Scientific integrity versus ideologically-fueled research

by Judith Curry

The main intellectual fault in all these cases is failing to be responsive to genuine empirical concerns, because doing so would make one’s political point weaker or undermine a cherished ideological perspective. – Heather Douglas

I have spoken often and publicly about my concerns about the integrity of climate research.  When I have used the words ‘integrity of research’, I have been referring generally to the adherence of the Mertonian norms of science and a general sense of ‘trustworthiness’.

The role of values in scientific research, and whether research is value laden or should be value free, is a subject of extensive debate.  A perspective on all this that makes sense to me is that provided by philosopher Heather Douglas.

Heather Douglas

Scientific integrity in a politicized world, by Heather Douglas.  See also HD’s talk on youtube. Excerpts:

As of late, the term “scientific integrity” has been used as an overly broad slogan encompassing everything good in research ethics. In this paper, I provide a more precise and narrow account, where scientific integrity consists of proper reasoning processes and handling of evidence essential to doing science. Scientific integrity here consists of a respect for the underlying empirical basis of science, and it is this scientists are often most concerned to protect against transgressions, whether those transgressions arise from external pressures (e.g., politicization) or internal violations (e.g., fabrication of data to further one’s scientific career).

If this value of science is to be protected, evidence must be able to challenge currently held views. This requirement creates certain demands for the structure of how other values (whether ethical, social, political, or cognitive) can play a role in science.

Depending on where one is in the scientific process, values have different legitimate roles they can play, with legitimacy determined by the need to protect the value of science. Consider the following two roles values can play in our reasoning: direct and indirect. In the direct role, values are a reason in themselves for our decisions. They evaluate our options and tell us which we should choose. An indirect role for all kinds of values (political, social, ethical, cognitive) is needed and acceptable throughout the scientific process. Science is thus a value-saturated process.

This view of values in science can now provide us with a clear definition of scientific integrity. First, as described here, scientific integrity is a quality of individual scientists, their reasoning, and particular pieces of scientific work. Thus, a person, a paper, a report can all be said to have scientific integrity. The crucial requirement for scientific integrity is the maintenance of the proper roles for values in science. Most centrally, an indirect role only for values in science is demanded for the internal reasoning of science. When deciding how to characterize evidence, how to analyze data, and how to interpret results, values should never play a direct role, but an indirect role only. This keeps values from being reasons in themselves for choices when interpreting data and results. In addition, values should not direct methodological choices to pre-determined outcomes, nor should they direct dissemination choices to cherry-pick results. This restriction on the role of values, to the indirect role only at these crucial locations in the scientific process, is necessary to protect the value of science itself, given the reason we do science is to gain reliable empirical knowledge. We do science to discover things about the world, not to win arguments. Protecting scientific integrity as so defined thus protects the value of science.

What does this view of scientific integrity mean for our understanding of the politicization of science? Clearly, political forces could cause a scientist, either voluntarily or through coercion, to violate the proper roles for values in science and thus violate scientific integrity. Examples of this include scientists pressured to (or for their own political purposes deciding to) fabricate evidence, cherry-pick evidence, distort results, or stick to a claim even when known criticisms which fatally undermine the claim remain unaddressed. The main intellectual fault in all these cases is failing to be responsive to genuine empirical concerns, because doing so would make one’s political point weaker or undermine a cherished ideological perspective. It is to utilize a direct role for values and have that determine one’s results. It is to use the prima facie reliability and authority of science, which rests on its robust critical practices and evidential bases, and to throw away a concern for the source of science’s reliability in favor of the mere veneer of authority. It is to turn science into a sham. No wonder scientists get so upset when violations of scientific integrity occur.

For example, a failure to respond to criticisms raised repeatedly and pointedly is a clear indication of a problem. If a scientist, or a political leader using science, insists on making a point based on evidence even when clear criticisms undermining their use of that evidence have been raised, and they fail to respond to those criticisms, one is warranted in suspecting that the cherry-picked evidence is but a smokescreen for a deeply held value commitment serving an improper direct role, and that ultimately, the evidence is irrelevant.

Violations can also be detected in overt or covert interference with the activities of scientists. Political actors may not like the results produced by scientists, but their response should not be to declare them by fiat to be otherwise. Instead, politicians can legitimately question whether the evidence is sufficient to support certain policies, whether other policy options might be preferable, or whether value commitments should demand contrary courses of action.

In addition, one needs to assess whether a sufficiently diverse range of scientists (to ensure adequate criticisms of each other’s work are being raised) are working on a range of projects that do not just serve a narrow set of interests. If power and money draw the efforts of scientists into a narrow range of projects, society will not be well served. Even if the science being done is performed with perfect integrity, the results may be distorted and politicized simply because they are the only results available. This is a much harder problem to track and assess, and has not been the main area of concern with the politicization of science. But I suspect it will become a key area of debate in the coming decades.

JC comments: Points that I find to be particularly insightful and relevant to climate science include:

• If this value of science is to be protected, evidence must be able to challenge currently held views.  Premature declarations of ‘consensus’ and attempts to marginalize those that disagree have become institutionalized in climate science, with strong statements of advocacy being made by professional societies (e.g. AGU, APS).

• . . . failing to be responsive to genuine empirical concerns, because doing so would make one’s political point weaker or undermine a cherished ideological perspective. JC: Climate science is rife with such examples, the most notorious example being the ‘hockey stick’. Another example is Lindzen’s iris hypothesis (which is the topic of a forthcoming post).

• If a scientist, or a political leader using science, insists on making a point based on evidence even when clear criticisms undermining their use of that evidence have been raised, and they fail to respond to those criticisms, one is warranted in suspecting that the cherry-picked evidence is but a smokescreen for a deeply held value commitment serving an improper direct role, and that ultimately, the evidence is irrelevant.  JC: Well this pretty much sums up the approach being used by President Obama and his advisors with regard to climate change.

•  One needs to assess whether a sufficiently diverse range of scientists (to ensure adequate criticisms of each other’s work are being raised) are working on a range of projects that do not just serve a narrow set of interests. JC: This is an issue of key importance for climate science, which was raised recently by the post Is federal funding biasing climate research?

Joe Duarte

Of direct relevance to the concerns raised by Hayward, Joe Duarte writes about Ideologically-fueled research, pursuant  to a comment on his recently published research Political diversity will improve social science.  Duarte focuses on an example from the social sciences, but these ideas easily generalize to climate research.  Excerpts:

If you believe your ideology is true, but look out upon the world and see that large numbers of people don’t embrace it, it can be frustrating. You have a list of issues you think must be urgently addressed by society, yet society is not addressing them, perhaps doesn’t even see them as problems to begin with. This can create a lot of dissonance – why don’t people see what we see or think as we think? One way to resolve that dissonance is to assume that there must be something wrong those people, that there must be “causes” behind their positions other than simple disagreement, much less any wisdom on their part. So the next step is to inventory the uncharitable reasons why people don’t embrace your ideology, the ideology you just know is true and noble.

Environmentalism is a rather new political ideology, and possibly a religion or a substitute for traditional religion, and it’s alarming that social psychologists are promoting it and trying to convert people to it. Embracing new, abstract, and somewhat ambiguous values like “nature” and “the environment” is just assumed to be equivalent to rationality or something. Environmentalist values are contested by scholars all over the place (though not so vigorously within academia), but the field seems unaware of this, and unaware of their status as values, as ideological tenets, as opposed to descriptive beliefs about the world.

What’s more, we often see researchers declare outright that their motivation is to advance their ideology, to spark political action, and so forth. I think it’s impossible to argue that the field is not biased when researchers declare themselves to be political activists and that their research is an outlet for said activism.

This researcher has already decided that holding a particular position that she disfavors has a certain class of “causes”, including behavioral and neural bases. She has pre-emptively shrunk reality, the reality that she will allow herself to see. Rather, she is extremely likely to find what she is looking for.

Science requires us to be more sober than this. We can’t go in having decided already what kinds of causes must be in force.

It seems to be in the nature of ideology to convert ideological tenets and value judgments into descriptive facts/concepts in the mind of the ideologue. It’s a good protective immune system for an ideology to have, to pre-emptively marginalize and de-legitimize dissent as corrupt or ignorant and thus deter one’s members from closely examining alternative schools. In any case, a valid social science needs to immunize itself from this sort of ideological embedding.

 JC reflections

The ideology that I am concerned about is what I have termed UNFCCC/IPCC ideology.  In the way that I have defined it, there is nothing wrong per se with an ideology; the problem is with ideologues – absence of doubt, intolerance of debate, appeal to authority, desire to convince others of the ideological ‘truth’, and willingness to punish those that don’t concur.

If the community of scientific researchers was sufficiently diverse to accommodate a range of ideological perspectives,  ideology wouldn’t have much impact on the overall scientific oeuvre.  However, when a single ideology is adopted by the professional societies and enforced by the political party in power, then we have a serious problem.

As an individual scientist, navigating all this in a highly politicized environment can be a real land mine.  But the problems – with only a few exceptions – aren’t with individual climate scientists, but with the institutionalization by professional societies of a particular ideology, the general liberal bias at universities, and arguable biases in federal funding of climate research.

It is very good to see philosophers and social scientists tackling these issues; it would be even better to see non-partisans from these fields analyze the situation in climate science.

 

 

246 responses to “Scientific integrity versus ideologically-fueled research

  1. It is very good to see philosophers and social scientists tackling these issues; it would be even better to see non-partisans from these fields analyze the situation in climate science.

    Indeed. Until then we have Judith Curry.

    • The only surprise is that we are surprised that scientists are only human and therefore scientific integrity lost the contest.

      • Objectivity and scientific integrity are not super human qualities.

        Everyone makes some mistakes or bad value judgements but for a whole field of science to keep making that same errors of judgement for 20 or 30 years can hardly be brushed aside with “oh well, I guess they’re only human”.

        Society does have a rather naive, fairytale image of what a scientist is and how science really works but the kind of Machiavellian behaviour revealed in Climategate was truly surprising.

  2. I think a significant problem is that all the folks from the relevant fields who would normally spot straight away endemic bias and cultural resistance to observations and all the other paraphanalia going on in orthodox climate circles, believe the narrative that the output of the Consensus is a certain conclusion of the ‘hard sciences’. And I think added to the inappropriate and strong emotional inertia for climate change orthodoxy that we all now have to struggle against to retain balance, they are somewhat conditioned not to challenge ‘hard science’.

    • Yes, the mandate for CO2 mitigation is inferred (even my many climate scientists) to follow directly from the existence of the greenhouse effect. They regard this as ‘science’.

      • The illogic and misdirection would have been blown apart long ago by other disciplines but for the ultimate in irrational semiotics: people know they’ll be called ‘denier’ and all that goes with it if they express even the mildest criticism. Obama has set an predictably bad lead on this.

      • +100 Prof Curry. And very pithily put.

      • Reminds me of this:

      • “Obama has set an predictably bad lead on this.”

        The great uniter has in so many ways become the great divider. With hard to believe cynicism especially given his first campaign, he purposely inflames both sides as a means to shoring up his base. It’s a profoundly narcissistic, scorched earth approach that has weakened us as a country. The first black President is personally responsible for setting race relations back 50 years.

        (aka pokerguy)

    • human1ty1st

      This is what I take Ben Pile means when he talks about the climate debate “descends to science” . That other participants in the debate are shakled by the limits impose by The Science. For example where something like climate sensitivity which actually contains very limited information WRT policy but seems to dominate. Ulimately it is an abdication of responsibility from the wider community.

  3. Kirsten Powers has a book on this subject as a broader phenomenon: “The Silencing: How the Left is Killing Free Speech.” This from a lifelong liberal.

    • “How the Left is Killing Free Speech”

      The good news is, in the long run it won’t work.

      • “Freedom is never more than one generation away from extinction. We didn’t pass it to our children in the bloodstream. It must be fought for, protected, and handed on for them to do the same, or one day we will spend our sunset years telling our children and our children’s children what it was once like in the United States where men were free.” — Ronald Reagan

  4. It’s been almost 2 decades since a “consensus” was established WRT “global warming”. I wonder how many “climate scientists” entered the field after this point, and were influenced by activism in their choice of field?

  5. Close to ten years of public beating around the bush and now Dr. Curry is formally on the core motive of climate “science”?

    Dr. Lindzen was here and alone for much of the past 30 years. Still, better late then never. Acknowledging the obvious leftist contrivance of climate science is fundemental to reform and defeat of that agenda.

    I told you so for years by the way. The spaghetti chart clowns on either side are washed away by the obvious.

    • “Still, better late then never”

      Cwon, Perhaps you’ve put your own career and livelihood at risk by taking a principled stand. If so, you’re to be congratulated.

      I know I haven’t. Nor has anyone else I know.

      • As gutless a rationalization as I’ve ever seen posted. It isn’t even true, Dr. Curry was held back because of her personal politics (leftist academia) and culture. Career Fear had little to do with it.

        She’s the most dangerous of “moderates” that advance the climate meme political structures through inane “compromise” culture. Same people who wanted to send foreign aid to the Soviets.

      • “Dr. Curry was held back because of her personal politics (leftist academia) and culture. Career Fear had little to do with it.”

        I don’t see how you can have one….the standard deep immersion in leftist academia and culture….without the other….that is the pressure to continue marching in step…and the implied negative consequences for failing to do so. Not can I understand how you simply dismiss how difficult it must be to rise above all that.

      • I was able to devalue career fear since i’m tenured, senior (in sight of retirement), and fairly financially secure. In my pre tenure days as a single parent, no way in hades would I have done anything to buck the establishment.

