JC’s conscience

Quotations that serve as a conscience of a profession. – Tom Nelson

Earlier this week, I gave a lecture on research ethics to a group of Georgia Tech and University of Minnesota students, that are embarking on a new NSF-funded project on sustainability of cities (the students were GREAT, asking lots of penetrating questions).  I drew from material from a previous blog post Scientists and motivated reasoning, and I framed this around conflicts of micro ethics versus macro ethics:

As a researcher, what kinds of responsibilities do you have to

your conscience (micro)
your colleagues (micro)
institutions (micro/macro)
the public (macro)
the environment (macro)

Robert Bradley’s post

With this fresh in mind, I spotted this post on MasterResource by Robert Bradley entitled The Brave Judith Curry (Part II)  [link to Part I here].  Following a preamble, both parts are comprised by a compendium of my recent quotes.    Excerpts:

Back to Professor Curry. Here are some salient quotations I have gathered from her recent output that offer both explanation and warning so that her profession can return to true scholarship.

Biased Scientists

“In principle, scientists can ethically and effectively advocate for an issue, provided that their statements are honest and they disclose uncertainties. In practice, too many scientists, and worse yet professional societies, are conducting their advocacy for emissions reductions in a manner that is not responsible in context of the norms of science.”

“In their efforts to promote their ‘cause,’ the scientific establishment behind the global warming issue has been drawn into the trap of seriously understating the uncertainties associated with the climate problem. This behavior risks destroying science’s reputation for honesty. It is this objectivity and honesty which gives science a privileged seat at the table. Without this objectivity and honesty, scientists become regarded as another lobbyist group.”

“As a result of this lack of a code of behavior for university scientists, there continues to be what I regard as extremely irresponsible public behavior by some climate scientists, and there are absolutely no professional repercussions.”

– Judith Curry, “Science, Uncertainty and Advocacy,” June 22, 2015.

“The issue is NOT that scientists have values, or even express them. Rather the problem is engaging in adversarial science in support of these values, whereby their public communications focus on repetition, inflated claims, and disproportionate emphases.”

“Hucksterism is a great word to describe what goes on in the communication of climate science in service of policy advocacy. The complicity of many climate scientists and professional societies in this hucksterism is a cause of great concern.”

– Judith Curry, “The Adversarial Method versus Feynman Integrity.” Climate Etc., August 12, 2015.

False Consensus

“My main concern re the IPCC consensus seeking and the consensus entrepreneurs is that this is extremely ill-suited to a complex, highly uncertain area of science, and that it acts to bias the science. Scientists defending the consensus end up conducting acts that undermine the consensus through loss of trust in the scientists.”

– Judith Curry, “Scientists Speaking With One Voice: Panacea or Pathology?” June 25, 2015.

“There is an unfortunate knowledge monopoly in climate science and policy – the IPCC and UNFCCC. As a result there is insufficient intellectual and political diversity in assessments about climate change. To break this monopoly, we need identify new frameworks for encouraging, publishing and publicizing independent and interdisciplinary ideas and assessments.”

– Judith Curry, Assessments, Meta-analyses, Discussion and Peer Review, July 29, 2015.

 

Climategate in History

“The tragic case in point for climate science is Mann versus McIntyre, as revealed by Andrew Montford and the Climategate emails. ‘Circling the wagons’, even. I’ve written previously of how we managed to quickly get back on track on the hurricane and global warming wars, whereas Mann continues to fight the hockey wars not just by hucksterism but by attacking his opponents. This kind of behavior does not help keep the dangerous human caused climate change narrative alive, and at some point simply becomes pathological.”

“Climategate was a watershed moment in that it turned the tide slightly in the direction of discussing uncertainty in the public debate on climate change. Given the extremely high policy relevance of climate science, this transition to Feynman integrity will require a better decision analytic model than the linear model that ‘speaks consensus to power’– examples of such strategies are provided in these previous CE posts.”

– Judith Curry, “The Adversarial Method versus Feynman Integrity.” Climate Etc., August 12, 2015.

“These negotiated government sanctioned assessments don’t adequately account for the very substantial disagreement about climate change that arises from:

  • Insufficient observational evidence
  • Disagreement about the value of different classes of evidence (e.g. models)
  • Disagreement about the appropriate logical framework for linking and assessing the evidence
  • Assessments of areas of ambiguity and ignorance
  • Belief polarization as a result of politicization of the science

All this leaves multiple ways to interpret and reason about the available evidence.”

– Judith Curry, Assessments, Meta-analyses, Discussion and Peer Review, July 29, 2015.

Intellectual Pluralism

“Where does the intellectual and political diversity come from in the climate debate? Certainly not from academia (other than emeritus professors or professors nearing retirement). What little diversity there is comes from think tanks like CATO, privately funded groups like Berkeley Earth, and independent researchers such as Steve McIntyre and Nic Lewis. This is a tiny tiny group of people. Non academic diversity on the ‘warm’ side is more organized, e.g. organizations such as Climate Central that seem pretty well funded. Of course industry funding (especially if it is tainted with fossil fuels) is regarded as a source of bias, whereas funding from green organizations somehow isn’t. Personally I think we should figure out ways to support more diverse perspectives on climate science and policy.”

– Judith Curry, “Is the EPA’s Clean Power Plan legal? Lawyers and Law Professors Disagree,” July 7, 2015.

Michael Mann (‘Hockey Stick’)

“I have written many posts about Michal Mann – apart from my own concerns about the hockey stick (Hiding the Decline), I am greatly concerned about Mann’s bullying behavior inserting itself into the scientific process (collaboration, peer review, public communication). My concerns go beyond the general strategies of adversarial science. to what I regard as unethical behavior.

It is a sad state of affairs for climate science that this book had to be written (it was brought on by Michael Mann’s lawsuit – without the lawsuit, Steyn obviously wouldn’t have bothered). At a time when the U.S. and the world’s nations are trying to put together an agreement to tackle climate change (for better or for worse), Steyn’s book reminds everyone of Climategate, why the public doesn’t trust climate scientists and aren’t buying their ‘consensus.

… I hope that everyone will learn that adversarial science as practiced in its pathological form by Michal Mann doesn’t ‘pay’ in the long run.”

– Judith Curry, Mark Steyn’s new book on Michael Mann, Climate Etc., August 13, 2015.

On Weepy Climate Scientists

“Having your ego wrapped up in having your research influence policy (frustrated policy advocates), keeping ‘score’ in a personal war against skeptics, seeking fame, generating book sales and lecture fees and political influence, etc. can all come into play in influencing how a scientist reacts to the climate wars or seeks to position themselves in reacting to the threats of climate change. Scientists might get ‘upset’ if they don’t think they are sufficiently successful at the above. This is something else — not pre-traumatic stress syndrome.”

– Judith Curry, Pre-traumatic Stress Syndrome: Climate Scientists Speak Out, July 10, 2015.

 

Funding Ad Hominen

“[O]il company funding … is too often used as an excuse to reject a climate scientist or their findings, even if the funding is very indirect and has nothing to do with the specific study.”

“In climate change research, there is no righteous source of funding – government funding can be a source of bias just as much as industry funding can, and there is A LOT more government funding out there.”

“That said, funding is probably a smaller source of bias than peer pressure to follow a consensus and to defend your own hypothesis, not to mention political preferences, environmental proclivities and career pressures.”

“So . . . is funding from power and oil companies ok if it funds research related to wind, solar geothermal and hydro? Better predictions of extreme weather events that hamper both energy supply and demand, whatever the source of power? Or is it only a problem if it supports outreach efforts by a climate scientist to deny humans are the cause of climate change?”

“If independent scientists obtain funding from power and oil companies, would this help support needed intellectual diversity into climate science to avoid the massive groupthink we now see?”

– Judith Curry, Industry Funding and Bias, August 16, 2015.

JC reflections

Well I am certainly appreciative of these compilations by Robert Bradley.  I was rather struck by seeing these quotations all together.  They comprise a pretty good overview of how I think about, and personally deal with,  the micro ethics versus macro ethics surrounding climate change.

These thoughts and blog posts put me in conflict with a substantial number of my colleagues (viz. Climate Heretic Judith Curry Turns on Her Colleagues.)  These thoughts also put me in conflict with a number of people on twitter, who accuse me of killing their grandchildren, etc.

The whole integrity/ethics thing, in all its complexity, is something that is of paramount importance to me and I think about it a lot.  There are no easy answers, and there are genuine micro/macro conflicts out there. Whether my own choices are ‘good’ or not is in the eye of the beholder.  Some others are clearly making other choices.

In any event, I am very appreciative of the two opportunities I have had to talk with graduate students about these issues.  Awareness of these conflicts, and the prices that researchers might have to pay depending on how they navigate these, is something that I hope young scientists will think about.

 

326 responses to “JC’s conscience

  1. Pingback: JC’s conscience | Enjeux énergies et environnement

  2. “I was rather struck by seeing these quotations all together.” Me too, your input to debate is very impressive when collated like this. Integrity is key, keep up the great work. Faustino

  3. Steven Mosher

    It’s interesting to compare your open struggle with ethical questions as opposed to say Schnieder’s open struggle with essentially the same issue.

    The most interesting aspect is how you openly look for answers, guidance, support, and criticism from other disciplines– heck even philosophy.
    which was dead.

    • Yes, Stephen Schneider struggled publicly with these same issues. He is sorely missed in the climate debate.

      • IDK. The early Schneider, below, sounded more reasonable.
        Mentions the benefits of use of energy in bettering peoples’ lives.
        Mentions doubts and uncertainties with problems.
        Mentions climates getting better in some areas worse in others ( net balance? )

        But then also goes on to cast the issue as ‘insulting global environment’, ‘irreversible change’, ‘risks of change… for our children‘.

        From what I read and heard in his later years, such doubts, perspective and balance were missing.

        It’s also interesting that population and CO2 have decelerated substantially from 1979:

      • Just shortly before his death (soon after climate heretic article), Schneider was harshly critical of what I was doing.

      • Is it possible that Schneider’s position would have moderated if he had lived to see the inaccuracy of the models upon which conclusions were based.

      • Well, Schneider might have struggled in his early days, i.e. long before he became an “expert” IPCC-nik. But let’s not forget that dreadful Anderegg et al PNAS piece that he “sponsored” back in 2010.

        There’s also the case of a really unprofessional (and far from factual) E-mail he wrote about an article by Ross McKitrick in October 2003. This came to light several years later via the Climategate emails. See:

        A Somewhat Late Response to Schneider at CA for details.

      • catweazle666

        Turbulent Eddie: “IDK. The early Schneider, below, sounded more reasonable.”

        He certainly did!

        ATMOSPHERIC CARBON DIOXIDE AND AEROSOLS:
        Effects of Large Increases on Global Climate.

        Abstract.

        Effects on the global temperature of large increases in carbon dioxide and aerosol densities in the atmosphere of Earth have been computed. It is found that, although the addition of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere does increase the surface temperature, the rate of temperature increase diminishes with increasing carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. For aerosols, however, the net effect of increase in density is to reduce the surface temperature of Earth. Becuase of the exponential dependence of the backscattering, the rate of temperature decrease is augmented with increasing aerosol content. An increase by only a factor of 4 in global aerosol background concentration may be sufficient to reduce the surface temperature by as much as 3.5 deg.K. If sustained over a period of several years, such a temperature decrease over the whole globe is believed to be sufficient to trigger an ice age.

        The rate at which human activities may be inadvertently modifying the climate of Earth has become a problem of serious concern . In the last few decades the concentration of CO2 in the atmosphere appears to have increased by 7 percent . During the same period, the aerosol content of the lower atmosphere may have been augmented by as much as 100 percent .

        How have these changes in the composition of the atmosphere affected the climate of the globe? More importantly, is it possible that a continued increase in the CO2 and dust content of the atmosphere at the present rate will produce such large-scale effects on the global temperature that the process may run away, with the planet Earth eventually becoming as hot as Venus (700 deg. K.) or as cold as Mars (230 deg. K.)?

        We report here on the first results of a calculation in which separate estimates were made of the effects on global temperature of large increases in the amount of CO2 and dust in the atmosphere. It is found that even an increase by a factor of 8 in the amount of CO2, which is highly unlikely in the next several thousand years, will produce an increase in the surface temperature of less than 2 deg. K.

        However, the effect on surface temperature of an increase in the aerosol content of the atmosphere is found to be quite significant. An increase by a factor of 4 in the equilibrium dust concentration in the global atmosphere, which cannot be ruled out as a possibility within the next century, could decrease the mean surface temperature by as much as 3.5 deg. K. If sustained over a period of several years, such a temperature decrease could be sufficient to trigger an ice age!

        Schneider S. & Rasool S., “Atmospheric Carbon Dioxide and Aerosols – Effects of Large Increases on Global Climate”, Science, vol.173, 9 July 1971, p.138-141

      • “He is sorely missed in the climate debate.”

        Really? I find that utterly confusing. He as much as told his colleagues to lie in the pursuit of the cause. This is missed? I’ve argued with people about that who say he never used the word, ‘lie.’ It’s true, I have never seen him in print say that scientists should pick out the degree of truth and falsehood they were comfortable with by using the word, ‘lie.’ But if that wasn’t the case, what exactly was the ethical dilemma? Between the truth and the truth? Between the truth and falsehood, or distortion or exaggeration or withholding? All activities by other names that reduce to lying. Do we need to consult with Bill Clinton on parsing words? If I’m wrong I’ll send him a thought apology, wherever he is, but please, someone, tell me how I’m wrong by explaining how his ‘ethical dilemma’ doesn’t reduce to positing truth against non-truth.

      • If i had my choice between Schneider and the current crop of AGW ‘leaders’, i’ll take schneider hands down.

      • . It is found that even an increase by a factor of 8 in the amount of CO2, which is highly unlikely in the next several thousand years, will produce an increase in the surface temperature of less than 2 deg. K.

        Well… 22 PPM = 0.2 W/m2…

        Fco2x8 = 3.46 ln (280*8/280) = 7.2 W/m2 ≈ 1.95°C

        Gee, if Schneider knew this 44 years ago – where did the mistaken impression that forcing was higher or that it “gasp” could be catastrophic come from?

        Schneider was on the right road 44 years ago – why has climate science been driving in the ditch since then?

      • When I interviewed him shortly before his death, he seemed fairly… I dunno… passive. Maybe accepting is more the right word. He didn’t seem angry at anyone and I gather he was surprised when I reported his comments accurately, given he thought I was a skeptic.

        In retrospect I wish I had asked him to talk about people–both those he was working with and those on the other side of the fence.

        I have a lot of respect for what he did over the course of his career. I don’t at all like the closing chapter–Anderson, Prall et al 2010 PNAS. But the guy stood up to Carl Sagan on nuclear winter–and won. He had the guts to bull through his earlier statements on global cooling and come down firmly in the warming camp.

        Given the quality of discourse on the activist side of the fence these days, I have to say I miss Schneider.

      • Here is Schneider showing how to treat a room full of Australian skeptics (some very angry ones), just weeks before he died.

    • stevefitzpatrick

      The difference, Steve, is that Schneider came down on the wrong side of honesty, despite his later protests to the contrary.

  4. Judith,

    Anyone who accuses people of “killing their grandchildren” probably stopped maturing around the age of 13.

    Here is a two word reply you can respond with – “Grow up.”

  5. From a Minnesoootan, I would like to have been at your presentation, Dr. C.
    I cannot find one quote to which I would disagree?

    I have been involved with Minnesota State Univ in Mankato, and near to their at Gustavus in St. Peter which hosts the annual Nobel Conference.

    Mankato has had at least six,speakers, all rather biased toward ACC.

    Dr. Curry, would you ever consider speaking at one of these institutions?
    It would be well, at least once, to have perhaps two speakers which would present a balanced presentation.
    I realize that I might be asking too much, but I do believe both institutions
    have the necessary requirements for a guest of your background..

    • Hi Darryl, i very much appreciate these invites. But for the sake of my sanity, i am declining almost all invites to speak that involve significant travel. I have offered to do Skype lectures and Skype meetings, but so far no one has taken me up on this (my lecture to GT/UMinn students was via Skype tho).

      • Judith,

        Would consider teaching a class via Coursera? I see that Georgia Tech is involved with Coursera.. There are so many things you could teach, like “definition and significance of uncertainty”, climate science, bias in science, etc. I am sure you and and your current and former graduate students and colleagues would have much better ideas. I would sign up in a heartbeat. You could cook Cook et al…:)

        You have demonstrated a remarkable ability to execute an end run around a formidable group by using social media in a thoughtful, diplomatic, and effective way. They tried to crush you – Sci. Am. “climate heretic” – but you outfoxed them. You could take the next step and utilize online education and “the power of free” to reach hundreds of thousands of interested people world wide.

      • You wrote: I have offered to do Skype lectures and Skype meetings,

        I am very interested in this. Maybe after the middle of September.

      • Judith, glad to know the live webinar/symposium you did with the American Chemical Society almost exactly 4 years ago in 2011 did not cause you to swear off such things. I think that was a first for all of the speakers.

      • Not meaning to be rude to Mr Biehn, no, seriously.
        I was reminded of James Gleick’s description of Francis Crick after receiving a Nobel Prize.
        He had a form letter made up
        Unable to accept your kind invitation to
        … send an autograph
        … send a photo
        … be interviewed
        etc x16 .
        On page 382 of “Genius” if you need to see it Judith.

    • bedeverethewise

      If Judith were to ever give a public talk within 100 miles of the U of Minn, I would be there. Or at MSU Mankato, my hometown and alma mater.

      I wonder if Dr. Doom and Dr. Gloom are still at MSU. I took a human ecology course which turned out to be a combination of apocalyptic eco-science fiction and blame Reagan/Bush. According to them , we should all be dead now. It wasn’t all bad, they planted the first seeds of skepticism in my young mind. Probably some of the best learning I could experience at university, but not what they had in mind.

  6. “At a time when the U.S. and the world’s nations are trying to put together an agreement to tackle climate change (for better or worse)…..”

    The absurdity of the enterprise beggars belief. It’s like declaring war on wood nymphs. We can’t see them, not can we even find definitive evidence of their existence. And if it turns out they do in fact exist, we don’t know whether they’re friend or enemy,

    But by all means, let’s invest several trillion dollars and see if we can’t smoke the buggers out anyway

    • *nor can we even find…*

    • aneipris: By your comments, I get the impression that you are in the Mr. David Wojick camp — i.e. AGW is zero.

      Problem is — Dr. Curry doesn’t believe this.

      • Stephen–Your comment seems to jump to conclusions. What if the impact of additional CO2 is a low rate of warming without net harms.

      • David Wojick

        Dr. Curry is a lukewarmer, as is Cato’s Dr. Pat Michaels. They accept some AGW but do not accept CAGW. Dr. Wojick (that is me) is a skeptic. So far as I can tell the increasing CO2 has had no effect whatsoever. As I read the UAH record the only atmospheric warming since 1978 occurred as a result of the giant ENSO in 1998-2000. There appears to be no GHG warming at all. That Curry, Michaels and I disagree about AGW is not a problem, because we all agree that forced global decarbonization in the face of CAGW is not justified.

      • Rob — Your statement would indicate that no actions are warranted, which in not consistent with Dr. Curry.

        Dr. Curry appears to have a “hot button” that was apparent in her last Congressional testimony on this subject. A member of Congress associated her with a position of no action — and Dr. Curry was clearly irritated.

        Dr. Curry has talked favorably of both some adaptation and mitigation (i.e., methane, smog, HFCs, black soot) actions — not no actions.

      • Dr. Wojick — What’s your position on a Global agreement/treaty (something binding) on “Fast Mitigation” (methane, smog, HFCs, black soot)?

