George Monbiot on ClimateGate & the climate denial industry

Lord Christopher Monckton, the 3rd Viscount Monckton of Brenchley

Public comments on the “climategate” emails have certainly been varied. From one extreme like Lord Monckton who uses it to justify his outlandish giant conspiracy theory, to the more rational discussion by science journalists.

George Monbiot, who writes for The Guardian, has made some of the more balanced comments. He is not dismissing the significance of the emails but at the same time puts them in a proper context. He is particularly warning that they are in no way evidence of a conspiracy, or that the current assessment of the threat of global warming is compromised.

The “Gish Gallop”

In this talk (video below) he points to the real issue of climate change denial and the propaganda industry built around this. He discusses some of the tactics used by deniers. I particularly liked his description of the “Gish Gallop*” where deniers make a series of claims, one after the other, continually moving the goalposts so that their opponents are denied the chance of replying to any of them. We have seen this locally with the denier groups and bloggers who have been attacking NIWA scientists. They have quickly moved on from the original claim that the raw data did not support NIWA’s conclusions, to new “demands” about details of adjustments, the numbers of stations used, etc.

Monbiot’s advice – don’t get sucked in! Stick with the original claims and show where they are wrong. Demand that the deniers justify their original claims instead of galloping on.

*The “Gish Gallop” gets its name from Duane Gish – a well known creationists who uses this tactic in his attacks on evolutionary science.

YouTube – George Monbiot on ClimateGate & the climate denial industry.

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51 responses to “George Monbiot on ClimateGate & the climate denial industry

  1. gallopingcamel

    I find George Monbiot very engaging and an excellent debater but his grasp of science is poor.

    My first impression of “Lord Monckton of Brenchley” was “another upper class British nincompoop with a plum in his mouth”. After listening to him for a while I got very uncomfortable because, unlike Prince Charles, Monckton made perfect sense.

    Monckton’s presentations are based on the work of Richard Lindzen, Fred Singer and Patrick Michaels. He may be another “Pitch Man” like Al Gore but his science is way more convincing.

    Like

  2. Monckton has never impressed me. In what way, specifically, does he make sense to you & why does that make you uncomfortable?

    Sent from my iPod

    Like

  3. gallopingcamel

    Ken,
    Why do upper class British nincompoops make me uncomfortable? Because so few of then could put something like this together:

    Like

  4. Sounds like “classism” to me. I wouldn’t be so willy to caricature people.

    However – you don’t say why Monckton is so convincing to you. I find his approach typical of theology – start with an assumption, a belief, and then cherry pick, select, or distort the evidence to support the preconceived belief.

    That’s not science – it’s theology.

    Pales into significance if you put it alongside the overwhelming evidence based review and conclusions which have come out of the IPCC.

    Like

  5. Pingback: Lynch mob mentality « Open Parachute

  6. gallopingcamel

    Ken:
    The link posted on January 13, covers ERBE, temperature trends, sea levels, ice packs and much more. I ask you to read the CO2 report as it shows where the IPCC’s main predictions are wrong and it also explains why they are wrong.

    While you are at it, take a look at the IPCC’s Copenhagen Diagnosis and tell me why the four main graphs (Figs. 7, 19,20 & 21) still look like the Mann, Briffa & Hughes Hockey Stick. That was voodoo science in 1998 and it looks crazier with every year that passes.

    Look at both sets of evidence and keep an open mind like it says at the top of this blog.

    Like

  7. gallopingcamel – you need to widen your sources of information. Mann’s so called “hockey stick” data was not discredited – far from it the National research Council mostly endorsed it. It has been incorporated, together with updated information, into the latest IPCC report. Mann has also published updated versions containing much more data and dealing with the national research councils criticisms of aspects of his statistical treatment.

    So, I recommend to you that you actually read the authoritative reports from the IPCC, or more accessible, the recent book of Andy reisinger (A good climate change book). I am currently reviewing it and am enjoying the fact that it is so objective and balanced – quite a contrast to a lot of the rubbish I have to read.

    Like

  8. Why would anybody get their science information from something called the “Science and Public Policy Institute”?
    Seriously, why?

    It’s like getting your biology information from the Discovery Institute as opposed to a biology department at a university or a biology textbook.

    If you want information about climate change then what’s wrong with going the normal route and asking a scientific community like NASA, for example?

    What has the “Science and Public Policy Institute” got that
    Visit Our Site
    NASA has not?

    …you need to widen your sources of information. Mann’s so called “hockey stick” data was not discredited – far from it…

    True is that.
    The “Hockey Stick” P.R.A.T.T. has been done to death by the deniers.
    It’s old news. Get informed.

    Visit Our Site
    Link.

    Like

  9. gallopingcamel

    Ken, yes I did read the IPCC’s reports such as the Copenhagen Diagnosis which is why I know that the Hockey Stick is still at the heart of their predictions delivered just 3 weeks ago. The Hockey Stick denies history (the Medieval Warm Period and the Little Ice Age) and it denies present reality such as the declining temperature trend since 1998. The blade of the Hockey Stick is really a drooping noodle.

