The horsemeat argument

by Judith Curry

So, what does the UK scandal involving horsemeat in lasagna have to do with climate change?

Roger Pielke Jr has a post that is both clever and profound entitled The Horsemeat in Your Lasagne.   A summary of the scandal:

It turns out that packages of Findus lasagne labelled as beef turned out to contain from 60% to 100% horsemeat. As a result the product was pulled and tough questions are being asked about food safety. The scandal is spreading to other food products and other countries. Some might say, so what? Meat is meat, right?

So what does the horsemeat scandal have to do with climate change?  RP Jr argues that the same ‘end justifies the means’ logic is being used in promoting the extreme weather meme as a reason for major government response to climate change.  In spite of the fact that the link between extreme weather events and human induced climate change is very weak, where it exists at all (see previous post on the IPCC SREX Report).  This reasoning is exemplified by the following quote from a tweet from Clark Miller:

Climate events have people thinking. Now maybe think mitigation. Social not natural causality. Whats not to like?

Now we get to the profound part of RP Jr’s post:

What does it matter if people wrongly associate recent extreme events and disaster costs with climate change? Responding to it is a good thing, and if people support mitigation action for the wrong reasons, so what?

There are three objections here.

First, an argument that mitigation of greenhouse gases makes sense in terms of decreasing the future costs of extreme events is not a strong one: Even under the assumptions of IPCC, Stern Review, etc. the future costs of extreme events under the most aggressive scenarios of climate change actually decrease as a proportion of GDP.

The second objection is that the discovery of a little horsemeat in lasagne ruins the entire product. You might cite the tasty (and safe) noodles and tomato sauce, but the presence of horsemeat in the product defeats your argument. The science is just not there to connect increasing costs of disasters to climate change, much less individual phenomena like drought, floods and storms. It is horsemeat — and don’t put it into your product lest you compromise the whole package.

The third reason should be obvious but often appears to escape the calculus of many campaigners and journalists. Telling people that their lasagne contains beef, when it actually contains horsemeat is just wrong.

Mouse proxies

Shortly after reading the horsemeat post, Kip Hansen sent me a link to a NYTimes article Mice Fall Short as Test Subjects for Humans’ Ills.  Excerpts:

For decades, mice have been the species of choice in the study of human diseases. But now, researchers report evidence that the mouse model has been totally misleading for at least three major killers —sepsis, burns and trauma. As a result, years and billions of dollars have been wasted following false leads, they say.

The paper, published Monday in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, helps explain why every one of nearly 150 drugs tested at a huge expense in patients with sepsis has failed. The drug tests all were based on studies in mice. And mice, it turns out, can have something that looks like sepsis in humans, but is very different from the condition in humans.

The group had tried to publish its findings in several papers. One objection, Dr. Davis said, was that the researchers had not shown the same gene response had happened in mice.

“They were so used to doing mouse studies that they thought that was how you validate things,” he said. “They are so ingrained in trying to cure mice that they forget we are trying to cure humans.”

“That started us thinking,” he continued. “Is it the same in the mouse or not?”

The group decided to look, expecting to find some similarities. But when the data were analyzed, there were none at all.

The drug failures became clear. For example, often in mice, a gene would be used, while in humans, the comparable gene would be suppressed. A drug that worked in mice by disabling that gene could make the response even more deadly in humans.

The study’s investigators tried for more than a year to publish their paper, which showed that there was no relationship between the genetic responses of mice and those of humans. They submitted it to the publications Science and Nature, hoping to reach a wide audience. It was rejected from both.

Still, Dr. Davis said, reviewers did not point out scientific errors. Instead, he said, “the most common response was, ‘It has to be wrong. I don’t know why it is wrong, but it has to be wrong.’ ”

Some researchers, reading the paper now, say they are as astonished as the researchers were when they saw the data.

“When I read the paper, I was stunned by just how bad the mouse data are,” Dr. Fink said. “It’s really amazing — no correlation at all. These data are so persuasive and so robust that I think funding agencies are going to take note.” Until now, he said, “to get funding, you had to propose experiments using the mouse model.”

Mouse meat

The horsemeat argument (aka ends justify means) has been used to justify a range of strategies in communicating climate change to the public:

  • extreme events are used as focusing events to alarm people and stimulate action on climate change, playing on their fears, losses and feeling of impotence in the face of say an event like Hurricane Sandy
  • the faux story of Richard Muller as a converted climate change skeptic, which acted as a counter to real skeptical arguments, i.e. if you were a smart Berkeley physics professor and actually did the research, you would be convinced too.
  • Peter Gleick’s strategy of apparently breaking laws for the ‘greater good’ of  discrediting the Heartland Institute and its position on climate change (note:  WUWT reports on breaking news that is embargoed until 2 pm on Thurs)
  • and of course there are dozens of examples in the climategate emails of attempts to stymie the publication and press attention of skeptical papers and jerry rig the acceptance of papers needed to support their arguments (e.g. Wahl and Amman).

RP Jr eloquently states the objections to the ends justify the means strategies and arguments.  But the mouse proxy  example raises an even more fundamental objection to the horsemeat argument.  For example, in the consensus climate change attribution arguments, natural internal variability and solar forcing have been largely dismissed because ‘It has to be wrong. I don’t know why it is wrong, but it has to be wrong.’   Recent research is suggesting a greater role for both (stay tuned for my next post on sensitivity).

We really don’t want to eat a mouse meat sandwich in terms of climate change policy.  We can avoid this by eliminating ends justify means strategies in communicating climate change to the public.  In their dealing with the climategate issue, climate scientists and the institutions that support climate science, never seemed to realize how a little contamination by horsemeat can ‘compromise the whole package’  in terms of public perceptions.  

And finally, a cartoon by Josh:

josh

819 responses to “The horsemeat argument

  1. It is horsemeat — and don’t put it into your product lest you compromise the whole package.

    Rather like (much of) the climatology profession declining to criticise the Climategate crooks, thereby aligning themselves with science fraud, and therefore also associating possibly valid science they do, with fraud too.

  2. Nature and Science both turned down the little paper that roared. It is amusing to read their rationale.
    ======================

    • have you? I mean, the quotes in the post are summarized and paraphrased by one of the study authors. it would be interesting to see the actual comments.

  3. “to get funding, you had to propose experiments using the mouse model.”

    Gracious me I do hope nothing like that happens in climate science,

  4. Judith

    Imo a very good post.

    I suggest a point that was missed by Pielke that has frustrated me is founded in basic economics. If countries use their very limited resources to implement CO2 mitigation actions they will have less resources available to take action to build and maintain a robust infrastructure. Climate mitigation actions can’t be even reasonably demonstrated to lessen any harms and building and maintaining a robust infrastructure can. What is the logic of putting a priority on mitigation actions?

    • Especially since the “mitigation actions” mitigate nothing, becuase they are ineffective and technologically unworkable.

    • Rob,

      One of my concerns as well.

      When they use the example of damage to coral reefs as justification for climate chnage mitigation, they ignore all of the already identified real threats to one that is theoritical at best.

      When they play the public health card – as in climate change is the single greatest threat to public health – they siphon off attention and resources from well known issues in public health.

      Who wins uin these scenarios? The only winners I see are the folks making the claims. Not the public nor the environment.

      And this is true even if they are correct in their claims. If they are overblowing it (as I believe) then what they are doping is bordeline criminal.

  5. So what’s the proposed solution for controls that didn’t work?

    Hey, it’s “more controls”, right?

    Duh!

    Max

  6. k scott denison

    Bravo. Very nice post. Time to have an honest discussion about group think, models, pushing agendas and blindness.

  7. “the faux story of Richard Muller as a converted climate change skeptic, which acted as a counter to real skeptical arguments”

    Lets see: Muller thinks that the HS is broken, so the HS must not be a real skeptical argument.

    Question: what are the ‘real’ skeptical arguments? and how do you spot a real skeptic?

    • The skeptical argument is the null hypothesis (no postulated effect). Zero.

      • So, mcintyre is not a skeptic. Lindzen is not a skeptic. spencer christy not skeptics. here is a hint. you are confusing statiscal hypothesis testing with science. You are confusing a tool with the whole enterprise.
        Finally, you can choose any null you want, so that cannot define the position.

      • Oh, for heaven’s sake. Climate Science is NOT two-party politics, with each party having a “true” position.

        The diversionary tactics of Mosher on behalf of Muller and BEST only rate as amusing — the real story is their hubristic approach that caused them to make an end run around any real serious peer-review on their results paper — making a mockery of their stated purpose to put to rest the controversy surrounding the surface temperature record for the last 150 years. Now their paper result is not only not settling anything, it is just another part of the controversy, just like the Hockey Stick.

      • “The diversionary tactics of Mosher on behalf of Muller and BEST only rate as amusing”

        A claim was made.
        The conversion was faux.
        Addressing that claim is on topic.
        Calling an comment that is ON topic a diversion, is a diversion

      • Mosher,

        You’ll have to take up Muller’s conversion or lack of with Dr. Curry. No sense arguing it with me, I couldn’t care less.

        You arguing it here on Muller’s behalf certainly keeps the attention off the very real possibility that BEST has wasted all its effort, funding, trust, and good will by ‘gaming the peer-review system’ by publishing at GIGS — where no real Climate Science expert believes it received the peer review it deserved or needed if it was to settle anything at all. Now even that decision itself, along with the paper and its result, has just become part of the controversy.

        As they say in fencing — “Nothing Done!”

        Sad to see all your time and talent wasted that way.

      • Steven Mosher
        Re: “you can choose any null you want,”
        I thought science was based on making a hypothesis and the null hypothesis was the evidence without that hypothesis.

        e.g., the null hypothesis for “major anthropogenic global warming” (> 50%) would be natural long term warming from the Little Ice Age, with natural solar (~11 yr) and oceanic oscillations (~ 60 year), with some minor anthropogenic contribution to global warming (5% to 50%).

        The null must be chosen to reflect the best prior science against which you want to prove the hypothesis.

      • Mosher, if they accept (or are convinced of) the A(CO2)GW, then they are not skeptical of the A(CO2)GW. They might be skeptical of some part of the hypothesis or of the extent of the anthropogenic GHG warming. Or they don’t want to be ridiculed by going 100% skeptical. Humans are herd animals.

    • Steven,
      If the evidence for massive taxation to mitigate what may be almost entirely natural is so clear and compelling, then why the need for ends-justify-the-means, obfuscation, trashing FOI and outright lying?
      Does that QUESTION give you some clue that I might be a real skeptic?

      • That doesnt address the question I asked. How do you define a real skeptic?

      • Steven,
        You did not answer my questions which were the answer to your question.
        If you don’t understand the definition of ‘skeptic’ then I’m sure the concept that Science is, by definition, skeptical, is far beyond your ability to reason.

      • John you posted a distraction and now an evasion. Are you going to answer the question or be a dishonest troll?

      • “If you don’t understand the definition of ‘skeptic’ then I’m sure the concept that Science is, by definition, skeptical, is far beyond your ability to reason”

        Which definition? I’ve seen several here. But if you view doing science as inherently skeptical then Muller is still a skeptic

      • Steven Mosher | February 13, 2013 at 11:38 am | That doesnt address the question I asked. How do you define a real skeptic?

        First define skeptic (sceptic).

      • lolwot,
        My, how projectile. Just who is being evasive and offering distractions (see and answer my first comment)? Is this like naming people who question your methodology Climate Deniers and Skeptics when it is yours and Moshers camp that diminishes Nature to the point of irrelevance? Name one skeptic that denies natural climate variability. Skeptics are not the ones initiating regulations and taxes on plant food to the tune of trillions. Skeptics have no more burden than to hold activist scientist and the policies they have decided to devote their grant funded work to, to the fire of reason.

        Steven,
        Just answer my damn questions, “If the evidence for massive taxation to mitigate what may be almost entirely natural is so clear and compelling, then why the need for ends-justify-the-means, obfuscation, trashing FOI and outright lying?
        Does that QUESTION give you some clue that I might be a real skeptic?”
        Re Muller, He has a well documented history of emphatic statements and he has a conflict of interest. Doubting the Hockey Stick (a no brainer) and taking Koch money might give him credit in some circles but apparently not enough credit to get his recent efforts published in anything other than a brand new journal as the first of it’s efforts. Why was it refused by the outlets you commonly refer to?
        A real skeptic ask you, “Have you defined and quantified all of the Natural parameters and their interrelationships? Why do your models have no predictive or hind cast capabilities(it was 10 years before your camp even began to acknowledged that temps have flattened)? How can you nullify a hypothesis that predicts everything?

    • Steven,

      How about I send you a photo. Not that I’m all that photogenic.

      • Sorry I just ate so so photos. How about you define what makes a skeptic

      • Truth Seeker vs Truth Defender. You define truth and I’ll take seeker and defender.
        ==========

      • They won’t answer mosher because they cant. What Judith did is a classic example of them promoting skeptics as a united team (and muller isn’t invited). But if I addressed them as a single entity likewise they’d complain. They team up to pull punches but scatter under fire.

      • Chief Hydrologist

        A sceptic is someone who is defined as such in an attempt to marginalise views that are not accpetable. It is pure Marcusian. Thus Roger Jn and Lomberg are sceptics for instance. An sceptical opinion is one that deviates from the simple memes of the groupthink. Thus Judith is a sceptic.

      • Steven,

        I’m not that into labels. In the climate discussion I’ve seen they do more to derail the conversation than to advance it.

        I can provide what I am skeptical about:

        1) The impacts – I see all sorts of claims about what is likely to happen, but little evidence.

        2) The accuracy of proxy data – it may very well be my lack of expertise, but I find it diffcult to believe you can get thermometer like numbers from tree rings and ice cores.

        3) The statistics – there seems to be considerable room for getting results which support one’s preconceived ideas. An analogy which comes to mind is baking baggettes. One of the secrets is to handle the dough as little as possible. The more you knead it, the less you’ll see of the nice bubbles. You still have bread, but can it accurately be decribed as a French baggette?

        4) The belief in models above everything else – I do not think they are worthless, nor do I call into question the people who work on or with them. I do think they have some very real limits which tend to be overlooked. I beliefe that anyone who makes policy recommendations based on model results is either a fool or is in pursuit of some other agenda.

        5) Other agendas – I am skeptical of statements by people who have obvious agendas that may or may not have anything to do with climate.

        6) True believers – what can I say? They may or may not be correct – which ever side of the argument they hail from. I’m simply skeptical as to the probility of their being so.

        7) CO2 as the overwhelming driver among human activities impacting climate – I believe all of the focus on CO2 diverts attention away from other factors. In particular factors humans may be in a better position to do something about. I would expand this to all of the “impacts” we are told to worry about. Dr Howard Frumkin penned an editorial last month in the Seattle Times trying to make the case for climate change being a great threat to public health. Skeptical doesn’t cover my opinion of that. Derisive would be a better word.

        Should I go on?

    • k scott denison

      Lets see: Muller thinks that the HS is broken, so the HS must not be a real skeptical argument.
      ——–
      I’m a believer in representative democracy. I see the current government in DC as broken. Does that mean that I’m now a skeptic of representative democracy?

      • Simple questions.

        1. find a skeptic who believes in the HS
        2. find a consensus scientist who will attack the HS and mann.

        Or you can define what exactly one has to believe to be a disbeliver.
        or define what one has to disbelieve to be a disbeliever.
        be careful you might turn some skeptics into believers by definition

        here is a hint: classification is a wicked problem

      • thisisnotgoodtogo

        Mosher is just trying to dispose of accepted definitions so that he – and only he – controls when they will next be called upon to do work.

      • Steven,
        A skeptic is a person who feels that maybe you haven’t found the right explanation for something yet. We are not trying to discourage you from your search, it’s just that when you use ends-justify-the-means tactics, use horsemeat and tell us it’s beef, lie, obfuscate, use strawmen, it tends to strain your credibility.

      • blueice2hotsea

        There is a continuum from dogmatism to cynicism. Science more or less drives down the middle of the road trying to stay out of the ditches.

    • Is Mosher trying to emulate Joshua for some reason? What is the point of the questions? Can’t an individual be skeptical of many issues for a variety of reasons on the topic of climate change related to CO2?

      Rate of change of temperature related to additional CO2?

      Knowledge of net harms vs net benefits?

      Rational justification supporting individual CO2 mitigation proposals?

      Priority placed on robust infrastructure construction and maintaince in various locations?

      Duty for one independent nation to provide funds to another nation due to the issue?

    • A skeptic (to skeptics) in the terms of the climate debate is one who does not accept the consensus, that CAGW poses a sufficient risk of catastrophic consequences to justify decarbonization of the economy.

      You can attack any part of the consensus, and still be in favor of mitigation to avoid CAGW, and thus not be a skeptic. That was what Muller did. That was what Keith Kloor did, for a while. Even an author of a climate related book who regularly comments here (including immediately above) objected to the hockey stick and climategate. But to my knowledge, none were ever against the consensus, so none were ever skeptics.

      Now that is not how consensus advocates define skeptic. To them, a skeptic is either a knuckle dragging, mouth breathing, neanderthal conservative denier who is stupid, or evil or both. Or they define it as anyone who has ever objected to any smallest issue raised by the consensus advocates, thus rendering the term meaningless, as suggested above.

    • thisisnotgoodtogo

      Is Muller on record saying the HS is broken?

    • Question: what are the ‘real’ skeptical arguments? and how do you spot a real skeptic?

      You seem to be projecting some kind of superior knowledge on this topic so perhaps you could enlighten us as to what a real skeptic is?

      Regarding Muller, why don’t you explain to us what he really is?

    • Steven Mosher | February 13, 2013 at 9:49 am asked: ”and how do you spot a real skeptic?”

      easy Mosher, very easy: real Skeptic can think outside the ”Group Septic Tank” – doesn’t use the words: may happen, can happen, it’s possible, if it happens. Real Skeptic doesn’t confuse localized climatic events / changes, as ”GLOBAL” warmings. Real Skeptic knows the self adjusting mechanisms the planet has under her sleeves.

  8. Steve, see if you can spot the logical fallacy in your own reasoning :)

    The key public issue re climate change skepticism is the attribution of 20th century change to humans. And this is how Muller billed his conversion from skepticism (Muller in his conversion did not state the hockey stick is not broken).

    • moshe’s just mad.
      =============

    • Judith, isn’t it only (and roughly) the second half of the 20th century? If our CO2 emissions had the claimed effect, any influence before that would be implausible. It’s the consensus too.

      • David Springer

        Whenever I hear about BEST I make a certain gesture mimicing something usually done in the privacy of a commode. Is that what you’re getting at?

      • David Springer

        I could make further inference to horsemeat at this juncture but feel I’m skating on Arctic summer ice as it is. So I shan’t.

    • I missed when Muller was a skeptic. I was in the bathroom.

      • denial of the surface warming records themselves are a big part of climate skepticism

        Cimate alarmism I assume you meant – otherwise how can one deny the Pause/Standstill ?

    • Judith denial of the surface warming records themselves are a big part of climate skepticism. Go over to the sppi site for example and read their report on the surface temp records. Or the nipcc report.

      Miller was a climate skeptic towards the surface records. Now he accepts them.

      • Miller was a climate skeptic towards the surface records.

        Tosh – he never was. He just wanted to head off criticism of them.

      • You don’t mean that tom you are just conspiracy theorising.

      • Denial of the surface warming records? Who denies there are records? Or that they show temperature? Or that after adjustment they show warming? Who denies “surface warming records.” Is that like denying climate?

        Now me, I think they (the temp records) are not nearly as precise as claimed, and I think it is ridiculous to base massive public spending and taxation on a perceived ability to measure global average temperature changes to within tenths of a degree per decade.

        But I guess that makes me a denier.

      • Tomcat

        ‘Tosh – he never was. He just wanted to head off criticism of them.”

        Well, that is a theory. you have no evidence for your theory. not very skeptical.

        Null: Muller believed that the record was accurate.

        Evidence to falsify this null.
        1. His actions. putting together berkeley earth has been a rather hard effort.
        2. His writings: Its pretty clear that he doubted the accuracy of the record.
        in fact, in a recent speech Clinton remarked that he shared Richs skepticism.
        3. What he has said to me and Zeke, prior to our joining Berkeley earth. It was clear to me that he thought UHI and and Microsite issues were huge.

        So, you have a theory. You have no evidence for that theory. All available evidence is against you. Unfool yourself

    • “The key public issue re climate change skepticism is the attribution of 20th century change to humans. And this is how Muller billed his conversion from skepticism (Muller in his conversion did not state the hockey stick is not broken).”

      I’m not talking about the key public issue. I’m talking about what positions make somebody a skeptic. I’ll make the following points.

      Muller was viewed by folks on both sides of the debate as a skeptic primarily because

      1. he criticized the HS publically. Find me a skeptic who accepts mann’s work. Find me a consensus scientist who will publically criticize the HS
      and mann as an individual.

      2. he criticized the temperature record. Find me a skeptic who accepts the record. Find me a skeptic that doesnt criticize the record. Find me a consensus scientist who would meet with Anthony Watts,
      and who who credit Anthony for the work he has done without reservation.

      3. he thinks Models are bunk. Every time I mention models in staff, Rich aint buying any of it.

      4. He criticizes the scientists in Climategate. Heck he read our book. Find me a consensus scientist who has read that book.. and liked it. (grin)

      So, my argument is pretty simple. prior to the results paper being done Muller shared skeptical positions, key skeptical positions. He said nothing about attribution because he was skeptical. That was my personal experience from the first day I met and talked to him. He said nothing about what he thought caused the warming, because he was skeptical of the warming itself.

      Now, comes the results paper. One day as we sat there looking at the record, I suggested ( may have been zeke or robert, but I think it was me ) looking at volcanic activity to make some sense of the swings in the early record. Robert went away and cam back with the results adding C02.
      At this point Rich was skeptical and over the course of the next few weeks he took a crack at trying other explanations. In the end after he had looked at a variety of cases, he announced that he had changed his mind and said something to the effect of “I thought the sun played a bigger role, but it look like C02″ Of course, Robert, zeke and I said that ‘we already knew that”, but it was clear from Rich’s presentation and from my earlier discussions with him that he had come to believe.

      In short, prior to this you would be hard pressed to describe him as a consensus scientist. You would have to admit that he shared key skeptical positions on the science ( HS, models, and temp records ) and he shared skeptical positions on climategate.

      Is this a faux conversion? I don’t think so. Was he a real skeptic? I think that presupposes some consensus on what it means to be a skeptic.
      Now, of course you could define skeptic by being somebody who attributes warming to humans? how much? steve mcintyre looks to be in the 50% camp. is he a skeptic. At one point in the past Willis thought 30% of the warming was due to humans? Skeptic? It looks like you are defining skeptic as somebody who believe none of the warming is due to humans which means only sky dragons qualify.

      So, again, what does one have to believe or doubt to earn the skeptic seal of approval, and who gives that approval.

      • Errata:

        ‘Now, of course you could define skeptic by being somebody who attributes warming to humans? ”

        Now, of course you could define skeptic by being somebody who doesnt attribute all warming to humans.

      • This is more like the Mosher I come here to see.

      • It’s actually pretty easy to see, moshe; Truth-Seeker vs Truth Defender.
        ============

      • Steve mosher, look up skeptic in the dictionary. You know perfectly well what it means. It means someone who doubts that warming is caused by man-made CO2. Muller has never done that.

        Criticising HTD is criticising HTD. It’s not being a climate sceptic. And as you know well from your CG investigations, most of ‘the team’ have (privately) criticised Mann and the HS – so are you saying they are all sceptics?

      • Steven Mosher

        Your long tale of Richard Muller’s conversion evades the key question, which you asked.

        what are the ‘real’ skeptical arguments? and how do you spot a real skeptic?

        From Wiki:

        Scientific skepticism (also spelled scepticism) is the practice of questioning whether claims are supported by empirical research and have reproducibility, as part of a methodological norm pursuing “the extension of certified knowledge” For example, Robert K. Merton asserts that all ideas must be tested and are subject to rigorous, structured community scrutiny.

        And

        Scientific skepticism is also called rational skepticism, and it is sometimes referred to as skeptical inquiry.

        So much for the term “rational skepticism”.

        “How do you spot a real skeptic” (in this case a skeptic of the IPCC CAGW premise as outlined in its AR4 report)?

        Pretty easy.

        A “real skeptic” questions whether the CAGW claims are supported by empirical scientific evidence (from actual physical observations or reproducible experimentation). Who claimed it, how nice the hypothesis fits with theoretical physics, how neatly it has been simulated by fancy climate models, etc. all doesn’t mean a thing if it is not validated by empirical scientific data (see remarks by Feynman).

        The “real skeptic” defines the “null hypothesis” that CO2 has zero impact on our climate, and insists that this “null hypothesis” can only be falsified by empirical evidence. (Popper)

        That’s the way the “scientific method” works for a “real skeptic”.

        There have been volumes of studies using model simulations, hypothetical deliberations, etc. etc, to verify the CAGW premiose, but there has been no empirical evidence as yet to support this premise.

        Until such empirical evidence is presented, the “real skeptic” will remain rationally skeptical of the CAGW premise.

        Unlike the “real skeptic”, Richard Muller did not insist on empirical evidence; after assuring himself that the temperature record itself was valid, he accepted the theoretical explanations for this record without first seeing any empirical evidence (because there has been no empirical evidence presented to date for the CAGW premise).

        So, while Richard Muller may have expressed unease about accepting CAGW prior to his work on the temperature record, he never was a “real skeptic”.

        Hope this explains it.

        Max

        PS I consider myself a “real skeptic” (in the Wiki sense as outlined above), so I don’t think we need to waste much time trying to redefine this term. It is what it is.

      • Steven Mosher

        An even shorter definition of rational skepticism is given here (also from Wiki):

        Scientific skepticism or rational skepticism (also spelled scepticism), sometimes referred to as skeptical inquiry, is a practical, epistemological position in which one questions the veracity of claims lacking empirical evidence.

        RM is not one of these, since he accepts “the veracity of claims lacking empirical evidence”.

        Max

      • Reread Muller’s NYT oped about his conversion:

        http://www.nytimes.com/2012/07/30/opinion/the-conversion-of-a-climate-change-skeptic.html?_r=4&pagewanted=all&

        “CALL me a converted skeptic. Three years ago I identified problems in previous climate studies that, in my mind, threw doubt on the very existence of global warming. Last year, following an intensive research effort involving a dozen scientists, I concluded that global warming was real and that the prior estimates of the rate of warming were correct. I’m now going a step further: Humans are almost entirely the cause.”

        Nowhere in the op-ed does muller discuss skepticism of the HS. The big apparent conversion is that “Humans are almost entirely the cause.” Nowhere have I seen previously that Muller stated that he was skeptical that ‘humans are almost entirely the cause’ or that global warming didn’t exist. Prior to BEST, he only registered skepticism about the HS.

        On the BEST website, there is nothing about skepticism motivating their surface temperature study, rather they state:
        “The Berkeley Earth Surface Temperature project aims to help resolve criticisms of the temperature record and lower the barriers to entry into climate science.”
        “Together they observed a real need for a new project to analyze current global surface temperature records in order to respond to concerns of critics and calm the debate about global warming.”

      • David Springer

        A real skeptic isn’t skeptical of things that Steven Mosher is not skeptical of.

        It’s not rocket science, folks. It’s predicated on the scientific method of “see no evil, hear no evil, speak no evil”. You may have thought it odd but couldn’t pinpoint quite why you thought that Richard, Steven, and Zeke look like three monkeys. Now you know.

      • It is a long long way from

        “he announced that he had changed his mind and said something to the effect of “I thought the sun played a bigger role, but it look[s] like C02″ ”
        to
        “I’m now going a step further: Humans are almost entirely the cause.”

        Looks like is not a conclusion. We already had “looks like” from everyone else.

        A long long conclusional jump without the backing of solid evidence.

      • And even what little evidence they did produce — a temperature record — is sullied by the transparent by-passing of serious peer-review and publishing in the pay-to-publish neo-natal online “journal” GIGS.

      • thisisnotgoodtogo

        Mosher is sounding more and more like a crazy corner preacher giving the testimonials of conversion

      • kip
        ‘of serious peer-review and publishing in the pay-to-publish neo-natal online “journal” GIGS.”

        I will suggest that you check your facts. no fees were paid. no fees were waved. no fees were ever discussed.

      • paul mathews

        ‘Steve mosher, look up skeptic in the dictionary. You know perfectly well what it means. It means someone who doubts that warming is caused by man-made CO2. Muller has never done that.”

        1. as a skeptic i doubt whether dictionaries capture the meaning of terms as people use them.
        2. as a skeptic I doubt that you know what I know pefectly well.

        Your definition:

        Skeptic means : doubts that warming is caused by C02.

        that claim contains TWO beliefs: it is warming AND the warming is due to humans.

        A) Muller doubted the record. How could he believe that warming he doubted was caused by humans?
        B) When I first talked to him he was somewhat of a sun and natural cycles proponent.
        C) When robert presented his C02 curves, i said “Like duh, of course c02 explains this” and Muller was skeptical of roberts work and set on on his own to look for other explainations of the warming. he came back and said “wow, you guys were right’

        So, as a skeptic I look at that evidence, and I’m convinced that he changed his mind. the other alternative is that he lied. I have no evidence of that. no evidence that h believed c02 was a cause before hand.
        You do think he believed in C02 before.. based on what evidence.

        maybe skeptics should practice skpticism with regard to their claim of knowledge about what muller thought before his conversion.

      • ‘Mosher is sounding more and more like a crazy corner preacher giving the testimonials of conversion”

        Weird. At issue is what Muller believed before doing berkeley earth and what he believed after.

        There are three forms of evidence.

        1. His actions
        2. His writings
        3. What he said.

        A good skeptic will look at all evidence.

        Your null: Muller was a believer:

        to disprove that we look at all the evidence so we dont fool ourselves.
        I supply information on what he said. you can ignore that evidence and cling to your null. not very skeptical.

      • Matthew R Marler

        Steve Mosher: So, again, what does one have to believe or doubt to earn the skeptic seal of approval, and who gives that approval.

        It isn’t approval but accuracy in labeling. The main skeptical position is that a human-sourced CO2 effect in changing climate has not been demonstrated. Did Muller ever say that? His “conversion” seems to have been an increase in his respect for the recorded temperature record.

      • thisisnotgoodtogo

        Mosher said

        tingto said
        ” ‘Mosher is sounding more and more like a crazy corner preacher giving the testimonials of conversion’.

        Weird. At issue is what Muller believed before doing berkeley earth and what he believed after.”

        Your definition of “skepticism” now seems to have mutated into
        “Skepticism: What you believe”.

      • The main skeptical position is that a human-sourced CO2 effect in changing climate has not been demonstrated.

        What is the significance of Muller believing that the temperature record analysis hadn’t been sufficiently validated?

        Obviously, the significance is that he believed that the evidence of a human-sourced CO2 effect on global temperature had not been sufficiently validated.

        In other words, he was “skeptical” of an ACO2 effect of changing the climate, because it had not been demonstrated

        One of the more amusing aspects of the climate wars is watching “skeptics” morph the definition of who is or isn’t a “skeptic” as it turns out to be convenient. That, plus how they alternatively argue that (1) the definition of “skepticism” is not monolithic and, (2) only “skeptics” that agree with their own opinions are those who are the true “skeptics”

        Even more amusing is the amount of arguing that takes place over something so completely insignificant as whether or not Muller fits some contrived (and selective) determination of who is or isn’t a “skeptic.”

        Same ol’ same ol’.

      • Steven –

        Your null: Muller was a believer:

        Actually, Muller was a “believer.”

        He believed that the trend analysis of global temperatures (showing anomalous warming attributable to ACO2) had not been sufficiently validated.

        But, of course, he wasn’t a “skeptic.”

        too funny.

      • Mosher — (and anyone else interested in this aspect of the BEST decision to publish in GIGS)

        Your statement: “I will suggest that you check your facts. no fees were paid. no fees were waved. no fees were ever discussed.”

        The fact is, of course, I did check. I personally called SciTechnol’s office in Henderson, Nevada. They are the publishers of GIGS. I spoke with their representative. He explained to me carefully that ALL of SciTechnol’s journals are published on an “author-pays” basis. He carefully explained that sometimes, at the discretion of the editors, fees can be waived in their entirety, partially waived, or charged in full. He kindly offered to waive any fees for students from UVI (the University of the Virgin Islands) based on our lower standard of living.

        I am surprised that you don’t know this, since you have seemed to indicate that you arranged the publishing of the BEST results paper personally. Perhaps you should have investigated more carefully. Everyone else seems to know how OMICS/SciTechnol operates.

        The BEST web site FAQ has only this confused sentence “Manuscripts accepted by GIGS are not subject to any page/color charges, or article processing charges, so nor can it be considered a “author-pays” journal.”

        We have to guess at the meaning, but the statement that GIGS is not an “author-pays” journal is simply false.

        Anyone wishing to check this for themselves, including Mr. Mosher and others on the BEST team, can call or write:

        SciTechnol
        2360 Corporate Circle, Suite 400
        Henderson, NV 89074-7722, USA
        Ph: +1-888-843-8169
        Fax: +1-650-618-1414

        Why in the world anyone would contest such an easily check-able fact is beyond me.

        .

      • Well, this grunt regrets that you trivialize Muller’s conflict of interest re: his daughter.
        ==============

      • “Even more amusing is the amount of arguing that takes place over something so completely insignificant as whether or not Muller fits some contrived (and selective) determination of who is or isn’t a “skeptic.””

        It’s important to them Joshua. They can’t accept Muller’s apostasy so they must pretend he was never a climate skeptic.

        To do that they must define climate skeptic to exclude Muller. Amusingly some of them don’t think it through and end up defining climate skeptic to exclude skeptics like Lindzen, Roy Spencer, etc etc.

      • Pretty simple kip. no fees were paid. no fees waived. no fees discussed.
        You are missing something and its super funny that you dont see it

      • lolwot –

        It’s important to them Joshua. They can’t accept Muller’s apostasy so they must pretend he was never a climate skeptic

        It is interesting to watch Judith’s changing perspective on Muller. Dude’s like a Rorschach inkblot.

      • And Muller admitted on a video interview, don’t remember the exact one now, that his attribution to humans was a gut feeling, not derived from more formal, scientific considerations.

      • Well, an officer ordering the Charge of the Light has provoked Judy’s zamboni and left this grunt’s comment hanging.

        Was Muller’s daughter ever a skeptic? Richard’s conflict of interest with his daughter should be explored. Let the entrails determine.
        =========================

      • Mosher —

        Two points, then I will leave this alone and let the public and the CliSci community come to their own conclusions:

        1. Nobody cares if BEST paid or didn’t pay SciTechnol to publish the paper. It is the nature of the journal that is in question. Their business model is and has always been “author-pays”. To stubbornly deny this fact — in other words, to tell an untruth — is silly, as anyone can check with the journal and find out what kind of journal it is. *I* too would have waived fees for the BEST paper if I had been the editor. What an opportunity for them to get a real jump-start from such an important paper. In fact, I would have published almost anything, including a dinner menu, with your author list — regardless of its scientific value – I wouldn’t have cared at all.

        2. NO ONE, and I include you and the BEST team, can really believe the paper received the peer-review is deserved or the peer-review it needed at GIGS — deserved and needed if it is to fulfill the purpose of the BEST project to put the contemporary surface temperature record controversy to rest.

        Thus, all your efforts, and the trust placed in your project, and the funds, and the faith of your esteemed colleagues in the Climate Science field, have all been utterly wasted. Your failed your primary purpose and duty to settle the controversy by doing it right. Your pride and haste has led you to add yet another log to the controversy fire, nothing settled, nothing done..

      • IMHO, criticizing the thermometer record since 1850 is the least significant of the skeptic arguments. Criticizing the hockey stick is a little more relevant because the evidence that the planet is, on the average warmer now than during the MWP is thin but again not critical.

        To me, the fundamental skeptic position is that the climate is stable tending toward cooling and massive glaciation. There is no precedent for a little warming causing runaway going back to the prior interglacial which seems to be generally accepted as much measurably warmer then this interglacial currently is with significantly higher sea levels. The temperature ultimately stabilized and started declining to the next glacial period.

        The idea that a little warming attributed to additional CO2 in the atmosphere will lead to runaway warming and the melting of all of the world’s glaciers does not pass the common sense test. In order to carry the argument that warming has positive feedback, the alarmists have to answer why did the Eemian interglacial end. Why did the Holocene, Minoan, Roman and Medieval warm periods end. If CO2 is such a powerful climate driver, how did the planet cool when CO2 was 5000 PPM or higher?

        I believe skeptics are like this guy:
        http://www.oregonlive.com/opinion/index.ssf/2013/01/the_changing_climate_of_climat.html. I love this quote:

        Reading the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences is much like reading Pravda during the Cold War: You do not look for beliefs, but for hints of change. In a recent paper (not peer-reviewed), newly elected members touted their belief that they had found the “fingerprint” of greenhouse gases. Yet they admitted to a considerable discrepancy with observations, a fatal flaw in a rational world. And buried deeply in the last table of supplementary information was the evidence that their climate simulations are failing badly.

      • What he said in private conversation is hardly convincing. Even fragments of public pronouncements are not definitive. How about the chapter on Global Warming from Muller’s own text book as presented on his web site “Muller & Associates” http://mullerandassociates.com/articles/pffp-10-climate.htm This would be definitive. Now you have something to argue over.

    • let me see if I can clarify this.

      in order to be a converted skeptic one must change ones views on the following issue:The warming is due to humans.

      Skeptics say no. Consensus says yes.

      But the claim ‘the warming is due to humans has TWO claims

      It is warming AND this warming is due to humans. TWO claims.

      Muller was skeptic. He was a skeptic because he did not assent to
      “it is warming” half of this skeptical claim.The issue of attribution was not on the table and logically could not be on the table since the issue of whether it was warming or not was not settled.

      it is impossible for Muller to have believed that the warming he doubted was caused by humans. How would that work. “I doubt whether it is warming, but this doubtful record is explained by human action” makes no sense.
      he doubted the record and so could have no opinion on what the cause of this dubious warming was.

      A skeptic can doubt the warming. A skeptic can believe in the warming and doubt the cause.

      A believer cannot doubt the warming and believe the cause.

      Its pretty simple that Muller went from skeptic ( doubt the warming ) to
      believer.

      • Lol!

        All I can say, steven, is good luck. And I feel your pain.

      • Matthew R Marler

        Steven Mosher: A believer cannot doubt the warming and believe the cause.

        What do you call someone who believes in the CO2 radiative/absorptive mechanism but who asserts that the size of the effect has been exaggerated? Say, someone who asserts that solar effects and the effects of aerosols, land use changes (deforestation and urban buildup) and others have been underestimated? Those are generally accepted as skeptics, and some have even been labeled “deniers”.

      • Chief Hydrologist

        There is of curse the question o attribution. The purely scientific view is that this is at most 0.1 degrees/decade from greenhouse gases. If real – the decadal variability in TOA radiant flux has significant implications – to do with low frequency variability – for attribution. (IPCC s 3.4.4.1)

        A sceptic is defined as someone who departs from an acceptable range of climate narrative. Including suggesting that anthopogenic warming is barely noticable. Very Marcusian.

        I feel your pain Joshua – oh wait – no I don’t.

      • thisisnotgoodtogo

        Muller might have been better described as cynical rather than skeptical, wrt Mann’s results.

      • “Muller might have been better described as cynical rather than skeptical, wrt Mann’s results.”

        Most hilarious attempt yet!

      • Muller might better have been described as ambitious wrt Mann’s result. And oh, the steps he’s taken.
        =================

      • Muller doubted it was warming? He was more skeptical than I then. Wonder why he thought the models were very likely right.

        4:35

      • At issue was whether Muller was a skeptic prior to his BEST experience which produced a conversion. But on http://www.skepticalscience.com/skeptic_Richard_Muller.htm we see quotes prior to the BEST experience such as “The issues that there is strong agreement on is that we have seen global warming over the past 100 years. An issue, though, that isn’t really settled yet is how much of that is due to humans? And that’s a subject that really can use more investigation.” 11 April 2011. According to this quote, Muller believed that warming was real, but he was not sure of the human contribution. A skeptic might accept warming, but would doubt that humans contributed to it by CO2 emissions.

        In http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U5m6KzDnv7k , Muller states at about 1:40 into the presentation that we’re experiencing “global warming” (which he connects to CO2 emitted by humans). This presentation appears to be from 2010.

        There are several more examples that Muller was a skeptic.

      • There are several more examples that Muller was NOT a skeptic.

        TYPO

      • Phillip –

        I’m confused. You say this:

        According to this quote, Muller believed that warming was real, but he was not sure of the human contribution.

        And then you say this:

        There are several more examples that Muller was NOT a skeptic.

        Are you saying that in believing that warming is real, but not being sure about human contribution, is not consistent with being a “skeptic?”

      • I rather think that Muller never had a road to Damascus experience, only a rhetorical one on the degree of attribution we should place on human activity.

      • I think it’s more clear if understand that skeptic is equal to heretic.

        So, Muller was heretic.
        A heretic is largely about who you associate with.
        So anyone that posts here could considered a heretic- it does
        not matter what you may or may not think is the truth.
        And a Skeptic is just a characteristic associated by science
        or agnosticism.
        The only way to diminish the chance of not being made into a heretic
        is to be in good standing with the church- or be big donor to the church.
        But even Al Gore by selling this network had some risks of being seen
        as a heretic

      • Joshua,

        There many varieties of skeptics, but none of them are uncertain about the human contribution. Some think the human contribution is zero or essentially zero; some think it is non-zero, but nothing much and not to be alarmed about and just about all of them think climate models are worthless for decade long predictions. If you view the youtube link I gave, you’ll see Muller accepts climate model long rang predictions.

        He isn’t a skeptic that was converted by BEST.

      • let me see if I can clarify this.

        Well, before you do that, perhaps you could clarify this (my bold):

        Let me be clear. My own reading of the literature and study of paleoclimate suggests strongly that carbon dioxide from burning of fossil fuels will prove to be the greatest pollutant of human history. It is likely to have severe and detrimental effects on global climate. [Richard Muller, December 2003]

        Perhaps in your books, Mosh, these are the words of an undeniable “skeptic”. But not in mine.

        Btw, any idea why Muller perpetually chooses not to engage with his critics here (or on any other blog of which I’m aware)?

        Oh, let me guess … he’s a firm believer that if his ideas are to be refuted/disputed, it should be via the oh-so-nobl,e time-honoured institution known as “peer reviewed journals”. Muller’s vehicle of choice in his very own (once-upon-a-convenient-time) words, circa December 2003:

        It was unfortunate that many scientists endorsed the hockey stick before it could be subjected to the tedious review of time. Ironically, it appears that these scientists skipped the vetting precisely because the results were so important.

