Analyzing AGW skepticism: missing the point?

by Judith Curry

There is a growing body of aca­demic lit­er­ature that seeks to under­stand, explain – and even over­come – cli­mate change scep­ti­cism. But is it get­ting to grips with scep­ti­cism, or missing the point? – Adam Corner

Adam Corner

At Talking Climate, psychologist Adam Corner has a very interesting post entitled:  Understanding Climate Skepticism:  A Skeptic Responds”, which includes discussion with skeptic Geoff Chambers.  An excerpt:

ADAM: In the last few months, two aca­demic papers that make sim­ilar argu­ments about the nature and ori­gins of cli­mate change scep­ti­cism have been pub­lished. If there is one simple mes­sage to take from these two studies, it is that simply providing more inform­a­tion – or turning up the volume on the sci­ence – is unlikely to reduce scep­ti­cism about cli­mate change. This is because scep­ti­cism about cli­mate change is not primarily caused by a ‘mis­un­der­standing’ of the sci­ence but by motiv­ated reas­oning pro­cesses – rooted in ideo­lo­gical dif­fer­ences – that mean that the ‘same’ evid­ence is not eval­u­ated in the same way. Would you agree that scep­ti­cism about cli­mate change has more to do with polit­ical views than an assess­ment of the science?

GEOFF:  Of course not. That would be to admit that my politics was over­riding my reas­oning capa­cities! The mis­un­der­standing comes I think from con­founding the tiny number of active scep­tics, who’ve come to a reasoned con­clu­sion, with the Jeremy Clarkson fans who show up in polls. You’re just not going to catch many of us in a survey of the gen­eral pop­u­la­tion. The “old white con­ser­vative male” label is no doubt true for the pop­u­la­tion at large, and can be easily explained, but it tells you nothing about the nature of reasoned scepticism.

I agree with you that turning up the volume on the sci­ence is unlikely to reduce scep­ti­cism about cli­mate change, but not for the reason you give. The more people learn about the sci­ence, the more they see how dodgy is the cli­mate sci­ence respons­ible for rising energy prices. One of the res­ults of the Kahan study you refer to was that the more sci­en­tific­ally lit­erate tend to be more sceptical.

JC comment:  what a novel idea – actually having a conversation with a skeptic to try to understand AGW skepticism.  Kudos to Corner for doing what to many of us seems the obvious thing to do if you are trying to understand AGW skepticism.  This is also discussed at Bishop Hill, there are some good comments in the thread.

Chris Mooney

In his glowing review of Michael Mann’s book, Chris Mooney has this to say about skeptics:

Despite my praise for Mann and his book—and I even gave it a cover blurb—I do have some differences with him. For instance, I think that here and in his public comments, Mann tends to focus too heavily on the idea that resistance to climate science, and his research, is corporate driven. Or as he puts it in the book: “well organized, well-funded, and orchestrated.” In contrast, I have increasingly come to think it is primarily ideological—driven by libertarian individualism, and those who embrace this view and its associated emotions—and the corporate connection is secondary (though often real). I thus think that focusing on it too much misleads us as to the nature of the opposition, which has grown so ideological at this point—and so driven by gut emotion—that it does the traditionally pragmatic business community no favors. If anything, it is out of synch with its own presumptive allies.

Australian choice experiment

Climate change scepticism and public support for mitigation:  Evidence from an Australian choice experiment

Sonia Akter, Jeff Bennett Michael Ward

Abstract. Public scepticism surrounding climate change is an obstacle for implementing climate change mitigation measures in many countries. However, very little is known about: (1) the nature and sources of climate change scepticism; and (2) its influence on preferences for climate change mitigation policies. In this paper, we investigate these two issues using evidence and analysis from an Australian public survey and choice experiment. The study has three key findings. First, the intensity of scepticism varies depending on its type; we observed little scepticism over the cause, trend and impact of climate change and widespread scepticism over the effectiveness of mitigation measures and global co-operation. Second, cause and mitigation scepticism play significant roles in determining public support for climate change abatement. Respondents who believed in human-induced climate change were significantly more supportive of mitigation. Likewise, respondents who believed that mitigation would be successful in slowing down climate change were significantly more likely to be supportive. Third, the general public tend to give the benefit of the doubt to supporting mitigation. Those who expressed higher uncertainty about climate outcomes were more supportive of mitigation than others with similar expectations but lower uncertainty.

JC comments
Much of the climate community continues to view AGW skeptics as anti-science, fossil fuel funded troglodytes (Mike Mann’s book is a prime example of this view).    As typified by Chris Mooney, many of the social scientists and journalists have come around to the view of AGW skepticism as “motivated reasoning”,  which is not really connected to corporate interests, and acknowledges that many skeptics are well educated and knowledgable about AGW science.  Well this is a step in the right direction: away from the idea that AGW skepticism is driven by corporations.  Some social scientists seem to be moving in the right direction.  Akter et al. refreshingly acknowledge the multi-dimensional nature of AGW skepticism.   But none of the academics seem to acknowledge reasoned skepticism (such as described by Geoff Chambers) by knowledgeable and well educated people as having an actual scientific basis; as such, they are “missing the point.”

718 responses to “Analyzing AGW skepticism: missing the point?

  1. AGW skepticism is not missing the point. That point – the fountain of energy that sustains life and controls the planets was discovered by Copernicus in 1543:

    http://tinyurl.com/7qx7zxs

    And confirmed by space-age observations:

    http://dingo.care2.com/cards/flash/5409/galaxy.swf

    http://omanuel.wordpress.com/about/#comment-105

    • A Hungarian scientist used solar oscillations to decipher the workings of the solar core in 1977, but then disappeared. I only recently heard of his work.

      Peter Toth, “Is the Sun a pulsar?” Nature 270 (November 1977) 159-160.
      http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v270/n5633/abs/270159a0.html

      The Sun’s pulsar core was ignored by the scientific community, beguiled into believing all neutron-neutron, neutron-proton and proton-proton interactions are attractive (except for the Coulomb repulsion between positive charges on protons).

      If the Yukawa potential correctly described reality, pulsars would indeed be dead nuclear embers. They very obviously are not !

      By 1977 the results of meteorite analysis had already provided evidence of local element synthesis leaving an iron-rich solar interior [1,2].

      The Sun continued to shine from repulsive interactions between neutrons in the Sun’s pulsar core [3].

      1. O. K. Manuel and D. D. Sabu, “Elemental and isotopic inhomogeneities in noble gases: The case for local synthesis of the chemical elements”, Trans. Missouri Acad. Sci. 9 (1975) 104-122.

      2. O. K. Manuel and D. D. Sabu, “Strange xenon, extinct superheavy elements and the solar neutrino puzzle”, Science 195 (January 1977) 208-209. http://www.omatumr.com/archive/StrangeXenon.pdf

      3. O. K. Manuel, “Neutron repulsion,” The Apeiron Journal 19 (2012) 123-150 http://redshift.vif.com/JournalFiles/V19NO2pdf/V19N2MAN.pdf

      With kind regards,
      Oliver K. Manuel
      Former NASA Principal
      Investigator for Apollo
      http://www.omatumr.com
      http://omanuel.wordpress.com/about/

    • Oliver, Judith says that social scientists looking at AGW scepticism are missing the point – not the AGW sceptics.

  2. This article speaks for more skeptics (but doesn’t directly relate to climate at all; read it as a metaphor). What do some members of baseball teams, cycling teams, and certain hockey teams have in common?
    http://www.cnn.com/2012/06/15/opinion/pearlman-lance-armstrong/index.html
    “Why fans shouldn’t forgive Armstrong”

    • Let’s start with burning all of the witches.

      Lance Armstrong Responds to USADA Allegation

      AUSTIN, TX — June 13, 2012 — I have been notified that USADA, an organization largely funded by taxpayer dollars but governed only by self-written rules, intends to again dredge up discredited allegations dating back more than 16 years to prevent me from competing as a triathlete and try and strip me of the seven Tour de France victories I earned. These are the very same charges and the same witnesses that the Justice Department chose not to pursue after a two-year investigation. These charges are baseless, motivated by spite and advanced through testimony bought and paid for by promises of anonymity and immunity. Although USADA alleges a wide-ranging conspiracy extended over more than 16 years, I am the only athlete it has chosen to charge. USADA’s malice, its methods, its star-chamber practices, and its decision to punish first and adjudicate later all are at odds with our ideals of fairness and fair play.

      I have never doped, and, unlike many of my accusers, I have competed as an endurance athlete for 25 years with no spike in performance, passed more than 500 drug tests and never failed one. That USADA ignores this fundamental distinction and charges me instead of the admitted dopers says far more about USADA, its lack of fairness and this vendetta than it does about my guilt or innocence.

    • Yes, Diag, former sports stars who refused to admit or to address evidence of wrongdoings are exactly like world leaders and leaders of news and science organizations that refused to address evidence in 2009 Climategate emails and documents of thirty (20) years of deceit.

      http://joannenova.com.au/2010/01/finally-the-new-revised-and-edited-climategate-timeline/

      We now have evidence that official misinformation actually started sixty-four (64) years earlier, in 1945

      http://omanuel.wordpress.com/about/

      Today society is on the verge of collapse – in Asia, Australia, the EU, the United States, and other drug-infested countries of the Americas, with headlines on unrest in Egypt and the UK:

      http://www.nytimes.com/2012/06/15/world/middleeast/new-political-showdown-in-egypt-as-court-invalidates-parliament.html?nl=todaysheadlines&emc=edit_th_20120615

      http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/financialcrisis/9332570/Osborne-unveils-140bn-scheme-to-kick-start-stagnant-economy.html

      The problem is arrogance on the part of frightened world leaders and leaders of the scientific community who “painted themselves into a corner,” suffering under the illusion they control reality.

      The solution will require conniving, manipulative, intelligent “naked apes” riding on the third ball of dirt orbiting the “fountain of energy that sustains life” to recognize their place in the universe, i.e., to get right-sized.

      The probability of success is unfortunately extremely small for those suffering from illusions of grandeur – about like the probability of getting a camel through the eye of a needle.

      http://omanuel.wordpress.com/about/#comment-109

      Unfortunately all humanity suffers the consequences.

      With deep regrets,
      Oliver K. Manuel
      Former NASSA Principal
      Investigator for Apollo
      http://www.omatumr.com

  3. It’s not difficult for a person with a scientific education to be skeptical of sweeping claims based on highly complex mathematical models. Until very recently, climate science was a backwater of physics. Now, they’ve somehow become willing to remake the modern industrial word on the basis of a guesstimate of sensitivity?

    In order for me to be confident in GCMs, I would have to be certain that climate scientists know EVERYTHING there is to know about how the planet’s climate changes over geological time. I can’t imagine this is true. And hindcasting the 20th century is such a weak test that is can’t possibly impress me. My skepticism isn’t OF science, it’s BECAUSE OF science. The greater the claim, the greater requirement for proof.

    • “…The ongoing push to squander billions of dollars and sacrifice our economies on the altar of climate change is dangerous nonsense. Like sundry other isms, Climatism is a triumph of belief over evidence, of righteousness over reason.” ~Walter Starck

      Expect Us to Take Their Little ‘Red’ Pills Forever

    • David Wojick

      Well said Mark. What these folks will not admit is that skepticism is one side of an honest debate. Both sides are ideological but that means that ideology explains nothing, except why there are two sides, because an ideology is just a category of personality so everyone has one. The science is inconclusive so different people come down on different sides.

    • MarkB,
      So, how difficult is it for a person with a scientific education to acknowledge that models are not the only basis for AGW? What about the paleoclimate studies? If anything, those give us a better estimate of climate sensitivity than models can.

      As long as you are talking about models, what is your favorite model? I don’t think there as a model which does not incorporate CO2 as a GHG which does as well in hindcasts as those that do. If you say no model, you might as well say, we don’t know everything; therefore we know nothing, which is an irrational statement.

      You could prove a projectile motion model based on a parabolic curve wrong by increasing the velocity of the projectile to the point where orbital mechanics are measurably more accurate. You could prove the elliptical path model wrong by making sure that projectile passed through enough atmosphere to affect its trajectory, and so on. None of these proofs would mean that gravity doesn’t exist, and that is kind of what you are implying.

      It really doesn’t matter if the sensitivity is 2 C per doubling or 4.5 C per doubling; the BAU trajectory will take us where we don’t want to go, it just takes a little longer to get there at the lower sensitivity estimates.

      Try a search for ‘climate model accuracy’ on Google Images, and let’s look at the first few hits.

      Showing accuracy:
      http://www2.sunysuffolk.edu/mandias/global_warming/climate_models_accuracy.html
      http://www.politics.ie/forum/environment/168493-new-nasa-data-blow-gaping-hole-global-warming-alarmism-6.html
      http://williamrwilson.hubpages.com/hub/CO2-Causes-Global-Warming-Heres-How-We-Know

      Showing inaccuracy:
      http://c3headlines.typepad.com/.a/6a010536b58035970c01676758c1ef970b-800wi
      http://media.reason.com/mc/_external/2012_02/climate-model-trends-versus-ac.jpg?h=273&w=500
      http://wattsupwiththat.com/2012/01/09/scaffeta-on-his-latest-paper-harmonic-climate-model-versus-the-ipcc-general-circulation-climate-models/

      Couple of things stand out to me immediately, a) the claims of inaccuracy tend to focus on shorter time periods than the claims of accuracy, and b) the claims of inaccuracy tend to say that the IPCC said things they didn’t actually say.

      Drilling down into the Scaffeta and Loehle from the Watts post, their model has no connection with physical properties of reality, and tends to break down badly when taken outside of their carefully selected and parameterized range. That’s pretty much what you would expect from a curve-fitting exercise.
      http://www.skepticalscience.com/pics/LSvsMobergvsLoehleAll.png

      How hard is it for a person to understand that with the same energy coming into a system, and less going out, that the level of energy within the system will rise?

      But, the real question is why is it that some people chose to believe one set of information over another. Anyone who things that a human mind is all that rational is fooling themselves.

      Why is it that you focus on models? Could it be that all you have to do to prove any model wrong is to demand more accuracy out of it than was coded into it? Once you’ve proven to yourself that it is not entirely accurate, you can tell yourself that all is well. That’s nice isn’t it; thinking that all is well? Thinking we are pretty much screwed is a bit harder to contemplate, isn’t it? So, what do you think; any bias there in what the general population would choose to believe?

      • paleoclimate studies? If anything, those give us a better estimate of climate sensitivity than models can.

        The Paleo Data shows that CO2 is sensitive to Temperature, just as in a soft drink with CO2.
        The Vapor pressure of the CO2 is higher in the warm drink and lower in the cold drink. The Oceans and Atmosphere follow the same rules of simple Physics. Study the Paleo data and compare the data with various Theories. They did get the Theory wrong and that did lead them to bad Models and bad projections.

      • So, you have no faith in the last 150 years of radiative physics?
        What exactly is wrong with our understanding of the absorption and emission of gases?

        That isn’t to say that CO2 isn’t sensitive to temperatures. It is entirely possible, even likely, that, within certain ranges, the planet tends to store more carbon in clathrates and permafrost when it is slightly cooler than when it is slightly warmer. It also can be fairly well demonstrated that warmer water holds less CO2 in solution than cooler water. Surely someone has mentioned the term ‘feedback’ to you before.

        By focusing on the response of CO2 to temperature and pretending that temperature is not sensitive to CO2, you have exposed your bias.

      • You can add more CO2 to a soft drink but a soft drink with double the CO2 gets to the temperature around it at the same rate as a soft drink with less CO2.
        The CO2 Vapor pressure, on the other hand does change when the temperature changes. This is the physics!

      • The bottom line is that the earth temperature is not doing what the flawed Climate Models say that it must do.

      • And that means what with respect to the fact that changing the level of CO2 changes the radiative physics of the planet?

        Your bias is still showing.

      • That means you can crank CO2 up and make green things grow better while using less water and not worry about any problems for life on earth due to CO2.

        Only good comes from adding CO2.
        I do have a bias for more CO2 and it is a very good bias.

      • HAP is incapable of plugging the numbers in for the activation energy of CO2 and seeing how it matches to the paleo data.

        This is an Wolfram Alpha equation assuming an activation energy of 0.3 eV for CO2 partial pressure in seawater. The temperature is changed by 10 degrees from a baseline of 290 K.
        The partial pressure increases by 50%, which would be a change from 200 PPM to 300 PPM, matching that of paleo reconstructions for that range of temperature change.

        Now you can understand how CO2 and temperature are symbiotically related. If steady state temperature changes, it can pull CO2 along with it. And then as CO2 increases, extra feedback is provided by the GHG effect.

        Interglacials appear as a kind of limit-cycle amplified by the GHG effect of CO2.
        http://theoilconundrum.blogspot.com/2012/03/co2-outgassing-model.html

      • Chris G | June 16, 2012 at 4:44 pm said: ”By focusing on the response of CO2 to temperature and pretending that temperature is not sensitive to CO2, you have exposed your bias”

        Chris, by saying what you did – you have exposed your ”half ignorance”

        1] warmer water tolerates less CO2, also saltier water tolerates more CO2; experiment with a beer. +/- temp / or salt. sacrifice a bottle in the name of science.

        2] most important ignorance you have is: CO2 absorbing more heat than air does – the other half, that created the contemporary confusion; is missing in your brains: CO2 can accumulate MORE COLDNESS than oxygen + nitrogen can – reason CO2 is used for making ”dry ice”
        Chris, on this earth, 12h is sunlight / 12h darkness = CO2 collects extra heat during the day – extra coldness during the night = those two factors cancel each other!!!!!!!! remember what Stefan told you. Stop being a flat-earther, believing in 24h sunlight on every spot. cheers

      • CO2 “traps coldness?”

        Oh Lord…

      • John Carpenter

        It’s not the vapor pressure…. It’s solubility. The relationship with temperature is similar for both for similar kinetic reasons, but vapor pressure is the tendency for a liquid to evaporate at various temperatures. In the example of CO2 in water, we are looking at solubility of a gas in a liquid. Since we are not looking at CO2 liquid and it’s vaporization, it is not correct to talk of the vapor pressure. The property we are looking at is solubility.

      • BatedBreath

        ChrisG
        On the subject of models’ connection to physical realities, and the comparison of energy going in vs energy going out, do you think there is anything like enough modelling of the mechanics and effects of clouds ? Enough to justify the huge drop in global wealth that switching from fossil fuel will entail, that is.

      • I’ve seen figures that energy produced from alternatives costs about 1.5x what energy produced from fossil fuels. The fossil fuel industry represents about 7% of the u.S. GDP. That puts the cost of switching to alternatives somewhere in the ballpark of 3% of GDP. BAU will lead to a degradation of the environment to the point where we will not be able to feed the population. For instance, extreme heat waves that covered less than 1% of the globe in the 1950-1980 average, have increased in frequency and area within recent decades to the point where they cover 10% of the globe in recent years. We have seen the impacts of this from the European heat wave, the one in Russia, Australia, and last year in Texas and Oklahoma. Where there is an extreme heat wave, agricultural production plummets. Would you like to wait until 20% of the land experiences an extreme heat event in a typical year before altering our course?

        So, let’s pretend that the hit to GDP is spread evenly. The last TV I bought cost about 3% of my yearly salary. If you are asking me if I would give up the last TV I bought so that my kids could live in a world without a seriously degraded ability to feed the population, based on the current information available, yes, I would make that choice in a heartbeat.

      • Citations, please

      • That puts the cost of switching to alternatives somewhere in the ballpark of 3% of GDP

        Aren’t you confusing the cost of switching to alternatives with the cost of using them?

    • John Carpenter

      Chris G makes some good points. The issue is not that a perfect model can be made…. It can’t. The point is models can tell us, generally, what we should expect. We learn a lot with models, models are useful, but we also know they are flawed. Models based on radiative heat transfer say increased CO2 will increase temperature. That is a fact, but it doesn’t conclusively say to what amount when looking at the whole planetary climate system, that is where the models are insufficient. Are current models sufficient enough now to make policy? Dunno, probably not…. But they do give insight.

      • John Carpenter, you write “The point is models can tell us, generally, what we should expect. ”

        Here, I disagree with you. The main, maybe the only real, use of non-validated models is to help design the next experiment. The only thing we can trust is the hard, measured, preferably independently replicated, data. Theory and hypothesis should lead us towards the next hard measured numbers we need to know. Models can help us decide how best to get these numbers..

      • John, you would think wouldn’t you that a model built to accommodate all the forcings in the atmosphere that sets out to forecast the “weather” 50 years from now ( and yes it is weather not climate they’re forecasting), would be slightly less successful than a model setting out to forecast the next three months of weather given all the observational data and knowledge of the weather we’ve gathered over the last hundred years.

        Well, on the 25 March 2012 the UK met office model forecast three months of drought with April likely to be the worst of the three months. By April 30th we’d had a record April rainfall, by May 31 we’d filled the depleted resevoirs that had caused a hosepipe ban across a huge swathe of the UK, and by June 15th when I left the UK it was still pissing down.

        What are we to make of models?

      • geronimo

        Happy Birthday! (June 16, 1829)

  4. Let’s look at the science:

    Akasofu calls the post-2000 warming trend hypothetical. His harshest words are reserved for advocates who give conjecture the authority of fact. (Andrew Orlowski)

    Now, let’s look at the psychological aspect of the matter:

    Before anyone noticed, this hypothesis has been substituted for truth… The opinion that great disaster will really happen must be broken. (Shunichi Akasofu)

    Behavioral psychology tells us that those in a position of power who should know better (i.e., who are supposed to understand the concept of the ‘null hypothesis’) who purposefully collude and engage in the activity of substituting their opinions for fact to knowingly deceive others are corrupt.

    All of us are free to second-guess the motives of others all we want. But, it does not change the science: [The IPCC’s] conclusion that from now on atmospheric temperatures are likely to show a continuous, monotonic increase, should be perceived as an improvable hypothesis. (Kanya Kusano)

    • “[The IPCC’s] conclusion that from now on atmospheric temperatures are likely to show a continuous, monotonic increase, should be perceived as an improvable hypothesis. (Kanya Kusano)”

      Except, they made no such claim.

      Why do you chose to believe someone who tells you they did?

  5. Stirling English

    Dunno what Mooney means here:

    ‘I have increasingly come to think it is primarily ideological—driven by libertarian individualism’

    But if it means that I don’t take kindly to some taxpayer funded asshole saying ‘Nobody without a PhD in Radiative Physics is qualified to have an opinion about AGW’ as one of the leading lights did here, then I plead guilty to thinking that he’s an arrogant **** and that I am unlikely to believe him on first hearing.

    And when I look more deeply into the whole of his field of study and see appalling IT ‘practices’, fiddled and inadequate quality control, ‘teleconnections’ (roflmao), concealment, intimidation and groupthink then my growing suspicion turns into full-blown scepticism.

    if climatologist aren’t a total bunch of shysters, I find it quite remarkable that their default mindset and behaviour pattern is to act as if they are.

    • Yep, the warmists sense teleconnections between a skeptical stance and tobacco companies. Go figure. Personally, I think these guys get high on Unicorn farts.

    • What mooney means – and he is right – is that a lot of self-proclaimed “skeptics” are actually motivated to deny science that clashes with their libertarian world view. Much like creationists are motivated to deny science that clashes with their religious worldview.

      We see a lot of posters on these boards railing against socialists and promoting individualism. I suggest this is an admission of their underlying bias that drives and motivates them on this subject.

      • Lolwot, the problem is that the greens and warmers are motivated to deny science, if you want to call it that, for their own reasons. Everyone is motivated by who they are. The point is therefore irrelevant, a form of ad hominem in fact. It suggests, incorrectly, that someone is wrong simply because they are motivated. You are clearly highly motivated or you would not post hundreds of comments here. Does that make you wrong?

        Moreover, no one is denying science, that is a shallow rhetorical device on your part. People just see the science differently.

      • I don’t buy it that “no one is denying science…People just see the science differently.”

        Yes people do. But there are limits to what is reasonable and I think the line has been well overstepped.

        On the age of the Earth a while back a fair number of scientists may have quibbled over whether Earth was 4.4 billion years old or 4.6 billion years old. But at the same time there were, and still are, a load of people who argue science shows the Earth is just 6000 years old.

        Can this difference of opinion be defended as a matter of “people just see the science differently”? No. The science doesn’t justify such a diverse and polarized opinion on the matter. Something unscientific is at play.

        We can say that the 6000-year old believers are in fact denying science due to religious bias. There’s nothing wrong with that because it’s true. It is not a valid defense to claim their bias is okay because everyone is biased in some way. Not everyone is biased to such a degree.

      • David Wojick

        Lolwot, you are getting nuts. No one here is claiming the earth is 6000 years old, or anything like that, so the comparison is insane.It must be motivated reasoning, because you sure are motivated.

        Skeptics have serious, well articulated concerns about the claims of warmers. Live with it.

      • Latimer Alder

        @lollie

        Your reasoning is at fault.

        If you see a man wearing a red tie driving a green car, you conclude that all green cars are driven by men in red ties.

        So if you then see a green car being driven by a lady in a yellow dress, you do not change your view about red ties, but imagine instead that if she is really a man in a red tie but has ‘fakely’ dressed up as woman in a yellow dress. This could lead to some social difficulty if you attempt to ‘expose’ the impostor.

        I don’t think we have seen what happens if you see a man in a red tie driving a yellow car or a lady in a yellow dress riding a motorbike. But I think we can safely say that it will be ‘odd’.

        Given your faulty logic, I can imagine why the seeming ‘gravitas’ of Mann et al appeals. Just wallow in their warm embrace and you don’t need to do any thinking for yourself or worry about any of those puzzling things…just believe and all will be well……….

      • Almost half(!) the US population believe in this form of creationism. I suspect at least some of the politically motivated skeptics are in that category, but probably few of those would read a science-oriented blog like this.

        http://www.upi.com/Top_News/US/2012/06/02/Poll-Almost-half-in-US-creationist/UPI-89661338647330/

      • David Wojick

        Jim D, the majority of those so-called creationists are skeptical of the evolution of humans via mutation and selection. They do not question the origin of species in general. But progressives lump them together with people who question evolution generally, as well as the new earth types. This is a rhetorical scam of course. But in any case it has nothing to do with the climate debate because no one is offering a creationist theory of warming.

        As for politically motivated skeptics, they are more than matched by politically motivated warmers, that is if the concept has any validity at all, which I doubt. These are just mass ad hominems. The question is who is right?

        I think the green political movement today is as dangerous as the red movement was 100 years ago, so I act accordingly. Does that make me biased? Not if I am right. Bias is a form of error, not merely strong belief. So only people who are wrong are biased. Unless you think that everyone is biased, in which case the concept is meaningless as far as the debate is concerned. Same for political motivation, whatever that may mean. Why somebody makes the arguments they make has no bearing on the truth of what they say.

      • Dave Springer

        lolwot | June 16, 2012 at 9:10 am | Reply

        “On the age of the Earth a while back a fair number of scientists may have quibbled over whether Earth was 4.4 billion years old or 4.6 billion years old. But at the same time there were, and still are, a load of people who argue science shows the Earth is just 6000 years old. Can this difference of opinion be defended as a matter of “people just see the science differently”?”

        Yes. Each view is not equally defensible but each view can be supported. Science is about best explanations not sole explanations.

        The old earth view is predicated on two critical assumptions:

        1. parsimony – Occam’s Razor; the most elegant (simplest) explanation is usually the correct one. If something isn’t strictly required in an explanation then don’t add it.

        2. constancy – Physical constants such as speed of light, radioactive decay rate, sedimentation and erosion rates, and others do not vary across time and space.

        These are both assumptions. They serve us very well but they are not laws. We have not measured C except in a tiny region of time and space. Likewise with radioactive decay rate and the others. Science has only been around for a split second in comparison to the ostensible age of the universe and measurements have only been made in a vanishingly small volume of space compared to the ostensible size of the observable universe.

        So the young earth creationist says 1) just because parsimony suggests we needn’t strictly add a creator to the equation doesn’t mean there was no creator. A sufficiently advanced technology could in fact have created the universe (especially a digital physics) in the relatively recent past and created it with a pre-history much as an author can create a novel and give the characters in it a plausible past even though that past is a fiction that never really happened.

        The second thing the young earth creationist will argue is that there is nothing but an assumption that what are given as physical constants are really constants. All the arguments for an old earth are predicated on those constants being unchanging across all time and space.

        This is a basic problem with narrative science. If there were no eyewitnesses, a sample size of one, and inability to replicate then the explanation can only be a narrative account a.k.a. a “just-so story”.

        Many people are unwilling to uncritically accept just-so story. You are unwilling to accept the just-so story of the young earth creationist and they are unwilling to accept the just-so story of an old earth.

        My opinion is that, frankly Scarlett, I don’t give a damn. The universe is what it is regardless of whether it was created 14 billion years ago or last week. My stock answer to the young earth creationist is not to tell him he’s crazy but rather to say “If God created the earth 6000 years ago He did a very good job of making it appear to be billions of years old.” I think that’s the best response you can make without getting your epistemological head handed to you on a platter because in the end all knowledge is predicated on unprovable assumptions.

      • “Lolwot, you are getting nuts. No one here is claiming the earth is 6000 years old, or anything like that, so the comparison is insane.”

        I disagree. I see climate skeptics on this blog entertaining similarly ludicrous ideas, such as:

        1) A doubling of CO2 causes no warming

        2) The ongoing CO2 rise is natural

        Given the weight of scientific evidence these ideas are as unlikely as a 6000 year old earth. The weight of evidence is that the CO2 rise is predominately due to man and that a doubling of CO2 results in significant warming (ie nowhere near “zero”).

        Said climate skeptics seem loathe to accept this however and are going to great lengths to sabotage the concept of weight of evidence in science.

        As an example of how this works see what Dave Springer writes below to defend those who believe the Earth is only 6000 years old. He makes it sound like the age of the Earth is just a matter of opinion and so believing the Earth is 4.5 billion years old is no more valid than believing it’s 6000 years old. No weight of evidence, just “opinion”.

      • Even a lack of a political view is a political stance. Point being, everyone has political beliefs. The fact that one person’s belief is A and the other’s B has no bearing on the objectivity of said person. You are looking at this in a very one-sided manner.

      • The problem is that motivated reasoning is a vague concept in psychology. I know of no operational definition in the literature on it, where it is something of a niche concept. What is the general theory? How does it differ from strong belief? Note too that it is not confined to political beliefs. There are often strong beliefs in scientific debates.

      • See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Motivated_reasoning
        Note that they define motivated reasoning as clinging to false beliefs despite overwhelming evidence to the contrary. That is certainly not the case with climate skepticism.

