Week in review – science edition

by Judith Curry

A few things that caught my eye this past week.

The Science of Time Explains Boredom and Stress, and How to Deal With Them [link]

Excellent interview on freedom of speech & inquiry by Joanna Williams, author of a new book on the subject. [link]

Must read interview with Hope Jahren, author of “Lab Girl” [link]

Will the health dangers of climate change get people to care? The science says: maybe [link]

Analysis: the ‘highly unusual’ behaviour of Arctic sea ice in 2016 [link]

Climate change may be far worse than thought, cloud analysis suggests. [link]

“heart rate variation & thinking process work together to enable wise reasoning about complex social issues.”  Research finds that wisdom is a matter of both heart and mind  [link]

Must read: The sugar conspiracy[link]

New paper finds decadal link between cosmic rays & clouds (Svensmark theory of climate) [link]

Important: No increase in extreme droughts, rainfall during 20th century [link]

New study shows Earth’s internal heat drives rapid ice flow and subglacial melting in Greenland [link]

Climate change threat to public health worse than polio, White House warns. [link]

How would warmer water temp affect #ArcticOcean heat transport & deep-ocean heat storage? See new #JPhysOceanogr. [link]

Scientists are looking to Mars to tackle climate change on Earth – here’s why [link]



Even with no war, nuclear winter claimed a victim: Vladimir Alexandrov, Soviet climatologist [link] …

In upcoming #JAtmosOceanicTechnol: New free-drifting profiling floats extend #ocean-monitoring depth to 4000 meters. [link]

The illusion of control in the medical setting, and overestimating the benefits of intervention. [link]

New high-res, 31-year, #satellite-based #snow reanalysis dataset is introduced in forthcoming #JHydrometeor paper. [link]



229 responses to “Week in review – science edition

  1. The Guardian utters the C-word! (But no triggers, so rest easy, snowflakes.)

    “Researchers find clouds contain more liquid – as opposed to ice – than was previously believed, threatening greater increase in temperatures…”

    “A lack of data and continuing uncertainty over the role of clouds is to blame for the confusion about warming estimates, said Ivy Tan…”

    They didn’t know? Now they do? It’s clearly worse than we thought.

    By “it” I mean the Guardian and its reportage of kiddie-console science.

    – ATTC

    • Danny Thomas

      Has there been a change in temperatures where ‘clouds’ occur?

      Science ‘assumed’ there was more ice, now it’s found there is less. Is that a change in climate or a change in assumptions?

      • Better ask the Guardian, Danny. I not only didn’t use to know but I still dunno.

        Around here some winter cloud can send a July average min up from 4.7 to 10.8 then an absence of winter cloud can send it back down to 5.1, all in consecutive years of the wet early fifties. Or in the stormy 1970s from 3.7 to 9.2 then down to 4.2. Yet our impossibly high September min of 1964 occurred with very little precip recorded. (Drunken postmaster? 26.2 is ridiculous but it’s in the record.)

        A shallow fellow would conclude that there’s a mess here and you had to be there to understand…while a deep-numbers type knows min/max will all equalise somehow to form truth and what-the-hell and don’t-argue.

      • Danny Thomas

        A couple of interesting comments. The last, first. Then a supplement.

        “Our study suggests that the climate sensitivity range should be shifted upwards,” says Tan. “By how much, we don’t know exactly.”

        “Headlines that scream ‘Scientists say sensitivity higher than thought!’ will not be justified,” says Gavin Schmidt, who directs NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies. “This is one extra ingredient that needs to go into the hopper.”


      • Danny,

        It’s just a change in what we think we know.

        Aka assumptions for the most part.

        The funny part is people can spin that into “you better be pissing yourself because it’s really bad”

  2. “Climate change may be far worse than earlier cataclysmic predictions”

    Fixed it.

    • She says to-mayto and he says to-mahto …

      Cloud analysis suggests cloud liquidity is greater
      than we thought ‘n reflectivity lesser than we thought.
      – The Guardian.

      @ CE Week in Review wa-ay back.

      ‘It was very recently discovered that an effect called
      quantum tunneling takes place in the water droplets
      that compose clouds. A photon passing within one
      wavelength of a water droplet can quantum tunnel
      through the droplet and emerge on the opposite side
      travelling in exactly the opposite direction.

      The visual effect of this was first observed centuries
      ago by mountain climbers who could look downward
      at clouds and see their own shadow cast upon them.
      A rainbow-like halo could be seen surrounding one’s
      own shadow but no around the shadow of a person
      standing close to you. That’s because of the 180-degree
      reflection. Only someone directly behind his own
      shadow could see the rainbow halo surrounding it.

      The origin of this has been a mystery for centuries
      because in classicial physics it is impossible for a
      water droplet to refract light 180 degrees. This halo
      is called “The Glory”. It may also be witnessed by
      passengers in an aircraft that is casting a shadow
      of itself on clouds below. A multicolored halo will
      surround the aircraft shadow.

      So basically clouds are reflecting more light than the
      classical physics in climate models is accounting for.’
      – David Springer July 22, 2012 at 12.45 pm.c

  3. Also this for those surprised how we still can get snow with climate change.

    • The most surprised are the alarmists who made claims like this in 2000:

      “According to Dr David Viner, a senior research scientist at the climatic research unit (CRU) of the University of East Anglia ,within a few years winter snowfall will become “a very rare and exciting event”. “Children just aren’t going to know what snow is,” he said. David Parker, at the Hadley Centre for Climate Prediction and Research in Berkshire, says ultimately, British children could have only virtual experience of snow. Via the internet,”

      I’d paste you a link (UK Independent March 20, 2000) but the alarmists were not willing to leave their claims up for future scrutiny.

      • Senator Inhofe is one of your brightest lights and he still thinks this is what is being said, hence his snowball demonstration in Congress last year, so don’t overestimate the skeptics.

      • Another example: Australia’s Climate Commissioner, Dr Tim Flannery, told us our dams would never fill again. he was dead wrong bu has never retracted and continues scare-mongering.

      • Harkin1 forgets to add that in the same newspaper article Dr. Viner also said heavy snow will return occasionally.

        Heavy snow will return occasionally, says Dr Viner, but when it does we will be unprepared. “We’re really going to get caught out. Snow will probably cause chaos in 20 years time,” he said.

        If Dr Viner believes heavy snow will return occasionally, how can he also believe kids aren’t going to know what snow is? Something isn’t right here, and I suspect it’s a sloppy job of reporting by the newspaper.

        I believe the Viner interview was back in 2010, which means he was talking about out to 2030. I wonder what the experience with snow has been in the UK since 2010?

      • Max10k

        The interview was March 2000 as harkin1 correctly states. WUWT saved an image of the relevant newspaper page in 2014, and archived it below in 2015:

        It’s anecdotal but I live in the UK and recall winter 2009 to 2010 being a cold one and with snow across most of the country. There was also a fair amount of snow the following two years also. Less since, but not zero and Scotland usually gets a larger dose. Remembering before 2009 is hard (!) but I have a general impression of a few mild winters in a row. I’ve never managed to find a UK snowfall chart by year, though I haven’t looked very hard.

      • P.S. articles like this can indeed have wide interpretation. But I assumed his meaning was that there would be so long between major snowfalls, that an entire generation could get to adulthood before seeing one. So about 18 years. Hence there isn’t a contradiction.

      • andy, thank you. Thank you. Yes, the article on snow in the UK appeared in The Telegraph in 2000 not 2010.

        The headline said “Snowfalls are now just a thing of the past.”

        I presume Charles Onions who authored the article or someone else at The Independent wrote the headline. The headline conflicts with the article’s following quote from Dr. David Viner:

        ‘Heavy snow will return occasionally, says Dr Viner, but when it does we will be unprepared. “Were really going to get caught out. Snow will probably cause chaos in 20 years time,” he said.’

        Obviously, Dr Viner doesn’t believe snowfalls are now just a thing of the past but heavy snow will return occasionally.

        If The Telegraph misrepresented Dr Viner’s views, it wouldn’t be the first time something like this has happened. As I recall, Dr. Curry has had some of he views inaccurately reported by journalists.

        That that a 16 year old newspaper article of questionable accuracy was even brought up by climate deniers/skeptics shows their desperation.

        If you find relevant data on snowfall in the UK, please let us know.

      • Max said:
        “I believe the Viner interview was back in 2010, which means he was talking about out to 2030. I wonder what the experience with snow has been in the UK since 2010?”

        The Viner article was in 2000. Sorry I only stated that twice so it was easy to miss for some. Either that or you’re practicing the thing alarmists do best: moving the goal posts.

      • Peter said:
        “Another example: Australia’s Climate Commissioner, Dr Tim Flannery, told us our dams would never fill again. he was dead wrong bu has never retracted and continues scare-mongering.”

        Same here in CA. The alarmists have put away their cameras for the time being and have suddenly gone silent on the reservoirs “never filling again”.

      • A historian said there was less open-air skating. True or untrue? Somerset House has open-air skating, but it appears to be manufactured ice. For the first time, a toy store offered no sleds for sale.

      • Damned cell phones.

      • Prediction ain’t easy, especially about
        the fuchure…

        That pesky ice-free Arctic, oh NASA!
        That pesky no La Nina in the offing,
        oh NOAH! Experts getting it wrong ?
        Oh Noes!


    • JimD

      I don’t think anyone is surprised about snow co-existing with global warming, save a few at HP. The NYT has it right about probabilities of extreme heat events. Simple stuff.
      My complaint is that 60 years ago this weekend I was watching the Masters in lovely 70 degree weather meaning the clubs were coming out. This morning there is 4 inches of snow outside. I much prefer those days of yore before global warming when the Masters was the start of golf season rather than the last of the snow skiing season.

      • I much prefer those days of yore before global warming when the Masters was the start of golf season rather than the last of the snow skiing season.

        All you had to do was listen to James Hansen back in the 1980s. You would be riding your mule over to the Masters in balmy weather.

      • ceresco, the article talks about that special type who say there is snow in my backyard, so there can’t be global warming. You do a good impression of them.

      • Jim D I did it for all the HP worshippers who want to improve their self esteem.

        JCH Only thoroughbreds allowed on the grounds. We’re talking about Augusta National, site of Martha Burk’s last stand and home of Ike’s belatedly fallen Loblolly pine. No slummin’ with use of the Dakota two by four learnin’ tool.

      • Yesterday’s (Friday) set a record high for Seattle. 76 F.

        It was a beautiful day.

        Now, what was it I’m supposed to be pissing my drawers about?

        (record was for the date.)

      • I live by one of those silly paces where they play pasture pool… The Colonial.

  4. Compared to the sugar conspiracy that lasted 40 years, the AGW conspiracy was busted fairly quickly.

  5. Lomborg in his WSJ article this week provided some additional very useful and compelling references in his pretty withering critique of the WH unreadable paper on the health effects of climate change.

    I found the writing in and structure of the WH paper extremely confusing. Is it just me?

    • It’s really hard to understand why the alarmists are alarmed. It’s really hard to find any objective evidence that warming is dangerous or that damages would exceed benefits. It’s even harder to find objective evidence that the benefits of mitigation will exceed the costs.

  6. Like Wagathon, I picked up this was a consensus science issue where the “truth tellers” were branded as heretics. Experts get it wrong. Add to the ulcers caused by stress file.

  7. Despite the title, the Guardian piece is largely correct on fats and cholesterol. However on the title subject of sugar, science and not conspiracy undermine the Yudkin/Lustig hypothesis. For example see the new papers in the International Journal of Obesity, http://www.nature.com/ijo/journal/v40/n1s/abs/ijo201611a.html and http://www.nature.com/ijo/journal/v40/n1s/abs/ijo201610a.html .

    • Things are multifactoral.