    Cedric, the SPPI material is mostly based on satellite measurements. If you have something better for the last 30 years, what is it?

    Like

  10. Gallopingcamel -Mann’s graph (so called “hockey stick”) is not a prediction. It is a record sythesised from all available evidence. It was updated to include a lot more data in his recent paper (2008 I think). It is well accepted and if you are insisting on ridiculing or rejecting it you are taking up a denier position, rather than a sceptic.

    Monckton does tell lies about that plot. He is just plain wrong,

    Sent from my iPod

    Like

  11. gallopingcamel

    The IPCC is in the climate prediction business but its track record is poor because it failed to predict the future in the short term (1998 to 2009). It also failed to explain the past by denying the MWP and LIA.

    So why would anyone trust IPCC predictions for the year 2100? Specifically, temperatures rising by 2 to 7 degrees Celsius and sea levels rising by 38 to 118 centimetres?

    These questions are asked in all humility without any wish to score debating points. I am a physicist rather than a climate scientist or a politician.

    Like

  12. The IPCC is about climate, not weather (short term).

    It is about projections – not predictions.

    Trust comes from the fact that IPCC conclusions are based on a thorough and transparent review of the published science. Read the IPCC reports to see how careful, balanced and non-alarmist these conclusions are.

    In contrast we have pitically and religiously motivated people like Monckton who have distorted information, lied about it, and used the lynch mob mentality approach I refer to.

    I say, why trust people like Monckton with the despicable record they have.

    Sent from my iPod

    Like

  13. The Hockey Stick denies history (the Medieval Warm Period and the Little Ice Age)…

    No it doesn’t.
    The Hockey Stick PRATT has been done to death. The scientific community has been over it plenty of times and doesn’t have a problem with it. It’s only the Denialist blogs that bring it up again and again and again ad nauseusm.
    Kinda dull.

    …such as the declining temperature trend since 1998.

    Oh joy. 1998. Wow. Three cheers for you.
    Yay.
    1998.
    Talk about original thinking.
    NOT!
    Why is it that Deniers always bring up 1998?
    It’s never 1997 or 1999 or some other year.
    Nope.
    It’s always 1998. Regular as clockwork.
    1998, 1998, 1998 like a broken record.
    (rolls eyes)
    If there really is a declining temperature rate then why is it not just as simple to plot a “declining temperature rate” from one of the other years for the sake of variety.
    Ever try to plot a rate using 1997 as your start line?
    Do you know why?
    It’s won’t look very good.
    Cherry-picking, anybody?

    …satellite measurements. If you have something better for the last 30 years, what is it?

    Well, if you are going to go with satellite data then why bother with something called the “Science and Public Policy Institute” which as far as anybody knows is just a rented postal box and a slick website?
    If somebody was interested in satellite data then surely the “go to” people are NASA, right?
    (Ok, maybe the European Space Agency at a pinch)
    Seriously, what has the “Science and Public Policy Institute” (or whatever it’s called) got that NASA has not?
    NASA, last time I checked, literally wrote the book on satellites and satellite data.
    Here’s a sample of what I mean.

    Like

  14. gallopingcamel

    Cedric, James Hansen has been blocking FOI requests for more than four years. As long as this continues NASA/GISS data sets will remain suspect. Public trust can only be restored by full disclosure.

    Fortunately, there are several other satellite data sets available via the Internet. The SPPI website clearly states which data sets and scientific papers they used.

    The IPCC bases its “projections” on the idea that radiative forcing due to GHGs (Green House Gases) has a strong effect on climate, so global temperatures should be rising.

    Based on ERBE, Lindzen and Choi 2009 (LC09) claim that the radiative forcing is six times less than assumed in 11 climate models used by the IPCC. This would explain why there has been no sign of warming in a decade.

    I don’t know who is right but I can tell you “the science is not settled”.

    Like

  15. Cedric, James Hansen has been blocking FOI requests for more than four years.

    (awkward silence)

    This is relevent to the discussion exactly how?
    Step back for a moment and think carefully.

    Let’s go all credulous for a moment and take your claim at face value without bothering to examine it closely.
    Let’s indulge in a little paranoid fantasy.
    Oooh lets!!!
    😉

    Even if we say that the whole of NASA with all of it’s thousands of scientists went into some freaky psycho lock-down mode four years ago… then so what?
    You’ve still got the NASA satellites date of about thirty years that was around and available four years and six months ago.
    That’s plenty to go on.

    The SPPI website clearly states which data sets and scientific papers they used.

    You are not getting this, are you?
    Why should anybody care what this “Science and Public Policy Institute” has to say about anything?
    Who cares where they get their data from?
    What’s wrong with skipping the middle men and going direct to the scientific communities that GATHERED THE DATA IN THE FIRST PLACE?

    Based on ERBE, Lindzen and Choi 2009 (LC09) claim…

    The ERBE?
    You are talking about the The Earth Radiation Budget Experiment?
    The Earth Radiation Budget Experiment that was designed, funded and launched by…NASA?
    Back in the Eighties?
    That Earth Radiation Budget Experiment?
    The NASA Earth Radiation Budget Experiment?
    The one that the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration co-operated on?
    Hmm.
    (scratches head)
    Well, this might seem a stretch but…if I really wanted to know about what the ERBE found back in the eighties then…I’d probably go ask NASA and check out the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

    Pretty simple really.