        [and]

        In most fields of science, researchers who express the most self-doubt and who understate their conclusions are the ones that are most respected. Scientists regard with disdain those who play their conclusions to the press. [emphasis added -hro]

        Mosh, do you have any evidence you can share of Muller’s “self-doubt” and “understatement” – or of his “reluctance” to “play [his] conclusions to the press”?

        No?! Didn’t think so.

      • Phillip –

        I have read many, many times,(here and at other blogs in the “skept-o-sphere” tha “skeptics” t (ironically, described by “skeptics” as being monolithic in belief) don’t question that ACO2 warms the climate, they only question how much.

        Anthony Watts wrote a post about how “most skeptics” don’t doubt that ACO2 warms the climate,they only question how much. Many of his “skeptical” readers wrote comments in complete agreement. Judith has many times described “skeptical” beliefs in exactly that fashion.

        You described Muller’s beliefs to be directly in line. As mosher has noted – Muller has also criticized extreme weather attribution and made other arguments characteristic of those who self-describe as “skeptics.

        There are a combination of factors here: the first is that there is no single definition of “skeptic.” The second is that people “skeptics” and “realists” alike selectively define the term to conveniently fit their arguments. The third is that Muller’s beliefs have changed over time, and he has made contradictory statements. The fourth is that what difference does it make which category people define arbitrarily to label Muller?

        And this:

        . Some think the human contribution is zero or essentially zero; some think it is non-zero, but nothing much and not to be alarmed about and just about all of them think climate models are worthless for decade long predictions.

        Is not consistent with what I have read many times. Many self-described “skeptics” say that the degree to which anthropogenically influenced climate change might be dangerous is too uncertain to merit policies (that they argue would be detrimental) – not that a lack of potential harm is ruled out, as you are describing the beliefs of “skeptics.” It is ironic that you are adding a monolithic attribute to the beliefs of “skeptics” which lies in direct contrast to easily obtainable evidence. Such is not a skeptical argument – it is a “skeptical” argument.

      • Joshua,
        You didn’t view my youtube reference and you didn’t see hro001’s comment just above. If you don’t want to pay attention to evidence then waste someone else’s time.

      • David Springer

        Steven Mosher | February 13, 2013 at 1:49 pm | Reply

        let me see if I can clarify this.

        “in order to be a converted skeptic one must change ones views on the following issue:The warming is due to humans. Skeptics say no. Consensus says yes.”

        Really? So if I say humans are responsible for some warming and that the warming is not causing any great harm then I’m in like Flint with the consensus?

        You say the stuipidest things Mosher.

      • moshe morphed into a Defender of the Truth. Paradoxically, I’ll still label him a skeptic. He’s seeking.
        ========

      • …It was unfortunate that many scientists endorsed the hockey stick before it could be subjected to the tedious review of time. Ironically, it appears that these scientists skipped the vetting precisely because the results were so important.

        Let me be clear. My own reading of the literature and study of paleoclimate suggests strongly that carbon dioxide from burning of fossil fuels will prove to be the greatest pollutant of human history. It is likely to have severe and detrimental effects on global climate. I would love to believe that the results of Mann et al. are correct, and that the last few years have been the warmest in a millennium.

        (emphasis mine) Love to believe? My own words make me shudder. They trigger my scientist’s instinct for caution. When a conclusion is attractive, I am tempted to lower my standards, to do shoddy work. But that is not the way to truth. When the conclusions are attractive, we must be extra cautious. – Richard Muller, 2003

      • Steven Mosher

        Your attempt at “clarifying this” misses the key point.

        You’ve got it ass-backward, when you write:

        in order to be a converted skeptic one must change ones views on the following issue:The warming is due to humans.

        Skeptics say no. Consensus says yes.

        so let me (as a skeptic) correct it for you.

        Supporters of the so-called “consensus view” of IPCC believe the warming is due to humans (specifically “most” of the warming since ~1950).

        “Skeptics” say: show me the evidence that this is so (Feynman).

        In order to be a converted skeptic one must change from the above position of scientific skepticism and become a believer that the warming is due to humans.

        Since there is no empirical scientific evidence to corroborate the hypothesis that the observed warming is due to humans, the converted skeptic must become a believer in this hypothesis for some other reason.

        In your case, it might be the beauty of the model simulations or of the theoretical physics supporting the AGW hypothesis.

        For others it might be more political or part of their job description.

        I cannot speak for the believers.

        I can only speak for the rational (or scientific) skeptics, like myself.

        My personal opinion is that Richard Muller never was a rational skeptic. He obviously never insisted on empirical scientific evidence to corroborate the hypothesis that humans were causing the warming before accepting this premise, because such empirical evidence does not exist. I think he has seen this issue as an opportunity to make a name for himself in this highly visible debate, help his daughter, etc..

        Issuing some skeptical-sounding (or controversial) statements (mostly on fringe issues rather than the key underlying question) has helped him stay in the limelight.

        And maybe he has wanted to show that a famous professor has moved from being a skeptic to being a believer, thereby giving credence to the hypothesis itself.

        But, hey, that’s just my personal opinion.

        Max

    • The alarmist definition of a “skeptic” is anyone who doesn’t buy their mantra, which they attribute to everything from stupidity to sexual perversion to rightwing politics (whatever that is, since the so-called “liberals” today have become the real right wing with their patently reactionary thinking).

      The honest, dictionary, scientific definition of “skeptic” is a person who does not accept statements as true or hypotheses as fact without appropriate levels of genuine, reverifiable evidence to support them. Of course no such evidence exists to support the alarmies’ claims and so they try to deflect attention from their ignorance and perverse motives and the weakness of their case – which is obvious even to them – by ad hominem attacks on skeptics. Their hypothesis dies a very quick death under even the most cursory scrutiny and reference to empirical fact, and their objective in their name-calling of skeptics is to divert attention from the flimsiness and frank absurdity of their arguments.

      Interesting, now that they have been confronted with the simple facts that (1) the climate has been getting colder again since 1998, and (2) that the overall trend since the peak warmth of the 1930s has been downward, short-term oscillations aside, despite 40 percent increase in CO2 since the 1940s and 10 percent increase since 1998 – now the alarmies are claiming that this cooling and the accompanying severe winters and record cold (140 below in Antarctica, an all-time record for Planet Earth since whenever) in places as far apart as Texas, Queensland and Moscow are all due to global warming.

      You might as well claim that water freezes into ice when you heat it. Sorry, alarmies, but being the dictionary-definition skeptic that I am, I don’t buy your doublethink.

      • “(1) the climate has been getting colder again since 1998″

        Lie

        “(2) that the overall trend since the peak warmth of the 1930s has been downward, short-term oscillations aside”

        Lie

      • lolwot

        Agree with you that the globally and annually averaged land and sea surface record shows warmer temperature today than in the 1930s, BUT

        The climate has not been warming since 1998 and has been getting colder since 2001.

        True.

        Max

    • This is all a massive distraction by Mosher – I suspect he is doing this because he knows someone will eventually acuse him of the same thing. I certainly well remember his attitude when he regularly posted at climateaudit.
      But regardless of the reason, I will posit that:
      A real skeptic is one who questions the methods and conclusions of a paper until tney are satisfied that either it is significant, or it’s garbage.
      A fake skeptic is one who takes what appears to be a skeptical position, then “folds” in order to discredit the arguments of real skeptics.
      Thus, I believe Mosher is a skeptic that has been convinced, and Judith merely accepted consensus until prompted to investigate, then found herself far from convinced.
      Please let us drop this distraction and get back to the real meat of the matter – is it right to deceive people into making choices you believe are best for them? IMO, the answer is slways no because your credibility on ALL issues is destroyed when it eventually comes out.

  9. The third reason should be obvious but often appears to escape the calculus of many campaigners and journalists. Telling people that their lasagne contains beef, when it actually contains horsemeat is just wrong.

    Some want to be lied to and some like to do the lying. For example, what is the liberal mind that causes the Left to invent new conventions and diminish science and logic to give sustenance to AGW alarmism? It’s the way the liberal mind works—i.e., sort of like a jury voting a guilty man innocent to see if the legal system really works the way it is supposed to work – much like liberal media can only understand freedom of the press exists by printing lies and not going missing. It was a cowardly enjoyment they took in trashing Bush because they knew in their black hearts that Bush believed in the right of the press. But, the press has no bravery when it comes to confronting socialism.

  10. Marlowe Johnson

    “The key public issue re climate change skepticism is the attribution of 20th century change to humans.”

    I didn’t know you were the skeptic-decider-in-chief Judith. I would have thought that the key issue is how much our activities are likely to change the climate in the future and whether or not that is something to be concerned about. but hey what do I know? Mosher’s question is a good one. What are the ‘real’ skeptic arguments and how do you differentiate them from the fake skeptic arguments?

    • She’s been democratically elected.
      =====================

    • “What are the ‘real’ skeptic arguments and how do you differentiate them from the fake skeptic arguments?”

      MJ,

      If you actually knew how the climate works, you wouldn’t need to ask this question. But you don’t, so you are just another Ignorant Warmer among the many Ignorant Warmers.

      Andrew

    • MJ,

      You are picking nits with regard to “the key issue”. And besides, isn’t “the attribution of 20th century change to humans” the same as “how much our activities are likely to change the climate”? And don’t both incorporate “climate sensitivity to CO2″?

      PS – Mosher has lots of good stuff. However his question above isn’t some of it. It’s a BS question which seems to indicate someone pissed in his bowl of cornflakes this morning. As my nephews and nieces would say – “Steven is pulling an Uncle Tim.” (He’s grouchy this morning.)

      • Marlowe Johnson

        tim, not quite. the two questions are connected but separate. climate sensitivity does factor into both, but the latter also hinges upon what you think a BAU emissions trajectory looks like and what the environmental and socioeconomic impacts are likely to be. so for example, harry-coal-bot might accept that climate sensitivity is ~2.5-3C but then argue that the bau emission trajectory is of no concern (WG III skeptic) and/or that the impacts in the future will be negligible (WG II skeptic).

    • Marlowe Johnson | February 13, 2013 at 10:08 am asked: ” What are the ‘real’ skeptic arguments and how do you differentiate them from the fake skeptic arguments?”

      1]real Skeptic knows that: 300-400ppm of CO2 cannot prevent oxygen & nitrogen 998999ppm from regulating the overall global temp, to be always the same!!! B] real skeptic would never ever believe that: because in some part of England/ or Colorado canyon has imprints of warmer / colder, or wetter / dryer = as a proof that: the WHOLE PLANET was carbon-copy warmer / colder… in other words: any person believing in ”proxy ”GLOBAL” temperature records”; is called a ”Fake Skeptic”

      real skeptic knows that; climatic changes are constant, and don’t need any bloody phony global warmings / coolings, for the climate to keep changing. BECAUSE WATER h2o REGULATES / CHANGES THE CLIMATE, NOT co2!!!

      2] oxygen & Nitrogen are regulating ”overall” temp in the troposphere to be ALWAYS the same! b] if any part of the planet gets warmer than normal; that can only last for more than few hours is; if other part / parts of the planet are gone colder – that’s what the laws of physics say – anybody avoiding the appropriate laws of physics, is a fake Warmist, or a fake Skeptic. All proven, beyond any reasonable doubt!!!

  11. This is the agony for a fine technocrat such as Pielke Fils. The lying has so corrupted the structure as to compromise its integrity as a vehicle. Perhaps the construction, the vehicle, insofar as crafted by man rather than nature, is inevitably delicate.

    And he can see that the lying has dashed the egg from the wall.
    ======================

  12. Judith Curry wrote …
    “Extreme events are used as focusing events to alarm people and stimulate action on climate change, playing on their fears, losses and feeling of impotence in the face of say an event like Hurricane Sandy”

    President Obama said …
    “We can choose to believe that Superstorm Sandy, and the most severe drought in decades, and the worst wildfires some states have ever seen were all just a freak coincidence. Or we can choose to believe in the overwhelming judgment of science – and act before it’s too late.”

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/business/text-of-obamas-state-of-the-union-address/2013/02/12/9d6e9bea-7587-11e2-9889-60bfcbb02149_story_3.html

    Horsemeat. Pure horsemeat.

    • We’re not talking about politicians, from them you can expect nothing but horsemeat.
      The problem is when scientists mix horsemeat in their work.

      • jake,

        It isn’t the meat part of the horse one can expect from politicians.

      • It is not just the politicians. During the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative stakeholder conference call on Monday the same extreme weather event justification was used by regulatory agency staff to support the plan to lower the cap to a level that will force real reductions. Also see the recent EPA Climate adaptation document for similar justification. Of course you can argue that regulatory staff personnel are political operatives.

    • Yup – except I’d say it’s from a part of the horse other than its skeletal muscle. I say to the alarmies, Let’s see proof of this “overwhelming judgment.” There is simple proof that it ain’t – just Google the Petition Project and see the names and credentials of 31,000+ degreed practicing scientists who say global warming ain’t so. And how about the thousands more that haven’t spoken up out of fear for their jobs at academic institutions tainted by this madness? I’ll just bet that a huge majority of scientists – a huge multiple of those who’ve sold their souls to leftist politics – DO NOT accept the AGW hypothesis.

      And then there is the OVERWHELMING PROOF that man’s activities DO NOT have any discernible effect on climate. Man’s activities are an infinitesimal fraction of CO2 activity, and CO2 is an infinitesimal factor in climate change – mathematically, man is an infinitesimal of an infinitesimal, mathematically one over infinity squared. Q.E.D.

      Amazing the hubris and impertinence of people who think they can control climate by controlling the tiniest fraction of the tiniest factor in climate change. Who do they think they are, God? (BTW – Don’t throw that religious right bullgarbage at me – I’m an atheist and my politics are basically liberal, though they are the true liberalism of the early 1960s, not those of today’s reactionaries who call themselves “liberals.”)

  13. The climate change burger packed full of noble cause corruption.

  14. Judith
    Maybe we could disaggregate the horsemeat from the lasagna by posing this question first:

    Are extreme weather events increasing?

    At first glance, it certainly seems that heat waves are increasing. There is reasonable direct evidence that precipitation patterns are tending to become more intense, as predicted, though the jury is still out on flooding. Monsoons appear to be becoming more intense. The evidence suggests that droughts are shifting around, but it is not clear that they are becoming more common.

    Hurricanes are controversial, with the trend numbers for all hurricanes falling, but those for more intense hurricanes rising. The persistence of the AMO is expected to increase Atlantic hurricanes.

    Munich Re, an insurance company, has a report that finds increasing incidence of several other events, but unfortunately it is behind a paywall.

    I have collected a few reviews of extreme events here: http://greenerblog.blogspot.co.uk/2013/01/are-extreme-weather-events-increasing.html

    If it is indeed the case that we can detect increases in extreme weather events,
    it is rather surprising and depressing, as we have only so far experienced about 0.7C of actual warming from AGW, so if there is an appreciable weather effect now, further warming is going to produce some pretty uncomfortable effects. In particular, the 2C increase which is in the probable part of the range accepted by lukewarmers cannot be viewed as a trivial change.

    • On his blog, docrichard writes “It seems that although trends are not completely unequivocal, extreme weather events are becoming more frequent, consistent with global warming theory.”

      Here we find the good old weazel word “consistent”. The problem the warmists have is, as I noted in my previous post, that the crucial empirical data to prove that CAGW is true is missing; it does not exist. So the warmists resort to all sorts of subterfuges to try and maintain that CAGW has a scientific basis. They change the title from “global warming” to “climate change” to “global weirding”. and who knows what else.

      But the fundamental issue remains. Does adding CO2 to the atmosphere from current levesl, actually cause global temperatures to rise? No-one can prove this. So people like docrichard propose all sorts of red herrings to confuse the issue. This one is about the frequesncy of extreme weather events. The fact that something or other is “consistent” with CAGW is not a proper scientific argument. Extreme weather events are also consistent with sorts of other possibilities; e.g. that the warming observed is completely natural in origin, and nothing to do with adding CO2 to the atmosphere.

      So, I dont buy docrichard’s argument at all. It is just another red herring.

      • docrich appears to have no apprehension of docpielkefils’ analysis of weather extremes. He’ll learn.
        ====================

      • Jim Cripwell, here I think the issue is more whether the facts are right, than whether they are consistent with the hypothesis.

      • what Kim said

      • BillC you write “Jim Cripwell, here I think the issue is more whether the facts are right, than whether they are consistent with the hypothesis.”

        I agree. However, my physics is not good enough to challenge the facts; even though I think docrichard is wrong. But I can challenge whether consistency is a scientific argument.

      • Actually, Jim, as I said above, it’s very easy to prove that CO2 DOES NOT affect climate. Just look at the record – zero correlation between CO2 in the atmosphere and changes in climate over the whole of recorded history..

      • Well, Chad, regard ‘the last quarter of the last century’ and the correlation of CO2 rise and temperature rise. Perhaps the greatest illustration yet of the ‘Post Hoc, Ergo Propter Hoc’ logical fallacy.

        Holes to drive trucks through,
        Fallacies are all lacy.
        Jumped up lace curtains.
        ============

      • Chad, you write “Actually, Jim, as I said above, it’s very easy to prove that CO2 DOES NOT affect climate.”

        I agree completely. docrichard, whoever he is (he seems to be afraid to use his real name), is one of those people who annoy me. He seems to know a lot more about science, physcis and climate than I do, but he comes across as a “know it all”; he is right, and all we other lesser mortals are worng. I am trying to challenge him on an issue where I feel I know as much as he does; but he seems to be reluctant to respond.

      • He might as well be a drone bot, launched to spread yesterday’s alarmist memes over the countryside. Remember, repetition is key.
        ===================

    • docrichard

      No.

      There is no empirical evidence that the incidence or severity of “extreme weather events” as defined by IPCC in AR4 are increasing.

      There is, of course, also no evidence that these events are increasing due to human activity.

      IPCC is apparently backing off from the AR4 pronouncements, which were based on “expert opinion rather than formal attribution studies”.

      It’s all hokum, doc. Somebody is trying to bamboozle us.

      Max

      • Max,

        There is. I gave you some links to a paper and articles written by none other than Dr Judith Curry herself.

    • Given that Earth’s climate trajectory spans millions of years, are you seriously suggesting that recent weather events are linked in any way to human activity? If you are, citations please.

      The amount of temperature changes that you allude to AGW range from 0.7degC to 2degC would surely be swamped by natural variability.

      Unfortunately, I can’t give you a citation because climate science have chosen not to attempt to estimate its extent but persist in claiming that it has measured the extent of human influence.

  15. The chickens are coming home to roost. The whole edifice of CAGW is collapsing. The Pielke piece is just one example of what is happening. Another is the recent post of WUWT by Alec Rawls. http://wattsupwiththat.com/2013/02/12/uv-shift-in-the-leaked-ipcc-report-more-inversion-of-the-scientific-method/

    The fundamental issue to me is really quite simple. In their first 4 reports, the IPCC grossly exaggerated the certainty with which they stated their conclusions. CAGW is a perfectly reasonable hypothesis, but that is all it is; just a hypothesis. The warmists have never been able to complete the last stage of any proper scientific study, and that is to provide the hard, measured empirical data that proves that when you add CO2 to the atmosphere from current levels, it causes global temperatures to rise. Without this crucial empirical data, there is no scientific proof that CAGW is true.

    So what has happened in the 5 years or so since the AR4 was written, is that there is now all sorts of empirical data that proves that the certainty with which the IPCC made it’s previous conclusions, is just plain wrong. The question is, how is the IPCC going to overcome this problem in the AR5? Do they neglect the science that proves the previous reports to be wrong? Or do they admit the empirical data into the discussion, and somehow try to weazel word their way out of the problem?

    Just how much mouse and horse meat will there be in the AR5?

    • Now here’s where science and real metrics will apply. We can measure the adulteration of the product by the sickness it causes.
      =========================================

    • Just how much mouse and horse meat will there be in the AR5?

      In light of so many developments and disclosures since 2007, one would expect to find considerable “remorsemeat”. But this is the IPCC we’re talking about. IOW, an almost dead horse that should long ago have been put out to pasture.

      So – considering the many advance disclosures, to date – I would not be surprised to find an abundance of recycled computer-assisted modelled pseudo-meat, which could just as easily have been produced by … three blind mice ;-)

      • They all ran after the farmer’s wife, she cut off their tales(smiley, here) with a carving knife.
        ==============

  16. Who’s to know if your soul will fade at all
    The one you sold to fool the world
    You lost your self-esteem along the way

  17. Horse meat and horse manure ….. there’s a lesson on there somewhere.

  18. Yes, where’s the beef?

  19. Excellent post!

  20. In addition to the eloquent mouse meat argument — “We really don’t want to eat a mouse meat sandwich in terms of climate change policy.” — there is another point raised by the Mouse Proxy paper — only after the failure of 150 drugs based on the mouse model did this one out-of-sync research group think to try and validate the model, the proxy, itself — to see if it really was capable, as a proxy or model, of producing research results that would translate appropriately to humans, for specific uses.

    From where I sit, I don’t see that this has been done with much of climate science. We see proxies of the past loosely associated with what we believe to have been the general climatic conditions of past centuries, but then find that these are used to provide *data* on the scale of tenths of a degree C. Where is the validation of this approach – not the rhetorical, logical justification, but the actual scientific validation?

    I think, though I am not a modeller or a climate scientist (an ethicist, maybe), we then see the proxies used to tune and then *validate* climate models? again on scales of change as small as tenths of a degree?

    Which Climate Science team is going to take up *this* challenge? and take the professional risks that Dr. Warren and his colleagues took on the mouse model?

  21. ‘It has to be wrong. I don’t know why it is wrong, but it has to be wrong.’

    Is this a specific quote from someone in climate science, or is it just a general impression from the climate science community?
    [There is something a bit similar to this statement in the intro of the strange comment by Hendry & Petris on Beenstock et al]

    • Placed in quotes, by a New York Times journalist, this bit from Davis may be charitably assigned a role as the mode of the reviewers responses. As BillC kindly notes above, we don’t actually have the reviewers comments.
      ==========================

    • Paul,

      The exact quote of the NY Times piece is, in full –>

      quote — Science and Nature said it was their policy not to comment on the fate of a rejected paper, or whether it had even been submitted to them. But, Ginger Pinholster of Science said, the journal accepts only about 7 percent of the nearly 13,000 papers submitted each year, so it is not uncommon for a paper to make the rounds.

      Still, Dr. Davis said, reviewers did not point out scientific errors. Instead, he said, “the most common response was, ‘It has to be wrong. I don’t know why it is wrong, but it has to be wrong.’ ” — end quote

      So, I’m sure Dr. Davis is characterizing the type of reviewer comments, not quoting them.

      [[ http://www.nytimes.com/2013/02/12/science/testing-of-some-deadly-diseases-on-mice-mislead-report-says.html ]]

  22. Complaints of the current rainy weather, and concerns about horse meat, make this extract from 1230 AD seem rather apt. It was taken from ‘Civil and Ecclesiastical History of the City of Exeter’ by Jenkins -printed 1841.

    “The harvests having failed for two successive years, owing to continual rain which caused great overflowing of the river there was so great a scarcity of provisions that the people were obliged to eat horse flesh and to substitute bark of trees for bread.’

    It appears that eating horse meat has always been seen as second best in this country. It also usefully illustrates –in conjunction with a great deal of other documentation-that the extended periods of prodigious rainfall and devastating drought endured in past centuries puts our current rather benign climate into a better historical perspective. There is no need to accept substitutes under false pretences
    tonyb

    • +1 Tony. I always appreciate your historical stance. The chicken littles of this world have poor memories and no historical context to draw from.

    • Isn’t less that horse meat is second best, more that horses were extremely valuable? The story of cavalrymen being instructed to “look after that horse: it’s more valuable than you” aren’t apocryphal. My late father-out-law was explicitly given that advice.

  23. I find it odd that the most obvious link between climate change and the horse meat scandal has been ignored in favour of some contrived attack on the ipcc.

    The obvious link I am talking about is of course the public perception of risk.

    Seems the public don’t require 95% scientific certainty of CAMC (catastrophic anthropogenic meat contamination before demanding political action, regulation, to mitigate the risk. Instead the public are demanding the CAMC skeptics prove the meat is safe. Fancy that.

    Lessons to be learned here but I am sure climate skeptics will let such inconvenient similarities fly over their heads.

    Perhaps with more help from Judith and wuwt to frame climate skeptics as being on the public side of the issue. Even though we all know skeptics are better aligned with the meat industry, cost cutting, minimal regulation and a care-not approach to risk. The notion of “It’s still meat” is the kind of thing skeptics would come up with to criticize “meat alarmism”.

    • Your grapes aren’t so sour as fetid.
      ===============

    • lolwot

      “Public perception of risk”?

      It appears that the horse meat was coming from some crooked producers in recent EU member, Romania.

      While a good part of the public (in Anglo-Saxon countries, at least) finds eating horse meat revolting, the “risk” associated with eating horse meat is nil; the risk from eating mouse meat or meat from crooked producers might be a bit higher.

      But, then again, it’s like the “risk” from emitting CO2. That’s also nil.

      (As we see – we are emitting it by the gigaton and nobody is being hurt as a result).

      Max

      • True to form you deny the risk from contamination of the food chain.

      • lolwot

        Your reading (or comprehension?) skills remain atrocious.

        I wrote that “the “risk” associated with eating horse meat is nil; the risk from eating mouse meat or meat from crooked producers might be a bit higher.

        In response, you write, “True to form you deny the risk from contamination of the food chain”

        Duh!

        Max

        .

    • Matthew R Marler

      lolwot: The obvious link I am talking about is of course the public perception of risk.

      No. It is the public reaction to having been lied to, once they find out about it. Once people learn that a previously trusted person is willing to lie for a cause, they no longer believe that person.

    • lolwot,

      People don’t care about percentages or probabilities when it comes to horsemeat in a product labelled beef lasagne. If it says beef on the label, they expect beef in the product.

      Just as when people say “we are experiencing extreme weather and its a result of climate change.” A late season hurricane, a record snow storm, a drought, yep that’s pretty “extreme”. I mean we don’t see that every day. So if they are saying it’s climate change, whom am I to doubt? The average person can’t tell you what the weather was like a year ago. People just don’t remember the weather, so it is easy to say something is unusual, just as you can call something beef lasagne, even if it contains horsemeat. Saying so doesn’t make it so. The extreme weather meme is exactly that.

    • Yeah, the cost of inspecting meat for to determine whether it’s Mr. Ed is almost identical to the cost of decarbonizing the economy. Therefore the amount of proof required to adopt either policy should be the same.

      This is why we conservatives try so hard to keep progressives from gaining control of the economy.

      • A horse is a horse, of course, of course,
        And no one should lie to a horse, of course.
        ========================

      • That is, of course,
        unless the horse,
        thinks CAGW is dead.

      • Now, Barney, it’s stinkin’ up the stall, but it’s much too spastic to be dead.
        =====================

      • Gary, don’t call them progressives – they’re reactionaries. They want to go back to the socialist dream as exemplified by the nomenklatura class in the Soviet Union – 9,000 people who controlled 95 perecent of the wealth of a country of 300 million (0.003 percent – makes Occupy’s 1 percent look pretty good, doesn’t it? that uiis, you believe even that bit of horse mucus). THAT is the model of so-called “progressive” aka REACTIO(NARY income redistribution – takes us right back to the Middle Ages when the nomenklatura of that day and age (the nobility) took everything and the rest of the world suffered in poverty.. Looks like Al Gore is well on his way to nomenklatura status – along with all the other alarmies getting rich off government “research” grants.

      • The spasms are tetanic. Snakes Alive!
        ==================

  24. If Steven Mosher had any convincing evidence of AGW he would be presenting that, rather than arguing meanings of words -which is not very convincing as far as presenting science goes.

    Andrew

    • No you are just trying to distract from a glaring flaw in the climate skeptic narrative. The more we discuss the basis for why skeptics say Richard muller was never a skeptic the more excuse making we see as it is revealed skeptics have no basis for the claim and are only pushing it to defend their tribe.

      And Judith has joined in!

      Quick Andrew try to change the subject!

      • I don’t care whether or not Muller was, is or never was a sceptic, or whether his work was peer-reviewed or what journal it appeared in, I care only whether it makes a worthwhile contribution to resolution or clarification of the CAGW/climate change. And as I can’t assess that, I have no comments to make regarding the gentleman.

      • The debate over whether or not Muller was a “skeptic” uninteresting, IMO. It is clear that Muller has made contradictory statements and anyway, the definition of “skeptic” is ambiguous, selectively drawn, and ever-changing. That debate is basically meaningless.

        What is interesting is that “skeptics” feel a need to present ridiculous arguments to claim that Muller was never a “skeptic.”

        Why do people who self-identify as “skeptics” fail to apply basic skeptical scrutiny of their arguments?

        Interesting.

      • “Quick Andrew try to change the subject!”

        Really?
        Not to put too fine a point on it, the “subject” was the horsemeat story, the mouse model story and how that relates to climate change. Mosher managed to change it to what “skeptic” means, then had the temerity to complain that others were not answering his off-topic questions. And now you boldly accuse others of changing the subject?

        I took Mosher YEARS and a deep involvement with BEST to become convinced there was nothing wrong with the temperature record. Just like the rest of the BEST team, he appears to believe that even though the (unpublished) BEST paper is about temperature record reliability, this somehow shows CAUSES are indisputably anthropogenic. Colour me a skeptic then, because no matter the merits of the BEST case on temperature records, it says NOTHING about causes.

  25. Judith
    “The key public issue re climate change skepticism is the attribution of 20th century change to humans”

    No. The key issue re climate skepticism is that “endorsement of a laissez-faire conception of free-market economics predicts rejection of climate science”

    • That would only seem to be true if one somehow accepts the concept that there is a one world government on planet earth. In the real world that is not true.

    • Says the guy who rides around in those black helicopters.

  26. David Springer

    “So, what does the UK scandal involving horsemeat in lasagna have to do with climate change?”

    C’mon, we’re not stupid. Did you really have to ask?

    Horses are a carbon-neutral form of transportation. It environmentally unsound to eat what you could ride instead.

    But that’s not what SHE said.

    • Ha! Funny.

      But they aren’t you know. The buggers consume tons of hay and protein nuts over about half the year, all of which have to be produced using vast amounts of FFs. Sad but true…

    • David

      Horses are a carbon-neutral form of transportation.

      Not quite. They convert hay and oats to CO2 (plus the dreaded methane, 20 times as powerful as deadly CO2).

      Haven’t done a material balance and GH impact assessment, but the GH load per horsepower is very likely higher for a horse than for a 2012 Chevrolet.

      Care to run a quickie calculation?

      Max

      • American farms were highly productive before the introduction of motorized farming implements.

      • JCH

        Yeah. And they are even more productive now.

        So what?

        Max

      • JCH

        Wiki tells us:

        The steep rise in crop yields in the U.S. began in the 1940s.

        This is about the time when tractors began replacing mules and horses in a big way.

        World-wide, major crop yields increased by 2.4x from 1970 to 2010 while population grew by 1.7x over the same time period.

        One reason cited for this increase in agricultural productivity is the increased use of modern farm machinery.

        [Higher CO2 levels and very slightly warmer global temperatures may also have helped!]

        Max

      • On my family’s cornfields, dating from 1836, the first major improvement came with seed. They used seeds produced locally, usually from their own fields. This practice started to disappear in the years just prior to WW2 when companies started selling hybrid seed, which greatly improved yields. My grandfather continued to use mules until ~1951, and his yields were always among the best in the county. Even when he switched to a tractor. My Dad had to buy it for him. He never would have. We still have the tractor.

      • After your dad switched to the tractor, did the family eat muleburgers for the next few weeks ?

      • Increased productivity doesn’t mean there has to have been increased production. For instance if you can take an assembly line and redesign it to reduce the number of people required to run it yet produce the same number of parts, you have increased productivity but not production. Assuming all else remains equal.

      • Gramps was a muleskinner, so maybe?

  27. Climate alarmists are shrewd in that they have at last invested in the one thing that can’t run out, “peak”, or be strictly defined for accountability purposes: extreme weather. They use the same line as Jehovah’s Witnesses when they initiate a conversation. (In the Australian bush, the JWs are neighbours and we have to be nice.) The pitch always starts with “all these things that have been happening lately”, in reference to wars, weather etc. Extremes are a constant, so you’ve softened the punters up very nicely by finding safe common ground. You just have to bank on people being too dumb or too polite to observe that “all these things that have been happening lately” were happening last century…and the century before that.

    Gaia has never been anybody’s mummy. Not ever. The New Man at Year Zero is banking on our history fatigue and the victory of fresh sensation over the sense of cycle and continuity. If cyclone Mahina in 1899 can’t convince Australians and Galveston the following year can’t convince Americans, then it’s safe to say the JWs and climate alarmists will always have a market for “all these things that have been happening lately”.

  28. This was an exceptionally poor post by Pielke Jr. I have often found his argumentation valid and interesting, but this was really empty of content.

    Making parallels between every case that someone doesn’t like is not particularly revealing, certainly not when the issues have as little in common as these two cases have.

    • Something wrong happened somewhere in the world, ergo I am right and you are wrong (buy my books).

    • Peeka —

      Jr. is making an analogy. His point is that like adding horse meat to beef lasagna, adding the known falsehood “Global Warming causes Extreme Weather like Sandy” adulterates the whole scientific field — the scientific case being made for policy solutions.

      It may look like good economy to the lasagna maker — he saves money and meat protein is meat protein. But it is not BEEF. When some hotshot tests the lasagna, finds the horse meat, and publishes an expose in the NY Times and on FOX News, his reputation and his brand are ruined.

      Likewise, adulterating the solid science hard-won to date in Climate Science with the oh-so-compelling (but false) argument that “Global Warming caused this Extreme Weather” will and has backfired — the general public is only fooled for a little while — then they see the expose stories and realized they have been “fooled again”. It becomes harder and harder for the general public to accept even the solid facts in Climate Science — they think the whole lasagna is adulterated.

      Quite right, too.

    • Matthew R Marler

      Pekka Pirilä:Making parallels between every case that someone doesn’t like is not particularly revealing, certainly not when the issues have as little in common as these two cases have.

      What these issues have in common is lying to the public. That is hardly incidental to public policy debate.

      • What these issues have in common is lying to the public.

        Yes. Indeed. When Clinton said he hadn’t had sex with that woman, first think I thought?

        Climate Change.

        When Palin talked about “death panels”…first thing I thought?

        Climate Change.

        When Mark Sanford said he was hiking on the Appalachian Trial…first thing I thought?

        Climate Change!!!!!

      • not only that, I also thought it when he said he was hiking on the Appalachian Trail.

      • Josh,

        I’m calling BS on this one – When Mark Sanford said he was hiking on the Appalachian Trial…first thing I thought?

        Climate Change!!!!!

        The first thought of almost everyone was – lucky dog.

      • Joshua

        From your “the first thing I thought was: Climate Change!” post it appears to me that you may have a serious disorder.

        Let me do a quick test o see how serious this might be.

        Look at the attached picture.

        If “Climate Change!” is the first thing that comes to your mind, look for professional help from your psychiatric health provider.

        Max.

      • Matthew R Marler

        Joshua: When Clinton said he hadn’t had sex with that woman, first think I thought?

        The first “think” I thought was that he was lying. That you automatically associated lying with climate change suggests you have a particular association of “climate change” with lying. Did Clinton lose credibility?

        Your free associations of lying with climate change are peculiar.

    • Here is the basic argument that Judith finds so “profound” (no doubt, because it is an argument that she makes so often).

      “Someone did something in error. Hey, that’s just like climate scientists!!!!”

      It goes along with a battery of similar arguments.

      “Someone has character flaw. Hey, that’s just like climate scientists!!!!!”

      “Someone said something about what bad science looks like. Hey, that’s just like what climate scientists do.”

      “Some academic has a character flaw. Hey, that’s just like climate scientists!!!!”

      “The scientific “consensus” was once wrong about something. Hey, that’s just like climate science.”

      • Joshua, you’re beginning to get the joke. Litch har har.
        ======================

      • John Carpenter

        Well, I can see your point Joshua but… what I think, IMO, right or wrong is what JC finds ‘profound’ are examples where established consensus science where confindence is thought to be high and uncertainty low turn out to be maybe not so. Especially if there is resistance within the consensus community to admit there could be lower confidence and higher uncertainty for the consensus. It upsets the comfort zone for some and for others it is more like an ‘aha’ moment. I suspect for JC it is an ‘aha’ moment. Natually she relates this to what she experiences within her scientific community. I can totally relate to that. We should not discount learning from other peoples mistakes if it could be helpful to ourselves. Some people call that learning ‘best practices’.

      • Joshua, you’re beginning to get the joke.

        Ah, but my beloved kim, I’ve been chuckling about this kind of confirmation bias amongst “skeptics” for ages

      • John –

        what I think, IMO, right or wrong is what JC finds ‘profound’ are examples where established consensus science where confindence is thought to be high and uncertainty low turn out to be maybe not so.

        I guess. But to me it is banal. Commonplace. It is a necessary by-product of motivated reasoning, which is a bias that affects all of us. Even more than finding it “profound” perhaps once, or perhaps twice, what is confusing even more is that Judith seems to find such a common occurrence “profound” over and over.

        It is also just as banal, IMO, that Judith fails to try to scientifically approach the question of how often, relatively, confidence in established consensus science turns out to be misplaced. That habit of hers, also, is easily predicted by what we know about how people reason.

        What might start moving towards profundity would be if people on both sides of the debate stop slinging Jell-o long enough to begin controlling for their own biases.

      • Yuk, yuk!

        (Or is it “yuck”?)

      • John Carpenter

        Joshua, I don’t think your argument of banality is helping you here. If you accept the premise of her argument is commonplace, that is to say misplaced confidence in scientific consensus is a common thing…. banal… then isn’t it a bit profound (unusual) the current climate consensus position for many is: this consensus is not subject to the same typical kinds of misplaced confidence that is so common? It’s bucking the trend? Hmmmmm.

        “What might start moving towards profundity would be if people on both sides of the debate stop slinging Jell-o long enough to begin controlling for their own biases.”

        Doubtful we will control our bias. More likely we have to acknowledge our bias and not be afraid to express it when we know it is part of our reasoning. I want to believe x, but y appears likely. I am going look for evidence that supports x…my bias in action. If I don’t acknowledge this in my discussions about x vs y, then I am going to end up ‘flinging jello’. Conversely, those that believe y cannot move the discussion toward meaningful dialogue without acknowledging x either. Not all x arguments about the uncertainty of y are unfounded and perhaps the discussion should be moving from x and y to a possible z explanation. Y believers have to acknowledge their bias of supporting only evidence that excludes x. Again, the answer may not be x or y but z. Perhaps this is what you consider controlling your bias… I look at it as acknowledging it and working through it.

      • Joshua,
        So you think that the horsemeat ending up in lasagna labeled as beef was an ‘error’? Emails telling top climate scientist to delete stuff was an ‘error’? Just what passes for malfeasance at Alarmist Industries Amalgamated?

      • John –

        If you accept the premise of her argument is commonplace, that is to say misplaced confidence in scientific consensus is a common thing…. banal… then isn’t it a bit profound (unusual) the current climate consensus position for many is: this consensus is not subject to the same typical kinds of misplaced confidence that is so common? It’s bucking the trend? Hmmmmm.

        I don’t think it is unusual to find people on both sides of this debate employing facile arguments. We see it all the time in this debate and others. It is commonplace. It is banal.

        The basic question is whether or not there should be (generally) some inverse relationship between a degree of agreement on a scientific conclusion and misplaced confidence. I’d say that there is such an inverse relationship. The more agreement among highly trained experts, the more likely the validity of the argument. Does that mean that a largely shared opinion guarantees validity? Of course not. Does it mean that a particular consensus opinion might not be disproportionately influenced by bias? Of course not. These questions are obvious and banal.

        The fact that there have been exceptions – where despite widespread agreement confidence was misplaced – does not invalidate the basic principle that the more widespread the scientific agreement, the more likely the conclusion is valid.

        The fact that some assert a special bias in this case of consensus agreement does not make it so. That argument needs to be scientifically argued. It doesn’t work to use Judith’s “bullsh– meter.” It doesn’t work to go with Wags’ delusions of political conspiracies. Merely establishing “tribalism” among some climate scientists doesn’t work – as it isn’t a sufficient argument; we’re all subject to tribalism. The existence of tribalism does not invalidate the inverse rule I describe above because tribalism is always present, and we could certainly list far more occasions where the consensus opinion was correct than we can the occasions where the consensus opinion was incorrect. (And what is ironic here is that “skeptics” like Judith argue that “Sky-Dragons” are wrong, essentially on the basis of an “appeal to consensus.”)

        So here’s the problem. It is facile to argue that some instances where the consensus was incorrect proves that rather than the inverse relationship I describe above, in fact – as Judith implies with her arguments selectively highlighting invalid consensus viewpoints – that consensus opinion is disproportionately positively associated with misplaced confidence.

        Institutional bias is a reality, but the existence of an institution does not predict invalid science. That sort of argument reflects a binary mentality, most likely employed in the service of motivated reasoning.

      • John Carpenter

        Joshua,

        “The more agreement among highly trained experts, the more likely the validity of the argument.”

        At face value this inverse relationship is hard to disagree with and I am apt to agree with it however,

        “…we could certainly list far more occasions where the consensus opinion was correct than the occasions where the consensus opinion was incorrect.”

        This statement is a bit harder to accept IMO. My reasoning for this is theories on which consensus is drawn evolve over time. What was a correct theory at one time and endorsed as a consensus view changes as new information is learned. The theory changes to explain better observations and can render what was once considered correct, incorrect. I think this happens with great regularity in science from both a historical perspective and based on my own experience as someone who conducts research. So I think you might have a hard time scientifically arguing that statement is true because just about any example you produce will show an evolution of how the theory got to where it is today where the predecessor theories are now considered incorrect. In short, theories are not derived immediately as correct and then remain static as correct forever.

        Based on that reasoning, the first statement is not as obviously true as it appears. We have theories and we realize them as snap shots in time. Over time they will become incorrect despite the fact that at any given time your inverse relationship may appear to be true.

        So the question is, what kind of observations are needed to make a change in a theory? How is new information affecting the ‘correctness’ of a theory received by the consensus? This is where motivated reasoning rears its head. It seems obvious to me that if I have a stake in the consensus position of a theory and my work has contributed to support the ‘correctness’ of the theory… I am less likely to embrace new information that casts uncertainties on the ‘correctness’ of the theory. If I have been promoting y and neglecting x, perhaps I am blind to z.

        Based on the reasoning above, I do not see a facile argument where illustrating examples of misplaced consensus opinion in one scientific field is not relevant to possible misplaced consensus opinion in another field, more specifically in climate science. I doubt you believe current theories of how our climate behaves is completely correct and will not evolve any further. It doesn’t happen in other fields of science, it shouldn’t happen in climate science. What kind of x information is not getting attention that could change theory y to z? Isn’t this the crux of JC’s arguments? You really think this line of reasoning is a “skeptical” one as opposed to a skeptical one?