      • Also, I’ve changed my ‘metrics’ for personal accomplishment (even included these in my annual report at Georgia Tech); no longer tied to recognition from my peers within the academic climate science community. These metrics probably aren’t going to earn me any salary increases from my university, however.

      • Steven Mosher

        Cwon can’t even sign his own name to his words. he’s one to talk about fear.

      • “In my pre tenure days as a single parent, no way in hades would I have done anything to buck the establishment.”

        Judith, I don’t know how anyone can read that and not gain some sympathetic understanding concerning the pressures young scientists face. At some point perhaps you’ll consider a book detailing your personal journey. Might be cathartic for you, and certainly enlightening for those who don’t really understand how difficult it is for a scientist in your position. Of course it’s no accident that skeptical scientists tend to be near or past retirement age.

        (aka pokerguy)

      • I used to think this was some sort of emeritus effect – aging scientists no longer keeping up with literature. Now I understand the emeritus effect to be something different – liberation from career pressures to think independently and buck the establishment

      • Wrong and distorted again Mosher, I said it wasn’t fear that brought Dr. Curry to the dark road of phony debate middling. It’s the twisted academic cookie cut political culture she is part of even while evolving. Sure, it’s progress she can identify any left-wing finger print to the Green/leftist agenda formally. I would expect a wide omission of relative importance of that agenda to this day.

        She’s tardy because she is another variant of the same leftist culture she now can formally identify in public. Still far from a Whittaker Chambers epiphany to be sure. Let her stand in the Senate and confess the warming agenda was conceived out of statist/NeoMarxist academic agenda and denounce the actual political/cultural “consensus” posing as “science” behind it and I and many might have higher praise. Climate science isn’t about a few bad apples but the evolution of social rotting of academics in particular through several lifetimes. I expect more middling and minimization of the core climate agenda but we will see.

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  7. stevefitzpatrick

    One of your best posts ever. It goes to the heart of the problems in climate science, which are self-evident to many from outside the field, but seem invisible to most within the field. I don’t expect work by Heather Douglas and Joe Duarte to influence climate scientists very much, but their work can help people outside the field, including non-scientists, to understand the political/values influence on ‘the science’, and why that influence is damaging to science.

  8. Good post, thanks. It’s a problem that is acute within climate science but goes well beyond. Good new book out on the subject from Kirsten Powers.

  9. Science that isn’t of high quality and high integrity has little value.

    The low rate of published study reproducibility indicates there is something wrong with the way we do science.

    There are four problems:
    1. The funders are biased. The NSF and the EPA used to do studies to get good information to fuel rational decisions. The current NSF and EPA fund studies to generate propaganda to support irrational policies.

    2. Too many scientists just aren’t very good at it.

    3. Too many scientists, given publishing pressures and signals from funders, produce works that aren’t really high quality objective studies. Some scientists don’t need pressures – they are overtly biased.

    4. There is no independent arbiter to review prepublication studies to verify that the work was done in a thoughtfully, carefully, and objective way, and that any analysis of the data is speaking for the facts not the scientist.

    Some of the NSF and EPA staff – particularly people with activist leanings – simply need to be fired. Activist scientists should be debarred from federal grant programs.

    As to the rest of it, scientists need to solve a pretty glaring problem – too much bad science is published. If scientists don’t solve the problem – someone else will.

    • a) there is no quality control process. The danger really doesn’t come until governments use ‘science’ to make policy. The best protection for the public would be a rule that requires replication by disinterested parties before any work can be relied upon for policy.

      b) statistics pros complain that scientists and other academics abuse stats constantly. In fact, some claim that most studies are flawed because of simplistic misunderstandings of the proper use of p values.

      • Automatic 5 year debarment from US government grants for misuse of statistics would fix that.

        The scientists would either use statistics correctly, or conservatively, or they would be out of work.

        There is no reason the US government grant system should coddle the incompetent.

  10. Interesting Youtube. See 35-40 minutes. Fred Singer is an example she uses of failing the integrity test. Also she has this.
    https://www.academia.edu/8987386/Why_Climate_Science_is_Politicized_and_What_to_Do_about_it
    Obviously she is part of the “groupthink”, and not a skeptic at all.

    • i didn’t watch the youtube, quality was too low. It is really hard to find anyone who isn’t a partisan in the climate debate.

      I’m ok with with the research that some activists publish (e.g. Hansen and Soon), in the sense of not finding obvious integrity violations. I’m more concerned with Gleick and Mann. Did you catch what the particular integrity concern was re Singer?

      • His using the cooling in the temperature record after 1940 to say AG was wrong. This even after aerosol effects were explained and widely accepted. He just kept saying the same thing.

      • Well, the interesting thing is that pretty much no one working on the topic of attribution now buys the aerosol explanation for the cooling between 1940 and mid 1970’s, particularly if aerosol forcing is as low as Bjorn Stevens says it is. So score one for Fred Singer. That Heather was convinced that Singer lacked integrity because of this just goes to show how pernicious the warm propaganda is.

      • The video is quite good quality for me. Check how she puts it. Often skeptical arguments don’t consider the publications, and things that they don’t consider would be pointed out to them if they tried to publish. You can’t just ignore aerosols when explaining the temperature record and GHGs the way Singer did.

      • Don Monfort

        jimmy. jimmy

        She asserts that Singer ignored aerosols. Got any proof of that, jimmy? Wouldn’t you say that her decision to label/libel Singer as lacking integrity needs a little more than that single assertion? Try to be honest this time, jimmy. Surprise us.

        By the way, video works fine for me too. I think you have to click it on to get it to play.

      • The Singer argument is similar to the pause argument today. These people just say it disproves AGW, and don’t address the explanations.

      • It doesn’t disprove the idea of the greenhouse effect or that humans are adding CO2 to the atmosphere. Rather it challenges the assertion that human caused warming is dominant over natural climate variability.

      • There has been a lot published about the size of natural variability being enough to account for a 15-year pause. Models also have such things in times of strong forcing.

      • Don Monfort

        Jimmy, do you think the consensus scientists have demonstrated integrity by denying the pause, until they couldn’t deny it any longer. And only then they set out to find a bunch of excuses to explain the pause they had studiously denied. There are reasons why the vast majority of the world’s population is not losing sleep over AGW. They don’t trust Chicken Little climate scientists, period.

      • They have not denied the pause, only that this one is special. There have been pauses before. This one happened to come after an anomalously hot year 0.3 C above the trend line, so it took 15 years for the trend line to catch up, and now an average year is as hot as that previous anomaly, which should tell you something.

      • David Springer

        “It is really hard to find anyone who isn’t a partisan in the climate debate.”

        Lindzen, Spencer, Christy, Pielke Sr., Loehle, Dyson, Koonin, Tsonis, Scafetta, Svensmark, Lomborg, Happer, Gray, C. Idso, S. Idso…

      • JimD, you write that ‘there’s been a lot that’s been published about the size of natural variability being enough to account for a 15-year pause. Models also have such things in times of strong forcing.’

        A lot of climate science alarmists have published a lot of d-grade scientific sounding alarmist blather to try to explain away a pause in temp rises that they previously denied was even happening.

        And there isn’t a single climate model anywhere that predicted the pause before it happened. If there was I think we’d know about it.

      • hidethedecline, you need to know that climate models are not weather models. They can’t predict even the first El Nino a year ahead, let alone El Ninos decades into the climate run (as 1998 would have been). They can do ENSOs to various degrees, but not their timing, similar with pauses. These are random fluctuations against a forced background trend. The 30-year trend did not slow down at all during the pause. You know why? Because the pause followed an equally impressive step in 1998.

      • “It is really hard to find anyone who isn’t a partisan in the climate debate.”

        Lindzen, Spencer, Christy, Pielke Sr., Loehle, Dyson, Koonin, Tsonis, Scafetta, Svensmark, Lomborg, Happer, Gray, C. Idso, S. Idso…

        What exactly does it mean to be “partisan” in this case? Is it being “partisan” to believe the science says that AGW is problem that needs to be solved?

      • By partisan, I mean a committed member of the activist ‘urgent action now’ group, trying to take down the ‘insurgent’ contrarians, skeptics, deniers. You list scientists who are obviously not ‘partisans’ in this sense, but in terms of social scientists and philosophers, it seems pretty hard to find someone who isn’t a partisan

    • Don Monfort

      Singer is not obligated to accept the theories on aerosols, yimmy. The lady brands/libels him as lacking integrity, when an alternative explanation could be that he is right and the consensus is wrong, or it could he is just not too bright. And what are her qualifications in climate science? Why should we listen to her? She looks and sounds like those State Department spokespersons, who regularly dodge questions and obfuscate.

      • She has obviously followed the debate and was referring to arguments made in the 90’s by Singer even after aerosol effects were considered important by everyone else. I don’t know why she singled him out. There are many to choose from.

      • 40:20

        He knew it was out there; and he just refused to talk about it. So this is clearly a failure of integrity. You have to actually respond. There could have been responses. There are things that maybe he could have raised which then could have led to further testing… and predictions… and modeling issues. But he didn’t. He just said the same thing over and over again.

        So here’s the challenge: did Singer “just say the same thing over and over again?” If not, we must question Heather Douglas’ integrity. If so, if he never actually responded to the aerosol argument, then we need to ask whether that actually is a “failure of integrity”?

      • AK, she listed a few things that should raise red flags, and he hit those too. Basically not publishing anything significant in the field he is criticizing is a red flag.

      • Basically not publishing anything significant in the field he is criticizing is a red flag.

        From S. FRED SINGER, Ph.D. Professional Background (via Wayback):

        MAJOR SCIENTIFIC ACCOMPLISHMENTS:

        […]

        Design of sensing instruments for MOUSE, including the first instrument for measuring stratospheric ozone (1956), now used in satellites.

        […]

        First calculation of methane increase due to population growth, and its effects on the stratosphere (1971). The theory serves as a paradigm for CFC-stratosphere effects. While developed in connection with the SST controversy, it is now of importance for both greenhouse warming and ozone depletion theories.

        […]

        PUBLICATIONS:

        […]

        Global Effects of Environmental Pollution (Reidel, 1970)

        […]

        Cost-Benefit Analysis in Environmental Decisionmaking (Mitre Corp, 1979)

        […]

        Global Climate Change: Human and Natural Influences (Paragon House, 1989)

        Re-analysis of the nuclear winter phenomenon by S. F. Singer Meteorology and Atmospheric Physics 1988, Volume 38, Issue 4, pp 228-239

        An analysis of the report of the (U.S.) National Academy of Sciences (NAS) on atmospheric effects of a nuclear exchange leads to conclusions that differ from those of the NAS and of the earlier “TTAPS” and “AMBIO” studies. Any cooling of the earth’s surface is likely to beshort-lived because of rapid removal of the smoke clouds originating from nuclear burst-initiated fires, andminor because of appreciable green-house effects due to several distinct physical causes. (One of these, neglected in prior analyses, is the infrared absorption from cirrus clouds produced directly by the nuclear bursts.) Taken together, these effects may even induce slight surface warming (“nuclear summer”) instead of cooling (“nuclear winter”). The consequences to atmospheric ozone are similarly ambiguous; depending on the detailed nuclear scenario, the net ozone content may increase-rather than decrease as argued by “TTAPS”. Experiments could settle some uncertainties.

        Environmental Effects of Energy Production by S. Fred Singer The Changing Global Environment 1975, pp 25-44

        The production and transmission of concentrated amounts of energy are the keystones for our rapid rise in standard of living. The major source of energy comes from fossil fuels, a resource which was accumulated over hundreds of millions of years but which is rapidly being used up: oil and gas in a matter of decades, coal in centuries: a brief episode in human history, but with a profound impact. Hopefully, nuclear breeders and fusion reactors will be developed in good time to supplant fossil fuels.

        We describe here the uses of various forms of energy, historical and future trends, and especially the various environmental effects. Chief among these are the increase in global carbon dioxide and the generation of waste heat. Their effects are judged to be noticeable but not serious at this time.

      • OK folks, here we go: Human Contribution to Climate
        Change Remains Questionable
        SF Singer – EOS, Vol. 80, No. 16, April 20, 1999

        The principal focus of climate science is certainly atmospheric science and meteorology, but the subject involves many other areas of the Earth sciences as well as different disciplines, such as physics, chemistry and even biology.This complexity makes climate science both fascinating and controversial. It also undergoes rapid change as new facts and analyses emerge.Yet public interest in the possibility that human activities can change climate has become so intense that far-reaching policies are instituted even before final judgments are possible.

        […]

        The second assessment (in 1996) no longer made this claim; instead, it found it necessary to introduce a previously overlooked factor, human-caused atmospheric sulfate aerosols, to reach the conclusion that “the balance of evidence suggests there is a discernible human influence on global climate.” This ambiguous statement does not do justice to the vast compilation of data and model results brought together in the report itself by some hundred climate scientists.Their important work (more than 500 pages, but lacking an index) has been largely ignored by the public, while attention has focused on the politically negotiated (5-page) Summary for Policymakers.Those who are skeptical of the IPCC conclusion have viewed the statement about “discernible human influence” as trivial and meaningless. On the other hand, the media and many policy experts have welcomed its convenient formula, which they regard as scientific proof of a coming climate catastrophe.[my bold]

        […]

        There is general agreement that the global climate warmed between about 1880 and 1940, following several centuries of the “little ice age,” which in turn was preceded by the “medieval climate optimum” around 1100 A.D. There is less agreement about the causes of this recent warming, but the human component is thought to be quite small. [See Sidebar] This conclusion seems to be borne out also by the fact that the climate cooled between 1940 and 1975, just as industrial activity grew rapidly after World War II. It has been difficult to reconcile this cooling with the observed increases in greenhouse gases. To account for the discrepancy the 1996 IPCC report has focused attention on the previously ignored (direct) cooling effects of sulfate aerosols (from coal burning and other industrial activities), which reflect a portion of incident sunlight. But this explanation to support the “discernible human influence” conclusion is no longer considered as valid. Leading modelers [Tett et al., 1996; Penner et al., 1998; Hansen et al, 1998] all agree that the aerosol forcing is more uncertain than any other feature of the climate models. Models have not yet incorporated the much larger indirect cooling effects of sulfate aerosols (by increasing cloudiness), or the quite different optical effects of carbon soot from industrial and biomass burning and of mineral dust arising from disturbances of the land. [my bold]

        Looks to me like Douglas lied. Certainly the juxtaposition of her statement with these excerpts from a 1999 article (less than three years after the 1996 “Second Assessment”) offer prima facie evidence of bad faith, and lack of integrity on Douglas’ part, in accusing Singer of such lack.