      But Lustig demonstrates at the molecular level.

      Remember, fructose metabolism was just understood in 2010!

      And if you listen to Lustig, he’ll remind you that it’s not sugar, per se, but fructose which has the harmful byproducts and fatty liver disease.

      Fructose is in not just sugar but also the High Fructose Corn Syrup ( which now exceeds sugar consumption ). And not just those, but also fruit juices and fruit.

      This makes sense. Fruits, such as they were 6,000 years ago were very pithy, had very little sugar, and weren’t available very often.

      PreModern and modern agriculture has increased the calorie density and fructose density dramatically.

      When they cut open the Ice Man’s stomach, they didn’t find orange juice, snickers bars, or Coca Cola. They found venison and goat.

      • That said, one can get fat without eating any fructose.

        One aspect of fructose is the effect on leptin which makes it pernicious because eating sugar itself reduces the satiety which leads to a positive feedback – eat more sugar.

        But eating too much of anything also has problems because even proteins when eaten increase the insulin response, which drives blood glucose into storage and leaves one hungry which leads to a positive feedback – eat more.

        So two things 1.) eating sugar and 2.) eating too much paradoxically lead to hunger, and obesity.

      • Don’t forget, co2 increases carbohydrate productivity. Co2 contributing to obesity and diabetes is actually one of the most solid negative externally. Next, increasingly moderate and temperate weather during warming is making us unprepared for inevitable extreme weather. Global warming is making us soft.

      • Hi Turbulent Eddie, There are many studies at the molecular level which show a lot of things, but translating them into actual human health is often problematic. What do you think we learned about fructose that we didn’t know before 2010?

        When we actually deal with humans and fructose at normal intake levels, we don’t find much impact (see http://www.mdpi.com/2072-6643/8/4/179 ).

        You bring up High Fructose Corn Syrup (HFCS) and some people have hypothesized that this can be key cause of obesity and metabolic syndrome. First of all, most people don’t realize the “high” level of fructose is not in comparison to table sugar (sucrose=50% glucose, 50% fructose) since it typically has 55%% fructose (although there is a version with 42% fructose, but much less used). This shows HFCS is only 10% higher in fructose than “normal” sugar. The reason HFCS is called “high” is in relation to ordinary corn syrup (chiefly maltose, which a disaccharide composed of 2 glucose units, with no fructose at all).

        You should be aware that HFCS has never reached a level of even 10% of the level of sucrose consumption globally, as it’s chiefly used in the US (due mainly to high US sugar prices due to quotas to protect domestic sugar producers). Yet we see increasing obesity in countries around the world, from India to Vietnam, who have essentially zero HFCS consumption.

        You are also probably aware that all carbohydrates, for example rice and wheat, are metabolized chiefly to glucose. (Whole wheat bread increases blood sugar more than sucrose). So eliminating sucrose and/or HFCS may not (in fact almost surely will not) have the impact folks like Robert Lustig want to achieve (at least not on health).

    • The problem here is focusing just on sugar. All kinds of carbohydrates break down to simple sugars and the simple carbohydrates break down very easily. It is certainly possible to get fat even while not eating sugar but I almost can guarantee you will not get fat if you eliminate carbohydrates unless you have some unusual metabolic condition.

      Take a look at this:


      Low carb diets were using as early as 1797 for diabetes.

      In more modern times we have

      Mackarness diet 1958
      Stillman diet 1967
      Atkins diet 1972

      • Yes, I proved that to myself fairly easily losing 20lbs.

        But there are somewhat separate but related issues: fat storage, diabetus, and heart disease.

        Fructose is different.

        The body can and will produce glucose if none is available – not so for fructose.

        Glucose is absorbed directly and usable by every cell in the body – not so for fructose.

        Being usable directly, glucose doesn’t create numbers of toxic byproducts – fructose creates a huge number of byproducts including damaging fats in the liver.

        And fructose screws up leptin response which leads to the underlying hunger.

        Now, glucose and more importantly insulin load does increase fat storage. And high insulin exposure is theorized to cause both diabetes and heart disease. But I think eliminating sugars ( including most fruit ) while limiting carbs to 30-40 grams per meal is most healthful.

      • TE

        30 – 40 grams of carbs per meal is pretty low.

        When first diagnosed, I was told 300 grams a day was the goal. Now I’m told no more than 200.

      • TE 30 – 40 grams of carbs per meal is pretty low.

        Yes, especially when a good IPA can have 30 alone.
        But it’s doable. It helps to get sanctimonious.

        People feel deprived ( and want bread ) but focusing on what you can have without limit ( bacon, cheese, salad ) seems to satisfy me.

        And I think that’s key – we crave carbs, but having them actually satisfies us less than fats & proteins. Insulin spikes and effects on leptin explain that pretty well. Though just as with the lipid hypothesis, better understanding will surely come.

        Best of luck.

    • Geoff@largess Banking on the fact that no one will bother checking.
      You are absotively right, no conspiracy here, time to move along children and take your Soma.

      First Paper:
      Luc Tappy has received research grants from Nestlé SA, Switzerland, and personal fees from Ferrero, Italy.

      Second Paper: J M Rippe
      Representative Client & Partner List The Rippe Lifestyle Institute.
      Con Agra Foods
      Evian Waters of France, Inc.
      General Mills, Inc.
      The Kellogg Company
      PepsiCo NA

      • Hi Horst, you seem to imply that funding determines outcomes and that the professors mentioned have no integrity. Do you believe the same is true for scientists who receive funding from the government?

        Do you have anything sensible to say about the actual science or just ad hominems? Suppose the papers were written by presidents of food companies (assuming they had the qualifications). Would that change the science in the slightest?

        It is supposed to be one of the chief values of the scientific method that is reduces the effect of biases (which all scientists have). Perhaps you don’t believe the scientific method can stand up to funding pressure. Knowing that the government funds a high percentage of the science in the US, do you think it is all biased?

      • Geoff: Just post pro-sugar papers by researchers who are not funded by the sugar industry and the point becomes mute.

      • Here is the bio of one of the scientists you are insulting:

        Luc Tappy was born in Lausanne in 1957. He graduated from medical school and obtained his MD degree at Lausanne University in 1981. He was then trained in the Department of internal medicine, Centre Hospitalier Universitaire Vaudois, and in the Diabetes section, Temple University Hospital, Philadelphia, PA.

        Since 1988, he has been a senior researcher at the Institute of Physiology, Lausanne University School of Medicine. He has been awarded a Career Development Award of the Foundation Max Cloëtta (1991-1997) to develop research projects in the field of human metabolism. His studies focused on nutrition, physical exercise and metabolism in healthy individuals and in various clinical conditions, such as diabetes, obesity, organ transplant patients and critically ill patients. In 2002, he was appointed full professor of physiology at the Department of Physiology of the University of Lausanne, and associate physician at the Division of Endocrinology and Metabolism of the CHUV. He has also been invited professor at the Centre Hospitalier Sart Tilman in Liège, Belgium (1998-2001), and in the Department of Nutrition at the University of California at Berkeley (1995).

        His present research is essentially focused on the environmental factors involved in the present epidemics of obesity and type2 diabetes. Several studies are thus conducted to evaluate the role of dietary sugars (more specifically fructose in carbonated beverages) in the development of obesity and insulin resistance. Several other studies are aimed at assessing and evaluating the role of sport and physical activity in the prevention of metabolic disorders.

        Luc Tappy has published more than 200 scientific papers in international medical journals and has gained a wide international recognition in his field. In 1997, he received the price “Apollinaire Bouchardat” as an international recognition of his scientific achievements. He has been a member of the scientific board of the Association de Langue Française pour l’Etude du Diabète (1997-1999) and vice-president of the scientific board of the Human Nutrition Research Center in Lyon, France (1996-2002).

      • Geoff: You are saying that it is insulting to copy and paste Dr. Tappy’s conflict statement from one of his own published papers. By your logic, Luc insults himself. Perhaps by taking money from candy makers and publishing papers with candy maker employees that conclude that candy is wholesome is an example of self deprecation.

        You then go on to laud his many accomplishments. TL:DNR. I assume he is the second coming as well as a top man.

        Appeal to authority is the first argument made when you have nothing.

      • Hi Horst, looks like you want to dodge the question of funding bias. Although I’ve never worked for a food company, I can imagine if I produced a product that contained sugar, I would indeed want to work with top level scientists who have addressed the issues fairly.

        Rather than further tie up a climate blog, I’ll wrap this up with one citations (of hundreds) not funded by industry (and in truth, the scientists mentioned above have received the vast majority of their research funding from public sources):

        First, the bio:

        Dr. Nikhil V. Dhurandhar, is professor and Chair of the department of nutritional sciences at Texas Tech University, Lubbock, TX, USA. He was president of The Obesity Society for 2014-2015. As a physician and nutritional biochemist, he has been involved with obesity treatment and research for over 20 years. Dr. Dhurandhar coined the term “Infectobesity” – obesity of infectious origin. Dr. Dhurandhar et al. were the first to identify adipogenic effects of an avian adenovirus (SMAM-1) and a human adenovirus (Ad36), and the first to report beneficial effects of Ad36, particularly on glucose metabolism. He believes that simple explanations for causes of obesity are inadequate and novel approaches are required for its effective management.

        Dr. Dhurandhar has received research funding from the NIH, American Diabetes Association, Federal Emergency Management Agency, and other non-profit or commercial funding sources, has published over 100 scientific articles, and book chapters, and served as a mentor or advisor for several students and postdoctoral fellows

        Now the citation: JAMA (Journal of the American Medical Association), The Link Between Dietary Sugar Intake and Cardiovascular Disease Mortality – An Unresolved Question (2015): see http://jama.jamanetwork.com/article.aspx?articleid=2174010&resultClick=3 .

        Since it’s paywalled, I’ll quote a few lines: “The relationship between added sugar intake and CVD mortality remains unresolved”. Referring to a recent study (Yang, et.al.) he remarks the study “does not support
        implementation of health policies limiting sugar intake because a relatively small fraction of the total population ingests excessive amounts of sugar by the IOM [Institute of Medicine] criteria. The implications vary
        substantially based on the criteria used for defining excess sugar consumption”.
        He concludes “although added sugar intake may increase CVD risk factors, the causal relationship between sugar ingestion, CVD risk factors,
        and CVD mortality remains unclear. Laws attempting to limit
        excess sugar intake have been passed and overturned on legal
        grounds. Aside from the legal questions, there is insufficient scientific
        evidence to support pursuit of policies limiting sugar intake”.

      • Horst Graben,

        Would I be correct in supposing that you support the genocidal sociopathic nutters calling themselves Warmists, who promote lunatic schemes to remove CO2 from the atmosphere, on the basis of bizarre unsubstantiated notions from a motley collection of self styled climatologists?

        All in the name of supposedly preventing the climate from changing, or some equally deranged crackpot idea. Really? These blundering fools couldn’t even tell you what the climate of California is, or how one could possibly immobilise the weather, in order that the climate would forever remain unchanging!

        I assume you are not that silly, but only pretending to be so, for reasons I cannot comprehend. Ah well, it takes all kinds to make a world. Good luck with your attempts to defeat Nature – let me know when you succeed.


      • Mike: I’m beginning to think you are actually a bot created by Mosher to clutter this blog with seemingly unintentional humor.

      • Horst Graben,

        You wrote –

        “Mike: I’m beginning to think . . . ”

        I’m very pleased to hear it. It gets easier, the more you do.


  8. Interesting piece on heart rate and wise reasoning. For a couple months months I’ve been going to a gym (Orange Theory) where they track everyone’s heart rates on a big screens as the put the group through a boot camp type workout for an hour. You get your results broken down and charted for the hour after class. I’ve also found it interesting to watch the variation amongst and between people which you can see on the board before class starts. I always start the lowest, end up high and shift like crazy. I’d thought it was my advanced age or an indication I needed the class, but even if if I’m deluding myself – it’s fun to think it might be wisdom.

