influence. One could interpret that to mean people don’t trust the climate scientists.

      • Bill –

        An interesting aspect about public belief WRT AGW is that polls also show that the public, generally, doesn’t know the predominant view among climate scientists on AGW.

        The data are a mess – it is very difficult to draw definitive conclusions. That’s what makes the ubiquity of definitive beliefs, as we see so often at this and other “skeptical” websites so interesting to me.

        IMO, as a life-long skeptic, it gives a bad name to “skepticism.”

      • Joshua –

        Labels cause all sorts of problems, but I think you often see one small group of ‘sceptics’ looming large in your headlights and the ‘99%’ may just be invisible. I’ll grant that here – or even more prominently at WUWT – you can find a hatful of people claiming ‘scepticism’ and also that AGW is a fraud. In this I’m in complete agreement with you and feel a noble intellectual disposition is somehow slightly besmirched. That is one of the ways of the world, as words are used to mean different things over time..

        Would you not say the same thing for ‘realists’? When I hear someone claiming to be a realist, I often notice that they have instantiated in their expectations two things that have little to do with realism – one is ‘catastrophe’ and the other is ‘the certainty of it’.

        In my little world view and taking how I use them in everyday speech ‘scepticism’ and ‘realism’ are close brothers if not identical twins.

        ‘Catastrophic visions’ are what I and most human beings create when we think about the dark and unpredictable future; realism is the accumulation of everyday experience;scepticism is the application of the latter to the former.

      • P.S I took a gamble and made my comment about the ‘multi-universes’ without watching more than two minutes of the link. The odds seemed good at the time. My bad, as they say.

      • Anteros –

        In my little world view and taking how I use them in everyday speech ‘scepticism’ and ‘realism’ are close brothers if not identical twins.

        Indeed – that is exactly why I’ve switched to using “realist” in opposition to “skeptic” instead of previously using “warmist” in opposition to “skeptic.”

        Clearly, all these terms are hopelessly vague and more reflective of the problems in the climate debate than anything else. But I realized that “warmist” has more inherently negative connotation than “skeptic” and felt that using them in opposition to each other was therefore imbalanced.

        Realist and skeptic both have positive connotations when divorced from this specific context. In the context of the climate debate, however, a “realist” can be someone who thinks the sky is falling or someone who advocates a sober and balanced analysis of the potential harm from AGW (i.e., what I refer to as “skeptical convinced”). Likewise, a “skeptic” can mean someone on either end of the “skeptical un-convinced/denier” end of the spectrum. Just as “realist” (in quotes) as used in the climate debate can be someone who sees darkness everywhere, “skeptic” (in quotes) can be someone who display patterns of analysis that are clearly not skeptical.

        I don’t doubt that under the “realist” umbrella can be irrational doomsayers, I am, however, skeptical (without quotes) of your attribution of being fear-based disproportionately to those on one side of the debate as opposed to the other.

      • Joshua,

        You keep asking for data! Have you downloaded the first and/or second batch of climate emails – which seem to be accepted by all parties as genuine emails!

        There is plenty of help out there on the internet. One example might be the email concerning the fact that someone inside the CRU had confirmed Steve McIntyre’s basic criticism of the Hockey Stick papers – you could feed noise into the algorithm and get out a hockey stick!

      • David –

        I haven’t downloaded them, but I have looked at various interpretations of the emails – complete with excerpts – for quite a while now. My reaction is that I have seen all sorts of responses to the emails; some tribal from both ends of the spectrum and some more balanced moving towards the center.

        My personal reaction is that the emails show tribalism, although the tribalism they evidence has also been vigorously exploited by “skeptics” to serve ideological and partisan agendas (as well as in appropriately dismissed by some tribe members out of partisan loyalty).

        I also feel that the tribalism they evidence is a reaction to a larger context, and any attempts to gain insight as to the implications of the tribalism they show that is divorced from a full examination and acknowledgement of the larger context is more counterproductive than useful.

      • steven mosher

        here you go Joshua you keep forgeting about the imbalance of power

        http://rogerpielkejr.blogspot.com/

      • steven mosher

        Do you really need to know what the public thinks to render your opinion on how much trust you should put in any paper where the author refuses to share the data? Do you need to take a poll to answer what you reaction is to a journal that refuses to uphold its own data access policies.

        When people say “the public has lost trust” that is code for “I’ve lost trust”

        you might move the conversation forward by asking them why they have lost trust.

      • steven –

        Do you really need to know what the public thinks to render your opinion on how much trust you should put in any paper where the author refuses to share the data?

        Directed at me? If it is, my answer is no.

        My point is that when people say that “the public thinks….blah, blah…” they should provide data to support their contention that the public thinks the way they just said that the public thinks.

        I don’t like sloppy analysis. I don’t think that sloppy analysis moves the conversation forward.

      • steven mosher

        Its very simple to say

        “you said most people dont trust climate scientists. When I hear that I wonder. Do you have evidence of that or are you just expressing your own opinion. If you have evidence Id like to see it. If its your own opinion
        Id like to know why you dont trust them”

        And oh, maybe this court case will make journalist trust these guys less

        http://rogerpielkejr.blogspot.com/

        Yes that guy is on the team. the RC team

      • 69% Say It’s Likely Scientists Have Falsified Global Warming Research

        The debate over global warming has intensified in recent weeks after a new NASA study was interpreted by skeptics to reveal that global warming is not man-made. While a majority of Americans nationwide continue to acknowledge significant disagreement about global warming in the scientific community, most go even further to say some scientists falsify data to support their own beliefs.
        The latest Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey of American Adults shows that 69% say it’s at least somewhat likely that some scientists have falsified research data in order to support their own theories and beliefs, including 40% who say this is Very Likely. Twenty-two percent (22%) don’t think it’s likely some scientists have falsified global warming data, including just six percent (6%) say it’s Not At All Likely. Another 10% are undecided.
        The number of adults who say it’s likely scientists have falsified data is up 10 points from December 2009 .

        Wording:-
        National Survey of 1,000 Adults
        Conducted July 29-30, 2011
        By Rasmussen Reports

        5* In order to support their own theories and beliefs about global warming, how likely is it that some scientists have falsified research data?

        NOTE: Margin of Sampling Error, +/- 3 percentage points with a 95% level of confidence

        http://www.rasmussenreports.com/public_content/politics/current_events/environment_energy/69_say_it_s_likely_scientists_have_falsified_global_warming_research

      • In the spirit of MAD magazine’s “here are some *** we’d love to see” parodies, here are some statistics I’d love to see. What percentage of Americans nationwide believe it’s (a) at least somewhat likely (b) very likely (etc.) that

        1. Berkeley’s BEST team has falsified its research data.

        2. In order to support their own theories and beliefs about global warming, some skeptics rely more on their fellow skeptics’ understanding of atmospheric physics than that of atmospheric physicists.

      • Vaughan, my memory of MAD magazine is deficient. Those are two very good questions, especially number 2. However, there is a slight variation,

        2′. In order to support their own theories and beliefs about global warming, some skeptics rely more on their fellow skeptics’ statistical analyses of climate data than those of atmospheric physicists.

        I would say that there is little difference in “understanding of atmospheric physics” between skeptics and atmospheric physicists (although the Dragon Slayers and others who make nonsensical claims based on the second law of thermodynamics may prove me wrong, there are also kooks among the AGW promoters.) The disputes are about the (a) accuracy of the mathematical and computation models, (b) the completeness of the knowledge, and (c) reliability of the forecasts. I have read now disputes of the accuracy and importance of the laboratory measures of the absorption and emission spectra of N2, O2, CO2, H2o and CH4, or the Stefan-Boltzman and Planck laws, or of the Clausius-Clapayron law. (my own dispute with the Clausius-Clapayron law is that it has not been shown to be sufficiently accurate for our purposes in a system that is never in equilibrium, not that it is wrong.)

        And here is another

        3. What percentage, etc, believe that AGW promoters have made many exaggerated claims about climate change that were later discredited by climate scientists?

        At a frankly pro-AGW site I sometimes visit, comments about this history of exaggerated or discredited claims are sometimes deleted, or met with the incorrect rejoinder that “No climate scientists ever made such a claim, it was press exaggeration”.

    • I dont know if it is limited to climate change scientists or not but I have heard hundreds of times over the last several decades the following statement regard dozens of disciplines..”Scientists used to believe blah blah blah but now they believe blah blah blah.” Perhaps it is the public catching on that there is more unknown about the so called known than some want to believe and we still have a long way to go before understanding the universe and all that is in it. Its a wild and crazy place out there and humans need an inoculation of humility every now and then.

    • Stacey,
      Good point.
      The AGW faithful love to confuse the skeptical argument by pretending it is an ‘anti-science’ by skeptics.

  9. Stephen McIntyre points out the harm caused by selectively showing favorable data while hiding unfavorable data in Hide-the-Decline Plus
    He quotes Soon et al (EE 2003):

    The calibration period of Mann et al. (1998, 1999, 2000a) ended at 1980, while 20 more years of climate data post-1980 (compared to the 80 years length of their calibration interval, 1902-1980) exist. If the failure of inter-calibration of instrumental and tree growth records over last two to three decades suggests evidence for anthropogenic influences (i.e., from CO2, nitrogen fertilization or land-use and land-cover changes or through changes in the length of growing seasons and changes in water and nutrient utilization efficiencies and so on), then no reliable quantitative inter-calibration can connect the past to the future (Idso 1989).

    McIntyre points out:

    Indeed, they did not simply “hide the decline”, their “hide the decline” was worse than we thought. Mann et al did not merely delete data after 1960, they deleted data from 1940 on, You can see the last point of the Briffa reconstruction (located at ~1940) peeking from behind the spaghetti in the graphic below: . . .
    Had Mann et al used the actual values, the decline would have been as shown in the accompanying graphic:

    (Showing how the “decline” in the data was almost as large as the 20th century rise).

    Contrast Securities Fraud

    Securities fraud, also known as investor or stock fraud, covers a range of activities that violate federal and state laws pertaining to buying, selling and trading securities. The most common forms of securities fraud include:
    Misrepresentation (presenting misleading or false information to investors about a company, or its securities)
    Accounting fraud (manipulating or falsifying books or records to misrepresent a public companies assets and liabilities)
    Insider trading (buying, selling or trading securities based on information that is not readily available to the general public)

    Consider the Penalties of Securities Fraud

    Whoever knowingly alters, destroys, mutilates, conceals, covers up, falsifies, or makes a false entry in any record, document, or tangible object with the intent to impede, obstruct, or influence the investigation or proper administration of any matter within the jurisdiction of any department or agency of the United States or any case filed under title 11, or in relation to or contemplation of any such matter or case, shall be fined under this title, imprisoned not more than 20 years, or both.
    Section 1107 of the SOX provides legal protection for those who report situations that may involve securities fraud.

    The proposed consequences in diverting trillions of dollars in public funds is far greater than securities fraud such as by Enron or Bernie Madoff.

    As a result of the massive fraud at Enron, shareholders lost tens of billions of dollars.

    Mann, Ammann, Bradley, Hughes, Rutherford, Jones, Briffa, Osborn, Crowley, Oppenheimer, Overpeck, Trenberth and Wigley conspired to hide the decline to influence both grants and massive public expenditures. Why should not this explicit fraud to improperly divert much larger be subject to even greater public sanctions?

    We need:
    Clear easy public access to the data obtained at public expense.
    Sanctions against scientific fraud that corrupts public funding.

    • David,
      When Climategate1 broke 2 years ago, I was impressed by how, if those e-mails had come from an investment or insurance world environment, the writers, the leaker and the media would have percevied it all, not to mention law enforcement.

  10. [McIntyre] does not believe this conclusion is a big lie. But he does want … to look at how the data had been “manipulated” — a perfectly honourable process

    Yes we all know McIntyre is now quite reconsiled with honourable processes like hiding the decline. Tell us something new Mr Pearce.

  11. <blockquote“The fuss over climategate showed that the world is increasingly unwilling to accept the message that “we are scientists; trust us”. </blockquote

    I really would like to know how people quantify and validate sweeping generalizations such as this

    I'd further like to know why so-called "skeptics" accept such broad generalizations without seeing validation for the claims.

    Where's the data? Show me the data.

    How ironic given that the subject of the essay is that scientists are too reluctant to show their data.

    Openness and transparency with data are, I believe, a good thing in balance It is unfortunate, however, that some advocates for increased openness don't temper their advocacy with a recognition that a flattening of the hierarchy of expertise is not, necessarily, an unmitigated good.

    It's like binary mentality disease has become a pandemic.

    • Actually – now that I think about it, I guess I don’t have evidence that binary mentality disease is on the rise. It could just be that I’m seeing it more since I’ve been reading the “skeptical” blogosphere.

      • Joshua –

        Or it could be that it is un-correlated with the “skeptical” nature of the part of the blogosphere you have been reading? It would seem to be consistent with your expectations to imagine such a correlation…If you’d restricted yourself to a diet of Tamino’s ‘open mind’ do you think you would have concluded [had you been able to stomach the diet..] that binary mentality disease had declined or disappeared? Or perhaps that we are in the midst of a festering epidemic? Or that the world was much as you see it now?…

      • Or it could be that it is un-correlated with the “skeptical” nature of the part of the blogosphere you have been reading?

        That’s possible; of course, I can’t rule out the anecdotal nature of my analytical process.

        But I do read other websites and a variety of other sources, and in my view, a binary mentality is particularly descriptive of an extremist libertarian mindset (just as it might be for extremist anarchists, for example).

        What I might or might not find at Tamino’s blog does not change the nature of what I see when I log on to Climate Etc.

        My assumption is that binary thinking is no more prevalent on one side of the climate debate than the other, just as it is likely no more prevalent on the right side of the political divide than the left side. What I find in the “skeptical” blogosphere, however, is a disproportionate representation of libertarian extremists – and I see that as at least partially explanatory for the high prevalence of binary mentality disease.

        FYI – I do leave comments at a site where all “skeptics” are viewed as being “deniers” that I think that such a characterization is inaccurate as well as counterproductive – but what’s interesting is that they don’t elicit the same level of vitriol in response as my comments do here where I point out that not all “skeptics” are skeptical.

        Interesting, no?

      • Joshua –

        Obviously that is partially a subjective reaction. It is though, interesting – I agree.

        What is also interesting is that it is you who is making the comments about deniers. I think it is fair to say that vitriol is aimed at you from some quarters (here) because of the name Joshua at the top of the comment. Sad and unedifying, but true.

        Occasionally the same happens to me at CoS where there is a small cabal of vitriolic anti-deniers. They are ready to react when they see ‘EdG’ or ‘Anteros’ at the top of a comment. In contrast, when someone admonishes fellow ‘denizens’ [in either arena] there is a much more muted response. Some muttering perhaps and “well, they are ‘deniers’ or ‘alarmists’……

        From your last paragraph it seems you are saying you observe an asymmetry in the respective tribes. That would be unlike you – do you believe it?

      • Joshua: What I find in the “skeptical” blogosphere, however, is a disproportionate representation of libertarian extremists – and I see that as at least partially explanatory for the high prevalence of binary mentality disease.

        What I find among warmists (e.g. Ehrlich, Holdren and Hansen, examples I used below) is a disproportionate representation of “statists” and “redistributionists”, people who want to respond to every purported problem with increased governmental control, increased taxation, and wealth transfers.

        I think that our respective “findings” are concordant.

      • Matt –

        people who want to respond to every purported problem with increased governmental control, increased taxation, and wealth transfers.

        Do you have some data to back up that assertion?

      • Anteros –

        From your last paragraph it seems you are saying you observe an asymmetry in the respective tribes. That would be unlike you – do you believe it?

        Good catch.

        In reality, the situations aren’t parallel. On the other blog, many of my comments are in line with the general “gestalt” of the commenters – thus a divergence on one particular point doesn’t get me labeled as a diversionary troll who’s trying “fool people” and “hijack” threads to prevent commenters from making their valuable contributions to the future of society by posting at Climate Etc.

      • Joshua: Do you have some data to back up that assertion?

        Of course not. I “found” it, as you “found” what you “found”.

      • Matt –

        You found that they responded to “every purported problem” in that fashion?

        Really?

        How about the problem of halitosis? The heartbreak of psoriasis?

        Perhaps they suggested responding to a few problems that they felt were threatening on an extensive scale in that fashion? And maybe even their responses to even those problems were not quite as monolithic as you suggest?

        Here’s the problem for me. I read what you write about statistical analysis, and it seems reasonable to me (as someone that can’t handle the math). I look at what you write on technical matters and think it deserves consideration, and I read what those in opposition to you write and think that what they say deserves consideration also. It leaves me with a quandary.

        But then you go and make overstatements, and then go even further and double-down in various ways when called on them. It suggests that you aren’t bothered by drawing conclusions that aren’t supported by data. FWIW, I’m still not inclined to just dismiss your technical analysis – but for someone like me not able to evaluate the technical aspects of the science, you undermine your own authority when you show such an obvious ideological influence and fail to take seriously a responsibility for controlling for those influences.

      • joshua: FWIW, I’m still not inclined to just dismiss your technical analysis

        whew! I am so relieved.

    • Joshua my son…
      Temperature following is a cause and effect that misses vast areas of parameters in climate.
      This then gives the uncertainty crutch for climate science.