      • “Motivated reasoning” is what someone a progressive disagrees with does. As contrasted to his own well reasoned critical analysis.

      • “Even a lack of a political view is a political stance. Point being, everyone has political beliefs. The fact that one person’s belief is A and the other’s B has no bearing on the objectivity of said person. You are looking at this in a very one-sided manner.”

        This is exactly how creationists argue back at me: by claiming that my lack of religious view is a religious stance that biases me.

      • Are you claiming to have no political stance?

      • David Wojick

        Lolwot, as I said above, bias is a form of error, not merely strong belief. So only people who are wrong are biased. Unless you think that everyone is biased, in which case the concept is meaningless as far as the debate is concerned. Same for political motivation, whatever that may mean. Why somebody makes the arguments they make has no bearing on the truth of what they say.

        And as usual you are confusing the form of an argument with its substance. Climate change and creationism are two different issues. Conflating them is dishonest, unless you really cannot tell the difference. That might explain a lot of the nutty stuff you say.

      • David Wojick

        Hunter, recently lolwot seems to be claiming that he has no stance at all, political or otherwise. This despite his hundreds, if not thousands, of comments here, most of which simply repeat the same extreme views. His claim is not credible, to say the least.

      • Dave Springer

        lolwot | June 16, 2012 at 8:51 am | Reply

        “This is exactly how creationists argue back at me: by claiming that my lack of religious view is a religious stance that biases me.”

        Do you believe that God does not exist? If you do can you prove it? If you can’t prove then upon what do you base your belief? The creationist is probably right in your case. I’m agnostic about religion which is the traditional position of the scientist who should only concern himself about what is investibable by the scientific method and consign everything else to, at best, cocktail party banter.

      • “Hunter, recently lolwot seems to be claiming that he has no stance at all, political or otherwise.”

        I have no political stance that interferes or biases me on this issue. I very clearly see libertarian biases at work in a lot of you guys. It’s very clear and you are trying ever so hard to avoid that.

        “This despite his hundreds, if not thousands, of comments here, most of which simply repeat the same extreme views.”

        My views are not extreme. I can see why you’d need to pretend they are though.

      • Lolwot
        You claim you have no political biases here, but this is flatly contradicted by your failure to ever note the elephant in the room – the obvious totalitarian bias in the pro-CAGW position. Like any leftwinger, you delight in a new excuse to increase taxation and bureaucracy, while aloofly pretending it’s all mandated in “the science” (commissioned by the very same bureaucracy).

      • A Noni Mouse

        Interesting comparison – let’s look a little deeper, shall we?

        With what are creationists derided? Facts, data, logical arguments.

        With what are climate “denialists” derided? Ad hom attacks on their funding sources, motivations and beliefs!

        Why should we believe climate scientists? Because they are experts in the field

        Why should we ignore stats experts and believe climate scientists who are self admittedly not stats experts?

        When each and every IPCC AR gives a lower projection of temperature increase over the next several decades; when CO2 increases exceed IPCC projections; when temperature increases are lower than IPCC projections, I am supposed to accept that things are “worse than we thought!”?

        I could go on, but you already know all this stuff – or at least, you should. If climate problems are “obvious” from a wide array of independent lines of evidence, then the multiple lines of independent evidence that climate science has some serious issues in terms of missing or neglected drivers and/or feedbacks, and in terms of uncertainty, should not be ignored either – yet it seems to be regularly arm-waved away. Our host appears to have similar views, as do many others that take the time to investigate rather than just take the word of, eg RealClimate and their sycophants.

        None of this makes you wrong – but it is extremely suggestive that you are over-confident in the results, that you cannot stand the idea of being wrong, and that you won’t argue the case on it’s merits. If I am to take a logical, scientific view of the issue, why won’t you present one when you are questioned?

        If you wanted to know why I’m skeptical, this brief and incomplete synopsis may help your understanding. I do not believe I am alone in this conclusion – the vast majority of luke-warmer and skeptical sites (at least the more technical ones like here, CA, Lucia’s etc) all seem to have similar concerns. If you want to make us believers, then address these concerns with data, analysis and logic, not ad hom derision and hateful labels – you may be right and I may be wrong, but if the evidence is plain for all to see, then present it! If my argument is full of holes, document them! If your papers are wrong, admit it and issue a correction! If you think you have a better moral standpoint, live up to it and deride your opponents for not living up to your own high standards! If “your side” had followed this path from the beginning as is the norm for all other such wide-ranging scientific arguments, then we would not BE arguing because I’d be on your side!

      • Latimer Alder

        Splendidly put!

        +10

      • Dave Springer

        Based upon the notion that the experts are always right shouldn’t those of us who are not experts in religion trust those who are?

        I’d actually be inclined to do that but first there’d have to be a consensus among the experts and I can find none. A billion Christians say a billion Hindus are wrong and a billion Moslems say they are both wrong and two billion Buddhists say the other three are wrong so on and so forth.

      • “…shouldn’t those of us who are not experts in religion trust those who are?”

        No.
        You need to love what is inside the Bible, before it wil reveal Him to you.
        Our Faith, is his first gift. See & grow. Have joy in your life, for real. I know that I am not alone when we say that: He is the head of the body.

        Not skull & bones either.

      • Ah, so this is all about climate creationism versus climate denialism ?

      • Vassily,

        Denialism v. Creationism

        Same as it ever was.

      • Perhaps we need a study on the psychology of Catastrophe Creationism then.

      • Like Zorba said: “The full Catastrophe.”

        One side of the same coin & it’s your call. Hope it’s not asking to much of you.

    • What both you and Mooney duck, is the unspoken and underlying political bias of totalitarianism that is the primary driving force of alarmism, and that the spotting and objection to this here is merely a reaction to that bias.

  6. RE; Adam Corner/ADAM: “scep¬ti¬cism about cli¬mate change is not primarily caused by a ‘mis¬un¬der¬standing’ of the sci¬ence but by motiv¬ated reas¬oning pro¬cesses – rooted in ideo¬lo¬gical dif¬fer¬ences – that mean that the ‘same’ evid¬ence is not eval¬u¬ated in the same way. Would you agree that scep¬ti¬cism about cli¬mate change has more to do with polit¬ical views than an assess¬ment of the science?”

    SORRY! If science is not even able to define what “climate” means (http://www.whatisclimate.com/) , it is simple arrogant to say: “scep¬ti¬cism about cli¬mate change has more to do with polit¬ical views”. Unfortunately; SCEPTICISM is neither able to challenge science on this point.

  7. My skepticism is rooted in my belief that there is no sound science that allows anyone to translate a change in radiative forcing into a change in surface temperature. Before the IPCC can claim, in the SPMs, that CAGW is real, it must establish what the climate sensitivity is for a doubling of CO2.

    The first stage in this process is to estimate the no-feedback climate sensitivity; the second stage is to estimate the feedbacks. The no-feedback climate sensitivity is estimated assuming that the lapse rate does not change. So far as I ascertain, the IPCC has never justified this assumption. Chris Colose claims that this is not necessary, since any change in lapse rate can assumed to be a feedback. This is fine as long as the IPCC quantitaitvely estimates what the feedback is for a change in lapse rate. So far as I can see, the IPCC has never done this.

    So, my logic leads me to this. Either the IPCC must justify the assumption that a change in radiative forcing does not change the lapse rate. Or the IPCC must establish what the feedback is for the change of lapse rate. I can find no reference where the IPCC has done either of these things. Unless the IPCC has been done one of these, then there is no basis for the IPCC to claim in the SPMs that CAGW is real.

    Where am I wrong? Anyone? Our hostess, lolwot, Jim D. Chris Colose?

    • Just Google “lapse rate feedback”. This is one of the basic feedbacks that’s routinely included in the analysis.

      • Pekka, you write “Just Google “lapse rate feedback”. ”
        sarc on/
        If it really is that simple, one wonders why the IPCC did not do it, so that they could include a quantitative value in the TAR and AR4. Do you suppose they will take up your suggestion so that a value can be included in the AR5?
        sarc off/

    • Jim, believe it or not, you can calculate the change in surface temperature based on a change in radiant forcing and determine that a 3.7Wm-2 increase in average resistance to heat flow, aka, increasing the insulation value, and actually arrive at an answer of 0.81C +/-0.2 C AT THE SURFACE. However, this requires less assuming and more figuring. Probably any professor of Thermodynamics or fluid dynamics could do it in a day.

      They could even estimate the average global change in temperature from glacial to inter-glacial is 1.9C based on the heat of fusion of water and the variation in freezing point of fresh and salt water.

      They could even prove that there is no “faint sun” paradox, just poor logic.

      What they can’t do is prove that more than 1.6C of warming is in our future from 3.7Wm-2 worth of CO2. We are at the point now they need to quit musing and start proving.

    • Dave Springer

      Change in lapse rate a feedback from CO2 increase? I think that’s a semantic game. It’s either a consequence or it isn’t.

      Anyone who denies it as a consequence isn’t adhering to the climate change party line. A hotspot in the upper troposphere in the tropic is the fingerprint of GHG warming vs. warming driven by other factors. The hotspot is defined as temperature rising faster in the upper troposphere than it rises on the surface. By definition this is a change in the lapse rate and more specifically a lessening of it and even more specifically a tacit acknowledgement that climate boffins agree, without admitting as much, that I’m right about increased CO2 raising evaporation rate without a commensurate increase in surface temperature as an increase in latent heat transport without a commensurate increase in radiative transport is the only way to lessen the lapse rate.

  8. To me, this seems backwards. The psychological studies should be done on the CAGW supporters not the skeptics. This whole global warming cause has been an environmental activist’s call to arms from the beginning and the science gets over blown to something that it is not. The study needs to be on behavior conditioning of school age children and the effect on adult reasoning. The environmental movement was being crammed down my throat as early as I can remember. For my kids it was worse.

    • good point. The opposite of ‘skeptic’ is ‘gullible’. I’d rather be skeptical.

      • blueice2hotsea

        My apologies for my pedantic hair-splitting, but I prefer these oppositions: dogmatist vs skeptic, alarmist vs cynic, sycophant vs contrarian.

        Good science is about maintaining a healthy balance between Type I Errors (dogmatism, incorrect belief) and Type II errors (skepticism, rejection of truth).

        If more alarmists became alarmed of alarmism and more cynics cynical of cynicism, then more problems would be self-correcting.

      • In my opposition I was thinking of the general public which seems to be easily misled with the help of the MSM. For science enthusiasts, the norm is supposed to be skepticism, leaving the extremes of dogma and cynicism to others. That does not rule out thinking one side is right, but it does mean that one must be open to persuasion from the other side, and even open to switching sides if that is where the evidence leads.

        Psychological studies of alarmists would be interesting. Even biographies showing how and why they became alarmists would be interesting.

      • blueice2hotsea

        Psychological studies of alarmists would be interesting.

        Yes. Sadly, this seems to a neglected area of research.

    • And while they’re atit Eric,they should include all those people who believe that man landedon the moon, tobacco smoke causes cancer, CFCs destroy ozone, evolution is real, etc etc etc …..

    • I agree.

      Are there equivalent studies on CAGW believers and alarmists?

    • Actually, no, Svante Arrenhius, the person who first proposed that our emissions would warm the planet, thought it would be a good thing, 100 years ago. Of course, he did live in Sweden. He pioneered the belief based on the physical science, not because he was an environmentalist.

      • I have been to lectures from Consensus Climate Scientists and lectures from Skeptic Climate Scientists. It appears to me that Scientists on both sides do mostly agree on how much Warming that increasing CO2 does. It is not much. Where they differ is in the Little Understood Carbon Feedback additions. That is much.

      • Herman, Maybe you could clarify something for me.

        Above, you make the claim that “The Paleo Data shows that CO2 is sensitive to Temperature”, and here you acknowledge that CO2 has an affect on temperature. If CO2 affects temperature in a positive way, and temperature affects CO2 in a positive way, that is a positive feedback mechanism.

        Just above, you mention a difference in beliefs about feedbacks. The lower sensitivity estimates rely on less positive feedbacks, and the higher ones more positive feedbacks. So, how big a positive feedback do you expect?

    • “The psychological studies should be done on the CAGW supporters not the skeptics. ”

      I’ve read the one in Nature; haven’t read the other. The one in Nature was primarily interested in the level of polarization, and its relationship with science knowledge. It did not focus on skeptics or supporters, per se.

      Why did you think that it did?

  9. From the evidence of Chris Mooney’s actions and words, it is Mooney who is engaged in “motivated reasoning”. Dismissing skeptics as ideologues or cynical employees of the so-called “fossil fuel industry” is, ironically, denial of the first order.

    • You misrepresent what Mooney says. He says of your bias: “I have increasingly come to think it is primarily ideological—driven by libertarian individualism”

      Are you going to deny that?

      • Libertarians are skeptical in general, particularly of decisions by small groups of people in gov’t or other authority. They like to look at all sides of economic issues and use consistent definitions and look at several ways of analyzing data, not just swallow the MSM alarmist version. For example, look not only at % increase or decrease in a single year, but also look at trends over many years, look at actual amounts of $, as well as the % and look at real dollars corrected for inflation. The two major parties always cheat by looking at the numbers only in the most politically convenient way and have the help of their respective MSM organs.

        This transfers over to some extent to CAGW, and particularly to how to deal with such problems.

        Greens and environmentalists, progressives and democrats, and even some republitards tend to be more ideologically driven to believe old tropes about fat cats and evil robber barons willing to pollute, steal, and injure to make a profit.

        They will ignore the actual numbers that thousands of times as much money is directed at pro-CAGW research and other efforts. Both major parties fund corporations such as Solyandra that then go belly up, only benefitting a few crony capitalists. This makes the rich richer but all of these simpletons think they are helping mother earth when in fact they are causing results (inequality of income and higher prices for consumers) that are the opposite of what they think they stand for.

        In our sound bite society, it is easy for people to be hood winked. What is sad is that people are so righteous in their stupidity and so arrogantly think that they are right even as they support policies with evil results.

      • Robert Austin

        This black and white view of the ideology of “skeptics” vs. that of the soi disant “realists” serves mainly as a blunt weapon with which to whack the other faction. The strident minions of either faction never address the fact that many people have drifted over time, for whatever reason, from one camp to the other. Do Mooney and Corner amongst others opining on the ideology of CAGW skeptics maintain that the apostates switched views mainly due to a “road to Damascus” style change in ideology.

        On a further note, I posted at Corner’s site on this topic but my post was “disappeared”. While critical of Corner’s overt bias, the post was not rude or obnoxious, at least by blog standards. Others posted at Bishop Hill that their posts were deleted also. One would think that all posts would be grist for a psychologist studying CAGW skepticism. The post removals merely reinforce the view that Corner is biased in the academic sense and any study he produced would be suspect due to that bias.

      • Joachim Seifert

        Robert: To the “Skeptics blunt weapon”….and Black-White-approach…..since there is only ONE Truth, and this truth
        is on the skeptic’s side, there remains to say that its only
        “when” (time) and not ‘if’ (possibility) that Skeptics will do the
        V-sign…..
        Sure, as long as Skeptics only casting doubts, they cannot make much headway….. but, if there is only one truth, then it will come
        out one day, and the more Skeptics are looking, the faster it will be…..
        You will see that by this years end, the Skeptics will have new, sharpened and higher caliber guns…..and will put the blunt stuff/soft tomatoes
        aside….
        JS

  10. What they really need for an accurate survey is two tiered insurance. Cheap insurance assumes things stay in the bounds of what is historically normal trends for temp/sea level/hurricanes/drought etc. The expensive insurance allows for these things to go up to and beyond IPCC estimates. The price difference can be calculated based on IPCC cost estimates of global warming, which would be significant. Then see what people buy – that is what they really believe.

    I think it would create a spike in scrutiny as well, people take a closer look when it is their money (directly) and their decision.

    • robin,
      The increases in Home Insurance over the past year in hurricane exposed areas reflects pricing models far above the historical risk levels.
      Your idea is good, and reinsurance companies are already making large profits off of it.

      • Those “large profits” are generally only on a portion of the coverage being provided, even by reinsurers. For extreme risks, insurers need to make large profits in years with no losses, so they can survive the years when losses are massive.

  11. One point that the “climate scientists” are missing is that most skeptics view them as incompetent. Those “climate scientists” are the more vocal, political and “creative” in expressing their confidence in their knowledge of what the world should do to avoid a catastrophe of unknown magnitude and likelihood when they can’t even review their work prior to publication.

    Chief Hydrologist recently linked to a paper that determined that leaf stoma in Florida are a direct indication that globally plants are responding to elevated CO2 levels which will reduce the hydrology cycle by nearly 50%. Draining a large portion of Florida evidently had no impact.

    Steig et al determined that the Antarctic is warming at the unprecedented of 0.1C per decade since 1950 by creatively “fabricating” data where none existed. They had to correc their paper because they over stated their confidence, then their paper was successfully rebutted by a bunch of bloggers

    Kevin Trenberth not only missed, 20Wm-2 doing a Earth energy budget trying to determine an imbalance of ~+/-1Wm-2 he resorted to using a model to indicate the imbalance was 0.9Wm-2 with a margin of error of +/-0.18 Wm-2.

    Mann et al has too many abuses of statistics to mention.

    James Hansen publicly muses on the boiling of the oceans and runaway global warming.

    Jacoby et al removes data that “diverges from observation”

    There is more.

    So I think that the “climate scientists” of this caliber should be replaced with scientists, so that the general public could regain confidence in science in general. But the no “climate scientist” left behind mentality will likely prevail.

    • +1

    • Latimer Alder

      +1

    • Draining the swamp had no impact on stomata.

    • And it’s the most incompetent one’s that try to paint the entire skeptic community as politically motivated.

      • The system appears to stimulate incompetence. They are graded on the number of papers published not the quality of the papers. They are rushed to meet publishing deadlines. They are rewarded for “sexing” up the graphics since the audience is not knowledgeable of the details of the science. They fight for top billing in the “prestige” journals since they are turned into “rock star” scientists if they get the right press. What reward is there for, “sorry guys, it appears we have the wrong sign for that forcing.” or “it appears that the system is approaching an asymptotic limit well below previous estimates.”

    • Dave Springer

      +1
      .

  12. “…The ongoing push to squander billions of dollars and sacrifice our economies on the altar of climate change is dangerous nonsense. Like sundry other isms, Climatism is a triumph of belief over evidence, of righteousness over reason.” ~Walter Starck

    Schoolteachers Expect Us to Take Their Little Red Pills Forever

  13. “much of the climate community continues to view AGW skeptics as anti-science, fossil fuel funded troglodytes .”

    Really? Do you have anything to back that up, because it sounds awfully like a sweeping generalisation?

  14. “The mis­un­der­standing comes I think from con­founding the tiny number of active scep­tics, who’ve come to a reasoned con­clu­sion, with the Jeremy Clarkson fans who show up in polls. … The “old white con­ser­vative male” label is no doubt true for the pop­u­la­tion at large, and can be easily explained, but it tells you nothing about the nature of reasoned scepticism.”

    Yawn, another elitist who think that only a “tiny number” of active skeptics, including of course himself, have reached their conclusions through reason. By that, this rocket scientist…sorry biologist…means conservative skeptics. You know, the ones who were skeptical from the beginning because they weren’t blinded by the group think of the left.

    Funny how when progressives want to debate an issue of what conservatives think, they seek out someone who shares their disdain for other conservatives. God forbid anyone around here should read anything by someone who doesn’t share their prejudices.

    If this pompous elitist wants to be rational in at least one area of thought, he is welcome to be a CAGW skeptic, more power to him. But asking him to psychoanalyze skeptics in general, the overwhelming majority of whom are conservative, is ridiculous. That is, if you are looking for a reasoned discussion, and not more confirmation of what you already believe.

    You might as well ask Willis Eschenbach to analyze christian evangelicals who believe murder is wrong. He may agree with them on that one point, but he is so deranged in his view of them otherwise, you are going to get gibberish for analysis.

  15. patrioticduo

    The more strident a scientist is about his findings, the more likely a true scientist is likely to doubt their findings. The scientific method demands a sceptical mind. The religious become convinced of their truth. Climate scientists (and I use the term only because they happen to be employed in academic institutions) have jettisoned their doubt mechanisms. A scientist will listen to almost anyone that questions and will respond with facts, calculations, considerations and questions in order to find agreement through knowledge. The global warming alarmist community has gone so far beyond into faith and mysticism that they resemble fanatics far more than they resemble scientists.

  16. Consensus Climate Theory and Models have said that Earth is and will be warming to dangerous levels. This alarmism has been going on for many years. The actual data does not support this. We are not warmer than we were in 1998, according to actual official data. There is nothing in this consensus climate science to have any confidence in. The alarmist forecasts keep being pushed into the future. It is not going to happen is much easier to believe than “not yet”, not yet again, not yet again, but soon, not yet again, someday. Show some actual “real honest” data that supports the alarmist theory or quit this disaster of an alarmist position.

  17. I am a skeptic.

    I have no formal training in Science except for H.S. and college basic science classes.

    I, however, am not stupid. I have a degree in computers and follow most science avidly (hence, my posting on this blog). I have to rely on the “experts” to try to get an understanding of this issue. I also have a pretty good bullshit detector.

    Here what it detects.

    1. Scientists claim to be able to deduce the temp from thousands of years ago via “proxies”. While it is reasonable to determine that the climate was warmer or colder and based on tree ring growth, it is unreasonable to say it was xx.xx degrees. I’d like to see these people be given a blind sample of tree cores from an undisclosed location that cover just the last 50 years and have them tell us the temps. I bet they can’t.

    2. Instrumental temp measurements are spotty. Vast areas go unmeasured and their temps are extrapolated. Now, where I live, there can be a 2-3 degree temp difference within a 5 mile radius. So claiming that some location in Siberia or the Australian interior is some average temp based on stations 50-100 miles away (if not further) is garbage.

    3. The people making claims about past and current temps are secretive and they don’t like to share their data. I don’t care why and it doesn’t matter why. It may be reasonable in their little world, but I’m not taking anyone’s word on anything if they are not transparent.

    4. It just so happens that the solution to AGW seems to align quite nicely with two political movements: The greens, who hate most anything related to man, and those who would have government control more and more and restrict individuals more and more. You may say I’m paranoid, but even a cursory look at their mitigation plans shows restrictions, increased taxes and more laws. This shouts “Political Movement”, not Science.

    Further bolstering this view is that for the most part, those advocating the AGW theory refuse to consider nuclear power, which is pretty much the only viable solution to the scenarios they advance.

    5. The primary scientific advocates of this movement are petty, vindictive, agenda driven and seemly very unlikeable people. Sure, you don’t have to be a nice guy to do good science, but when you try to get people fired, suppress dissenting opinions etc. that scores about a -10 on my trustworthy meter.

    6. I read quite a bit about how the data they rely on is cherry picked (Yamal) or that they ignore completely other data (Law Dome O18). I know that in real science, you don’t get to pick your data. It is what it is and you don’t throw it out because it doesn’t agree with your theory.

    Lastly, when I see those who ask questions about AGW being demonized, shouted down and derided, I will automatically tend to support them. Not because their arguments are so strong, but because their opponents, in behaving in this manner, show their arguments to be so weak.

    So there it is. If you have some grand plan to do something about Global Warming, I’m the guy you have to convince because I’m the guy paying the taxes and voting. Only through me will you see your agenda implemented, which means you need to cut the bullshit and come clean.

    • Well said, Don. Anyone seeking to analyze CAGW sceptics should first deal with the points they make here, rather than, as appears to the case, taking the CAGW case as a given from which no rational/reasonable person could demur.

    • All good points. Let’s make it even simpler — CAGW alarmists want to impose draconian changes on the world through govt force. What kind of evidence will I require to agree to such massive deprivations of life, liberty, and property? It better be solid, transparent, and of the highest quality possible. The burden of proof — clear and convincing. The evidence has to stand up to scathing cross-examination.

      Is this what the hockey team and friends offer us? No. We get Mann’s stupid hockey stick, Rahmstorf’s ‘worse than we thought’ (who knew that science could be that bad?), Jones’ made up China data, SST SWAGs, Briffa’s magic tree, Steig’s temperature smearing, Monnett’s pathetic polar bear study, Harry Read Me, Climategate, IPCC lies, whitewash investigations and the Gergis Oops. We get GCMS that can’t explain the climate, circular reasoning, and a disturbing lack of interest in quality matched only in intensity by an extraordinary commitment to political propaganda.

      Transparency is a complete joke, no one cares about audit or replication, and the scientists involved seem incapable of grasping why such concepts should matter in a democracy. Instead of science that impresses the public with quality, redundancy, and thoroughness, we get “The Three Stooges enter the Science Fair”.

  18. tempterrain

    Psychological studies? Psychiatric examinations may be more appropriate for some of the more extreme skeptic/denier denizens of this bog :-)

    • tempterrain

      …this blog :-)

      • No need for the correction, the marshy habitat seems to suit you.

        (Oh no! I’ve broken my “no snide remarks” rule! In my defence, when I tried to engage tt some time ago, he brushed me off.)

      • tempterrain

        Faustino,
        I might have been right first time as you suggest. The people I had in mind could well be classed as ‘pond life’.
        PS Don’t remember the “brush off”

      • tt –

        do you not think, in all honesty that the “more alarmist/CAGWers” also are not appropriate candidates for psychiatry?

        What reasons do you have for an asymmetry?

        I see nutters spread around fairly indiscriminately, and if I come across people seeing the loonies only on one side of an argument, amazingly enough I find I have discovered someone whose ideology blinds them to the truth.

      • Anteros, There are plenty of so-called controversies which have “loonies”, as you describe them, solely on one side of the argument.
        I can think of plenty of examples and I’m sure you can too.

  19. I read the interview at the link on Bishop hill. It was painful. I could not decide if it was more like going to Bank of America to tell them they made a mistake on your account or challening a Vatican encyclical ruling. Bank of America and the Vatican treat any challenge from the standpoint of “let me help find where you made a mistake”. Their position is infallible. I can only image a person who has the technical chops to really understand the elemetary state of this science getting help from a psychologist to sort out any misgivings.

  20. Why is it always the ideology of the skeptics that is noted? When is the same done for the believers?

    If you apply one type of analysis to your subjects, mustn’t you apply the same analysis to your controls?

  21. Dr. Curry,
    As more and more people are noticing, it is the psychology of the AGW true believer, not that of the skeptic, that is largely unexplored.

    • very good point

      • Someone I follow just tweeted this..
        Picture of Adam Corner – Green party candidate carrying a banner at Copenhagen – ‘Act Now’ it says…

        http://t.co/Hdqz9Wbn

        original greenparty source and write up by Adam Corner
        http://t.co/ezqsBusb

        Whilst also at Copenhagen Adam tweeted

        @AJCorner
        loving Brown calling people ‘deniers’ and ‘luddites’ on Cif. Tell it like it is Gordy! http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/cif-green
        12:59 PM Dec 7th, 2009 from web
        http://twitter.com/AJCorner/status/6429777167

        Adam defending the ‘climategate ‘Nature Trick’
        @AJCorner
        these are well worth watching re: ‘climategate’ emails, esp nice showing legitimate use of ‘trick’ http://climatesafety.org/crude-swifthack/ 2:16 PM Dec 8th, 2009 from web
        http://twitter.com/AJCorner/status/6464342690

        A co-author of one of his papers Alex Randall, was Kiribati’s representative) And COIN colleague (COIN behind Talking Climate blog) Alex was also a former employee of PIRC, (PIRC also behind the Talking Climate blog)

        Abstract of Corner/Randall – Selling Climate Change
        http://www.mendeley.com/research/selling-climate-change-limitations-social-marketing-strategy-climate-change-public-engagement/

        Adam and Alex’s boss at COIN (George Marshall), I nearly forgot to mention was a senior Greenpeace campaigner as well and Georges blog http://www.climate denial.org is not exactly going to endear him to sceptics.
        http://coinet.org.uk/about-us/staff-and-volunteers

        I do think I have demonstrated that COIN and PIRC (behind Talking Climate) are very much percieved as activist organisations. It is good they are now willing to begin to talk, but the background is that they are also the very same people, in the past preventing any debate from happening..

        It seems to be a very small green insular world.

        I very willing to chat with Adam, but I think we are worlds apart in worldview, and building trust will be challenging……

      • Could Corner be round the bend?

      • more to the point, can he be turned?

      • Exactly – let’s look at the psychology of the round-earthers too, while we are at it.

        OK, let’s be serious.

        It’s stuff like the emails sent to Phil Jones, full of vicious hatred and threats, that suggests to people there is something rotten at the heart of ‘climate skepticism’.

        Deal with that.

      • Michael,
        So ~20 anonymous creepy e-mails indicts a whole group of people?

      • Creepy?????

        Unhinged.

      • Michael,

        Creepy??? Unhinged. Hmm…sounds like the standard greenshirt profile. I mean, like, that’s the hive’s recruiting criteria, isn’t it, Michael? And, as you get the chance, Michael, google “fake hate crimes” and see what you get. So did you write any of the hate-mail to Jones, Michael? Or, is your hive-assignment strictly to whip-up the hyped outrage?

        So, Michael, wake me when arrests are made or, at least, when names are named. I’ll be very curious to see who, exactly, does the perp-walk for Jone’s hate-mail. Until then, I’ll remain unimpressed with your loser agit-prop on behalf of your loser “team’s” loser “cause.”

        And, oh by the way, Michael–your thoughts on the 10:10 video that featured killing children who lacked proper zeal for your noxious eco-orthodoxy. Another video you will undoubtedly enjoy: Google: “libtards create murder republicans violent video” on youtube. Again, your comments on that last video, please. And please note, Michael, both of the above videos are expensive, high-production value, little numbers produced by the left’s mainstream propaganda elite–not the work of some marginal, rogue nut-ball.

      • ah, good to see mike’s in the ‘false flag operative’ loony squad.

      • Michael,

        A bit of an inconvenience, Michael, isn’t it?–I mean, like, my pointing out the hive’s well-documented penchant (again, Google: “fake hate crimes”) for false-flag intrigues. I mean, like, in throwing out my little, false-flag suggestion, Michael, I think I can safely say I knocked you off the spastic-dork rhythm of your selective, hyped outrage act–right, Michael?

        And the “Jones gets hate-mail” pitch was your best shot amidst the whole doofus litter of your commentary on this post–wasn’t it, Michael? And then, Michael, I went and messed it all up for you. Oh, darn! Too bad, so sad.

