New “Hockey Stick” but same tired old denial

Ian Wishart is on his climate change conspiracy high horse again (see New global warming scandal hits climate science). His fevered imagination has managed to produce a “scandal” out of the publication of a scientific paper. Of course the scandal is based entirely on his climate change denial echo chamber. His denier mates have ripped into this paper. They are obviously very upset by it – more so than normal. It’s worth asking why?

I think the simplest answer lies with the word “Hockey Stick!” This phrase, together with reference to Dr Michael Mann, usually gets them foaming at the mouth. And it’s amazing what rubbish they can spout once so provoked.

This time they are reacting to a new “Hockey Stick” presented in a recent Science paper by Shaun A. Marcott, Jeremy D. Shakun, Peter U. Clark and Alan C. Mix. (see “A Reconstruction of Regional and Global Temperature for the Past 11,300 Years.”) The earlier research had extended back roughly 1,500 years, and suggested that the rapid temperature spike of the past century, believed to be a consequence of human activity, exceeded any warming episode during those years. This new work confirms that result while suggesting the modern warming is unique over a longer period.

The new work compiled the most meticulous reconstruction yet of global temperatures over the past 11,300 years, almost the entire Holocene. They used indicators like the distribution of microscopic, temperature-sensitive ocean creatures to determine past climate. The plots below compare these new results with those found by previous workers


The temperature reconstruction of Marcott 2013 (past 11,000 years) and a collection of reconstructions (past 1800 years) as presented by Mann 2008. (Credit: The two epochs of Marcott and the Wheelchair).

Wishart says the new paper “claimed to have validated the discredited “hockey stick” graph and proven that modern temperatures were the highest in four millennia.” He then goes on to use the authors’ simple acknowledgement that “The 20th century portion of our paleotemperature stack is not statistically robust” to claim their “story is rapidly unravelling” and that this is a “new global warming scandal.”

Bloody hell – is that all it takes to produce a scandal? For a scientist to point out limitations in part of their data (an area already extensively covered by other work)? What does Ian think – that every piece of scientific work must repeat in depth all the previous work? That no existing information can be used?

No of course not. He is just being dishonest. Using anything he can get hold of to weave a story discrediting honest science – and honest scientists. We have seen it all before in the lies he and his climate change denial mates promoted about Dr Michael Mann’s work – the work producing the original “Hockey Stick.”

For example, Wishart’s reference to “the discredited “hockey stick” graph” is a lie he promotes in his book “Con Air” (see  Alarmist con for my review) and is repeated ad nauseum in the climate denial echo chamber. But it is just not true. Far from being discredited this work has been validated again and again. It’s the critics of this work who have been discredited. Been caught lying.

I summarised this several years ago in my article Climate change deniers’ tawdry manipulation of “hockey sticks”. Have a look at that if you want details.

The climate change denial movement worked extremely hard to discredit the work of Michael Mann which produced the original “Hockey Stick.” Mann has described this campaign in his book The Hockey Stick and the Climate Wars: Dispatches from the Front Lines (see The truth about the hockey stick for my review of the book). Their campaign failed. This work has been discredited in one place only – the  biased mind of the committed climate change denier like Ian Wishart.

Meanwhile, if you wish to learn more about the Marcott (2013) paper and their work here are some links:

A Reconstruction of Regional and Global Temperature for the Past 11,300 Years.
Global Temperatures Highest in 4,000 Years
Response by Marcott et al.
Recent Warming Is Still Unprecedented In Speed, Scale And Cause: A Marcott Et Al. FAQ
Fresh Thoughts from Authors of a Paper on 11,300 Years of Global Temperature Changes

Similar articles

116 responses to “New “Hockey Stick” but same tired old denial

  1. The issue is of course the resolution of the data in the 20th C compared with the rest of the proxy series, and also the splicing of instrumental data with proxy.
    This is the dishonest “Mikes Nature Trick” which was exposed in the climate gate emails.
    Dishonest scientists who sell their souls to the dishonest government funded gravy train will recognise this of course. The same dishonest scientists who produced the dishonest Gergis et al paper that was retracted because of bad statistical methods are nowhere to be seen. Prof David Karaoke originally thanked Steve McIntyre for pointing out his errors and then later proceeded to diss the man in a cowardly and dishonest attack on a man of intergrity

    Such dishonesty I find hard to stomach


  2. Oh dear, Phil – you are using that word “dishonest” again. It’s a dead give away!

    The resolution of the 20th century “proxy data” is not an issue. It’s limitations are understood and acknowledged. There is plenty of 20th century data out there which can be used – we don’t have to rely on the 20th century proxy data. Or the 20th century data in this paper.

    And are you barmy or something? Do you believe there is a law preventing inclusion of data from different proxy and instrumental sources in the same graphic? Or are you trying to invent such a silly law right now? That is pathetic.

    The so-called “trick” was to handle the problem of recent proxy data which were clearly wrong and known to be wrong. It’s not a matter of “splicing” so much as of combining the data in a way that is not confusing. It’s a well known issue and had been discussed in the literature well before Mann’s paper. There was no secret about the problem. Have a read of Mann’s book if you really don’t understand the issue.

    So, I repeat Phil, you are lying, and your use of the word “dishonesty” is a clear indication of that.

    But, I am surprised you don’t see the more serious charge I made – you are also stupid. You must be to tell such lies (the evidence is in your comments in the previous thread) and then pretend there is no evidence!

    Liars usually try not to spread so much evidence around.

    Very stupid.


  3. I am surprised you don’t see the more serious charge I made

    The term boor seems also appropriate.


  4. Dishonest scientists who sell their souls to the dishonest government funded gravy train will recognise this of course. The same dishonest scientists who produced…

    It’s a global konspiracy!
    No details on how it could possibly work though.
    There never are.
    There’s this trick that is wrong but, somehow, the deniers can’t actually demonstrate what exactly is wrong. There’s dishonesty but, somehow, none of the deniers seem to be able to identify it in a court of law or in the scientific community.
    People are selling their souls but no actual money is discovered in secret bank accounts or anything.
    There’s nothing. Nothing but babble.


  5. Hey Ken, if I took your weight every day once a day for six months, then I took your weight every 20 minutes after you woke up, I might expect a spike on your body weight at the end due to the resolution of the measurement interval and the time it takes to digest your breakfast and lunch

    Clearly, this is a valid technique, as advised by Mick Mann.

    Therefore I should advise you that you need to start on an immediate weight loss program, administered by me.

    Would you agree that this is dishonest? Maybe not, I;d like your opinion.

    It matters to me. I have a truckload of weight loss pills I need to fob off to a gullible public, but I don’t like to be dishonest.

    Is this a valid scientific technique, or it is dishonest?

    (* crickets chirping, tumbleweed rolling….*)


  6. Hey Ken, if I took your weight every day once a day for six months, then I took your weight every 20 minutes after you woke up, I might expect a spike on your body weight at the end due to the resolution of the measurement interval and the time it takes to digest your breakfast and lunch



  7. “His denier mates have ripped into this paper. They are obviously very upset by it – more so than normal…. And it’s amazing what rubbish they can spout once so provoked.”

    Perhaps you could have a look at concerns raised by ‘his denier mate,’ Steve McIntyre, and respond specifically to the re-dating issue. If you addressed the issue raised in Steve’s audit then we might have an debate that would be useful to all.

    I find it strange that Neither the name of the critic or the core dating issue he raises are addressed by either authors or other defenders of the paper. It would also be helpful if The difference on this matter between Marcott’s thesis and the published paper were explained.


  8. It’s a global konspiracy!
    No details on how it could possibly work though.
    There never are.

    Hey Ken, if I took your weight….

    There’s nothing. Nothing but babble.


  9. I find it strange that…

    That’s nice. Less talky-talky and more worky-worky.
    Your Nobel Prize awaits.


  10. You and your fellow conspiracy theorists can never win any scientific argument over climate research, Phil.

    You have no scientific standing nor any scientific credibility.

    None at all.

    It is quite sad reading the pathetic efforts made poor bewildered souls such as Richard Cumming over on Treadgold’s Clinate Converstaions blog. Quoting research articles he doesn’t understand from journal after journal, all the time seemingly oblivious to the basic fact that the authors of the articles he cites overwhelmingly dismiss the arguments that he invents to reinforce his world view of a scientific conspiracy.

    There is no reason to pay you any heed other than expose the stupidity of the AGW denier troll.

    Because in the end the research doesn’t support you and every single one of you reverts to shouting your core belief, that there is a conspiracy out there, “they” are out to get you or your wallet.

    It now appears that Monckton NMHL has partly given up on distorting the science and is increasingly pushing his core conspiracy motivation: it’s Agenda 21 and concentration camps for all.

    You guys are risible.


  11. Strange Phil, I have been doing exactly that experiment. And while it would be nice to believe that the increase I have observed is a one-off spike removed by a single defecation unfortunately I have to face the facts. The increased weight is there.