    • What naive elitist nonsense Joshua. Climate ‘science’ may be the worst and most incontravertable example of systemic science fraud funded by a party with vested interests in a particular ‘result’, but it is by no means the first. Remember tobacco ‘science’ telling is smoking is perfectly healthy?

      Where is your data that climate scientists are trusted? And is it going up or down?

      The only scientists opposed to openness are those with something to hide, who are committed to some preconceived conclusion and so resistant to entertain any debate. Openness is indeed an unmitigated good, and secrecy an unmitigated evil.

      • Punksta –

        What naive elitist nonsense Joshua. Climate ‘science’ may be the worst and most incontravertable example of systemic science fraud funded by a party with vested interests in a particular ‘result’, but it is by no means the first.

        Leaving aside your motivated characterization – my point is exactly that the tribalism on both sides of the climate debate is nothing new. My point is exactly that the notion that it is something new, and hence a trend of an “increasing unwillingness” to accept elitism is something easily claimed but not easily quantified and/or verified.

        Where is your data that climate scientists are trusted?</blockquote

        Actually, there are data that show that general level of trust in scientific expertise on climate change is pretty high.

        And is it going up or down?</blockquote

        I don't know. That's why I'm asking for verified data when people assert trends and broad generalizations.

        The only scientists opposed to openness are those with something to hide, who are committed to some preconceived conclusion and so resistant to entertain any debate. Openness is indeed an unmitigated good, and secrecy an unmitigated evil.

        Indeed – exactly the kind of binary thinking of which I spoke.

      • steven mosher

        What id different Joshua is that one tribe uses it its power both against its own members who stray against the other tribe and against
        onlookers

        http://rogerpielkejr.blogspot.com/

      • All Joshua has to do is borrow Judith’s choice of ‘intemperate’ to characterise Stefan’s behaviour and we can return to a perfectly symmetrical world.
        Except.
        It isn’t.

      • Anteros –

        All Joshua has to do is borrow Judith’s choice of ‘intemperate’ to characterise Stefan’s behaviour and we can return to a perfectly symmetrical world.

        I’m not into moral equivocation. I’ll leave that for steven and Judith.

      • The only scientists opposed to openness are those with something to hide, who are committed to some preconceived conclusion and so resistant to entertain any debate. Openness is indeed an unmitigated good, and secrecy an unmitigated evil.

        J: Indeed – exactly the kind of binary thinking of which I spoke.

        Yes binary and incontrovertable. The sole motivation for secrecy is fraud.

      • Punksta –

        People on both sides of the debate withhold their data for a variety of reasons. Sometimes those reasons are to obscure fraud or bad science. Sometimes those reasons are in reaction to what people view as politically motivated advocacy on the part of those who seek to discredit their work.. Sometimes the reasons are related to the belief that a hierarchical process of analysis leads to a better result.

        I tend to doubt that you would call frauds all those “skeptics” who control access to their data.

        Again, I believe that in balance more openness and transparency are for the better, and certainly protecting data from scrutiny can be a means to perpetuate fraud or bad science, but IMO simplistic rhetoric by those who take a binary approach and who create false dichotomies does more harm than good to the cause of open access.

        What I find particularly interesting is the association between those who exploit arguments about open process for climate debate advocacy and those who argue for government protection of private sector proprietary intellectual property rights. You wouldn’t happen to be one of those, would you?

      • Joshua –
        Sometimes [secrecy is] in reaction to what people view as politically motivated advocacy on the part of those who seek to discredit their work.
        What utter drivel. It’s the secrecy that is political advocacy, seeking to stop enlightenment getting in the way.

        Sometimes the reasons are related to the belief that a hierarchical process of analysis leads to a better result.
        Again, mere elitist conceit trying to cover for of enlightenment from mere commoners emerging.

        Again, I believe that in balance more openness and transparency are for the better, and certainly protecting data from scrutiny can be a means to perpetuate fraud or bad science, but IMO simplistic rhetoric by those who take a binary approach and who create false dichotomies does more harm than good to the cause of open access.
        This is a complicationist smokescreen. It’s simply honesty v dishonesty, with you saying you quite like honesty, except if honesty goeas against what you’d like to hear.

        I tend to doubt that you would call frauds all those “skeptics” who control access to their data…. What I find particularly interesting is the association between those who exploit arguments about open process for climate debate advocacy and those who argue for government protection of private sector proprietary intellectual property rights. You wouldn’t happen to be one of those, would you?
        What I find particularly interesting is those who try and confuse and equate public and private property with each other. Whoever pays for the data should own it, and be allowed access to it. And regardless, if public policy is being based on some data, then it should be publicly available – if need be by purchasing the rights to it if is not already publicly funded.

      • Punksta –

        While I take some solace in seeing that you can screw-up html tags as well as I can, I feel I should tell you that I see no point in responding to your posts further unless you find some way to assume good faith on my part in the discussion. There’s only so many times that I can read that what I post is “drivel” or nonsense or rationalization for dishonestly, etc., and still feel there is any point in responding*.

        Let me know if you change in your assessment of my goals in discussing these issues, and I’ll resume sharing perspectives with you.

        *I should say responding on point. I may continue to exploit opportunities for a good snark.

      • Joshua – sorry to hear your preciousness has got the better of you. Or is that that a cover?

      • Joshua: What I find particularly interesting is the association between those who exploit arguments about open process for climate debate advocacy and those who argue for government protection of private sector proprietary intellectual property rights. You wouldn’t happen to be one of those, would you?

        I am. I think that the data belong to who paid for them. Intellectual property rights become more complicated, and depend on the contracts. If you contract to work with the VA now, the intellectual property rights devolving from the work belong to the Federal Government, though you may get professional credit as an author of a paper. If you are a university employee you probably control the disposal of your intellectual property (i.e. you can give away copies of a computer program that you wrote, or share preprints and data), but if you patent something the university is a co-owner of the patent and entitled to a share of any commercial proceeds. Universities are not uniform, and the standards are always changing. If you work for a private company, you probably signed away your intellectual property rights to the company.

        Note that, for patent purposes, a company may be required to disclose data to the Patent and Trademarks Office. For drugs and medical devices, the company will be required to disclose data to the FDA.

        You wrote as though there is some confusion or inconsistency here, but there is neither. The only ambiguity has resulted from the fact that the federal government has not always explicitly asserted it property rights to the data it has paid for. It is more and more common, however, for the grants to require explicit plans for archiving and sharing data. In some fields (protein structure, gene sequencing and mapping) it is always known that a product of the work will be raw data deposited in a publicly accessible data base.

      • Punksta,

        Joshua is a hopeless troll. Not the meanest on the board but his commentary is useless. “Tribalism”?? He doesn’t have a clue what tribe he is in let alone that Dr. Curry is related to his fringe tribe. If people can’t catch on the political motives of AGW mitigation fraud or even acknowledge such motivations they are worse than dishonest. Joshua is pathetic but unimportant while the moderator does far more real damage which I assume is the intent.

      • Thanks for reading, cwon.

        It’s nice to know that I can count on you.

      • cwon14,
        I agree with nearly everything you are observing about our pal Joshua. the one point of difference is that Joshua knows exactly where he is in this.

    • What a shame.

    • randomengineer

      I really would like to know how people quantify and validate sweeping generalizations such as this

      I’ll take “what are tons of polls of the public showing concern and/or believability re climate change” for $100, Alex.

      And that’s just for starters. Your google-fu skills must suck. Do your own homework.

    • steven mosher

      Joshua it is nothing more than people trying to give weight to their personal opinion by inserting the locution “the public” You know and I know that no poll would satisfy your question. After climategate the % of people who said they trusted climate scientists dropped. Not alot and one can hardly inferr anything from this. The people you meet here dont trust the process, they dont trust certain individuals. Rather than argue with them that they are a minority, see if you can address their concerns. That means communicate

      • steven –

        Not alot and one can hardly inferr anything from this.

        Especially since the data have moved in various directions prior and since.

        Rather than argue with them that they are a minority, see if you can address their concerns.

        I’m not arguing about whether they are in the minority. I don’t think that I know whether they’re in a minority or not. That’s my point.

        I’m arguing that despite claims of “skepticism” and outrage about conclusions being drawn without sufficient support in the data, they show themselves to be willing to suspend skepticism and to make claims without supporting data.

        If they aren’t willing to see that their binary thinking and false dichotomies are a part of the problem, productive communication is unlikely. I have no particular problem in communicating (although not necessarily agreeing) with people who accept openly that bias, tribalism, motivated reasoning, etc., are a shared concern on both sides of the debate

      • steven mosher

        “If they aren’t willing to see that their binary thinking and false dichotomies are a part of the problem, productive communication is unlikely. ”

        do you have any evidence of this.

        Do you spend any time at RC telling Mike mann that lumping all skeptics into one heap is fruitful?

        What I observe is this. I observe that your method of communicating and convincing doesnt work.

        By the way, in case you missed it.

        The court got this one right. seems the court doesnt care that Ramesdorf belongs to a powerful tribe

        http://rogerpielkejr.blogspot.com/2011/12/journalist-fights-back-and-wins.html

      • Ultimately, it is the duty of the courts to protect the “weaker tribes” from bullying. It seems they fulfilled their mission well in this case.

  12. Cause that was the cause
    Of our foundations trembling.
    Why is that? Because.
    ================

  13. Judith,

    Currently, record breaking precipitation should be of great concern.
    Oh, stupid me, that is not temperature data…

  14. If CRU had been more open with its data from the start, a great deal of time and angst on the part of its scientists — and a great deal of public uttering of paranoid nonsense from climate deniers — would have been avoided.

    But they were open with their data from the start. Way back when McIntyre wrote on his website: ‘Phil Jones stands alone among paleoclimate authors, as a diligent correspondent. I have data and methods from Jones et al 1998.’

    It seems to me the problems started when McIntyre and co. started asking for data which CRU didn’t completely own.

    • Or CRU could no longer find the original data for…
      Or CRU had since discovered that McIntyre was looking to replicate what they had done for possible errors.

  15. Cue a new round of “Fred Pearce is rubbish” posts.

    • MM not quite. Yes he does rather desparately want CAGW to be true, but he does at least smell rot down below.

    • That is because temperature data is rubbish and took away from any real advancements we should have made in understanding this planet.

  16. Where’s the data? Show me the data.

    “69% Say It’s Likely Scientists Have Falsified Global Warming Research”
    Does a Rasmussen poll help in your quest for data?

    • Bob,

      It did not help that the funding parameters were very heavily rigged for a positive global warming and so were the publishing journals.

    • Bob –

      69% say that is is very likely, or somewhat likely that some</strong scientists have falsified data to support their beliefs or findings.

      Let's look at that a bit. Who are those "some" scientists? Lindzen? Spencer?

      The latest Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey of American Adults shows that 69% say it’s at least somewhat likely that some scientists have falsified research data in order to support their own theories and beliefs,…

      If they think it is “somewhat likely” do they feel for certain that it has happened, or do they think that it may be possible? Do they think that the falsification is to an extent that their results can’t be trusted? Do they think that some scientists, like anyone else may sometimes be influenced by ideology or confirmation bias? Is the public more likely to feel that way now any more than they felt that about scientists in the past? Do those numbers go up and down depending on whether or not there has been a recent stretch of cold or hot weather?

      Data show that views about climate science, and the work of climate scientists, are highly contingent on social and political orientation. Social and political orientation are nothing new, and have always influenced how people view scientific analysis.

      What I find most interesting about that poll is the way that it has been spun by some “skeptics” to confirm their beliefs.

      Some old, same old. And, as always, ironic.

      • The public have not heard of Lindzen and Spencer, Joshy. It’s Jones and Mann, and you know it. You are very dishonest Josh. Everybody can see it.

      • He fools himself, so thinks he can fool us.
        =============

      • Thanks for reading, kim.

      • Heh, I read Don. You I usually skip right on by, because there is nothing to learn, new, from you.
        =========

      • You I usually skip right on by, because there is nothing to learn, new, from you.

        Odd, that – as you frequently nest responses directly under mine and make comments very specific to the content of my posts.

        Particularly funny since the very existence of this latest post is a direct contradiction to the claim you make. This is the kind of obviously flawed logic that make your comments so special, kim.

        Another cute and repeated example is when you ask for links when I excerpt your post about connecting dots to find Obama’s “Muslim sympathies.”

        Will you “not read” my comment and yet again ask me to post the link?

        I’d be more than happy to comply.

        Thanks for reading.

      • He’s a troll not worth feeding but I do at times as well.

      • Again, thanks for reading cwon. It means a lot to me.

  17. i see it a bit like how allief scientists hid data from the nazis during the war

    • Some comments are too perfect. This is one of them. One of the very best. Its only proper response is the awestruck, hushed silence of an admiring humanity.

      Incidentally, 12345, you’re not commenting from Durban in the still-groggy aftermath of yet another wild, taxpayer funded, night on the town, are you? If so, I’d just like to say we’re getting our money’s worth, it seems.

    • steven mosher

      Joshua?

      • steven –

        I consistently denounce moral equivocation for tribal behavior.

      • steven mosher

        no you dont.

        show me some evidence of you on a another blog
        calling out this kind of behavior.
        I have left some nuggets for you in places as a test.
        They dont use my name. Its a Joshua test.

      • gracious, steven mosher, that one has been unanswered for 3 days. You’d think Joshua would find it important enough to address.

      • Some of us have jobs. I can understand why the data socialists, who focus on lobbying the government to give them the fruits of other people’s work, might find that hard to understand. But to try to emphasize with us producers. ;)

      • Careful Josh, Steven has connections :)

        From a Rabbet Run comment.

  18. This is all too wimpy a conversation point, three steps behind the curve. We should be talking about “Crawl back” and try to recover funding that was based and AGW fraud. The type of jail terms should also be discussed for the leaders of this effort.

    http://www.forbes.com/sites/larrybell/2011/11/29/climategate-ii-more-smoking-guns-from-the-global-warming-establishment/

  19. Those of us who assemble, manage, and use datasets from which a synthesis of the information is made public have a legitimate concern that freely released data will be used inappropriately by someone with an agenda. The concern is that the context and caveats will be ignored and an incorrect story will told. It goes beyond just a different spin on the meaning of the data to a deliberate mischaracterization in support of a “cause”. The effort required to rebut these hijacking attempts after the fact is not trivial, often comes when time and energy are not available, and may even be impossible. Even so, I recognize and endorse the idea of transparency. My practice when releasing data is to fully inform the recipient of it’s provenance and short-comings as well as it’s strengths as far as I understand them. The burden to derive meaning honestly from the data then falls on the recipient. It’s good practice to spell this out in writing beforehand for two reasons: self-protection, obviously, but also to educate the requesting party about the data and to head off misuse before it happens. All of this derives from an attitude of wanting to turn data into information and information into knowledge, rather than to push a political position.

    • good comment, thx

    • Agreed. Thank you.

    • Those of us who assemble, manage, and use datasets from which a synthesis of the information is made public have a legitimate concern that freely released data will be used inappropriately by someone with an agenda
      Climategate seems to completely passed you by Gary. Those of us in the cheap seats have a legitimate and well-substantiated concern that secretly held data will be used inappropriately by scientists with an agenda.

      • Punksta,

        You missed his point. In spite of his concern (which is valid), he goes on to say this:

        Even so, I recognize and endorse the idea of transparency. My practice when releasing data is to fully inform the recipient of it’s provenance and short-comings as well as it’s strengths as far as I understand them. The burden to derive meaning honestly from the data then falls on the recipient.

        That is the essence of integrity and it should be applauded.

      • Gene – my point is that his point misses the real point – ie, that the real problem is not the great unwashed having hidden agendas, but rather that the ‘professionals’ have (very cunningly) hidden agendas. iow, the major threat to science is the behavior of alleged scientists, not their critics.

        ‘Scientists’ like IPCC leading light Prof Phil Jones, who not only do not practice science (while on our tax money), they don’t even know what it is, hence his “Why should I show you my (sic) data when I know you’ll try and find somethjing wrng with it “.

      • Gary, of course, would be the one to state definitively what his meaning is, but his statement only mentioned “someone with an agenda”. I saw no differentiation between “the great unwashed” and the “professionals” in his comment.

      • Gene, ‘Professionals’ are number:

        “8. Not all messengers are equal
        Egg-head scientists are important messengers: they have authority, and reassure people that someone understands the complicated issue of climate change. But we need common-sense and likeable intermediaries as well, to translate the opaque pronouncements of scientists into practical and obvious advice.”

        Here is a link:

        http://www.futerra.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2011/09/New-Rules-New-Game1.pdf

        Agenda

      • Interesting…complete non-sequiter to the discussion at hand, but interesting.

    • Gary: Those of us who assemble, manage, and use datasets from which a synthesis of the information is made public have a legitimate concern that freely released data will be used inappropriately by someone with an agenda. The concern is that the context and caveats will be ignored and an incorrect story will told.

      Those are legitimate concerns. But the public have reason to suspect the data managers of exactly the same transgressions. We have the same legitimate concerns about you, and taxpayers have these legitimate concerns about me (or did when my collaborators were funded.) As usual, we have some conflicts and complementary concerns. What’s the best overall solution to these conflicts and complementary concerns? Openness and public debate.