        Thanks

      • David Wojick

        Stephen, my position is that since there is no problem, no mitigation is called for. One cannot mitigate what does not exist, right? I like the wood nymph metaphor. Very droll.

        Harking back to a prior discussion, perhaps I am a climate scientist, broadly speaking. For example I did an extensive study of the surface statistical temperature models — NOAA, GISS and HadCRU (and now BEST). My conclusion is that they are unreliable, for some fairly clear reasons. Is that climate science? Or perhaps climate metascience? Or am I a climate mathematician? Some of the deepest issues in the debate are mathematical. The role of chaos for example, which I have also studied in depth.

      • Why does one need to be in a camp?

      • For example I did an extensive study of the surface statistical temperature models — NOAA, GISS and HadCRU (and now BEST). My conclusion is that they are unreliable, for some fairly clear reasons.

        From your study, unreliable in what way(s)?

      • Stephan

        Again you incorrectly jump to an incorrect conclusion when writing that I think “no actions are warranted”. Imo, it depends upon the specifics

      • Dr. Wojick — Thank you for giving us your position on “fast mitigation”.

      • Rob — I agree with your statement on “specifics”.

      • richardswarthout

        Stephen

        Rob — I agree with your statement on “specifics”.

        Perhaps this is a break through. Up to now, on this post and the previous post you’ve been using the term “fast mitigation” with no details as though we, including JC, should all know what it is. You said that CATO opposed it, but it appears only that CATO does not agree to some of the details. For instance, what should the cap be for soot? Appears that think progress and the EPA have a level that might be extreme; perhaps an unsettled detail?

      • timg56: “Why does one need to be in a camp?”

        It is a tenet of Climatastrophy that doubters of an immediate need for extreme expenditures to ineffectively mitigate a hypothetical problem must be isolated, lest their heresy doom the grandchildren.

      • richard — Dr Curry has favorably written about “Fast Mitigation” on several occasions over the years. Leading climate scientist Dr. Ramanathan talks about it a lot.

        Here are 2 Google search terms:

        ramanathan “fast mitigation” or
        “short lived carbon pollutants”

      • Stephen Segrest | August 25, 2015 at 2:29 pm |
        “Dr. Wojick — What’s your position on a Global agreement/treaty (something binding) on “Fast Mitigation” (methane, smog, HFCs, black soot)?”
        Stephen what is your position on Carbon Capture Technology in view of the recent problems in Kemper County Mississippi in regard to 3 points.
        A blow out in cost from 1.8 billion to 6.2 billion and heading towards 10 billion. 2 years late in construction.
        40% more coal being burnt as needs 25% capacity of the plant power to compress/push the CO2 underground.

        18% increase in electricity costs to the poorest Americans living in the area and obligated to take the electricity from this plant with higher costs mooted for many years.
        A giant influx of funding 270 million dollars initially and up to 900 million to get this icon or eagle off the ground.
        Could have had 3 ordinary power plants running for that much money producing more power and less CO2.
        You say you have knowledge expertise in this area of throwing good money after bad?

      • Stephen, Try https://judithcurry.com/2014/12/07/super-pollutants-act-of-2014/

        ‘fast mitigation’ was a bit to vague for most. I didn’t much care to the ‘super’ because it tends to be related to forcing potential instead of health issues. For example, PM2.5, PM1.0 and ground level ozone aren’t forcing issues but health issues and they are ‘pollutants’ in the true sense of the word.

      • angech2014 — Let’s use your argument on another Southern Co. project — Georgia Power’s new Vogtle units.

        Should everyone give up on nuclear because of cost over-runs also in the billions of dollars?

        But, as to your question:

        (1) This project is of course the first commercial scale of this technology. I have no magic “crystal ball” whether this technology can ever be economic.

        (2) Personally, I put major blame on the U.S. Department of Energy and Congress. A capital cost cap should have been placed on the first few projects of this type — exactly what the Energy Policy Act did for new generation nuclear.

        (3) As I’ve discussed several times, another approach to “skin the cat” on coal and CO2 is closed loop biomass co-firing which I’ve done a lot of work/demonstrations on (engineering and agriculture). I’ve testified before Congress on these efforts.

      • angech2014 — In biomass co-firing, an existing coal unit is modified from 100% coal to something else (e.g., 90% coal, 10% biomass).

        Also, a “no regrets” type benefit of co-firing are reductions in NOx and SO2 at the coal unit.

      • “Problem is — Dr. Curry doesn’t believe this.”

        Stephen,
        I’d say Dr. Curry is a lukewarmer, which is in itself is a fairly broad category. I’m not a scientist. However FWIW, my very best judgment after closely following the debate for some 5 years now, is that we still don’t know whether AGW…to the extent it even exists… is a problem. I’ve seen persuasive arguments that thus far the effects of increased CO2 have been largely positive. With atmospheric sensitivity looking lower in a spate of recent papers, I’m not ready to believe this won’t hold in the future.

        Incidentally, I came to this issue as an uninformed warmist.

        (aka pokerguy)

      • In reply to mwgrant, regarding the unreliability of the surface statistical models. First, thanks for asking.

        To begin with, these models are all using a convenience sample. Statistical sampling theory is based on probability theory, so one of the fundamental requirements is a random sample, which we do not have. Arguably the first law of sampling theory is that no meaningful conclusion can be drawn from a convenience sample. Thus we should be prepared for an incorrect result.

        Then we get to the area averaging method, or in BEST’s case the field averaging method. This is a crude approximation technique, far beyond the bounds of sampling theory. This is demonstrated by the fact that there is no way to estimate confidence intervals for the result (even if the sample were random). This method involves a great deal of interpolation, for which there are many alternative methods, so the result is strongly an artifact of the assumptions.

        Then we get to adjustment, UHI, local heat contamination a la Watts & Co, etc. These are all cumulative sources of error.

        Basic point is I think these statistical models are possibly accurate to a degree C, but not to 0.1 degree C and certainly not to 0.01 degree C, as is being reported. My explanation for the surface warming that these models show, but which the satellites do not show, is simply that the surface models are wrong. The supposed surface warming that AGW is based on never happened. It is an artifact of the data and the method.

      • Steven Mosher

        “Then we get to the area averaging method, or in BEST’s case the field averaging method. This is a crude approximation technique, far beyond the bounds of sampling theory. This is demonstrated by the fact that there is no way to estimate confidence intervals for the result (even if the sample were random). This method involves a great deal of interpolation, for which there are many alternative methods, so the result is strongly an artifact of the assumptions.”

        Its NOT averaging. Its not field averaging.

        Lets make this brutally simple for Wojik.

        You have 40,000 stations ( actually more )

        You take those 40,000 stations and randomly select 5000.

        From those 5000 stations you assume a statistical model.

        T = f(lat, altitude). That right, the temperature at any place on the planet is a function of latitude and altitude. its the sun and lapse rate
        stoopid.

        That regression explains over 90% of the variance in the data.

        Whats that mean?

        That means I can use that model to PREDICT the temperature at all other locations.

        This is testable.

        And when you test it lo-and behold the model works.

        AND the accuracy attained is better than Wojick “guesstimate”

        Of course we are not the first to use this approach. Its fairly standard.
        It works. And so anyone who tells you it cant work or doesnt work is simply lying.

        The great thing is willis even confirmed the approach.

        The number one myth I want to dispell is that people are calculating an average. they are not. They might call it an average, but it’s really a prediction of what you would measure at unmeasured locations.

        You can test it via hold out, or you can go search for data not in the 40000 stations data set.

        1. Private for pay newtorks
        2. Agri cultural data sets
        3. Old data that hasnt been digitized
        4. Industry data
        5. Every EPA air quality site.
        6. Huge foreign networks that have not relased their data

        In every case where I look at out of sample data… the prediction works.
        it works better than wojick imagines

        Then we get to adjustment, UHI, local heat contamination a la Watts & Co, etc. These are all cumulative sources of error.

        UHI is included in the station error.

      • David Wojick.Thanks very much for the answer which I want to look over some…probably focusing on BEST because of the kriging aspect and I am looking at some USA annual temps [only from POV of spatial structure]. I’ll get back here…I have to take advantage of an incredible day (70’s) for August. Clearly a biased sample is something one has to deal with–locations were not set with the averaging process in mind. This is common also with contaminated site too. Thanks again.

        Sample support might be another interesting aspect to reflect on when considering a ‘global’ (or regional) metric.

      • fiddlesticks—missed on location…
        see immediately below…
        https://judithcurry.com/2015/08/25/jcs-conscience/#comment-727467

      • I had a stats class once. But I will risk ridicule to learn something: It seems to me that you haven’t addressed this, Steven:

        “Arguably the first law of sampling theory is that no meaningful conclusion can be drawn from a convenience sample. Thus we should be prepared for an incorrect result.”

        The coverage of 40,000 stations leaves out vast expanses of the earth’s surface. And historically coverage has been way worse. A random sample of 5,000 from 40,000 stations concentrated in populated areas doesn’t seem to a guy with one stats class to be useful for accurately estimating the trend of global average temperature. Can we just call it a guesstimate? And rely on the satellites for the last few decades?

        PS: “You can test it via hold out, or you can go search for data not in the 40,000 stations data set.”

        Doesn’t the data from the six sources you listed to check against come from the same places as the data from the 40,000 stations? Please explain why the testing is confirmation?

      • My questions don’t look exactly right on second thought. Maybe you can deal with them anyway. What I am interested is what this means:

        “In every case where I look at out of sample data… the prediction works. it works better than wojick imagines’

        What are you comparing your predictions to? Is it reliable data from the specific locations that you have predicted?

      • Steven –

        “That means I can use that model to PREDICT the temperature at all other locations.

        This is testable.”

        As someone who (rather obviously) has never taken a stats class, it seems to me that Cowtan and Way’s cross-validation is a very important component that “skeptics” fail to address when they criticize C&W’s methodology. Have you seen a “skeptic” make a serious dent in invalidating their cross-validation?

      • Steven Mosher

        “What are you comparing your predictions to? Is it reliable data from the specific locations that you have predicted?”

        predictions are made for EVERY location, so your question about specific locations makes no sense.

        I will keep it simple imagine the function looks like this

        T = x*Lat + y*Alt

        What you do is simple. You go out and find stations that were NOT USED in the construction of the model.

        For example:

        http://www.enviroweather.msu.edu/homeMap.php

        an example

        http://www.agweather.geo.msu.edu/mawn/station.asp?id=haw

        you take the data

        Latitude: 45.2994 deg.
        Longitude: -83.8528 deg.
        Elevation: 252 m

        you make sure that you havent used the station

        And using the model predict the temperatures and then compare to the actual site.

        It’s very labor intensive. WHY?

        because to build our 40K stations we required that the stations be downloadable from ftp.

        BUT there are thousands of other stations where you have to do the download by hand…

        In any case. as for the reliability there are these two answers

        A) station error due to everything is already built into the model.
        station error is one reason why your r^2 is say 93%
        B) the stations by and large tend to be high reliability. for example,
        some networks charge for access.

        The bottom line is this. “the data is unreliable” … well that dog dont hunt.
        its getting warmer. all data points that way. Skeptics should
        follow nic lewis and put their brain power on senstitivity.

      • Thanks, Steven:

        “And using the model predict the temperatures and then compare to the actual site.”

        That’s what I asked:

        “What are you comparing your predictions to? Is it reliable data from the specific locations that you have predicted?”

        I am guessing that works OK if you have data from some stations not very distant from the site you are predicting, and not so good if you are predicting based on data from distant sites. But I am not going to worry about it.

        I just learned that two of our soldiers left behind in Afghanistan were killed, probably by Afghan army turncoats. This is one of the results of the worst C in C in the history of the U.S. making the purely political decision to leave a token force in Afghanistan that is not strong enough to provide for it’s own defense.

      • Providence RI Latitude 41°49′ N; Altitude 23m; ave annual temp. 51.5°F
        Rome Latitude 41°54′N; Altitude 13m; ave annual temp. 59.9°F

        or this

        El Paso Latitude 31°47′ N; Altitude 1200m; ave annual temp. 64.7°F
        Jerusalem Latitude 31°47′ N; Altitude 754m; ave annual temp. 61.5°F

        These cities at similar latitudes and altitudes, have averages over a year of 3 – 8°F (1.7 – 4.4°C)

        Yet we can extrapolate/guess/predict station temps to within tenths or hundredths of a degree based on their latitude and altitude?

        So surrounding topography, proximity to lakes, forests, and mountains, and susceptibility to impacts of various oceanic oscillations, are irrelevant to your model? Or its laughably inflated claims to precision?

      • Don

        The British lost 20 men defending that area before pulling out of camp bastion last year and handing it over to the afghan army.

        There is simply no point in having a token force in such a hostile area especially when some on your ‘ side’ are so eager to show off their turncoat credentials.

        Tonyb

      • Steven Mosher

        Gary

        the model is done on MONTHLY values.
        two sigma is around 1.6C
        so yes you MUST ABSOLUTELY find values outside this range.
        if you want to tighten the prediction up you add more variables
        like longitude and distance from coast

        next

        Watch a real skeptic examine the same question with different data

        http://wattsupwiththat.com/2015/05/14/the-temperature-field/

      • Steven Mosher

        Don

        ““What are you comparing your predictions to? Is it reliable data from the specific locations that you have predicted?”

        I am guessing that works OK if you have data from some stations not very distant from the site you are predicting, and not so good if you are predicting based on data from distant sites. But I am not going to worry about it.”

        WRONG.

        you take data from all over the world

        you build a model

        T = a*Alt + b*Lat ( its actually more complex than this)

        basically what that says is that the main things driving temperature is the latitude (read the sun) and the altitude (read the lapse rate)

        everything else, UHI, land cover, etc.. is SECONDARY.

        To test this.. you pick a location: say your backyard. you measure the height and latitude. you plug it into the formula and you will get a temperature out.

        no matter where you pick you use the same formula.

        That gives you the prediction: that prediction doesnt care if the actual sites the model was built from are 2000 miles away.

      • Tony, a few British troops were responsible for holding onto Helmand province for a number of years. The Parachute Regiment was prominent, with help from Royal Marines, SAS, Dutch special forces and U.S Marines, 82nd Airborne and spec operators. About a thousand of our best people died there. I believe nearly 400 were British. In a year or two it’s likely the Taliban will be in control again.

      • NICE WORK, Steven. But what about the satellites?

        Anyway, I can’t obsess about this BS, like some people do. I am among the great majority of folks who list climate change down near the bottom of things to worry about. I am most concerned about what Obama et al are doing to our country and the consequences that the wrecking of the world’s good superpower will have on peace and freedom on our little planet.

      • Don Monfort,

        +100

        I can obsess about many things, but CAGW is not one of them.

      • catweazle666

        Mark Silbert: “I can obsess about many things, but CAGW is not one of them.”

        Ah, but you are not absolutely dependent on it for your income, and in many cases a large number of perks like all expenses paid global travel to seminars, p!ss-ups, massive get-togethers in the World’s beszt five star resorts, first class air travel (accruing bucketfuls of air miles, naturally) and various other freebies and entertainment, and of course the ultimate joy, being able to exercise very considerable power to inconvenience – sometimes terminally – billions of people with absolutely zero accountability for the dire consequences of your activities.

      • “Watch a real skeptic examine the same question with different data.”

        Nonsense. Eschenbach’s post has absolutely nothing to do with your claims that you and BEST can discern trends of tenths and hundredths of a degree at locations with no sensors. Let alone construct a national or “global” average temperature with such precision substituting statistics for data.

        No one denies that our sparse measurements are completely useless. Clearly there are broad climate issues we can study with such data.

        But what we (you) do not have is measurements sufficiently extensive, and precise, to justify giving you and your fellow warmists control of the global energy economy.

        Keep changing the subject though. Maybe no one will notice.

      • Gary has been on fire lately. Yes, and this is where Mosher has got it…wait for it…WRONG!

        “you take data from all over the world”

        Much of the world has no data. That’s why they have to make it up with elaborate “model” schemes. They even hold their little noses and use the satellites to infill, when it suits their little purposes. We really don’t much care about wild ass guesses on what the global temp was in 1875, or 1947. We are interested in the last few decades as CO2 has increased. Why do they ignore the satellite data?

      • Steven Mosher

        gary

        “Nonsense. Eschenbach’s post has absolutely nothing to do with your claims that you and BEST can discern trends of tenths and hundredths of a degree at locations with no sensors. Let alone construct a national or “global” average temperature with such precision substituting statistics for data.”

        1. straw man. We make no such claims. In fact I disagree, we do not know the temperature or trends to 1/100s. Like many others you
        dont get it. I will explain. you have a scale. it measure weight within
        1 lb. You step on the scale three times: 200,200,201 are your measurements. the average is 200.33. Does this mean you know the weight within 100ths? No. It means your best estimate of weight is
        200.33. That means this estimate will MINIMIZE the error of prediction.
        When you say “the average is 200.33” you are saying
        IF you measure my weight with a perfect scale my best estimate is 200.33. When you calculate Perfection – 200.33 or the error
        that number will smaller than say perfection – 200.5

        As for willis work you dont even understand thee fundamentals

        Lets say we want to estimate the average weight of every person
        on the planet. thats 7 billion people. I start by selecting 5000 people
        I note the following W = s*height. that there weight can be modelled
        by merely looking at their height ( we will forget gender for now )
        and so you do that regression. And then you use that model to predict the weight of the next 5000 people. Guess what, your model works pretty good. and so you check the next 5K, and the next 5 K, and so on.
        And you see that you can in fact predict the weight of unseen and unweighed people. Now suppose along the way you notice that somme of your predictions are much worse than others. you look deeper and find out that you are always getting women wrong. So you go back to your model and add a term for women. And so on. and then you note that
        people from the US and US samoa are always underestimated..
        So you add a term for that. In all of these predictions you have an
        average value for the prediction.. the average weight is 203.456876543
        That doesnt mean you know the average weight to that precision.
        you dont. What you are saying is that this value minimizes the error of
        the prediction. Now when you have weighed 40000 people some stoopid person will scream wait.. there are billions you havent measured.
        Yup that is true. Maybe they are all freaks!! ok. here is your science project. go get another 10000 and see if you find any freaks..
        and so you continue this untl you have weighed 6 billion people
        and then a skeptic says… all the freaks are are hidden in that last billion
        so you weigh another 500 K and the skeptic says.. the last 500K might be unicorns… Super freaks and your model will have more error
        so you finally get down to weighing almost everyone and the skeptic says.. The one you havent measured is a super super freak unicorn
        fat person. you get the idea. its always unicorns for the conspiracy minded conservative.

        So what do we do with temperature. Well first off we realize that its the the poles are cold and the equator is hot. Go figure. temperature is related to latitude the same way weight is related to height. it explains a part of it.
        next we observe that everest is colder than death valley. Yup
        when you go higher you get colder. So, we propose a model
        T = a*Lat + b* Alt. Now its ACTUALLY more complicated than this
        because we calculate the interaction of these two variables and the interaction with seaonality ( one reason your selection of cities fails )
        All sorts of people say wait wait you cant say that temperature is due only to latitude and altitude. Well, yes you can. using only those two variables you can explain a large amount of the variation– like height and gender explains weight. Now to be sure there are other variables you could add.. that would make your error smaller. just like some countries have fatter people at the same height some stations have features which make your prediction less accurate. the measure.

        Another thing to note is that every prominent skeptics ALSO use this approach of modelling temperature via regression. take Ross McKittrick.
        you know his famous skeptical paper that jones tried to keep out of Ar4.
        he modelled temperature AS A FUNCTION OF LITERACY. Yup
        altitude, latitude, and literacy amongst other variables.

        Now of course no skeptics jumped up and said… wait a minute you cant say that..you cant say temperature is a function of Literacy!! but that is in one of the most prominant skeptical models of temperature.