    I am not surprised you have truckloads of pills, and probably a few bridges, you want to unload. But I am not that gullible. Especially with your record of dishonesty.

    Fortunately I have enough sense to look at the issue of frequency and spiking and draw my own conclusions, and act on them sensibly. Yes, it would be tempting to deny my weight increase, despite all the other evidence (bloody hell, you should see all those clothes I have that I can no longer get into), but I think I am man enough to face the truth.

    I’ll just have to make those life style changes that nutritionist has been telling me about for years.

    And you know that is a continual issue in science. We are always having to confront these sort of measurement problems and do our best in interpreting results. We debate the issues and learn in the process.

    Only idiots thinks that is somehow a conspiracy or dishonest.


  12. Berniel,

    It’s really hard to take each new argument deniers raise seriously when they refuse to acknowledge and correct the lies they have already told – such as Wishart’s claim that the original work of Mann which produced the hockey stick has been discredited. It hasn’t – he is just lying.

    Perhaps you could first confront that issue, for which there is plenty of available evidence. Once you have done that perhaps you could then explain the details of these “re-dating”‘ “core dating”‘ etc., “issues.”

    Otherwise you are just into Gish galloping. And simply throwing out slurs from the denier echo chamber.


  13. Yes Richard, poor old Richard Cumming is really pathetic. I can’t help feeling sorry for him.

    Don’t know the guy at all but I do have an image if him which is not flattering. He really should get a life, or some help of some sort.


  14. Did you read Bernie’s comment? He is an honest person who understands the issues that were raised early on at climate audit.

    I admire honest people like Bernie and Steve Mac who are prepared to stand up to the dishonest scientists.

    Of course ken I do not actually have truck loads of pills.
    It was a figure of speech.
    Of course, dishonest people might try to distort my quip and claim that I am a drug pusher. It was a joke, geddit, I am not dishonest, unlike some people.


  15. Berniel a mate of yours, is he Phil?

    Well, if he has a proper understanding, not just into denial, he can show that by his behaviour here. So far he seems only to have adopted the Gish gallop approach – but I have an open mind.

    Unfortunately though, your recommendation is a bit like the kiss of death as you have well established your own dishonesty here.

    I see my discussion of my weight issues was above your head. Why am I not surprised.


  16. God, the Potty Peer really has no imagination. He is now threatening Herald journalists and New Zealand universities because they have not said nice things about him. His letter is presented in Treadgold’s mouthpiece (

    It’s good for a laugh!

    Looks like his “speaking tour” here is going to provide more amusement than we expected.


  17. Your discussion of your weight is irrelevant because you did not understand the point I was trying to make, ie that an hourly measurement of your weight cannot be compared with a daily or weekly measurement if your weight.

    I can sympathize with the weight issue but I can assure you my weight gain did not occur within the last six hours.

    I am glad you will find enjoyment in Moncktons speaking tour, unfortunately I can’t make it as I have to go on a weight loss camp, but perhaps you can report back, honestly of course.


  18. Yes, Phil, It thought it was over your head. You don’t seem to understand how scientific interpretation works, do you?

    But it looks like the Mad Monckton will be using Richard Treadgold’s blog as his mouthpiece during this tours so I recommend you follow it. Richard doesn’t seem to realise how damaging his publicity will be to his denier cause.

    I’ll do my best to advertise his relevant posts by tweeting them – maybe it will bring Richard a bit of traffic.


  19. No I don’t understand Ken. I am an idiot
    As I said, i am proud of it

    Better an honest idiot than a dishonest scientist


  20. I assure you, Phil, you are not an honest idiot. That has been well established.

    I am off to bed – got to get the weight off my feet.


  21. Sorry if you thought i cast any slurs. i only suggest you read the two posts by McIntyre so that you get to the heart of the critique and address it. You might find them interesting. There is also a nice summary here:

    What about you have a read and post some responses? I would be interest if you think the FAQs answered the main concerns.

    Best wishes, Bernie


  22. Bernie, you are way too polite to the old duffer. Whenever Ken parrots a critique of me I generally treat it in the tradition of Groundhog Day and wheel out a post from the past to remind everyone that Ken’s grasp of climate science is 99% bluster and one percent substance.


  23. Ian Wishart: Wow! You really don’t understand science or climate science at all do you? Your little link packs in so many LOL’s that it does display a daunting capacity for stupidity. I had never heard of you before, I’ll go back to that more elevated state now.


  24. Ken’s grasp of climate science is 99% bluster and one percent substance.

    NASA grasps climate science. As does every single scientific community on the planet. There is no spooky-wooky global konspiracy.
    Stop being a moron.

    NASA | 2012 and the Future of Fire


  25. Ian’s not only an “IDiot”, he’s also a Birther.
    Comedy that writes itself.


  26. Berniel, Why should I go chasing up your recommended links from the climate change denial echo chamber when you have not responded to anything here? Can’t you see that’s your response to my pointing out that you have not acknowledged the lie about Michael Mann’s work being discredited, let alone put that misinformation right, does not recommend me to follow up such diversions.

    What is your attitude towards Wishart’s sweeping claim that Michael Mann’s work has been discredited? (Your response to that question determines the credibility of your participation in a good faith discussion).


  27. Yes Ian, you do treat critiques of your silly claims as “in the tradition of Groundhog Day.” Because, after all, that is much easier for you than actually dealing with the critique. It’s a typical avoidance mechanism.

    I repeat – your claim that Michael Mann’s work on the “hockey stick” has been discredited is a lie. It was a lie when you made the claim in your silly book. And it is a lie now.

    You actually know that – and that is why you have refused to respond to my current or precious critiques. You prefer to rant in in the climate denier echo chamber than engage with the real world.


  28. The link that bernie provided was to Judith Curry’s blog. Dr Curry is a climate scientist.

    So why is this part of the denial echo chamber Ken?


  29. Martin Lack

    Re: Ken v Phil and the issue of frequency of measurement – I have been having a similar debate with a denier-of-science on my blog: Someone who was unable to come up with an excuse for his “scepticism” when, for the sake of argument, I opted not to insist that the current rate of change of temperature is unprecedented (even though it probably is)… This is because, once you park the rate of temperature change or measurement canard, you are just left with the question is the proxy data reliable. Clearly, those who do not want current warmth to be unprecedented (because that would require responsibility and/or action to be taken to address it), will always want proxy data to be unreliable… It all reminds me of the title of a movie with Al Gore in it, what was that called again…?


  30. Phil, so far Berneil has behaved just like a climate change denier or creationist Gish galloper. He has not responded to anything here in terms of discussing it, pointing to problems with what I have said, or acknowledging what I have said. He could, for instance, start with either justifying the claim that Michael Mann’s work has been discredited or acknowledging that claim is a lie. (Hint – you could also do something about retrieving you credibility by doing the same).

    I don’t care who the link is to. I have a policy of not following up bare links when they are presented without any discussion or support. If the commenter can’t or won’t describe the point they wish to make, its a waste if my time to try and work it out for them.

    I look forward to Berneil expressing his opinions on my post in his own words.


  31. The link that bernie provided was to Judith Curry’s blog. Dr Curry is a climate scientist.

    That’s an argument from authority.
    Science is not invested in any one individual scientist.
    Only the work counts.
    Scientists are not holy prophets who speak magic words that are true just because they have spoken them. That goes for climatology as well as biology or chemistry or and other of the physical sciences.
    A person with a Phd can still be wrong.
    Even (gulp) Judith Curry.

    Any scientific research must stand or fall in the scientific arena. Only the work matters. Anything else is amateur night.
    That’s why climate deniers fall into the same catagory as Moon Landing deniers or Evolution deniers or Germ Theory deniers or HIV deniers.

    6. Evolution vs. Creationism:Experts vs. Scientists-Peer Review


  32. Debating AGW deniers, creationists and is like an intellectual form of tennis, the problem is they want the net up for your serve but want it down for their returns.


  33. From Ken: “If the commenter can’t describe the point they are making its a waste if my time to try and work it our for them.”

    Yes, I can see how links to scientific reasoning might be wasted on those who cannot spell or punctuate. You are welcome to ping me for same, but that one just went begging Ken..


  34. Sure, Ian, have a childish dig. It helps avoid the elephant in the room.

    You must have to really hold your hand in front of your eyes to leaf through these comments above, or indeed my article, and miss things like “start with either justifying the claim that Michael Mann’s work has been discredited or acknowledging that claim is a lie.”

    All people like you and Phil have done is repeat the lie as if simple repetition makes it true. It doesn’t, and this one has well and truly been exposed. Refusal to deal with the real world and to attempt to get by on such lies is not just dishonest, it’s cowardly. Even more cowardly because it contains a large component of attacking the man as well as his work. And it’s exactly the tactic you and your mates in the denier echo chamber are attempting with Marcott’s paper.