        P. S. By the way, Michael, what did you think of the video, I recommended? Your brand of agit-prop, if I’m not mistaken–right, Michael? I mean, you know, the video has just that edgy, pumped-up, blood-and-gore, death-threat, geeks-with-seething-hate-get-even-with-the-world-that-thinks-they-are-weirdo-little-creep-outs-unlike-mom-who-understands-their-spoiled-brat-cutie-pie-“specialness” fervor you lefties love–when it’s you who are dishing out the hate-mongering, that is.

      • Rotteness confirmed.

      • Michael,
        Again: are all skeptics condemned by ~20 e-mails?
        Even if I and many more than 20 skeptics have specifically stated the e-mails were inappropriate and wrong?
        In the same context, what was your stand when Gleick admitted to identity theft and fraud?
        What about the infamous 10:10 video?

      • John Carpenter

        Don’t expect a reasoned discussion with Michael

      • hunter,

        There’s a widespread problem with ‘climate skepticism’ that is seen in both the unhinged stuff, such as the emails, and the less repulsive stuff on the blogs; the main one being the obviously political and personal character of much of the ‘critique’, which often mixes charges of ‘socialims’, ‘UN world govt’, ‘big govt’, ‘taxes’ and ‘watermelons’ to what is purported to be a challenge on the science. Then there is the focus on the personalities; vilifying individual scientists, the unhinged emails being exhibit A, but just an extreme version of the politics of personal vilification that ‘skeptics’ seem to be fixated on.

      • Michael, PJ has more guts than you. He just left the forest he planted by hand, and moved to the beach! He looks happy, happy, happy.
        Not a sad sack at all from the looks of him and he is ninety-too.
        You should go the the beach and get some ‘Son’.)
        HAND

      • Michael: “much of the ‘critique’, which often mixes charges of ‘socialims’, ‘UN world govt’, ‘big govt’, ‘taxes’ and ‘watermelons’ to what is purported to be a challenge on the science.”

        The simple fact is, what purports to be “the science” is indeed funded by big government, and will hence invariably be biased in its favor . The obsession with trying to pretend otherwise – that it is honest and objective – is the root of the whole problem.

      • Morano gets similarly ugly emails.

        why not just condemm the ALL the nutters sending abusive emails, and deal with the issue.

      • Isn’t that the point – go over to Bishop Hill.

        There’s far less condemnation than there is excuse-making or outright support.

        It’s not much better here with the ‘skeptical’ denizens.

      • Robert Austin

        There is fringe of nutbars on both sides of the issue. There, it is dealt with!

    • tempterrain

      Well why not explore it then? We’ve had quite a few articles on “Conservative perspectives” but none at all on the perspectives of those who largely accept the overwhelming scientific consensus.

      I suppose, to answer my own question, its like analysing the perspectives of those who reject the consensus on Darwinian Evolution. Its those who engage in “motivated reasoning processes” who are of psychological interest. Not the rest of us who are happy to let science work in its normal way.

      • The normal way for climate science being hiding data, sidestepping peer review, etc, and having a political paymaster with a huge vested interest in your ‘conclusions’ being first and foremost politically correct.

      • Pause to consider that challenging common wisdom with specifics is science working in its normal way, trying to marginalize those who disagree with you is not. Rejecting scepticism always has hurt science, embracing it has always made it stronger.

      • How will we ever have progress unless…

        http://campaign2012.washingtonexaminer.com/blogs/beltway-confidential/house-obamas-fda-causing-drug-shortages/600936

        the current structure is destroyed first.
        See.

      • tempterrain

        ” Rejecting scepticism always has hurt science, embracing it has always made it stronger.”

        That’s what AIDs/HIV denialists, sorry sceptics, say too!

      • I don’t doubt it, it’s what pretty well everyone says.

      • And they’re right.

      • ‘They’ are only right if they are using ‘scepticism’ in the correct sense. Once ‘they’ start ranting about how Al Gore is a hypocrite, the establishment of a new world order, its all a plot by Government to raise taxes, a plot by the UN to subvert the American constitution, etc etc then they aren’t even right in the head, never mind right right about the merits of the strength of the scientific case.

      • Robert Austin

        If climate science as it is presently practiced is science working in its normal way, then god help us and god help science. There are billions of dollars at stake while certain climate scientists (see climategate emails) play juvenile games. If these scientists don’t like the heat, get out and play around in a less controversial field.

    • I’ve seen a number of posts here that have tried to explain why progressives, I mean CAGW proponents, are more intelligent, moire rational, better adjusted (albeit less well informed) than their conservative counter parts.

    • Both sides have “true believers” in their ranks, in approximately the same proporation too. I think honest skeptics can be either in the warmist camp or not, or said another way, if you accept AGW as provisionally true or not, should not impact your underlying skepticism. True believers, on either side, will always be unconvinced by data or more information and will never accept the opposite thing they believe in as “provisionally” true, no matter how much data or science they are inundated with.

      • which raises the question of how you got lost?

      • I am skeptical about the hypothesis that I am lost, but since I hold AGW as only provisionally true, I welcome, and in fact seek out any real evidence that AGW is not true. Please don’t bother with cherry picked timeframes, submarines coming up in polyna, stories of Mars warming, and all the rest of the non-scientific nonsense. C’mon fellow skeptics, I’m counting on you!

      • R. Gates,
        That is interesting. Perhaps we should discuss what we each mean by “AGW”? For me AGW is the belief that Earth climate is undergoing dangerous change caused by CO2.
        What does AGW mean to you?

      • That’s just another expression of the PP. I’m more inclined to look at the failures to prove that it IS true. Models, yup. Matches between models and real life? Not so much. Um, not much at all. Um, are you part of the AGW food chain?

      • hunter, do you think a 3 degree change by 2100 would be dangerous? You have to separate “dangerous” from the objective measurable things like temperature changes. Maybe a lot of so-called skeptics believe the temperature can change that much but that it is not dangerous. We need a separate classifications for those who go along with IPCC WG1 (warming), but not WG2 (bad effects). I would say they would be warmists and not skeptics at all from the scientific viewpoint.

      • tempterrain

        R. Gates,

        I guess that what you are saying is that all scientists are sceptical. Yes AGW is “provisionally true” just like the Higgs Boson, the expanding universe, the invariance of the speed of light etc etc are all “provisionally true”. The theories are the best fit to the facts. If better theories are found or extra facts are discovered, changes are made. That’s how science works.

        I can’t see, though, how there could possibly be any “true believers” in AGW being be a serious problem without the current consensus scientific position. Thirty or more years ago when the position was only starting to be formulated, there weren’t any. At least I’m pretty sure there weren’t.

        Its not as if sensible people want there to be a problem when none exists. We don’t, but on the other hand if there is a problem then there’s no point denying it.

      • “Its not as if sensible people want there to be a problem when none exists. We don’t, but on the other hand if there is a problem then there’s no point denying it.”

        The plan was to $ex it up. The plan is to cause fear so people will do something [pay for it]. So it’s quite sensible that some people would want more fame and money.
        It’s not that they want a problem, it’s they want you to have a problem.
        Hence Al Gore jetting around the world, and living in huge inefficient houses. Etc.

      • Robert Austin

        Good post R. Gates, especially so as you resisted the urge to slip in the word “anthropocene” (chuckle). Consider though that despite Trenberth’s efforts, the null hypothesis that observed climate change is natural still rules. And as for cherry picking, are not certain climate scientists past masters of that art. Was it not D’arrigo who was celebrated for her cherry pies? I do welcome your affirmation of continuing skepticism since, as of late, the tenor of your posts seemed to be drifting into “science is settled” territory.

      • John Carpenter

        Hunter, for me, AGW is the understanding that humans can impact the environment via CO2 emissions, among others. The physics says it is possible, so I believe the physics to be true. To what degree? Don’t know, but AGW is possible. how much A is there in the GW? Does it rise to the level of alarm? Not for me…. See CAGW, which is where the warmest camp falls off the rails.

      • BatedBreath

        C’mon fellow skeptics, I’m counting on you!

        OK then fellow-skeptic … point taken

        In earlier threads we touched on ocean warming occurring, without the atmosphere first warming (so as to slow ocean cooling, the ocean (you said) typically being cooler than the atmosphere it touches). Which suggests that warming of the atmosphere – and hence added CO2 – is not the culprit in this ocean warming.

      • BatedBreath

        (The given to the above being that for some time the oceans have been warming but the atmosphere hasn’t).

    • I disagree with that assessment hunter. The psychology of the True Believer (no matter what cause they believe in) has long been studied. A good early summary reference would be Eric Hoffer’s book, “The True Believer”

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_True_Believer

      Such mass movements are antithetical to skepticism and science of course.
      But really, there is very little difference in psychology between the True Believer who is 100% certain that AGW is happening, and the True Believer who is 100% certain that it is not. Neither will change their position because they hold a position based on faith and emotion.

      For those of us who are skeptics first, and take all matters of science as only provisionally true, no matter where we’ve come down on the AGW issue, True Believers of any type are our psychological polar opposites.

      • R. Gates,
        I am pleased to see you are familiar with Hoffer’s book. His book has informed my skepticism of the AGW movement to quite an extent.

      • All mass movements have an element of True Believers involved,but that doesn’t mean there is not some validity to the movement itself If you’ve read Hoffer’s book, then you know he points this fact out. One ought not equate the association of true believers with a movement with the validity of the cause that movement stands for. A “true believer” is a psychological condition whereby rationality is suspended, an emotional investment in “the cause” has been established, any counter evidence to the cause or principles of the movement are discarded, and the world is seen as black and white– an us vs. them mentality. AGW “fanatics” and AGW “deniers” are more like each other psychologically than they are like someone from their respective groups of AGW warmists or true AGW skeptics.

      • Gates, you seem to be talking about the demographics of the strength of belief, as an empirical description of the debate. My question to you, and throughout this thread, is what difference does this make, as far as the debateis concerned? I see none.

        BTW I provisionally believe that AGW has been falsified. If we all said we provisionally believe, instead of we believe, would that help somehow?

      • Do we have a diagnostic mechanism for true believers? As opposed to those who are merely convinced, or does that make one a true believer? Just looking for some science here.

        Psychology seems to assume that people are irrational. It is hard to understand rationality in that context.

  22. Amazing. It really doesn’t seem to occur to these conceited ivory tower twits that a profession plainly in bed with its benefactor (politics), with many of its leading lights comprehensively exposed as unapologetic frauds, and most of the dimmer lights raising nary a criticism, would lead people to doubt its word.

    • So Adam Corner is just another lying AGW promoter.
      Thanks for clearing that up.

  23. Adam sadly does not realise that the majority of ‘sceptics’ would see him very much as an ‘activist’ himself.

    Adam is Policy Advisor to COIN (one of those groups behind the Talking Climate blog. COIN’s founder is none other than George Marshall, who has been in part responsible for painting sceptics as deniers and trying to close down any debate for years.. George Marshall is on the advisory board of the Campaign against Climate Change with a Deniers ‘Hall of Shame’, and Skeptic Alerts.

    George is also the founder of Rising Tide, an organisation also with a ‘deniers’ Hall of Shame, with scientists politicians, journalists he disgrees with in it.

    A friend of Adam’s and also co-author, Alex Randall also now work for COIN, Alex was a UK youth activist representing Kiribati, no less at Copenhagen.

    You would think that a phsycologist, would realise that he is not going to come across that well. Talking Climate has a blog post by George Marshall – How to Talk to a climate Change denier’ which is the most patronising condescending think I have ever seen. The lack of self awareness is somethin else.

    Also behind Talking Climate is the PIRC, who also also has a trustee on the board of the CaCC. PIRC behind the actvist Climate Safety Report (and blog) and partner of the Zero Carbon Britain Report. COIN has activist journalist George Monbiot as a member of its advisory board. George Monbiot is Hon President of the CACC (alongside George Marshall), George Monbiot, als has his very own Hall of shame of Deniers in the Guardain, with politicians, journalists and scientist in.

    Another trustee of PIRC is Christian Hunt, the former greenpeace activist arreste don the roof of the Houses of Parliament, and now the ediotr of the Carbon Brief, a medi project of the European Climate Foundation (lobbying for EU CO2 emmission reduction -95%, by 2050) Christian is mates with Alex Randall working on the Cheat Neutral project together.

    Adam writes at the hundred months and counting blog… (believing there are/were a 100 months to put intoplavce the policies to prevent dangerous climate change – 53 months to go I think?

    Neutral scientist, or part of a very small green world insular groupthink?

    as COIN would be percieved by most as a totally activist organisation, I have asked Adam before to chat with George Marshall about the Halls of Shame, ie VERY counterproductive, ‘communication’ wise.

    At Climate Etc, Mark Lynas (blog post An Opening Mind ) said to me that yes, the CaCC Halls of Shame wer indeed shameful, Mark was on the board of the CaCC, and he has now stepped down. Mark Custard famoulsy custard pied Bjorn Lomborg a decade back, (Bjorn was in that Hall of Shame) as Mark is now on good terms with Bjorn, I’m sure he saw what those Halls of Shame were. Politicised rhetoric to close down any debate/disagreement..

    I wonder if Adam sees that?

    Adam is/has been a green party activist (was standing for parliament, but stood down) Adam is no doubt a very nice and sincere chap, but he wishes to frame the debate that there is no questions about the science, only allowed to talk about policy. He seems oblivious to the reason for scepticism, as pointed out in the Bishop Hill blog (and some are quite tough on him there)

    • So in other words, these guys are the CAGW equivalent of Joseph Goebbels, only not so open-minded and objective.

    • Barry
      You writing about the hundred months blog reminded me of the book by the editors of the ecologist called ‘5000 days to save the planet.’ published in 1990 it’s well past it’s sell by date
      Tonyb

  24. It probably takes less than 24 hours of hanging around a climate blog for the average joe to experience that AGW theory is full of errors, unsupported assumptions and unverifiable claims.

    Andrew

    • tempterrain

      “The average joe” , presumably you mean the average joe denier, and even some who should know better, doesn’t even need this long. They decided that the science is all wrong as soon as they heard about it. Its an article of faith to those of right wing political dispositions that it must be. No scientific understanding is required.

      • No I mean any objective observer.

        Andrew

      • Stop the BS Tempterrain. Every sceptic understands the science. We all believe that atmospheric polyatomic molecules behave as Gg’s. What is unproven, and BS until empirically observed, is the unwarranted sensitivity you pseudo scientists ascribe to CO2. Show us proof of that Tempt, or if you can’t take a look in the mirror and see if you can spot the shoddy scientist.

      • tempterrain

        Bob, But is it BS? As Jim Cripwell tells us, in a moment of candour, in his denizens entry: “When I first heard about CAGW, maybe 12 years ago, I knew it was wrong. In the intervening years, I have learned a great deal, and everything I have learned, confirms my initial reaction.”

        That’s not the way scientists are supposed to think. They are supposed to learn first then decide afterwards. Not beforehand.

        Is it just Jim who’s guilty of this? I don’t think so. It may be true that committed climate deniers have mugged up on the science more than most. But it doesn’t count for anything if their thought processes aren’t rational.

      • Tempt, I ask for proof. You have none. Therefore CAGW is BS.

      • There isn’t proof, you are expecting too much.

        But the evidence is that a doubling of CO2 causes somewhere between 2C and 4C warming.

      • Since when has a computer model counted as “evidence”?

      • Bob,

        We’re talking about science which works on the basis of evidence rather than absolute proof. A scientific theory, to be accepted, has to be able to describe observed phenomena in the best way possible. That’s really the only criterion.

      • There is no evidence that a doubling of CO2 will do anything. There is only Model output. The same Models have missed their temperature guesses for many years now. The year 2011 was not warmer than the year 1998. The Models did tell us that 2011 would be a lot warmer than 1998. Al Gore said the same thing. They were all wrong. They have been wrong, time and time again. We can make some bets. Do you think the models will ever be right?

      • tempterrain

        Herman,

        The models didn’t actually predict that 2011 would be warmer than 1998. Just think about it. 1998 was a freak warm year and no-one could predict that.
        Its like predicting, say that the weather on the 1st July will will warmer than it was on the 1st June. Most times you’d be right but other times you won’t be.
        What was predicted, with a much higher degree of certainty, was that the 00s were going to be warmer than the 90’s. And they were.
        Just like the 10’s will be warmer still.

      • Forget predictions about specific years – did the models predict the clear rise from ~ 1970-1995, suddenly flattening out from then till now ? Clearly not.
        (30 years being the minimum period to consider, there has now been no significant atmospheric warming for ~14 years).

      • tempterrain

        No significant warming for 14 years?
        Its just not true!
        http://c1cleantechnicacom.wpengine.netdna-cdn.com/files/2011/11/best-global-warming-results.jpg

      • I suggest that almost everyone started out believing in dangerous man-caused global warming. I certainly did. You hear what scientists have to say about something, and you more or less assume it is correct, much like you do in school. Treating disease, how aircraft work, and so on.

        It was only when the cheating and politicization of the profession started to come to light that doubts began, and led to the science being looked at more closely.

        Furthermore, the main reason doubts remain, is because the profession simply will not do anything much about the cheating and politicization. Still today FOI is being resisted. Perhaps it’s structural and individual scientists cannot do anything about it, I don’t know. But if say the main Climategate crooks and people like Glieck were sacked, there would be a huge drop in skepticism. Something Corner and Mooney should note.

      • Dave Springer

        Tomcat | June 16, 2012 at 6:59 am | Reply

        I” suggest that almost everyone started out believing in dangerous man-caused global warming.”

        Perhaps. But I started out believing in dangerous man-caused global cooling circa 1974. Now what I believe is that any warming/cooling trend that persists for a generation is a tipping point that causes a widespread belief that the trend will never end.

      • “I suggest that almost everyone started out believing in dangerous man-caused global warming”

        I’d suggest that you are, almost, totally wrong in saying that. I say ‘almost’ becuase there are exceptions. Judith herself once took a different stand. In fact she’s moved from saying that global warming is dangerous to giving the impression that its not. She’s saying there is a large degree of uncertainty, therefore we should do nothing, which many of us don’t think makes sense.

        But the exception, if Judith really is an exception, doesn’t really prove the rule. Can you show me examples of how well known sceptic/deniers have changed their opinion over the years?

    • “It probably takes less than 24 hours of hanging around a climate blog for the average joe to experience that AGW theory is full of errors, unsupported assumptions and unverifiable claims.”

      And having the support of WebHubTelescope and lolwot
      helps a lot.

      I think they are making a lot easier and quicker for most
      people.
      Sort of like Bill Clinton helping Obama.

      BUT does Bill really want to help Obama??
      Play the Twilight Zone theme music.
      Maybe they are ones actually getting paid by the oil companies- if so, it’s fairly cushy job.
      Though saying stupid things, not so fun, could be dreary.

      But whatever, thanks guys, keep up the good work.

      • A great example of ambiguous soggy word salad by gbaikie:

        “And having the support of WebHubTelescope and lolwot
        helps a lot.

        I think they are making a lot easier and quicker for most
        people.
        Sort of like Bill Clinton helping Obama.”

        gbaikie doesn’t have a firm grasp of the english language, and is apparently trying to be sarcastic. But to really excel at sarcasm, you have to be less sloppy in wording.

        Grade: D+

    • Bad Andrew,

      That’s exactly why you ought not “hang around a climate blog” to form any sort of opinion about matters of science. Best to spend time reading research papers, listening to lectures, studying the basic physics, etc. to form a scientific opinion about an issue as complex as climate. Blogs are good for pointing you to some of these resources, but bad as resources in and of themselves.

      • “you ought not “hang around a climate blog”

        R Gates, and why do “you” hang around climate blogs if “you” shouldn’t?

        And your advice that people should spend their time becoming climate scientists is thoroughly absurd. Climate Science should be bringing the science to us, if it’s that important.

        But we both know it’s not.

        Andrew

      • I hang around the “climate blogs” partly for the chance to discuss things that interest me with other like-minded people (let’s all face it, most of our friends and family could care less about this stuff), but also in the hope that on occasion I might actually come across a link or tip to some research that will further my knowledge. In this regard then, blogs are great for discussion and pointers and links toward actual scientific research, but most of the stuff you read on blogs (and everything else on the internet) should of course be taken as extremely suspect in and of itself and probably taken as “provisionally suspect” until you can read more about it from actual research.

    • “The average joe” may not know the details of the radiation budget, but he knows that a discipline riddled with deceit and secrecy, and financed by a party with a vested interest in the fiddled alarmist results, is not to be trusted. It is only those whose own leftwing outlook supports any new excuse for more taxes, that are wilfully blind to this obvious finagling..

      • Erica,

        There seems little point in trying to convince you that AGW is really a problem rather than a hoax.
        But try to imagine you were living in a parallel universe where AGW really was the problem that scientists say it is. The scientists, and everything else, would be the same in that world as in this. They’d still say silly things in emails from time to time. Left wing politics would be the same. Governments would be the same. There would even be a parallel Judith Curry who would say it was all too uncertain.
        But would there be a parallel Erica who still maintained that it was all a scam? Or would she be smart enough to figure out the truth? And if so how would she do that?

      • temp
        Yes, while your argument is so utterly incoherent, there is indeed little point trotting it out all the time, trying to pretend that government-funded climate science doesn’t have an inherent government bias.

        And if in the end the CAGW guess turns out to be true, that still won’t mean the bias wasn’t there – the bias of presenting speculation as fact.

      • tempterrain

        Erica,
        I think you’ve understood exactly what I’m saying. You only have to look at the history of government funded science to see that more often than not scientific findings have been inconvenient to government. The recent experience of climate scientists in the USA shows this to be the case with AGW too. They aren’t exactly encouraged by government to speak up. Instead its more like: Shut the f…. up!

        AGW isn’t a guess. It basic physics that adding GH gases will cause the atmosphere to warm. That much is fact. Just how much is subject to some uncertainty as Judith never tires of telling us. Her estimate is that it will be between 1 and 6 degs C to the 66% confidence level. If it’s Judith’s view, it can’t be biased, can it?

      • Latimer Alder

        @tempterrain.

        I’d love to see lots of examples of the government telling ‘climate scientists’ to ‘STFU’. Please list them for us all to see.

      • Latimer Alder

        @tempterrain

        I looked at your references. Though agog for a story of evil denier stormtroopers filling the streets with the blood of the innocent ‘climate scientists’ who dared to say

        ‘Morning Fred, a bit warm today isn’t it’

        while walking the dog, I found nothing so lurid.

        Here instead are the two stories.

        1. in 2006 Hansen objected that requests for interview with him need to go through the NASA press office. I find it hard to get too worked up about that. He is a public employee, not a private individual. If that is the policy of the organisation, then he can either stop taking the paycheque or abide by its rules and regulations. As a private individual, he could say what he likes, but he can’t have his cake and eat it.

        L’Hansen; Zero points (As we say in Eurovision)

        2. Mann and Cucinellli doesn’t seem to be a case of ‘the government’ telling Mann to STFU. More to re-establish the point that, however much climatologists might like to think of themselves as independent, when they take money from somebody they become employees (I recognise that I am simplifying a bit) and that their work and efforts belong to the organisation that pays them. not to them as private individuals.

        Maybe 2/10 for effort.

        And if those two examples (one from six years ago) are the best you can come up with then I think you have a long, long. long way to go to establish that the ‘Government’ are trying to get the ‘climate scientists’ to STFU.

        Got any others? A bit more lurid with lots of blood and Gore this time, please.

      • Latimer

        I think the requirement for journos to go through Nasa to get an interview with Hansen ( reasonable bearing in mind he is an employee) stems from an interview he gave a year before this diktat in which a journo described his office as ‘comically cluttered’ thereby perhaps implying his work was not as logical and incisive as might be thought desirable for the worlds most high profile scientists

        http://www2.bren.ucsb.edu/~dozier/Class/ESM203Fall2008/Reading/Kolbert2005b.pdf

        Well worth reading in its entirety although it doesn’t seem relevant at first.
        tonyb

      • Latimer Alder

        @tony b

        Thanks for the link. I thought the best bit was that Hansen sent an e-mail afterwards that said ‘its a lot better organised nowadays than it used to be’!

        And Phil Jones from UEA/CRU/Climategate is notoriously badly organised. I think he lost a whole load of valuable and confidential data in an office move. And we know from the trials and tribulations of poor Harry_Read_Me that their IT department is in ‘a terrible state o’ chassis’ (*).

        I’ve worked on and managed a lot of data centres over the years. With very important data. The absolute number 1 key things you must get right before anything else are to know what you’ve got, where it is and what it means. If you fail on any of those three, your operation will fail to do its job. Period.

        Which is why we spend huge amounts of time and effort on things like version control and data dictionaries and archiving and auditing and backup copies and all that stuff. We know that to do the job right you have to pay close attention to this basic housekeeping. You have to have processes and procedures that are robust and can be carried out time and again correctly. It is boring and unglamorous, but needed to help guarantee a professional job.

        So I wonder why we are asked to look with almost fond amusement on the ‘Towering Giants’ of climatology working in disorganised shambles with no process, no procedures, no ‘structure’. And then expected to take their word as gospel about the imminent End of the World or Thermageddon or whatever it is?

        I’d have lot more faith in climatologists if they could persuade me that they knew how to organise themsleves out of a paper bag, rather than just bumble along in chaos making doom-laden announcements along the way.

        (*) Not quite James Joyce, but close.

        .(*) not quite Joyce for Bloomsday, but close.

      • tempterrain

        Latimer,

        I think you’ve failed to grasp the point that James Hansen was making in the link I sent you. He’s saying that the White House instructed the NASA management to insist that any requests for an interview with him be directed to the NASA press office so that someone else could give the interview. Someone who certainly wouldn’t have the same scientific credibility or newsworthiness.

        So, we have a situation where, according to your theory, Dr Hansen is doing all he can to be helpful to Government by whipping up as much hysteria as possible about the non-existent threat of AGW so that they can step in to impose Draconian carbon taxes and he’s being told by the very top of the Government that his efforts aren’t required.

        So, who in government, has directed James Hansen to lie about his work? And why, when he is virtually unsackable anyway, would he want to do that? Why would he want to make so many enemies when he could just coast along to a happy retirement on his NASA pension.?

        Has it crossed your mind that just maybe, just possibly, he actually believes what he says, and that saying what he believes is not exactly what the Government wants him to do? And has it crossed your mind that the US government not only don’t actually want to impose any carbon taxes, they don’t really want to do anything at all to control GHG emissions? Has it crossed your mind that they’d rather just pretend that AGW didn’t exist as a serious problem to be tackled?

      • For decades, thousands of government climate scientists incessantly chant of the coming CAGW, making sure the message isn’t diluted by means if tricks like hiding the decline, circumventing peer-revew, etc etc, as per the demanding standards of that profession. Then one of them is once slightly hampered in his comments.
        Yeah, tempterrain, that really changes the overall picture.

      • And you persist with the naive notion that the state is just the elected politicians temporarily in office. Everyone who works for the government is part of the government (including those who dole out climate funds), and it’s rare to find any of them that think government needs to be scaled back; compared to the public they are meant to be serving, they are on average more to the totalitarian end of the ideological spectrum.

      • Latimer Alder

        @tempterrain

        Wow. That’s quite a conspiracy theory you’ve built for yourself there.

        Let’s try to bring it back down to earth a bit. This is not an exhaustive critique, just a few thoughts that occurred on a quick reading.

        The first, and most general one, is that Hansen is not a neutral observer. He is presenting ‘his side’ of the story in a pretty sympathetic and unchallenging interview. Which is fair enough, but doesn’t mean his every utterance is to be taken as gospel truth. There is quite a considerable distance between him claiming that he is being persecuted, and any evidence that he actually is.

        Specifics

        1. You say ‘the White House’ instructed the NASA management to insist that any requests for an interview with him be directed to the NASA press office so that someone else could give the interview’

        I’ve carefully read his remarks, and there is no reference in them to anything about ‘The White House’ at all. Hansen does not say anything about the White House or the administration. His complaint is about the NASA Public Affairs Office.

        2. The point about the referral to the press office and hence the possibility that they *could* ask another NASAite to do the interview is entirely hypothetical. There is no evidence presented that this ever actually happened. A theoretical possibility is not the same as evidence of that occurrence taking place. And his terms and conditions of employment are, I guess, identical to all other NASA employees.

        You then witter off at length about ‘my theory’. I have not presented any theory. I very rarely do. Your point is garbage.

        Your next point is

        ‘So, who in government, has directed James Hansen to lie about his work? And why, when he is virtually unsackable anyway, would he want to do that? Why would he want to make so many enemies when he could just coast along to a happy retirement on his NASA pension/’

        To which I ask you to show any evidence at all that anybody at all has ever asked him to lie about his work. I have yet to see any. Find me a NASA instruction or a presidential memo or a documented discussion with the bigwigs that shows Hansen being so instructed..and I’ll believe you.

        But pending more convincing evidence, your claim seems to have as much substance as the Australian Climatologist Death Threats. Which you will no doubt remember were shown to entirely fictitious.

        So I fear that – on the evidence you have presented to back up your claim – I am not persuaded that the government have been telling climatologists to STFU.

        On past form, I expected you to have done a better job :-(

      • tempterrain
        You have provided an interesting isolated example, which we see is fraught with countervailing issues, and is hence completely unlike the climate issue. Yes the smoking thing may well have reduced government revenues, but on the other hand it increased government regulation. With CAGW they can impose more controls AND increase revenue. (Theoretically mitigated by a revenue-neutral tax, for as long as the neutrality holds out. Estimate : 1 administration max)

        “The recent experience of climate scientists in the USA shows this to be the case with AGW too. They aren’t exactly encouraged by government to speak up. Instead its more like: Shut the f…. up!”

        They ARE government . Again you miss that the state as a whole is vast, and career bureaucrats often have their way regardless of what current politicians say. For 20+ years government climate scientists have banged on and on about CAGW, regardless of which administration is in power. And completely and utterly failed to take action against the blatant science fraud on which the CAGW pitch depends.

        “AGW isn’t a guess. ”

        You duck the point. CAGW certainly is a guess, and the alleged C is what all the fuss is about.

      • tempterrain

        Erica,
        You need to define what you mean by Catastrophic. Do you mean the extinguishing of human life? Or do you mean a potentially very dangerous and serious change could take place?

      • tempterrain
        Check with your favorite dictionary, but a catastrophe is any extreme misfortune. So that obviously includes both your examples.
        It’s the idea of catastrophe that is the whole rationale behind switching to vastly more expensive energy – and hence reduced standards of living for everyone – so as to reduce CO2 emissions.