      • John Carpenter

        Correction

        “At face value this inverse relationship is hard to disagree with and I am apt to agree with it however,”

        Should read,

        ” At face value this inverse relation to misplaced consensus is hard to disagree with… Etc.”

      • John –

        I agree with much more of what you wrote then than I disagree with.

        Yes, pointing out to someone who claims that consensus is unerring or lockstep with truth or “proves” the veracity of a particular conclusion, that sometimes the consensus has been wrong, is not banal. I’m not sure I’d go with “profound,” but it is important.

        But pointing it out over and over, and going further to imply that prevalence of expert opinion is not associated with validity at all, and selectively noting errors in consensus without grounding that reality in the context of how often we all assume that consensus is correct (and are correct in doing so), adds up to weak (and I would say banal) rhetorical gamesmanship.

      • John Carpenter

        Joshua,

        “I agree with much more of what you wrote then than I disagree with.

        Thank you. Let me just add, I don’t think an example such as Muller’s ‘faux’ skepticism that JC offered up was a good one or supported her argument very well. I would have to put that in the ‘facile’ argument box. I also agree that much of what is passsed as skeptical here is really “skeptical” without going into details. In that regard, I have come around to agreeing much more with what you say recently than what you say that I dont agree with.

      • Matthew R Marler

        Joshua: “Someone has character flaw. Hey, that’s just like climate scientists!!!!!”

        I think that you are catching on: Climate scientists have lots of flaws and make lots of errors. They’ll have more credibility in the long run if they work to ameliorate their flaws and correct their errors.

    • Pekka, a shocking blind spot for the content, the ethics. Are you content to tout an adulterated product?
      ==================

    • Pekka Pirilä

      There is a valid argument in Pielke’s essay, namely that “the end does NOT justify the means”.

      As the lead post points out:

      Now we get to the profound part of RP Jr’s post:

      What does it matter if people wrongly associate recent extreme events and disaster costs with climate change? Responding to it is a good thing, and if people support mitigation action for the wrong reasons, so what?

      There are three objections here.

      First, an argument that mitigation of greenhouse gases makes sense in terms of decreasing the future costs of extreme events is not a strong one: Even under the assumptions of IPCC, Stern Review, etc. the future costs of extreme events under the most aggressive scenarios of climate change actually decrease as a proportion of GDP.

      The second objection is that the discovery of a little horsemeat in lasagne ruins the entire product. You might cite the tasty (and safe) noodles and tomato sauce, but the presence of horsemeat in the product defeats your argument. The science is just not there to connect increasing costs of disasters to climate change, much less individual phenomena like drought, floods and storms. It is horsemeat — and don’t put it into your product lest you compromise the whole package.

      The third reason should be obvious but often appears to escape the calculus of many campaigners and journalists. Telling people that their lasagne contains beef, when it actually contains horsemeat is just wrong.

      Sorry, Pekka, this one’s not so much about “science” as it is about “ethics”.

      And Pielke is 100% correct.

      Max

    • Oh? So you missed the point that lying to people – even for their own good – is counter-productive? That lying is always wrong? That’s the point Pekka – I don’t know how you missed it – I don’t know how anyone missed it.

      • A generic observation like that, doesn’t add anything to the understanding. Adding one more example to the infinite list of real and less real cases of dishonesty is pointless. Some people welcome every opportunity to remind us of climategate. Their whole thinking seems to just make circles around supposed faults of “the gang of IPCC”.

        This blog starts to lose interest, if every discussion turns soon to the repetition of the same almost empty arguments.

      • Neil Fisher

        Another guy that missed that distinction is Peter Gleick.

        (But that’s another story).

        Max

        PS My experience with Pekka is that, unlike Gleick, Pekka is very knowledgeable and honest himself, but he tends to give the benefit of the doubt to other “consensus” believers that may not be quite so honest as he is and occasionally attacks a “non-believer” as “dishonest”, apparently principally because this person disagrees with him.

  29. thisisnotgoodtogo

    Mosher,
    Until you can bring me a cup o’ skepticism, let’s just say that skepticism is what skeptics do.

    You remember that don’t you?
    “Brrrrriiiinnng me a cup of science. Science is what scientists do”

    • thisisnotgoodtogo

      Oh,tingto, you mean that Hansen making out that McIntyre is nuts when McIntyre found the NASA error, that is Science.
      Well, yes, because Hansen is a scientist, and that is what he did.
      Mosher nails it.

    • Skepticism is a both a behavior and a position.
      unfool yourself

      • Belief is both a behavior and a position, Go ahead, fool yourself.

      • Skepticism is only a position insofar as you have not convinced the skeptic of your position. Skeptics make better lovers ’cause they are open to the possibility of other positions while you just continue to beat off on the same dead horsemeat.

      • thisisnotgoodtogo

        Mosher couldn’t beat his meat in argument

      • thisisnotgoodtogo

        Now Mosher is decorating the landscape.
        Skepticism is a position.

      • John Carpenter

        “Now Mosher is decorating the landscape.
        Skepticism is a position.”

        tingtg,

        Are you suggesting skepticism is not a position? That would seem odd. If you are skeptical about an idea or conclusion, don’t you thereby hold a different position than the one offered? Isn’t being skeptical the same as holding alternative positions (ideas)?

  30. The whole thing is a scam, there is no AGW Greenhouse Effect as it was created entirely from fake fisics.

    There is nothing to be sceptical about, it’s all junk.

    • Yes, and most of all the idea of a consensus is junk – just another of the many lies told by the alarmies.

  31. Flogging dead horses with bad analogies, anyone?

    Judith Curry wrote:

    In their dealing with the climategate issue, climate scientists and the institutions that support climate science, never seemed to realize how a little contamination by horsemeat can ‘compromise the whole package’ in terms of public perceptions.

    Yes indeed – Another finger-pointing, institution-spanning, “tut-tut” from Judith Curry, climate scientist, advocate for the integrity of science, and marketing expert.

    Except – That is not science or skepticism – Nothing here but tired excuses for identity-politics and blog-posturing.

    Does anyone really expect to improve the public perception of science by flinging rhetorical horse-poo at those scientists and institutions that are conveniently assumed to be morally inferior to the infallible (and eloquent!) True Skeptics such as Profound Pielke?

    Curried red meat (whatever slouching beast it came from) is very tasty – but it’s always over-cooked.

    • Marlowe Johnson

      well said Heinrich. well said.

    • Pielke’s comments were as ‘profound’ as an observation that the sun rises in the west.

      • Michael

        Recognizing how profound a statement is requires an ability to think logically.

        For those who appear impaired in this respect, I’d recommend reading it over a few times slowly, with a completely open mind.

        Maybe the light will come on (and not from a “sun rising in the west”).

        Max

      • Max finds that his perception of others’ profundity reflects well on him.

        Give yourself another pat on the back Max.

      • Michael finds that his perception of Pielke’s profundity reflects well on him.

      • what’s that saying about imitation?……

      • Max:

        Recognizing how profound a statement is requires an ability to think logically.

        Recognizing how VALID a statement is requires an ability to think logically.

        Profundity requires more than logic – a significant correspondence with matters-of-fact.

        E.g. “the sun rises in the west” is a perfectly coherent statement – but it is not profound because it is blatantly false.

        Blog-scientists always seem to have a great difficulty distinguishing truth from validity.

    • This tribe pokes the dying embers.
      ========

    • Nice nod to Yeats, Heinrich.

  32. Thanks Jim and manacker for comments.
    Jim, when a medic gives an opinion in a court of law, she may say “the wounds are consistent with causation by a sharp blade”. It is a neutral, non prejudicial way of putting things. The pattern of wounds does not prove that the knife labelled Exhibit A caused them. That is a matter for judgment. So we talk of consistency or inconsistency. That’s all.

    Intense precipitation events are consistent with global warming, since warmer air can hold more water vapour. I recall (but cannot recall the source) that cumulonimbus clouds were found to be more common in warmer conditions, again consistent with theory.

    Manacker, I am tickled that you quote IPCC SREX to back your view. AR4 was a while ago, and also, they were looking at whether events were attributable to AGW. I specifically am not looking at attribution, just at the question of whether or not extreme weather events are increasing. I am aware (Kim) that Pielke jr finds negative results, and my blog post points to them. I would be astounded if contrarians had not found some contrary evidence, and I am sure much more will come up. That is the way with science. Nevertheless, the few pieces that I was able to come up with as a mere non-climatologist in a few hours does indicate that there is something happening to the weather which goes beyond mere journalistic fashion. And I repeat, if we are indeed seeing this kind of extreme weather at 0.7C increase, the case for insouciant handwavings about how trivial a 2C rise would be is somewhat undermined.

    • docrichard, I’m sure you’re aware that just because warmer air can hold more water vapour doesn’t mean that it does.
      And I’m also sure you’re aware that most of the ‘extreme’ rainfall we’ve experienced over the past few months in the UK has occurred during a relatively cool summer, and going into autumn and winter, during which, by definition, the air temperature is below the annual average.

    • docrichard, you write “Intense precipitation events are consistent with global warming, since warmer air can hold more water vapour. ”

      As long as “global warming” does not mean CAGW, I will not dispute your statement. But what has caused the earth to warm? Empirical data shows that the earth has been warming since the LIA, and for most of the time, this warming could not have been caused by mankind pumping CO2 into the atmosphere.

      It is true that extreme weather events are consisitent with global warming caused by CAGW. It is also true that extreme weather events are consistent with global warming caused by natural events. So what? The evidence of extreme weather events is just as much supportive that the warming observed is due to natural causes, as it is that these events are caused by CAGW.

      That is the issue, which you do not address.

    • docrichard

      As Jim Cripwell and phatboy have pointed out to you, there are two logic errors in your assumption that intense precipitation events are a result of human-caused global warming (since warmer air can hold more water vapor).

      You apparently fear that we will experience more of these intense precipitation events after the “globally and annually land and sea surface temperature anomaly” has increased by 2C, some 200-300 years from now, IF and when ALL remaining fossil fuel resources on our planet have been exhausted.

      I do not fear this, because of the points made by phatboy and Jim Cripwell and also because 200-300 years is so far in the future that we would be utter fools to try to predict today what our world will look like then (reason three).

      So let’s leave it at that. You have a phobia, which is refuted by logic.

      I do not.

      Max

      • Max, you write “You have a phobia, ”

        I dont think so. docrichard probably has a doctorate in some sort of scientific discipline, but he has drunk the Koolaid, and is convinced CAGW is correct; “the science is settled”. He came onto CE with the intention of showing the hoi polloi, people like you and me, just how much he knew about CAGW.

        But he has not behaved like a scientiist; he has behaved like an advocate. He can only see the physics that “proves” that CAGW is correct. When phatboy and I point out just how wrong he is, he will quietly disappear. Like all warmists, it is against his religion to admit he is wrong.


      • I dont think so. docrichard probably has a doctorate in some sort of scientific discipline, but he has drunk the Koolaid, and is convinced CAGW is correct; “the science is settled”.

        He may have an advanced degree, understand the physical evidence, and be intelligent – but unfortunately, docrichard has somehow arrived at the WRONG conclusion, a fact that is completely and universally obvious to blog-scientists.


        When phatboy and I point out just how wrong he is, he will quietly disappear. Like all warmists, it is against his religion to admit he is wrong.

        For non-warmists, you guys sure seem to know everything about religion.

        Or perhaps you are just suffering from a severe case of psychological projection…

        In any case, the funniest thing about you ‘denizens’ is that you think that all this childish rhetoric is somehow important to science.

  33. John Robertson

    It’s a communication problem, team IPCC wonders why the public treats their claims with contempt. After being exposed as willing to lie to further their cause, they find it inconceivable that the public no longer trusts them.
    The end justifies the means, historically leads to unforeseen ends.

    • When the end justifies the means, the means becomes the end. That is not unforeseen, or at any rate shouldn’t be, whenever people like the alarmies talk about totally rearranging (and wrecking) the world economy. If you kill off 80 million people as a “necessary step to reform society,” as a former historiy professor colleague of mine described Stalin’s mass murders, the killing itself becomes the end. Of course the Nazis were rather less circumspect about their murder of 40 million people – they were quite up front about the killing being both the means and the end.

      And now we even have some of the alarmies coming right out and saying that all humans are the scourge of the Earth and must be eliminated. This Jim Jones kind of talk is getting rather too frequent for my taste.

  34. Aaaahhhh Muller, must be good time to bring this one out again:

    http://www.vukcevic.talktalk.net/Bestomics.htm

  35. Apropos of the discussion as to who is and isn’t skeptical in their thinking, I offer exhibit B:

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2013/02/12/sea-ice-news-volume-4-1-arctic-ice-gain-sets-a-new-record/

    Now is that the work of a skeptic or a “skeptic.” You make the call.

    And after you’re done calling, take a look at this:

    http://tamino.wordpress.com/2013/02/13/some-people-cant-be-reasoned-with/#more-6248

    I mean seriously – Watts is a skeptic? Really?

  36. Curious Canuck

    Bad labeling is dishonest, intentional or not. Deception about what we eat especially.

    When I go to the supermarket, I darn well expect chevaline (horse meat) or bison when I pick them up. It’s actually more expensive than beef in Quebec supermarkets, although perhaps cheaper through a shop.

    I’ve always found the english speaking world’s growing taboo about it intriguing. Always made me wonder if it was a product of moving away from religion and adopting new irrationalities and superstitions.

    At least some of the traditional food taboos seem to overlap with avoiding disease vectors. Although anthropomorphising or feeling ‘akin’ to animals seems like it’s been forever present, too. But I don’t think we should stop eating chickens or pigs because to some people they are pets.

    Food management guidelines must be addressed. The ‘horror’ only started when the meat entered the anglosphere, but just imagine how upset any other religious-type group would feel about being deceived into violating their prohibitions.

    That said, having had listeria and ecoli outbreaks, the former repeatedly here. There’s a smugness at the mayhem the media would whip up over this, all the while Canada is the dumping ground, slaughterhouse and conscience (and stomach) of the US ‘horse friend’ riding industry.

    • Chief Hydrologist

      And if they call it skippy mince – I damn well expect skippy mince – Mmmmm baby skippy.

      Larrikin Bob
      Chief Hydrologist

  37. Dr. Curry, your post reminds me of that famous commercial, “Where’s the beef?” But it is not just in the arena of science where deception for the greater good takes place. Recently Professor Randy E. Barnett of Georgetown made a similar appeal to get at the truth behind gun control measures. http://www.volokh.com/2013/02/12/my-letter-to-ted-cruz-on-gun-control-proposals/ The stampede tactics are merely borrowed from the political world.

    • There’s only one argument against proposed gun control measures by the government: the right to bear arms for protection was for protection against a rogue government and so a governement enacting or seeking to enact legislation for gun control proves itself a rogue government.

      http://www.forbes.com/sites/lawrencehunter/2012/12/28/gun-control-tramples-on-the-certain-virtues-of-a-heavily-armed-citizenry/

      “Americans provisionally delegated a limited amount of power over themselves to government, retaining their individual sovereignty in every respect and reserving to themselves the power not delegated to government, most importantly the right and power to abolish or replace any government that becomes destructive of the ends for which it was created. The Bill of Rights, especially the Second and Ninth Amendments, can only be properly understood and rightly interpreted in this context.”

      The inalienable right is to freedom – America is unique in having this spelled out, the best model of anarchy we have. America is not a democracy, it’s an Anarchy.

      http://www.britsattheirbest.com/freedom/f_british_constitution.htm

      • Vice President Biden’s understanding of the Constitution and US history is surprisingly lacking. Which is a bit of a surprise, considering the position he holds and the fact by education he is an attorney.

        It is sad that for many people, including a number of our elected officials, the name Concord denotes a variety of grape.

      • Myrrh says :”There’s only one argument against proposed gun control measures by the government:”

        No, there are many more arguments against gun control besides the important one of preserving a capacity against a rogue government. For example:
        2. Gun control laws which infringe the rights of decent citizens to keep and bear arms violate the US Constitution and represents government lawlessness — a legal argument.
        3. Such laws impair the ability for decent citizens to uphold the law (more guns for decent citizens means less crime) — a practical argument.
        4. Such laws do not seem to be effective in keeping criminals from getting guns — another practical argument.
        5. Such laws may impair the defense of the US — a practical argument.

        There are more arguments, but these four additional will give you some idea of other arguments

      • There’s also the philosophical argument: People are are allowed to individually protect themselves. Why defeat this universal right by taking effective protection away from them?

        Andrew

      • ‘Americans may like guns because they are reminiscent of the smell of the outdoors, military heroism, the intensity of the hunt, or merely because they are fascinated by the finely machined parts. Maybe the origin of a gun speaks of history; maybe the gun makes a man’s home seem to him less vulnerable; maybe these feelings are more justified in the country than in the city; but, above all, many of us believe that these feelings are a man’s own business….’

        H/t from testimony before a Senate subcommittee. ‘The Gun’, by H. S. Bloomgarden, 1975, Grossman Publishers, p. 61.
        ===============

      • People don’t kill people, mentally ill guns kill people.
        ==================

  38. JOshua,

    I’m starting to wonder if you and Steve Mosher are the same person. You and he and the inimitable lolwot jump all over this “what is a skeptic” nit as if it were actual proof that co2 does anything at all that we have to be worried about.

    However you want to define a skeptic, the real issue is Muller was never in doubt that co2 is connected to very likely dangerous warming. He’s portrayed in the media…seemingly with his full support and approval…as someone who doubted that.

    • yes he was in doubt. he is still in doubt that the warming will be dangerous.
      He routinely critcicizes the extreme weather crap. WRT to future projections, he is dubious of models and you basically get shot down if you try to argue from models.
      So, you have a belief not based on experience or facts. falisfy your null about muller

      • “he is still in doubt that the warming will be dangerous.”

        In the AR4, the IPCC projected warming of .2 degrees per decade in the coming years.

        http://www.ipcc.ch/publications_and_data/ar4/wg1/en/spmsspm-projections-of.html

        In his NY Times “conversion” op-ed, Muller projected warming as follows:

        ” I expect the rate of warming to proceed at a steady pace, about one and a half degrees over land in the next 50 years, less if the oceans are included. But if China continues its rapid economic growth (it has averaged 10 percent per year over the last 20 years) and its vast use of coal (it typically adds one new gigawatt per month), then that same warming could take place in less than 20 years.”

        By my non-scientist math, 1.5 degrees over 50 years is .3 degrees per decade. And in his higher sinophobic alarmist projection, that 1.5 degrees warming would take place over 20 years, or .75 degrees per decade. Even if his projections would be “less if the oceans are included” (though by how much we get to guess) he’s still talking about potentially more warming than even the IPCC has projected.

        The skeptic, non-alarmist Muller projects warming may be from 1.5 to 4.25 times greater than the IPCC’s projections which are the foundation of the CAGW scare campaign.

        Muller the skeptic. We have now entered….the Twilight Zone.

        Cue the spooky music – and somebody better dig up Rod Serling.

      • unless of course Muller means 1.5 degrees F not C…

      • lolwot,

        Yes, if he meant farenheit, then he was talking about a range from roughly equivalent to the IPCC projection, to slightly more than double their figure. Still hardly a skeptical rejection of potentially dangerous warming.

      • Muller also ups the IPCC’s ante on attribution from “most” warming is attributable to humans to “…we came to the conclusion that global warming is real, and the evidence points very strongly to 100% of it being due to humans.”

        https://sites.google.com/site/mytranscriptbox/home/20120801_rm

      • That’s a converted skeptic for you

      • Chief Hydrologist

        ‘The observed global-warming rate has been nonuniform, and the cause of each episode of slowing in the expected warming rate is the subject of intense debate. To explain this, nonrecurrent events have commonly been invoked for each episode separately. After reviewing evidence in both the latest global data (HadCRUT4) and the longest instrumental record, Central England Temperature, a revised picture is emerging that gives a consistent attribution for each multidecadal episode of warming and cooling in recent history, and suggests that the anthropogenic global warming trends might have been overestimated by a factor of two in the second half of the 20th century. A recurrent multidecadal oscillation is found to extend to the preindustrial era in the 353-y Central England Temperature and is likely an internal variability related to the Atlantic Multidecadal Oscillation (AMO), possibly caused by the thermohaline circulation variability. The perspective of a long record helps in quantifying the contribution from internal variability, especially one with a period so long that it is often confused with secular trends in shorter records. Solar contribution is found to be minimal for the second half of the 20th century and less than 10% for the first half. The underlying net anthropogenic warming rate in the industrial era is found to have been steady since 1910 at 0.07–0.08 °C/decade, with superimposed AMO-related ups and downs that included the early 20th century warming, the cooling of the 1960s and 1970s, the accelerated warming of the 1980s and 1990s, and the recent slowing of the warming rates. Quantitatively, the recurrent multidecadal internal variability, often underestimated in attribution studies, accounts for 40% of the observed recent 50-y warming trend.’

        Using data to attribute episodes of warming and cooling in instrumental records – Ka-Kit Tung and Jiansong Zhou

        Perhaps some more sceptics in Tung and Zhou – but I go further of course. If the satellite data is ‘real’ (IPCC 3.4.4.1) – decadal cloud variability accounts for a lot more.

      • AMO – cause or effect…?

        Z&T – in error or wrong…?

      • Measurement accuracy of pre-CERES satellite data…?

      • Chief Hydrologist

        Tung and Zhou used the usual solar reconstructions. The ERBS satellite has a cumulative error of 0.4 W/m^2. The AMO is a feature of global climate seem over long periods in proxies. Are you saying that global warming causes global cooling over decades through the AMO?

        Tung and Zhou are quite obviously in line any number of attributions.

        Do you have a point blah blah – other than seeking some vague justification for igniring peer reviewed science that you can’t process because you are a space cadet?

      • They were two separate and unrelated questions (except that they relate to you).

        I repeat:

        AMO – cause or effect…?

        Z&T – in error or wrong…?

        Who’s having trouble processing? Not me…

      • you are missing a key part.
        1. the proper units
        2. the word “dangerous”

        But you understand how you are arguing against yourself.
        The issue is did Muller convert from being a skeptic to a warmist.
        painting the warmist side in more dramatic colors, turning him into a CAWG type only makes it harder to prove that he wasnt a skeptic.

        The issue: he used to believe X, now he believes not X

        So, please go ahead and detail the more extreme positions he takes today.. It actually helps the case I am making.. opps for you.

      • The ERBS satellite has a cumulative error of 0.4 W/m^2.

        That’s not what I understand at all. Source?

      • To be clear, CP, I’m asking you for measurement uncertainty in TOA flux ‘observations’ over the period ~1980 – 2000. By data set, preferably. Presumably you can rattle this off, along with the relevant references.

      • Let me take my billy club out an make one more swing at the deceased slab of horsemeat lying on the floor of the blog room.

        If Muller was a skeptic of the consensus (which according to Cardinal Schmidt is : 1) the Earth is warming; 2) man is causing it; 3) if GHG emission continue the warming will continue and in fact accelerate; and 4) it is sufficiently dangerous that we need to do something about it), then Muller had to believe that at least 4 was false.

        You can have all the doubts you want about the accuracy and precision involved in 1 through 3, but if you accept 4, you are a member of the august Church of the Consensus.

        Muller had some cavils about the way the consensus was presented, but for all the shouting about how much a skeptic he was, I have never seen a quote from him saying that we need not worry about mitigation, ie. decarbonizing the world economy.

        I have tried repeatedly to find statements from Muller, pre-BEST, on the issue of mitigation. So far – nada. I’ve followed a number of discussions on this tread warn topic, and none of the Mullerites have produced a link to such a comment.

        If any of the “Muller is a skeptic” proponents want to show he was actually ever a Skeptic, all yu have to do is post any statement pre-BEST from Muller that the consensus is wrong about the need to mitigate CO2 emissions. I find it hard to believe that a physicist, so well versed on so many discreet issues in the climate debate, never discussed mitigation until he formed the effort that he would claim shows the consensus understates the amount of warming.

      • lolwot

        “That’s a converted skeptic for you.”

        Logic error: What Muller now states (about human attribution for warming)shows what he now thinks.

        We have no statements from Muller showing that he thought differently (about human attribution for warming) previously, do we?

        Ergo, we do not have any evidence that Muller was skeptical in the past of the premise that past warming can be attributed to humans, or that he is now a “converted skeptic”, do we?

        It’s always best to use your head before you post statements, lolwot.

        Max

      • lolwot

        A March 2011 quote from alleged past “skeptic” Richard Muller in the “Huffington Post”:

        “Although it is not a conclusion of the Berkeley Earth group, it is my personal opinion that greenhouse gas emissions from humans have contributed to the observed warming,” Muller said. “The IPCC says that ‘most’ of the 0.6-degree Celsius warming of the past 50 years is anthropogenic. If ‘most’ means between 0.3- and 0.6-degrees Celsius, then that is certainly within the realm of possibility.”

        Hmmm.

        Doesn’t sound too “skeptical” to me.

        Max

      • Muller: “CALL me a converted skeptic. Three years ago I identified problems in previous climate studies that, in my mind, threw doubt on the very existence of global warming.”

        Three years ago. That would be BEFORE your quote.

        More Muiller “Last year, following an intensive research effort involving a dozen scientists, I concluded that global warming was real and that the prior estimates of the rate of warming were correct. I’m now going a step further: Humans are almost entirely the cause.”

      • Hah, he leaped from the Slough of Uncertainty straight off the Cliff of Credulousness. A dextrous dancing step, so far and far. Whoa, he’s still in the air!
        ===============

    • “However you want to define a skeptic, the real issue is Muller was never in doubt that co2 is connected to very likely dangerous warming.”

      Wrong. Before the BEST project he didn’t accept the surface records. He didn’t trust them. Therefore he didn’t accept there had been warming, so he couldn’t have believed CO2 had caused any.

      It was only after the BEST results starting coming in that he accepted the warming the surface records like HadCRUT and GISTEMP had shown and then decided the contributing factor was most likely man.

  39. Judith Curry,

    The same thing wrong with the mouse proxies is what is wrong with climate scientists relying upon Bayesian Probability. Both are dependent upon “expert judgement”. And therein lies the self-reinforcing errors. Those who say and repeat ad nauseum that Bayesian Probability is useful, at least in the climate world, seem to be those who believe in modeling, particularly the part where model assemblages are used to provide probability projections. The selection of plausible models and model runs are through “expert judgement.”

    Is the whole infrastructure of FDA or NIH going to alter their behavior just because of new information upon which they evaluate other research projects has changed? Not likely. Government inertia. The same experts as before will be hauled out to say why mice are better than men for experiments, so we’ll keep with mice. Never mind there are plenty of lawyers available as experimental subjects and lab personal don’t get so attached to them as to other primates.

    There is currently Government bureaucracy funding and directing climate science research; allocating money and resources, such as the new super computers, away from weather research and directed to climate research. More likely than not, this climate advocacy and funding will continue in place as the same climate scientists who sit on “expert panels” that judge the merit or not of proposals, who conjure the next Request For Proposals, will downstream be the recipients of awards which another group of colleagues and experts will kindly guide funding their way.

    Have you ever heard the saying: “vice is nice, but incest is best”?

    • Excellent point. Let’s throw out mouse studies and Bayesian analysis. Obviously, nothing useful ever comes out of any of that nonsense!

      Is the whole infrastructure of FDA or NIH going to alter their behavior just because of new information upon which they evaluate other research projects has changed? Not likely. Government inertia.

      Yes indeedy. Drown them in that bathtub along with mouse research and Bayesian Probability. Public health schmublic health. Vaccinations smaschinations. Let me ask you, does the government of Somalia spend all that money on research and public health? Or course not. Have you ever thought about why they don’t waste all that money like we do? No stinkin’ libz gumming up the works, that’s why!

      There is currently Government bureaucracy funding and directing climate science research; allocating money and resources, such as the new super computers, away from weather research and directed to climate research.

      Yes, indeed. That’s the problem. All that money going to study climate science. I mean the problem is certainly not the anti-government/drown it in bathtub rhetoric that blockades government-funded research on a broad-scale basis. Nope.

      Why can’t the American public wake up and realize how much we’re falling behind all those governments that don’t spend money on funding research? Why can’t they wake up and look at the history of civilization, and see all those countries that have been fantastically successful based on anti-government ideology? I mean there are so many examples from history AND today, like …um…..er…..ah….mmmm…uh….Somalia? And don’t forget Somalia! And Somallia too!

      • Now Josh, you surely jest. I didn’t lambast government per se, rather, the cronyism that pervades the processes of research, like, funding and supporting projects that are “me too.”

        The Drain Commissioner is a very important person in the fight against malaria. Vaccines, which in the USA our Government indemnifies, allows manufacturers to produce vaccines which have saved untold lives and abolished many more than that in suffering; a really really lot of people.

        Your launch over my perspective indicates to me that you live in a black or white universe. I can see why you have difficulty with understanding probabilities.

      • the cronyism that pervades the processes of research, …

        You’ve obviously got a bone to pick. An agenda. That’s OK. It’s not uncommon.

        Cronyism exists in all walks of life. It isn’t something exclusive to “the process of research.” The fact that it exists in “the process of research” to some extent – something easy to prove – does not substantiate the argument that it “pervades the process of research.”

        Show some validated data to back up your assertion. Show that it “pervades” the process of research. Perhaps that might make a better argument than passing judgement on my “difficulty with probabilities.”

      • Josh,

        Only those instances of cronyism that makes it into the media get acknowledged. Here’s one:

        http://www.scientificamerican.com/article.cfm?id=massive-fraud-uncovered-in-work

        The news article focuses on fraud, but the article elucidates the cronyism between researches and institutions.

        My bones to pick now are slim pickin’s as time has wounded all heels. I just got to watch.

  40. The Muller addition to the post has been a very convenient means for several commenting to ignore the “extreme weather” meme the I think was the gist of this post. Maybe not, but as a test can we ignore the Muller bit and talk about the RJP-Jr. horse meat post?

    Mosh / Willard / Joshua / lolwat / etc – any thoughts on that? Is Pielke Jr. full of crap citing the lack of “horse meat” that is GW=extreme weather, or are the consensus spokes-scientists (who make themselves available for interviews after any given storm and then blame it on GW) full of crap? To steal a line from Dire Straits – “Two men claim they’re Jesus, one of ‘em must be wrong.”

    • My kingdom for an “Edit” button. Please mentally delete the two words “lack of” above.

      • Global cooling would certainly be a nightmare, far worse than any warming man seems able to create. And yes, plenty of graveyards, then. But I was speaking of the howling blizzard at which you merrily melodize.
        ===================

      • Dang, misplaced. Maybe the wind will drift it.
        =============

    • TerryMN

      Wal now, if some one sez there are more severe weather events because of AGW and this some one gets asked, “what evidence do you have for this?”, and the answer comes back, “no evidence; it’s ‘based on expert judgment rather than formal attribution studies'”, I start getting a bit leery.

      How ’bout you?

      Max

    • Terry – I commented on Roger’s argument over at his blog.

      I think there is a legitimate debate to be had about attribution of extreme weather. I agree that there are those on the “realist” side that are guilty of rhetorical overreach in that respect, and that it is likely counterproductive. That said, the problem is not nearly so simple as Roger’s and Judith’s selective objections. The rhetorical over-reach exists on both sides: For example, when climate scientists are conditional in their statements about the linkage of AGW and extreme weather events, and “skeptics” either ignore their qualifications or outright distort the qualifications they make.

      Roger’s selectivity, and silly rhetorical gamesmanship, undermines the legitimate discussion that you are referring to, IMO.

      • Thanks Joshua – what bothers me is that – this is my impression, ymmv – the “realists” you’re referring to are of the attitude that “Hey, this severe weather seems to be getting traction, double down!” and it will eventually come back to bite them in spectacular fashion.

      • Terry, only if the globe cools. Warming or plateau can(will) be attributed to human guilt.

        Heck of a mess this narrative has given us.
        ==========

      • Terry –

        “Hey, this severe weather seems to be getting traction, double down!” and it will eventually come back to bite them in spectacular fashion.

        I think that perspective has more or less been stated, explicitly, a number of times. The rational for that perspective has been explicated: some “realists,” who have confidence about a likelihood of dangerous climate change, believe that getting traction on this issue is important.

        As to whether the attitude will bite them…I kind of doubt it. Barring some completely unambiguous and short-term string of extreme weather (of the sort which is not predicted by AGW theory), this debate will be over only well into the future – most likely after we’re all dead. As I read the basic theory of AGW and how public opinion moves in these kinds of issues, I’d say it is safe to say that the theory itself predicts that we won’t have dramatic-enough shifts in the climate to end this debate (and have people get bitten spectacularly) for decades.

        I’ve read many statements in the “skept-o-sphere” about “boy who cried wolf” (“final nail,” and “stake through the heart”) scenarios that will have devastating effects on public opinion about climate change, public trust in science, public opinion about climate scientists, etc.

        But that hasn’t happened. I don’t want to be snarky here because you have engaged respectfully, but my questions is, why would you not look at many similar and failed predictions from the “skept-o-sphere” and not be skeptical of such predictions?

      • Joshua whistles merrily.
        =====

      • kim dreams.
        about graveyards.

      • But that hasn’t happened. I don’t want to be snarky here because you have engaged respectfully, but my questions is, why would you not look at many similar and failed predictions from the “skept-o-sphere” and not be skeptical of such predictions?

        Because they don’t matter, frankly. I agree there have been far too many “last nail” / “stake through the heart” etc. assertions shouted about, but relatively few from people in office, academia, gov’t institutions, etc. It’s by and large blog-noise. Here’s my impression of this exchange:

        “realists”: “Sandy and the NE snowstorm have a human fingerprint/this is the new normal/harmful affects from AGW are here”

        Pielke: “Um, no, here are a half dozen studies to show no increase in severe weather.”

        Leonhardt: “Climate events have people thinking. Now maybe think mitigation. Social not natural causality. Whats not to like?”

        Pielke: “That it isn’t true?” [Queue horse meat analogy]

        Joshua: “The rhetorical over-reach exists on both sides”

        Me: “Yep. Two wrongs don’t make a right”

        Anyway – that’s my take on it. Pielke uses a colorful analogy, but in this case I don’t think he’s being selective by replying to the author of an NY Times article, and yes, there are people on both sides who exaggerate and spin. But by and large, the “realists” are in charge – those who comment on blogs (including myself, obviously) matter very little in the grand scheme-o-things.

        Off to work; have a good one!

      • Dang, with ‘queue’, Terry does more work than I will all day. Cue the cornets.
        ========

    • Sure. Gimme some time. maybe later tonight.

    • Terry, in an acute orthopaedic ward back in 1965 or ’66, a nurse measured my height and told me that I was “exactly six feet.” I mentioned this to a fellow-patient, and a passing patient (who I think must have been in the wrong ward), said: “You can’t be exactly six feet, only one man was ever six feet, and that was Jesus Christ!” Well, getting in practice for some comments and debates on Climate Etc (such as much of this thread) almost 50 years later, I made no reply.

    • kim

      Looks like were back to the “Goldilocks” discussion.

      I kinda like the climate we have today, but wouldn’t mind a degree or so warmer, while (it appears that) Joshua (and his bunch) want to go back to the pre-industrial Little Ice Age with a degree or two colder than today.

      Since most of GH warming is supposed to take place at colder latitudes, the choice seems like a no-brainer to me.

      Only fly in the ointment is we can’t really change our climate no matter how much money we throw at it.

      But it’s fun to talk about it like we had a choice.

      Max

  41. I’ll stick with climate science, thank you, as I hve no expertise in studying horse entrailse. I have tried to explain why climate change stops and starts and shown that clissical physics cannot provide the understanding required. Application of quantum theoty is plagued by the impossibility of some of itts beliefs, like the dual nature of matter. Is it a particle ot a wave? But no one can seriously suggest that a photon has mass, so the duality theory collapses.

    • If e=mc^2, are you suggesting that no one would seriously suggest that photons possess energy? If m=0, then e likewise equals zero.

      If photons possess no energy, then your radio and TV work by magic, lights are magical, and so on.

      Which sort of mass are you talking about? Like one of Lewis Carroll’s characters, I endeavour to believe in several impossible things from time to time – by definition “before breakfast”.

      But back to business. When was the last time the climate stopped (or started?)

      Thanks

      Mike Flynn

      • “When was the last time the climate stopped (or started?)”

        Climate change started in 1910 and reversed in 1940. It started again in 1980 and stopped in 2000.. See my website above.

        Of course photons. posses energy, It is just not the kind of energy associated with mass and inertia, but more akin to field energy.
        Thanks, Mike Flynn, for replying.

  42. Climate alarmists, fergettin’ Galveston, can argue till their hoarse
    that hurricanes in the us have become more frequent and intense.
    Yer could say the arguments are ‘hors de toute evidence.’

    http://www.aoml.noaa.gov/hrd/hurdat/ushurrlist18512009.txt

    • I think Judith’s scientific findings show (and which she still agrees with, as far as I know she hasn’t disowned them) that hurricanes haven’t increased in frequency but they have increased in intensity in recent decades.

      • tempterrain

        Can you cite a link to a study undersigned by Judith, which states that hurricanes have increased in intensity in recent decades as a result of AGW?

        Thanks.

        Max

      • As I recall, there was indication of a slight increase in intensity, but not enough to be considered significant.

        Slight decrease in frequency.

        Slight increase in intensity.

        And a hypothesis that NA landfalls would likely decrease.

        If this induces pee to run down one’s leg, I’d suggest it is due to either a weak bladder or a weak mind.

      • “This research supports the hypothesis that the worldwide increase in sea surface temperatures since 1970 is contributing to increase in global hurricane intensity,” team member Judith Curry told PhysicsWeb. “The current consensus is that the increase in tropical sea surface temperatures during the last 35 years is attributed to anthropogenic greenhouse warming.”

        http://physicsworld.com/cws/article/news/2006/mar/16/hurricane-intensity-linked-to-warmer-oceans

        We examined the number of tropical cyclones and cyclone days as well astropical cyclone intensity over the past 35 years, in an environment of increasing sea surface temperature. A large increase was seen in the number and proportion of hurricanes reaching categories 4 and 5.

        http://webster.eas.gatech.edu/Papers/Webster2005b.pdf

      • tempterrain

        Thanks for citing links.

        I’ll look through the study in more detail and we can see what our hostess has to say about it (if anything).

        Max

  43. Où est le boeuf?

    • Careful with the use of French, Max! I’m told it doesn’t go down too well in US right wing circles. They might think you are part of some ‘intellectual elite’ who’s spent too much time ‘book learnin’. It might be better to pretend you don’t any if you want to stay well in with them.

      • Chief Hydrologist

        I wuld be inclined to think that Kerry is playing down the Swiss boarding school he attemded or his mother’s estate in Brittany.

        Lucky I don’t have those restraints.

        I chié dans votre chapeau

      • Chief,

        I would say that should be “Je chié dans ton chapeau”. The French do have their own word for “I” and “votre” sounds far too polite for use in this context.

      • Chief Hydrologist

        Le magnifique, sene par leguer.

      • ??

        Do you mean “Il est magnifique mais ce n’est pas la guerre’ ?

      • Chief Hydrologist

        Of course not – tt

      • Some suggestions:

        1. Since “boeuf” refers to the animal and not the meat, MiniMax should try:

        > Où est la viande?

        or, less literally, and more amusingly:

        > Enlevez le boeuf, c’est de la vache.

        2. Depending what Chief wants to say, he could use:

        > J’en chie des ronds de chapeau.

        if he means he “suffers”, or

        > Je vous chie dessus.

        which means something like “I despise you”,

        or

        > Il m’a chié dans les mains.

        which means “He failed me.

        The last example is there to show the proper conjugation of the past participle.

        3. Beth should adjust both the content and the container:

        > Peut-être n’est-ce qu’une tempête dans un verre d’eau.

        and Rimbaud’s stanza is

        > La tempête a béni mes éveils maritimes.

        which might mean many things, considering that Rimbaud once was into arms trafficking and that the poem does not end that well for its narrator.

        Beckett have translated this poem in English. It should not be bad.

      • tempterrain

        Most right-, left- or no-wing US Americans know enough US history to know that the French saved their bacon during the Revolutionary War against England.

        Most Frenchman (especially those living in the Normandy) realize that the US-led Allies saved their bacon by driving the German occupiers out in WWII.

        N’est-ce pas?

        Max

      • Willard

        Not to belabor a point of French grammar, but the word “boeuf” refers to both the animal AND the meat, as in: rôti de boeuf, filet de boeuf, bouillon de boeuf, etc.

        But, of course, when “Wendy’s” asked the question, they could’ve been looking for a steer – who knows?

        But they sure as hell weren’t looking for a horse.

        Max

      • Max,

        Yes and the Statue of Liberty was gift from the French. So why all that nonsense, a few years ago, about renaming French fries as liberty fries? But, incidentally, ‘chips’ is a better word anyway.
        And “cheese-eating surrender monkeys”? Where did that come from?
        And wasn’t it Newt Gringrich who ran an ad about Mitt Romney speaking French?
        How would Republican voters take to discovering that one of their candidates had a degree in climate science? Would that be grounds for expulsion from the party?

      • > The word “boeuf” refers to both the animal AND the meat […]

        Yes, but you won’t get understood if you use the single word “boeuf” in an expression to refer to its meat, which is why these examples:

        > rôti de boeuf, filet de boeuf, bouillon de boeuf, etc.

        use the word “boeuf” to identify the kind of animal providing the meat or the stock.

        ***

        If you say something like:

        > Ce soir, je mange du boeuf.

        it will be taken as a metonymy for

        > Ce soir, je mange de la bavette, du steak, etc.

        MiniMax belabouring a point verging on the limits of his personal knowledge: comme c’est singulier!

      • Willard

        The question in a restaurant, “C’est du boeuf ou du porc?”

        Is not asking whether or not it’s a steer or a hog, it’s simply asking whether it’s beef or pork.

        The word can be used for BOTH the meat and the animal, and it depends entirely on the context.

        But I think you know that.

        Max

      • You need a “du” before your “boeuf”, MiniMax, and something that comes before that, which is provided implicitly in your restaurant script.

        If you were wondering about the kind of “roti” they have on their table d’hôte, it is a “roti de boeuf” or a “roti de porc” or a “roti de veau” or else that you’ll be ordering, not “le boeuf”. Although you certainly could say:

        > Je vais prendre le boeuf.

        if the waiter can identify to what you are referring, i.e. the roast.

        Another example would be:

        > Elles sont au veau ou au boeuf, vos saucisses?

        Notice the word “au” and the fact that we identify what will be ordered, i.e. the sausages.

        In all those cases, the context works a lot for you, a context which is absent in “où est le boeuf?”, in fact a false French expression only used by Anglos to play smug [1], which would not be a proper translation for what is conveyed by “where’s the beef?”.

        [1] http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=ou%20est%20le%20boeuf%3F

      • Chief Hydrologist

        C’est un morceau de gâteau – wee willie

      • give me the 8th wonder of the world, Hangul.