      If you collected, managed and used these data sets under contract with the government (i.e., a “grant”), then you are the steward of the data, not the owner. If you acquired reputation, promotions, or prestige from your collection, management and use of the data (all things that I support), then it is also true that you were paid by the taxpayers to acquire the reputation. I would not go so far as to say that the people own your reputation that they paid you to earn, but I do think that they have ownership of the data that they paid you to collect and manage. In the US, the federal government has not generally been as clear and explicit about the ownership and disposition of data as private industries have been, but they are becoming more so. I recently consulted with the VA, and the contract clearly specified that they owned the data and were responsible for ultimate disposition. This is becoming more common in other federal agencies, but I don’t know how common or how consistent the contractual arrangements are.

    • steven mosher

      The concern about the mis use of data is largely overblown. The risk in credibility to the mis user far out weighs whatever temporary benefits may accrue to them. Science is self correcting. What history shows us through example is that far more harm is done by hiding data than by sharing it. Let’s take Piltdown Man as an example. That hoax existed for 40 years in the literature. During that time those who controlled the remains refused to let anyone else inspect it. Your defense is rather like those who defend the shroud of Turin. If science is allow to operation freeing data harms no one.
      Provide one example where freeing data has led to a harm that has not been rectified.

      • What hit have skeptics taken from misuse of Alley’s GISP2 data though?

      • steven mosher

        Im missing the part where these skeptical mis uses have showed up in the IPCC reports?

        Im missing the part where any of these mis uses have been used by the EPA

        Im missing the part where any of these mis uses have been cited in literature.

        find them. and then science can do its work

      • This misses the point, the purpose of such misuses of data is not to influence the content of IPCC reports or to get them cited in the literature, it is to provide a counter to the IPCC, the EPA and the published literature. To try to persuade the public that the picture painted by the IPCC and the literature is a false one.

        Of course such abuses can’t change the scientific argument but they can certainly influence the political one and therefore have an impact on people’s willingness to support policies to address AGW.

      • That’s the same excuse the skeptics always use when they are caught with their pants down.

        “It doesn’t matter”

    • It’s interesting to see how the responses to my comment reflect the specific interests of each person replying. Gene gets it — the issue is integrity and how best to maintain it when conflicts of concern and personal agendas abound. All parties involved with data have conflicts — when they want to tell a story or tell a story that supports a hypothesis or tell the whole story; when they have to protect privacy (if it involves personally identifiable data under FERPA regulations); when they are under constraints of time or constraints of imperfect and incomplete information; when they want to be totally transparent while at the same time being clear and concise; when they use data someone else has collected and may “own”; etc. Ultimately, integrity depends on who you are working for — yourself of somebody else
      (Yes, I know it’s both, but you know the point I’m trying to make) — and if you can admit you may not be the smartest guy in the room.

      Punksta: I was involved with paleo-climatic research in the late 70s and have maintained a keen interest in it, even though I’ve had a different focus since then. I’ve seen research from the inside and outside.

      MattStat: That’s the point. If you don’t see yourself as a steward, then you are likely to be casual about your integrity. However, you are a steward whether you collect, process, report, or use the data. No individual owns it when everybody pays for it. And even when you foot the whole bill yourself, when you publicly release it some of your “ownership” goes with it.

      steven mosher: Misuse is not overblown when it results in delay of scientific advancement (in health care, as a prime example), waste of resources, harm to people with integrity. Yes, self-correction happens in science, but that’s not sufficient excuse for breaches of integrity. You misunderstand if you think I advocate withholding data. I advocate for providing the context with the data that (hopefully) will minimize misuse.

      • Bravo. On all points.

      • FWIW, here is a code of ethics for professionals working with higher educational data: http://www.airweb.org/?page=140

      • I think that we are in agreement. But your expression of concern was asymmetric, where I thought it should be symmetrized. Everyone has concern.

      • But your expression of concern was asymmetric,

        How so. It seemed pretty symmetrical to me. Particularly this part:

        Even so, I recognize and endorse the idea of transparency. My practice when releasing data is to fully inform the recipient of it’s provenance and short-comings as well as it’s strengths as far as I understand them. The burden to derive meaning honestly from the data then falls on the recipient.

      • Joshua: How so.[?]

        I inferred it from the structure of the paragraph, with the main point prominent in the opening sentence, and the balance a minor qualification later on.

        It seemed pretty symmetrical to me.

        Then we disagree on our interpretations.

  20. Steve McIntyre isn’t primarily complaining about openness of data as claimed below in this part of the essay – he’s showing a manipulation of data (aka “hide the decline”)to provide a preordained answer – the hockey stick:

    “CRU had been more open with its data from the start, a great deal of time and angst on the part of its scientists — and a great deal of public uttering of paranoid nonsense from climate deniers — would have been avoided. And if, in the months before the hack, Jones and his colleagues had not spent ever more time bitching about McIntyre and scheming to keep their data and working methods secret, then the emails would have contained little of outside interest.”

    See today’s post:

    http://climateaudit.org/2011/12/01/hide-the-decline-plus/

  21. Kelvin Kemm of South Africa challenges:

    during the French Revolution, baying mobs in Paris streets were ready to chop the heads off anyone perceived not to be part of the New World Order. . . .
    Today, I fear we are experiencing similar, though less lethal, sentiments on topics of so-called global warming, global climate change, global climate disruption and weather “weirding.” . . .
    Why do climate change alarmists seek to suppress evidence that the Earth has not warmed and may even have cooled slightly since 1998? . . .
    historical evidence clearly demonstrates that there was a Medieval Warm Period (MWP) of great health, wealth and prosperity, during which temperatures were warmer than today’s, but with no anthropogenic carbon dioxide in the equation.. . .
    misguided government and corporate policies and actions worldwide – in response to the false science and high pressure tactics – will be highly detrimental to mankind, especially poor families that will be trapped in perpetual poverty, disease, malnutrition and premature death. . . .
    Let us hope, instead, that at least some world leaders will have the courage to stand up at COP-17 and demand the kind of scientific rigour that brought so much enlightenment and progress over the centuries. Proper due diligence in Durban requires nothing less.

    Only then will poverty be eradicated, and health and environmental conditions improve, for billions of people all over our planet.

  22. Maybe then we can be trusted to read: All government files on the JFK murder. Seeing as how all the major players are dead.
    Secrets suck.

  23. Norm Kalmanovitch

    There are two versions of Trenberth’s energy balance representing 1997 data and 2004 data. These energy balance diagrams use a more or less consistant 342 and 341.3W/m^2 value for incoming solar radiation flux but use vastly different values for albedo and OLR for the two versions with no justification for why these values were changed and this is a flagrant violation of science protocol.
    More importantly OLR data measured by satellite exists and provides actual physical measurement for OLR representing another breach of proper scientific practice for using assumed values for OLR when actual values exist.
    Interestingly the albedo can be calculated from the difference between the solar flux and the OLR as being the amount of flux that has to be reflected to achieve Trenberth’s energy balance.
    The values for the OLR in 1997 and 2004 were approximately 231.8 and 233.0W/m^2 respectively. If the Solar flux is held constant this results in the albedo decreasing by 1.2W/m^2.
    A decrease in albedo of 1.2W/m^2 is more than sufficient to account for the approximate 0.1°C of warming that occurred between 1997 and 2004.
    The real question is the increase in CO2 capable of causing this warming as well.
    According to Mehre (1997) CO2 forcing from the increase in CO2 concentration from 363.71ppmv in 1997 to 377.49ppmv in 2004 would be 5.35ln(377.49/363.71) = 0.19895W/m2
    This is only a fifth of what is measured for change in OLR and in the opposite direction so the climate models based on Trenberth’s energy balance predict a decrease of 0.19895W/m^2 in OLR from CO2 and the physical data shows an increase in OLR of 1.2W/m^ disproving the climate models and the energy balance values on which they are based.
    This also shows that it is changes to the albedo and not changes to the CO2 content that gaused the temperature increase from 1997 to 2004.
    The world has been led to believe the opposite because of statements made by the IPCC that solar influence is a minor factor compared to the effect from increased CO2 which is clearly false.
    “Data libertarianism” if anything means the honest presentation of data and the climate change issue is clearly not about “Data libertarianism” in any way shape or form.

    • And what latitude was this measurement taken from?
      Means absolutely nothing when ALL parameters are not included.

      • Norm Kalmanovitch

        Plus 90° to minus 90° latitude
        This is global averaged OLR from satellites using a 37 month moving average to eliminate the 10W/m^2 per year seasonal variation due to the seasonal temperature variation from the effects of the larger northern hemisphere landmass.
        You can find this graph posted on http://www.climate4you.com under the temperature heading.
        What means nothing is when a desired output is determined and data is fabricated to achieve this desired outcome as is the case for climate models and global temperature.
        There is no scientifically valid established relationship between CO2 emissions from fossil fuels and CO2 concentration, there is no scientifically established relationship connecting forcing to increased CO2 concentration and there is no scientifically established relationship relating reduction in OLR to increased global temperatures according to the climate models.
        What this simple exercize of using actual measured data instead of fabricated assumed values for OLR does is to point out that physical data shows an increase in OLR between two years where the models would project a decrease. In science when models point down and the physical data points up we generally discard the model. In global warming advocacy when the model points down and the data points up those who feel that they are above science protocol keep the models and question the physical data and discard it as “Means absolutely nothing when ALL parameters are not included.”

      • Norm,

        I am being sincere here when I see a vast number of mistakes by the assumption of using an average on a planet.
        This average then assumes the planet is a cylinder rather than an orb.
        It misses a vast number of areas that should have been considered but the averaging disallows this.
        From solar rays of the sun, distance differences, angle of solar penetration and time of solar heat dispersion are NOT considered.
        The differences of velocities is the cause. The angles are NOT uniform in changing from the equator to the poles.
        See reference:

        http://jonova.s3.amazonaws.com/guest/lalonde-joe/world-calculations.pdf

        http://jonova.s3.amazonaws.com/guest/lalonde-joe/world-calculations-2.pdf

  24. I agree with Mr Pearce and Dr Curry. Science should be opened up.

    There are already examples of internet community engineering. For example, RepRap.org enables anyone to help design a self-replicating machine. Brainstorms and critiques seem to be welcomed. We should trust in the ‘wisdom of crowds’ to some extent.

    In climate science, the release of the BEST data was supposedly to allow internet community science, with helpful critiques improving the dataset and methodology. Unfortunately the release doesn’t seem to have been useful in this way due to unexplained ‘bugs’ preventing 3rd party use, and a lack of clarity in the data-creation methods. But the principle seems sound enough.

    Obviously there is a danger to the pride of some scientists if they post their work and an obvious error is duly noted by an acne-ridden high school student… :-)

  25. And the scientific priesthood can no longer claim that scrutiny should only be among their specialist fellows

    Priesthood? Ouch! Someone is not happy with the cloak and dagger approach to scientific research.

  26. One of the problems with the practice of scientists (which is not always the same thing as “science”) is that a surprising amount of it operates on the Superstar model. A moderate amount of scientific knowledge, combined with strong entrepreneural drive, effective communication skills, and a good understanding of the writings of Machiavelli can take a researcher far in academia. These rainmakers are highly sought after by universities and once established they can do no wrong unless someone from outside takes a pin to their bright-colored balloon. An excellent example of this is the expose by Baggerly and Coombes in the Annals of Applied Statistics of bogus cancer research at Duke (http://www.nytimes.com/2011/07/08/health/research/08genes.html?_r=1&ref=health). As in climate science, Baggerly and Coombes had to persist through a cloud of obfuscation to get information, which in their case allowed them to show that the the emperor has no clothes. I don’t know if climate scientists are obfuscative for the same reasons, but the lack of openness that Fred Pearce decries in climate science is not a minor emotional defect on the part of those who resist it as he seems to suggest.

    • Bob K. An excellent example of this is the expose by Baggerly and Coombes in the Annals of Applied Statistics of bogus cancer research at Duke (http://www.nytimes.com/2011/07/08/health/research/08genes.html?_r=1&ref=health). As in climate science, Baggerly and Coombes had to persist through a cloud of obfuscation to get information,

      I agree. An excellent example.

      Except for identifying information on research participants (name, birth date, etc.), and allowing some priority of examination to the researchers who collect and manage the data sets, I think all government-funded data should be publicly accessible. The Mann, Jones, McIntyre et al saga, and the interchange in Annals of Applied Statistics, March 2011 pp 5 – 123, illustrate how much better science, and the reputations of some scientists, would now be had Mann, Jones and all been generous in sharing data with McIntyre and others from the start.

  27. And there is sometimes a fine line between the crackpot and the sublime.

    The ensuing paragraph has good examples. Sometimes the crackpot and the sublime are the same person. Isaac Newton is frequently cited as an example. I think modern examples might include Paul Ehrlich, John Holdren and James Hansen, though “overconfident” might be more accurate; clearly, some of their work has been really good and important (unlike the crackpot without sublime, such as Emmanuel Velikovsky, and perhaps myself.)

      • Joshua, you can supply your examples if you don’t like mine. Ehrlich and Holdren early on advocated secretly poisoning municipal water supplies; Hansen has worked in support of people who want to destroy (or at least damage) existing coal-fired power plants.

        Other examples might be William Shockley, Sir Ronald Fisher, and Sir Cyril Burt, but probably readers here are less familiar with their combinations of crackpot and sublime. I infer from past writings here, that some of the readers would nominate any good scientist who is a devout Christian, but I personally don’t think devout religionists are generally crackpots.

      • Matt –

        I don’t like or dislike your list, I was just curious as to whether there might be a sample selection bias.

        So the criterion you used was likely familiarity to people here?

        Do you suppose readers here might be familiar with Monckton (Aids internment camps, Nazi and HItler Youth analogies), or Fred Singer (research and involvement in political campaigns casting doubt on harm from tobacco smoke), or Lindzen (analogizing environmentalists to eugenicists)?

        And while some people here might “nominate any good scientists who is a devout Christian” to be a crackpot, I wouldn’t. But I do think that it is hard to reconcile that some climate scientists – who would be familiar to readers of this site – think that Intelligent Design is a valid scientific theory.

      • Joshua: Do you suppose readers here might be familiar with Monckton (Aids internment camps, Nazi and HItler Youth analogies), or Fred Singer (research and involvement in political campaigns casting doubt on harm from tobacco smoke), or Lindzen (analogizing environmentalists to eugenicists)?

        Unless you mean to nominate them as combinations of scientists and crackpots, that question is irrelevant. And if you neither like nor dislike my examples, then your first post was irrelevant. As to your question about whether there might be a selection bias: there is always a question of whether there might be a selection bias.

        The great fault of my post was grouping Sir Isaac Newton with Ehrlich, Holdren and Hansen, who are clearly lesser scientists than he in the first place.

      • Matt –

        Unless you mean to nominate them as combinations of scientists and crackpots, that question is irrelevant.

        I’m nominating them as scientists (or people who argue about scientific analysis) who have advanced beliefs that strain credulity. My personal opinion is that a lot of people promote ideas that strain credulity or that seem reasonable at the time but later turn out to be ill-conceived. IMO, that doesn’t merit the label of crackpot.

        You were the one throwing the assignment of “crackpot” around, and I was questioning the criterion that you used for your categorization – and whether it would apply to those other folks as well. You offered the distinguishing criterion as likely familiarity with this blog’s readers. That obviously wouldn’t apply in the case of Monckton, Singer, climate scientists who think that ID is a scientific theory, and Lindzen.

        Can you offer another selection criterion for determining “crackpotness” that would apply to your examples but not mine? Again, I never called anyone a crackpot – you did.

        And if you neither like nor dislike my examples, then your first post was irrelevant.

        Once again, I neither like nor dislike your examples. I don’t have a personal feeling who you nominate. You can nominate my mother for all I care. My interest is in smoking out political bias in how people approach the climate debate – and that’s why I was interested in seeing whether there was a sample selection bias in your nomination process.

        As to your question about whether there might be a selection bias: there is always a question of whether there might be a selection bias.

        I’m having a bit of trouble figuring out what you’re saying there. Are you saying that yes, there was a sample selection bias in your list of examples?

        The great fault of my post was grouping Sir Isaac Newton with Ehrlich, Holdren and Hansen, who are clearly lesser scientists than he in the first place.

        As would be Lindzen, Monckton, Singer, and climate scientists who think that Intelligent Design is a valid scientific theory. Saying that any particular scientist is a lesser scientist than Newton seems like a rather trivial statement.

    • Matt,

      What happens when they are found to be plain WRONG in NOT including ALL parameters.
      This then gives us the garbage we have today of missing motion in science…whoops.

      • Joe Lalonde,

        What are you talking about?

      • Matt,

        Many areas of climate are left out of temperature data. And yet they try to predict the future of our climate based strictly by temperatures.
        Precipitation and evaporation play huge factors along with MANY other areas to move these temperatures around.
        Temperatures are after cause and effect and in no way generates climate activity.

      • steven mosher

        the prediction of future temperatures has NOTHING to do with the temperature record. The record is not used as inputs.
        Period. full stop. get a clue.

      • Joe Lalonde,

        I take your point, and I agree with its importance, but I think it is irrelevant to this thread.

  28. The Hockey Team has been mulish. The 4X4 of reality has not fazed them. We are prospecting through the John Muir Woods for just the right attention-getter.
    ============

  29. I think modern examples might include Paul Ehrlich, John Holdren and James Hansen,

    Interesting examples.