      • tempterrain

        You’ve already admitted that scientists could be correct in their assessment which is that potentially a very dangerous and serious change could take place. They aren’t actually saying that it will extinguish all life on the planet or even all human life, but they are saying that measures should be taken to avoid it and that the cost of doing nothing, and taking no action to control the use of fossil fuels, will be greater that the cost of acting.
        So they are arguing for the opposite of what you are accusing them of. They are arguing for higher living standards. It won’t be just the higher living standards that are associated with stabilising the climate, there will also be higher living standards associated with residents of large cities having cleaner air to breathe. Its what is known in business-speak as a ‘win-win’ situation.
        http://www.latimes.com/news/local/environment/la-me-gs-epa-proposes-more-stringent-soot-rules-20120615,0,7012915.story?track=rss

      • they are saying that measures should be taken to avoid it and that the cost of doing nothing, and taking no action to control the use of fossil fuels, will be greater that the cost of acting.

        The only problem being, as we both know, they have no idea what the costs of doing nothing are, since they have no idea how much warming mankind is causing. They’re just guessing, and dressing this up as science, which is a convenient way to quietly push their ideological agenda of higher taxes etc – consistent with the extremely low average level of honesty amongst government climate scientists we must deduce from Climategate and the muted professional response to it, the ongoing deafening silence.

      • Erica,
        Certainly the IPCC cadre are dishonest, but perhaps a little unfair to accuse the rank and file of dishonesty. Probably more a question of fear of damaging their grant and career opportunities by speaking out, against either the Consensus, or the corruption employed to fortify it.

      • tempterrain

        Erica,

        You really think that everyone who is paid by the government is the government? That would include all the armed forces then? So the US is under a state of marshall law?

      • “You really think that everyone who is paid by the government is the government? That would include all the armed forces then? ”

        Of course the armed forces are part of the government, their Commander in Chief is the President.

        “So the US is under a state of marshall law?”

        If President has cause and declares the US or portion of US under Martial law, yeah.
        That means military grunts assist or replace police officers.

  25. Perhaps to keep the balance we need a new initiative :
    How to talk to Catastrophic Anthropogenic Global Warming Truthers – like the abovementioned authors.

  26. Dolphinhead

    Climate science is presented to the public as a scam by a bunch of activists masquerading as scientists. What are we supposed to think? That it is legit? Get a grip!

  27. Joachim Seifert

    The topic is: Skeptics vs. Believers (of AGW.)…
    Skeptics know/or feel that arguments of believers are flawed
    …just ……not sufficiently convincing…..AGW with a 95%
    probability…..??
    Why should a Skeptic board an airplane, which might arrive at
    destination with a 95% probability (or in IPCC speak: “Very likely”)
    ….. I would stay off of the “very likely” arriving airplane….and let only believers go on the flight….JS

    • tempterrain

      Isn’t it the other way around? The IPCC estimate of the unscathed arrival probabilty of our aeroplane is just 5-10 % You’d have a better chance of survival playing Russian roulette with only one empty space in the revolver. (instead of the usual one bullet and five empty spaces)

      • If the IPCC designed the plane the chance of arrival would be 0.001, it would never fly :)

      • Tempt, would you con­sider a thought exper­i­ment? Suppose, as was sug­gested in Time magazine some 35 years ago, that sci­ent­ists were con­cerned about a cooling planet. I will assume you are familiar with the Government/NGO granting system. If 99.9% of grants were awarded to study a cooling planet, what side of the polit­ical spec­trum do you think the skep­tics would be on? My answer — it’s always the money.

      • tempterrain

        Bob, But trained scientists, straight out of uni, are smart guys. If they were motivated by money they would use their skills in the finance sector. In fact, many of them do.
        The ones who choose a scientific career do so because they actually like working in science and get a satisfaction from a better understanding of their chosen field.
        That just wouldn’t exist if they had to constantly fudge their results to please their paymasters. They’d all quit in no time, and move to better paid employment, if they were required to do that.
        Those you refer to as skeptics, but of course aren’t genuine, are those whose political or religious sensibilities are challenged by unpalatable scientific findings. That’s why deniers is a more accurate term.

      • Tempt, so I take it you don’t want to take a shot at the thought experiment. Think about it, deeply.

      • tempterrain
        You fondly imagine a science is unaffected by who is paying for it, particularly when that is a single entity.

        The scientists who are given grants are selected at least party on the basis of their outlook. So those selected are unlikely to have objectives that differ much from their paymaster’s. So there’ll be no incentive need to up sticks and get a better-paid job in finance

        And your systemic mischaracterization of skeptics as deniers merely reveals your own bigotry.

      • Bob : it’s always the money

        Indeed. And 99.999′ % of it is from the state. Which stands to impose huge new powers and tax revenues on the basis of the scary ‘consensus’ it selectively provides grants for.

      • So lets get this straight:

        Forward-thinking politicians (huh what?) funnel money to specific research so that 10 or 20 years later a different generation of politicians will have an excuse to impose “huge new powers and tax revenues”.

        Do you really buy that? As if politicians are so obsessed with raising taxes and power that they would put in place such a long scheme that would not “benefit” them but future politicians.

        We haven’t even touched upon how politicians manage to funnel the money in the first place. How do they influence the research which is done or the results that are obtained? There are many layers between tax money and research grants and the people making the calls on what gets researched are not the politicians. Politicians are only really involved at a general “fund science” level. Are you claiming the politicians secretly ring up various people and demand (threaten?) that they should promote certain research?

        For your conspiracy theory to work you need all the middle-men to knowingly cooperate on the is conspiracy too. Not to mention cross-border co-operation. You need europe, US and countless other countries to have similar hierarchies of conspiracy set up. We don’t see a schism between research results in the US and europe do we? Why is that? Oh according to your theory they must both be corrupt states.

        It’s very easy to fantasize about such conspiracies if you only look at the matter in some trite simplicity so the complexities don’t get in the way. Eg I could argue the police have been secretly encouraging crime because that way they get more funding. Sounds logical doesn’t it? But if you try to look at how that could happen you realize how unfeasible it is.

      • lowot
        No, your tired old strawman of “conspiracy” does not get it right. Indeed, it’s back-to-front – you’d need a conspiracy for government scientists to NOT come up with conclusions that benefit government.

        And you don’t need particular politicians or parties to organize anything. All organizations naturally act in their own interest, and the countless government bureaucrats at various levels will do this automatically. There are few people in government who think government should be reduced.

        Your incredulous response to such simple facts, and your need to try and overcomplicate, is merely a reflection of how out of touch you are,

      • OneFineDay,

        If scientists in the US, and elsewhere, are so keen to work on the side of government, how is that they often present reports and findings which cause governments much inconvenience? It would have perhaps started in the 60’s. Just when governments were happily collecting all that lovely tax revenue from millions of hardened nicotine addicts, along came these scientists, who were largely paid by those governments, filling peoples heads with silly notions they were harming their health. Talk about biting the hands that fed them. Fortunately there were scientists employed by the private sector, at the time, who were able to provide a more balanced picture.

        Furthermore, many climate scientists are actually based in the USA where governments of various political hue have been most reluctant , to say the least, to impose any sort of carbon tax, or introduce any kind of carbon cap and trade scheme.

        President Bush was in office for eight years up to 2008 when many important papers and reports were being written. So, are you really sure he was saying one thing in public, and completely the opposite in his private conversions with climate scientists?

      • tempterrain

        In attempting to argue we musn’t follow the money, you ask
        (1) why government scientists pointed to the harm of smoking, so threatening cigarette tax takings.

        Your basic mistake is misrepresenting ‘follow the money’ as applying as the one and only iron rule that determines the decisions of all scientists to the same degree all the time. A strawman corruption of the basic idea; if it were true, there’s be no Judith Currys on the government payroll.

        In reality it’s a broad, general tendency, operating along with other influences. And the cigarette case is an interesting and rare counter-example in this regard. Unlike with cagw, the evidence and science was empirically clear-cut, and govnement likes to be seen as acting for the public good. What’s more, this has helped in raising the tax rate on cigarettes and so bash some corporations. In this rare case, the public good and tax takings were at odds

        But with climate, government can (massively) increase its tax takings and control of society, at the same time as claim to be acting for the general good. Amongst other things that eases their conscience about not cracking down on scientists who pervert the science process so as to present an undiluted alarmist message. It can boost its own position by appearing to act in the public good – an unholy alliance of ideas.

        (2) how can there be rabid climate activists (eg Hansen) on the government payroll when politicians (eg Bush) are not sold on their ideas

        The President does not directly control the many thousands of government employees. Political office is temporary, whereas the government bureaucracy is a huge beast with its own dynamics. Furthermore Bush was somewhat alone on this, and it was not even very high on his list of priorities. You need to look at the state as a whole, not small isolated bit of it, and most state employees think state power is a good thing period, and that the rest of us must just obey.

  28. Why is the public sceptical of AGW in Australia? Because (1) no one has explained how a gas they know is less than 1% of the atmosphere can have such a great affect on the climate; (2) We know that Australian climate is governed by El/La Nina: We have just had floods and now a record cold spell widely attributed to the phenomena; (3) Our present minority party government achieved power by an election promise not to introduce a carbon tax, now they have broken their promise to placate their Green partners.

    My own view, as a scientist, is that both AGW and the sceptics are right: we did have AGW until the dramatic change in climate in 1940. After 1940 the pre-1940 extra heat has been slowly percolating through the oceans raising global temperature again to the present level. See my web site paper “An alternative theory of climate change”.

  29. At first they talked at us, the they talked about us but the alarmist AGW cowards rarely talk to us…
    Makes you wonder why!

    • “alarmist AGW cowards”

      Unhelpful in fostering dialog, and you wonder why they rarely want to talk you…really?

      • Latimer Alder

        @R Gates

        Only yesterday you were pointing a gun at the heads of my children and grandchildren and asking me how much I would pay to stop you shooting them.

        What is sauce for the goose, mon brave, is sauce for the gander.

      • Latimer,

        Your lies about me pointing guns at your chlidren’s heads is despicable. You are not an honorable person sir. This speaks poorly of your upbringing and whatever nation you hold your citizenship in.

      • R. Gates,
        Perhaps you did not mean it, but it came across that way to more than a few skeptics.

      • Latimer intentionally misrepresented my statement and metaphor and I think he knows it…which makes him all the more dishonorable.

      • Latimer Alder

        I am proud of my upbringing.

        Born: England. Nationality : British

        Education : Local Primary School, Local Grammar School: 8 O levels, 3 A levels, Oxbridge Scholarship Examination: Exhibition (Minor scholarship awarded). Undergraduate degree : Chemistry. Masters degree : Atmospheric Chemistry. inc computer modelling of high atmosphere reaction kinetics.

        Subsequent career: IT Professional. Programming, Technical & Support, IT Management & Organisation, IT Consultancy, General Consultancy.

        There is a very simple way for people not to think you wish to point guns at children’s heads. Do not write about it. If you cannot make a rational argument without such images, then rethink your position until you can.

      • Latimer,

        Not once did I say I “wished to point guns at children’s heads”. I used a metaphor to illustrate the probabilities of doing nothing about potential catastrophic climate change. If you failed to grasp that this was a metaphor then your British educational system has failed you…If you grasped that this was a metaphor, but chose to purposely twist my words and my intention to try to launch some sort of ad hominem my way, then your social upbringing has left you slighted in your moral character.

        Either way, there was nothing honorable in your actions.

      • Latimer Alder

        Wow

        To

        ‘illustrate the probabilities of doing nothing about potential catastrophic climate change’,

        the best metaphor you could come up with was to hold a gun at my grandchildren’s heads and ask me how much I would pay for you not to pull the trigger?

        And I’m the one supposedly with the defective morals for quoting your words? Right. OK then. I understand your position.

        I think we’ll have to agree to disagree on that one.

      • Dave Springer

        Gates, do you deny using a metaphor of children with guns pointed at their heads?

      • Steven Mosher

        I suppose if Latimer asked you to imagine having “relations” with sheep as the premise to a thought experiment, you might not take too kindly to it.
        Basically, your a smart guy who screwed up a good argument with a metaphor so bad that no matter how latimer answered you end up looking worse. Them’s just the facts. Take your lumps, admit your mistake. or not.

      • Obviously, your reality is not mine!

    • tempterrain

      Wonder no longer! I keep telling myself that it’s a complete waste of time talking to you guys and that I really do have better things to do. I just wonder why I don’t take my own advice!

      • Dave Springer

        tempterrain | June 16, 2012 at 6:59 am | Reply

        “I just wonder why I don’t take my own advice!”

        Because you subconsciously realize you’re a blithering idiot and not even a blithering idiot takes the advice of a blithering idiot.

        I hope that clears it up for you. :-)

  30. Like many of the previous commenters, I note that there is a major strain of scepticism that the pro-CAGW proponents won’t address. These are the group that have backgrounds in engineering or the physical sciences that actually do understand the science and maths. They also are well aware of the limitations of models. A read through of the denizens here or on The Air Vent, then matching them to the comments, shows that the naysayers often have very valid criticisms that are soundly based. They are also concerned about the lack of ethical behaviour regarding the underlying data. It might be unfashionable to state so, but academics don’t have the monopoly on knowledge or intelligence.
    Trying to broadbrush paint this sceptical group into a convenient cubbyhole says more about the analysts than anything else. Like JC points out some people like Chris Mooney are starting to recognise this but they still have a long way to go. Motivation doesn’t have to be driven by financial motives. Many people just want it to be correct with the uncertainties properly documented. Like Steve Mc continually points out, if society is going to make trillion dollar decisions on the basis of the science, it needs to be right and stand up to scrutiny. If that is “missing the point”, then I am happy to be one of the troglodytes.

  31. Several years ago when I started following blogs about climate change, I confess that I did lump skepticsm about anthropogenic climate change into one big bucket of “corporate shills, ignorant red-neck Republicans, or some combination thereof”. What I came to learn after many years of actually reading what skeptics had to say is that:

    1) You can’t lump AGW skeptics into one category. Skeptics are like any other group– full of individuals with diverse reasons for their position, and thus there are quite a few flavors of skeptics.
    2) Many skeptics really do understand the science very well (far better than I do), and many skeptics don’t, which is exactly the case with AGW warmists as well. (this follows directly from #1 above).
    3) I had a lot I could learn from skeptics about the science and the real areas of uncertainty that don’t make it into much of the MSM and actually reading research that skeptics provide makes me understand the science better, softening my AGW warmist position on some areas and strengthening it in others.
    4) There is a category of “fake” skeptics, who are not really skeptical (meaning willing to change their position as more data comes in). This category can also be called a “denier” in a very accurate and justifable way.
    Fake skeptics or deniers give real skeptics a bad name. I am suspicious about people who become overly indignant about the use of the term “denier” as it is very descriptive and accurate for a group of people who otherwise would like to be called skeptics.
    5) Real skepticism is vital to real scientific advancement.
    6) I am a AGW skeptic and a warmist at the same time, meaning: after looking at all the data and the understanding enough of the theory behind AGW, I accept it as “provisionally” true (as any honest scientist should do with any scientific theory), but I am always overall a skeptic at heart and constantly looking for any actual data that may disprove all the many theories about life, the universe, and everything.

    • I think the most important take away from listening to the viewpoints of honest skeptics was to realize the value of skepticism, and that you should always be a skeptic first, even if you accept any scientific theory including AGW as “provisionally true”. Thus, it is possible, and in fact even desirable, to be a skeptic and what I would call a “provisional” warmist at the same time.

      • Dave Springer

        Four billion years of climate while no humans were around and only 250 years of industrialization and climate change. The null hypotheses is that climate change occurs without human involvement. The null hypothesis is what is provisionally true, Gates. Write that down.

      • Do you even realize the illogical nature of your post or the fact that the data simply no longer support the null hypothesis? What they support is holding AGW as provisionally true, and trying to find data that would refute it.

        For four billion years the only fusion that took within four light years of this part of the galaxy was inside the sun. On November 1, 1952 that changed, and the hypothesis that all fusion must take place inside the sun was forever wrong. The presence of sentient and intelligent creatures with increasingly advanced technology capable of massive changes to the environment forever alters a planet. On Earth it has been humans. Welcome to the Anthropocene.

      • Latimer Alder

        Did anybody seriously propose the hypothesis that

        ‘all fusion must take place inside the sun’

        Or are you just demolishing a (rather pointless) strawman that you have constructed yourself.

        Please show evidence that they did.

      • Dave Springer

        Really? The data is wrong? Climate didn’t change before the industrial revolution?

        Wow. Just wow.

      • Robert Austin

        “the data simply no longer support the null hypothesis”
        That is an truly astonishing claim considering how little we understand climate.

        My translation of the claim is:
        We can’t think of anything other mechanism at the moment so let us finger mankind through their emissions of greenhouse gases. Consider that the Pacific Decadal Oscillation was not identified until 1997. If we don’t understand climate, we cannot say the null hypothesis is not supported by observations, especially when the observations show nothing unusual about our present climate when compared to what we know of Holocene climate history.

      • Steven Mosher

        I like provisionally true, or the best explanation of the facts. Of course the best explanation is full or holes, but it is nevertheless the best we have.
        “sceptics” on the other hand have no good explanation.

      • I’d opt for abrupt climate change – the latest climate shift being in 1998/2001. Gee I wonder how that works?

    • Gee, R. Gates is “a AGW skeptic.” Not a doctrinaire regurgitator of CAGW group think like he pretends.

      Maybe we can get a guest post from him on why so many of his fellow skeptics are deranged?

    • Appreciate the well defined and nuanced position. I suspect most of us are about there, my only difference is I wouldn’t accept things as ‘provisionally true’. That is probably just semantics, but it strikes me as against the spirit of science (eg, not yet falsified is more apt, where the wording insists on a specific claim or prediction that can be tested). Also, semantics aside, I don’t think the evidence warrants a ‘provisional true’ in the spirit you probably meant it – but if defining that point by point we may be closer there too.

      If thinking about economic models, that math and theory there can be pretty solid, but still I wouldn’t call them provisionally true (aka, go ahead and increase your leverage), at least not without a lot of history on its side.

      So I guess I’m a provisional-not-too-alarmed – we may not be at the same table, but the same bar at least. And hopefully talking distance rather than the usual shouting distance : ).

      • To be clear Robin, I only accept things as “provisionally true” that match foundational scientific principles and are confirmed through multiple independent pieces of research.

        I would be a bit stronger in my level of “provisional” acceptance of anthropogenic climate change in that I’m provisional-and-potentially-alarmed. Having spent a fair amount of time “hanging around” with some of the smart people working with the Scripps Institution of Oceanography, I can say that some of the changes being seen in the global ocean I find a bit concerning, It would take some quite extraordinary evidence to change my view that these changes merit at least some concern..

      • Latimer Alder

        Go on then. Tell us what are these ‘changes in the global ocean’ and why you are concerned about them.

      • Again ‘provisionally agreeing’ : ) here, but to nitpick, ‘confirmed’ never really happens in science, as I assume you agree. If by research you mean real world data and extensive experiment that can’t falsify the hypothesis, then I agree in spirit people treat these things as confirmed, or at least ‘useful in practice’ (which holds a LOT of weight!). When research is more along the lines of computer models though, then I strongly disagree we can reach the spirit of ‘confirmed’ from there. I’m not saying models aren’t useful, just on their own they can only tell us what we believe to be true already.

        I too would welcome more info on the changes in the ocean you find concerning. And to un-nitpick a bit, I think ‘concern’ is the perfect word. I too am concerned about plenty of things we do to the environment, and agree they merit close monitoring, and changes if need be. Honestly nothing that comes close to ‘fear’ or even grave concern, but that doesn’t imply I don’t give a damn either.

        My take is that say 5% of people see uncertainties on much more dramatic scales than most of us. They are very vocal, and usually frustrated that others don’t share their alarm. This is not a shot at just the extreme CAWG side, people who see greens as a movement to enslave the world are exactly the same type. While somewhat of a fringe, they are useful on the whole to a society (proof being that they exist and have always existed). It can be a bit frustrating when they drown out reasonable voices with all the drama, but eventually people want meat. Maybe that is kind of what you were saying originally, plus one there.

      • Dave Springer

        robin | June 16, 2012 at 4:14 am | Reply

        “Again ‘provisionally agreeing’ : ) here, but to nitpick, ‘confirmed’ never really happens in science, as I assume you agree.”

        I agree. Confirmation happens in engineering. Endless procrastination happens in science. Good thing we got both dreamers and doers, huh?

      • Robin, I agree with the essence of what you’re saying.

        In terms of some of my concerns about the oceans, I would suggest reading these for starters:

        http://www.stateoftheocean.org/pdfs/1906_IPSO-LONG.pdf

        http://scrippsnews.ucsd.edu/Releases/?releaseID=1271

      • Thanks for the links. I must say the first one reads like propaganda to me, and it really overstates the certainty of many things it touches on (eg: sea level rise is already worst case scenario, humans have warmed the oceans. Also phrases like “mass extinctions”, or “eliminates the ability of ecosystems to support humans” are extremist imo. The call to action (‘Timelines for action are shrinking”, “Proper and universal implementation of the precautionary principle by reversing the burden of proof”) don’t seem very scientific.

        That all said, I too am concerned with overfishing (even ‘very’ concerned on that one), and agree plastics etc in the ocean merits more study. Perhaps some fairly simple changes can go a long way there. I think the type of advocacy in paper ‘A’ is counter productive, really it just makes people take it less seriously. It reads as propaganda, so it must not be true – this is a fallacy, but humans have a deep and sensitive BS detector and it is prone to throwing out everything from a discredited source. I think this ‘abstract environmentalism’ has had a pretty poor track record as far as results in the last few decades, hopefully we can shift to focus on more realistic needs and wants, many of which have practical solutions.

        Thanks for taking the time to post the links, and I do agree there are still areas of concern in both papers (once you get past the drama).

      • Latimer Alder

        Robin says

        ‘I think the type of advocacy in paper ‘A’ is counter productive, really it just makes people take it less seriously’

        I take a more realistic approach to it. 27 people from 18 organisations spent 3 days on a jolly in Oxford one Easter vacation. They all need to go home showing to their lords and masters that they did something useful. So the report is a bran tub full of whatever it is is the hot button of the parent organisation.

        Everybody can point to a bit and say ‘look boss…I made sure our concern was in the final report’. You could have written it without anybody needing to attend at all.

        Still Oxford in the spring can be very nice. I hope they had a good time punting, in Blackwell’s, admiring the architecture and of course, following the trail of Inspector Morse around the inns and hostelries of that fair city.

    • A seemingly sensible post from R.Gates, betrayed in the end by mention of fake skeptics, but no mention of fake believers.

      • Erica, I did an entire post here under this topic about True Beleivers on both sides of the issue and indicated why they are psychologically the same. The term fake believer makes no real sense in this context.

  32. Beth Cooper

    A truly myopic position by Alan Corner. Hey, hasn’t he heard, that probably due to Steve McIntyre, a second hockey stick has been found to be flawed, its statistics unable to be replicated? That this paper, Gergis et al, 2012, is in error has been publically admitted in a letter to Steve McIntyre by one of its presenters, David Karoly.

    Should Alan peer out from his ivory corner, he might also read the Climate gate emails exposing gatekeeping avoidance of transparency, ‘hide the decline’ method and peer review cronyism writ large. Believers all the way down.

  33. Sociological/psychological explanations of AGW skepticicism fail to come to grips with its purely scientific basis. The more one knows about real-world climate based on sound physical principles and actual observations, the more flimsy prove to be the “consensus” claims, based on academic presumption and unproven computer models.

  34. Beth Cooper

    Having jest read Barry Wood’s comment and links, it would seem that Alan’s own position is ‘rooted in ideological differences.’ Ironic isn’t it? )

  35. We should not confuse incredibilism with skepticism:

    The comment thread show reasoned incredibilism at work:

    http://julesandjames.blogspot.ca/2012/06/costs-of-uncertainty.html

  36. The Skeptical Warmist (aka R. Gates)

    Okay, perhaps considering changing my moniker. It accurately reflects my position on the issue of AGW, but is it too confusing for those who want clearly defined “sides” in the issue? A true skeptic will never take a “side” in the sense that they are closed to contrary data that might change their position, and will therefore accept certain theories as provisionally true.

    • Can you list the tents of AGW you at least question?

      • I question it all (else my claim to be a skeptic at heart would be a lie), but the basic issues, such as whether CO2 is a greenhouse gas or whether or not human activity is increasing it, while I take them as “provisionally true”, it would take extraordinary data to refute. But the areas I question the most would be the role of clouds as net positive or negative feedbacks, ocean-atmosphere heat flux, the full dynamics of aerosols (natural and anthropogenic), etc. All areas that are of keen interest to many climate scientists and thus the focus of intense research.

      • R. Gates,
        Yet in your many posts you do not seem to question those points. You bash those who do, however..
        Afterall, AGW opinion leaders are demanding and (getting some) hugely expensive policies and many expensive tax payer funded conferences based on there being no significant climate questions left.
        I would suggest that the largest area of uncertainty is that of framing the question:
        Is the climate as sensitive to CO2 as the AGW consensus claims?
        As for evidence, I would ask you this question:
        If climate is as sensitive to CO2 as is claimed by the AGW consensus, then why is nothing of any significance happening in the manifestations of climate, weather?

      • “Yet in your many posts you do not seem to question those points. You bash those who do, however..”

        The reason they get bashed is that those who question those points typically do so to reach an unwarranted conclusion. Eg “clouds are uncertain so climate sensitivity must be low”

        “Afterall, AGW opinion leaders are demanding and (getting some) hugely expensive policies and many expensive tax payer funded conferences based on there being no significant climate questions left.”

        No they get those things based on the danger of climate change. A danger that isn’t negated (it’s actually increased) by the existence of significant climate questions. If someone thought the science was totally uncertain (and I don’t) then perhaps sensitivity is 10C/doubling?

      • We don’t know, therefore it must be worse than we thought?
        How does that logic work then?

      • Latimer Alder

        @lolwot

        If it is ‘totally uncertain’ the sensitivity could be 0C or +1000000C or -10,0000000C. Or anywhere inbetween. But it ain’t. The climate is remarkably stable, and that implies that the sensitivity, if there is one at all is low.

        You don’t have much experience of this ‘science’ stuff do you?

      • Hunter,

        The single most important issue is of course the one of climate sensitivity, but this is also the most complex. But when you say nothing of any significance is happening in the manifestations of climate, are you simply discounting the entire Arctic? The region of the planet where the biggest changes have long been modeled to occur the earliest and where we are seeing big changes. Are you asking me to not consider this?

      • R. Gates,
        There is credible paleo evidence that the Arctic has done this before.
        Did the Arctic collapse in the past?
        No.
        So stop with the hysteria.
        The eco system is doing fine. NASA just reported that phytoplankton is booming in open Arctic waters: Good for whales and fish and seals and polar bears.

      • lolwot,
        AGW opinion leaders are mostly getting big expensive things that profit them and their friends.
        Certainly you are not uninformed on this worldwide reality?
        As to speaking for R. Gates, I was unaware he needs you to tell him his position.
        As to yous non-rational and repetitive assertion that uncertainty means things are worse, I am glad you are only pushing this bs in blogland, where no one can get hurt.

      • BatedBreath

        You asking for his pitch, Hunter ?

      • Not really. Trying some open and respectful dialog. I hope R. Gates will respond in kind.

    • Dave Springer

      Changing your name would be the smart thing for you to do. If you were of Japanese descent hara-kiri would be the appropriate response instead.

      • Dave, this is a highly inappropriate thing to write.

      • agreed. Zero content, all spite. That kind of talk just moves everything backwards.

      • Latimer Alder

        -1.

        Leave remarks like this for idiots like Greenpeace and Franny Armstrong from 10:10 to make. The alarmists are a sufficiently target-rich environment that e don’t need to do this.

      • Actually Dave,

        As I am not in battle, and certainly therefore cannot be defeated in battle, the notion of me doing the honorable thing as a defeated warrior makes no sense at all. Having said that, the act of hari-kari or sepuku was an act of courage so as to restore some honor to the defeated warrior and their family. I would hope that had I lived the life of a Samurai, and had been defeated in battle, that I would have been so courageous as to commit sepuku.

      • Dave Springer

        I don’t understand what’s so inappropriate. Some of you people take yourselves WAY too seriously.

  37. “A true skeptic will never take a “side” in the sense that they are closed to contrary data that might change their position, and will therefore accept certain theories as provisionally true.”

    Yeah, I am your side.
    Just don’t expect much agreement.

  38. David L. Hagen

    Biased framing: The academics’ foundational misunderstanding is to frame the issue as “climate change skepticism” which is an equivocation for “catastrophic anthropogenic global warming”.

    Misunderstanding: Secondly they misunderstand a political “consensus” with the scientific method. Thirdly, they presume “mitigation” is needed, not realizing that the case for CAGW is still “not proven” and second that “mitigation” is far less cost effective than adaptation.

    Scientific Method:It appears that Adam Corner and Chris Mooney do not understand the scientific method and the essential scientific requirement to validate models against evidence and show that they differ from the null hypothesis of natural trends and variations. The scientific issue is not “belief in human-induced climate change” but whether we can detect that change with validated models and the magnitude of that change as distinct from natural trends, oscillations and variations.

    Unvalidated:They appear to be swept along with the alarmist rhetoric about non-scientific “consensus” rather than evaluate whether climate scientists have developed and validated accurate models. Nor do they appear familiar with the poor performance of global warming models to predict global temperatures and the worse performance on regional temperatures.
    e.g., James Hansen’s 1988 forecast now appears to be 150% hotter than actual temperature increases. The mean IPCC trend of 0.2C / decade similarly appears 2 sigma hotter than the 0.138C/decade trend for the last 32 years of satellite data. (ie ~outside 95% of the actual temperature trends.)

    Professional standards: Corner and Mooney also do not appear able to follow professional journalism standards of challenging the evidence and presenting both sides of the issue. e.g. where is their evaluation of models by Syun-Ichi Akasofu, Nicola Scafetta, Don Easterbrook, or Craig Loehle etc. which find dominant natural trends and oscillations dominate over anthropogenic forcing, with better fit to the evidence than the IPCC models. Nor do they appear to have interviewed Bob Carter, Fred Singer, Richard Lindzen etc.

    When will they ever learn?

  39. Latimer Alder

    Adam Corner presents himself as wanting to understand climate scepticism.

    But his moderation policy at his blog seems to be directly opposed to such understanding. I tried to post this some hours ago. Other, subsequent more alarmist posts have appeared, but mine is still ‘awaiting moderation’, where I am beginning to think it will languish forever. So just for the record, here’s what I wrote.

    ‘To expand on Anteros’s com­ment about what makes people scep­tical. I came to be a sceptic because iI had heard ‘The Science is Settled’ , had a career break and set myself the task of under­standing what I naively ima­gined to be some really cool exper­i­ments that had been done to demon­strate AGW.