    If this research holds up up and pans out will we monitor students, job candidates, political candidates… On some polarizing issues might partisans on n one side of the debate tend differ markedly from their opponents in this regard?

    Seriously, I wonder if the effect in the article is tied to the condition wherein some people are physically/emotionally excited by reasoning, alternatives and ideas.

    • Heart Rate is one physiological variable that is easy to monitor non-invasively and easy to analyze — variation in r-r interval. This variation can have many causes through several pathways …

      Variation in the beat-to-beat interval is a physiological phenomenon. The SA node receives several different inputs and the instantaneous heart rate or RR interval and its variation are the results of these inputs.
      [ … ]
      Factors that affect the input are the baroreflex, thermoregulation, hormones, sleep-wake cycle, meals, physical activity, and stress.


      Not mentioned are clouds, CO2, water vapor, sun cycles, black carbon, snow cover or methane.

  9. This too, on Svensmark’s Solar-cosmic-ray theory of
    climate. O that settled climate science!

    • Mmmm, so you would also argue that the science is not settled because of Doug Cotton’s “theory” published in that very same, err, journal?

    • Interesting graphs. When global irradiance vs clouds is separated by hemisphere, correlation goes up dramatically.
      Good find!

  10. This just up at WUWT citing free speech witch hunt-sceptics targeted.


    At first I thought is this Al Gores retribution for Lamar Smith going after Nasa because they wouldn’t disclose data?

    However it seems it may a concerted attack on non governmental non taxpayer funded organisations. I do not know who CEI is so perhaps someone can see if there are any analogies between them and Nasa.


    • Tony, I am for 100% transparency on climate science, including climate science skepticism, regardless of the funding source. Yes, I said it, 100% transparency. What’s good for the goose is good for the gander. People who live in glass house shouldn’t throw stones.

      • The Panama Papers, show that it can be far more important if you simply remove all your property from the local tax rolls too, thinks G.S. They all have too many windows to break anyway. May be down the road just a bit if people leave a few more ‘gates’ open. Let’s all Hope.

      • richardswarthout

        The problem occurs when government try’s to regulate advocacy and burdens organization with undo legal costs.


      • max10k:

        Whether you are just being cynically dishonest or truly believe in “100% transparency” there is no comparison between Congress exercising its oversight duties of federal agencies and the government targeting private citizen dissidents.

      • It looks like this is a case where CEI are being brought in to help in the RICO case against Exxon. I don’t see CEI being prosecuted because this is just a subpoena in another case, and they may have some relevant evidence.

      • …they may have some relevant evidence.

        If there is any basis for that approach then subpoenas should be issued to Naomi Oreskes and the Climate Accountability Institute in the next few days. That’s where the real conspiracy arose.

    • maksimovich1

      its a wag the dog event as the US virgin islands is on Pierre Moscovici hit list,due to the failure of its investigative bodies to respond to eu tax crime requests (viz a viz Panama.)

      • I expect Putin, to respond by attacking the soft underbelly of US personal financial data stored by the biggest firms and the accounts of their powerful clients. If he does nothing, this is all fake people. If he does it should be in the newsstands this Summer. What would you do if you were as smart as V. Putin? Anyone?

      • Well there’s nothing like a little competition to shine a light on malfeasance and keep everybody honest.

        UK prime minister says he bungled admission of offshore fund


        British Prime Minister David Cameron admitted Saturday that he bungled his admission of his investment in an offshore fund revealed in the mammoth data breach of a Panama law firm….

        It was Cameron’s first public appearance since his admission Thursday night that he had owned shares in a Bahamas-based trust from 1997 to 2010. He had sidestepped persistent questions on the issue for four days with a string of obfuscating statements issued through aides.

        Cameron faces mounting pressure from opposition lawmakers to reveal the full extent of his past investment in offshore investments….

        The British prime minister is one of scores of political leaders, celebrities and sports stars who have been linked to shell companies and investment trusts organized by the Panama City-based law firm Mossack Fonseca, which specializes in registering offshore companies. Cameron has made the closure of global tax loopholes a focal point of his government — and rejected charges of hypocrisy on the issue.

      • Glenn – this is a good example of why simple, non-onerous laws are net beneficial. If the US could simplify corporate tax law, it would eliminate some of the corporate expense for attorneys and accountants. If more corporations return to the US, a lesser tax rate would bring in the same revenue. Socialists want to counter the off-shore shelter problem by maker even more laws and by dealing out punishments. It’s a never-ending cycle. They are too short sighted to see the problem with over-regulation, and what’s more, they keep making more so “solve” the “problem” when they don’t really even understand the problem is themselves.

      • Arch Stanton said:

        I expect Putin, to respond by attacking the soft underbelly of US personal financial data stored by the biggest firms and the accounts of their powerful clients.

        This may already be happening.

        Here’s a link to a video report that someone sent me this morning.

        It is in Spanish, but it alleges that the heat was getting a little bit too hot for the benefactos of the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ) — Soros and the Rockefellers (Open Society Foundation), Ford Foundation, David Packard Foundation — so ICIJ unleashed a typical “look over there” media campaign with the release of the Panama papers.

        “What is the ICIJ and the obedient mainstream media hiding?,” the nartator asks.

        The argument is that the leaks have been very selective, chosen to implicate certain perps, but omit others.

        The reason ICIJ and the Organized Crime and Corruption Reporting Project (OCCRP) — both with financing by George Soros — unleashed the “look over there” campaign is to call attention away from the world’s most important fiscal paradise and center of money laundering: the United States.

        This is a battle between elites, and from my point of view there don’t appear to be any good guys, only bad guys.

    • David Wojick

      Tony, CEI is one the leading climate change skeptics in DC, led by Myron Ebell. See their http://www.globalwarming.org/. They run the Cooler Heads Coalition which features a monthly coordination meeting with other skeptical groups, focused on Congressional action. Great front line people.

    • https://cei.org/issues


      The Competitive Enterprise Institute is a non-profit public policy organization dedicated to advancing the principles of limited government, free enterprise, and individual liberty. Our mission is to promote both freedom and fairness by making good policy good politics. We make the uncompromising case for economic freedom because we believe it is essential for entrepreneurship, innovation, and prosperity to flourish.

      Unique among free market groups, CEI pursues a full-service approach to advancing public policy. We publish original scholarly studies that make the case for an issue, but our work doesn’t end there. We then take it to the next level by marketing our policy proposals. We craft and deploy media advocacy campaigns around that foundation of solid research in order to reach policy makers, influential opinion leaders, and grassroots activists. CEI policy analysts produce timely commentaries for major news organizations, appear on television and radio, and reach out to beat reporters covering our issues.

      We also build coalitions, joining with allies to advance specific issues at the state, national, and international levels. When appropriate, we pursue our pro-freedom advocacy in court. We have brought lawsuits challenging the constitutionality of dubious statutes, interstate agreements, and onerous regulations, and we have sued government agencies to force the disclosure of public information.

      Founded in 1984, CEI has grown into an effective advocate for freedom on a wide range of critical policy issues, including energy, environment, business and finance, technology, telecommunications, and food and drug regulation.

      Think: the free-market equivalent of the Sierra Club, or perhaps Greenpeace.

    • CEI is also a defendant with Mark Steyn in the Mann law suit that will never end. The court “expedited” the appeal in April, 2014; the briefs were completed in November, 2014; and as of April 8, 2016…..crickets..

  11. Ignore all health warnings on food, and all food fads. I remember the mindless shovelling of “carbs” back in the eighties, and all those ads for disgusting “lite” oils and margarines where mummy was applauded by the whole family for dishing up slimy yellow grease with a tick from some government authority.

    You can’t beat culture, tradition, flavour and appetite as guides. Avoidance is as bad as gorging, health food as bad as junk food. People who eat puritanically with their heads end up dining out on muck anyway, just to get their quotient of flavour, sugar, salt, fats etc.

    I don’t know what cholesterol is and neither do I care what cavemen ate. The baked brussel sprouts with bacon are calling me from the oven where I’ve just cooked a rosemary foccaccia which I’ve just torn apart and drenched in butter…

    • amen
      would only add two words …
      Kieth Richards

      it’s all in the tumbling dice

    • You just lost all your street cred with the Brussels sprouts. It will be difficult to trust anything said by one who actively seeks out that experience.

      • Look, I know Brussels sprouts sound terribly Michelle, but try baking them into nutty deliciousness with lots of whole garlic and bacon (halved or quartered to absorb more of the olive oil, butter, salt and muscovado sugar).

        Then all the food mullahs will think you’re a non-triggering Democrat and go bother someone else.

      • Danny Thomas

        Sounds great if ya just leave out the brussel sprouts.

      • mosomoso,

        I fear your head has been turned by Warmism. Do not use muscavado sugar! It’s a Warmist conspiracy, intended to confuse, divert and deny!

        “Confusion has been created over the meaning of the term muscovado sugar, and as there is no legal definition or Protected Designation of Origin (PDO), different manufacturers are free to use the term loosely to describe any dark, molasses-rich sugar they produce.”

        Obviously a Warmist product. Ill defined, confusing, and loosely used. At least it seems to have some actual sugary goodness in it, unlike the usual Warmist fare, which provides no sustenance at all.


      • No longer indigestible. Serfs like that…mmmm,
        better than acorn meal.

    • Baked brussel sprouts are divine.

  12. Here is a “Flip Side to Dr. Curry’s “Must Read” story on scientific consensus (sugar article):


    • What’s always seems to get lost in these highly reductionist leftist screeds is that, if we can get past the point where making a profit is considered to be evil, that the best way to make a profit is to give the customer what he wants, and at the cheapest price point.

      But in the leftist mind consumers are invariably reduced to mere putty in the hands of the engineers of consent: the public can be persuaded to buy any product, just so long as the sales pitch is crafty enough. To wit:

      Beginning in 1921, GM’s executive committee began to articulate the first principles that would come to be known as Sloanism–that is, planned obsolescence and product differentiation through speed, power, style and color; “a car for every purse and purpose,” as Sloan was fond of saying.

      Between 1922 and the end of the decade, Sloan and his GM associates would devise marketing strategies that would see GM overtake Ford as the world’s largest automobile manufacturer and set the tone for the next fifty years of American automotive consumption. Central to this growth would be an awareness that consumers were no longer looking merely for basic transportation, which was the stock in trade of Ford’s beloved Model T. In addition to consumer financing (which Ford opposed), Sloan was convinced that style, snob appeal and speed would help GM steal its customers away. He was right….

      As it happened, the new additive could be fitted neatly into the Sloanist equation. For while it was initially seen by Kettering and his staff as a way to cure knock and to husband fossil-fuel supplies, the high compression it enabled in motors was just as easily exploited to make cars faster and more powerful, thus easier to sell. Alan Loeb, a former EPA attorney and lead historian who has examined the period closely, has neatly summed up Kettering’s conversion: “By 1923…it was clear that Kettering’s original purpose for the antiknock research had given way to GM’s desire to improve auto performance without regard for its effect on fuel economy….

      This sort of thinking serves the purpose of placing all culpability on the industrialists, and removing it from their customers, so that the industrialists can be cast in their unambiguous role as the great satan.

      It must be remembered, however, the key role these industrialists played in making the United States the industrial powerhouse it once was.

    • JCH,

      You wrote –

      “The shingles are concrete and asbestos. Very thin, very strong, and very durable.”

      Oh no! Get away from that house! Asbestos! Asbestos! Mesothelioma! Lingering death!

      On the other hand, just leaving them alone might be the best thing to do. Much like a bit of CO2 in the atmosphere. Plants love it, we breathe it out all the time.