      • Achtung, strasse werken ein kopf.

        Oh, sorry, you were speaking French.

      • Willard

        I appreciate you trying to give me French lessons, but let me remind you that in French (when not prefixed by un/une or le/la to specifically indicate “a” or “the”) you usually put a “du” (or “de la”) in front of any noun (not just specifically “boeuf”).

        But we have beaten this “boeuf” to death.

        Max

      • MiniMax,

        What I’m saying is **not** that, in French, you can’t use “boeuf” to refer to its meat, but that to make it work you need other linguistic tools, like “du”, “au”, and other kinds of qualifications, e.g. “boeuf (à la) Strogannof”. The only context where “le boeuf” would refer to a dish would be in a restaurant.

        ***

        If what you want to say is:

        > Where’s the beef?

        meaning

        > Is there any substance?

        you need to use the word “viande”, or a more idiomatic expression like

        > Y-a-t’il de la **chair autour de l’os**?

        but even then, we don’t use a rhetorical question to convey this idea, but we’d say something like:

        > Il n’y a pas grand chair autour de l’os.

        which means there’s not much substance.

        ***

        There’s a reason why translators are mostly native speakers.

        Language is a social art.

      • C’est du gâteau, Chief.

      • Chief Hydrologist

        not quite the smug anglo – wee willie?

  44. I am reposting this from WUWT

    We use lots of animals as human models, nematodes, mice, rats, dogs and primates. However, we ARE aware that a mouse is not a human. This article is yet another ‘we recognized that mice aren’t human’ feature, based on a university press release.
    We know.
    Honest we know that mice are not people. However, they are cheap, we can generate gene knock-outs and knock-ins, and most importantly we can do things to a mouse that we can’t do to a human.
    As to the billions spent on Sepsis/trauma and burns; I wish.
    This is a review of NIH spending by disease

    http://report.nih.gov/categorical_spending.aspx

    Almost all trauma funding is on brain and spine injuries, not hemorrhagic shock
    Septicemia gets 98 million a year, only about 1/3 will involve animal models. Burns do not meet the $500,000 threshold.

    So bottom line. We know mice aren’t human. We use them as a mammalian model. For somethings they are fantastic, for other things less so. You don’t need to tattoo ‘Mice aren’t people’ to our foreheads, as it is etched on our souls*.

    *Even the ones we sold to get that R01 three years ago.
    X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X
    Performing an intervention on a mouse model of a human disease tells you how the intervention works in that model.
    Many of us use strains of mice with a much modified immune system to grow human tumors and to then treat those tumors. Now we know that the tumor growing in the mouse is different than the same tumor growing in a human. We then give chemotherapy and see what happens. Now we then assume that what happens in the mouse is ‘pretty much’ the same as in the human. It isn’t the same, but if the mouse liver turns to mush you know that isn’t going into a person.
    What the hell do you people think we can do?
    Seriously?
    We DO NOT KNOW a better system to guess what is going to happen in people than a combination of tissue culture and animal experiments.
    This is the bottom line. Animal experiments give us our best guess.
    We are not lying to you, the mice models are not perfect. in some diseases they are damned good, other, suck. Anything to do with aging brain, no models work. Immune system, models can be iffy. Human brains and human immune systems are quite removed from other animals. Makes work hard, slow going and mostly wrong in a strict model=human sense.
    So we know all this. I am not lying to you that the models are temperamental. Sometimes fantastic, sometimes completely crap.
    We could work on primates instead, but the costs of research would be two orders of magnitude higher and the outcome only slightly improved.
    However, i will tell you what will not work. Looking at sick people. Physicians have a duty of care and they have to threat their patients to the best of their ability; under threat of lawsuit. So they treat their patients. Different patients have different doctors and different preexisting conditions and present with a different cocktail of drugs for their hemorrhoids, premature balding, hormone replacement therapy, pain pills for soft tissue injury and copper bracelet.
    Patients present at different ages, heights, ethnicity and different drug histories; give me mice that are almost clonal any day.
    So don’t shot the pianist’s as they are doing their best.
    WE KNOW MICE ARE MODELS; they are bound to be bad in some disease states.
    In the case of gerontology and auto-immune diseases mice don’t mimic humans well. We don’t have any good aging models and even chimps have a different immune system to us. Chimps cost a small fortune and have to be looked after in retirement, and as the HIV/AIDS people will tell you, don’t mimic our immune system either.

    • Thanks Doc.

      Very informative. It is amazingly easy to see something like this come up and jump straight to “Those stupid medical researchers! Don’t they know mice are not human? I knew all along one should trust research involving mice.”

  45. Am I in the naughty corner?

    • No.
      I’ve said pretty much the same thing further down thread (and at JoNova’s).

      • Isn’t it odd how the biomedicals and climate scientists treat their models. We know animals are iffy, and plead, best we have. Climate Scientists says models good, and plead, more money and they will be better.

  46. Peut-etre c’est une tempete dans une tea cup, Max )

    ‘La tempete a beni mes eveilles maritimes,’

    H/t Rimbaud

  47. DM, yer can come out now.

  48. So climate scientists are saying the main concern over the emission of GH gases is related to extreme weather events?
    I don’t think so. If an increase of 10 % or so in hurricane intensities, or frequencies, or drought intensities or frequencies, flood intensities or frequencies etc were the only problem then I doubt there would be much of a case for climate mitigation policies. That’s the horsemeat argument which is unsaleable.
    The real beef is here:

    • The John Thaw (aka Inspector Morse) would no doubt take that fingerprint into evidence. But I don’t know what he’d deduce from it, certainly not that “We’ll all be rooned!”

    • temp,

      Isn’t this the book where Dr Archer makes claims for a 30 ft (or perhaps it was 10 meters, I can’t recall) rise in global sea levels by the end of the century?

      I’ve seen several numbers for the rarte of increase, but going with the number that seems to be the most accepted (3 mm/yr), my simple math skilss provide a figure of about 10 inches.

      Slight difference, don’t you think?

      • “Isn’t this the book where Dr Archer makes claims for a 30 ft (or perhaps it was 10 meters, I can’t recall) rise in global sea levels by the end of the century ?”

        No. It isn’t.

      • My mistake temp.

        Archer says 10 meters rise per every 1 degree C rise in temp.

        He claims a rise as high as 50 meters is possible.

        Did you read the book?

      • timg56

        Let’s see:

        “10 meters rise per every 1 degree C rise in temp.”

        We’ve seen 0.7C rise in temp since around 1850.

        So I guess we’ve also seen 7 meters SL rise.

        Right?

        Max

      • Yes David Archer does say that 50 metres of sea level rise is possible several hundred or more years into the future. Or ‘going forward’ , should that be? :-)

        Yes I have read the book. Got it out of the library last year.

        He makes a strong argument that we need to look beyond the end of the current century. Even if people like Judith turn out to be right that “there is no existentialist threat” from climate change this century , there will be later. . Why is the year 2100 so important? We’ll all be dead just as dead then as we will be in 2200 and beyond.

      • Archer is arguing that climate is hypersensitive ie it has magnitude responses to an external forcing such as solar,Co2,orbital etc.

        The argument is somewhat incorrect ,as the responses are inverse (asymmetric) insofar as the increase in forcing is still significantly distance from the area where bifurcations become unstable,and somewhat closer to the region where a small decrease in forcing ( the relaxation region) suggest it is indeed turtles all the way down eg Ghil 2001,Zalipin and Ghil 2010.

        ZG10 in their initial paper,that we have been indeed fortunate to have a small positive forcing.

        The alternative proposition is that climate is almost transitive (Lorenz 1963) the pendulum has another state.

      • tempterrain

        Archer may think he has an infallible crystal ball that tells him how “humans in the 21st century are going to change our planet’s climate for the next 100,000 years”, but his claim doesn’t pass my basic “sanity check”.

        (Nor does his claim of accelerated SL rise discussed above.)

        Sorry.

        But everyone loves a good sci-fi thriller.

        (Just as long as you don’t start believing it could be real.)

        Max

      • temp,

        David Archer’s book should then be in the Sci-Fi section of the library, if he’s trying to tell us what the world will be like hundreds of years into the future. It is speculation, and with little in the way of facts to back it up, it is essentially a work of fiction.

        Why is it the Erlichs and McKibben’s and Archer’s of the world are so concerned about people who don’t exist, nor will exist for a hundred years or more? How about being concerned about the people who actually exist today?

    • A long time ago I asked on RC from where the fascination with 2100 came, and I think it may have been DA who responded.

  49. Chief Hydrologist

    I think I am in permenant moderation – I am innocent I say – innocent – diabololical – all this for inviting springer to the Sydney mardi gras?

  50. Peter Davies I note yer’ve taken over the plus one franchise.
    I am sure you will manage this responsibility well. It’s kinda like
    being on the review board :)

    • I realise that it will be an onerous and responsible task, not to be taken lightly. There will be those who will pirate this franchise without payment of royalties and I will be chasing them with a wet noodle!

  51. Twice in my life I have had horsemeat passed off on me. The tastes is instantly recognizable from American beef (grass or corn fed). I am familiar enough with European beef, no offense intended, in my travels, that I can understand why some Romanian slaughter houses thought they could pull this off.
    And that is where I find the analogy with climate ‘science’ as it stands at this moment, gullibility.
    Mosher,
    In your enduring, ad nauseum, diversionary quest for the definition of skeptic, you might look at a thesaurus. Ought ta be right up your alley. According to every dictionary and thesaurus I have, the first antonym of skeptic (sceptic) is BELIEVER which happens to be synonymous with gullible.

    • John another,

      “According to every dictionary and thesaurus I have, the first antonym of skeptic (sceptic) is BELIEVER ”

      If I accept what you say to be true does that mean I’m gullible?

      • No, because j.a. has the evidence to back his statements up.

      • Well done, Chad. You seem to have grasped the point I was making.

      • Chief Hydrologist

        Just because you’re gullible doesn’t mean they aren’t out to baffle you with fake scetic logic. Be alarmed be very alarmed – for the next 100,000 years.

      • tempterrain

        If you accept what ANYBODY says is true (provided it does not pass your own personal “reality check” first) without first asking to see empirical evidence that it is so you are GULLIBLE.

        Max

  52. In moderation, Chief? Luckily the naughty corner has jest been
    vacated, so there yer go till JC tells yer yr can come out… :)

    • Chief Hydrologist

      It seems that responding to homophobic attempts at humour crosses the line. No links to the Sydney Mardi Gras or mention of p..fs or qu..ns allowed. All a bit namby pamby. Empowerment begins with co-opting the language of discrimination.

  53. What I like about the horsemeat argument is that it gives yer
    something ter get yer teeth into.

    Beth the Neanderthal.

    • Having lived a few years in southern China and Hong Kong, I’ve hoped and prayed the dishes I was being served contained horse meat.

      The rice and veggies were always nice, though.

      Max

  54. Alexander Biggs “Application of quantum theoty is plagued by the impossibility of some of itts beliefs, like the dual nature of matter. Is it a particle ot a wave? But no one can seriously suggest that a photon has mass, so the duality theory collapses.”

    Back at University I was doing a project on a semiconductor laser diode (when they were VERY new). I was thinking about the concept of “stimulated emission” when there was an excess of electrons in a high energy state and wondered why there wasn’t also “stimulated absorption” when a majority of electrons were in a a low energy state.

    Thinking about it, I realised that it was quite likely there was stimulated absorption: that the presence of light stimulates the transition in state of an electronic which absorbs light. But how? Obviously, the process was that an “photon” of light was given out but this time instead of enhancing the wave it was be in anti-phase and subtract from the light wave.

    Over time I realised that:
    1. There is no need for the idea of a “photon”.
    2. That none of the raw evidence requires “photons”.
    3. That the wave-particle theory of light is anti-scientific in the sense that it is impossible to disprove it … because it is not deterministic whether it should behave as a wave or a particle. You can disprove it behaves as a particle … only to be told that is because it behaves as a wave. And then you can disprove it behaves as a wave … only to be told that is because it is now a particle … but no one will tell you WHEN it must behave as one or the other.

    You also get around problems of the “faster than light” transmission of information of the slit through which the photon travels which is a necessary and clearly absurd requirement of classical wave-particle duality “theory(s)”.

    So, yes the duality “theory”(s) is/are a load of non-science.

    • So what is it?


    • Thinking about it, I realised….
      But how?
      Obviously,…

      An armchair physicist, using nothing but pure opinion, refutes the photoelectric effect, quantum superposition, and even gets around the non-existent problem of faster than light transmission.

      Bravo!

      Once you get around to doing actual experiments, you will provide more details, yes?

  55. Tomas Milanovic

    I would say that should be “Je chié dans ton chapeau”. The French do have their own word for “I” and “votre” sounds far too polite for use in this context.

    Neither nor. One should not make comments about things that one obviously doesn’t master – in this case French.
    In this context the right expression (if we wanted to use French) would be :
    “Je chie dans votre chapeau”
    “chié” is grammatically incorrect because it is a past participle of “chier”.
    “votre” is right because it conveys the idea that the comment does not adress only a single particular person but any person sharing some (common) attribute.
    This use is not to be confused with the use of “votre” in singular which adresses a single person instead of several.

    The difference between the use (in singular) of ton/ta/tes vs votre/vos is not politeness but familiarity.
    A person that one doesn’t know is always “vous” regardless whether one likes him/her or not.
    Toi/tu is reserved for family, children and friends.
    Sometimes it is used for strangers with little grasp on French and sometimes in companies where the management wants to make believe that everybody is a part of a big happy “family”.
    So actually if one wants to signify that a person is neither family nor friend and keep a distance, it is “vous” by definition.
    Exception are aristocrats who (generally) use “vous” even within the family.
    This has a symbolic and a history which we won’t develop here even if it is interesting per se.

    This was my minute of language lesson and it is so brutally off topic that I would understand if Judith removed it :)

    • Chief Hydrologist

      Hi Tomas,

      I will take your gramatical corrections on board – but rest assured I would never do that to your hat.

      ‘Le magnifique, sene par leguer – it is magnificent, but it is not the railway station. ‘ Is the whole quote. Is just us thinking we are being funny.

      Cheers

      • Tomas Milanovic

        Chief

        Languages are my passion and rank right second after quantum mechanics. I speak personally 6 and have a clue in 5 more.
        My daughter studied linguistics and there are few topics more interesting than the dynamics that was at work by transforming the indo european protolanguage in the language families we use today and that are spoken by about half of world’s population.

        It is fascinating how when starting from the modern Snow, Schnee (german), Snieg (russian), Snjor (icelandic), Nieve (spanish), Neige (french), we bifurcate to ancient latin Nivis, ancient Greek Nipha, ancient Gothic Snaiws to finally reconstruct the common indoeuropean ancestor of us all – Sneigh.

        And then reverse the time again and see how the northern tribes stayed close to the indoeuropean ancestor from 3000 – 4000 years ago while the southerners dropped the initial s and mutated the word much more because they probably were not very concerned with snow and didn’t use the word so often.

        As this is a climate blog, we can speculate that our indoeuropean ancestors were well familiar with snow (as the linguistic shows with wolves too!) and that it was probably rather cold back then.
        We, their descendants, are lucky to live in a warmer world :)

      • Tomas

        Linguistics is a fascinating field, indeed.

        Your analysis of why the more southern languages modified the proto-word for “snow” more than those from the north makes sense.

        I’m just reading a German book: “Der Sturm” by Peter Arens, about the ““Völkerwanderung”, which he calls the “longest march in human history”, when the (mostly) Germanic tribes moved across all of Europe and part of North Africa at the end of the Roman Empire (in the west). One of the principal reasons for this massive movement of people is speculated to have been the worsening (cooling) climate at the end of the Roman Optimum and resulting crop failure and famine.

        Some proponents of the IPCC CAGW premise predict massive waves of “climate refugees” moving from warmer to cooler climate this time, although I have a hard time visualizing such a thing.

        GH warming is supposed to take place primarily at higher (cooler) latitudes, where a bit of warming might actually slow down the current general movement of “climate refugees” who have a choice (retirees, for example) from places like Michigan (or Germany) to Florida (or Spain).

        Max

    • Alexej Buergin

      TM

      Your version may be gramatically correct, but I do not like your interpretation (“votre”=plural would mean that several persons share a hat).

      As my teacher once told us: If you do not like a person, be extremely polite to him (thus “votre”=singular).

      And yes, le gènéral did not tutoye his wife Yvonne Charlotte Anne Marie.

    • Tomas

      A (not so polite) instruction (no “polite form”):

      allez donc chier dans votre chapeau va donc chier dans ton chapeau!

      (I wouldn’t use that expression here, no matter how tempted I might be from time to time.)

      Max

    • Tomas,

      Because the tu/vous distinction doesn’t exist in English it isn’t the easiest of things to get right but I’d just question your “not politeness but familiarity.” statement.

      When cycling in France when I was young I noticed that everything was “tu” even between strangers, providing we were fellow cyclists. Yet if we spoke to an older person who wasn’t riding with us it was invariably “vous” which I took to be the more polite form.

      Also our French teacher, at school, used to call us “tu” and did so right from the start, before she knew us, but wouldn’t have been at all pleased if we had called her “tu” even after we’d got to know her well later on.

      • TT and Tomas

        Having lived in the France, Belgium and the French part of Switzerland, the “tu/vous” distinction seems to vary with

        Age. Most young people (children, young adults) move to the “tu” right away when talking to each other. Older folks take longer to make the switch with friends or acquaintances.

        Social “class”. Normal folks use “tu” inside the own family, but some (snobby?) folks of the “old generation” still used “vous” for elders, even within the family (getting rarer).

        The etiquette of moving from “vous” to “tu” (“ce tutoyer”) is also different, but in most cases involves a glass of wine or a beer.

        A French lady once told me that it’s a shame the distinction no longer exists in modern English: she suggested that Americans (and Australians) were all on a “tu” basis when they used “you”, while Britons were on a “vous” basis with “you”. Maybe she was right?

        Max

      • typo: should be “se tutoyer”

      • I’m not sure there is much difference between the English speaking countries, except maybe India if they count as English speaking. I used to consider that the use of tu/vous was pretty much the same as being on first name, or the more formal Dr Smith, Mr Jones etc, terms.

        But hardly anyone is that formal anymore. Certainly not on the net.

  56. A fan of *MORE* discourse

    Judith Curry short-sightedly deplores  “Extreme events are used as focusing events to alarm people and stimulate action on climate change, playing on their fears, losses and feeling of impotence”

    Judith’s post short-sightedly deplores an essential element of rational human cognition.

    Q  Is it rational for the “extreme event” of lung cancer to “alarm people” regarding the risks of smoking — including in particular second-hand smoke — so as to “stimulate action” regarding tobacco regulation in response to “fears, losses and impotence” of preventing harm?

    A  Definitely fear of harm from smoking is rational, and corporate-funded demagoguery to mitigate that fear is morally wrong .

    —————

    Q  Is it rational for the “extreme event” of AGW to “alarm people” regarding the risks of climate-change — including in particular risks to future generations — so as to “stimulate action” regarding CO2 emissions in response to “fears, losses and impotence” of preventing harm?

    A  Definitely fear of harm from climate-change is rational.

    Is the reasoning of Judith Curry’s post substantially different from the cherry-picked immoral pseudo-scientific demagoguery of smoking/cancer denialism? The distinction is not readily apparent!

    Q  Is fear-of-harm a legitimate and essential element of rational cognition, in regard to both the well-established smoking/cancer link and the well-established CO2/AGW link?

    A  Absolutely “yes” in both cases!

    \scriptstyle\rule[2.25ex]{0.01pt}{0.01pt}\,\boldsymbol{\overset{\scriptstyle\circ\wedge\circ}{\smile}\,\heartsuit\,{\displaystyle\text{\bfseries!!!}}\,\heartsuit\,\overset{\scriptstyle\circ\wedge\circ}{\smile}}\ \rule[-0.25ex]{0.01pt}{0.01pt}

    • He fans, but the smellody lingers on.
      ======

    • A fan of *MORE* discourse

      Kim, isn’t it true that the harmful effects of asking the wrong question are far worse than embracing the wrong answer?

      A short-sighted question  Is the scientific evidence utterly incontrovertible that second-hand-smoke is harmful?

      A far-sighted question  Does smoking harm children?

      ————

      A short-sighted question  Is the scientific evidence utterly incontrovertible that AGW is real, serious, and accelerating?

      A far-sighted question  Will AGW harm future generations?

      ————

      It is a pleasure to help you ask farther-sighted questions, Kim!

      \scriptstyle\rule[2.25ex]{0.01pt}{0.01pt}\,\boldsymbol{\overset{\scriptstyle\circ\wedge\circ}{\smile}\,\heartsuit\,{\displaystyle\text{\bfseries!!!}}\,\heartsuit\,\overset{\scriptstyle\circ\wedge\circ}{\smile}}\ \rule[-0.25ex]{0.01pt}{0.01pt}

      • Fan

        The answers to your “far-sighted” questions:

        Does smoking harm children?

        Yes. Medical records show that individuals who start smoking large numbers of cigarettes at an early age are more likely to get respiratory ailments of all kinds than those who do not smoke. As a result one should keep children from getting addicted to smoking by keeping them away from cigarettes

        Will AGW harm future generations?

        No. There is no evidence to indicate that AGW will present any future harm to humanity. A bit of warming (from whatever cause) might actually be a good thing for a majority of the world’s population; warming from AGW is posited to occur primarily at higher (cooler) latitudes and could, therefore, be beneficial on balance.

        Hope this answers your questions, Fan.

        Always glad to help.

        Max

      • A fan of *MORE* discourse

        Manacker claims  “There is no evidence to indicate that AGW will present any future harm to humanity.”

        LOL … and via comparable arguments the Heartland Institute concludes Secondhand smoke is no danger?

        How is it that your (vehement yet wholly non-rational) arguments and the Heartland Institutes (comparably vehement and non-rational) arguments are so eerily parallel, Manacker?

        The parallels are striking, eh? … and so “the world wonders!”

        \scriptstyle\rule[2.25ex]{0.01pt}{0.01pt}\,\boldsymbol{\overset{\scriptstyle\circ\wedge\circ}{\smile}\,\heartsuit\,{\displaystyle\text{\bfseries???}}\,\heartsuit\,\overset{\scriptstyle\circ\wedge\circ}{\smile}}\ \rule[-0.25ex]{0.01pt}{0.01pt}

      • Fan

        You got a bit off track there with the Heartland Institute and second-hand smoke – your question was “does smoking harm children”.

        And there is plenty of empirical evidence that it does, so the answer is “YES”.

        But there is NO empirical evidence that “AGW will harm future generations”, so the answer here is, “NO”.

        Quite simple actually.

        Max

    • More people could be saved if doctors would wash their hands. Maybe if we focused on germs and particulates and toxics and excess nutrients, we could really save people. Alas, our Fan prefers hot air and hysterics.

      The cure is a Steely Dan and a shot of Bourbon.

  57. Jonova also had an article on the sepsis claimsand peer-review. I posted this there:

    I’ll put the case for the opposition.

    I’m not entirely surprised the paper didn’t receive the plaudits the authors might have hoped for. I guess that reviewers working in the area of inflammatory diseases (a huge area) might have shrugged their shoulders and said “Yes, we know that. Welcome to Immunology.”

    The most expensive book I have ever bought was “Fundamental Immunology” by William E. Paul. It was also, by some margin, the heaviest book I have ever bought. The introduction, I recall, started with the sobering words “It used to be said that Immunologists know everything, but understand nothing.”

    Every researcher knows (or should know) that mouse models are far from perfect. Some are worse than others. But they are tools that are available. Doing experiments in primates is extraordinarily expensive, and clinical drug trials still have to go through animal testing before they come near a human.

    Idiosyncratic toxicity is a huge financial cost in drug development with many solutions being explored. Plenty of drugs may work in one human, but not in another. Hence the fashionable term “personalised medicine’.

    Remember when people predicted that sequencing the human genome would lead to spectacular advances in medicine? Have they arrived yet? This paper is banging the gong for the automated gene-expression approach. It is one avenue of research, but not the only one. And yet, about the year 1999 I recall learning that only 5% of human disease are estimated to have a genetic component.

    We have not yet got so far with our science that medical research can be advanced merely by drawing a little blood and letting the computers do the rest. Where have we heard that before?

    The workings of peer review I’ll leave for another occasion.

    • Nice to see some skepticism here at Climate Etc.

    • A fan of *MORE* discourse

      COMMON SENSE
      Year-by-year  progress in medicine is imperceptible
      Decade-by-decade  progress in medicine is slow
      Generation-by-generation  progress in medicine is appreciable
      Century-by-century  progress in medicine is incredible

      Only in the past single decade have we even begun to envision the dynamical processes of living cells.

      That’s why the coming century of medicine is gonna be TERRIFIC!

      \scriptstyle\rule[2.25ex]{0.01pt}{0.01pt}\,\boldsymbol{\overset{\scriptstyle\circ\wedge\circ}{\smile}\,\heartsuit\,{\displaystyle\text{\bfseries!!!}}\,\heartsuit\,\overset{\scriptstyle\circ\wedge\circ}{\smile}}\ \rule[-0.25ex]{0.01pt}{0.01pt}

      • Wash your hands and stop killing 100,000 people every year. Is that the terrific advance?

      • What do you mean ‘we’ ?

        What the hell have you done to increase our understanding of cell function and dysfunction?
        Go parasite someone else’s field.

        Moreover, what the hell do you know of those of us who work away at the coal face? I am going to inject 50 mice with human gliomal cells in a few minutes, when they are counted.
        In a weeks time half the mice get their first injection of a gliomal specific chemotherapeutic drug. It has taken me 30 years of study to understand the dynamics of cellular systems to get to the point where I can do rational drug design. However, I never make the foolish assumption that a steady state dynamic system is an equilibrium. That is your motif.

      • I happened to live in Hong Kong when the SARS scare broke out there.

        All of a sudden there were signs in English and Cantonese in all toilets telling people to WASH THEIR HANDS.

        And a culture change swept across Hong Kong…

        Max

    • It is useful to remember the meaning of the Greek word ‘Pharmakos’.
      =======

  58. The French are less squeamish about horsemeat. They must be squealing with laughter across The Channel.

    • @Michael Hart Having lived on contential Europe for many years. I am not squeamish about horse meat at all, quite fond of a horse burger in fact. Oddily this fondness did nothing to dissuade me of my squeamishness towards food mislabling and fraud, I suspect the French, find no humour in this either.

      • I’ve only knowingly eaten it once, and found it like a poor quality beef. Perhaps if I’d grown up on it then I’d think the reverse if I had never eaten beef.

        Needless to say, it was bought in a French supermarket.

  59. ‘You may cite the tasty (and safe) noodles and tomato sauce
    but the presence of horsemeat in the product defeats your
    argument.’ R.Pielke Jnr.

    Building on sand
    instead of rock
    ain’t wise,
    ends justifing
    means, ie, noble lies,’
    Is dishonest compromise.

  60. Thx fer yr corrections, Willard, ‘eveils,’ yes, can’t manage the acute
    sign on me com-put-er.. Coincidentally I jest came from reading yr comments re Lewandowsky on the Air Vent.

    A couple of minor corrections of my own re yr comments on Rimbaud, Willard. ‘Beckett ‘has’ translated…’ minor correction. Concerning the meaning of the line from Bateau Ivre, the line has its meaning w/in
    the context of the poem, not with reference to some action of Rimbaud
    in life. A poem is its own dictionary, yer might say, a concentration of
    total meaning, metaphor, sound pattern, metre rhythm …

    ‘And from then on I immersed myself in the Poem
    Of the Sea, luminous, milky, star sown,
    Gorged with greeny-blues where, pallid flotsam,
    A charmed sailor at times drifts thoughtfully down;’

    ‘…. .. flottaison bleme
    Et ravie, un noye pensif, parfois, descend;
    I like ter say that aloud, I find it so concentrated. )

    • Thanks, Beth.

      If you want the accents, go fetch the text on-line and copy-paste it.

      My remark about Rimbaud’s life was just a way to insert a factoid that could help understand his poetry; not that it can’t be understood otherwise. Rimbaud was a provocateur and a bum.

      Here’s a line that seems appropriate for ClimateBall:

      > L’air marin brûlera mes poumons, les climats perdus me tanneront.

      “Tanner” can both mean “to tan” and “to annoy”.

    • ” A poem is its own dictionary, yer might say, a concentration of
      total meaning, metaphor, sound pattern, metre rhythm ”

      the organic fallacy. cleanse yourself of that cleanthe brooks stuff.
      A poem is a machine.

  61. A Depression (depressing?) song

    The old gray mare she ain’t where she used to be
    Ain’t where she used to be
    Ain’t where she used to be
    The old gray mare she ain’t where she used to be
    Twenty long years or more

    (Chorus)
    Twenty long years or more
    Twenty long years or more
    The old gray mare she ain’t where she used to be
    Twenty long years or more

    The old gray mare is now in you ravioli
    Gourmet lasagna and meat sause spaghetti
    Leave ‘er on the pasture, ’cause that’s where she oughta be
    Not in your grocery store

    (Chorus)
    Not in your grocery store
    Not in your grocery store
    Leave ‘er on the pasture, ’cause that’s where she oughta be
    Not in your grocery store

    Max

  62. Max,
    As I no longer do plus ones, I’m awardin’ yer a ‘bravo’ instead.
    Hope that will suffice. I do like,
    ‘Leave ‘er in the pasture,’cause that’s where she oughta be’
    Beth.

  63. Lauri Heimonen

    Judith Curry:

    ”So, what does the UK scandal involving horsemeat in lasagna have to do with climate change?”

    As such, both of them are harmless in reality: 1) already more than half a century ago, I pragmatically learned that horsemeat is due food, and 2) in my own scrutiny, I have pragmatically learned that any global warming can not be related to human CO2 emissions.

    As Jim Cripwell says, the climate sensitivity caused by antropogenic CO2 emissions ‘is indistinguishable from zero’. According to the earlier comments of mine, that is true already on the total CO2 increase, and the human share of that is only about 4 %; e.g. comment http://judithcurry.com/2011/08/04/carbon-cycle-questions/#comment-198992 etc.

    The negative attitude to horsemeat and anthropogenic CO2 emissions depends mainly on ideological, social and economical issues.

  64. “As Jim Cripwell says, the climate sensitivity caused by antropogenic CO2 emissions ‘is indistinguishable from zero’. ”

    I agree, so why does everyone shy away from speaking, out loud of some truth, of I.P.C.C.’s dog shit? To hell with the PC. Horsemeat in lasagna, I agree, is revolting but I.P.C.C.’s product is even worse.

  65. Chief Hydrologist

    Euraka!!! Why don’t I change the units if it makes no difference and clarifies without the need for a whole lot of explanation.

    From energy conservation we have:

    Q1 (J) – Q2 (J) = Energy in (J) – energy out (J)

    Where S – in honour of the hydologic equation of storage – is the energy stored in the global system at time t1 and at a later time t2. Effectively planetary warming or cooling. All given in energy units of Joules.

    => dS/dt (J/s) = Power in (J/s) – Power out (J/s)

    It is not claimed that this is a fundamental theoretical breakthrough – merely an expicit but conventional way of thinking about data.

    This is Karina von Schucmann’s ARGO graph – there is a later one available.

    It shows warming in the oceans – and as we all know atmospheric temperatures are flat. It implies that dS/dt is positive and the planet is accumulating energy.

    Here is the SORCE TSI geaph for the period. Power in declined in the period – less energy was incoming. However – making adjustments for geometry – the change is only about 0.25 W/m^2 in the period.

    Here is power out anomalies from Loeb et al 2012.

    Eyeballing it in we get about 1 W/m^2 decrease in global reflected shortwave in the period. This is mostly cloud cover changes – that I think are probably associated with ENSO. See the tropical variability. Emitted infrared is going nowhere. Of course we could do something radical like get the data – and make some calculations. But all you would get out if it at the end of the day – in CERES especially – is trends is anomalies – which are much more accurate than absolute values.

    The warming all happened in shortwave in the period – due to cloud changes. In the longer term there are secular changes in cloud cover that will change again the dynamic energy balance.

    • Actually, if you use W instead of S you don’t have that Joules/K thing to deal with.

      I know that K means something. What could it be?

      • Chief Hydrologist

        Did I have a K capt dallas? I don’t think so. A K I think might be a Kelvin.

        Beats me?

      • You didn’t, but you should have. Entropy has units Joules per degree K, work doesn’t. So while any form you have written has some meaning, you would always have to assume some K if you really were trying to determine S.

        So it is easier just to use Eout =Ein-W like a Carnot Engine. Then W would mean something like keeping an atmosphere expanded, winds circulating, precipitation precipitating etc. Ein=Eout is Telescope Jockey for F__k if I know what is going on. Using Ein=Eout would cause you to neglect S, use anomalies and assume that everything is due to something you kinda of understand instead of trying to figure out everything that is really involved.

      • Chief Hydrologist

        Temperature is used to derive the ocean heat content in Joules – but I agree there are all sorts of other energies involved such such as enthalpy, kinetic, potential none of which neccessarily involves temperatures. I have just lumped these under S for storage – and usually gloss over that there are minor terms that can be neglected when considering temperature changes in respone to energy in and out.

        But wouldn’t we have to call it work and heat – W&H

        d(W&H)/dt = Power in – Power out

        In the equilibrium case Energy in = Energy out and d(W&T) = 0. But should we not generalise to the non-equilibrium state.

        In the case of d(W&H)/dt (it’s a bit clumsy but more complete) > 0 gives energy in > energy out and vice versa. So if we are stuck with anomalies and quite innacurate absolute values – it gives us a starting point. The ocean heat content is the anchor. If the ocean is warming – we can pretty much say that d(W&H)/dt is positive and look for contributing factors in irradiance trends.

        The most intersting result is clouds – and you then look for what changes cloud cover and how knowing that there are secular trends in cloud.
        I would suggest that sea surface temperature is a malor factor.

      • Chief, definitely SST is a major factor. Average ocean temperature is also a major factor. With accurate absolute temperature you could do an entropy balance. Pretty neat actually.

        Of course if you use 14C for a “surface” temperature, things wouldn’t balance :)

      • Chief, The problem with storage is that there is a conversion process required in order to store the energy. No energy conversion process is 100% efficient, how much is lost matters. Since CO2 has a rough magnitude of about 1% of total OLR flux, that is the bar.

        CO2 is applying a radiant resistance, so it would be reducing the entropy of an internal radiant process. Since solar is external, it would be unlikely that CO2 resistance forcing would have the same impact as solar direct forcing. Strike one for the Lamba delta F boys, designing based on 100% efficiency in all processes is a fools game.

        Depending on what you define as Work, the main reason for entropy is cycling. If you can reach a real steady state, you can fine tune efficiency. With a sinusoidal energy applied, RMS should be considered instead of “average”. The solar input is relatively stable, but the ORL value depends on the decay rate from Emax to Emin, not Tave. Since that decay rate determines the diurnal temperature range, likely the best surface index is totally missing in most of the discussions. That index shifted in circa 1985 BTW.

        Now the fun part of this, is that internal natural oscillations are cycles (psuedo-cycles), which would impact the decay rate of OLR and the diurnal temperature range. So natural internal oscillations are in fact a “forcing”. Imagine that :)

      • Chief Hydrologist

        The earth has a certain heat content – and the change is the difference in energy in and out in the period. 100% – as energy is conserved.

        Entropy is not a useful concept in the non-equilibrium system. The production of entropy varies. But the energy out depends only on albedo and IR emissions – and is measured with increasing precision. Data and not speculation.

      • Chief, “Entropy is not a useful concept in the non-equilibrium system. The production of entropy varies.”

        Entropy would vary, that doesn’t mean it may not be useful in a non-equilibrium system. When you have a reduction in variance, you should have a reduction in entropy. Since satellite data is painfully short term, being able to more accurately interpret paleo I would think very useful.

        For example, land base diurnal temperature range decreased from near the start of the instrumental record until roughly 1985. That would indicate that entropy decreased until 1985 and shifted, likely due to the changing rate of ocean heat uptake. Adding energy to the oceans. work, would require a decrease in entropy.

        Since 1985, both DTR and the variance in DTR has increased, indicating an increase in entropy, due to a reduced rate of ocean heat uptake and more energy transfer to the atmosphere.

        If you consider internal transfer work and external entropy, near equilibrium, W=S. You have two values to compare.

      • Chief, in case you are curious,

        Comparing the Galapagoes Tmin and DTR it looks like a major shift occurred prior to 1995. Since the record goes back to 1915, that shift looks like something other than AMO or PDO related. Of course there could be serious instrumental issues, but it is interesting.

  66. Do you ask what the birds say? The Sparrow, the Dove,
    The Linnet and Thrush say, “I love and I love!”
    in the winter they’re silent—the wind is so strong;
    What it says, i don’t know, but it sings a loud song.
    But green leaves, and blossoms, and sunny warm weather,
    And singing, and loving—-all come back together.
    But the Lark is so brimful of gladness and love,
    The green fields below him, the blue sky above,
    That he sings, and he sings; and for ever sings he—
    “I love my Love, and my Love loves me!”

    h/t Samuel Taylor Coleridge, this is the ‘Answer to a Child’s Question’.
    ===============

  67. Horsemeat is good meat so I have trouble with this goofy metaphor. The main reason we no longer slaughter horses is their nobility not their taste.

    • You render me glueless. See A. Bierce, ‘Oil of Dog’.
      =============

    • There are many more chickens and cows alive today than horses because we eat the chickens and cows. If people don’t eat horses, then there is very little reason for horses to be born and no money to provide for them if they are. The internal combustion engine has replaced the horse as a method of transport and a source of energy. Thus, the noble horse is doomed in the long term.

      Those of you that wish to keep the horse should promote the horse as food. This would ensure its survival in large numbers. Look at the acres of rice and wheat planted each year. There would be a lot less of these if we didn’t eat them.

  68. Just for info, late 1964 to late 1966 I saw, in Verdun, France, butcher shops with the depiction of a horse’s head. Supposedly, this indicated horse meat for sale.

    • Indeed, as a horseman I used to go to horse auctions. What we called the cutter/canners were there. Any horse that was not bought for use was bought for slaughter. It was heartbreaking to witness the decisions, horse by horse. I was told that the slaughtered animals went either to Belgium/France in cans or Japan as fresh meat by air. The slaughter of horses for meat is now illegal in America. Not because it is bad meat but because of the nobility of the critter.

    • Bravo. By creating a demand for horses the butcher gives the farmer a reason to breed horses. Otherwise the land will be given over to growing cattle, corn, wheat, etc. Who in their right mind is going to grow horse in any volume simply as toys of the rich? It only makes sense if horses are rare.

  69. Heh, willard, 1.47pm, c’est un climat en enfer :)

  70. Chief Hydrologist

    Beth – yes I thought immediately of willard too.

    ‘Jadis, si je me souviens bien, ma vie était un festin où s’ouvraient tous les coeurs, où tous les vins coulaient.

    Un soir, j’ai assis la Beauté sur mes genoux. – Et je l’ai trouvée amère. – Et je l’ai injuriée.

    Je me suis armé contre la justice.

    Je me suis enfui. O sorcières, ô misère, ô haine, c’est à vous que mon trésor a été confié !

    Je parvins à faire s’évanouir dans mon esprit toute l’espérance humaine. Sur toute joie pour l’étrangler j’ai fait le bond sourd de la bête féroce.

    J’ai appelé les bourreaux pour, en périssant, mordre la crosse de leurs fusils. J’ai appelé les fléaux, pour m’étouffer avec le sable, avec le sang. Le malheur a été mon dieu. Je me suis allongé dans la boue. Je me suis séché à l’air du crime. Et j’ai joué de bons tours à la folie.

    And springtime brought me the frightful laugh of an idiot.’

    Une Saison en Enfer – Rimbaud is the limit of my French and so rusty.

  71. Chief, ranimes dams ton esprit l’esperance humane.Sur toute joie
    dans tous les saisons.
    (My French was always rusty, lol.) BC

    • Eh oui – ça se rouille.

      (Et pour ça il faut boire du vin et ne jamais de l’eau, parce que ça rouille aussi)

  72. Chief Hydrologist

    In joy revive humanities hope indeed. Let them eat skippy.

    A recipe for roo bourguignon –

    First catch your skippy…

    • Emincé de “roo” à la sauce “Shiraz”

      Brown “roo” chunks in lard in a skillet and remove when brown.

      Add a bit of flour and stir to make “roo roux”

      When “roo roux” is light brown, slosh in ¾ cup of Hunter Valley Shiraz and stir until “roo roux” is dissolved (while drinking rest of bottle, to keep it from going to waste)

      Put chunks back into “roo” sauce and simmer for 25 minutes or until meat is edible.

      Serve with freshly deep-fried chips and a new bottle of Shiraz.

      Bon appétit!

  73. I’m all fer literature that’s food fer the spirit, oh incorrigible larrikin.
    … Robert Frost fer example anf fer a bit of bite, e e cummings.

  74. If there’s anything more boorish than the attitude of the French about their language, it’s people trying to out-pretentious each other by posting to show their French skills in the comments of a climate blog.

    Yeah, yeah – rendezvous, ménage à trois, voulez-vous coucher avec moi ce soir? c’est la vie, oh là là, à la mode, comme si comme sa, aide-de-camp, papier mâché, nouvelle cuisine , bon voyage, cinéma vérité, déjà vu, foie gras.

    There. Now was that? Pretty impressive, huh?

    • Chief Hydrologist

      You will find that the original statement – that started all this – were deliberate parodies that I am sure would not amuse pedantic French. Something to do with hats and a woefull Aussie parody of ‘c’est magnifique, mais ce n’est pas la guerre: c’est de la folie’. To the efffect that it is magnificent but not the railway station – in French hardly recognisable as such.

      I fail aso to see how copying a few lines of a Season in Hell – that I struggle to interpret – means much at all. On the other hand – Rimbaud was a visionary poet who still gives me goosebumps when I am old and should know better.

      You on the other hand seem more the harbinger of the eschatological promise bursting like a new and frightening dawn on the world.

      • Jut teasin’ ya’ Chief. Don’t get so upset. The alarmism is cute, however.

      • Chief Hydrologist

        Josh,

        As I explained somewhere else – it is a combination of dangnabitness and insousiance. Irritability and going to bed without my dinner.

        Eschatological promises bursting like a new and frightening dawn on the consciousness of humanity is one of my finer lines – although in my advanced Alzheimer’s I do get it confused with scatological and end up with a smelly hat and not the end of the world at all.

        But to mistake it for the curmudeonly – is to miss entirely the purpose. Sometimes it is to talk all sciency, sometimes it is just a game I play for fun, sometimes I just like to hear myself talk. But for the latter – you know that I am not talking to you but past you.

        C’est la vie.

    • Alexej Buergin

      As the riding instructor used to say: “Il faut les aimer jusqu’au bout”. And that includes eating them.