    • Don Monfort

      “Why Climate Science is Politicized and What to Do about it”

      It looks like her solution is to politicize it more, and more effectively for the furtherance of the alarmist cause. Actually, following her plan would likely make the alarmists more effective propagandists. Heather has some talent. But she is very hypocritical to be talking about integrity.

      • She is opposed to the consensus argument and suggests using win-win solutions for argument. This seems quite reasonable to me.

      • Don Monfort

        Read it harder, jimmy. She includes the consensus among her diverse arguments. It was listed first.

      • She said specifically why that argument is not working.

      • Don Monfort

        Read all of the freaking thing, jimmy. She specifically listed consensus first in her list of diverse arguments. Do you think that means she wants to drop it, because it ain’t working? She wants to improve it. You are really not very clever.

      • patmcguinness

        “It looks like her solution is to politicize it more”
        That’s my take as well. What a dreary proposal. We would be better served if scientists listened to Roger Pielke Jr and his appeal for ‘honest brokers’. The world has more than enough salesman but not enough honest brokers.

    • patmcguinness

      First, on the part of the HD paper posted in the article, She stated “The crucial requirement for scientific integrity is the maintenance of the proper roles for values in science.”

      I have to disagree with the emphasis. Yes, Values are important in science; and the #1 value is integrity, ie, honesty and pursuit of truth. But values aren’t enough. An honest astrologer or faith healer who means well is still a bad imitation of a scientist. Science is a process, and there was precious little in the excerpt, or in the paper that I read, that focussed on the critical elements that make scientific integrity, ie the integrity of the scientific *process* – falsifiable hypotheses, data to confirm or reject those hypotheses; objective / unbiased use of data (avoiding cherry picking/ curve fitting); etc. As with ‘rule of law’, scientific integrity is mainly a matter of process. Bad process that gets the ‘right result’ is still bad science.

      ” scientific integrity is a quality of individual scientists,.. The crucial requirement for scientific integrity is the maintenance of the proper roles for values in science.” This thinking is at best circular. At worst, it become a dangerous mindset that elevate intentions and soft ‘value’ concepts, with what science is GOOD at – hard, quantitative, objective things. In particular, a hard, clear, quantitative, objective PROCESS.

      Her paper also completely misses what President Eisenhower understood in 1959, that the Government research complex itself creates self-interested incentives that bend research. To cite Bush administration somehow pushing for certain results, while NOT mentioning how Obama administration has expelled climate skeptics from government or how IPCC has become an exercise in groupthink, is egregious.

      As for the presentation, it is a political exposition that argues the debate is political, and the debate hasn’t ‘worked’, but instead of rethinking why it hasnt worked or maybe why this is not a good trend, it suggests lets use MORE politics.

      Slide #4 is the bogus 97% claim; we know how flawed that is, not reflecting in any meaningful result; the ‘97%’ is used as a political shaming/dissent suppressing device (social conformity pressure). HD doesnt object to it because “97%” as an argument is a logical fallacy, but rather because it doesnt work; so she’s ok with fallacious political arguments that distort perceptions of science, so long as they work? She at least points out the resistance to it is in effect a reaction to an argument that is calling on people join in with ‘groupthink’.

      “We should use a range of arguments” Why? That is a political goal “Hey, we want to get an agenda approved, how do we shape minds?”

      Gotta love this one: “We should not acidify the ocean!!” So a “Waterloo Chair in Science and Society” needed two exclamation points. Seems like cheerleading. Never mind that oceans have changed pH by only about 0.1, from 8.2 to 8.1 pH, in the last 50 years or so, are still alkaline, and we’d need a 2x CO2 to get to 7.9pH, and the whole ocean could absorb 2800 gigatonnes of carbon before the whole ocean even dropped to 7.9 pH. That’s just another of the ‘scare’ items – alongside climate refugees, sea level rise, extreme weather, lyme disease.

      My summation:
      – Her thinking about scientific integrity is confused and falls short. I think scientist practitioners would be better served by thinking about process and how to build integrity into the process; perhaps, taking Deming’s 14 points and applying it to their research programs.
      – Her ‘solution’ to the politicization of climate science is more useless politicization of science and attempts at more PR. warmists don’t need PR, they need to return to scientific integrity.

  11. UNFCC/IPCC ideology in a nutshell is anti-white, anti-Western, anti-Judeo/Christian, anti-American, anti-gay, anti-women’s rights and pro-communism.

  12. Very salient post. Kudos to Heather and Jose. A Memorial Day remembrance of what science was supposed to be, but no longer is. Not only in climate research.
    Biology, variants drug research, metabolism (cholererol kerfuffle), stem cells (Japan thermal shock fraud). Electrochemistry (energy storage) variants graphene, nanotubes. Photovoltaics, new variant hybrid perovskites (organometallic halides, which have two separate instability problems making them practically useless). And so on. The politicized hunt for government grant funding is destroying science, just as Eisenhower foresaw in 1959.

    • Don Monfort

      Did you watch Heather’s video performance, Rud?

      • No. Tried, would not load on old iPad this vacation weekend.. But, so what? What was posted made sense. And, she is entitled to change her mind. Better, wrong about Singer, whose position on secondary smoke has been repeatedly misrepresented by MSM.
        I figure we need to win the climate war, not every skirmisch therein. So Pick targets and ‘ammo’ carefully.

      • Don Monfort

        She didn’t change her mind, Rud. She is on the alarmist side.

        https://www.academia.edu/8987386/Why_Climate_Science_is_Politicized_and_What_to_Do_about_it

        She doesn’t really care about how the alarmists have politicized the debate. She just wants them to be more effective.

      • I figure we need to win the climate war, not every skirmisch therein. So Pick targets and ‘ammo’ carefully.

        At least someone understands. Is skirmisch Yiddish?

    • The other problem with (pick your favourite topic) is that it leads nowhere useful. It is not an argument that can be technically decisive – and the assumption that winning the science high ground in the climate battle will win the culture war is clearly wrong.

      • “and the assumption that winning the science high ground in the climate battle will win the culture war is clearly wrong.”

        A clearly incorrect comment.

        If climate models were even reasonable accurate then there would be no “war”. There is a “war” because some people are pushing others to adopt their beliefs about what will happen and what should be done as a result despite there being no good science to support their conclusions.

      • Low or high sensitivity – the example I was thinking of – is not something that can be technically decisive. Especially as the third possibility – both – is more likely.

        Ghil’s model shows that climate sensitivity (γ) is variable. It is the change in temperature (ΔT) divided by the change in the control variable (Δμ) – the tangent to the curve as shown above. Sensitivity increases moving down the upper curve to the left towards the bifurcation and becomes arbitrarily large at the instability. The problem in a chaotic climate then becomes not one of quantifying climate sensitivity in a smoothly evolving climate but of predicting the onset of abrupt climate shifts and their implications for climate and society.

        Models are known without a doubt to be inaccurate. It is called ‘irreducible imprecision’ and it has been known about since Edward Lorenz plied hi convection models in the 1960’s. Models can have slightly different starting points as a result of uncertainty in inputs. Many solutions are thus possible – for a single model – that diverge exponentially over the calculation period. The problem is shown in the diagram from a paper by Julia Slingo – head of the British Met Office – and Tim Palmer – head of the European Centre for Mid-Range Weather Forecasting.

        Source: Julia Slingo and Tim Palmer 2011

        It is quite demonstrable math but mention this on any global warming blog and the inhabitants will exhibit severe agitation, fear and loathing as cognitive dissonance kicks in. However – it is not quite right either to claim that models are inaccurate because they fail to reproduce the lack of more recent global temperature rise. Instead what they have done is arbitrarily pick one of the possible solutions – and discard all the others – based on expectations of how climate will evolve. The choices are too hot – what a surprise. They dress up the choices with ad hoc rationales.

        Uncertainty cuts both ways. There is not enough accurate and comprehensive data – there are impossibly inadequate methods and incomplete theories. Battling on these grounds is just two tribes telling each other stories superficially. in the objective idiom of science. It is a battle that can’t be won. As far as I can tell – no one but Judy has a gut belief in the existence of Mr T.

        The culture war is clearly broader than climate however. The global warming progressives narrative involves narratives of moribund western economies – governed by corrupt and ruthless corporations – collapsing under the weight of internal contradictions – leading to less growth, less material consumption, less CO2 emissions, less habitat destruction and a last late chance to stay within the safe limits of global ecosystems. It is a philosophy of limits in which carbon dioxide is just one talking point.

        The best response is stress the centrality of economic to provide the resources for social progress and environmental conservation and restoration. The best way forward is to frame a positive narrative of the future – and actually work to bring it off.

        http://watertechbyrie.com/2015/05/23/economic-growth-and-environmental-management-in-a-global-iriai/

      • David Springer

        @Rob Starkey

        +1

    • David Springer

      No other problem solution will lead to a more useful place. It is an argument that can be technically decisive – and the assumption that winning the science high ground in the climate battle will win the culture war is clearly correct.

      Great comment, Rud.

    • Steven Mosher

      rud

      “. A Memorial Day remembrance of what science was supposed to be, but no longer is. ”

      the science you dream of never was.

  13. Re Duarte’s comments on ideologues, I met many left-wing ideologues in the ‘60s and ‘70s who knew that they could never get general acceptance of the world view which drove them, and that they could succeed only by devious means or by “blood-in-the-streets – fomenting a crisis which led to violence: cf Arthur Scargill who effectively sought to replace the UK government by a coup in the late ‘70s. The devious route has been followed since at least the late 19th C, supplemented where useful by the bloody route. The key to success is not to convince people of the rightness of your views, but to foster “useful fools” who will do your bidding without grasping your goal. The most successful example of this in Australia was from 1975, when union leader Laurie Carmichael and Victorian Education Minister, later Premier, decided that the only way to succeed was through propagandising the education system from primary school onwards. Teaching methods and curriculum content have been contorted to introduce a leftist bias into unwitting students. Occasional attempts to unwinding this have had little success, the left-wing bias of academia being a factor – cf the outrage about Lomborg versus the support for Sydney Uni’s anti-Israel, anti-Semitic Jack Lynch.

    Alleged CAGW has been a godsend to left-wing ideologues, who have penetrated to the heart of many bodies while lacking appropriate scientific qualifications [I have some sources if I can find them]. Ben Santer’s contribution to the politicisation and distortion of the IPCC is well documented – only source to hand http://wattsupwiththat.com/2012/04/22/madrid-1995-was-this-the-tipping-point-in-the-corruption-of-climate-science/ .

    You can’t attack red wolves in climate-change sheeps’ clothing by philosophy and sociology, it’s essentially political and politics will trump science whenever it is convenient. Debating the finer parts of CAGW science will not stop the extreme left (and nor am I equipped to do it), it will unfortunately take great political effort rather than climate science house-cleaning. Hopefully those on what I see as the “right” (no pun intended) side will maintain their integrity in challenging those who lack any.

    • Interesting recollections, Great Cunn.

      I briefly strained to be radical in the late 1960s, but it really was too much strain. The end might have been when students at Sydney University jostled Sir Roden Cutler (VC with one leg) as he inspected the university regiment. He ignored them and kept hobbling down the line. (Some engineering students eventually formed a cordon for him.)

      Mind you, it was the jostling of a cripple I objected to, not the demonstrating. Trouble is, I rarely encountered demonstrators happy just to demonstrate. I left the Left of the 60s thinking it was one big cheap shot.

      I’m used to the Israel-bashing and dinner-party anti-semitism which pervade the present era but I can scarcely believe the aggressive picketing of Max Brenner shops. That’s not back to the 60s – that’s back to the 30s!

      Anyway, no ideologies for me. Plenty of spleen and bias…but no ideologies thanks. I’m not a big fan of Max Brenner chocolate, but I go there when in Sydney just because a mob told me not to.

      To be honest, I think I first went raging skep on climate just because I couldn’t stand the Amway convention attitude of CAGW preachers and believers. When Gore went recruiting “climate ambassadors” around Oz (and they had to pay him and pay lots!) that really did settle the science for me.

    • Debating the finer points of climate science is fun but ultimately inconclusive. Their are some facts that are irrefutable maths – but neither side seem to have much of a grounding in this math. Treat it as a learning curve – with the excitement of occasionally passing a knowledge threshold. I remember wanting to get on my chair and clap in the lecture on reduction to row echelon. In the semi circular auditorium we would do Mexican waves just for the hell of it. The wonder when I first realised that I could computer model rainfall. In 1990 I discovered drought and flood dominated regimes in a book called Australian Geomorphology. Beginning a 25 year quest. In 1997 it was at last connected with the newly described Pacific Decadal Oscillation as a cause – but how could sea surface temperature in the north-east pacific influence Australian rainfall? In 2003 I realised it caused global warming and cooling. In 2009 I at last understood that they were chaotic climate shifts. Each of those moments I remember in vivid detail. It’s a bit Aspergers I know. In 2009 I told Daisy I was wrong about cycles. So what’s new she said – utterly unimpressed.