        Continuing. After you build this model.. you test it. the model says the next 5000 stations will have temperatures that look like this.. yup they do. and so you add more.. yup those too.
        and when we get to 40000 stations we note that our model hasnt changed very much.. we add more data from unseen places and the answer is stable.

        So along comes a skeptic and yells.. what about the billions of unicorns.
        So we go looking at find another 1000 stations. no unicorns.
        another 1000. no unicorns….

        Then willis comes along and says ‘wait’ I have a different sensor that measures temperature.. and I have the whole surface.. I can see every unicorn is there is one. And whats he prove.. yup.. you can model temperature with a few variables.. and yup there are no unicorns
        when we only sample 40K we are effectively learning all there is worth learning. no unicorns.

      • It looks like Mosher just predicted, projected, prognosticated, pontificated, or otherwise suggested that the global temperature is constant.

      • Mosher,

        Baloney.

        BEST’s whole purpose was supporting the CAGW case. And Mueller even went beyond that and “discovered” attribution in your made up, massaged statistical legerdemain. The goal was to show there was no problem with precision based on UHI as a rapid reaction to Watt’s surface stations project.

        You keep making comments about how no matter what you do, you get the same average/trend. Those comments are meaningless except in defending your tribe’s CAGW religion.

        And Eschenbach’s WUWT post was not about the precision of global average temperature constructs. Notice that his graphs involve disparities of 7 and 8 degrees celsius among the various colors.

        He was not looking for a global average, but for whether you could tell anything about temperature on a macro scale using certain metrics. That is why he found evidence of the oceanic oscillations “interesting.” Not a basis for decarbonization, just interesting.

        Of course altitude is a factor in local temperature. So are dozens of other factors. And picking any two broad factors can probably give you an estimate within a degree or two. But that spread renders your product useless for CAGW.

        But your tribe’s whole CAGW religion is based on claims that you can determine GAT to within tenths of a degree per decade. And your claims to “warmest year ever” are based on claims of precision to hundredths of a degree.

        You don’t want to be tarred with the false claims of certainty and precision made by the consensus? Stop defending their claims like you are the last Japanese soldier on the last Pacific atoll.

        Besides, you forget. Surface temps are no longer a good proxy for the real CAGW culprit, heat content. Your atoll is no longer even on the maps of the Imperial Fleet.

      • T = f(lat, altitude). That right, the temperature at any place on the planet is a function of latitude and altitude. its the sun and lapse rate
        stoopid.

        The problem Stephen, is this is wrong. It fails to take into account the long term path of the Jet stream, which it’s path is driven by ocean surface temps. The temp in my yard swings 10-20F based on it’s path, and it’s a long term path, years long. I believe it’s the difference between the temp here being mid to upper 70’s in the 60’s and 70’s, and being mid 80’s and 90’s in the 80’s and 90’s.
        And it is moving south, we’ve had only 6 or 7 multiday 90F days this year, most of this week has been in the 70’s, yesterday it didn’t even get to the 70’s.
        Now imagine half of the North American continent where the area under tropical air changes by thousands of square miles.

        Your assumption is wrong. therefore your results are wrong. This is the major factor that influenced surface temp reconstructions of the 80’s and 90’s, bad sampling, and infilling propagates your assumptions into your temperature trend.
        stoopid

      • There are issues with all analyses ( we can’t even model the past, much less the future ) though they’re not wildly different.

        Still, I’d trust the UDEL more than the others just because I can see the small scale variation. That’s because of the resolution, not so much the other analysis choices though:

        When I wrote display software for contours of current obs, forecasters were not happy with analyses which violated station data (Barnes, Cressman, et. al. ) so I used those which ensured contours reflected each station’s representation. I don’t think any of the above analyses achieve that, but it would mean using resolutions finer than the minimum distance between stations, which is significantly finer than even the UDEL.

        While the resolution of the UDEL makes it appealing, any of the analyses which infill over Antarctica, Greenland, and other places are both laughable and grotesque.

      • Steven Mosher: That means this estimate will MINIMIZE the error of prediction.

        There are a lot of people who do not understand or accept the concept of minimizing the mean squared error of prediction, or median absolute prediction error, or integrated mean square error, or related concepts.

        Also, the methods of cross-validation that are used by BEST to test/confirm the accuracy of the BEST estimation procedure are lost to most readers.

      • Don Monfort: “Arguably the first law of sampling theory is that no meaningful conclusion can be drawn from a convenience sample. Thus we should be prepared for an incorrect result.”

        All samples are suspect, and convenience samples are suspect. Nevertheless, almost everything reliably known is known from convenience samples. Pure random samples, cluster samples, stratified samples are idealizations, but everything is limited by convenience.

        Perhaps you or someone you know went in for a medical checkup, donated biological samples, and received back a report with a bunch of numeric values, such as BP = 125/80. That is a result of a convenience sample. Did you tell that someone that the result is meaningless? Probably not.

        The sampling of earth surface temperature is a concern, and the computed mean temperature is doubtless not exact. Nevertheless, the ongoing and historical sampling produces results that have meaning.

      • matt, “Also, the methods of cross-validation that are used by BEST to test/confirm the accuracy of the BEST estimation procedure are lost to most readers.”

        Well yeah, when was the last time you saw global uncertainty plot? Once upon a time Judith mentioned issues with Arctic kriging. Mosher I believe showed how that impact “global” uncertainty and Tamino showed a graph of the Arctic without including uncertainty. There are huge differences in regional uncertainty especially at the polar “corners”.

        As you go back in time with any interpolation method you will get smoothing and smearing.

      • matthewrmarler:

        There are a lot of people who do not understand or accept the concept of minimizing the mean squared error of prediction, or median absolute prediction error, or integrated mean square error, or related concepts.

        Then there are people who do understand things like these but think BEST has done certain things wrong and try to discuss that. They tend to find such very unpleasant, getting responses like these when they do.

        I attempted to respond to Mosher’s offensive comment, but my comment vanished. It didn’t even show up as in moderation. I’m not sure what I said that tripped that harsh a filter. Regardless, Mosher’s response to me is a complete fabrication as what I said is completely true, yet he apparently feels free to make any accusation, no matter how offensive or false, in order to defend BEST.

        Things like that make discussing the shortcomings of BEST rather unpleasant. The worst part is as I pointed out in my comment there, BEST’s team leader tells the public untrue things about its work. So then if someone points that out, BEST team members show up to slander them.

        Because, science?

      • captdallas2: Well yeah, when was the last time you saw global uncertainty plot?

        Last I recall on that topic was a comparison of the BEST uncertainty estimates to some others, and the BEST uncertainty estimates were higher.

        Are you agreeing with me that future attempts to reconstruct (i.e. re-estimate) the global temperature record from the extant raw data is likely to produce at most slight improvements over BEST?

      • I understand that the temperature data analyses have some meaning, matt. But is it sufficiently informative to draw meaningful conclusions for the purposes of deciding to implement drastic and costly CO2 mitigation schemes?

        “Perhaps you or someone you know went in for a medical checkup, donated biological samples, and received back a report with a bunch of numeric values, such as BP = 125/80. That is a result of a convenience sample. Did you tell that someone that the result is meaningless? Probably not.”

        No, those results wouldn’t be meaningless. I trust medical doctors in general and medical technology. But if the doc examined 7 other people and not myself, then told me that he figured out what was going on with me by interpolating, juggling, kriging, scalpeling, smearing etc. I would slap him upside his head.

      • matt, “Are you agreeing with me that future attempts to reconstruct (i.e. re-estimate) the global temperature record from the extant raw data is likely to produce at most slight improvements over BEST?”

        That depends on what is called an improvement. If you are just looking for a “global” mean anomaly, yes I agree. If you are looking for “useful” global temperature, there could be a lot of improvement.

        Especially if folks have a tendency to splice things together.

      • Well Don, I guess we’ve established that you are against profiling. :O)

      • Greenhalgh (would indicate that the “roller coaster” ride for the past 10,000 years has been rather smooth UNTIL now. Lots of smoothing of the data to get that result. How much smoothing of the recent, relative to that done in the past to get that smoothness, would yield the same hysteria?

      • Don Monfort: I understand that the temperature data analyses have some meaning, matt.

        Then you ought not have said that they were meaningless.

        As to the doctor measuring other people, how else would he or she know whether the measurement device was out of calibration? Interlaboratory comparisons use methods similar to those used by BEST when conducting surveys of, for example, changes in diet and cholesterol in the population. the American Statistical Association gives an award annually on the problem.

      • As to the doctor measuring other people, how else would he or she know whether the measurement device was out of calibration?

        LMAO, well a good Dr would send the device to metrology for calibration, not test it on other patients.

        I think this servers as a great example of what’s wrong in climatology.

      • I never said the temperature analyses are meaningless, matt. I asked a question about what somebody else said:

        I said:” I had a stats class once. But I will risk ridicule to learn something: It seems to me that you haven’t addressed this, Steven:

        I quoted Wojick:“Arguably the first law of sampling theory is that no meaningful conclusion can be drawn from a convenience sample. Thus we should be prepared for an incorrect result.”

        And your medical exam analogy is just goofey. We expect better from you, matt.

      • Danny Thomas:

        Do you think it would make any difference in the perception issue if BEST created a ‘base’ of stations which are utilized year over year and analysed via the same method? All while continuing their normal processes of adding new stations and ‘in-filling’ (via evolving methods) on an independent track.

        Huh? BEST doesn’t infill anything.

        As for creating a base set of stations, that’s what the USHCN did that led to problems with the “zombie station” nonsense. When you have one base set of stations, you wind up with problems if stations close down. The USHCN resolved this by infilling stations when they didn’t have data by using the average for nearby stations which did have data (more or less). People complained that meant they had “zombie stations,” but what else could they do? They had required a base set of stations, and some of those stations weren’t available anymore.

      • ” BEST doesn’t infill anything.”
        Of course they do, only a fraction of the planet’s surface is measured, and GMT is a calculated average for the entire surface, the rest is made up based on assumptions, and the further back in time you go the more that’s made up.

      • micro6500

        ” BEST doesn’t infill anything.”
        Of course they do, only a fraction of the planet’s surface is measured, and GMT is a calculated average for the entire surface, the rest is made up based on assumptions, and the further back in time you go the more that’s made up.

        That’s… not what infilling means in any normal use of the word. You’re conflating infilling and interpolation. The two are related, but they are not the same thing. Infilling creates data points to be used in further calculations. Interpolation doesn’t (necessarily). Or at least, that’s how I usually see people use the two words.

        If you’re using them differently, then I have no idea what the complaint might be about. Interpolating between measurements is a perfectly normal thing to do.

      • ” infilling Def
        Material that fills or is used to fill a space or hole”
        ” If you’re using them differently, then I have no idea what the complaint might be about. Interpolating between measurements is a perfectly normal thing to do.”
        If they were infilling between points on a linear line, that wouldn’t be a big deal, but the temperature field (actual temperatures, not what BEST uses) is not linear over relatively short distances, nothing like the 1000km distances BEST uses.
        Now being climate science, infilling could mean anything to them.

      • Brandon,
        My use of the term “infilling” was the more generic:

        “material that fills or is used to fill a space or hole.
        verb

        with no implication intended of anything untoward. The hope was to suggest a base format vs. an ever expanding/altered/changing format. Commenting once again that it’s the trends which are important.

      • Danny Thomas

        Do you think it would make any difference in the perception issue if BEST created a ‘base’ of stations which are utilized year over year and analysed via the same method?

        I think that people worry to much about BEST. It has interesting technical aspects so I really enjoy posts or comments on those aspects, but based on my perceptions of the climate ‘debate’ it is not a critical in moving toward resolution.

      • ” I think that people worry to much about BEST. It has interesting technical aspects so I really enjoy posts or comments on those aspects, but based on my perceptions of the climate ‘debate’ it is not a critical in moving toward resolution.”
        My complaint is that all of the surface temp trends all diverge from the satellite data, and they diverge from the actual surface data that is much closer to the satellite trend, the common factor is all of the processing the surface series use (as opposed to the surface station records ).
        And if we go by the satellite trend, there’s nothing to worry about.
        Which is critical to the debate.

      • micro6500 and Danny Thomas, you guys might want to try looking at the definition you claim to be using again, because I’m pretty sure you weren’t using it. You said BEST was infilling things, but your definition says:

        Material that fills or is used to fill a space or hole

        That’s a noun, not a verb. You can’t, “Material that fills” missing spots. And even if you could, some random dictionary definition is a terrible thing to use when we’re talking about a specific field of work where words are generally used in particular ways which dictionaries are not going to capture.

        And regardless, what would it even mean if you say no infilling under this proposed definition? What was said was:

        Do you think it would make any difference in the perception issue if BEST created a ‘base’ of stations which are utilized year over year and analysed via the same method? All while continuing their normal processes of adding new stations and ‘in-filling’ (via evolving methods) on an independent track.

        If you mean to include any sort of interpolation when you say infilling, then how in the world do you propose anyone create a global temperature record without infilling anything? We don’t have data for every part of the globe, so interpolation is always going to be necessary. There’s no getting around it.

      • ” If you mean to include any sort of interpolation when you say infilling, then how in the world do you propose anyone create a global temperature record without infilling anything? We don’t have data for every part of the globe, so interpolation is always going to be necessary. There’s no getting around it.”
        My point is there is no way to produce a GMT that means anything. But you can use the trend at the stations that have good data, and aggregate those trends. This is what I do.
        Thus has physical meaning, and you can do out of band testing, the others don’t.

      • Brandon,
        In no way do I suggest no “in-filling”. All I was suggesting was a ‘check and balance’ system as a comparison. There is quite obviously a high level of concern on the part of some as to the effects of the methods used by those who create the predicted GMT.
        I used BEST as a representative, but the suggestion of using a ‘base set’ (a control?) would apply to all those in the business of providing a predicted GMT.
        One of the arguments is ‘all those who supply the predicted value indicate, in the example of 2014, is one of the warmest years ever’. This is an indication of the value of trends to which was referred. Should the ‘base’ trend and the ‘in-filled’ (interpolated?) trend diverge it seems this would lead to further questioning. Should they not, it would seem to lead to further support.

      • Danny Thomas

        Brandon,
        FYI.
        “Infilling
        Finally we come to infilling, which has garnered quite a bit of attention of late due to some rather outlandish claims of its impact. Infilling occurs in the USHCN network in two different cases: when the raw data is not available for a station, and when the PHA flags the raw data as too uncertain to homogenize (e.g. in between two station moves when there is not a long enough record to determine with certainty the impact that the initial move had). Infilled data is marked with an “E” flag in the adjusted data file (FLs.52i) provided by NCDC, and its relatively straightforward to test the effects it has by calculating U.S. temperatures with and without the infilled data. The results are shown in Figure 9, below:……………………..”
        From here: http://berkeleyearth.org/understanding-adjustments-temperature-data/

      • micro6500

        What else can you expect? We have arrived where we are today in a purely ad hoc manner.

      • mwgrant:

        I think that people worry to much about BEST. It has interesting technical aspects so I really enjoy posts or comments on those aspects, but based on my perceptions of the climate ‘debate’ it is not a critical in moving toward resolution.

        I originally was just interested in a couple small technical points regarding the BEST methodology. I never planned to spend much time on it. I hadn’t spent much time on any of the other modern temperature records because I don’t think the issues with any of them are large enough to be that big a deal. I have some questions I’d like resolved, but nothing so serious I’m too concerned about them.

        But the more I looked into BEST, the more troubled I was by it. Part of it was just that I couldn’t get answers to a couple simple questions, but a larger part was that BEST does shady things like deletes previous results and keeps no record of them (or at least, no public record of them).

        Now, that’s bad enough, but then BEST even changes its methodology and doesn’t disclose the change anywhere. In fact, it left a description of its old methodology up on its website for some time. This caused me some confusion when BEST started talking about its new methodology as I couldn’t figure out why its description didn’t match what it had said before and what it was (at the time) saying on its website. When I tried to resolve the confusion, all I got was abuse and insults from Steven Mosher. After I finally figured out what was going on, Mosher shut up. Then some time later, BEST secretly changed its website to remove all the descriptions of its old methodology, leaving no trace and making no note of the change, proving I was right. Naturally, I received no apology or acknowledgment.

        Because things like that happened over and over and over, I’ve kept interested in BEST. If BEST had just, you know, done what it said it would do and been open and transparent, I never would have spent more than a couple hours looking at it. My favorite one though, was when BEST decided to publish a guide on how to be a skeptic. Their “Skeptic’s Guide to Climate Change” is quite possibly the dumbest thing I have ever read. You should check it out, just for laughs. It’s hilariously bad.

      • micro6500:

        My point is there is no way to produce a GMT that means anything. But you can use the trend at the stations that have good data, and aggregate those trends. This is what I do.
        Thus has physical meaning, and you can do out of band testing, the others don’t.

        That sounds like a terrible approach. If you don’t account for spatial distribution, your results will be completely skewed.

        But if you did somehow do account for spatial distribution, then your approach woud be mathematically no different than if you interpolated. Whether you map your interpolation onto a 2d map or a 2d matrix is irrelevant since interpolating over 2d map is just mapping the data to a 2d matrix with weighting functions.

      • Dang, I just lost my long post.

        That sounds like a terrible approach. If you don’t account for spatial distribution, your results will be completely skewed./blockquote>
        Or you could consider that the weighting is depended on the uncertainty of the various areas, the more stations the better defined the temp is in that area. All the stations have a weight of one. When there’s a few dozen stations for north africa, how well is the temperature actually defined, why is making up data for all of the areas not measured better?
        But you also need to realize I’m not making a global anything, I’m seeing what a collection of station actually measured. The larger the collection the less weather the average will have, when you start to include even larger areas you start to account for seasons (ie north and south of the equator). I also produce various sized aggregated areas, 1×1 degree cells, 10 x 360 bands, continental and then global.

        I’ve also eliminated all stations that don’t have at least 360 sample (almost all then have a complete year). Since I am mostly looking at the station rate of change, I work with a stations previous days measurements (yesterday’s min (or max) – today’s min(or max), so it removes a lot of calibration issues. It also reduces any step changes, they happen on a single day, and don’t happen again.
        A year of a single station, the sum (or average) of the day to day change should be zero, unless there’s a trend change or weather.a collection of stations should average out weather, but not a global trend.
        It shows large regional swings, but no trends, and when you compare yesterday’s rising temp to last night’s falling temp for these stations 50 of the last 74 years are slightly negative, 30 of the last 34 years are negative, and over all they are slightly negative. If you consider the data to be +/- 0.1F (measurement uncertainty) the difference is 0F+/- 0.1F
        the stations did not record any yearly trend. Now peak temperature for a year might have gone up, but that heat was radiated to space by the end of the year. To me that makes me thing the warming is due to something other than a loss of cooling from Co2. The regional swings makes me believe that what’s been detected is warm pools of water in the oceans moving around and impacting surface thermometers that are downwind, but on a global level they average out. Also my difference measurement (which broadly matches the satellite measurement) shows higher levels of cooling on hot years, and lower levels of cooling on cold years.

      • Don Monfort: And your medical exam analogy is just goofey. We expect better from you, matt.

        Actually my medical exam analogy is based on procedures in common use in research. A measurement instrument can be within specs and still be highly biased. For example, most medical devices are acceptable if the mean square measurement error is 25%; that’s because the difference between “healthy” and “unhealthy” (or present vs absent) may be very large compared to the bias and mse. In research where the expected outcome may be small, you can usually improve the accuracy of an estimate for a particular person by including all the estimates of all the research participants. About 18 years ago, Emery Brown and Charles Czeisler used empirical Bayes techniques in the study of circadian rhythms of plasma melatonin levels. I can find the reference for you if you want, but you can probably find it yourself through a PubMed search on those authors and keywords.