      Some people want to get rid of it all. Probably the same sorts of people who would demand you get rid of your asbestos shingles. I’d keep the shingles, myself.


      • It just depends on whether or not they are actually hail damaged. I doubt it, but if the adjuster thinks they are, then I’m going have Ludowici distressed tiles installed – weathered and warped from the factory.

      • In grad school, some construction activity at the other end of the building shook loose a small (less than hand-size) pile of white powder from the ceiling to the floor. You would have thought we had just been exposed to aerosol Ebola–evacuation, the industrial-safety people coming in to perform tests, etc.. We eventually got an email congratulating us on our paranoia and reassuring us that the powder was not asbestos and that our air was free of measurable quantities of the devil mineral. The whole thing suggested to me that these types of fears might be the equivalent among educated Americans of belief in witchcraft. After all, the non-smoking shipyard workers of WWII, who were massively exposed to the nastier version of the fiber, didn’t exactly drop like flies, although they did get sick at a higher rate. The idea that a tiny potential exposure (to the less-dangerous kind generally used in civilian insulation) might be a reason for panic was fairly ridiculous.

  13. “According to a new U.N. report, the global warming outlook is much worse than originally predicted. Which is pretty bad when they originally predicted it would destroy the planet.”
    — Jay Leno

  14. Two good articles, among many at the website, as a evidence-based counter to facile, conspiracy-mongering about diet :



    • blog science. gotta love it.

      • Is that a substantive critique?

        I wouldn’t take anything in those articles at face value, but I do think that they provide useful context for evaluating the newspaper science conspiracy-mongering that Judith considers a “must read.”

      • blueice2hotsea


        Are the ‘articles’ really worth more a ‘substantive critique’? Here’s one problem:

        The article on the Asian Paradox looks at the diet of Bedouins which it compares to that of Colombians, Cubans and Venezuelans who have traditionally had among the highest rates of per capita sugar consumption in the world and low rates of coronary heart disease mortality.

        Whereas the World Health Organization gives the age adjusted mortality rates/100,000 for cardio-vascular disease as:


        So now I am wondering why Cuba and Venezuela were selected as examples of low heart disease mortality and why you judged the articles as ‘good’. Well, not really

    • Observational studies are particularly useless because they don’t control other variables. If you look at the sources of saturated fats in the modern diet, what you’ll find is something like pizza, hamburgers, tacos, etc. which all have high carbohydrate content in addition to animal fats and are likely washed down with corn syrup soda.

      There is an operating theory with respect to high carb diets and heart disease. Namely insulin response ( insulin is an inflammatory substance ) damages arteries which the body tries to repair with cholesterol ( which is the reason the body produces cholesterol ). Too much repair in the arteries is akin to scar tissue which builds up.

      The lipid hypothesis was that eating fats led to fat deposits. But why? Fats are liquid at body temperature. And it turns out the specific cholesterols in arterial disease are associated with bodily repair.

      So, heart disease is one aspect, but obesity is another. Since more than a teaspoon or so of glucose in the blood is toxic, the body MUST store any excess in fat to keep it from killing us. It is no wonder that stressing our bodies with high carb loads results in fat storage.

      • It’s sad to see this propaganda, not a solid scientific presentation. Rather than tie up this post too much longer, I’ll just make two points.

        1) Dr. Lustig states (more or less accurately) there is 55 grams of “salt” in the average Coke, which he compares to the amount in a pizza. Well, no doubt there are extra low-salt (and tasteless) pizzas in San Francisco, but the typical pizza serving of 300 grams contains almost always at least 2 grams of salt at least, and levels up to 7 grams are not uncommon. So 36-127 times as much salt as a Coke. Cutting back on Coke will hardly affect your salt intake. (And a global study has shown intakes between 3-5 grams of sodium, roughly equal to 7.5-15.5 grams of salt are healthy for most people. See http://circres.ahajournals.org/content/116/6/1046.full ).
        2) I’m as open to vigorous rhetoric as an Oxford don, but perhaps I’m a bit sensitive to the word “poison”. In my decades managing chemical businesses, I dealt with the kinds of poisons that could kill in seconds – chlorine and ammonia gas, sodium and hydrogen cyanide, carbon disulfide among others. My 91 year old father would be surprised to discover he’s been eating “poison” every day of his life, and so would my 80 year old step mom. You can be sure, if I decide to bump someone off, I’ll use the more reliable and faster acting poisons mentioned rather than the fictitious “poison” postulated by Dr. Lustig.

      • I think you missed the point on salt – it’s not that salt is a problem but that the only reason it’s in Coke is to make you thirsty for more Coke. And the only reason caffeine is in Coke is to make you pee out the old Coke so you have room for more Coke. That’s not illegal but it’s a reminder that Coke has more interest in selling Coke than your long term medical bills.
        I used to drink Pepsi and 30 years ago, I do recall a Pepsi having 120 calories. Now, they seem to have 180 calories. So if one were drinking at the same rate, they’d be getting 50% more sugar. ( I’ve since forsaken all sodas ).

        It’s sad to see this propaganda, not a solid scientific presentation.

        Did you watch the coupla minutes of biochemistry? Chemistry, measurements and the like. Glucose is directly absorbed in the blood and is directly usable by every cell, though too much and insulin response becomes a problem. Fructose on the other hand, requires all ilk of sub processes and measurements of fatty deposits in the liver and screwed up Leptin which screws up satiety leading to overeating.

        Now, the causations are identified in the bio-chem, but it’s true there is a lot of statistical correlation. However, the fructose consumption increase correlates very well with diabetes increase.

        What is your operating theory explaining the increase in diabetes?

      • Dear Turbulent Eddie,
        Having you repeat the silly statements that Dr. Lustig makes does not make them any more supportable. Cataloguing all of the mistakes and misrepresentations would take a book and detailed discussion of what we do and do not know about metabolism, so I’ll just limit to a couple of points.

        1) Your (and Dr. Lustig’s) hypothesis seems to be that added salt in a beverage increases thirst and therefore consumption. Let’s see, can we find any counter examples? For one, how much “salt” is in a 12 oz. glass of milk? About 370 mg, so more than 6 times the level in Coke. Do we drink milk excessively? How much sodium is in a glass of V8 vegetable juice? 480 mg? Is this level causing excessive consumption of V8 (vegetable) juice? As mentioned above, pizza often has 2-3 grams of salt. Is that causing massive overconsumption of beverages? So no, evidence does not support your and Dr. Lustig’s hypothesis.
        2) Dr. Lustig tries to dazzle with a lot of biochemistry. Although he did get his bachelor’s degree in biochemistry from MIT, it was a long time ago (1976) and he seems to have forgotten a lot of basics, the essential ones being that human biochemistry is complicated. (In this he reminds me of a lot of climate scientists who just claim “It’s the physics!). He purports to show pathways for fructose that lead to certain outcomes, such as increased uric acid, increased gout, increased triglycerides, increased hypertension, etc. However, he ignored evidence in humans of little or no effects including http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S027153171300184X, http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25144126, and http://jn.nutrition.org/content/145/10/2265.abstract . (I’m referencing newer papers written after his diatribe just to show the latest studies, but similar studies were available before his talk, for example http://ajcn.nutrition.org/content/86/6/1586.full ).

        3) Although there are lots of studies on diabetes and obesity, we don’t really understand the causes very clearly. I would quote Prof. Robert Waterland, Professor of Pediatrics and Molecular & Human Genetics, Baylor College of Medicine, in his recent paper in the prestigious Annual Review of Nutrition and Metabolism, where he states that although “the current obesity epidemic is arguably the single greatest nutrition-related problem in the developed world, its fundamental causes remain poorly understood”. (see http://www.annualreviews.org/doi/abs/10.1146/annurev-nutr-071813-105315). The razzle-dazzle of Dr. Lustig does not help, but rather impedes this process of open minded scientific investigation. As I mentioned above, diabetes is rapidly increasing in parts of the world where HFCS is unknown, and soft drink consumption is a fraction of that in the US.

      • One last quick set of facts. Diabetes was first documented by the Egyptians, so it’s been around a lot longer than Coke. In fact, it was the Greek physician Aertaeus who coined the term diabetes mellitus in the first century AD!

      • My pet hypothesis is that a big factor in diabetes is cultural, bad social and psychological dynamics affecting hormones.

      • My observations lead me to believe a sedentary lifestyle plays a large role.

      • One last quick set of facts. Diabetes was first documented by the Egyptians, so it’s been around a lot longer than Coke. In fact, it was the Greek physician Aertaeus who coined the term diabetes mellitus in the first century AD!

        Do you suppose they were observing Type 1, not Type 2?

        Also, that’s pretty apt. Diabetes, Obesity, and Heart Disease are Diseases of Civilization. Evidence is that most agriculture has produced crops much denser in carbohydrate and sugar. See the chart below. What’s remarkable is the uptake in sugar and it’s increase in the calorie density.

        All foods appear to stimulate some insulin response. Carbohydrates stimulate the most. But it’s pretty clear that total calorie consumption, total sugar intake, and diabetes are all rising, while at the same time animal fat consumption has been decreasing.

      • My observations lead me to believe a sedentary lifestyle plays a large role.

        Ya, things are multi-factoral. Chemistry is not my long suit, but it seems if vigorous exercise takes place for sufficient time, the body uses all readily available glucose/glycogen and searches for other energy which would seem to include some of the harmful fats in the liver.

      • I prefer common sense and deterministic analysis. Look at Native Americans in the 1800’s versus now. Obesity, diabetes and low alcohol tolerance. Obviously, they have not had 10K to 5K years of evolution to adapt to a Western diet that includes refined carbohydrates, sugars and alcohol. They are like the canary in the coal mine showing what happens when a dietary source of carbohydrate shifts away from root vegetables rich in fructan polysaccharides in a very short period of time.

        It’s not surprising that Dr. Lustig, whose video which is dumbed down for the general public has a solid scientific publication background. You can see that this quack seems to be focused on solving the childhood obesity problem. If he was smart about funding, he would proscribe more Nestle candy bars and Pepsi Cola super gulps.

      • Horst,

        >…fructan polysaccharides…

        No need to cuss, although that is a clever way around the muderator.

        I don’t think a few million years of a evolution provided homo sapiens sapiens the equipment to handle sugar. A beehive was a rare find.

        I tell my kids to stay away from the fructan sodas – the sugar drinks are banned from our house.

      • fructans are good for people, fructose is good for multi-national corporations. The best sources of the common food fructan inulin are jerusalem artichokes (sunchokes… New Leaf used to carry them, great on salads), chicory root, onions, garlic, asparagus, leeks, etc.

        It is considered a pre-biotic e.g. the food for “good” bacteria whereas sugar and alcohol are food for “bad” bacteria. It has to do with the types of volatile fatty acids that get created.


      • Hi Arch, yes it’s very likely reduced physical activity has a role, and perhaps vitamin D (http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/10408398.2015.1136922?journalCode=bfsn20).

      • Horst,

        The words “fructan” and “inulin” are knew to me. I thought you meant “phookin” and “insulin”. Anyway, I followed Casey Stengel’s advice and looked ’em up. Inulin is good, but too much too fast can lead to volcanic trumping and feculent eructations, so you can nevah evah be too careful. I wonder if the Donald knows the meaning of trumping – tooting your own horn, so to speak. I read about it in my textbook from “Flatology 101” (not a subset of topology).

        Anyway, we eat lots of garlic, onions, bananas, and yams, though not wild yams, so we’re good with fructans and inulin. I had my gut biota severely tested by a little stay in the ICU with nectrotizing fasciitis and I came out of it smelling like a rose.

        Thanks for the info about fructans and inulin – you amaze me with all the things you know. How do you do it?