      I transported draft dodgers and AWOL soldiers to safe houses with my mum in her Volkswagen in the 60’s. Was I right? The only possible win in that unwinnable war was to end it as quickly as possible – the only reason not to was to fight the communists to a standstill in south-east Asia. I marched against nuclear in the 70’s in a position informed by cyberpunk. Ever more powerful technologies need a cooling off period. We could very well have avoided the worst errors by holding off a little.

      We took over the Jervis Bay Protection Committee one evening. Having been to the hard school of Labor politics – I took the chair and we elected all our candidates unopposed. Half an hour later we were eating pizza and drinking champagne. It was a totally middle class administration and the greenies hated us for it. But we got the public onside – we were at every opening of a phone booth handing out pictures of dolphins and cute penguins. Only once did we stop the US Navy – to national headlines of the mouse that roared – by sending the greenies onto the bombing range.

      I was a yippie because – frankly – the hippies were so dour and humorless. Yippies were about having fun – hanging in coffee shops with dog eared copy’s of Rimbaud, driving too fast, loving girls in rags and feathers, dressing as Santa Claus to be star chambered by the House Un-American Activities Committee. Yippies know how to win the culture war by framing an eloquent and optimistic narrative – emphasing the centrality of economic and a stewardship of nature that employs the most modern and powerful tools. As Springer notes – verbosity is my other middle name so I’ll give it a good old Aussie go.

      I read somewhere recently that left and right speaks to divisions that are no longer relevant – to be supplanted by uppers and downers. Buying into this optimistic discourse is the future for uppers. So if I may – and as I read recently on my facebook timeline – I’m wearing the cape and I’ll make the whooshing noises.

  14. The first paragraph from Duarte can be applied to skeptics too. They see large numbers of people not agreeing with them and therefore assume there must be an ideology and look for ulterior reasons why they don’t agree with you. This site spends a lot of time looking for reasons that the scientists don’t agree with Judith.

    • It can apply to skeptics too. Some where near both extremes you can have certainty. Uncertainty is more in line with lukewarmers. Ideologues might be said to exhibit more certainty. Skeptics can be more certain it’s primarily natural and the whole field is not too trustworthy. While I read WUWT daily, many of the commenters appear certain of themselves. Perhaps at one time everyone was uncertain. We later had more certainty from the warmists and later still pushback certainty from the skeptics. There’s the question of each of us being ideologues and unable to see that?

      • “Skeptics” are the ones who are too certain that the IPCC central estimate is wrong. They preach uncertainty while also being too certain on that point. It’s an enigma how their minds reconcile these views.

      • JimD,
        “Believers” are the ones who are too certain that the IPCC central estimate is right. They preach certainty while knowing that there is substantial uncertainty. It’s an enigma how their minds reconcile these views.

      • Jim D

        Your comment is written like someone who is frustrated that others do not accept their system of beliefs.

        I agree with Ragnaar’s observation. I am skeptical that actions being suggested for reduction of CO2 emissions in the US make sense. I accept these is a potential that more atmospheric CO2 will lead to warming that will lead to “climate problems”. I am skeptical that we understand where and when the climate will improve vs. being harmed.

      • The IPCC has a wider uncertainty range then these “skeptics”. The central estimate agrees with the last 60 years of warming, so why not use that as a central estimate for the future? “Skeptics” say no, don’t use that? Not sure why, uncertainty rules, but don’t use the most direct estimate whatever you do.

      • Jim D writes- “The IPCC has a wider uncertainty range then these “skeptics”. The central estimate agrees with the last 60 years of warming, so why not use that as a central estimate for the future?”

        My response- The actual warming that has occurred over the last 15 years has been much lower than the mid point of the IPCC’s estimates and has indicated that the models used to form conclusions about what will happen farther into the future to be highly unreliable scientifically for temperature and other conditions.

        Jim- What is it that primarily leads you to believe that environmental conditions will worsen as a result of more CO2? Where specifically will this occur and when? If conditions are not clearly worse by some date in the future, will you change your opinion?

      • JimD, IPCC has a wider uncertainty range than skeptics? That’s rich – 35 years on, 5 super expensive Assessment Reports and you’re actually proud of the fact climate science hasn’t been willing or able to narrow their ranges? They keep the ranges wide to accommodate the alarming ‘projections’ and still be able to claim to be within range when, as with the pause, the observations just don’t match the alarming projections.

        You seem to me to have a very strong level of faith in IPCC – how can you, after the Climategate revelations?

      • A lot of swiveling by skeptics when I answered their questions. Yes, I think a 60-year record, which by the way includes the whole pause, is more reliable, don’t you? This happens to agree with what the IPCC uses as a sensitivity, so I am encouraged by that as a sign they got things about right too. I didn’t say anything about environmental conditions, but I think it is better to stabilize the climate near the current one. Separating the questions of how much warming/melting from the rest about impacts and mitigation or adaptation is an important for clarity in the science debate. Don’t conflate these.

      • NOAA recently update its AGGI ( Annual Greenhouse Gas Index ).

        Here’s the correlation with temperature:

        Put in perspective with some of NASA’s wilder propaganda:

      • Also,

        if one takes the NOAA AGGI, shifts it to a common 2000 baseline of the RCP, and plots it over the IPCC RCPs, one gets:

        Forcing rates were less than the low end B1 scenario of AR4.
        AR5 reset by using the RCPs and forcing appears to be growing at less than all the RCP scenarios after just a few years.

      • TE, surface temperature and CO2 give 2 C per doubling if you take the changes since 1950. It is a very simple calculation, 310-400 ppm and 0.7 C warming.

      • Jim D on May 25, 2015 at 9:09 pm

        ““Skeptics” are the ones who are too certain that the IPCC central estimate is wrong. They preach uncertainty while also being too certain on that point. It’s an enigma how their minds reconcile these views.”

        By looking at the actual surface data, and not other people’s trash it was turned it into .

      • The skeptics only apply uncertainty to data they don’t like, such as the surface warming and ocean measurements, but don’t to things like the pause where they use 15-year trends as if they are robust. Another enigmatic disconnect that needs explaining.

      • Jim D:
        I’ll give you that the IPCC has a wider uncertainty range than skeptics and lukewarmers. At the same time:
        “ FAR:  “The size of this warming is broadly consistent with predictions of climate models, but it is also of the same magnitude as natural climate variability…”
        “ AR4:  “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.”
        https://judithcurry.com/2011/06/14/overconfidence-in-ipccs-detection-and-attribution-part-iv/
        Though it just one case, it’s evolving toward more certainty at times. I cannot tackle their expert opinion. Its meaning is too muddled for my small mind.

      • Ironically AR5’s increased certainty on attribution could have come from the extended pause and the reduction in their aerosol estimate relative to AR4. More forcing and less temperature change meant more certainty that the temperature change could be largely accounted for by the forcing uncertainty distribution.

      • Don Monfort

        What would less forcing and more temperature change have meant, yimmee? The opposite, or the same freaking thing? Let’s see if you can avoid falling into the unintentional irony pit here. Joshie is watching you.

      • Don M, a large temperature change and weak forcing would lead to less certainty about anthropogenic attribution, of course, but the reverse is the case.

      • Jim D-
        Simple quesion—

        What reliable information is there that leads you to conclude that any warming that occurs will lead to a negative change in conditions for the USA or the world overall?

      • Jim D: The skeptics only apply uncertainty to data they don’t like, such as the surface warming and ocean measurements, but don’t to things like the pause where they use 15-year trends as if they are robust.

        Could you quote such a skeptic, who claims that the surface warming and ocean measurements are data that they don’t like, yet who claim that a 15 year trend is “robust”? The “hiatus”, if that is what you are referring to, is taken seriously by all of the warmers now, and they have diverse explanations of what has caused it and how much longer it will continue.

      • Jim D: A lot of swiveling by skeptics when I answered their questions.

        Which question did you quote and answer, and where? Quoting the question exactly is necessary so that readers know what a comment from you is purportedly and answer to. You repeatedly misquote and shift your ground.

      • Jim D: “Skeptics” are the ones who are too certain that the IPCC central estimate is wrong.

        Presumably (correct me if I am wrong) a true skeptic (without the scare quotes) merely asserts that the IPCC central estimate has too little evidentiary support to be useful for planning.

      • Eddie, rcp8.5 can’t be achieved. It assumes surreal fossil fuel resources.

      • TE, surface temperature and CO2 give 2 C per doubling if you take the changes since 1950. It is a very simple calculation, 310-400 ppm and 0.7 C warming.

        Wonder why temperature seems to be less sensitive?

        That said, I should probably stop posting the correlation ( from 1950 or any time ) because there are other things going on ( whether IPCC has them correct or not ):

      • Eddie, rcp8.5 can’t be achieved. It assumes surreal fossil fuel resources.

        Ya – and I’m beginning to think we won’t ever reach any of them, though India looks to be pouring on the energy now.

      • Turbulent Eddie

        The period from 1910 to 1970 has the same temperature rise but without the co2 component. WUWT?

        Tonyb

    • When all think alike, no one is thinking.

    • The skeptics only apply uncertainty to data they don’t like, such as the surface warming and ocean measurements, but don’t to things like the pause where they use 15-year trends as if they are robust. Another enigmatic disconnect that needs explaining.

      Fallacious generalization. Certainly I have seen the behavior you describe on the so-called “skeptic” side but it is most definitely not universal.

      Face it: the lack of scientific integrity affects both “sides” in a debate that is so politicized that it is nearly impossible to extract the truth. Yet everyone claims they are in favor of more integrity. I just haven’t seen a lot of evidence for that being true.

  15. Some thoughts:

    1). If there is a 97% consensus on AGW, why fund continued research in it? :).

    2). Why not file an ethics complaint with professional societies against the worst offenders? It keeps the problems enumerated here alive.

    3). This quote explains what is going on:

    “In a world increasingly devoid of moral authority, the supposed impartiality of science provides a seemingly objective source of authority. That authority is a major threat to the environmental movement.”

    Iain Murray , “The Really Inconvenient Truth” P. 51-52.

    George Devries Klein, PhD, PG, FGSA

  16. “If you believe your ideology is true, but look out upon the world and see that large numbers of people don’t embrace it, it can be frustrating. You have a list of issues you think must be urgently addressed by society, yet society is not addressing them, perhaps doesn’t even see them as problems to begin with. This can create a lot of dissonance – why don’t people see what we see or think as we think?”
    Might be talking about libertarians. To affect change takes more than knowing I am right. It’s convincing others. The warmists have convinced quite a few people but are short of a critical mass. The ideology might be on par with K-12 education. Everybody wants more of it but money is still an issue. Politicians give it some play, but then move on to their next pressing concern. Things seem to have stalled for the warmists, but that is the most common outcome. Teachers are a good example. They have what they have and they try to maintain it. They study the politics and use that, and their vigilance is unending. They pretty much hold the status quo and make small improvements. They aren’t expecting radical changes or a new era. Do they get frustrated that things are wrong and they can’t fix them? To some small extent. Do they feel unlistened to and that society is not addressing their concerns? Yes. Are they ideologues? Some of them are, but it might be possible to be an effective ideologue. Doing a good job in a less than ideal situation. Reminds me of a song, I never promised you a rose garden.

  17. David Springer

    The bottom line is that global warming is a political football and academic cottage industry. Very few of the public, at least in the US, are concerned about it. Seriously put a drag on the economy with mitigation schemes and then they’ll pay attention.

    Look at all the things Americans consider more important:

    http://www.gallup.com/poll/1675/most-important-problem.aspx

    It’s fun to debate if you’re a science/politics/culture warrior but beyond that it’s just not that important. Just because Obama is playing it up doesn’t mean anything. He’s just trying to divert attention from things people care much more about.

    • But if you ask them the direct question whether international agreements should be used to reduce emissions, you get about 70% saying yes. They possibly don’t see it as a problem because it is understood and being addressed.

    • catweazle666

      “Look at all the things Americans consider more important:”

      Let’s look at all the things the World’s population considers important.

      Here is the 2015 United Nations My World survey covering currently over seven and a half million respondents.

      Out of sixteen categories, climate change comes flat last.

      http://data.myworld2015.org/

      Says it all, that.

  18. There are a couple of months where the temps equaled 1998.

    http://www.woodfortrees.org/plot/gistemp/from:1997

    There are any number of explanations – ocean heat, volcanoes, solar variability, etc – these all avoid large variability in the outgoing energy budget.

    I watched the Heather Douglas video – that included the comments of on mid century cooling. The lack of awareness of the vagaries of knowledge – the certainty with which she pursued a simple explanation was the striking note. We don’t know what the sulphide forcing was. We don’t know that changes in natural sulphides – which recent work suggested was the source of most variation. We don’t know even how anthopogenic emissions behave in the atmosphere. There is a suggestion that sulphides interacting with particulates doubles the warming potential of black carbon.

    There is an alternative explanation and the correlation is compelling. Recent work is identifying abrupt climate changes working through the El Niño Southern Oscillation, the Pacific Decadal Oscillation, the North Atlantic Oscillation, the Southern Annular Mode, the Arctic Oscillation, the Indian Ocean Dipole and other measures of ocean and atmospheric states. These are measurements of sea surface temperature and atmospheric pressure over more than 100 years which show evidence for abrupt change to new climate conditions that persist for up to a few decades before shifting again. Global rainfall and flood records likewise show evidence for abrupt shifts and regimes that persist for decades. In Australia, less frequent flooding from early last century to the mid 1940’s, more frequent flooding to the late 1970’s and again a low rainfall regime to recent times.