        This topic is way more interesting than can be addressed here, but the Brown and Czeisler paper is one place to start. The empirical Bayes estimates improve the mean square estimation error across the whole sample, but may increase the error of any one measurement, though experience shows that to be rare. Steve Mosher said something similar: the methods used improve the mean square estimation error across the sample. You generally can not show for particular cases exactly how all the statistics computed from all the measurements produce the particular changes for those cases; the biggest changes occur for the measurements with the least reliability, as estimated from the data. If you have external information of which measurements have the greatest reliability, you can modify the algorithm so as to use that information..

        As to “meaningless”, I apologize if I was not quoting you, as I thought I was quoting you.

      • The empirical Bayes estimates improve the mean square estimation error across the whole sample, but may increase the error of any one measurement, though experience shows that to be rare.

        This is exactly why i calculate the day to day difference on a single station, before I combine the difference with other stations difference.
        I expect there to be a smaller error where a single station takes repeated measurements even when the temporal period has moved to the next day. Also as long as the same procedure is used on a regular cycle, the time of observation bias restores the measurements average value, or a fraction of it, but it’s station/staff specific.

        And maybe instead of infilling (though the definition is correct, it’s another climate specific use where they change what a word means), I should have use interpolation, but in any case temperature is not linear over spacial distances, consider a small pop up shower that traverses a large area and missed a number of stations, the temperature field is not linear.

    • Oh, Steven wrote something,

      Quickly for now–70’s in DC area in August is tooo good to pass up. Yes, it is not an average as most people think of them. However, like different averaging processes one can arrive a global (in sense of physical domain, not necessarily earth) estimates. Despite all the complaining about the use of kriging goes I continue to think that it really is a very, very reasonable tool to use. The are quite a few types of kriging (Steven and BEST are aware) and we will likely see only more of it with variations in the future. That said, David’s looking at this from a sampling perspective is IMO addressing territory that will evidently needs to be covered–perhaps even at a level independent of particular implementations/applications such as BEST or C&W. Back later.

      • ..eventually needs to be covered!

        muss hinaus!!!

      • David Wojick

        Indeed it is a beautiful day here in Virginia, like the first day of fall. As for the models, in a way BEST is worst, because they do an infinite amount of interpolation in order to create their temperature field. The problem is that there are many ways to do this so the way they choose is an artifact of the method.

        Look at it this way. Imagine every thermometer temp reading for a given time is a pole, the height of which is the temp. (Also the earth is flat. Hey, it is better than a spherical chicken.) Now we create the global temp field by stretching a perfect, no sagging tent over all these poles. The average height of the tent is the average temperature of the globe. The assumptions here are huge. Many adjustments are possible and some are made, others not.

        The mathematical strength of kriging is that it is the spatial averaging method that is least likely to be wrong (assuming a random sample). That in no way implies that it is right. On the contrary it is very likely to be wrong.

        The irony here is that kriging is widely used to estimate oil reserves. In that context no one believes that these estimates are accurate to several significant figures. Yet that is just how these numbers are treated in the climate debate.

      • GaryM, David, Steven

        Gary: In a nutshell Kriging does attempt to take into account nearby values (observed) when estimating a value at a given location. I write ‘attempts’ because kriging is an estimation procedure. Steven has opined that it is better to spend the efforts on sensitivity—I would pay attention to that; there are limits as to what can be accomplished vis-a-vis climate change (my words). Kriging and other geostatistical extension are as good as data permit for predicting a temperature field at a single time. There are even extensions that look at spatial-temporal problems. Still the data are apparently a real constraint.

        As an aside—separate from GW—estimating temperature fields is a very interesting and challenging problem in its on right. As mentioned there are data constraints, but even more interesting are the ‘terrain’ and ‘regional’ effects you bring up—I’m thinking of drainage winds, coastal boundary layers, etc. David also raises the point that for GW the quantities of interest are the much smaller differences in temperature fields), coverage is a problem, and biased sampling is a problem. This is reflected in Steve’s observations data and hence on sensitivity.

        If I misrepresent anything David or Steven please call it out.

        David, your points on interpolation are valid. I am comfortable with estimates, but my parochial interests are is the annual temperature fields, their spatial structure, and how they might be estimated. Pointing out application of kriging in determining oil reserves brings focus on questioning just what is the quantity of interest. Differences between two estimated temperature fields can be quite sensitive to ‘small errors’ in each of the two estimated (fields). To me it also naturally leads to the idea of using stochastic simulation instead of kriging—a natural way to get a handle on uncertainties. (Of course I am just playing with a the lower 48 states and physiographic regions. The world…intensive to say the least.)

        Steven, I’m just saying things to mess you up :O). Hope not.

      • Steven Mosher

        mw

        it is always a pleasure to read what you write. I fear david wont get it because he doesnt do any real work

      • Steven Mosher

        ” Now we create the global temp field by stretching a perfect, no sagging tent over all these poles. The average height of the tent is the average temperature of the globe. The assumptions here are huge. Many adjustments are possible and some are made, others not.”

        there are always huge numbers of assumptions.

        The way we progress is by stating a precise assumption and testing it.

        For example.

        Assuming that UHI infects the average. simple to test. it doesnt.

        Assuming few stations will change the answer. it doesnt

        Assuming more will improve it. nope.

        The crazy thing is only a couple people have identified the real issues
        with the approach we take. other folks.. just dont get it

      • mwgrant,

        “In a nutshell Kriging does attempt to take into account nearby values (observed) when estimating a value at a given location.”

        But you have to pay attention to the whole statistical house of cards. “Nearby” is often defined as 750 miles.

        Somewhere up above I made a comment showing differences of several degrees on average yearly temperature (which is the CAGW standard – “warmest year ever!!!!”)

        Mosher tried to claim that BEST does monthly, not annual temps.

        “Gary
        the model is done on MONTHLY values.”

        Except that is simply false. BEST does both monthly and annual averages.

        “The global surface temperature average (land and sea) for 2014
        was nominally the warmest since the global instrumental record began in 1850; however, within the margin of error, it is tied with 2005 and 2010 and so we can’t be certain it set a new record.”

        http://static.berkeleyearth.org/memos/Global-Warming-2014-Berkeley-Earth-Newsletter.pdf

        Mosher’s comments sound great, if you ignore their intended purpose. Which is of course his obscurantist point.

      • GaryM

        “In a nutshell Kriging does attempt to take into account nearby values (observed) when estimating a value at a given location.”

        But you have to pay attention to the whole statistical house of cards. “Nearby” is often defined as 750 miles.

        The quoted sentence above applies to kriging and is not specific or restricted to the BEST implementation. Above* you wrote:

        So surrounding topography, proximity to lakes, forests, and mountains, and susceptibility to impacts of various oceanic oscillations, are irrelevant to your model? Or its laughably inflated claims to precision?

        * https://judithcurry.com/2015/08/25/jcs-conscience/#comment-727491

        These factors affect other stations in that locale. Kriging weights closer location more than distance. Kriging is one attempt at incorporating Tobler’s Law into the estimation. Kriging is an estimation technique. Your comment suggests to me that either you still somewhat unfamiliar with the conceptual basis of the technique you are criticizing or choose to ignore it just to chew on a leg. As for 750 miles and greater: given coverage in some areas who is surprised? That aspect is of course subject to criticisms and comment, yes that affects the quality of estimates. However, were I you I would raise my game—maybe dig into the analyses and in particular the error analyses. As for BEST, the fact is one does not work for hours and hours on such tasks and not notice issues and on a number of occasion it has been noted that there are priorities.

        As for But you have to pay attention to the whole statistical house of cards. That is a pretty vague comment. Just what is your ‘statistical house of cards’ here? That is, for you what statistical sensibilities are being tweaked?

        Somewhere up above I made a comment showing differences of several degrees on average yearly temperature (which is the CAGW standard – “warmest year ever!!!!”). I assume here you are referring to the comparison between locations with similar latitudes and how they illustrate local and regional influences. Well, again kriging preferentially weights/weighs nearer observations (Tobler’s Law). BTW Steven adequately caveated his discussion up front:

        I will keep it simple imagine the function looks like …

        Monthly, annual? Ha! Give me a break! Better yet, just what is your point? Just messin’ with Steven or an important criticism?

        I could care less about ‘record’ or ‘no record’. For reasons well beyond BEST, C&W, etc., etc., etc. that ‘highest recorded temperature meme IMO is total silliness that I generally ignore in the media. Don’t waste your time with it.

        Mosher’s comments sound great, if you ignore their intended purpose. Which is of course his obscurantist point.

        Absent language cues I am not as quick to attribute purpose to Steven’s and others remarks. Where others may look at the remarks looking for alarm I try to look for caveats and technical aspects. One also has to look at context.

      • mwgrant, I think the focus on Kriging is misguided. From what I’ve seen, the more immediate issue is BEST’s approach to handling breakpoints. In my opinion, BEST’s empirical breakpoint calculation approach is terrible. The reduction it causes in spatial resolution is quite extreme and doesn’t seem to be warranted. It seems leaps and bounds worse than the approaches used by previous groups, and it makes BEST seem dishonest since it encourages people to look up temperatures for local areas even though it knows its results don’t have resolution to anywhere near that scale. That’s particularly relevant since you say:

        As for BEST, the fact is one does not work for hours and hours on such tasks and not notice issues and on a number of occasion it has been noted that there are priorities.

        Richard Muller told the media BEST’s adjustments don’t alter its results for any sizable areas, even though that’s completely untrue. He also said their unadjusted results were available for people to look at, which was completely untrue. So BEST has this problem where it keeps presenting its work as things its not. And they don’t really correct their misstatements.

        Anyway, I’m happy to say BEST has released some of their unadjusted results. If you’d like to see some examination of them, I have a post where I’ve done a bit. And if you want to know what I’m talking about regarding the other stuff, here’s a post on that.

        Long story short though, I think people are looking at the wrong stuff when it comes to BEST.

      • Steven Mosher

        Brandon, richard Muller told the media BEST’s adjustments don’t alter its results for any sizable areas, even though that’s completely untrue. He also said their unadjusted results were available for people to look at, which was completely untrue. ”

        Sizable areas? Where did he use those words.
        Also you know exactly what he meant by raw data being available. Raw station data. Stop lying.

      • Here a couple of questions from a “naive bystander” on all of the temperature estimation methods:

        1. It seems to me that all make, at some level, the assumption that we can “correct” or “fill in” a temperature value in location A using “good” data from surrounding stations. Am I correct in this?

        2. If #1 is true, then what has been done to characterize the expected variation of temperature over space to know what granularity of spatial sampling is need to make #1 a decent assumption?

        3. How does the granularity in #2 match with what is actually available?

        4. How does the difference in #3 affect the statical significance of what is reported as the “global mean temperature”.

      • Brandon S?: In my opinion, BEST’s empirical breakpoint calculation approach is terrible. The reduction it causes in spatial resolution is quite extreme and doesn’t seem to be warranted. It seems leaps and bounds worse than the approaches used by previous groups, and it makes BEST seem dishonest since it encourages people to look up temperatures for local areas even though it knows its results don’t have resolution to anywhere near that scale.

        My opinion is that your opinion is wrong, and you do not understand the BEST methodology. It is the best attempt to date, and the cross-validation results show that any future improvements are likely to be very slight, in the sense of MSE. The instrumental record has problems of site sampling, instrument drift and malfunction, changes in site characteristics and such that have been much discussed. A new approach may reduce the MSE by increasing the precision of the estimates at all or most locales, but the cross-validation results that BEST have published show that the improvement to be expected is slight. For the past, the sampling bias entailed by site selection can’t be changed much.

        I do wish Mosher had not accused you of lying. I t think you are confused. You haven’t claimed, I hope, that BEST have not made their code and data available?

      • but the cross-validation results that BEST have published show that the improvement to be expected is slight

        Of course, there process is trash, adding more data to a trashy process doesn’t magically make it better, it just makes more trash.
        Also, since all of their data is processed for lat and alt to calculate the field, any out of band data has to go through a similar process to see if it’s close, so the out of band sampling trashes the data, so no wonder they thing it’s so great, it’s basically all made up to what they think it ought to be.

        And before you try and tell me I don’t understand this or that, I do understand both what BEST is doing, surface data, and how to build data sets where the data has to represent reality, not that people think ought to be reality. There is a difference that is lost on all of the published surface data sets.
        Here is the best representation of what temps are doing on the surface, a comparison of daily rising temps to the following night’s falling temps for all of the surface stations that sample for more than 360 days per year.

      • micro6500: Of course, there process is trash, adding more data to a trashy process doesn’t magically make it better, it just makes more trash.

        So, …, are you saying that much improvement over BEST is possible with extant data? Or are you agreeing with me that any improvement over BEST using the extant data is likely to be slight?

      • So, …, are you saying that much improvement over BEST is possible with extant data?

        I’m saying any global mean temp claimed is artificial. Until we have better sampling, and they stop adjusting the data the only real answer is based on what the stations actually measured. Homogenizing and infilling the measurements to fabricate a GMT is making up a meaningless number.

        And of course even meaningless numbers can seem close to some arbitrary measurement, but the same can be said of rolling dice or pulling a card out of a deck of cards, or which of the 3 cups actually have the bean under them. While you can created statistics on the probability the next dice roll will be a 6, the sequence of rolls is without value in predicting the roll in 20 years other than it will be one of the 6 sides possible.
        Climate is not a roll of a die.

      • Brandon.

        mwgrant, I think the focus on Kriging is misguided.

        Yes. It often seems to creep back into conversation perhaps because people are uncomfortable with some of the necessities of interpolation and estimation. There is not a single approach to estimation and interpolation that does not have artifacts and limitations. I tend to respond when that happens directly or indirectly. That reflects interests and background.

      • matthewrmarler:

        My opinion is that your opinion is wrong, and you do not understand the BEST methodology.

        I would love to hear what you base your opinion on. On what do you base your opinion that I “do not understand the BEST methodology”? I’ve written quite a bit about BEST, and as far as I know you’ve never once pointed out a single mistake on my part, so I don’t think it’s that you think I’ve said lots of wrong things. So… is it just that you think I’m wrong, therefore I must not know what I’m talking about? That’d be pretty weak.

        It is the best attempt to date, and the cross-validation results show that any future improvements are likely to be very slight, in the sense of MSE.

        What is your basis for this?

        I do wish Mosher had not accused you of lying. I t think you are confused. You haven’t claimed, I hope, that BEST have not made their code and data available?

        Um, no. If you read what I said, you’ll see I certainly did not say that. If and when the comment I submitted clears moderation, what I’m saying will be abundantly clear, but in the meantime, you should have no problem understanding the details of it if you follow the link I provided it for reference purposes.

      • Danny Thomas

        MWGrant, Steven, et al

        Do you think it would make any difference in the perception issue if BEST created a ‘base’ of stations which are utilized year over year and analysed via the same method? All while continuing their normal processes of adding new stations and ‘in-filling’ (via evolving methods) on an independent track. Thinking it’s the trends that matter. (Steven, maybe this is already being done?)

      • mwgrant:

        Yes. It often seems to creep back into conversation perhaps because people are uncomfortable with some of the necessities of interpolation and estimation. There is not a single approach to estimation and interpolation that does not have artifacts and limitations. I tend to respond when that happens directly or indirectly. That reflects interests and background.

        I understand that. I think part of the problem is just that most people don’t realize how much effect adjustments have on BEST’s results. If they did, they’d probably pay far more attention to the subject. I mean, just look at how much talk there is about adjustments with other data sets. BEST’s adjustments have at least as much effect as any other group’s, just of a different sort.

        Of course, it’s a lot harder to look at the effect of BEST’s adjustments because there is no “before” and “after” adjustments with BEST. BEST’s adjustments are part of the temperature field calculation process itself, making them far harder to disintangle. On top of that, BEST never bothered to disclose the effect of them, and it didn’t publish the results it’d get without them (despite telling the media it had).

        That situation has changed a little in the last month or two, but it doesn’t undo the damage caused by years of lack of disclosure on BEST’s part.

        And it looks like my comment with the links showing these things may not clear moderation. I guess I may need to try submitting a new one with them.

      • Ken Denison | August 27, 2015 at 10:26 am |

        This is just an IMO.

        1.) It seems to me that all make, at some level, the assumption that we can “correct” or “fill in” a temperature value in location A using “good” data from surrounding stations. Am I correct in this?

        Here you are referring to interpolation.

        2.) If #1 is true, then what has been done to characterize the expected variation of temperature over space to know what granularity of spatial sampling is need to make #1 a decent assumption?

        That is open and of course depends on the application in mind. Here I assume that you mean estimating a metric, e.g., ’average global temperature’. If it were me I would work backwards: first I would determine the error I could tolerate in the estimated metric and then determine coverage* based on that, characterization of the existing data, and proposed methodology. But that is still a very, very simple picture and this is simply a blog comment.
        ———
        * I prefer ‘coverage’ to ‘granularity’.

        3.) How does the granularity in #2 match with what is actually available?

        It probably has not been determined or considered but that view reflects bias of someone living outside the paywalls and only a modicum of interest.

        4.) How does the difference in #3 affect the statical significance of what is reported as the “global mean temperature”.

        Here the significance should be set prior to sample collection/observation and analysis. It is integral to the QA plan (novel idea). In a perfect world you set your standards (and goals) before you lift your pinkie.

        I like the questions because they they re-enforce the idea of getting to some things that should be addressed up-front in climate and other environmental projects. (Again just IMO)

      • Brandon

        I understand that. I think part of the problem is just that most people don’t realize how much effect adjustments have on BEST’s results.

        Of course I do not know, but I would not be surprised. None of the material is casual and adjustment appears [to me anyway] the much tougher topic to get into. Even with equations folks have intuitive and maybe visual ideas about interpolation, sample coverage, etc. You know the effort needed for crawling thru both. Was it more difficult to look at the adjustment aspects than the interpolation? Does ‘adjustment’ overshadow ‘smoothing’ as a problem?

        Rhetorical questions just for thought: How important is any individual methodology for a temperature or anomaly plot? Is the collective behavior or failure adequate in the policy realm?

        I hope we move beyond them…maybe sensitivity?

      • mwgrant:

        You know the effort needed for crawling thru both. Was it more difficult to look at the adjustment aspects than the interpolation? Does ‘adjustment’ overshadow ‘smoothing’ as a problem?

        Well, until recently, BEST hadn’t published results which let people see how much effect its adjustments had on its results, so you couldn’t tell what effect its adjustments had unless you ran its code with and without them. On the other hand, you couldn’t really tell what effect Kriging had without running its code either, so I’m not sure either was more difficult than the other to look into if you wanted to quantify things.

        Most people haven’t seemed to try to quantify things though. If you’re not going to try to figure out the effect of things, then neither problem is particularly difficult to look at. Of course, if you’re not going to try to look at how much effect these things have, I don’t know what the point of talking about them is.

        Rhetorical questions just for thought: How important is any individual methodology for a temperature or anomaly plot? Is the collective behavior or failure adequate in the policy realm?

        No clue really. That depends on the policy argument, which is a hairy subject. On the one hand, many people like to say our estimates of climate sensitivity won’t change by a meaningful amount based on pinning down the details on the temperature record. On the other hand, we’ve seen a significant effect on the policy debate due to the “pause,” so clearly, small differences matter quite a bit to at least some people. If not, papers like the recent Karl et al one by the NOAA wouldn’t be such a big deal.

        Personally, I think it matters quite a bit because a solid temperature product should be a key foundation to good climate science. I don’t see how you convince policy makers to rely on things like GCMs if there are not insignificant questions about the temperature record. And that’s not just about the global record, but also regional results. Even if you get perfectly accurate global results, if your regional results are way off, leaders of countries can’t rely on your work. If they can’t rely on your work as to what has happened in the past, they can’t rely on projections as to what will happen in the future.