    …Lindzen and Choi 2009 (LC09) claim…

    That’s, um, nice.
    Where exactly did they make this claim?
    When scientists checked out this claim, what reaction did it get?
    Do tell. Cite your sources.

    This would explain why there has been no sign of warming in a decade.

    Nobody in the scientific community talks like this.
    It’s a Denialist PRATT point.
    I’ve mentioned it before to you but apparently it didn’t sink in the first time.
    Look at this link, oh confused one.
    This link right HERE.
    All shall be revealed.
    Why are you still insisting on cherry picking only 1998?
    Why not 1997?
    What’s wrong with 1997?
    Or 1996?
    Or 1999?
    What’s the big secret behind 1998?
    Hmm?
    🙂

    I don’t know who is right…

    Why not do a little digging and find out?
    What’s wrong with getting your information from an actual scientific community?
    Live a little.
    Stop bottom feeding for a while and get your nose out of the Denialist blogs and just go straight to the scientific communities websites that are set up for the public?

    If you don’t like NASA for some reason then how about the Royal Society?
    Or the British Antarctic Survey?
    Or the American Meteorological Society?
    You could quite literally choose any scientific community on the planet.
    They are all in agreement that global warming is happening and that humanity is the main cause of it and that this is NOT good.
    Why are you not prepared to go to any of them?
    Why this bizarre fixation on a tiny group of people with a website and post office box that poses as an “Institute”.

    I know we’ve been talking a lot about satellites and all but did you know that there are other ways of gathering data points to monitor the Earth’s climate?
    How much does this “Institute” of yours know about bees, for example?
    Enjoy.

    Like

  16. gallopingcamel

    Cedric, this is starting to get interesting. I liked your bee video which I see as really good news. Let us hope that the warming trend resumes so that once again we Brits will be able to grow excellent wine, just as our ancestors did during the Medieval Warm Period.

    If our luck holds it may even get warm enough to melt the ice caps entirely so we will have plants growing from pole to pole as in the Eocene. Mammals emerged back then, eventually leading to the Ascent of Man. Can we at least agree that Mankind is a good thing?

    LC09 was published in Geophysical Research Letters. Kevin (Travesty) Trenberth and other members of the Hockey Team are pretty steamed up about it. Their problem is that Richard Lindzen (MIT) is far more respected than they are.

    One more thing we can agree on; the climate is going to change. In my opinion the longer the warming continues the better; even with modern technology, the human race will not fare well when the next Ice Age hits. Only 20,000 years ago there were glaciers where New York City is today.

    The problem for the IPCC is that they predicted a ridiculous rate of warming (between 2 and 7 degrees by 2100) and Mother Nature has refused to cooperate.

    The warming since 1850 can be seen as “climbing out of the Little Ice Age” when “Frost Fairs” were often held on the frozen Thames.

    We can agree that some of the warming is mann-made but there is mounting evidence that the IPCC (ably backed by NASA/GISS, UEA/CRU and UCAR) has overstated the effect.

    Like

  17. I liked your bee video which I see as really good news.

    That’s screwed up.
    Nowhere in the video does it say that bees being out of sync with plants is a…good thing. How are crops supposed to be pollinated?
    What happens to farmers that rely upon the bees?
    Where is the food on your table supposed to come from?
    Don’t you know anything about agriculture?
    Or are you one of those people who thinks that fruit and vegetables appear by magic in supermarkets?

    …just as our ancestors did during the Medieval Warm Period.

    Once more around on the merry-go-round?
    (sigh)
    Ok.
    Vikings, vikings, vikings, vikings etc ad nauseum.
    The Medieval Warm Period is a Denialist PRATT. See here for the link.
    Why don’t you understand this?
    This PRATT has been circulating the Internet for YEARS.
    It’s been done to death.
    You need to put away the denialist talking points and get your science from science sources.

    If our luck holds it may even get warm enough to melt the ice caps entirely so we will have plants growing from pole to pole as in the Eocene.

    What of the nations that will lose their local water supply? What happens to them?
    Link here.
    And another one here.

    What about species mass extinction events? Fiddle with the temperature gauge on the planet and…eco-systems collapes. They don’t come back. New eco-systems will eventually take their place but that takes forever. Link here.

    What happens to our oceans and marine life?
    The fishing industry?
    Do you know anything about acidification at all?
    See here for the link.

    Can we at least agree that Mankind is a good thing?

    (WTF???)

    LC09 was published in Geophysical Research Letters.

    You neglect to mention that the scientific community read it and decided that it was hopelessly flawed. This is not about a small handful of individual scientists. It sank like a stone.

    Geophysical Research Letters is run by the AGU.
    The AGU doesn’t think much of LC09 either.
    The AGU’s statement on global warming is loud and clear.