    Is a common orientation among the examples you provided – WRT political orientation in debates about environmental issues – perhaps purely coincidence, perhaps reflective of some overriding truth about people who share their orientation, or, perhaps, reflective of the process by which you judge someone to be a “crackpot?” Or maybe there’s some other explanation I hadn’t considered?

    • Joshua,

      Scientists needs references which they get off of each other in their own enclosed biosphere.
      The planet is being nasty by not conforming to the temperature data being produced due to having many processes ignored as of inconsequential to the current climate mindset.

    • Joshua,
      Could the reason be the one that you would never think of? :
      That all three have offered up careers of making predictions that turn out to be wrong.
      Being wrong is, in most areas of life, is significant. when it comes to the AGW community, not so much.

      • Hunter –

        It’s much worse than just being wrong. It’s being blindly, repeatedly and perniciously wrong that’s the problem. If Hansen lives to be 120 he’ll still be spouting the same unsupportable tosh that he has been doing for three decades.

        The astonishing thing is that Ehrlich has been doing it for four and a half decades, and some people still listen to him. Surely it is an oddity that he is without doubt the ‘most wrong’ person of the last hundred years and yet people still buy his books. Maybe they think they’re comedies?
        If only!

  30. If CRU had been more open with its data from the start, a great deal of time and angst on the part of its scientists — and a great deal of public uttering of paranoid nonsense from climate deniers — would have been avoided. And if, in the months before the hack, Jones and his colleagues had not spent ever more time bitching about McIntyre and scheming to keep their data and working methods secret, then the emails would have contained little of outside interest.

    Maybe, but it is hard to tell. In part, they were covering problems in their data management. Had they been more forthcoming in the beginning, those problems would have come to light sooner, damaging their reputations sooner. Without a considerable effort to improve their data management, their reputations might not have recovered yet. At least we would not have someone say of Jones that “the statute of limitations on his transgressions has expired” (or words to that effect.)

    • Matt,

      Would not pushing the uncertainty blanket cause to show problems in the whole field?

    • steven mosher

      Actually not. Jones was forthcoming in 2002 when he shared data with Mcintyre. His decision to change his policy was a direct result of his constact with Mann and his attitudes toward skeptics

      • You sure it wasn’t contact with skeptics? When did the attacks on the surface temperature record begin? Phil Jones would have been a target there.

      • steven mosher

        The record supports my position. Not yours.

      • It’s not my position I was just asking. Phil Jones handed over some data and…then what happened with that data…just wondered if that was it

        Take how WattsUpIt treated Pieter Tans just because his website had an update glitch. Suddenly he’s thrown into a kind of inquisition. I forever will read the big bolded red “preliminary” and “subject to change” words on the CO2 trends site as having a certain tired and exasperated tone.

        http://www.esrl.noaa.gov/gmd/ccgg/trends/

        Certain “skeptics” behavior is enough to turn certain scientists against cooperating with them.

      • I think what Lolwots really means is – certain skeptics’ behavior is enough to turn certain “scientists” against cooperating with them.
        Yes – what “scientists” want is that their hiding of data, pal-review etc etc, is treated as science, and that it be accepted without question.

      • steven mosher

        In the case of the data he handed over to McIntyre in 2002. Nothing happened. Zero. Zip. Nada. Jones promised more data, never delivered and dropped the matter until Willis raised it again in 2007.
        Warwick Huhes started requesting data in 2003, in July of 2004 Jones promised him the data. He said that he thought the data should be released per WMO guidelines. The matter lay there for several months.
        In feb of 2005, Briffa sent Jones a list of news editorials. Those editorials were critical of Mann for refusing to share data. he commented to Jones that the skeptics were getting traction with this data hiding charge.
        That same day, Jones sent Warwick Hughes his final response, changing his prior position. He denied Hughes the data and complained that all Hughes wanted to do was to find something wrong with it.

        Prior to any FOIA for data, prior to WUWT, prior to CA, Jones declared that he would destroy data before sharing it.

        You are wrong on this issue. There is no need to defend the defenseless.
        Science is not served by your ignorant refusal to come to grips with the facts. Jones was took the wrong course of action. our cause has been materially damaged as a consequence.

      • Well thanks given that chain of events I agree he was definitely wrong on all counts to do that. I would still like to know his motive you say Mann convinced him to change his stance at some point?

      • I personally researched, and then publicly criticized, the Jones type statistical models in the mid 1990’s. So that is when the “attacks” began as far as I know. I got a nasty email from Tom Wigley saying they knew well about these problems, and indeed there is a literature on them. But I allowed as though these problems were fatal. No response so I continued, to this day.

      • steven mosher, I think I take your point, but what exactly do you mean by “Actually not.; not what?

      • steven mosher

        ” In part, they were covering problems in their data management. ”

        actually not. Jones was forthcoming with McIntyre about his disorganization in 2002.

      • You said above that Jones gave data to Mc in 2002. Subsequently he stonewalled. Looks like he decided it was in the team interest not to co-operate. They wanted to appear to infallible. Beyond question and debate, and that would have obviously included not admitting to sloppy data management. Why argue that point?

      • I see.

      • steven mosher

        why argue that point.

        I think its important for folks to realize that Jones motivation was not connected to his lack of organization.

  31. If scientists won’t audit or replicate the work of other scientists (because there isn’t any funding in it), the least they can do is let other people take a look at it. Especially as the estimates of the percentage of published studies with major errors keep getting higher.

  32. Mr. McIntyre had written:

    If CRU had been more open with its data from the start, a great deal of time and angst on the part of its scientists — and a great deal of public uttering of paranoid nonsense from climate deniers — would have been avoided. And if, in the months before the hack, Jones and his colleagues had not spent ever more time bitching about McIntyre and scheming to keep their data and working methods secret, then the emails would have contained little of outside interest.

    Hm. If CRU and the other members of “Mike’s hockey team” had been “more open with [their] data from the start,” they could not have foisted “the cause” upon the private citizenry as they had, and the whole preposterous bogosity of the anthropogenic global warming contention would have died a-borning long before the IPCC was created in 1989.

    As it ought to have done.

    Openness in the sciences is the quintessential element in providing the error-checking mechanism required to keep investigation and discovery in accord with objective reality.

    Let’s keep on repeating Richard Feynman’s observations from his CalTech commencement lecture in 1974:

    There is one feature I notice that is generally missing in “cargo cult science.” It’s a kind of scientific integrity, a principle of scientific thought that corresponds to a kind of utter honesty — a kind of leaning over backwards. For example, if you’re doing an experiment, you should report everything that you think might make it invalid — not only what you think is right about it; other causes that could possibly explain your results; and things you thought of that you’ve eliminated by some other experiment, and how they worked — to make sure the other fellow can tell they have been eliminated.

    Details that could throw doubt on your interpretation must be given, if you know them. You must do the best you can — if you know anything at all wrong, or possibly wrong — to explain it. If you make a theory, for example, and advertise it, or put it out, then you must also put down all the facts that disagree with it, as well as those that agree with it. There is also a more subtle problem. When you have put a lot of ideas together to make an elaborate theory, you want to make sure, when explaining what it fits, that those things it fits are not just the things that gave you the idea for the theory; but that the finished theory makes something else come out right, in addition.

    In summary, the idea is to try to give all of the information to help others to judge the value of your contribution; not just the information that leads to judgment in one particular direction or another.

    This is the fundamental intellectual and moral integrity that the members of “Mike’s hockey team” had violated so flagrantly in their push for “the cause”

    • Rich,
      Thanks for making those points so clearly.

    • Rich, you couldn’t be more wrong.

      If you think manmade global warming was invented by any of the email scientists you are wrong.

      If you think it wouldn’t exist if they had released some data, you are wrong.

      A case in point: The datas available today and manmade global warming is very much still real.

      • You are dreaming lolwot. All we really know is that CO2 is a greenhouse gas. It’s impact on overall temperatures is still an unknown, due to the vast complexities in the climate system such as feedbacks.

      • It’s not a complete unknown. CO2 is a significant greenhouse gas. Even the no-feedback case produces more warming per doubling of CO2 than has happened over the entire 20th century (itself an unusual century of substantial warming)

        Even ignoring feedbacks for a second, a doubling of CO2 produces a 3.7wm-2 forcing. What else could conceivably produce that magnitude of forcing in a mere two centuries? The Sun would have to increase output by almost 2% to induce such a forcing and we know by the Sun’s past behavior – with solar cycles minimum and maximum being just 0.1% difference, that such a change of 2% is totally out of the question.

        The science resoundingly shows that the earth is very likely to warm significantly more than it already has over this century.

        By all means wishfully hope that the very unlikely will turn out true, but don’t pretend the very unlikely is actually quite probable. It isn’t.

      • You doggedly miss the point that the effect of CO2 on the overall picture is still largely complete unknown, despite all your near-religious faith to the contrary. The only people saying otherwise are those like the Climategate crooks who have been repeatedly caught sabotaging the science process.

      • I didn’t miss the point I addressed it. The overall picture is known. The world will get significantly warmer and as a result all sorts of systems tied to temperature will change. That’s almost everything.

        It’s the details that are unknown, not the overall picture.

      • Yet again you miss the point. The overall effect of CO2 in the big picture is as yet unknown. The only people saying otherwise are those like the Climategate crooks who have been repeatedly caught sabotaging the science process.

      • It really isn’t unknown. The big picture is a large increase in temperature and large drop in ocean pH. Both very fast on geological scales. Look even skeptics saying there’s only 0.7C warming per doubling of CO2 are accepting a large amount of warming lined up

      • The temperature future is almost completely unknown. Only half-wits and those with totalitarian political motives are trying to “know” that big increases are “lined up”, since the science is in such a young state.

      • The magnificent lolwot writes on December 1, 2011 at 6:09 PM:

        datas

        And that ain’t a typo, folks. This warmista doofus actually thinks that “data” is a singular requiring “s” to get it into the plural form.

        Borjemoi! Any better “Q.E.D.” required to demonstrate the intellectual bankruptcy of the AGW fraudsters and their True Believer sputniki?

      • It *was* a typo. I missed out the apostrophe. It should have been “data’s” as in “The data’s available today”

        So what we have is you reading something into words that isn’t there, concocting a fantastic tale about it based on presumption and thus whipping yourself into a frenzy of imagining a mere typo is somehow proof of such bizarre conspiracies as the “intellectual bankruptcy of the AGW fraudsters and their True Believer”

        And that my friends is how skeptics read the hacked emails. Rich Matarese has just demonstrated how Climategate 2.0 works.

      • lolwot, you putz, the total of your post of 6:09 PM was:

        Rich, you couldn’t be more wrong.

        If you think manmade global warming was invented by any of the email scientists you are wrong.

        If you think it wouldn’t exist if they had released some data, you are wrong.

        A case in point: The datas available today and manmade global warming is very much still real.

        Addressing nothing but your typo – “datas” – was purest charity on my part.

        But what the hell. You keep sticking up your [self-snip]; who am I to resist the temptation to shoot you in both cheeks?

        You have failed to address the fact that your beloved criminal coterie of “email scientists” had, in fact, tenaciously and in purposeful collusion withheld from critical scrutiny the raw data upon which they had predicated their assertions regarding not only their conclusions about the anthropogenicity (man-made etiology) of global atmospheric warming but also their contentions about the degrees to which such climate warming had taken place in the past, estimated by way of proxy indicators and gauged by thermometric instruments.

        To the extent that the anthropogenic global warming (AGW) fraud was fabricated – particularly in the astonishing “Hockey Stick Graph” cooked up by Mann et al to obliterate the Medieval Warming Period – to no substantive extent has there anybody in academia or government research agencies except your pack of racketeering “email scientists” to have invented the whole glorious “manmade global warming” fraud.

        I draw your attention to the Climategate Timeline, which tracks the sordid history of this hideous hoax from 1974 to the spectacular exposure of the “long con” your “email scientists” have been perpetrating.

        It’s never been a matter of “if they had released some data” but that they refused to release all of their data – their raw, un-“cooked,” un-“fudged,” un-“enhanced” data – and why that obstinate, persevering, suspicious refusal to release all their data stank to high heaven.

        As I’ve observed before, lolwot, the normal response of an honest scientific investigator to somebody asking for the data upon which he’s based his conclusions, once he’s published on it, is always “Okay, here y’go. You got a thumb drive, or you want me to burn it on a CD-ROM?”

        But you’re absolutely alien to scientific investigation, lolwot. Honesty, too, no doubt. You think that your goddam “email scientists” should be held to different standards of professional ethical conduct than are scientific investigators in astronomy or oncology or zoology.

        And in that you’re inadvertently right. Y’see, lolwot, your “email scientists” quit being legitimate scientific investigators a long, long time ago (see that Climategate Timeline again), and since they began to push this fraud have been instead comporting themselves according to the professional standards of Mordecai C. Jones, M.B.S., C.S., D.D. – “Master of Back-Stabbing, Cork-Screwing and Dirty-Dealing!”

        And not only is your “manmade global warming is very much still real” statement an utterly unsupported assertion, it’s very much a friggin’ lie.

        Look, lolwot, this “man-made global warming” crap just isn’t working out for you. Why not try the Nigerian e-mail scam instead?

      • You need professional help for a delusion complex

      • Uh Oh. A grammar nanny on the loose!

        Look out folks, this could get ugly.

        Gather the children and head for the hills.

      • Joshua –

        Can we do a swap? We’ll take Holly if you’ll accept Rich Matarese in return. For keeps, mind – we don’t want him back.

        But in case you were wondering, no – Robert is too high a price..

      • Anteros –

        No way!

        Holly is not worth swapping for Rich. Rich’s posts are absolutely priceless. But if you throw in Bruce, cwon, stan, GaryW, hunter, and Jim Owen I’m ready to deal.

      • Ah, Anteros. With “friends” like you and Mitt “the Massachusetts Flopper” Romney, what need have those of us contesting the AGW fraud, defending scientific integrity, and supporting the U.S. Constitution for enemies?

        Ron Paul in 2012. If for no other reason than that it would cause Anteros to blow an aneurysm.

      • Rich –

        I think you’ve just demonstrated why you’re on the transfer list.

        And FWIW, I’m finding myself becoming more warmist by the minute..

      • Anteros on December 1, 2011 at 9:05 PM consoles all honest men and women everywhere by writing:

        And FWIW, I’m finding myself becoming more warmista by the minute.

        Oh, how truly good. To quote Rostand (in translation):

        Watching you other people making friends
        Everywhere – as a dog makes friends! – I mark
        The manner of these canine courtesies
        And think: “My friends are of a cleaner breed;
        Here comes – thank God! – another enemy!”

      • lolwot,
        The crisis, the hype, the money train pouring billions a year into cliamte science and stup[id AGW policy demands were all very much enhanced and aggravated by the e-mail writers.
        You wish the skeptics were trying to say the physics were fabricated, but when you make that case you are just arguing with yourself and few loose screws.

      • Actually if anything the issue hasn’t been properly hyped. As evident by my encounters by skeptics who remain absolutely clueless about the significance of the ongoing changes. It’s not simply that they are in direct denial, they simply don’t know – mainly because they’ve been force fed reassuring rubbish from skeptic blogs and don’t look elsewhere.

      • lolwot,
        Beyond lies about storms and other weather extremes, and lies about slr, just what are skeptics missing?
        As to force feeding- very few people spend time on blogs.
        Force feeding is associated with major media, and as my post about the German slander case shows, major media is hardly force feeding skeptical information. But you know that.
        So can you please offer up anything to justify your moralistic superiority regarding climate besides your firm faith?

      • “they’ve been force fed reassuring rubbish from skeptic blogs and don’t look elsewhere.”

        Yes, that’s when, to find out what’s really happening, I often look to anonymous Warmer comments that mindlessly repeat hyperbolic and unsupported assertions. Like the one I am responding to.

        Andrew

      • randomengineer

        Actually if anything the issue hasn’t been properly hyped.

        If true then it should be easy for you to prove. An easy start is counting up the number of minutes in nature type shows that discuss… well, nature, and along the way discuss climate change, things that show on national geographic, discovery, etc. and then look at the shows that are nothing *but* climate change. Compare this to the number of minutes devoted to shows aiming to prove AGW is *not* happening. Rinse lather repeat where it concerns mainstream newspaper and magazine articles.

        Your response here simply pegs the stupid meter.

      • Perhaps they are not clueless, just they do not agree with you. And in your arrogance, you do not have the capacity to understand that while facts are not debatable, suppostions and hypotheses are. And so far, that is all Climate science is about. The null hypothesis remains in effect,

      • “Perhaps they are not clueless, just they do not agree with you”

        The two aren’t mutually exclusive. It’s obvious on interrogation that they underestimate the significance of human changes compared to geological time. They think all these changes have happened before, therefore there is no issue. They typically employ the fallacy that if something isn’t 100% proven it can be ignored.

        You say: “Ergo, you may “believe” manmade global warming is real, but it is not a fact. It is an unproven supposition.”

        No it’s a fact. Even the handful of climate scientists (well you can count them on fingers on one hand) that skeptics often cite still have to admit a doubling of CO2 causes something like 0.7C/doubling of CO2. None of them are saying zero C / doubling, or 0.05C or anything insignificant like that. They are forced too because the radiative forcing from a doubling of CO2 is so damn big. They try their hardest to imagine ways the climate can limit temperature rise in response (eg more clouds to offset of more temperature), but they still have to reach conclusions of about ~0.7C/doubling. 0.7C is enough warming to dominate the temperature record on century timescales. It certainly doesn’t support the idea that manmade global warming is a myth.