        But am I right about that? Well…

        I hope we move beyond them…maybe sensitivity?

        Some people want to boil the policy debate all down to a single climate sensitivity value. I think that’s terrible. I don’t think a good policy maker would go for it. I think a good policy maker will say, “That may be true for the planet, but what about for my country? What will be the effect on my people?” If you can’t answer that question, and answer it with reasonable accuracy, I don’t think you can expect any resolution on the policy debate.

        Which is why right now I believe all we’ll see is political theater. I don’t think there are that many policymakers who are really looking to implement policies to combat global warming because they think we need policies to combat global warming. I think most of it is just your typical self-serving politicians hijacking a popular cause to advance their own agendas. Which isn’t to say there is no truth to their concerns about global warming, but I doubt it is the driving factor for many of them.

  7. Excellent. Conscience and it’s cousin character are the reasons I frequent this site. The science is good. The people are better.

    Modernism and post modernism would have us (artificially) separate the subjective from the objective. This was inherited from the Enlightenment. It is an unhelpful perspective with regard to supporting scientific disagreement as it tends to erase underlying, common value. This in turn causes disagreement to degenerate into ad hominem.

  8. If science as an institution had any kind of integrity with regard to quality control, the integrity of individual scientists would matter a whole lot less.

    If the IPCC weren’t so easily hijacked by a small group of scientists with enormous conflicts of interest, those conflicts of interests wouldn’t be such a problem now.

    The US Constitution was built with checks and balances because the founders understood that power corrupts. The process matters. The fewer quality controls and process requirements that an institution has, the more important the integrity of the individuals becomes.

    If science was diligent about replication, about checks and balances in insuring that diverse views are aired in compiling assessments, and about requiring transparency, science would have a whole lot more credibility today.

    • Instead of complaining that some people act like fallible humans, set up the process so that the corruptibility and fallibility of humans is less likely to impact the quality of the eventual output.

  9. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again. Thank you for bringing some sanity to this debate.

  10. “…so that her profession can return to true scholarship.” – Robert Bradley

    Says the free-market fundamentalist, we’ll never run out of oil, ideologue, with a suddenand abiding interest in the quality of scienctific research.

    The laughs keep coming.

    • Steven Mosher

      Hmm.
      I agree with him on scholarship and disagree on oil.
      How does our position on oil have anything to do with
      A position on scholarship.? Well it can’t. Regardless of his motivation the issue still remains. One easy way to see this is to imagine that his argument was posted by an anonymous account. His argument wouldn’t change.
      Yours would have to. Which means that your argument is not robust.

      When people who believe in Agw make silly arguments it doesn’t help.

      Far better would be to address the actual issue.

      • I believe we have picked the lowest fruit on the fossil fuel tree in less than a century. The public seems to lose awareness of the fact that we are using solar energy that has been stored over eons of time. While many are wanting to use more current solar energy.
        The amount that has been stored is vast, but it is finite.
        Simple math would suggest that current solar energy sources, regardless of the efficiency of usage will be inadequate.
        Therefore, I believe we will gradually turn to energy in the nucleus of the atom
        —-and what I really think will eventually happen, although it is a long, long way off. Is the human race will develop methods of converting nuclear energy to energy stored in compounds that are organic in nature.
        So, maybe now I will ‘Talk to the Trees’ :)

      • One easy way to see this is to imagine that his argument was posted by an anonymous account. His argument wouldn’t change.

        What argument was he making? I didn’t see one.

      • Steven Mosher

        I can tell you where to look but cannot see for you

      • I couldn’t find one in either post. Where should I look?

      • “One easy way to see this is to imagine that his argument was posted by an anonymous account. His argument wouldn’t change.
        Yours would have to. Which means that your argument is not robust.”

        Well put :)

      • Steven Mosher

        look harder.
        don’t play stupid. That’s a skeptic game.

      • catweazle666

        Steven Mosher: “I agree with him on scholarship and disagree on oil.”

        Of course we’ll never run out of oil.

        The Stone Age didn’t end because we ran out of stones, nor will the Oil Age end because we run out of oil; or gas; or coal, come to that.

        It will end because we invent something cheaper and more usable.

      • bedeverethewise

        Mosher dreams of being the blind old master

    • Michael: regarding the oil question, please refer to my arguments on ‘resourceship’ here: http://www.econlib.org/library/Columns/y2012/Bradleyresourceship.html. And remember that renewable energy has had a 100 percent market share for most of mankind’s history, and the fossil-fuel era is still young: https://www.masterresource.org/resourceship/re-frack-resourceship/.

    • No they don’t. You’re not that funny Michael.

    • Berényi Péter

      Says the free-market fundamentalist, we’ll never run out of oil

      And he is right. “Never” is a bit too strong perhaps, for not even the universe lasts forever, but we’ll never run out of the stuff while there is market demand for it, provided of course we would not abandon the free market.

      The secret is as follows. If it can’t be mined any more, it can still be manufactured. One only needs limestone, water and energy to do that, and we’ll never run out of either one until the Sun turns into a red giant and Earth evaporates.

      I hope I do not have to explain how our current limestone and water deposits are sufficient for billions of years, nor have I to explain the chemistry involved.

      As for energy, fissile material in a single ton of ordinary granite, the default stuff continents are made of has the same amount of recoverable energy content, as 50 tons of coal + 133 tons of atmospheric oxygen. The technology to accomplish that much was available &. tested at Oak Ridge National Laboratory fifty years ago, so it is not like SciFi.

  11. “The whole integrity/ethics thing, in all its complexity, is something that is of paramount importance to me and I think about it a lot.” – JC

    Hmmm.

    Likening a fellow scientist, with whom you have disagreements, to the Charlie Hebdo terrorists.

    Darn, that whole integrity/ethics thingy……tricky.

    • Michael, thanks for the same comments on every post, but you’re missing the concept here. The integrity/ethics ‘thingy’ is more about intolerance/suppression of alternate views and the resulting corruption of climate science, and less about snarky comments between scientists.

      • > The integrity/ethics ‘thingy’ is more about intolerance/suppression of alternate views and the resulting corruption of climate science, and less about snarky comments between scientists.

        I smell a false dichotomy there, frog, and don’t think you can dismiss megaphones of snarky comments such as Judy’s with the big boys pants sexist platitude.

        At least Judy doesn’t, at least when she’s on the receiving end of the snarky comments.

      • Michael has always missed the concept. But then he isn’t here for any concepts, just to be a smartass trying to annoy Dr Curry.

      • Steven Mosher

        I think you have the integrity thing all wrong.

        Integrity as Dr. Curry uses it refers to having a consistent “ethical” or “professional” code of conduct.

        The particular issue in play is the tension ( some would say there is no tension ) between

        A. The scientist’s devotion to the “whole truth”
        “It’s a kind of scientific integrity, a principle of scientific thought that corresponds to a kind of utter honesty–a kind of leaning over backwards. For example, if you’re doing an experiment, you should report everything that you think might make it invalid–not only what you think is right about it: other causes that could possibly explain your results; and things you thought of that you’ve eliminated by some other experiment, and how they worked–to make sure the other fellow can tell they have been eliminated.

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

        And B. The scientists devotion to say “the human species”

        And the conflict of course as detailed by Schneider is that there may come times where you see a threat to humanity, and you think that
        something should be done, But you believe or fear that taking the feynman approach will not be convincing.. You have your obligations
        as a scientist and your obligations as a human and the human obligations win.

        One could also ask:

        what does it mean to be human in a scientific age?

        hmm somebody else asked this question ..

        a recent discussion..

        http://www.easterbrook.ca/steve/2010/12/agu-talk-michael-oppenheimer-on-how-to-communicate-science/

        At the bottom that is Cr. Curry’s question. She identifies as scientist first
        and a human second. Her argument is that nothing should trump the scientists dedication to feynman like behavior.

        The typical responses to Dr. Curry aim at showing some sort of hypocrisy on her part. Cases where she is at once urging scientific rigor and total
        transparency and devotion to understanding, while at the same time
        engaging in some all too human personalization of arguments. But
        these lapses are to be expected.. People who argue for integrity are always subject to these attacks. Its a form of ad hom.

        That doesnt mean we ditch integrity. And it doesnt mean her argument is wrong.

        For whatever reason Dr. Curry decided to be a scientist. And it seems clear that in her mind that choice entails dedication on her part to a certain set of principles as articulated by Feynman. Rigorous truth telling comes first before any other human value. That choice comes with certain costs. To put it crudely, with a mind like hers she could have cashed out big in any field less dedicated to rigorous honesty. Now, however, she perceives that others in the group are acting in ways which undermine the value of the choice she made. She sacrified to be a scientist and other folks are devaluing or undermining what it means to be a scientist.

      • > having a consistent “ethical” or “professional” code of conduct.

        INTEGRITY ™ – You’ve Heard It Through Channel’s 2 of Our Current Megaphone

      • ==> “That doesnt mean we ditch integrity. And it doesnt mean her argument is wrong.”

        It means that she is wrong when she filters the evidence to selectively locate the problem on one side.

        For example, she wouldn’t be wrong if she were to point out that neglecting OHC when speaking before Congress of a “pause in global warming” is inconsistent with the principle of:

        ” For example, if you’re doing an experiment, you should report everything that you think might make it invalid–…

      • Michael and willard, mote, beam, same tired criticisms, yawn, scroll.

      • “You have your obligations as a scientist and your obligations as a human and the human obligations win.”

        Only in post modern science would one find the argument that the obligations of a scientist are different from those of a human.

        Say your doctor has a new medicine that he thinks will successfully treat your illness. But he is afraid that if he tells you of the potential side effects, or doubts about its efficacy, you will choose not to do what he has decided is best for you.

        His obligation as both a scientist/doctor, and as a human, is to tell you the full truth.

        It is the patient’s decision to as to whether the potential risks are justified by the potential benefits. So too, decarbonization is a choice that is the voter’s and taxpayer’s to make. there is no A and B. In an ethical world, there is only A. Integrity and humility.

        Progressivism is all about elitists feeling they have the right to make decisions for the stupid voters. Schneider’s preening about how complex it is in deciding whether to give in to his ego and lie to the public to make them do what he wants them to do, is nothing but a rationalization. It is not even motivated by concern for the people. It is plainly and simply an expression of a desire for power over others, masked as compassion.

      • Mosher @ 6.55, good post subject to Gary M’s comments. To me, honesty and integrity are fundamental, along with working to understand the universe and yourself as part of it. To best serve humanity (and yourself), you must start with honesty and integrity, otherwise your efforts to help will go astray.

      • Michael Cunningham: “To best serve humanity (and yourself), you must start with honesty and integrity, otherwise your efforts to help will go astray.”

        What do honesty and integrity matter to a climate “scientist” who has convinced themselves they’re on a mission to “Save the Planet”?

      • Well put Steven.
        Sadly the scientists who developed the bomb put scientific truth foremost and suffered as the integrity of the politicians failed.They paid a huge personal cost.
        GaryM
        “Say your doctor has a new medicine that he thinks will successfully treat your illness. But he is afraid that if he tells you of the potential side effects, or doubts about its efficacy, you will choose not to do what he has decided is best for you.”
        “His obligation as both a scientist/doctor, and as a human, is to tell you the full truth.”
        This opens a Pandora’s box.
        Your ethics or my ethics?
        Because unfortunately ethics are not the same for everyone/thing.
        If you choose to go to a doctor, it is your choice to tell the doctor if you want to know about side effects of medication or it’s efficacy and if you want the full truth.
        It is not his obligation as you have consented to treatment by him in the action of going to him as a professional.
        Same as when you fly on a plane, You do not ask the pilot if he has doubts about the weather that day or if the plane will stay in the air [not 100% guaranteed I am sorry to say, watch the news sometimes].
        If you need to fly you trust the plane and pilot, implicitly.
        If you insist on the doctor going through all the ramifications of the treatment be prepared for a long visit, high costs and the doubtfulness of a review visit with that doctor, plus you will probably decide not to be treated for that condition you really needed to be treated for.
        Agree with you on most things but medical ethics ??? a thorny field.

      • Steven Mosher on August 25, 2015 at 6:55 pm wrote:

        I think you have the integrity thing all wrong.

        Integrity as Dr. Curry uses it refers to having a consistent “ethical” or “professional” code of conduct.

        The particular issue in play is the tension ( some would say there is no tension ) between

        A. The scientist’s devotion to the “whole truth”…Details that could throw doubt on your interpretation must be given, if you know them…

        And B. The scientists devotion to say “the human species”…you think that
        something should be done, But you believe or fear that taking the feynman approach will not be convincing.. You have your obligations
        as a scientist and your obligations as a human and the human obligations win.

        Steven:

        Ethics simply requires that one clearly indicate if he/she is acting in the role of scientist or activist. It is unethical to slide in and out of the two roles on a whim and force peers and historians to guess which role is associated with each statement.

        Folks who want to trade on a reputation as an “A” whole truther, and then slip in a few ambiguous or outright misleading public statements as a “B” convincer are well into unethical territory.

      • angech,

        “Your ethics or my ethics?
        Because unfortunately ethics are not the same for everyone/thing.”

        No, there is in fact an objective moral framework in western culture. many, Mosher included, think it is the height of sophistication to deny this, and claim that ethics is subjective.

        In the west, it is the Judeo-Christian ethic (at least for now). In much of the Middle East and Asia, it is Shariah. I’ll leave it to you to figure out which has given rise to the better society.

        Schneider’s comments on whether to tell the truth tell us nothing about ethics in general. They tell us everything about his personal rejection of ethics as a curb on his own behavior.

        Everyone decides for himself whether to accord his conduct to the objective ethical standard of the society in which they live. But a decision to ignore those standards does not render the conduct ethical.

        The rapist, the murderer, the child molester, the thief, all have their own “personal ethic.” But when we catch them, they pay the price for violating our objective standards.

        “Justice” is a meaningless word in a world where each person divines his own morality. Which is why so many today find the whole issue of ethics so “complicated.”

        Rejection of objective morality is not sophisticated. It is simply immoral.

      • There is nothing ethical about stealing people’s liberty or their right to participate in self-governance. Gary M is exactly right. When a scientist lies to people in order to fool them into voting in a way he desires and he justifies his lies by denigrating the intelligence and judgment of the people he is lying to, he is not being ethical. He’s just another lying, corrupt asshole overcome with a hubris that’s made him stupid.

        A science degree is not a license to steal democracy from the voters.

    • Michael, what is your problem, man? You are always able to find a tiny little sentence or quote in a huge post from Judith that you disagree with and then dig up some obscure vague link between Judy and somebody/something you disagree with, to insult her or question her motives or integrity.

      Knock it off alreay, it is getting really old. You are not doing the pro AGW side any favors with this behaviour. It shows your colors very clearly.

      • Actually, wij, Michael underlined a whole post. Let me remind you of it:

        https://judithcurry.com/2015/01/11/charlie-challenging-free-speech/

        Please read it in full. I won’t quote from it, just in case you’re willing to go with you phony “but cherrypick” excuse.

        And if you believe this is the only post, think again:

        https://judithcurry.com/category/ethics/

        Once again, I won’t pick any post from it. Knock yourself out.

        And if you believe that it’s the only relevant category I could cite, think again. That’s just one of the channel to that megaphone. There are others.

        INTEGRITY ™ – Megaphones All the Way Up

      • I reread my Charlie post, I don’t take back or regret a word of it. I realize it was unpopular with many (including Don!), but there is a war against free speech (and like it or not, Mann is part of that war).

      • When was the last time you regretted a word for anything pushed through line 1 of your megaphone, Grand Dame?

      • Judith,

        I reread my Charlie post, I don’t take back or regret a word of it. I realize it was unpopular with many (including Don!), but there is a war against free speech (and like it or not, Mann is part of that war).

        I guess I should be impressed that you’re standing by it, but I think the post was genuinely appalling. Firstly, you used an horrific event to try and score some kind of point against people with whom you have a disagreement. Secondly, you made the association between a bunch of murderers and those with whom you have a disagreement. Maybe you can convince me that there is some kind of positive angle, but I’m really struggling to think of one.

      • The association is in your head, not mine. My concern is attacks on free speech. Was Charlie an attack on free speech? Is Mann’s lawsuit an attack on free speech? Whatever you personally think about the case, the large number of amici filings in favor of Steyn argue that many perceive this lawsuit as an attack on free speech.

      • Judith,
        How is it in my head? You used the Charlie Hebdo killings as a motivation to write a post about free speech in which you said

        Anyone defending the satirists at Charlie should have a tough time defending Michael Mann in his legal war against the satirical writings of Mark Steyn and Rand Simberg.

        You might want to argue that you didn’t intend to associate Michael Mann, for example, with a bunch of murderers, but it’s extremely hard not to draw that conclusion. Someone choosing to exercise their right to take someone to court is in now way comparable to what the Charlie Hedbo murderers did. Anyway, I think your post was in extremely poor taste. You’re – of course – welcome to disagree.

      • Did I say anything about murderers in that statement? I referred to people defending the satirists at Charlie Hebdo (the defense beyond which says murder is wrong). My entire blog post was motivated by the murder, but the free speech issue stands by itself. Your logic is flawed in making the inference that you did from my statement.

      • > Did I say anything about murderers in that statement?

        Did a Grand Dame ever used a rhetorical question to throw in a “who, me?” squirrel?

        The problem’s not what was said, but what was implied. Not attribution, but association. The Steyn kerfuffle started with a very similar thing.

        Compare and contrast:

        (1) The Grand Dame of Climate Science compared Mike to Jihadists.

        (2) Judge Judy compared Mike to Jihadists.

        (3) The Serial Misinformer of Climate Science compared Mike to Jihadists.

        Which one sounds more natural to you?

      • Grow up Kenny.

        Oh the horror of Judith equating one attack on free speech with another. Sure one used violence and another the courts, but they are still attacks. Now if you automatically run to the conclusion that Judith is calling Dr Mann a murderer, well maybe that might explain the diaper. Just because you automatically poop yourself when your senses are so offended.

        News flash Prof Rice – there is no right not to be offended. Perhaps because a little common sense tells us that as long as there are people who draw squirrelly conclusions like you just have, someone is always going to feel offended.

      • Well…

        Free speech must be pretty important. The first thing a tyrant, Chavez, socialist, environmentalist, global warmer, radical moslem, climate consensuser, etc. does is try to control freedom of speech and silence the opposition.

        What is interesting is it is the libertarian/capitalist/free marketers (with a smattering of true liberals) who are trying to protect free speech.

        True well protected free speech (and a large caliber gun) are the best protections of individual liberty and democracy.

      • With Willard as his baby sitter, Ken ain’t growing up anytime soon.

      • Judith didn’t equate Mann with the murderers, exactly. But mentioning a civil litigant and the terrorists in the context that Judith put them in was a major faux pas.

      • “Sure one used violence and another the courts, but they are still attacks.”

        So, if someone sues you, and someone else cuts you in half with an AK, it’s about the same?

      • Steven Mosher

        willard

        Grand Dame?

        really?

        Do you know anyone, except Steyn perhaps and Tamino, who makes any
        any reference to a persons gender and age?

        Now of course there are some meanings that make no reference to haughtiness or age. But why would you use a word that could be misinterpreted so easily?. of course it’s a dog whistle of sorts
        since the standard line against skeptics is that they are old white men,
        and so of course you can insinuate that Dr. Curry fits in quite well.

        Of course there is the lame defense that you didnt intend the “old woman” connotations, but given that they are there and given that you could have called her Dr. Curry, we get to wonder about you.