    The Earth’s climate is now clearly out of balance and is warming. Many components of the climate system—including the temperatures of the atmosphere, land and ocean, the extent of sea ice and mountain glaciers, the sea level, the distribution of precipitation, and the length of seasons—are now changing at rates and in patterns that are not natural and are best explained by the increased atmospheric abundances of greenhouse gases and aerosols generated by human activity during the 20th century. Global average surface temperatures increased on average by about 0.6°C over the period 1956–2006. As of 2006, eleven of the previous twelve years were warmer than any others since 1850. The observed rapid retreat of Arctic sea ice is expected to continue and lead to the disappearance of summertime ice within this century. Evidence from most oceans and all continents except Antarctica shows warming attributable to human activities. Recent changes in many physical and biological systems are linked with this regional climate change.

    Read the rest here.

    One more thing we can agree on; the climate is going to change.

    Well, duh!

    In my opinion the longer the warming continues the better…

    Your opinion is completely unsupported by the scientific community.
    In order to prop up your beliefs, you must religiously avoid all contact with any mainstream science and stick exclusively to no-name denialist blogs.
    NASA, the Royal Society, the AGU and all the other scientific communities on the planet are not your friends.

    The problem for the IPCC is that they predicted a ridiculous rate of warming…

    The scientific community supports the IPCC.
    You have nothing and you don’t seem to be bothered very much by it.
    You are living in a fact-free world.

    We can agree that some of the warming is mann-made but there is mounting evidence that the IPCC (ably backed by NASA/GISS, UEA/CRU and UCAR) has overstated the effect.

    Yet, strangely, you seem unable to back up this statement with evidence.

    Oh, and please don’t forget this one…

    Why did you cherry pick 1998?
    Why not 1997?
    What’s wrong with 1997?
    Or 1996?
    Or 1999?
    What’s the big secret behind 1998?
    Why did you repeat this Denialist PRATT twice?

    Like

  18. gallopingcamel

    Cedric, you have swallowed every bit of alarmist nonsense and you still refuse to admit that a warmer climate is to be desired.

    Depending which scientist you listen to, global warming since 1850 (measured in the low latitudes) amounts to 0.6 t0 0.9 degrees Celsius.

    This small change created much of the prosperity we now enjoy. The “Frost Fairs” will not be missed. The Swiss farms that were swallowed by glaciers are now ice free.

    Surely you can see that the positive aspects of global warming far outweigh the negatives.

    The IPCC is predicting a warming 3 to 10 times what we have enjoyed in the last 160 years and they say it will happen in the next 90 years. I wish they were right but look around, it is not happening. Reality trumps dogma and false prophets too.

    The leaks from UEA/CRU confirm what was long suspected. Since AR2 the IPCC has been controlled by zealots.

    Like

  19. Surely you can see that the positive aspects of global warming far outweigh the negatives.

    What’s so positive about loss of drinking water?

    What’s so positive about loss of coastal properties?

    What’s so positive about disruption of our farming, forestry and fishing industry?

    Our ecology and our economy is dependent upon the status quo in global temperatures.
    Upsetting the apple cart either way is a really, really BAD idea.

    I wish they were right but look around, it is not happening.

    Scientists are looking around.
    They study reality for a living.
    That’s their job, you moron!

    That’s why they say global warming is happening.

    Reality trumps dogma and false prophets too.

    Science is not a religion. It works differently.
    Duh.

    The leaks from UEA/CRU confirm what was long suspected. Since AR2 the IPCC has been controlled by zealots.

    Ok. How?
    What scientific research paper was debunked by the stolen CRU emails?
    Be specific.
    Actually name one.

    Before you answer, you should do yourself a favour and get informed first.
    See here and ….here.

    Oh, and please don’t forget this one…

    (Why do you wiggle away?)
    🙂

    Why did you cherry pick 1998?
    Why not 1997?
    What’s wrong with 1997?
    Or 1996?
    Or 1999?
    What’s the big secret behind 1998?
    Why did you repeat this Denialist PRATT twice?

    Why do you refuse to confront your painfully obvious dishonestly and evasion?
    Grow up.

    Like

  20. gallopingcamel

    Cedric, please accept my apologies. It was never my intent that you burst a blood vessel or be forced into an anger management program. Let me explain.

    I am new to blogging and wanted to start a dialog with Climate Alarmists. I tried Climate Progress but they censor all dissenting posts.
    Deltoid is even worse.

    George Monbiot is the only prominent Alarmist who continues to command my respect. From his public statements it is clear that he knows that even the appearance of academic fraud is a very serious matter. This is especially true in science that may be used to create new public policy.

    For the last 20 years my employment has been in Electro-Optics as a researcher (feeding at the public trough) and as a teacher. My classes would be very dull but for a sprinkling of students who challenge everything that comes up. They are not always right but they keep everyone awake and we all learn more as a result of the inevitable spirited debates.

    You have done a good job challenging everything in my posts and that is the right attitude in matters of science. For my part I know there is little chance of changing your opinions but I will be more than satisfied if you start to challenge your own assumptions. You may end up more convinced than ever but it is possible you may occasionally see merit in the opposing point of view.