    I’ve got a ‘hard sci­ence’ Masters way back when, so didn’t think that this would be too hard a task. Couple of days at most to while around on the Internet. Maybe soem maths a bit beyond my pay grade, but I can under­stand any­thing exper­i­mental pretty well. And after 30 years in pro­fes­sional IT, I know enough to find my way around code.

    The con­trast between what I was expecting to find and what is out there is abso­lutely stag­gering. There are no neat exper­i­ments. There are few exper­i­ments at all. There is a bit of lab wok about CO2 IR absoprtion and then immense leaps to high-sensistivity feed­backs and doomsday scen­arios. It is all about as near to my con­cep­tion of voodoo sci­ence as can be ima­gined. You can think of it as MSG science..it has a sort of sci­ency fla­vour, but without much actual science.

    And tehn i learnt about the hiding of data, the inad­equate to non-existent quality con­trol. Finally I read Harry_Read_me, which con­vinced me that many prac­ti­tioners were unfit to manage a whelk stall let alone be let loose on the most important data for the most important problem facing humanity.

    Others will have their own stories of why they are scep­tical. That’s mine. Sorry if it doesn’t fit your preconceptions.

    And PS — I abso­lutely hate being told ‘Trust Me little insig­ni­ficant person, I am An Expert and you are too stupid to have an opinion’ in any area of my life. Climatology seems to have attracted more than its fair share of those whose talent is way behind their self-regard.’

    • Dave Springer

      +1

    • Latimer Alder

      Just an update.

      My posting at Corner’s blog (as reproduced above) has now disappeared without trace. I leave readers to draw their won conclusions about the sincerity of his desire to ‘engage sceptics’.

      And of the validity of any conclusions he might draw after his ‘research’.

      Most annoyingly he is based in the UK, so it is my taxes go to fund his ‘work’.

  40. “But none of the academics seem to acknowledge reasoned skepticism (such as described by Geoff Chambers) by knowledgeable and well educated people as having an actual scientific basis; as such, they are “missing the point.” – JC

    The fact that we now need a new category of “reasoned skepticism” tells us a lot about ‘climate skepticism’ and how they have debased the term.

    • Latimer Alder

      Lost me there skip.

      Judith is not suggesting the need for a new category. The failure she discusses lies with the academics missing the point, not the sceptics.

      Please explain

    • It’s like “compassionate conservatism.” Only those whom have no clue what conservatism is would think you needed to add the qualifier.

    • Michael,
      Do you really miss this point so badly?

    • It’s too complicated??

      Chambers refers to “reasoned skepticism”, to differentiate himself from you lot.

      You’ve tarnished the brand.

      • Michael,
        That is ironic coming from you.
        But it is clear you are not going to grasp the point.
        Oh well.

    • Well Michael perhaps we do need a new category of skeptics – ‘unreasoned skeptics’, to distinguish them from the bulk of the skeptics.

      And speaking of debased terms, we definitely need a new term ‘reasoned cagw believer’, to distinguish them from the bulk of cagw believers.

      And also ‘genuine climate scientist’, to distinguish them from the Consensus bulk (upholders of the Phil Jones why-should-I-show-you-my-data school of climate science).

      • “Well Michael perhaps we do need a new category of skeptics – ‘unreasoned skeptics’, to distinguish them from the bulk of the skeptics.”

        It’s the other way around.

        2 words;

        Murry Salby.

      • Resonable scepticism is that EVERYTHING can be questioned. No danger in questioning, while on the other side dogma and suppression are very destructive.

      • Everything……except not-IPCC dogma.

        Then it’s tinfoil hats all round.

      • Latimer Alder

        WTF is Murry Salby?

        And what connection does it have with my scepticism about CAGW.?

        Please explain.

      • The guy who made grand claims about the ‘natural variability’ cause of the observed rise in CO2…to much ‘skeptical’ applause.

        Sans the actual article……or evidence……or data……or ‘the code’ (all still absent almost a year later).

        The self-proclaimed ‘skeptics’ were suddenly and completely credulous.

      • Confirms my earlier analysis – that in true cagw truebeliever fashion, Michael is attempting to mislabel some minority skeptic as a typical one, and his views as widely accepted, when in fact neither he nor his views are even known around here. You don’t have to be dishonest to sign up to cagw, but it sure helps.

      • Latimer Alder

        @michael

        Never heard of him or his work. And I follow ‘sceptical’ blogs pretty well.

        Trumpeting his name as a sort of knockout blow seems to have misfired somewhat for you.

      • So you are OK with using Keith Farnish as an example the typical AGW true believer?

      • Lati,

        If I were one of the ‘skeptics’ I’d be trying to froget all about that too.

        You already have!!

      • Latimer Alder

        @michael

        I’m guessing that you are probably employed full time in acdemia and therefore have very little to do. And so have time to follow every byway and winding pathway of the climate debate. I don’t. I have to earn a living …which means going out to work. And I have a life to lead outside climatology.

        Whatever or whoever the incident you refer to is or is not about I have never heard of it. I do not have a view on it, have never expressed a view on it and do not intend to find out and start now.

        So in your list of sceptical demons wrt Murry Saxby, please ensure my entry is ‘null’ ( X’00’). Thanks

      • When MS’s paper came out a certain scientist blogged it could be a game changer. Lol.

      • Lati,

        Sorry, I assumed since that you commented on the Murry Salby thread you might have remembered it.

        But, as I said, I’d be trying to forget that one too – blowing their own trumpets about being ‘skeptics’ and then behaving so credulously……

        Down the memory hole with that!

      • August 2011, Judith Curry:

        > I just finished listening to Murry Salby’s podcast on Climate Change and Carbon.  Wow.

        http://judithcurry.com/2011/08/04/carbon-cycle-questions/

        In that same thread, Latimer Adler:

        > Could you explain to an interested layman why this isn’t interesting to you? Seems to be extremely interesting to me.

        http://judithcurry.com/2011/08/04/carbon-cycle-questions/

        June 2012, Latimer Adler:

        > WTF is Murry Salby?

        Ut supra.

      • Latimer Alder

        OK. I confess. I am not Lesley Welch the Memory Man.

        Bring on the bracelets. I plead guilty to having made one generalised remark on a long thread nearly a year ago. Sadly I cannot tell you what I had for breakfast, lunch or dinner on that day, nor who I met in the pub.

        In mitigation m’lud I observe that poking alarmists with a stick is a harmless and socially necessary hobby and Judith’s blog is such a target-rich environment that I cannot remember every little interaction.

        Be gentle with me. I promise to reform. And I did not have sex with that woman.

      • Latimer Alder is a most insincere fake. He doesn’t remember Murry Salby much like he can’t remember all the sockpuppet identities he assumes in this blog’s comments section. I see Latimer’s “Stirling English” sockpuppet just made an appearance upthread.

        It gets to the point that one can’t trust anything that someone like Alder says. What I try to do is quantitative analysis because I realize that only logic has the potential to stand on its own, not dependent on subjective rhetoric of the kind that Alder continually plays with.

        I make the prediction that Salby won’t release his paper because he has determined flaws in the “carbon origin” logic and found his argument inconsistent.

      • Latimer Alder

        @webbie

        Struggling with the idea of an ‘insincere fake’. Is it like ‘100% genuine faux synthetic leather’ driving gloves? Please explain.

      • > I did not have sex with that woman.

        You have no good reason, then.

      • “Struggling with the idea of an ‘insincere fake’. Is it like ’100% genuine faux synthetic leather’ driving gloves? Please explain.”

        Latimer Alder is insincere, as all his other sockpuppet identities are fakes.

      • Lati,

        Striving to forget the issue and make it your memory.
        Understandable attempt at diversion given the embarrasing reality.

        The issue is the gullibility displayed by the purported ‘skeptics’ and how their behaviour is so at odds with real scientific scepticism.

        Anyone paying attention knows that we are dealing mostly with political opposition dressed up in a very facade of ‘scienceness’ .

      • Michael is right. To understand and make sense of the science requires one to juggle facts and knowledge and make it all consistent. When Latimer lamely acts like he forgot something, it exposes how much of a scientific poseur he is and how much this is just a game to him.

      • I had forgotten Salby as well.
        Did his paper ever get published?

      • Oh yes, hunter was there too, 100% credulous, ala the ‘climate skeptics’.

        And still no sign of the paper.

        Will it ever appear?

      • WTF is Murry Salby?

        Seems he’s an aussie half-wit propaganda professor dedicated to shutting down debate by trying to talk down to dissenters, much like the two oxygen thieves who provide the subject matter of our current blog.

      • “WTF is Murry Salby?

        Seems he’s an aussie half-wit propaganda professor dedicated to shutting down debate by trying to talk down to dissenters, much like the two oxygen thieves who provide the subject matter of our current blog.”

        I believe is an American professor and wrote book:
        http://www.amazon.com/Physics-Atmosphere-Climate-Murry-Salby/dp/0521767180

        I interested if someone could point out something in this book which disagree and find wrong

      • Like James Love-Lock, Michael?

        http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2012/jun/15/james-lovelock-interview-gaia-theory

        Now he loves our fracking future too?:o)

      • Steven Mosher

        I see your Salby and raise you a Gergis

      • ” “Well Michael perhaps we do need a new category of skeptics – ‘unreasoned skeptics’, to distinguish them from the bulk of the skeptics.”

        It’s the other way around.

        2 words;

        Murry Salby.”

        So, I trying this out. This Murry Salby is guy worked with IPCC and with satellites, and was writing some book on climate.
        So, spent about an hour looking at this- looked thread and watch video
        where gave speech about Natural emission and sinks of CO2 to audience in Australia.
        I could continue looking at this, but wondering you give clue what mean
        exactly in regards Murry Salby?

      • I see the problem. To buttress their preconceived position, a typical (ie credulous and unreasoning) cagw believer like our Michael here, tries to make out that the small minority of skeptics who are unreasoning, represent the reasoning majority.
        Candidate for the Strawman of the Year 2012.

  41. I regard all attempts to categorise people’s views on individual issues by resorting to psychological mumbo-jumbo as (a) codswallop and (b) potentially sinister. Let’s face it, it is far from unheard-of in human history for unpopular dissenters to be described as nutcases and treated accordingly. Truly, it is a mistake to even go there.

    With regard to expertise, of course almost nobody in the general population is a ‘climate scientist’ – indeed, it is arguable that even those who describe themselves as such are. I think that the unravelling of the CAGW meme has come from the tiny snippets of millions of people’s individual expertise. Farmers whose previously drought-stricken properties are under water (contrary to predictions) scratch their heads – even more so on multi-generational properties where it has all happened before. Biologists and foresters are baffled by the voodoo science of tree-rings. Statisticians feel like mosquitoes in a nudist camp – it is hard to even know where to begin. People who have used computer modelling (of whom I am one) find the claims that are made both for individual and aggregated models utterly absurd. Empiricists who actually measure stuff like sea levels and glaciers discover that in the CAGW world, models trump data. Etc, etc, etc.

    On the political level, it is fair to say that opponents of government intervention in the broad sense are more likely to be skeptical, but that is not inherently unscientific or irrational. There are many, many examples of how ideological beliefs have been used to restrict liberty and extract money from the citizenry with few, no, or even negative outcomes. Unfortunately, once entrenched, these measures are extremely difficult to dislodge, not least because of the pernicious ‘precautionary principle’ as well as the piercing squeals of those on the gravy train.

    The jet-setting lifestyles of many high profile advocates of The Cause don’t help either, especially when poor people are shivering because of skyrocketing energy prices that pay for windmills, solar panels, and comfy jobs for hangers-on and parasites of all stripes in the energy industry.

    It is interesting that after years of abuse, suddenly there is a virtuous trend towards ‘dialogue’ coming from the CAGW crowd. Methinks they are making a virtue out of necessity. They are losing ground fast, so suddenly they appear at the front door with a bunch of doghouse roses (ref: Steve Earle). There is no harm in talking to the bearer of doghouse roses, but believing that he has changed his spots is a genuine (not virtual) risk, of significant proportions.

    • johanna | June 15, 2012 at 10:18 pm “With regard to expertise, of course almost nobody in the general population is a ‘climate scientist’ –“

      What is a ‘climate scientist? An “average weather” scientist? A “statistical description” scientist?
      WMO offers for climate:
      __in a narrow sense Climate is usually defined as the “average weather”,
      in a more rigorously way, Climate is the statistical description in terms of the mean
      and variability of relevant quantities over a period of time, and
      in a broader sense, Climate is the status of the climate system which comprises the
      atmosphere, the hydrosphere, the cryosphere, the surface lithosphere, and the
      biosphere. (http://www.oceanclimate.de/Archiv/pdf/may6_10.pdf )

      WMO does not define „weather“, making all their talking about „climate“ scientifically (!) meaningless, and the use of “climate sceptics” is so non-specific that it is difficult to have a fruitful discussion about it.

    • ArndB use of “climate sceptics” is so non-specific that it is difficult to have a fruitful discussion about it.

      Might I just recommend a step down from your ivory pedestal ? Down here in the real world of evolving terminology, it means one sceptical of the cagw hypothesis.

  42. Dave Springer

    My skepticism is driven entirely by numbers. Specifically numbers promulgated by AGW boffins that don’t add up along with clear evidence that many of those numbers have been subjected to cherry picking and pencil whipping and clear evidence of coercion and collusion in trade rags to exclude contrary evidence and hypotheses. There are four kinds of lies. Lies, damn lies, statistics, and climatology.

    • Michael Hart

      Seconded.
      I also add that in science, a world-weary cynicism should always be kept sharp and ready, though it may not win friends. After experiencing some difficult real-world problems, other claims to have solved a far more complex problem are easier to winnow out.

      .

  43. Plus one, Joanne.

  44. Sorry, I’ve done it again. ‘Johanna’ (I have a friend, ‘Joanne’
    guess I’m a creature of habit like the turkey in The Black Swan example.)

    • No probs, Beth. My friends know me by variants of my name, all OK with me.

      But, I repeat that we are being offered doghouse roses, at best.

  45. Adam Corner said this:

    “The more people learn about the sci­ence, the more they see how dodgy is the cli­mate sci­ence respons­ible for rising energy prices.”

    How very true that is. Almost all of the energy price rise is due to scarce fossil fuel resources. In particular, the world is undergoing an irreversible state change transition as they begin to ween themselves off the first generation crude oil resources.

    Whoever blames climate science for the the rising fuel prices is delusional. Even if all climate science research gets crushed, which is apparently what the AGW skeptics want to happen, the world will still have to change business-as-usual to accommodate the transition to low-grade fossil fuels and alternative and renewable energy sources.

    That’s the point that 99% of the AGW skeptics miss.

    • Actually it appears that Geoff Chambers said that, so Geoff is one of the 1% of the skeptics who actually realize that climate science mitigation is not responsible for rising energy prices. And if I misinterpreted what he said, then he is one of the 99% delusional.

      • WebHubTelescope,

        I’d rather say use the word incredibilist, as shown there:

        http://julesandjames.blogspot.ca/2012/06/costs-of-uncertainty.html

        Skepticism has nothing to with that attitude.

      • This geoffchambers character seems to lack motivation. He actually said this in the comments that you linked to:

        “This kind of argument is boring boring boring. Most of us grew out of it in High School. Some of us (most of the commenters here I imagine) went on to PhDs and successful scientific careers. Others, like me, (I haven’t opened a maths book for fifty years) just shake our heads and wonder what’s the point of it all. “

        His skeptical POV is to be incredulous and let it stand at that, as if that holds any weight at all. So geoffchambers calling something “dodgy” indicates that he won’t pursue it further, sees no point,and wants to leave it at that.

        I agree that attitude is the opposite of skepticism. In my mind a mathematical model representation is everything, and if I can help in any way to make it more concise, that would meet my objective.

      • Steven Mosher

        Are you certain that a mathematical model representation is everything?

      • I prefaced that with “in my mind”. That serves as a template to my working a serious analysis. Anything that can’t be described in logic or math is open to ambiguity, and that’s usually where one gets into trouble.

      • You don’t say.

      • “You don’t say.”

        That’s not proper first-order logic. Unless one invokes negation as failure, an infinite number of phrases will match what one doesn’t say.


        said(this).
        said(that).

        did_not_say(Phrase) :- not(said(Phrase)).

        So what exactly was said that wasn’t?

      • WebHubTelescope,

        Please have a look at the angered talking points of the editorial that started this discussion at James’:

        http://www.climate-resistance.org/2012/06/reinventing-precaution.html

        I’m sure you will recognize the Chewbacca attack: you will recognize lots of “you make no sense.”

        You will also see another level to this attack: “You are a bullshit artist.”

        You make no sense, therefore you are a BS artist.

        This was a natural extension of the Chewbacca attack, don’t you think?

        Please note how the Chewbacca Attack and its piling-on variant can be seen as a special case of incredibilism.

        Also note how the overall argument from ignorance emerges at the end:

        > [What if the “expected costs of adaptation and mitigation” are utterly wrong] is the important point, and one which you know (but our assailant doesn’t seem to have bothered trying to understand) is explored often here.

        http://www.climate-resistance.org/2012/06/reinventing-precaution.html#comment-65131

        Appealing to ignorance is not skepticism. We need another distinction.

        What if we did improve the world for nothing? What if nothing exists? What if nothing exist except the relationship Latimer did not have with that woman?

      • WebHubTelescope,

        Please have a look at the angered talking points of the editorial that started this discussion at James’:

        http://www.climate-resistance.org/2012/06/reinventing-precaution.html

        I’m sure you will recognize the Chewbacca attack: you will recognize lots of “you make no sense.”

        But you will also see another level to this attack: “You are a BS artist.”

        You make no sense, therefore you are a BS artist.

        This was a natural extension of the Chewbacca attack, don’t you think?

        Please note how the Chewbacca Attack and its piling-on variant can be seen as a special case of incredibilism.

        Also note how the overall argument from ignorance emerges at the end:

        > [What if the “expected costs of adaptation and mitigation” are utterly wrong] is the important point, and one which you know (but our assailant doesn’t seem to have bothered trying to understand) is explored often here.

        http://www.climate-resistance.org/2012/06/reinventing-precaution.html#comment-65131

        Appealing to ignorance is not skepticism. We need another distinction.

        What if we did improve the world for nothing? What if nothing exists? What if nothing exist except the relationship Latimer did not have with that woman?

      • Willard, That’s as bad as our friend Brandon. Reading it makes my head hurt, I would rather read the Chewbacca Defense as that has some entertainment value.

        BTW, Ben Pile made an appearance last month at http://theoildrum.com and was roundly thumped as being argumentative and adding no value.
        http://www.theoildrum.com/node/9212
        You can see write there in the comments that I said that Ben Pile was the “master of the vacuous rhetorical argument”

        We have Pile pegged real good.

      • WebHubTelescope,

        I could find an interesting collection of statements:

        First simple negations:

        > I don’t believe there is a ‘relationship between population growth, resource limits and nations with intense poverty

        > I don’t think that an ‘ecological footprint’ has any objective value.

        Then some Chewbacca Attacks:

        > It’s an interesting proposition: authority without agency. But ultimately, it’s a nonsense.

        Some YesButFreedom:

        > [T]hings can be ‘unsustainable’ turns into an argument for some kind of authority to impose limits, where natural limits are presumed to exist. That’s a pretty toxic form of politics, which denies people the right to make decisions about their own material interests.

        > Neo malthusianism has been a half century journey, with malthusians constantly screaming that the end is nigh, now, in a minute, very soon…

        > A benevolent dictatorship with a working definition of ‘good’ is identical in form to a tyranny.

        And finally this interesting tweet:

        > And so, inevitably, @TheOilDrum removes my comments. Intellectual cowardice is not running out, even if the oil might be.

        Considering how our exchange ended up on his site, I suppose TheOilDrum should better warn his guest that any future comment that won’t satisfy its moderator will wipe out all the guest’s comments.

        ***

        There are more important stuff to do than to try to reason out these gaming theorists.

        Thank you for the read.

      • WebHubTelescope,

        Well, now that’s interesting.

        Here’s what Ben Pile promised:

        > You can go away, and you [sic.] posts will remain.

        http://neverendingaudit.tumblr.com/post/25231421098

        I did go away. The posts have been deleted. Let’s recall his tweet:

        > And so, inevitably, @TheOilDrum removes my comments. Intellectual cowardice is not running out, even if the oil might be.

        By chance I keep copies.

      • TheOilDrum will moderate stuff out, especially if someone whines about why something was deleted. I have learned that from experience:)

      • Well, now that’s interesting.

        Here’s what Ben Pile promised:

        > You can go away, and you [sic.] posts will remain.

        http://neverendingaudit.tumblr.com/post/25231421098

        I did go away. All the thread after my first comment has been deleted.

        Let’s recall his tweet:

        > And so, inevitably, @TheOilDrum removes my comments. Intellectual cowardice is not running out, even if the oil might be.

        He has a point.

      • Steven Mosher

        WHT.
        “in your mind” are you certain of that? Are you certain that in your mind the mathematical model is everything? That seems to be the opposite of skepticism. If you want to argue that you know your mind and whats in your mind better than others, then that would seem to be a defeater
        ( look up that term ) against claims that somebody has motivated reasoning, when they assert that they do not

      • I will tell you how far I will go. I actually tried to write my entire blog in the e-prime writing style. Somebody invented e-prime as a way to enforce an active writing style and one that minimizes the passive voice. Anybody that tries it finds it incredibly hard to sustain. Yet, it does reduce ambiguity, because everything one writes requires an active subject-predicate-object, and you can’t get away with saying something just “is”. Everything stated has to have ownership, either by someone’s theory or something that I have come up with and claim ownership for. As an unintended result of writing in this style, one can sound pompous and often pretentious. Cripes, don’t you know, I get that leveled at me all the time :)

        So the whole “in my mind” approach has to do with organizing principles in the way I write and do research.

        BTW, I don’t think e-prime improved readability on my original blog http://monbjectivist.blogspot.com, but I liked the results it produced.

        I wrote this comment in e-prime, note the nonexistence of “is”, “was”, “were”, “be”, “being” except in quotes. I quickly tire of it and rarely use it in comments except to make a point.

    • In Australia energy price rises are predominantly from the imminent carbon tax; mandated “alternative energy” shares of 20%+; over-building of transmission lines (after years of neglect when government-owned) to cope with air-conditioning demand on about 7-10 few days each year when temps are extra high. That is, all within the policy domain rather than scarce fossil fuels; re which, we have about 40% of the world’s known uranium reserves, but rule out nuclear energy. There is also opposition in some quarters (mainly Greens) to proposed increased use of our vast gas reserves.

    • How cunningly you misread that quote, Web. Any real substance it has would be about the threatened impact on energy prices.
      (But OTOH, the author was quite possibly trying on the same trick, so maybe you just dutifully salivated on cue).

      • The grammar in that quote was terrible.
        “how dodgy is the climate science responsible for rising energy prices”

        One can not tell what the subject of that sentence refers to. Is the climate science dodgy or is placing responsibility dodgy?

        Fake skeptics don’t reason, they confirm their preconceived notions.

    • Whoever blames climate science for the the rising fuel prices is delusional

      Perhaps on your side of the pond, but not mine.
      Look up “fuel price escalator” and “feed-in tariffs”

      • Latimer Alder

        And ‘Climate Change Act’.

      • thanks, missed that one…

      • Delusional UK fools. How is that North Sea oil supply coming along?I

        No uncertainty involved.

      • And what’s the gasoline price in the good ol’ USA then?
        Anywhere close to the £1.35 ($2.12) per litre that we pay?
        Or do global fossil fuel resource levels somehow affect you guys less than it affects us?

      • Typical projectional response that we can count on from fake skeptics.

        We in the USA have a short-term respite and oil glut because we have these flash-in-the-pan hydraulic fracturing sites in the upper midwest and extra oil from tar-land Canada that has no where else to go.

        The typical upper midwest frac oil well has a very short life-span with an average half-life of around 2 years. I actually do some real analysis:
        http://theoilconundrum.blogspot.com/2012/05/bakken-growth.html
        unlike the typical skeptic.

        My analysis of UK North Sea oil supply has been roughly accurate in its prediction:
        http://www.iii.co.uk/articles/27580/oil-industry-warns-declining-north-sea-production

        “OGUK estimated an 18% fall in North Sea production in 2011 compared with an average 6% decrease over the last five years. Meanwhile, exploration drilling is down 50% versus 2010, a level not seen since the mid-1960s.”

        That is an overall decline which amounts to (1-0.06)^5 * (1-0.18) * 100% = 60% of the production output from 6 years ago.

        Compare that to what I wrote in 2005:
        http://mobjectivist.blogspot.com/2005/10/uk-north-sea-simulation.html

        The updated figure based on EIA statistics looks like this
        http://img269.imageshack.us/img269/5060/ukoilupdate.gif

        I used estimates of discovery alone to arrive at the UK decline, and my model did not account for new discoveries past 2004 (which is the only missing piece). This last year the production is starting to nosedive as it is impossible to keep those offshore platforms operational as the production starts to decline. And there are few new discoveries to make up for the reduced production.

        Fake skeptics don’t do any of this kind of analysis. They simply write scare-mongering screeds such as suggesting that elderly UK citizens are burning telephone books to stay warm in the winter, all due to AGW carbon emission reductions. What a load, the reality is that crude oil supply is finite and you guys are depleting your reserves.

      • WHT – Show us where you “predicted” fracking’s increase in nat gas and liquids. You can’t, because you didn’t. Just like you can’t predict what else might happen to increase supply.

      • Latimer Alder

        Look children.

        Webbie’s done some sums again on the worlds bestest ever and most wonderfully clever website. Isn’t he a clever boy!!!.

        What on earth they have to do with anything like the price of electricity is so obscure as to have escaped even him…but he wants us to know he did them anyway. Isn’t that kind……Perhaps we should all give a little round of applause……there,,,isn’t that nice.

        Meanwhile in English we will all wonder what he means by ‘fake sceptic’. He uses the phrase a lot, and it obviously means something to him. Can we guess what he’s trying to say? I hope it isn’t rude….

        There’s the bell! Playtime now and when we get back maybe we’ll come back to ‘fake sceptics’. Maybe we’ll have broken the code by then……….

        Remember to play gently children. And wrap up against the chilly weather.

      • Oh, so I’m just imagining the several hundred percent government fuel duty we’re forced to pay, am I? That’s good news, as it means that I must have several tens of thousands stashed away somewhere that I’d forgotten about – now I just have to remember where I put it…
        What makes you think the global crude price is different over there than it is here?
        And as for you professing to know what goes on here, tell you what, let’s swap houses for the winter, shall we?

      • jim2 doesn’t realize that tight oil found in shale is a different kind of oil, accumulated by completely different processes. It’s kind of like mixing up anthracite coal with lignite coal, or rich uranium lodes with the amount of uranium that is dissolved in the oceans.

        Of course one can try estimating those low-density ores and tarry liquids, but it doesn’t get you anywhere in describing where the world is headed.

        If I was a bozo fake skeptic like you, I would just point to the energy pyramid which shows huge reserves of all sorts of dilute resources that will either (a) take tremendous amounts of energy to recover or (2) take huge costs to develop.

        Bottomline is that skeptics are upset that they lack the analytical skills to do much of anything worthwhile.

      • Latimer Alder

        Back after the break children. And we have a new message from Webbie! Isn’t that exciting! Here’s what he says:

        ‘Bottomline is that skeptics are upset that they lack the analytical skills to do much of anything worthwhile’

        Isn’t that cute. He’s such a clever little boy. And now, he can play the trumpet as well. At least that’s what they call it in England ‘blowing his own trumpet’.

        But children , I think at heart Webbie is just a lonely little boy. He really really wants us all to appreciate him for the mathematical genius he thinks he is. And so he keeps on reminding us of his supposed prowess.
        And I think its very very sad that he hasn’t got any friends just like him to play with and has to keep butting in here with distractions and self-aggrandisment (we’ll look that up in the dictionary tomorrow class) that never seem to have anything to do with the substance of the conversation……

      • Latimer Alder is really the lonely one as he feels the need to create all of his imaginary sockpuppet friends.

      • @WebHubTelescope | June 16, 2012 at 10:04 am |
        It isn’t a “different” kind of oil, it is the same oil, just in a different place. The oil in the shale migrates upwards to the more classical reservoir drilled historically.
        While shale oil is more spread out than after it accumulates, the businesses that actually put their money, sweat, and time on the line to bring us a reliable source of energy don’t need TheOilDumb to tell them if, where, and when to drill. They can judge that from market conditions.
        Finally, while oil is a limited resource, that is no reason not to drill whenever and wherever we need to.

      • jim2,
        It’s classified as tight oil. In this case the oil exists in small nooks and crannies within the shale and requires fracturing to allow it to escape. Yet that is nowhere near the same as finding oil trapped beneath large salt dome structures.

        The statistics of finding large geological features capable of trapping oil (such as salt domes) is captured by the Dispersive Aggregation model. This model accurately describes the size ranking of reservoirs encountered:
        http://img137.imageshack.us/img137/3955/northsealk2.gif

        The important reservoirs are the largest ones but those of course are the most rare. The biggest such as Ghawar in SA and Canterell in Mexico are the gray swans.

        Bakken is bottom of the barrel stuff, either a very large reservoir completely fragmented or millions of tiny reservoirs disconnected because of the geology. It is only exploited because all of the conventional reservoirs have been tapped.

        “It isn’t a “different” kind of oil, it is the same oil, just in a different place.”

        Highly dispersed into nooks and crannies. You can also try to count and/or recover all the uranium atoms dispersed in the ocean and the ground — good luck with that.

        ” The oil in the shale migrates upwards to the more classical reservoir drilled historically.”

        It gets trapped in shale seams, not the very loose aggregates in conventional reservoirs. It never got a chance to truly migrate to a larger structure.

        The tar sands of Canada are actually more like a larger reservoir, but it all got mushed as the Rockies shifted and it turned the oil into a gooey kerogen, left in place without the benefit of the pressures required to turn it into oil.

        “While shale oil is more spread out than after it accumulates, … “

        Like I said, it is bottom of the barrel crumbs. That is why the average half-life of a well is only a year or two.

        You really have a problem with someone doing quantitative analysis don’t you?