      • Mosh

        I think Judith would be flattered to be called a grand dame by Willard. It’s rather flattering, not demeaning

        http://www.thefreedictionary.com/grande+dame

        Tonyb

      • Actually I find the Charlie Hebdo attackers analogy very apt to the problem of bias ( and it applies to all, not just disaster enthusiasts ).

        Religious groups have fervent adherence to ideas – sacred beliefs.
        They are threatened by those opposing these ideas.
        In the extreme, jihadists kill opponents of their ideas.

        Political affiliations share similar behaviour.

        I think group dynamics also insinuate themselves into science.

        Consider that in context of this Wiki entry on ‘In-group favoritism’

        “The belief congruence theory concerns itself with the degree of similarity in beliefs, attitudes, and values perceived to exist between individuals( of a group ). This theory also states that dissimilarity increases negative orientations towards others.”

        In 1906, the sociologist William Sumner posited that humans are a species that join together in groups by their very nature. However, he also maintained that humans had an innate tendency to favor their own group over others, proclaiming how “each group nourishes its own pride and vanity, boasts itself superior, exists in its own divinities, and looks with contempt on outsiders” This is seen on the group level with ingroup–outgroup bias. When experienced in larger groups such as tribes, ethnic groups, or nations, it is referred to as ethnocentrism.

      • > Grand Dame? Really?

        Tell that to Robert Bradley. Would you prefer Joan of Arc of Climate Science, like Josh?

        INTEGRITY ™ – Own Your Nick

      • Steven Mosher

        tony

        “A woman who is socially prominent, respected, and experienced, especially one who is haughty and advanced in age.

        See haughty
        See advanced in age.

        There is no escaping the connotation.

        1883 Charlotte M. Yonge, Stray Pearls, ch. 17:
        Now the Baronne de Ribaumont Walwyn was a veritable grande dame, and Madame Croquelebois, in spite of her sharp nose, and sharper tongue, was quite cowed by her.
        1902, Gertrude Franklin Horn Atherton, The Conqueror, ch. 3:
        “Do you no longer want to go to Europe? to court? to be grande dame and converse with princes?”
        1966 Aug. 19, “Resorts: Happening at the Hamptons,” Time:
        “Beatniks,” snorted one grande dame as she pushed her way toward her chauffeur-driven limousine.
        1985, Peter Carey, Illywhacker, Faber and Faber 2003, p. 141:
        She has been buying (under my guidance) new clothes and she looks quite the grande dame.

      • I prefer grande dame to aunt judy

      • > There is no escaping the connotation.

        And then Denizens wonder why I quote the goddam source:

        The Grand Dame of Climate Science is maintaining her prolific output at Climate Etc, which now includes energy- and policy-related commentary. Her posts, and guest posts by others, are increasingly multi-disciplinary, questioning not only the trumped consensus of physical climate science but also the postmodernist notion of preferable, competitive “clean” energy.

        https://www.masterresource.org/debate-issues/the-brave-judith-curry-part-ii/

        INTEGRITY ™ – No Need to Read

      • Steven Mosher

        Willard

        “Tell that to Robert Bradley. Would you prefer Joan of Arc of Climate Science, like Josh?”

        False choice

        Dr. Curry

      • Steven Mosher

        Willard

        were these your words

        ‘Did a Grand Dame ever used a rhetorical question to throw in a “who, me?” squirrel?”

        It doesnt matter if you first quote somebody else using ‘Aunt Judy”
        and then use it yourself.

        Show some restraint, or did reading it once make you do it ?

        For the next week try referring to Dr. Curry by the title she earned.

      • ATTP, gnat, camel, yawn, scroll.

      • > It doesnt matter if you first quote somebody else using ‘Aunt Judy”
        and then use it yourself.

        False choice.

      • > For the next week try […]

        INTEGRITY ™ – We Direct from Megaphones

      • If nothing else, Dr. Curry’s congressional testimony, where she so succinctly noted the uncertainties in future climate change regardless of anthropogenic influence, earned her the “Grande” adjective.

      • Steven Mosher

        Willard reads a page.
        The page uses Grand Dame.
        Suppose the page used the N word.

        Willard then writes a comment using Grand dame
        and tried to argue that he is quoting the source.
        weird.
        I suppose that defense would work for the N word.. nah.

        The simple fact is this

        Willard made a choice:

        he could choose to use Dr. Curry
        he could choose something else.
        Something else will always be interpretable.
        Dr. Curry is just a civilized formality.
        Like not stepping on your partners toes while dancing.

      • Steven Mosher

        Willard is off his game

        “INTEGRITY ™ – We Direct from Megaphones

        Willard I said TRY.

        Do you know the difference between a request a suggestion and a demand or direction?

        INTEGRITY ™ – We Suggest from Megaphones,

      • Grande Dame: A French term meaning “great lady,” used to describe a woman who is highly respected in her field.

        Sexist? Of course. As well it should be. Leave “grand homme” to the males.

      • > Suppose the page used the N word.

        Suppose the page used the word “Team.”

      • > I said TRY.

        Suppose someone says “try to read the page before saying things like the connotation is clear.”

      • Steven Mosher

        Yes, suppose the page used the word team.

        If I wanted to quote it I would write

        “team”

        but you didnt quote your source.
        you used the term.
        You had a choice.
        nobody forced you.
        nobody made you do it.

        own it.

      • I don’t take back or regret a word of it.

        Now, try to own your rookie mistake.

      • The point here is that Mann has a dictatorial streak that causes him to try to silence his critics. He is also evidently very thin skinned or perhaps at some level realizes that his work may have errors and inconsistencies. If he were really confident about the verdict of history, he would not be using libel law to try to adjudicate a science question. Whether its the same instinct that animates those who want to silence what they consider blasphemy is a side issue even though an interesting one.

      • The problem here is that those like Willard and our public relations man for an astronomy department want at all costs to avoid discussing whether the preponderance of the evidence is that Mann’s work is flawed and will look bad 40 years from now when we have a lot better handle on paleocliimate. Willard’s fascination with McIntyre is also such a tactic to avoid discussing the real topic.

      • curryja | August 25, 2015 at 4:32 pm |
        “Did I say anything about murderers in that statement? I referred to people defending the satirists at Charlie Hebdo (the defense beyond which says murder is wrong). My entire blog post was motivated by the murder, but the free speech issue stands by itself. Your logic is flawed in making the inference that you did from my statement.”

        At best, at ATTP suggests, this was in extremely poor taste, to ride on the coat-tails of super-heated emotional issue, still fresh in our minds, to make a trivially silly and petty attack on your bete noir.

        Even trying to make Mann’s civil case a ‘free speech’ issue is pretty weak tea.

        But making an allusion to mass murdering terrorists…..

        Clearly a lot more thinking still required on ethics and integrity.

      • It’s all passive aggressive coward-speak, just like the careful wordsmithing the chickenhawk Steyn uses to dance around slander with his juxtaposition of Mann and Sandusky.

        JC:

        Did I say anything about murderers in that statement? I referred to people defending the satirists at Charlie Hebdo (the defense beyond which says murder is wrong). My entire blog post was motivated by the murder, but the free speech issue stands by itself. Your logic is flawed in making the inference that you did from my statement.

        “Your Logic is Flawed” Bull. It’s a distinction without a difference. neener neener neener, I made you flinch, your logic is flawed… Grow TF Up.

      • And then a new Denizen comes in to tell Denizens that the topic ain’t the title of this post.

        INTEGRITY ™ – But The Real Issue Is

      • > Sexist?

        And now another new Denizen steps in to misinterpret the referent of that “expression” which, to remind the new Denizens soon to resurface that it referred to “big boys pants.” Let good ol’ Denizens try to recall where that expression comes from in the petite histoire of #ClimateBall.

        Go Team!

      • Steven Mosher | August 25, 2015 at 5:46 pm |
        Very well put.
        “Do you know anyone, except Steyn perhaps and Tamino, who makes any
        any reference to a persons gender and age?”
        Well there were a whole lot of vitriolic people at Tamino’s blog in 3 consecutive posts that were attacking Judith in sexist and other tones was it 2-3 years ago. Then Tamino went a bit religious on women’s rights for 3 months [but no apology to Judith] as he did not see his hypocrisy. He then stopped blogging almost completely for 6 months, it may have caused some disharmony somewhere. Michael and Willard should share their sexist comments with their spouses or sisters and see how funny they find them.
        With luck they would stop blogging for 6 months as well.
        For what it is worth Steyn’s piece was offensive, I said so at the time and understand why Mann took umbrage, whatever that is.
        It still fell under the role of free speech and Willard, ATTP and Michael know and should appreciate it. It is the reason why they are able to be so spiteful here.
        ATTP knows how to handle free speech which transgresses his ethics at his blog [right ATTP and Don]. Yet he feels free to come over and dish it out here. Still if you go there and are polite you can try to make a point or a question.
        For what it is worth, free speech, well as free as we can give any grudging tolerance should be encouraged and defended until we cannot take it any more, and then some.
        Keep up the good work Judith , Steyn and keep trying ATTP, your blog has improved even if the denizens are slow.

      • Steven Mosher: “A woman who is socially prominent, respected, and experienced, especially one who is haughty and advanced in age.

        See haughty
        See advanced in age.

        There is no escaping the connotation.

        “Haughty” and “advanced in age” are a modification of the basic definition, not always implied either in the definition that you quote or in the examples. It is easy to “[escape] the connotation”, and remain with the more positive “socially prominent, respected, and experienced”. Surely a department head qualifies? The explicit sexual reference in the definition is not derisive, but a reminder that not all of the “grand” folks are men.

      • I’m advanced (advancing) in age. But I’m completely the opposite of haughty

      • Don,

        If someone manipulates the law to take away my freedom, it isn’t that far removed from them taking my life by their own action. Or have you forgotten what the people who rebelled against their “lawful” king held as part of their core beliefs? You know, the whole “Give me liberty or give me death.” ; “I regret I have but one life to give for my country.” ; Live Free or Die.” “We ask not your counsels or your arms. Crouch down and lick the hands which feed you. May your chains set lightly upon you, and may posterity forget that you were our countrymen.” (Sam Adams)

        Personally, I think I’ll take my chances with terrorists. At least with them I can shoot back.

      • Free speech does not include libel, and a society cannot be free if free speech does include libel.

        If you have ever been libeled – defamed – by the writings of another person, you will go to a lawyer and discover that in the United States of America you are virtually defenseless against being libeled.

      • JCH,

        So far, based on the amicus filings, not too many folks believe Dr Mann was libeled. Perhpas when his day in court comes, assuming he ever lets it come, you can be there to offer the good doctor a shoulder to cry on.

      • Because the standard for libel is horrifically skewed off course in the United States of America.

        And the argument that this makes us free is utter BS.

        Is Oprah a public figure? Yes. Is Michael E. Mann? Seriously? Out of the 100,000 people surveyed who would know who is Oprah is, it’s very possible not one single one would know who Mann is.

      • Also, the blather from people who claim they know who will win this lawsuit is hilarious.

        As for Mann, he’s in the AMO boat right along with other slightly less than anonymous professors, and I think they’re not very good at science.

      • Jch

        You doubt that Even 1 person in 100,000 would know who dr Mann was?

        Surely that is entirely illogical. You often claim that an overwhelming number of people support the science behind agw and us ignorant sceptics are in the minority and unscientific.

        Anyone following the science, I.e. the overwhelming majority of that 100,000 , would surely know the name of Mann?. If not, what version of the narrative of climate change have they been following?

        Tobyb

      • What I am suggesting is it would be possible to sample 100,000 Americans who do know who Oprah is, but have not a clue who Dr. Michael E. Mann is. I don’t know, watch Leno interview Americans:

        http://videolicious.tv/2009/06/the-best-of-jaywalking-final-jay-leno-tonight-show/#.Vd4LiYuTSCI

      • “Michael and Willard should share their sexist comments” – angech2014

        Maybe if you could provide an example my ‘sexist comments’??

      • Michael | August 26, 2015 at 9:05 pm |
        “Michael and Willard should share their sexist comments” – angech2014
        Maybe if you could provide an example my ‘sexist comments’??

        Somebody thinks you make them

        “Michael, what is your problem, man? You are always able to find a tiny little sentence or quote in a huge post from Judith that you disagree with and then dig up some obscure vague link between Judy and somebody/something you disagree with, to insult her or question her motives or integrity.”

        Somebody thinks you should not

        Tamino in a weak moment
        ” I’ll continue to listen to what my wife thinks and feels, and try to remember to shut my mouth while she’s talking (something most men, including me, should learn to do better and more often)”.

        Somebody else confirms it but then you didn’t hear that did you?

        “Michael has always missed the concept. But then he isn’t here for any concepts, just to be a smartass trying to annoy Dr Curry.”

        That attitude, on this blog, seems sexist to me.

        Do you think Willard has been sexist in his remarks?
        Have you called him out above? No.
        So condemned both by your past statements and attacks and by your current silence.

      • Oh, I see, there are no “sexist comments” from me.

      • Willard: Did a Grand Dame ever used a rhetorical question to throw in a “who, me?” squirrel?

        The problem’s not what was said, but what was implied. Not attribution, but association.

        Associations are in the minds of the readers. If you accuse a writer of an implication, then you ought to start with exact quotes from the writer and show how you infer that the implication was intended.

        From the exact quote, how exactly did you infer that a question was a “rhetorical” question? It looked to me like a question meaning: did you misquote her,

    • Willard again your focus is on the bickering and barbs (by Judith and her detractors) and fail to see the overarching issue – the anti-science groupthink and actions of the establishment. Look past the characters, the petty rivalries, the scandalous gossip, and the issue on the table is the broken system.

      • > Look past the characters, the petty rivalries, the scandalous gossip, and the issue on the table is the broken system.

        The whole CAGW meme rests on the idea that one problem is part of the other’s, frog. You can’t take evidence of characters, rivalries and gossip when it’s used as evidence against INTEGRITY ™ issues. You’re giving away the justification to most of the victim playing shrieked daily through megaphones like Judy’s. It also cuts you from “it’s not the science, but the promotion of it” kind of fallback. Not a good deal, if you ask me.

        I like when Denizens probe minds to beg questions, BTW.

      • > You can’t take evidence of characters, rivalries and gossip when it’s used as evidence against INTEGRITY ™ issues.

        Let’s rewrite that one to You can’t take out characters, rivalries and gossip when they’re used as evidence in INTEGRITY ™ issues.

        INTEGRITY ™ – We Rip Off Our Shirt for Science

      • Willard
        ‘You’re giving away the justification…’
        Who cares? I’m not looking for a hero. Judith has her issues, but I don’t enjoy rolling around in the muck, playing gotcha. Do I think Judith would exhibit the same sort of bias if she was the authority? Probably. But here is the clear signal she has been useful in drawing attention to: Somehow the scientific authority doesn’t track with the science. It’s too dependent on ideology. That’s a problem.

      • > Somehow the scientific authority doesn’t track with the science.

        Jumping from INTEGRITY ™ back to the science begs your question even more pressingly, frog. Good luck with trying to overthrow AGW if you can’t appeal to your CAGW meme. Meanwhile, enjoy the megaphones’ show.

        Who cares anyway.

      • So Willard, what’s your position on the current state of integrity in climate science?

      • Willard: Good luck with trying to overthrow AGW if you can’t appeal to your CAGW meme.

        Whatever does that mean?

    • bedeverethewise

      Wow, that’s quite a molehill Michael. Very impressive.

  12. I speculate that human evolution strongly favoured adherence to a group.
    This meant adhering to group ideas and ideals.
    We are evolved toward advocacy because we are evolved to protect and advance the group.

    Unfortunately, this is all of us, not just Mann.
    We can only hope that we also share the ideal of reason.

    Once one enrols in a ‘school of thought’, one stops thinking.

    • Once one enrols in a ‘school of thought’, one stops thinking.

      Audit enrollment maybe useful at times…adaptation and grafting of ideas and seeing patterns can be effective, though knowing limitations is essential. Just another form of ‘modeling’.

  13. This wonderful post answers the question you asked in your previous post. Climate Etc. keeps the conversation alive and thwarts the efforts of those that would squash the debate out of self-interest. You are invigorating science.

  14. Thank you, for JC’s conscience.

  15. One of my scientific mentors advised me to ‘be my own best critic’ to avoid hyperbole and narcissism. Judith you exemplify this ideal about as well as I’ve seen in my 45 year career. Keep up the good work!

  16. the ‘Hockey stick’ is far too serious episode in the evolution of the climate science to be flippant about:

  17. daveandrews723

    I don’t know if narcissistic is the right word, but I have never seen more egotistical, condescending, cocksure, and arrogant people in science than those handful of “climate scientists” who are leading the CAGW movement. It really is a frightening sight to behold. You all know who they are.

  18. Judith,
    You continue to provide safe harbor in seas of ambiguity, tendentiousness, partisanship and narcissism.

    Thank you.

  19. I find it all very interesting and having followed JC and the debate for many years all of the references are familiar. My concern is that it is no longer about the science but purely political. For most of the world the turning point was the UNFCCC (United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change) in Brazil in 1992 (Rio convention) casting the tone and tenor of everything about the matter of climate change – ” “… we should not allow lack of understanding / certainty prevent implementation of policy prescriptions” and “…the precautionary principle should be applied in all cases.” In the U.S. the entire debate was changed by the Supreme Court ruling that allowed CO2 to be defined as a pollutant, Mass vs. EPA, 549 U.S. 497 (2007), decided 5-4 in which twelve states / several cities sued the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to force it regulate carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases (GHGs) as pollutants based on their being GHGs. That of course is the basis for carte blanche executive orders and EPA mandates we have seen. The Supreme Court case was bungled by the defense because it didn’t sufficiently challenge the scientific basis for global warming or course we know considerably more now than we did at the time esp. regarding climate sensitivity and the underlying uncertainty of the modeling. If only Karl Popper were alive …

    • “If only Karl Popper were alive …”

      Agree – but I think Karl Popper is very much alive through his writings.

      His master piece: “The logic of scientific discovery” Is a tour de force in putting forward proper arguments – and revolutionary in the way he solved the problem of induction.

      The great tragedy is that universities can still put through students without having trained them properly in Poppers empirical method.

      The work by IPCC is much influenced by “Guidance Note for Lead Authors of the IPCC Fifth Assessment Report on Consistent Treatment of Uncertainties” In this document IPCC does exactly what Popper warns about – by promoting the use of probability statements and even putting it into system.

      As phrased by Karl Popper: “All this glaringly contradicts the programme of expressing, in terms of a ‘probability of hypotheses’, the degree of reliability which we have to ascribe to a hypothesis in view of supporting or undermining evidence.”

      Else than this, I think the IPCC report is very much based on inductivism and justificationism. Which popper demonstrated to be utterly flawed methods.

      For those who haven´t had the pleasure, please enjoy some Popper:
      http://strangebeautiful.com/other-texts/popper-logic-scientific-discovery.pdf

  20. Judy,
    What a wonderful compendium of comments. I express my gratitude for your sensible and professional efforts. I was involved in climate programs since 2005, celebrated the 2007 Noble Peace Prize with the team and gradually became aware of problems with the science, data and relationships with those who dared even to request the data backing up the publications. On the other thread about trust I commented that some climate scientists one can trust and others not. Like financial managers, some are competent and ethical and some like Madoff talk well but cheat.
    Scott

  21. Viewed one after another, the affect of these statements is powerful and stand in contrast to your generally calm demeanor and measured tone, which are appropriate to your profession. Your surgeon’s scalpel is very sharp.

    In toto, the statements represent a thorough indictment of contemporary climate science— one that must give all concerned pause.

  22. It’s nice to have somebody with credentials for the fight fighting on the other side, but I don’t see any deep ethical problems.

    It’s a fight for control of a bureaucracy.

    Curiosity will continue quietly on its own topics, ones that interest it. Probably not in “climate science,” but who can tell.