    • Alexej Buergin

      If you should ever visit Max, just avoid the “Pferdemetzgerei”.

      • Alexej

        Yeah. It used to be that horse meat could only be sold be special butchers (as you indicate).

        According to new food laws it is now available in both Switzerland and Germany in regular food markets (COOP, Edeka, for example). Price is about the same as beef.

        It must be clearly marked “Pferdefleisch” (and the scandal of unmarked lasagna containing horse meat of doubtful origin has also hit Switzerland and Germany).

        Max

    • Alexej Buergin

      More boorish is the attitude of the Vatican. It took them three tries to get the declaration of the resignation of the pope right. They use Latin.

  75. C’est la vie, Joshua, mon ami, toujours des jeux.

    Beth the pretentious cow girl – comme on dites en anglais.

  76. “This Climate Change Burger Contains HorseShzt” was the title Josh couldn’t print.

  77. Chief Hydrologist

    I had an idea that my eschatological interests were inspired – in some dim past – by Henry Miller. One of America’s great literary stylists. Certainly Miller – Nexus found at 15 years old on a railway bookstall while looking for dirty books – changed my life. The works of Miller introduced me to an immense literary banquet. Homer, Cervantes, Rebelais. Saint-Exupéry and John Cowper-Powys. Dostoevsky and Celine. Whitman and Rimbaud.

    Miller had an eschatological preoccupation – but I don’t think I actually stole the line. But while googling I came across this.

    Eschatology – will I have time to finish lunch. Now there’s a line worth stealing. It combines 2 of my 3 most favourite things. What seems incredible, however, is that they they have food modes on cameras these days.

    Eschatology, will I have time to finish lunch?

  78. Pingback: Manzo, Cavallo, Topi, Lasagne e propaganda climatica | Climatemonitor

  79. Walking by the river, today, Joshua , got ter thinking about ‘play.’
    Hmm …I’d say that here at JC’s e-salon, under the playful title of
    ‘The horsemeat argument’ is a serious discussion about ends
    justifying means.

    JC’s e-salon… not quite the French salon of polish and politesse,
    peut-etre, therer’s a certain sturdy Swiss and UK democratic
    robustness here and a certain roughness of debate by some of
    the new world denizens from the Americas and OZ. But don’t be
    fooled by the jokes and irreverence, the play is serious and
    problem based. Coming out of multiple threads over a couple of
    years, drawing on outside sources and denizens’ professional
    experience, is a serious discussion of ‘what can we *know* of
    climate’s underlying physics or of its behavior as an interactive
    system? Part of the enquiry involves what do we understand of
    climate’s past hstory, and its possible future state, unprecedented
    warming or will the ice-man cometh, quick, (or slow?)

    How best ter respond ter what-may-come-out- of left-field? Fifty
    year platonic planning or innovative no regrets action? Here at
    JC’s e-salon there’s a range of experience brought ter the discussion
    of changing climate and human adaptability to inevitable surprises
    from tricky Nature.. We got experienced scientists, engineers,
    economists , mathematicians, physicians … From Oz alone, denizens experienced in policy advice and water management.

    here at JC’s e-salon, Socrates agora. Experience and wit, we got kim!
    Who can say that this often playful discussion has no effect, can have
    no effect,willhave no effect beyond the blogosphere.
    As mysterious climate …
    so mysterious meme change.

    One of the serfs.

    • In the middle ages, BC, when someone mindlessly threw their slops out the window onto the pavement and it landed on passers-by, there were two possible reactions depending on personality: indignation, and sh*t happens.

      Today we mindlessly toss CO2 up into the atmosphere. I see no difference in the diversity of reactions, do you?

      • Vaughan, practice what you preach. Stop using cars. Stop travelling by planes. Stop using fossil fuelled electricity. Stop using computers.

        In short, stop being a hypocrite.

      • Vaughan Pratt | February 15, 2013 at 2:33 am said: ”In the middle ages, BC, when someone mindlessly threw their slops out the window onto the pavement”

        Vaughn, stop using vehicles and planes – start using a horse – when the horse gets too old – you can have him in your lasagna, instead of junkyards pollution.

        2; for you CO2 is a pollution, but for the vegetation is essential food and survival – feeding the vegetation, trees, crops with the essential food as CO2 &H2O, CO2, is the most noble thing to do. indirectly is helping all the critters in the animal kingdom. the Red Rats like you, refuse to acknowledge the reality; but the reality will catch up with you.

      • Chief Hydrologist

        Vaughan old buddy – Je chie dans votre chapeau. We have workshopped it and are now gramatically – if not politically – correct.

        I advise you to go long in aluminium foil.

      • Free range, pantry fed
        Red Rats in the bouillabaisse.
        Don’t shout, wave about.
        ================

      • Shawl of red pepper,
        Dash of the black, and tan salt.
        A dynamite dish.
        ===========

      • Venter

        You’d have to add to the list for Vaughan:

        “stop exhaling”

        (And I’d add: “stop extrapolating”)

        Max

      • Perhaps Vaughan the only thing for you to do is to join Paul Erlich for a drink and cry into your beer.

        Your indignation is more like hypocracy.

      • I seem to have touched a nerve. Nurse, more novocaine please.

    • A good characterisation Beth. Everyone has a worthwhile contribution to make. Its a matter of individual judgment as to whom contributes more positively to the debate but I know my favorites and try to keep up with them.

      As an aside, I wonder how so many of them can spend so long at their computers without any ill-effects that I can detect, apart from the ad homs.

  80. INteresting discussion. But, as a side note, the bit about mouse vs human genomic response was taken,by the NYT, out of context, and could apply to climate changes in other ways than was suggested. I.e. is the genomic response to infection entirely different in mice, or is the genomic response in rigorously controlled conditions different than the genomic response in the messy reality of human disease. The treatments that are effective in sepsis are mostly supportive and preventative, not interventional. Which is similar in mice. That A leads to B leads to C, and C is bad, does not mean that eliminating B willmean less C. Sometimes getting rid of B causes more C. Because sepsis is nonlinear.
    If, say, a butterfly flapping its wings in China causes a tornado in Texas, then, obviously, killing all the butteflies in China will prevent any tornadoes in Texas. And if too much acidity in the septic patient means greater mortality, then simply giving bicarbonate to counteract the acidity will prevent mortality. Except, it doesn’t, as most medical students know.
    The mouse model may be problematic in many ways, but to imply that we would find a definitive cure for sepsis by using the right model I think is wrong. Now, whether or not C02 will be proven to be the primary and only signficant driver of climate– well, neither Joshua or I know the answer to that. But I’m “skeptical.”

  81. Carbon VP? I guess I agree with chemist, Primo Levi, final chapter
    of ‘The Periodic Table,’ that it is a fundamental element of all living
    things. We’re not talking about soot or throwing s..t out of windows
    here VP. When didja last read Primo Levi’s sublime chapter? Chiefio
    also has some very interesting estimations on carbon starvation in plants
    as well.
    A bientot, VP )

    • Enhancing the feeble concentrations of the life-giving elixir for all plants (and hence all life on our planet) by our precious exhalations and emissions…

      Almost sounds poetic, but VP sees it as tossing filth out the window.

      Give the guy a course in biology (and another one in logic).

      Max

  82. Yes Max, life giving elixir. Now what do I need today? Some carbon,
    wine, water, a hamburger and song! Oh, and a bit of that poetry
    Mosh describes as some sort of machine. )
    Beth

    • A fan of *MORE* discourse

      The hungry Sheep look up, and are not fed,
      But swoln with wind, and the rank mist they draw,
      Rot inwardly, and foul contagion spread:
      Besides what the grim Woolf with privy paw
      Daily devours apace, and nothing sed,

      But that two-handed engine at the door,
      Stands ready to smite once, and smite no more.

      Beth Cooper, doesn’t good poetry amount to grace in service of truth … not grace in service of beauty?

      \scriptstyle\rule[2.25ex]{0.01pt}{0.01pt}\,\boldsymbol{\overset{\scriptstyle\circ\wedge\circ}{\frown}\,\diamondsuit\,{\displaystyle\text{\bfseries???}}\,\diamondsuit\,\overset{\scriptstyle\circ\wedge\circ}{\frown}}\ \rule[-0.25ex]{0.01pt}{0.01pt}

    • Beauty is truth is beauty. Ascribing truth and deep metaphysical meaning to ugly deconstructionism is one of the mental pathologies of untreated hysteria and lysteria. Heal Thyself.

    • Chief Hydrologist

      To quote from Wikipedia on sheep look up,

      ‘With the rise of a corporation-sponsored government, pollution in big cities has reached extreme levels and most (if not all) people’s health has been affected in some way. Continuing the style used in Stand on Zanzibar, there is a multi-strand narrative and many characters in the book never meet each other; some characters only appear in one or two vignettes. Similarly, instead of chapters, the book is broken up into sections which range from thirty words in length to several pages. The character of Austin Train in The Sheep Look Up serves a similar purpose to Xavier Conroy in The Jagged Orbit or to Chad Mulligan in Stand on Zanzibar: He is an academic who, despite predicting and interpreting social change, has become disillusioned by the failure of society to listen. This character is used both to drive the plot and to explain back-story to the reader.

      By the end of the book rioting and civil unrest sweep the United States, due to a combination of poor health, poor sanitation, lack of food, lack of services, ineffectiveness of services (medical, policing), disillusionment with government/companies, oppressive government, civil unrest, high incidence of birth defects (pollution-induced), and other factors; all services (military, government, private, infrastructure) break down.’

      It’s a seventies sort of thing. Stand on Zanzibar is my favourite over-population novel and it is a precursor to cyberpunk which is my all time favourite sci-fi sub-genre.

      Milton’s poem is in a different context of course – http://www.dartmouth.edu/~milton/reading_room/lycidas/ – but parallels can be found of the Catholic Church with corporatism if you look hard enough.

      But FOMBS’s entire approach is deconstuctionist and it all depends on the truth you are looking for. Real science and real political realities are far more complex and poised between a cooling world and a nonlinear climate system.

      • It’s a seventies sort of thing. Stand on Zanzibar is my favourite over-population novel and it is a precursor to cyberpunk which is my all time favourite sci-fi sub-genre.

        Really? You surprise me. The problem with cyberpunk is that there isn’t much of it, and the best remains Gibson’s early work. I met him a couple of times in the early 90s (once with Bruce Sterling while they were promoting The Difference Engine). A charming, clever man. Sterling is slightly crazed – he is as he writes.

    • haha. back in the 80s I used to post poems on my office door in the literature department that my computer had composed. It was a very creative machine. Surrealist genre. later it would
      be trained to write haikus.. sonnets where tougher. maybe someday I’ll return to that work.

      • “The most important thing in art is The Frame. For painting: literally; for other arts: figuratively– because, without this humble appliance, you can’t know where The Art stops and The Real World begins. You have to put a ‘box’ around it because otherwise, what is that shit on the wall?”
        ― Frank Zappa

      • Chief Hydrologist

        there may be a ghost in the machine but not a poet

      • Heinrich,
        Zappa was correct. See Morse Peckham for more on the framing issue.
        There is no inherent property that “picks out” art. Warhol understood the framing concept as did william carlos williams

      • Chief thany for getting the point of my experiments. you are the first to actually get it. The broader thesis was that it is impossible to distil out the individual contribution to a work.. basically the language itself speaks through the speaker, the culture speaks through him, and expression is constrained and informed by these and does not have complete mastery.

    • A fan of *MORE* discourse

      Chief Hydrologist concludes a [very literate!] comment: “… It all depends on the truth you are looking for.”

      Chief, it was surprising that your (admirably clear) comment closed with a remark so redolent of Karl Rove’s infamously deconstructionist assertion We’re an empire now, and when we act, we create our own reality.”

      As we now appreciate, Karl Rove was dead-wrong.

      In regard to climate-change (as in regard to Iraq/Afghanistan) reality has the final word:

      (1)  if the Earth’s energy imbalance is sustained, then

      (2)  temperatures and sea-levels will rise in which case

      (3)  our children will pay a heavy price.

      These three scientific realities can’t be “deconstructed”, can they, Chief Hydrologist?

      ————–

      Conclusion  It’s as simple as 1,2,3:  AGW is real, serious, and accelerating.

      \scriptstyle\rule[2.25ex]{0.01pt}{0.01pt}\,\boldsymbol{\overset{\scriptstyle\circ\wedge\circ}{\smile}\,\diamond\,{\displaystyle\text{\bfseries!!!}}\,\diamond\,\overset{\scriptstyle\circ\wedge\circ}{\smile}}\ \rule[-0.25ex]{0.01pt}{0.01pt}

      • “a remark so redolent of Karl Rove’s infamously deconstructionist assertion “We’re an empire now, and when we act, we create our own reality.”

        Actually, using that quote shows one to be a shameless liar.
        This isn’t the first case of using fictitious quotes to attack someone ‘let them eat cake’ is more famous. However, it is quite clear that people who peddle the Rove ‘Reality’ quote know there is no way that Rove would say such a thing to a journalist like Ron Suskind.

      • Chief Hydrologist

        FOMBS,

        Be assured that I was referring to you rather than Karl Rove. Your simple ‘truths’ are far less that the reality of either climate or politics – poised between a cooling world and a non-linear climate as I said.

        Energy imbalance?

        d(W&H)/dt = Power in – Power out

        Where W&H is planetary work and heat – with all terms in J/s.

        Power in changes very little. We can see clearly that Power out is where most of the energy imbalance manifests – and this happened in CERES almost entirely in SW. This is even more prominent in ERBS and ISCCP-FD data with substantial warming in SW and cooling in IR. The most obvious cause is a secular change of cloud cover in the periods realated to variability in ocean and atmospheric circulation.

        Temperature and Sea Level?

        We have seen decadal variability warming and cooling alternatiely. We are currently in a cool mode and unlikely to see any warming over a decade or three more. This involves changes in the PDO, ENSO, SAM, NAM, AMO, etc in which is involved a multitude of cloud, snow, ice, dust, vegetatin, hydrology, MOC,… feedbacks. Beyond the decadal variability is centennial and millenial variability seen in Bond Events and involving these same mechanisms. We have long term proxies for these things – up to 11,000 years for ENSO.

        The most likely source of large scale climate instability this century seems to be hydrological changes driving salinity changes in the North Atlantic – with the potential for bifurcation between climate states. But there are many equilibria in the climate state space.

        Our children will pay a heavy price?

        They could well do so as there is the potential for surprises arising from the non-linear nature of the system. Future climate shifts may be mild or they may be extreme. There is no a priori way of knowing – you may argue one way or the other but it is an argument from ignorance.

        Appropriate policy response?

        Climate pragmatism – http://thebreakthrough.org/blog/Climate_Pragmatism_web.pdf – a workable way forward rather than the failures of the past and present.

        One of the most important ways forward for many reasons is ‘conservation agriculture.’

        Feeding the world and sequestering carbon – http://www.fao.org/ag/ca/ – good news for all.

        Conservation agriculture makes production sense for both big and small farmers – as opposed to the nonsense we have seen up to now – aye FOMBS?

      • A fan of *MORE* discourse

        DocMartyn claims  “There is no way that Rove would say [‘We create our own reality’] to a journalist like Ron Suskind.”

        LOL … DocMartyn, cognitive scientists have not yet detected any bounds to the foolishness that political ideologues will say (and even believe) to make themselves feel better.

        Hasn’t history established that fact plainly, DocMartyn?

        \scriptstyle\rule[2.25ex]{0.01pt}{0.01pt}\,\boldsymbol{\overset{\scriptstyle\circ\wedge\circ}{\smile}\,\heartsuit\,{\displaystyle\text{\bfseries???}}\,\heartsuit\,\overset{\scriptstyle\circ\wedge\circ}{\smile}}\ \rule[-0.25ex]{0.01pt}{0.01pt}

      • Did you watch it? I watched it live.
        Did you see that he stated that it was too early to call with the data he had?
        He stated that the modeling suggested that until some votes came in it was too early to call and that he was getting his data from the website of the State.
        What Rove didn’t know is that FOX were getting a direct feed and so were able to project using a superior dataset to that he was using.
        The moment that Rove had the same data, he called the state for Obama and accepted Romney had lost.

        Rove behaved in a completely reasonable manner.

        If I were to state what I think of you and you stupid, siht-stirring posts I would be banned. I have almost given up posting here because of you, your falsifying data. your deliberate lying and misrepresentation and your linkage of skepticism with either stupidity, evil or paid propaganda.

        You are close to being the lowest form of life, a liar and a cad.

      • A fan of *MORE* discourse

        DocMartyn  “I have almost given up posting here because of you [FOMD], your falsifying data. your deliberate lying and misrepresentation and your linkage of skepticism with either stupidity, evil or paid propaganda. You [FOMD] are close to being the lowest form of life, a liar and a cad.”

        Gosh … only *close* to being the lowest?

        DocMartyn, please tell Climate Etc who *is* the lowest!

        \scriptstyle\rule[2.25ex]{0.01pt}{0.01pt}\,\boldsymbol{\overset{\scriptstyle\circ\wedge\circ}{\smile}\,\heartsuit\,{\displaystyle\text{\bfseries???}}\,\heartsuit\,\overset{\scriptstyle\circ\wedge\circ}{\smile}}\ \rule[-0.25ex]{0.01pt}{0.01pt}

        My guesses for “lowest of the low” are:

           • Jane Goodall
           • Pope Benedict
           • James Hansen
           • Wendell Berry
           • Ed Wilson

        The envelope please … (drum roll) … and the DocMartyn “most evil” award-winner is … WENDELL BERRY!

      • Did you see that he stated that it was too early to call with the data he had?

        Even for Climate Etc., that is quite impressive. Here is a direct quote from the clip:

        It’s going to be a Republican victory.

        I love you guys!

      • Joshua, you are aware that the clip has been put together to make Rove look stupid by taking statements he made during the course of the evening and the early morning?

      • More Romney:

        “I predict Mr. Romney will win FL (29), NC (15), VA (13), NH (4), OH (18), IA (6), CO (9) and Mr. Obama will get MN (10), NV (6), WI (10), MI (16), PA (20).

        “This brings Mr. Romney to 285 Electoral College votes and Mr. Obama to 253.

        But wait! He acknowledges uncertainty. Maybe he realizes that Romney won’t squeak out a victory after all??

        “For example, while I put them in Mr. Obama’s column, I still believe NV, WI, and PA are in play and very winnable for Mr. Romney. If crowds at his recent stops in these states are any indication of his supporters’ enthusiasm, Mr. Romney will likely be able to claim victory in these states as well.”

        Wait – but that was only on one occasion. Maybe if he had time to think it through clearly, to reason it out carefully, and put his thoughts down in..oh… I don’t know, a Wall Street Journal editorial, or something like that?

        My prediction: Sometime after the cock crows on the morning of Nov. 7, Mitt Romney will be declared America’s 45th president. Let’s call it 51%-48%, with Mr. Romney carrying at least 279 Electoral College votes, probably more.

        http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052970204846304578090820229096046.html

        Oh. My sides.

      • Doc –

        Joshua, you are aware that the clip has been put together to make Rove look stupid by taking statements he made during the course of the evening and the early morning?

        What I did notice is that the editing makes it a bit unclear what the antecedent was when he predicts a “Republican victory.” He may have been referring to a county vote and not Ohio

        But in another clip, he goes face to face and hears the analysis of those who were predicting a Romney loss, and he basically says that he doesn’t care what their data is, he still thinks it wasn’t sufficient for a projection.

        That is different than your characterization of him simply not having the data available. He discounted the statistical modeling that turned out to be correct. He was wrong.

      • A fan of *MORE* discourse

        DocMartyn  “The clip has been put together to make Rove look stupid.”

        Overoptimism on election day? Mere benign mendacity … to be expected from any ideology-driven politician.

        Shipping 363 tons of $100-bills to Baghdad in service of goofy free-market war-winning fantasies?

        Not just Karl Rove, but the entire Bush White House was totally out-of-touch with reality. And so many American families lost much *more* than money, in that ill-conceived ill-planned war.

        Aren’t those the evident facts of the case, DocMartyn?

        \scriptstyle\rule[2.25ex]{0.01pt}{0.01pt}\,\boldsymbol{\overset{\scriptstyle\circ\wedge\circ}{\frown}\,\clubsuit\,{\displaystyle\text{\bfseries???}}\,\clubsuit\,\overset{\scriptstyle\circ\wedge\circ}{\frown}}\ \rule[-0.25ex]{0.01pt}{0.01pt}

      • A real sceptic accepts the evidence and changes their opinion accordingly. A real sceptic would now accept that Fan’s comments were quite reasonable. Heck they might even apologise for some hasty remarks.

        A real sceptic.

        Not sure we’ll see DocMartyn back here doing any of those things.

      • How would a dribbling-at-the-mouth truebeliever like yourself have the fainest idea about scepticism ?

      • Vassily,

        Yes, I’m a true believer – in the sense that I have a justified true belief in AGW. But that’s entirely rational and sceptical.

        The funny thing about the self-described climate ‘skeptics’ is the absolute certainty they routinely express in matters which are at the very least doubtful.

  83. Steve Mosher, I think you’re providing useful information on Richard Muller’s state of mind, information that most of us did not know. And it makes sense to call him a converted skeptic. But I also think it’s fair to say that the media is presenting a false picture of what happened; his skepticism about one detail of the CAGW presentation in no way means that “any skeptic who learns a little bit about the subject will come to agree with the consensus”. There are a number of things that have to be true for the CAGW consensus, ranging all the way from temperature measurements to economics forecasts and political science, and there are skeptics doubting each of them. For example, I think Muller remains a “skeptic” on the question of whether it makes sense for the US to try to cut down its CO2 emissions; he thinks that just isn’t going to make a difference compared to the developing world. And so too for many other points. I heard a really neat radio interview where these two environmentalists were bitterly disappointed to hear Muller tell them, in no uncertain terms, that they remained dead wrong on virtually every issue they thought he had joined them on – extreme weather events, fracking, hockey stick, etc. It was a lot of fun.

    So I think Judith Curry’s point remains: The media is presenting a false picture of what “one learns from Richard Muller”.

    • Mike I think part of the problem is the conflatiion of two concepts:
      1. skepticism as a method.
      2. skepticism as a position.

      The first is rather well defined, and I think Muller, like most scientists and many here follow a skeptical method more or less. It is instructive to watch people who take a “skeptical” position against CAGW, drop their skeptical methods when it comes to things they believe in. So, they accept Popper without doubt, Feynman without doubt. They accept their philosophical version of the scientific method without doubt. They make strong claims about C02 having no effect. They make non skeptical claims about the MWP, the LIA, they believe in CGR without practicing the skeptical method. They buy Willis’ “thunderstorm” hypothesis without doubt. in short they are SELECTIVE in their application of the method. One minute doubting peer review, the next minute demanding it. One minute doubting models, the next minute using them. One minute demanding “measurement” the next minute accepting UHA. One minute doubting the temperature record, the next minute using it to show the impact of jupiter on our climate. One minute, doubting the satillite version of arctic ice, the next minute accepting reconstructions of arctic ice based on driftwood or ice rafted debris. Very few people practice the skeptical method in everything. I could just as easily show how folks who accept the consensus view dont follow the skeptical method. Thinking mcintyre is an Oil shill, we all know the list.

      The second, AGW skepticism as a ‘position’ is much harder to define and this is where Muller’s “conversion” meme becomes important. In the past I was fond of saying : “one can believe in climate science and also believe that hide the decline was wrong” or One can beleive in the temperature record and still disbelieve in AGW.. or one can accept some role for C02 and still be a skeptic. Or one can believe in a large role for C02 and think that mitigation is the wrong approach.. Let me put it a differnt way. I find Muller interesting not because of the “conversion’ meme, but rather because he illustrates why the conversion meme is confused. He illustrates by example that our categories are dysfunctional, that they categories have become weapons in a rhetorical war rather than tools that improve communication.

      • Steven Mosher

        You make a good case for two forms of “skepticism”, going into a lot of specific detail on pieces of the overall CAGW premise.

        But I think you miss the key part of what rational (or scientific) skepticism really means.

        It has been defined by Wiki (and others), so I won’t repeat that.

        It is an integral part of the scientific method (nothing “selective” about that, Steven).

        Both Feynman and Popper have discussed it.

        And it very simply states that any hypothesis remains an uncorroborated hypothesis until it can be validated by empirical scientific evidence (such as from real-time physical observations or reproducible experimentation), OR until it is falsified by such empirical evidence.

        To date the IPCC CAGW hypothesis (as outlined in its AR4 report) has neither been corroborated nor falsified by empirical evidence, so it remains an uncorroborated hypothesis, nothing more.

        Now to the second part, which is more personal.

        Everyone has his/her own “BS meter” or “sanity test”. If a premise passes this first test, it is often accepted a priori without going through the formal “scientific method”. If not, the second step comes in. This is human nature.

        If, for example, some one tells me that the average distance to the moon is 380,000 km, I take their word for it. If, on the other hand, they tell me it’s 2,000 km, I say “wait a minute – where are the data to support that?”

        “Doomsday predictions” usually do not pass my “BS meter” (simply because every single one of them has always been wrong, i.e. there has been no “doomsday”).

        The CAGW premise as outlined by IPCC in AR4 is one of these premises that got rejected by the “BS meter” and requires the second formal step before I (as a rational skeptic) am prepared to accept it.

        The “null hypothesis” is that GHGs have zero (= “null”) impact on our global temperature, so it’s up to those who propose something else to falsify the “null hypothesis” with empirical scientific evidence (Popper).

        And, even further, it is up to those who propose the IPCC CAGW hypothesis to corroborate this hypothesis with empirical scientific evidence (Feynman).

        Actually very simple, Mosh.

        And so far the hypothesis has not been corroborated.

        Max

      • Max, you write “And so far the hypothesis has not been corroborated.”

        Actually, Max, it is far worse than that. With current technology, it is impossible to corrobate CAGW with empirical evidence. It cannot be done. And people with names like Watson, Houghton, and Hansen must know that it cannot be done. Maybe even Steven Mosher knows that it is impossible.

        What the IPCC should have said in it’s first report, is that until CAGW can be corroborated with empirical evidence, we must conclude that physics cannot tell us what happens when more CO2 is added to the at atmosphere from current levels.

        That would have been the correct scientific statement.

      • manaker

        you are insufficiently skeptical of your account of skepticism.

        But I think you miss the key part of what rational (or scientific) skepticism really means.

        “And it very simply states that any hypothesis remains an uncorroborated hypothesis until it can be validated by empirical scientific evidence (such as from real-time physical observations or reproducible experimentation), OR until it is falsified by such empirical evidence..

        1. No hypothesis is ever validated.
        2. No hypothesis is ever falsified.

        Evidence either
        A) confirms
        B) disconfirms
        C) is neutral

        with respect to a hypothesis under test.

        When an observation is in conflict with a hypothesis ( hint it always is)
        You have three choices:

        A) stop using the theory
        B) question the observation.
        C) modify the theory.

        Even Popper came to recognize this. if you look at what scientists do scientifically, rather than PRESCRIPTIVELY, that is, if you observe what scientistist DO rather then telling them what they should do, you will find that they don’t actually practice “falsification”. No theory, no hypothesis faces evidence in isolation. That’s because theories are interconnected and you cannot determine merely on inspection where the problem is.

        Let’s do a thought experiment. I build a model of how a bomb falls from a plane to the earth. I use netwons laws of motion. My hypothesis is that the bomb will take 36 seconds to hit. I test this. My observations indicate the bomb took 45 seconds to hit. Well, there you have it
        Newtons laws are falsified. But we dont do this. yet the logic of falsification says we should. Why dont we? Well because netwons laws are hard to give up. It would involve a huge amount of work, a bunch of other physics would have to change. So, we assume that the problem must lie elsewhere. Check that data again! or check the parts of your model that dont involve newtons laws. The point is this: there is no simple way to ISOLATE a hypothesis from all other physics or theory to test it. And data can always be wrong. When the difference between hypothesis and data gets really small, really really small, we call that mismatch “error” and we stop questioning the hypothesis. The hypothesis is not validated. It can never be validated. In practice people stop questioning it. They lose interest in challenging it.

        So, like many others who drone on about falsification, you are not being scientiific about falsification. Popper was PRESCRIBING what he thought scientists should do, rather than describing scientifically what they really do, the practices that work. So, if you are more skeptical about your account of how science “works” you will see that both feynman and Popper were not being scientific about science.

        So, while you promote a view of what the scientific method is, you at the same time dont use the very method you proscribe. That is, you dont question your account of the scientific method.

        here is some reading, from one perspective.

        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Duhem%E2%80%93Quine_thesis

        Here is some more from a radically different perspective

        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Feyerabend,_Paul_K.

        “Feyerabend was also critical of falsificationism. He argued that no interesting theory is ever consistent with all the relevant facts. This would rule out using a naïve falsificationist rule which says that scientific theories should be rejected if they do not agree with known facts. Feyerabend uses several examples, but “renormalization” in quantum mechanics provides an example of his intentionally provocative style: “This procedure consists in crossing out the results of certain calculations and replacing them by a description of what is actually observed. Thus one admits, implicitly, that the theory is in trouble while formulating it in a manner suggesting that a new principle has been discovered” Against Method. p. 61. Such jokes are not intended as a criticism of the practice of scientists. Feyerabend is not advocating that scientists do not make use of renormalization or other ad hoc methods. Instead, he is arguing that such methods are essential to the progress of science for several reasons. One of these reasons is that progress in science is uneven. For instance, in the time of Galileo, optical theory could not account for phenomena that were observed by means of telescopes. So, astronomers who used telescopic observation had to use ad hoc rules until they could justify their assumptions by means of optical theory.”

        The point is rather simple. You dont practice what you preach.

      • “No hypothesis is ever falsified.”

        Does that mean that the Earth might still be the center of the universe?

      • Steven Mosher

        Thanks for your long explanation, but I think we are going in circles here.

        Rational (or scientific) skepticism is what it is – it is a key part of the scientific process.

        The CAGW hypothesis of IPCC does not pass the test of the rational skeptic.

        It, therefore remains an uncorroborated hypothesis in the scientific sense.

        That is my position as a rational skeptic.

        Your position that no hypothesis is ever either validated or falsified is simply a side track.

        Granted, nothing is ever permanent is science. There is ALWAYS the chance that even a hypothesis, which was assumed to have been corroborated by empirical data becomes falsified through new data or a closer look. As a matter of fact, that is what is happening to CAGW now.

        CAGW is in a bit of a pickle today. The hypothesis depends not only on a perceptible GH effect on our climate (which has not yet been demonstrated by empirical data as Jim Cripwell correctly states), but also on a 2xCO2 climate sensitivity, which is high enough to potentially result in GH warming, which could lead to catastrophic consequences (as outlined by IPCC in its AR4 report), which is even further from being corroborated by empirical data (and is actually being falsified by recent observation-based estimates).

        IOW, the “science is NOT settled” .

        You can hem and haw all you want to Steven, but those are the facts today.

        Who knows? Someone might actually present the empirical evidence to either corroborate or falsify the “null hypothesis” or CAGW in the next few years, and then we would have a new ball game.

        But, as it stands today, the CAGW hypothesis has not yet been corroborated by empirical data, and is therefore on a shaky scientific foundation. Show me the empirical evidence, rather than wordy rationalizations why I don’t need to see this evidence or don’t understand the scientific method.

        Any costly mitigation actions, which are being proposed on the basis of this uncorroborated hypothesis, should be put on hold until the hypothesis can be corroborated by empirical scientific data.

        The ball is in the court of the scientists who are supporting (or promoting) the CAGW premise – they still have their homework to do.

        Max

      • One might think that following and describing, what scientists do might equally well result in describing what they do wrong as what they do right, but then the focus can be changed from what they do to what they have done when they have produced the most valuable results, and to the related question of what they should be doing in order to have the opportunity to have also those moments that produce the most valuable results.

        Rather than trying to define, what science is, we should try to tell, how we can maintain best the process of science as a process that leads to better and better understanding of the world.

      • Pekka

        I agree with your philosophical position.

        We do not have to “redefine science”. It’s well enough defined as it is.

        Max

      • To date the IPCC CAGW hypothesis (as outlined in its AR4 report) has neither been corroborated nor falsified by empirical evidence, so it remains an uncorroborated hypothesis, nothing more.

        But it has been falsified – Carbon Dioxide lags temperature rises by around 800 years. It plays no part in driving global warming into interglacials which really are dramatic rises in global temps and dramatic rises in sea levels..

        ..in ever recurring cycles.

        No one can seriously claim he is a scientist who can’t see the absurdity of claiming carbon dioxide drives temperatures when all empirical data show it to be an effect not a cause.

        The AGW Greenhouse Effect is created out of deliberately faked fisics because this lag falsifies the claim – trickery is the only way it can still be touted as if it exists.

        “Gore had Cause and Effect Reversed

        By Robert Ashworth, Nasif Nahle and Hans Schreuder

        10 May 11 – In Al Gore’s presentation of his “Inconvenient Truth” documentary, he conveniently separated the Vostok Ice core temperature and CO2 graphs so you could not see which came first, a warming spike or a CO2 spike. He said that a CO2 spike came first but alas, it was the just the opposite as shown in the Vostok Ice Core graph below.”

        http://www.iceagenow.com/Gore_had_Cause_and_Effect_Reversed.htm

        Gore separated the lines in a magicians sleight of hand distraction, I’ve seen several examples where the graph was deliberately reversed to make it appear that carbon dioxide drove the warming, such as here:

        “The Gore/David/Shakun Connection
        Posted on April 8, 2012 by Steven Goddard
        Al Gore’s partner, Laurie David , produced this fraudulent Vostok graph in her children’s book – which reversed the relationship between temperature and CO2.

        “Now Shakun comes along and tries to do the same thing in Nature Magazine, and then claims that he has “vindicated Al Gore” Why would a scientist even mention Al Gore, much less go to the press and claim that he has vindicated him?

        Something appears to be seriously amiss and transparently corrupt about Shakun’s paper.”

        http://www.real-science.com/the-goredavidshakun-connection

        FALSIFIED.

        The AGW Greenhouse Effect is a science fraud. The items of skullduggery in its catalogue grows every day – why would any scientist or anyone interested in science choose to ignore this?

        How can anyone ignore the crass stupidity of these trick arguments for the Greenhouse Effect?

        This is not a science body and this is not written by a scientist:

        “One of the most remarkable aspects of the paleoclimate record is the strong correspondence between temperature and the concentration of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere observed during the glacial cycles of the past several hundred thousand years. When the carbon dioxide concentration goes up, temperature goes up. When the carbon dioxide concentration goes down, temperature goes down. ”

        http://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/paleo/globalwarming/temperature-change.html

        It’s written by a conman. Begin with the outright lie of the magician telling you what you are seeing and then create a spurious justification for it together with caveats which make it appear that there is some considered science thinking going on –

        are all AGW/CAGW’s incapable of seeing the con here?

        The claim that Carbon Dioxide drives global warming is FALSIFIED.

  84. Mike R

    The media is presenting a false picture of what “one learns from Richard Muller”.

    Yes. This is obviously the case.

    Most of the media is selling the IPCC’s CAGW pitch, and this is just part of that sales job.

    It is also pretty apparent that Richard Muller is enjoying the publicity he is getting (and the help he is giving his daughter) by acting as the “enfant terrible” of the CAGW crowd, including his alleged “conversion” from skeptic to believer on human attribution.

    But, hey folks, it’s all show biz and media hype.

    (Doesn’t have much to do with science or the truth.)

    Max

  85. BTW, I’d agree that a lot of what Muller has said in the past makes sense.

    One thing that DOES NOT make any sense at all was the BEST finding on the urban heat island impact on the temperature record.

    We all know that studies show that this urbanization effect, including land use changes, poor siting of measurement equipment, elimination of a large number of stations in the old USSR, etc. have resulted in a local or regional upward distortion of temperature measurements. There are many papers out there on this, and the main bone of contention is simply “how large is this distortion?”

    But amazingly the BEST study showed that the net UHI impact on the global temperature was one of slight cooling.

    From this the overall conclusion was that there is “no impact”.

    This is bad science at its worst.

    My overall conclusion would have been: Oops! Our study shows something that goes against all the empirical data out there on a local and regional basis, so OUR STUDY MUST HAVE BEEN WRONG. Let’s rework it.

    Max

    • manacker –

      BTW, I’d agree that a lot of what Muller has said in the past makes sense.

      I’m not sure how to interpret that, given that in the past, you have completely mischaracterized Muller’s views.

      • Joshua

        The best way to “interpret” what someone writes, is simply to read it.

        It requires no “interpretation”.

        Some of Richard Muller’s past statements related to the ongoing scientific and political AGW debate have made sense to me. Others not.

        Got it now?

        Max

      • manacker –

        Some of Richard Muller’s past statements related to the ongoing scientific and political AGW debate have made sense to me. Others not.

        Allow me to repeat the problem. You have, in the past, completely mischarcterized Muller’s views.

      • Joshua
        Allow me to repeat the problem : since you are a leading mischaracterizer on CE, your claims of others’ alleged mischaracterizings are at best worthless.

      • Tomcat –

        How much are you willing to wager (we’ll pick a mutually agreed upon 3rd party to be the judge) on whether or not I can prove (to the 3rd party’s satisfaction) that manacker mischaracterized Muller’s views?

      • As things still stand you have made an empty claim. So back it up or withdraw it.

      • Joshua

        Get specific.

        Max

      • As things still stand you have made an empty claim. So back it up or withdraw it.</blockquote.

        I want to make it worth my time to search through the back threads. You seem sure of yourself, put your money where your mouth is. Name your amount and I'll agree to the bet. Or not. Either way, it's a fantastically beautiful day out and a long hike with the dog is a much better expenditure of my time. I'll check back to see if you're ready to pony up.

      • Joshua has still not backed up his claim.
        And lacks the integrity to withdraw it.
        BAU.

    • Coming from one of most eager mischaracterizers on CE, that’s pretty damn rich. And thus suggests Max has NOT mischaracterized Muller at all.

    • “But amazingly the BEST study showed that the net UHI impact on the global temperature was one of slight cooling.”

      wrong. That’s like look at the “pause” which has a slight positive trend and calling it warming.
      The test is whether the effect is statistically significant. It wasn’t.
      Now, using the same criteria for rural, Zeke and I found a slight UHI bias in the US, a result confirmed by his recent paper. Further, in the Berkeley paper we showed why you can get a “negative” statistically insignificant result: the variability in station trends is large. That means for the UHI signal to come through it has to be of a magnitude great enough to overcome that noise. regionally, in areas of great urban development ( japan, china, US) you can find the signal ( about .1C decade ) but globally it vanishes into the noise. That said, there are a few more things I’d like to try to see if I can find the signal in a GLOBAL dataset, but I’ve spend 5 years working with every dataset and every method of defining rural and urban and the signal defies conclusion identification. You can and will find it locally, you can find it in some regions. but when you look at the global record and segregate sites into urban and rural.. the difference falls below the noise floor.

      • Steven

        Wrong again, Steven!

        It is TRUE that “the BEST study showed that the net UHI impact on the global temperature was one of slight cooling”

        You add, but the cooling wasn’t “statistically significant”

        (A second argument, which may well be correct, based on how you define “statistically significant”.)

        But since the answer (UHI => net cooling) is so absurd, the study results should have been tossed in the garbage can and re-worked.

        That is my point. (And others have made it, as well.)

        Max

      • max, you dont understand statistics and appealing to others who make the same mistake is not very Popperian.

        See, once again you cannot practice the rational skepticism you preach

      • Max,

        I would also ask, how you can know that the result is absurd. It might be absurd to claim that real UHI is negative, but analysis of temperature averages is not an analysis of UHI. UHI is the effect that urban areas warm more than nearby non-urban areas, but that by itself does not tell what happens to the temperature time series. Many other changes affect the temperature measurements near the urban areas, not only the general real change in temperatures of those areas.

        Thermometers are relocated and small changes are made even when no major relocation takes place. You cannot know the overall effect of all these changes that have also complex causal interrelationships. Only a careful analysis can improve the knowledge of these changes, not the typical certainty of false skeptics. Analysis after analysis has shown that the effects are after all not that strong and that the time series have errors with effects in both directions that cancel to a significant degree each other.

      • Steven Mosher

        “Max you don’t understand statistics.”

        That a classical cop-out, Steven.

        I have read enough about the impacts of urbanization, land use changes, poor siting of measurement devices, etc., to know that these have a spurious warming impact locally or regionally. What their “global” impact could be is debatable, but I know it is not a net cooling impact.

        When I see a study that tells me that they have a net cooling impact on global temperature (UHI => net cooling) my “BS meter” (or common sense) tells me there is something wrong with this study and it should be redone before being used to draw any conclusions.

        It’s just that simple, Steven.

        But, hey, if you want to believe these results, go right ahead.

        I’m just telling you why I am rationally skeptical of them.

        Max

      • Pekka

        Thanks for your mail.

        I have explained to Steven Mosher why I am rationally skeptical of any study, which concludes that UHI => cooling.

        It should be redone, otherwise the conclusion that UHI = 0 is based on study results that are questionable by definition.

        Max

      • Max,

        How totally can you misunderstand me?

        I was stating that you are totally wrong when you say or imply that urbanization cannot have a negative influence on the calculated average temperatures. You have been making strong claims that you cannot substantiate. Scientists have studied the influence of various error sources on the time series and all these numerous studies have resulted in the conclusion that the time series are not seriously distorted by UHI or any other source that hasn’t been understood and corrected for.

        You seem to misunderstand that this is the outcome of extensive scientific work and that this outcome has strong support from multiple arguments. It’s a typical results of science, it’s not the full truth but it’s the best we have and we have strong reasons to believe that it’s pretty good.

      • Pekka

        I understand what you are saying, but disagree with it.

        UHI => cooling doesn’t pass my “BS filter”.

        If it passes yours, so be it.

        Max

      • Max,

        It doesn’t pass your filter, because is a oneway filter. You remove from every logical set of arguments all those parts that are against your goal. You are the most systematic in that from all who write regularly here. Others may have other faults, but in that you are number one.

      • manacker,

        Not just BS. Think of UHI as a control. You have a series of temperature measurements. You intentionally add a degree to some of the sites averages to see what the impact is on the average. And the result is, the added spurious heat decreases the average.

        This doesn’t tell you what the real average temperature is.

        This doesn’t tell you what the flaw in the method is.

        This doesn’t tell you that whoever concocted the method of finding the average was cooking the books.

        But what it does tell you is, the method is flawed.

        UHI reduces the average U.S. land temperature average.

        El Nino inflates the global average temperature.

        Both simply demonstrate that the methods they have for finding average temperatures, both locally and globally…sucks.

      • max it is pretty simple

        The trend of a station is a combination of three things

        A) a climatic trend
        C) a natural variation
        D) a potential UHI trend

        Looking at regions of the world where UHI is bad ( take the US ) we see
        an UHI bias of .1C

        That bias is for the US, which is 2% of the data.