  15. From “May the best Idea win”:

    “Knowledge must be open for everyone to challenge,” Williams says in Academic Freedom. “The advantage of a marketplace of ideas is that the best, least refutable ideas will win out no matter how often they are contested by whom. The assumption that some knowledge is incontestable contributes towards a culture of conformity in universities.”

    Talk about wishful thinking. Perhaps this person has never encountered group think before (also gang think). As proof, consider that Universities once were an open marketplace of ideas. Now they aren’t.

    • Joanna Williams book. University no longer a market
      place of ideas but a safe place from language that
      can threaten a student’s identity …

      Q: What’s wrong with critical theory, in your view, and how
      has it limited academic freedom?

      A: The problem with critical theory is that it sets in place
      the political trends that underpin so much of the identity
      politics we see today and provides an intellectual
      justification for the practice of censorship. It teaches that
      all knowledge is inherently political and reducible to
      power relations. If this is the case, then there is little need
      for students to learn anything that arises from outside of
      their own identity group. It teaches that words and images
      are all powerful in constructing reality — and that to change
      words and images will effect changes upon the way the
      world is. For example, racism can be challenged by
      showing positive images of black people, sexism can be
      challenged by swapping pronouns in children’s books.
      This teaches students the antidemocratic and unrealistic
      notion that banning certain words or pictures can make
      the world a better place. At the same time, critical theory
      also promotes a relativism. Nothing is more worth
      knowing than anything else. This means the necessity for
      academic freedom, to challenge existing orthodoxies and
      contest truth claims, is done away with.

      • °°°°Joanna Williams says:

        It teaches that all knowledge is inherently political and reducible to power relations.

        The problem is that a great deal of knowledge is based on power relations.

        How is the layman to determine which knowledge is based on power relations and which knowledge is based on a logic, empiricism and dialectic which is less biased by power relations?

        In the school of hard knocks, non-elites have discovered that the Modernist dream of a totally unbiased, apodictic science was never anything but a utopian yearning, and an instrument of social control.

        Nevertheless, hope, or the disingenuousness of the elites, springs eternal, and the Positivists, which include a great many scientists, still cling to their vision of an apodictic science and the dream of being able to lord it over everyone else.

        Of course, regardless of how much a scientist’s endeavors are based on power relations, the scientist will argue they are not political and are driven only by “the one true science.”

        Thus, as Nietzsche realized, Socratism — the advent of “logic,” the advent of rationality without the chaos and complexity teeming behind appearances, creating and destroying them — is a fundamental human stance, and science is “a problem with horns.”

        As Nietzsche wrote in The Birth of Tragedy:

        What I grasped then, something terrifying and dangerous, a problem with horns, not necessarily a bull, nevertheless a new problem: today I would say that it was the problem of science itself — science for the first time made problematic, worthy of questioning.

        As Williams points out, however, if we go too far down the relativist and construcivist road, that creates a whole new set of problems of its own.

  16. The article on over treatment was interesting. One only has to look at the less then stellar history of the adoption of useless and harmful fads in childbirth in North America to see it in action. And the need for doctors to be comforted by their activity, which is normally not required in a normal birth, which most are, is profoundly illustrated by intense controversy over not doing things like routine episiotomy, stirrups and lithotomy position, to see how much physicians as a group value their comfort over what is good for women and babies.

  17. Danny Thomas

    A lesson in dealing with scientific uncertainty: https://weather.com/news/news/nws-los-angeles-funny-forecast-discussion

  18. Submitted by Alan Longhurst:

    Exhibiting Bias: Radical environmentalists want museums to stop taking donations from environmentalists

    • One intangible COI not (apparently not) mentioned is one that you have mentioned, fear of expression of skepticism of global warming. Fear of ostracism or related fears conflicts with scientific honesty.

    • “Fabrication is making up data or results and recording or reporting them.”

      Now strictly speaking that (making up data) would be something like the average temperature in Albuquerque in January is 51 when it is actually 47. Agencies, if I understand correctly, use data that is agreed upon reliable and then they compute using logarithm to decipher a number vs the base. I am ignorant of UAH an RSS but understand it to be a similar process. So scientists rely on distilled information or it is otherwise incomprehensible. If they fail to supply code and method it should be suspect.

      Now most people would believe the data to be fairly exact and that the government would have to provide reliable numbers. Best would not be given that standard but would have to be perhaps even better to justify it’s usefulness. So when one goes to the Drudge Report and finds a link that says: “Global Temperature Record Is A Smoking Gun Of Collusion And Fraud” They can either dismiss it as crackpot conspiracy theory or wonder how could this happen? https://stevengoddard.wordpress.com/2016/04/08/global-temperature-record-is-a-smoking-gun-of-collusion-and-fraud/

      For quite some time now the government reported unemployment figures are skewed. Because they only record people going back to work and not people who have given up trying they end up with a figure that is say 5% vs a real number of 7% or higher. So it is not as if the government can be depended upon for unvarnished truth. But most of us believe they have to be transparent and tell the truth or otherwise join the legions of conspiracy theorists. So basically someone like me, who has no scientific background, has to pick it’s poison and either join the naïve or the conspiracy theorists. I find this very frustrating and continue to tune in if only to see if this is somehow rectified. I know the unemployment data won’t be fixed, back to what it was, but that is a recording problem not a method and code problem. Still either they don’t know (probably most) or they don’t consider it to be fraud.

      • “First, let’s talk about his comment that the 5 percent unemployment rate is likely doctored and that we’re “probably into the twenties if you look at the real number.”

        Trump elaborated on the official unemployment rate, which was just reported in Friday’s nonfarm payroll report: “That was a number that was devised, statistically devised to make politicians — and, in particular, presidents — look good. And I wouldn’t be getting the kind of massive crowds that I’m getting if the number was a real number.”

        Related: The Brutal Economic Truth Behind the Rise of Trump​​​​​​

        Economists at Bank of America Merrill Lynch took a crack at the jobless rate issue in a note to clients on Tuesday, admitting that the situation “doesn’t feel” like unemployment is really at 5 percent. Because of the way unemployment is calculated, the rate can be reduced either by more people finding jobs or more people giving up on their job search. Factoring in a partial recovery in the labor force participation rate from levels not seen since the 1970s, the economists estimate the “real” unemployment rate is about 6 percent and potentially as high as 7.7 percent.


      • Thanks

      • Certainly, unemployment is an important factor in the mood of the country and the rise of Trump. But there is another factor in play here. From the article:

        The Conundrum

        So while it is true that the US is richer than ever, it is also true that the majority of Americans are relatively poor in comparison. This is a conundrum because it is this growing disparity in income and wealth between the rich and poor that is bringing the rate of economic growth in the US to a standstill.

        It is consumer spending that fuels the majority of the growth in the US economy. Income growth is what drives consumer spending. When an increasing percentage of overall income goes to the wealthiest Americans, who are more likely to save or invest what they earn rather than spend it, the rate of consumer spending growth declines and the rate of economic growth follows.


      • Re unemployment, etc., the government (BLS) collects the data you want.

        A quote from the BLS web site:

        “Does the official unemployment rate exclude people who want a job but are not currently looking for work?

        Yes; however, there are separate estimates of persons outside the labor force who want a job, including those who are not currently looking because they believe no jobs are available (discouraged workers). In addition, alternative measures of labor underutilization (some of which include discouraged workers and other groups not officially counted as unemployed) are published each month in table A-15 of The Employment Situation news release. For more information about these alternative measures, please visit http://www.bls.gov/cps/lfcharacteristics.htm#altmeasures.”

        Go to Table A-15 in the linked April release for the data.


  19. After reading the White House scaremongering about health effects (worse than polio?!?!), I am reminded of Joseph Welch’s famous question to Senator McCarthy – “Have you no sense of decency, sir?” And then Al Gore – our almost-President – essentially calling for the rape of free speech: a fine defender of the Constitution he has proven to be! Yet again proving we need less heat and more light.

      • Glenn –

        Presumably, you recognize the ubiquity of wails of “crisis” in these pages, from Judith, and from yourself with regard to the state of our economy?

        Not to mention the beautiful, sweet irony of the use of that quote in and of itself: Fear-mongering about “tyranny?”

      • But Joshua, there’s a difference between yelling “fire” in a crowded theater when there is a fire, and yelling “fire” in a crowded theater when there isn’t a fire.

        It’s a distinction the climatariat, and their fellow traverlers on the other side of the aisle, the neocons, don’t ever seem to be able to make.

      • “But Joshua, there’s a difference between yelling “fire” in a crowded theater when there is a fire, and yelling “fire” in a crowded theater when there isn’t a fire.”

        This is spot on, but please allow me to elaborate a bit:

        Falsely yelling fire in a crowded theater that subsequently incites panic and injury is criminal because it is a fraud that led to demonstrable injury.

        Conversely, if a man were to get up and silently walk out of a theater because he noticed the back curtains had caught on fire, without warning another soul, this is also a crime. A crime of reckless and callous endangerment.

        The man who stands up in a crowded theater that is on fire not only has the right to yell fire, there is a compelling legal argument to be made that he has an obligation to do so.

    • “Climate change poses a serious danger to public health – worse than polio in some respects – and will strike especially hard at pregnant women, children, low-income people and communities of color, an authoritative US government report warned on Monday.”

      Unbelievable propaganda. Who would have thought this could happen in the United States. This is just like the things we expect to see from totalitarian regimes.

  20. Analysis: the ‘highly unusual’ behaviour of Arctic sea ice in 2016…
    “The Arctic is warming more than twice as fast as the global average, largely in response to rising greenhouse gases.”

    Largely in response to the increase in negative AO/NAO since the mid 1990’s, which is the complete opposite of what the models predict more CO2 will do to the AO/NAO.

    The sea ice extent took a drop in January with a strong -AO driven Arctic warming event, and further -AO episodes through February and early March:

  21. Danny Thomas

    You & I discussed this a short while back: Important: No increase in extreme droughts, rainfall during 20th century [link]

    “Researchers from Sweden, Germany, and Switzerland have found that climate models overestimated the increase in wet and dry extremes as temperatures increased during the twentieth century.”


    While this states confirmation of warming, it at the same time challenges the theory that ‘extreme’ precipitation (or lack of) lies outside the bounds of natural variability in the 20th century.

    For balance, found this: https://www.skepticalscience.com/factcheck-are-climate-models-wrong-on-rainfall-extremes.html

    Previously offered to you was a work showing drought had not increased in since +/- 1950 (Sheffield 2012). Followed that trail and found that Sheffield wrote later with Trenberth/Dai and they did not reject the 2012 work. Tornadoes have reduced, ACE is reduced, one day precipitation events have not increased (excluding snowfall in some instances). All while warming and increased levels of CO2 for a greater than ‘climate time scale’.

    • If he is looking at the average for the 20th century, the climate change signal averages out to less than half a degree, so any change towards the end would be lost in the statistics. The 21st century will show a warming signal at least five times that of the 20th, so pay attention to what the projections say about that effect, and don’t take too much comfort in a 20th century average because climate change has barely started in that part of the record.

      • Danny Thomas

        Just guessing, but presume you didn’t look at the work or related link. What he did was compare centuries of data from multiple sources.

        “However, the intensification of the twentieth-century-mean hydroclimate anomalies in the simulations, as compared to previous centuries, is not supported by our new multi-proxy reconstruction. This finding suggests that much work remains before we can model hydroclimate variability accurately, and highlights the importance of using palaeoclimate data to place recent and predicted hydroclimate changes in a millennium-long context.”

        Now it could be that you have issues with the proxies and or models………..

      • I did look and didn’t see anything more fine-scale than a century mentioned. He would be better off looking at the late 20th century versus other periods, but even there the warming signal is small compared to what is to come.