    Surely it’s the height of stupidity to naively repeat the same tactics when they have, in the past, so resolutely been exposed as political lies.

    Don’t you guys learn from your mistakes?


  35. My point, although slightly in jest, is valid Ken. Marcott’s “evidence” that the world is warmer now than it’s ever been in 11,000 years turned out to be crap…and he was forced to admit this over the weekend. It is now widely expected that his paper will be retracted because, after all, it was the 20th century spike he hung his hat on that turned out to be unsupported.

    The issue is really that simple, and if you can’t understand that or address the point, then you are scientifically illiterate.

    Marcott got caught, Mann got caught before him. You prattle about how you are not going to read linked evidence because you can’t be bothered. Newsflash, the rest of us have lives as well. I for one am not going to relitigate a 4,000 word deconstruction on your page in one of these comment boxes purely because you can’t be bothered clicking on link.

    Seriously, if you can’t be bothered reading what respected climate scientists like Judith Curry have to say about Marcott and Mann’s work, then you don’t really have a valid foundation upon which to criticise…one thing I learnt a long time ago was read widely, including those I disagreed with and their source material, because if I didn’t understand their reasoning I could hardly respond to it..

    Don’t you guys learn from your mistakes?


  36. Oh, and PS…I published the graphs that prove Mann fiddled with his hockey stick…
    Of course, there is far deeper analysis than that available…but you wouldn’t read it regardless


  37. Ian, Berneil contributed nothing. He did not say anything about the critique of the paper. If he is not prepared to state what he is going on about a link serves no value.

    As for the 20th century spike in Mancroft’s paper – they themselves said their paleo data was insufficient to describe the temperatures accurately in recent years. That is not what their paper was about – it was describing temperatures derived from proxies over a longer period back than had previously been done.

    Of course we already have reliable information on recent temperatures so it doesn’t take much to daw inferences – based on a wide amount of work and scientists.

    All that is very simple and it takes either an idiot or someone maliciously inclined to draw the conclusions you have.

    You go on about critiques from respected scientists. Well the question of resolution we have already discussed here was obvious to me, and I was also made in Michael Mann’s critique where he raised the issue. Now he is a very respected climate scientist. I do read scientists discussions and don’t restrict my reading to the denial echo chamber.

    You continue to repeat your lies about Mann, and extend them to Marcott. But you are completely unable to substantiate them. The arguments you used in your book have been well refuted. No one has been caught out except you and your mates.

    One simple lie that you guys keep repeating is that Mann’s work was removed from the IPCC AR4 report – and you claim this as evidence of his being discredited. That is easy to check and has been shown completely false. Of course you are not going to go in to details about this because it doesn’t support your cowardly attacks on Mann. You prefer to repeat as nauseum the lies circulating in your Internet denier silo and stay away from the real substantive evidence.

    Mann and his work have not been discredited. His work was included in the AR4 report. His work is regularly cited by climate scientists. This discrediting is all in your own mind.


  38. Give up Ian, your pretense of having a deep (or otherwise) understanding of climate science is only convincing to those more ignorant than yourself.


  39. Ian, that is pathetic. You say in that post:

    “The discreditation of Mann’s hockey stick has been widely published in official reports, books and papers…but as I said, one doesn’t even have to go that far. By making the Medieval Warm Period disappear (even though the warmth appears in his own raw data), Mann achieves a hockey stick effect with a blade spiking upward in the 20th century.

    Then attach 2 small graphs without even referring to them!

    Bloody hell – is this your concept of proof? Do you think this establishes that Mann “fiddled” with his data to distort it? You would fail completely any academic course if you contributed such a pathetic “argument.”

    Come on Ian, you did better in your book when you extensively quoted from Wegman’s (now discredited) report and refused to even acknowledge the authoritative report of the NRC which vindicated Mann.

    And your ignore completely the acceptance of Mann’s work by the scientific community as indicated by their continuing citing of it.


  40. From my book, page 200, this quote from Mann: “The mid 20th century was comparable in warmth, by most estimates, to peak Medieval warmth”. Good, now show me that in the hockey stick graph. It isn’t there, yet even Mann admits it should be.

    There are hundreds of studies showing the MWP was as warm or warmer than the present, yet Mann’s graph doesn’t show this. It is discredited as it conflicts with the actual data.

    Debunked and refuted my jacksy..the last four years have only reinforced the truth of what I wrote in Air Con. You will recall Trufflehunter’s scoffing at my suggestion that deep ocean heat circulation may work on timeframes of centuries? I was only saying what AR4-WG1 report says: ““Thermal expansion would continue for many centuries, due to the time required to transport heat into the deep ocean.”

    The only denialists in this thread are the blinkered believers in AGW.


  41. The denier trick with the MWP is to completely confabulate the facts that the phenomena was relatively regional so that of course while it will have an effect on the hemispheric and global reconstructions these will be smaller than at the local regional level. It’s such a blatant example of motivated reasoning, cherry picking evidence and lying to support a preconceived position.

    Have a look at my article referred to above from several years back (Climate change deniers’ tawdry manipulation of “hockey sticks”). That includes figures from Mann’s papers, and from the IPCC report showing the influence of the MWP on the global and hemispheric reconstructions

    Of course you can find hundreds of studies showing the regional MWP was as warm as or warmer than the present global temperatures. But again, and I have pointed this out to you before about your “evidence,” you are comparing lemons with apples. And you are doing that to support an argument which doesn’t really have true support.

    Can you deny that Mann’s work was included in the IPCC AR4 and is regularly cited by reputable climate scientists? Isn’t that evidence that your claim he has been discredited is completely wrong?


  42. Actually, back in 2009 I reported:

    >Thirdly, when questioned in a Congressional hearing, panel members of the National Academy of Sciences who are widely reported on believer’s websites as having “cleared” Mann’s hockey stick, said this:

    “Our committee reviewed the methodology used by Dr. Mann and his coworkers and we felt that some of the choices they made were inappropriate. We had much the same misgivings about his work that was documented at much greater length by Dr. Wegman.”

    Doesn’t sound like a ringing endorsement to me. What you had in the NAS report was a face-saving summary designed to leave the IPCC, which had relied on Mann’s discredited hockey stick, intact, while what one climate scientist described as “the extensive and deep criticism of the MBH methodology” was buried inside the NAS report in Chapters 9 and 11.”

    Those criticisms included the quality of the proxies Mann based his claims on…and much more

    As for the MWP…numerous studies have found its effects in Antarctica and even NZ…the growing consensus is that both MWP and LIA were global in scale.


  43. The only denialists in this thread are the blinkered believers in AGW.

    “Since the ideas proposed by deniers do not meet rigorous scientific standards, they cannot hope to compete against the mainstream theories. They cannot raise the level of their beliefs up to the standards of mainstream science; therefore they attempt to lower the status of the denied science down to the level of religious faith, characterizing scientific consensus as scientific dogma . As one HIV denier quoted in Maggiore’s book remarked,

    “There is classical science, the way it’s supposed to work, and then there’s religion. I regained my sanity when I realized that AIDS science was a religious discourse. The one thing I will go to my grave not understanding is why everyone was so quick to accept everything the government said as truth. Especially the central myth: the cause of AIDS is known.”

    Others suggest that the entire spectrum of modern medicine is a religion.

    Deniers also paint themselves as skeptics working to break down a misguided and deeply rooted belief. They argue that…”
    (HIV Denial in the Internet Era)


  44. Just one of the studies indicating the global nature of the MWP:


  45. Curry’s article provides a good overview of the issues with Marcott et al
    Some observations from me-
    -the uptick doesn’t appear in the Marcott PhD these, but appears in the paper
    -there is a fairly serious problem with the dating of the proxies in the 20th portion (see Climate Audit)

    You don’t have to be “anti-science’ or a “science denying creationist” (insert your favorite pejorative here) to see problems with this paper.
    This is why Curry, Pielke Jr etc have stepped up ot the plate and openly criticised the work.


  46. Ah…Katebsy, the flatlining temperature denier…


  47. Thank you Andy for some sanity. That’s all it needed…someone to read the criticisms from Marcott’s colleagues who understood the problem. Regardless of where we stand in the climate debate, sub-par research from either side in the published literature needs to be identified and not relied on.


  48. Spiked wrote this about Marcott et al
    I thought this was a balanced article (in that it doesn’t “deny” AGW – it is still possible to pull apart paleoclimate studies and acknowledge that there is a potential problem with CO2 emissions)

    I expect that others will disagree with my view because the article critiques Michael Mann, something that is verboten.