        Its easy to see how that can be lost in the global data and REVERSED by global data. I’ve see it over and over again with

        A) different datasets
        B) different urban definitions
        C) different methods.

        part of the problem is people thing that every site in in a big city.
        40% of the sites have zero population. Those 40% just happen
        to be warmer than the 60% in cities.

        Why?
        A) UHI is smaller than you all think. The literature tends to report MAXIMUM instensity UHI and not average UHI which is an order of magnitude smaller.
        B Other variations swamp the signal.

        There are a couple more explanations: Land use, and small town UHI.

        I’ve assembled the data to look at both of those as well. Until that time what we did was exactly the test that skeptics said would prove their point.

        Their hypothesis: A rural only trend will be lower than an urban trend

        We tested that. and the hypothesis was falsified. Call Popper and complain if you want to ignore the falsification.

        Or, insist that something is “wrong” maybe the data, maybe the method, because you dont want to reject your hypothesis.
        Ha. See my other post on “rational scepticism” and note that you are doing what I say people do as opposed to what Popper and Feynman say

      • Steven,
        You should add to your list the influence the of all other changes of human origin that affect the time series. These may well be as large as UHI and of either sign. They are mostly related to the the weather stations themselves as well to measurement practices.

      • Where’s Jim Cripwell to point out that the influence of UHI on global temperature is indistinguishable from zero?

      • Steven Mosher

        It is very clear to me why and how urbanization and land use changes cause local temperature readings to be higher. There are plenty of studies from all over the world (not only the USA), which have shown this. The same applies for the addition of asphalted runways and buildings at airport locations. These are all local distortions.

        It is also clear to me that a thermometer next to an AC exhaust in the summer or a heated building in the winter will show a higher reading that one that is not. And there have been studies in the USA showing that this sort of thing has become common. The impact here is, of course, only local, but I can only assume that the USA is not a single exception to the rule here.

        The logic here passes my BS filter without problem.

        When I read studies which show that a large number of stations in the sub-arctic USSR were closed down, explaining why this resulted in a spurious warming signal on a regional basis, this also makes sense to me.

        All of these are local or regional distortions, which may or may not have a perceptible impact on the globally averaged land surface value (obviously not the sea surface value).

        So I say to myself, yes there is a positive UHI distortion, but this may be small (as you have indicated for the USA) or it might be significant, as some studies have estimated.

        Had the BEST study shown a small global warming distortion (say the 0.1C warming you describe for the USA), I would have said, “OK, it looks like UHI is no big deal and can be ignored”.

        However, when I see that it tells me the net impact of all these effects is negative rather than positive, my BS meter goes off.

        And you and Pekka can rationalize until you are both blue in the face, unless you can show hard data to support the BEST finding that UHI => net cooling, my BS meter is still rejecting that idea because it is not logical, based on all the other data that are out there.

        Max

      • Pekka

        Aw, c’mon.

        Your “one way filter” remark is pure BS.

        I could say exactly the same thing about you, but it also wouldn’t mean anything.

        Max

      • Yet another example of how limited my technical understanding is:

        However, when I see that it tells me the net impact of all these effects is negative rather than positive, my BS meter goes off.

        I was under the impression that a result that isn’t statistically significant is considered as an artifact – something that could occur simply by chance, a product of random error. I was under the mistaken impression that a statistically insignificant finding in one direction is no different, from a statistical perspective, from a statistically insignificant finding in the opposite direction. Therefore, it would be a mistake to look at a statistically insignificant finding in one direction and make an assumption that the finding is invalid, but you would have accepted a statistically insignificant finding in the other direction as valid.

        Thank goodness that there are rational “skeptics” around with their highly sensitive “bs-meters” to straighten out my confusion.

      • Must be free range cuz’ it’s tough to chew. Not very filling, either.
        =================

      • yes, pekka there is also micro site issue which the study doesnt represent. I think what confuses most people is the perception that UHI is huge in all cases. If you look at the literature and read the 100 or so papers you’ll quickly find out that the vast majority detail UHI MAX or maximum intensity UHI. To record max intensity the studies will choose days where UHI is know to have its largest effect: Clear, rain free windless days. On those days, in summer and winter, you do see a big effect for some cities. So, in england for example it would be on anti cyclonic days or about 20% of the time. in the US even less.
        To give you an example I recently went to study small town UHI. I picked the optimal month for detection: July. I collected att MODIS LST for every day that month. About 50% were cloudy. finding a wind free day was even harder. Any way you get the idea. IF the UHI signal was large it would be easy to find. If it happened very day, easy to find. Finally it is complicated by the fact that rural areas can in fact be warmer than urban areas. That happens when a city is surrounded by certain land classes,
        low shrub lands and bare earth where the albedo and emissivity of the rural land is such that the rural is actually warmer. for desert cities this is even more clear.

      • Joshua

        You got that one right (for a change).

        Your previous posts here have been a good demonstration that your “technical understanding” is indeed “limited”, as you concede.

        But, hey, you can always learn new things (provided you have a open mind but use your “BS meter” to weed out the bloopers).

        Max

      • Thank goodness indeed Joshua!

  86. Horsemeat in lasagna is as honest as hydrogen is nuclear fuel for stars..

    http://noconsensus.wordpress.com/2012/01/10/the-truth-about-wikipedia/#comment-92147

  87. Chief Hydrologist

    Blah blah blah blah blah blah blah duh,

    BBD | February 14, 2013 at 2:37 pm |

    They were two separate and unrelated questions (except that they relate to you).

    I repeat:

    AMO – cause or effect…?

    Z&T – in error or wrong…?

    Who’s having trouble processing? Not me…

    BBD | February 14, 2013 at 2:43 pm |

    The ERBS satellite has a cumulative error of 0.4 W/m^2.

    That’s not what I understand at all. Source?

    BBD | February 14, 2013 at 2:47 pm |

    To be clear, CP, I’m asking you for measurement uncertainty in TOA flux ‘observations’ over the period ~1980 – 2000. By data set, preferably. Presumably you can rattle this off, along with the relevant references.

    http://wwwpaztcn.wr.usgs.gov/julio_pdf/Gray_ea_AMO.pdf – are you suggesting that the AMO is caused by anthropogenic global warming?

    It is T&Z –

    http://www.pnas.org/content/early/2013/01/22/1212471110.abstract – and as I suggested, if you have some actual per reviewed rebuttal – show your cards. I’m calling your bluff. If anything with T&Z – the anthropogenic component is overstated.

    ‘When the four ERBS error sources are combined, the total stability uncertainty (1-sigma) in the 60°N to 60°S and tropical annual mean radiation for the ERBS WFOV 15-yr dataset from all three sources combined is on the order of 0.3 to 0.4 W m_2. Time sampling uncertainty dominates SW and net flux stability, while calibration uncertainty dominates LW flux stability.’ Appendix B of the Wong et al 2006 paper I have peviously cited.

    Perhaps you are thinking of the absolute uncertainty – which is 2.5 W/m^2 for both LW and SW.

    ‘The total uncertainty for the WFOV longwave and shortwave is estimated by Green et al. (1990) to be on the order of 2.5 W m_2 or 2.5% of SW TOA reflected flux and 1% of LW TOA emitted flux. For decadal changes and interannual variations as shown in the current paper, however, the more relevant error analysis is for annual mean changes in the Tropics and 60°S to 60°N over the 1985–99 time period. Below we consider the four major error sources (calibration,angle sampling, time sampling, and space sampling) and briefly summarize results documenting these uncertainty levels.’

    I would suggest that you actually read and try to understand some of the science I reference. Your questions seem silly, smug and impertinent.

  88. lurker, passing through laughing

    So how many billions of dollars have been wasted based on false positive results from mouse studies? How many more billions have been wasted on false negatives? The hubris of far too many in crediting some sort of infallibility to science, along with self-interest has very likely suppressed more problematic results than we are currently aware of. The implications for climate science are obvious and will be avoided by far too many of the AGW extremists dominating the public square.


  89. So how many billions of dollars have been wasted based on false positive results from mouse studies? How many more billions have been wasted on false negatives?

    We will never know.
    That’s because they’re FALSE positives and negatives.

    They come with the TRUE positives and negatives, undifferentiated – unless, of course, you happen to be one of the many omniscient people who post here.

    If we knew all the answers already, there would be no need to bother with this thing we call “scientific research”.

    Get it now, Mr Hubris?

  90. Ken in Alberta

    The problem with the horsemeat is as safe as beef argument is that under normal food controls it might be, in this case we have no idea how the horses were treated. For instance; What veterinary drugs were used on these horses? What diseases the horses might have had prior to slaughter? What is the history of these animals? Are these animals really safe to eat?

    • Ken in Alberta

      Grey Meat = Grey Literature?

    • Ken in Alberta

      You make a good point.

      Recent analyses in Germany are showing presence of pain-killer drugs in some of the horse meat that was found.

      It’s the tip of the iceberg as more analyses are apparently being made..

      And you are right. It’s not the horsemeat, itself. It’s the crooked operators, non-transparent supply chain process, false declarations and lousy controls. What kind of horses were these? Certainly not horses especially bred for human consumption (because these are just as expensive as beef), but probably old plugs “ready for the glue factory”

      And, as Roger Pielke Jr. has opined, the “oh, well, horse meat is not harmful so why get all excited” argument is the “same ‘end justifies the means’ logic [which] is being used in promoting the extreme weather meme as a reason for major government response to climate change”, (although I won’t take a stand on that comment, one way or the other.)

      Max

  91. If it had been goat I imagine Greeks would be offended at all the fuss so why aren’t the French offended?

  92. Say – I was encountering difficulties getting Judith’s blog to load for a while there.

    And I posted some comments on this thread. Coincidence, or the result of the “climate orthodoxy police” doing their dirty work?

    How will we ever know? Someone contact Peter Lang, quick, before this gets out of hand!!!!1!!!!1!!!!

  93. In late Nov 2009, Climategate surfaced as the tip of a deep iceberg that had started to grow out-of-sight as the Second World War ended in 1945-46, when . . .

    _ a.) Fred Hoyle was writing the papers that would abruptly change majority opinions on the internal composition of the Sun from iron (Fe, element #26) to hydrogen (H, element #1), and

    _ b.) George Orwell was frantically writing a warning to the public that a tyrannical government was approaching that would engulf society by “1984.”

    http://omanuel.wordpress.com/about/#comment-2204

    The ultimately damage to society from Climategate probably depends on the length of time it takes us to address the problem. So far, the time lapse is ~3.33 years and counting.

  94. Judith,

    I find it rather strange that in a discussion about ends justifying means you make certain claims supposedly based on the climategate emails without mentioning that the emails themselves were obtained by illegal means and considering the question of whether the ends justified the means in this case.

    • Unknown means, but the bobbies got right on it and besieged castles. Fee Fie Foe Fum, I smell the bleeding, the beat of the drum.
      ===========================

    • You mean, one of the insiders was waterboarded? When in your opinion are disclosures from whistleblowers and not illegal means? When Hell freezes over?

      • Climategate definitely exposed fraud and skulduggery, and was definitely tax-funded. That exposing this is a crime, is itself a crime, an indication of a totalitarian regime resistant to accountability. Perhaps the MPs who voted for the relevant legislation should be sent to prison.

      • Wagathon,

        Whistleblowing os pretty well defined in law. This wasn’t it.

      • Vassily,

        Computer hacking is a crime, just as, say, breaking and entering is a crime. Do you want specific exemptions in law if by committing such actions people reveal improper behaviour by others? Or even suspect it?

      • Being a crime (or against the law) doesn’t make it wrong. Rosa Parks broke the law and did the right thing.

      • Edim,

        Yes, I agree. Thank you for making that simple point in an honest fashion.
        I don’t think that supporting the most likely criminal actions of the climategate hacker if one thinks that the release of the emails was a greater good is an unprincipled position (even if I might think it a mistaken one). I just want skeptics to admit that this is their position.

      • …someone who is motivated to provide evidence of scientific impropriety and ethical breaches, especially when disclosures are motivated out of concerns about collusion, foi laws are being flouted and public-funded raw data being fraudulently manipulated and purposefully misinterpreted for political purposes and ultimately going missing altogether is the very definition of a whistleblower.

      • aa, you can’t say ‘most likely criminal’ because you really have no idea. Neither do the Bobbies, yet they besiege an innocent man’s castle. That smells like something criminal, carried out by Officers of the Law. Howdya like them apples?
        ====================

      • The actions of whistleblower who is an insider are less likely to be a criminal act than at best a civil action. The issue of criminality mostly comes up concerning the actions of those who are being outed, not those doing the outing.

    • andrew adams

      Exposure of tax-payer funded fraud and skullduggery is a good thing, isn’t it?

      How else can the scoundrels be discredited?

      How else can the public be made aware of the bad behavior of a few of the very people whom they are funding?

      Isn’t that what “whistleblower” laws are all about?

      Max

      • whistleblower laws target those acting in the public interest to expose criminal acts or serious wrong-doing.

        I’m not sure that ideological jihads count as the former, and there also appears to be a serious lack of the latter.

      • Michael

        Cooking the books while on the taxpayer payroll is a no-no.

        Destroying data to evade FOI requests is another no-no.

        Whistleblower laws are in place to catch this sort of misbehavior.

        Max

      • then surely people have been charged with various crimes max?????

        Hello?

      • Exposure of tax-payer funded fraud and skullduggery is a good thing, isn’t it?

        Yes, I agree that it is, even if I don’t agree that climategate would be classified as such. The question is whether it is acceptable to break the law in order to expose such behaviour. If you are arguing that it is then fine, I would actually agree that in some cases it would be, as long as the people concerned are prepared to accept the consequences. I just want people to be honest about what they are arguing for.

    • There is one insider who had a right to access all the files and would not be in violation of the law as it is written in the UK. He would not be free from civil penalties for releasing personal data. In the second release personal information was redacted. A third release was promised. At the time of this promise the hacker said that no deal was done. The third release has not been made. These are merely the facts. many conclusions follow.

      • Steven Mosher

        Your book on the first release is the definitive account of Climategate I.

        Maybe Michael should read it.

        Max

      • Steven,

        Norfolk police made an extensive investigation and have stated unequivocally that CRUs servers were hacked and that the files were obtained unlawfully and not merely released by an insider.

      • Norfolk police made an extensive investigation and have stated unequivocally that CRUs servers were hacked and that the files were obtained unlawfully and not merely released by an insider.

        Reference please.

      • Perhaps more accurate to say the Norfolk police carried out an extensive obstruction and coverup operation, much like their fellow civil servants at UEA that they dutifully closed ranks behind.

      • Tomcat,

        Sure…

        http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2012/jul/18/police-hacked-climate-science-emails

        “…as a result of our inquiries, we can say that the data breach was the result of a sophisticated and carefully orchestrated attack on the CRU’s data files, carried out remotely via the internet. The offenders used methods common in unlawful internet activity to obstruct inquiries. There is no evidence to suggest that anyone working at or associated with the University of East Anglia was involved in the crime”

  95. “Eat More Horse.” ~Daisy

  96. Thx fer the vid 15/02 @6.42pm on growing soil biomass, Chief. I can
    use it. Yer might say this is the meat of the argument about what ter
    ter do if yr concerned about rising carbon levels in the atmosphere.

    Ter repeat meself here, Freeman Dyson argues that to stop this we
    need only grow the biomass in the soil by a hundredth of an inch per
    year. Simple as growing compost
    … pulpy stems, rank, silo-rich,
    leaf-mold, manure, lime,piled agains slippery planks …
    Theodore Roethke understood about dirt.

    Beth -pro-capitalism- soil -conservationist..

  97. Max writes: “It’s not the horsemeat, itself. It’s the crooked operators, non-transparent supply chain process, false declarations and lousy controls. What kind of horses were these?”
    To tell you the truth, I can’t walk into a grocery store these days without feeling queasy. I don’t trust any part of the process. Corruption is rampant, both the moral kind and the organic kind. I rarely eat meat anymore

  98. “If I were to say what I think of you and you stupid, siht-stirring posts I would be banned.”
    My sympathies Doc. I often wonder….seriously and with an open heart …what drives FOMD. There’s no doubt she’s a troll in the sense that she’s committed to driving the opposition nuts. Her style is purposely rage inducing. The trick…and not much of a trick at that…is to simply skip her posts. Don’t let her drive you off. That would be a shame.

  99. A question for my much beloved “skeptics,” should any choose to take pity on me and help me decrease my ignorance (just a drop in the bucket, I know, but a journey of a thousand miles begins with the first step).

    I have often read “skeptics” speak of their dislike of “appeal to authority.” Now I happen to believe that the authority of scientific expertise is usually relevant even if it is only rarely sufficient to be dispositive. And I also happen to think that almost any time that I can think of that an objection to “appeal to authority” has been employed in blog arguments, it has been employed to defend selective reasoning (in other words, I have often seen objections to “authorities” that are in disagreement from the same folks who cite the opinions of “authorities” they agree with).

    So considering all of that, I am a bit confused by all the references I see to Popper and Feynman on blogs in the “skept-o-sphere.” Such references seem to me to be basically appeals to authority. Now since I deeply respect my “skeptical” brethren, I have to wonder about this seemingly contradictory behavior. So then, the question is, why would all these references to Popper and Feynman not be “appeals to authority?”

    Thanks in advance, your faithful ignorant adherent to the warmist cult of statist, pissant, eco-Nazi, hoping to see millions of poor people starve and get malaria, progressives,

    Joshua.

    • Popper and Feynmann? They’re different of course! The skeptics have somehow convinced themselves that Popper and Feynmann are, or would be if they were still alive, on their side in the so-called ‘debate’.

      They seem to particularly like Feynmann’s “the ignorance of experts” quote which they take to mean that all experts, apart from their designated exceptions, are, of course ignorant and have it all wrong. Feynmann didn’t mean it quite like that and no-one of any intelligence thinks he did. He wasn’t saying that all Physicists before him, including his fellow Nobel winning prize Physicists were ignorant in the accepted sense of term. He wasn’t saying that Plank , Schrodinger , Einstein et al were all ignoramuses. But it suits them to present climate scientists in that light.

      They like Popper’s classical observationalist form of scientific method in favour of empirical falsification. They take his argument to mean that AGW can’t be real unless proved by controlled double blind experiments that it is. And if it can’t be ‘proved’ that way there can’t be any problem, can there? The creationists say the same thing about evolution of course and it is equally impossible to ‘prove’ that adding GH gases will cause planetary warming as it is to prove that humans and chimpanzees shared a common ancestor. Popper didn’t dispute the latter so there is no reason to expect he would take their line on the climate. I’m sure the sceptic/deniers must know that but it suits their purposes to claim otherwise.

      • So many straw men in one comment. Better hope nobody strikes a match.

      • Chief Hydrologist

        ‘It is our responsibility as scientists, knowing the great progress and great value of a satisfactory philosophy of ignorance, the great progress that is the fruit of freedom of thought, to proclaim the value of this freedom, to teach how doubt is not to be feared but welcomed and discussed, and to demand this freedom as our duty to all coming generations.’

        There is a discussion of Feynman here – http://blog.iandavis.com/2012/07/12/feynman-on-science/ – that is succinct.

        The attitude is at utter odds to certainties that are expressed on both sides of the climate war. Both I would suggest are arguments from ignorance – simple narratives of the climate warriors. Real science is much more complex and interesting. But the great responsibility of natural philosophy is to keep an open mind on the science.

        Even evolution is on much less certain grounds than it seems. Einstein shows that the fundament of time is the 4 dimensional space/time continuum. Perhaps it is not so much that evolution does not need God but that relativity does not need evolution.

      • And that’s another handy tactic from the deniers’ ‘how to blog’ manual. If there’s no reasonable counter argument then why not use the phrase “straw man” or “Ad hominem” or “Reductio ad absurdum” or one of countless others?

        There doesn’t have to be a ‘straw man’ or any flaw at all in the reasoning, but if someone just says there is, then other deniers don’t have to worry themselves any further.

        It works on just about anything, not just on questions of climate. Need an argument against anything at all, but can’t think of one, then just two or three words picked at random from a list of possibilities should do the trick! And it saves getting a headache from actually having to think, too!

      • With no actual argument to go on, temp sticks to the truebeliever blogging manual and waffles on regardless, bravado and quantity rather than quality being how he impresses himself and his fellow cagw religionists.

      • Chief Hydrologist

        Humbug – I give you thought you pissant twit and you go off on a rant about deniers. You are a space cadet with a line in reasoning that borders on the imbecilic. You are not interested in knowledge or discourse in goog faith but only in a stupid climate warrior rhetoric in the service of a pissant progressive ideology.

        Happy Josh?

      • He wasn’t saying that Plank , Schrodinger , Einstein et al were all ignoramuses. But it suits them to present climate scientists in that light.

        But.. climate scientists are ignoramuses. They don’t have the water cycle, they don’t have rain in their carbon cycle, they say trace carbon dioxide is some supermolecule able to defy real world gravity and to act as a thermal blanket around the Earth taking the place of the voluminous heavy ocean of real gas which is our atmosphere, mainly nitrogen and oxygen. They say that visible light from the Sun heats land and oceans and there is neglible radiant heat from the Sun/radiant heat from the Sun can’t get through some magical barrier to reach the surface of Earth.

        Their claims are idiotic, what does that make them when real world empirical science shows just how idiotic these claims are?

        At the very least it shows them not to be scientists at all as they are incapable of analysing their own basic claims.

        It shows them ignorant of real world science, tried and tested in the field which makes them a joke, they are ignoramuses because they take themselves seriously.

      • Sorry, for want of a slash

        tempterrain | February 16, 2013 at 4:07 am
        He wasn’t saying that Plank , Schrodinger , Einstein et al were all ignoramuses. But it suits them to present climate scientists in that light.

        But.. climate scientists are ignoramuses. They don’t have the water cycle, they don’t have rain in their carbon cycle, they say trace carbon dioxide is some supermolecule able to defy real world gravity and to act as a thermal blanket around the Earth taking the place of the voluminous heavy ocean of real gas which is our atmosphere, mainly nitrogen and oxygen. They say that visible light from the Sun heats land and oceans and either there is neglible radiant heat from the Sun/radiant heat from the Sun can’t get through some magical barrier to reach the surface of Earth.

        Their claims are idiotic, what does that make them when real world empirical science shows just how idiotic these claims are?

        At the very least it shows them not to be scientists at all as they are incapable of analysing their own basic claims.

        It shows them ignorant of real world science, tried and tested in the field, which makes them a joke – they are ignoramuses because they take themselves seriously.

      • Humbug – I give you thought you pissant twit and you go off on a rant about deniers………..

        That comment was meant for Gary M.

        PS Pissant progressive and space cadet, may be amusing terms, but don’t you think you might be guilty of overusing them?

      • OK, I’ve got a few minutes to kill, so I’ll list your straw men for you. Then wait and see if you can then make an actual argument.

        “The skeptics have somehow convinced themselves that Popper and Feynmann are, or would be if they were still alive, on their side in the so-called ‘debate’”

        What skeptics claim is that Popper’s and Feynmann’s statements regarding the scientific method are inconsistent with the way “climate scientists” engage in the CAGW advocacy. Skeptics cite them with respect to HOW to come to the conclusion on the issue of CAGW, not what that answer should be.

        “They seem to particularly like Feynmann’s “the ignorance of experts” quote which they take to mean that all experts, apart from their designated exceptions, are, of course ignorant and have it all wrong.”

        I shouldn’t bother explaining why this bit of hysteria is a straw man, because if you don’t know, you are beyond hope. But I’ll drop you a couple hints anyway…”all,” “ignorant,” and “all wrong.”

        “He wasn’t saying that all Physicists before him, including his fellow Nobel winning prize Physicists were ignorant in the accepted sense of term. He wasn’t saying that Plank , Schrodinger , Einstein et al were all ignoramuses.”

        Forget whether all skeptics say this. Can you give a cite to one, anywhere, ever?

        “They take his argument to mean that AGW can’t be real unless proved by controlled double blind experiments that it is.”

        Ditto. Who are “they?” Can you name even one?

        “Popper didn’t dispute the latter so there is no reason to expect he would take their line on the climate.”

        Ok, that’s not a straw man, but it’s hilarious. You begin by falsely accusing “skeptics” of claiming that Popper and Feynmann are somehow skeptics from the grave, then turn around and make a a posthumous appeal to their authority yourself. Well done.

        It’s raining straw men…hallelujah
        It’s raining straw men…amen…

      • “Even evolution is on much less certain grounds than it seems.” – Chief

        Oh please, indulge us.

      • temp, don’t you think you might be guilty of overusing the term, ‘denier’? Especially seeing that doing so might mark you as a ‘believer’
        ‘Believist’, perhaps?

      • Oh there’s no ‘might’ about TT being a pre-committed and devout truebeliever. He will always support any CAGW idea, and always oppose any criticism of CAGW. His position is undislodegable, firmly rooted as deep faith.

      • phatboy,

        I have no problem with being called a “denier.”

        I deny that climate scientists can actually measure the average temperature of the entire global climate system, oceans, land and atmosphere, to within tenths of a degree at any given time in the present.

        I deny that climate scientists can actually measure the change in the global average temperature to within tenths of a degree per year, per decade or per century in the present.

        I deny that climate scientists can measure either of the above with such precision from tree rings, ice cores, ocean sediments or other proxies for the past, let alone over thousands of years in the past.

        I deny that climate scientists know enough about the global climate system, including solar, water vapor, ocean heat storage, etc., to accurately model the climate to the extent they can provide anything approaching accurate forecasts of global average temperature 20 years from now, let alone 80.

        I deny that it is irrelevant to public policy that climate models have not been, and apparently cannot be, validated.

        I deny that climate scientists know enough about what the global average temperature will be in 20 to 50 to 80 years, or the effects of any given reasonably expected level of warming, to justify decarbonizing the world economy now.

        Say it out loud
        I deny and I’m proud.

      • A lot of “skeptics” claim absolute certainty that the IPCC sensitivity range is wrong, and also claim that the IPCC are too certain themselves when they give a range. Can you spot the “skeptics” hypocrisy there? Why are they providing a certainty range when they say the IPCC can’t?

      • Gary M

        Your philosophical discourse on “what Feynman and Popper really meant”, is a bit superfluous.

        They were both quite clear about “what they meant”, and it is straightforward.

        There are some in the CAGW camp that are trying to muddy up the waters to slip through the CAGW hypothesis as “settled science”, but these attempts do not fly.

        A hypothesis, such as the CAGW hypothesis as outlined by IPCC in its AR4 report, which has not been corroborated by empirical scientific evidence, remains an uncorroborated hypothesis.

        And a “null hypothesis”, which cannot be falsified by the same sort of empirical evidence, stands.

        Max

      • Some sceptics claim the IPCC sensitivity is wrong, others that the IPCC is too certain. Note Jim D’s fancy footwork in rolling the two groupstogether.

      • Alarmists regret that skeptics are not monolithic. We’d be as fragile and delicate as they are were we.
        ===================

      • Jim D

        You write:

        A lot of “skeptics” claim absolute certainty that the IPCC sensitivity range is wrong, and also claim that the IPCC are too certain themselves when they give a range. Can you spot the “skeptics” hypocrisy there? Why are they providing a certainty range when they say the IPCC can’t?

        This set my BS meter off.

        I have seen no “skeptics” here claiming “absolute certainty that the IPCC sensitivity range is wrong”, simply that it is not supported by empirical scientific evidence.

        The more recent (and lower) estimates of around 1.5C for 2xCO2 have an advantage over the previous range of 3.2C+/-1.2C as reported in AR4 (WGI, Ch.8) in that they are largely based on actual real-time physical observations instead of only on predictions from model simulations based principally on theoretical inputs and dicey feedback estimates. However,there is still major uncertainty regarding the assumed natural forcing and variability (as our hostess has pointed out), which is quite likely underestimated in the new estimates (because some unknown factor has been ignored or overlooked).

        But I would not at all say that 1.5C for 2xCO2 ECS is “certain”. It could just as well be “indistinguishable from zero”, as Jim Cripwell states.

        In fact, Jim D, the “null” hypothesis is that it is “null” = zero.

        It is IPCC, who tells preaches “certainty”, by telling us that it is “very unlikely (less than 10% likelihood) below 1.5°C”.

        So, yes, I can spot YOUR “hypocrisy” when you make such a silly statement.

        Max

      • The majority of “skeptics” here claim the IPCC are certainly wrong (not JC’s view by the way), which by default means that they think the IPCC are too certain of their own range. These are not mutually exclusive views. Then they invoke JC’s uncertainty monster argument anyway. I just mention this to point it out to those doing it.
        “skeptics” is a bad word which is why I always put it in quotes. A true skeptic would not necessarily think the science is wrong, just not proven enough, but would concede it could be right (more like JC’s view). Since one d-word is not liked, I would use doubters as a better word, though some would seem beyond doubt and the other d-word applies there.

      • Alarmists have signed on to a narrative, a conjecture and creation of Man. Skeptics observe that Nature hasn’t the ears for such narratives.
        ====================

      • manacker, the null hypothesis is another thing that is strange to me. Science supports that the earth is 33 degrees warmer due to GHGs than it would be without them, yet this hypothesis says no more effect will be seen for further increases, as though it has suddenly stopped at this level. It is not null at all, it is denying that the 33 degrees was due to GHGs, which is a scientific (or pseudo-scientific) position.

      • Jim D

        Rather than philosophizing about which “d-word” should be used to describe those who disagree with you, and evading the REAL issue here, show me the empirical evidence that supports the IPCC statement that the 2xCO2 climate sensitivity is very unlikely (less than 10% likelihood) to be below 1.5C or that falsifies the “null hypothesis” that it is “null”.

        I think you cannot do so, because it’s simply not there yet, JimD.

        Pretty simple.

        Max

      • It is fascinating how confused these metalevel arguments about the nature of skepticism quickly become. Warmers want skeptics to be skeptical of skepticism in which case they could have no opinion whatever, which would suit the warmers just fine.

      • manacker, 1.5 C per doubling doesn’t work for an equilibrium sensitivity because we are already near that for land areas and only half way to a doubling, and that is without talking about paleo evidence of how warm temperatures were last time CO2 was over 500 ppm.

      • DW is correct that you can’t group “skeptics” because no two think the same thing. It is a hard thing to argue against for that reason. I enjoy it when skeptics argue with each other, however. More of that please.

      • Yes, JD, I’m glad you share my appreciation. The creative ferments boils clouds of insight.
        ============

      • The richly bubbling ferment also dissolves narratives and melts flying monkeys, once in the stew.
        ===================

      • Yes I can see that to Jim D and others of the truebeliever cult, where studying and imbibing the official catechism is the order of the day, the idea that we non-church people have own own thoughts and have debates about them, must seem quite novel and entertaining.
        But don’t get too taken up with this rational discourse malarkey though, Jim, your precious faith might wither.

      • Jim D, Of course skeptics have a wide range of opinions. The “consensus” does also. The difference is the skeptics haven’t gotten together to create a political agreement together on their scientific beliefs. If the IPCC wasn’t there where would the consensus be? Would those that think the sensitivity is closer to 1.5 C be on the same side as those thinking it is 1 C or would they be arguing along side those that think it is 4.5 C? To argue that the consensus views as expressed by the IPCC is some sort of monotonic scientific opinion doubted only by a fringe few ignores the reality that there is no consensus. There is only an agreement to bracket the disagreements.

      • kim, yes indeed, the “skeptic” side is so cloudy, they can’t even see each other.

      • Heh, you got it. I appreciate you; will you help me find my key under this streetlamp?
        ===========

      • Jim D wrote: “1.5 C per doubling doesn’t work for an equilibrium sensitivity because we are already near that for land areas”
        ———————————————————————–
        I’m sure you’re aware that whatever land area temperatures have or haven’t done, they have precious little to do with global averages, let alone equilibrium sensitivity

      • The difference is that the wide range of skeptic opinions is due to a shared “we must shut down this CAGW idea at all costs” motivation combined with a care-not attitude to consistency when doing that. That’s why you get a scatter-shot of disagreeing arguments, because it’s largely just home-brewed knee-jerk “attempts” to attack CAGW with no care for consistency.

        The tell that this is the case is that the arguments skeptics advance only follow certain patterns convenient to that motivation.

      • steven, the 3 degrees per doubling long precedes the IPCC, and is part of the pre-political science. It is only politics that entered to make it murky. Others, when alternative credible ideas come for the following, I would consider them.
        1. Why is the surface 33 degrees warmer than it would be without GHGs?
        2. Why, when CO2 doubles and the temperature increases by 1 degree, should Clausius-Clapeyron not be allowed to operate to give the water vapor feedback?
        3. Why is cloud cover decreasing if there is supposed to be a negative cloud feedback?
        4. Why is the land warming faster than the oceans if the oceans are supposed to be driving the warming?
        5. Why, when there is such a clear positive feedback to solar forcing, should not the even greater CO2 forcing have an effect?
        6. Why was the climate so warm 50 million years ago if it wasn’t the high GHG concentrations at the time?
        These are all answered by AGW, but no single alternative theory has been proposed for even one of them that I would consider viable. They have a lot of ‘splainin’ to do as they say.

      • lolwot, you lose a lot of effectiveness when you reveal so much about the basis for your misunderstanding of skepticism.

        The furor is over the catastrophes. Warming by man, even if entirely so, has been demonstrably good, and will so continue.

        So much for AGW, lets have more of it; and please, leave your bogeymen under your bed; we’ve enough catastrophes without your personal store.
        ================

      • Jim D, because people can agree on fundamental physics doesn’t mean they can agree on what a doubling of co2 will do. If that were the case we would have a number already with a very small error range.

        lolwot, the other side also ignores what is convenient to ignore and trumpets what is convenient to trumpet. I suppose they are only interested in shutting down the production of more co2 and also couldn’t care less about the science.

      • JimD, “1. Why is the surface 33 degrees warmer than it would be without GHGs?”

        The 33 C assumption is base on a “fixed” albedo in a hypothetical case. Manabe has even speculated the range could be as much as 90 C degrees.

        “2. Why, when CO2 doubles and the temperature increases by 1 degree, should Clausius-Clapeyron not be allowed to operate to give the water vapor feedback?” Feed back on what surface? Evaporation increase exponentially with temperature reducing the “surface” energy at a constant temperature and transferring that energy to a higher colder space. Air can hold more water at a higher temperature which would allow condensation at a lower warmer space. That is a negative feedback not consider in C-C which would involve super saturated air and physical water in the atmosphere that would absorb incoming solar energy, reducing “surface absorption.

        “3. Why is cloud cover decreasing if there is supposed to be a negative cloud feedback?” Over what time frame? In a NH dominate cycle the ratio of water surface to land is less than in a SH dominate cycle. Without knowing the true range and cause of natural internal variability, you would be adding assumptions to assumptions.

        “4. Why is the land warming faster than the oceans if the oceans are supposed to be driving the warming?”

        Land has a range of specific heat capacity that varies with water content. If the surface air over land is warming faster than oceans after considering thermal mass, then less of that warming is being retained. CO2 would amplify land based warming, but would not indicate increase in heat capacity. For example; Sudden Stratospheric Warming events in the NH have been increasing since the beginning or the “pause” and were fewer and less intense during the 1990s.

        “5. Why, when there is such a clear positive feedback to solar forcing, should not the even greater CO2 forcing have an effect?”

        CO2 forcing does have an effect. 1 to 1.5 C per doubling at some “surface” at some altitude that has been so far been fairly elusive. Likely because the C-C relationship and water vapors Effective Radiant Layer were not properly considered.

        “6. Why was the climate so warm 50 million years ago if it wasn’t the high GHG concentrations at the time?”

        Natural internal variability depends on the the location of the land masses and water areas with respect to each other, the polar sinks and the equatorial source. Thanks to plate tectonics and erosion, that is constantly changing. That would make Earth climate a non-ergodic system. That is the less predictable type of chaos.

      • kim, you express one of the memes.
        -the warming is good meme
        -the warming is not happening meme (it just looks like that on thermometers)
        -the warming is natural meme (anything but CO2, several subclasses here)
        -the warming will be followed by cooling meme
        -some combination of the above depending who you are arguing with and what day of the week it is

      • Max,

        I did mention earlier that a skeptic/denier would only be satisfied by double blind tests done on the climate. It was meant a little tongue in cheek at the time but perhaps I was right. Was I? What would it take to answer your assertion on the “null hypothesis”, and “empirical evidence”?

        Would even double blind tests on a 1000 Earths carried out over a 1000 years be enough?

        I doubt it. You’d just move the goalposts even further away. You and other hard core deniers are heavily into a method of denial which is to arbitrarily move the criteria for “proof” or acceptance out of range of whatever evidence currently exists. If new evidence comes to light meeting the prior criteria, the goalpost is pushed back further – keeping it out of range of the new evidence. All for the purpose of denying an undesirable conclusion.

      • captain gave it the old college try. Anyone else? I think his ideas are unique to him, but if we can get a consensus of two skeptics on any of his points, maybe there can be a debate on it.
        1.33C: yours is not an alternative theory, more like a don’t know
        2. water vapor: you want to doubt C-C?
        3. clouds: over the recent evident warming cloud cover was decreasing – no?
        4. land: not an alternative theory, looks a bit confused as to cause
        5. solar: relative forcing magnitude doesn’t come into it?
        6. paleo: hmmm, you will have trouble explaining 10 C with land bridges, but perhaps you really do firmly believe that for some reason. I haven’t seen the literature.

      • The complexity of skepticism accurately reflects the complexity of the science. That is the arguments for AGW and CAGW are scientifically complex and different skeptics focus on different arguments. Last I looked Skeptical Science listed over 100 distinct skeptical arguments and offered several hundred counter arguments, each of which has multiple skeptical responses which SS does not include. Skeptics did not create this complexity, rather the climate and the warmers did that. Skeptics are merely responding to questionable claims with the obvious questions.

      • Jim D, I don’t know all there is to know about what controls ocean currents. I know far less then many of course. Tell me who does so I know who to ignore. Oceans don’t just tranfer heat, they also change weather patterns. Does it matter if the watts are sw or lw? Yes but it is too small to matter is a consensus view. Are they right?

      • The appeal to complexity says we can’t really explain any of the above things I listed, but it only looks like we can by some fluke that makes it look like CO2 has a big effect.

      • Jim D

        You post the same tired, old rationalizations, but no empirical evidence to support your claims.

        Let’s go through them, one by one.

        1. Why is the surface 33 degrees warmer than it would be without GHGs?

        It is estimated to be 33 degrees warmer than it would be without an atmosphere, including GHGs. Most of this is estimated to be due to water (as vapor, liquid or ice crystals), with an estimated 15 to 20% resulting from CO2 and other trace GHGs.

        2. Why, when CO2 doubles and the temperature increases by 1 degree, should Clausius-Clapeyron not be allowed to operate to give the water vapor feedback?

        Clausius-Clapeyron gives the theoretical increase in water vapor with warming, assuming relative humidity remains constant with warming. Long-term NOAA radiosonde data plus shorter term observations over the tropics by Minschwaner + Dessler show that RH does not remain constant with warming, but that the actual increase in water vapor is less than 40% of the theoretical value per Clausius-Clapeyron. As a result, it is very likely that IPCC has overestimated the positive water vapor feedback in AR4.

        3. Why is cloud cover decreasing if there is supposed to be a negative cloud feedback?

        a) Spencer&Braswell have shown, based on CERES satellite observations over the tropics, that the net overall feedback from clouds with warming is negative, instead of strongly positive as predicted by the IPCC model simulations.
        b) Wyant et al. have demonstrated the same negative cloud feedback at all latitudes with climate models, using superparameterization to better simulate the behavior of clouds.
        c) Earthshine observations (Palle et al.) showed that over the 1980s and 1990s, global temperatures were rising, when cloud cover was decreasing (allowing more incoming SW radiation to reach the surface); after 2000, global temperature started cooling slightly, when cloud cover increased, thereby blocking more incoming SW radiation. The mechanism for this cloud forcing is not well understood – IPCC calls it the “largest source of uncertainty”.
        d) As a result of the above, it is almost certain that IPCC has grossly overestimated the positive feedback from clouds (which should be negative, instead) and, based on this plus the very likely overestimate of water feedback (see above), has grossly overestimated 2xCO2 climate sensitivity.

        4. Why is the land warming faster than the oceans if the oceans are supposed to be driving the warming?

        The oceans represent a massive thermal reservoir with a large inertia. For the answer to your question, ask someone who can speak about the role of the ocean like the Chief – I can’t answer your question.

        5. Why, when there is such a clear positive feedback to solar forcing, should not the even greater CO2 forcing have an effect?

        The “clear positive feedback to solar forcing”, which you posit, assumes that there is no other solar forcing beside solar irradiance, so is a highly questionable number. IPCC concedes that its ”level of scientific understanding of solar forcing is low”, so any feedback estimates based on this “low understanding” are just as dicey. As a result, this cannot be used to posit a strong positive feedback to CO2 forcing.

        6. Why was the climate so warm 50 million years ago if it wasn’t the high GHG concentrations at the time?

        I do not know the answer to that question; nor do you. We do not have complete knowledge of what makes our climate behave the way it does and cannot even explain what is happening to it today, let alone 50 million years ago. “We can only explain X if we assume Y” is an “argument from ignorance”, so don’t bring it.

        These are all answered by AGW, but no single alternative theory has been proposed for even one of them that I would consider viable. They have a lot of ‘splainin’ to do as they say.

        The ‘splainin’ is up not up to those who are rationally skeptical of the CAGW hypothesis; it is up to the people who claim that the CAGW premise as outlined by IPCC is valid (starting with a high 2xCO2 ECS with a mean value of 3.2C).

        – They need to ‘splain’ with empirical evidence how the “null hypothesis” is falsified by empirical evidence. (Popper)

        – They need to ‘splain’ how the CAGW hypothesis is supported by empirical evidence (not just by “asking” hypothetical questions). (Feynman)

        Jim D, you really make yourself look ridiculous with hypothetical arguments like these (we’ve heard them all before) – it’s empirical data that’s missing.

        Back to the basics. Bring it if you can – or simply admit that you cannot.

        Max

      • JimD, “1.33C: yours is not an alternative theory, more like a don’t know.”

        I don’t know is a valid and under utilized answer, especially when a hypothetical argument is used. I don’t know also implies that you don’t know, uncertainty.
        “2. water vapor: you want to doubt C-C?” No, there are obvious reasons to doubt C-C. There are two or more surfaces involved and C-C would not apply to both/all. With the average temperature and altitude of condensation changing, the water vapor ERL would change. A lower average cloud base would be a negative feedback, pure and simple. That would stimulate upper level convection, a negative feedback pure and simple. Instead of specific humidity increase, the humidity gradient would increase. That is a pretty obvious mistake that has Santers and Trenberth rethinking models.

        “3. clouds: over the recent evident warming cloud cover was decreasing – no?”