      • Danny Thomas

        Wait. So longer term trends (cycles) are less important than shorter terms?

        I’ve looked, and cannot locate a source for an optimum time frame. Is it 1950 to present? Hiatus/pause scale? 30 years? Decade? Record years? Event scale? Century? Centuries?

        Seems you and the author have a difference of opinion:
        “”The study shows the importance of placing recent precipitation changes in a millennium-long perspective. Actual measurements of precipitation are too short to tell if the observed changes today fall outside the range of natural variability. Instrumental measurements are also too short to test the ability of state-of-the-art climate models to predict which regions of the hemisphere will get drier, or wetter, with global warming,” says Charpentier Ljungqvist.”

      • It’s like this. You can’t say a given drought shows an increase in the frequency of droughts until you see multiple 100-year events in a few decades, where the odds increase that something has changed. Same with floods. Statistics takes time for extreme events. You can only say that these 100-year events are consistent with change, not proof.

      • Danny Thomas

        Jim D,
        Two parts.
        “Statistics takes time for extreme events.” What is the appropriate scale?
        Sheffield’s work on droughts looked back to +/- 1950. Is 65 enough? If not what is?

        “You can only say that these 100-year events are consistent with change, not proof.”

        You lost me with this. Today’s link is 1200 years from 128 sources and the author specified the 20th century was not outside the bounds of those 1200 years.
        “Both the climate model simulations and the updated temperature reconstructions agree that the twentieth century was likely the warmest in at least the past millennium. However, unlike the climate model simulations, the new precipitation reconstruction does not show an increase of wet and dry anomalies in the twentieth century compared to the natural variations of the past millennium.”

        “Nevertheless the difference between the simulated and the reconstructed precipitation in the twentieth century is a robust feature and the reconstruction also agrees with meteorological measurements.”

        “”The climate models simulate pre-industrial precipitation variability reasonably well but simulate much stronger wet and dry anomalies during the twentieth century than those found in the reconstruction.” (As suggested to you in our earlier discussion).

        Still seeking the optimum time frame.

      • The temperature, being a continuous measure is much more robust statistically than extreme events. Therefore you can get a lot more confidence that the 20th century was exceptionally warm than about the frequency of things that only occurred a few times in a millennium. Rare events just take longer to build up the statistics towards significance. Even with climate models, a single run may not show up strongly significant changes in the 21st century, but with a large ensemble you can get a significance in the projected change because you have many realizations of the 21st century.

      • Danny Thomas

        Jim D,

        But that is not the question. The work substantiates the warming. The work also substantiates that precipitation and related events (or non events) have not expanded (or gone outside) the bounds. Independent data shows the same and has been provided previously.

        The question remains what is the threshold which would lead one to expect that this will change. The model ensembles (singularly/collectively) are used to state that precipitation and droughts have increased. Evidence shows they have not.

        “Rare events just take longer to build up the statistics towards significance.” This work covers 1200 years. The most recent 100 year segment shows no change via 128 types of data: “To do this the researchers compiled hundreds of records of precipitation change across the Northern Hemisphere from archives including tree-rings, speleothems, lake sediments, and historical records.”

        The most recent 65 year discussion on droughts show no change. Much discussion is towards 2100 which is not so far from 65 years from now.

      • The precipitation change period has been too short to see significance. Unlike temperature, precipitation is very variable between years at a given location. Much harder to make definitive statements on statistics. You can only look at annual totals and see if most of the wettest or driest years cluster more recently, but it is tough to prove for sure mainly because rain records don’t go back very far. The only kind of statement you can make is that the summer mean temperature in many locations will change by many standard deviations by 2100, such that the bell curve will almost not overlap with today’s. It is not about droughts, so much as just continuous heat, but you should try explaining that without someone mentioning droughts.

      • Danny Thomas

        Jim D,

        So we’re seeing things with the same eyes. There is no ‘statistically significant’ change in precipitation to date. Therefore an associated reasonable statement would include no change in drought. And although warming may be expected to continue there is no reason for precipitation associated concern based on current evidence.

      • There have undeniably been some extreme events, but you can’t yet attribute them to climate change until more events are in. Warming goes with either drying or more rain, depending on where you are, but the precip should more likely change in some way along with it. Less snow, more rain, for example is an obvious one.

      • Jim D says he believes projections more than historical data. Instead of commenting with deniers to boost your ego, why don’t you get some science education? I know, it’s hard work and it might contradict your political theories.

      • Danny Thomas


        The paper’s author says the same:
        “”The climate models simulate pre-industrial precipitation variability reasonably well but simulate much stronger wet and dry anomalies during the twentieth century than those found in the reconstruction. This does not necessarily mean the mechanisms driving precipitation changes in climate models are wrong. The explanation for this could be that the global warming is not yet strong enough to trigger the changes in precipitation patterns that climate models simulate,” reports Charpentier Ljungqvist.”

        What he doesn’t say is that the explanation could alternatively be that the climate models are indeed wrong.

        The initial question to Jim (or anyone) is why based on that historic evidence should one expect the future to be different? What would be the ‘shift’?

      • Danny

        I have done a LOT of research on weather and extreme events for the UK.

        There is simply no evidence that supports the idea that today is wetter or stormier than the past. In fact, the climate of the last century has been relatively benign.

        There has been some prodigious periods of rain, drought and storms over the last 1000 years many of the catalogued in Kington’s Book ‘Climate and Weather’. Kington was a top scientist at CRU and a contemporary of Phil Jones.

        I have recently been researching in great depth the climate of the 13th Century. It was phenomenally wet (at times) phenomenally stormy (at times) sometimes very hot, but in general it was a cool century and the alpine glaciers temporarily advanced.

        Throughout history it is difficult to see the oft quoted correlation between extreme events/heavy rain and a warmer climate. These conditions appear to happen more frequently in a cool world than a warm one.


      • You have to be careful of interpreting regional climate as any more widespread than it is.

      • Jimd

        In Britain We can access an extraordinary depth of detail of our climate going back many centuries. It would be remarkable if the best records in the world run counter to the climate diversity also being experienced elsewhere.


      • A wet or warm decade in Britain doesn’t translate globally, but if you take a century average, it should be related to a global signal.

      • The 21st century will show a warming signal at least five times that of the 20th, so pay attention to what the projections say about that effect, and don’t take too much comfort in a 20th century average because climate change has barely started in that part of the record.

        For this to be plausible, our estimates of radiative imbalance would need to be much higher than they are.

      • Averaged over the 20th century, the forcing would have been about 0.5-0.8 W/m2, and it would be easy for the 21st century to exceed 5 times that given we are already over 2 W/m2, so I don’t know what you mean. It’s the forcing change that matters.

      • TOA imbalance is estimated at .6. And with very little tropospheric warming over the past 15 years, it should have increased substantially. It didn’t, it may have even declined.

        IR out should have declined more relative to SW out increase.

      • Are you assuming that the forcing won’t change between now and 2100? I find it hard to see what you are talking about.

    • A: Precipitation results largely from positive vorticity advection

      B: Climate models cannot predict long term changes in PVA.

      C: Therefore, climate models cannot predict precipitation change.

      • Air that is 4 C warmer holds one third more water. Rainfall is heavier in warmer parts of the world for that reason. Latent heat drives storms too. Climate models have the basic thermodynamics laws that give these increases. Warmth adds fuel to the storms.

      • Danny Thomas

        Jim D,
        “Air that is 4 C warmer holds one third more water. Rainfall is heavier in warmer parts of the world for that reason.”

        Uh. No: http://www.skymetweather.com/gallery/toplists/top-ten-hottest-countries-in-the-world/1

        Think you’re missing something.

      • Maybe you noticed that the heaviest rainfall events are in the tropics. There is a reason for that, but it is also true that hotter can mean more desert-like at some latitudes. Depends where you live which way it goes.

      • Air that is 4 C warmer holds one third more water.
        Air that is x degrees warmer can hold more water, but it doesn’t necessarily. Much of the atmosphere has a relative humidity closer to 0% than to 100%:

        Rainfall is heavier in warmer parts of the world for that reason.
        Dynamics are much more important than temperature which is why there are shapes of very dry and very rainy regions both within the tropics:

        Latent heat drives storms too. Climate models have the basic thermodynamics laws that give these increases. Warmth adds fuel to the storms.

        Do not confuse thermal energy with kinetic energy. The atmosphere is very poor at converting thermal energy to kinetic energy. What does provide kinetic energy is gradients of thermal energy. That’s one reason the so called hot spot is a big deal. If it occurs, it would reduce the vertical gradient ( lapse rate ) in the tropics ( even to 60 degrees poleward ) which would reduce convective energy. On the other hand, if the hot spot does occur, it would increase the gradient at jet stream level between the poles and equator, which would provide more energy to mid latitude storms.

        But the hot spot doesn’t appear to have occurred for the MSU era and there’s not much apparent change in average gradients for the mid-latitudes or the tropics. That’s roughly consistent with the top-of-the-atmosphere radiative forcing which is relatively uniform, tending not to alter gradients.

      • Examples: storms in the US in spring are fueled by moisture from the Gulf. Imagine tens of percent more moisture in that fuel.
        Record hurricanes like Haiyan draw strength from unusually warm tropical water, but in the future that warmth won’t be so unusual any more.
        The tropical hot spot is part of the negative lapse-rate feedback. If you want to believe its absence is a good thing, you miss that the surface needs to warm more to account for a forcing change when the hot spot is less developed. The hot spot should go along with the warming of the tropical ocean, which is delayed relative to the land but is occurring too.

      • Jimd

        Haiyan was not a record typhoon


        Anyway, for how long do you think the Philippines have been recording accurate wind speeds from their thousands of islands?

        It was however one of the deadliest. Natural disasters, whether hurricanes, earthquakes or flooding will get increasingly alarming, not because of climate change but because of the astonishing growth of humanity,

        As an example the Philippines had some 27 million inhabitants in 1960 . It is now well over 100 million.

        Personally I think we are worried about the wrong target (co2) but to dare to suggest that the root cause of many of our problems is overpopulation just invites accusations of Malthusian concerns.

        Developed countries tend to have much smaller growth in populations than underdeveloped ones so surely we should be encouraging growth through cheap energy?


      • While it was out at sea it had some of the strongest estimated winds ever, and it is a case where they considered creating a category 6. That discussion made a lot of news at the time.

      • Examples: storms in the US in spring are fueled by moisture from the Gulf. Not in the summer when heat and humidity are greatest?
        Tornadoes and strong mesoscale storms derive their energy from the jet stream, not humidity. Tornadoes occur because storms lift a vertical gradient in wind.

        Now, rain does occur only with some humidity in the air. And to the extent that humidity does increase, rain potential should as well. That should create some increase in total average precipitation, but not drought.
        And the effect would be marginal. If you are worried about that, then you should be hiding under your bed because April is warmer than March in the NH by about the same amount that global warming might bring.

        Record hurricanes like Haiyan draw strength from unusually warm tropical water
        Hurricanes do not derive their kinetic energy from heat but from the difference in bouyancy of the lowest levels to the upper levels. Models indicate the greatest heating in the tropics at the upper levels. So if you are arguing for intense hurricanes, you must be arguing that the models are wrong. In fact, radiative forcing into the surface is much less than at the upper levels for most of the atmosphere, even being negative for much of the surface of the hurricane areas:

        Of course, ACE hasn’t shown any increase, so this is just something else made up, just like the heart disease people claiming eggs did it.

      • TE, there are reasons that strong storms occur more in the spring than the summer, and that hurricanes only get strong over warm water, but I will leave that for you to explain to yourself.