      • ‘That global oil demand may peak before supply has been suggested among others by John Browne, the former CEO of BP and most recently by Ali Al-Naimi, the Petroleum Minister of Saudi Arabia in the official publication of the World Petroleum Congress in Doha, December 2011. With continuously high oil prices, there is a strong price incentive to become more energy- and fuel-efficient and to substitute away from oil, particularly in the non-transport sectors. We already see reports about demand destruction in certain applications. If this trend persists, this may well have a significant downward pressure on oil demand, particularly as countries where consumers are still partly protected from the impact of high oil prices by petrol subsidies will need to reduce the budget burden by moving towards global market prices. ‘

        http://www.europeanenergyreview.eu/site/pagina.php?id_mailing=279&toegang=d395771085aab05244a4fb8fd91bf4ee&id=3685

        The peak in supply is still decades away and may be overtaken by changes on the demand side. In an era of escalating energy costs – much of which have been speculative – can there be a need for addtional government imposed costs.

      • WHT – you are a fount of knowledge already well-known. Just about everyone knows that biomass isn’t converted to oil anywhere near fast enough to replenish what we use. Everyone already knows that shale is “tight.” It doesn’t take a rocket surgeon to understand these things. What I like about the O&G companies is that they spend their time trying to figure out how to bring us economically viable oil – a positive exercise, one that keeps the nation going. Neither you nor I know what they will come up with next as technology advances.
        The government and environmental movement, OTOH, bring us the shutdown of Yucca Mountain, a negative. The government and environmental movement causes the US to spend money on allegedly green companies controlled by Dimowit funders. These companies go bankrupt and waste our money, a negative.
        Then we have a half-baked climate science that wants to change our entire life style. A negative.
        You are a smart guy, WHT. You really don’t have to pound the point that we will eventually run out of oil or that we need to develop new sources of energy. Everyone that spends 5 minutes thinking about it already knows that. We have to look at viable sources of energy. You speak of the density of oil in various formations – compare that to the density of wind and solar energy. A good analogy, that.

      • One of the underlying issues is that the oil industry does not let any knowledge creep out for public consumption. Unlike other industries associated with research, such as telecom, computers, medical, etc., the oil companies will not publish anything remotely related to their lifeblood, which in this case is future resource availability (unless it can be tightly controlled as press releases and corporate reports).

        What I have done is decode and expose many of the algorithms that they must use behind close doors. They aren’t stupid after all, and those that left the industry are also doing similar analyses, people like Laherrere, Patzek, and Deffeyes (if they were still employed they would not get to publish what they find.). The diff is that I have no connections to the oil industry, and there are a few of us that do this kind of work, including Khebab at TheOilDrum, and David Rutledge at CalTech looking at coal.

        Its really only a handful of people that do the quantitative analysis. Try to find some yourself. I decided to look at this topic because no one else has. It is the flip side to Climate Science.

        “You really don’t have to pound the point that we will eventually run out of oil or that we need to develop new sources of energy. Everyone that spends 5 minutes thinking about it already knows that. “

        I don’t think that is true, otherwise the entire climate science controversy would grind to a halt. After all, the risk mitigation is exactly the same for fossil fuel depletion as it is for stopping potential AGW — that is, finding alternatives to finite supplies of fossil fuels.

        That is the point that is missing (see title of the top-level post).

        “We have to look at viable sources of energy. You speak of the density of oil in various formations – compare that to the density of wind and solar energy. A good analogy, that.”

        Not quite. The density is qualitatively different. Since those sources are renewable, the density is not limited by the finite nature of the resource. The density of the solar energy on a patch of prairie is essentially infinite when integrated over time … as long as the sun keeps shining.

      • Ahhh, but any energy source that is disperse is more costly to harvest. I’m not as concerned at this point with global warming as you, and that is a major difference we have. However, I do think it is a good time to emphasize nuclear. I’m not sure where you stand on nuclear, but it is a very dense energy source. U, of course, but we also need to research thorium. We need to accelerate the development of small, mass-produced nuclear reactors. If it turns out that man-made CO2 isn’t the problem it is believed to be by the “consensus,” then small nukes would more than likely be a cheap energy source that could be used, for example, to harvest and refine tar sands for use as liquid fuels. There is nothing better than hydrocarbons for use in metal engines – they are anti-corrosive and energy-dense. Alcohols, being more hydrophilic, are more corrosive.

        It is good that you say you fear man-made CO2 will be problematic and you also say that meshes with your ideas of fossil fuel depletion – i.e., you are open and honest there. For me, the C in CAGW remains to be demonstrated to a degree strong enough to take draconian steps to stop CO2 emissions.

      • Latimer Alder

        @webbie

        ‘What I have done is decode and expose many of the algorithms that they must use behind close doors’

        Clever boy.

        I hope your Mum is proud of having such a clever little Webbie.

        But since you never deign to explain

        a. What you have found

        or

        b. why this should be of any interest to us

        you should not be surprised to know that I for one view it as no more than vacuous self-aggrandisment.

      • “But since you never deign to explain

        a. What you have found”

        Oh, that’s what your problem is. You don’t realize that I wrote a book on the topic of oil depletion, which is available as a download from my blog:
        http://theoilconundrum.com

        I have one section on the mathematical connection between fossil fuel emissions and atmospheric CO2 concentration.

        “or

        b. why this should be of any interest to us”

        You don’t seem to understand that this is a systems problem. The system is the earth/sun and mankind. The amount of CO2 being added by mankind is critical to projections of AGW.

        “you should not be surprised to know that I for one view it as no more than vacuous self-aggrandisment.”

        Again I score some more punditry points, mucho thanks.

      • I haven’t researched or written about nuclear energy but am open to it as a long-term solution.

        I also haven’t looked at the C in CAGW to any great extent, but know from paleoclimate data that there have been gradual CGW/CGC cycles w/o man’s involvement. These were only catastrophic to the animal species that had to adapt and evolve over relatively long time periods.

      • Latimer Alder

        @webbie

        You really haven’t grasped this ‘blog’ thing have you? It doesn’t matter if you can stick a penny whsitle up your fundament and blow ‘When Johnny Comes Marching Home’. If you ain’t written it up here, or at least given the major highlights, we do not know about it.

        So if you say, for example

        ‘I have decoded the secret algorithms the giant lizards use to control all the sceptics’, and leave it just at that, then we all just think you are a blowhard egomaniac with a superiority complex Your work might be the greatest piece of literature since Will Shakespeare was a lad, the finest piece of maths since Albie Einstein…but of we can’t read it we don’t know.

        A few days ago I think you got very upset when I suggested that you
        ‘show your working’

        A start might be even showing your f***g results!

      • Latimer said:

        “You really haven’t grasped this ‘blog’ thing have you?

        If you ain’t written it up here, or at least given the major highlights, we do not know about it. ”

        Who is this “we” that you speak of?
        Are these members of your skeptic team?
        Do you all get the same weekly bullet-point memo on what to think via email ?

      • Latimer Alder

        ‘We’ is the general blog audience.

        The ones who aren’t rushing to the forefront saying

        ‘Latimer, it is you who are mistaken. Webbie’s posts are crystal clear to us. It is surely obvious that his fantastic mathematical abilities and magnificent simple and modest way of describing them has led him to be the most respected commentator here. Not only the bloggists but politicians of all hues hang on his every word.’

      • Thanks Latimer,
        That passage looked similar to good reviews I received.

        “… fantastic mathematical abilities and magnificent simple … “

      • So have i got this right Web?

        You are taking a peak-oil (energy is running out) approach. Yet you say you don’t have access to what energy companies are saying on reserves because they’re too secretive? …

      • Webby : Again I score some more punditry points, mucho thanks.

        I do wish that beastly Latimer would stop accusing you of self-aggrandizement.

      • Latimer Alder

        @webbie

        ‘The density of the solar energy on a patch of prairie is essentially infinite when integrated over time … as long as the sun keeps shining.’

        Think you need to go away and study some basic stuff about energy, power, area and time. Come back when you’ve clearly grasped these concepts.

        Most O level physics textbooks will be able to give you the theoretical grounding you need.

      • Latimer Alder

        @webbie

        Please show references to the ‘good reviews’ you so modestly claim to have received. I know it will be hard for one whose natural tendency is to shrink away from the limelight and shrug off all praise with ‘shucks it was nothing’, but c’mon – you can do it for your adoring fans. Pretty please?

      • Mrs. Wilma Hub Telescope

        You are all being very horrible to my little Webster.

        He is ever so clever and got a gold star at elementary school for his facility in math. So there.

      • Yes indeed, I have received good feedback and others have applied the algorithms to their own analysis.

        Thanks for your interest.

    • Web, in 1904 kerosene cost you 3 cents a gallon, out of your silver dollar. Today it costs you three dollars in paper. Do the math and see if you find a relationship between the two prices. FED up yet?:o)

      • …For instance, in December 1904, in New York, the center of Standard’s largest refineries, kerosene was priced at 10.5 cents per gallon; At Cincinnati and Cleveland, prices were at 6.4 and 7.0 cents per gallon, respectively. The pcrice at Minneapolis and St. Paul was 7.2 cents; while it was 12.3 cents at San Francisco, 14.5 cents at Seattle, and 14.4 cents in Denver, with only a small fraction of the difference in prices being due to higher costs for transporting the oil. And the prices of gasoline in these cities shows the same differences as that of kerosene.

      • Sorry about my picture. I had not considered ‘Old Vertically Integrated Standard Oil’, of Seven Sisters fame. Monopoly anyone? Now how about the FED?

      • Beats me what Tom is trying to say. All of his religious stuff and bible-quoting goes in one ear and out the other. I figure it is harmless twaddle.

      • WebHubTell,
        Thank God, I thought your problem was between your ears.

      • Latimer Alder

        @Web Hub Telescope

        For once we are in agreement. Tom speaks in riddles no sane man understands.

        If he can’t be bothered to make his point clear, we shouldn’t waste our time trying to read it.

      • Where have we heard that before Latimer? I am glad just to bring minds together though.

        Rev 6:6 And I heard a voice in the midst of the four beasts say, A measure of wheat for a penny, and three measures of barley for a penny; and [see] thou hurt not the oil and the wine.

        A penny for your thought.

      • Latimer Alder

        @tom

        Thanks for illustrating my point.

        I have no idea what you are trying to say, and frankly, care less.

        If a writer cannot be bothered to make their point clearly and concisely there is no obligation on the reader to bother trying.

        You clearly can’t or won’t do the former. I will not do the latter.

      • It is my pleasure Latimer. All the best to you.

  46. “Abstract. Public scepticism surrounding climate change is an obstacle for implementing climate change mitigation measures in many countries. However, very little is known about: (1) the nature and sources of climate change scepticism; and (2) its influence on preferences for climate change mitigation policies.”

    This is just too funny. Beyond parody as they say. Could they be any more out of touch? Like clueless anthropologists. Very little known about the nature and source? I have an idea, why don’t they put away their ridiculous paper and instead take a look at some of the you know, skeptical arguments. After all they’re not hard to find. But then again, it couldn’t have anything to do with the science because that’s so well settled. Jesus. How silly academia has become. I’m embarrassed for them.

    • pokerguy,

      It’s not just academia. When the Obama administrations lawyers argued in favor of Obamacare before the U.S. Supreme Court, they were taken completely by surprise by the questions and objections by the conservative members of the court.

      These were not stupid or dishonest men (or no more so than most progressives). They are excellent lawyers. They were just completely unfamiliar with the conservative constitutional principles with which they were confronted. They, like the progressive, moderate and independent denizens of this blog, simply don’t lower themselves to even reading such scurrilous materials. They assumed that conservatism was what they and their friends and colleagues all agreed it was.

      They learned long ago that conservatism is a racist, sexist, homophobic, fascist ideology. So why bother to find out what it really is? Everyone they know agrees with them that they are morally and intellectually superior. Why waste their time?

  47. Michael Hart

    I’m glad there are people like JC around who are writing about this.

    The language of the article she quotes seems typical of many that I have read. That is, MSM journalist with little science background [and less inclination to get one], apparently starting from the premise of “Why DO those strange skeptic people continue to say that they don’t believe the cAGW CO2 spiel?”

    Well guess what? It’s because I really don’t buy much of it, and much of what I do buy is exaggerated or misused.

    If an Arts-graduate journalist tells me that the “experts” say it is correct, I will reply ‘Thank you kindly, but I can use my own science education and experience to evaluate both the quality of the science, and the quality of the “expert”.’

    “Missing the point” is indeed the right term.

  48. Contra the notion that “motivated reasoning” is asymmetric:

    “[The] asymmetry position grounds motivated reasoning in a general propensity toward dogmatism that tends toward a conservative (or “authoritarian”) political orientation…In contrast, the symmetry position (as reflected in cultural cognition and related theories) sees ideologically motivated reasoning as simply one species of identity-protective cognition…[which] refers to the dismissive reaction that individuals form toward information that threatens the status of (or their connection to) a group that is important to their identity. “Democrat” and “Republican” (along with hierarchy and egalitarianism, communitarianism and individualism, in cultural cognition) are both group affinities of that sort, and so both create vulnerability to motivated cognition.” –Dan Kahan

    http://www.culturalcognition.net/blog/2011/12/13/the-ideological-symmetry-of-motivated-reasoning.html

    Contra motivated reasoning itself:

    “One wonders how strongly the theory of self-serving bias must have been held to prompt such uncritical acceptance of empirical evidence… We doubt that careful investigation will reveal ego-enhancing or ego-defensive biases in attribution to be as pervasive or potent as many lay people and most motivational theorists presume them to be (p. 233).”

    Nisbett, R. and L. Ross. 1980. Human Inference: Strategies and Shortcomings of Social Judgment.

    My own observations: The idea of egocentric bias and motivated reasoning is older than Freud. The high watermark of the cold cognition paradigm, probably about 1980, explicitly rejected the hot cognition inherent in the notion of motivated reasoning, and is well-expressed by the quotation from Nisbett and Wilson above.

    Kunda’s 1990 “The Case for Motivated Reasoning” (Psych. Bulletin) appears a decade later. Scarcely 20 years later the phrase “motivated reasoning” is in the mouths of everyone. I went to google scholar and searched the following phrases:

    against motivated reasoning, contra motivated reasoning, critique of motivated reasoning, criticism of motivated reasoning

    And so on. And found almost nothing. This, in spite of the fact that 30 years ago, the whole concept was highly out-of-favor. It is as if the cold cognition body of research from about 1955-1980 has been “disappeared” from contemporary scholarship. Strange, since mountains were written against the notion of motivated reasoning prior to the 1990 Kunda paper.

    Just FYI. The miniskirt comes and goes.

    • And another problem with the motivated reasoning hype. Even if true, it may be a sideshow in the grander scheme of belief formation. As my co-author Austin and I argued:

      “Are ideology and beliefs merely self-serving reflections of narrow self-interest? If they are, their positive relationship is spurious and perhaps behaviorally uninteresting. We call this the ‘epiphenomenon hypothesis.’ Certainly, since Marx, if not before, many have suspected that ‘where you stand depends on where you sit.’ In one sense, our results present an immediate challenge to this position: the experimental evidence our subjects viewed is undoubtedly uncorrelated with their narrow self-interests; yet, the evidence is the single strongest predictor of ex-post beliefs as shown in [our analysis of our data] (p. 513)” (Austin and Wilcox. 2007. Believing in Economic Theories: Sex, Lies, Evidence, Trust and Ideology. Economic Inquiry.)

      The paper is paywalled but a penultimate working paper is here:
      http://www.cerge-ei.cz/pdf/wp/Wp238.pdf

  49. All we are saying is give America a chance. It’s very nearly 236 years old (remember July 4th?) and the Left is pointing to what, France or maybe China as the pinacle of human socio-economic accomplishment? Or, perhaps the Left wants to go back, back, BACK to the USSR.

    positivism is another kind of limited scepticism which is married with a constructive program. In this case the most prominent element of the scepticism is scepticism about the senses, and the constructive element involves some conception of proper scientific method, often combined with the reformulation of scientific theories in phenomenalistic terms. These phenomenalistic reformulations may be seen as a modern variant of the pyrrhonean view that we can know only about appearances, not about anything we might suspect to be an external cause or subject of those appearances. The prototype of positivistic scepticism is David Hume, its first prophet Auguste Comte.

    http://www.rbjones.com/

  50. I am a skeptic because IPCC’s projections don’t agree with observation as shown =>http://bit.ly/HnYPQf

    There is no motivation in this. That is what the comparison of IPCC’s projection with the observed data shows.

    Here are some excellent passages I read about a SCIENTIST:

    “As he formulates his final theory, the scientist subjects it to intensive criticism. Seeking to make it as useful as possible, he asks himself:
    Is this proposed law universal throughout the extent of space and the
    passage of time? Does it lead anywhere? Does it predict one state of
    affairs as arising out of another? Can it be transposed from one frame
    of reference to another and still remain valid? And finally, because of
    his innate passion for orderliness, his aesthetic appreciation of things
    which are meet and fitting, he asks: Is this theory as elegant as possible? Could I formulate it more succinctly?

    Now comes the moment of verification and truth: testing the theory
    back against protocol experience to establish its validity. If it is not a
    trivial theory, it suggests the existence of unknown facts which can be
    verified by further experiment. An expedition may go to Africa to watch
    an eclipse and find out if starlight really does bend relatively as it
    passes the edge of the sun. After a Maxwell and his theory of electro-
    magnetism come a Hertz looking for radio waves and a Marconi building a radio set. If the theoretical predictions do not fit in with observable facts, then the theorist has to forget his disappointment and start all over again. This is the stern discipline which keeps science sound and rigorously honest.

    If a theory survives all tests and is accepted into the canon of scientific law, it becomes a fact in its own right and a foundation for higher
    spires of thought. Abstract though it may be, a theory which has been
    proved can suggest new hi-fl sets or hybrid cattle just as surely as do experiments with electricity or stock-breeding. It serves as a starting point for new theories just as surely as any experience on the plane of protocols. Galileo’s formula for the increasing speed at which a body falls freely near the surface of the earth became a single example of Newton’s law of gravitation. Newton’s law, in turn, became a single special case in Einstein’s theory that gravitation is a manifestation of the geometry of space and time. At this moment some child in a hamlet somewhere may be preparing himself for the work of constructing a “unified field theory” of both atom and cosmos, in which Einstein’s sweeping concepts of relativity will appear as mere details.”

    The Scientist
    Life Science Library
    By Henry Margenau, David Bergamini
    And the Editors of LIFE
    1966

    Is one who utterly believes in the above beautiful passages anti-science?

  51. If the scientist predictions do not fit in with observable facts (http://bit.ly/HnYPQf) , then the theorist has to forget his disappointment and start all over again. This is the stern discipline which keeps science sound and rigorously honest.

  52. As I have said before, there are two types of skeptics. (a) those who think the IPCC is too certain and would broaden the error bars, but not dismiss it entirely, and (b) those who believe fairly certainly that the IPCC range of projected warming is wrong with almost zero probability of happening. We don’t hear much from the former type (except JC herself), and the latter type are in the clear majority here and on WUWT.
    I happen to go along with the view of the clear majority of people who have studied climate, whose consensus is represented by the IPCC. This also happens to be the view of other scientific societies who don’t benefit from the “government funding”. This is often explained as all these non-climate scientists just being liberal and political, as though no objective scientific view exists without politics. You have to ask what an objective scientifically informed view would look like, if is not anything you think you have seen yet?

    • Jim2
      * You say the government-funded consensus is shared by scientific societies not taking government money.
      Which ones ?

      * You object to criticism that no objective scientific view exists without politics.
      Not if politics is funding science, and the science in question has huge political ramifications. Follow the money.

      • Quote where I said that. You didn’t read it well.

      • probably meant for me. The American Physical Society, National Academy of Science, others in chemistry and geology, don’t gain from climate-change funding. Find a scientific society that doesn’t have an AGW type of climate statement, and also commercial entities like Apple, Google, Microsoft have climate statements consistent with AGW. Why would they not be objective? Here’s a typical statement from industry “Rising greenhouse-gas emissions pose significant risks to society and ecosystems. Since most of these emissions are energy-related, any integrated approach to meeting the world’s growing energy needs over the coming decades must incorporate strategies to address the risk of climate change. ” Guess who that one is from? ExxonMobil.

      • Latimer Alder

        @jim d

        That explains why my paycheque from the Big Oil Denier Conspiracy Shill Fund hasn’t come through!

        But it also makes Mike Mann’s continued ranting about it make him appear even more of a dickhead than I thought. And that is saying a lot.

      • Jim D – You seem so naive if judged by that statement. Businesses are dominated by government. If business doesn’t play along with government, they risk being investigated and regulated out of business. So typically, businesses will be the first ones to the table with the government so they 1) appear cooperative, 2) can influence the outcome of the game in their favor. Of course, there is also all that government money up for grabs these days.
        In other cases, the businesses just don’t know any better.
        To say the science societies get no money from the government is mis-leading. You can bet their members get grant money from the government. Also, just because the leadership of a society forces a statement, does not mean all the members agree with it.
        You entire comment is nothing more than a grand appeal to authority anyway.

      • jim2, I think the logic that ExxonMobil makes their pro-AGW statement to make the government happy is flawed. What does the government get out of it? They end up having to pay more if AGW is true and would rather it went away from an economic perspective. You seem to imply that everyone promotes AGW because the “government” wants it, not simply because the science makes sense. Parts of the government in Congress certainly don’t want it and would defund those parts that even want to act on it. Why wouldn’t the oil industry be paying more attention to those people? Your conspiracy theory doesn’t hold up to scrutiny. I think you need a new that is actually thought through a bit more.

      • “They end up having to pay more if AGW is true and would rather it went away from an economic perspective.”

        They don’t pay more. They increase their prices and customers pay more.

      • You seem to imply that everyone promotes AGW because the “government” wants it, not simply because the science makes sense.

        Well of course they do. The government and its scientists (what you deceptively call “the” science) keep telling them CAGW is true, and the the government is vastly more powerful than everyone else put together (writing “government” (ie with quotes around) is plain ludicrous).

      • Jim D (the right Jim, sorry)
        I didn’t say climate money in particular, I said government money in general. The Physics and other society members are all on government money.

        And why would commercial entities like Apple and even Exxon be in the Consensus? To be craven and get/stay on government’s good side. It’s usually good idea to humble yourself to toughest kid on the block.

      • OK, let me see if I get the conspiracy theory right. The government has lots of money it gives to its friends, but they are only friends if they say AGW is true. Why would the government care what people think about AGW, or is it just a litmus test to see who is sane to them?

      • “OK, let me see if I get the conspiracy theory right. The government has lots of money it gives to its friends, but they are only friends if they say AGW is true.”

        No, they can’t say AGW is untrue. If they do and it’s threat to the message, they campaign to shun that person. The increase the cost
        of that anyone employing free speech in regards to their religion. And
        also if someone like Ted Turner say we going get 10 degrees warmer and 30 year resulting in everyone becoming cannibals. Ted is speaking to power and saying something very brave.
        Or kooky stuff regarding CAGW is not hiss at, instead it is given a pat on the back.

      • There is no “conspiracy” – that is just a strawman. Government is simply acting in its own interest. Why do you try and pretend this is a “conspiracy” – its just BAU.

  53. WARMIST’ SCIENCE IS LIMITED; BUT SKEPTIC’s STUPIDITY IS UNLIMITED
    AGW promoters thrive on their doormats called ”Fake Skeptics”

    If one doesn’t understand that: small / big climatic changes have nothing to do with any phony GLOBAL warming – that’s NOT a Skeptic. That name was given to them by the Warmist – to deceive the public that: the Fakes are the Warmist opponents. Many of the Fakes are also soliciting for cash, on false presence – pretending to be against the Warmist. In reality; Warmist believe 90% of possibility of GLOBAL warming, in 100years – the Fakes believe 101% in many phony GLOBAL warmings’ and actively promote localized fluctuation in temp for few days in a year as GLOBAL warmings and GLOBAL ice ages. Records are established that: Warmist are scared from ”real proofs / facts” from me as the real opponent = prefer to use their own roles of toilet paper as ”opponents”. Imagine if Obama can nominate a roll of toilet paper as opponent, instead of Romney! What the Warmist are doing, beats the Great in history, who nominated his own horse as opponent in the senate… Fakes, cannot even qualify as Warmist horse

    Both Warmist and Fakes promote misleading / phony GLOBAL warmings. Climate is controlled by H2O, not by the Warmist & Fakes; the two cheeks of a same butt. Warmist presenting the Fakes as ”Skeptics” is using them; to silence the truth = prolonging the devastation of the climate and western economies. Some Fakes are daydreaming that: Warmist will admit guilt; because off Fake’s smelly skeletons in their closed: 89 was the warmest + LIA presented as phony ”GLOBAL” cooling… what a crappy dream!!! Stefan

  54. Here’s a fun article:

    http://psych.cornell.edu/sec/pubPeople/tdg1/Dawson.Gilo.Regan.pdf

    It shows that, in the paradigmatic confirmation bias setting–The Wason 4-Card Problem–motivated reasoning can actually undo confirmation bias. Two wrongs make a right.

    Or alternatively and more deeply: At the social level, the distribution and interaction of so-called “cognitive biases” might be an adaptive advantage for a species like us, equipped with language. Or, as the great Ed Hutchins once put it, “[Some] ways of organizing people around thinking tasks will lead to an exacerbation of the maladaptive aspects of [confirmation bias], whereas other forms of organization will actually make an adaptive virtue on the group level of what appears to be an individual vice.” (Hutchins. 1995. Cognition in the Wild, p. 240).

    Go figure.

  55. Non falsifiability is what did it for me. All the consensus in the world cannot prove a theory for which no contradictory evidence is hypothetically possible. Such a theory provides no new information and is almost always a tool of political interest, such as Intelligent Design.

    • What’s wrong with waiting for the temperature to rise over the next few decades? Wouldn’t that be falsifiability? I never understood when skeptics keep saying AGW doesn’t make any falsifiable predictions like other scientific theories. Just because it takes longer to prove doesn’t mean it is not a theory.

      • Latimer Alder

        @jim d

        If the temperature rises over the next few decades, it will demonstrate GW. But not necessarily AGW. There is an important difference.

        And after the last few weeks of the coldest wettest June on record in UK, I’d be grateful for any GW..however caused.

      • “If the temperature rises over the next few decades, it will demonstrate GW. But not necessarily AGW. There is an important difference.”

        Nice dodge.

        He was talking about falsification. If temperature doesn’t rise it will falsify AGW and GW. In other words AGW is falsifiable.

        In fact the argument that AGW isn’t falsifiable is contradicted by those climate skeptics who claim it has been falsified.

      • Latimer Alder

        @lollie

        No dodge involved. If the temperature rises over the next few decades, it will have exactly demonstrated that. Such a demonstration will have nothing to do with AGW, for which you need to show that A. the temperature has risen and B. Man’s activities caused it.

        B. is a lot lot harder to prove than A. So hard that nobody has even yet (AFAIK) come up with an experiment/observational strategy to attempt it.

        But how do you account for the lack of temperature rise in the last fifteen years or so? And note that if there is no rise than A falls, and B is irrelevant. If temperature isn’t going up then we don’t need to speculate about a possible cause

        Jeez – you’d think that people would grasp this ‘O’ level stuff about proofs by now. But we already know that climatology is only ‘sciency’ not scientific. The MSG version of real meat.

      • Latimer Alder

        Further answer:

        Way back when crazy old Albie Einstein proposed his Theory of Relativity.

        And the Great and the Good pooh-poohed it and said ‘We are Physicists. Trust US. Nobody without a PhD is capable of having an opinion on Our Subject. Newton is Infallible. He Rules OK’

        And Albie said ‘Newton was right, but my theory is even righter. I will put my cojones on the line in a falsifiable experiment. If I am right , you will see so, but if I am wrong it will be apparent too. Deal?’

        And the Great and the Good said ‘OK – Sounds like we’ll get this Newton sceptic loser to get egg all over his face..and in his mustache and hair. Deal’

        And Albie said

        ‘Go and measure very very carefully the position of the planet Mercury next time it passes across the face of the Sun. If I am right it will not quite be where Newton says it will be. And the error will be amount X in direction Y. If I am wrong, you will see it just where Newton says. I am putting my cojones in your hands here’

        And they went away and measured the position of Mercury. And lo an dbehold when they looked very carefully Albie was right and the difference from Newton was indeed amount X in direction Y.

        And the Great and the Good said ‘F..k us he’s some clever dude that Albie! Give him a Nobel Prize and remember – we always believed in him’

        So that is what I call a ‘falsifiable’ theory. One that makes definite predictions that can be proved or disproved by experiment/observation. Einstein’s prediction of the orbit of Mercury is classic.

        But AGW theory gets nowhere near such a level of falsifiability. Firstly it b=never makes any thing resembling a definite prediction in anything better than the vaguest terms. And it is such a slippery eel (depending on who one is talking to) that almost any observations can be presented as ‘consistent with our predictions’. It is not too much of a lampoon to suggest that the alarmist guide to British weather forecasting is as follows (copyright The Met Office)

        If it is unduly cold: – a temporary lull in the inexorable planetary rise to Thermageddon. AGW melting of the polar ice caps means that it is much colder than usual..thanks to AGW

        If it is normal: – enjoy this brief spell of normality while you can. Your chlidren will never see such balmy conditions again. But don’t forget Thermageddon is just around the corner

        If it is unduly hot: – Definite proof that the warming we so much fear has taken hold of our climate. Prepare for Thermageddon

        If it is unduly dry: – Of course it is drier. An inevitable consequence of AGW. Deserts are hot and dry. Prepare for Thermageddon

        If it is unduly wet: – Warmer air evaporates more ocean. So rainfall is higher, An inevitable consequence of AGW. Prepare for Thermageddon

        If it snows a lot: An inevitable consequence of warmer oceans, more water in the atmosphere and so more snow. Prepare for Thermageddon

        If it deosn’t snow at all: Of course t doesn’t snow you imbecile. It is too warm for snow because of AGW. Prepare for Thermageddon

        ….

        Now do you see the difference between real cojones on the line quantifiable falsifiability of Einstein and the handwaving qualitative ‘consistent with’ and ‘not inconsistent with’ soggy mush masquerading as science we get fed by the alarmists?

      • Brilliant

        Thank you.

        Please see also => http://bit.ly/LQRopm

      • If it warms 3 degrees by 2100, I am sure the skeptics will be scrambling for even wilder theories than now (if that is possible) to explain it, while the AGW side will have another century consistent with their theory in the record books. At some point the skeptics will be marginalized as loonies and lose support.

      • “If” is a mighty big word

      • “If it warms by 3 degrees…” The biggest difference between the skeptics and the convinced is that the skeptics are actually looking to reduce uncertainty while the convinced revel in it. If the system, Earth, is reasonably stable the temperatures will approach a limit with the rough shape of T*e^t/RC, The thermal mass of the oceans is large but not infinite, the thermal mass of the atmosphere is three orders of magnitude smaller than the oceans, the lapse rate will change with ocean heat content, which is a negative feed back. If the Earth were prone to thermal instability we would not be here discussing the issue. The current TCR estimates are 1.6C and decreasing which does not imply 3C with T*e^t/RC as an expected system curve.

        http://i122.photobucket.com/albums/o252/captdallas2/climate%20stuff/nothere.png

      • Jim D,
        If it does not warm by 3.0C by 2100 AGW true believers will claim they meant it would happen by 200 and will be worse than predicted.
        As far as who is losing support, you need a really serious reality check.
        But if you did a reality check you would not be an AGW kook, would you?