        With likely 60 to longer periods of natural internal variabilty involved and poorly understood, there is not baseline for what cloud variability should be. You are shooting in the dark.

        “4. land: not an alternative theory, looks a bit confused as to cause” Arrhenius even screwed the pooch on latitudinal impact. There is land based amplification or polar amplification, but where that amplification occurs is not very ideal for increasing ocean heat uptake efficiently. You have to look at the problem regionally not globally.

        “5. solar: relative forcing magnitude doesn’t come into it?” Over a long enough time period. The thermal mass of the oceans is 1000s of times greater than the atmosphere so solar changes would take time. The range of solar forcing change is small but persistent.

        “6. paleo: hmmm, you will have trouble explaining 10 C with land bridges, but perhaps you really do firmly believe that for some reason. I haven’t seen the literature.” Not really. You would have more problem explaining how global the 10 C would be. As far as the more recent 4 to 5 C change,

        http://sam.ucsd.edu/sio219/toggweiler_bjornsson.pdf

        The globe is made of two thermally asymmetric hemispheres. Write that down :)

      • Tempterrain

        Let’s go through your post to me.

        I do not really care what sort of “empirical evidence” is presented to a) falsify the “null hypothesis” (CO2 impact on climate = 0) and b) to corroborate the CAGW hypothesis (as outlined by IPCC in AR4).

        It does not need to be a “double blind” test.

        Feynman and others have described what is meant (and what is NOT meant) by empirical evidence.

        Without repeating all that in detail it is generally meant to include actual physical measurements or results of reproducible experimentation.

        For example, the “cosmic ray / cloud nucleation” mechanism proposed by Henrik Svensmark et al. is being tested under controlled conditions at CERN. So far the nucleation mechanism itself has been reproduced under controlled conditions in the presence of certain naturally occurring aerosols, but more work needs to be done to see if the mechanism really works under controlled conditions simulating our planet’s climate. If these further experiments do, indeed, show that this mechanism exists and can reproducibly quantify its effect under controlled conditions simulating our planet’s climate, then this would be “empirical evidence” supporting the cosmic ray / cloud nucleation mechanism.

        This is cited as an example. A similar sort of thing could conceivably be done to corroborate and quantify the CO2 GH effect, but it’s not up to me (as a rational skeptic) to define the methods used to address my request for “empirical evidence”.

        The rest of your post about “moving goalposts”, “hard core deniers” or “double blind tests on 1000 Earths” were obviously just polemic rather than serious talk, so I’ll ignore them.

        I hope I’ve explained this well enough that you can understand.

        It’s really quite simple.

        Max

      • manacker,

        “Your philosophical discourse on “what Feynman and Popper really meant”, is a bit superfluous.”

        My what? Where? Is what?

        If disagreeing with comments by CAGW advocates is superfluous, (not to mention “philosophical discourse” – how dare anyone charge me with that heinous crime), you could write that criticism to almost every comment I write here. Not to mention more than a couple of your own.

        I will award myself a point based on the fact that after my comment, tempterrain went from righteous indignation that anyone would dare criticize his comment as filled with straw men, to blaming his tongue for getting caught in his cheek. (Or was he blaming his cheek for catching his tongue?) And if I had to superfluously wax philosophical to get it…then so be it.

      • Chief Hydrologist

        blah blah blah blah…flying monkees….blah blah blah…

        Pissant progressive and space cadet are terms used to signify green left politics and AGW groupthink. They are far less used than psychopathic denialist scumbag and WASP sceptic. Your problem is that you think a leftist Marcusian asymmetry is the natural order of things,

        As for Michael – it is all a matter of time. ‘Since there exists in this four dimensional structure [space-time] no longer any sections which represent “now” objectively, the concepts of happening and becoming are indeed not completely suspended, but yet complicated. It appears therefore more natural to think of physical reality as a four dimensional existence, instead of, as hitherto, the evolution of a three dimensional existence.’ Albert Einstein

      • Jim D | February 16, 2013 at 6:55 am |
        manacker, the null hypothesis is another thing that is strange to me. Science supports that the earth is 33 degrees warmer due to GHGs than it would be without them, yet this hypothesis says no more effect will be seen for further increases, as though it has suddenly stopped at this level. It is not null at all, it is denying that the 33 degrees was due to GHGs, which is a scientific (or pseudo-scientific) position.

        Jim D | February 16, 2013 at 8:00 am |
        steven, …1. Why is the surface 33 degrees warmer than it would be without GHGs?
        ============

        The 33°C AGW “warming by greenhouse gases” is an illusion – it doesn ‘t exist in real world physics.

        That is the not the null hypothesis, that is the AGWScienceFiction scam brainwashing meme.

        AGWSF’s Greenhouse Effect misses out the Water Cycle, completely. The Earth would not be -18°C without water, it would be 67°C.

        The basic AGWSF Greenhouse Effect claim is a magic trick, deliberately created to confuse the gullible who think they’re scientists – you, generic climate scientists, don’t even have an atmosphere in your models, and you don’t know you don’t have it. Why should you? You haven’t noticed you don’t have a water cycle, you haven’t noticed that there’s no rain in your carbon cycle, and so on. You, generic, have no idea of basic physical properties and processes, because you have been educated spout nonsense. Your world is impossible.

      • Max.

        but it’s not up to me (as a rational skeptic) to define the methods used to address my request for “empirical evidence”

        Who is it up to then? You seem to think that cloud nucleation experiments at Cern can be counted as “empirical evidence”. Incidentally the first paper was written a couple of years ago:

        http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2011/08/the-cerncloud-results-are-surprisingly-interesting/

        But, you don’t count IR absorption measurements of CO2 as “empirical evidence” and , yet, that was first done over a hundred years ago and has been repeated and the technique refined many times since.

        So you must think its up to you to decide just what constitutes “empirical evidence”.

        Science can only proceed on the basis of what’s possible. Just what, precisely, would you like to see done that isn’t being done? If you can’t answer that question, you’ll end up looking as big an idiot as Jim Cripwell who openly admits he’s asking for the impossible and thinks, because he won’t get it, that means there can’t be any problem.

      • Gary M

        Guess I misunderstood your comment.

        Sorry (after re-reading it, it makes sense).

        Max

      • tempterrain

        Let’s go through your last post.

        To date there have been no conclusive reproducible experiments at CERN to either corroborate or falsify the cosmic ray / cloud nucleation hypothesis proposed by Svensmark et al., as I indicated in my post.

        What we have is an experimental confirmation that the cosmic ray cloud nucleation mechanism itself exists under presence of some naturally occurring aerosols.

        So we are about as far as we are with the greenhouse effect. In that case have laboratory evidence that CO2 (and other GHGs) absorb and re-radiate LW radiation – so a mechanism exists.

        In NEITHER case do we have empirical evidence, based on reproducible experiments under controlled conditions simulating our climate that this mechanism really results in changes in our planet’s temperature (in one case by the GH effect, and in the other, by the creation of clouds, which block incoming solar radiation). These data are still lacking for BOTH the Svensmark hypothesis as well as AGW.

        The CLOUD experiment at CERN is expected to perform these experiments over the next couple of years; once they have completed this experimental work, we should hopefully have empirical data based on reproducible experimentation to either corroborate and quantify or falsify Svensmark’s hypothesis.

        Got it?

        Now you drift into discussions of the “impossible”.

        I do NOT agree with you that it is “impossible” to corroborate and quantify (or falsify) EITHER Svensmark OR CAGW.

        I can’t tell you how this could be done, but as long as NEITHER hypothesis is validated and quantified or falsified by empirical scientific evidence, BOTH hypotheses remain UNCORROBORATED (and equally valid or invalid).

        Jim Cripwell is only asking for the empirical evidence to falsify the “null hypothesis” that increased CO2 has “null” (zero) imopact on our temperature, which TODAY is “impossible” to do (because the data do not exist).

        But, hey, if scientists can figure out a way to provide empirical evidence to corroborate and quantify or falsify the Svensmark hypothesis, they ought to be able to come up with a way to do the same for the CAGW hypothesis. Don’t you think?

        We’ve been talking about AGW long enough. It’s time to put some empirical science behind all the talk.

        Max

      • “The CLOUD experiment at CERN is expected to perform these experiments over the next couple of years; once they have completed this experimental work, we should hopefully have empirical data based on reproducible experimentation to either corroborate and quantify or falsify Svensmark’s hypothesis.”

        Not by the standards insisted on by skeptics it won’t.

        The CLOUD experiment at CERN can never falsify the null hypothesis that cosmic rays have zero influence on global temperature. Because the CLOUD experiment is happening in the lab, not in the actual atmosphere.

      • lolwot

        You are beginning to waffle a bit too much for me.

        You state that the future reproducible experimental work of the CLOUD experiment at CERN, which is intended to either corroborate and quantify or falsify the Svensmark hypothesis under controlled conditions simulating our atmosphere, would not be accepted by skeptics because it is not the real atmosphere.

        I think you are wrong in that assumption. I, for one would accept it (assuming there were no obvious errors in the approach or conclusions).

        I also believe that if similar actual reproducible experiments were done to corroborate and quantify (or, alternatively, to falsify) the AGW effect of CO2 (or CAGW, by extension) under controlled conditions simulating our atmosphere, that these would also be accepted by skeptics. I’ll agree that setting up this experiment could be more complicated and difficult than the CLOUD experiment at CERN, for several reasons, but if such a reproducible experiment were run, I am sure that most rational skeptics, including me, would accept the results.

        Let’s see what these experiments show us before we speculate on who will or will not accept their results.

        Max

      • GaryM | February 16, 2013 at 5:51 am said: ”I deny that climate scientists can actually measure the change in the global average temperature to within tenths of a degree per year, per decade or per century in the present”

        Gary, because they don’t know what was the GLOBAL temp last year – how can they compare it with any other year? have a look at their ”global temperature charts” they look as seismographs – as if the earth has hi-fever… that can tell you the honesty in the past / present climatologists.

        The Fakes pretend / lie, to know the correct GLOBAL temp for 300y ago, for 700y ago… when most of the planet didn’t exist, the earth was flat, thermometer didn’t exist. On the top of their favored lies, the Warmist created their own lie about warming in 100y. Which means: the Fakes are much more prolific liars than the Warmist; only the Warmist are clever / have brains, to cash on it. Fakes are the born losers / suckers… .
        .

  100. Appeals to authority Joshua, are about agreement ter an expert or to consensus per se, accepting the authority of the shaman or the group .
    To agree with a particular Feynmann statement, eg ‘a scientist should
    bend over backwards ter critically examine his/her own hypothesis’ is
    not a matter of appeal ter authority.

    • Thanks, Beth, but your reasoning seems selective to me.

      To agree with a particular Feynmann statement, eg ‘a scientist should bend over backwards ter critically examine his/her own hypothesis’ is not a matter of appeal ter authority.

      I’m asking for something more in-depth than argument by assertion.

      When someone references Feynmann by name, they reference his authority. Otherwise, why not simply use their own words to express their own conceptualization, (which may happen to be similar to that of Feynmann),without referencing his name? Why do they need to reference his ideas, explicitly, except as an appeal to his authority, to his standing, to his intelligence or insight?

      It’s like when Judith references Freeman Dyson and then objects to others “appealing to authority,” or when she criticizes the work of others on the basis of their lack of relevant experience in the field.

      I agree that a scientist should bend over backwards to critically examine his/her own hypotheses. In fact, I have said essentially that many times in these threads. Will you now reference your agreement with my statements as you might reference your agreement with Feynmann’s? If not, why not, except that by referencing him, you are appealing to his considerably greater authority?

      • We know the True Believers of ACGW (America-Caused Global Warming) have sacrificed decency, dignity and integrity on the altar of Left-liberal Utopianism when they lie about the credentials of scientific skeptics and determinedly engage in the politics of personal destruction against all persons of good faith who have the courage to speak the truth about global warming alarmism. “People who live in an age of corruption are witty and slanderous; they know that there are other kinds of murder than by dagger or assault; they also know that whatever is well said is believed” ~Friedrich Nietzsche (The Gay Science)

      • We know the True Believers of ACGW (America-Caused Global Warming) have sacrificed decency, dignity and integrity on the altar of Left-liberal Utopianism when they lie about the credentials of scientific skeptics and determinedly engage in the politics of personal destruction against all persons of good faith who have the courage to speak the truth about global warming alarmism. “People who live in an age of corruption are witty and slanderous; they know that there are other kinds of murder than by dagger or assault; they also know that whatever is well said is believed” ~Friedrich Nietzsche (The Fay Science)

      • Refraining from needlessly restating a known argument is engaging in an appeal to authority. Dare not to say Newtonian physics or Einstein’s theory of relativity.

      • Joshua

        Nothing “selective” in Beth’s reasoning at all.

        It’s simply the way it is.

        The CAGW hypothesis as outlined by IPCC in AR4 is not supported by empirical scientific evidence and, as a result, is simply an uncorroborated hypothesis and not “settled science”.

        The “null hypothesis” is that 2xCO2 climate sensitivity = “null” (zero), and this “null hypothesis” has not been falsified by empirical evidence.

        Go back and do your homework rather than philosophizing how climate scientists “should bend over backwards to critically examine their hypotheses”. That statement is meaningless. The “consensus process” of IPCC only accepts findings, which support the CAGW hypothesis, as has been demonstrated in some detail on this site and elsewhere.

        Open your eyes, Joshua.

        (Beth’s are wide open and her vision appears to be 20-20.)

        Max.

      • “2xCO2 climate sensitivity = zero” doesn’t need to be falsified.

        Anymore than “All creatures were created on Earth 6000 years ago in their present form by God” needs to be falsified.

        It’s weight of evidence that renders both statements above not credible, except of course to the most contrary of minds.

      • lowlot wrote: ““2xCO2 climate sensitivity = zero” doesn’t need to be falsified.”
        ————————————————————————-
        Whoever said it was zero?
        And, before you start, saying something is “indistinguishable from zero” is not the same as saying it is zero.

      • This part Phatboy:
        “The “null hypothesis” is that 2xCO2 climate sensitivity = “null” (zero), and this “null hypothesis” has not been falsified by empirical evidence.”

        It’s a demand for 2xCO2 = zero to be falsified. And as I said that isn’t what science is about.

        Also please bear in mind that skeptics are not a single mind (apparently) so please in future do not assume to talk for all skeptics.

      • lowlot, No, it cannot be falsified. But you’re the only one I see here suggesting that anyone requires it to be – it’s simply a statement of fact.

      • “But you’re the only one I see here suggesting that anyone requires it to be”

        Then you aren’t looking. Scroll up.

      • lowlot, I’m well aware of what he wrote. You, on the other hand, attach your own meaning to the words.

      • There’s no way to interpret
        “The “null hypothesis” is that 2xCO2 climate sensitivity = “null” (zero), and this “null hypothesis” has not been falsified by empirical evidence.”

        as anything but a demand for “2xCO2 climate sensitivity = zero” to be falsified.

      • Perhaps for those whose worldview is so distorted by their prejudices and biases

      • Joshua

        You are really using “used straw” from the cow barn with your statement:

        “2xCO2 climate sensitivity = zero” doesn’t need to be falsified.

        Anymore than “All creatures were created on Earth 6000 years ago in their present form by God” needs to be falsified.

        Wrong. The “null hypothesis” (2xCO2 CS = “null”) DOES need to be falsified – and, so far, you have been unable to do so..

        “All creatures were created on Earth 6000 years ago in their present form by God” has already been falsified by empirical evidence from fossil finds, carbon dating, etc.

        Next time, when you create a strawman like this, make sure you use fresh straw.

        Max

      • Joshua

        Let me cite an extreme example of why your logic is wrong.

        I can show you a wonderful chart that shows a robust correlation between the sales of “Big Mac” hamburgers at McDonald’s with global temperature since the 1970s. They increase almost in lockstep.

        So I can claim that there is “causation” there (either way).

        You can tell me, “wait a minute – correlation does not provide evidence of causation; the ‘null hypothesis’ is that the two are not causally related; show me the empirical evidence, which would falsify the ‘null hypothesis’.”

        And you’d be in the right, without needing to come up with any alternate explanation.

        Empirical evidence is NOT: “because X said so” or “because this prestigious scientific organization agrees”

        It is also NOT: “because our models cannot explain it any other way”

        Nor is it: “because we have this wonderful theory that is based on ‘known physics’.

        It is what it is.

        And it’s missing for the IPCC CAGW hypothesis (as outlined in AR4).

        Max

    • Joshua : I’m asking for something more in-depth than argument by assertion.

      You can start by putting your own house in order : back up your assertion about Max. Or continue to be a vacuous two-face hypocrite.

      • Impossible to beat Joshua @ criticism; he’s got hyper and hypo thoroughly covered, the range is saturated.
        =============

  101. I am happy ter say that Joshua, “J’ says ‘that a scientist should
    bend over backwards to critically examine his/herown hypotheses’
    As it happens, it was also a scientist’s comment, Feynmann,scientist
    ‘F’ who made the oft reported comment.

    Seems ter me that tero go to the source of a statement and then
    discuss the statement is something we do in argument. If our focus
    is the speaker exclusively, and not evaluating the content of the
    statement made, its an appeal to authority. But citation is something
    were always doing in debate, refering ter such and such paper,
    Hansen PNAS 2012, Lindzen et al, 2009. Yer can’t per se call
    referencing anappeal to authority. It can also be a blogging short
    cut to ‘take a lookat his paper.

    Gee, Joshua, yer know I’m a cow girl, how do I git meself into these
    discussions? I’m even going ter have a go at SM on poetry
    B – CG

    • David Springer

      It takes a certain amount of brainpower to walk or drive back and forth to work. Sitting yer ass on a horse that knows where you want to go and can get there safely without your help frees up the rider’s mind to think about other things. So cowgirls and cowboys should naturally have deeper thoughts than others all else being equal.

      That’s my story, I’m sticking with it, and that’s all I gots to say about that.

  102. Chief Hydrologist

    The appeal to authority fallacy is by definition an appeal to a false authority. There are a few forms that it can take. One of the most popular is the appeal to science as a whole or to an unspecified scientific consensus to support a statement. An example is that the ‘increase in global average surface temperature this century will be between 1.5 and 4.5 degrees C this century’ is consensus science. Science suggests that there is no rational way to support such a statement. Science can’t determine this beyond an as yet undefined probability. It is of course model based and can be assumed to be considered ‘plausible’ by climate modellers but not to be definitive. Models are without a doubt chaotic and beyond a short period have no single deterministic solution. In this case – it is an appeal to a global authority that can’t possibly exist. There are many examples where science is tentative, approximate and hugely provisional. An assumption of certainty on the basis of the inherently uncertain is an appeal to authority fallacy.

    Appeals to authority apply to various sources that are more or less authoritative. Appeals to statements by Newton, Einstein or Feynmann are popular and may be taken to be an appeal to the zeitgeist of the social construct of science. How we think about how we do science – and may be considered to be reliable by how useful it has proven to be as a cultural shorthand. Yogi Bera may be considered to be reliable in this sense. Al Gore on quantum mechanics may not be. Indiscriminate use of sources is the fallacy of an appeal to authority.

    An appeal to Fenymann has a proven track record legitimised in the zeitgeist – an appeal to Joshua has an air of desperation.

  103. There are times when I regret surrendering me +1 franchise.
    “Equusgate, ( Gary M)
    “slaughtergate,” (HR)

  104. Not bad, chief, an appeal ter the zeitgeist … mind if I borrow it?
    I will of course attribute, lol.

    • Chief Hydrologist

      Call it the cultural commons Beth and put it together with other things in novel patterns. It is how poetry evolves.

  105. Ahem Tempt., Popper* argued that certainty or proof in science is a mistaken quest, knowledge is essentially conjectural and provisional,
    open to refutation. This is a skeptical viewpoint not ‘the science is
    certain’ claim we’ve heard put forward from some AGW advocates.
    *K Popper. Objective Knowledge Clarendon Press.

    • Yet you guys demand empirical PROOF that CO2 rise causes warming.

      Seems Popper disagrees with such demands. As he should. Science is about weight of evidence, not proof.

    • lolwot

      You misunderstand yet once again.

      No one is “demanding PROOF” (it doesn’t exist in science).

      All that a rational skeptic is asking for is “empirical scientific evidence” (from real-time physical observations or reproducible experimentation – see Feynman and Popper), which would a) falsify the “null hypothesis” (2xCO2 CS = “null” in our atmosphere) and b) corroborate the CAGW hypothesis (as outlined by IPCC in AR4).

      That’s all, lolwot.

      Should be a stroll in the park for someone who firmly believes the CAGW premise.

      Max

  106. Appeal to Authority is not always a fallacy. For example to the authority of the consensus of climate scientists is not as they are experts in the field under discussion.

    However the way climate skeptics appeal to authority often IS a genuine fallacy. For example the Oregon Petition in which 31,000 largely irrelevant non-expects on climate were presented as authorities is a class example of the appeal to authority fallacy.

    • lolwot

      “appeal to authority” is NOT empirical evidence (Feynman)

      The “31,000” Oregon petition, the “2,500” IPCC scientists, etc. – these are good examples of the fallacy known as “argument from authority”.

      The ONLY thing that counts is “argument from evidence”.

      Max

  107. Thx fer yer comment Max, actually, I do have ter wear glasses
    fer reading but other than that me vision’s 20/20 )

    • Beth

      Ah reckon thet ta reed sum of the stuff thet gits posted hear, yew need more’n jest reedin glasses – yew need lenses with a bilt-in BS filter.

      Max

  108. I am absolutely astounded at the discussion started by Joshua at 10.54 pm on January 15th, and what the “appeal to authority”, and “certainty” mean. There is only one authority in physics, and that is the hard, measured empirical data. Why anyone wants to discuss any other meaning, I have no idea. We do not accept the ideas of the great physicists of the past and present because of who they are, and the ideas they present. We accept these ideas because the empirical data shows that they are correct. And certainty is a function of the accuracy with which the measurements are made.

    It really does not matter who “wins” the debate on CAGW between the “warmists” and the “skeptics/deniers”. In the end the empirical data will demonstrate conclusively who is right and who is wrong. The only question, is when is this going to happen?

    • Nope, narrative always wins. I know this from history, so far.
      ============

      • Will Rogers, Uncommon Dean of Sense, had a thing to say about newspapers and his own eyes. There is narrative, and there is Nature, and sometimes the twain do meet.
        =================

      • Well dang, this was supposed to follow Fan’s propaganda below. He’s trying to tell me what my lying eyes show me.
        ================

    • A fan of *MORE* discourse

      Jim Cripwell claims  “In the end the empirical data will demonstrate conclusively who is right and who is wrong.”

      Jim Cripwell, has that happened even for the evolution of species?


      National Science Ed Center
      on Anti-Evolution Bill:
      “Last Thing Missouri Teachers Need”

      “The Missouri legislature is getting national attention again — and not exactly the good kind. As we reported last week, Representative Rick Brattin, a Republican, is pushing a proposal to mandate that “intelligent design” be taught in all Missouri schools alongside evolution, telling us that he’s a ‘huge science buff,’ who believes different origin theories should get equal treatment.”

      This distinction is pretty clear, isn’t it Jim Cripwell?

      —————–
      The difference between a skeptic and a denialist: No amount of evidence will convince a denialist.
      —————–

      The scientific evidence for the reality of AGW has gotten so strong, that nowadays most folks who doubt the reality of AGW are denialists pure-and-simple. Because the scientific evidence that AGW is real — theoretical, observational, and experimental — has sufficed to convince almost all rational skeptics. Because nowadays, ordinary folks can plainly see the sobering reality of AGW with their own eyes

      The present debate over AGW, therefore, is not in regard to the scientific reality of AGW, but in regard to the magnitude of AGW: will the effects of AGW “merely” serious … or will the effects of AGW (considered on a time-scale of centuries) be sufficiently large as to reasonably be called catastrophic?

      At present, no-one but a denialist will assert with confidence that coming generations will not grapple with the CAGW that our generation is initiating.

      Both morally and scientifically, isn’t that pure common-sense, Jim Cripwell?

      \scriptstyle\rule[2.25ex]{0.01pt}{0.01pt}\,\boldsymbol{\overset{\scriptstyle\circ\wedge\circ}{\smile}\,\heartsuit\,{\displaystyle\text{\bfseries???}}\,\heartsuit\,\overset{\scriptstyle\circ\wedge\circ}{\smile}}\ \rule[-0.25ex]{0.01pt}{0.01pt}

      • Fan (Sidles), you write “The scientific evidence for the reality of AGW has gotten so strong, that nowadays most folks who doubt the reality of AGW are denialists pure-and-simple”

        As I have noted before, I swore I would ignore you. But when you post in such a blatant fashion, that is different. Show me the empirical data that proves that when you add CO2 to the atrmosphere from current levels, it causes global temperatures to rise. Simple.

      • I wrote “Show me the empirical data that proves that when you add CO2 to the atrmosphere from current levels, it causes global temperatures to rise.

        I misspoke. I should have written “Show me the empirical data that measures how much global temperatures rise when you add CO2 to the atmosphere from current levels.

    • The 33 degrees is pretty empirical evidence isn’t it? Why are we at a comfortable 15 C instead of -18 C that non-GHG physics says should be the surface temperature this far from the sun?

      • Jim, the surface is in direct contact with the atmosphere (not in vacuum). Why would it have -18 °C? What physical law requires it?

      • An atmosphere without GHGs may as well be space for all the effect it has.

      • So, you don’t know any physical law (or theory) requiring Earth’s surface having -18 °C. Me neither.

      • David Springer

        Jim D | February 16, 2013 at 8:17 am | Reply

        “The 33 degrees is pretty empirical evidence isn’t it? Why are we at a comfortable 15 C instead of -18 C that non-GHG physics says should be the surface temperature this far from the sun?”

        Because of the global ocean. Water is transparent to sunlight and opaque to thermal radiation. Those are exactly the properties of CO2 which make CO2 a greenhouse gas. So the ocean is a greenhouse fluid. Sunlight penetrates it at the speed of light. Impurities in the water eventually absord the energy and warm the surrounding water. Thermal radiation from the warmed water at depth cannot propogate upward and must instead be mechanically transported by convection. Since density changes with temperature this results in stratification with warmer water floating to the top. The warm water warms the atmosphere. So the greenhouse effect is due to the ocean and if the atmosphere were pure nitrogen at 14.7psi there wouldn’t be much difference in temperature over the ocean because the ocean will load up the atmosphere with water vapor which is quite effecient at transfering heat from ocean to atmosphere. This would not be possible without an atmosphere of at least some non-greenhouse gas to provide enough pressure at sea level to raise the boiling point of water above its freezing point i.e. liquid water doesn’t exist in a vacuum.

      • David Springer

        Edim | February 16, 2013 at 9:07 am |

        “So, you don’t know any physical law (or theory) requiring Earth’s surface having -18 °C. Me neither.”

        The measured average temperature of the moon is -23C. It receives the same amount of solar energy as the earth and the surface rocks are about the same composition so if we stripped the earth of ocean and atmosphere we would essentially be the same average temperature of the moon. Different rotation rates explain the rest of the difference as a more uniformly illuminated body has a higher equilibrium temperature. The earth would experience about 100C diurnal temperature change at the equator where the moon experiences about 300C change IIRC. The T4 relationship of power to temperature comes into play making the moon radiate away its daytime heating faster than the earth resulting in a lower equilibrium temperature for the moon for the same solar constant and same albedo.

      • David, ” The earth would experience about 100C diurnal temperature change at the equator where the moon experiences about 300C change IIRC. ”

        That is the biggest problem with the 33C assumption. The diurnal temperature range is dependent on thermal mass. It is like a pulsing DC battery supply. The higher thermal capacity filters more of the pulses out. The average land based diurnal temperature range on Earth is about 14 C per BEST and about 6 C in the oceans. Since the ocean DTR is dependent on that thin surface boundary layer and the oceans cover the lions share of the “surface” global “average” surface air temperature is just about useless.

        With more land in the prime equatorial band, DTR would be greater and Tmax higher. If your paleo data is based on Tmax like delta o18, it would indicate much warmer conditions than a proxy based on Tave or Tmin. Deep ocean paleo is about the only ones that can be trusted.

      • David, I accept the warming effect of the atmosphere, but I think it’s caused by the bulk of it, not by the so-called GHGs.

      • Edim, it is very clear that you don’t know what the radiative balance dictates that the radiating temperature should be, but it is physics, so it is not surprising that this is not your strong suite.

      • Edim, so you are one of the Postma/Sullivan/Jelbring types with the mass effect and disregarding radiating levels or not inconsistently.

      • Jim the surface temperature and the effective radiating temperature are not the same thing, more than 90% of the Earth’s cooling power in IR comes from the atmosphere (and clouds). The surface, on the other hand, loses more than half of the absorbed solar energy by non-radiative means (to the atmosphere). It’s physics Jim.

      • capt.d., a diurnal range of 5% doesn’t affect the mean radiating temperature very much. 33 C is quite close to how much you have to explain somehow, which people haven’t done yet without radiative transfer models, but if you have an alternative theory to radiative transfer, great.

      • Edim, talking of physics, what do you think the radiating temperature would be without GHGs, just the oxygen and nitrogen it has? It should be an easy problem for a physics student given the solar constant at earth’s distance and its albedo. Then we can ask what the surface radiating temperature would be, and then the same questions without an atmosphere. Trick questions: same answer for all.

      • JimD, I don’t need an alternate theory to radiant physics. You just need to understand the physics.

        Rule one, a radiant surface cannot emit energy any faster than energy can be transferred to that surface. GHGs change the rate of transfer at one surface, but that surface doesn’t have sufficient thermal mass to control its own destiny. It is dependent on the source.

        Diurnal temperature range is an indication of the rate of transfer. You can think of it as a capacitive electrical circuit. If the source or capacitor, has a larger capacity, it can maintain a more constant supply of energy.

        So for Earth, the capacitor is the oceans. With an average charge of 334 Wm-2, it will maintain 334 Wm-2 of OLR fairly stably, ~6 degrees DTR or 36 Wm-2 of power supply noise. . Adding CO2 will reduce that noise but will not eliminate that noise. Since the charging circuit is independent of the CO2 resistance and is a sinewave, the RMS value of the power supply limits the peak charge. You can’t create energy.

        To get to a Peak value would require infinite atmospheric resistance. Without adding mass to the atmosphere there is a lower limit.

      • “Rule one, a radiant surface cannot emit energy any faster than energy can be transferred to that surface.”

        Capt, it cannot even radiate that ‘fast’ if more than half of the energy loss is non-radiative.

      • Edim, “Capt, it cannot even radiate that ‘fast’ if more than half of the energy loss is non-radiative.” Since we are on a rock floating in a nearly perfect vacuum, there will be a radiant surface. The Earth and its atmosphere has lots of thermodynamic surfaces or layer, so you have to think about which one is doing what, where, when and how much. That’s dynamics.

        Since I selected the average oceans as a source delivering 334 Wm-2, you know the how much, but the where is only ~70% of the true surface, so since we need a uniform radiant layer, 334*.7=234 Wm-2 available for a uniform surface that could cover the whole 100% of the globe. What transfers energy to that “surface” is latent, conductive, convective and radiant energy which is in ever changing proportions depending on the layers between the source and the “radiant surface”. The when is 12 or more hours per day when the system is not charging.

        So you need to draw the layers on a piece of paper and follow the energy.

      • capt.d., so the earth has to radiate outwards at 240 W/m2 to maintain its energy balance. How do you propose the surface radiates at 390 W/m2, while the top radiates at 240 W/m2 without radiation being absorbed and emitted by the atmosphere in the no-GHG case? A no-GHG atmosphere emits just as much from the top as it gets from the surface because it can’t do anything with it. The answer is with no GHGs the surface and top both emit at 240 W/m2, ergo the surface temperature is -18 C, and the atmosphere has to be colder because of the lapse rate due to gravity. As Spencer mentions, there isn’t deep convection in this situation.

      • Capt, I mean the Earth’s surface.

      • JimD, “The answer is with no GHGs the surface and top both emit at 240 W/m2, ergo the surface temperature is -18 C, and the atmosphere has to be colder because of the lapse rate due to gravity. As Spencer mentions, there isn’t deep convection in this situation.”

        For a hypothetical no greenhouse gas Earth Ein would equal Eout when the Earth is in thermal equilibrium of some sort. Limiting radiant cooling via the atmosphere and convection or what ever just lets you play with what “surface” you are going to use as a reference. If you allow there to be an atmosphere, conduction, the slowest form of transfer with no chance of radiant cooling would produce an isothermal atmosphere. If that atmosphere is not opaque to incoming solar, the no greenhouse gas Earth would be about 4 C degrees.

        So posing a hypothetical without imposing a time constant, -18 C is a lost cause. What is time to a planet?

        Now if you assume that we hit snow ball Earth status and we still have an atmosphere with more than 316Wm-2 average solar available, then 0 C would be the no greenhouse gas Earth equilibrium. The “surface” though would be under a few meters of snow and every time a N2 or O2 molecule hit it it would gain energy that could not be lost to space.. The guys with the 33C were smoking some good stuff since that requires a magic floating albedo layer that never touches the “surface”.

      • Edim said, “Capt, I mean the Earth’s surface.”

        Which one? The day one, the night one, the summer one the winter one? You can just consider one surface and one time frame. If it weren’t for that “radiant” surface, there would be no latent or convective heat transfer.

        You said, “Capt, it cannot even radiate that ‘fast’ if more than half of the energy loss is non-radiative.” It can’t transfer any if there is no source and sink.

      • I mean the average one (land & ocean, day & night, seasons, latitudes…). Of course this average is not real, but it may be an useful concept, or not.

      • capt.d., you pulled 4 C out from somewhere, so it makes no sense unless you have explained that.

      • JimD, “capt.d., you pulled 4 C out from somewhere, so it makes no sense unless you have explained that.” it should. 1361 Wm-2 the solar constant divided by 4 for a spherical surface yields 340.1 Wm-2 or about 5C if you assume a perfect black body or ~4C is you consider that nothing is perfect, using the S-B relationship.

        If you like you could also consider 1361 as the peak to peak value. That would give you an RMS of 0.707*(1361/2)=481 Wm-2 at the equator or total if the Earth were flat, but 0.707*481=340.1 Wm-2 since it isn’t. The problem with the 33C is that it never considered thermal mass. That heat capacity slash thermal inertia thing is not something to assume away very lightly.

      • capt.d., so if you can see how 5 C corresponds to a black body, why can’t you see how -18 C corresponds to something with an albedo of 0.3? Changing one thing at a time, as we are taught to do in science, the difference between -18 C and + 15 C is the part due to just atmospheric GHG additions that don’t change albedo (we have to assume the same albedo to isolate this effect, so perhaps you can imagine the water vapor, with clouds and oceans, and CO2 are still there, but without any GHG properties).

      • JimD, “capt.d., so if you can see how 5 C corresponds to a black body, why can’t you see how -18 C corresponds to something with an albedo of 0.3?”

        -18C could correspond to something with an albedo of 0.3, but the no greenhouse Earth model would require the albedo to be where it is now. Since the majority of that 0.3 is clouds in the tropics, that is unlikely. With the hypothetical no greenhouse, the tropics would most likely be clear allowing the oceans to “charge” producing the 0 to 4C. In other words, the no greenhouse Earth model ignores the thermal mass and properties of liquid water.

        Since the 33C GHE seems linked to parsimonious reasoning, starting with a fallacy just leads to more confusion. 1 to 1.5 per doubling would be parsimonious reasoning, anything more is reaching.

      • capt.d., no an albedo of 0.3 gives the same result wherever it is distributed. Albedo is defined by the reflected total, which leaves 0.7 of the solar input, or 240 W/m2, to be balanced by IR outwards and the radiative temperature for 240 W/m2 is -18 C (255 K). I think this has been gone over many times before here, but no indication of understanding this part has been made. This outward radiation is confirmed by satellite measurements, so it is not just a theoretical exercise. If it came from the surface instead, that surface would have to have an effective temperature of -18 C, which is colder than it is here, isn’t it. GHGs prevent that with a blanketing effect.

      • JimD, “capt.d., no an albedo of 0.3 gives the same result wherever it is distributed. Albedo is defined by the reflected total, which leaves 0.7 of the solar input, or 240 W/m2, to be balanced by IR ”

        No, that is incorrect. You could have a 0.3 albedo and not have a single cloud in the skies from 30N to 30S, the wheel house of solar irradiance. If there is open water in the equatorial band the oceans will have a net positive heat uptake. In order for that not to happen, the albedo would have to be distributed so all the less intense solar reached the surface and all the 500Wm-2 plus surface irradiance was either blocked or diffused. That is part of the problem with assuming an isothermal radiant surface when in fact there is only a partially isothermal radiant surface. The only “surfaces” that meets the near ideal black body criterion is the bulk of the oceans and the 65Wm-2 or lower turbopause. There is a paradox where there shouldn’t be.

      • capt.d., you are not using the global definition of albedo if you don’t think the earth reflects 30% of its incoming solar energy. The global definition is weighted so that tropical areas have a higher weight due to their greater incoming solar radiation. This 0.3 is the albedo in a projection as viewed from where the sun is, which automatically weights polar areas less per unit surface area due to their angle relative to normal.

      • JimD, “capt.d., you are not using the global definition of albedo if you don’t think the earth reflects 30% of its incoming solar energy. The global definition is weighted so that tropical areas have a higher weight due to their greater incoming solar radiation. This 0.3 is the albedo in a projection as viewed from where the sun is, which automatically weights polar areas less per unit surface area due to their angle relative to normal.”

        In order to get the 33C, the tropics have to be weighted. Albedo of 30% just means that 30% of the total energy is reflected. If you neglect the peak energy you miss the potential impact. That is the point, somethings you can average and some things you can’t. With energy, voltage or current, you need to consider RMS and Peak to Peak.

        For Earth, the actual Peak is nearly 1410 Wm-2 and the “zero” is ~67 Wm-2.

        So the 33 C is assuming an incorrect average.. The impact of WMGHG that are non-condensible, is 67Wm-2 +/- about 5. Had the Telescope Jockeys considered the thermal capacity and inertia of the oceans, we would not be here.

      • JimD, Another way to think about it to consider the definition of temperature.

        T=dE/dS what you “see” leaving a planet is entropy. Since entropy decreases with total energy, the approach to zero decays more slowly. You have a skewed energy distribution. Temperature itself is just a linear construct of entropy so you can explain things and measure energy indirectly. Our whole frigging universe is non-linear and we are still farting around with ten digits.

      • capt.d., the 33 C assumes the current surface temperature is 15 C. I thought most people agreed with that. Maybe I am not following your argument, but the difference between 15 C and -18 C is 33 C, so you have not made clear which of these numbers you disagree with. We are really talking about equivalent W/m2 here because that is what really has to be integrated over the surface and averaged. So it is 390 W/m2 at the surface, 240 W/m2 at the top and a 150 W/m2 difference due to the atmosphere having an IR effect.

      • JimD, “capt.d., the 33 C assumes the current surface temperature is 15 C. I thought most people agreed with that. Maybe I am not following your argument, but the difference between 15 C and -18 C is 33 C, so you have not made clear which of these numbers you disagree with. We are really talking about equivalent W/m2 here because that is what really has to be integrated over the surface and averaged. So it is 390 W/m2 at the surface, 240 W/m2 at the top and a 150 W/m2 difference due to the atmosphere having an IR effect.”

        The 33 C makes a lot of assumptions. The first is that “Average” is meaningful. That 15 C is the averaged “surface” temperature. That albedo is uniformly distributed. That 240 Wm-2 would be the “average” Ein and Eout. That thermal mass is negligible, i.e. there is no thermal inertia. That is a whole lot of ‘ssuming

        Since Earth has two “greenhouses” one with 1000 times the thermal mass of the other, both have to balance. Once you balance both, you would find that “average” surface temperature is roughly 17.1 C not 15 and not 14 C, but “average” is pretty much meaningless anyway.

        Another issue is that a radiant layer or shell has to be isothermal to produce estimated results. The only truly isothermal “shell” would be in the turbopause where there is no turbulent mixing. Also a radiant “source” has to have sufficient thermal mass to maintain a steady state. That would be the Oceans.

        Climate science attempted to jump head first into dynamics without setting up the problem statically first. As Clint Eastwood said, “A man has got to know his limits.”

      • You can add more detail like adding in thermal inertia and integrating regional energy fluxes and temperatures, but you aren’t going to find an answer that disagrees with the IPCC position no matter how much extra detail you throw in.

        Because no matter how much detail you add to your calculations the GCMs already do it in far more detail.

      • lolwot, “Because no matter how much detail you add to your calculations the GCMs already do it in far more detail.”

        That would be why they are reducing aerosol forcing, increasing BC forcing, changing indirect effects on ozone and trying to figure out why they miss absolute temperature so much. Yes, they have far more details to correct.

      • Irrespective of any flaws they calculate the greenhouse effect in far more detail than you are. And they find it is substantial.

        33C is a ballpark estimate based on making the atmosphere IR and holding everything else fixed. The assumptions underlying it are well understood. You can try adding in extra details like thermal inertia and not using global averages, but when you do you’ll find the greenhouse effect remains.

      • lolwot, “33C is a ballpark estimate based on making the atmosphere IR and holding everything else fixed. The assumptions underlying it are well understood. You can try adding in extra details like thermal inertia and not using global averages, but when you do you’ll find the greenhouse effect remains.”

        Time will be the judge. Still, the lack of a uniform radiant source and shell at the surface reduces the impact by nearly 50%, 0.8 versus 1.5 at the high end. The Turbopause impact also implies that gravity waves influenced by tidal forces have a larger than expected impact on climate. I believe Richard Lindzen has a paper or two on the subject.

        In short, there is a lot more to climate than the “experts” ever imagined.

      • I think you grossly overestimate your own expertize and grossly underestimate theirs.

      • lolwot, “I think you grossly overestimate your own expertize and grossly underestimate theirs.” It has nothing to do with my expertise, likely more to do with my lack of expertise, I try to triple check everything and assume nothing.

        As far as “their” expertise, the anomalies are revealing their short comings. Trenberths “minor adjustment” was nearly 20 Wm-2 of “atmospheric window” energy exchanged between surface water and cloud water, mixed phase clouds. Clausius-Clapyron does not deal well with supersaturation or physical water in the atmosphere which can become an effective IR ground plane.

        When climate science selected the most chaotic layer of the planet for a “reference” they doom themselves to failure. KISS Keep It Simple Stupid

      • capt.d., so your explanation in answer to why we are at a comfortable 15 C instead of -18 C involves the turbopause rather than GHGs, and you prefer not to believe the one-dimensional radiative transfer models that can explain the difference between the surface and top of atmosphere radiation in terms of GHG composition for any given column, and for a global average of columns. I think I can see where you stand, but am not sure why you don’t believe radiative transfer models that already explain all this with no mysteries to solve. The 33 C is no mystery. It is well quantified by known physics.

      • JimD, “The 33 C is no mystery. It is well quantified by known physics.”