    Initially my blogs were a feeble attempt at the Socratic method with the aim of exploring what the science is telling us. As things went on I shifted towards a more important question, namely “What climate outcome should we prefer?”. Maybe it is time to take a look at the tougher questions:

    Q1. Does mankind have the power to control the average global temperature?

    Q2. If the answer to Q1 is “Yes” should we attempt to change the temperature and in which direction?

    Q3. If “Yes” to Q3 what methods are most likely to be effective?

    Like

  21. I am new to blogging and wanted to start a dialog with Climate Alarmists.

    Actually, the correct term is “every single scientific community on the planet” not “Climate Alarmists”.

    You have done a good job challenging everything in my posts and that is the right attitude in matters of science.

    That’s very nice of you.
    I wish I could repay the compliment and say how honest and forthright you have been in response to my challenges.
    However, we both know that you have been both dishonest and evasive.
    Please stop.

    Your posts consist of PRATTS from start to finish.

    The Hockey Stick PRATT.
    The Medieval Warm Period PRATT.
    The “It hasn’t been warming for a decade” PRATT (otherwise known as the 1998 PRATT)
    The “Warming is a good thing” PRATT.
    The “IPCC got it wrong” PRATT.

    All of your PRATT’s are listed here and here and (for variety) here.
    They are well and truely “old news”.

    Regurgitating them again and again and again is very poor form and will serve only to alienate even very patient and reasonable people.
    Being deliberately dense is not the way to win friends and influence people.
    Judging by your behaviour here, that seems to be your standard M.O.
    It’s no wonder that you’ve been banned at other websites.

    …the aim of exploring what the science is telling us.

    We live in the age of the Internet.
    If you really want to know what the science is telling us then…google a scientific community’s webpage and check out their postion on global warming.
    It will take you a couple of minutes-tops!
    They all agree on three things.

    1)Global warming is happening.
    2)We are responsible for it.
    3)This is BAD.

    For example: NASA. (link)

    Maybe it is time to take a look at the tougher questions…

    Not much point in looking at the questions if you just continue to shove your fingers in your ears and ignore the answers.
    (shrug)

    Any chance of you stopping your evasions and answering my questions?
    Remember these?

    What scientific research paper was debunked by the stolen CRU emails?
    Be specific.
    Actually name one.

    Why did you cherry pick 1998?
    Why not 1997?
    What’s wrong with 1997?
    Or 1996?
    Or 1999?
    What’s the big secret behind 1998?
    Why did you repeat this Denialist PRATT twice?

    Like

  22. gallopingcamel

    Cedric, I hoped that you would take a stab at thinking for yourself.

    Here are a few closing thoughts as it seems pointless to continue this dialogue. Please feel free to have the last word.

    Good science does not need the blessings of the establishment but it stands the test of time. Galileo was right and the mighty Roman Catholic church was wrong.

    Albert Einstein was a humble clerk working in a patent office when he wrote his treatise on “Special Relativity”. The only kind of “settled science” is junk science; here is a quote from Albert that sums it up:

    “No amount of experimentation can ever prove me right; a single experiment can prove me wrong.”

    Like

  23. Please feel free to have the last word.

    What a worthless person you are.
    You can’t even bring yourself to admit that you have nothing and have been roundly trounced.
    Shame on you.
    “Please feel free..?”
    “Please feel bloody free..”???

    Take your “please feel free” and eat it.
    Eat every single last bit.

    Why are you running away without answering my questions?

    Remember these?:
    What scientific research paper was debunked by the stolen CRU emails?
    Be specific.
    Actually name one.

    Why did you cherry pick 1998?
    Why not 1997?
    What’s wrong with 1997?
    Or 1996?
    Or 1999?
    What’s the big secret behind 1998?
    Why did you repeat this Denialist PRATT twice?

    I hoped that you would take a stab at thinking for yourself.

    I do think for myself.
    I also am very comfortable listening to the scientific community to get my science information.
    They have the training.
    They do the work.
    They follow the scientific process.
    So naturally, they get my attention.

    It’s the same deal when it comes to medicine.
    I don’t get my medical information from strangers on the internet.
    I consult the medical community.

    Good science does not need the blessings of the establishment but it stands the test of time.

    Well, duh.

    Galileo was right and the mighty Roman Catholic church was wrong. Albert Einstein was…

    CONGRATULATIONS!!!
    🙂
    You’ve just scored 45 points in the
    Crackpot index!

    You get 5 points for each mention of “Einstien”, “Hawkins” or “Feynmann”.

    Plus 40 points for comparing yourself to Galileo, suggesting that a modern-day Inquisition is hard at work on your case, and so on.

    Want to earn more points? Check out the Crackpot Index for yourself! Link.

    But the fact that some geniuses were laughed at does not imply that all who are laughed at are geniuses. They laughed at Columbus, they laughed at Fulton, they laughed at the Wright Brothers. But they also laughed at Bozo the Clown.

    Carl Sagan

    Like

  24. Pingback: Monckton requires religious certification for scientists? « Open Parachute

  25. gallopingcamel

    Cedric, I find your passion most refreshing. Apathy annoys me.

    To my surprise, the dialog with Climate Progress was not dead after all. There was a response from Richard Brenne.