        And lets not forget this is an extreme low end prediction only accepted by a handful of scientists (who all disagree with each other on the ‘why’) and these scientists don’t even try to explain how the planet got so much warmer in the past with such a low sensitivity.

      • Sorry Lolwot, while global warming is real, there has still not been any refutation of the null hypothesis. Ergo, you may “believe” manmade global warming is real, but it is not a fact. It is an unproven supposition.

      • manmade global warming is … an unproven supposition.

        Yes quite. Even the truebelievers in the IPCC and RealClimate etc can only manage to say something like : Well what else could it be ?

  33. Somewhat OT, but it does bear on data liberation and data integrity:

    http://rogerpielkejr.blogspot.com/2011/12/journalist-fights-back-and-wins.html

    An RC writer climatocrat got busted for defamation in forcing a media publication to toss a journalist under the bus.
    The sad part is the climatocrat has succeeded in getting that journalist to stop covering climate due to the stress of the battle.

  34. On this blog I’d like to see less carping about details among those of who do recognize the falsity and fraudulent character of the AGW theory, and more discussion of ideas about how we can all effectively fight back against the prevaricators and control freaks and profiteers that are pushing it. Most of us commenting here seem to have a unity of purpose – let’s put that to effective use. Enough talk – let’s get to the action.

  35. While I may not agree with Mr. Pearce’s views on whether the “science” supports the IPCC premise that AGW constitutes a threat to humanity, I would agree that taxpayer-funded science should be open to the taxpayers that funded it, unless there are national security concerns.

    It appears that our host agrees with this concept, as well.

    Was the past lack of transparency and openness a reason for the loss of public confidence and trust in climate science today as borne out by polls?

    I would submit that, while there were certainly other contributing factors, this was undoubtedly one major reason.

    As Pearce writes:

    the world is increasingly unwilling to accept the message that “we are scientists; trust us”.

  36. steven mosher

    I’ll just ask how many people here will ask sceptics for data and code everytime they post their analysis. I think Willis is getting better about this so I dont feel so alone in asking. How about the rest of you?

    If you want transparency and openness you have to demand it of everyone.
    try it. You will see that many people don’t like sharing their data or their code, while they demand it of others.

    • “If you want transparency and openness you have to demand it of everyone.”

      No you don’t steven mosher. You only need the data and code used by people who want to make decisions for the public. If it’s data and code not being used to make decisions for the public, then you can give a a rat’s behind, if you want to.

      Andrew

      • “You only need the data and code used by people who want to make decisions for the public. If it’s data and code not being used to make decisions for the public, then you can give a a rat’s behind, if you want to”

        Not really. At least, not if you are talking about a meaningful debate about the science.

        Sure, it’s fair enough that most self-described skeptics don’t publish in the peer-reviewed science; but this does not mean that anything and everything counts as equivalent to anything and everything else, in quality and persuasiveness. Significant or meaningful dissent and knowledge debates do not occur without equal (although equal does not necessarily mean exactly the same) accountability for claims.

        As much as I have little to nothing in common with Steven, I appreciate his consistency in this regard.

      • Martha –

        There is something else relevant here which produces an asymmetry in terms of publication. It is not necessarily a case of two competing scientific paradigms – in which case the importance of publishing data and code would be important to both sides.

        Here we have a situation much more like one group of people saying our data and code and models and conclusionsare evidence that everybody in the world needs to do something dramatic and costly – now.

        For most of us ‘yet to be convinced’, ‘sceptical’, ‘unsure’ and ‘a little dubious’ we don’t feel the need to publish scientific papers, let alone make available codes and data. All we want is the evidence that people allegedly have for their extraordinary claims.

        Some sceptics may indeed have papers they wish to publish and of course in that case ‘show us all the data’. For the most part, though, what is wanted is the truth behind the contention that has been called the ‘Hockey stick’, and a great deal of the furore is because of the attitude of people like Phil Jones who is concerned that all people want to do is to show what is wrong with his data. He is absolutely right – It is called falsification, and is the most important part of (true) science.

        If a ’cause’ is more important than the truth, then withholding data makes a great deal of sense indeed.

      • Yes, by their secrecy approach, Phil Jones and the rest of the Team show nothing but contempt for science, indicating that some other cause is their primary driver. And by their deafening silence on, and toleration of, the matter, much the same goes for a good deal of the climate science ‘professionals’.

      • “not if you are talking about a meaningful debate about the science.”

        Martha,

        Warmers do not engage in a meaningful debate about the science. But you already know that.

        Andrew

    • Steve, has any skeptical climate scientist of any consequence refused to divulge data and methods on any peer-reviewed paper?

      • John Carpenter

        I have seen Steve claim Nicola Scafetta will not share his code.

      • Yes I too have badgered Scafetta on this from my vantage point in the peanut gallery.

      • steven mosher

        Scaffeta, Ludecke, and a few guest posters at WUWT.

        I egenerally only ask for code and data that directly involve areas where I have expertise. That is studies that include the surface record.

      • I am not sure you answered my question, Steven. I was asking about skeptical scientists refusing to reveal data from some published paper of consequence. Another question, please: If we had access to the emails of the scientists and other prominent figures in the skeptic camp, would we see the same kind of vengeful conspiratorial sleaze and hack science that we have seen in the Climategate emails?

      • Where can I download the UAH satellite record source code and raw data?

      • lolwot writes “Where can I download the UAH satellite record source code and raw data?”

        Contact Roy Spencer. I am sure he will accomodate you

    • Producing research but refusing to reveal data should lead to the research being devalued and not taken seriously as an advancement of knowledge. A number of journals have adopted the policy that authors must make their data available. Others don’t. If you don’t want your work to come under serious scrutiny, or if you want to thwart replication of your work by others, publish in the latter. The rest of us will take it for what it’s worth, which isn’t much. An exception should apply to those who work on the public dime, either as civil servants or as recipients of government grants. Unless objective criteria justifies shielding the data, it should be made available. After all, the public did pay for it. On the other hand, if someone is doing work on non-goverment time and uses their own or private resources to obtain data, and doesn’t publish their work in a venue where making data available to others is demanded, then it’s up to them to decide if and how they want to share their material. Priggish of them? Maybe, but their work also will carry less sway than if they had done so. Seems like a fair exchange to me.

    • Willis Eschenbach and Steve McIntyre frequently post their code, though I do not know whether they always do. McShayne and Wyner made all of their code and data available as supporting on line material for their AOAS paper, as did the other commenters who did additional analyses.

      I think the equivalence that you assert would make more sense if the skeptics were actively lobbying Congress for large amounts of money to finance a reorganization of the global energy industry, or if the AGW proponents were not.

      • Skeptics are actively lobbying Congress to ignore a threat to the planet.

      • The issue is if it is a threat. That has yet to be established. The skeptics are doing the science a grand favor. Until such time as it has been established as a threat, lobbying congress to stick to science would appear to be the proper thing to do.

      • The threat has been established. The changes we are making to greenhouse gas levels in atmosphere are unprecedented in Earth’s history as far as we know (in terms of rate of increase). This is similar to doing something really dumb geo-engineering wise, eg dumping a chemical in the oceans in bulk, without understanding what will happen. It’s reckless and dangerous to significantly meddle with the *global* climate in this fashion as the consequences could be dire.

        There wouldn’t be a threat if it had happened before and turned out fine. We could then say it’s been “tried and tested”.

        We are coming in at multiple angles, changing the greenhouse gas level in the atmosphere very fast and changing ocean pH very fast. I even suspect the plant fertilization effect of elevating CO2 might cause problems, as it’s happening so quickly at a global scale that as different plant species adapt differently to it it could completely shake up entire ecosystems.

      • @lolwot – to hysterians, the threat has been established. To scientists, the data does not support that conclusion yet. That is why I did qualify my statement saying that they should stick to science. Scientifically, the null hypothesis remains in effect. Hysterically – you can say anything you want. Facts are a bother to hysterians.

      • lolwot: the only people saying the threat has been established have been shown to be systematiaclly sabotaging the entire science process in order to be able to say it. In a word, the credibility of the mainstream climatology establishment is esentially zerio.

        But since you are clearly driven a deep need to believe this this threat, why don’t you try and find an alarmist who is NOT lying through his or her teeth ? Good luck.

      • Alarmists have for decades been actively lobbying Congress to pretend there is a known threat to the planet.

  37. A friend at a large, prestigious university who believes “there is truth in your solar theory” wrote privately to advise me to “stop this shrill output, which does absolutely nothing to enhance your stature as a scientist” and “return to scholarly production.”

    I sincerely thanked him for his advice and his concerns, before relying as follows:
    – – – – – –
    This is the “current” stage* of life from my perspective:

    A problem that started in the early 1970s over seemingly minor misunderstandings about the origin of the solar system and its elements, grew into purposefully ignoring precise experimental evidence of solar mass fractionation in the 1980s, expanded into hiding experimental data from the Galileo probe of Jupiter in the 1990s, and then exploded this past decade into a full scale AGW propaganda campaign that leaders of the Western scientific community continued to endorse as scientifically valid, . . . even after e-mails showed that temperature data had been manipulated to promote the illusion that man-made CO2 caused global warming.

    Many citizens of nations in the former “Free West” have lost confidence in their political leaders and in leaders of the Western scientific community.

    These political leaders will be removed from office if they continue to ignore citizens’ opinions. Hopefully the transition will be orderly, but it will occur. The Tea Party and the Occupy Wall Street movements reflect citizens’ current ill-defined discontent.

    The entire Western scientific edifice will also probably be dismantled unless leaders of our scientific community start addressing the experimental data and observations summarized, for example, in my research profile and in this paper:

    “Neutron Repulsion”, The APEIRON Journal, in press (2011)

    http://arxiv.org/pdf/1102.1499v1

    Oliver K. Manuel

    http://myprofile.cos.com/manuelo09

    “All the world’s a stage, and all the men and women merely players; They have their exits and their entrances; And one man in his time plays many parts, His acts being seven ages.” – Shakespeare
    – – – – – –
    I would appreciate suggestions from others of ways to help leaders of the Western scientific community realize that it would be in their best interest to address the experimental observations today, before the present political leaders are removed from office for failing to follow the wishes of the people.

  38. Speaking of data-sets, does anyone know where the highest resolution CO2 Antarctic core data-set is?
    I would like to know Air[CO2] and also the estimates of Antarctic ice volume covering at least two ice ages.

  39. cwon14,
    As more and more people from outside of climate science or AGW fundamentalism look at what is giong on, the level of disgust and dismay is only going to increase.
    The interesting thing is how well insulated the AGW faithful are from considering the implications of what they are involved in.

    • Many are just ignorant and naïve but a goodly number are deliberately so, therefore evil. The debate is so habitual and long-standing that it often gets left out due to people need to maintain decorum.

      I’m especially hard on the academics who really do know better privately but pander to their peers and the Hoi Polloi base for personal gain or fear of being outcast.

      • The DailyTech article you posted is biased and false.

        It claims BEST shows temperatures flat over the past decade. This is false. BEST shows 0.13C warming since 2001, in agreement with CRUTEM, and 0.26C warming since 2000 (to give an idea of the noise).

        It fails to mention that BEST vindicated GISTEMP and HadCRUT.

        It claims this is one of Phil Jones emails:

        “I’ve been told that IPCC is above national FOI [Freedom of Information] Acts. One way to cover yourself and all those working in AR5 would be to delete all emails at the end of the process. Any work we have done in the past is done on the back of the research grants we get – and has to be well hidden. I’ve discussed this with the main funder (U.S. Dept of Energy) in the past and they are happy about not releasing the original station data.”

        Except that’s actually two separate emails about two separate subjects and DailyTech has joined them together to pretend they are a single email. It’s also quotemined. The DailyTech article does not quote the part of the email that makes it clear why Jones doesn’t want to give out the data – which has nothing to do with him having something nefarious in it and wanting to avoid scrutiny.

        It cherrypicks this statement from one of the emails:
        “The trick may be to decide on the main message and use that to guid[e] what’s included and what is left out.”

        But the context of the actual email is very different:
        “”I think the hardest, yet most important part, is to boil the section down to 0.5 pages. In looking over your good outline, sent back on Oct. 17 (my delay is due to fatherdom just after this time), you cover ALOT. The trick may be to decide on the main message and use that to guid what’s included and what is left out. For the IPCC, we need to know what is relevant and useful for assessing recent and future climate change. Moreover, we have to have solid data – not inconclusive information.””

        The DailyTech has omitted all the parts that put the sentence in an honorable light. If that’s your idea of the kind of stuff that the public should read (to mislead them) then you are dishonest too.

        So yeah you can stick your “DailyTech” article where the sun don’t shine. If that’s

  40. The title of this post gets it

    Steve McIntyre is what libertarians call a rent-seeker. He uses the coercive power of the state to force other people to give him, gratis, the fruits of their labor. He does not produce himself — he uses the data of others, repackaged and sensationalized, to fuel the hit count of his blog.

    A “data libertarian,” if there is such a thing, would be horrified by this. The warp and woof of libertarianism is respect — a respect that borders on fetishism — for property rights. Forcing the people who spent time and money creating these data sets and profit by selling access to them — for the supposed good of science and humankind — is the opposite of the libertarian model. Making other people’s property free to all comers is a philosophy which already has a name — forced collectivization. In other words, what McIntyre is arguing for is data socialism, not data libertarianism.

    • You are really pathetic.

    • Spent whose money?
      ==========

    • lol.
      Publicly funded research is now subject to private property rights?
      What idiot came up with that one?
      Oh, sorry, I did not notice that it was from *that* Robert.
      You blog truly does track you well and is well named for the job.

      • Governments use cars to carry out state business; that doesn’t mean that you, as a representative of “the people” have the right to steal one.

        Dial it back, Comrade Hunter.

      • It really gets lonely over on your blog, don’t it bobby. You are a little child, crying out for attention. Amusing.

      • You are really giving your fellow socialists a bad name, Donnie.

        Mind your manners. If only for the sake of your comrades.

      • Robert: Governments use cars to carry out state business; that doesn’t mean that you, as a representative of “the people” have the right to steal one.

        How is that relevant? How is following the law to share government funded information comparable to stealing government property? In the first place, “sharing” is more like “borrowing” than it is like theft, and in the second place “sharing” data does not take it away from the data steward.

        Steve McIntyre is what libertarians call a rent-seeker. He uses the coercive power of the state to force other people to give him, gratis, the fruits of their labor.

        Likening “information” to “fruit” expands the concept of “rent seeking” beyond any usefulness. Steve McIntyre has not sought “rent”; he has followed the law to request government funded “information”, which as I noted above does not take it away from the data stewards. Steve Mc Intyre has volunteered his services to use publicly-funded information in the public interest.

        Granting your point that “libertarian” is also imprecise in this context, if there are any “rent seekers” at all, they are the people writing grant proposals to pay them to do what they want to do, instead of trying to sell their services in the commecrial sector.

      • hunter: Publicly funded research is now subject to private property rights?
        What idiot came up with that one?

        In the US, the Congress wrote a law giving government-funded researchers property rights in their patents derived from their research. They also awarded property rights to patients who had contributed biological samples to the research, and property rights to the universities that supported the research, and to the US government. My summary is way too simple to be taken seriously as a reference, but yes: the Congress has awarded private property rights to intellectual property that resulted from federal funding.

        That probably does not apply in this case; one would have to consult the law and some experienced attorneys so see how it would apply to data collected by Michael Mann under federal contract. On this issue, there has been much public debate, public testimony before Congress, publicly available briefs and decisions from court cases.

        The motivation for the law is that the technical experts who develop technologies under federal contract are more likely to patent the technology (putting it in the public domain) and produce useful products if they share in the property rights than if they do not. It’s a debatable claim (like the claim for why it is good to protect publicly funded data for a short time to benefit the researchers who have collected the data), but it is not an empty claim

    • steven mosher

      Robert you do not know what you are talking about.

      The data mcintyre requested in his appeal to CRU’s refusal was data that is not covered by any confidentiality agreements.

      Second. We requested the information on which NWS had restrictions so that we could contact them and pay for the data if need be. As a side note, these NWS will release data for non commerical purposes. The use restrictions are not what Jones represented them to be

      Third. CRU guidelines require them not to enter in to confidentiality agreements UNLESS those agreements are NECESSARY to CRU’s
      mission. The confidential data they hold is not necessary to their
      mission, in fact their scientific arguments are quite the opposite:
      Their results WITH confidential data do not Differ from those
      WITHOUT confidential data.

      Fourth. The argument is pretty simple. If you are going to base public policy on data, then that data must be open and transparent.

      Fifth. See WMO resolution 40.

      • Robert you do not know what you are talking about.

        Not only do I know what I’m talking about, I know when to put a comma in a sentence. Jus’ saying.

        The data mcintyre requested in his appeal to CRU’s refusal was data that is not covered by any confidentiality agreements.

        So you admit his original demand (before his “appeal”) was for the state to steal other people’s data and turn it over to him?

        The argument is pretty simple. If you are going to base public policy on data, then that data must be open and transparent.