  22. So we have geothermal activity implicated in Greenland. And then recent studies have identified greater than previously known geothermal activity in West Antarctica. Some are investigating the role of geothermal activity in the Pacific for understanding the rise in OHC. Perhaps more research is warranted beneath our feet to actually understand all the dynamics that are at play. The same can be said for evaluating SLR in the sexy places that get all the MSM headlines. Subsidence is the stepchild of the SLR meme. Too confusing for the average reader. Don’t let their minds wander.

    • Danny Thomas

      Maya Tolstoy strongly suggested greater investigation of GeoTherm a while back: http://time.com/3698572/science-maya-tolstoy-geophysical-research-letters-volcanoes-climate-change/

      I’m nobody, but think we oughta look everywhere.

    • Studies about geothermal melting ice on Greenland are not new.

    • cerescokid,

      Obviously, I agree. The Earth on which we reside is a big molten fluid blob. It wriggles, it jiggles, its insides seem to be in constant motion. The surface wrinkles, crinkles, and moves in three dimensions, spasmodically and unpredictably.

      A supersonic (literally) kimberlite pipe eruption could snuff you out in the blink of an eye. Or you might die in an earthquake or tsunami! Maybe live near Lake Nyos, where a couple of thousand people were asphyxiated by a release of CO2 from beneath the surface.

      Who knows how the energy of the interior rearranges itself, or why? Why are there so many volcanoes in Antarctica, and so few in the UK? Mind you, the supervolcano under the Laacher See in Germany will give the Brits a bit of a hurry up if it decides to blow!

      Instead, spend billions on trying to stop the climate changing, whatever that means. The old method of hurling virgins into the local volcano to pacify the gods seemed to be as effective at preventing the climate from changing, or volcanoes from erupting, and considerably cheaper.

      Virgin sacrifice might be viewed, these days, as an inefficient use of resources, quite unlike the resources employed to provide brightly coloured, but ultimately useless collections of scribbles. Money completely wasted, but quite efficiently, one would hope.


  23. The stories of the lipid hypothesis and harmful climate change are similar.

    Both were promoted by strong arm tactics over dissenting voices.
    Both were promoted by proponents rising to high levels in organizations.
    Both had opponents leaving those organizations.
    Both had Congress declare the science settled ( McGovern ).
    Both had plausible but unproven general theories.

    The lipid hypothesis is now appearing to be completely wrong ( after half a century of actually harmful advice and policy from the government ).

    On the other hand, global warming would appear to be real.

    But harmful climate change is probably also false, mostly because the extent of warming is not large and because warming doesn’t much climate change.

  24. Two articles that might serve as a bit of a tonic for those “end of the enlightenment” alarmists that tend to hang around this joint.




  25. “The illusion of control in the medical setting, and overestimating the benefits of intervention. [link]”

    I kinda have to laugh, again, as the elitists (as represented by this NEJM article) telling the plebs (practicing physicians) what to think and do.

    The first illusion is that there exists such a body of knowledge as “evidence based medicine”. Academics in particular, but government health care funding employees as well, seem to believe evidence of medical therapeutics of the kind from randomized control trials from large and diverse populations, exists in many disorders. Or even worse, that such studies can tease out which portion of the population may benefit and which portion would not. Most of recommendations come from expert opinion. Even the Cochran literature review of available evidence is based upon expert opinion.

    The second illusion is that explorers of medical therapeutics, frequently going against expert opinion are doing harm without patient/care giver’s information or consent. One disorder, cystic fibrosis (CF), where there is no animal model, patient care has advanced and patient survival increased from mean age of survival of 35 years. The care patients’ with CF has advanced in spite of Infectious Disease experts denigrating use of inhaled antibiotics; combining antibiotics to act synergistically (1+1= 4), and using antibiotics in the face of measure antibiotic resistance. Small, private foundation funded “studies” advanced care. Orphan disorders, like CF, collaborated in getting Congress to fund Orphan Drug provisions to facilitate developing new drugs for disorders that do not have large populations.

    The third illusion is that people, in the aggregate, are the same and that one therapeutic intervention shoe fits all. The problem has been the transparency and accountability in holding all these therapeutic experiments to the satisfaction of insurance companies and government officials who are being asked to pay for some of these expensive treatment efforts. The electronic medical record was suppose to overcome this issue, and, the medical record is a poor representative of medical care.

    There are lots and lots of issues with academics and bureaucrats telling most of us what to do.

  26. Will the health dangers of climate change get people to care? The science says: maybe [link]

    The link takes us to the White House, the politicalization of the US Surgeon General and narratives by experts and trade group associations regarding the impact of climate change:

    “Increase ground level ozone and fine particle concentrations, which can trigger a variety of reactions including chest pains, coughing, throat irritation, and congestion, as well as reduce lung function and cause inflammation of the lungs
    Increase carbon dioxide concentrations and temperatures, thereby affecting the timing of aeroallergen distribution and amplifying the allergenicity of pollen and mold spores
    Increase precipitation in some areas leading to an increase in mold spores
    Increase in rate of ozone formation due to higher temperatures and increased sunlight
    Increase the frequency of droughts, leading to increased dust and particulate matter”

    Reasons for fearing climate change include items which are frankly shown not to be true (increased droughts); more ozone due to higher temperatures and increased sunlight (maybe the increasing the length of day?); or increased fine particulates from….?; increased allergenicity (like ragweed that pollenates according position of the sun, like a host of other pollens blooming by available sunshine); and increased precipitation; and more and more ground level ozone; asthmatics sensitive to allergens made worse by a purported escalation of allergens, ozone and particulates, true? Of course, none of the above are related to air pollution, just increased CO2 and…climate change.

    The White House, and its present resident we all need to remember is a community organizer so it is not altogether surprising that mythology begins with the oracle of communication arts and non-science.

  27. on the “highly unusual behavior” of arctic sea ice
    could someone please describe the ‘usual’ behavior of said ice?

    being uneducated in science
    I am always curious about the specific definitions of such words as

    Is the hand made artisan climate change of a higher quality than the store bought mass produced human caused climate change?

    Please excuse my ignorance. I was born and raised in NC, so I come by backwardness honestly.
    Go Bruce!

    • BTW
      I now reside in a large Yankee city
      Our mayor, in righteous indignation, has prohibited all city employees from traveling to NC due to NC’s actions on LGBT rights.
      She will be junketing to Qatar in coming weeks.

      • Is your mayor aware of the position of Qatar on liberal issues?


      • The Republicans in southern states want to protect their own form of religion-based intolerance, which we can view as similar to that exhibited in some Muslim countries.

      • It is also an accepted cultural system and way of life.

        “Patriarchy is a social system in which males hold primary power, predominate in roles of political leadership, moral authority, social privilege and control of property; in the domain of the family, fathers or father-figures hold authority over women and children. Many patriarchal societies are also patrilineal, meaning that property and title are inherited by the male lineage.”

        Think what you will.

      • That is what the ‘Donner Party’ reported years ago.

      • Scientists point out the survivors must be wrong because the trees said so.


        Even then everybody lied about the weather.

      • “Scientists point out the survivors must be wrong because the trees said so.”

        Except that’s not what the scientists said.

        read harder.

      • Steven Mosher,

        Merriam-Webster definition of precipitation –

        “Definition of precipitation
        : water that falls to the ground as rain, snow, etc.”

        Or from good ol’ Wikipedia –

        “In meteorology, precipitation is any product of the condensation of atmospheric water vapor that falls under gravity.[1] The main forms of precipitation include drizzle, rain, sleet, snow, graupel and hail.”

        Warmist definition of precipitation from the linked article –

        “Precipitation, however, is different than snowfall. Precipitation represents rain combined with snow that has been melted for its water content.”

        On the other hand, the writer redefines tree rings studied by dendrochronologists to be a measure of precipitation, which presumably doesn’t include snow, rather than Mann et al, who claim that tree rings correlate to temperature – “The amount of new growth corresponds to the amount of precipitation received in the region.” Who to believe, huh?

        So we see that precipitation means whatever you want it to mean, and tree rings correlate to whatever you desire. Deny, divert, confuse. Rewrite history. Of course, you can always claim the writer really meant something other than what he wrote!

        Maybe you should think harder? Or maybe not?


      • I blamed the trees, what more do you need? All the scientist did was misinterpret what the trees were saying. Read harder.

    • Sea ice is born, survives and then melts. Unusual behavior might be a short life span or an overly long life span. Some might say it’s not unusual behavior to form when the water is cooler and melt when it’s warmer. Truly unusual behavior might be form around the islands of Hawaii, or to not form at the North Pole, in the dead of Winter. One might say that Land temperatures are exhibiting unusual while expected behavior. Unusual as a pause or unusual as a relentless march upwards. One man’s unusual is another man’s expectation. Another man may expect the unusual. But he may be disappointed by the normal. Urban dictionary boringly weighs in with, Not normal, but different. The sea is not normal but different. The sea ice is not the same. It’s still sea ice, still following physics, but it’s different. The sea ice levels are not normal. Normal being, to not react to CO2 levels, or to react to them? It would not be normal to not react to warmer waters. It would be unusual for sea ice to not react to warmer waters.

    • blueice2hotsea

      rebelronin –

      Arctic sea ice extent has been mostly below average and trending lower for decades. Yes, ‘more of the same’ is not ‘unusual’.

      But low Northern Hemisphere snow cover combined with low Arctic sea ice extent does put the screws to popesclimatetheory. Wonder what he has to say.

  28. JC, I was extremely interested to to your flag on the heart rate research. I confess I know next to nothing about measuring ‘wisdom’ but can shed a little light on heart rate variability.

    I was the principle investigator on a DARPA research program during the early 80’s looking at human-in-the-loop control of dynamic systems – to wit: aircraft piloting. During the design and flight test phases of development the need arises to measure the ease/difficulty of controlling the various dynamic modes of the aircraft and make design adjustments accordingly. The go-to method was for the pilots to rate specific tasks based on their subjective judgement according to the Coop-Harper Scale. While the best technique available, the subjective nature and the differing ratings between evaluators required repetitive testing which could lead to significant time and financial burdens.

    My approach was to collect physiological data from the pilots and have them rate the handling qualities while I altered the stability margin (thus task difficulty) relative to the specific mode being tested. I looked at respiration rate, galvanic skin response, electrocardiogram response, and a variety of other factors. Among all the parameters measured heart rate variability showed a statistically significant degree of correlation to a very high level with the difficulty of the task being performed.

    I was curious to see the authors of the new study conclude, “people with more varied heart rates were able to reason in a wiser, less biased fashion about societal problems when they were instructed to reflect on a social issue from a third-person perspective. But, when the study’s participants were instructed to reason about the issue from a first-person perspective, no relationship between heart rate and wiser judgment emerged.” My research came to a somewhat less grandiose conclusion – pilots had significantly higher heart rate variability at low stress levels and much more regularity when they were presented with an immediate challenge. The more difficult the task, the more fixated they and their autonomic nervous system became. I suppose the findings of the new study tend to corroborate my results but I can’t help but wonder if their parametric is simply an analogue of a stressor.

  29. On reflection, I’m not sure if I can make sense of the quote given above. They refer to heart rate variability then speak of heart rate. Those are two different thing entirely. My work showed heart rate had low correlation with any stress level but heart rate variability correlated extremely well.

  30. Danny Thomas

    Tell me if you heard this one before: ““The reality is that, in some instances, species conservation is a political issue as much as it is a scientific one,” Christensen wrote in his decision.”

    “If the wolverine is deemed threatened by the agency, it could open the gates for other animals to win similar status based on climate-change claims.”