    Anastasios Tsonis, of the Atmospheric Sciences Group at University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee, and colleagues used a mathematical network approach to analyse abrupt climate change on decadal timescales. Ocean and atmospheric indices – in this case the El Niño Southern Oscillation, the Pacific Decadal Oscillation, the North Atlantic Oscillation and the North Pacific Oscillation – can be thought of as chaotic oscillators that capture the major modes of climate variability. Tsonis and colleagues calculated the ‘distance’ between the indices. It was found that they would synchronise at certain times and then shift into a new state.

    It is no coincidence that shifts in ocean and atmospheric indices occur at the same time as changes in the trajectory of global surface temperature. Our ‘interest is to understand – first the natural variability of climate – and then take it from there. So we were very excited when we realized a lot of changes in the past century from warmer to cooler and then back to warmer were all natural,’ Tsonis said.

    Four multi-decadal climate shifts were identified in the last century coinciding with changes in the surface temperature trajectory. Warming from 1909 to the mid 1940’s, cooling to the late 1970’s, warming to 1998 and declining since. The shifts are punctuated by extreme El Niño Southern Oscillation events. Fluctuations between La Niña and El Niño peak at these times and climate then settles into a damped oscillation. Until the next critical climate threshold – due perhaps in a decade or two if the recent past is any indication.

    Towards the end she suggested that the question was not what we know – but do we know enough to act. The practical answer is not without defining the cost and benefits of actions. The usual policy from global warming progressives involves the collapse of western civilisation and capitalism leading to less growth, less material consumption, less CO2 emissions, less habitat destruction and a last late chance to stay within the safe limits of global ecosystems. And this is just in the ‘scholarly’ journals.

  19. Prof Curry I think Paul Homewood has noted an example of ideological climate science, not that he calls it that. Just my view and I could be wrong of course.

    https://notalotofpeopleknowthat.wordpress.com/2015/05/25/you-could-not-make-it-up-but-they-can/#comments.

    From the abstract asserting unabated sea level rise (it has to be read to be believed):
    “The rate of global mean sea-level (GMSL) rise has been suggested to be lower for the past decade compared with the preceding decade as a result of natural variability… However, satellite-based GMSL estimates do not include an allowance for potential instrumental drifts… Here, we report improved bias drift estimates for individual altimeter missions from a refined estimation approach that incorporates new Global Positioning System (GPS) estimates of vertical land movement (VLM). … Applying the bias drift corrections has two implications. First, the GMSL rate (1993 to mid-2014) is systematically reduced …. Second, in contrast to the previously reported slowing in the rate during the past two decades1, our corrected GMSL data set indicates an acceleration in sea-level rise ….”

    It seems to me the ideology in this case is that sea-level rise must be getting higher because warming, even though it isn’t according to prior published science and measures.

    So, the steps:
    1. refer to prior science as merely a ‘suggestion’
    2. identify a hypothetical measuring problem, but don’t call it hypothetical, call it potential
    3. assert an improved estimate of measuring problems from a refined estimation process that incorporates estimates
    4. leap from the fact the entire exercise was nothing more than an estimation of hypothetical instrumental problems to an outright assertion of unabated sea-level rise

    Just my opinion.

  20. My radar is bleeping I’m afraid.

    Is this Heather Douglas just stating (and convoluting) the obvious at extreme length as a soften-up for a warmie message? You know the drill: new formula let’s-get-together alarmism, now with added inclusiveness, so smooth and yummy I can’t believe it’s not skepticism?

    Sorry if I’m reading her wrong…but this radar is really going off.

    • As I have noted, she appears to be leaning towards warmism in the video and in a presentation she has. Does this make her points in the post less believable to you now?

      • The obvious expressed in fluent academese…and looooong. What’s to believe or disbelieve?

      • Don Monfort

        It’s plain from the video and her other presentation that Heather D is a committed alarmist, yimmy. Unless the Heather who wrote the stuff included in this post is some other Heather, then she is also a big hypocrite.

      • You are going to say she is some kind of activist instead of just another independent thinker that is convinced by the evidence. This is no surprise.

      • Don Monfort

        What does Heather know about the evidence, yimmy? She was very casual about slandering Dr. Singer with the flimsiest of excuses. One freaking chart and the assertion that he lacks scientific integrity. What’s her evidence? That the consensus knows all about the settled science of aerosols and Dr. Singer’s opinion must be due to a lack of integrity. She is ignorant, yimmee. Even you should be able to admit that. Singer should sue the smug little knownothing.

      • Don Monfort

        Jimmee, why do you suppose that of all the scientists in the freaking universe, Heather picked on Fred Singer? Is he the one she had the best case against? She never heard of Cookie and Lewandumpski? She is a partisan axe grinder, like the others.

      • Singer graduated from tobacco denial and was openly supported by the oil industry. Seems like an easy target. He also was one of the first AGW deniers as early as 1990 with setting up the thinktanks and criticizing the science mainly because he did not like the policy implications. He was a pioneer.

      • I find the skeptical mindset very entertaining. That’s why I am here. It is good to probe what they are thinking with some questions, and this is an especially interesting time as the pause ends, a big El Nino is about due. What will they think of next? Maybe they will give up the ghost on whether warming will happen, and just head on over towards the warmer-is-better argument.

      • Don M, you asked me why Singer, and I gave my opinion.

      • ‘Finally, the presence of vigorous climate variability presents significant challenges to near-term climate prediction (25, 26), leaving open the possibility of steady or even declining global mean surface temperatures over the next several decades that could present a significant empirical obstacle to the implementation of policies directed at reducing greenhouse gas emissions (27). However, global warming could likewise suddenly and without any ostensive cause accelerate due to internal variability. To paraphrase C. S. Lewis, the climate system appears wild, and may continue to hold many surprises if pressed.’ http://www.pnas.org/content/106/38/16120.full

        Jimmy is having a lend of us. These things are completely unpredictable. I just shrug my shoulders and think probably not. For the same reason that I doubted the permanent Australian drought. Hydrology is a science of stochastic probabilities. This pattern of weak El Nino and strong La Nina has a 20 to 30 year period.

        And when you are looking for ENSO influences – it pays to look at monthly data.

      • The models found that this doubling of extreme El Niño episodes is caused by increased surface warming of the eastern equatorial Pacific Ocean because of climate change. This area of the ocean warms faster than the surrounding waters, the researchers found.

        But Cai acknowledges those findings stand in contrast.to previous studies that found no solid consensus on how El Niños will change because of global warming.

        “The question of how global warming will change the frequency of extreme El Niño events has challenged scientists for more than 20 years,” said study co-author Mike McPhaden of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. “This research is the first comprehensive examination of the issue to produce robust and convincing results.”

      • Don Monfort

        Yes, that’s what they told us and we are still waiting.

        The BIGGER AND MORE FREQUENT EL NINOS have been due since 1998.

      • Jim D: Singer graduated from tobacco denial and was openly supported by the oil industry.

        Singer criticized the exaggerated claims about the dangers of second-hand smoke; and criticized the exaggerated claims about the public health benefits of eliminating public smoking. The evidence was and remains poor: dangers and public health benefits were exaggerated.

      • Jim D: I find the skeptical mindset very entertaining.

        Mostly what entertain you about skepticism are your misquotations and inaccurate paraphrases. Singer’s point that there was pitiful and inadequate evidence that second-hand smoke was a public health danger you turned into “tobacco denial” — and on and on. “Reasonable, empirically founded, alternative explanations can’t be ruled out on present evidence”, and “the future of cloud cover is not known” you turn into some sort of anti-science. While having no explanation for why there is a ~950 year period in temperature data you assert for no reason that any such explanation is irrelevant to estimating the effect of CO2 since 1880. And with no understanding whatsoever of high dimensional non-linear dissipative systems you insist that the equilibrium approximations are accurate.

      • The idea that global warming caused the ‘Great Pacific Climate Shift’ of 1976/77 is a very old one. The shift back in 1998/2001 to a La Nina like regime demonstrates that the natural dynamic – evident over millions of years – is still very active.

    • If this value of science is to be protected, evidence must be able to challenge currently held views. This requirement creates certain demands for the structure of how other values (whether ethical, social, political, or cognitive) can play a role in science.

      Her viewpoint is somewhat poisoned by her politics.

      Science is the known body of facts. Scientists seek to increase the known body of facts (unless you a global warmer and they tend to work in the opposite direction).

      Saying values affect facts is a sign of extreme bias, or of mental illness or defect. The fact that global warming alarmists think values affect science and science can be used as a political tool indicate there is something wrong with their understanding or science – or something is wrong with them.

    • human1ty1st

      She could just believe the consensus view while at the same time believing in a culture that allows that ‘truth’ to be constantly tested.

  21. I have problems with Heather’s statement “Science is thus a value-saturated process.”. To my mind, it should not be. If she is saying that’s how it is, not how it should be, then she may be correct, but I didn’t see that in what she said. Again, to my mind, science goes off the rails regularly specifically because it is value-laden and because it operates on paradigm shifts a la Thomas Kuhn, when it ought to operate on falsifiable multiple hypotheses – falsifiable a la Popper and multiple a la Chamberlin (“With this method the dangers of parental affection for a favorite theory can be circumvented.” http://www.auburn.edu/~tds0009/Articles/Chamberlain%201965.pdf from https://judithcurry.com/2015/05/21/the-method-of-multiple-working-hypotheses/ thanks, Judith).

  22. Excellent posting, thanks. This description by Duarte, “You have a list of issues you think must be urgently addressed by society, yet society is not addressing them, perhaps doesn’t even see them as problems to begin with” would seem applicable to many people from various academic disciplines, political advocacy groups, etc. etc. There are experts in many fields who push for higher levels of attention for their favored cause. In a world of competing values, they can’t all be number one nor can most receive the attention level advocated by their champions. Most people recognize that you can’t do everything and heed the full recommendations of all experts, but in the case of climate advocating for some sort of balance or prioritization with other factors (ala Lomborg) can get you labeled a denier and enemy of science by some. What would policy look like if governments heeded the advice from all scientific and academic experts as regards their independent fields. of expertise? I see a dystopian novel waiting to be written.

  23. I think this organisation believes in the GHE, but does experimental work looking at a possible downside of lowering CO2 levels. Integrity in research notwithstanding ideology. I think I like it!

    “Atmospheric CO2 dependency of biological processes.

    Critically, as [CO2]a approaches low levels (180-200 ppm), experimental evidence indicates that the primary productivity and nutrient demand of forest trees and grasslands declines, together with proportional and total carbon allocation to roots (and therefore mycorrhizal partners). Such responses reveal the potential for non-linear effects of CO2 starvation in diminishing weathering activities by terrestrial vegetation and its mycorrhizal partnerships.

    We are testing the unifying hypothesis that [CO2]a starvation will have the dual effect of reducing plant demand for phosphorus, and carbon-energy supply to mycorrhizas. These fundamental effects of low [CO2]a, in concert with linked shifts from EM to AM plant dominance, are likely to strongly repress plant and mycorrhiza-driven weathering of primary calcium silicate/phosphate minerals. We aim to investigate the potential role of these biosphere-geosphere interactions in the Cenozoic carbon cycle.

    Our experiments address fundamental questions regarding the role of interactions between changes in [CO2]a, vegetation shifts from forest to grassland and biological weathering, and how this feeds back into the climate system to maintain CO2 above Earth system minimum values of 180 – 200 ppm. The work is funded by The Leverhulme Trust and carried out using state of the art growth chambers in the Sir David Read Controlled Environment Facility, that maintain the atmospheric CO2 in matched growth chambers at low (200 ppm), ambient (~450 ppm) and high (1200 ppm) levels.”

    A couple of potential problems raise their ugly heads, of course.

    First, an average CO2 level does not guarantee a minimum level everywhere.
    Second, there is mention of potential non linear effects.

    A quick look at the logistic growth equation might well give pause for thought. Maybe more research needed?

  24. “Quasi-ideological phenomena
    The potentialities of ideological orientations relatively seldom come to realization. Quite apart from the tenacious hold of the central institutional and value systems on many persons who are simultaneously ideologically disposed, ideological orientations often do not eventuate in fully developed ideologies or ideological primary groups because the ideological needs of those who come under their influence are not sufficiently intense, comprehensive, and persistent. Without a powerful ideological personality, powerful in intelligence and imagination, ideological propensities in the more ordinary human vessels of ideological needs do not attain fulfillment.

    Furthermore, once the ties binding an ideological primary group weaken, the ideology persists in a somewhat disaggregated form among the late members of the group. In that form, too, it continues to find adherents who, without the discipline of an ideological primary group, select certain congenial elements of the ideology for application and development. These elements constitute an ideological tradition which is available to subsequent ideologists and ideological primary groups.