        That’s the socialist argument. All power to the people; private property redistributed for the public good.

        It’s not necessarily a bad argument; that’s another discussion. But was it obviously isn’t is “libertarian.” A libertarian would say that as long as you are free to buy the data from its owner, then it is open and transparent. Rent-seekers do not have the right, in the name of sharing, to seize the fruits of producers’ labor.

      • Robert,

        How is open access to data collected on the public’s dime “private property redistributed for the public good”? How is it “private property”?

        Note that I am not a libertarian, nor do I have detailed knowledge of what all the FOIA requests have been for. But researchers using government funds are in essence paid for their time, and the data is public, not private property (except where a contract specifies otherwise).

      • Little bobbie is pretty stupid, but I am sure he knows the difference between public and private property. It’s just that he has not had a visitor to his blog in months, and he is seeking attention. Please don’t dignify his foolishness with serious replies.

      • How is open access to data collected on the public’s dime “private property redistributed for the public good”?

        To what public are you referring? The property McIntyre demanded the government steal for him came from a large number of agencies and organizations around the world. The data was shared under strict conditions because it has market value.

        The libertarian approach would be to buy the data at market prices, or obtain your own.

        Even if you want to restrict the demand to data collected by the CRU, your argument fails in a couple of ways. First, government property does not belong to “the people.” If the FBI buys a sedan, that doesn’t mean you can rap on their window and demand they drive you to work. Property rights are property rights, and are not, except in a hardline socialist revolutionary model, trumped by the demands of any random mob.

        Second, the CRU is part of the University of East Anglia, which is funded by the government of the UK. McIntyre is not a UK citizen or taxpayer, as far as I know. So his demand is for an international socialist ethos in which his idea of the public good trumps property rights.

        Threefold fail.

      • Sorry Robert, the 3 fold fail is you and your arguments. The only thing you are convincing people of is your own lack of a grasp on reality.

      • steven mosher

        Robert.

        “So you admit his original demand (before his “appeal”) was for the state to steal other people’s data and turn it over to him?”

        No. His request was for the same data that Jones had given to Peter Webster. The fact of that transmission gave Mcintyre a good faith basis in requesting the data.

        Either that or Mcintyre would have to believe that Jones was transmitting
        property to webster that was not supposed to be transmitted.

        Jones responded by claiming ( falsely) that some of the data was controlled by confidetiality agreements that PRECLUDED RELEASE TO NON ACADEMICS. So, We had academics request the data. The typical use restrictions put n this data is a non commercial use restriction. Since they charge for the data, they will release it for non commercial
        uses, ie scientific. Jones responded to these requests from academics
        ( one from his own unviversity) with more lies. So we requested the agreements. 4 were found. None met the description given by Jones.

        So an appeal was written.That appeal, removed the request for confidential data.

        So. You still don not know what you are talking about.

        Jones delivered data to Webster. McIntyre had a good faith belief that if the data could be released to Webster it could be released to him.
        In fact, Jones also released the data to Rutherford. So,

        are you claiming that Jones is a theif by transmitting that data to webster and rutherford?

      • Oh. I see I was rendered redundant even as I was writing.

      • Maybe Phil trusted this Webster fellow more than he trusted McIntyre. Sharing it with McIntyre afterall was effectively making it public in a very uncontrolled way.

      • So. You still don not know what you are talking about.

        I hope I am not some sort of grammar nazi. I make my fair share of typos. Nevertheless, I feel compelled to point out that when you are actually in the process of accusing another person of ignorance, it’s important not to misspell a two-letter word.

        Since they charge for the data, they will release it for non commercial uses, ie scientific.

        Emphasis mine. A telling admission on your part.

        Of course, as property owners, the agencies can put whatever restrictions on the use of their data that they want. They chose to restrict it to scientists, not retired mineral consultants. That’s their choice. Demanding the government ignore their rights and give you their property anyway is asking the government to nationalize the fruits of their labor — like eminent domain, but with no compensation.

        If you really believed that was a good deal for the data-producers, you would have asked them, the owners, for permission to use their data, dealing with the agencies directly, instead of asking the government to violate their rights.

        You can try a justify that as a necessary evil in the public interest — that’s the socialist argument. It’s another discussion. But what it is obviously not is a “libertarian” attitude towards data. It’s exactly the opposite of that. Libertarians are not the people who believe the government should take something people own and charge for the use of and give it to them for free.

      • Robert: So you admit his original demand (before his “appeal”) was for the state to steal other people’s data and turn it over to him?

        That is nonsensical. Data sharing isn’t “stealing” when it is covered by due process of law, as worked out in Parliamentary debate and written law.

      • steven mosher

        What robert also misses is that

        1. we knew that Jones had given the data to Webster
        2. some of us were willing to pay for it, we just wanted the list of
        NWS that charged.

      • That is nonsensical. Data sharing isn’t “stealing” when it is covered by due process of law, as worked out in Parliamentary debate and written law.

        That is emphatically not how the libertarian regards property; as something which derives its legitimacy from the law.

        You can argue that anything you can convince the government to turn over to you can’t possibly be stolen, even if police just torn it out of the previous owner’s hands. That is not a libertarian attitude, however.

    • Robert: Making other people’s property free to all comers is a philosophy which already has a name — forced collectivization.

      The “other people” of whom you write are the taxpayers and other citizens, whose representatives use their constitutional authority to appropriate and spend money in the public interest — in this case, scientific research and technological innovation. These “other people”, many of them, have testified openly before Congress and the courts on the best way to allot the property rights, and Congress has written appropriate laws (these need constant updating as technology progresses.) The resultant laws are publicly available for anyone to read.

      Your post is absurd.

      He does not produce himself

      That is false.

      McIntyre has produced detailed and valuable reviews of the data and analytical methods of the publicly funded scientists; they have responded to his reviews; McIntyre has responded back. The net work of all is better than the work of Jones and Mann alone. Not only that, he has enriched public understanding without charge to the public for his work. When McShane and Wyner did their work, including rejoinders to the critics of their work, they specifically cited McIntyre’s mastery of the data sets involved because the data descriptions supplied were opaque.

    • John Carpenter

      “Steve McIntyre is what libertarians call a rent-seeker. He uses the coercive power of the state to force other people to give him, gratis, the fruits of their labor. He does not produce himself — he uses the data of others, repackaged and sensationalized, to fuel the hit count of his blog.”

      Robert, are you asserting the reason SM chose to verify the ‘hockey stick’ graph was to become a popular blogger? Becoming a popular blogger was his motivation? Serious question Robert, is that your true belief?

      • Bobby would be ecstatic, if you would post that on his blog. He rarely gets positive comments, from other than his own aliases. You aren’t bobbie, are you?

    • Steve McIntyre is what libertarians call a rent-seeker. He uses the coercive power of the state to force other people to give him, gratis, the fruits of their labor.

      What a truly spectactular piece of drivel. The state has already coerced the money out of taxpayers and given it to its lackey scientists, before any involvement by McIntyre. All McIntyre is of course actually doing, is trying to get the fruits of taxpayers’ labours made available to taxpayers.

    • “He does not produce himself — he uses the data of others, repackaged and sensationalized, to fuel the hit count of his blog”

      Does the CRU collect its own temperature data or do they collect their own?
      Did Judy, and the rest of the BEST team, collect all the temperature data from 1850 onward, or did they use the work of others?
      Does Mann go around the world collecting tree cores or does he rely on others?
      When I use Wiki to look up stuff, when I use Google Scholar, when I email a perfect stranger to find the best methodology to assay some parameter, am I to a degenerate freeloader?
      Who pays? Well the whole of scientific/technological progress we have observed since the days of the twilight of the Gentleman Natural Philosopher has been funded by the tax payer.
      They pay our wages, they buy our materials, they purchase our instruments, they build the infrastructure.
      We owe everything to the taxpayer, we are their servants.
      I have never, ever, treated ordinary members of the public with contempt. If you work on cancer, everyone you meet, parents at School, Scouts or the Orchestra, Taxi drivers and even the bug sprayer are interested in your work. They want to know how it is going and when will it be cured. They all have a dog in the fight.
      It is the same with Climate research and the implications of ‘Thermoageddon’. Many scientists scream that we MUST change out whole economic system, based on their data, analysis and conclusions. Instead of laying out, step by step, the how of their conclusions, they behave with the moral character of Mafia bosses.
      The ‘Team’ have behaved with contempt to the public, the public who have lavishly funded them for decades.
      The only group of people who have come out of the Climategate 1.0 and 2.0 worse than the professional climate scientists are their cheerleaders.

    • steven mosher

      Thanks for posting link to Open Science summit panel discussion.

      It appears that the panel was pretty much unanimous that publicly funded basic research should be fully open (code, data, experimental results, etc.), while commercially funded technology development research should remain proprietary. (While not discussed, climate science would fit into the former category.)

      The panel discussed whether or not openness was required before or only after publication, with everyone agreeing that openness after publication is simply following the scientific method, while there is the danger with openness prior to publication that data will be stolen (probably of less concern in climate science, than in many other fields).

      Max

      • yes. That is why Willis and I disagree over BEST.

        The notion of making data available as it is gathered is troublesome. I think its a grey area. Obviously abuses exist on both sides of this.

      • steven mosher: Obviously abuses exist on both sides of this.

        That seems not to be as obvious to everyone as it is to you and me.

        When the data are to be made public is the biggest debate. The Journal of the American Statistical Association, and the journal Science, require that the data be made public upon publication, but Science has not strictly enforced its policy, as documented by Stephen McIntyre. On the other hand, most journals do not, including my favorite: The Annals of Applied Statistics — even though some of the senior editors, like Stephen Fienberg, strongly support full disclosure.. Of all the standards that I have seen proposed, I prefer the standard of JASA and Science. When data are collected over long time spans and peer-reviewed reports are published about data collected up to a time ( great example is the Framingham Study), then the data used for the published report should, I think, be made public at that time. When errors are found and corrected, as they will be, then the corrected data set, with annotations, can be made public.

        When you plan for full disclosure from the beginning, and manage data sensibly, then full disclosure requires little extra time and effort.

  41. Apparently in the UK we can use Viticulture as proxy for climate to show the RWP, MWP, LIA and the Modern Warm Period:

    http://www.winelandsofbritain.co.uk/lecture.htm

  42. Oops! I posted the above on the wrong thread – sorry!

  43. It’s a shame that Pearce had to muddy up such an excellent article with “deniers”, but I suppose he has to try to maintain his street cred with the establishment. The rest was on the side of the angels.

  44. Yet another battle where people act as if they’re focusing on the science, but in reality are banging their political drums.

    The supposed moral/ethical distinction between “rights” to public or private data is just another false dichotomy, a product of facile and binary thinking.

    “Public” data are generated largely through individual efforts, which to a large degree at least are paid for with public funding – but at some level doesn’t someone being paid with public funds deserve some degree of ownership and rights over the product of their work paid for with public funds and which, it is expected, will bring a positive return to the public in kind?

    On the other hand, nothing in this country generated in the private sector is generated without some degree of reliance on public funding; highway travel, clean air, educated work force, police protection and protection of the courts, etc.

    Once you get past the proxy political bickering, where our libertarian friends can regurgitate their favorite memes about the evils of the public sector, the question that’s most important is what policies will further the science – and for that I’ll repost a link to Gary’s post above.

    http://judithcurry.com/2011/12/01/data-libertarianism/#comment-145304

    Balance will further the science. Reasonable expectations of transparency and openness, coupled with appropriate identification of caveats and a respectful and responsible use of the data by others, for legitimate purposes. Everyone should be expected to be held accountable, and tribalism on both sides should be denounced.

    Instead, what we get in the climate change debate at least, are tribalists claiming ethical and moral principles but in reality fighting old political fights at the expense of the science.

    • ““Public” data are generated largely through individual efforts, which to a large degree at least are paid for with public funding – but at some level doesn’t someone being paid with public funds deserve some degree of ownership and rights over the product of their work paid for with public funds and which, it is expected, will bring a positive return to the public in kind?”

      Suppose you work for Bell labs, Bell labs owns the data that was generated
      for your work.
      You work for government, government owns the data.
      Government ownership is public ownership.
      You work for NASA, they fly a mission. It costs hundreds of millions.
      All acquired data is public owed. Hard to see how employees should own the data that public paid to get.
      You want to retire from NASA and write a book- no conflict.
      If retire and use NASA data only available to you- there is a conflict.

      • Fair enough. I said “ownership and rights,” but I was thinking more along the lines of rights – not outright ownership; such as the right to protect the data at some level from intrusive exploitation by others.

      • find a single example where sharing data has lead to a harm.
        The notion that somehow a scientist is protecting people by keeping data to themselves is not supported by any real evidence. Science is self correcting. If I release my data and someone “misuses” it, science has a corrective action.
        information wants to be free (google that)

        and check out http://stallman.org/

      • Science doesn’t have any recourse for corrective action when the errors appear in newspapers, magazines and blogs.

        And when scientists have to expend time stepping out and challenging such publications they get labeled “activists” and get attacked.

        So much easier to just not give the skeptic blog-o-matic any data to abuse.

      • randomengineer

        Science doesn’t have any recourse for corrective action when the errors appear in newspapers, magazines and blogs.

        Would this observation also apply to the magazine articles that assured us that NYC would be in danger of flooding by now? The articles that assured us the Maldives were being encroached upon by rising sea levels caused by global warming when in fact the only thing happening there is subsidence?

        Your lopsided view indicates extreme partisanship.

      • “Would this observation also apply to the magazine articles that assured us that NYC would be in danger of flooding by now?”

        Yes

      • steven –

        I’m generally in agreement that data should be shared, and that sharing data would better science – particularly given the technological advances that allow for sophisticated analysis to be performed so quickly. Over a long-enough time frame, I can’t see any advantage to not sharing data, as the self-correcting aspect will prevail as you describe.

        I can see, however, on a shorter time frame where someone turning over data, particularly if it is somewhat preliminary in nature, could lead to exploitation from people who have less than forthright intentions. I think that it is unrealistic to think that it will advance science to not consider some protections to prevent such occurrences.

        More specific to the climate debate – it’s easy to sit back and say that those who have sought to protect their data are just wrong, or immoral, or trying to hide errors, or deliberately trying to perpetuate fraud. But as I see it, there is a long history of bi-lateral tribalism around this issue as there has been with other similar issues. There is a larger context that industries seek to discredit legitimate research that jeopardizes their bottom line. There is an established history of industrial interests creating campaigns to discredit legitimate climate science. We can argue about how extensive that was or how much it still characterizes “skeptical” science re AGW, but there is a context which helps explain why scientists might legitimately want to have some protective mechanisms for their data. Just simply saying it is wrong won’t make it go away.

        I’ll repost the link to Gary’s comment, because I think he nails it:

        http://judithcurry.com/2011/12/01/data-libertarianism/#comment-145304

      • steven –

        Consider, on a small-scale, the recent deceptive manipulation of Urban’s data by WCR and Pat Michaels.

        It’s not a direct analogy because they took a published paper and manipulated the data to present a deceptive spin that matched their tribal agenda – but it is instructive as to the type of intent that some people have, and that merits some consideration for protective mechanisms.

        I don’t really know what the answer is, and I tend to think that you’re right, generally. To the extent that no policy is perfect, incomplete policy should err on the side of too much openness and transparency rather than too little – but how do we get to a point of more openness and transparency without having scientists feel, at least to some extent legitimately, that they are open to malicious intent to use their data?

      • steven –

        What were you suggesting that I look at on that stallman link?

      • Joshua: but it is instructive as to the type of intent that some people have, and that merits some consideration for protective mechanisms.

        No it does not.

        As I wrote above, the consideration is symmetric: the stewards of the data may also have the wrong “type of intent”, and the only solution to these conflicts of “intent”, where they exist, is openness. It’s the “Who guards the Guardians?” problem. The only solution is full disclosure and public debate.

        The proposition that the correct “type of intent” can be reliably discerned is false.

      • Matt –

        : the stewards of the data may also have the wrong “type of intent”

        Did you read what I wrote? If you did, then why did you need to make that point as if it was in contrast to what I wrote?

        The proposition that the correct “type of intent” can be reliably discerned is false.

        “Reliability” is almost always a relative notion – almost never existing in a perfect form in anything. The fact that it can’t be 100% reliably determined doesn’t mean that it isn’t reasonable, IMO, to consider some mechanisms for protection.

        Again, I’m just not that into binary thinking. It’s like when extremist libertarians argue that because unintended consequences from government action can occur, all government action (except what protects their own property) are ill-advised. Or that because government regulation can’t prevent any fraud, no government protection against fraud is advisable.

      • ….can’t prevent any fraud in the sense of can’t prevent all fraud, of course.

      • I think we just need to be clear what “abuse” of data means. As used by the climate establishment and the likes of loltwot, it simply means failure to line up with political correctnes – ie that CAGW and hockey sticks etc are true.

      • steven mosher

        Joshua

        “Consider, on a small-scale, the recent deceptive manipulation of Urban’s data by WCR and Pat Michaels.”

        And since we all have access to the data no harm is done. Do you see
        WCR being published in the peer reviewed literature? Do you see micheals bogus crap on the web making it into THE SCIENCE. hardly.

        When a misuse of peer reviewed data gets published in a peer reviewed journal and survives, let me know. Wait I have one for you….