  49. The CA article about the dating problem is here

    `The graph says it all, really


  50. Mann’s work being peer-reviewed for AR4:
    I see quite large
    differences in the 20th century between the original MBH leading PC and the
    ‘correct’ calculation (whole period centering and standarization,blue line).
    Only the original MBH PC shows a positive trend in the 20th century. The blue
    lines seems even to show a negative trend or no trend at all. If this PCs
    were to be used in the MBH regression model (with trend included in the
    calibration) the results could be quite different. I would tend to think that
    this figure actually supports the MM05 criticism, since the hockey-stick
    shape of the leading PC disappears.

    I’ve moved this, and the associated reconstructions, into “supplementary
    material”, mainly to avoid having to discuss all the issues around the AD1400
    to present proxies, and also the difference between reconstructing multiple
    temperature PCs and then evaluating their mean and direct reconstruction of
    the mean temperature. There is some sensitivity to the principal components,
    but very little in the reconstruction.
    > Section 3, end, bristlecone pines. I am also worried by this paragraph. The
    recent NAS report clearly states that the bristlecone pines should not be
    used for reconstructions in view of their potential problems. They cite
    previous analysis on this issue. I think that to refer to just one study
    indicating no fertilization effect could not be enough. However, I am not a
    dendroclimatologist. This could open the door to potential problems.


  51. So, Ian, you have some anonymously attributed comments to “panel members” – yet you pointedly ignored completely, maybe even suppressed, the NRC book in your book.

    I have read both the Wegman and NRC reports and can assure you the section I quoted from the NRC is completely representative. I am used to committee reports on research and the whole thing read to me like a completely objective report, pointing out limitations in Mann’s work but making the overall justified positive assessment. Mann even referred to the criticisms of his work in that report in his 2008 paper where the identified problems (relatively minor) were overcome. Bloody hell, one expects reviewers to identify some problems with sample use ( your “quality of proxies” – that is the nature of that sort of science even at its beat. But you will pick on anything and expand it to support your false claims.

    So it is dishonest of you to rely on unattributed anonymous quotes and a personal twisted interpretation of motives to claim Mann’s work has been discredited. It hasn’t – the only people discredited are those who continue to promote that lie. And the fact that you resort to anonymous quotes while ignoring the report itself shows your own dishonesty. It’s a typical trick of rubbish journalism.

    For the benefit of readers here is part of the conclusions made by the NRC – which I repeat is authoritative (Wegman is not):

    “The basic conclusion of Mann et al. (1998, 1999) was that the late 20th century warmth in the Northern Hemisphere was unprecedented during at least the last 1,000 years. This conclusion has subsequently been supported by an array of evidence that includes both additional large-scale surface temperature reconstructions and pronounced changes in a variety of local proxy indicators, such as melting on ice caps and the retreat of glaciers around the world, which in many cases appear to be unprecedented during at least the last 2,000 years.”

    The AR4 report and Mann’s 2008 paper included at a from quite a few independent studies which basically validate Mann’s results.

    A point of interest related to the progressive nature of science is that of course the form of the “hockey stick” gap has changed over time. The MWP was originally more prominent, then it’s influence was reduced, and in the 2008 paper it is more prominent. This is of course due to improvements because of the availability of more and better data. It is not evidence, as quite a few climate change deniers claim, of dishonest manipulation. As someone who understands the progressive nature of science I find such interpretations really stupid.

    Now, Ian, do you agree that Mann’s work was included in he IPCC AR 4 reports and is a accepted and cited by reputable climate scientists? That it has been validated by similar work done by independent scientists?

    If you do, why not apologise for claiming Mann and his work had been discredited. They had not.


  52. Bloody hell Andy, you are illustrating this new Internet phenomenon Gish galloping by linkage.

    If you have got something to say, say it in your own words. Make you point. If you are capable of interesting me I might follow your links. But I am not going to waste my time trying to work our what message you wish to convey if you refuse to do the work.

    After all, if you have something valid, and you understand the issue, you will have no trouble expressing yourself rather than expecting others to do the work for you.


  53. Ah…Katebsy, the flatlining temperature denier…

    NASA and every single scientific community on the planet cannot be described as “flatlining temperature deniers”.

    Six months from now, you will have done no work.
    Six years from now, you will have done no work.
    Less talky-talky, more worky worky.
    Anything else is just babble from a failed kook.
    Learn from the failure that was ID.

    NASA | NASA’s Analysis of 2012 Global Temperature


  54. Again Ian, I don’t question the reliability of your quote from peer review comments. But I know about peer review having had all my publications peer reviewed and done a lot of peer review myself. I can assure you – quoting extracts, especially only isolated ones, from peer review is by no means a good way of assessing work – and very often is very misleading way. One that for obvious reasons scoundrels will resort to.

    But I am not surprised you resort to such shonky arguments. After all you can’t rely on actually assessing an overall conclusion. You must search and cherry pick to find anything to support your unwarranted claim.

    Tell me – do you accept that Mann’s work was included in the IPCC AR4 report? That his work is accepted and regularly cited by reputable climate scientists? That his results were validated by others in independent studies?

    Simple questions – but your answers would be very telling.


  55. Ian, I burst out laughing when you wrote this – “Thank you Andy for some sanity.” Have a look at this to get a real idea of the state of Andy’s mind when he discusses climate change issues. He has assured me that he stands by everything he said in that particular exchange.

    You two go together well, don’t you?


  56. I stand to be corrected, but you can you show me a post of mine suggesting Mann had no input into AR4? I don’t recall one and I’ve done a text search of and not found one on point. My recollection is that a modified version of the hockey stick was used (MM05) as opposed to the one in MBH98, but that’s purely off the top of my head. It’s irrelevant, and I couldn’t really care less whether IPCC used it as they are hardly gold standard in the science dept.


  57. And I get back to my Michael Mann quote that you studiously avoided. Please go back to the hockey stick graph and show me where it illustrates that modern warming was similar to Medieval warming.


  58. No, I am not saying “you” specifically, but “you” in reference to many climate change deniers who will swear black and blue that Mann’s work was dropped and this is evidence of him being discredited. You are right, his work was included – together with that of other independent workers. Effectively showing validation of his work rather than discrediting.

    I am glad you agree with that – but it does somehow suggest you are not honest to claimMann’s work was discredited.

    Now what about the other 2 questions?


  59. Ian, the hockey stick has generally shown pretty conclusively that the global or hemispheric medieval temperatures were lower than currently. As I said, to get equivalent or higher temperatures you have to use the European regional MWP – which is the usual meaning anyway. It’s a regional phenomenon, even though one can find a similar effect in one or more other isolated regions.

    The early hockey stick exaggerated the medieval temperatures because of poorer data, as I explained.

    Another vitally important fact you guys refuse to acknowledge is that Mann’s was not the only work showing this result – it has been validated by several other independent studies – shown in the AR4 graphs, the very authoritative NRC report and in Mann’s 2008 paper.

    Now we still have two questions left. You accept that Mann’s work was included in the AR4 report (a confirmation of its acceptability). But do you accept the work is regularly cited and supported by reputable climate scientists? And do you accept the work has been validated by other independent studies?


  60. Ken, the evidence is increasingly showing the MWP was global…there are numerous southern hemisphere studies to that effect. If you want to insist that it was regional then this debate will go nowhere.

    As to the quality of Mann’s work and the IPCC report…Mann himself admits the IPCC exaggerated his study. Fred Pearce covered this for the Guardian, quoting a National Academy of Sciences member who Mann then agreed with:

    “One panel member, Kurt Cuffey of the University of California at Berkeley, reserved his criticism for the way the graph had been used by the IPCC. “I think that sent a very misleading message about how resolved this part of the scientific research was,” he said. In retrospect, Mann rather agrees. “Given its place in the IPCC summary with the uncertainties not even shown, we were a target from the beginning,” he admitted to me later..”

    I wouldn’t be hanging any credibility on IPCC usage of Mann’s work, as I have said previously.


  61. As for being validated…Briffa has published new data recently that wipes out the hockey-stick effect. See

    What is interesting, of course, is that Briffa’s run picks up the MWP….


  62. You are going to have answer to God for failing in your stewardship of his creation, Wishart.
    Magic man with the beard is not going to be happy with you.


  63. Meanwhile, when a plant scientist criticises Keith Briffa earlier over the hockey team’s methodology in regard to tree ring analysis, Phil Jones advises Briffa not to respond…curious.


  64. Dick, me old china, how’s it hanging?


  65. Ian, Mann in his book describes how he felt his work was originally elevated further than it should have been. I guess it was the best they had at the time.

    You refuse to recognise the credibility of the IPCC reports because you want to refuse to accept the science. But the fact is that these reports are the results of a thorough review of the literature that exists. It depends on the existing science and an integrated overview of it.

    That is far more authoritative than any old cherry picked, or misrepresent interpretations of, individual studies or paper which the unscientific methodology of climate change deniers depends on.