    Sometimes certain of these elements become a program of aggressive demands and criticism against the central institutional and value systems. Programs, like ideologies, are also emergents from prevailing outlooks and creeds; they “take seriously” some particular element in the outlook and seek to bring it to fulfillment within the existing order. A program accepts much of the prevailing institutional and value systems, although it fervently rejects one sector. Thus, a program stands midway between an ideology and a prevailing outlook or a creed; it can be reached from either direction (and testifies thereby to the affinities between ideologies and outlooks and creeds).”
    Edward Shils, University of Chicago – http://www.encyclopedia.com/topic/Ideology.aspx
    About the first paragraph, many things fail. And this is difficult. We see the political fights which is a pretty tough area.
    Paragraph two, the idea that survives is the problem with fossil fuels. Carried by multiple yet probably not coherently organized groups. Too many environmental problems and not a grand common theme, though CO2 is a good candidate for summing everything up.
    Paragraph three, the road to Utopia runs through main street. Fulfillment of mitigation goals would happen amongst the central institutional and value systems. The one sector rejected is fossil fuels. What is called above ‘a program’ is more of a middle of road approach would might let some of us (myself) off the ideologue hook.
    My interpretation might mean the argument is a fallback from a full on ideological one to a more achievable goal. That the issue is a remnant of somethings that came before it. A good place to look might be the 1960s and 1970s. Strategically, the CO2 argument is in many ways a good approach. You can roll so many things into a focused simplicity.

  25. David L. Hagen

    NYT What’s Behind Big Science Frauds?

    When the papers in those journals have the fillip of a hot topic, like sex or race, the frenzy is even greater. And yet many reporters fail to do the necessary due diligence before publishing their work. The drive for scoops is even greater in journalism than it is in science.
    Economists like to say there are no bad people, just bad incentives. The incentives to publish today are corrupting the scientific literature and the media that covers it. Until those incentives change, we’ll all get fooled again.

    Can we change incentives by embarasing Journals into retracting bad climate articles?

  26. David Springer

    “It is really hard to find anyone who isn’t a partisan in the climate debate.”

    Lindzen, Spencer, Christy, Pielke Sr., Loehle, Dyson, Koonin, Tsonis, Scafetta, Svensmark, Lomborg, Happer, Gray, C. Idso, S. Idso…

    Well let’s not forget Mann, Hansen and Trenberth.

  27. Posted this on another thread here already, but it is particularly relevant to this post.

    http://www.nationalreview.com/corner/418811/why-gay-marriage-study-was-faked-and-why-we-should-expect-more-it-ian-tuttle

    Science doesn’t have values, just like mathematics and structural engineering don’t have values. Scientists have values, or don’t.

    Want to ‘fix’ climate science? Start teaching students about integrity and humility. I still find it hilarious that we live in a society where the ‘elite’ has decided the Judeo-Christian ethic is de’classe, but they are now fumbling around trying to find some ‘new’ ethic to deal with the pathologies that inevitably resulted from their arrogance.

    It’s very similar to the libertarian/progressive deconstruction of sexual morality on college campuses. With the easily predictable result of the progressive campus ‘elite’ now attempting to criminalize and control virtually every aspect of social interaction between men and women on campus because of the harms they themselves have caused.

    We don’t need some fancy new technological/academic view of human behavior (Social science – isn’t. A science.). Everything you need to know to correct the problems in climate science has been around for millennia. You just have to have the humility to see it.

    There is nothing new in the climate debate.

    • Gary writes- “It’s very similar to the libertarian/progressive deconstruction of sexual morality on college campuses.”

      Wrong

      Your beliefs about how people should behave is solely based on your cultural perspective. (religion)

      Views about climate science will ultimately be determined by a better understanding of how the system operates.

    • David L. Hagen

      On Scientific Integrity and the Lack Thereof
      Matthew J. Franck contrasts integrity and its lack in social science:
      Tales of Two Social Scientists: One of these cases is not like the other.

      . . .Regnerus offered the first example of sound social science questioning what the elite in the academy and media desperately want to believe—that same-sex marriage will have absolutely no negative fallout for the young and vulnerable. So of course his research had to be attacked, mischaracterized, or explained away by “re-analysis” at your local dry cleaner. Never mind that his results actually accorded with common sense and historical experience about parents and children.

      LaCour, on the other hand, offered those same academic and media elites an astounding reversal of conventional wisdom on public opinion formation, but one that delighted them because it made their work look easier, their future brighter, and their pet cause more imminently triumphant. So of course this was the most exciting breakthrough in social science of the last year!

      Until it wasn’t. I wish Michael LaCour well, though I cannot see how his vindication could be possible in this case, or his budding academic career salvaged. Meanwhile Mark Regnerus continues to advance the cause of sound social science.

  28. Steven Mosher

    A post with some philosophy in it would be nice. This one had none.
    She fails to make her primary distinction clear. the rest is motherhood and apple pie. ho humm

    • Kind of like someone’s 2.7 climate sensitivity guess.

      • Steven Mosher

        estimating under conditions of great uncertainty has been my 9-5 since 1985. whether you call it estimating or guesstimating or predicting it all amounts to the same process in the end.

      • Steve

        I think anyone estimate of ECS is a low value guess based on what is known of the overall system at this point. People want to guess about ECS but it may not be recognized over timescale important to humans.

        If someone wants to estimate TCR, then they should provide that estimate for a measureable near tem period. Otherwise it is just another meaningless guess.

        What will TCR be over the next 25 years? Lots of claims by people who “know” what the system is doing. Little reliable evidence to support the claim. And yes- I do make determinations about what evidence is reliable in regards to systems.

      • Steven Mosher

        TCR estimates dont drive the next 25 years very strongly, so the estimate is probably inconsequential. figure what you will get for the next 25 years is pretty much baked into the system

      • “TCR estimates dont drive the next 25 years very strongly”

        I would think 25 years as adequately long to state what the response to more CO2 will be during that period if someone actually understands what the system is doing.

      • Temperature trends less than low end:

        Sensitivity at the low end and future forcing looking low end just doesn’t support the ideation of disasters.

      • Steve–BTW– you comment TCR estimates don’t drive the system is either overly cryptic, silly, or I completely misunderstand.

        TCR estimates NEVER drive the system response. TCR is a statement of what the system did in a prior period or an estimate of what it will do in the future. The number can be lower or higher than ECS depending on what the overall system is doing. If someone actually understands what is happening in the system currently– they should be able to make a reasonably accurate estimate.

  29. The issue of science and ethics has been debated since Sokrates so I don’t see much news here.

    It’ actually a bit off topic.

    The problems stem from the simple fact that the scientific community is embedded in the normal society which works differently. There it’s just pragmatics. Anything that works for ones purposes works.The art of the possible.

    How to construct a “clean” interface that cannot be “hacked” and doesn’t crash or gets hung up at times?

    Less debated and less amenable to rigorous argumentation.

    Realism isn’t good in inspiring “movements”. In the arts there isn’t much interest in realism.

  30. Steven Mosher wants people to write posts to his specifications. Maybe Judith doesn’t really care what Steven Mosher thinks. I don’t know, nor do I care much.

    ho humm.

  31. Reblogged this on Tallbloke's Talkshop and commented:
    .
    .
    Judy Curry grasps the nettle of the ideological bias that has skewed climate science.

    • russellseitz

      Tallbloke | May 26, 2015 at 4:15 am
      Reblogged this on Tallbloke’s Talkshop and commented:
      “Judy Curry grasps the nettle of the ideological bias that has skewed climate science.z”

      All climate blogs that ouch on public policy reify ideology to some degree, but few carry Ideological bias to its purest expression in active censorship. As one of Watts’ gatekeepers you sir, are one of its practitioners.

      Can you tell us how reducing the scientific bandwidth of such websites serves to raise the signal to noise ratio of the comments they elicit?

  32. Climate science isn’t a science and so seems to have all these people problems.

    It’s not that they’re doing science wrong. The field as a whole doesn’t constitute a science in the first place.

    Compare what geophysical science papers used to look like sea waves.

    What was his motivation? Curiosity.

    There’s no tie-in to a huge field covering the Earth. He didn’t need to be careful about any of these climate science concerns to be doing science.

    He simply noticed something they couldn’t predict — “that’s curious” — and accounted for it.

    There still is the Earth as a whole but there was not a science of studying it and still isn’t.

    Only pieces work as science. No whole.

    • /sarc on

      rhhardin,

      Next you’ll be telling us that scientists should be curious. They don’t need curiosity – just obedience!

      /sarc off

  33. David Wojick

    Duarte’s concern about environmentalism capturing social science is the same problem as with physical climate science. Environmentalism is a massive ideological movement, one that has gained political power steadily for the last sixty years. Climate and the attack on fire is its high water mark (so far). It has captured both the scientists and the governments. But I think it has finally overeached because what it wants cannot be done.

    • Skeptics aren’t trying to claim the moral high ground that warmers are, or demanding a restructuring of global economies and a redirection of capital to “fix” the problem. The responsibility for the preponderance of proof is on the shoulders of those pressing that the science is settled. There’s an abundance of demonstrable evidence that the progressive culture has permeated everything that touches AGW. It strains credibility regardless of the “real percent” of scientists that are warmers. The fixes have a pedigree of fraud wrapped around them as the propaganda is laced with disinformation and disingenuous innuendo.

      Most scientists are involved in field work that is specialist in nature, I’m sure most are honest brokers of data. However, those that aggregate all science that influences climate into a prognosis represent a fractional number of the entire body of science, they’re in league with political pundits, they have the entire globe wrapped in a straight jacket. Its these few whose voices are wedded with a massive body of global progressive politics and a willing aspirational media sympathetic to the cause, who are collusive with methodologies to advance the narrative that have created the AGW drum beat.

      So no, skeptics do not have the same burden of proof or motivation as the warmers. They are the voices of reason that see the naked emperor parading down the street.

      • David Wojick

        My point is that environmentalism is a powerful political movement unto itself. Thinking that the climate scare is somehow separate is a mistake, too narrow. So is thinking that this is just an aspect of the progressive position, too broad.

      • I for the most part agree with you. I don’t believe that one being on the left or right predisposes the poistion one will take concerning AGW necessarily. However, I do believe the power brokers, among them the environmentalists as you describe, but in general the leadership in progressive politics, the elite left as a whole are the drivers of the politics behind AGW. The ones advancing the global fund and other schemes. I’m sure too there’s a good number of apolitical opportunists in third world countries etc, in positions of power that are among the loudest proponents. The latter fit within the follow the money crowd.

      • patmcguinness

        “There’s an abundance of demonstrable evidence that the progressive culture has permeated everything that touches AGW.”

        It’s clear that progressive / leftist ideology has permeated a number of institutions in academia, media, and other areas of culture, and in so doing has politicized those areas in ways that they were not previously.
        There is ‘office politics’ in any institution, that’s not new, but the latest generation has seen increase in dogmatism across a wide swath of social sciences and a politicization and the suppression of dissent in many areas.

        We can speak of “liberal media bias” and “campus political correctness” as manifestations of this trend. They are just aspects of a consistent pattern. Progressives / leftists often see their goal of advancing an agenda as superior to the other needs of the institution; they are willing to subvert, radicalize, change and undermine the institution to advance the agenda. The institution is co-opted and in some cases corrupted in order to serve the agenda.

        I had thought the hard sciences was immune, but the last 15 years in seeing how environmentalist politics has corrupted climate science has disabused me of that notion. What’s sad about this is that politics is a form of decision-making decidedly inferior to scientific discovery. When you think of a successful business or organization, they are driven by data (think of Google).

        Politics has now permeated most everything in our US culture, and I blame the 60’s leftists who invaded, co-opted and corrupted the commanding heights in our institutions for the sorry trend.

    • I should clarify what I’m referring to in the first sentence; by moral high ground behind warmers, it’s a dishonest moral high ground “campaign” because science is used as a tool to advance the progressive movement. Therefire it’s not truly moral the way it’s advertised. Skeptics aren’t trying to push a global governance model, nor ramrod advance any form of politics

    • “because science is used as a tool to advance the progressive movement”

      Dr. Curry’s next post. Science As Pretense.

      Andrew

  34. Reblogged this on Centinel2012 and commented:
    Sir Karl Raimund Popper (28 July 1902 – 17 September 1994) was an Austrian and British philosopher and a professor at the London School of Economics. He is considered one of the most influential philosophers of science of the 20th century, and he also wrote extensively on social and political philosophy. The following quotes of his apply to this subject.

    If we are uncritical we shall always find what we want: we shall look for, and find, confirmations, and we shall look away from, and not see, whatever might be dangerous to our pet theories.

    Whenever a theory appears to you as the only possible one, take this as a sign that you have neither understood the theory nor the problem which it was intended to solve.

    … (S)cience is one of the very few human activities — perhaps the only one — in which errors are systematically criticized and fairly often, in time, corrected

    I think we have lost what Popper taught us!

    • Well, yeah.

      http://www.nytimes.com/2015/05/26/science/maligned-study-on-gay-marriage-is-shaking-trust.html?hp&action=click&pgtype=Homepage&module=first-column-region&region=top-news&WT.nav=top-news&_r=2
      Critics said the intense competition by graduate students to be published in prestigious journals, weak oversight by academic advisers and the rush by journals to publish studies that will attract attention too often led to sloppy and even unethical research methods. The now disputed study was covered by The New York Times, The Washington Post and The Wall Street Journal, among others.

      “You don’t get a faculty position at Princeton by publishing something in the Journal Nobody-Ever-Heard-Of,” Dr. Oransky said. Is being lead author on a big study published in Science “enough to get a position in a prestigious university?” he asked, then answered: “They don’t care how well you taught. They don’t care about your peer reviews. They don’t care about your collegiality. They care about how many papers you publish in major journals.”

      Science has lost integrity. Without integrity the only science that makes sense is hard science that improves processes (this can be tested in a lab).

      Without integrity any science that can’t be immediately and objectively tested is paid storytelling.

    • Steven Mosher

      “If we are uncritical we shall always find what we want: we shall look for, and find, confirmations, and we shall look away from, and not see, whatever might be dangerous to our pet theories.”

      This is especially true of people who appeal to Popper. he was wrong.