        Based on known assumptions. So you don’t get lost, let’s start with the turbopause first. To use the assumption that a radiant layer can be approximated as in local equilibrium, it has to be isothermal in the horizontal, since a flat disc is basis for a radiant “surface”. If it is not isothermal horizontally, then the assumption is less valid. Convection through a radiant layer would require a great deal of adjustment to compensate for. Since the turbopause is very nearly isothermal, i.e. no turbulent convection, it would be a more reliable reference surface. My use of the turbopause just expands the boundaries of the system to a more stable reference layer, it would not change any of the physics.

        With the turbopause as a reference layer, the source would also need to be selected to provide stable energy flux with minimal advection and convection. If you read back to the beginnings of radiant physics, a furnace was often used. By selecting the oceans and their “average” energy as my furnace, I have approximately 334 Wm-2 (energy at 4 C degrees) provided by a “surface”: approximately 70% of the area of the Turbopause radiant “shell”. 0.70 time 334 equals 234 Wm-2. There is a minor difference but totally consistent with the range of uncertainty in the actual approximation of 236 to 240 Wm-2 used to produce the -18C in the 33 C approximation.

        The good thing about thermodynamics JimD is you can adjust your frame of reference.

        Now since the oceans have a temperature inversion, they decrease in temperature from the true surface, with an average energy of 334 Wm-2, the surface energy would, in the day at least, be greater than 334 Wm-2. The 33C is still there only the :surface is defined where in the quantified by known physics case it is not. What surface matters.

      • JimD, in case you are wondering. With oxygen in the atmosphere, even the no greenhouse gas Earth would still have a stratospheric temperature inversion. By assuming that the no greenhouse Earth has no convection, the assumption forces to Turbopause to be near the “surface” then switches the frame of reference to the tropopause. You can’t switch thermodynamic horses in mid stream.

      • capt.d., the ozone in the stratosphere is a GHG but its more important effect is in the UV range where it absorbs solar radiation. Your attempts to complicate something that is already an explanation with your own unneeded epicycles can add no more than small and canceling perturbations to the 33 C, otherwise you end up messing up the energy balance. I prefer radiative transfer because it explains what is measured and is based on physics. “Skeptics” problems in this area usually amount to not understanding the known science fully, which of course is a prerequisite if you want to improve on it. We see similar things happening in thermodynamics here too in a well known recent case.

      • JimD, “otherwise you end up messing up the energy balance”

        Really? I think Kiehl and Trenberth did that. My “budget” estimate is nearly identical to Stephens et al. http://judithcurry.com/2012/11/05/uncertainty-in-observations-of-the-earths-energy-balance/

        In fact, it was the OBVIOUS screw up in the K&T budgets with the ludicrous 0.9 +/- 0.15 Wm-2 is got me interested in this discussion to begin with. You really need to wake up and smell the coffee.

      • capt.d., there is nothing fundamentally different between Stephens’ energy balance and that of K&T. If you believe one and not the other, you are fooling yourself about uncertainties in these numbers. Also I suspect Stephens does believe in and understand radiative transfer as he has several papers on the subject, so he would not subscribe to your theory either.

      • JimD, “Also I suspect Stephens does believe in and understand radiative transfer as he has several papers on the subject, so he would not subscribe to your theory either.”

        Maybe, maybe not, kinda depends on whether he wants to be right or not :)

        There are plenty of ways of skinning a catfish though. I suspect Stephens understands radiative transfer and the limits less than ideal conditions place on their results.

  109. David Springer

    Jim D | February 16, 2013 at 7:10 am |

    “1.5 C per doubling doesn’t work for an equilibrium sensitivity because we are already near that for land areas”

    That statement appears to be no more than hot air on the face of it.

    How do you support it?

    • Maybe you need to start by saying how much warming you think the land has had since pre-industrial times.

      • David Springer

        Not all land has warmed. Some has cooled. In general it warmed more in the NH than in the SH and in general it has warmed more at higher latitudes than lower and in general it has warmed more at night than during the day and in general it has warmed more in the winter than in the summer.

        Land is a bit less than 30% of the earth’s surface so whatever net warming has occured must be weighted accordingly to what’s happened over the ocean during the same period of time. In general the ocean has not warmed as much as the land if it has warmed at all.

        And even if we knew all that we still can’t reliably separate anthropogenic warming from natural warming nor can we separate different anthropogenic forcings one from another such as warming due to methane, CO2, and black carbon. Nor can reliably determine how much anthropogenic aerosol cooling might be negating the warming from other anthropogenic factors.

        Your statement was pretty much pure unadulterated horseshiit and I just wanted to embarrass you by asking how you supported it.

  110. I guess the null hypothesis is that the solar influence on global warming = zero. Well that null hasn’t been falsified so I guess that means we have to go around saying “the Sun’s impact on global temperature is indistinguishable from zero” a lot.

  111. lolwot @ 7.11am,
    Popper wasn’t against corroborating evidence, lolwot, he argued that
    even when our hypothesis has been corroborated to date, tomorrow
    who knows, it may be refuted. All our hypotheses should be held provisionally. We can never *know* that a hypothesis is true.

    Wasn’t it Einstein, here a claim ter an authority figure, who said:
    “Yer can have as many corroborations as yer like, even red shifts,
    but one counter example -and kaput!”

    • David Springer

      Correct. We can’t prove a hypothesis is true but we can prove it false. If it cannot be proven false, at least in principle, then it isn’t a valid hypothesis according to Popper. The example Popper gives is the hypothesis that all swans are white. This can never be proven because there will always be the possibility that a non-white swan exists somewhere but was never seen. On the other hand a single observation of non-white swan disproves the hypothesis. So it’s a valid hypothesis.

      That said repeated observations that do not disprove a hypothesis adds strength to it. At some point after what’s arbitrarily considered exhaustive testing a hypothesis is promoted to theory where it’s presumed true until disproven. For things that are observed again and again without deviation but for which no explanation exists it becomes a fundamental law of nature. We have no explanation for conservation of energy, for instance, but despite superhuman effort at falsification and almost daily crank science claims of violation, it remains unviolated and is hence deemed a law of nature.

      • Get over Popper will you.

        Even Popper did.

      • David, What I cannot understand is why there is any discussion on this topic. What you have written is so undeniably true, that it remains a mystery to me why it is even necessary to write it on a scientific blog.

        Now if only Steven Mosher, lolwot, temperterrain, our hostess, and all the rest of the warmists would agree, in writing, that it is true, we could save a lot of time and unnecessary discussion on CE.

  112. David Springer

    captdallas2 0.8 +/- 0.2 | February 16, 2013 at 8:37 am |

    “Air can hold more water at a higher temperature which would allow condensation at a lower warmer space.”

    Yes but it also increases enthalpy which effectively reduces the environmental lapse rate to something closer to the saturated lapse rate so a higher altitude must be attained to adiabatically cool to the dewpoint. The additional vapor added at the surface is distributed along a longer distance so I don’t think dewpoint is lowered. What I think happens is that average cloud height increases with increasing CO2 but cloud temperature remains the same. The net effect is more efficient cooling of the cloud because there’s less atmosphere between the cloud top and space restricting radiation and more atmosphere between the cloud base and the surface restricting downwelling radiation.

    I’m anxiously awaiting more definitive data on global average cloud height.

    http://www.nasa.gov/topics/earth/features/misr20120221.html

    It appears in preliminary measurements that cloud height has reduced about 1% in the past decade which NASA conjectures is the cause of the pause. I think they have cause and effect reversed and cloud height is falling in response to temperature change not causing it. Collecting data is going to be challenging. We need to know what’s happening with global average lapse rate as well. If average cloud height is changing but average cloud temperature is not changing, indicating a change in average lapse rate, the whole thesis that lower clouds are radiating from a warmer level and thus radiating more efficiently goes right out the atmospheric window (pun intended).

    • David, ” What I think happens is that average cloud height increases with increasing CO2 but cloud temperature remains the same.”

      Pretty much. With a lower cloud base, CO2, H2O and solar forcing would all combine to “stretch” the cloud vertically. Increasing deep convection and Brewer Dobson circulation. Or as I like to say, the lid on the pot rattles more.

      • David Springer

        I think the base rises too and cloud depth remains the same. So basically all you get is the proverbial hotspot in the tropical troposphere which all the usual suspects say is the signature of CO2 warming. I think where they err is that there is no water vapor feedback to raise temperature higher than MODTRAN calculated 1.1C/doubling. Furthermore I believe that over the ocean the surface that is warmed (*some* surface has to get warmer in response) is not top of the water but rather the top of the cloud which level in the atmosphere would, absent the doubled CO2, be cold dry air above the cloud instead of warm saturated air. The higher altitude of the cloud top makes radiative cooling to space more efficient and makes downwelling radiation from the cloud bottom back to the ocean surface less efficient.

      • David, “I think the base rises too and cloud depth remains the same.” That depends on where the cloud is located. Over land with less moisture yes, but that is only about 20% of the active surface. Over oceans with plenty of water and heat, the base should lower.

        This was looked into by Polvani and Solomon trying to figure out the tropical ozone depletion and stratospheric water vapor, but didn’t consider the base would change with surface temperature.

  113. David Springer

    lolwot | February 16, 2013 at 8:06 am | Reply

    “I guess the null hypothesis is that the solar influence on global warming = zero. Well that null hasn’t been falsified so I guess that means we have to go around saying “the Sun’s impact on global temperature is indistinguishable from zero” a lot.”

    No, it’s easy to see the 11-year solar cycle in global temperature records so the influence is both distinguishable and non-zero. What’s at issue is whether longer term solar cycles can have even greater effect due to persistance over an extended period of time and/or by mechanisms other than variation in TSI.

    http://hyperphysics.phy-astr.gsu.edu/hbase/thermo/solact.html

    • “What’s at issue is whether longer term solar cycles can have even greater effect due to persistance over an extended period of time and/or by mechanisms other than variation in TSI.”

      Well the null hypothesis is that they don’t. And that null hypothesis hasn’t been falsified. So the solar impact on climate in the long term is indistinguishable from zero.

      • lolwot

        That the sun heats the surface of the Earth is obvious from actual physical observation. So there is no “null hypothesis” that the sun’s effect on our climate is “null” (zero). But how important are changes in solar activity on our climate? This appears to still be unknown (with the exception of the small changes in direct solar irradiance), although there are lots of hypotheses.

        One such hypothesis is the cosmic ray / cloud nucleation hypothesis proposed by Henrik Svensmark and others. This shows reasonable correlation, but the mechanism for causation has not been demonstrated empirically.

        The reproducible experimentation going on at CERN today has already shown that there is cloud nucleation from cosmic rays when certain naturally occurring aerosols are present, but more work is needed to demonstrate and quantify (or falsify) this effect under reproducible controlled conditions simulating our climate.

        Let’s see what this brings.

        This is the sort of reproducible experimentation that could conceivably be used to either falsify or corroborate (and quantify) the CO2 GH effect, for example.

        Max

      • So lets refine it into something you agree with:

        The solar influence on longterm climate change is indistinguishable from zero.

      • lolwot

        You talk about a “null hypothesis” for the sun

        This is absurd, because EVERYONE knows that the sun is the primary source of energy for our planet. This is “reliable scientific information”.

        But what about CHANGES in solar activity?

        We can measure direct solar irradiance, which does change, so we have one empirically measurable solar impact.

        Therefore the “null” hypothesis regarding the sun must EXCLUDE the impact of changes in direct solar irradiance, right?

        So one could state a “null” hypothesis that solar impact on climate change is limited to the impact from changing solar irradiance.

        Now to “empirical evidence”.

        – For the CAGW hypothesis we have reproducible laboratory studies showing that CO2 (and other GHGs) absorb and re-radiate LW energy.

        – For the cosmic ray / cloud hypothesis of Svensmark et al. we have the results from CERN, which have demonstrated the cosmic ray cloud nucleation mechanism, itself, in the presence of certain naturally occurring aerosols.

        So, for both hypotheses, we have an empirically demonstrated mechanism. This is important evidence.

        But, in neither case do we have empirical evidence to either corroborate and quantify or falsify the hypothesis that this empirically observed mechanism really results in changes in our climate.

        In the next few years, CERN hopes to provide this evidence based on further reproducible experimentation under controlled conditions simulating our climate.

        But today, we have two different hypotheses, neither of which are either corroborated and quantified or falsified by empirical evidence – IOW two uncorroborated hypotheses (arguably equally valid or invalid).

        Wouldn’t you agree?

        Max

      • Max, you write “Wouldn’t you agree?”

        What you have written is undoubtedly correct. Any rational scientist, and I hope I am one, would agree with you, without a moment’s hesitation. But will any warmist agree with you? I doubt it.

      • “In the next few years, CERN hopes to provide this evidence based on further reproducible experimentation under controlled conditions simulating our climate.”

        Does the simulation include ENSO? biosphere-atmosphere, ocean-atmosphere and land-atmosphere interactions? Does it simulate full scale clouds?”

        I demand empirical proof from the atmosphere. Prove that cosmic ray changes cause a change in temperature. Lab studies just won’t cut it because no lab is able to simulate the full Earth atmosphere in perfect detail.

      • “Therefore the “null” hypothesis regarding the sun must EXCLUDE the impact of changes in direct solar irradiance, right?”

        Okay lets do that:

        The influence of non-TSI changes in the Sun on global temperature is indistinguishable from zero.

        Kind of contradicts all that Alex Rawls fuss about the Sun having more influence than the IPCC reported.

      • lolwot, you write “Kind of contradicts all that Alex Rawls fuss about the Sun having more influence than the IPCC reported.”

        Going back to my previous remark, it is clear that lolwot will not answer Max’s question, but he introduces a red herring. I suggest that if you want to refute Alec Rawl`s `fuss`, you take it up with him. But I can assure you that your rather simplistic approach to a very complex issue does not in any way refute the point Alec makes. But that is a whole other issue.

        The thing I would like to see is you, lolwot, addressing Max`s question directly, and refrain form introducing more red herrings. But I know this will not happen.

      • lolwot, to continue with my thoughts. The effect of CO2 and the sun are similar, in a very simplistic sense. Each has evidence to support them, so they are both viable hypotheses. Neither shows a signal, so there is no empirical data to support either of them, and they remain viable hypotheses.
        `
        Very simplisticly, what the IPCC claimed in the AR4 was that the ONLY solar effect was a change in TSI, which has a negligible effect. So a solar effect on climate is NOT a viable hypothesis. They made the same claim in the FOD to the AR5 in Chapter 7. Alec Rawls pointed out that a solar effect on cliimate is a viable hypothesis, and the authors of Chapter 7 agreed.

      • “Very simplisticly, what the IPCC claimed in the AR4 was that the ONLY solar effect was a change in TSI”

        No it didn’t. It states the complete opposite. Alex Rawls was BSing from start to end.

        What the IPCC AR4 report effectively concludes is that the non TSI-solar forcing is indistinguishable from zero.

      • lolwot, you write “No it didn’t“

        From the SPM of the AR 4, page 3, it states “Changes in solar irradiance since 1750 are estimated to cause a radiaitive forcing of +0.12 (+0.06 to +0.30)Wm-2, which is less than half the estimate given in the TAR.“ That is the only mention of solar effects in the SPM. There is no statement in the whole of the AR4 that there is any other solar effect on climate. On the contrary, it dismisses any suggestion that the sun has any effect on climate, other than a change in TSI. Produce me a reference from the AR4 which acknowledges that there is a hypothesis that suggests that, other than TSI, the sun affects climate in some unknown way.

      • The null hypothesis is that ,they do not no what the null hypothesis.

        A reduction in TSI is required to explain the little ice age excursion as Volcanics are sparse,and poorly understood.

        TSI by itself is a poor metric,you need a better understating of solar there is no continuous instrumental information greater then 5 years and the use of proxy data is illusory.

      • lolwot, youn write `2.7.1.3 Indirect Effects of Solar Variability
        `
        Fine. Where are the words in this piece that states that there is a viable hypothesis that the sun can have an effect on climate. I cannot find it.

      • lolwot and Jim Cripwell

        It certainly would have been astounding if IPCC had not mentioned solar forcing at all in the 1,000+ pages of its AR4 WGI report.

        There is mention of solar forcing in Chapter 2, Section 2.7 (Natural Forcings).

        Unfortunately, the discussion of past solar radiative forcing is essentially limited to the forcing from direct solar irradiance, which is stated to be relatively small (+0.12W/m^2 out of a total natural + anthropogenic forcing of +1.72 W/m^2 since pre-industrial 1750).

        Mention is made of the Svensmark et al. hypothesis of cosmic ray cloud nucleation, with the remarks

        Hypothesised to result from changing ionization of the atmosphere from solar-modulated cosmic ray fluxes, an empirical association of cloud cover variations during 1984 to 1990 and the solar cycle remains controversial because of the uncertainties about the reality of the decadal signal itself, the phasing or anti-phasing with solar activity, and its separate dependence for low, middle and high clouds. In particular, the cosmic ray time series does not correspond to global total cloud cover after 1991 or to low-level cloud cover after 1994…without unproven de-trending.

        So the hypothesis is essentially written off as “controversial”.

        As a result, IPCC concluded that total natural (solar) forcing was equal to the measurable change in forcing from direct solar irradiance only (or around 7% of the total natural plus anthropogenic forcing since 1750.

        There have been several studies by solar scientists, which have concluded that around 50% of the observed past warming (instead of 7%) can be attributed to the unusually high level of 20th century solar activity. These are skipped over by IPCC in AR4.

        However, IPCC does concede in Ch.2 as well as the SPM that its “level of scientific understanding of solar forcing is low”.

        It should be mentioned that this was all written before it had become apparent that the warming of the global temperature had taken a “pause”.

        This pause has since been attributed to natural causes, raising the obvious question: “if natural factors were only 7% of the total since 1750, how can it be that they have totally overwhelmed the much stronger anthropogenic forcing since around 2000?”

        So there is still lots of uncertainty about the impact of natural forcing on our climate and, as a result, on the amount of warming that can be attributed to anthropogenic forcing.

        Max

      • lolwot

        Your revised “null” hypothesis on solar impact (any forcing other than that from direct solar irradiance is indistinguishable from “null” (= zero) is just as valid as the same “null hypothesis” on CO2 impact on temperature.

        Agreed?

        BOTH mechanisms (LW energy absorption and re-radiation by CO2, cosmic ray cloud nucleation in the presence of naturally occurring aerosols) have been validated experimentally, but NEITHER has been corroborated and quantified (or, alternatively falsified) by empirical evidence from reproducible experimentation or actual physical observations at conditions simulating our atmosphere.

        Agreed?

        The reproducible experiments planned for CLOUD under controlled conditions simulating our atmosphere could either corroborate and quantify or falsify the Svensmark et al. hypothesis on cosmic ray cloud nucleation and resulting climate change – or they could end up being non-conclusive for one reason or another.

        Agreed?

        So far there are no such reproducible experiments under conditions simulating our climate planned to corroborate and quantify (or, alternatively, falsify) the AGW hypothesis (and, by extension, the CAGW hypothesis as outlined by IPCC).

        Agreed?

        In each case, if you do not agree, please specify why.

        Max

    • lolwot tries to embrace the null, but finds it fast in the grasp of others.
      =============

  114. News Flash

    One of the companies involved in the circuitous horse meat supply chain process is a Dutch company with the name “DRAP”.

    The word “drap” doesn’t mean much in Dutch and its’ not D.R.A.P., so how did they get that name?

    “DRAP” spelled backward is “PARD”, the Dutch word for “horse”.

    (Horse laughs, anyone?)

    Max

  115. Well I am just saying skeptics don’t apply their own arguments aimed at CO2 to other things like the Sun do they? We don’t see skeptics proposing a null hypothesis that the Sun has no influence on global temperature do we? No, because that would make it harder for them to claim the Sun as a cause of warming. Such rhetorical games are designed to attack CO2 only.

    Another example: Bob Tisdale analyzes patterns in SST and announces he can’t find a CO2 signal, so therefore warming wasn’t caused by CO2. Okay so has he looked for a solar signal? If he can’t find one then he should announce that the warming wasn’t caused by the Sun (??). Same reasoning isn’t it?

    Another example are the graphs (with bogus scales) drawn of CO2/temperature correlation in the past 16 years. Skeptics will use these to claim there’s no correlation and so CO2 can’t be causing warming. But do they draw similar graphs of the Sun and global temperature that show the same lack of the correlation there and announce the Sun didn’t cause the warming? No, they don’t.

    Telling isn’t it.

    • What’s telling is that Bob Tisdale doesn’t know the sun mechanism, but lolwot purports to know the CO2 mechanism. Write that down. No, not in ink, in sand.
      ======

    • lolwot, the IPCC shows natural forcing declining as soon as the first solar cycle was slightly weaker than that of the cycle before. At the same time advocates argue for long response times and a high warming to equilibrium for co2. Remember what I said about convenience and trumpets?

    • Lolwot, have you noticed that when the sun goes down in the evening, the temperature always seems to drop?

    • lolwot

      I’ve covered most of your points in a previous post above (#296519)

      The curves showing the past 16 years’ “globally and annually averaged land and sea surface temperature anomaly” versus atmospheric CO2 or solar activity don’t tell me much.

      The “null hypothesis” for solar impact on climate would have to exclude measurable changes in solar irradiance, as pointed out above, but otherwise your point is valid: one could proposed a “null hypothesis” that climate changes resulting from changes in solar activity are limited to those measurable changes in solar irradiance.

      OK. Would that suit you?

      Max

  116. It is not only the Sun cycles, but the movement in degree of tilt which effect great changes in global climate – 5,000 years ago the Sahara had a regular monsoon, which is proof it was hotter 5,000 years ago than it is today, and it will be back in 15,000 years time..

    …so they say..

    • Myrrh | February 16, 2013 at 6:50 pm said: ”5,000 years ago the Sahara had a regular monsoon, which is proof it was hotter 5,000 years ago than it is today”

      Myrrh, my friend, isn’t Sahara now hot enough for rain?… sometimes you come up with things that make lots of sense – other times; you are not flogging horse-meat as beef – but bull-dung as beef… pity.

      2] ”5,000 years ago” the planet overall was as warm as today; no less / no more! Reasons Sahara had monsoonal rain, was: 1] it was before the opening of Bosporus straight – which means; more warm water from the Gulf-stream was staying in Mediterranean and was producing extra water vapor / instead off going to Black sea. 2] then Sahara had still plenty lakes, creeks, rivers, with permanent water – now is too much dry heat only created there / which repels the clouds away (clouds avoid dry heat)

      3] was still plenty of vegetation all over Sahara – vegetation attracts rain-clouds from the sea. b] people did know how to produce fire artificially – that fire was going from one end to the other (they didn’t have helicopters, to put the fire off) Because of those uncontrollable fires, gradually Sahara become dryer and dryer (it’s happening same thing now in Australia) vegetation tolerates 20-30-70 fires, than gives up. fires destroy the nutrients that trees have taken from the soil -> floodwater and winds take that ash into the sea = desert.

      THEREFORE: Sahara had milder temp – warmer nights / colder days; nothing to do with any stupid / phony GLOBAL warmings. For everything that happens in nature; there are real reasons. ”GLOBAL” warmings / coolings is Warmist & Fake’s crap; no need for you to consume it.

      • Sorry Stefan, I’ve only just seen your post.

        stefanthedenier | February 16, 2013 at 9:25 pm | Reply Myrrh | February 16, 2013 at 6:50 pm said: ”5,000 years ago the Sahara had a regular monsoon, which is proof it was hotter 5,000 years ago than it is today”

        Myrrh, my friend, isn’t Sahara now hot enough for rain?… sometimes you come up with things that make lots of sense – other times; you are not flogging horse-meat as beef – but bull-dung as beef… pity.

        I did add something which you appear to have missed…

        They say the Sahara was hotter. They put it down to the angle of the Earth changing, which is what it does periodically and why they say that it will again become wetter in fifteen thousand years time.

        2] ”5,000 years ago” the planet overall was as warm as today; no less / no more!

        There is a distinct period of much hotter during the Holocene, it’s called the Holocene Maximum – and we’ve been on a downward slide ever since…

        From: http://www.co2science.org/subject/other/clim_hist_tenthousand.php

        “Near the beginning of the current interglacial, global temperatures rose considerably about 10,000 years ago to usher in a period of time referred to as the Holocene. On the basis of temperature reconstructions derived from studies of latitudinal displacements of terrestrial vegetation (Bernabo and Webb, 1977; Wijmstra, 1978; Davis et al., 1980; Ritchie et al., 1983; Overpeck, 1985) and vertical displacements of alpine plants (Kearney and Luckman, 1983) and mountain glaciers (Hope et al., 1976; Porter and Orombelli, 1985), it has been concluded (Webb et al., 1987; COHMAP, 1988) that mean annual temperatures in the Midwestern United States were about 2 °C warmer than those of the past few decades (Bartlein et al., 1984; Webb, 1985), that summer temperatures in Europe were 2 °C warmer (Huntley and Prentice, 1988), as they also were in New Guinea (Hope et al., 1976), and that temperatures in the Alps were as much as 4 °C warmer (Porter and Orombelli, 1985; Huntley and Prentice, 1988). In the Russian Far East, temperatures are also reported to have been from 2 °C (Velitchko and Klimanov, 1990) to as much as 4-6 °C (Korotky et al., 1988) higher than they are today; while the mean annual temperature of the Kuroshio Current between 22 and 35 °N was 6 °C warmer (Taira, 1975), and the southern boundary of the Pacific boreal region was positioned 700 to 800 km north of its present location (Lutaenko, 1993). A graphical representation of the mean global air temperature that results from the amalgamation of these several records, as prepared by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (Houghton et al., 1990) and presented in the accompanying figure, indicates that temperatures during the Holocene maximum were warmer than those of the past few decades for a period of time on the order of several thousand years.

        http://www.co2science.org/subject/other/figures/temp10000.jpg

        I’ve seen, iirc, 2-8°C higher for Western Africa.

        Reasons Sahara had monsoonal rain, was: 1] it was before the opening of Bosporus straight – which means; more warm water from the Gulf-stream was staying in Mediterranean and was producing extra water vapor / instead off going to Black sea. 2] then Sahara had still plenty lakes, creeks, rivers, with permanent water – now is too much dry heat only created there / which repels the clouds away (clouds avoid dry heat)

        From what I recall, the Bosphereous incident was around 5,000 BC, not 5,000 years ago, so the monsoons were regular for the first two thousand years after that, seems unlikely that it has anything to do with the stopping of the monsoons.

        Just looked it up, the date given is 5,600 BC, 7,600 years ago, so nearly three thousand years of monsoons.

        http://www.dangoor.com/73page29.html

        One thing that’s just occurred to me, I don’t know for how long the monsoons were regular, maybe it could have been enhanced with the arrival of the Bospherous flood, because, this was triggered by the melting of our IceAge ice being held back in lakes, much like the appearance of the North Sea and separation of Britain from France earlier, and earlier than that the separation of Britain and Ireland. It took the much greater temps of the Holocene Maximum to first melt the ice and when the final walls holding back the melts gave way is when the flooding happened. Perhaps the colder waters presented a greater temperature difference making the monsoon stronger?

        Bearing in mind how we get monsoons, http://library.thinkquest.org/C003603/english/monsoons/causesofmonsoons.shtml
        I’ll see what else I can find on this.

        Anyway, back to the first link:
        “In addition to exhibiting temperatures that were significantly warmer than those of today, the first half of the Holocene also produced several regions of significantly enhanced precipitation. The hyper-arid core of the Sahara, for example, was actually moist at this time and contained many lakes (Fabre and Petit-Marie, 1988; Petit-Marie, 1991), as the summer monsoon migrated northward by some 600 kilometers (Ritchie and Haynes, 1987), helping to create the extensive groundwater deposits of that region (van Zinderen Bakker and Coetzee, 1980) and giving life to ecosystems that supported crocodiles, giraffes, elephants and gazelles (Crowley and North, 1991). Increased monsoon moisture also extended across Saudi Arabia, Mesopotamia, and the Rajastan Desert of India (Bryson and Swain, 1981), drastically altering and enhancing the productivity of those lands as well. Indeed, because of the perception that these many biospheric changes were of a positive nature, this much warmer period than the present is often referred to as the Holocene Climatic Optimum (MacCracken et al., 1990; Ciaia et al., 1992; Lutaenko, 1993; Lambin et al., 1996). And it was during this particular warm interval that the world experienced perhaps the greatest of all anthropogenic advancements – “the rise of human civilization, based on the development of agriculture (Whyte, 1995).”

        Ah, here we go: http://oceanworld.tamu.edu/resources/environment-book/desertificationinsahel.html

        “Recent work by meteorologists and oceanographers has shown that much of the recent year-to-year changes in Sahel rainfall are forced by changes in sea-surface temperature in the Gulf of Guinea (on the equator near the prime meridian) and by El Niño in the Pacific. When the gulf is warm, the Intertropical Convergence Zone shifts south away from the Sahel reducing the African monsoon that draws moist air into the Sahel. Longer term changes in rainfall from decade to decade are forced by changes in sea-surface temperature in the western Indian and tropical Atlantic oceans. When these areas are cool, Sahel rainfall increases.”

        http://oceanworld.tamu.edu/resources/environment-book/desertificationinsahel.html

        And this earlier on the page:
        “The changing climate first attracted people to the Sahara as rainfall increased abruptly throughout the region beginning about 10,500 years ago (8,500 BC) at the end of the Younger Dryas (See Abrupt Climate Change). Then increasing drought drove them southward into the modern Sahel as the rains became less frequent beginning about 7,200 years ago. By 5,500 years ago (3,500 BC) the Sahara had returned to full desert conditions. It appears that many who left the Sahara settled in the Nile valley about 5,500 years ago, setting the stage for the First Dynasty starting with the reign of King Narmer in 3,000 BC (5,000 years ago).”

        The Holocene Maximum is rather dramatically different in temps from what we have now, as with the disappearing trick of the MWP, AGW/CAGW ScienceFiction does what it can to make it appear insignificant..

      • Misremembered the West Africa Holocene Maximum temp, it was 5-8°C hotter:

        http://www.ipcc.ch/ipccreports//tar/wg1/073.htm

        “SSTs reconstructed from analyses of a sub-tropical, high sedimentation rate site off West Africa might indicate a remarkably high amplitude Holocene variability of 5 to 8°C on a time-scale about 1,500 years (deMenocal, 1998).”

        There’s also this, http://www.nature.com/ngeo/journal/v2/n6/abs/ngeo513.html

        Although it’s still local orbital forcing making the difference, the colder regions further north still under the ice will be playing a big part re the wind systems. As now, it’s the greater heated equatorial land and oceans which create our huge equator to poles wind systems, as hot air rises and cold air sinks, so, the colder air which comes from the poles would have been a lot closer to the Sahara – it’s the dramatic difference in temperature in expanding less dense hot gases rising and colder denser heavier high pressure air flowing into the low pressure areas created which are our winds (volumes of the fluid gas Air on the move).

      • Myrrh | February 18, 2013 at 6:28 pm said: ”They say the Sahara was hotter. They put it down to the angle of the Earth changing”

        ****Mirrh, now you are saying: ‘’THEY”’ say Sahara was hotter’’…. Mirrh, all the names you are quoting, are believers that overall GLOBAL temp goes up and down as a yo-yo; which I have proven that is WRONG! Holocene Maxima / Minima and all the rest of the crap; WAS LOCALIZED CHANGES IN CLIMATE, not global!! They are back to front on everything! There are correct interpretations why was warmer / cooler – dryer / wetter, here are few examples:

        Sahara had the best climate 50 000y ago – vegetation &animal population flourished – then human invented how to make fire artificially – in seasons when is no fruit – they invented roasting meat, to suit their stomachs / animals become fridges / their new food storages -> they flourished. Mediterranean was freshwater / separated from Atlantic. Human gradually destroyed Saharan vegetation / climate by uncontrollable bushfires -> Sahara started producing dry heat instead, AND that made Mediterranean, Ionian, Adriatic , Aegean, Caspian, Aral, Black sea and the rest in the system, DRY, by 22 000BC (and triggered the Ice Age in N/H only!!!. Plus Sahara dry – where do you think all that water was gone. During the Ice Age (which was only on the N/H) all that water from the Mediterranean system was in the oceans. Their theory is that: during the ice age, the sea-level was lower’’ – the truth is completely the opposite!!! Because sea-level was higher – overflowed, cut the Gibraltar straights and connected / filled Mediterranean with water. That system has much more water in it now, than all the water trapped in Greenland’s ice. That water made Sahara green again 10 000y ago!

        2] then the multiplying people burned the vegetation again. AND opening of Bosforous was only about 600 -900BC, I have physical evidences / (is going in a book) nevertheless, real reasons were changing the climate, but had NOTHING to do with any phony GLOBAL warmings! Holocene, Crapocene and the rest, were concocted by ignorant big city deviates; who cannot comprehend that: H2O regulates the climate, not the other way around!B] For real climatic changes doesn’t need any phony GLOBAL warmings… unfortunately, you have fallen for their simplistic ignorant hypothesis.

        3] global temperatures DIDN’T rose considerably about 10,000 years ago to CONFUSE the ignorants in a period of time referred to as the Holocene!!! Instead, all that water that 10 000y ago filed up the Mediterranean system = less water in the oceans, ‘’but higher moisture” IN PLACES that for the shonky ‘’climatologist’’ was representing the whole WORLD… Became milder temp, not warmer!!! milder means: cooler days / warmer nights!!! Sahara doesn’t need higher temp, to get rain (rains in Canada, Scotland. Needs the raw material for rain! instead now she produces dry heat and destroys that raw material before reaches Sahara. get the real proofs on my blog

        4] Mirrh, by the planet spinning eastward – the dry heat Sahara &Arabian peninsula constantly create, is like a balloon over eastern Atlantic / on HIGH altitude -> destroying the moisture created in Atlantic – that dry balloon is high above west coast of central /north Africa – vegetation is still prospering and confuses the ignorants… Mirrh, not acknowledging that: H2O regulates the climate, NOT CO2, NOT the sun – those authors you are suggesting, I consider them as committing the biggest crimes ever, to the planet and humanity!!! Because: lots of improvement can be done to the climates on many places, if the truth is acknowledged that: water regulates the climate / human, to a degree can control water and improve the climate. Those authors / scientists of yours, should be hanged in public, by their…

      • ****Mirrh, now you are saying: ‘’THEY”’ say Sahara was hotter’’…. Mirrh, all the names you are quoting, are believers that overall GLOBAL temp goes up and down as a yo-yo; which I have proven that is WRONG! Holocene Maxima / Minima and all the rest of the crap; WAS LOCALIZED CHANGES IN CLIMATE, not global!! They are back to front on everything! There are correct interpretations why was warmer / cooler – dryer / wetter, here are few examples:

        Stefan – if you read my first post, it is what I said then – and I didn’t mean AGW/CAGWs – I meant people who know how weather happens. My point being that globally there are great and dramatic changes in temperature – that’s why for a hundred thousand years we’re back in the grip of our Ice Age before temperatures rise dramatically and we enter interglacials – and if you’re saying that gazillions tons of ice miles deep over most of the northern hemisphere is merely local, then we’re on a different page..

        I’ve just posted this in another discussion, it was a series of programmes tracking our journey around the Sun, very well done and refreshingly free of AGW/CAGW science fiction fisics.

        http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b01dq1h0

        Monsoons are all to do with the angle of tilt of the Earth, which changes regularly over time, and the real properties of real gases in our real heavy voluminous ocean of atmosphere under gravity – which AGWSF’s the Greenhouse Effect doesn’t have. They don’t have an atmosphere at all – they have empty space populated by the theoretical ideal gas, without volume, without attraction, without weight, without mass, so nothing for gravity to act on.

        Real weather is not something AGW/CAGWs can discuss, because they don’t have an atmosphere at all.

    • Myrrh | February 18, 2013 at 6:59 pm said: ”Misremembered the West Africa Holocene Maximum temp, it was 5-8°C hotter”

      Myrrh: I never argue about localized warmings / coolings! If West Africa Holocene, Crapocene temp was 5-8°C hotter” on other parts of the planet was colder than now, laws of physics don’t permit warmer the WHOLE planet simultaneously!!! Was it ”hotter 5-8C” only during the day? that would suggest bigger desert NOT GLOBAL warming, wasn’t rainforest.

      Myrrh, in the past 150y, the opportunist have being manipulating the truth – to get funds and on the front page in newspaper / they were not scrutinized… all of their crap about past; you are taking as gospel.

      Exuberant high temperatures happens: when small / big part of a hemisphere gets ice age – > air above shrinks -> to avoid vacuum, lots of air from other place / places gets there – which means: on that ”other place” THE ATMOSPHERE IS THINNER (as it’s now above Sahara during the day) thinner atmosphere = extra / exuberant warming during the day.

      Actually, Sahara is not a good example… what happens in Sahara is: during the day becomes very hot – part of the troposphere that is above Sahara; expand upward as a dome -> that part as a dome cools much more -> that air shrinks -> falls down and makes the nights much colder than it should be. The extreme temp makes like trampoline off the troposphere, can you dig-it?

      • Myrrh: I never argue about localized warmings / coolings! If West Africa Holocene, Crapocene temp was 5-8°C hotter” on other parts of the planet was colder than now, laws of physics don’t permit warmer the WHOLE planet simultaneously!!! Was it ”hotter 5-8C” only during the day? that would suggest bigger desert NOT GLOBAL warming, wasn’t rainforest.

        As I said, we’re talking at cross purposes.. But, your suggestion is wrong – it is precisely these higher temperatures pre the drought in the Sahara which created the monsoons, from the great temperature differences between volumes of air over dry land and volumes of air over water. When this was happening in the Sahara, further north there were still ice sheets, but nearer to Africa then than the Arctic is now.

        That the Sun is responsible for the great changes in temperature around the globe is what AGW/CAGWs do their best to distract from.

        The 7,000 BC time is when northern Europe began to unfreeze and this had an effect on the monsoons in northern Africa. It’s known as the Neolithic Expansion –

        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Neolithic_expansion.svg

        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Neolithic_Europe

        Back to the Sun – explanation of how the periodic changes in the Earth’s tilt affect our global temperatures –

        http://www.livescience.com/6937-ice-ages-blamed-tilted-earth.html

        “In the past million years, the Earth experienced a major ice age about every 100,000 years. Scientists have several theories to explain this glacial cycle, but new research suggests the primary driving force is all in how the planet leans.

        “The Earth’s rotation axis is not perpendicular to the plane in which it orbits the Sun. It’s offset by 23.5 degrees. This tilt, or obliquity, explains why we have seasons and why places above the Arctic Circle have 24-hour darkness in winter and constant sunlight in the summer.

        “But the angle is not constant – it is currently decreasing from a maximum of 24 degrees towards a minimum of 22.5 degrees. This variation goes in a 40,000-year cycle.

        “Peter Huybers of Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution and Carl Wunsch of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology have compared the timing of the tilt variations with that of the last seven ice ages. They found that the ends of those periods – called glacial terminations – corresponded to times of greatest tilt.”

        And they go on to speculate how this ties in with the 100,000 year glacials.

        Anyway, real world climate firstly can’t be understood without understanding how our real gas atmosphere works, how real gases expand and contract on being heated and cooled giving areas of low and high pressure and from that how we get our weather, and, how we get that differential heating of land and water to differentially heat the volume of real gas above them is how we get our global climate changes and that’s due to the real radiant heat from the Sun, (not visible light). Real world is the Null Hypothesis. Great and Dramatic shifts in temperatures give us our great and dramatic weather globally.

  117. Around 11:48 Muller says rural stations show the same warming as others. That seems to be called into question in some recent studies.
    Around 17:23 Muller admits the attribution of warming to humans is a gut feeling. Not science.

  118. The Raspberry has something pertinent about meat-eating @ nofrakkingconsensus.com
    ================

  119. We have heard the IPCC story before:
    Ebenezer Scrooge: “These are garments, Mr. Cratchit. Garments were invented by the human race as a protection against the cold. Once purchased, they may be used indefinitely for the purpose for which they are intended. Coal burns. Coal is momentary and coal is costly. There will be no more coal burned in this office today, is that quite clear, Mr. Cratchit?”
    – Charles Dickens, A Christmas Carol

  120. The problem with RP Jrs argument re the connection between extreme weather and AGW is that he ignores a whole area of evidence. He looks only at statistical connections, and ignores expectations based on what we know about how climate (as opposed to AGW) works. It is not unreasonable to suggest that a wetter atmosphere will lead to more extreme weather. It will take years if not decades to see this in the statistical record, but this is a fair reason to assert a connection (though it is not absolute proof).

    • Evidence vs expectations. But you’re right, nobody knows what AnthroCO2 will do, thermally, atmospherically, climatically, socially, or politically. Too many eddies.
      ========

    • dean

      It is not unreasonable to suggest that a wetter atmosphere will lead to more extreme weather.

      Yeah. And “it is not unreasonable to suggest that a wetter atmosphere will lead to less extreme weather.”

      And it is very reasonable to suggest that an added 100 to 200 ppm CO2 in the atmosphere will not lead to any changes whatsoever in extreme weather.

      That would be my call, because it also passes the common sense “BS filter”.

      Max

  121. From Honolulu Star bulletin.

    What ever happened in the great Oahu rabies scare of the latter 1960s?

    On Oct. 5, 1967, the Army and the state announced an 8-year-old Schofield boy had been bitten by a rat diagnosed as rabid. But repeated tests at mainland laboratories failed to show any rabies.

    It later came out that misdiagnosis and laboratory mix-ups accounted for the scare, which was triggered by the Army Medical Laboratory, under the direction of Lt. Col. Edward E. Dean, a veterinarian who had diagnosed 27 cases, with the assistance of state Veterinarian-Pathologist Dr. Frederick Lynd.

    Five enlisted men accused the colonel of misdiagnosis in letters to congressmen. An investigation upheld the accusations on Jan. 16, 1968, and Dean was transferred.

    It took more than three months for the Army and state to admit a mistake. Hawaii was still rabies-free. But thousands of cats, dogs and other pets received anti-rabies shots. An estimated 60,000 doses of vaccine were received from the mainland by Oahu veterinarians.

    Some 2,500 dogs and cats were put to sleep by the Humane Society. Eighty-one persons received anti-rabies shots from the Army after they were bitten or scratched by suspicious animals. Civilian physicians gave an estimated 50 or more anti-rabies shots.

    On Jan. 18, the state lifted an inter-island restriction on animal shipments. The state continued its animal quarantine, in effect since 1912.

    ——————- == —————————
    So, my question is are the testing the beef correctly?

  122. Pingback: Congress Cancels Global Warming Hearing Because of Snowstorm | Tony Johnson

  123. Pingback: A campaign worth joining: improving outcome in severe sepsis and septic shock using the Surviving Sepsis Campaign guidelines.(Editorial): An article from: Southern Medical Journal · WWW.DBESTREVIEW.COM