    As for the idea that the MWP may have been more global than we currently think. If so this will show up as the data improves, as we get wider coverage and more detail. After all, the purpose of the science is to reconstruct a reasonable picture of the paleoclimate – not to manufacture one to fit existing prejudices. We leave that to the climate change deniers – in that respect they are the same as the evolution deniers.

    Your reasons for asserting temperature in the medieval period were greater than they are at present are not scientific. They are to prop up your opposition to the current scientific understanding. You will choose anything hat supports your bias, and ignore anything that doesn’t.

    Even worse, you go out of your way to attack honest scientists just because their findings don’t support your bias.


  66. Oh, I forgot to remind you Ian – we are still waiting on your answer to 2 questions. You have already acknowledged that the AR4 included Mann’s work – a pretty definite indication he has not been discredited.

    So, do you accept that reputable climate scientists that days continually accept and cite Mann’s work?

    And do you accept that Mann’s work has been validated by a number of independent studies – depicted in the AR4, the authoritative NRC report and Mann’s 2008 paper?


  67. Ken…I will happily further discussion on your questions, once you have shown me where my response in those areas has been incorrect.

    I have posted graphs of both the hockey stick, and numerous studies including one by Mann himself that clearly show the MWP.

    I have also given you Mann’s acknowledgement of same in quotes. The National Academy of Sciences report was only confident enough to say modern warming shown by Mann was highest in 400 years, which is no great surprise given the Little Ice Age impact.

    I have now shown you Briffa’s latest data runs which confirm the MWP and obliterate the hockey stick shape.

    Before I waste any more of my time…please explain for me how you personally reconcile the above with the hockey stick graph’s so-called integrity?


  68. By the way, you do realise that AR4 had little credibility outside of sciblogs and the green lobby industry? The report had so much non-peer-reviewed science that even in the climate science community many are writing off the IPCC reports now. See Judith Curry among others. The appeal to authority of AR4 might impress Gareth Renowden and friends, it doesn’t impress those who understand the science better.


  69. Ian, you hardly have the experience, understanding, or more important the objectivity, to make an assessment of AR4. And your silly statements about it clearly show that.

    The fact remains that these reports come out of a professional review of existing literature. A review made by top ranking climate scientists around the world and peer reviewed by other scientists. As such they have far more relevance and reliability than individual studies – despite the conservative nature of the conclusions down – an inevitability of the process.

    There will always be individuals who differ on aspects of the overall view – perfectly normal and scientists are very used to such disagreement. Its part of our job. But, in the end everyone (well everyone with sense) agrees that an overall assessment is better than individual opinion. And of course governments are going to place far more reliance on such reviews and assessments than individual opinions. They would be fools not to.

    The physical science section of the report relies on peer-reviewed studies – yes I know dishonest people try to make a lot of the weaker areas in the another sections of the report and then disingenuously ascribe the same problems to the scientific sections.

    So, I assure you that the SR4 reports do have a lot of credibility – far more than any individual opinion can have. And certainly very much more than the extreme biased opinion of a shabby investigative journalist well known for his conspiracy theories and shaky creationist ideas.


  70. …it doesn’t impress those who understand the science better.

    NASA understands the science better.
    NASA and every single scientific community on the planet.

    Global Warming: An Introduction


  71. Well, here’s what some of Mann’s colleagues were saying about his error-ridden methods behind the scenes. If that’s validation then I’m Katesby:

    date: Thu, 13 Jan 2005 17:06:58 -0500
    from: Henry Pollack
    subject: Re: near final
    to: Keith Briffa

    Hi Keith,

    Thanks for the latest version, which in the borehole discussion differs notably
    from the earlier version you sent, presumably due to comments from others.

    Because I am traveling again (leave Friday, back on Tuesday), I will send only a
    few general comments today, in no particular order.

    1. Figure 1b, as discussed on pp.1,2 . This figure shows borehole results, and
    ‘pseudo’ borehole results, but the borehole curves are never mentioned
    explicitly in the text. The pseudo borehole results are the so-called ‘optimal’
    results of Mann. Mike has never analyzed borehole temperatures; he simply
    manipulated reconstructions that I sent him, in a manner that dealt with
    spatial noise in a totally inadequate way. I think it is inappropriate to show
    the so-called ‘optimal’ reconstruction because it is flawed (even after the
    correction of gridding errors); the gridded curve should be the one shown in
    Pollack & Smerdon 2004, not the Briffa and Osborn 2002. Tim has told me of how
    that was constructed, and the P&S 04 version should be substituted.

    2. Your discussion of uncertainty on pages 4,5 is good. The paragraph following
    acknowledges that there is generally greater centennial-scale variability in the
    ensemble of reconstructions than is displayed in the hockey stick. I think the
    hockey stick is effectively an end-member reconstruction, rather than a
    ‘centrist’ whose uncertainty bounds encompass all other reconstructions.

    3. The statistical efforts (yours, others) to retain more long period
    variability in the dendro series have led to greater variability in the
    reconstructions, all toward a cooler past in the 16th-17th centuries. There is
    no a priori reason that the improved dendro series should have led to a cooler
    past; retention of more long period variability might conceivably have led to a
    warmer past, but it did not. That makes me think that the 16th-17th centuries
    were indeed cooler than the hockey stick portrays.

    4. page 7. The Von Storch, Zorita model results suggest that the regression
    reconstruction techniques do not extract signals well in the presence of noise.
    There is a new paper soon to be submitted by Tom Crowley, Gabi Hegerl et al that
    reaches a similar conclusion. I believe that this is an important issue, one
    that is at the heart of my criticism of how Mike Mann re-analyzed the borehole
    results. May I suggest that in the FOD (first order draft) that you include a
    discussion of field reconstruction methodologies, particularly as to how they
    fare in the presence of noise. This would compare and contrast the regression
    techniques, the von Storch approach, the Crowley approach, the revised
    Rutherford Mann (2005)methodology, and perhaps the wavelet approach that Anders
    Moberg has proposed.


  72. I assume that both you Ken and Katey understand the implications of Pollack’s critique above…I wouldn’t be betting my house on the ‘hockey stick’.


  73. Well, here’s what some of Mann’s colleagues were saying about his error-ridden methods behind the scenes.

    Behind the scenes? Who gives a damn?
    In science, only the work matters. Let them enter the scientific area.
    Less talky-talky, more worky-worky.

    Michael Mann: The Hockey Stick Under Oath


  74. Ian, I will just repeat the already quoted piece from the conclusions of the NRC report on the “Hockey Stick:”

    “The basic conclusion of Mann et al. (1998, 1999) was that the late 20th century warmth in the Northern Hemisphere was unprecedented during at least the last 1,000 years. This conclusion has subsequently been supported by an array of evidence that includes both additional large-scale surface temperature reconstructions and pronounced changes in a variety of local proxy indicators, such as melting on ice caps and the retreat of glaciers around the world, which in many cases appear to be unprecedented during at least the last 2,000 years.”

    I think it is only sensible for me to draw my conclusions about what the report says from this rather than your abrupt, but unwarranted, claim that the report was “only confident about the last 400 years.”

    What the report did do was discuss the difference in confidence as one looked further back in time. A simple assessment because of the difference in sample numbers and reliability, etc. Perfectly normal – we are dealing with the real world. Of course subsequently such studies have been able to push further back in time, with more confidence – and now we are arguing about Mancroft’s study which has gone back much further than every other study. But still confirming Mann’s work where they overlap.

    I think the integrity of Mann’s work is indicated by its wide acceptance and citing by climate scientists. By its verification in a number of other independent studies (and here again you are making unverified claims about one study or another but ignoring the larger number of studies which don’t confirm to your bias – you are cherry picking). By its inclusion in the AR4 report which is widely accepted by scientists and governments as the most authoritative review at the time. And by the assessments drawn by the NRC in its very authoritative report.

    You are wasting your time, Ian, because you are just repeating either lies, or cherry picked opinions. You are relying opinion rather than established conclusions.

    That is just another example of shabby, ideologically driven, “investigative” journalism. What we have all come to expect from you.


  75. If you genuinely want some corroboration on the scale of the MWP vis a vis the hockey stick, read this email from Ed Cook to Mike Mann and others. They knew in 2001 that MWP stretched across the entire northern hemisphere and was “showing up strongly” in the Southern Hemisphere data as well. Good reading if you are up to it:

    cc: “Michael E. Mann” , REDACTED, Jonathan Overpeck , Keith Briffa
    date: Wed, 2 May 2001 10:59:37 -0400
    from: Edward Cook
    subject: Re: hockey stick
    to: tom crowley

    >heard some rumor that you are involved in a non-hockey stick reconstruction
    >of northern hemisphere temperatures. I am very intrigued to learn about
    >this – are these results suggesting the so called Medieval Warm Period may
    >be warmer than the early/mid 20th century?
    >any enlightenment on this would be most appreciated, Tom
    >Thomas J. Crowley
    >Dept. of Oceanography
    >Texas A&M University
    >College Station, TXREDACTED
    >REDACTED(alternate fax)

    Hi Tom,

    As rumors often are, the one you heard is not entirely accurate. So, I will
    take some time here to explain for you, Mike, and others exactly what was
    done and what the motivation was, in an effort to hopefully avoid any
    misunderstanding. I especially want to avoid any suggestion that this work
    was being done to specifically counter or refute the “hockey stick”.
    However, it does suggest (as do other results from your EBM, Peck’s work,
    the borehole data, and Briffa and Jones large-scale proxy estimates) that
    there are unresolved (I think) inconsistencies in the low-frequency aspects
    of the hockey stick series compared to other results. So, any comparisons
    with the hockey stick were made with that spirit in mind.