  35. Judith
    Would you consider writing a post reviewing what reliable information leads science to conclude that AGW will result in a worsening of environmental conditions for the USA or the world overall?

    • Well I thought the AR5 WG2 did a reasonable job of this, although the way the media portrayed this and policy makers continue to portray this is very different

      • Doesn’t AR5 WG2 assume that the models upon which the conclusions are based are reasonably reliable? If current GCMs are not reasonably reliable for determining changes in conditions upon what were the conclusions reached?

      • The significant conclusions in WG2 were analyses of historical data.

      • SPM.1 and the RFC’s are in your opinion are reasonably good?

      • WGII seems to attribute the harm (page 13) to weather or sea level rise.

        The bad weather to warming/CO2 connection is unproven despite a lot of effort to dig one up. The sea level rise of 7-9 inches per century doesn’t seem threatening.

        How does either generate enough harm to counter the benefits of more CO2?

      • well yes, that is rather the point, I think the IPCC has failed to demonstrate ‘dangerous’. Danger hinges on a larger sea level rise.

      • The assessments for the 2nd half of the 21st century seem to be scientifically unsupported. Take another look at projected damages to marine systems (ocean acidification) Food production and human health. Do these projected damages seem to be scientifically based??? LOL

  36. Human subject research has been concerned with ethical integrity issues for quite some time due mainly to abhorrent past abuses. At most US colleges and universities Institutional Review Board (IRB) approval is required before conducting such research and part of the approval process is a training course and certification. One organization in that business is CITI – The Collaborative Institutional Training Initiative – (https://www.citiprogram.org/) whose mission is “to promote the public’s trust in the research enterprise by providing high quality, peer reviewed, web based, research education materials to enhance the integrity and professionalism of investigators and staff conducting research.” All climate researchers ought to be certified by this or a comparable organizations. If it’s required to conduct something relatively trivial as surveys of college students, why shouldn’t it be required of all important research?

  37. OT, sorry, but maybe of interest if it hasn’t been noticed before.

    John Mashey was sued by Wegman et al for tortious interference in state court in VA, subsequently removed to fed court. See http://www.desmogblog.com/2015/05/19/ed-wegman-yasmin-said-milt-johns-sue-john-mashey-2-million

    Case # 1:15-cv-00486 in eastern dist VA.

    The suit looks like it was very badly pled and the plaintiffs withdrew it a few weeks after the removal. Mashey links to his motion to dismiss on the blog post referenced above – I don’t think he provides the original complaint but you can retrieve it via PACER if interested enough.

    I’m not a lawyer but I think I have enough familiarity with basic procedural stuff to recognize the complaint as a hunk of junk, legally.

    No opinion on the substantive issues – I don’t really know the background.

  38. The role of ideology – or ideologues – in climate science isn’t, unfortunately, limited to the warmist side. The skeptic side has its problems, also.

    Recently I locked horns with Lord Monfort, the Brit who is big on the GWPF side. I found his recent attacks on criticism leveled at him disturbing. The emotional content, the sense of umbrage, that someone had dared to disagree – even if wrong – struck me as what we see with people who wish to win the argument (one of the above points) above all. Rhetorician techniques rather than logicians.

    The skeptic argument at times (see above) is not about the inappropriateness of a consensus on a scientific truth, but about the WRONG consensus. This is a control and command problem no different from what Hansen, Gore and the IPCC has. Skepticism means there is dispute. If you don’t accept disagreement calmly and politely, you do not accept skepticism. You just want to be the guy who is know to be “right”.

    A couple of months ago I deleted all the automatic updates I received on skeptic climate science. I was discouraged by the current stage of the debate/war/situation. I was accused of calling for a plague on both houses, a position that was cynical and unhelpful. What I realised was that the polarization of the issue had created camps on both sides that had disposed of uncritical thinking. Disagreement at any level meant being a collaborator with the other side.

    Fact is, skeptic ideology does result in cherry picking. It is evidence based much more than the warmist position, but you will be hard-pressed to find a positive opinion on “facts” as described by warmists. Not all warmists are tainted leftists. Where large uncertainty exists that cannot (as yet?) be removed, the pragmatist William James said you are philosophically allowed to choose the option that fits best with your other views or is actually just more comfortable. (He was supporting belief in God in a world in which hard evidence for God’s existence doesn’t exist.) If something might or might not happen, and you understand you cannot determine which is more likely to happen, it is reasonable to choose the one that goes with your current flow. Intelligent people can hold that the IPCC is “close enough” to warrant action. Not all of these supporters are unaware of the weaknesses of the IPCC narrative. They aren’t demons.

    Which is not to say that their, our or your choice is “right”. Agreeing with something on balance because of ideology is not the same as agreeing because hard, cold, verifiable and reproducible facts say it is so.

    Skepticism does not mean you can’t make a decision, it means you accept the possibility of error and the need to change your position later. Some of the so-called skeptics aren’t, in my opinion, skeptics. They are rigid advocates of their superior abilities. They are right, and only fools or troublemakers disagree with them.

    In case anyone thinks I am a troll who sows discord, a spy from the other side, I freely admit that I don’t think the IPCC story of CO2 is right. The evidence in my eyes is that sensitivity to CO2 is far too high, that important parameters like clouds have greater balancing effects than granted, and probable “damage” lies within natural variability and mitigation efforts. But I also think the Heartland Institute is an ideologically driven organization that drives an anti-science agenda of its own by denigrating to the nth degree all aspects of the CO2 issue that might actually be true.

    Ideology is in the driver’s seat in a lot of cars in this contest.

    Science used to be a tool to achieve something. Under the current regime, science is a tool to rally those who would otherwise be unsupportive. Obama’s use of the IPCC story reminds me of Bush’s use of foreign intelligence prior to invading Iraq: the truth is irrelevant as long as the crowds end up marching the desired way.

    • douglasroctor: But I also think the Heartland Institute is an ideologically driven organization that drives an anti-science agenda of its own by denigrating to the nth degree all aspects of the CO2 issue that might actually be true.

      Can you give us some examples of “denigrating to the nth degree all aspects of the CO2 issue that might actually be true”?

    • What percent of the body of scientists would you calculate are the aggregators of climate science; those that distill all the disciplines into a prognosis and who in turn interface with the political bodies?

      Beyond the distinctions of bullheadedness and character traits of all types that can and do distill down to the ideologies of one or few, I can’t argue with your levying certain skeptics as having an ideology. But that’s not the point where distinctions should be made. Just by nature of definition alone it doesn’t represent the same principles behind the juggxrnaught of political persuation that walks in lockstep to what has evolved into a manifesto behind warmist ideology today. For the politics of warming the burden of absolute proof is equal to or less than the amount of leverage over the proof that can be used to persuade a desired political outcome. Science= Politics=Media=Outcome.

      BTW, Bill Clinton used the same intelligence network as a reason to bomb WMD in Iraq, but I digress.

    • @douglasroctor

      Just wondering who you actually ‘locked horns’ with. There is no Lord Montfort, even in Britland far away and over the big cold sea.

      There is Andrew Montford, (no title, ‘d’ not ‘t’) who wrote the excellent ‘Hockey Stick Illusion’ and occasionally produces reports for the GWPF. He is also known as ‘Bishop Hill’ from his popular blog title

      Or there is Christopher Monckton, a member of the House of Lords who is a well known presenter and broadcaster on climate topics. I’m not aware that he has any particular affiliation with GWPF.

      So I can offer you a Montford without a Lord, or a Lord without a Montford. But not both.

      Please clarify to which your remarks apply..

      • Latimer, I tend to associate Monckton with the GWPF, but he has no position there; he’s neither a trustee nor on the highly-credentialled Academic Advisory Council.

      • Zero return on searching GPWF site for “Monckton.”

      • Monckton is a UKIPer and Lawton is a Tory.

        It is hard to know what to make of this. Can’t find a lot of ties between GWPF and Monckton except for the DeSmog claims. Four obvious possibilities:

        1. Monckton is buddy buddy with Lawton.

        2. Monckton is trying to influence a member of another party (Lawton) and one of his organizations to some end.

        3. Monckton is trying to smear some of the glory of the GWPF on himself to enhance his stature.

        4. Desmog is blowing smoke and trying to discredit the GWPF.

        I tend to favor #4. GWPF seems to be an honest and objective organization with a good reputation. This creates a great contrast between the GWPF and DeSmog,

        DeSmog is possibly jealous and trying to undermine the GWPF.

      • It would be very helpful if Douglasroctor could reply directly about exactly who he ‘locked horns’ with.

        While the ambiguity about a simple question like ‘who was it you were arguing with?’ remains, it is hard to treat his remarks on ethics and integrity with the seriousness they may deserve.

    • The role of ideology – or ideologues – in climate science isn’t, unfortunately, limited to the warmist side. The skeptic side has its problems, also.

      Well…

      CO2 has a small effect on temperatures. Other things have more effect on temperatures.

      If other factors make it warmer, CO2 will make it a little worse.

      However, to create a CAGW scenario, you have to postulate that:
      1. CO2 forcing is 3 times its actual value (due to a 2X water vapor multiplier).
      2. CO2 levels in PPM will rise above current levels more than 4 times higher than they actually will. RPC8.5 CO2 level in 2100 is 940 PPM vs a probable 480 PPM, or a 540 PPM increase from today vs a likely 80 PPM increase.
      3. The CO2 atmospheric lifetime is 6 times longer than it actually is. C14 from nuclear testing disappeared with a lifetime of 16 years (half life of 11 years) vs the IPCC 100+..
      4. Warmth is bad.
      5. CO2 is not beneficial and is actually harmful.

      None of the CAGW postulates have been proven, the uncertainty is the only reason CAGW is still in play. If CAGW was forced to prove their postulates and eliminate the uncertainty global warming would go away as an issue.

      The “skeptic side” doesn’t actually have problems. They don’t have anything to prove – the ball is in the CAGW court.

      The null hypothesis is that CAGW is wrong. Warming and CO2 have been beneficial in the past. CAGW claims that warming and CO2 are going to turn around and bite us in the future.. CAGW has to prove their postulates and the claims that stem from them. They don’t seem to be making a real effort to do that,.and pretend that their postulates can be assumed, or are correct because {insert rationalization here}.

      • patmcguinness

        The Co2 projections have to extrapolate several trends in the worst-case direction to even come close to doubling from here in 100 year. RCP 8.5, whihc postulates getting to 2.5X current emissions for 2050-2100 is an impossible stretch:
        1. Despite the CO2 emissions actually going down in US in recent years and flatlining in OECD nations, the ‘business as usual’ assumes emissions increase on an annual basis by 2.5X by 2070. now emissions did grow by about 3%/ yr globally, largely on the back of big increases in China and few other emerging economies (like India). But in 2014, CO2 emissions were flat vs 2013. China is no longer driving increases.As economies mature, the pace of emissions increases will slow. Energy intensity is improving by 2-3% per year, so even with global growth of 3.5%, you would have 1-1.5% emissions increase.
        2. As of now about half of CO2 emissions are absorbed by natural ocean and land CO2 uptake feedbacks. There is a huge capacity for more ocean uptake and reason to believe it would increase commensurate with the CO2 concentrations in the air; the deep ocean has its CO2 level set from the time when it was sub-280ppm and is absorbing 1.6 PgC per year from surface ocean. Total ocean uptake went from about 1.8 PgC 20 years ago to 2.5 PgC per year; land uptake increased by more.
        3. As a result of #2, Co2 concentrations have gone up linearly, about 2ppm per year, even as Co2 emissions increased.
        4. With ocean and land CO2 uptake increasing alongside CO2 concentrations, each increase in Co2 ppm magnifies the negative feedback.

        So a more reasonable assumption is:
        – we get to by 2050, another 35 years x 2.5ppm/yr increase = 487ppm.
        – Emission total increase of about 50% by 2050 vs today (15 PgC/yr).
        – Co2 increases are ~3ppm/yr after 2050, so we reach 640ppm by 2100.
        – The TCR of 1.35C (Lewis and Curry 2014) suggests a temp rise of 1C during next 70+ years due to CO2.
        – Should we flatline or reduce our emissions after 2050 to under 7 PgC (PgC = petagrams Carbon = gigatonnes of carbon), the natural uptake would reduce the Co2 concentration increases to a very small amount.

        If you instead consider more reasonable assumptions, such as a 2% increase in CO2 emissions per yr, and Co2 uptake remaining about the same %age of emissions, you get

      • patmcguinness:

        We are pretty much on the same page.

        The fossil fuel use is going to crank down by 2065 at the latest. By that point fossil fuel costs and research on new technologies will make other sources more attractive. Peak CO2 levels will be 460-480 PPM. 2100 will be under 400 PPM.

        Absorption by the environment is increasing 2.25 times faster than emissions (30 year trend).

        Your numbers are pessimistic. The rate of CO2 increase will bounce around at the current average 2.2 PPM/Y for a while and if there is no further natural warming will starting declining within a decade. China’s emissions staved off the CO2 rate decline to this point and there is no one else with lots of local cheap coal reserves to take up the slack.

        It is important to note that a 20-30 PPM CO2 increase “immunizes” the planet against 9.8 GT/Y of emissions so about 60-70 PPM of the CO2 rise in the last 100 years is due to other causes. Predictions should carry some caution warnings until the other causes are more accurately known and monitored.

        Net warming by 2100 (barring radical change) will be 0.1°C or less.

      • Absorption by the environment is increasing 2.25 times faster than emissions (30 year trend).