  23. Dr. Curry, at some point in the future, when the history of the AGW movement is written, the point where you began to question the orthodox view will be marked as the turning point; the event that triggered the ultimate unravelling of the mythology and the return to science and the scientific way.

    Every movement has its arc…a beginning and an end. I believe that the end will come at some point, and that your voice will be remembered.

    Thanks.

  24. DataTurk: Every movement has its arc…a beginning and an end. I believe that the end will come at some point, and that your voice will be remembered.

    Well said. Thank you for the post.

  25. Consider in this regard the absurdity of the polar bear scare which has scavenged the popular domain. We are told that global warming has impacted adversely on polar bear colonies, which are diminishing rapidly and approaching extinction. The U.S. Congress is preparing to classify them as an endangered species. The facts of the matter declare otherwise. Biologist Mitchell Taylor, who works with the Nunavut Territorial Government of Canada, states categorically that their numbers in the Canadian north have increased by a factor of 25% (National Center for Policy Analysis, January 25, 2007; The Independent, February 10, 2009). Other reputable sources inform us that the total North American polar bear population was estimated at between 5000-8000 individuals in 1970; it is 25,000 today (Environment & Climate News, March 2007, Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, February 3, 2008, and others.) Environmentalists have relied on a single study of only one of Canada’s 13 polar bear populations, which showed a decline in numbers; but it has been verifiably ascertained that 11 of these populations are either stable or growing. Mitchell Taylor has accounted for the one attested exception by competition for food, which indicates that the fundamental issue is one of overpopulation.

    Recent reports indicate that subarctic weather is colder than usual and that polar bears have fattened owing to late break-up of ice and a longer hunting season. Complicating the picture for alarmists, the Greenpeace July 15, 2009 release warning that the Arctic will be ice-free by 2030 was retracted by outgoing Greenpeace leader Gerd Leipold. “That may have been a mistake,” Leipold ruefully conceded (Newsmax.com, August 30, 2009). Polar bears will be doing just fine. Which suggests, too, that the real problem lies with our ursine activists who suffer from a kind of bi-polar syndrome, seeing one thing transpiring in the Arctic while refusing the factual medication that would enable them to see another. But as with the polar bears, their numbers are also ramifying and their colonies prospering in the four quarters of the globe.

    Indeed, geologist Don Easterbrook, Professor Emeritus at Western Washington University, is convinced that recent solar changes suggest the advent of a new cooling cycle which could be “fairly severe” (GlobalResearch, November 2, 2008). Fellow geologist David Dee, Chair of the 2008 International Geological Congress science committee, asks: “For how many years must the planet cool before we begin to understand that the planet is not warming?” ~David Solway, Gobal Warming: The Trials of an Unsettled Science (September 04, 2009)

  26. Science doesn’t work by consensus, it is not some democracy where we all vote for which theory we want to work, nor is it some beauty contest where we decide which theory is most attractive.

    Instead science is a dictatorship of the facts. There is no compromise, if the facts say something is true, then no number of people wanting something else to be true can make it true. And often the truth science reveals is uncompromising even brutal and often not at all Politically Correct.

    And that is a huge problem in academia which bends over backwards to try to be politically correct.

    • richardswarthout

      Scottish Sceptic

      From Dr Christy’s congressional testimony and from the transcript of the APS Climate Change Workshop, the IPCC process appears designed to sculpt a predestined message. The lead authors run the show, skillfully selecting research often authored by themselves. Scientists then gather in a room to subjectively score the likelihood of pending disaster.

      Richard

  27. Hi Judy – This is an excellent, insightful summary!

    It agrees with my experiences. .

    My very recent experience seeking to interact with Gavin Schmidt, and then having to endure personal attacks from not just him, but several well known climate scientist (Doug McNeall; Victor Venema; Bart Verheggen; Chris Colose; Andrew Dessler; Peter Thorne) on twitter, is a confirmation of the degeneration of constructive scientific discord in this community.

    Roger Sr.

    • Rpielke

      Twitter lends itself to the short sharp attack but is poorly suited to scientific discussions. It’s best ignored and left to those who can only compose short sentences designed for maximum effect but needing minimum thought.

      Tonyb

    • Reaching out can be a very bitter experience, a bit like being a Captain Cook sandwich if you encounter the wrong group of natives, Roger, which I believe you did at a blog elsewhere. You handled yourself very well as I recall.
      Keep up the good work even if you are a lukewarmer/warmist, your genuineness in communicating like Judith is a beacon in these troubled times.
      Hope that sandwich comment is not a Charlie moment.

  28. Dr Pielke,
    Please be encouraged by the support of observers to your fair minded and professional communication of climate science and truth seeking. It is sad that a high ranking government scientist like Gavin Schmidt would treat you as you describe. He should engage in discussions with you and others like Dr Christy and Dr Curry with the openness of seekers attempting to unravel the complex interactions of the global climate, A Great Machine as a recent book calls it. I read two of your books Human Impacts of Weather & Climate and Mesoscale Meteorlogical Modeling and look forward to the one you mentioned above Vegetation, Water, Humans and the Climate. But please continue with the uncomfortable struggle in the midst of the unfair attacks.
    Scott

    • Scott – Thank you for the support. The article by Marshall Shepherd

      http://www.forbes.com/sites/marshallshepherd/2015/08/03/my-5-ground-rules-for-writing-about-climate-as-the-u-s-announces-key-climate-plan/

      provides a voice for a positive approach. He writes

      “I will entertain reasonable dissenting viewpoints but not mean-spiritedness: One of the most baffling aspects of climate change discussion is the mean-spiritedness and vitriol. I don’t get it. As a scientist, we are trained to dissent and present counter-positions. And believe it or not, the science should always be questioned. However, it should be questioned through the rigors of peer-review. We must be careful to differentiate between “opinion” and scientific facts. I could certainly write about heart transplants in a blog, OpEd or Tweet (and even sign it Dr. Shepherd to give it credibility). The problem is that I have no formal training or research in the topic and have no belief that my opinion trumps colleagues in the medical field.

      I am open to a dissenting voice if it is respectful. I am also collegial and have personal relationships with scientists that may appear on opposite sides of the debate (e.g., Michael Mann, Judith Curry, Roger Pielke Sr., Michael Oppenheimer, and so on). I can completely disagree with one of these colleagues but still have a nice dinner with them.”

      Roger Sr

  29. When a hypothesis and all of the research thereafter rests solely on manipulated data, we call that a hoax.

    • Wag
      Pithy, harsh and accurate as to the manipulated data. I think the team is fooling themselves and not the rest of the observers. Politicians and the green blob embrace it as a hoax. The scientists providing them data fodder, fool themselves in pursuit of funding, peer approval and promotion. Most scientists don’t knowingly manipulate data but place thumbs of the scale in support of their expected and desired outcomes.
      Scott

      • Some manipulate data knowingly. Essay When Data Isn’t provides temperature examples like Rutherglen Australia’s BOM nonsense. Essay A High Stick Foul exposes Marcott’s academic misconduct by just comparing his Science paper to his thesis; maybe he thought no one would check. Mann’s Nature trick, stripbark bristlecones, and upside down varves. Dessler’s positive cloud feedback with an r^2 of 0.02. O’Leary’s Quobba Ridge deception in essay By Land or By Sea on sudden SLR. AR 4 WG2 on extinctions in essay No Bodies. An awful lot of deliberate manipulation exposed to the light of day.
        No wrestling with conscience in any of that. No uncertainty. Purre and simple deceit, deception, plus sometimes clear academic misconduct.

      • ristvan
        I agree with you about those examples. Outrageous!! I continue to believe most climate scientists are not that explicit but Australian BOM manipulations looks exactly explicit and indefensible. I am anxious to hear the results of the review to track the documented changes that support the homogenization and data adjustments. Same for the Karl paper about SST. Zeke and Mosher provided lots of info on BEST so they are not in the same class. Mosher says no thumbs on the scale, even that his algorithm has no thumbs nor fingers. This is up in the air and I continue to depend on UAH and RISS for lower atmospheric temps. Too many fingerprints of thumbs to depend on GISS and HadCru4.
        Scott

      • Steven Mosher

        “Please be encouraged by the support of observers to your fair minded and professional communication of climate science and truth seeking. ”

        practice what you preach

        “Pithy, harsh and accurate as to the manipulated data. I think the team is fooling themselves and not the rest of the observers. Politicians and the green blob embrace it as a hoax. The scientists providing them data fodder, fool themselves in pursuit of funding, peer approval and promotion. Most scientists don’t knowingly manipulate data but place thumbs of the scale in support of their expected and desired outcomes.”

      • Don’t both the Orsekes (2004) and Cook (2014) papers underling alarmists’ claims of a 97% consensus of opinion among climate scientists concerning global warming exhibit a gross failure to adhere to scientific standards? These papers are still pointed to by the government-education complex despite the fact that the classification of many works supposedly supporting the IPCC’s position on AGW was totally erroneous, according to the authors of said works.

    • Wagathon: When a hypothesis and all of the research thereafter rests solely on manipulated data, we call that a hoax.

      That is not relevant to the climate debate. The hypothesis does not rest “solely” on manipulated data, and neither does “all of the research thereafter”. The hypothesis “rests on” physics, and almost all of the manipulations of the data are aimed at getting the best representation of the phenomenon. A few publications rest on “manipulated” data in the pejorative sense of “manipulated”, but not “all” of them.

      • It is relevant in the same way that manipulation of the supposed facts that underlie hypothesis that aliens cause global warming is relevant. The simple fact is, there is a more significant causal link between global warming and alien sightings than increasing ppm of atmospheric CO2. But, many who refuse to be simply swept away by the supposed fact of “alien sightings” are so eager to buy into the supposed fact that modernity is causing global warming and simply take it as given that global warming actually exits and should be viewed with the utmost foreboding.

  30. “Strive not to be a success, but rather to be of value.”
    – Albert Einstein

    To me it seems like you have followed that advice.
    I think you are of great value and also a success.

    • Extremely Well Said that blogger!!!

      All we can do is strive to be of value, to inject new thought and to broaden the debate. Science is served by the frank and open discussion of contentious and complex subjects. Those that move to shut this process down and to quell dissenting opinion do themselves and science as a whole a great disservice.

      Those that choose to weather the storms on both sides should be celebrated. Sadly, there are far, far to few of them.

  31. Judith, thanks for all you have and do say, have done and do. A shining beacon in the dark tempest of climate change. The contrasts between you, the Pielkes, Christy, Lindzen, and a few others like McIntrye and Lewis and the ‘consensus gang’ grow ever starker. And it all indelible, right down to the disappeared comments and ad hom tweets.

    • Totally second that
      Scott

      • richardswarthout

        Me too. Add Koonin.

        Richard

      • Richard,
        Agree, Dr. Steven Koonin did such a great job with the APS review only to be derailed by the tribe. It seems so Kafisque (sp) or 1984 manipulation of the truth by big brother and the ministry of “truth”. I thought those presentations and questions by Curry, Lindzen, Held, Santer and I think Christy were spectacular. What a shame they abandoned the effort due to the secret reasons. Dr Koonin did write a great WSJ editorial but it did not have gravitas of the APS process.
        Scott

  32. Judith,

    Others may have suggested this but have you thought of writing a book about this? Bradley essentially provided an outline and you could expand on each post as a chapter.

    George Devries Klein, PhD, PG, FGSA

  33. I believe Feynman would be proud to have you as a colleague.

    The only thing certain about climate change is that the Left has latched on to it as a tick on a dog and is doing to it what the Left always does in its lust for power: destroying it.

    Last thought: Don’t let the bastards get you down. And thank you for the enormous amount of time and work you devote to this forum which is an island of sanity in the swamp of the insane.

    • ‘ Courage! What makes a king out of a slave?
      Courage! What makes the flag on the mast to wave?
      Courage! What makes the elephant charge his tusk, in
      the misty mist or the dusky dusk?
      Courage! ‘

      Wizard of Oz. H/T The Lion.

  34. Judith,

    You are doing a great job. Most of the time you strike a reasonable balance. CE is still one of my first and last daily site accesses.

    CE has led me in many interesting directions during the past couple of years. I never heard of Mark Steyn before and I thank you for that connection.

    If anything I am moving away from lukewarmerism toward the view that CAGW is a nasty hoax being perpetrated by a bunch of commie pinkos and green eugenicists.

    • [… T]oward the view that CAGW is a nasty hoax being perpetrated by a bunch of commie pinkos and green eugenicists.

      I doubt there’s a dependency there. A “bunch of commie pinkos and green eugenicists” could perpetrate a “nasty hoax” even if the problem (whatever it is) is real: they demand “solutions” that advance their agenda, and denigrate anybody who disagrees with their “solutions” as denying the problems.

      The real problem I have (personally) with the term “luke warmer” is that it’s based on an assumption contrary to known science. Which is the notion that there’s a generally linear relationship between how much fossil carbon we dump into the system and the magnitude of the effect.

      Climate is known to be a very complex, non-linear system. Like any such system, there’s the potential for “tipping points” when it’s being modified by gradual external changes of any type. The very term “luke warmer” hides this fact. In addition, the very focus on “climate” hides the fact that there are other eco-system risks from increasing CO2 besides those via climate:

      CO2 is plant food.

      A much better approach, in my view, is to start by accepting that the fossil-carbon problem represents a risk, of unknown type and extent. Then to ask: “How can we mitigate this risk with minimal impact to the system that has provided our wonderful modern life-style to a fraction of the world’s population, and bids fair to provide it to all?”

      From the perspective of this question, the issue of “a nasty hoax being perpetrated by a bunch of commie pinkos and green eugenicists” becomes much clearer: All their proposed “solutions” will reverse, or at least slow down, the Industrial Revolution. When people propose solutions that might work with the system of “capitalism” derived from the winner of the “Cold War”, or that might allow the developing world rapid access to cheap energy while addressing the CO2 problem differently, they are denigrated as “wanting to do nothing.

      That’s where we need to look for the “a nasty hoax being perpetrated by a bunch of commie pinkos and green eugenicists.

      • The real problem I have (personally) with the term “luke warmer” is that it’s based on an assumption contrary to known science. Which is the notion that there’s a generally linear relationship between how much fossil carbon we dump into the system and the magnitude of the effect.

        It seems more accurate to say that lukewarmers reject a linear relationship.

      • It seems more accurate to say that lukewarmers reject a linear relationship.

        Not really. Those who “reject a linear relationship” aren’t going to focus on myths such as “transient climate sensitivity”, or even “forcing”.

      • AK: The real problem I have (personally) with the term “luke warmer” is that it’s based on an assumption contrary to known science. Which is the notion that there’s a generally linear relationship between how much fossil carbon we dump into the system and the magnitude of the effect.

        Does even one luke warmer base any developments on that linear relationship between fossil carbon and the magnitude of the effect? I don’t, and none of the other luke warmers here do either as far as I can tell from reading them. Most commonly forcing is related to log of concentration of CO2, and an additional linearity is commonly assumed via the Stefan-Boltzmann relationship. Other nonlinearities are frequently discussed.

      • I agree with Matthew. To me a lukewarmer is just a person who agrees that CO2 has some warming effect – but is either at the low end of the IPCC range or even slightly under it.

        say 1C to 1.8C or so (for the warming from a doubling of CO2).

        If a person doesn’t believe CO2 has any warming effect they are not a lukewarmer (in my opinion).

        I was taught (by Lucia at the Blackboard) that the direct warming effects from CO2 were about 1.2C (warming from doubling from 280 to 560 ppm of CO2).

        Perhaps another definition of a lukewarmer is a person who agrees with the computed direct effects of CO2 (i.e. 1.2C per doubling), but doesn’t buy into the indirect amplification effect, which is supposed to just about triple the direct effects.

        I am not sure were the linear things comes in.

      • Does even one luke warmer base any developments on that linear relationship between fossil carbon and the magnitude of the effect? […]

        I am not sure were the linear things comes in.

        Most “luke warmers” appear to me to accept the notion of a “climate sensitivity”. According to the principles of non-linear dynamics, that sensitivity is a myth. A (more or less) dangerous myth, as the perceived “climate sensitivity” might suddenly change by an order of magnitude when the pCO2 passes a certain level (“tipping point”). Or when the sea level rises past a certain point.

        Granted the probability of any such an occurance is small. But we can’t say it’s zero. And there’s a large n-dimensional space of possible occurrences.

      • Because of our failure to understand enough about the various hysteresis loops, we are left with what we may understand better. A near linear relationship. With all the variables, the system is described using a reductionist approach even though we suspect it is more complex. Here’s a quote where Colose wanders into bistable systems.
        https://chaosaccounting.wordpress.com/2015/08/15/climate-hysteresis-loop/
        Suggesting many agree we are working with the non-linear.

      • AK, I think before you pronounce on ‘lukewarmers’ you should spend some time reading what they say.

      • Tom, I have. And I’ve been called a “luke warmer” myself. I don’t agree:

        Consider the “classical” definition: you’re a “luke warmer” if you think the “climate sensitivity” (transient or “equilibrium”, take your pick) is between x and y. In fact, let’s account for uncertainty and say if you think it’s probably between x and y.

        Well, then, I’m not a “luke warmer” because I think “climate sensitivity” (transient or “equilibrium”, take your pick) is a myth.

        So how many of the “luke warmers” you want to talk about respond that way to the introduction of “climate sensitivity” (transient or “equilibrium”, take your pick)? Because if they don’t, if they’re prepared to discuss “climate sensitivity” (transient or “equilibrium”, take your pick) as though it has any more reality than unicorns, then they would seem to me to accept the notion of a “climate sensitivity”.

        Which was my point.

      • AK: AK: The real problem I have (personally) with the term “luke warmer” is that it’s based on an assumption contrary to known science. Which is the notion that there’s a generally linear relationship between how much fossil carbon we dump into the system and the magnitude of the effect.

        Again, what lukewarmer assumes the linear relationship that you describe?

      • Again, what lukewarmer assumes the linear relationship that you describe?

        AFAIK most of them.

        First, a logarithmic relationship would qualify as “a generally linear relationship”, both because it’s linear WRT the logarithm of the added CO2, and because for small changes that logarithm is essentially linear. (The smaller the change, the closer to linear.)

        Second, I wasn’t speaking of the amount of the “Greenhouse effect”, I was speaking of the overall effect. The general assumption that the most important effect of adding a well-mixed greenhouse gas to the atmosphere will be a linear multiple of the supposed increased temperature due to the increased “greenhouse effect”, “all other things being equal”.

        The very notion of “climate sensitivity” demands this linear relationship. If doubling the amount of CO2 will produce a 1.2° increase without “feedbacks”, the “climate sensitivity” is how much it will increase with “feedbacks”.

        But “feedbacks” are a myth. “Forcing” is a myth. “Equilibrium,” when it comes to “climate” is a myth. And the thing supposedly changing, “global average temperature” is a myth. Oh, you can produce a number that is claimed to represent the instantaneous average of the temperature field over space, although it’s the equivalent of averaging apples, oranges, pears, lemons, and watermelons. Etc.

        But to create an “average” over time, you have to specify a bunch of arbitrary rules for “smoothing”, and weighting the instantaneous values at different time intervals from the time you’re supposedly creating an average for. And there would be many questions regarding how well different “averages” will work to represent a “proxy” for whatever effect you’re talking about.

        Whatever the reality behind the myth of “climate sensitivity,” for science to understand it, it needs a much more rigorous definition of “climate” than currently exists. There’s nothing causal about “an average of weather.

      • AK: First, a logarithmic relationship would qualify as “a generally linear relationship”, both because it’s linear WRT the logarithm of the added CO2, and because for small changes that logarithm is essentially linear. (The smaller the change, the closer to linear.)