    Richard Brenne is fully committed to the IPCC and all its proposals. He has met most of the big names in the AGW movement including Al Gore, James Hansen, Kevin Trenberth and many, many more. As you will see from his writings he is very smart indeed.

    If you have time please take a look at the link below. Failing that, please comment on the posts from #98 onwards.

    http://climateprogress.org/2009/12/27/watch-ross-gelbspans-video-on-climate-change-and-the-fossil-fuel-industry-fossil-fuel-funded-disinformation-campaign-launched/

    Like

  26. gallopingcamel, I find your evasions most predictable. Please stop.

    …the dialog with Climate Progress was not dead after all.

    Who cares? If I want to find out about science then I’ll go direct to science sources.

    Grow a pair and answer my questions:

    What scientific research paper was debunked by the stolen CRU emails?
    Be specific.
    Actually name one.

    Why did you cherry pick 1998?
    Why not 1997?
    What’s wrong with 1997?
    Or 1996?
    Or 1999?
    What’s the big secret behind 1998?
    Why did you repeat this Denialist PRATT twice?

    Like

  27. Pingback: Climate change deniers tawdry manipulation of “hockey sticks” « Open Parachute

  28. gallopingcamel

    Cedric, arguing furiously over every trivial point creates more heat than light. My goal is to solve problems and that sometimes means trying to find common ground with people who hold contrary opinions.

    I would like to persuade you that global warming is a good thing but if that is not possible, maybe we can agree on other things such as the potential of nuclear power to reduce CO2 emissions.

    I chose not to answer some of your questions as it was my intention to stimulate your thinking rather than trigger irrational anger. In spite of my restrained responses you went ballistic anyway. You can hardly get any more manic in print so here are the answers you requested.

    The CRU papers debunk nothing that was not already discredited. They merely confirm what was long suspected about MBH98, MBH99, MBH08 and related papers. In a nutshell, tree ring proxies are junk science, the “Peer Review” process was manipulated and key source data was deliberately destroyed. “The dog ate my homework” is not an acceptable excuse in scientific research. To cap it all, the statistical programs used to process the data were designed to produce a Hockey Stick even with Red Noise as the input data.

    Choosing start dates is a cheap trick and you are absolutely right to point out that choosing the start as 1934, 1998 or any other hot year automatically biases the forward trend lines in a downward direction. The IPCC uses the same cheap trick to produce upward trends so please be honest enough to cry “FOUL” when they do it.

    No matter what starting point one chooses, the Hockey Stick looks more like a drooping noodle with every year that passes. Mother Nature plays such cruel tricks!

    Did you read any part of that Climate Progress link that I sent in my last post?

    To date there seems to be no interest in our exchange of views so if you want to continue in a less public medium, that will be fine with me.

    Like

  29. I would like to persuade you that global warming is a good thing…

    No scientific community supports your position.
    There is no reason to believe you.
    You have nothing.

    I chose not to answer some of your questions…

    No. You had no choice but to avoid them for you had no real answers.
    You were in the wrong.

    The CRU papers debunk nothing that was not already discredited.

    Pure handwaving.
    I’m not going to let you get away with a Gish Gallop.

    In a nutshell, tree ring proxies are junk science…

    Who says? Put up or shut up.

    Choosing start dates is a cheap trick and you are absolutely right to point out that choosing the start as 1934, 1998 or any other hot year automatically biases the forward trend lines in a downward direction.

    So why did you do it? Twice?
    How come you couldn’t come clean about it before?
    Why did you do it when you knew you were being dishonest?

    The IPCC uses the same cheap trick to…

    No. Don’t bring up the “tu quoque” argument as a smokescreen to hide your own flaws.
    We can talk about the IPCC another time, AFTER we’ve dealt with your dishonest 1998 PRATT.
    Start explaining yourself.
    Be honest.
    Come clean….if you can.

    Like

  30. Galloping – please read my post today about the “hockey stick” issue.

    You as just repeating a denier falacy.

    Sent from my iPod

    Like

  31. Richard Christie

    Cedric, it has been said that there is a risk associated with continuing in debate with the stupid; that listeners will have a problem discerning just who is the fool.
    Thanks to you and to galloping camel for the preceeding.
    In this case the anecdote fails, I have had no problem sorting it out.

    Like

  32. Thanks Richard.
    I truely wish it was possible to have a discussion with a climate-denier who didn’t think that reason and evidence were just sneaky ways of cheating.
    😉

    Like

  33. I guess that is the way of differentiating the climate change denier from the climate change sceptic. I just wish the later had more representation (and influence) within that group. They must really cringe at some of the arguments and tactics being used.

    Like

  34. gallopingcamel

    Cedric, when you folks descended to name calling and mantras (moron, denier, PRATT, Gish Gallop etc.) I realised that you have not bothered to read anything I sent you.

    Our discussions rest on the IPCC’s prediction that global temperatures at the low latitudes will increase by 2 to 7 degrees Celsius by 2100. For simplicity I call this the Hockey Stick.

    The problem with the Hockey Stick is that it is not happening, so with every year that passes it looks more and more ridiculous. If the Hockey Team were real scientists they would spend their time finding out what is wrong with their theories rather than constructing a cover up that breaks our FOI laws.