        You missed the obvious example; Mann’s mis use of Tiljander data!

        dolt.

        But that got corrected. Once we had a look at the data.

        To pass this test you have to show how data shared got misused and caused harm. And you have to detail the harm. You know evidence.
        And you have to show how SCIENCE was harmed, not peoples feelings.

      • The sole motive for hiding data in science is dishonesty – to deny ammunition to those who don’t agree with you. And we now have a long history of a largely corrupt climate science profession cookng the books to misrepresent CAGW is an establised fact.

      • In response to one of Joshua‘s endless free-floating neurotic yelps about “extremist libertarian” this and that (just set the phrase in your browser’s “Find” function and take a rough count of his perseverations), we have from Punksta on December 3, 2011 at 1:45 AM:

        I think we just need to be clear what “abuse” of data means. As used by the climate establishment and the likes of loltwot, it simply means failure to line up with political correctness – i.e., that CAGW and hockey sticks etc. are true.

        Now there’s something to which Joshua and the wonderful lolwot are bound to object. Setting a definition to that which los warmistas obviously wish to keep inchoate and thus to whatever their Humpty-Dumpty purpose happens to be at the given moment.

        So how does someone “abuse” observational data provided by a scientific investigator to a critic for the purpose of assessing the validity of that investigator’s conclusions?

        Yes, certainly the inquirer could deceitfully cherry-pick from among that data. But the original analyzer of the observations can (and would) easily point to this act of suppressio veri, suggestio falsi to rebut the inquirer’s attack upon the investigator’s conclusions, could he not?

        What other “abuse” might the skeptical inquirer otherwise undertake?

        Showing that the investigator’s own action with regard to the raw data was itself an “abuse” of the dataset’s integrity?

        In 2004, the medical profession got slapped in the nose by the publication of news that a major pharmaceuticals company – Merck – had failed to fully report adverse safety data in their key Phase III clinical trials – results published from 1998 through 2001 in top-tier journals after undergoing peer review – of their “blockbuster” COX-2 specific nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory product, rofecoxib (Vioxx), so as to ease its passage through FDA and EMEA marketing approval and disarm potential prescribers’ suspicions that the use of this medicine would tend to increase their patients’ predispostions to coronary and cerebrovascular thromboembolic occlusions.

        The product was abruptly withdrawn from the market “voluntarily,” and I think Merck has finally – just last month – worked its way through the liability lawsuits and criminal charges, but I confess that I quit following the whoop-la all that closely back in 2008.

        Now, what Merck did with the safety data in those trials was pretty much a conspicuous case of “abuse,” and the same I would rise to explain.

        Is there any way in which a skeptical inquirer could take the observational data upon which the members of “the Team” have predicated their conclusions – and their government policy advocacy for what is effectively the de-industrialization of the human race – and “abuse” those data to any extent comparable with what los warmistas have already done?

      • Joshua: Did you read what I wrote? If you did, then why did you need to make that point as if it was in contrast to what I wrote?

        Since you asked me “why”, I’ll answer “because it complemented what you wrote”. As pointed out by steven mosher with his example of the abuse of the Tiljander proxies by Mann et al, you argue about abstract abuses and ignore the actual concrete examples of abuse. For the Tiljander case, and other cases of concern over potential abuse, the cure is openness (with debate, including rejoinder), not secrecy.

        as for your claim that you eschew “binary thinking” that is true for certain — you never think about the problems exhibited by the AGW promoters or the problems with the “evidence” cited by them. You are a sort of “monist”.

        I’ll second Steven Mosher’s main point, slightly rephrased. As far as we know from actual examples, the problems of data “abuse” arise almost entirely from keeping the data hidden. I like the cliche: “Sunshine is the best disinfectant.”

      • Joshua: I can see, however, on a shorter time frame where someone turning over data, particularly if it is somewhat preliminary in nature, could lead to exploitation from people who have less than forthright intentions.

        Sure.

        Let me complement your thinking again: “I can see how, on any time frame, keeping data secret could lead to exploitation from people who have less than forthright intentions.”

        Again, sure.

        So, do we have a lot of examples of exploitation from people who have less than “forthright intentions”? It is hard to judge “intentions” from “apparent errors”, but certainly the misuse of the Tiljander data by Mann et al was “exploitation”, and data sharing was a part of the solution to the exploitation.

        Is there any reason, or series of examples, to show that data sharing exacerbates the problem of “exploitation from people who have less than forthright intentions”? Not that anyone has presented.

        Data sharing clears up problems faster, and discloses “exploitation” sooner and more completely than does secrecy.

      • I found this:

        Support the Robin Hood Tax on speculative financial transactions.

        among other stuff. But I did not find anything pertinent to this discussion. Stallman is a long time advocate of openness.

      • Matt –

        …you never think about the problems exhibited by the AGW promoters or the problems with the “evidence” cited by them. You are a sort of “monist”.

        Not true, and evidence of a binary mindset. Just because I criticize the non-skeptical “skepticism” evidenced in much of what I see from certain “skeptics,” and just because I disagree with you on this particular subject, does not imply that I “never think about…”

    • Another pathetic attention seeker. Highway travel? LOL! You picked a really moronic position to back here, joshy. But bobbie is your ideological pal, and you gotta do what you gotta do. Down with Freedom of Info Act! Right, joshy. The citizens don’t have a right to know wtf the gov is doing with their money, when the cause is the recipient of the largesse.

    • randomengineer

      … but at some level doesn’t someone being paid with public funds deserve some degree of ownership and rights over the product of their work paid for with public funds [snip]

      You’re arguing what you think ought to be, not the way it works. Try sticking to the reality based community.

      • You’re arguing what you think ought to be, not the way it works. Try sticking to the reality based community.

        What I see are some folks who don’t like government-funded research (because they have an extremist libertarian political ideology) using climate science as a proxy for arguing their politics – to the detriment of science, IMO.

        The reality is that we have scientists that do research that is at least partially government-funded and who exercise some control over their data. You (and your buds) are the ones who are arguing for a different reality, on the basis of a binary and simplistic moralistic argument – an argument that I think ignores certain realities. One reality is that when a scientist spends a lot of time doing research on something, they are likely to feel they have some rights as to how their data gets used by other people, and that they should have some protection against people who wish to use their data in a manipulative way to discredit them and pursue a political agenda. On the other hand, it is logical that there might be some scientists who would seek to protect their data so that they could shield their data from legitimate scrutiny and to hide their data in an attempt to pursue a political agenda of their own.

        In my view, if someone’s interest is in bettering the science, they should acknowledge the inherent complications and argue for a balanced resolution rather than hide behind some moralistic elitism. Your view may vary.

      • Joshua: What I see are some folks who don’t like government-funded research (because they have an extremist libertarian political ideology) using climate science as a proxy for arguing their politics – to the detriment of science, IMO.

        Here you “see”. Earlier your claim was that you “find”. Neither assertion has the least credibility.

      • Neither assertion has the least credibility.

        lol!

      • @Joshua
        What I see are some folks who don’t like government-funded research (because they have an extremist libertarian political ideology)
        rusing climate science as a proxy for arguing their politics – to the detriment of science, IMO.

        Only someone with an exreme totaltarian political ideology would regard criticism of the politically motivated abuse of science by government-funded scientists that Climategate revealed, as evidence of extreme libertarianiam.

        One reality is that when a scientist spends a lot of time doing research on something, they are likely to feel they have some rights as to how their data gets used by other people, and that they should have some protection against people who wish to use their data in a manipulative way to discredit them and pursue a political agenda.
        This is egregius political spin. The reality is that IPCC scientists on tax money have been using ‘their’ data in a manilpulauve way to pursue a political agenda. The sole reason for hiding ‘their’ tax-funded data from the taxpayer is to try and protect their own abuses from beng revealed as abuses. There are no cases of honest climate scientists wanting to hide ‘their’ tax-funded data – only crooked ones do.

  45. Is anyone aware of any work being done on cracking the encrypted files in the FOIA?

    It might not be so hard as possibly the hacker has overlooked the fact the encryption is weakened by the fact we know a good deal about the data inside the files – eg we know they are emails so we know they start with date and time headers.

    • “Is anyone aware of any work being done on cracking the encrypted files in the FOIA?”

      Rephrasing, anyone who is directly or indirectly involved in violating various federal laws, please raise their hands…

    • steven mosher

      yes. work proceeds apace. it will take dumb luck

    • lolwat writes “Is anyone aware of any work being done on cracking the encrypted files in the FOIA?”

      My guess is that if it were legal to give the job to the NSA or MI6, they could break the code in about a year. For anyone else, forget it.

  46. Personally, I just want an end to the lies. I am tired of hearing about “accelerating sea level rise” when there is no such thing. It isn’t happening. I am tired of hearing of the disappearance of Himalayan glaciers when there is no such thing. I am tired of hearing of the lack of snow at Kilimanjaro blamed on Global Warming when it is due to decreased humidity from local deforestation. I’m tired of hearing of accelerating global temperature rise when there is no such thing.

    What bothers me the most, and I don’t hear it coming directly from the mouths of the scientists, are the lies. But the scientists don’t seem to stand up and say quite clearly that it isn’t happening and thereby are accessories to it.

    Why is it allowed to continue?

    • Depends what you mean by accelerating sea level. Do you mean this year or ever? This paper seems to argue that sea level has accelerated over the 20th century:

      http://www.agu.org/pubs/crossref/2006/2005GL024826.shtml

      • lolwot

        The global tide gauge record shows that sea level rise did NOT accelerate over the 20th century. In fact it decelerated slightly.

        http://www.agu.org/pubs/crossref/2007/2006GL028492.shtml

        The mean rate for the twentieth century calculated in this way is 1.67±0.04 mm/yr. The first half of the century (1904-1953) had a slightly higher rate (1.91±0.14 mm/yr) in comparison with the second half of the century (1.42±0.14 mm/yr 1954-2003).

        In addition there is this study on US tide gauges, which also confirms a deceleration.

        http://www.tbrpc.org/abm/abmagendas/2011/031011/Dean_Paper.pdf

        Our analyses do not indicate acceleration in sea level in US tide gauges during the 20th century. Instead, for each time period we consider the records show small decelerations that are consistent with a number of earlier studies of worldwide-gauge records.

        Hope this clears it up.

        Max

      • Holgate 2007 simply builds on Holgate and Wodworth 2004 which is why the AR4 has that statement about variability. Essentially we show that there is significant decadal variability in the sea level record. As a result there is a good possibility that all the 1993 to 2003 rate shows is internal variability (despite what Rahmstorf et al might suggest in Science). I would say that we need rather more evidence than 1 decade to be sure of an acceleration. There is certainly no evidence of a 20th C acceleration though there is some to suggest an overall acceleration since the mid 1800s (Church and White, Geophysical Research Letters, 2006). – Simon Holgate

      • JCH

        Yes.

        Holgte 2007 “builds on” Holgate 2004 to conclude that sea level rise has decelerated slightly over the 20th century.

        This was the point, to correct lolwot’s statement:that sea level rise had accelerated over the 20th century.

        Max

        PS Yes. There are wide fluctuations in the decadal rate of SL change, from very rapid rise to slight decrease so that shorter-term comparisons are silly; but over the entire 20th century the record shows around 1.7 mm.year on average, with the rate slightly higher in the first half-century than in the second half.

      • Looks like there is acceleration in sea level rise:

        http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2011/07/is-sea-level-rise-accelerating/

        and the acceleration has accelerated!

      • Since sea level is rising much more slowly than was predicted by the models, someone at real climate is being untruthful. Still less than 1 foot per century. http://sealevel.colorado.edu/

      • Man! That looks down right asymptotic!

      • But Rob you are assuming sea level rise isn’t accelerating.

      • Also Rob:

      • I am not making any assumption- I am looking at the data. Look at the link from the satellite data. Are you suggesting that a one year up tick is significant? It that somehow more significant than the down turn the prior year? NO. Is the 20 year trend consistent with what the IPCC forecasted? NO- it is about 1/3rdwhat was predicted.

        I am sorry that actual data gets in the way of your fears.

      • Since sea level is rising much more slowly than was predicted by the models, someone at real climate is being untruthful. … – Rob S.

        Do you have anything to back this up?

        What rate do you think models predicted for the period included in the graph? I don’t know the answer, but I would not be surprised at all if it is less.

      • Didn’t the IPCC claim a 1000mm sea level rise by 2100? Isn’t the actual rate less than 300mm by 2100. Doesn’t the long term data show that sea level was due to rise regardless of human activities since sea level is pretty near to the historic low levels? It appears to me the Real Climate chart is wrong.

      • The question I would like the answer to is, how come the ancient seaports are all inland today? Ancient Troy, for just one. Then there is this also:

        http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2063973/Whales-desert-Prehistoric-bones-unearthed-Chiles-Atacama-desert.html

        What’s going on?

      • Didn’t the IPCC claim a 1000mm sea level rise by 2100? Isn’t the actual rate less than 300mm by 2100.

        Is that really your question?

        It doesn’t say anything flattering about your level of understanding.

        Certainly, somebody that thinks that is a serious question is not equipped to critically assess any science. It’s a math gap.

        So tell me, seriously, are you playing dumb, or do you really not understand?

      • Tom – I think the changes can be attributed to rock’n’roll.

        Rob – when I asked I was told the models make no prediction for 2011. They make a prediction for 2100, or 2099, as examples. Between now and then there will be many accelerations and many decelerations in the rate of SLR. I think the current rate is entirely congruent with the IPCC prediction. It’s entirely congruent with Hansen’s theoretical up to 5 meters. It’s entirely congruent with a model predicting 1/2 inch by 2100.

      • lolwot

        We were discussing whether or not there had been an acceleration of the rate of SL rise over the 20th century

        The global and US studies I cited showed that there was a deceleration of the rate of sea level rise over the 20th century

        Sorry, no cookie…

        Max

        PS A tip: do not use RealClimate as a source – it is unreliable. Better to go back to the real studies themselves.

      • JCH

        To underscore your “rock ‘n roll” statement:

        The decadal average rate of sea level rise bounces up and down in true “rock ‘n roll” fashion.

        Max

      • “We were discussing whether or not there had been an acceleration of the rate of SL rise over the 20th century”

        Actually no the start of the topic was whether it’s correct to describe sea level rise as accelerating. Turns out it is. Maybe not since 1900, but since eg 1950

  47. Stephen Pruett

    In many biomedical journals, microarray data sets must be deposited in a public database like Gene Expression Omnibus before the paper can be published. These data sets consist of gene expression levels for about 50,000 genes and there are usually replicates and control and treatment groups, so there can be relatively large amounts of data. Submitting also involves providing MIAME (minimum information about microarray experiments) compliance, which is a bit of a pain, but definitely worthwhile. I enjoy having my data sets available for review by other scientists or the general public; I think it shows taxpayers that they are getting something for their tax $$ and that no claims are being made from the data that cannot be confirmed by others using the raw data as a starting point.

    It seems to me that something like this could work for some types of data (e.g., raw data used in proxy reconstructions) in climate science.

    • I used the same example above, and I am glad that you expanded on it.

      There is also the Protein Data Bank (Brookhaven?) repository of crystallography data.

      I enjoy having my data sets available for review by other scientists or the general public;

      I have frequently (well, at least once every few years) wished that we already had disclosure policies in place, so that my collaborators would know in advance that all our data would become public a year or two after our first publication.

    • In many biomedical journals, microarray data sets must be deposited in a public database like Gene Expression Omnibus before the paper can be published……It seems to me that something like this could work for some types of data (e.g., raw data used in proxy reconstructions) in climate science.

      Yes. But is likely to be strongly resisted by the alarmist consensus, whose entire approach is to misrepresent advocacy as science. Blinkered, partisan publications like Science and Nature pay little more than lip service to openness is climate science.

  48. All I am certain of, is that the world would be vastly improved if we could sommehow ban the use of the phrases “I find it interesting” and “I find it curious.” Oh and “I find it fascinating” is pretty useless too.

  49. Joshua really seems to inhabit some planet of his own. In it, climate scientists are actually interested in science, and their critics by definition just want to “abuse” the scientists’ they come up with. This is why they seek to keep the data within the lillywhite climate priesthood.

    Wake up Joshua, this is not the first priesthood found to be implicated in abuse. And the only way to see who is abusing data is to open it up to as many eyes as possible. And the way to achieve this is to criminalise the hiding of publicly funded (climate, in this case) data.

    • Punksta –

      and their critics by definition just want to “abuse” the scientists’ they come up with. This is why they seek to keep the data within the lillywhite climate priesthood.

      You really need to read my posts again. – as your characterization is not consistent with what i wrote. It is consistent with fantasies in your head about “statists” or some other such nonsense.

      What I find interesting (sorry NW), is that seemingly intelligent people, putatively interested in sharing perspectives on issues such as these, would allow their predetermined political orientation to so dramatically overwhelm their critical thinking processes — such as to result in such a complete inability to view what other people say accurately, as apposed to distort what other people say to fit some preconceived, grossly inaccurate characterization.

      The real irony is that the constant and repeated distortions of what I write in these dialogues – – a patter so well exemplified by you post above – so abundantly and authoritatively proves my overall point about tribalism distorting the reasoning of climate warriors.