        If you define “generally linear” to mean “linear in a nonlinear transform” or “approximately linear in the derivative over a short interval”, then you have an idiosyncratic meaning of “generally linear” that includes all nonlinear relationships.

        If you can find a lukewarmer who believes that the surface radiation or water vapor pressure is a linear function of surface temperature, please let us know and quote him or her exactly.

  35. “The whole integrity/ethics thing, in all its complexity, is something that is of paramount importance to me and I think about it a lot.”

    When society abandons the ethical system that evolved over millennia, through hard fought trial and error, because it’s “elites” think themselves too sophisticated for such superstition, is it any wonder the issue of ethics becomes “complex”?

    Try this. Employ what used to be called the cardinal virtues to any situation you might find, and see what you get. And yes, there are issues raised by those moral precepts, but they have been the subject of thousands of years of debate and scholarship. There is no need to start from scratch just because we now have the internet.

    The statutes and court rules of this country are littered with detailed rules of ethics supposedly guiding the legal community. And I can tell you with confidence that the profession is more corrupt and dishonest than at any time in my life.

    Why? Because the rules are not enforced. (Except when it comes to misuse of client funds.) Our elitist society finds integrity, and particularly humility, to be de classe’.

    Ask someone today what prudence means, and you will likely get a guess that it’s the name of a Beatles’ song (at least from my generation).

    • GaryM –

      ==> “When society abandons the ethical system that evolved over millennia, through hard fought trial and error, because it’s “elites” think themselves too sophisticated for such superstition, is it any wonder the issue of ethics becomes “complex”?”

      Are you referring, there, to the founding fathers – when they “abandoned” an ethical system that had evolved over millennia?

      • No, because of the ethical system that had evolved, they abandoned a political system. They specifically referenced that they did so because of well-established understandings of ethics.

  36. When I first read the five points: your conscience, your colleges etc. … I thought nothing of it. When I read all the posts with Ad Hom attacks and petty bickering I then when back and reviewed those points. I thought mostly of JC and James Hansen. The first point seems to have been most important to both of them. After the first point it becomes much more difficult to remain resolute in the midst of the criticism by remaining true to yourself. I believe both JC and Hansen had the integrety to sustain the criticism while wading through the other points. I’m sure we could qibble and find problems with both in working their way through the way they associated with the bigger picture but I personally believe they both remained true to themselves and their personal belief of what they thought they learned from science.

  37. Judith wrote: “The whole integrity/ethics thing, in all its complexity, is something that is of paramount importance to me and I think about it a lot.”

    The consensus on CAGW is the result of a perverse combination of two mutually-incompatible systems for discovering “the truth”: science and law. Politics is similar to the law, except that the goal is to make good decisions rather than discover “the truth”.

    Stephen Schneider has famously written: “as scientists we are ethically bound to the scientific method, in effect promising to tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but — which means that we must include all the doubts, the caveats, the ifs, ands, and buts.” Feynman expressed similar sentiments with more detail in “Cargo Cult Science”. The ability to trust the work of their peers means that scientists don’t need to waste time and effort checking all of the details in important papers. Sometimes we can get away with simply reading the abstract and perhaps glancing at key figures. (Auditors like Steve McIntyre are hated, because he has vulnerability in this system, especially when editors fail to force authors to share data.) A reporter investigating a scientific controversy normally would hear the same fundamentals of the controversy from any involved scientist, followed by differing opinions about what evidence they personally each found most persuasive.

    Politics and law are adversarial systems that are very different from science. Even when we are lucky even to have politicians who don’t lie, we certainly don’t expect them to tell us the “whole truth”. Instead we get an agenda, perhaps supported by a cherry-picked collection of facts. In the courtroom, witnesses swear to tell the whole truth, but are often asked narrow, rehearsed questions that can be answered “yes” or “no”. In law and politics, the adversarial system works because both sides are guaranteed equal opportunity to present their case to the judge, jury or public. Ethical reporters traditionally are (or were) expected research and present both sides of any political or legal issue.

    A perverse combination of these two systems has produced the worst of both: Instead of telling the whole truth to the public, we now have climate scientists who get loads of media attention by presenting scary scenarios and simplified, dramatic statements and who make little mention of doubts and uncertainty. We have a single forum for producing an artificial consensus controlled by a self-selected and self-perpetuating group of activist scientists, politicians and advocates. Consensus climate scientists refuse to publicly debate skeptics and prevent public access to comment from outside peer reviewers for years after their report has been published.

    I have sworn upon the altar of God, eternal hostility against every form of tyranny over the mind of man. – Thomas Jefferson

  38. Over the last several years I have read perhaps thousands of sentences written by Judith and not in a single case has she displayed anything other than supreme professionalism and a complete commitment to good science.

    In their hearts the establishment knows that and it is driving them crazy.

  39. Last time I checked, scientists were still human. If they were angels we wouldn’t need the scientific method, transparency, etc.

  40. I greatly admire ‘the grand dame’ but I also love skipping through her playground of engaged commentators.

  41. This looks like another good opportunity for me to thank you for providing and maintaining this forum.

    Professor Curry, thank you!

    • Yes, she is well worth the Cost of the monthly subscription

      Tonyb

      • Tonyb,
        The blog Climate Etc, is not costless to Dr Curry.

        Seems to have cost her a lot but may have been worth it in intangibles like integrity and honest evaluation of scientific controversy. At the end of ones career, those strong stands based on core beliefs and honor are rewarding regardless temporary financial costs.
        Scott

  42. Judith Curry

    “As a researcher, what kinds of responsibilities do you have to

    your conscience (micro)”

    For the last day I have been wondering why you place a “micro” next to your responsibilities to your own conscience.

    To me at least, my own conscience is foundational to the pyramid of my values. At the end of the day, in the dark, when I am alone and things go bump in the night, I have myself to account for what I have done or not done, said or broadcasted and my foil for that encounter, is my conscience.

    I am sure there is a nuance that I have missed. Point me in the right direction and I will “go fetch.”

    • I searched your blog on “Scientists and motivated reasoning” which did mention micro and macro that at some future date you were going to spell out. I hope to find more.

      What intrigued me was this:

      “However, at the heart of the IPCC is a cadre of scientists whose careers have been made by the IPCC. These scientists have used the IPCC to jump the normal meritocracy process by which scientists achieve influence over the politics of science and policy. Not only has this brought some relatively unknown, inexperienced and possibly dubious people into positions of influence, but these people become vested in protecting the IPCC, which has become central to their own career and legitimizes playing power politics with their expertise.”

      Nobel cause corruption. Without one’s conscience, I don’t see how some can navigate the issue. Science becomes secondary if even that.

    • micro vs macro refers to scale. my conscience is personal (one person). my institution is some 20,000 people. The public is millions to billions.

      • I am dense it seems. Your responsibility to the “micro” means you refer to your personal conscience. Then the universe expands to Georgia Tech and ultimately to the world as we know it. Does your responsibility to GT differ in anyway from your responsibility to your own conscience? Does scale matter?

    • RiHo, “To me at least, my own conscience is foundational to the pyramid of my values.” Yes, I responded to a somewhat similar point from Planning Engineer in the previous blog as follows:

      PE: “I don’t like the idea that we as individuals have some sort of moral imperative or unquestionable obligation to disregard our own personal “beliefs” in deference to some expert consensus.” Absolutely. “To thine own self be true” is the basis of moral and spiritual development. Each of us must deal with the world as we perceive it, and develop our own understanding. We can take external offerings and examples as guides and inspiration (where appropriate), but must make our own assessments and act within our own framework and knowledge. Anyone who disputes this is not worth listening to.

  43. I’ve followed Dr.Curry’s blog since the beginning and admire how she handled the personal attacks of the AGW bloodhounds over the years (like Dr.Pielke describes), in fact she did not changed at all and always remained to the point and civil.
    Many, if not most would have perished in these continues attacks, but not Dr.Curry, she’s an example for the climate debate.

    And then comes this fool, Willard, using of course Grande Dame in a different way than originally meant. Last but not least comes this pompous twit Mosher explaining us all what and how to think, yuk….

  44. Judy,

    One can’t help think that a few of the above responders get paid by the word.

    Nonetheless, I find your contributions and your willingness to allow the loyal opposition to offer counter arguments are invaluable contributions to the climate discussion. Thank you, period.

    Steve

    “Only time, whatever that is, will tell.”

    Stephen Hawking

  45. David L. Hagen

    Thanks Judith for standing up for ethics and restoring scientific integrity.

    The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing.

    The Intellectual Life of Edmund Burke p 176

    Its a kind of scientific integrity, a principle of scientific thought that corresponds to a kind of utter honesty, a king of leaning over backwards.

    Richard Feynman, Cargo Cult Science, Surely your joking Mr. Feynman p341

  46. Mosher claims that 5000 stations out of 40000 stations is a representative sample.
    There are no 40000 real stations in the network he describes, the system makes up stations at grid points that the algorithm requires.
    At least 10,000.
    It also makes up data for the stations that are real but nonfunctioning due to issues, equipment down, equipment malfunctioning, in some areas operators who are ill or have died. Stations that have been replaced by progress. Say 12000.
    This leaves 28000 thousand, many at military or scientific bases, often airports sometimes in mechanical buoys and floats which have to have inbuilt temperatures to function, not that this should effect the temp of the water about them being collected or the air nearby.
    These 28,000 stations do not have their raw data used directly. It is compared to past measurements and altitude and latitude but not cloud cover adjustments and then adjusted to what it should have been on top of that mountain at the latitude of Siberia.
    How dare it be different from what our algorithms say it should be with our CO 2 adjustments.
    Neighbouring sites are homogenised to agree with the warmest sites, it must be warmer surely, never the coldest.
    Then and only then does our Steven draw his 5000 random stations out of the hat. Look Ma.
    Our system works, well one could think of other words.
    In the field of statistics one should draw the 5000 samples at least a 1000 times.
    Then one should do an analysis of the error range.
    One should have aberrant results.
    One sample should come back disproving what Steven has said by being absolutely a degree below the average.
    Half the samples do come back under the line, that is what an average is.
    But there is also a spread.
    There should be outliers positive and negative of sprightly dimensions.
    There should be an error bar of 1/2 a degree.
    But what do we get?
    An error bar of 0.1 degree.
    Scientifically impossible.
    But true.
    How do we know?
    In the words of Mr Integrity he has said that we can take any 5000 results and we will always get the same answer.
    And he is right.
    Though scientifically impossible.
    Which can only mean, statistically, that the results have been massaged by the algorithms to that state of perfection, 97% in agreement.
    Hoist with ones own petard.

    • Steven Mosher

      “Mosher claims that 5000 stations out of 40000 stations is a representative sample.
      There are no 40000 real stations in the network he describes, the system makes up stations at grid points that the algorithm requires.
      At least 10,000.”

      Wrong.

      there are more than 40K stations.

      Even ISTI has 32K

      http://www.surfacetemperatures.org/databank

      you refuse to look at data sources
      lets start with GHCN Daily

      https://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/oa/climate/ghcn-daily/

      GHCN (Global Historical Climatology Network)-Daily is an integrated database of daily climate summaries from land surface stations across the globe. Like its monthly counterpart (GHCN-Monthly) , GHCN-Daily is comprised of daily climate records from numerous sources that have been integrated and subjected to a common suite of quality assurance reviews.

      GHCN-Daily now contains records from over 75000 stations in 180 countries and territories. Numerous daily variables are provided, including maximum and minimum temperature, total daily precipitation, snowfall, and snow depth; however, about two thirds of the stations report precipitation only. Both the record length and period of record vary by station and cover intervals ranging from less than year to more than 175 years.se to look at data

      other sources you can see here

      https://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/data-access/land-based-station-data/land-based-datasets

      exampple

      https://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/isd

      The database includes over 35,000 stations worldwide, with some having data as far back as 1901, though the data show a substantial increase in volume in the 1940s and again in the early 1970s. Currently, there are over 14,000 “active” stations updated daily in the database. The total uncompressed data volume is around 600 gigabytes; however, it continues to grow as more data are added. ISD includes numerous parameters such as wind speed and direction, wind gust, temperature, dew point, cloud data, sea level pressure, altimeter setting, station pressure, present weather, visibility, precipitation amounts for various time periods, snow depth, and various other elements as observed by each station.

      • Try again. This line of yours is repetitive and tricky and not even wrong.
        It is smart and tricky to dodge facts but not ethical.
        You do not look good doing it.
        I agree with 90% of your statements but I will attack the AGW support rubbish you put up til the cows come home.
        “I dont use USHCN”
        so what.
        The stations you have commented on include USHCN even if you personally cross your heart and deny knowledge of it.
        The UHI adjustments are included in the station data both USHCN and otherwise so stop being a weasel on this point.

      • Steven Mosher | June 28, 2014
        If you take 40000 raw records and want to create a global average you MUST calculate.
        Steven Mosher | August 26, 2015 at 1:22 pm |
        “Then we get to the area averaging method, or in BEST’s case the field averaging method.You have 40,000 stations ( actually more ).
        Steven Mosher | August 26, 2015 at 8:14 pm | Reply
        Wrong. there are more than 40K stations.
        Steven Mosher | August 26, 2015
        take all 40k stations.
        Well which is it Steven? 40,00 stations
        or more than 40,000 stations?
        and the real questions
        How many are real?
        How many real ones are active?
        Dodge.
        Dodge.
        Dodge.
        Every time you evade this question one only sees deception not Integrity.

    • Steven Mosher

      “Then and only then does our Steven draw his 5000 random stations out of the hat. Look Ma.”

      No.

      not even wrong.

      • not even wrong.
        I know the quote
        Then prove it.
        Quote the number of fabricated stations.
        Quote the number of inactive stations.
        Judith had a post Skeptical of skeptics: is Steve Goddard right?
        Posted on June 28, 2014 | 588 Comments
        Did you answer then No will you answer now No
        Of course Goddard could chip in [please]
        Or Nick Stokes.
        The truth really , really hurts , does it not.

  47. Steven Mosher | August 26, 2015 at 7:12 pm |
    ” Now we create the global temp field by stretching a perfect, no sagging tent over all these poles.
    Assuming that UHI infects the average. simple to test. it doesnt”

    And the reason why?
    Mosher gives it earlier. He already included it so it cannot be tested!!

    Steven Mosher | August 26, 2015 at 1:22 pm |
    “Then we get to adjustment, UHI, local heat contamination a la Watts & Co, etc. These are all cumulative sources of error.
    UHI is included in the station error.”

    Steven Mosher | August 26, 2015 at 5:52 pm |
    “Don everything else, UHI, land cover, etc.. is SECONDARY.”

    Well hardly secondary. Primary or hidden by being included in the data before looking for it.

    UHI is real, obvious, look at a picture of the globe at night. Imagine what is was like before those cities and power stations were built. Imagine the temperature then and now.
    But Mosher has no imagination, you say?
    Not true.
    Then why can he not see UH effect ?
    He has turned his UH sensors off and put his dark glasses on.

    • Steven Mosher

      Its simple.

      take all 40k stations.

      select the rural.

      the answer is the same.

      why?

      1. UHI is not year round. the figures you see people highlight are
      UHI MAX! which doesnt occur every day. So its real, but not really frequent.

      2. Given ANY city there will be regions in the city that are warmer than
      the rural, the same as the rural, and Lower than the rural.
      in other words UHI varies across the city. so it really really matters
      WHERE you site in the city.

      3. rural landcover can cause more warming than urban.

      here.

      Look at this chart. degrees kelvin on the left
      the x axis is CATAGORY of land cover

      Guess which category is URBAN is it 7 or 10?

      • catweazle666

        Steven Mosher: “select the rural.

        the answer is the same.

        why?”

        Because of the algorithm that Mannipulates them, I imagine.

        Or should that really be “AlGore-ithm”?

        You see Mosher, for years I have run a car that has an external temperature gauge, and I drive quite high mileages at all times of the day and night.

        And I can absolutely assure you that the temperature in built-up areas – both by day and by night, and both in summer and winter – exceeds that in rural areas, sometimes by several degrees.

        This is noticeable even in the small rural towns in North West Yorkshire, and very noticeable indeed in the larger towns.

      • catweazle666:

        It is my understanding that it is not that the temperature is warmer in urban versus rural.

        For UHI it is that the anomaly rises over time in the same location as that location turns from rural to urban (i.e. population density increases at a spot over time).

      • ” For UHI it is that the anomaly rises over time in the same location as that location turns from rural to urban (i.e. population density increases at a spot over time).”
        Isn’t that a given?
        The airport where the city’s temps were measured for as long as I remember, 30-35 miles away is a couple to about 5F warmer than my backyard, which is different from the small towns 5 miles away.
        In fact on a motorcycle you can feel the temps drop riding under a tree.

  48. USHCN includes UHI for all its observations.
    “UHI is included in the station error.”
    So now we can safely say UHI does not exist?
    “Piffle” in the words of the great man Wolfe.

  49. I just assume that anyone who claims to be a ‘climate scientist’ is, (by definition) a lying bastard.

    The few exceptions are people with whom I’ve had sufficient opportunity to meet them or discuss issues with them to persuade me otherwise.

    Works for me. And it makes life so much simpler.

    • catweazle666

      Latimer Alder: “I just assume that anyone who claims to be a ‘climate scientist’ is, (by definition) a lying bastard.”

      In the vast majority of cases (97%?) it works for me too (with the probable exception our gracious lady host).

      Many of the posts from “climate scientists” on this blog demonstrate that very clearly indeed, unfortunately it seems that most “climate scientists” have become indistinguishable from politicians.

      Now why is that, I wonder…

  50. Steven Mosher,

    Yeats said that rhetoric was an argument with somebody else and poetry is an argument with oneself.

    You may be wrong about the future (I think you are), but please be humble enough to understand the following: “I now predict that I was wrong, sayeth Stephen Hawking.

    Some of us hope that stop you stop sounding so pedantic.

    Best wishes from Wisconsin,

    Steve

  51. Here’s something interesting in the news today about groupthink, consensus enforcement, professional integrity and the very definite ways outcomes can be manipulated without there being a nefarious conspiracy or hoax.

    Spies: Obama’s Brass Pressured Us to Downplay ISIS Threat

    Two defense officials said that some felt the commander for intelligence at CENTCOM failed to keep political pressures from Washington from bearing on lower-level analysts at command headquarters in Tampa, Florida. That pressure, while described as subtle and not overt, is nevertheless clear, the analysts said: Assessments on ISIS should comport with “the leadership consensus,” that is, top policymakers’ view, that the U.S.-led campaign against the group is paying dividends.

    A process has developed… by which officials … are trying to achieve something close to consensus among the several intelligence agencies that weigh in on the threat of ISIS and the U.S. efforts against it.

    The CENTCOM analysts say they’ve concluded that the campaign isn’t going well, but that the senior officials want all reports on ISIS to see “eye to eye” and to avoid analyses that reach widely different conclusions.

    “I think it comes from the seniors that interact with the policy folks [meaning senior administration officials] and it filters its way down,” one of the analysts said.

    “You get this pressure. It’s a very subtle approach but it is effective,” he said.

    It sounds familiar.

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  53. JC Where does the intellectual and political diversity come from in the climate debate? Certainly not from academia

    Because they’ll all funded from the same source; and which is by no stretch of the imagination is a disinterested observer.

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  56. JC Of course industry funding (especially if it is tainted with fossil fuels) is regarded as a source of bias, whereas funding from green organizations somehow isn’t.

    Vastly more worryingly, funding from government is not regarded as a source of bias
    – when plainly government has such an obvious and huge vested interest in fomenting alarmism, and is also the overwhelmingly dominant funder of climate science.

  57. JC “That said, funding is probably a smaller source of bias than peer pressure to follow a consensus

    No – since the consensus itself is a product of the vested interest funding in the first place.