    My assertion that global warming is a good thing results from what historians tell us. To take a simple example, I drink beer and scotch whisky, products appropriate to today’s climate in the upper latitudes. Historians say that my ancestors in Littleham-by-Bideford in Devon during the Medieval Warm Period were more inclined to drink wine because of its abundance and high quality.

    If the IPCC is right my children will live to see inexpensive good quality wine grown in England once again. Sadly, this appears to be improbable fiction.

    Why did you ignore my links to safer nuclear technologies such as LFTRs and SCNRs?
    Does real science make you uncomfortable?

    Like

  35. To say the “problem with the hockey stick is that it isn’t happening” is just weird!

    The “hockey stick” is actually a record of what has already happened!

    Sent from my iPod

    Like

  36. gallopingcamel

    Ken, looking forward, the Hockey Stick shows a rapid rise in temperature that looked pretty good when it was first published in 1998. The trouble is that 1998 was an exceptionally hot year; the temperature has been trending down since then. Don’t think of this as weird; it is more a case of bad luck for Michael Mann and his Team.

    In the backward direction, the Hockey Stick looks back 1,000 years so it should show both the Medieval Warm Period and the Little Ice Age yet there is no sign of the MWP; the LIA is a minor dip.

    For a more credible analysis that does not deny the huge historical record take a look at the corresponding figures published in the IPCC’s AR1 report. Then look at work done in the last few years by Loehle & McCulloch. Unlike MBH98, L&McC does not use tree ring proxies. They use ice core measurements based on direct temperature readings (past temperatures are stored in icecaps owing to the low thermal conductivity of ice) and O16/O18 isotope ratios:

    http://www.jennifermarohasy.com/blog/archives/002711.html

    Disagreements are very common in science. Even though most people think of Albert Einstein as omniscient he never accepted the validity of Quantum Electro-Dynamics, the basis for many modern industries.

    Like

  37. But the “hockey stick” can’t “look forward”. It is a record of the past.

    As for proxy measures, by their very nature the best results obtained by using as many as possible – not restricting youself.

    Our best indication of the temperatures of the past is obtained from the evidence, all the evidence, not our imagination. It’s a joke to invent a record then compain because the evidence contradicts it.

    Sent from my iPod

    Like

  38. Cedric, when you folks descended to name calling and mantras (moron, denier, PRATT, Gish Gallop etc.)

    I believe in calling a spade a spade.
    I do not suffer fools gladly.

    All you are doing is endlessly throwing up PRATT’s.
    An endless string of PRATT’s does not an argument make.

    When I focus on one of your PRATT’s…you disappear and bring up a different PRATT.
    Then when I switch my attention to the more recent PRATT…you recycle the old PRATT.

    The problem with the Hockey Stick is that it is not happening…

    The Hockey stick is a record of…the past.
    As in what HAS happened.
    Why don’t you even understand this basic fact?
    Don’t you ever fact check?
    Ever?
    Do you enjoy sounding pig-ignorant on the web?
    Bitching and whining about the Hockey Stick PRATT will get you nowhere.
    Here’s a video that tells you all you need to know about the damned hockey stick.
    LEARN.
    Climate Denial Crock of the Week – “The Medieval Warming Crock”

    …during the Medieval Warm Period…

    Holy-crazy-monkey-jumping-up-and-down-on-a-stick!!
    You just can’t help yourself, huh?
    Ok.
    Let’s do this again.
    Ready?
    (Chants in monotonous, bored voice)
    Vikings, vikings, vikings, vikings, vikings, vikings, vikings, vikings, vikings, vikings, vikings, vikings, vikings, vikings etc…
    (Chanting ends)
    This is one of many PRATT’s that you have just stupidly recycled again and again and again.
    We’ve been there. Bought the t-shirt. Done that.
    Enough with bloody spam.
    I don’t like spam.
    Monty Python – Spam

    😦

    Like

  39. gallopingcamel

    Ken, the main point of the Hockey Stick is its “look forward”. This is the basis of the IPCC’s prediction of a 2 to 7 degree Celsius rise in temperature by the year 2100. Take a look at Figure 21 in the Copenhagen Diagnosis. This shows the temperature range predictions all the way to 2100:

    http://www.copenhagendiagnosis.org/

    While I agree with you that it makes sense to use all available proxy methods, not all proxy methods are of equal value. The computer codes leaked from UAE/CRU show that tree ring proxies were given undue weight by the Hockey Team. The work of L&McC shows what you get if you give zero weight to tree ring proxies.

    Who is right? You seem to be convinced that MBH98 et seq are correct; I think the jury is still out.

    I did not invent the historical record so the Hockey Stick has a major credibility problem given its failure to explain past climate. Loehle & McCullough do a much better job in that respect so I am leaning their way.

    Like

  40. Richard Christie

    gallopingcamel wrote: “I did not invent the historical record so the Hockey Stick has a major credibility problem given its failure to explain past climate.”

    gc, The Hockey Stick graph makes to pretence to explain anything. Explanation and interpretation are separate issues.

