by Judith Curry
I’ve been traveling; first chance I’ve had to collect some reactions to the Senate Hearing.
I was pretty happy with my written testimony when I submitted it; my goal was to provide what I regard as policy relevant evidence/data regarding climate change, to be used as a resource for the Senators. I also included (as requested) material related the to the ‘dogma’ issue and concerns about the objectivity of federal funding of climate change.
I did not hold out any objective or hope of actually convincing the ‘convinced’ Senators by my arguments, particularly the ones throwing the word ‘denier’ around.
I thought the opening statements by the two Ranking minority members were reasonable, although it seems pretty pointless only to call on the one minority witness.
Udall and particularly Markey were way over the top. Markey’s statements, and his exchange with me, was a perfect illustration of Dogma versus Data. Perhaps that was the point of the Hearing, to see how the Democratic dogmatists behaved in the face of actual data.
Senator Cruz seems very much into the Data, and generally knowledgable about the scientific process. One of his staffers is an avid reader of CE, WUWT and apparently Steve Goddard’s blog. I was rather surprised that Senator Cruz didn’t moderate closely for time; perhaps he was leaving space for interesting, spontaneous discussion to break out.
It is unfortunate that only one Republican participated (besides Cruz), and that his questions were about energy economics and innovation. I was totally not prepared for the question on energy innovation, I considered saying that I didn’t have anything to say on that topic, but I actually do have plenty to say. Unfortunately my thoughts on that topic were not organized, since I haven’t focused on that topic (stay tuned for a future blog post).
Well I hope that Senator Cruz’s staff found my testimony helpful. In hindsight, I pitched this a little too ‘high’. And I didn’t really address the main propaganda points from the Democrats: 97% consensus, and warmest year.
My remarks on consensus were more philosophical; perhaps I should have focused on debunking the 97%, and on highlighting the recent collapse of the consensus on dietary fat/cholesterol/heart disease.
Markey’s focus on the ‘warmest year’ highlights the role that warmest year and hiatus has in the politicking and propaganda surrounding climate change. Warmest year is pretty meaningless in understanding anything, but sure seems convincing to some people (and they don’t seem to understand rate of warming). This also highlights the power of the hiatus/pause narrative on the other side of the debate, and why Rep. Lamar Smith is investigating the Karl et al. paper.
Actually, in the propaganda wars, Marc Morano’s new movie Climate Hustle does a good job of debunking warmest propaganda (I’ve seen the movie, stay tuned for a blog post on this within the next week).
And finally, Markey referred to the ideology of ‘deniers’. What ideology could that be? I don’t think he meant our ideology of data analysis. Must be something to do with energy. So an ideology perhaps something like this: people need electric power and transportation fuel to be happy and safe and to support their economy. They prefer their power to be secure, plentiful, and economical; all other things being equal, they prefer clean energy to dirty energy. SCARY.
Yesterday, I heard an interview on NPR with Senator Cruz, about climate change [link].
The critical policy relevant issue that emerged from this Hearing is the differences between the global satellite-based record of atmospheric temperatures, versus the surface temp record. Stay tuned for a post on this topic also.
Mark Steyn’s article on the Hearing is [here].
p.s. towards the end of the Hearing, Senator Cruz showed some graphs, I had no idea what they were or where they were from. Apparently they were from Steve Goddard’s blog. Any comments I made were regarding general adjustments to the surface temperature record.