    Global surface temperature is significantly influenced by different climate forcings operating at specific time scales. This study investigates the association between global surface temperature and the Pacific Decadal Oscillation (PDO) in a multiscaling framework in terms of both time scale of variability and non-stationarity. First, the ensemble empirical mode decomposition (EEMD) is used for multiscale disintegration of the Global Surface Temperature Anomaly (GSTA) and PDO datasets. A close matching of the periodicity of different modes of PDO and GSTA is noticed, and the subsequent cross-correlation analysis of the modes showed that their linear association is the most perceptible at the slowly varying trend component. The correlation between the different modes is further analyzed using a multiscale dynamic correlation method namely, time-dependent intrinsic correlation (TDIC). This study found a strong long-range positive correlation between the time series pairs in decadal and inter-decadal modes exceeding 20-year periodicity. Further it is found that, the multiscale teleconnection between PDO and GSTA is not always of unique character but associated with localized reversals in the nature of correlation in the time domain. The study further observed a similar pattern of correlation for both cold phases of the 20th century (1901–1924 and 1947–1976); whereas the pattern of correlation is different for the warm phases of PDO (1925–1946 and 1977–1995) in different process scales.

    Like I said… many many times… with my crayons. The PDO is a beast. ACO2 has tamed it. CS is higher than previously thought.

  32. JCH,

    Stick with your crayons. Correlate (or colourate) this in as many colours as you wish –

    “Total revenue generated by arcades correlates with computer science doctorates awarded in the US

    Correlation: 98.51% (r=0.985065)”

    The paper to which you refer is plainly specious nonsense. It starts off -“Global surface temperature is significantly influenced by different climate forcings operating at specific time scales.”

    Nobody has ever measured the global surface temperature, and it is unlikely that anyone ever will, considering the vast majority of the surface is hidden beneath ocean, soil, vegetation, buildings and so on.

    No one has ever rigorously defined one climate forcing, let alone different ones. Climate, being the average of past weather, has no forcings. It is an average, an arithmetical construct which has no power to alter anything at all.

    And so it goes.

    Another sciencey religious tract from the Warmist Church of Latter Day Scientism. Maybe I’m being a little harsh.

    Does it have some nice line diagrams that you can fill in with your crayons? At a cost of $USD 38, you could probably buy a few adult coluring in books. Could be more useful and relaxing.

    What do you think?


  33. Both “It’s worse than we thought.” articles are from the Guardian. Who da think?

    As for the “science” the health stories are complete bs. I’ll wager it’s all model based as they have no real data. And Trenbreth must be really stressing. “Oh my God, we have found that clouds have more water vapor rather than ice crystals. We are doomed.”

    • timg56,

      “One of this paper’s authors, Dr Kevin Trenberth, senior scientist at the National Center for Atmospheric Research, said research has already shown “major errors in climate simulations associated with clouds.” – and no doubt major errors also associated with CO2, H2O, temperatures, winds, oceans, volcanoes, the troposphere, the stratosphere, and treemometers, to name just a few.

      It’s a really good thing that nobody actually paid any attention to these error filled climate simulations, isn’t it?

      Oh, wait, . . .


  34. Looking at this chart it seems the weather makers and witch doctors might be wise to start retraining for a new career.
    http://climatechange.carboncapturereport.org/cgi-bin/topic?#activitytimeline The chart shows how interest in climate change and related spin has waned in the English speaking media, globally, including blogs and twitter, since Copenhagen. The chart is updated daily. (However, caution in interpretation is needed because sometimes some data sources change or are truncated).

    • Thanks for the link Peter L. Whether the warming is actually trending on a long term scale or not and whether it can be attributed to anthropogenic causes or not really doesn’t matter anyway. It is hubris to consider that humans can engineer climate change in any shape or form by reducing fossil fuel emissions.

    • Peter,

      Great find.

      It’s just one more bit of empirical evidence which indicates the public is tuning the climatariat out.

      This page summarizes all English-language monitored mainstream and social media coverage worldwide of Climate Change. For each 24 hour period (midnight-midnight CST), a complete analytical report called the Daily Report summarizes all content.

    • Peter Lang:Looking at this chart

      Thanks for the link.

    • This line of reasoning is just as silly as the 97% bull. You can spot the Diva’s by their attraction to popularity.

  35. I’d love to see Dr. Curry’s comments on this paper:

    “Increasing flooding hazard in coastal communities due to rising sea level: Case study of Miami Beach, Florida”


    Is the statement

    “The average rate of sea level rise in Southeast Florida increased from 3 ± 2 mm/yr prior to 2006 to 9 ± 4 mm/yr after 2006.”

    a simple case of cherry picking?

    • Alex,

      CNN is making a similar argument about Isle de Jean Charles, Louisiana.

      ‘There’s no more land’

      ‘Climate refugees’
      This is an environmental tragedy — and one locals didn’t cause.


      If one wants to move beyond the logic which informed the Salem witch trials, however, it is incumbent upon those making the charges to prove that:

      1) The loss of land is caused by sea level rise (a claim which even the article is very vague about making),

      2) Global warming caused the sea level rise, and

      3) CO2 emissions caused the global warming.

    • Lol. Wobbles. It’s the wobbles.

    • Alex,

      I believe glacial isostacy is responsible for coastal depression aka sea level rise, on the eastern side of the USA.

      Nothing to do with CO2. Simple conservation of mass. Crustal upward rebound has to be reflected by equivalent downward displacement somewhere else.

      Real physics. Not realclimate physics beloved of climatologists. Maybe I’m wrong. A geophysicist or similar earth scientist should know.


      • A geophysicist or similar earth scientist should know. …

        You will not find a single one, unless he’s a quack ho, who agrees with you.

      • The study of earth science is a dying field at the end, with lots of free time.

      • JCH,

        I suppose you’re right.

        I suppose the people who write these things are quacks, and the universities that employ them are quite mad. According to you, anyway!

        “Secular vs. Eustatic Sea Level

        Sea level changes have left numerous signs to their occurrence such as abandoned shorelines, drowned rivers, marine extensions into continents, biological (e.g. corals) organism changes, seismic reflector truncations, etc. (Plag, et. al., 1996). In fact, it was these signs of sea level change that led early geologists to think about isostatic rebound processes (e.g. Jamieson, 1882 and Shaler, 1974). Today, the knowledge of eustatic sea level variations is very important in climatic studies. However, since apparent sea level is affected by two different, but linked, processes, deciphering purely eustatic sea level can be complicated. The processes affecting sea level are: 1) formation of continental ice and 2) glacial compression and rebound. One area where this complication is now obvious is the east coast of the United States. The North American continent was partially covered with the Laurentide ice sheet until about 6000 years ago (Farrand, 1988). The east coast was the peripheral bulge of this ice sheet and the land there is now experiencing subsidence. This sinking makes it appear as though sea level were rising more quickly than it truly is.”

        I have to admit that if I was looking for minerals or oil, getting advice on what sorts of foundations I’d need for a dam, a bridge, or a skyscraper, I’d probably be silly enough to employ the services of someone with experience in the earth sciences.

        A clever chap like yourself would no doubt pay someone like Hansen, Schmidt or Mann, and avoid quacks such as geologists, geophysicists, or even engineers!

        I salute you! Please let me know when you build something based on climatological advice. I’ll make sure to stay well away!


      • And you think suddenly modern sea level scientists are somehow disconnected from any that? They are not.

      • JCH,

        You wrote –

        “And you think suddenly modern sea level scientists are somehow disconnected from any that? They are not.”

        The Warmist tactics of deny, divert, and confuse, which you are attempting to use, don’t seem to be doing that well. Your attempt to read my thoughts, is, as usual, doomed to failure.

        You might care to name a “modern sea level scientist”, as you have gone to the trouble of creating another sciencey sounding piece of nomenclature. I suppose anyone claiming to be a climatologist could just as easily claim to be a sea level scientist, or a Nobel Laureate. It wouldn’t make any difference to the fact of conservation of mass within the interior of the Earth, and the logical consequences, would it?

        You don’t seem to like the concept of real science. Not realclimate sciencey stuff, but real science. Geology, physics – that sort of science. Unlike climatology, real science actually provides useful things on occasion. If you find a relevant fact or two, please let me know. I’m always prepared to change my view, if new facts appear.


      • Hogwash. Your sea level arguments are silly.

    • Glenn

      Here is the NOAA data. Click on an arrow to see the trend.


      Some areas are experiencing slight sea level fall others slight sea level rise many more are experiencing substantial changes in either direction. Isostacy is an important element. A global average is very misleading and I am not aware of the rapid change you cite


    • No. Rather an example of confounding subsidence with actual sea level rise. So much water is being withdrawn for Miami, Ft Myers, Ft Lauderdale… that the land is actually sinking rather rapidly. In most cases where sea level rise is of concern it really is caused by human action – primarily poor land use or excessive water withdrawals. Sort of like the floods in UK a couple years back that were “unprecedented” – and really were because poor land use had really buggered the Brits’ [local] ability to handle large rain events.

      • I didn’t purchase the full paper to get their raw data, but I did download the Key West tide gauge data and reproduced their “9 mm/yr” since 2006. But there are also many other 10 year periods with even higher rates in the past 113 years of data. 2016 had very high levels, but isn’t that El Niño related? So from my own analysis – I think that I’ve answered my own question and the answer is “yes, cherry picking”. I don’t think there is an acceleration signal discernible in that particular tide gauge record. I’m no mathematician, but a linear trend looks like a perfectly good fit.

        They don’t mention subsidence in the abstract, I’ll have to look into that.

  36. Interesting story about analogies between nutrition science and climate science.

    On an RC post in 2013 Gavin made the following comment to one of the commentators.

    “That there are fashions in science is undeniable (and not just medicine), but the best bet for avoiding the vast majority of these is to pay attention to the assessments (from the AMA, or the NRC or the IPCC) and not to individual scientists (including us).”

    I responded with a link to the Wikipedia article on AMA about the AMA being primarily a lobbying organization and asked:

    “So are you saying we should think of the IPCC like the AMA for scientific assessments?”


    At any rate, I could swear my comment went straight to the Bore Hole. I remember this in particular because I think it was the last time I bothered to comment on RC.

    At any rate, when I went back to find it today, it seems my comment is not in the Bore Hole now and Gavin responded.

    [Response: Fair point – and no. Think more like the Surgeon General reports. – gavin]

  37. Sharyl Attkisson interviewed Donald Trump.

    ‘Full Measure’: Sharyl Attkisson 1-on-1 with Donald Trump


  38. Couple of notes on sugar:
    1) The article is great, but only talks about the recent history of sugar. Sugar before the 1600s was very much like cocaine. Sugar in the late 1600s to 1700s is largely responsible for the early enslavement of Africans.
    Even by Napoleon’s era, the influence of sugar production in the Caribbean affected national policy – it led to the growth of beet sugar production in continental Europe.
    2) The article doesn’t mention the role of industry on the sugar side. Moguls like the founder of General Mills had personal beliefs which fed public propaganda about the benefits of (shockingly) carbohydrate diets vs. the more fat and protein centric diets. The founder of Kellogg’s was one such individual: he believed sugar consumption vs. fat consumption would reduce the sexual urge and thus auto-eroticism. He also invented granola.
    In a literal sense, corn flakes were invented to prevent masturbation!
    Does anyone really think that the General Mills, Kellogg’s and the like weren’t overtly delighted by the anti-fat crusades of the 70s and 80s? If not playing an actual role?

  39. Oil …

  40. five plausible mechanisms for SLR.
    -Thermal expansion [not that simple as hotter water does put more water into the air and only up to 100 C. Also from -2 to 4 degrees C water shrinks as it gets warmer]. There is a lot of water in the sea [most of it at temps <4 degrees centigrade either at the poles or at depth.So is there thermal expansion or thermal contraction?
    -Landed ice discharge from glaciers and ice sheets.
    -plain old water runoff
    -continual erosion
    -Isostatic compression. [I apologize for this last one as not happening at the moment]

  41. Market Realist has a series of articles on Solar City.