    This is a fundamental point and already made in preceeding posts.

    Climate models are the tools for prediction, physical systems determine climate change and climate models enable us to predict. Science has the job of first gathering evidence (the record), studying the physical systems and developing predictive models.

    Like

  41. Richard Christie

    Apology for the typo, post should read “no pretence”

    Like

  42. Galloping – you can also have a look at Mann’s 2008 paper (Proxy-based reconstructions of hemispheric and global surface temperature variations over the past two millennia) to see the effect of ignoring tree ring data on the “hockey stick” graph.

    Or look at the National Research Council report Surface Temperature Reconstructions for the Last 2,000 Years.

    I have dealt in more detail with “hockey sticks” in my post Climate change deniers’ tawdry manipulation of “hockey sticks”

    Like

  43. gallopingcamel

    Ken, we are unlikely to agree on the science relating to global climate. Maybe we can agree on a related issue.

    Question:
    Do you believe that humankind should reduce its CO2 emissions?

    My answer to the question is “Yes”. Furthermore, as a scientist I can help to make it happen.

    Would you work with me to reduce man-made CO2 emissions even though you may doubt my motives?

    Like

  44. Galloping:

    1: I think most of humanity believes we should reduce CO2 and other greenhouse gas emissions.

    2: While we see huge political problems it’s clear to me that our answers to these sort of problem lies with education, promotion of science, fighting ignorance (including current attacks on science) improvement in the lot of women and overcoming religious and superstitions restrictions on society.

    I am quite optimistic in the long term (although I think we are going to see some unwanted consequences of global warming in the coming century). I think science is continuing to produce solutions, many are currently feasible.

    3: I guess in my research career some of my projects were relevant to the problem, specifically to the issue of storage of C in the soil.

    4: In my retirement I am enjoying contributing to the general problem of fighting ignorance and superstition and particularly fighting against anti-science attitudes. My blogging on climate change denial and creationism I see as contributing to the latter.

    Like

  45. gallopingcamel

    Ken, thanks for a wonderful response! It tells me that we have much in common. You have worked as a researcher; we are about the same age and we both want to improve education!

    Like you I am a “hard” scientist so we should be able to get along. I want to reduce the consumption of fossil fuels but for quite different reasons than the good people who frequent this website.

    In my opinion the only technology that will slash mankind’s CO2 emissions without requiring a drastic reduction in our lifestyle is nuclear power.

    I am not talking about the kind of nuclear power that we have today or the the thermo-nuclear power that we may have 150 years from now.

    There are intermediate nuclear technologies capable of consuming the nuclear waste destined for Yucca mountain very efficiently so that the gross amount of heavy radioactive elements at the earth’s surface will fall. Technologies that are far safer than even the best nuclear reactors operating today.

    Like

  46. Galloping – “In my opinion the only technology that will slash mankind’s CO2 emissions without requiring a drastic reduction in our lifestyle is nuclear power.” – That’s a sweeping statement. And I don’t think you can support it empirically.

    The IPCC reports have estimated the contribution that can be made by different technologies to mitigating CO2 emissions. While nuclear power is an important component – it is by no means the only one, or the one which can make the biggest contributions.

    The lesson seems to be that the solution lies in adopting and promoting a range of mitigating technologies (including nuclear power). Concentration on a single technology can’t do the trick (and don’t get carried away with my use of that word).

    In other words – don’t put all your eggs in one basket.

    Like

  47. gallopingcamel

    Ken, of course you are right that nuclear power only impacts electricity generation and that is not the main problem.

    I hate to say it but the French are way ahead of us. We need to “leap-frog” the French (sorry about the weak joke) by persuing advanced fission reactors. That can bring us safer nuclear reactors and cheaper electricity.

    Cheaper electricity will drive people away from petrol powered cars. Even today the fuel cost per mile for electric cars is lower than petrol cars. Lower cost electricity can create a kind of domino effect. I love my electric car.

    The good folks at Deltoid have been beating me up for a while. They are even tougher than Cedric (where did he go?). You may get a chuckle or two from this link:

    http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2010/01/more_monckton_2.php

    Like

  48. My comments on nuclear power were related to the energy sector.

    For example a doubling of nuclear energy generation by 2030 will increase nuclear share from 16% to 18%.

    Silly to put all eggs in one basket.

    Sent from my iPod

    Like

  49. gallopingcamel

    I am for hydro, geo-thermal, wind, wave and solar. I am dumb enough to believe in fusion within the next 150 years. Am I missing something?

    Like

  50. gallopingcamel – if that was your best way to get our attention, you just made yourself look like a moron. Do some research before you open your big mouth next time. You could have started talking about good way’s of stopping CO2 emissions right from the start without making idiotic comments to wind us up. Now we’ll just leave jakerman to talk to you because in terms of communication, you suck.

    Posted by: guthrie | January 23, 2010 7:07 AM

    Reposted from Deltiod.

    Like

  51. Pingback: Lord Monckton on Alex Jones Tv 4/5: Obama’s Green Jobs”Nothing More Than Socialized Terrorism!” | Johnsblog - I Know I'm Right...

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