      • Returning to the point. AGW: Falsifiable, yes. Provable, as much as any other placeholder theory (e.g quantum mechanics, the standard model, general relativity).

      • BatedBreath

        Jim D: AGW: Falsifiable, yes.

        In its present state? What physical measurements would you suggest ?

  56. Chad Wozniak

    Actually, the psychology of the AGW tyrannists is very simple: control freakery, perverse motives, and greed. As I’ve said before AGW isn’t about the environment nor even climate change. It’s about authoritarian impulses and knowingly, intentionally destructive agendas – and about the theft of trillions of dollars from those of us who do legitimate work. .

    It should surprise no one that the AGW crowd won’t listen to contrary evidence. What else do you expect from doctrinaire ideologues?

    There is always real danger in “consensus” of the sort proclaimed by the AGW fascists, Historically, this sort of “consensus” has given us Mao Zedong’s 120 million murdered, Stalin’s 80 million, and Hitler’s 30 million, for openers. Not to mention the immediate, clear and present danger to liberty as we know (or used to know) it.

    • what contrary evidence aren’t the AGW crowd listening to?

      It’s climate “skeptics” that refuse to listen to, or learn from, contrary evidence. Only the other week we had WUWT pushing the debunked Lassen ’91 solar-temperature link. And if it isn’t debunked it shows global temperatures have decoupled from the Sun in the last few decades.

      Either way climate “skeptics” like WUWT are ignoring contrary evidence.

      • Latimer Alder

        This is like totally f…g weird!

        You seem to be of the opinion that because Anthony Watts or Andrew Montford or McSteve or whoever reports something, that everybody who claims to be a sceptic immediately agrees with its correctness and importance. And further that from that day to this we all remain completely devoted to our allegiance to it . Utterly bizarre.

        It may be the case that in your little religion as soon as something is published in Team Daily Orders or Books by our Great Leader Jim, The Autobiography of Mike – the World’s Greatest Living Scientist (and ever so modest with it) or The Thoughts of Chairman Gavin at RC then you are all obliged to be able to quote chapter and verse from now to doomsday.

        But, as I have tried to point out several times, scepticism isn’t the reverse image of alarmism. It does not define itself in a particle/antiparticle relationship. And the bloggers mentioned would, I think no more imagine that they are the keepers of the flame of sceptic belief than that they could fly to the moon or win the Olympic Gold Medal for cat herding or unicorn scat collecting

        I do not base my scepticism on a ‘party line’ dictated by anybody else…nor I suspect does anybody else here.. You may have noticed a pretty general diversity of views among those who do not accept that AGW alarmism has been shown to have any scientific basis. And that is why your little barbs about ‘sceptics say….’ and Michael’s (TWGLS) daft remarks about ‘the sceptic brand’ are not only pointless but also silly. You are firing your weapons at imaginary targets and just wasting your effort.

        Like Anthony Watts or Andrew Montford and others, I write about what Is interesting and compelling to me. If others endorse my views then I am pleased. But whether they do or not has very little to do with what I write and believe. Telling me that abc on another blog said something obliging or disobliging about xyz has very little influence.

        And if you have a dispute with any of those bloggers, take it up with them. They are the only ones who can fix it. If Anthony has published something that displeases you…go over there and make your point there.

      • “You seem to be of the opinion that because Anthony Watts or Andrew Montford or McSteve or whoever reports something, that everybody who claims to be a sceptic immediately agrees with its correctness and importance.”

        All climate skeptics are complicit apologists in the unscientific nonsense posted on blogs like icecap.us, steven goddards blog, WUWT and climate depot. The existence of such blogs is a reflection of the political bias and poor standards of science that underly climate “skepticism”. To boot it also reveals the hypocrisy of many climate “skeptic” accusations leveled at scientists: If climate “skeptics” really did want better standards for science, they’d have cleaned up their OWN act long ago.

        When I read Hansen, Schmidt and Mann on matters of climate I see competence and gravitas in their coverage of the subject. When I read climate skeptics I just see jokers flailing out with error ridden logic and nonsense in a bid to deny.

      • Latimer Alder

        @lolwot

        You do write a lot of complete twaddle (or as we Brits say ‘bollo**s).

        I am no ‘complicit apologist’ in what anybody else writes. And you are verging on the deranged (no surprise there) to suggest that I am.

        As far as I can recall I have never even heard of one of the blogs you cite, let alone visited it, (though I will now,..thanks for the tip), so the accusation of ‘complicit apology’ for it has no legs.

        The idea that ‘skeptics should clean up their act’ is equally daft. I hold no brief for and am not responsible for what other people write. Very happy to take responsibility for my own actions..but that’s as far as it goes.

        ‘Climatology’, however claims to be more than a bunch of individuals. It likes to see itself as a ‘filed’, and I’m sure would aspire it being ‘a profession’ .It has a hierarchy and a few house journals and government grants and promotion prospects and support staff and buildings and conferences and all that jazz. It also has its own culture.It can be viewed as an orgnisation like any other.

        As I have repeatedly tried to point out (to little avail within your limited world view) climatology and scepticism are not reverse images of each other, any more than (for example) believing in the Catholic Church has as its exact religious opposite not believing in the Catholic Church. There is only one way to believe, but an infinite variety of ways not to believe. Atheism, Islam, Church of England, Agnosticism, Paganism, worshipping the end of the toothpaste tube are all ways of not believing, but they are all different. No point in a Catholic priest saying to a pagan…look over there the Islamists pray 5 times a day, so therefore you must too. It ain’t like that.

        If these concepts are too hard for you, then I suggest we end it here. I’ll let you get back to your study of True Belief.

      • All AGW believers are then complicit for Romm, “Time’s Up!”, and all the many many other AGW claims made by anyone who claims to be a believer.

      • When I read Hansen, Schmidt and Mann on matters of climate I see competence and gravitas in their coverage of the subject.

        Totally obscured by the data hiding, peer-review fiddling, crooked statistics and obvious political agenda.

      • It’s “skeptics” who have fiddled peer-review, and to cover their crime up they accuse scientists of doing it instead:

        Pal Review – the True Story and the Fairy Tale
        http://www.skepticalscience.com/pal-review-true-story-fairy-tale.html

        Hansen has made his source code and data public for years now. He doesn’t get any credit for that by climate “skeptics” who only misrepresent and distort his views for their own agenda. He’s regularly accused of hiding this data that is public, and countless other false and disproven accusations of data manipulation are made against him.

        The fact BEST backed up his work is ignored by skeptics. Saying Hansen has a political agenda is just smear work. There is zero evidence that Hansen has a political agenda.

      • No, it’s “scientists” who have fiddled peer-review, IPCC reports etc, indeed “redefined” it as one of the Climategate crooks put it.

        And Hansen hasn’t been instrumental in driving climate political policy?? Now you’re really having a laugh. Does he have an agenda other than politics? would be a better question.

      • Latimer Alder

        @lolwot

        ‘There is zero evidence that Hansen has a political agenda’

        H’mm. What were these all about then?

        http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OUMqiZ3XQi0

        http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nvzAvN0E064

      • James “death trains” Hansen is merely a humble scientist calling ’em like he sees ’em. Just don’t let him get near the thermostat if you’re holding a hearing on “global warming.:

      • Tomcat,
        lolwot is amazingly desperate in his position.
        This is fascinating.

      • Here is what academics do to academic skeptics who state the truth:
        http://wattsupwiththat.com/2012/06/16/another-skeptical-university-professor-fired-related-to-carbs-pm2-5-air-pollution-regulation-scandal/
        Fire them.
        The AGW believer argument that it is skeptics messing with honest communication is breath taking in its deliberate ignorance and deception. Climategate e-mails demonstrate the team’s approach to pushing fraud in a deliberate fashion.
        But notice how our true believer friends refuse to even take a serious look at cg, much less deal with its implications.
        They would rather talk about 20 dubious rude anonymous e-mails than deal with thousands of well documented e-mails.
        Cowards.

  57. Climatism is just the tip of the iceberg of the Left’s jihad on Americanism.

    • Another example of why the more sensible want to distance themselves from ‘climate skepticism’.

      • Fearful Western schoolteachers will rescue humanity from Global Warming, True or False?

        It’s really quite easy to expose the hypocrisy and intellectual dishonesty of the government-funded schoolteachers of Climatism. For the longest while they took convenient advantage of the privileges of academia to avoid scrutiny — we have come to expect that from those in government. And, so it is disappointing but nonetheless true that schoolteachers and their Leftist comrades – Climatism followers (Lenin’s liars) — hid facts made up data, abused science lied to the public and breached every fiduciary duty, presumption and expectation of good faith in the process. All the while these Climatists blithely demanded of us all that we trust them, keep quiet, abuse others if they didn’t keep quiet and above all, keep taking their little ‘red’ pills to know what is good for us.

      • Sure, sure it’s about schoolteachers saving the world from industrialization and capitalism.

  58. Please delete the previous identical post as it was badly formatted.

    I am a skeptic because IPCC’s projections don’t agree with observation as shown =>http://bit.ly/HnYPQf

    There is no motivation in this. That is what the comparison of IPCC’s projection with the observed data shows.

    Here are some excellent passages I read about a SCIENTIST:

    “As he formulates his final theory, the scientist subjects it to intensive criticism. Seeking to make it as useful as possible, he asks himself: Is this proposed law universal throughout the extent of space and the passage of time? Does it lead anywhere? Does it predict one state of affairs as arising out of another? Can it be transposed from one frame of reference to another and still remain valid? And finally, because of his innate passion for orderliness, his aesthetic appreciation of things which are meet and fitting, he asks: Is this theory as elegant as possible? Could I formulate it more succinctly?

    Now comes the moment of verification and truth: testing the theory back against protocol experience to establish its validity. If it is not a trivial theory, it suggests the existence of unknown facts which can be verified by further experiment. An expedition may go to Africa to watch an eclipse and find out if starlight really does bend relatively as it passes the edge of the sun. After a Maxwell and his theory of electro-magnetism come a Hertz looking for radio waves and a Marconi building a radio set. If the theoretical predictions do not fit in with observable facts, then the theorist has to forget his disappointment and start all over again. This is the stern discipline which keeps science sound and rigorously honest.

    If a theory survives all tests and is accepted into the canon of scientific law, it becomes a fact in its own right and a foundation for higher spires of thought. Abstract though it may be, a theory which has been proved can suggest new hi-fl sets or hybrid cattle just as surely as do experiments with electricity or stock-breeding. It serves as a starting point for new theories just as surely as any experience on the plane of protocols. Galileo’s formula for the increasing speed at which a body falls freely near the surface of the earth became a single example of Newton’s law of gravitation. Newton’s law, in turn, became a single special case in Einstein’s theory that gravitation is a manifestation of the geometry of space and time. At this moment some child in a hamlet somewhere may be preparing himself for the work of constructing a “unified field theory” of both atom and cosmos, in which Einstein’s sweeping concepts of relativity will appear as mere details.”

    The Scientist
    Life Science Library
    By Henry Margenau, David Bergamini
    And the Editors of LIFE
    1966

    Is one who utterly believes in the above beautiful passages anti-science?

  59. “I’m not worried about sea-level rises,” James Lovelock chortled “At worst, I think it will be 2ft a ce,ury,” and moved to Dorset to live by the beach in a lifeguard cottage, tra-la.

    • Latimer Alder

      For those unable to comprehend such a massive increase, ago and look at a standard British brick built house. 8 courses of standard bricks with mortar are pretty much exactly 2 feet.

      So Lovelock anticipates the rise to be 8 housebricks per century…or one brick by 2024, another in 2036, one more in 2048 and so on until 2112.
      Much the same old rate that it’s been for many centuries.

      In the UK our coastal waters are tidal. Every day, in the centre of our biggest city (London), the tides rise an fall by about 80 housebricks in 6 hours. We have accommodated these tides without too much difficulty and most of us don’t even notice them. I’m hard pushed to believe that a one housebrick increase every twelve years will bring about the end of civilisation.

      Accordingly I am seriously so not going to support the demolition of our existing economic system because of fears over sealevel rise.

    • You are right to now worry about sea level rise.
      While in Europe in 2007, we visited the Blue Grotto.
      http://www.mediterranean-cruise-ports-easy.com/capri-blue-grotto.html
      A lot has been written about this natural cave and its surreal, phosphorescent blue light, created by the daylight entering the cave through an underwater opening located below the entrance.
      The blue is intensified even more by the fact that the water filters through all the red shades of light and what you see is a blue so vibrant and real you feel like you can capture its essence in a jar.
      We know for sure that the Capri Blue Grotto has been known since Roman times, especially under the rule of emperor Tiberius.
      The remains of statues of the sea god Neptune/Triton, dating to the 1st Ct. A.D. have been found in the Grotto and they once lined the walls of the cave decorating Tiberius’ private swimming pool or nympheum.
      In other words, the ocean level is much like it was two thousand years ago. During the next two thousand years, sea level will be much like it was during the past two thousand years. Ice melts and causes warm times and then it snows and that causes cold times. The oceans go up and down during these natural cycles. Ocean level is at or near an upper bound and will go down to the lower bound as the cold time takes its turn.

  60. Harold Pierce Jr

    I have in prepartion this article for the op-ed page:
    The Late John Daly and Global Warming
    which I _will_ send to a number of north American newspaper.

    I shall post a draft here and at WUWT. Stay tuned.

  61. The elementary point these psychologists miss, is that, as a first approximation
    – climate scientists are on the government shilling, and hence have an in-built bias to promote the interests of government whereever possible (in this case by propagandizing alarm),
    – skeptics are not on the government shilling, and are thus not preselceted for this bias.

    Being on government money themselves, the psychologists would have the same pro-political bias, and at the same time be loathe to admit any of this.

    • Latimer Alder

      While on the topic of money, has anybody in the sceptic community mistakenly received my paycheque from

      Slavering Big Oil Denier Shills Bite the Head off Babies Attack Hard Working Trustworthy Climatologists Ever So Good at Statistics While Wallowing in the Trough of Anti-Science Filth and Slime 2012 (UK branch)?

      It seems, as ever, to have gone astray.

      • Latimer

        I thought I might have been accidentally receiving your pay cheque but my one has the words ‘ knuckle draggng neanderthal ‘ in it, so guess it can’t be yours after all..
        Tonyb.

      • Sadder still, Lati does it from ideological conviction.

      • Latimer Alder

        And what ‘ideological conviction’ might that be?

  62. jim2 | June 15, 2012 at 10:13 pm | Reply
    “And it’s the most incompetent one’s that try to paint the entire skeptic community as politically motivated.”

    Well, the starting point in all this this is that alarmist faith is without question politically sponsored and hence motivated. And it is true that a part of scepticism is due to a recognition and criticism of this political motivation that is the driving force of alarmism.

    So the political motivation of some sceptics, is but a reaction to the political motivation of most believers. The latter are enthusiastic about even needless tax increases, the former first want to see the need.

  63. Because I am a climate realist, a skeptic, a denier, I am a minority. I see so-called papers, studies and other pseudo-psychological material being produced to explain away what is basically a fundamental political difference in my viewpoint from the establishment’s. I see some notable bloggers discussing such papers and what I find indecent and appalling, is the complete lack of condemnation.

    http://thepointman.wordpress.com/2012/05/25/the-real-bastards/

    If you want to know where such thinly-disguised psychobabble leads, have a look at –

    Robert Van Voren’s site http://www.robertvanvoren.com/

    Pointman

    • Your website is amazing.
      Thank you for your link and the link to Van Vorven as well.

    • Pointman,

      You can’t be a true skeptic and a denier at the same time. Deniers give skeptics a bad name, just as true believer alarmists give warmists a bad name.and as the extremists of any group can taint the perception of that group by the outside world.

      • You’ll become a denier, which the “educated” ones among them will carefully explain to you, just means you deny stuff but all the grownups in the room know it really means you’ve just dropped down the morality ladder to the level of a holocaust denier, which you’re being likened to. The not so educated ones usually stick to simpler names like climate criminal because the alliteration makes it easier for them to remember it.

        http://thepointman.wordpress.com/2011/11/28/climategate-2-yes-theyve-been-lying-to-you/

        Pointman

      • Long on opinion, very short on facts.

        Just your garden variety ‘skeptic’, otherwise known as the credulous contrarians, trying to hide their ideological position behind a very thin veneer of ‘scienciness’.

      • You been looking in the mirror again Michael?

        Pointman

      • There are few whose veneer of ‘scienciness’ is thinner than the core of alarmists scientists themselves, who find nothing untoward in ‘Professor’ Phil Jones : “Why should I show you my data when I know you’ll try and find something wring with it”. And hiding declines, circumventing peer-review, gatekeeping …

  64. Beth Cooper

    Climatereason 16/06 5.o2am:
    Well Tony, as perhaps the sole remaining Neanderthal on the planet, you might jest qualify for a new post here. You have the ground breaking, inside story and it could pay well, even get you a grant. We’ve had ‘The Righteous Mind,’ The Republican Brain,’ “Conservative Perspectives 1&11,’ ‘The Nature of Skeptic Intelligence,’ say, why not The Neanderthal Brain?

  65. If the theoretical predictions do not fit in with observable facts, then the theorist has to forget his disappointment and start all over again. This is the stern discipline which keeps science sound and rigorously honest.

    • Girma,
      When one reads how the AGW believers approach uncertainty it is clear they have left the world of science far behind.

      • You idea of certainty is:

        “I am certain that doubling CO2 won’t cause a catastrophe” (with no proof to back that up)

        AGW believers approach is:

        “doubling CO2 may lead to catastrophe” (noting that we don’t know because it’s never been done before)

        Who has really left the world of science far behind?

      • lolwot,
        No, the way science works is someone claims CO2 is causing a catastrophe. I ask “please show the evidence”.
        I am still waiting.
        The way AGW works is believers claim CO2 is causing a catastrophe.
        I ask, “please show the evidence”.
        Believers call me a denier, a cynic, someone endangering my children and grandchildren, an idiot, a person unworthy of an opinion, etc.

      • lolwot has got his wires badly crossed. ““doubling CO2 may lead to catastrophe” (noting that we don’t know because it’s never been done before)” is the basic skeptic position.

        The alamist/truebeliever/consensus position is that catastrophe is very likely, never mind that it’s never happened before, and we have no way of testing/knowing this now. Just give us your money anyway.

      • That’s not the case. The skeptic position is that catastrophe can’t happen if CO2 doubles. We’ve all heard skeptics using the “CO2 is life”, “CO2 is plant food”, “CO2 is a harmless trace gas” arguments.

        If climate skeptics admitted the possibility that catastrophe could occur as a result of CO2 doubling they’d have to admit human emissions of CO2 that stand to do just that are dangerous. Even a 1% chance of catastrophe would still make the act dangerous and that won’t do for Climate skeptics who want to paint human emissions as harmless, therefore they can’t admit any liability.

        If you look at the IPCC reports they never claim catastrophe is certain. They don’t even ascribe certainty to the recent warming being human caused. They say: “Most of the observed increase in global average temperatures since the mid-20th century is very likely due to the observed increase in anthropogenic greenhouse gas concentrations.”

        In numeric terms they are saying there’s 90 to 99% chance that more than half the warming since the mid-20th century is due to the increase in GHG concentrations.

        Of course this reasoned and sensible summary the IPCC takes cannot be tackled by climate skeptics so instead they misrepresent the IPCC and erect strawmen pretending that the IPCC is claiming the warming is all due to man and isn’t mentioning any uncertainty.

      • Latimer Alder

        @lolwot

        There you go again. Attempting to come up with a broad brush ‘the sceptic position’ because somebody who is sceptical once presented their view about something.

        I support my local football team. As do many others, My view is that the current centre forward is not quite good enough, Others disagree. But in your narrow view as a supporter of our greatest rivals, you would try to present that ‘all the fans view is that the centre forward isn’t good enough’

        At the art of misrepresentation, you have few peers..or you are so blinded by your devotion to the One True Way that you don’t even know you are doing it.

      • Gavin Schmidt is going to get POed at you for throwing around the “C” word like this. Didn’t you know that the C in CAGW is all a skeptic plot to undermine the science? Better check your in box for the memo, ’cause you musta missed it.

      • GaryM,

        More like a plot to underine any skerrick of credibilty the ‘skeptics’ might have.

        Seems to be working quite well.

      • Skeptics represent themselves as a single group when it suits them (publishing and promoting a petition for example), but disassociate themselves from each other when it doesn’t.

        You don’t see much conflict between skeptics in public on matters of the science, despite supposedly having very different views. Is it because the clever ones don’t want to annoy the useful idiots.

      • Skeptics never disagree on the science??? What have you been smoking?
        And you have inadvertently nicely summarized the lack of disagreement in the “Consensus” – the clever and dishonest ones driving it don’t want to upset the useful idiots, who might otherwise start ending their improper silence on the Climategate shenanigans.

      • Actually, not to quibble too much with you lolwot, but the true skeptic position would be to remain unconvinced until given sufficient evidence to accept a position on an issue, and then to always hold that position as “provisionally true” until any counter evidence is presented, but to never be a blind “true believer”. Thus, I was skeptical about AGW until I did a few years of study on the issue (before there were blogs or even the internet!). Now I accept AGW and the general notion of the Anthropocene as provisionally true, though at heart, I am always a skeptic (about a good many things), and that has served me well.

      • Dave Springer

        Catastrophe could happen if CO2 *does not* double. A doubling of CO2 may delay or even prevent the end of the Holocene interglacial. Or possibly prevent a repeat of the Little Ice Age which would still rank as catastrophic. CAGW droolers seem oblivious to the fact that the earth has been in an ice age for the past several million years. Cold is something to fear. Warm is something to welcome. We can live without freezing cold winters, dummy. We can’t live without warm summers.

      • Lolwot, you genuinely don’t have a clue what skepticism is about. You are just going by the comicbook strawman skeptics you hear about on Realclimate and official government propaganda sources. Can you point to any significant numbers of deniers (ie not skeptics like most here) who say doubling CO2 “cannot” cause a catastrophe?

        The IPCC is there to promote alarmism, nothing else, since this is what serves the purpose of bringing about world governance, the objective of its parent the UN. Pachauri has pretty much said as much. To do this they have lead authors review their own work, etc etc, so as not to “dilute the message” with any skeptical views. It is a shambles and a fraud from start to finish.

  66. The problem with warmists is that they insist in misusing the term “climate change” instead of “anthropogenic global warming”. As Jo Nova writes: “In the search for the truth only accurate language will do”.

    But, are warmists really searching for the truth? Are they ready to accept reality? Are they willing to be intellectually honest? I just don’t think so.

    About the misuse of the term, here you have two excellent articles:
    Jo Nova: http://bit.ly/OXdk1D
    Roger Pielke Sr: http://bit.ly/N12WGM

  67. I haven’t read all the comments so apologies if I’m repeating points already made. When social scientists ask questions of the kind, “why don’t some people believe the scientists”, isn’t there a suppressed premiss, that the scientists must be right, (so these odd-balls must have some other reason for ‘denying’ AGW, such as they don’t like its implications for political reasons etc). Quite possibly there is a big over-lap between the groups who don’t like the political implications of AGW and deniers, but that does not at all mean that denialism is a refusal to believe (scientific findings) on account of their implications. The refusal to believe is entirely because of the weakness of the case for belief that scientists are making. Why should we believe (that we’re in the warmest epoch, due to man’s activity) when we know Greenland was inhabited in the Middle Ages? Why should we believe historic assessments of global temperature which, given variations in coverage, methodology, expertise, can be little more than an informed guess? Why should we believe that selected old trees can tell us anything precise about temperatures? Why should we believe people who offer evidence reliant on statistical methodology which they themselves appear not to fully understand? And thats for starters. You can disbelieve science and scientists in this sphere quite easily, quite rationally, without having any other kind of ‘agenda’ at all.

    • “The refusal to believe is entirely because of the weakness of the case for belief that scientists are making. Why should we believe (that we’re in the warmest epoch, due to man’s activity) when we know Greenland was inhabited in the Middle Ages?”

      Here’s a question for you: Why do you believe Greenland was warmer in the Middle Ages just because it was inhabited? Greenland is inhabited today.

      • “Here’s a question for you: Why do you believe Greenland was warmer in the Middle Ages just because it was inhabited? Greenland is inhabited today.”
        “Greenland is a country the size of Europe, yet it has only 51 farms (all of them sheep farms except for one with 22 cows) and 9 forests, all of which are both tiny and cultivated by hand. The only vegetable grown in Greenland is potatoes. All other vegetables are imported, mostly from Denmark. ”
        [Potatoes came from the New World- early Viking didn’t have potatoes]
        “Greenland has been on the cusp of agriculture since the 16th century. Before this, agriculture was practiced by Viking settlers. Then came the “Little Ice Age” of the 16th century, wiping out Norse settlers and dooming agriculture in the region. But temperatures have been rising steadily since the 80s, and farming may soon be possible.”
        http://www.environmentalgraffiti.com/ecology/greenland-is-green-again/392

        Your evidence it wasn’t warmer?

      • From your link: “A local supermarket in Greenland is stocking fresh locally grown cauliflower, broccoli, and cabbage for the first time.”

        So they can grow various vegetables and farm cattle today. So how did viking inhabitance differ that indicates it was warmer back then?

      • Latimer Alder

        Greenhouses.

      • Wow! It’s amazing what a fraction of a degree increase in average global temperature can do

      • “So they can grow various vegetables and farm cattle today. So how did viking inhabitance differ that indicates it was warmer back then?”

        Well, it might get as warm or warmer in Greenland in a couple decades.
        And it could be presently as warm. Or maybe in decade from now it gets colder.
        It seems it’s starting to get somewhere in the range of how warm it was back at the time of early vikings.
        Now I don’t think one can say it was cooler in days of vikings. And seems fair to say it was warmer back in those days, but perhaps within couple decades one can say with some confident it’s as warm or maybe warmer as compared to those early times.
        Also the modern people would better chance of finding warmer area, compared some people in wooden boats. Or no doubt the viking did some exploration to find the best locations, but probably fairly inadequate as compared what people there know about the region.

        But in any case, issue is we suppose warmer because humans have been emitting about a trillion of tonnes of CO2 over the last decade or so. And in Greenland at least, one can’t say we are measurably warmer.

      • I don’t suppose it could be that Viking technology was less developed than Greenland has now for the first time ?

      • Dave Springer

        When glaciers retreat today human artifacts are often found beneath them. That includes Viking artifacts beneath retreating glaciers in Greenland.

        Beneath the ice in Antarctica lies the remains of a temperate forest. During most of the earth’s history it had no permanent ice caps. Four million years ago it had no ice caps.

        Mind blowing, huh?

      • Dave Springer | June 17, 2012 at 6:55 am said: ”When glaciers retreat today human artifacts are often found beneath them. That includes Viking artifacts beneath retreating glaciers in Greenland.”

        David, are you ready yet for some honest science? Here: 1: some american warplanes, on the way to Europe; have fallen on the top off Greenland’s ice / now those planes are 183m below the surface. 2]Vikings left on the surface of the ice artifacts / skeletons… what happens is; people have to learn the truth about the polar caps from Stefan on the end!!! ”Geothermal heat is melting the ice on the polar caps, from below; every day and night of the year!!! B] new ice is created, by freeze-drying the moisture from the air / without rain or snow!!!! Those WW2 planes in few hundred years, will be on the bottom of a 1km thick ice. David, you are too ignorant to know what is happening today on the planet – instead you are stating with confidence about the past = shrunken brains by Ian’s crap. Learn normal functions in nature / by the laws of physics / on my blog. Plimer’s stench you are using; will not be fashionable for long.

        2] ”warbling of the planet” (Milutin’s theory, plus ”movement of the tectonic plates”; can produce surprises / confusion, to Fakes demagogs like you.
        b] if Antarctic was, where is. now and those fossilized palms were growing there – Indonesia, Congo, Central America’s temp would have being 105C, 5C above boiling point. If you prefer rto start to use your own brains, instead of Plimer’s crap – go to my website and read the lot..
        David, can you comprehend some ”honest science by your ”little brains” it’s up to you?! cheers!

    • Harold Pierce Jr

      When you post a comment, use short paragraphs of about 6 or 7 lines. A large blockof text is too difficult to read. I generally skip over these comments.

  68. Beth Cooper

    Johanna says ,16/06,5.47am:
    ‘We are being offered doghouse roses, at best.’

    I do not want their doghouse roses either, overblown and the perfume isn’t right.

  69. Adam has said he would have a private chat with me (exchanged phone numbers, I thought I would explain where I am coming from on his blog, and hope that we will still be able to talk.
    http://talkingclimate.org/understanding-climate-scepticism-a-sceptic-responds/comment-page-1/#comment-266

    It is the weekend (and I’m pretty sure Adam is out having a social life, so should I ! ) so it will pend moderation for a while. (all my other comments have been approved)

    —— A bit long —- sorry..

    Hi Adam, I would still love to have a chat with you.

    But as a phsycologist surely you must be aware how ‘sceptics’ must percieve you, and the fact that perhaps you would be percieved as having your own ideological backage and biases as well.

    Additionally, you must recognise it is hard to be percieved as a nuetral scientist, on the particular issue of climate change and climate policies, when you are policy advisor to COIN, which is percived as a totally activist, policy & political lobbying organisation,

    and that you were carrying a banner at Copenhagen with ‘Act Now’ on it, and writing at the time as a green party candidate..
    http://t.co/Hdqz9Wbn

    Photo, and write up Green Party mag it came from –
    http://t.co/ezqsBusb

    Not that there is anything ‘wrong’ in that, ie lots of nice sincere people are greens, (my sister in law, having been a Green Party MP candidate, councilor, spokesperson, Green Party Press Officer, and the former editor of Greenworld, is a personal testament to that) but you must realise you will be percieved as an activist AND a lobbyist for policies (ie anti-fossil fuels, and nuclear?) who also questions aspects of capitalism, and you will be challenged as such.

    You clearly believe having your own blog ‘a hundred months and counting’ and your other writing, that dangerous climate change is jus taround the corner. You consider the science is established enough on that, to state above:

    “Scepticism about cli­mate policies — and debate about what altern­at­ives might be– seems much more important than a repeated doubting of well-established science.”