    What Jan Esper and I are working on (mostly Jan with me as second author)
    is a paper that was in response to Broecker’s Science Perspectives piece on
    the Medieval Warm Period. Specifically, we took strong exception to his
    claim that tree rings are incapable of preserving century time scale
    temperature variability. Of course, if Broecker had read the literature, he
    would have known that what he claimed was inaccurate. Be that as it may,
    Jan had been working on a project, as part of his post-doc here, to look at
    large-scale, low-frequency patterns of tree growth and climate in long
    tree-ring records provided to him by Fritz Schweingruber. With the addition
    of a couple of sites from foxtail pine in California, Jan amassed a
    collection of 14 tree-ring sites scattered somewhat uniformly over the
    30-70 degree NH latitude band, with most extending backREDACTEDyears.
    All of the sites are from temperature-sensitive locations (i.e. high
    elevation or high northern latitude. It is, as far as I know, the largest,
    longest, and most spatially representative set of such
    temperature-sensitive tree-ring data yet put together for the NH

    In order to preserve maximum low-frequency variance, Jan used the Regional
    Curve Standardization (RCS) method, used previously by Briffa and myself
    with great success. Only here, Jan chose to do things in a somewhat radical
    fashion. Since the replication at each site was generally insufficient to
    produce a robust RCS chronology back to, say, AD 1000, Jan pooled all of
    the original measurement series into 2 classes of growth trends: non-linear
    (~700 ring-width series) and linear (~500 ring-width series). He than
    performed independent RCS on the each of the pooled sets and produced 2 RCS
    chronologies with remarkably similar multi-decadal and centennial
    low-frequency characteristics. These chronologies are not good at
    preserving high-frquency climate information because of the scattering of
    sites and the mix of different species, but the low-frequency patterns are
    probably reflecting the same long-term changes in temperature. Jan than
    averaged the 2 RCS chronologies together to produce a single chronology
    extending back to AD 800. It has a very well defined Medieval Warm Period –
    Little Ice Age – 20th Century Warming pattern, punctuated by strong decadal
    fluctuations of inferred cold that correspond well with known histories of
    neo-glacial advance in some parts of the NH. The punctuations also appear,
    in some cases, to be related to known major volcanic eruptions.

    Jan originally only wanted to show this NH extra-tropical RCS chronology in
    a form scaled to millimeters of growth to show how forest productivity and
    carbon sequestration may be modified by climate variability and change over
    relatively long time scales. However, I encouraged him to compare his
    series with NH instrumental temperature data and the proxy estimates
    produced by Jones, Briffa, and Mann in order bolster the claim that his
    unorthodox method of pooling the tree-ring data was producing a record that
    was indeed related to temperatures in some sense. This he did by linearly
    rescaling his RCS chronology from mm of growth to temperature anomalies. In
    so doing, Jan demonstrated that his series, on inter-decadal time scales
    only, was well correlated to the annual NH instrumental record. This result
    agreed extremely well with those of Jones and Briffa. Of course, some of
    the same data were used by them, but probably not more than 40 percent
    (Briffa in particular), so the comparison is based on mostly, but not
    fully, independent data. The similarity indicated that Jan’s approach was
    valid for producing a useful reconstruction of multi-decadal temperature
    variability (probably weighted towards the warm-season months, but it is
    impossible to know by how much) over a larger region of the NH
    extra-tropics than that produced before by Jones and Briffa. It also
    revealed somewhat more intense cooling in the Little Ice Age that is more
    consistent with what the borehole temperatures indicate back to AD 1600.
    This result also bolsters the argument for a reasonably large-scale
    Medieval Warm Period that may not be as warm as the late 20th century, but
    is of much(?) greater significance than that produced previously.

    Of course, Jan also had to compare his record with the hockey stick since
    that is the most prominent and oft-cited record of NH temperatures covering
    the past 1000 years. The results were consistent with the differences shown
    by others, mainly in the century-scale of variability. Again, the Esper
    series shows a very strong, even canonical, Medieval Warm Period – Little
    Ice Age – 20th Century Warming pattern, which is largely missing from the
    hockey stick. Yet the two series agree reasonably well on inter-decadal
    timescales, even though they may not be 1:1 expressions of the same
    temperature window (i.e. annual vs. warm-season weighted). However, the
    tree-ring series used in the hockey stick are warm-season weighted as well,
    so the difference between “annual” and “warm-season weighted” is probably
    not as large as it might seem, especially before the period of instrumental
    data (e.g. pre-1700) in the hockey stick. So, they both share a significant
    degree of common interdecal temperature information (and some, but not
    much, data), but do not co-vary well on century timescales. Again, this has
    all been shown before by others using different temperature
    reconstructions, but Jan’s result is probably the most comprehensive
    expression (I believe) of extra-tropical NH temperatures back to AD 800 on
    multi-decadal and century time scales.

    Now back to the Broecker perspectives piece. I felt compelled to refute
    Broecker’s erroneous claim that tree rings could not preserve long-term
    temperature information. So, I organized a “Special Wally Seminar” in which
    I introduced the topic to him and the packed audience using Samuel
    Johnson’s famous “I refute it thus” statement in the form of “Jan Esper and
    I refute Broecker thus”. Jan than presented, in a very detailed and well
    espressed fashion, his story and Broecker became an instant convert. In
    other words, Wally now believes that long tree-ring records, when properly
    selected and processed, can preserve low-frequency temperature variability
    on centennial time scales. Others in the audience came away with the same
    understanding, one that we dendrochronologists always knew to be the case.
    This was the entire purpose of Jan’s work and the presentation of it to
    Wally and others. Wally had expressed some doubts about the hockey stick
    previously to me and did so again in his perspectives article. So, Jan’s
    presentation strongly re-enforced Wally’s opinion about the hockey stick,
    which he has expressed to others including several who attended a
    subsequent NOAA meeting at Lamont. I have no control over what Wally says
    and only hope that we can work together to reconcile, in a professional,
    friendly manner, the differences between the hockey stick and other proxy
    temperature records covering the past 1000 years. This I would like to do.

    I do think that the Medieval Warm Period was a far more significant event
    than has been recognized previously, as much because the high-resolution
    data to evaluate it had not been available before. That is much less so the
    case now. It is even showing up strongly now in long SH tree-ring series.
    However, there is still the question of how strong this event was in the
    tropics. I maintain that we do not have the proxies to tell us that now.
    The tropical ice core data are very difficult to interpret as temperature
    proxies (far worse than tree rings for sure and maybe even unrelated to
    temperatures in any simple linear sense as is often assumed), so I do not
    believe that they can be used alone as records to test for the existence of
    a Medieval Warm Period in the tropics. That being the case, there are
    really no other high-resolution records from the tropics to use, and the
    teleconnections between long extra-tropical proxies and the tropics are, I
    believe, far too tenuous and probably unstable to use to sort out this

    So, at this stage I would argue that the Medieval Warm Period was probably
    a global extra-tropical event, at the very least, with warmth that was
    persistent and probably comparable to much of what we have experienced in
    the 20th century. However, I would not claim (and nor would Jan) that it
    exceeded the warmth of the late 20th century. We simply do not have the
    precision or the proxy replication to say that yet. This being said, I do
    find the dismissal of the Medieval Warm Period as a meaningful global event
    to be grossly premature and probably wrong. Kind of like Mark Twain’s
    commment that accounts of his death were greatly exaggerated. If, as some
    people believe, a degree of symmetry in climate exists between the
    hemispheres, which would appear to arise from the tropics, then the
    existence of a Medieval Warm Period in the extra-tropics of the NH and SH
    argues for its existence in the tropics as well. Only time and an enlarged
    suite of proxies that extend into the tropics will tell if this is true.

    I hope that what I have written clarifies the rumor and expresses my views
    more completely and accurately.



    Dr. Edward R. Cook
    Doherty Senior Scholar
    Tree-Ring Laboratory
    Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory
    Palisades, New York 10964 USA
    Email: REDACTED


  76. Ian, I repeat. It is shabby, ideologically driven and biased reporting to cherry pick opinions, emails and extracts from review comments while at the same time ignoring scientific assessments, summaries drawn from review of the published research literature by credible, experienced, authoritative specialists in climate science.