      • Joshua: What I find interesting (sorry NW), is that seemingly intelligent people, putatively interested in sharing perspectives on issues such as these, would allow their predetermined political orientation to so dramatically overwhelm their critical thinking processes —

        So tell us more! What details pique your interest: names, examples, evidence. You frequently “find” and “see” stuff that is hardly apparent to anyone else. Which people are merely “seemingly” intelligent, only “putatively interested”? What examples do you find (and cite) of their predetermined (how do you know that they are predetermined?) political orientations “dramatically” overwhelming their critical thinking processes? Who has such a “complete” inability to view what other people say “accurately”? Whatever it is that you “find interesting” is absent from this post.

      • Matt –

        Whatever it is that you “find interesting” is absent from this post.

        It’s rather simple and stark, and I must say I find it “interesting” that you didn’t see it.

        Look at the part of Punksta’s comment that I reposted in bold. I have put up many posts at Climate Etc. In none of them have I said anything consistent with Punksta’s characterization of what I said. I don’t think that all people who want open access to data, “by definition” just want to “abuse” climate scientists. Nor do I think that climate scientists are “lilly white.” In fact, what I have posted has contained comments that make it abundantly clear that neither of those statements characterize my perspective.

        Punksta seems to me like an intelligent person. I assume that he’s (she’s?) interested in good-faith dialog. S/he has made his/her strong political orientation apparent. I put those things together and I conclude that his/her partisan orientation distorts his/her intent at dialog and in spite of his/her intelligence, her/his strong orientation corrupts his/her critical thinking process and allows him/her to take what I say and create such an inaccurate characterization.

        This isn’t the first time it has happened with her/him, and it happens very often with other folks here at Climate Etc.

        I don’t pretend to be above having my partisan orientation affect my critical thinking processes also – but I like to think that when it happens and someone calls me on it, I have enough openness to good faith debate to admit that it’s happened. I also don’t feel a need to deny that phenomenon when I see it in other people who draw conclusions that are similar to mine.

      • Joshua: I don’t pretend to be above having my partisan orientation affect my critical thinking processes also

        Really?

        Well, probably you try your best.

      • @Joshua
        In no[o posts] have I said anything consistent with Punksta’s characterization of what I said.
        – Translation : I (Joshua) say things that Punksta identifies, but I try and cover myself by elsewhere saying things that contradict them. Data hiding is ok or not ok – what could be simpler? Damn him/her for not allowing me to be all things to all men.

      • Joshua said:

        In no[o posts] have I said anything consistent with Punksta’s characterization of what I said.

        But Punkska heard:

        I (Joshua) say things that Punksta identifies

        I think we’ve identified the problem; Punksta hears whatever it wants to believe, even if it is the opposite of what was said: it “translates” it via a magical process that makes it mean whatever lil’ punky wishes it did.

    • No, Joshua, it is you who really needs to read your posts again. You just don’t seem to realise the implications of your own words. A a large part of which is your devout state-worship you try so hard to obscure – whereby, eg, despite Climategate etc, you consistently assume honest intentions from state funded climate science.
      All dressed up in sanctimonious pitter-patter about how ‘interesting’ you find it that people aren’t taken in by your oh-so-objective preening.

      But do keep ‘em coming, since much is learned from processes like this, even if not necesarily what we ‘authors’ think is being learned.

      • Since you’ve admitted that you “translate” what Joshua says into whatever you wish he’d said, even if the “translation” is exactly the opposite of what the words literally mean, you’ve put yourself outside the range of “implications” and into the realm of “hallucinations,” of which the paranoid delusion of confronting the imaginary problem of “devout state-worship” is an excellent example.

      • Yes, Joshua is a slippery customer whose words and implicit and hodden assumptions need to be brought out into the open. His simpleton sympathisers don’t like this openness of course.

  50. Maybe, NW, we could use interestingly, curiously and last but not at least fascinatingly instead, if you think that might improve the world. I, for one, like all the phases used to express thought. I find it delightful to be able to summarize a interesting, curious or fascinating concept using discourse.

  51. Alex Heyworth

    Another take on data freedom from a guest post by Prof Robert G Brown of Duke University at Watts’s blog: http://wattsupwiththat.com/2011/12/02/foia-is-not-enough-why-not-legally-mandate-transparency-in-climate-research-a-modest-proposal/#more-52435

    • I read it! Very thoughtful, and brilliant analysis. The climate change question is too important and the impacts are far too great not to have higher standards than what the climate warming email ring leaders are adhering to.

      ““Why should I share my data when you just want to find something wrong with it?” – Phil Jones

    • Dr. Brown’s essay should appear on the front page of The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Boston Globe, The Times (London), Le Monde, La Observatore and on every media outlet ( print, broadcast, electronic ).

      It should be required reading for every elected representative and every voter who thinks that climatology has been conducted in accord with scientific method. There has been no verification and no replication. That’s not science.

  52. lolwat writes “No it’s a fact. Even the handful of climate scientists (well you can count them on fingers on one hand) that skeptics often cite still have to admit a doubling of CO2 causes something like 0.7C/doubling of CO2. None of them are saying zero C / doubling, or 0.05C or anything insignificant like that. They are forced too because the radiative forcing from a doubling of CO2 is so damn big. ”

    Let me bring this out to a new part of the thread. This goes to the very heart of my objections to the idea of CAGW, and I hope lolwat will respond in a spirit of scientific discussion. It is quite true that when CO2 is added to the atmosphere, the radiative balance is disturbed. I am not sure it is “so damn big”; but it is significant.

    The problem as I see it, is that there is no proper physics to convert a change in radiaitive forcing into a change in surface temperature. The basic problem is one that Andy Lacis mentioned some weeks ago. That to do the calculations there needs to be an assumption that they can be done by ONLY looking at the effects of radiation. I can find no physics that shows that this is true.

    So let me ask the simple question. Where is the logic that shows that by ONLY looking at radiation effects, we can deduce change in surface temperature from change in radiative forcing?

    As an aside, I am not sure whether I qualify, but as a skeptic I can see no evidence whatsoever that suggests that the effect on surface temperatures of adding CO2 to the atmosphere from current levels is anything other than negligible, and will never be measured as a signal against the background of natural noise variations.

    • Jim Cripwell | December 3, 2011 at 7:25 am |

      Could you define how you mean ‘negligible’?

      Meaning, a 10% amplitude might be lost as mere noise in a signal, depending on other aspects of a dataset; a 10% difference in a compounded interest rate, on the other hand, is huge.

      Do you mean you doubt it will ever be possible to detect the signal of CO2, or that CO2’s effects are negligible because you haven’t seen the signal yet?

      Which mortgage rate would you rather pay: 2.5% or 12.5%?

      If a dog is trained to attack on a signal from a dog whistle, does your not hearing the whistle mean you won’t get bitten?

      • Bart R writes “Do you mean you doubt it will ever be possible to detect the signal of CO2, or that CO2′s effects are negligible because you haven’t seen the signal yet?”

        The former. I believe that there is a greenhouse effect from CO2 when you add more from current levels, but the CO2 effect is, essentially, saturated. It is like, reductio ad absurdum, adding an extra inch of insulation to a house here in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada, when you already have 20 feet of insulation around it. It will reduce heating bills in winter, but you will never be able to detect this reduction, against a background of changing winter conditions.

        Negligible means just that; negligible. I dont know how else to define it.

      • Jim Cripwell

        It’s my understanding the problem in northern Canada is too low a standard of housing, not too high.

        The question of tipping points and perturbation of chaotic systems is very much one of the straw that breaks the camel’s back.

        Also, ‘saturated’ isn’t very well borne out by past claims I’ve seen. Are there new claims of saturation that haven’t been shown to be wrong?

      • Why on Earth do you think CO2 is saturated?

  53. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cW9dxFrAk-I (starting at about the 2:30 mark)

    There are multiple flavors of libertarian.

    A data libertarian believes in the right of the individual to hoard data and use it as they please for their own benefit while saying whatever they wish about the claims others make without giving anything about their own data away.

    Which just doesn’t work out very well in Science.

    Tycho Brahe practiced data libertarianism, holding back his field by jealously guarding his state-funded secrets, until his bladder exploded and Johanes Kepler founded modern planetary astronomy with Brahe’s hoard.

    It is the dominant attitude of scientists that the data they collect is “theirs” in more than the sense that they collected it. It’s often treated as personal property might be, and much of the data ever collected has gone to the grave with the scientist (both figuratively with their obscure career and literally as they do nothing to ensure it stored and cataloged properly).

    This must change. It’s simply not true in any sense on any basis of ownership in any system of valuation, and its wildly harmful. It confers no benefit to the society that makes such observations possible for the scientist to make, and we have the means to ensure the originators of observations and methods do benefit from the prestige they seek without the suppression of the ideas they themselves are interested in.

    • Bart –

      This must change. It’s simply not true in any sense on any basis of ownership in any system of valuation, and its wildly harmful.

      So the questions I’d like to see you answer, then, are how should it change and should there be any provisions for scientists to have some form of “rights” WRT data they’ve collected through individual effort, (with a consideration that there are folks out there who seek to use data – in particular preliminary data – not for the advancement of science but for the purpose of protecting partisan interests/pursuing a political agenda)?

      How do you propose reversing an existing “dominant attitude?” IMO, simple moralizing about that attitude won’t get the job done. Nor will heavy-handed enforcement of laws or policies that force scientists to allow full access to all their data. Would you agree that neither of those two approaches would have much affect that would benefit science? If so, is it ridiculous to think that an alternative approach might be one that allows some degree of assurances of protection against malicious intent on the part of people who have political and/or partisan (i.e., not scientifically valid) agendas? If you would agree, what might that look like?

      • Not too bad for a dimwitted foot soldier. But where’s freddy?

      • Joshua | December 3, 2011 at 11:51 am |

        1. “how should it change”

        Why is it possible for Computer Science to realize the benefits of the Open Data Model, and for Science not to?

        Open data from cradle to grave, in so searchable and usable a form as possible from the moment the instrument registers it and on, accessible online with all its metadata, is much more attractive than a series of files stored on some undergrad’s hard drive in some unsupported format that only one guy knows how to read and he only drags it out to satisfy publishing requirements because it’s “new” until it gets published.

        2. “should there be any provisions for scientists to have some form of “rights” WRT data they’ve collected through individual effort”

        Electronic rights management is as superior to data hoarding as having a modern banking system is over hiding cash in a mattress. And with some of the same pitfalls. It’s only as good as the management.

        So while I can see, and empathise fully with, the reluctance of scientists to trust their data to such a scheme initially, given the utter lack of faith scientists rightfully have in their deans of studies, publishers and employers, I still believe the benefits outweigh the costs.

        What is more likely to increase the power of actual front-line scientists more than if they take hold of the management of open exchange of data for themselves and wrest it from the hands of the current Dark Ages-style managers running the show now?

        3. “with a consideration that there are folks out there who seek to use data – in particular preliminary data – not for the advancement of science but for the purpose of protecting partisan interests/pursuing a political agenda)”

        I look at the willing sheep at ClimateAudit and hear echoed the flagrant rhetoric and manipulations of their master in their broadcast bleatings through the blogosphere, the piously fraudulent argumentation, and listen to Dr. Curry’s accounts and fears of activist scientists who let their ends justify their means, and cannot disagree with the consideration on both sides as they each obscure the truth a little.

        From the point of view of someone more interested in getting to some objective understanding beyond mere political agenda, I still say that open data and open methods will reveal too, rather than hide, the tricks up all the partisans’ sleeves, in the manner of Reginald Scot in The Discoverie of Witchcraft in 1584.

        4. How do you propose reversing an existing “dominant attitude?”

        If it’s just me, then it’s just me here saying what I think is better. Though I am not the originator of the idea, and I note it pops up all over the place as the notion spreads. Thesis advisors who embrace it for their candidates, deans (sorry about calling you pre-Medieval) who endorse it for their departments, publishers who realize the many benefits for their publications, private corporations who consult even semi-competent lawyers in the field and take advantage of the protections already in law to make more money at less cost — or who skip the lawyers and plow ahead without them — and you who reads any report in science and writes back saying, “pity the data isn’t open, as I can’t trust what you write without that” will be the pressure on the side that makes it so.

        Otherwise, Science advances one funeral at a time.

        5. As politics never advances anything at all, Science in the end will win.

      • Bart –

        Thanks. You’ve given me some things to think about. I may want to reply later…too broken up right now about Cain “suspending” his campaign to even approach dealing with anything else.

      • Judith –

        What on earth are the criteria you use to decide which posts to delete?
        You allow rants about libz on you blog on a very regular basis – with links to the climate debate that are

        Now obviously you saw something substantially different in this little back and forth about Cain and Clinton, so I’m wondering if you might shed some light on your reasoning about the difference.

        Of course, if your basis for deleting posts is more or less arbitrary, that’s fine also. It’s your blog. I’ve asked you this before and haven’t gotten an answer, so maybe you don’t have an answer. But I would be happy to save you the trouble of deleting my posts if you would made it clear what your judgement criteria are.

      • waaaaaaaaay off topic

      • waaaaaaaaay off topic

        Of course they were. But no more off topic than much of what we read in these here threads. Consider the long debate I had with Gary about whether or not a country where over 90% of the people live in government housing is a country where there is centralized planning (yes, as hard as it is to believe, he really did argue about that). That was certainly off topic.

        So I’m trying to figure out if your moderation policy is arbitrary in the sense that there is some guiding principle that is selectively applied depending on the political views expressed, arbitrary in the sense that it is just unevenly applied, or maybe there’s some other explanation.

        How about this?: Maybe with the debate I had with Gary where he was posting incoherent comments about Singapore, you didn’t see the waaaaaaay off topic posts until way after the fact and saw no particular need to delete the off-topic comments – as the thread had already drifted as far off topic as it was likely to go. In this most recent case, you saw the off-topic posts as they were on-going, and so by deleting them as you saw them you were possibility preventing the post from drifting further off topic? Would that be it? That might also explain why you don’t delete one of cwon’s off-topic political rants also – because they don’t generate responses in kind and present no danger of spinning the thread further off topic?

      • There is an element of arbitrariness associated with which comments I actually happen to spot on my dashboard. Only on a technical thread do i periodically sweep through the entire thread.

      • Joshua, I do hope you duly appreciative of the extra-special treatment you’re getting from Judith here.
        If you think I’m exaggerating, try going on to Realclimate and making some comment that diverges by some minute amount from the CAGW gospel – you’re likely to get one of their signature arseholic responses pioneered by Gavin.
        .

      • Punksta –

        I appreciate Judith’s moderation. Asking her to clarify her criteria does not mean that I don’t.

  54. I see the grubby little Occupy Climate Etc. activists are at it again, early this morning. Must be hard for them to sleep with the burden of saving the world on their stooped little shoulders. But only have the foot soldiers have arisen. Where is the intellectual/ideological leader? Wake up, freddy!

  55. This issue is not at all complicated. People living off the government teat do not own the product of their work. In some cases that is data. There are statutes in various democratic countries that allow citizens to petition to see this data. Hiding data subject to revelation under FOIA laws is, by definition, ILLEGAL. Case closed.

    • Don Monfort

      Alas that there is no law against being bad at math, or failing to use logic correctly.

      No Freedom of Intelligence Act to make hiding from data and reason illegal.

      No understanding that all data belongs to the commons, and the tragedy of the commons applies to it, regardless of who paid to get to it first, or how much they pay to build walls around their ‘claim’ to special knowledge.

  56. If you haven’t seen Dr. Robert Brown’s essay at WUWT titled: “FOIA is not enough. Why not legally mandate transparency in climate research? A Modest Proposal…”, it is MUST reading.

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2011/12/02/foia-is-not-enough-why-not-legally-mandate-transparency-in-climate-research-a-modest-proposal/

    • The irony is that without transparency, so that all eyes can help gauge the path forward, climate science is doomed to follow errant paths, as they have so memorably recently demonstrated.
      ==============

  57. Stallman is a long time advocate of openness.

    He could perhaps best be described as a software communist, as he opposes the freedom to own software.

  58. lolwot | December 3, 2011 at 6:20 am
    You need professional help for a delusion complex

    YOu responded to yourself. Was that a freudian slip?

  59. Forbes: 12/07/2011
    Climategate’s Michael Mann Channels His Inner Palpatine

    http://www.forbes.com/sites/jamestaylor/2011/12/07/climategates-michael-mann-channels-his-inner-palpatine/

    “The ongoing Climategate scandal, including 5,000-plus Climategate 2 emails released two weeks ago, reveals prominent global warming advocates acknowledging flaws in the theory that humans are causing dramatic climate change, coordinating efforts to hide such flaws, coordinating efforts to misrepresent scientific data, coordinating efforts to destroy evidence of these inconvenient truths, and coordinating efforts to blackball or induce the firing of scientists and editors of peer-reviewed science journals who publish evidence contradicting the alarmist storyline. The most important revelation from the Climategate scandals is that global warming scientist-activists are misrepresenting the scientific data regarding global warming. The second most important revelation is that scientist-activists are waging a brutal and dirty war of personal and professional destruction against skeptical scientists who disagree with them.

    “Make no mistake, the scientific misconduct revealed in the Climategate emails is severe and undeniable. The Climategate scientist-activists openly acknowledge substantial scientific evidence that contradicts their theories, then work to together to hide that evidence from the public.”