    Whilst I am mainly sceptical about policies, these are driven by the science, where very many sceptics do question, just how well established it is the science, at least the projections af dangerous climate change, believing that these depend in part on the models which are diverting now from reality. The example of Prof Judith Curry, at Tamsins’ blog, being an expression of that – [models] OVER estimated. The climate scientists will cheefully discuss whole areas of climate science where there is very low or medium confidence in the drivers of climate change. (this is all in the IPCC reports, in the main text of wg1)

    Thus we hit the problem of climate communication, many want to move the debate on to policy (the science settled) yet many do not consider this to be correct, especially with respect to dangerous climate change. ie perfectly happy to accept, doubling CO2 will cause a degree or so of warming, with possible benign benfits. Prof Richard Betts warned a while ago, that environmentalists should not over hype 2C, that this could occur and impact be neglible .. ie it is all uncertain.

    and rather than allow the debate on the issue of the science, we end up phsycologising reason for denial/secpticism of the science.

    Now I do applaud this blog post, it shows a willingness to talk, yet George Marshall, and many of your aquaintances and collegues) has done so much to polarise debate, with Halls of Shame, talking about denial, etc

    This shameful language of deniers, anti-science, flatearthers, etc has made it into main stream political speech

    @AJCorner
    loving Brown calling people ‘deniers’ and ‘luddites’ on Cif. Tell it like it is Gordy! http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/cif-green
    12:59 PM Dec 7th, 2009 from web
    http://twitter.com/AJCorner/status/6429777167

    Gordon Brown’s speech reffering to flat-earther, anti-science climate deniers and luddites, appalled me, I thought it was dispicable ignorant POLITICAL rhetoric from the Prime Minister of my country, that with Ed Milliband frequent ignorant use of denier, and a shocking reference to ‘climate sabatouer’ (ie en par with terrorism)made me very concerned and is a part, why I started being very sceptical.

    Yet my response does not seem to fit in your world view of why people are sceptical.

    Perhaps you and your collegues could reflect on that.

    Just going to quote from Bishop Hill, the fundamental problem we seem to have with communicating with each other..

    “Ok, with the best will in the world, how are you going to have a conversation based on their terms, which appear to be ‘we must discuss policy, the science is settled’? Where to start? I am not advocating not talking to them, I just can’t see how we are able to, if they will not admit ‘there is room for doubt.'” – Rhoda

    May I ask if you see another reason why many are secptical, the sheer nastyness and political nature of the rhetoric of those champoiingthe cause.

    What would you say personally about scepticism, to a cambridge professor, that has been put into a politicised AGW consensus, well funded USA website, ‘Denier, Disinformation Database.

    Tagged and labelled a climate denier, Part of the denial industry, responsible for ‘disinformation’ and’ misinformation’.

    basically a blacklist of dissentters, accused of, delieberatley lying and spreding faslehodos and propoganda. Would you be sceptical of motives of people that creted this database.

    What would you say to Professor Don Keiller, treated like this publically, just a scientist disagreeing and asking questions of other scientists?

    http://www.desmogblog.com/don-keiller

    I know at least half a dozen people in that database. I would prefer not to be put in it mself. very nasty stuff. And yes I frequently get called a ‘denier’, in the above politicised context it really offends me.

    Dr Tamsin Edwards had this to say a while back about me and Andrew:

    “I am an example of a consensusist who has stopped using denier directly because of Barry, Bish and this forum.

    Name calling is ever so counterproductive. Today I was defending you lot to (particle physics) friends, yesterday to climate/stats friends, saying that denier offends and there is a spectrum of opinions anyway.” – Dr Tamsin Edwards

    http://www.bishop-hill.net/blog/2011/9/28/dellers-on-reason.html?currentPage=3#comments

    At the time, I was writing about not calling those on the offensive consensus names. (even having an argument about it with James Delingpole earlier in the comments, as was Ben Pile, similar tone to me)

    To repeat whilst at Copenhagen campaigning, you tweeted

    @AJCorner
    loving Brown calling people ‘deniers’ and ‘luddites’ on Cif. Tell it like it is Gordy! http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/cif-green
    12:59 PM Dec 7th, 2009 from web
    http://twitter.com/AJCorner/status/6429777167

    So what is your opinion Adam, am I a ‘denier’ for questioning aspect of the science, have you moved on from that copenhagen tweet, about ‘Deniers’ & ‘luddites’

    As I said I would love to have a serious chat, but until the science is on the table, at least the more alarmist aspects of it, it would seem very hard to do this.

    ps:

    Mark Lynas used to be on the advisory board of the Campaign Against Climate Change (alongside George Marshall -COIN, and Tim Helweg Larsen PIRC – 2 organisatiuons behind this very blog – Talking Climate)

    Mark has stepped down now from CaCC, and a while back said to me [at Climate Etc, and privately), that the Halls of Shame were shameful.

    here: http://judithcurry.com/2011/06/15/an-opening-mind/#comment-76091

    your thoughts?

    pps sorry for the long comment, opportunities for frank exchanges can be quite rare.

  70. “Here’s a question for you: Why do you believe Greenland was warmer in the Middle Ages just because it was inhabited? Greenland is inhabited today.”
    Its inhabited today, but is arable farming undertaken now in Greenland on the scale it was in the Middle Ages? Anyway, putting the kindest interpretation possible on your comment, all you are saying is that Greenland is as warm now as it then was, so our times are not exceptional after all, which precisely contradicts the claims scientists are making. Next I suppose you’ll say Greenland ‘doesn’t count’ because its only one location. As I remarked above, the historical thermometer based ‘global temperature’ is something of a joke, which sadly the scientists fail to see: so if single locations ‘don’t count’, and the global measurement is a joke, what is the basis for inferring that the globe is indeed warming (even before making the claim for man’s responsibility)? As I say, there are plenty of reasons for disbelieving the scientists, their lack of rigour in logic and method invites disbelief (even scorn).

  71. Like some others,I also posted at talkingclimate but was rejected.

    My point is and was that IPCC supporters no longer debate publicly with dissenters, and for a very good reason. Years ago, there were debates, and often the audience was more skeptical afterwards. I recall an NPR debate, and also the ABC (Australian tv) show I can change your mind on climate change where minds were changed away from IPCC conclusions.

    So if a reasonable audience, selected only by their interest in the topic, are more persuaded by skeptical than alarmist arguments, what does that say about IPCC science?

    • Creationists were very keen on live public debates with scientists. The reason being that in a stage debate the showman with all the rhetorical tricks wins. Evangelical preachers tended to be more charismatic and better speakers than scientists so they tended to win any debates held.

      We see though what happens with the skeptic “urge to debate” when the medium is not so conductive to rhetoric and showboating. WUWT and Monckton recently backed out of a *written* debate with “alarmist” Peter Sinclair after he was just too successful at pointing out and highlighting errors Monckton had made in his live presentations.

      • The difference with the old creationist debate and the climate one, being that the climate scientists of today are known to be crooked and politicized, and to have access to billions of dollars – virtually all the funds in the field..

      • And that Christ died, to set us all free.

  72. “That would be to admit that my politics was overriding my reasoning capacities!”

    I hope Geoff is expressing himself somewhat ironically on this point, just so that no one mistakes him for someone who pretends (or worse yet someone who actually believes) that political attitudes, values and beliefs i.e. ‘politics’, are somehow something separate from his brain’s other reasoning skills or unexaminable in the light of day. Such would leave one to wonder, ‘Where exactly do you ‘think’ the values, attitudes and beliefs you hold that influence your interpretations and judgment of information and desirable options i.e. ‘thinking’, actually reside? In your foot? Well, o.k. then.

    Or, Geoff could engage in more objective and self-conscious evaluation of mainstream punditry that is in fact very much a part of his own expressions of this general ‘skepticism’.

    Frankly, he’s not as special as he thinks. ;-)

  73. The message that the sea will flood New York City and other coastal communities has been out there a long time. People know it is rising, no matter the cause. The government is encouraging them to stay where they are through flood insurance. The least intrusive way to deal with this is to phase out what flood insurance will pay over, say, a 25 year period. The per cent damaged covered will fall linearly to zero in 25 years. This will give a gentle incentive for the affected folks to take appropriate measures. The cost will fall on them. That is fair, since they chose to live in a low-lying area. They will have plenty of time to move.

    • You would think that since Wall Street is at the lowest point in Manhattan, they’d all be rooting for sea level rise.

      • More thoughts on this. This might give NYC a chance to become the Venice of North America. Considering how many rich people are leaving the taxing state, tourism might soften the blow there.

        But further considering the coastal residents, perhaps they should be compensated for some external costs. We would first have to determine the amount of sea level rise caused by the anthropogenic contribution of CO2. If it is 10%, then we don’t ratchet flood insurance to zero. We bring it down to cover 10%.

        We would have to collect some of that money from other countries that contribute to CO2 levels.

    • jim2,
      The National Flood Insurance Program was started to help people live near areas that can flood.
      River valleys and flood plains, coastal areas, etc.
      It was not started because of sea level rise.
      The mount of wealth derived from coastal and other flood prone areas is immense. NFIP has been a good bet for America for many decades.
      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/National_Flood_Insurance_Program

      • Hunter – you may have to re-think that.

        “Based on these findings, the aspects of flood insurance rate-making that already account for the possibility of increasing risk, and the tendency of new construction to be built more than one foot above the base flood elevation, the NFIP would not be significantly impacted under a 1-foot rise in sea level by the year 2100. For the high projection of a 3-foot rise, the incremental increase of the first foot would not be expected until the year 2050. The 60-year timeframe over which this gradual change occurs provides ample opportunity for the NFIP to consider alternative approaches to the loss control and insurance mechanisms of the NFIP and to implement those changes that are both effective and based on sound scientific evidence.”

        http://papers.risingsea.net/Flood-Insurance.html

  74. Alan D McIntire

    Everyone,, even religious fundamentalists who believe the world is only 6000 years old, interacts with and observes other humans. We all become aware of con artists who trry to get us to donate to questionable charities, try to sell us products which will make us appear younger, slimmer, and have more hair on our heads. Our natural ability to detect “huxterism” is used in spotting the CAGW scam.

    IF CAGW were a legitimate concern, would believers be burning CO2 by flying to conferences in Kyoto, Copenhagen, and Rio? If human produced CO2 is such a serious threat, wouldn’t it make more sense to
    have “teleconferences” instead of meeting in person? Shouldn’t CAGWers who actually believe in the seriousness of the situation be setting an example on cutting back energy use?

    In 1950 the world had half the population it does now, it was using
    1/4 of the energy it does now, and CO2 was increasing at roughly half
    the rate it does now. By cutting back on energy use by 7/8 we supposedly
    wouldn’t be ELIMINATING any human caused CO2 increase, we’d just be
    slowing down the increase by a small factor. I don’t think you’ll find
    anyone in the world willing to cut back energy use by 7/8.-returning us to a 19th century level of technology.

    Putting all ot the above together, either CAGWers are hypocrytically pushing a totalitarian agenda, or they are innumerate. ,

    • RE: “teleconferences” instead of meeting in person

      That is what is called “Business as Usual”. It takes a huge amount of effort to overcome the inertia of conventional social norms. One of the social norms is to have face-to-face meetings, and many still believe that is necessary to make progress whenever you have a collaborative effort.

      The leaders are setting examples in their own personal way. Stephen Chu rides a road bike to work every day. Bill McKibben wrote a classic book on cross-country skiing several years ago. That may not seem like much but it really amounts to individual personal quests to understand what we are capable of.

      • Then maybe government ought to lead by example, and end all the taxpayer funded drunken bashes in Vegas? You can certainly get plastered at your computer. I’ve seen many, many examples of that.

      • Never once been to a conference in Las Vegas, but been to almost half the other states for meetings. Work actually gets done at engineering and scientific conferences.

    • Michael Hart

      You make a good point Alan, which is worth repeating:

      By ignoring a huge uncertainty in the carbon cycle or wrongly ascribing it to something else, those taking the IPCC view have put their ‘intellectual hands in a vice’ and it is now beginning to pinch. Their logic now dictates that lowering human CO2 emissions will make no difference!
      [Some might say that is reason enough to be politically skeptical about being forced to swallow solutions to a problem that probably doesn’t exist.]

      The way out will almost certainly involve acknowledging that humans are essentially not responsible for the atmospheric CO2 rise, something equally painful for those wedded to the IPCC view of the carbon cycle.

  75. IF CAGW were a legitimate concern, would believers be burning CO2 by flying to conferences in Kyoto, Copenhagen, and Rio? If human produced CO2 is such a serious threat, wouldn’t it make more sense to have “teleconferences” instead of meeting in person? Shouldn’t CAGWers who actually believe in the seriousness of the situation be setting an example on cutting back energy use?

    What is the word that describes these people:
    hypocrite: a person whose actions belie stated beliefs.

  76. There have been a number of articles analyzing the skeptic. The rationale being skeptics are the odd man out, deserving analysis of their contrarian views. That perspective, evident in the media, is flawed.

    If for no other reason, it is flawed because it stands alone as a solitary pillar of jaded opinion when in fact there are two. One held up to ridicule, the other used to have climate alarmists placed upon it. The pillar of alarmism has been ignored or treated like the elephant in the room. Where the hell is the balance? Where is the objective analysis of catastrophic global warming alarmism and the alarmists that push the bad science behind it? Where is the deconstruction of the leftist mindset that drives the green movement which envelopes climate alarmism? Where is the objective analysis of the notion that CAGW is the norm in spite of dodgy science, outright lies, tortured data, and agenda driven reports, and skeptical views are held up to being the apoplectic ravings of right wingers clutching their bibles and guns?

  77. Michael Larkin

    I had a dream.

    In it, some scientists claimed they had discovered a major threat to the continued well-being of the billions of us living on this planet: a threat that we ourselves had caused.

    The vast majority of us, not being scientists, had to decide whether or not to believe it. Some of us decided one way or the other dependent on prior prejudices–political or moral. Some of us tried to get to understand more of the science, and to base our opinion on that.

    Society was polarised over the issue.

    Eventually, the scientists came to the rescue. They invited all, believers and disbelievers, scientists and laymen, to engage in free and open debate. They insisted all data was made available, for or against. The debate was given exhaustive media coverage. Unbiased synopses of the arguments for both sides, couched in laymen’s terms, were provided by expert communicators. This process continued until such time as all available evidence had been thoroughly examined.

    At a certain point, it was obvious what the truth was to everyone. I can’t remember exactly what that was, though I have tried. It could have been that the believers were correct, or the disbelievers, or perhaps that everyone agreed no one was actually sure one way or the other.

    My overall feeling about the dream was one of pride for the species I belonged to. How rational was the approach to examining the issue! How fair and scrupulous had been the debate!

    How different that would have been had one side enjoyed the support of various elites in government, business and the media. How different if that side had sought to demonise the other, even to consider its proponents mentally deranged. And how tragic had it eventually transpired that that side was wrong, after having enacted expensive and far-reaching global policies that diverted resources away from many truly worthy causes, resulting in unnecessary and untold human suffering.

    I’m glad my dream hadn’t been like that.

    • AT WHAT POINT DOES GLOBAL WARMING PSEUDOSCIENCE CROSS THE LINE FROM ‘POLITICS AS USUAL’ AND MORE ACCURATELY IS SEEN AS THE USUAL FRAUD AND CORRUPTION WE EXPECT FROM IMMORAL AND EVIL PEOPLE? When should the behavior of a ‘True Believer’ global warming alarmist be seen as something qualitatively different from an ignorant and superstitious prognosticator of doomsday? When is such behavior seen as immoral according to the traditional principles of Judeo/Christian ethics because the real intent is to gain power over others by hindering the finding of truth and purposefully perpetuating superstition and ignorance for money and power?

      http://evilincandescentbulb.wordpress.com/2012/04/04/pardon-me-but-your-evil-is-showing/

  78. As to skepticism about global warming: I am not. We have had global warming. We are at or near the end of this warming period and we are at or near the beginning of a cooling period.
    We have been warming since the cold part of the little ice age.
    Before that we cooled after the Medieval Warm period.
    Before that we warmed after the previous cold period.
    Before that we cooled after the previous warm period, “called the Roman Warm Period or something like that.
    Before that we warmed after the previous cold period.
    Before that we cooled after the previous warm period.
    These cold and warm periods have been very similar for ten thousand years.
    We will continue this warming and cooling cycle until something changes that can make a difference.
    Human caused CO2 is a fraction of a trace gas. That is not something that can make a difference.
    If it could make any difference it would soon be stopped by the thermostat of earth. When anything tries to warm the earth, warm water melts Arctic Sea Ice and that turns on the Snow Monster that always stops Earth from getting too warm.
    Watch the Snow Monster after every record Low Arctic Sea Ice Event. This data is available to everyone. Look at NOAA’s Low Arctic Sea Ice Events and the cold and snows that follow. This past cold season had records in Alaska Canada, Europe and Asia. The year before had record snow in the lower United States of America.

    • Look at the data. It snows a lot when oceans are wet and warm. I does not snow much when oceans are cold and frozen. Look at the temperature and snow accumulation in this plot. This is real data from ice cores.
      http://popesclimatetheory.com/page11.html

    • Dave Springer

      Yes, sea ice is a very good insulator. Open water in the Arctic can dump heat to space like crazy while ice covered water cannot. There is a time lag with this process due to the rather slow speed of the oceanic conveyor belt which moves water from tropics to poles and back. In order to become credible with claims of skill at prediction climate boffins need to be able to explain mechanism underlying the 60 year cycle called the Atlantic Multi Decadal Oscillation (AMDO). Instead of explaining it however they were blind-sided by the transition from warm to cold side of the cycle and now they’re scrambling about trying to pick up the pieces of their shattered credibility. Their credibility peaked in 2007 and public support has been on the decline since just as the AMDO has been on the decline. Their fortunes were always tied to whether the earth continued warming through the cold side of the AMDO and unfortunately for them they lost that bet and the public, if they understand anything, understand that the earth stopped warming over 10 years ago despite no abatement of CO2 emissions. No warming is a show stopper. Put a fork in the CAGW hypothesis, it’s done. They better hope the earth doesn’t start cooling enough for agricultural output to fall off or there might be repercussions for them that go beyond tarnished reputations.

  79. Chad Wozniak

    Tomcat and Lolwot –

    Yes, there is proof that doubling the CO2 content of the atmosphere won’t have any effect on climate!

    2 billion years ago, before blue-green algae began the process of converting CO2 to O2, the Earth’s atmosphere was about 20 percent CO2, or 500 times the concentration today (and the inventory of CO2 in the air was actually more like 750 times, since the atmosphere was thicker then than now, before it was partially blown off by asteroid impacts such as the Permian and K-T boundary events). And did the Earth overheat and burn up then? Obviously not.

    I am a denier based on three things: the historical record which proves there is no correlation between CO2 and climate change; the simple arithmetic which proves that human activity is an infinitesimal portion of CO2 activity, and that CO2 is an infinitesimal factor in climate change; and the hard evidence of fraud and mendacity on the part of the AGW tyrannists,

    • Chad,

      1) You don’t know the atmospheric composition 2 billion years ago, or the atmospheric pressure. There certainly was less oxygen, but the greenhouse content of the planet is not resolved. Moreover, the sun was significantly dimmer at this time period. In fact, the sun was sufficiently dim that greenhouse gases much higher than today are a leading candidate for preventing the Earth from succumbing to a snowball. Though, there are other things that could do the trick. Even a thicker atmosphere of diatomic gas like N2 could help, and methane could build up to much higher concentrations in an anoxic atmosphere. There are chemical processes which could produce haze layers to offset the greenhouse effect. There are many things going on different than today’s atmosphere, and really, you’re just making stuff up now.

      The rest of your comment is just wrong. You evidently have not worked out any of the “arithmetic” yourself.

  80. Chad Wozniak

    Re my last posting: no politics here, just observable facts,

  81. Much of the climate community continues to view AGW skeptics as anti-science, fossil fuel funded troglodytes (Mike Mann’s book is a prime example of this view). As typified by Chris Mooney, many of the social scientists and journalists have come around to the view of AGW skepticism as “motivated reasoning”, which is not really connected to corporate interests, and acknowledges that many skeptics are well educated and knowledgable about AGW science. Well this is a step in the right direction: away from the idea that AGW skepticism is driven by corporations. Some social scientists seem to be moving in the right direction. Akter et al. refreshingly acknowledge the multi-dimensional nature of AGW skepticism. But none of the academics seem to acknowledge reasoned skepticism (such as described by Geoff Chambers) by knowledgeable and well educated people as having an actual scientific basis; as such, they are “missing the point.”

    So near, yet so far. If Geoff Chambers is a model of reasoned skepticism, then it’s easy to see why some are confused about the distinctions about motivated reasoning.

    1. knowledge is no barrier to motivated reasoning. Motivation comes from a deeper psychological level than knowledge, and completely bypasses knowledge unless one uses great care. This is seen in such phenomena as invincible ignorance, superstition and the sort of people who remain fans of cellar-dwelling professional teams.

    2. “well educated” ought be measured by the standard of ability to overcome motivated reasoing, perhaps. But it just isn’t. Any Ivy League grad is as liable to being overcome by irrationality as the average high school dropout. Indeed, the more pampered and insulated from hard realities, the less likely one is to develop the hard-nosed self-appraisal necessary to make the right call. I have no doubt Geoff Chambers is well educated, for a certain value of educated. It’s merely irrelevant by dint of the results it procured.

    3. Chambers claims (sorry, WHT, you’re just misreading him, or the man has no idea how to form a cogent sentence in English grammar) that much of fuel price rise is attributable to climate science. That’s simply contrafactual, and contrafactual in any plausible future scenario. In the USA, the proportion of gas price at the pumps that goes to taxes has dropped 60% in the past two decades. Name another product so favored by tax cuts? Even in the most highly carbon-taxed regimes in the world, the price rise over time is many times greater due other forces.

    4. Chambers’ claim that he rejects “that scep­ti­cism about cli­mate change has more to do with polit­ical views than an assess­ment of the science?” because it somehow would invalidate his own personal views is rabidly illogical. It violates basic causality. There’s no reason all skepticism is to do with political views in the formation, so there’s no reason Chambers’ views might be invalidated by the propostion. Though if the majority of his views come out of such ‘logic’ then they may well be invalid for separate reasons.

    • Bart R,

      First. please stop writing things I completely agree with, like your paragraph 2 above. It doesn’t happen very often, but when it does, I just don’t know how to process it. I end up just sitting and staring at my monitor, until my son walks by and smacks me in the back of the head to reboot my brain.

      As for your point three, the CAGW effect on fuel prices is not limited to taxes. Our CAGW activist in chief at various times has: stopped all exploration on public lands (while taking credit for the increase on private lands over which he had no control); killed the Key Stone Pipeline; enacted regulations specifically designed to destroy the coal industry; continued requiring the addition of ethanol and other additives to gasoline, with different requirements for different locales; continued the moratorium on development of nuclear power (which means more fossil fuel usage top generate electricity)…. All of which have had a, shall we say, noticeable impact on the cost of fuel.

      There, disagreeing with you makes me feel so much better.

      • GaryM | June 16, 2012 at 2:27 pm |

        I do my best when saying something reasonable people might agree with to at least spell badly, miss an html-tag, or use poor grammar. It’s the best I can offer. Even a stopped clock agrees with the right time twice a day. I won’t speculate about which of us is stopped. ;)

        Keystone Cops are a constant source of hilarity. Have you worked out what the effect on America of the approximately 330,000 km^2 of pipeline right of way associated with the (40% Chinese-owned) Canadian tar sands granted by the government to Canadian oil companies will be?

        330,000 km^2 of solar panels would provide a hundred times the power to America, and at a third the long-term cost. And guess what? It’d leave that tar in the ground, where future generations can make it into plastic, pharmaceuticals, industrial chemicals and fertilizer.

        http://www.dilbert.com/2012-06-16/

        One of the dirty secrets of Canadian tar sellers is that, on any average day, Canada experiences a pipeline leak. Canada intends to convert the USA into its tar pond, and China’s financing the operation.

        Latimer Alder | June 16, 2012 at 2:43 pm |

        Oh, I worked out the math for his claims in Europe, too. They’re not as egregiously wrong as in the USA, but they’re still mathematically bogus.

        I couldn’t say for Australia, to be fair. However, it’s Australia. No one cares.

      • Latimer Alder

        @bart r

        ‘Oh, I worked out the math for his claims in Europe, too. They’re not as egregiously wrong as in the USA, but they’re still mathematically bogus’

        Show your working, please. And both Chambers and Corner are in the UK. ‘Europe’ is not UK. Anymore than Alaska is The USA – nor vice versa Do not mistake the one for the other

      • “Show your working, please. “

        Bart,
        Perhaps ignore Latimer.
        I go through the trouble of working out the details and he says “Isn’t that cute. He’s such a clever little boy.”

      • WebHubTelescope | June 16, 2012 at 5:02 pm |

        While Latimer’s requests are often unreasonable, this is not one of them, as witness my egregious math error of late, where I mistook km for m.

        And his responses to efforts to provide correct and fulsome details may be hardly ever agreeable or courteous, which doesn’t make being correct or providing sufficient support for claims wrong.

        That said, it’s late, I’m frustrated with a wonky browser, and anyone can work out that the UK is indeed in Europe, part of Europe, belongs to Europe, and is full of Europeans who happen to mainly speak English and revere the British crown.

        Oh, and as it’s European, and hardly the most heavily fuel-taxed, experiences still more price disruption in the fossil sector as a proportion of overall price from non-tax influences than, for example, the Dutch, who are much more adversely affected by non-tax influences on the price of their fuel than on tax influences of all sorts as a ratio of recent price rises.

        And if someone wishes to work out, as gbaikie was so diligent and kind to do in the case of my kilometer for meter slip, the numerical details, I’ll be glad to come back and say what I really meant, at some later date.

      • Latimer Alder

        My requests are rarely unreasonable. I just ask people to prove the assertions they make. That’s all.

        If they find providing such proof to be too hard for them, then that speaks for itself about the likelihood of them being right.

        If they can, then we have all learnt something.

        It’s called scepticism.

        As to me being unpleasant to poor old Webbie…you may have noticed that social skills do not feature highly on his resume. Well behind immense self-regard, pompousness and his Messiah complex. I will try to reform.

      • Latimer Alder

        @bart r

        Your analysis of UK and Europe is incorrect. You say that Geoff is wrong because you have ‘analysed Europe’

        You do not need to analyse ‘Europe’ as a whole. You need to analyse UK. Hence my analogy with Alaska.

      • Latimer Alder | June 17, 2012 at 2:06 am |

        Sorry. I don’t find the UK all that interesting, except for the comedians. I just parameterized by taxes that could be plausibly attributed to carbon content, and energy prices, and the UK wasn’t anywhere close to the top of the pack, so became unimportant to my original point.

        While you may have a valid complaint about how high your socialist government taxes are overall, I’m not Houdini. I can’t really fix everything wrong with the UK.

      • “As to me being unpleasant to poor old Webbie…you may have noticed that social skills do not feature highly on his resume. Well behind immense self-regard, pompousness and his Messiah complex. I will try to reform.”

        Collaborative work features highly on my resume, thank you. It’s nice to be able to choose who to collaborate with, and you aren’t on my list.

        As for the rest, thank you, as those seem to be good resume qualifications for a second career in punditry.

      • Bart R,
        You extremists cannot tell the truth at all, can you?
        It is heavy oil when it is sold. Not tar. The pipeline carries oil.
        Wonderful oil that permits us, even the stupidest AGW or Green extremist able to drive, bicycle, wear clothes, have computers, food, medicine and health care.
        And the lie on leaks is that you would leave the false impression anything at all is a dangerous event.
        As to your solar delusion, how much habitat do you crazy AGW extremists require to destroy or clutter up before you are satisfied?

      • “Keystone Cops are a constant source of hilarity. Have you worked out what the effect on America of the approximately 330,000 km^2 of pipeline right of way associated with the (40% Chinese-owned) Canadian tar sands granted by the government to Canadian oil companies will be?”

        You probably missed a couple decimal points, did you mean 3,300 sq km?

        “330,000 km^2 of solar panels would provide a hundred times the power to America, and at a third the long-term cost. And guess what? It’d leave that tar in the ground, where future generations can make it into plastic, pharmaceuticals, industrial chemicals and fertilizer.”

        So we talking some bigger the State of Oregon [which is 251,419 sq km].
        Say a solar panel cost $300 per square meter [which is cheap and probably cost at least twice as much]. 3.3 x 10^5 sq km is 3.3 x 10^11 sq meters, and 9.9 x 10^13 US dollars. Or 99 trillion dollars.
        Current US GDP is about 15 trillion. 99 trillion dollars is a lot of money.
        Probably half that amount can transport the world population to Mars.
        Or at least US population.7000 per seat is a bit cheap, whereas $165,000 per seat more plausible.
        5 trillion could probably buy Space solar power same amount power.

        Oh next, how much power would this give you. Depends where it is, Oregon would not be a good place- around 6 kwatt hour sunlight per day,
        so say use somewhere around Texas in best areas with 10 kilowatt hr per day. Now you trying to replace gasoline. Gasoline is a very good energy source for vehicle. Per gallon of gasoline you have about 33 kilowatt hours of energy, Here say 138 billion gallon used:
        http://americanfuels.blogspot.com/2010/04/2009-gasoline-consumption.html
        Seems mickey mouse, but use it anyhow. So 138 times 33 kilowatt
        is amount electrical energy needed without considering the inefficiency
        of using electrical power for vehicles.
        Next lets assume a good efficiency of solar panels of 20% in terms of capturing the solar energy.
        3.3 x 10^11 sq meters times 10 kw/h times .2 times 365 Or
        2.4 x 10^14 kw/h of electricity from solar.
        And 1.38 x 10^11 times 33 so 4.5 x 10^12
        So roughly 50 times more energy in simple comparison to gasoline.
        And not counting the diesel fuel truck transport or kerosene fuel for planes. And of course there isn’t any electric powered airliners.
        And the cost of requiring everyone to have electric cars, is interesting.
        The pollution created making batteries would astonishing, and there would shortages of material unless it was a slow transition and the market could catch out up to the demand. but these are details.
        The main points are huge amount land use, the cost with making all these solar panels and the undesirable requirement for people to use a electric car when it may not meet their needs.

      • Bart’s an economist. Don’t confuse him with banal numbers.

      • Heck, if we only have to destroy an open are larger than Oregon for a mere $99 trillion, if it will calm down the AGW kooks, it may just be worth the price. And if we rig their meters so that their turn off first when it is cloudy or at night, we won’t have to hear from them much any way.