    In the end your opinions are of course of no value or even influence. Especially in today’s world we people mostly accept that you are a conspiracy theorist. An extreme one at that.

    Of course you won’t answer my questions. At least not in an honest balanced way. I don’t expect you to – but readers can make up their own mind from you avoidance and diversions.


  77. In this next email…a climate scientist calls the IPCC “stupid” for backing Mann’s hockey stick:

    cc: “Folland, Chris” , REDACTED, Keith Briffa , “Brohan, Philip” , REDACTED
    date: Wed, 23 Feb 2005 12:29:03 +0100
    from: REDACTED
    subject: Re: FW: More on the “Hocky Stick”
    to: “Tett, Simon”

    I think one should list three publications which have stirred some disucsions, namely ours,
    the one by Anders Moberg and colleagues and Steve Mcintyre’s in GRL.
    I would assign the following significance ot these articles (just among us, please):
    — ours: methodical basis for hockey stick reconstruction is weak; discussion was unwisely
    limited by IPCC declaring MBH to be “true”. (Stupid, politicized action by IPCC, not MBH’s
    responsbilkity. IPCC did one more of these silly oversellings – by showing the damage
    curve by Munich Re without proper caveat in the fig caption);
    — Moberg: an alternative suggestion – this may turn out to be more or lesa accurate at a
    later time, but it is at least a serious hypothesis, which is consistent with the
    independent bore hole reconstruction and our model simulations.
    — Mc&Mc: As far as I can say (we did not redo the analysis, but Francis Zwires did) the
    identfied glitch is real. One should not do it this way. HOWEVER, we have tested the
    implication of this unwise set up in the logic of ERIK, and we found that it does not
    matter in this setup (see attachment, submitted to GRL).
    I should also mention the Crok analysis – Crok is a Dutch journalist who researched the
    whole field quite extensively. It turns out that the social process, within which the MBH /
    Mc&Mc drama evolved, was certainy not geared twowards best science, but towards defending
    turfs and claims.
    I have pdf’s of all these articles; if you need them, let me know.


  78. Given the criticisms of the IPCC from within, do you and Katesby still want to maintain that AR4 was the gold standard in climate science? Or is it possible that there is fair criticism to be made here?


  79. Ian, what did I say about cherry picking opinions, emails and review comments. Extremely shabby journalism.

    And, especially so with the climate gate emails. Are you not aware that climategate is now counted as one of he top ten conspiracy theories, alongside one world government and birthers.

    You really are dragging the dregs.


  80. Actually Ken, I am answering your questions with documentary evidence, which you are evidently too dull to understand. These are not “cherry picked”. They are comments from Mann’s colleagues containing valid criticisms of methodology and interpretation, and disclosing a much wider MWP than you yourself were aware of. They are not taken out of context…any reader can understand the gist of the argument. The science clearly was NOT settled, behind the scenes.


  81. Ian, you probably are not aware of this, not having a scientific bone in your body, but scientists are continually criticising each others work. We are obliged to. It’s a sign of good science that it happens.

    But it really does indicate a high level of dishonesty when a so-called “investigative” journalist cherry picks such opinions to fit their own ideology biases and conspiracy theory.

    Honest journalists would look at all the opinions, and especially at the final assessments and conclusions.


  82. Ian, science is never settled – that talk of settled science is largely a myth promoted by climate change deniers. (So I am not surprised to hear it from you).

    You only have to read the AR4 report to see how qualified and conservative their conclusions are and how honest scientists are about the degree of confidence around the conclusions. There is continual concern and discussion about the problem of getting through to the public the question of degree of confidence.

    You are cherry picking. You are avoiding the overall assessments. You are taking out of context any opinion or email you can find to fit your aim of discrediting science and scientists.

    What else have we come to expect from creationists and climate change deniers?


  83. do you and Katesby still want to maintain that AR4 was the gold standard in climate science?

    Of course they will – Ken, Katesby, the Royal Society, NASA and every scientific institution on the planet.

    Ian Wishart, you haven’t lessened or dented the authority of IPCC in any respect whatsoever. Don’t make us laugh.


  84. Ken, you call yourself a scientist but show no scientific rigour, with respect. Read the documents, answer their criticisms. The evidence behind Mann’s work is nowhere near as strong as IPCC painted it, and now Shaun Marcott’s effort to back it up has been shot down. Do your job as a scientist man, or get out of the kitchen if the heat is getting too much (pun intended).


  85. Ian, I am happy to let readers judge who has the scientific rigour or credibility here. There is plenty to go on.

    But look, you aren’t having any effect – because you are the one avoiding the scientific papers, documents and reviews. You are the one trying to discredit the science. You are the one relying on cherry picked out of context opinion rather than overall reviews and assessments.

    I think you should knock off for the night. I am happy to continue this silly Internet tennis, but its going nowhere. The arguments are been presented and we can all make up our own minds.

    Go to bed.


  86. From the NAS/NRC report you cited:
    “Because of larger uncertainties in temperature reconstructions for decades and individual years, and because not all proxies record temperatures for such short timescales, even less confidence can be placed in the Mann team’s conclusions about the nineties, and 1998 in particular.”

    Not exactly a ringing endorsement of the hockey stick’s 1990’s blade peak, is it?


  87. Ian, all you are doing is demonstrate how clueless you are in respect to how scientific research advances understanding.
    Mann’s reconstruction was the first of its kind. It produced a striking picture of temperature over the past 1200 years.
    Subsequent studies have supported its salient features, this is how science improves understanding of any break-through research.
    Your nit picking at features of MBH99 etc is irrelevant to current understanding.


  88. Ian, I fully endorse the NRC comment you have cherry picked and quoted out of context. That is the nature of science – we are dealing with the real world and have to do the best we can. That does not make us dishonest – in fact we usually, especially after criticism from colleagues, honest enough to point to limitations in our work.

    But you are getting desperate, aren’t you, to “drag up” this particular quote when we do have plenty of non-proxy instrumental measurements?

    Or perhaps you aren’t thinking too well, it is getting late.

    What about popping of to bed then?


  89. Cherry picking? It’s one of those “conclusions” you asked me to reference. You really are a denier, Ken. How does the NRC criticism support the contention of the hockey stick that the nineties were the warmest in a thousand years? It doesn’t really, not to the certainty levels that you, Katesby and Christie parrot..


  90. Go to bed, Ian. You are not making sense. You are obviously very tired.

    Yes you did cherry pick from the NRC report. You searched through to find anything “critical” you could quote. As I have explained such realistic criticisms are part of scientific review. But perhaps your lack of scientific understanding prevents you from seeing that.

    But here’s a new question for you. Given the authoritative nature of the NRC report on the “hockey stick” why did you ignore it in your book? That can’t have been an accident or due to lack of knowledge. After all your did use the now discredited Wegman report, extensively.

    We’re you trying to hide the existence of the most reliable report on this period and work?


  91. If you genuinely want some corroboration on the scale of the MWP vis a vis the hockey stick, read this email from Ed Cook to Mike Mann and others.

    An email?

    In this next email…

    An email?
    No, that won’t do. What kind of a gullible idiot would get their science from emails? Very silly.
    Only the work counts.
    You can say anything you want in an email.
    It’s another story though to enter the scientific arena.
    Less talky-talky and more worky-worky.

    The evidence behind Mann’s work is nowhere near as…

    It’s not about one single scientist.
    Science is not a religion. There are no prophets. It’s about all the physical sciences working together using multiple, independent lines of evidence.

    Mann and all his work could vanish in an instant.
    It wouldn’t change a thing. You have to look a the much, much MUCH bigger picture.

    … and now Shaun Marcott’s effort…

    Nope. We’re not dealing with only two scientists.
    The hockey stick has been replicated multiple times where it counts; in the peer-reviewed literature. It’s successful. It’s not even that important.

    Climate Denial Crock of the Week – “The Medieval Warming Crock”


  92. It doesn’t really, not to the certainty levels that you, Katesby and Christie parrot..

    Ken, Christie and myself are just the messengers.

    It’s not you vesus us.
    It’s you versus NASA.
    Say it with me slowly….


    Yep, that’s right. NASA.


  93. The NRC report didn’t dig Mann out of the hole. Like I said, it endorsed Mann back four hundred years. Hell, I’d endorse the nineties as being the warmest decade in 400 years as well, given the Little Ice Age only began to thaw around 1850. It doesn’t take a rocket scientist, let alone a climate scientist, to figure that one out. But on the big issue, they pour cool water on the hot nineties claim…

    Keep drinking the Koolaid, KenKateKristie…it’ll be OK when you wake up


  94. It’s not NASA, it’s humans, just like you and I. Stop being over-awed by authority…this blog reeks of scientism, or what Michael Shermer called the worship of men in white coats.