        You know what will be the maximum irony is that in 2100, they’ll be burning FF’s just to keep Co2 from taking a dive after we stop using it to power the world.
        Extrapolate your trend out, how long till absorption exceeds emissions (with realistic future FF consumption rates)?

      • Extrapolate your trend out, how long till absorption exceeds emissions (with realistic future FF consumption rates)?

        Well…

        The absorption will equal current emissions in 19 years more or less.

        There are 76 years of fossil fuel at current consumption. If we follow the 80% increase every 30 years emissions path,.in 44 years emissions and absorption are equal. However, we will have or are about to, run out of fuel at that point.

        Realistically the CO2 level will quit rising in under 35 years.

      • “Realistically the CO2 level will quit rising in under 35 years.”

        Huge assumptions included as a part of that conclusion make it unlikely to be accurate- imo.

      • Rob Starkey (@Robbuffy) | May 27, 2015 at 2:10 pm |
        “Realistically the CO2 level will quit rising in under 35 years.”

        Huge assumptions included as a part of that conclusion make it unlikely to be accurate- imo.

        Well, yeah, it could flatten out in 19 years if the emissions don’t change.

        I think emissions will increase a little, so… maybe 25 years.

        Or are you saying that the CO2 annual increase will starting declining sooner and my numbers are too pessimistic?

      • PA

        Assumptions include (but are not limited to)all that you listed plus the potential for more fossil fuel discoveries/recovery than you have accounted for plus the potential for human made energy source(s) that releases CO2

      • Rob Starkey (@Robbuffy) | May 27, 2015 at 3:09 pm |
        PA

        Assumptions include (but are not limited to)all that you listed plus the potential for more fossil fuel discoveries/recovery than you have accounted for plus the potential for human made energy source(s) that releases CO2

        Yeah, and if fish could fly they would be birds.

        Gee what do legacy wells cost per barrel… $10. What do new wells cost?
        http://www.psac.ca/wp-content/uploads/wcs_sample.pdf

        I will defer to people from the mining industries but with regulations ever toughening and easy to reach supplies pretty much gone the people who think we are going to be burning a lot of fossil fuel in 2065 are either misinformed or dim-witted. Plus not all the reserves are extractable at any price. China has 200 GT of coal that is off limits.

  39. Which part of the climate should we not be doing more research on? It seems to me if there are still unanswered questions in climate science we need more resources to answer them. Right?

    • When you have unlimited funds you can throw money at everything. In the real world the US spends 25%-35% more than is generated in revenue and priorities for spending what is generated need to be made.

      • You don’t think we need to know whether AGW will cause future damages?

      • Joseph- Read more closely.

        I would like to have reliable models predicting changes in the climate over the next 25 years but before committing to pay to attempt to develop such a model it is wise to review the other pending priorities and the probability that the modeler’s attempt will be successful.

      • Joseph- before determining if agw will cause problems, it would be good to verify that agw exists and is not dominated/overwhelmed by natural variation.

    • “if there are still unanswered questions in climate science”

      If?

      Andrew

    • “Ok I guess you think we need to answer them, right?”

      Are you suggesting all the questions are answered?

      Andrew

    • More research on precipitation regimes. Research related to resilient and productive agricultural land use.

    • Joseph | May 26, 2015 at 12:54 pm | Reply
      Which part of the climate should we not be doing more research on? It seems to me if there are still unanswered questions in climate science we need more resources to answer them. Right?

      We can immediately defund all studies of the impact of global warming.

      Studies on the impact of 4°C of global warming or 2000 PPM of CO2 on ocean are like studying the impact of a 20 km asteroid (and about as likely).

      These sorts of thing create problems. You don’t have to spend hundreds of millions or billions to figure that out. There is about $2 million a year for asteroid impacts. Global warming studies should get the same level of funding – not 1000 times more.

      General climate studies – things like look at clouds and natural cycles – should get funding.

      Until we know that global warming WILL produce a significant temperature change and the magnitude of the change – impact studies are a waste of time and money. We aren’t going to get over 500 PPM CO2 so studying ocean acidification is stupid and should be defunded. There isn’t a chance in hell the ocean with 38000 GT of carbon will become acidic from a few GT a year of CO2..

    • Joseph,

      You should fund the climate research which you feel gives you satisfaction. After all, it’s your money.

      As to “we”, if that includes myself, then the part of the climate we should not be doing more research on is the irrelevant and unimportant part. I’m pretty happy to part with not one cent.

      I have no unanswered questions of any consequence regarding climate. It’s the average of weather. Easily calculated, and quite unimportant. Don’t you agree?

  40. I don’t see that there is really a comparison to be made between an ideologue and a scientist with integrity except one comes before the other in a dictionary.

    “Ideologue is an adherent of an ideology, especially one who is uncompromising and dogmatic” Wiki

    Integrity: the quality of being honest and having strong moral principles; moral uprightness:” Wiki

    Now, I ask you: to whom are you going to listen?

    The only real question, at least for me, is to distinguish between the two. I have to listen for a while. Ask a question or more. Consider the answers. Make a judgement which seems correct. Be prepared to listen some more and and reconsider if need be.

    My relatively recent journey into Climate Change has been roughly as above. I find that I have to evaluate scientists on whether or not they demonstrate integrity first, before moving on to substantive science issues. A much more difficult task going about it this way. Sad, but true.

    • Well, an ideologue puts his beliefs ahead of the facts and a good scientist puts the facts ahead of his beliefs.

      Letting environmental ideologues get science grants, is like hiring creationists to teach the origins of life and the universe in public schools and giving them a free hand with the curriculum..

  41. It’s exactly the same in antismoking research. Except that there it’s been going on much, much longer. We’ve only had Global Warming “science” for about 25 years. But we’ve had antismoking “science” for 85 years, if you count the Nazi-era studies of Fritz Lickint, Franz Mueller, and others (which most people have never heard of). The climate scientists learned everything they know from Tobacco Control. Everything.

  42. I liked the Heather Douglas essay. Thank you.

  43. The main intellectual fault in all these cases is failing to be responsive to genuine empirical concerns, because doing so would make one’s political point weaker or undermine a cherished ideological perspective. It is to utilize a direct role for values and have that determine one’s results… and to throw away a concern for the source of science’s reliability in favor of the mere veneer of authority.

    This is where we’re at in the debate about the veracity of AGW theory? It’s a numbers game for a reasonl. When it comes to a scientific understanding of anything — if it can be known — we humans are only capable of understanding it as a number. Everything else is dogma; and, THAT is where integrity comes in to play (i.e., in the West, there isn’t any). Without integrity, science is nothing but a numbers racket and as Douglas says, a lack of integrity will, “turn science into a sham.”
     

    “Actually, everything
    that can be known
    has a number;
    for it is impossible
    to grasp anything
    with the mind
    or to recognize it
    without this.”
    ~Philolaus

  44. I listened to the entire Heather Douglas youtube talk and really liked it.

    Her talk makes a lot of sense.

    Even her point about Fred Singer makes a great deal of sense, if it is actually true that he has never responded to the SO2 theory dealing with global warming during the cooling period Heather discusses.

  45. russellseitz

    Can AK be serious about invoking Singers ‘Nuclear summer’ paper as a
    “MAJOR SCIENTIFIC ACCOMPLISHMENT…”

    Singer breated new life into Sagan’s ersatz apocalypse by getting the sign wrong on the overalll radiative forcing – cirrus clouds literally pale in comparison to the impact of stratospheric soot aerosols– if ( very big if ) they exist to be modeled in the first place.

    The irony is that the definitive take down of the TTAPS 1-D model was written by Steve Schneider , who with Starley Thompson published “Nuclear Winter Reappraised” two years before Singer’s ineffectual critique appeared.

    ( and four years after I called Carl’s bluff in Nature and Foreign Affairs.

    See my 2011 letter in Nature for a reality check.

    • VVatts Up With These comments from the peanut gallery?

      See my 2011 letter in Nature for a reality check.

      How about a link? Here! I’m not going to sort through your sorry pseudo-blog for links to your “work”.

      • russellseitz

        Google ‘ Seitz Nature nuclear winter ‘, and this at the top of the page:

        Search Results
        Nuclear winter was and is debatable : Nature : Nature …
        http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v475/n7354/full/475037b.html
        Nature
        by R Seitz – ‎2011
        Jul 7, 2011 – Nature | Correspondence …
        Nuclear winter was and is debatable

      • What I find is a paywall. You run a “blog” (actually a search-trap pseudo-blog, IMO), but you can’t even drill down through the search results to find an un-paywalled version?

        http://www.researchgate.net/profile/Virginia_Valian/publication/51472600_All-male_line-up_yet_again/links/0deec519109a4beeb1000000.pdf

        Or maybe you had your reasons. There’s nothing there about your claim that:

        Singer breated[sic] new life into Sagan’s ersatz apocalypse by getting the sign wrong on the overalll[sic] radiative forcing […]

        Or that:

        […] I called Carl’s bluff in Nature and Foreign Affairs.

        Anyway, that’s all irrelevant. My citations were in response to Jim D’s implication that Singer had never published in the field he was criticizing:

        Basically not publishing anything significant in the field he is criticizing is a red flag.

        Whether Singer’s publication had priority or was a post facto review, he published on the subject. Even whether he made an error in his publication is irrelevant. My point is that he was active in research, and publishing research, in the field he was criticizing.

    • Well, given the dismal failure of the GCMs I don’t trust models much, we need more empirical data …

      Perhaps we should stage a small nuclear war to collect data.

      Given that we have tested thousands of nuclear weapons before we know the “warming” threshold is fairly high so there is some flexibility. We aren’t trying to start a major nuclear winter, just collect sensitivity data.

      Even If the global warmers are right the GHG warming will only be temporary, perhaps a decode or two, and a good “nuclear winter” would close that window.

      • russellseitz

        Actually , there have been two sets of locally catastrophic atmospheric soot injection experiments, one of which is currently in progress.http://vvattsupwiththat.blogspot.com/2015/05/what-if-they-had-nuclear-winter-and.html

        You might read the Defense Nuclear Agency and SCOPE reports on the subject before risking further pontification- they’re not much longer than the IPCC reports, and we all know Judy is a stickler for primary sources.

      • http://climate.envsci.rutgers.edu/robock/robock_nwpapers.html

        This Alan Robock character has driven himself into a tizzy over nuclear winter.

        http://www.rand.org/pubs/papers/P7009.html

        Rand Corporation seems to say “assume it is real and plan around it”.

        Seems to be some diversity of opinion on the subject.

      • russellseitz

        Your RAND report is 31 years out of date: it was written just after the nucclear winter hypothesis was published in Science in December 1983.

        In the years following the subject literally melted down under intense scientific scrutiny . here’s an op-ed condensation of the critique I published in The National Interest in 1986:

        http://www.textfiles.com/survival/nkwrmelt.txt.

        The survival of the term testifies to the power of semantic aggression- the only head of state who still takes Sagan seriously hosted Robock in Havana last year !

      • You might be right, but I don’t have a position on nuclear winter until we do a field test to gain empirical information.

      • Before they were banned, humans did a lot of above ground Nuclear bomb tests, while the effects might not show up in global temps, it would surely affect regional temps, if it effects temps at all.

      • I have had it with scientists trying to infer effects from partial data collected for other reasons that yield results with enormous confidence ranges.

        If I want to get the parametric information for a transistor – I go into the lab and measure them, I don’t guess at them from its performance in a circuit or test another transistor and “infer” the correct values..

        If you want to test something you write up a well designed test plan and implement it. The sort of half-assed measurements that seem to be the norm in science are ridiculous. If something is important enough to measure accurately you plan for and collect the data you need to determine it’s value accurately. We have plenty of nuclear weapons.

      • Steven Mosher

        PA

        “If I want to get the parametric information for a transistor – I go into the lab and measure them, I don’t guess at them from its performance in a circuit or test another transistor and “infer” the correct values..”

        design a chip and then talk to us..

        http://asic-soc.blogspot.com/2008/09/delays-in-asic-design.html

        http://cadlab.cs.ucla.edu/~cong/papers/aspdac99_delay_model.pdf

        First chip (3D) I was in charge of we faced some nasty issues with floor planning. At that time there was a cool new start up called magma.
        So, we used (and broke) their tools. must have been around 2000

        Its been a few years..

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

      • Ha :), I did an ecl/cml asic in 86(?) ran just a bit under 300Mhz.

        I am amazed that I have a 4Ghz processor, and it’s “common place”.

  46. G’day Braves,
    If you want to give insomnia to those ”ideologically driven researchers” read this post, every sentence of it: https://globalwarmingdenier.wordpress.com/global-warming-lost-its-compass-again/

  47. russellseitz

    If Stefan did not exist, it would be necessary for Naomi Klein to invent him.

  48. Pingback: You Believe the Science? What “Science?” | al fin next level

  49. Below is a link to Patrick Wood’s recent interview on the Corbett Report. Patrick’s recent book “Technocracy Rising” historically tracks a fanatical group of individuals in the early twentieth century that sought international dominance through total control over energy resources. This group was later supported by the nefarious Trilateral Commission who eventually sought to further there efforts internationally by backing the Environmentalists movement and later the Global Warming cause. Organizations that have garnered a large amount of public attention, backed up by public media and various government officials, supporting an agenda based almost entirely on fear mongering and the story of Chicken Little ! https://www.corbettreport.com/interview-1046-patrick-wood-exposes-the-technocracy-agenda/?

  50. Pingback: Weekly Climate and Energy News Roundup #181 | Watts Up With That?

  51. Pingback: Weekly Climate and Energy News Roundup #181 | I World New

  52. Pingback: My new Arctic Fallacy paper- Sea ice stability and the polar bear | polarbearscience