  95. Ian, you are repeating yourself. And we all know if the NRC report discredited Mann in any real way you would have included it in your book.

    Why did you refuse to acknowledge that report in your book? We’re you hiding it from your readers?

    I suggest you sleep on it and reply tomorrow when you are fresh. You aren’t making any sense at the moment. Go to bed.


  96. Stop being over-awed by authority…this blog reeks of scientism, or what Michael Shermer called the worship of men in white coats.

    Ho, ho.

    Science isn’t religion.
    ID is religion.
    Science isn’t about worship.
    Ian Wishart is about worship.


  97. It’s not NASA, it’s humans, just like you and I.

    Nope, I’m nothing like NASA. Neither are you.
    NASA does the work. Everything else is idle chatter from some guy with a blog peddling konspiracy theories for the gullible.

    Stop being over-awed by authority…

    Every single scientific community on the planet in on my side with regards to climate change.
    Every single one.
    Including NASA.

    That didn’t happen by magic. It certainly didn’t happen by “authority”.
    It happened the boring, old-fashioned way.
    Hard work.
    Hard work covering all the Earth Sciences over many decades and using multiple independent lines of evidence.
    All of it carefully recorded and examined and reviewed in the peer-reviewed literature.
    Science is the study of reality. Reality is not your friend.

    …this blog reeks of scientism…

    Isn’t it nice when you can just recycle stuff from you ID creationism days?
    So effortless. So much petulant fail.

    Say it again with me now.

    NASA: Climate Change; A Warming World (HD)


  98. Ken, I didn’t include it because it added nothing. It is obvious from the hard data and other studies that MWP existed and was global…Mann’s stick contradicted his own data and his own statements. I don’t care what NAS found, even though it accords with my criticisms, because it was irrelevant. The book and peer reviewed studies established an MWP, Mann erased it…UN IPCC overhyped it…end of.


  99. Ed Cook explains how the comparison graph I published came about, and defends it in an email to Michael Mann:

    It appears that you are responding in a way that is a bit overly defensive,
    >> which I regret. I am not supporting Broecker per se and only explained in a
    >> very detailed fashion the origin of the work by Esper and me and how it was
    >> presented to refute a very unfair characterization of tree-ring data in
    >> Wally’s perspective piece. The fact that Esper compared his series with
    >> Jones, Briffa, and Mann et al. should not be viewed as an attack on your
    >> work. It was never intended to be so, but it is was a clearly legitimate
    >> thing to do. As I said, I have no control over Broecker. But it is unfair
    >> and indeed incorrect to start out by dismissing the “Special Wally
    >> Seminars” as self-promoting acts. To say that is simply wrong. He doesn’t
    >> bring people in to only express support for his point of view or pet
    >> theory, as you are implying. So, I suggest that you cool down a bit on this
    >> matter. It detracts from the scientific issues that should properly be
    >> debated here.


  100. …and defends it in an email…

    Another email? How quaint.

    It is obvious from the hard data and other studies that MWP existed and was global…

    Been there, done that.

    23 — Medieval Warm Period — fact vs. fiction


  101. Yeah right, Ian. You suppressed information about the report because it was damaging to your attempts to discredit the science and the scientist.


    And unprofessional.

    But it’s what we expect from you.


  102. Ian Wishart

    actually Ken…you are simply proving you cannot read…the NAS report backed up the criticisms and didn’t add relevancy…you have yet to show precisely how the NAS report was significant…especially in light of the criticisms made above and in the book. But then again…covering your own ignorance with bluster and more questions seems to be your trademark.


  103. …. Mann’s stick contradicted his own data and his own statements.
    blah blah
    ….the NAS report backed up the criticisms …

    Blah blah blah

    Mann’s reconstruction was the first of its kind. It produced a striking picture of temperature over the past 1200 years.
    Subsequent studies have supported its salient features, this is how science improves understanding of any break-through research.
    Your nit picking at features of MBH99 etc is irrelevant to current understanding.


  104. Ian, anyone who can read honestly and has read the relevant documents will see why the NRC report is so authoritative. It is thorough, the panel was composed of experts, it was balanced and critical. It was able to identify weaknesses and strengths and make conclusions about the validity of conclusions drawn from the work. It was the sort of objective balanced report scientists welcome.

    You will continue to deny this, of course, because you suppressed information about this authoritative report in your book. Instead you went for the weaker, obviously politically driven, and now discredited Wegman report.

    You did this because of your own alarmist conspiracy theory related to Agenda 21 and one world government. You were politically motivated.

    But in the process you showed you were a hack. Your so-called “investigative” journalism was a sham.

    But that is what we have come to expect from you, Ian.


  105. Ken , I provided the links to back up my claims that I made in my first comment, ie that there was no spike in the PhD thesis and that there was a problem with dating in the 20th century.

    This was directly addressing the point of the blog post, unlike the comments about Mann and the MWP

    So why is this a Gush Gallop Ken?


  106. Andy, Gish, not Gush.

    Specifically on the point you raise. Surely this work is about reconstruction of the paleo temperature record. Not about current temperatures. In fact they make the point that their proxy data for recent years is just not good enough to draw confident conclusions.

    This of course does not stop them, or anyone else, including current data from a wide number of sources. Data which, in contrast to their’s for that period, is reliable.

    So you issue about spikes is a manufactured complaint. Typical of the attempts that were used to discredit Mann (unsuccessfully as it turns out), and to discredit the current authors.

    Ok, the spikes are out of the way. You will have to explain yourself over “the problem of dating int he 20th century.”

    Does this refer to your love life?

    Surely it doesn’t refer to radio metric dating – we have simpler and more reliable ways of dating things in recent times.


  107. You did this because of your own alarmist conspiracy theory related to Agenda 21 and one world government.

    Wha…? Really?
    It’s not just limited to Intelligent Design, secret Kenyans in the White House and a global scientific conspiracy involving every scientific community on the planet?
    There’s also the Agenda 21 thing and the New World Order thing?

    (…awkward silence…)

    I am shocked (shocked!) to find that gambling is going on in this establishment.


  108. Because Andy is specifically questioning the recent Science paper by Shaun A. Marcott, Jeremy D. Shakun, Peter U. Clark and Alan C. Mix. (see “A Reconstruction of Regional and Global Temperature for the Past 11,300 Years.”) referred to in my article it’s worth seeing what these authors did in fact say.

    Here is the abstract:

    “Surface temperature reconstructions of the past 1500 years suggest that recent warming is unprecedented in that time. Here we provide a broader perspective by reconstructing regional and global temperature anomalies for the past 11,300 years from 73 globally distributed records. Early Holocene (10,000 to 5000 years ago) warmth is followed by ~0.7°C cooling through the middle to late Holocene (<5000 years ago), culminating in the coolest temperatures of the Holocene during the Little Ice Age, about 200 years ago. This cooling is largely associated with ~2°C change in the North Atlantic. Current global temperatures of the past decade have not yet exceeded peak interglacial values but are warmer than during ~75% of the Holocene temperature history. Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change model projections for 2100 exceed the full distribution of Holocene temperature under all plausible greenhouse gas emission scenarios."

    Now, clearly they compare their reconstruction of paleo temperatures with current global temperatures, and also with model predictions for future temperatures based on IPCC scenarios. But they do not have to depend on their less than reliable modern temperatures reconstructed from proxies. There is plenty of instrumentally based temperature data available.

    So if criticisms are to be made, let’s make them relevant to what the work actually was.


  109. iPad seems very keen to make Gish Gallop into Gush Gallop

    Obviously it’s a global conspiracy masterminded by the late hippy Steve Jobs


  110. Mind you, Andy, Gish galloper’s do gush.


  111. Andy and Berneil, you have not followed up with a description of the issues you wished to relate. Perhaps my explanations have been sufficient for you?

    However, there is a lot of crap about Marcott’s paper being promoted in the climate change denier echo chamber and I urge anyone that wants to approach this issue in good faith to actually look at the original paper (I have a copy of the full text if anyone wants one). Also, I urge you to look at the Real Climate post “Response by Marcott et al,” where all the questions are responded to.

    The discussion on that post is also very informative, although quite technical in parts. It demonstrates the value of good faith discussion for clarification.


  112. Ken I can’t be bothered arguing with someone who refers to Judith Currys blog as part of the climate denial echo chamber. Go and find someone else to pester


  113. Uh! this is Ken’s website. You came here. So if anyone is pestering it is you.

    Why don’t you admit it you are not interested in understanding the science. You have a position and nothing will change your view.


  114. I was responding g to Kens comment directed at me. Yes I am interested in science, my mind is not made up about anything, thanks for your kind remarks nevertheless


  115. Pingback: Why Climate Change Denial Is Just Hot Air | Tim

  116. Pingback: Why Climate Change Denial Is Just Hot Air | Tim

Leave a Reply: please be polite to other commenters & no ad hominems.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s